Boring Post-Wedding Blog Post #2: Table Decor for Days

In Part 2 of my boring post-wedding recap, we get to the part I was most excited about … the DECOR! Well, excited when I wasn't paralyzed with overwhelming fear at how to put it all together. First I casually browsed some Pinterest ideas - specifically, looking at things like this and this, but THIS one is where I got my main inspiration from:

So rather than having table numbers, I decided to do drawings for each table, each one an interest of mine, or my fiancé's, or both - which lead to these:


Next I needed to figure out what ELSE to put on the table. Since we knew it'd be outside in Fall, I was happy to do minimal runners as tablecloths (plus, hello - just renting table linens, I found out, was hella expensive). For a while I considered these tablecloths from Susty Party because they were simple, cute and cheap:

But we ended up throwing out that idea as being too unpredictable in a possibly windy outdoors. We were all set doing only burlap runners until the caterer and my fiancé convinced me that the tables needed full coverage, not just for aesthetics but because the uneven, splintery wood bits might snag the guests' clothing. So now we had white tablecloths with burlap runners as our base. Good deal.

We rented stemless glasses and linen napkins from the caterer too, but instead of using their dishes we found some super cute compostable dishes from Verterra that we wanted to incorporate:

Unfortunately, they were all sold out of their cute cutlery by the time we got to them, but luckily we found this place that had a similar alternative.

Next I had to figure out how else to fill up the tables. I'd seen on Young House Love a long while back that they'd used recycled wine bottles as water/lemonade/tea servers at their wedding, and figured maybe there was some way we could use our *ahem*MASSIVE*ahem* collection of empties at ours. I didn't want to use them to serve drinks, but thought it'd be fun to have them serve as vases. I spent a LOT of time trying to use this method to soak the labels off of the bottles, while my fiancé rubbed them with olive oil and then scraped the label off. Neither method was perfect, but both eventually worked. I threw some wheat stalks in them that I found at Michael's (and kept hidden in a closet until the wedding so my cat wouldn't continue to be mesmerized by them) so voila - more table stuff.

Next I convinced my parents to pick up a zillion flameless candles they found at Costco, which ended up being not only perfect for table decor, but also for port-a-potty decor, bar decor, and now for all-over-my-house-decor. They even have remote controls and timers, so you can have a BAM ROMANTIC atmosphere greet you whenever you get home from work! (which may or may not feel appropriate EVERY day)

These things and these cinnamon-scented pine cones I also picked up at Michael's really saved the port-a-potty experience, too. You feel less like an ass asking people to use a port-a-potty on a cold November day when at least it smells like cinnamon and has some candlelight ambience.

The only thing left to throw on the tables were some mason jars, because hello - rustic wedding, of COURSE there had to be mason jars! Which turned out to be a good thing, since the metal rods I'd gotten to hold the table cards immediately fell over, and needed to be braced within a mason jar in order to stand at all. They still tended to lean off-kilter, but maybe people would assume that was on purpose. Wouldn't want the drawing of the Muppets to be perfectly straight and upright, where's the fun in that??

It was pretty funny, the caterer had some design helpers who took it upon themselves to decorate the tables for us, using gourds and tree stump things and pumpkins from the venue. But we blew in, all "HOLD YOUR HORSES, WE'VE GOT EMPTY WINE BOTTLES AND DRAWINGS OF CATS WE NEED TO USE - I HAVE A PLAN". They stared at us and our wood cutlery and fake candles, but somehow throwing everything together worked out.

Here's what the final table setup looked like:


Adventures in Hand Lettering

I loooooove hand lettering. I'm obsessed with how messy and flawed and carefully crafted it looks.

I think I've been obsessed with hand lettering since before I realized it, back when I used to inhale as many Baby-Sitters Club books as I could. And what did they have every time there was a super special combined book that featured every BSC member getting their own chapter? A sample of their hand-writing!

Although I was a preteen and therefore kind of stuck in Stacey hand writing mode for a while - upright curvy letters and circles dotting the i's - I slowly gravitated toward Dawn's more tilted, casual script. Eventually it evolved into the messy, unattractive handwriting I still hold onto today, crafted by years of taking notes in college and work meetings. Speed became way more important than how it looked. I've never been a fan of my own handwriting, but lately I've gotten sick of how much it's devolved and have been consciously trying to spruce it up.

And what better excuse for testing out some handwriting skills? Wedding invitations, of course!

When we first started planning the wedding, I knew invitation design was one of the few things I'd really get into (not terrified by, such as catering and venue holding and money spending). The invitations themselves were cobbled together in a collection of handwriting-like fonts (I'll post those post-wedding -- actually there's a BUNCH of stuff about the wedding I will be posting once it's all over and I can get back to breezy, casual reality!) because I was too chicken to try my pen at them, but I decided to just go for the gusto with the envelopes.


That's right, no pencilling beforehand, straight up ink! I wanted some way of combining the big and the swoopy with the thin and straight - so I decided on swoopy for the people, and organized for the address. However, it wasn't long before I abandoned doing the address part and outsourced that to my fiancee - he was much more concerned with being neat than I was, and it was way more fun to make it a team event.

I was quite pleased with the messy result, and it was so much fun I decided to extend it to the table decor as well. I knew I wanted each table to hold a drawing of one of our interests. At first I envisioned (as I usually do when starting a project) that the drawings would be very neat, precise, and I would draw with very thin, detailed, simple lines using only a tiny Micron pen. Of course that didn't happen, because like most things I do I end up working larger and messier than I plan and things take on a loud, weird life of their own.


So I abandoned tiny neatness and went for mimicking the swoops of the envelope handwriting. This time I used a brush pen for the swoopy, which defeated the purpose of the thin spidery lines I like, but was fun nonetheless.

Here are how some of my favorite ones turned out:


Now, I anticipate EVERYONE will want to sit at the Muppets table and I'll be the sole nerd at the Greek Mythology table . . .