Tuesday, September 23, 2014

DIY: Broquet (Make a groomsmen gift in minutes)

It's so hard to think of thank you gifts for groomsmen, especially if you don't want to stick with the typical alcohol drinks. Engraved flasks, personalized pint glasses, bottles of liquor ... those are usually what's suggested when you google groomsmen gifts.

If you want something delicious for your groomsmen, make a broquet.

Yes, broquet. It's a bouquet ... for bros.

It's really easy to DIY. You can put them together in a handful of minutes and they're really eyecatching. Plus, you can personalize them for each groomsmen.

What You'll Need:

  • Heavy mug (the heavier the better because it needs to offset the weight from the snacks)
  • Duct tape
  • Scissors
  • Styrofoam cup
  • Chopsticks (you could use skewers instead, but they might be a little long)
  • Snacks (chocolate, chips, cookies, Cracker Jacks ... whatever your guys like)

What You'll Do:

Squeeze one Styrofoam cup, upside down, into the heavy mug.

Duct tape the snacks to a chopstick.

Stick the chopstick either into the cup or into the space between the cup and mug. You'll want to vary where you stick these based on size and weight (big heavy stuff goes in the back, short light stuff goes in the front).

What worked best for me was sticking them all on the chopsticks and then arranging them. I had originally tried to do them one at a time, but in the time it took to duct tape a second chopstick, the first item would lean. It was a pain in the neck. When I did it all at once, everything was able to lean on everything else and I could really arrange it better. This is so solid and I have no fear of anything leaning and dragging down the rest of the broquet.

It's so easy. This one cost me $10 to make and I grabbed everything (even the duct tape) at the dollar store. The more you make, the cheaper each will be. Why? Take an item like the peanuts. There were six in the pack I bought, but only two packages really fit in the broquet. So for $1, you can make three. The animal cookies had four in a pack; the Cracker Jacks were three in a pack; the Nature Valley granola bars were two in a pack. Spread those over multiple broquets and you are spending less.

The mug I used comfortably held eight chopsticks worth of items. You have to keep in mind that some of the items are bulky (like the filled pretzel bag I bought) so it will take up more space.

Imagine having a bunch of these all lined up for your groomsmen. They will be really eyecatching and your groomsmen will absolutely love all the snacks. What guys don't love food?

BRIDAL BABBLE: What would you add to these for your groomsman?

Friday, September 19, 2014

Favor Friday: Drink Koozies

Before moving south, I never used a koozie. Ever. Which is just ridiculous because they're brilliant inventions. I mean, they sit on your drink and keep it cold. I spent years walking around outside with a naked water bottle as it got warm.

When we got married, I wanted to give out koozies as a rehearsal dinner favor. I thought it would be such an amazing idea. It was something I picked up in North Carolina, and since our wedding was in the Tar Heel State, it was perfect. Once we started planning, though, we decided to do an open bar at the rehearsal dinner ... which meant water from a tap and beer from a keg. There were no bottles, so no use for koozies. I loved the idea a lot, but had to scrap it.

So when I decided to create Favor Friday posts (with the thumbs up from many of you on Facebook), I knew I had to start with drink koozies.

I stumbled over mustache ones (which I love because I just love stuff with either owls or mustaches), but those weren't very wedding friendly. So I stuck with ones that were wedding themed and available for purchase (there are cute Etsy listings on Pinterest that are out of stock, so I skipped ones like that) and came up with my top six.

Photo credit
The Eat Drink And Be Married koozies are really cute, simple, and right to the point. Being black and white means they can match any theme, although they look best with a chalkboard theme. Personally, I love multiple fonts in the koozie. We were planning to go that route, had we made these.

Purchase here for $15.60 a dozen ($1.75 each).

Photo credit

This wedding-themed koozie set is the only one of this set that isn't uniform. It comes with six different pictures: two text only and four mismatched images. Three are pink, two are blue, and one is purple. For someone like me, who had a wedding-specific need for things to be very uniform, this absolutely wouldn't work. But for someone who doesn't like matchy-matchy things, this set is perfect.

Purchase here for $18 for six ($3 each).

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When I was thinking about koozies, I planned them to say, "To have and to hold and to keep your drink cold." Isn't it great that Oriental Trading already sells To Have And Hold can covers. It means you can just order them online instead of finding someone to design these for you.

Purchase here for $20 for 50 ($.40 each).

Photo credit

If you want something that's a little more "you," check out these personalized photo can covers from Oriental Trading. You can choose from fifteen colors, then personalize it with your one-letter monogram on one side and a photo, names, and date on the other side. This is a great way to get a second use out of your engagement photos (if you've paid for them, you definitely want to use them as often as you can and get your money's worth).

Purchase here for $21 for 10 ($2.10 each).

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If you want to do the personalized route, Etsy is the way to go. I picked this City & State wedding koozie as an example (solely because it was of North Carolina and that's what ours would have looked like if we made them, although the heart would be more southeast). You can find a ton of Etsy that will match your style. Just remember, complete personalization can get pricey, so keep that in mind.

Purchase here for $89 for 25 ($3.56 each).

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And, believe it or not, there's an entire site dedicated to wedding koozies. I found this Something Brewed koozie on a site called, quite simply, Totally Wedding Koozies. You can purchase can coolers and bottle sleeves in a variety of materials. The site has a ridiculous amount of designs for everything wedding (there are ones for engagements, save the dates, weddings, anniversaries, bridal parties, and more). You can choose one of their pre-made designs or upload your own. For someone who is a little more hands on, this is the way to go.

Purchase here. Prices vary greatly based on quantity and product.

For more favor ideas, check out our favors link. If you're curious, check out what we had as our bridal shower favor and wedding favor.

BRIDAL BABBLE: What do you think about koozies as a favor?

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Disney Is Making A Frozen Wedding Dress (Check out the sketch!)

I've never seen Frozen. I know the song "Let It Go" is very popular among little kids, but I've never heard it in its entirety. In fact, the only time I've really heard the song is when my Facebook friends post videos of their kids singing it.

No kids, so I've been living in a a Frozen-free zone.

I know the girls are Anna and Elsa and one of them wants to build a snowman. Small aside: Do they build a snowman? Anyone know? Because I don't. I also don't know if anyone actually finds Nemo in Finding Nemo because I fell asleep before the ending and never decided to finish it.

These are questions I probably need answered before we decide to have children. But the question I need answered right now is: Would you want to wear a Frozen-themed wedding dress.

Photo credit

Disney Weddings is pairing with designer Alfred Angelo to create a Frozen dress as part of the 2015 Disney Fairy Tale Weddings by Alfred Angelo collection.

Now, before you hit pause on this idea because it sounds a little extreme, this collaboration isn't being started just for Frozen. The 2014 collection has dresses with a style for all your favorite princesses: Cinderella, Jasmine, Snow White, Tiana, Sleeping Beauty, Ariel, Rapunzel, and Belle. I'm in love with this Cinderella dress, which looks nothing like the blue dress I remember her wearing in the movie.

The rumor is the Frozen gown will actually be blue, which is something I'm not completely a fan of. I love white dresses, can accept ivory dresses, and wouldn't try on anything colored. I did see a bride-to-be fall in love with a green Vera Wang dress while I was dress shopping, so it's definitely a style for some people. I'm just not that person.

The dresses on the site run between $999 and $1,399, which is a lot less than some of the boutiques I went into when I was dress shopping. The James Clifford that I originally liked was $2,700 if I bought the sample. So these Disney dresses are pretty reasonable. Plus, you can pair them with the Disney Princess engagement rings everyone was gaga over not too long ago.

BRIDAL BABBLE: Would you wear a blue dress as a bride?

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

DIY Tissue Paper Tassel Garland (Make in minutes! No gluing or sewing needed!)

When we were looking at wedding venues, I knew I wanted one that was "move in ready." I didn't want something that I had to do a lot to. I wanted a venue that does weddings all the time and had the decor to back it up. I didn't want to rent tables, I didn't want to worry about napkins, I didn't want to think about recessed lighting.

We picked a venue on the beach (instantly the "outside" was taken care of) that has sixty-odd weddings a year. There was a lot we didn't have to do, as far as decor goes, and I was super happy with that. See, everyone in our bridal party lives up north, so it was just Pete and I down here in North Carolina putting everything together. And decor that I would have created would have been made on an assembly line of two, so I opted against any DIY decor.

But yesterday, my Twitter friend Sarah asked if I had a photo of a tassel garland. I didn't ... but I also didn't think it could be that complicated to put together. So I grabbed some twine and tissue paper and my assembly line of two (although I swapped Pete for my kitten Totes) to see what I could do. To my surprise, I had one for her in a handful of minutes.

I was actually shocked at how easily this came together. It took me about ten minutes, start to finish, and that included taking these step by step photos and chasing away my very curious cat. Plus, there's no gluing or sewing involved, which makes it so much easier.

What You'll Need:

What You'll Do:

Fold your tissue paper into six to eight sections (depending on the size of the paper).

Cut it into strips.

Fold a strip in half, then cut strips about two-thirds of the way up. Remember to cut from the "open" side of the paper. Four strips (so three cuts) was the perfect size for me.

String the "folded" side onto a piece of twine.

Scrunch the top of the tissue paper, then twist to create a "knot.' I twisted one and a half rotations and it felt really secure. It's been hanging all afternoon and I haven't worried about any tassels falling down.

Repeat with another pieces until your garland is complete. It took seven tassels to cover 23 inches of space, if you're looking for numbers. From knot to knot is about two inches, give or take. I liked that because it gives the bottom of the tassels enough room to billow out and not get cramped and lost. Plus, if you have them right on top of each other, you'll use more tissue (which means it will cost you more).

I rotated between purple and white (because that's what I had on hand). You could make yours all one color, all mutli-colored, whatever fits your theme best. I actually love how it looks hanging up in our living room.

I sent the photo to Sarah, and she turned it into a cute photo (so of course, I had to post it).

Technically a collab with @sweetsassdesign
For something I just threw together in my spare minutes while I was waiting for my coffee to brew with items I already had lying around at home, I'm pretty impressed. DIY isn't as intimidating as you might thing.

BRIDAL BABBLE: What decor items are you going to try to DIY?
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