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Posts Tagged ‘ideas’

Vases to outshine your flowers

In Decoration, Flowers on May 7, 2009 at 2:39 pm

The cost of wedding flowers is an outrage. It’s a science fact. Luckily though, you can make up for any paucity of flowers, dodgy DIY centrepieces or lack of floral complexity by  the clever use of containers. Here’s the Credit Crunch Bride’s guide to vases to outshine your flowers:

1. The single stem vase. Elegant AND built for those with a very tight flower budget? This is as good as a baby without the childbirth.

Put single tall blooms in single stem vases for maximum dramatic effect

Put single tall blooms in single stem vases for maximum dramatic effect

2. Apothecary bottles a.k.a chemist’s bottles. These are perfect for the shabby chic look. For proper collectibles go here or here, otherwise you can pick them up on eBay for about a pound a pop.

Apothecary bottles

Apothecary bottles

3. Vintage bottles – Perfume bottles, old coca cola bottles, whatever the junk shop offers really.

4. Teapots. If you’re hesitating over doing that Alice in Wonderland theme, this could be the tipping point.

Teapots give flair to any floral arrangement, not matter how messy

Teapots give flair to any floral arrangement, not matter how messy

5. Jam jars. No country wedding is complete without wild flowers in jam jars.

6. Tin cans wrapped in pretty paper. An ultra low budget option for the baked bean eating bride.

7. Tureens and silver cups.Not necessarily cheap, but certainly cool.

No rose can look average in a silver goblet.

No rose can look average in a silver goblet.

8. Mismatching vintage vases. See Style Me Pretty’s eBay finds.

With this outrageously over-priced ring, I thee wed

In Rings on April 24, 2009 at 10:44 pm

Ladies, a ring is a symbol of your love and commitment. It’s not an exact replica. A big rock does not mean he loves you more, neither is it physical proof of how valuable you are in this world. If you’ve chosen to marry the man you love rather than a balding billionaire, you may have to compromise a little in the one carat diamond stakes.

Hand made ring made by manipulating the silver while molten

Hand made ring made by manipulating the silver while molten

Best starting point is to dare to be different. If you insist on a platinum ring with a single solitaire diamond (brilliant cut, natch) and then a matching platinum wedding band, the Wedding Industrial Complex will make you pay big time. Diamonds are not the only stone; platinum is not the only metal.

Concrete rings surely must symbolise permanence. From 22designstudio

Concrete rings surely must symbolise permanence. From 22designstudio

Here’s some less eye-wateringly expensive, alternative ring choices:

1. Don’t wear one. My mother never wore one, and has managed being married for 34 years and counting. Indeed when I was a child, she once told me rings were symbols of slavery (she’s since denied this).

2. Yellow gold is very fashion forward. For some it’s the metal of grannies and gypsies, but it’s half the price of platinum, hardwearing and is making a come-back in the fashion world.

3. White gold. This is basically gold with a coating. You may need to get it re-coated at points, but it’s still cheaper than platinum.

4. Titanium. If you’re an active woman, or star frequently as one of the rollerblading, sports-loving extras in tampax adverts, you may want an unbreakable, unscratchable, lightweight, titanium ring. It also happens to be easy on the credit card.

Titanium. If it works in hip replacements, you know its forever.

Titanium. If it works in hip replacements, you know it's forever.

5. Go vintage. Portobello Market in London has a series of antique jewellery stalls which have hand-cut Victorian diamonds bigger than your iris for much less than a new diamond.

5. Use your engagement ring as a wedding ring as well. The ground will not open up and swallow you up if you have just one wedding band not two.

6. Try semi-precious stones. See my earlier post on this.

7. Choose an unusual cut or design. What your ring lacks in expense, it makes up for in imagination.Make it round, marquise, emerald, princess, radiant or pear.

8. Embrace flaws. A slightly yellow diamond or one with a tiny flaw goes down in the gemology ratings. If you want a big rock, just get a flawed one. No one will know, unless you’re in a habit of whipping out your gemology certificate and pointing at the clarity rating your stone has. Anyway, slightly coloured diamonds have more character.

Lighting your way to a chic wedding venue

In Decoration on April 23, 2009 at 6:00 am

It’s the interior designer’s most famous secret – you can turn any interior into a haven of chic with some decent mood lighting. Turn even the most grim of village halls into welcoming place with some clever lighting. Here’s how:

1. Sack off overhead lighting. It makes everyone look ugly and no one wants to feel like they’re in a Topshop changing room.

2. Fairy lights work wonders. Make your own DIY flower fairy lights here.

Cherry blossom fairy lights could replace flowers at tables for evening weddings

Cherry blossom fairy lights could replace flowers at tables for evening weddings

3. Tea lights are cheap as chips and far less calorific. Hang them in jam jars outside for a higgedly piggedly country knees-up effect.

Cute AND wind-proof? Whatever next.

Cute AND wind-proof? Whatever next.

If wind is an issue, you could even go for LED fairy lights and make pretty covers for them, like this.

Make your own tea light covers (involves putting glued thread in the microwave)

Make your own tea light covers (involves putting glued thread in the microwave)

4. Church candles at every table create a feeling of opulence. Find them at online bulk discount stores like Candles on the web, Covent Garden Candles or for the Americans, Barn Loft Candles, though watch out you get decent ones not spluttery ones with wicks which burn too fast. Read the Independent article on church candles here.

Pillar candles at different heights. And a birdcage. It's lighting nirvana.

Pillar candles at different heights. And a birdcage. It's lighting nirvana.

5. Paper lanterns create soft, warm lighting, and are financially-friendly, easy to put up and even easier to take down afterwards.

Pack the ceiling with paper lanterns for a many mooned feel.

Pack the ceiling with paper lanterns for a many mooned feel.

6. Sparklers are a perfect end-of-the-night treat and create cutelicious photos.

One, two, three, aaaaaaaaaaaah.

Wedding cake for the Nouveau Poor

In cake on April 1, 2009 at 3:21 pm

If you don’t fancy handing over a wild amount of crisp notes to a wedding baker, then a home made cake is the way to go. The secret is to avoid the traditional…

1. The Rainbow Cake – Cut through the white icing to reveal rainbow sponge. This is modern day genius.

OMG, simply the most awesome wedding cake on the planet.

OMG, simply the most awesome wedding cake on the planet.

Making rainbow cake

Making rainbow cake

Find out how to make it here.

2. Big balloons, tiny cake. The cutting of the cake isn’t really about cake. It’s about drama. Create an exciting cake environment, and no one will notice the frugality of your actual cake.

Big balloons, tiny cake

Big balloons, tiny cake

3. No cake. Really, you wont spontaneously combust if you don’t have cake.

4. Sweetie Bar. Or, as the Americans say, a candy bar. You could sack off the cake, and have your photo taken opening the Sweetie Bar by cutting a ribbon with an ornate pair of scissors. It could be called The Opening of The Sweetie Bar Ceremony.

The Sweetie Bar a.k.a The Candy Bar

The Sweetie Bar a.k.a The Candy Bar

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Credit crunch wedding cake