Handmade wedding in Virginia: Katie + John

Categories   Real Weddings

When it comes to planning a wedding, we’re all for sticking behind the idea of “Spend as little as possible”. That’s exactly why we applaud today’s super thrifty and resourceful bride. With no budget set in mind, except for wanting to stay true to the above motto, Katie + John threw a 70 guest wedding, adorable DIY projects and all, for $10,000. This completely handmade wedding captured by Jodi Miller Photography is sure to get your creative juices flowing.

handmade wedding in virginia

handmade wedding in virginia

All paper goods were made by Katie herself. The invitations, programs, menus, signage – you name it! By the end of this you’re going to be asking yourself, “What didn’t Katie make?”.  On top of that, Katie played it smart with her entire outfit. Get this – Her dress from David’s Bridal was $450 + altercations, $600. Her bright shoes (seen below) were bought at Off Broadway Shoe Wearhouse, earrings at Target, and her veil on eBay, making her total for accessories $50. Add it all together and what do you get? An entire look for just under $700! High-fives are in order.

handmade wedding in virginia

That adorable burlap flower in her hair, that she sewed together herself using left over burlap from her table runners, saved her $50 that she would have spent on a real flower that would have wilted away after day was over. We’ve got a creative gal on our hands!

handmade wedding in virginia

handmade wedding in virginia

I really wanted the programs to be fun and unique, not something people would just toss after the ceremony. Knowing how much our families enjoy puzzles, I created a crossword puzzle and word search that featured clues about my fiance and I. All the paper I used came from Paper and More and had everything else assembled at Kinkos. After working so hard on them, it was so rewarding to actually see everyone working on the puzzles during the reception!

handmade wedding in virginia

“In My Life” by The Beatles played as their processional song and as you can see tears were flowing once Katie met her man to say their “I Do’s”.

Listen to it here:

handmade wedding in virginia

Ok, we’re thinking every wedding needs to have a parade (if your reception location is within walking distance, of course). Katie + John armed their guests with kazzos and handmade ribbon wands, and together paraded a celebratory march to the reception. The kazzos were ordered from Oriental Trading and all the ribbon to make the wands was from the Dollar Tree.

handmade wedding in virginia

I was really excited about our card catalog escort cards. I have always loved libraries and books so I knew I wanted to incorporate something library themed into our wedding. I ended up typing the escort cards out on my vintage Royal typewriter a week before the wedding. The call number “090407” stood for the anniversary of our first kiss.

handmade wedding in virginia

handmade wedding in virginia

One of the biggest cost savers was DIYing our flowers. I was kind of apprehensive about doing them ourselves, but it turned out to be pretty easy! We only spent around $450 dollars on the flowers used in 12 centerpieces, two altar arrangements, about 15 small mason jars worth of random arrangements, three bridesmaid bouquets, and a bridal bouquet. I’m also really happy (and proud) to say that the $450 dollar floral budget included my favorite flower…peonies! By buying local I got peonies for $19.99 for TEN stems. I cut even more out of our flower budget by sewing boutonnieres and corsages (see adorable image below).

handmade wedding in virginia

handmade wedding in virginia

Our guests had no idea where our cupcakes were from and still don’t believe me when I tell them that we got them at Sam’s Club. We spent $36 dollars on 90 cupcakes. Sam’s club has the BEST cupcakes…we get them for birthdays every year. They’re so moist and delicious.

handmade wedding in virginia

handmade wedding in virginia

If their wedding doesn’t get you excited and reassures you that a budget shouldn’t restrict your creativity, we don’t know what will. We’re simply in love with all the heart Katie put into every detail. Thanks for sharing so much helpful information to your fellow Cakelets, Katie! Congrats to you and John!

*We don’t think this has ever happened before, but today is also Katie’s birthday, so a very Happy Birthday to her!

Photography: Jodi Miller Photography / Dress: David’s Bridal / Veil: Venus Veils on eBay / Shoes: Sam & Libby from Off Broadway Shoe Warehouse / Flower in hair: Sewn by bride / Groom: Jos A. Bank / Bridesmaid dresses: David’s Bridal / Flower girl dress: Macy’s / Coordination:  Ashley of Coast Couture /Stylist:  Lynn of Sunshowers and Rainshine / Ceremony Venue:  Nelson House / Reception Venue:  Freight Shed / Hair:  Animare Aveda Salon / Makeup:  Candi Valentine / Officiant:  Dawn Kenny / Caterer:  Green Leafe Catering / Cupcakes:  Sam’s Club / Linens/Rentals:  ABZ Rentals

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Social Love

Nicole H. on Jul 14, 2011

I love all the homemade details and how in love the happy couple look! Very beautiful!

birdie to be on Jul 14, 2011

Very sweet wedding! Beautiful touches... like those table settings! Gorgeous!

Caroline on Jul 14, 2011

FINALLY a Virginia wedding near me! I live in Williamsburg and have always loved Yorktown. I've considered this location as a potential venue, but have never seen it utilized. The Freight Shed has officially moved to the top of my list.

Designs Good on Jul 14, 2011

What a lovely wedding--so many thoughtful touches. It's homemade, but still so elegant. I'm going to have to try those Sam's Club cupcakes!

jenn {bow tie & bustle} on Jul 14, 2011

that word search on their program is sooooo brilliant! adorable wedding! love all the crafty details!

Lady Blue on Jul 14, 2011

What a beautiful couple and wedding!!! I love interracial couples, and her creativity and effort are really extraordinary. I can't believe the whole wedding cost only 10K!

27Messes on Jul 14, 2011

The bridesmaids dresses are so unique!!!

How to Propose on Jul 14, 2011

Beautiful Wedding! These pictures turned out simply stunning and the budget that you were able to stay under is very impressive.

HiLLjO on Jul 14, 2011

Happy Birthday to the Bride. Lovin' all the burlappy goodness!

Katie on Jul 14, 2011

I just wanted to add the "Just Married" sign was made by lynn lindsay of Sunshowers and Rainshine :) Lynn also brought the beautiful desk we used as our altar and sewed a bunch of handmade flowers not pictured here.

Alicia@Charitywedding on Jul 14, 2011

She did an amazing job! The wedding was beautiful and she is a DIY pro for sure! I love the Just Married Sign and the kazoos- adorable!

Gina on Jul 14, 2011

What a beautiful wedding! There are so many truly unique details that make this wedding special. I loooove the word search on the program, the Just Married sign is perfect, card catalog as the escort cards is so clever, and not to mention the bride and groom look so happy. Nicely done to all who was involved :)

Rebecca on Jul 14, 2011

Beautiful wedding! And happy birthday Katie! Just wanted to add that I have worn that bridesmaid dress in a wedding! I got tons of compliments and no one could believe that it was from David's Bridal as it is so different :)

Maggie Santolla on Jul 14, 2011

love this. was thinking about burlap table runners as well....yours look so good, you've got me inspired!

Mel on Jul 14, 2011

My dad's from Pittsburgh but I haven't had Rita's in years. Anyone that's had it can imagine my jealousy that they served Rita's at their wedding (I live in Scotland). Such beautiful handmade touches in this wedding. The photos are stunning!

Stef on Jul 14, 2011

David's Bridal has rare gems, and those bridesmaid dresses are definitely one of them. I've looked at the style for ages, wanting a reason to need it. Your girls look lovely!

Carrie on Jul 14, 2011

Absolutely beautiful. All the details are perfect, the photography is magazine-worthy, and the couple is so cute. Congratulations!

Kim on Jul 14, 2011

Oh my goodness! This inspires me so much! I really wanted to do a lot of things myself, but gave up a little when I realized there was so much to do, but this really make me want to do everything! Katie, how did you make those amazing invites!! I really wanted to make my own as well and I just don't even know where to begin. Do you have any advice?!

betty on Jul 14, 2011

wow you're photography is amazing :)

Beauty Hairem on Jul 14, 2011

I got emotional while listening to their song. what a LOVELY wedding. I wish the both of them a happy, healthy, LONG marriage with many many babies to surround them.

Raphaelle on Jul 15, 2011

Such lovely ideas !!! Beautiful wedding.

Jen C on Jul 15, 2011

Such a beautiful wedding! I cannot believe that she did her own flowers! They look terrific! Along with all the other wonderful things she made, great job Katie!

alexis on Jul 15, 2011

B - E - A - UTIFUL!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Casey on Jul 15, 2011

Perfect! I love so many aspects! Anyone have an easy template/instructions for the cloth flowers? They are beautiful!

Claire on Jul 16, 2011

I love the details... but I think I love the tears a little more. What a beautiful celebration in every way - this one will stick in my mind I think. (For romance, for being real - and I'm almost ashamed to admit, for the brilliant idea of white personalised wedding pencils!)

Katie on Jul 17, 2011

@Kim I actually designed the invitations on PowerPoint. I just picked out a few fonts I loved on dafont.com and played around with them til I liked them :) I guess for DIY invites its best to keep them sort of simple.

Brittany on Jul 17, 2011

This is wedding has soo many cute fun ideas. I love the use of hemp, it is such a cool yet pretty fabric. And i LOVE how it was used in the bouquet with the little charms. Such a beautiful couple. My sister has a website that has craft supplies that would be great for stuff like this too, CAcraft.com

Kat on Aug 2, 2011

Where did you get the flowers? I am getting married in VA in April 2012 and am looking for good local wholesalers. thanks!

Dawn on Aug 9, 2011

Absolutely love the celebration set-up and ideas that went into this one. The ribbon & kazoo walk was a lovely way to kick off the evening party.

Donna on Aug 13, 2011

You two make a beautiful couple - almost felt like I was there with the music and fantastic lovingly handmade touches. wishing you two a lovely future together.

Rebecca Woods on Aug 17, 2011

I love, love, love the card catalog escort cards - what a creative idea!

Becky @ Ballistic Gypsy on Sep 12, 2011

Simply Breathtaking. xo

Renna Breckley on Oct 6, 2011

Thank you a lot for sharing this with all folks you really know what you're talking about! Bookmarked. Kindly additionally talk over with my website =). We could have a link trade arrangement between us!

what is a logo on Nov 13, 2011

Your write-up has verified beneficial to me. It is very informative and you are certainly very knowledgeable in this region. You might have opened my eyes to varying views on this subject with interesting and solid content.

George Berrett on Sep 19, 2012


Marlys Pitocco on Nov 16, 2012

I've been surfing online more than three hours lately, but I never found any fascinating article like yours. It's pretty value enough for me. In my view, if all web owners and bloggers made excellent content as you probably did, the net will likely be much more useful than ever before. "A winner never whines." by Paul Brown.

Holly on Apr 16, 2016

I love the Just Married sign. That is such a sweet touch, along with all the other handmade items!! So beautiful!!

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