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Posts Tagged ‘wedding’

One year ago today, J and I were married.

sparklers

sparklers

sparklers

We wanted our wedding to be a comfortable, fun, local, organic, vintage inspired party. To this end, J grew all of our wedding flowers in our community garden plot. Our bouquets and arrangements included zinnias, black eye susans, bells of ireland, snapdragons, and hosta leaves.

Justin with flowers at the garden

hanging jar of flowers

We used my grandparent’s cake topper for our chocolate cake. It was looking a little yellowed on the bottom, so I sewed it a little pleated skirt!

vintage wedding cake topper

We strung up photos from our time together, as well as family photos along the porch for people to look at.

Wedding Photos

Simon served as our ring bearer. He really knows how to steal the show! I also upcycled my wedding dress– it was the same dress my sister wore the year before, but I had it altered to look like a new (and different!) dress.

Playing with Simon at the wedding

Filmstrip quilt backdrop

I designed and made our save the dates and wedding invitations. They included sewn on mini bunting, and I made matching full sized flags to hang on the porch where we held our reception and over the outdoor altar where we held our ceremony.

Self designed save-the-date

Ceremony site

I made quilts for our friends and family in the wedding party, and used this as an excuse to sharpen my quilting skills!

Stack of wedding quilts

Stacked coins quilt

Filmstrip quilt

zigzag quilt

Striped Wedding Quilt

Striped Wedding Quilt

We used one quilt in particular as a backdrop for our outdoor photo booth. I love seeing this quilt in all of these photos! I want to make another like it. I’m also so glad we thought to have a dry erase board and markers available for guests to write us messages in the photos– these turned out to be my favorite of all of our wedding pics!

Filmstrip quilt backdrop

Filmstrip quilt backdrop

I really can’t believe it’s been a whole year! Time flies when you have a good partner. Love you, J! I’m so excited for the rest of our years together.

family portrait

*** Here are links to the posts I’ve previously written about the things we made for our wedding.***
Things we made, reused, and grew:
Save the Dates

Invitations

Vintage Cake Topper

Photobooth

Home Grown Flowers

Handmade Gifts:
* Birdie Sling bags can be found here and here
* Stacked coins quilt
* Filmstrip Quilt (which can also be seen as our photobooth backdrop, here)
* Striped Quilts can be found here, here, and here

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flowers on the kitchen table, being made into arrangements

For our wedding this past summer, J and I decided to grow all of our own wedding flowers. It was a big undertaking, and I know it’s not for everyone, but we decided to take it on because it was in line with what matters to us. We didn’t want to spend a lot of $ on flowers, and we wanted them to be grown locally to reduce the amount of fuel needed to ship them. We also didn’t want flowers that had been covered in pesticides and chemicals, so growing them ourselves seemed like the way to go. J has been getting a plot at the community garden to grow his organic veggies, and this year he got a full plot instead of a half plot so we’d have plenty of room for flower beds. He researched which kinds would look good together in bouquets, and which would thrive in our environment. He chose zinnias, snapdragons, and bells of Ireland. We also tried to grow some dwarf sunflowers, but something else thought they’d be a tasty snack, so they didn’t make it to the wedding.

Here’s a photo of J with our buckets of harvested flowers a few days before the wedding.

Justin with flowers at the garden

We brought them home, and with the help of my mom and sisters, turned them all into bouquets and arrangements for the tables.

bouquets at the wedding

We used shepherds hooks to hang small jars of flowers along the aisle for the ceremony. We were lucky to be able to borrow vintage blue glass canning jars from my sister’s in-laws to hold all of the flowers. It was the perfect blend of local, fresh, and vintage that we were going for.

hanging jar of flowers

Plus, we have had bouquets all summer long– in fact, we harvested the last few flowers this past weekend. It was sad to see the plants go, after all the time and energy we put into them this year, but I know we’ll be able to grow them again, and J is going to try to harvest some of the seeds, so our wedding flowers will be their own sort of heirloom.

family portrait

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Filmstrip quilt backdrop

One of the reasons I wanted to make quilts as gifts for people in our wedding was that I realized these could double as decoration. Our wedding was picnic-themed, and the dancing, games, and general partying happened on a large, covered porch and open lawn area off the reception hall. We hung the quilts all along the porch, and one in particular– the filmstrip quilt (which I first blogged about here) served as the backdrop for our “photobooth.” We had our photographer set up a camera where anyone could get their photo taken, and we set up sparklers and a dry-erase board so people could write a message or have some fun in their pictures. Here are a few of my faves.

Filmstrip quilt backdrop

Filmstrip quilt backdrop

Filmstrip quilt backdrop

Before the wedding I had seen a number of other weddings featuring a setup similar to ours– open camera and an invitation for guests to take photos. There were a few I kept going back to for inspiration, including this, this, and this. For a long time I thought about using a large piece of fabric like many others had, but once I formed my plan to make so many quilts, I knew a quilt backdrop would be perfect.

Filmstrip quilt backdrop

Filmstrip quilt backdrop

And, of course, Simon managed to sneak his way into some pictures.

Filmstrip quilt backdrop

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Striped Wedding Quilt #3

Striped Wedding Quilt

For the last fabric-strip quilt, I wanted to incorporate lots of bold, bright colors. For this quilt, I used some of my favorite prints, including Sandi Henderson’s farmer’s market line.

I backed the quilt in Heather Bailey’s zig zag fabric, which I believe is from the pop garden line. I think this is out of print now, but I picked up a bunch when it was on clearance at the local fabric shop, and I’m so glad I did. I love it as backing for a quilt!

Striped Wedding Quilt

Birdie sling bag and apple stripe quilt

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Our wedding invitations followed the same basic pattern as the save-the-dates. I wanted the look to be consistent, and to reflect what we were planning for the wedding.

Our self designed wedding invitation

The bee and the grass were both stamps that I purchased on etsy. I didn’t stamp each invitation individually, because I wanted a uniform and professional look for them. Instead, I stamped a few bees and a few grasses, and scanned them into my computer. I edited them to be the right size and color, and pasted them into the word doc where I designed the rest of the invitation. It was easy to print them all out at once this way, and I didn’t have to worry about hand stamping each one perfectly.
The invitations included a pocket-fold back, to which I added a light green, shiny invitation mat, and then on top of that went the cream cardstock invitation. As with the save-the-dates, I printed these at home, and sewed the flags on each one with my sewing machine. I had a little help this time– I took the invitations home with me for a visit to my parent’s house, and my sisters spent an evening laying out the flags, so I could just run them all through the machine.

Our envelopes and pocketfolds were shiny green

We chose a pocketfold invitation

Sewing flags to paper or cardstock is incredibly easy– I didn’t even glue these down or fasten them to the paper in any way, I just made sure they were positioned correctly as they made their way towards the needle. One thing to remember, though, is once you’ve sewn through paper with a needle, you don’t want to use it on fabric, as it becomes dull FAST. I keep my “used” needles in a separate section of my sewing case so I can use them just for this.
I was really happy with how these came out. They were a lot of work, but it was important to me that they fit my aesthetic, and that they were hand-made.

Our self designed wedding invitation

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My quilting story

Wedding quilts in the grass

It is about time that I get to blogging about some of the quilts I have made over the last 8 or so months!

Stack of wedding quilts

I took up quilting right around December of 2009. It is something I had been thinking about doing for a LONG time, and I was finally ready. I started by making a small quilt for my dog, Simon, just to get a feel for piecing, basting, and quilting. I call it the “puppy quilt,” and it was a great practice. I then made the spectrum quilt that is hanging in my office at work. That was my first experience with free motion quilting, and I was hooked.

Stack of wedding quilts

Next, I came up with a crazy plan to make quilts for a friend getting married in May, for both of my sisters who were graduating from grad school and high school in May, and then for my friends and family who were in our wedding in July. Total count: 9 full quilts in about 7 or so months. The learning curve was steep, but I made it through, and now feel pretty confident in my ability to quilt.

Stack of wedding quilts

I learned by reading books and blogs, and following well-documented tutorials on some of my favorite blogs. I think I’ll dedicate a separate post to these resources soon!

Stack of wedding quilts

I also plan to blog about all of these quilts separately in the upcoming weeks, with more details on each. In short, I made a mixtape quilt, a filmstrip quilt, a zigzag quilt, a stacked coins quilt, a deconstructed 9-patch quilt, a basic squares quilt, and 3 striped throw quilts.

Stack of wedding quilts

Even now, just writing about all of them I’m overwhelmed that I was able to finish all of this in the lead-up to the wedding (in addition to all the other planning and crafting). I also am glad that I’m now able to turn to some projects for myself– I got used to having all of those quilts around, and my living room feels pretty empty now!

Stack of wedding quilts and bags

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Save the date

Self designed save-the-date

One of the things I was most excited about for our wedding was all of the design I had a chance to do. From the time we picked out our picnic theme, I knew I wanted to incorporate a sense of fun and color into the save the dates and invitations. I also wanted a vintage-y feel, so I sorted through a number of old-fashioned typewriter fonts to come up with the perfect one for us.

I designed these in microsoft word, and printed them on a heavy, textured cardstock on my printer at home. I then used my paper cutter to slice them up, and sewed little fabric flags onto each one. Sewing the flags became a little tedious after a while, but I didn’t mind too much, because I was so happy with how these turned out.
Closeup of sewn flags

Before I began, I took all of the fabrics I had bought for the wedding (a number of Heather Bailey, Amy Butler, and other assorted bright, fun prints) and cut a small strip, which I then cut down into small triangles for flags. I used these fabrics for a number of wedding projects to have a somewhat consistent palate, and I have more projects (including quilts!) I’ll be blogging about soon 🙂

Extra mini flags!

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Our Picnic-Themed Wedding

Simon running in the Latchfords yard

When J and I started to plan our wedding, we knew that choosing a theme would help us tie everything together. We thought a bit about what kind of feeling we wanted to evoke with our day, and the words that came to mind were “relaxing,” “laid-back,” “comfortable,” and “fun”! We quickly realized that we wanted our wedding to have picnic feel, including festive activities like lawn games, s’mores, sparklers, and flags. We wanted everything to be outdoors, and we generally wanted our guests to be able to kick back, relax, and have a genuinely good time.

The Latchfords barn

I thought back to a picnic-campout we were at a couple of years ago for my brother-in-law’s birthday. We went to his parents house in Pennsylvania, and we all had a great time eating, drinking, playing games, and hanging out around the fire.

Picnic for Matt's birthday

Simon especially loved this trip, as it was his first encounter with a goat.

Simon having a staredown with the goat

He is never sure what to make of non-canine animals. It cracks me up.

The Latchfords goat

Anyway, once we had our picnic theme chosen, a lot of details began to fall into place. We formulated a plan to design our own save the dates, invitations, gifts for our wedding party and families, and activities for the party. I’ll be talking about all of these things in upcoming posts, so stay tuned!

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July 2010 wedding quilts 085

One thing I didn’t mention in the last post about the birdie sling bag was what fabrics I chose to use for the interior. I think picking out the fabric is one of the best parts of starting a new project (and probably explains why I have so MUCH fabric in my house!), and it was so fun to put together these fabrics. I used the lemon print, as I liked the brightness it brought to the bags. I also used more light blue nicey jane, as it tied in with both of the bags.

July 2010 wedding quilts 082

One of the things I was most excited about, though, was a special little pocket I added to the interior of my sister Lindsay’s bag. Lindsay got married last summer, and when I began planning my wedding with an eye towards keeping things eco-friendly and affordable, she offered me her wedding dress to cut up and to use as I’d like. I had the dress tailored to fit me, and had some significant changes made to it so it didn’t look quite the same. I had it shortened to a tea length, and added straps and a green sash. In shortening the dress, the tailor had a small bit of fabric left over, and I took it home with me, thinking about how I could re-purpose it and return it to my sister in a new form. It was such a small piece (only about 5 inches tall by 12 inches wide), so it couldn’t really stand alone as it’s own little project. While piecing the pockets of the bags, though, I realized I could easily turn it into a little reinforced square pocket inside her bag. It would be a private little touch that only she would know about, and I love returning goods to their original owners in a different form. Here’s the little pocket, all sewn into the finished bag:

July 2010 wedding quilts 086

I love when stuff comes full circle.

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July 2010 wedding quilts 088

I decided early on that I wanted to make as many of the gifts we gave to people for helping us with the wedding as possible. I also liked how thinking along these lines allowed me to indulge in buying some of my favorite fabrics! I had been eyeing Heather Bailey’s new line of Nicey Jane fabrics since before they came out this past winter, and I knew I wanted to use some in my crafting.

July 2010 wedding quilts 111

While I did find multiple uses for the fabric in wedding related crafts, these were a few of my favorite gifts to make. For many people in the wedding I made quilts, but for my 2 sisters I wanted to make something else (as I had just given them both quilts as graduation gifts in May).

July 2010 wedding quilts 187

I decided to use Amy Butler’s pattern called the Birdie Sling Bag. I must say, I think they came out rather well!

July 2010 wedding quilts 017

This was the first time I used a real pattern to make something– I am very used to winging it when I sew and craft, so having pieces to cut out with an actual template was really new! I also had never used interfacing before, and had no idea how to do things like pleats or gussets. I am feeling very accomplished now, and can’t wait to make myself a nicey jane birdie bag!

I headed to a local park where there’s an old mill to take these photos. I think all hand-made gifts are deserving of such a lovely background for their photoshoot.

July 2010 wedding quilts 007

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