DIY Wedding

So where does a wedding fit in with home renovation and dogs?


Good question, we are an entire family of DIYers and big fans of wet nosed, “fur- babies”. My parents not only hosted our wedding in the midst of a home renovation, but we actually had to warn off our family from bringing all their “furry kids” to the wedding. (My parent’s dog Jake did crash the reception and danced on the driveway with us in the end)

Yet, this is not your typical “show off the wedding page”on the blog, this page embodies what a DIY family can do!We just wanted to share the magnitude of awesomeness, and our appreciation of our parents hard work.

We can’t say enough, how blessed we were that my parents offered to host it at their home in Newcastle, California. They saved us tons of money, and what better to celebrate a home renovation story then host 110 people at your house? It was like a housewarming and wedding rolled into one! These two are the “originals”, our personal Mr. Miyagis of DIY renovation and home decor!

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(This is what happens when a handyman and home stager fall in love and raise a family)…Your family would host a wedding with a home renovation in progress.

Yet we pulled it off! We were literally painting walls and installing carpets a day before the big day. In fact we were all fighting for the house’s showers two hours before the ceremony.

This wedding was a major labor of love for us, our families and friends. Everyone pitched in and we wouldn’t have had such a beautiful day without the help of them all.

That all said, Kristy Weldon our fabulous photographer and her husband/artist Ted Weldon were the dynamic duo responsible for the gorgeous wedding pics intertwined with their before and afters!

Check out more beautiful and personal moments she captured (on her website):

As promised, here are the pics from the DIY/Home Renovation wedding…Its a long one but a goodie…First lets take a walk down memory lane, with the before and after pics (that way one can really appreciate the wedding pics)…

Lets start with VENUE…My parent’s bought the home as a real fixer, complete with moldy mudroom, 70’s kitchen, and popcorn ceilings. This was a down to the bones home renovation…The front of the house…Before…


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We used the front porch essentially as our “Gift Table”, guests stacked them on the chairs and steps for when they mixed and mingled before the ceremony. You can see some of the beautiful views by our videographer Frontside Films.

Before pic of the barn…Did it not scream Deliverance?OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAFTERipone pics 6-16-2013 041They repainted, added hardware,hanging pots, installed a flagstone patio, and left over stone from the porch remodel.ipone pics 6-16-2013 009Of course the newly renovated barn was the “money shot” for one of our favorite wedding photos. 120929__kristyweldonphotography_391The underpart of the Barn is actually my mom’s art studio. My dad had used reclaimed barn wood from one he’d torn down, to line the walls as well as diamond plate. He also made two bar islands out of the same reclaimed wood, pieces of granite and placed them on wheels…ipone pics 6-16-2013 053ipone pics 6-16-2013 052It worked perfectly as the bars for the wedding. 120929__kristyweldonphotography_059

Next came the Kitchen, Living room, and Guest bedrooms, “Mission Control” for all pre wedding beautification!


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The living room; shag carpets, 1970s pot belly stove, box lighting, adding square footage, it was a big job but the ‘rents and the dogs were troopers and made all this possible…AFTER…ipone pics 6-16-2013 022

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See Pre-Wedding “Mission Control” in action…T-minus 1 hour to showtime!120929__kristyweldonphotography_078(Ignore the lack of closet doors, they were still drying by go-time)120929__kristyweldonphotography_057

120929__kristyweldonphotography_022 120929__kristyweldonphotography_061 120929__kristyweldonphotography_047 120929__kristyweldonphotography_058Now on to the dress and accessories…If “say yes to the dress” taught us one thing…’Girl its all about the dress!120929__kristyweldonphotography_001(Is it wrong for the bride to drool more over the double french doors than her wedding dress?)120929__kristyweldonphotography_005



Now some wedding details, since I get these questions all the time…

The dress was David’s bridal on clearance $300, shoes $19 at Nordstrom’s the Rack, jewelry borrowed from mom (pearl bracelet, and earrings) were free. No veil, flowers or head piece, sorry maybe I’m boring but I like simplicity and would’ve probably fussed with it.

The groom and bridal party attire…


Grooms linen suit, shoes, belt, and tie were $200 from Macy’s (we were able to take advantage of a great sale). Also its a suit that can be worn again!


Groomsmen were asked to BYOC (bring your own clothes) of a white collar dress shirt, khaki pants, brown belt and brown shoes, then we supplied the vests and ties. The vests and ties were also part of their groomsmen gifts and they were buy one get one free, which was great since we had 4 groomsmen. ($75 total for 4)


120929__kristyweldonphotography_287The bridesmaids were all asked to just wear a brown dress, and it worked out beautifully! I wanted them to wear a dress they would be comfortable in and felt gorgeous, and it looked like they were!



Ring bearers and flower girls the same thing, I asked their moms to supply the dresses and outfits, with one request: that they would match the bridesmaids and groomsmen. (They pulled it off between JCPennys and a $29 David’s bridal find!) We were very cognizant of our friend’s budgets and of course the goal for the bridal party was comfort.

The Decor and Details…

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We asked our guests to sign adirondack chairs instead of a guest book. Which we later turned into back yard furniture. (see more here)

We also wanted an “indian summer/early autumn” look so we glitter bedazzled pumpkins from the parent’s garden and strategically placed them around for decor. 120929__kristyweldonphotography_401 120929__kristyweldonphotography_411

We knew we needed a focal point for where the ceremony took place, so I climbed a couple trees on my wedding day to hang a few of these…


Oddly enough we saved money by not having a formal sit down ceremony? (I guess less chairs and less hassle for caterers meant more dollars saved).We used a few chairs for the older relatives, however ours was a standing ceremony.(Sweet, short and informal just how we like it)…Yet oddly enough we heard later our guests enjoyed sitting on the back porch and sipping their cocktail? Who would’ve guessed?




The kids also ran off to the pond or watched the horsies, so we can safely say no tantrums were thrown during the ceremony.

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We gave the “Barn” bar a conversation piece, by stringing all of our old pictures with twine and clothes pins. We then attached them to the barn wood walls.


Myself and Eric’s aunt stenciled and painted all the wedding signs and table numbers out of leftover barn wood from the bar.

120929__kristyweldonphotography_400 120929__kristyweldonphotography_008 120929__kristyweldonphotography_423 I also found Goodwill frames, took out the pictures and glass to create chalk boards. 120929__kristyweldonphotography_418 120929__kristyweldonphotography_068

Our wedding was in the “sticks” so we provided a Comfort table, offering flip flops, blankets, flash lights for the walk to the car, aloe bug spray, parasols, fans, and even some glow sticks thrown into the mix.

(We were able to save bucks by buying most at the Dollar store)


Of course don’t forget the burlap…We used it strategically from dessert table decor, to “deck drapery”, to both the aisle and the table runners.

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Also we had to give a nod to the foothill wine country through the DIY table scapes. Warning: Your friends might be lushes when they can supply you with 110 corks for place card holders within a few months? (We cut them by hand with a small key hole saw blade.)


Dinner was set up on the back lawn. (What people don’t know was my poor dad had to re-sod a good portion of it, and fight off racoons from tearing it up)

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My mom, family friends, and I put the centerpieces together the night before the wedding…Super easy, green, and the guests could take the flowers home with them!120929__kristyweldonphotography_079

Another idea, a little jute and free sprigs of rosemary from the front yard go a long way for dolling up napkins.120929__kristyweldonphotography_037

Also since we love to hike and camp with the dogs, we knew trail mix in brown paper bags and a s’mores bar was mandatory. It was so nice to see everyone cozied up with blankets and their s’more kits down at the fire.


I found these fabulous stamps at Michael’s Crafts. Then for the favors, mini brown paper bags on clearance at Target. Large school lunch paper bags were used for the s’mores kits. Guests could just fill up their bag, grab a wood stick then toss them both in the fire when finished. (Great idea if you are helping with clean up after)120929__kristyweldonphotography_420 120929__kristyweldonphotography_421

The flowers…

Luckily mom previously worked for a florist and had some connections on these beautiful bouquets. However we still needed to pad the budget, so we mixed fake and bulk sunflowers from Costco to create a few of the taller arrangements ourselves. (You couldn’t even tell the difference, in the picture below)120929__kristyweldonphotography_413

Mom used a few of her holiday wreathes, I added some decor from around the house, and burlap. A little strategic wiring and we ended up with custom chair decor!120929__kristyweldonphotography_182 120929__kristyweldonphotography_183 120929__kristyweldonphotography_161

This was one of the favorite wedding details…The Dessert!


We had a “Sacramento Bakery” theme for our dessert table. Instead of the traditional wedding cake, we had desserts from our favorite Sacramento Bakeries!

You might recognize Rick’s Dessert Diner, Ettore’s, Freeport Bakery, and Icing on the cupcake! It was also much cheaper to provide several options versus one cake. One hint, it helps to have fabulous in-laws willing to pick them all up from different locations on wedding day…We also found these lovely metal tins at Walmart to display all the goodies. 120929__kristyweldonphotography_532 120929__kristyweldonphotography_524120929__kristyweldonphotography_529 120929__kristyweldonphotography_528

Lastly we danced the night away on my parent’s driveway with cafe lights strung across on wire…Special thanks to the groom and his buddies for the lighting!

PS. Luckily I found a $30 strapless grecian style gown at Marshalls since dad had repaved the driveway or else this dancing nut would’ve ruined her wedding dress.

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All in all we left some things to the professionals, especially with 110 guests descending on your parent’s home:

Catering: Penguin Catering, Auburn CA

Videographer: Front side Films, Eldorado Hills CA

Photographer: Kristy Weldon, Sacramento CA

DJ: DJ Magic, Walnut Creek CA (AWESOME! He wrangled 110 guests and our crazy family)

Make-up: Christi Reynolds Make up Artistry, Sacramento CA (momma knew her hippy daughter needed some help)

Desserts: Rick’s Dessert Diner, Ettore’s, Freeport Bakery, and Icing on the cupcake, Sacramento CA

For a wedding of a 110 guests we can safely say we did not break the budget! In fact I sold the majority of our DIY decor to another bride. Yay, for recycle, reuse!

Thanks to the hard work of us, our friends and family, some extra planning, and lots of DIY we pulled off a creative and very fun wedding. Hopefully you can use some of these ideas for your own fabulous one!

PS. In case you were wondering the dogs were at home chasing squirrels and being spoiled by the dog sitters.