Wedding DIY Series: Part 1

Welcome to the first part of my Wedding DIY Series! My entire wedding was basically DIY so I will use this post to breakdown 2 of the projects- The gold window seating chart made from Dollar Tree picture frames and the card basket (one of the easier projects).

Let’s start with the Dollar Tree frame seating chart-

I originally got the idea from this Youtube video.

You’ll need:

  • Picture frames- amount depends on number of tables, I used 9 of these.
  • Large foam core board- like this one.
  • Hot glue gun
  • Hot glue sticks
  • Gorilla Glue
  • Box cutter
  • Painter’s tape or another tape that won’t leave residue on glass
  • Chalk Marker
  • Supplies to clean glass
  • Wooden dowels
  • Computer
  • Printer

We originally planned on 11 tables so I was going to try to make a 12 frame display but, luckily, we ended up with 9 so it looked a lot like the one made in the video above. I really liked the idea of having our names and the date on the seating chart but with 9 tables I had to give it up and use all 9 for the chart. I didn’t miss it. 🙂

For the first step-

You’ll need to create your seating chart on the computer. I signed up for a free trial with PicMonkey to design mine. I used the blank 5×7 template and the Scriptum Pro and Shadows Into Light Two fonts.

Once you get everything typed up, print out your templates and cut them down. They don’t have to be cut to exactly 5×7 because you can position them on the glass as needed.

TIP: If using PicMonkey, make sure you turn alignment hints on to easily see where to center your text. This icon on the bottom of the screen:

Capture

Step 2-

Take the backs off of the frames and push the tabs back so that they are flat against the frame. Remove all glass and clean both sides. Organize the frames on the foam board and then hot glue them one by one to the foam board and by their touching edges.

Step 3-

Turn the frames over so that they are facing you and cut out the foam board that fills the center of the frames. Take off as much as you can so that you don’t see any of the board when looking at it from the front. You will probably have to take more off of the back in order to get the glass in. At this point, you can use one of the blank glasses to measure the backs of each slot to see how much more you need to take off. Cut, cut, cut until each one is ready for you to just drop the glass in without much struggle.

Step 4-

Time to write on the glass! Take one of your printouts and place it under the glass so that you are looking at the names. Position it in the middle of the glass as best you can and tape it with the painter’s tape. I taped it around the front, just be sure that none of the tape is covering any of the writing. Now try your best not to let your perfectionist come out and trace the writing through the glass. I promise it won’t look perfect when you’re staring at it and working on it but nobody else is going to examine it and it will look absolutely perfect to them. (As you finish each, you should glue them into their spot on the frame. See Step 5.)

Step 5-

I would use gorilla glue to glue the glass into the frames. Because the glass is so smooth, the hot glue doesn’t tend to hold very well. When you’re ready with your first completed piece of glass, put some gorilla glue along the inside edges of the frame and drop in the glass so the names are facing away from you. Be careful not to hit the writing as chalk marker comes off very easily. Repeat this step until all of your glasses are secured into their spots.

Step 6-

Almost done! You may want to reinforce the frames with wooden dowels of some sort, I used these. You can hot glue them to the foam board on the areas where the frames intersect. In order to crisscross them, I would recommend cutting the dowels and gluing them on either side of the dowel in the opposite direction.

There you have it! Now, you need to be very careful in transporting it to the venue. I was able to lay mine face down in a large cardboard box. It didn’t fit so it was laid at an angle and it made it to the venue in one piece. I displayed mine using an easel display that I found at HomeGoods for $5.99! My original plan was just to lean it on the wall at an angle but I really liked the look of the easel. I think it could work either way.

For the card box-

You’ll need:

  • A basket or box that you like. I found my basket in-store at Michael’s but I can’t seem to find it online. There are other similar ones online if you google “basket with hinged lid”.
  • I bought this at Michael’s as well, I looked for one that looked fibrous.
  • Twine
  • Small clothespins
  • Hot glue
  • Flowers of choice
  • Black marker
For the first step-

I didn’t measure, I just wrote the letters out with a chiseled tip marker. When I had a ‘C’ that I liked, I used that as the measurement for the other letters. If you look at the picture, you will notice that the paper is not cut to the same size for each letter but I think it adds to the character of the box. 🙂 I believe they ended up being around 4 inches tall or so. You can draw them however you like but try to draw them away from the edges of the paper so that you can “cut” them so there are fibers showing on each edge.

Step 2-

Once your letters are all written out, you will need to fold where you want your “cuts” to be. Fold on the line and then fold again in the opposite direction and flatten with a pencil or something hard that you can press along the edge. Now you have to wet the edges a bit. You can use a damp paper towel and just wipe it along the fold. I had to let mine absorb the moisture for a second due to the thickness of the paper but once you’re ready, pull both sides away from the fold. Repeat this for each edge of each letter.

Step 3-

Take your twine and measure it on your basket so that it hangs down a little in the middle and I left a little hanging on either side of the ends. Glue to the basket in each corner.

Step 4-

Organize a few flowers as you like. I used these peonies from Amazon. I thought I would have to glue them but I ended up being able to tuck them into the basket weave and they stayed just fine. I would try to go this route because you can re-purpose the basket after. Less is more here!

Step 5-

Clothespin each letter onto the twine and arrange them as you like. At this point, you can glue them in place to the twine or just leave them pinned. They stayed fine without being glued for me but if you want to be on the safe side, glue them.

That’s it! The seating chart is a bit more labor intense but I would say it was worth it. Let me know if you have any questions in the comments below and if you end up making either of these, I would love to see your results!!

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