It's all in the details, brides! And the good news is, you don't have to spend a fortune prettying up your wedding venue with all the little things. Simply take what you already own from home and transform your wedding space into a picture perfect place. Here's how to do it.
1. Throw pillows and blankets
Add a pretty punch of color or pattern to lounge furniture with your favorite throw pillows from home, recommends Francesca DiSalvo-Follmer of Pure Luxe Bride. Don't have any you really dig? "Then find some you'd like to own at home so you can keep them after the wedding is over," she says. Same goes for a beautiful throw or blanket, tells Chancey Charm Boston wedding planner Jyl Deering. "Toss it over a couch or chair to dress up the area and make the lounge feel more personal."
Hardcover books from your personal collection can add height to a dessert buffet or floral centerpieces, notes Anthony Navarro of Liven It Up Events. If you have lounge areas, wedding planner Lauren Chitwood, owner and founder of Lauren Chitwood Events, suggests bringing your personal coffee table books to make your reception personalized. "Guests will feel like they're right inside your home."
3. Unique decorative items
Grab those random (albeit beloved) knickknacks off the shelf — they'll be perfect to place on shelving behind the bars or on coffee tables as accents, offers Marina Birch of Birch Design Studio. "For example, we had a client who adored pugs and had a whole collection of porcelain pugs so we incorporated some of her collection peeking out from behind floral on bookshelves and clustered on coffee tables in the lounge areas."
4. Family photos
"Family pictures from both the bride and groom's side are a must to enhance the wedding décor, along with an heirloom table to display them on," says Lori Hogan, Special Events Assistant at Andalusia. Laura Irizarry-Garcia, owner of LIG Events, agrees. "I love incorporating your grandparents' and parents' wedding photos into the gift/guest book table. Bringing the photos from home in their original frames usually works very well. Guests always love looking at them and it's a great way to include those family members who might not be with you any longer."
5. China, linens and champagne flutes
If your family has amazing china, or even linens, bring them, advises Deering. "I had a bride use her family's beautiful lace tablecloths for the cocktail tables and the cake table." A special heirloom place setting of china for two and the "good" crystal wine glasses, water goblets and silverware from your mother's china cabinet are perfect for the sweetheart table too, notes Florida Keys wedding planner Lynn D'Ascanio of D'Asigner Events. A cake cutting set and chic champagne flutes from home are a must as well.
6. Trays and vases
Have a pretty tray that you could use for the boutonnieres or a shot of your invitations? DiSalvo-Follmer encourages you to bring it along to spruce up photos. You could also use it for your favor or dessert table. "One couple I knew brought serving trays that had been in the family for years for their going-home favor table," tells Dezhda "Dee" Gaubert, owner of No Worries Event Planning. "My couples have also brought candy jars, vases and other home décor items that can be used for candy displays or centerpieces."
7. Family heirlooms
Family heirlooms like display family crests, your mother's wedding gown or any variety of personal items that may be in storage are lovely to display at your wedding, says Chitwood. "Most brides are surprised to find all of the meaningful history you can discover around the house to personalize your big day." Other ideas, according to Jenny Orsini, Owner and Creative Director of Jenny Orsini Events Inc., include family heirlooms, such as an old table linen that can cover the sweetheart table, or your grandmother's jewelry trinket boxes as décor for your cake table.
They add a beautiful reflective glow to your wedding and the best part is that you can easily write (think calligraphy) on a mirror and remove it later, points out Chitwood. They make for gorgeous signs!
9. Lanterns & pillar candles
Chitwood recommends arranging them in strategic clusters for added styling on guest book tables or even escort card displays.