The age of Pinterest is in full bloom and the ideas that swirl around for any event are too numerous to count. I can not tell you how many times a client shows me a Pinterest picture on their phone to tell me they are going to "do it themselves". It seems easy enough, right?
It is easy enough for a professional crafter, yes. Is it 'easy enough' for your average event host? Most likely, not.
Now, I spend my share of time on Pinterest as well. I love the ideas that site inspires and I very often refer to it as "my new Google". You need to find a homeopathic sunburn remedy? Pinterest. You need instructions on how to strip an old piece of furniture? Pinterest. You need photos of wedding decorations? Pinterest.
I grew up in a do-it-yourself household. My father was an experienced and talented finish carpenter, and my mom is an amazing seamstress. Let's suffice it to say that our home looked like it came out of a magazine. The truth is, they did it themselves. If we couldn't afford it, we learned how to make it!
I also learned by growing up in that DIY house that projects take up the majority of a person's free time. My parents were always re-doing a room in the house, or preparing to host an event...it was almost like having a second full time job.
When it comes to hosting a special event, you naturally want it to be extra special. You want your guests to 'oooh and aaah' at how beautiful it looks. You may even want to be able to say "I made that!" Below are some of my tips on how to be a sucessful DIY-er:
- Prioritize Prioritize Prioritize!
I caution you to choose your projects wisely and prioritize them in order of importance in case you run out of time. If the favors don't get little ribbons put on them, is that going to make or break your party? Probably not. BUT...if you decide you are going to lay the floor of your tent from reclaimed barn wood so no one is walking in the mud...that pretty much NEEDS to get done.
- Be Honest with Yourself
Look long and hard at how much time you have before your big event. Factor in your work schedule, family obligations, even gym time and figure out how many hours you are going to dedicate to preparing for your big day. If the answer is less than what you realistically need for your project, you have 2 choices. Sacrifice part of your existing life temporarily to get this done, or hire a professional.
- Don't volunteer your friends
Not only could it end your friendship to volunteer someone without permission, but it could result in a product you don't like. I have seen many a host tell me "I'll get my friends to help!" when really, the friends are very loving but not that crafty. If your friend offers his/her time and talent to help you, consider yourself lucky. If you think forcing your wedding party to hang lanterns in a tent the morning of your wedding is a good idea, we need to re-evaluate your definition of friendship.
- You don't need to sacrifice the final product
Just because you may have come to the conclusion that you don't have time to do that Pinterest look yourself doesn't mean that you need to sacrifice what you want on your special day. There are artisans on Etsy that can create the item you are looking for, and usually for a fair price! You can hire a professional to lay that tent floor or hang those chinese lanterns. The resources are out there!
Remember: If your straws have little flags with cute sayings on them or not, your event will have what it needs most...YOU!