Rustic Wedding – Inexpensive Decorations
Steeped in history, Turner Hall in Galena, Il. is the perfect setting for a rustic wedding. The hall is beautiful even before any decoration. It is an amazing place and working with the City of Galena was great. Reflecting the hall’s heritage we chose wedding decorations that reflected the same vintage rustic charm.
Earlier this summer I showed you the bucket inserts that I made to hold the flowers that I planted for the wedding. They survived until wedding time and helped to add a touch of the outdoors to the beautiful hall.
Flowers in galvanized bucket
Wedding Seating Sign
The ceremony was in the hall’s balcony. At the entry of the curved staircase we added a sign to help direct attendees to their seat location.
I used an old piece of plywood, that was recycled from a desk, and painted it with black chalkboard paint. It took a couple of coats to get a nice even finish. I just gave the back one coat because we stood it on an easel, so the back was not very visible.
Rather than using chalk or the chalkboard markers I used an off-white acrylic paint, to paint the letters. It comes in a small tube at most craft stores for less than a couple of dollars. I wanted it to have a more vintage feel than I thought the bright white lettering would have.
First, I used chalk to write it out so that I could get the lettering the way I wanted it. Next, I used the paint to fill in the letters.
Sign for wedding guests
We used two 6 panel doors for our photo backdrop. I painted them both off white and hinged them together. Then we used an L bracket on the back of each door to keep them from tipping over backwards. It was just screwed to the back of the doors, one on each door. We also used a piece of wire with a loop on each end that was screwed to each door through the loop on the top edge of the door. It was just the length needed to make about a 130-degree angle with the doors spread open.
I made a pattern of the shape I wanted the sign shape to be by folding a newspaper in quarters and cutting it out. That way all edges were the same. We cut it from a 1/4″ thick plywood that was sanded on one side. After cutting it out with the jigsaw the edges need to be sanded a little to smooth them out. I drilled two holes in the top to insert a ribbon to hang it from the doors. Finally, I painted it with the same chalkboard paint and off-white paint for letters as the other sign.
Sign for Photo Area
I hung the sign from the top of the doors and added an antique camera that I hung from the door knob. Unfortunately, I did not get a photo of the set up at the hall, for some reason there must have been other things on my mind! This photo gives the idea, but it is hanging on our chicken coop.
Gift and Card Table
For the card box I used an old suitcase that is usually part of a stack of suitcases that make up an end table in my living room. A family member cut out the letters in two different colors of scrapbook paper with her Cricut cutter. I pinned the short piece of twine across the lid of the suitcase and using small-clothes pins attached the lettering for CARDS.
The beginnings of a Love Story for the couple is rolled into the old Royal typewriter. This was placed next to the photo book that they made for the guests to sign.
Peonies and Typed Message Decorate the Gift Table
I made an oval sign using the same steps as the other sign for the bride and groom to hold for a photo they could use on their thank you cards. During the ceremony we hung it from a short section of antique picket fence that has been decorating my porch in its free time.
Thank You Sign
And the Flowers?
My one mishap was my flower bouquets for around the hall. We had cut down a birch tree and used the wood to make discs to put Ball jars with candles on the tables, so fortunately we were not depending on flowers for the table decorations, but I wanted some for head table area and other tables. Before we left to decorate the hall, I picked nearly every blooming flower from my gardens. There were enough to fill a 5-gallon bucket with a variety of flowers. Wedged into their own special spot in the back of the car they made the hour and a half trip beautifully. The day was 90 plus degrees and I had the brilliant idea that they would hold better for the wedding the next day if I put them in the cooler. Not such a good idea, the cooler froze the flowers and in no time about half were a wilted looking mess. I salvaged enough for one big vase. The peonies survived, apparently a little less frail than the lilies and others, so in the end there were a few flowers on the head table and book signing table.
For the table center piece we used a disc of wood with 2 pint-sized Ball jars with an electric candle wrapped in lace and burlap. As I mentioned the wood was from a tree we had to cut down. Dan used his chainsaw and just cut it into 1″ thick slices. We have passed those onto a friend for her wedding. The jars can be purchased very inexpensively at thrift stores. River stones, from the driveway, strategically placed around the jars finish the look.
The centerpiece was sitting on a burlap rectangle that we cut from yardage rather than purchase actual table runners.
Another cost saving measure was that we used the table clothes from a cousin that was recently married. Ours was the third cousin that used them, there are thirteen cousins, so they will be well used.
To cool the wine bottles we filled my old laundry sink with ice, yep the same one I use to wash wool in, and put the bottles in there.
Laundry Sink Wine Cooler
It is very easy to go crazy and sink a lot of money into decorations. We spent very little on what we used and the vintage look worked well with nearly 150-year old hall.