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I’m Louise. Blogger. Wife. Designer of TruLu Couture Veils + Accessories.  If you’d like to know more, check out my bio.

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Entries in DIY (20)


Pointy Things {DIY Place Cards}

*The uploads below are slow. I hear patience is a virtue.*

One of my favorite DIY go-to spots is The Graphics Fairy. You might remember her from my DIY matches that I had at my wedding. She featured them on one of her Brag Monday posts. *Blush* I was so proud! If you have any sort of ability to cut and paste and manipulate images for your own printing pleasure, she is a God-send. For reals. She recently posted some cool finger clip art. Yes, I said finger. Steampunk fingers. I thought they were so cool and totally wish I could have had them about a year ago...you know, for my own DIY stuff. So instead, I thought I'd do some DIY place cards, you know, just for fun (my definition of "fun" has altered somewhat in the absence of The Candyman). I really like Steampunk art work, specifically these pointing fingers. And you know what? You could use these on invites, or wedding signs. In fact, I was thinking they would be great direction signs for weddings. You know what I'm talking about, right? Like this:


I did a little a research and did you know that you can decal on wood? Meaning, no more having to hand paint this kind of shit when you have little to no artistic ability but gobs and gobs of creativity?  But that's an idea for another DIY post. Stay tuned. Until then, I made up these little place cards in a few different versions. What do you think?  

This is what I might have done for my wedding - the chocolate brown printed on ivory cardstock.

If you click on the little arrow on the top right hand corner of each format, it should take you directly to the PDF to download. Or, click on the little menu bar thingy. If not, then you can click here to download the first set. Click here for the second. Click here for the third. These links are in The Thirty-Something Bride's Adobe Acrobat public down loads. I also included these in Word format if you want to play around with them yourself. Please note that Acrobat does not support the font I used (Sloop Script One - you can download for free here) in the Word format. The templates are set up for use on Avery #5302 tent cards. Or, if you want to print on your own paper and cut, I included the die-cut lines for your guiding pleasure. Please feel free to help yourself to anything on the Acrobat link (other DIY tutorials are there). Just remember to read The Graphic Fairy's info on how you can use her images. Basically, use it for personal stuff. Don't sell it. Duh. If you people need help, contact me directly or leave a comment and I promise not to leave you hanging. I mean, no one likes a bullshit DIY they can't use, right?  

So will you point your guests in the right direction?

Sorry, it's early. Bad puns happen early.



A Wedding in Progress

Happy Tuesday, Lovers. Good long weekend? Yeah, me too. A much needed massage at Corroboree and additional self-love treats the included wine drinking and a mani/pedi. I slept a lot and ate indulgently. And uh, now it's back to the grind. Bummer.

Yesterday I met up with one of "my" brides, Miss Natasha. She is another Nashville bridal blogger (Big Spoon Little Spoon) who is getting married on the coveted 10.10.10 date! I'm creating a custom shorty bubble veil and hair toy for her and we did some fitting and altering of it. It's going to look SO CUTE when it's done, I just can't wait. While I was over at The Spoon's residence, Natasha was so sweet to show me "The Room" where are things wedding have taken over. I was so excited. I have no idea why. It's not my wedding. I mean, I know Natasha, but it's not like we've been BFF's forever. I really do think that I've got an issue with the World of Weddings now. How, may I ask, did this happen? Good Lord.

At any rate, I took some snaps of her work in progress and am just dying to show you some little snippets of her amazing DIY planning thus far. Her colors are white, ivory and champagne with little snippets of black. It's looking REALLY pretty.


Bubble veil in progress.


A snippet of her AMAZING dress. She got it for a song too - SAMPLE!


The most adorable little bags for their candy buffet. See the LITTLE SPOON!?! So freakin' cute.


DIY wedding signs a la Natasha.


DIY Wedding Wands! What's a Wedding Wand? Just another option to bubbles, sparklers, rice, rose petals...you know, a Wedding Wand.


Her GORGEOUS poms! Miss Natasha tea-stained THOUSANDS of coffee filters. They really are stunning.


More coffee filter decor! Love it.


She hand-cut these to save bank on a one-time use punch. I hear patience is a virtue...The Virtuous Natasha!

Little Spoon is just 34 days out from her wedding. It's the final countdown, right? The girl has got it together though and appears ready to wed. She's been working her tail off so that she can try to relax these last few weeks before the wedding. I did the same too, although it still just gets crazy when you get down to the wire. I am excited that's she letting me do her veil and hair toy. Can't wait until it's done!

Are you getting down to the wire? Are you ready? Did you wait until the last minute for everything? Did you think a DIY project would be easy and were you wrong? So wrong? Do tell.


Pretty or Petty? A Little of Both!

I was coming up blank for a post today. Writers block, I guess. Generally something just pops into my head and out it comes. But really, nothing was popping into my head that was generally wedding related. I've got all sort of design ideas floating around because I'm knee deep in designing January 2011 decor stuff. I'm swimming in colors and textures and all sorts of goodies that I suppose could be translated into wedding day decor, but I'm just not solid in all those ideas...yet. Work in progress.

So I woke up a little early this morning, pet The Candyman's head for a  few minutes and then stumbled into the office to check emails and such before officially starting the day. I read one particular email and I got a big 'ol smack-a-roonie in the brain and immediately knew what my post would be. And I knew it wouldn't be good. Not that it might not be well-written, but that my intent was malicious. Vengeful, even. Sweet, sweet vengeance. Vengeance is mine, sayeth The Thirty-Something Bride!

So I'm driving to work and formulating said post. It takes me about 20 minutes to get to work and I wasn't 8 minutes into the drive when I had exhausted myself. I mean, why? Because of an email? Because of a nasty comment? Because someone cut me off at a stop sign? I exhaust myself with righting what I find wrong in the world. Sometimes, you just have to let things go. I'm not so good at that. I try and fail all the damn time. SO here I am, disgusted with myself and I'm driving along Old Smyrna Road (it looks exactly as it sounds) and am startled to see that summer is now in full swing.

Middle Tennessee is breathtaking. It'll do a number on your allergies, but it seriously is gorgeous.


You can commune with nature a mere 30-40 from downtown Nashville. That's pretty cool. Old Smyrna Road looks a lot like the top picture. Right now, it's crazy-blooming with Queen Anne's Lace, one of my favorite wild-flowers. So instead of the vengeful post, I thought I'd write about wild-flowers and how gorgeous and cheap they are. In fact, I stopped and picked some, I was so damn inspired. Now, the Queen Anne's Lace isn't in full bloom yet, so these are pretty small heads, but how gorgeous would they be as a huge bouquet?

I also picked these flowers. On the side of the road. For free. Think about it. I wish I had!

I also found these lovelies on the side of the internet. I picked them for free too.

All from here. And those purple spiky things tied to the post above? Those were ALL OVER this morning, but they don't just have spiky flowers, they have spiky/thorny everything, so I couldn't pick them. But they were there.

So now I have a vase of wild-flowers on my desk to wish me happy Friday. I also have two ant bites simply from standing on the side of the road that are swelling nicely. Why? Because I'm like allergic to everything. I hate bugs. If it's bigger than a rolly-polly, I'm pretty much terrified. The thought of camping makes me want to throw up. I love the outdoors, but bugs just ain't my thing. No outdoor wedding for this chick. But I digress....

But you know what? The shit from this morning is still bugging (no pun intended) me. Still. Why? Why do I care? Why do I let things get to me? I should know better. So here's what happened.....

I get email updates when someone comments here on my blog. I saw that someone left me a comment last night on yesterday's post. Reader "Evelyn" left the following comment:

Seriously, you seem so classless.

So I retorted with:

@Evelyn - is it the "fuck" or the "asshole" or the desire to go to yoga that makes me classless? I swear, you idiots are going to make me want to sensor people leaving comments and I swore I would never do that. I am begging you Evelyn, please stop reading my blog if you can't handle adult conversation, K?

Class, in this sense means (via my handy-dandy American Heritage Dictionary) "elegance of style or manner." Now, dropping an F-bomb and talking about my eating habits resembling the little brown crinkle star are decidedly not elegant. They are not. But calling someone classless has much greater meaning, me thinks, than a lack of elegance of style or manner. You'd be much better calling me a bitch (I can be). Or a potty mouth (um, duh!). Or even tacky. But classless? You're assuming that I dance on tables in bars and enter wet t-shirt contests (the former - once, the latter - never). Or perhaps that I use my hands to eat, slurp my soup, don't wash behind my ears and turn my panties inside out because I'm too lazy to do laundry. None of those things is true. Here's the deal people - I swear. I take the Lord's name in vain. Please either deal with it or go away. You are entitled to your opinions on my blog. I encourage them. But name calling is just so base. And honestly, there is nothing that gets me all riled up than name-calling. Name calling means the gloves come off. It's just an invitation to sharpen up the claws and get my cat-fight on. And here's the funny part about people who name-call: generally they don't have much else in their bag of tricks. Call someone with a quick wit and sharp tongue a bitch and you'd best prepare yourself. 

So, I read this email and I'm trying to shake it off. I check my blog stats, check out the location of the commenter (California) and a few other things I like to track. Oh, and for those of you who are clueless and post "anonymously" - you have an IP address. Anyone with sitetracker or a more advanced blogging page like myself can pretty much find out who you are really easily. Just so you know....

Anyway, I'm checking out my site stats and I have a referrer page. Meaning, I can see the entry point to my blog. Say for instance, you saw my blog listed on a  blog roll somewhere. You click the link and I can see that you came from that particular blog. So, I'm browsing through the referrer links and see that yesterday I got some hits from Style Me Pretty. Eh? And then I remembered that I posted a comment on the site yesterday, something I hardly EVER do, because I NEVER read the damn thing. However, I was going through my Google Reader yesterday and saw some wedding pictures and recognized the location, Solvang, California. I've been there many times and it is just a stunning place. A lot of the movie Sideways was shot there.....anyway, I checked out the wedding featured and left a comment, primarily based off of this photo montage:


Here's the comment I left:

Not to be a spoilsport here - because this is a total eye-candy, but I do not think I'd want to be a guest at this wedding. Who wants to sit in their finest with their feet in the dirt eating? Bugs and such in all that grass, potentially in your food? Just not a realistic concept to me.

Here are some of the responses:

Its absolutely lovely and classy. (@ The thirty something bride: But I am certain it could get lost on people who are used to the cookie cutter wedding- Stick to good ole hilton hotel weddings, honey! No bugs there)

I totally love this.
I disagree with Thirth-SomethingBride... I wouldn't mind the bugs :) especially with such a gorgeous view and setting. However, I'd be panicking the whole month prior to the wedding hoping it didn't rain.

While I understand that this setting may not be everyone's idea of a perfect wedding I ADORE IT. And contrary to what 30something bride said, I would LOVE to be a guest at this wedding. The view and details of the wedding - just absolutely breathtaking. Of course, the dessert buffet table sealed the deal for me.

OK, so the last two comments are fair statements. They express their own opinions, which they point out are contrary to mine. Cool. But that first one? Come on, dude. Really? Cookie-cutter? Moi? Did you come to my blog and review my wedding? Did you note that my guests stayed at the Hilton, but I did not wed there? Or have a reception there? Now, I did not have a Style Me Pretty worthy wedding. Thank GOD. Nor did I have a bazillion dollar planner, the time to DIY the entire damn thing, a daddy with bottomless pockets for his little princess (gag, I think I just threw up in my mouth a little) or the desire to make my guests traipse through a field to eat. The Candyman's brother is in a wheelchair for God's sake. Our wedding was about surrounding ourselves with the people we love to celebrate our love. Isn't that what weddings are about? Shouldn't it be? Does it matter if the wedding is in a field in Solvang or in a Hilton hotel? And just to prove that bitch (yes, yes - name calling, I know I'm a hypocrite, but I'm prepped with more in my bag of tricks, if need be) wrong, here are some pics from a few cookie-cutter Hilton hotel weddings:





So I stand by my comment. I don't want to sit with my feet in the dirt. Bugs bite me. Bugs get in food and I don't want to eat them. I don't want the heels of my fantasy Jimmy Choos sinking into dirt. Old people don't want to walk in fields because they fall and break hips and such. Perhaps this couple doesn't have living grandparents or handicap family members, which is why it might have been posted on Style Me Pretty. But beauty, and pretty, is in the eye of the beholder, no? And I think the Hilton weddings shown above are flawless and gorgeous in both presentation and emotion. And it's the emotion that counts - because for what other reason is there to wed? Remember the love, people. I'm trying to.

Oh, and Genevieve Rogers? You can go fuck yourself. Oooops. There went the love. Happy Friday everyone!


The Cinderella Syndrome

You know what I haven't blogged about in a long damn time? My most favorite accessory ever - the shoe. I got a lot of flack from friends and family in my early wedding blogging days about all my shoe posts. Well, damn it - shoes are an integral part of the whole ensemble - and not just on your wedding day! I can't stand when people wear ratty old shoes with a really nice outfit. It makes no sense to me at all. Or, God forbid, SNEAKERS of any sort as a fashion statement. *gag*

Yes, I am a shoe snob.

What that doesn't mean is that your shoes have to be expensive to look good because they absolutely do not. I was an enormous fan on Shoe Carnival as a twenty-nothing. I think I may have written this before, but at the height of my shoe-aholic-ism, I was pushing over 200 pairs of shoes. Yes, yes. It was an issue and part of the cause of my twenty-nothing credit card debt, I'm sure. I've pared (no pun intended) down significantly since then, but I still loves me some shoe.

I'm hear to give you brides some shoe advice.

  • First, if you find a shoe that's uber-cute and way expensive, find out the name and Google it for a lower price. For instance, the following shoe that I adore is the Martinez Valero "Corrine" Sandal. It sells at Nordstrom for $139.95. I Googled the name and found the exact same shoe for $59.95 at DSW. And if you want these in brown or black for an every day thing or for your maids, they are on Overstock.com for $49.99!

  • Please do not buy designer shoes on the cheap from lame on-line stores like this one. I guarantee you that this is a Chinese manufacturer knocking off Louboutin's. How do I know? I can recognize Chenglish a mile away. If the deal is too good to be true, it ain't the real deal. And maybe you don't care if it's the real deal or not - but when you support this kind of manufacturer, you're supporting really crappy stuff - like child labor, unfair wages, unsafe working conditions and more. Seriously, just don't freakin' do it.
  • Dude, DIY yourself into some really cool shoes. Yes, that's right. I said DIY. I did it, so can you. Even the shoes above can be done on the cheap. If you don't read ...love Maegan, you're truly missing out. That chick can DIY in her sleep. Check out how she made her version of the petal sandal
  • Still not convinced? OK, yesterday Rock My Wedding posted some gorgeous shoes by Emmy Custom Made Wedding Shoes. It's a UK based custom wedding shoe maker and they are so totally swoon-worthy.
  • Source

  • Killer right? I think the cheapest embellishment (not the shoe) I found on the Emmy site was £60, or $86.38. WTF? The custom shoes were over  £260 ($375). Crazy. And not cost effective at all. So what's a bride to do? I'm telling you, DIY! Head on over to your local Payless and check out their Lela Rose and Unforgettable Moments collection. Or, if you can stomach it, go to David's Bridal and check out their shoes. Here's some from their website.



  • Once you have your shoe picked out, you can embellish them at will! My blue satin shoes had this black and clear rhinestone monstrosity on them that I knew I would replace when I bought them. I dug through my vintage jewelry and found some of my grandmother's earrings that I knew would do the trick! I cut off the backs of the earrings with some wire snips then replaced the other bling by sewing them onto the shoes. I'm not going to lie, sewing them on was a bitch, but it was worth it for me to have my shoes look the way I wanted them too. See?

Jonathon Campbell Photography

  • If you're not a vintage jewelry whore like I am, hit up your friends and relatives - especially the grandma's! Those old ladies have some awesome stuff hidden away in their armoires, trust me. Or, go to Goodwill and find some funky retro pins. Or hit up an antique store and find some groovy old rhinestone stuff. What about feathers? Feathers are totally cool. You can find all sorts of feathers at any local craft store.


  • Don't own a needle and thread? Can't figure out how to sew them on? Dude, get yourself a hot glue gun. Or better yet, some Super Glue Gel. It's not as runny as the regular stuff and it's easier to apply. But BE CAREFUL. If you get this stuff on fabric or leather and you don't want it there, you're screwed. 

Just get creative it what I'm saying. You don't have to be a crazy DIY person or particularly talented. Find something you like and think about how to knock it off. Make it your own for less than the 300 bones some designers are wanting for a pair of shoes that you'll most likely have kicked off sometime during the reception anyway. Right? Right.

Do you love your shoes? Are you struggling with style, size, type, price? Where did you get yours and how much did you pay?


DUDE! A Freakin' DIY Goddess!

Holy crap. I think I might have stumbled upon the world's most incredible DIY wedding chick EVER. I shit you not, ladies. You can color me so impressed. First of all, you can start with her bliggity blog where she's trolling along quite nicely with a mere 3 months left to plan. Here's some of the stuff she's made so far.....

  A lily flower alter. Nice.  


Her doily-backed menu. You know I love me some hot doily action.


SHUT UP! She made her own freakin' doily chandelier. I love her.


DIY bridesmaide bouquets. Sweet.

Not only is she making all this crap, she's making her own dress and veil too! Impressive. Veronica ( the nut job behind all this DIY) is also the creative juices behind Coco Irene, "a collection of  intricate  accessories made from vintage and antique materials." And guess what? She makes wedding gowns too! SQUEEEEEEEEE! Check out Veronica Schaeffer Gowns! Retro love, baby.


Seriously, I am so impressed by this woman's DIY. You gotta go check out her blog, My Hands Made It. Oh, and you should also go over to Ruffled and vote for her DIY pinwheel table numbers. Yes, she made those too (over-achieving bitch...kidding!). Vote for #9 in the comments section!

And um, Veronica? *Looks down. Shuffles feet. Looks up out the top of my eyes like Susanna Hoff from The Bangles.*

Um. Will you be my new BFF? Pleeeeeeeeeeease!

Oh, and this request in no way transfers, negates or diminishes my other blog BFF's like Susie or LA Love. Or Chic 'n Cheap. Or GEW. Smooches to you all.

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