This post originally appeared on our old blog Born to be a Bride.
I am what I like to call a saver. If you ask my family, they will probably use the word hoarder. Over the years, especially the past few, I’ve tried really hard to change my ways and stop holding on to every scrap of paper, hotel room key, and so on. There aren’t enough hours in the day or days in the year to actually sit around scrapbooking my whole entire life. A lot of it needs to go.
But I won’t apologize for holding onto precious items from our wedding — it’s only now, a year later and eight months pregnant, that I am starting to figure out what to do with all this stuff. After its tenure in my mother’s guest room, followed by my car and our storage unit, it’s time to make some choices. In the next couple of weeks, I am looking forward to revealing to you our beautifully emerging nursery and the other fun design details of our new home. As we gear up, here are some tips I’ve come up with for making the most of your Etsy purchases, DIY endeavors, and excess favors. Have fun!
Buy a wedding scrapbook kit I received one for my bridal shower, and finally got down to working on it this month. We have an absolutely beautiful, invaluable, handcrafted wedding album filled with our photographer’s shots. But I wanted a place to stash extra bits and bobs like my makeup design sheet, the well-wishes written by guests, even the Post-It I stuck outside of my cube at JCP before heading off for the wedding (Yes, I kept that, too…)
These scrapbook kits are affordable and easy to use; plus they come loaded with all the paper and stickers you’ll need, so that’s less time at Michael’s and no energy figuring out how to design it. I’m waiting on a few more photos to print from Shutterfly, but hope to have this done in another week or so. Purchase yours at any craft store!
Hang a banner of love We had a burlap banner over our dessert table declaring “Love is Sweet” and plan to hang it in the nursery. I was stumped on how to use the Just Married one but since the letters are interchangeable, we are thinking of taking them off the ribbon and reworking into a new word. Check out WordSolver.net to help you unscramble your letters. From ours, I plan to spell “DREAM” for the girl’s room.
And get creative thinking where you can use your fixed banners — perhaps in the dining room? Outside on a patio area in summer? We also have a small one that says “Josh, Here Comes Your Girl.” We won’t have room in the apartment but I’d love to put that one in a frame later and hang it somewhere in our next home.
Stick it A lot of brides over-order supplies for their big day and I was no exception. For our candy table, we had glassine bags and custom J <3 J stickers with the date made. Of course, I ended up without about 50 extra stickers that I’ve been hoarding ever since. I found a way to work a few of these into the aforementioned scrapbook, and I’ve put one aside for a lifetime scrapbook I plan (!) to one day make for my little girl. But what of the other 47? I recommend getting a little less precious about this stuff you’re saving.
There are SO many ways you can reuse a sticker like this. Anything from closing bag lunches to affixing a love note to the kitchen counter. You can even use them inside of cookbooks and coffee table books as a fun twist on the somewhat outdated practice of branding one’s books for return. It’s better than letting them sit around for the next ten years collecting dust and yellowing.
Get organized The vessels you use for various parts of your celebration can often be repurposed. We plan to use all glass canisters for hair bow and pacifier storage in the nursery. There’s also the bucket that housed the yarmulkes, and rustic crates from the ceremony programs. No one likes a hideous storage bin. Find creative ways around the house to make the most of these items and save money on boring, plastic containers.
Donate, sell, donate Offhand, you might not think other people would want most of the stuff you used for your big day. But given a little more thought, there are so many ways to turn your wedding extras into a big score for someone else — especially someone who can’t afford to shell out the big bucks for her own special day. First, we unloaded all the extra beach flip flops that weren’t taken during our ceremony. The sheer bags they came in went to Good Will, too. You can also sell or donate decor items, paper goods, bins, baskets, glassware, etc. easily online. Check out Wedding-Recycle.com where you can sell your stuff. And for tons of ideas on donating your items — even flowers! — head over to The I Do Foundation.