Newlywed Solutions, Tips & Ideas
Now that you’ve walked down the aisle in style and changed your name you may be
wondering what to do with your wedding gown. It’s still hanging in your closet isn’t
it? Here a few options for you to think about:
Preserve your gown with minimal hassle…
After all the planning and hoopla of a wedding, what newlywed wants to drag her
dress to a dry cleaner and hope they do a professional job for a reasonable price?
None that we know of! The simple solution:
WedClean.com. For $129, this fabulous company will mail you a pre-addressed
box with pre-paid postage. What do you have to do? Simply put your dress in the
box and drop it off at your local UPS store. With online tracking you’ll know exactly
where your gown is in the preservation process and when it will arrive on your doorstep
in its sealed storage chest. Preservation problem solved!
Donate your wedding dress to a great cause…
Have you heard about
Brides Against Breast Cancer. They sell donated bridal gowns to raise funds for
the Making Memories Breast Cancer Foundation. You can donate your gown to them via
mail and receive a tax credit for your donation. Talk about a great use for your
used gown. With one act you will be helping stage 3 breast cancer patients, enabling
some other bride to find the dress of her dreams at an affordable price and you’ll
get a credit from Uncle Sam!
Have a Bride & Groom themed cocktail party…
Who says you’ll never wear your wedding dress again? Plan a wedding-inspired soiree
for your couple friends. It can be as simple as champagne and cake or you can go
all out with flowers, candles and favors. The important part is to make sure everyone
attending wears their wedding attire! Imagine the amount of fun and photos that
will result…especially if you all go out on the town afterwards.
Want to include single buddies in your party? Let them pick out wedding gowns and
tuxes from the local thrift shops…the crazier the better!
Loved your wedding bouquet? What bride didn’t? After spending many hours and many
glasses of wine poring over magazines and blogs to find the perfect flowers for
your big day, you might wonder what to do with your floral masterpiece now:
Dry your bouquet yourself…
Are you a Martha Stewart- in-training? If so, following these simple instructions
will result in a lovely dried version of your bouquet. Attach a wire or hook in
a dark, dry cool place where you can leave your flowers for 2 weeks. Next, remove
any ribbons from your bouquet (you can always reattach them later). Tie a string
around the base of your bouquet and use it to hang your flowers upside down on the
wire or hook. Now resist the urge to continually touch or “test” the dryness of
your flowers. Wait two weeks and you will have a prettily preserved bouquet.
Make post-wedding potpourri…
Feeling a little crafty? Potpourri is an inexpensive and easy way to keep the flowers
from your bouquet long after you’ve said “I do”. Simply remove the petals from your
flowers before they start to turn brown and put them in an air-tight container.
For every quart of flowers you have in the container, add one tablespoon of fixative
(available at any craft store). Then you can add a few drops of your favorite essential
oil to increase the scent of your potpourri. Popular choices are lavender, rose
or even a few drops of your wedding perfume. Seal the flower/essential oil mixture
in your container for 10 days to and shake it lightly every two days to evenly mix
the scent. You now have post-wedding potpourri that you can put in a decorative
bowl or sew into sachets to keep your lingerie smelling newlywed naughty!
Professionally preserve your flowers in a shadow box or frame…
A pricier option than some of our other ideas, but the results are literally picture
perfect. A professional flower preservation company will freeze dry your bouquet
or selected flowers from your bouquet and place them in a shadow box or display
frame of your choice. The nicest ones we’ve seen include a wedding portrait and
one of your invitations in the box or frame or your flowers turned into a
framed monogram. It’s a great way to preserve your wedding memories and decorate one of the bare
walls in your apartment or house at the same time!
Wondering what to do with the fabulous wedding photos you spent a fortune on? Here
are a few ideas to help you maximize the memory potential of your favorite images
(and even justify the investment a bit more):
Make your own album or photo box…
Display your professional wedding photos in a truly professional way. Kolo.com
has the nicest albums and photo boxes we’ve seen anywhere. If you received proofs
of your wedding photos, this is the perfect way to showcase them!
Print a custom wedding album (inexpensively)…
Are you a busy bride and want a custom wedding album without the hassle of ordering
, gluing and cramming photos into a traditional book? We’ve got the solution for
you! Use Shutterfly's
easy online software to drag and drop your professional digital wedding photos (and
even a few candids from your own camera or honeymoon) into a custom book. You can
choose your album cover, page designs and layouts or use one of the standard wedding
templates. Once you’ve arranged the photos of your big day to your heart’s desire,
you can order additional albums for family and friends. Hasn’t your mother-in-law
been dropping hints? Starting at $29.99 this is one photo option that won’t break
your post-wedding budget.
Get your decoupage on…
Decoup…what? Warning, this idea is for the serious craft queens out there or those
willing to make a giant mess in the name of a wedding project. Decoupage is the
art of decorating a surface with cutouts and then adhering them with several layers
of glue or varnish. You can use your favorite wedding pictures along with pressed
flowers, decorative papers like your wedding invitation or program and fabrics (finally
a use for bridesmaid dress swatches) to decorate any surface of your choice. Note
that it’s best to use color photocopies of your wedding photos because the ink in
real photos might smear.
Turn a favorite photo into Pop Art…
So how does this process work? First choose an item to decoupage, such as a cardboard
photo box. If you can’t think of a fun idea, craft stores abound with inexpensive
items to decoupage. Brush a layer of Elmer’s glue, thinned with water, onto the
surface and arrange your decorative items on it. Let the first layer of glue dry
and then brush a second layer on top of the items, making sure to cover all decorative
items and the edges of the surface completely. Let this new layer of glue dry and
then add 2-3 more layers and allow ample drying time. You have now created artwork
that celebrates and preserves your favorite wedding memories. If it turned out well,
you can use your newfound skill to make customized wedding thank you presents for
the people that helped you the most on your big day.
This idea is a must for the newlywed couple that is shamelessly addicted to pop
art. Can’t afford an Andy Warhol of your own? Let photohow.com
turn one of your wedding portraits into a crazy cool custom canvas. This is also
a great (and dare we say sneaky) way to get your new husband to proudly display
a wedding photo at his office.