The wedding reception is often the favourite part for both guests and the newly-married couple as if offers everyone a chance to let their hair down and immerse themselves in the spirit of the occasion.  We’ve got some excellent tips on how to create a beautiful reception, with a little help from Brides Magazine, using DIY décor ideas you can achieve on the cheap.

Decorate the Room

There are many things you can do yourself to turn the reception venue into something magical.  Depending on the theme of your wedding, there are all sorts of colours and styles that can fit; for instance, if your theme is bright and colourful, why not use coloured ribbons to accessorise table tops and surfaces?  Simply buy some lengths of coloured ribbon and tie into a bow, leave two tails hanging from the bottom to create a gorgeous decoration to add to the top of picture frames, above windows or on the backs of chairs.

To help add atmosphere to the room, mood lighting is a great idea.  To create a really fun, vintage look, take some old jam or coffee jars and fill with battery powered fairy lights.  All you need to do is wind them into a ball and place in the jar – these are great for table tops or to bring light to dark corners of a room and they also resemble catching fireflies in a jar, giving the place some childlike wonder and magic.

The vintage look is very fashionable for weddings at the moment, and one idea we love is to take an old-fashioned bike and use it as a focal point for the room.  The basket on the front can be filled with flowers, and the spokes of the wheel can have little polaroids of happy couple inserted in.  The feature also makes for an excellent photo opportunity, adding some traditional glamour to the proceedings. 

Decorate the Cake

Wedding cakes can be hugely expensive depending on what size you require and how complicated the design is.  A cheap option is to buy a plain tiered cake and decorate it yourself!  Use silk ribbons to tie around each tier to create a fancier look, then use shop-bought decorations and accessories to make it look a million dollars.

Another option for cake decoration is to use stenciling; create you own using cut out plastic or buy stencils from any art shop and use them to dust chocolate powder or edible glitter on your cake.

Also, the traditional bride and groom standing happily atop the cake can be customised to suit you and your other half.  You may wish to accessorise your icing-couple with little echoes of your personalities, for instance if the bride and groom are avid cyclists, why not have them in icing riding a tandem bike?  Or if they like surfing, perhaps have them posing on an icing surfboard in swimming costumes but with a veil and bow tie respectively?  Be creative, it will make it memorable!

Decorate the Table

If you are having a sit down meal, or even a buffet, having a beautifully decorated table is a must as this is where most of your guests will spend the majority of their time during the reception.  Centrepieces can be extravagant or minimal, depending on your style, but neither need to be super expensive.

We have seen a few images lately of people using parasols and umbrellas upturned and hanging above the centre of the table.  They act almost as a canopy and can be filled with whatever you like, from balloons to glitter, to fresh flower garlands or teardrop glass features.  They are a magnificent way of adding something glamorous and quirky to the proceedings and are a definite talking point for guests!

You can create you own place settings using a whole variety of craft materials and it can be a fun way to spend an afternoon with your bride or husband-to-be.  If you want to add a funky wedding favour, we particularly like the idea of hanging coloured umbrellas from the back of guests’ chairs filled with glitter so when your guests take them outside to open them, they are given a sparkly treat perfect for photo opportunities.

There is no need to break the bank when creating a gorgeous wedding, there are options everywhere not just to save money, but also to create something truly unique that will never be forgotten by the couple or the guests.