In the midst of all the list-making, a very clear problem emerged - I had lots of little ideas but nothing to tie them all together in a way that made sense. There needed to be some cohesion of the different elements - the colors, the centerpieces, the favors, the place cards. I didn't want them to be super matchy-matchy, but I didn't want them to look totally random, either. What I needed was a theme - not an in-your-face kind of thing, but a little bit of inspiration that I could weave throughout the event to make it all gel, and something to use as a foundation for choosing the various decor and gift items I would need to buy.
The obvious starting point was our chosen colors, white and orange. Regardless of what theme we chose, the components would have to match the color scheme. I started searching by color on wedding websites and retail sites to see what options were out there for centerpieces and other decor. I knew the favors would be the easy part, because really, the sky is the limit - there is so much available and so many creative ways to personalize and customize them. They can be simple or extravagant, you can buy them or make your own, you can find something in every color and style and size and shape imaginable, and all you really need to make it look sharp is the right packaging. It's the other details that are more challenging - flowers and centerpieces and lighting elements, the real "showy" stuff. That was where I needed to start.
Oddly enough, that is not where my search proved most fruitful, but it gave me enough information so that I wasn't so overwhelmed with choices - it helped me to clarify my options and narrow my search. I had a list of lighting options, possible plants and flowers, pictures of real weddings to reference, and most importantly, I now had knowledge of what was available and realistic for my situation.
The whole atmosphere of our wedding is going to be casual but elegant, with a side of playful. The decor also had to match that tone. Nothing too fancy, nothing too elaborate, nothing too traditional.
Oh, and nothing too expensive. Let's not forget that.
I started doing general searches of wedding websites and vendor sites that included our colors and some of the items I had come across during my initial searches. Suddenly, the most amazing thing happened: I found everything I was looking for in one adorable (and affordable!) item. It took all the ideas that were swimming around aimlessly in my head and gave them shape and focus.
These little favor boxes solved all of my confusion. I must say, they are cuter in person, the picture doesn't do them justice. I got 120 of them for $85.90, including shipping, which works out to about $0.72 per box (I got them here). When we get closer, the idea is to fill them with orange and white candies. Easy!
At this point, the orange gerbera daisy became my theme. It has all the elements we need: it's sweet and vibrant and fun, but still classy, and definitely affordable. And of course, it matches our colors!
Once I had come up with a starting point, all the other little details became so much simpler. I was able to tweak some of my random musings and abstract ideas into specific plans and designs. I came up with a centerpiece idea and starting shopping for the various components that would go into them. I was able to make decisions regarding attire, bouquets, ceremony and reception decor, and stationery. All the little pieces began falling in to place and it actually started to feel like a real put-together wedding instead of a bunch of messy concepts on paper. I still had a long way to go and a lot of decisions to make, but it was definitely nice to have a solid foundation and finally have that feeling of accomplishment.
Driven by a daisy... I know there's a joke in there somewhere.