DIY Custom China

If you know anything about our design and style philosophy at Trademark Weddings & Events, you know that we are huge supporters of making every event say something about you. There are countless examples of gorgeous weddings and events on Pinterest, Instagram, your favorite blog, and in every magazine you can imagine, but what really makes them special are the small, unique touches that make them about you. Simply doing something that has already been done may be aesthetically incredible, but it will always lack that special something if you don't put a bit of yourself into the design. 

One of our favorite ways to incorporate these personal touches is through elements on the head table (or sweetheart table). The theory behind this is that it's not always possible to produce enough of this special object for every guest (or even every table).

Sometimes you're limited by budget, but other times, especially if it's actually a personal item and not something you're purchasing, there just may not be more than a few in existence. That's ok! In fact, we think it's great. Things are more special when there are only a few of them, right? One example we often encourage couples to consider is using the wedding china they've registered for. Many couples receive several sets of china before the actual wedding, and we speak from experience when we say that no matter how much you love it, you just will not use that china as much as you may think or hope that you will, so why not incorporate it into one of the most special days of your life! We bring in a few sets of china, any additional pieces they've gotten (think salt and pepper shakers, serving platters, coffee cups and saucers, etc), use them for that one table, and then choose a beautiful, complimentary rental set for the rest of the guests. You can apply the same theory to grandma's china, if you're lucky enough to have some, or even mix and match for a beautiful, eclectic table that tells the story of your families. How cool is that? Almost every guest will visit the table where the bride and groom are seated, so it gives you an opportunity to share the stories of special elements with them. 

However, some couples don't have any family china, and maybe their wedding china doesn't aesthetically work with the rest of the color palette of the event. Never fear! You can still have some very cool, unique items on your table to create a truly personal moment. We're always trying to come up with new ways to accomplish this, and this past week, we experimented with a very affordable, cool, DIY project that totally gets the job done!

All you need for this very cool DIY project is:

- Tissue paper: choose a color/pattern that goes with your desired event decor

- Mod Podge

- A small, round sponge brush (you could also use a paint brush, but when using Mod Podge, we've found that sponge brushes work best and allow you to avoid the little hairs that often come off of a paint brush and get stuck in your beautiful project!)

- Scissors: if your tissue paper has an intricate detail that you want to trim around, you'll want smaller, more precise scissors, but if it's a large pattern, any scissors will do!

- Clear plates: any size, any shape. We used glass, but this should work on plexiglass or even plastic, though we can only vouch for it in theory! You can find glass plates at a very affordable price at your local thrift shop, Goodwill, Walmart, or places like TJMaxx. Keep in mind that they don't all even have to match! They can be different sizes and shapes, and you can simply depend on the tissue paper to tie things together. 

To get started, trim a few, large pieces of your tissue paper. You should have enough pieces to cover the bottom of the plate. There's really no right or wrong way to do this part. If you only want to feature the tiny roses that are part of the paper, feel free to cut them out and arrange a beautiful border around the edge of your plate. If you have a bigger, bolder pattern that you want to utilize the entirety of, we found it works best to cut out large, irregular shaped pieces, and then arrange them to overlap a bit on the back of the plate. Feel free to leave some empty space, or cover it entirely, but don't worry about the edges at this point. You will trim those later. 

Once your tissue paper pieces are laid out exactly how you'd like them on the underside of the plate, use your small, round sponge brush to apply a generous amount of Mod Podge on top. If you have smaller pieces, you may want to start with a smaller amount on your brush to allow for some more precision, and then layer more once you've secured them down. If you're going for all-over coverage, feel free to glom that stuff on there, girl! Mod Podge dries clear, so don't worry about it. Do note that with larger chunks, you'll get some creases in your paper. This is totally ok! It won't ruin the finished look, we promise. 

Once you've covered the entirely of your plate (or the whole area that you're applying pieces to), you can trim your paper if needed. Just use your scissors to get as close to the edge as possible, trimming away the excess paper. Again, don't worry if this part isn't perfect, just get as close as you can. Once that's done, run your round sponge brush around the edge with another layer of Mod Podge, just to secure it down so you don't have any pieces coming up or curling. 

After you've trimmed and secured the edges, simply set the plate(s) aside to dry. 

Mod Podge does dry pretty quickly, but we'd recommend waiting overnight before moving them from their drying spot, just to be safe!

When they're dry, you will have some incredibly unique pieces that your guests will definitely covet! 

Here are some of the AMAZING results, styled into some mini tablescapes.