Pinterest inspires generation of frugal brides

Photo courtesy of The Susquehanna Photographic

Pinterest’s explosion in popularity has triggered a DIY revolution that has drastically altered the way brides plan their weddings. According to the 2012 annual study for Brides magazine, 59 percent of couples used Pinterest, a social bookmarking site, to find wedding inspiration.

York area couples are no different. When Cantrell Frey’s husband, Duane, proposed using a fortune cookie, she went straight to Pinterest to plan her big day.

“I’m a graphic designer, and I’ve always had an artsy background,” Frey, 34, of Red Lion said. “I knew I wanted the wedding to be hands-on, and both of us wanted to give everything a personal touch.”

Frey envisioned a “simple and intimate wedding — a personal reflection on us,” she said. She chose Blue Hound Farm in Fairview Township for her DIY wedding on Aug. 25, 2012. The total cost came to just $7,000.

Cutting corners

Photo courtesy of The Susquehanna Photographic

Frey cut costs by designing her stationery, from the save-the-dates to the ceremony programs; purchasing her flowers wholesale, making her own bouquets, boutonnieres and centerpieces; and making her own favors.

While it’s tough for her to pick her favorite DIY project from the wedding, she really loved the favors. She adapted a Pinterest project for drink coasters using 4-inch square tiles from Re-Source York.

“I cut patterns from scrap paper and used Mod Podge to attach the paper,” Frey said. “Then I painted them with a protective coating. I received so much great feedback on the coasters. Our guests really loved them.”

Frey also decided to think outside of the box when it came to her guest book, a bench that her guests signed with their names and a special message.

“When it’s warm outside, the bench sits on our front porch and holds a plant,” she said. “It’s more meaningful than a book that would just end up stored in a box.”

Making memories

Photo courtesy of Kat Hanaegraaf

Planning a wedding can be stressful, but Frey encourages brides to remember to make the process meaningful and personal. “Anything you can add to the event that is strictly about you two just makes the day so much better,” she said.

Casey Herrmann, 29, of West Manchester Township agrees that adding handmade, personalized details to a wedding makes the experience truly memorable and intimate for guests.

For her Sept. 7, 2012, wedding at the Yorktowne Hotel, Herrmann set a goal to take the DIY ideas she saw on Pinterest and find a way to recreate them on the cheap.

“I found my guest book on Pinterest selling for $378, but I knew I could make it myself,” she said. “I pulled out my coupons and ended up making it for $25.”

Now the project, a shadow-box frame where guests signed their names, is displayed in her home.

Personal touches

Photo courtesy of Kat Hanegraaf

Herrmann also purchased simple white-rose bouquets and added her own lace and pearl detailing to give the flowers a more custom look. She draped her grandmother’s pearls around her own bouquet.

“It’s just so important to focus on the things that actually matter,” Herrmann said. “You don’t need monogrammed cocktail napkins; you don’t need the personalized monogram runner down the aisle. There’s nothing you’re going to be able to use that for in the future.”

Herrmann splurged on a few items like a photo booth — the instant, posed pictures doubled as favors for guests — which brought her bottom line to $14,000.

“I’ve been to weddings that are so over the top, but I feel like our wedding was just so much more intimate and memorable,” Herrmann said. “When it comes down to it, you’re married and spending time with your family and friends. It really doesn’t matter how much money you spend.”

Follow our DIY brides

See the pins that inspired Frey and Herrmann by following them on Pinterest. View Frey’s pinboards at and Herrmann’s pinboards at Find Smart on Pinterest at

Facebook fans weigh in

Photo courtesy of The Susquehanna Photographic

We put a call out on Facebook to see what DIY brides have done for their big day in York and Adams counties. Here’s what you had to say:

    “We’re making our own farmhouse tables for our reception … and it’s become a small business. We’re renting them out to other couples. What a great way to spread the love and create a true partnership!” — Missy Bupp

    “I found lots of fabulous ideas on Pinterest — made our own barnwood signs, burlap and lace decorations, and candy/popcorn bar for our casual-themed crab feast reception.” — Beth Bruening

    “We did almost the entire thing ourselves, minus the dresses and food. We had in right in our driveway with more than 200 guests. I give many props to Pinterest and Etsy.” — Ashley McClain

    “My aunt handmade all the decorations for our fishing-themed wedding reception. She crocheted more than 100 fish-shaped pot holders as favors and made row-boat centerpieces for all the tables.” — Jennifer Wentz Lorenz

    “I made our invitations, programs and everything else. My husband and I cooked the food with the help of our family for 75 people.” — Heidi Sherrick Wolak

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2 Responses

  1. June 28, 2013

    […] Pinterest inspires generation of frugal brides […]

  2. July 10, 2013

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