Whimsically Clever DIY Wedding With Personalized Touches At Everyone Corner

Every now and again I am surprised by a couple with something cool that they came up with to make their wedding truly unique to them!  Such is the case with Cristin Cramer & Mike Trosien’s completely adorable whimsical DIY wedding.  Realizing it or not, guests were asked to participate in the creation of some pretty creative decor pieces for the wedding, asked to draw 2 love birds on their RSVP cards.  These drawings where then turned into  art which was hung all around the reception… I.LOVE.THIS!  Such a terrific way to make your guests smile, really personalize your day and bring them into the fold!  Another clever thing that Cristin & Mike did that I really adore is their first look.  Each grabbed a large grouping of balloons to ‘hide’ their faces, walked toward each other, released et volia!  This is only a taste of the terrific ideas that our couple came up with when putting together their love bird infused DIY wedding, all sweetly captured by Leah Moss Photography.  From the center pieces to the fabric bouquets, your going to love each little detail!


Novella of the Bride…

Mike and I met 10 years ago, at work, for a company that did event video production. That day, we were shooting video for an ice skating competition. It was my first day on the job and although I met him that day, it wasn’t until we went on a trip for work out of town that we really started to click, and then started dating shortly after. We dated for about 5 years before we broke up for a while but remained friends … and then got back together to then eventually get married! I joked in my vows to him that our relationship has been like a RomCom…meet, get together, fall in love, have conflict, find each other again!   I am not easy to surprise, but I was completely shocked when Mike proposed to me on our vacation to Colorado last year. Although I accidentally tried to derail the proposal, he ultimately got down on one knee at sunset in Boulder, on a mountain, at a spot called Artist Point. (and I said yes, of course).

We themed our wedding around “love birds” but tried valiantly not to make it overly bird-y by having only small touches of birds. On our RSVPs we asked our guests to draw for us a “pair of lovebirds” and with the drawings we received back we created pieces of art to hang along the Opera House walls. We also sprinkled little birds and nests and birdcages here and there, along with a feather cake and feather boutonnieres. We wanted the whole thing to feel sort of whimsical and casual and springy. We aren’t really formal or uptight people so the formal, traditional wedding and reception wouldn’t have worked for us, and it was very important to us that it did have a bunch of special touches that were really personal to us.

For our ceremony, my brother, Ryan, wrote, performed and prerecorded all of our music, which was super special to us, and my brother also stood up on my side as a “Bridesman,” along with my matron of honor and best friend of 20 years, Kristy Deiters. Mike’s wedding party included his best friend Bryan Collinash as his best man and his twin, Matt, as his other groomsman. Our small wedding party also included our flowergirl, Mike’s niece, Lorelai, and our dog, Keypers, as the ringbearer. (he’s 9 and our little buddy – Mike got him for me early on in our relationship). During the ceremony we did a “God’s Knot” ceremony, because we didn’t think that the traditional unity candle was right for us. We also wrote our own vows by combining some shared lines that we both used and then mixed in our own promises for each other.

The reception was very DIY – the centerpieces were made up of thrift store containers that were all spray painted to match our colors, and then handplanted with succulents from a nearby greenhouse, the table numbers were made by a friend, the bird paintings on the wall were DIY, as I mentioned, the placecards were made by me, and were hanging from a tree that was assembled with branches that were picked from my parents’ yard and then painted. We decorated the whole window front with paper flowers that were handmade and assembled/strung by us, and the dessert table was made-up of teacups and plates collected from thrift stores and glued together, and then a friend of mine made the cake (I made the toppers), and our families made cookies (cupcakes were purchased, but renamed by us!). Other special touches – we love craft beer and we like to support local breweries so we had a keg of Short’s Bellaire Brown (from Bellaire, Michigan). Mike and I also made and packaged our own favors – seed bombs. We also had a vintage-themed photobooth.

Our bouquets, corsages and boutonniere were all fabric. The bouquets were made partially from my mom’s wedding gown. She had passed it down to me and I decided that though I didn’t think it was the dress I wanted to wear, I did want a way to integrate it into our day. Now, I’ll have pieces of it forever on display within my lovely handmade bouquet.  I also made and printed or had printed all of the paper details like our invites, programs, placecards, guestbook…etc, so we were able to make those very personalized to us.  Another maybe interesting detail is our first look. We both had a bouquet of balloons that we released to reveal ourselves to each other!

My matron of honor, Kristy Deiters, helped to cut and glue flowers for the flower strands and helped with the centerpiece planting and favor packaging. And she and her hubbie, Josh, helped us with all of the setup.  My parents helped with everything, from the painting and planting of the centerpieces to the assembling of the flower strands, to gathering materials to do everything, to making the no-bake cookies, to making the frames for our bird paintings. I could go on and on, they helped us with every detail. My brother, Ryan, and his girlfriend, Heather, helped us stuff the favor boxes. And Ryan did the music, as I mentioned.  My friend, Samantha Mann, made the beautiful table numbers.  Another friend, Melissa Wood, made our cake.  Mike’s sister-in-law, Tami Trosien, made cookies.

Although neither of us had any tie to Howell, we loved the look and feel of the Opera House.  It’s wood floors and brick walls and downtown location gave it a different, relaxed and cool vibe that we preferred over a banquet hall.   The Opera House was the first venue that we looked at for our reception, but we followed it up by looking at many many other venues around the Metro Detroit area before realizing that it was really the place for us.  We had also visited the Crystal Gardens Chapel and since it was in Howell, too, we decided it’d be a good fit. The Chapel appealed to us because it gave an outdoor feel, while still providing cover in case unpredictable Michigan weather brought rain on our April wedding day!

Bride’s Favorite Moment: “I’m not sure how I could possibly pick one favorite out of all the day’s moments, but I do distinctly remember riding in the limo by myself on the way to our “first look.”  I was able to have a few minutes to myself to breathe and pray and relax, which was followed up by our reveal. I loved getting to spend that time with  Mike and get our day of celebration started, together.  It was a really relaxing block of time before the chaos of the day kicked in.”


Vendor Love

Ceremony Venue: Crystal Gardens Chapel Reception Venue: Howell Opera House  | Wedding Dress: Watters  | Bridesmaid Dresses: Dessy  | Shoes: Me Too…  | Hair & Makeup Stylist: The Beauty Bar  | Invitations: Bride | Transportation: A List Limousine  | Ceremony Music: written/performed/recorded by Ryan Cramer {Bride’s brother} | Reception DJ: Ultimate Entertainment  | Rentals Chairs: A Moment Forever  | Florist: Centerpieces by Bride, Fabric Bouquets ~ Autumn Art{partially made with materials from mother’s wedding gown}, Corsages~Burlap and Bling Studio, Boutonneieres~Pomp & Plumage | Caterer: Town Host Catering  | Cake: Melissa Wood  | Baked Goods: The Cupcake Station, Family & Friends {Groom’s sister in law, Tami Trosien, Parents of the Bride, Morgan & Sue Cramer}  | Videographer: Shane Tincu Films  | Photographer: Leah Moss Photography