Tom & I had seen some wooden wedding chandelier decorations on Pinterest and felt that they would fit our woodland wedding theme really well. Having had a scout online, I couldn’t find anything suitable so decided to make my own! I used to make props for Nickelodeon TV, so thought some of my resourcefulness might come into play here..and roping in my art teacher friend Emma-Jayne (http://www.emjayartworks.co.uk) whom I paid in Gin to help!! I thought between us we should be able to fashion something half decent!!
I wanted the diameter of the wedding chandeliers to be at least half a metre as our marquee was massive, I knew they would have to be big enough so that they didn’t get lost in the space. I decided to buy some plastic hula hoops from eBay, as these would give me a good size and structure to work from. The hoops needed hanging so that we could work all the way around them and so we hung them off ladders that we had in the garden. Anything would do for this, so long as you can get underneath the hoop later.
I was thinking that the hoops needed padding out so popped to my local B&Q in West Norwood and bought some of the pipe insulation, that already has a slit down one side ready to thread onto your house pipes! It was a little small for the hula hoops but once in place, I rotated the gap to the top, as when they would be hung in the air you would only see the under side. This was well worth thinking about as really its only worth dressing the chandeliers for a view from below, so you don’t waste anything on top and can focus all the good stuff underneath!
After adding the pipe insulation, Emma- Jayne thought it would be a good idea to paint it brown to match the willow twigs that id got off eBay. Genius. This really really helped and in fact made the pipe insulation look like one large branch! We used standard acrylic paint for this and just mixed up a colour to match the twigs.
Once the paint was dry, we started wrapping the Willow branches around the hoop and fastening it off with black cable ties (again a b&q purchase). The black cable ties soon became invisible once we started layering up the willow. A good tip for getting the Willow to bend instead of snap, is to soak it in water first. I tried to do this but didn’t have a container big enough, but on researching I found many people suggest soaking it to enable it to bend, especially if doing a hoop. I think a wheelie bin is probably the best idea, to fill it with water and stick the Willow in to soak. Next time ill try this!
Once we had added the Willow branches to the chandeliers, we started adding fake ivy, which is something you can easily get online. I got mine from eBay and it comes in 2m lengths. Again we fastened this onto the chandeliers with cable ties and concentrated on the underside rather than covering the whole thing.
Once we got into the Marquee, we added satin ribbon (to match the wedding theme colours) and I also added some clear baubles. I bought the clear baubles from eBay and these are the type that have a seam down the centre, so they pop in half which enabled me to fill them with baby’s breath. I would have liked to have used fresh flowers here but to save money and allow them to be done in advance, I bought some plastic baby’s breath online. It was slightly to light a green when it arrived but once the chandeliers were in the air, I didn’t think you would be able to tell too much!
I also bought some fairy lights and dressed these onto the chandeliers before we hung them. This part was the only tricky bit in that I employed an electrician to come and wire the lights together so that they could all be lit up and run off the marquee generator. It only took a couple of hours and I think the end result was worth it!! They looked so fantastic on the day and when it got to the evening they helped create a lovely atmosphere in the marquee!
What do you think?! I think they turned out pretty lovely in the end!!
If you would like Emma to make some chandeliers for your wedding or have any other ideas that you would like to discuss, please contact us here...
P.S. We are not sponsored by any company or website, I just find that eBay tends to have all sorts of good bits and bobs for making things, hence why I buy so much from there. You can get clear baubles, hula hoops and fake flowers from loads of places online.