Thursday, March 1, 2012

Our DIY "Message In a Bottle" Wedding Invitation

We decided to DIY our wedding invitation for the civil wedding because we're going to have an intimate wedding with just less than 50 guests and thought  it would be manageable. It ended up being a major task and took us a month to finish even if we just need to make 23 pieces of invitations. I won't recommend this if you have 100 guests, well, not unless you have a knack for torturing yourself, lol. But I must say, after our guests received theirs and they started calling us/texting us to tell us how impressed they were and raving that it's the most unique wedding invitations they have ever received, it was all worth it in the end....

Anyway, so here's how we pulled this off.

We divided this into phases. First phase is putting the sand and tiny shells in (which is what I volunteered the h2b to do, lol). Second phase is adding the accent ribbon on the bottle. Third phase is the actual invitation (printed, rolled and placed into the bottle, and added medium-sized and large shells). Last phase is the box, including the final touches like the accent ribbon and the tag.

Here's what you'll need:

roll of rafia, the bottles and unassembled boxes (right)
For the first phase.
1. Bottles (I ordered my bottles from, look for "message bottles")
2. Tiny shells  from A.C. Moore and medium and large shells from walmart.
3. Sand (got mine cheap from Joann's fabric shop). I also added some Cape May sand into the mixture (Cape May is where our wedding will be held).
4. Plastic spoon and paper funnel (for pouring sand into the bottle).

For phase 2.
1. Ribbons (I got lucky and found a ribbon on sale at Joann's fabric shop that looks weddingish)
2. Sticker ribbons for hiding the overlapped ends of ribbon #1 (got mine from michaels, martha stewart has some interesting patterns)
3. Motif ribbon (bought a turquoise blue from michaels)
4. Glue (that can work for both fabric and glass)
5. A lot of patience. Putting glue on bottles and fabric isn't my favorite thing in the world, let me tell you that, lol.

For phase 3.
1. Paper of your choice. I used a handmade paper from michaels, which,  by the way, is a daunting task by itself because i had to go to several michaels branch because not all branches carry the paper we need and if they do they would just have, like, 10-15 of them (i need atleast 23 but i tried to get more in case of printing errors).
2. Rafia ribbon for keeping the scroll in place.
3. Nautical theme charms (got mine from, look for happysupplies)

 For phase 4.
the plain box before gluing in the wrapper
1. Boxes ( also got them from
2. Ribbon for tying the boxes shut.Although, this is really optional. You can actually just tuck in the the cover inside (see right image).
3. Gift tags, to write in the name of your recipients.
rolls of exotic wrapper ($3 each
and each  piece makes 6 boxes)
4. Any interesting wrapper. I was lucky to find one from artistcraftsman  (they have the most amazing exotic wrapper collections!) which is just a block away from where I work. Just cut the wrapper into the shape of your box then glue the wrapper in place.

For the steps I think everything is pretty much self explanatory. Or if you still want to see the detailed steps it's the same as our DIY WYB message-in-a-bottle necklace (click me), the only additional steps would be for the accent ribbons on the bottle and making the boxes for the bottle.

And oh, here's our finished product (the picture has our monogram sticker but I decided not to put them anymore because it makes the box looks busy):

all ready to be mailed but first we need mailing envelopes


Anonymous said...

where exactly could i find the boxes on the website?

mindovercookie said...

Anonymous said...

Thank you!!

Nyasha Evans said...

Could you give me an estimate of how much it cost altogether for this project?

Anonymous said...

Can i ask if you used anything inside the bottles to keep the sand and shells from moving around in shipment? Maybe it's a dumb question but I'm trying to figure out what they looked like when they arrived at their destination (as far as shipping them). I love what you did - I will have to mail some of mine however. Should I worry about the objects inside the bottles flying around inside? Thanks, DS

Mrs. Sweet Tooth said...

i would assume the bottles would shake a lot enroute but i didnt worry too much about that... first, because i made sure the cork sealed the bottle well & 2nd, when the recepient receives the bottle they would open it with the bottle sitting upright so all the sand and shells will just all go back in place (which is at the bottom of the bottle)...

Anonymous said...

please where can i get the wrappers?

Mrs. Sweet Tooth said...

if you read the blog above it's at "For Phase 4", #4 step.

or here:
(i didnt buy it online though, since their store is just walking distance from my old office i just walked in)

Mrs. Sweet Tooth said...

@nyasha. it's less than $10 per bottle. between $7-10.

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