Ten Craft Supplies to Take Your DIYs to the Next Level

There are so many reasons to turn to DIY for your wedding day. You can save big bucks by applying your own elbow grease; everything can be personalised to your tastes and interests and seriously, the sense of accomplishment that comes from knowing your hands were involved in those little details can be huge. But what if you don't consider your local craft store your second home? You know about hot glue, ribbon and glitter, but all of that stuff in the back of the store can seem foreign, complicated and way above your ability. You might be worried that trying to make something might turn out a little more summer camp than wedding chic, but great news! If you know what you're buying, there are a ton of supplies out there that practically do the work for you. We're here to help you make sense out of those bottles and jars so you're armed and ready to take on those gorgeous projects like a pro with a few recommendations to help you bring out your inner artist.

1. Gold Leaf

What is it? Actual real gold that's been hammered into a super thin sheet.

What can I use it for? When spray paint just isn't going to do the trick, gold leaf can add that perfect sparkle to candle holders, vases, frames and just about anything that will sit still. You'll need the proper adhesive to get it to stick, then you simply press the sheet to the glue for a perfectly posh finish. Too sticky? Too complicated, then you can try ... 

2. Specialty spray paint

What is it? Basically, it's just fancy spray paint. This DIY staple comes in all kinds of varieties to give you an effortless stone, foil, mirror or frosted finish and that's just the tip of the iceberg.

What can I use it for?  Turning something cheap into something that looks totally profesh. Use Krylon Looking Glass to get this faux-mercury glass look. Fine Texture Stone paint can give you a realistic concrete look without the weight or the mess of mixing and pouring the real stuff. With all kinds of metallic finishes, jazzing up simple pieces is as easy as point and shoot!

3. Reactive Paints

What is it? Reactive paints give you the look of natural weathering processes like rust and patina without having to wait for years or find the perfect vintage piece.

What can I use it for? Adding these antique finishes to pieces fits in perfectly with industrial, vintage or rustic looks. We love these faux concrete and rust planters that combine stone texture spray paint with a little rust trim. Adding antique touches to lanterns, birdcages or other metal decor adds another level of interest to those little details!

4. Alcohol ink

What is it? Alcohol ink is an alcohol-based dye for adding transparent color to glass, plastic, metal or other non-porous surfaces.

What can I use it for? Using the felt stamping tool to apply a mix of several colors adds gorgeous watercolor finishes to wine glasses (that double as favors!) as well as vases, candle holders, even picture frames! When I found the perfect hairpiece for my wedding only came in silver when I needed gold, I just took a detail brush and some yellow alcohol ink to stain those metal details to a perfect brassy shade.

5. Vitrail

Pebeo Vitrail , $6.59 at Utrecht Art Supply

Pebeo Vitrail, $6.59 at Utrecht Art Supply

What is it? A heavy glass stain that emulates stained glass.

What can I use it for? Diluted vitrail is the main component in these gorgeous, easy sea glass bottles. You can also create these unique stained glass-inspired vases, or take the backing off of a picture frame to create a personalized wall hanging or sun catcher. Once the Vitrail dries, it's completely waterproof, so it makes an excellent option if you want to add some color to any vessels that will hold fresh flowers!

6. Aquash Pen by Pentel

Pentel Aquash Brush Pen , $8.49 at Joann

Pentel Aquash Brush Pen, $8.49 at Joann

What is it? A water brush perfect for all of your brush script needs.

What can I use it for? Do you have nice handwriting but don't really *get* calligraphy? This pen makes gorgeous brush script practically effortless! It holds water in a tube that allows you to dilute your color without washing it off in a cup, making great transitions between colors. Plus, the nylon bristles hold a perfect point AND clean off in a breeze!

7. Die Cutters

Recollections Tag Lever Punch , $14.99 at Michael's

Recollections Tag Lever Punch, $14.99 at Michael's

What is it? Specialty punches that automatically cut paper or cardstock into any shape from simple circles, to butterflies, to tags for gifts or favors.

What can I use it for? Do you love the look of paper garlands but don't really feel like spending the money? You can punch out your favorite colors and string them up for half of the price, plus you have the punch for future projects. Some cutters are specially designed to add a lace-like border that can take invitations and other stationery to the next level. All you have to do is insert your paper and press down on the lever for perfectly cut and matched shapes of any kind.

8. Embossing Powders

What is it? A pigmented power that when combined with slow-drying ink and a little heat adds a raised finish to any surface.

What can I use it for? Everyone knows an embossed business card is super-legit, but with a little effort, you can add luxurious touch to your wedding signage, stationery or decor. The ink can be painted, stamped or penciled on, then all you have to do is sprinkle the powder on top and add a little heat for the perfect embellishment.

9. Gel Medium

Golden Gel Medium , $17.42 at Utrect Art Supply

Golden Gel Medium, $17.42 at Utrect Art Supply

What is it? An additive typically added to paint to add texture and relief

What can I use it for? This is an essential supply for transferring photos to canvas, but the same process can be used on wood, metal or even fabric to display photos beyond pictures in frames.

10. Foil Stamping Printers

Heidi Swapp Minc Starter Kit , On sale for $104.99 at Joann

Heidi Swapp Minc Starter Kit, On sale for $104.99 at Joann

What is it? A specialized printer that allows you to add foil stamping to any paper.

What can I use it for? If you're willing to go all-out (or maybe it's something you could use well after your wedding) and drop the $150 for the printer, you can literally use it for any paper project that could use a little flash and sparkle. You can use pre-purchased templates, or you can print your own project using toner-based ink to add all kinds of metallic colors to your cards, signs or envelopes!

The most important tip in finding the perfect DIY? Just read the instructions! You'll get all the information you need about compatible products and how to clean up. When you find a product that practically does the work for you, conquering those projects becomes a new favorite hobby!

Still a little nervous about trying things out? Let us know how we can take you from clueless to crafty by sending us a message here!

Shannon GrahamComment