You have spent hours upon hours shopping for the perfect dress and jewelry, scouring over magazines and Pinterest for decor ideas and planning every single little detail for perhaps the biggest day of your life: your wedding. Now that the big day has come and gone, you will have lots of meaningful keepsakes left over—the evidence of all of your hard work. What do you do now with all of your precious wedding mementos? Here are a few ideas for incorporating some of your wedding decor into your home and how to properly preserve your wedding keepsakes.
How to Repurpose Wedding Decor into Your New Home
Reuse Table Decor
If you bought your own tablecloths for your reception tables, use them in your dining room. Sure, you probably don’t need 20 tablecloths, but keeping a couple will make sure your table is never bare. Make sure to save your table decor and any utensils, such as your cake knife and server, to don your table on special occasions.
The shabby chic style of decor is a trendy option for weddings as well as home decor. If you like the vintage or rustic style, choose your wedding decor in light of what could double as home decor after the wedding.
If you used any furniture at your reception, such as a dessert table or displays, find a place for them in your home. If you took the time to make or repurpose a piece of furniture for your big day, it could be especially meaningful to keep this homemade keepsake.
Many couples choose to include a display of pictures, a decorative backdrop, or signs in their decor. Use these to fill up empty wall space in your home. If you displayed engagement pictures at your wedding, try repurposing some of the frames to show off your wedding photos. If you used fun signs to direct your guests to the restroom, hang them on your bathroom door after the wedding.
General Wedding Decor
Every bride is different, which means every wedding will have a different look and feel. Whatever style you end up going with for your wedding day, chances are you can find a way to repurpose your decor in your home. For example, if you used tiki torches or another fun lighting accessory, use it to spruce up your landscaping. Use aisle runners as displays in your house or garden. If you had any special decor items, like your cake topper or centerpieces, find a way to display them on the mantel or bookshelf.
How to Preserve Precious Wedding Keepsakes
In an ideal world, you would be able to repurpose all of your most meaningful mementos from your wedding in your home. However, this goal simply isn’t realistic for most couples. You may have to find places to store your precious keepsakes to remember your day years down the road. It is important to take special care to preserve these keepsakes properly the first time to avoid damage.
Preserving a Wedding Dress
Your wedding dress is probably the most expensive clothing item you have ever, or will ever, purchase. Even after all the wedding festivities have died down, you’ll want to take special care to preserve your dress properly.
You may have been extremely careful on your wedding day to avoid damage and stains to your dress, but chances are it will need a cleaning and possibly some repairs. Keep your dress stored in a garment bag until you can bring it to a professional cleaner to remove any stains. Make sure you don’t wait too long to get it cleaned because it doesn’t take long for stains to set.
If keeping your dress well is important to you, you may want to look into having it preserved professionally. This can be a bit pricey, but it is worth it if you want to keep your expensive dress in mint condition for future generations.
Your engagement ring and wedding jewelry will need special care to protect them from deterioration, particularly if they are vintage. Every once in a while, it is a good idea to give your jewelry a cleaning. Use only light cleaners, like dish soap, and never scrub roughly. Once a year, use a q-tip to apply a high-quality mineral oil to keep your jewelry from becoming brittle. If you are not going to wear your jewelry often, you will need to find a good place to store it. Ideally, jewelry should be stored in a place without fluctuating temperature, light and moisture, but with proper ventilation.
Saving Wedding Flowers
You spent so much time and thought on your flowers, especially if you made your own, so you’ll want to figure out a way to save them. There are many different options for preserving your wedding bouquet and most of them are actually pretty easy. The easiest preservation method is to hang your bouquet upside down to dry for several months. Pressing your flowers takes a bit more work, but the end product is beautiful and versatile. You can also try silica gel or freeze drying. If you want to save your flowers, it is a good idea to talk with a trusted bridesmaid before you leave the reception to make sure the flowers are taken care of after the wedding and until you return from the honeymoon.
With all of the digital photo options today, you might not have to do anything special to preserve your wedding photos. However, one fun wedding trend has guests take Polaroid pictures of themselves to place in an album instead of a traditional guestbook. If you have Polaroid photos or have prints of your big day, taking steps to store them properly will keep you from losing precious photo memories. Keep your photos in a well ventilated area and avoid moisture, heat, and light. Light will cause your prints to fade. Store your photos off of the ground, preferably in an area of your house that is climate controlled.
Have you found a fun way to incorporate your wedding décor into your home? Share with us in the comments below or on social media!