Whether you’re a veteran crafter who plans to have handmade details in every corner of your wedding or a newbie DIY-er who’s tackling a big project for the first time, this reference guide is a must-read! We’ve compiled some need-to-know DIY terms that you’re bound to stumble upon while searching for inspiring handmade projects.
Anything from basic clear tape to hot glue to superglue. Keep in mind that different crafts and materials call for different types of adhesives—you can’t use Elmer’s School Glue for everything!
Any decorative element that can be attached to fabric (most commonly). You might add crystal appliqués to your DIY headpiece or garter, for example.
Photo by Kirsten Kuehn
You might recall brads from elementary school crafts, but here’s a reminder. These little metal pieces punch through paper and allow the paper to spin. They’re a total must for paper pinwheels!
This specialty paint turns almost any surface into a re-useable chalkboard. Just follow the instructions on the can, and soon enough you’ll be drawing away.
Have you ever wondered how some couples get their wedding chalkboards to look so perfect? Hint: They don’t use classroom chalk. Chalkboard pens (or paints) give your chalk designs a clean, polished look.
A die-cutter is pretty much a shaped hole puncher. It’s a machine or special tool that can be used to cut something as simple as a hangtag or as complicated as a pattern on the front of an invitation.
Photo by Little Peach
A rough or torn edge on paper. This decorative almost feathery edge gives your stationery some vintage flare.
Thin, round wooden sticks that come in a variety of lengths and widths. They’re often used for place cards, table numbers, or small signs.
More commonly called “Mod Podge” after the most popular brand, this adhesive works on almost any surface and dries clear. Crafters can barely go a day without it! Decoupages often come in different finishes and consistencies, so read the bottle carefully.
Pressing, stamping, or molding that depresses one part of a material to make the shape stand out. You’ve probably seen embossed invitations and other paper goods.
Photo by Dauphine Press
Nope, you can’t just put any paint on fabric. If you’re decorating tote bags for your wedding party, some type of fabric paint is necessary if you want the paint to not wash off. There are tons of varieties.
Silk greenery, glass beads, gems, or stones that are used to fill vases or other containers to add decoration. You can find tons of colors and styles at craft stores.
DIY-ing your bouquet or centerpieces? You’ll need floral wire, a thin, green (or sometimes brown) wire that keeps your blooms from looking limp.
Ever seen metallic paper goods at a wedding? There’s no magically metallic printer ink—the shimmer is actually a foil, which is typically pressed into the paper.
Photo by Atelier Isabey
Iron-on embellishments usually can be applied to fabric (and sometimes other materials) through heat, which is where your iron comes in. You can often find letters, patterns, and other decorations in iron-transfer material.
While you could break out your inner artist and an actual paint brush, paint pens are often easier to use and add small doses of pigment to a surface.
Just like if you were painting a room, primer goes onto a material before the paint (or any other color) to make sure the hue is as true as possible.
A round blade used to smoothly cut fabric. These come in a variety of sizes. Make sure you have a mat to cut on—otherwise, you’ll be slicing whatever surface you work on.
A spray that covers your project once it’s finished so that none of the goods fall off or move around.
A relatively rough, neutral-colored string. It’s both functional and stylish — twine can hold your project together while giving it a rustic feel.
Colorful, patterned tape that we can’t get enough of! No matter your wedding colors or style, you’ll definitely find some tape to suit you.
A special crafting knife that can easily slice perfectly straight lines through paper, cardboard, and other materials.
Did we miss something you need for your project? Don’t worry — ask for help at your local craft store. The DIY fanatics there can certainly point you in the right direction. Happy crafting!
Browse Loverly for more DIY ideas and advice:
Got a tough wedding question? Download the Loverly app to chat FREE with one of our virtual wedding planners and choose from affordable planning packages.