To DIY or not to DIY: Finding your niche in the creative scale

Guestpost by Moonrose on Sep. 26th
I made that!

This is former Offbeat Bride Kara's 'I made this!' face.

For many of you, you might look on Offbeat Bride and find a LOT of different choices in the DIY department. How to make a certain bouquet out of brooches or ornaments, maybe you want to DIY your Save the Dates somehow or even all of your invitations. For some of you, that might seem too much. For the rest of you, it's right up your alley. And then there's a small portion of us who are a little scrapbook/sewing savvy, but aren't too sure of ourselves with these bigger projects.

If you're not sure what your niche is creatively, think about the basics:

  • Do you like scrapbooking? If so, how much? What kinds of scrapbooking do you do?
  • Do you like to sew? If so, how much? What kinds of sewing do you do?
  • Do you like to craft? If so, how much? What kinds of craftwork do you do?

Now to end all of these questions, this is the most important one: Do you often start and COMPLETE your project, whatever it may be? If you're thinking of doing ANYTHING DIY, think about it hard.

Once you've made your decision that you want it done, here are a few tips you may want to consider:

1. Get planning. Before you step into any project, you need to sort out what materials you need and how you're going to create even one item step by step. How are you going to make this effect on your card with little to no mess? How will the message be printed? Are you going to use an adhesive that isn't glue?

2. Once you have a plan, write it down. This will help in your step-by-step process so when you are ready to start, you can look back on your notes for reference. Dimensions for this piece are so many inches by so many inches. Put some strips of double-sided tape on the back of this piece to stick on this piece along this area. Hint: if you can, draw pictures. This will help you visualize even more what you want to make!

3. Get help. Although what you might be doing seems simple, its good to have help and plan specific days with your friends and/or family to create your vision. Before you begin the work, have a step by step visual tutorial so that everyone can see exactly what they are supposed to do. You can even make it an assembly line by asking people if they could work on one to two steps of your project at a time. Be sure to have some music playing or something to snack on — it'll make it a bit more like a party atmosphere this way!

Or, like Ariel said in the Offbeat Bride book, if you can relinquish the control of a specific project to someone else, not only does it take a LOT off your mind, but you will most likely be happy with the end result.

4. Don't sell yourself short in the creative scale. If you know something simple but effective, do it. I was happy when everyone commented how beautiful my save-the-date magnets were, even though they were REALLY easy to do! I had quite a few ready to hand out after a few days and I had made them by myself! The funny thing is I hate scrapbooking, but I guess this project was so much more meaningful and didn't feel forced, so I was happy to do it.

If for any reason you still don't feel that creative… stop there. Don't worry. If you don't feel up to trying something by yourself (or with some help, of course), don't do it. It's okay. You know that it's not the worst thing in the world to keep things simple.

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About Moonrose

I'm a fairy born and raised in the midwest from a Slovak heritage family with three older brothers making me the baby. Some days I feel like a princess while other days I feel like an adventurer... that is, in between working at a McDonald's close to home and spending time with my Psychology Major fiancee, who my parents graciously allowed to live with us. Every so often I love to sew, draw, and try to get involved in theater whether by acting or by playing in the band.