If you have ever used Pinterest, I am sure you know by now that rustic décor is trendier than ever. From rustic barn venues to cowgirl boots for the bride, the good old dirty farm has transitioned into a romantic wedding setting.
Now, I grew up on a farm and ended up marrying a farmer, so this theme worked out perfect for my husband and me. It also allowed me to have easy access to multiple décor items….FOR FREE!
The Milk Can
Also known as a milk churn, the milk can provides endless options for rustic décor.
The easiest way to use the milk can is to use it just the way it is. If you can find a true antique milk can, you will most likely already be blessed with its rusty beauty it has gained with age.
Another simple way to incorporate milk cans is by using the can as a vase or pot holder. Milk cans are perfect for displaying large floral arrangements. Your typical wedding arrangements are found on tables, chairs, or altars but milk cans allow you to display larger floor arrangements. These can be placed by doors, aisles, and make for great visual accents by the altar. If you don’t want to spend tons of money on cut flowers, an eight inch plastic pot fits perfect in the top of an open milk can. You can spend a few dollars on seeds or bulbs, plant them in the spring and have beautiful arrangements to pop in the cans the day of your wedding! Just make sure you are on top of watering or your flowers will end up with a $h*tty shade!!!
The milk can also works great for displaying signs. Simply place your signs on a post and insert the post in to the milk can. Depending on the size of your sign, you may need to add sand or gravel to hold the sign in place.
Lastly, if you have a milk can that you still have the top for, you can find someone handy that can cut a slit across the top that fits cards. This makes for a truly unique card “can”!
Straw or Hay Bales
When it came to decorating for our outdoor wedding, I wanted to incorporate straw bales into our décor but I didn’t want to use them for our main seating. I have seen multiple weddings where bales are spread out with wooden boards used to create benches or just bales spread out for seating on their own but I had too many people invited to deal with setting all of that up. This led me to a few great ideas
If you by chance have access to large round bales, then you are in luck! They are the perfect size for cocktail tables! When laid on their side, round bales fall a little higher then waist height. I am sure your thinking…”I wouldn’t trust setting my drink on a bumpy, rough surface.” Well guess what, I didn’t either, which led to the conclusion that plastic round tables fit perfect on the top of the round bales! Leave the legs of the tables closed, place the table on top of the bale, lay a round table cloth over the table and bale and wrap that ever so rustic baler twine around the table cloths to secure them down.
If you don’t have access to round bales, don’t you worry! Small bales can be used to create fun rustic themed furniture for your guests to take advantage of for both lounging and for great picture opportunities. We created a basic couch layout using 10-12 small bales but you could easily make chairs and tables. You pretty much go at it like a game of tetras. Also keep in mind, bales are pretty prickly, so make sure to have blankets or something smooth to lay on top of the areas that will be used as seats
If you really want to stay on top of your Pinterest game, then grab a pallet or a piece of barn wood and get sign making! The best rustic signs are made from the ugliest pieces of wood. I was lucky enough to find an entire old barn door that I converted into a sign. And guess what…I used some of those small bales as a holder to display it! See how it’s all coming together now.
Now I am pretty artsy when it comes to painting but if you are good with your wood working skills, you can use the rest of those palettes to create the perfect outdoor bar. Whether it is just for lounging or for actually serving drink from, these are perfect for an outdoor wedding!
I’m not even going to get to in detail on mason jars because everyone that has been to a wedding in the past five years knows these are easily converted into centerpieces. Want to jazz them up a little? Feel free to add raffia, ribbon, or lace to each jar to customize them to match your wedding colors. These jars can also be found in ceramic colors or can easily be spray painted!
If you can get your hands on old galvanized watering cans, these also make for great décor. They can be used to hold fresh cut flower and are great for holding your wedding bouquets.
Overall, rustic décor has allowed us to repurpose old, rusty, worn items and make them beautiful again. I truly love that I was able to create an amazing wedding space without hurting my pocket book! I have my matured (I really mean older) family members to thank for holding on to all of their old crap!
Images By Eric Johnson of Let it Rain Studios Green Bay, Wisconsin