It started with the engagement ring. Mike got me an Edwardian style ring from 1915 that has a lot of intricate filigree and antique charm. We chose to get married at the church we attend which meets in a 120 year old building and after looking at a ton of reception venues we settled on a 100 year old mansion. Before we knew it we had an antique classic theme. When it came time to make wedding programs, we kept relating back to the theme and fan programs seemed perfectly classic.... I probably would have opted for parasol wedding programs if it were logistically possible!
There are so many options out there! We came across fan programs on a wooden stick, ones printed on actual fans, and some with five blades of paper tied together to make a fan. We decided we liked the five blade style best and got to work brain-storming. One of the decisions we had to make was whether to make all five blades the same color paper or alternate three and two. We ended up going with the same color so it was easy to read.
- First Mike used his awesome computer skills to design a page with four fan blades in alternating rotation (there's a free template below!)
- After much debate, we decided on the exact information we wanted on each page and laid it out onto the fan template. We had five pages including a Welcome, Ceremony, Wedding Party, Wedding Party continued, and Thank-You page.
- We printed the blades using our tips for cheap printing.
- Then we got our scissors and cut, cut, cut! There were 1000 blades to cut out individually but we were lucky to have help from some family and friends! Mike's mom helped so much she needed to wear gardening gloves to prevent MORE blisters!
- We then punched out three holes (two for the ribbon and one for a brad) in each fan blade.
- At the top of the first page fan blades, we wove a ribbon through the two holes.
- Also on the first page, we stamped a fleur de lis on the bottom, above the brad hole.
- Finally, stacking the five fan blades, we put a brad through the bottom hole.
We made 200 programs with 5 blades each so that's 1000 total blades. We squished 4 blades on each page so we needed 250 pages printed - 50 in color and 200 in black and white since the first blade in each fan had color but the other four were black and white.
- $15 for a ream of cream card stock (250 pages)
- $60 for printing
- $4.50 for three spools of ribbon on sale
Total: $79.50 or 40 cents per program
Here are some templates for the fan blades that you can use for free. I've saved them in the most common file types. If you're new to print design and aren't sure which to chose, go with Word Document! Enjoy.
- PDF format - You can use Inkscape, Adobe Illustrator, or Adobe Acrobat Pro to edit this pdf.
- DOC format - note Word doesn't let you do upside-down text so there is no way to get 4 blades on a page. The DOC format is set up for three blades so all the text is right-side-up.
Like this idea? Check out our other DIY Wedding posts!