Honestly, this was one of my FAVORITE parts of the wedding planning process. I spent sooo much time planning out the invitations and save-the-dates that it almost makes me sick. Do you know how little time I spent planning the programs? Do you know how much more proud of the programs I was than any of the other wedding paper products?

First we started out with paper. Thick paper. Program paper. 

Or maybe we started with the actual program. I don't remember.

Not being Catholic, I had to spend a lot of time on the wording and researching other Catholic wedding programs. Originally we were working with Father Tim, but he ended up having to do something for the archdiocese on the same date as our wedding. It was sad, but we scampered to find another priest to fill in. We ended up not even having a priest officiate which worked out quite well for us.

Point being... I had to e-mail him and the church coordinator about the wording and events within a Catholic wedding (that did not include communion). I needed to make sure I included all of the prayers and everything that needed to be said since only a few of Justin's friends and my dad's side of the family were the only to have ever experienced Catholic mass before.

Meanwhile, the wording for Catholic mass got changed as we were planning the wedding making things even more confusing. Ahhh!!!

So anyway, the program was double sided beginning with a cover page (including our names, the church name, the date, and the time) and ending with our thank yous and remembrances. We also made sure to include the names of everyone involved in the wedding mass including readers, singers, and ushers that were not necessarily standing with us at the front of the church during the mass.

I used a similar type to that which had been used on our invitations and save-the-dates.

My favorite part was the outside of the program. Justin had sifted through and bought a bazillion(!!) blue flowers from Ikea for our floral arrangements that I had NO IDEA what we were going to do with them! In January, I had bought a TON of ribbon from Hancock Fabric on sale that I also did not know what I would do with. So it came together. My mom and I spent 2 days cutting flowers, ribbon, and using a glue gun. *ugh* SOOOO TIME CONSUMING! But it looked so pretty, and I was sooooo happy with it! I was really afraid that all of the programs piled on top of one another would lead to flat flowers, but luckily this did not happen. On top of it, Justin (yes, Justin) had to teach my mom and I how to tie the bows so they would lay pretty. (Justin knows how to do everything! It really is scary occasionally. Apparently he learned this skill on a "How to Correctly Tie Your Shoe" website. Go figure. lol.)

At the same time as we were gluing flowers and tying ribbon, we were also poking holes in the pages of the program and sewing the books together. (Also very time consuming. So glad my dad was able to help!) Finally, we glued pockets inside the program covers to hold the map and information about the reception site. (The church coordinator had suggested the use of pockets to make church clean up easier. She said inserts typically get left at the church in the pews as they fall out of the programs. Then you have guests that can't find their way to the reception site! It probably didn't help that I had left the reception site as a surprise to everyone except out of town guests, immediate family, the wedding party, and the vendors.)

The one thing major that we did to the programs, that was even a surprise to me, was include two birds and a heart sitting on the ribbon that went around the back of the program.

My mom used to joke when I was young that if we saw birds sitting on a power line that they were having a meeting. I had a bird hole punch I bought for the wedding not knowing if I could use it. (Yes, they are technically black birds that I punched as blue.) Anyway, I was just playing around and being silly when I discovered that this could be a fun and unique way to personalize our programs without losing the class I was hoping to achieve. So my mom cut out approximately 300 "blue birds" on some thick blue paper while I used my Silhouette Cameo to print 150 hearts. Then my mom got to work gluing. I figured not many people would notice, but I was amused... Justin was amused. Everybody who knew anything about this little touch was able to notice and be amused.

Overall, I was so proud and excited for my guests to see our wedding programs. A lot of time and love went into them. I felt involved in every detail... and yet I felt like everything just came together.

I don't really have any suggestions for creating your own wedding program except to have fun. The minute you start worrying about copying somebody else or not being creative enough, you will probably get locked up and not be able to imagine what it is you want. Worst case scenario: call me.

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