Maddie’s DIY Wedding: Part 1

Posted by Maddie Derdiger in People | July 29, 2015

Part 1: Maddie’s Dream Day or Design Nightmare?

Demanding, particular, know-it-all, and thrifty. The bride that has impossible standards and wants to save money is the hardest one to please.

Last May the love of my life asked me to marry him (yay!) and with more than a year until our wedding date, I figured that I’d have plenty of time to design our big day and save us tons of money. From the destination to the place cards, I was determined to make my wedding design, my magnum opus. Little did I know that the preparations for my dream day would be the makings of my worst nightmare design job.

The Perfect Theme

The destination, Madeline Island, was easy to pick as it has been my ideal venue since I was a little girl. The island, as we call it, has been my family’s summer spot for generations and the home of my great grandfather, Captain Angus whom owned the ferry line. With a strong history rooted in boating and island life, the theme practically picked itself: NAUTICAL!

A Logo to Set the Tone

Every designer knows that a logo is never just about a mark. The logo sets the aesthetic for an entire brand and determines the tone for everything that supports that brand’s image. Knowing this made designing such an important piece of my wedding incredibly difficult. As with a brand, I wanted our logo to communicate everything about the day, the history of the venue, and the story of our relationship, which is a tall order for any designer, especially one that is so personally invested. Having been a graphic designer for 6+ years, I must have designed hundreds of logos and branded plenty of events, but who knew this would be the hardest mark I would create? After drafts of dozens of logos that were too bold, too kitschy, too cliché, I finally sought help and asked my colleagues for a second opinion. Turns out, the greatest logo in the bunch was one of the first that I designed. It was the one that was most instinctual and the least forced, much like the love that inspired it. Because the standard I set for myself was so high, I realized if I left the decision up to me, nothing would ever be good enough. I needed an outside eye to pull me back to reality and keep me on track.


Did it Save Me Money?

No because who in their right mind has a wedding logo but a designer? This would not have been an expense incurred by any normal bride.

Did it Accomplish My Goal?

It did. I set the tone for the wedding I had in mind and in that respect, the blood, sweat and tears were well worth it.

So for now, I will not be firing myself and will look forward to the next challenge: Invitations and collateral!