Got a creative sister? A mother who loves to sew? What about an aunt that has a special talent for flower arranging, or a brother who is a computer whiz? Why not enlist their help and have a DIY wedding?

Small weddings are great because you can get your wedding guests involved. Having friends and family help you will not only makes everyone feel a part of your big day, it will add a personal touch to your wedding, and leave less work for you. There’s one more perk: A DIY wedding will save you oodles of money!

For Darin and I, getting loved ones involved was not only fun – it made our lives a whole lot easier.

One of the biggest challenges we faced while preparing for our wedding was getting our house ready for the big day. Our parents and friends helped us with everything from landscaping the yard, to mopping the floors. Working alongside our loved ones made the list of chores seem much less overwhelming.

For various DIY wedding-related tasks, we called on the talents of our creative sister-in-law who made the invitations and the place cards, and my mother, who led the flower arranging crew (consisting of myself, my maid of honor and my sister-in-law) in creating centerpieces, as well as the bride’s and maid of honor’s wedding bouquet. Darin’s talented aunt made a lovely silk ringbearer’s pillow, and a friend videotaped the wedding.

During the ceremony, a dear friend offered a prayer that she had written for the occasion, and my brother read one of my favorite poems.

Looking back on our wedding, it is these moments that sparkle among the brightest.

But involving friends and family is not for everyone. For some brides and grooms, the quest for the “perfect wedding” prevents them from getting friends and family involved. They’d rather have centerpieces from the best florist in town than a homemade flower arrangement. They’d much prefer embossed invitations on the finest card stock, than invitations created by a loved one.

For others, getting friends and family involved means a loss of control, and in turn, added stress. Some couples have strong ideas of what they want, and their loved ones just don’t seem to see eye to eye with their plans.

For these couples, involving friends and family could backfire and create hard feelings for years to come.

Just because family and friends offer help, it doesn’t mean you have to take them up on it. Do what feels right to you.

What if, on the other hand, you want the help of your family and friends to pull off a DIY wedding, but no one has offered? Ask them! It might be that they don’t want to interfere with your plans and they’re afraid to approach you. Maybe offer some suggestions of how they can be helpful to you, or let them provide you with some ideas.

If you’ve decided to involve loved ones, the best way to avoid disappointment is to be specific about what you want. Unless you are the laid-back type that just goes with the flow, it’s best to be clear about your ideas so there is no room for misinterpretation (and disappointment.)

 Ways to get your friends and family involved in your DIY wedding: