To start with I wasn’t sure we would even need table numbers. We hadn’t’ planned on a seated dinner, but then realized it would be easier on both our event staff and our guests if we tackled assigned seating. Of course that meant more DIY projects since that single decision yielded the need for escort cards, table numbers, and perhaps seating cards. I didn’t like the idea of a piece of paper on a metal stick. While I think they are perfectly fine, I just didn’t think they’d fit our “not-so-shabby chic meets French Garden” wedding. So I went to my standard go-to for wedding inspiration and found some framed table numbers on Weddingbee to use for inspiration and then gave it a little different approach for a look that really fit with our table decor. I think they turned out quite well 🙂
(photo credit: Climie + CO)
- Hot Glue Gun & Glue
- Paint Brush
- Paint in desired color
- 4×6 ” Frames (make sure they have glass panes)
- Fabric (1/2 yard or so per 5 frames)
- Wooden Number(s) for each table.
Getting Everything Ready to Assemble:
- Disassemble your frames. Doing this all at once will mean you can put them back together in a more assembly line type process which will go MUCH faster.
- Paint your frames if they need to be a different color. I realize that it might be easier & cheaper to buy unfinished frames and paint them. Had I not found white frames I liked I would have done the same thing. This is the step where you should paint the front and sides of your frames. Let them dry and then flip them over to paint the back. I also think spray paint might work well for this, especially if you could hang the frames on a makeshift clothes line so they could hang and dry more quickly.
- Paint the wooden numbers. Since they are unfinished it may mean you need multiple coats of paint to produce a solid coated surface. Since I wanted a more textured look to my numbers I used a foam stencil brush and “dabbed” them up and down with paint. It gave it a more textured finish than painting them with a regular brush in a back and forth motion.
- Let everything dry. I painted my numbers one night and then left them to dry until the following evening before I started assembly.
Assembling the Table Numbers:
- Take one of the pieces of glass and lay it on top of your fabric to use as a template. Use your scissors and cut around the piece of glass, leaving about an inch of fabric on all sides. Repeat this step for the number of tables you will have. We used two different prints and had 10 tables, so we cut 5 blue pieces and 5 green ones.
- This is where the assembly line process kicks in (so if you have buddies over to help you can assign each one a task). Go ahead and plug in your glue gun and get that bad boy preheated. And no laughing at how old my glue gun looks…because it is! My mom gave me her OLD one when I left for college 10 years ago, and it still works so I still have it! Thanks Mom! 🙂
- Take a piece of your fabric and place it face down on a flat surface.
- Place a piece of glass centered on top of the fabric.
- Pull up one of the long sides of the fabric wrapping it around the edge of the glass and using scotch tape secure it to the glass. Shocked that I used tape for attaching the fabric instead of glue? By using tape we were able to easily remove the fabric and reuse the frames after the wedding!
- Repeat this process on the other long side, making sure to pull the fabric tightly against the glass to make a smooth surface.
- Now, take the fabric on the end of the glass and push it in from the sides to make two triangular flaps. Pull the back flaps back firmly against the glass and tape down.
- Then pull the top flap down over the bottom one and also tape it securely to the glass. Repeat this process on the other side of the glass plate and then turn it over to make sure you have it all tight and smooth. This is where you could pass it off to someone else if you’d like.
- Now it’s time to reassemble your frames. Place the covered glass pane back into the frame with the covered side exposed. Then place the frame backing into the frame and reattach with side slides or press down the staples (depending on how your frames are structured). Then pass the reassembled frame off to be glued.
- First play around and decide where you want your numbers to lie on the frame. I wanted everything centered which made it really easy to stick them and move on.
- Break out your trusty glue gun and apply a thin line of glue to the back of your painted numbers and then quickly position them in the center of the fabric area.
- Hold it down until solid, and you are DONE. Pack them up and mark table numbers off your list.
For ReUse After the Wedding:
Using this method made it possible for use to reuse the frames after our event, AND even sell the fabric/number portion to another bride and save her some work! I call that a win-win! To reuse simply take the back off the frames and remove the glass plate with the fabric/number still attached. Simply peel off the scotch tape and separate the fabric from the glass. As long as you used a light weight Cotton fabric the glue won’t have gone through the fabric and it will slide right off. You might need to clean the glass panes, but otherwise your frames are ready to showcase your beautiful wedding photos! This is how my mom reused them for our hometown reception.
This is what we were left with once we took the fabric off the glass….see they are all intact and ready for someone else to use with the frames of their choice or even save for a future event!
Cost Breakdown & Ideas for more savings:
Frames: We used white wooden frames that my mom already had to use for our hometown reception to display wedding photos (and later gift to several family members). However, for this mock-up I used white plastic ones I picked up for $1 each at Dollar Tree and I actually think with the beaded edge they look nicer , plus they are lighter weight for those needing to pack & transport.
Fabric: $1.00 from the Dollar-a -Yard section at Hancock Fabrics we had leftover from covering our jam jar escort cards/favors. We purchased a yard of each fabric and used approx. 1/2 a yard of each color for (5) 4×6 inch frames of each color. You could also use leftover scrapbook paper like this or wrapping paper like this.
Wooden Numbers: $6.24 (including tax) for 11. From Michaels (purchased during a 40% sale). Using coupons at craft stores like Michaels, JoAnn’s, or Hobby Lobby can really save you alot of money! Sign up for each of their email programs to get advance notice of big sales and extra coupons sent directly to your inbox.
Paint & Brush: Free since I already had them from some other project years ago. These are also items you could pick up for a buck at Dollar Tree.
Total for 10 Tables: $18.96 (w/Dollar Tree Frames)
Price per Table: $1.89 (w/Dollar Tree Frames)