Real Wedding DIY Done Right – Popcorn Station

I have a love-hate relationship with wedding Do-It-Yourself (or DIY) projects. In my opinion, there’s a fine line between something looking super cute and handcrafted and something looking like an elementary school art project. DIY projects can go really wrong, really fast, and sometimes the hours put into it just don’t justify the end result.

But… there are some wedding DIY’s that work, and one of our clients recently had a DIY project that we thought was a huge hit… a DIY done right, if you will! Bri and David‘s popcorn station was a perfect addition to their rustic wedding reception at Stockyards Station in Fort Worth. With a wedding reception start time of 3:30 p.m. and only 45 minutes for cocktail “hour” before the reception festivities began, the popcorn station was a perfect replacement for traditional hors d’oeuvres, and was adorable to boot!

No need to figure out how to DIY it or how much it costs ’cause we’re breaking it all down right here on the Hitched Events blog! (Please excuse the photos taken from my phone… they totally do not do this project justice!)

The supplies needed for the popcorn station were mainly purchased from Hobby Lobby, but any arts and craft store will likely have what you need. You’ll need the following:

  • Large, wood picture frame
  • Metallic spray paint
  • Red and white acrylic paint
  • Large wood letters to spell out POPCORN
  • Five bushel baskets
  • Two white plastic tablecloths
  • Five small signs to indicate popcorn flavors
  • Chalkboard spray paint

Popcorn Sign: A little spray paint can do wonders for a DIY project. Not only is it inexpensive, but it’s easy! Our bride started by spray painting the large, wooden picture frame (which was originally black) a metallic gold to match a few other decorative elements of her reception. You could, of course, spray paint the frame any color you want or keep it just like you bought it… totally up to you. The large letters were painted with red and white acrylic paint to tie in with the striped red and white popcorn boxes. A little hot-gluing magic and the letters were attached to the frame.

Baskets: The same metallic gold spray paint was used to create a light shimmer effect on the outside of the bushel baskets. The baskets were then lined with the white plastic tablecloths so that it created a nice barrier between the popcorn and the wood. (No need to give your guests splinters in their snack!). The tablecloths were cut to size, then stapled around the inside edge of the basket.

Popcorn Flavor Signs: Chalkboard spray is another fun element in DIY projects. Our bride used small, stand-up ceramic signs from Hobby Lobby and doused them with chalkboard spray to transform them. Our team wrote the popcorn flavors on each of the signs in chalk during set-up so guests knew exactly what they were filling up on.

Popcorn Supplies: Now that the crafty elements are done, all you need are the actual popcorn supplies! Our bride purchased her popcorn from Sweet Boutique in Fort Worth, and chose a combination of sweet (like the multi-colored confetti and kettle corn) and savory flavors (like the cheddar and jalepeño ranch… my favorite!). For those closer to the Dallas side of things, Uptown Popcorn is one of my favorite picks. The popcorn boxes were purchased from Amazon, and the popcorn scoops came from a kitchen supply store, although you could probably find them somewhere online.

So, about how much did this project cost?

  • Large, wood picture frame = $10
  • Metallic spray paint = $7
  • Large wood letters to spell out POPCORN – $2 each x 7 = $14
  • Red and white acrylic paint – $2 each x 2 = $4
  • Five bushel baskets – $4 each x 5 = $20
  • Two white plastic tablecloths – $1 each x 2 = $2
  • Five small signs to indicate popcorn flavors – $2 each x 5 = $10
  • Chalkboard spray paint = $8
  • Popcorn – $60 for a 120-serving bag x 5 = $300
  • Mini-scoops – $4 each x 5 = $20
  • Popcorn boxes – $170 per case x 3 = $51

TOTAL: $446 – The metallic spray paint and chalkboard spray were used for several other projects, so I’m not sure if those costs really “count,” but I included them anyway to get the full effect. With almost 300 guests in attendance, we used three cases of the popcorn boxes. Obviously, your counts on the boxes (and popcorn) might change based on the size of your group.

So… what do you think about how it turned out? Share your love for this project in the comments!


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  • AngelaApril 8, 2013 - 7:43 am

    I was planning to create my own popcorn bar as well. This bride did a fantastic job!! Do you know what size the bushel baskets were? I am having a hard time figuring out what size will be too small vs. too big.ReplyCancel

  • KimberlyApril 8, 2013 - 10:03 pm

    The bushel baskets used were about one foot tall and eighteen inches wide. Each one held about 120 cups of popcorn. Hope that helps!ReplyCancel

  • YvonneJanuary 6, 2014 - 8:58 pm

    Can you tell me where you got the bushel baskets please? Thank you.ReplyCancel

  • Kimberly | Hitched EventsJanuary 12, 2014 - 8:07 pm

    The bushel baskets can be found at a craft supply store like Hobby Lobby.ReplyCancel

  • Megan ChamberlainMay 30, 2016 - 9:09 pm

    What was the sizing on the picture frame and the letters?ReplyCancel

    • Kimberly RhodesMay 30, 2016 - 9:17 pm

      Hi Megan!

      It’s been a few years, so I’m not 100% sure…. I believe the frame was one of those long skinny poster size frames. 36″ long x 12″ wide. The letters were maybe 8″ tall. Hope that helps!!!ReplyCancel

  • misty BaneMarch 9, 2017 - 8:22 pm

    love this idea! what did you use to staple the tablecloth to the inside of the wooden basket/how does that work? could you hot glue the tablecloth in? we are not seeing a way to get the tablecloth down inside the rim of the basket.ReplyCancel

    • Kimberly RhodesMarch 13, 2017 - 5:09 pm

      Hi Misty!

      A heavy duty stapler works for this. I think a glue gun could totally work as well… you’ll just need to make sure the hot glue doesn’t melt the plastic tablecloth!ReplyCancel

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