Monday, March 22, 2010

The Pain of Waiting....

I'm so bummed.  My supply site for centerpiece stuff no longer carries the apothecary jar I want.  What do I do now? :(

Oh Shoes

A big pickle of DIY is getting that perfect idea in your head, knowing there's a slim chance of finding it unless you make it, then realizing that making it is just totally over your head.

I have in my head a vision of my perfect wedding shoes and they go a little something like this:


You may say to yourself "I see shoes like that all the time" and indeed, so do I.  The problem is that RED plaid is prevalent and I want any combination of BLUE or PURPLE or GREEN.  I could find the perfect print at a fabric store but everything I read says quite clearly "DON'T TRY TO GLUE FABRIC TO YOUR SHOES!!!"

So then, the conundrum is: Where do I bend?  Or perhaps not "where" (obviously plaid is going to be the thing to go) but "how".

I noticed yesterday that people are buying or crafting some sort of embellishment to clip onto the toe or heel of a shoe for a special occasion, which can then be used as decor on a purse or hat or memento box, etc.

Examples from

A cute idea.  One that I could have fun replicating with the right amount of sparklies and feathers.  I still want to keep an eye out for my plaid shoes though.....

Friday, March 12, 2010

Best Boutonnieres

I got a really cool idea for the men's boutonnieres the other day since 3 of the 4 (including the groom) are guitar players.  After snooping around the web I found, of course, that it's been done before.  But that's okay....  I can make that.

C is a Fender man all the way (and the little "rock on" hand is so cool!) but when I was a little girl, my dad owned a music store and I remember always wanting to play with the Tortex picks he sold because I loved all the different colors.  So we'll have to see about mixing the two up.

Black Is The New Green

I have a job that sometimes allows my mind to wander for hours on end.  Here is where it wandered yesterday:

One of the reasons I chose to make my own wedding gown is because I couldn't stomach spending tons of money on a dress that, realistically, would never be worn again.  So, why should I ask my bridesmaids to spend a chunk of money on a dress that they might never wear again?  Blue and purple and green dresses would look great, but would they ever pull it out of the closet again?  Probably not.  However, every girl needs at least one (or two, or three...) little black dresses.  Plus, black looks stunning on every body.  So, I think (I haven't talked to my girls yet) I want to do matching black dresses.

I know some "traditionalists" might find black a bit daunting, so of course, we'll spice it up with the bouquets.  I want each girl to carry one color and type of flower (the flowers on the image board are just ideas -- I'll talk to my florist about what's in season), then my bouquet will combine all three.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Pretty Pretty Bridesmaids

Love this dress.  Thankfully, my girls like it too.  I can't decide if I want it in plum or blue though.  Or maybe, since I have three bridesmaids, I could do one in each of our colors: peacock, plum, olive.  I hope the style is still around by the time we need to get it!

Centerpiece Take 2

In one of my first posts I declared a love of simplicity.  Getting swept up in wedding details, I kind of lost track of that.  I went back and looked at my previous "apothecary centerpiece" image board and had to laugh at myself.  Three jars on each table?  Really?  Filled with how many different things?  Is that necessary?

So I simplified my plan a bit and found a neat jar that had three stacking compartments.  It's about 12 inches high ("experts" say centerpieces should be under 14 inches or above 30...)  Each compartment will highlight an item.

The black river rocks will go in the bottom compartment, the moss and LED votive candle will go in the middle, and a purple flower (maybe a rose, maybe not) will go in the top.  Interesting, not complicated.  And, in the end, easier to manage and a lot cheaper.

On Top of the Table

In looking at a lot of reception photos on wedding websites, I noticed that most of them are white on white on white with some colorful flowers as a centerpiece.  Some of them don't even have colorful centerpieces.  To me, too much white screams sterile and yuck -- who wants to start a marriage that way?

To express my love of 'color' and 'interesting' I wanted tables that would pop; not just with a centerpiece but as a whole presentation.  The reception hall we're using offers white or ivory table linens with a few different color choices for napkins.  You can rent coordinating table runners in a solid color as well.  I wanted my tables to have something: table runner, placemat, charger plate (which are really pricey by the way!)  I thought about making my own table runners -- that way I'd get exactly what I want and I could sell/donate/regift them after the wedding.  Then I found this great photo at and immediately knew what I wanted.

I took a trip to Jo-Ann yesterday (coupon commotion, woohoo!) and thought I'd browse a bit to see if anything jumped out at me for table runners.  Of course, something did and I could feel that 50% off coupon burning a hole in my pocket.  However, knowing that I can be a bit impulsive  and getting tired of returning fabric that I've impulsively bought in the past, I put it in the cart to think about it while I kept walking.  (Another of my mom's great tactics: "Let's put it in the cart and think about it.")

I wandered over to the scrapbooking aisle because I'd seen some really neat ideas for escort cards.  The 50% off rack was staring at me with alluring eyes and as I coyly gazed back I saw it: a stack of paper that perfectly coordinated with the fabric in my cart that I was supposed to be thinking about.  The stack even featured every one of my wedding colors.  I did a little happy dance, hugged the stack and quickly rushed to the cutting counter.  Thinking done.  Mind made up.  Here's what I got:

Hey mom, feel like sewing some table runners?

Thursday, March 4, 2010

It Ain't Easy Being Green...

Planning an eco-friendly wedding with minimal impact is really REALLY hard!  And a lot of times it means spending an extra buck (or hundreds...).  It's so incredibly easy to get swept up in everything that surrounds wedding planning and you suddenly realize that you're drowning in clutter and can't clearly see that goals you were striving to meet anymore.  But if I remember correctly, holding true to our tree-hugger values was one of them.

Obviously, C and I don't have the means to have the ultimate green wedding.  There will be energy expended, there will be carbon emitted, and there will be non-local products purchased.  It can't be helped and I'm becoming okay with that.  As I said, earth-friendly isn't cheap and, just as there's no such thing as "free energy", I don't believe that "energy free" really exists either.  You can't create something from nothing but here are a few things we're doing to make our nuptials easier on Mother:

My dress.  Handmade by me.  Automatically eco-chic, right?  Well, not always.  Just because the gown wasn't made in a far-away factory doesn't mean the fabric used to make the gown wasn't.  However, I know that polyester-based fabrics produce tons of waste and use lots of energy to make so I'm sticking with (as much as I can) 100% silk.  Many don't know that silk is a natural fiber woven from the cocoons of little silkworms.

The ceremony and reception.  We're on the brink of deciding to just have the two at the same place.  A truly difficult decision for us because we really want an outdoor ceremony.  However, our reception hall has tons of skylights and windows and a cute little terrace so it'll have to do.  By having the ceremony at our reception hall, we're reducing the need for our guests to travel to different venues.  We're also eliminating the "drag time" between the two events.

The reception hall.  C and I have a lot of out-of-town guests that are invited.  We're also having an open bar.  These two factors automatically decided that we choose a hotel ballroom as our venue so guests will have the option of not needing to drive at the end of the night.

The flowers.  Since the wedding is in June it shouldn't be a problem to find a local greenhouse to supply our blooms.  One with organic practices is preferable of course, but not practical if it's prohibitively expensive.  I love flowers but I'm okay with limiting them to bouquets and boutonnieres.

The centerpieces.  I'm robbing Peter to pay Paul on this one.  The truly eco-friendly thing to do in this case is to just use the centerpieces that the hotel provides (which are totally boring by the way).  However, I'm justifying my stimulation of the economy by creating centerpieces that can be reused, say, as the following year's Christmas gifts.  Apothecary jars are cool and multi-functional -- not like that enormous martini glass from so-and-so's wedding that's been sitting under my sink for five years.......

The food.  We don't have much control over the food because we have to use the hotel's caterer but I am working with them on exploring some organic and locally-produced options.

The cake and cupcakes.  I am lucky enough to have a friend who went to school to be a pastry chef.  If I'm lucky enough to talk her into making my desserts, I can guarantee that they'll be made with organic ingredients and no preservatives.

The rings.  Hand crafted by a local jeweler.

I guess it's kind of like a marriage -- sometimes you have to make compromises to find a solution that best suits everyone.  Imagine that....