What I imagine my DH repeats to himself daily.
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We did it! After being engaged for three years, and after one year of SERIOUS, mega planning, we tied the know on 9.3.2011 in San Francisco, CA. I had three weeks off before the wedding, and man, was I glad! It was a hectic last month, but everything worked out well!
For the brides-to-be, I figured I would keep my blabber short by imparting my ever-so-useful advice in compact, bullet-form:
- Delegate. It's the only way to keep yourself sane.
- Let things go. If something goes wrong or if something isn't 100% to your liking, your guests won't notice. Only you'll know what's missing. Chances are, everyone will still think everything was magical. I honestly didn't get to a lot of what I wanted to get to...but bah. Gotta take my own advice, right?
- Relax. Enjoy yourself! Don't type A or control-freak yourself out of enjoying your big day.
- our UP guestbook, even though people were sloppy with their thumbprinting. And not everyone remembered to do it.
- our s'mores bar
- our choreographed first dance
- our mad libs RSVP cards that we then read to our guests during the reception
- having a great location for great shots: we got some pictures with a Rolls-Royce (thanks to my uncle who happened to know the right person) and some pics on a cable car. And, oh, we got to enjoy the waterfront!
- Ask someone to get food for the day of while you're getting ready.
- Save money by getting your cake at a supermarket. Whole Foods makes amazing cakes and provided you don't need a swanky design, it will save you a lot of money.
- Consider buying clay flowers for your cake. These feel awesome and look amazing. And cost less than sugar paste flowers (especially if you want something more intricate). Even if they are the same cost, consider that you can resell it after your wedding (just make sure to ask the staff to keep the flower and not trash it. Which we unfortunately forgot to do. Sad face.)
- Do your own flowers if you want to save money! I highly recommend a trip to the SF Flower Mart if you are a Bay Area bride.
- Michael's is your friend. Especially with 40% off coupons.
Anybody have the problem of having TOO many different inspirations? Colors is my area most prone to flip-flopping. Too many things look beautiful!
Too late to change now! Final verdict: White, champagne with gold and black accents.
Date #1: Dinner and a Matt Damon movie. Two loves all-in-one.
Date #2: Dinner at an unassuming hole-in-the-wall. Everyone knows good food is found at holes-in-the-wall.
Date #3: Dinner at a Sichuan place where the best spicy fish was had. He let me bring the leftover home (which, if you knew how much FI loves food, you'd understand how big of a deal this is.)
You get the idea, right? Food is a common love and so food will be had everywhere!
My first dress!love was the Pronovias Harlem. Loved the ruching. However, she felt quite heavy and I get hot really easily. Also, I started to think that taffeta looks a little too "shimmery" in flash photos so I wanted to see materials that weren't quite as light reflective. Lastly, I realized that I was convinced all this time that I wanted a plain dress, but I think I started to fall in love with dresses that had a little more detailing...
Credit: Cliff Brunk Photography
Love #2: Marisa 737. She was more fitted and was very figure flattering. She also had more detailing and was much lighter than the Harlem. All of these were pluses...but there was something missing. I think, mostly, because I've been in love with the idea of the Hannover!
Sources: Kelly Zhang; and from some bio I forgot (let me know if it's yours!)
And just in case I didn't have enough inspiration...totally fell in love with meredithlane20's do (based on the popular Eva Longoria inspiration pic)!
Love these hair flowers:
Credit: The Knot; Kelly Zhang
Soft, natural, with slight emphasis on the eyes.
OR, if I don't look like a crazed raccoon, I might try something with more drama eye-wise
Ciredt: PrimaDonna Makeover
Credits (clockwise): Caparos, Kelly Zhang, Dana Saylor, Last Forty Percent Photography, Haute Bride, Stephanie Williams Photography
I'm letting my girls pick their dresses. Only requirements:
- Champagne color
- Flowy material like chiffon or nu-georgette
I decided to pair them up with gold, strappy sandals to match with the chiavari chairs and possible gold chargers at the reception.
I'm totally digging the mismatched BM dress idea!
If I go with matching dresses, I love the idea of differentiating my girls with different statement necklaces.
Credit: Last Forty Percent Photography
**UPDATE: One of my girls found her dress. This isn't her, but I like that it gives me an idea of how it'll look. I loves! Since this one is a V-neck, I'm nixing
the statement necklace idea but choosing epic statement earrings for my girls instead.
Skinny ties + pocket square
I was thinking of getting cool socks that reflect something about FI and each of his GMs. FI is a nerd scientist; one GM is an electrical engineer; the other is a consultant but MEGA obssessed amateur ballroom dancer; and the last one is an insurance analyst but met FI playing basketball.
I'm kind of worried it would be weird for that one guy to have yellow-ish socks, though. Not to mention they're technically lady
socks, LOL. But he has a good sense of humor...I think.
<-- Periodic table<-- Circuit board
Wait...how about vests?
Ok. Men dressed smartly just get to me. Vests are formal but not crazy formal, and really, when do guys get to rock vests? Plus, you could pair them with awesome sneakers.
CUTE ATTACK. Sadly, I'm going to have to find something in a bigger size because Nordstrom only makes this up to 6M. We didn't end up having a FG but I'm keeping this up because the cardi idea is just darling!
I love food, so this cake has got to be awesome.
missdoxxy had a tres leche cake. How awesome is that? I ♥ tres leche. I also hate dry cakes, so tres leche would ensure yummy moistness. I'm just not sure how well it will hold up though, especially when stacked.
demyful is having a Strawberry Sensation cake from Fleur De Lisa Bakery. The description is to die for: Victorian Vanilla cake filled with white chocolate, cream cheese and strawberries. I love strawberry shortcake, but have been looking for a place that might incorporate a little sweet cheesy flavor too. I might have to check it out!
or my fave: shortcake! --> or... our wedding colors! -->
Buttercream (for the yum factor). And a simple, modern, white look.
If somehow we can afford this, I would LOVE something dramatic like this:
Or, love the idea of a textured layer:
We decided to go with Whole Foods because their cake is just freakin' delicious. Moist and rich goodness. Mmm. We chose strawberry shortcake (huzzah!) and chocolate mousse cake. But FI loved their mango mousse cake. So...if mangoes are in season, I'll try to surprise him with a mango sheet cake/groom's cake.
The drawback to Whole Foods is that they can't do intricate decorations, which is fine. In my books, taste trumps looks. So we'll go with a fresh flower look or I am thinking of comissioning a clay flower from this DK Designs:
Cake table inspiration
From PW gallery; Source
I always knew I loved calla lilies, so it's no surprise that I was drawn to the idea of a a few long stems of these beauties. At the same time, I love the whimsy aspect of baby's breath bouquets
(not to mention the cost savings)! I'm more leaning towards the latter at this point.
Source: (right) Leigh Miller Photography
Still debating if FI is going to get a pocket square, but if he goes the flower route, calla would definitely be the way to go. Classy but not too girly.
Credit: ABC (Eli Stone) + my mad (and slightly neurotic) screen capturing skills
I've also grown to generally love voluminous bouquets, white bouquets. I'd love to throw in some cream/champagne hues in there too.
So undecided! Love lace. Love bling. Love pearls. Love black. Love white.
I am smitten. The end. It actually matches FI's band (where I had "Je t'aime" engraved).
Thanks to kittyglampants for the inspiration!
Altar & Aisle
Love the look of dark pillars with blooms and branches. We'd probably go with more white, however.
but with more white, like this:
Credit: Karen Tran
WAIT! I love this!
Since we're having a rooftop ceremony in the city, we're in need of something modern to line the aisle. People have customarily done submerged flowers at our venue and I think it looks beautiful. I might alternate every other row with a shorter vase with a floating candle instead so I don't go bankrupt buying orchids.
Credit: The Knotty Bride
I'm a big fan of the fresh, crisp look of green with white/ivory. Along with possibly using calla lily centerpieces, I've been inspired by these items as well:
I'm guessing they don't come cheap, though, so baby's breath would be a great alternative. I would break up the baby's breath overload with another white bloom in low CPs (like the center picture).
Basically, the theme is big, tall, and white. ;)
But then I saw this and thought it would be such a cool way to have non-flora CPs and bring in some champagne/beige. (Not sure what they are though...looks like tufts of fabric and/or feathers to my untrained eye.)
Or just candles?
Or the perennial favorite: manzanita branches.
Update...I think I'm going to go for this completed look after all:
I think we'll go light on florals in general, but I love the look of flowers and candles lining the head table!
With flowers of varying degrees of cream, ivory, and champagne:
Uplighting (for the reception)
Not sure how I'll make this look happen seeing as our reception room isn't white and seeing as draping it all would be quite expensive. To be continued...
It's got to be white! And...maybe even round? :)
Outdoors and whimsical, complete with cutesy food and giant paper flowers. Turns out I was overly ambitious about this. But keeping this up here for inspiration for others!
Credits (clockwise): Board on the left: Style Me Pretty, cayann32's shoot captured by Mimi Nguyen,
Simply Bloom Photography, yannalovesandrey by Andrey P, Simply Bloom Photography. Board on the right: 1, 2, Andrey Perepelitsa, 3, 4. Bottom left: Thai Mai, GWS, Forgot :(, Caroline Tran, Caroline Tran, Forgot x2. Bottom right: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6
Cutesy food! --> Cutesy cups!--> Cutesy friends!-->
The cup was FI's gift to me after I had been eyeing them for so long at Teavana. You can't tell, but there's a little bunny tail at the back of the cup. (We call each other hunny
bunny.) The owl is the owl from Lost in Translation...and FI got one expressly from Japan! Well, he technically tricked someone into getting it for him, but it's all about the sentiment, right?
Since my wedding hair will be up, I figure a more lowkey do for the e-session would be fun.
Projects that I hope to complete!
Flowers & wrap
Yep! I figured I will save so much from doing it myself and maybe I'll get to get the flowers I really want. We'll be getting our supplies from the San Francisco Flower Mart. Check out these great tutorials that I found super helpful! (They inspire me with a false sense of confidence, methinks).
3. Great thread here with random tips.
Will-you-be-my BMs fortune cookies
Thanks to kalenalena's epic tutorial, my BMs got lovely surprises in the mail. How can you say no to this? (Answer: you can't.) CHECK!
Inspiration and potential components:
And oh...I might also just be infatuated with this one even though it's white:
Source: Weddingbee (Vera Wang Crystal Sash)
California = wine country. Need I say more? Additional touches:
Might spruce them up with:
1) some bling on the number
2) a small label in the back with the name and origin of the wine (something from Sonoma or Napa)
3) story about us incorporating the number
4) I'll ask our MC to play some game where one person from the table gets to bring the wine home
Love the idea of these since we'll be able to frame them up and stare at them forever. I used to paint so this would be a great excuse to take that up again--and I like to think it shouldn't be too hard. (Delusional, much?)
Not sure if I'm going to go with thumbprints (and not sure what style "tree" I want) or stickable leaves--where guests can write on the leaves themselves and leave their digits clean. ;)
Credit: Taryn Kent
Inspiration (I think I will stick to just one box even though the stacked look is gorgeous). Check out these amazing DIY instructions from rkrupan.
<---This color, but this design-->
...with a little bling.
The pics will either be of the person or of something that represents them.
To create the cards:
- Print photos on photo paper and table names on cardstock
- Use a circle punch to crop faces
- Use larger circle punch to create cardstock circles
- Affix faces to one cardstock circle and table name to the other
- Using adhesive, glue to popsicle stick and stand up in center of cupcake
Wrapped in this pretty (and inexpensive) DIY holder made from doilies or from wrapping paper:
With this instead of the pictures:
Check out this great tutorial here!
- welcome notes
- directions and local points of interest
- water bottles
- local snacks
I'm thinking a mix of non-traditional/personalized and traditional.
For the personalized part, I ♥ this by Clayton Melton.
And this is my advice to you. Find a boy who calls you beautiful instead of hot. Who calls you back when you hang up on him. Who will lie under the stars and listen to your heartbeat, or will stay awake just to watch you sleep. Wait for the boy who kisses your forehead. Who wants to show you off to the world when you are in sweats. Who holds your hand in front of his friends. Who thinks you’re just as pretty without makeup on. You will know he is the one because he will apologize first even if he feels he was in the right, because being right won’t matter if you go to bed angry. When you tell a joke he will laugh out loud. He will constantly be reminding you of how much he cares and how lucky he is to have found you. He will turn to his friends and say, ‘that’s her.’
For the non-traditional part, I also thought this article was super cute. It will allow us to make our vows our own. Plus, I've now realized that I am allergic to public sappiness. The traditional part should placate the sappy crowd.
Here’s an Easy Way to Write Your Own Super-Sweet Wedding Vows
At my friends’ wedding last Friday, the bride and groom wrote their own wedding vows, but ...
They used low-pressure, fill-in-the-blank-style wedding vows that made the whole process stress-free.
Here’s how it worked: There were about six lines of shared vows. Each line started with
“I vow to __________.”
And they filled in the blank together a few weeks before the wedding.
So the first line was “I vow to be your best friend and your biggest fan.”
Then there were five or so lines after that, all in the same format.
But the best part was, the bride and groom each got a blank to fill in on their own—and neither knew what the other would say until they were standing at the end of the aisle together.
So first the groom read the shared lines, then he finished with “I vow not to call you crazy, even when you’re acting crazy.” (Funny, because the bride definitely has a mild—but endearing—case of the crazies.)
On the bride’s turn, she finished with “I vow to read the directions before I start and try to do things the ‘right’ way.”
The wedding vows were super-personal, and the bride and groom said they had a great time writing them.
And oh, this could be a fun way to package our vows after-the-fact:
A twist on the wine ceremony – Patron ceremony! After reading the vows they wrote to one another, Amber & Kyle sealed them & placed them into a box of Patron Tequila. The officiant said, “If you ever find your marriage is facing hard times, do the following: open this box, read your vows, and take a shot. If you haven’t opened it by your fifth anniversary, open it to celebrate!”
But I thought of putting a wine bottle in there instead and hope we won't have to open it until our fifth anniversary. A sort of time capsule, if you will. I'm thinking of a label that says "Love Gets Better with Age". Inspired by this SMP feature. Thanks to Natasha118 for posting it!
My one concern is: can one cook safely over Sterno cans? (Apparently yes according to Sterno's own documentation.) And oh, I guess I need to get clearance from my venue too.
And having different flavors of marshmallows could make it even more seriously awesome. I'd love to write suggested recipes that guests could try on a menu on the side (e.g. Dark Chocolate Raspberry – chocolate graham cracker with raspberry marshmallow and dark chocolate: Vanilla Nut – honey graham cracker with vanilla marshmallow and chopped toasted pecans: and of course Traditional S’mores - honey graham cracker with milk chocolate and vanilla marshmallows)
Invites & Save-the-date's
Our STD was a website inspired by this epic STD: http://www.helenandjoshsittinginatree.com. (Go green!). CHECK!
Inspiration for invites from slhashimoto. My dilemma...I love the color combo, but those won't be our wedding colors. I don't think guests will care, but I'm a little OCD. Maybe I'll try to come up with a different color combo that works.
OR, if I somehow have the pateinece and artistic skill...I think this boxed invite would be amazing. The bride drew "polaroids" of the couples' life:
Decided I was going to tie in the theme of food by having a booklet invitation (maybe make it menu-esque?) with different lengths of papers to make tabs at the edges. And using a goldy-esque color scheme.
1) Front: "It's a love feast!" (inspired by pic below). But maybe on something cuter like a cupcake.
2) Tab 1: Nutritional information = details of the event
3) Tab 2: Recipe = directions
4) Tab 3: Resting time (or something more artful than that?) = Accomodations
5) Tab 4: Your Reservation = RSVP
So I love Pooh. There's something simplistic yet deep (!) about the things he says. The best is when Pooh and Piglet hang out together and say the most ridiculously cute things to one another. I'm not sure what to with these quotes just yet, but I'd like to incorporate them somewhere. Maybe as part of the tag on our guests' favors?
“If you live to be 100, I hope I live to be 100 minus 1 day, so I never have to live without you.”
"If ever there is tomorrow when we’re not together.. there is something you must always remember. You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think. But the most important thing is, even if we’re apart.. I’ll always be with you."
“It is more fun to talk with someone who doesn't use long, difficult words but rather short, easy words like 'What about lunch?'"
“Promise me you'll never forget me because if I thought you would I'd never leave.”
“Piglet sidled up to Pooh from behind. "Pooh," he whispered.
"Nothing," said Piglet, taking Pooh's paw, "I just wanted to be sure of you."”
"A little Consideration, a little Thought for Others, makes all the difference.”
“"I wonder what Piglet is doing," thought Pooh.
"I wish I were there to be doing it, too."
“"Well," said Pooh, "what I like best -- " and then he had to stop and think. Because although Eating Honey was a very good thing to do, there was a moment just before you began to eat it which was better than when you were, but he didn't know what it was called”
“Those who are clever, who have a Brain, never understand anything.”
“"Pooh," said Rabbit kindly, "you haven't any brain."
"I know," said Pooh humbly.”
Would love to surprise FI with a groom's cake. Still trying to think about what he loves that would translate well into a groom's cake (curse him not being a video game nut!) Totally didn't get around to doing this. HA.
This is crazy awesome:
It doesn't really fit into what FI is like though. I'm considering the following ideas since FI is a neurobiologist (though I must admit it looks kind of gross):
Or this (and it's a DIY too!):
Thanks to Thegirlnextdoor, I now have a nerdy idea in mind that isn't as unappetizing. Behold neurotransmitter cupcakes!
And...I'm an ex-scientist myself...so I'd get a kick out of these too.
Extra points if you "get" this one.;)
Ok, this isn't scientific, but it's epic since we like to play Settlers of Catan. We're cool nerds. Really.
Zomg. Nerditude overload.
- Photographer: One Love Photography
- Venue: Hotel Vitale
- Wedding dress: Pronovias
- MUA: All Dolled Up Studio
- Videographer: Blissful Pixel
- Flowers: DIY, SF Flower Mart
- Wedding band: Brilliant Earth
- FI's wedding band: Zoe & Doyle
- Earrings: Haute Bride and Nadri