The day started at 9:30 am with a makeup appointment. This one I did my own. It was nice and peaceful and quiet. My makeup lady, Christy, had some great jazz standards playing. Really relaxed me.
From there I went to the hotel to get some breakfast that my bridesmaid Jess got for me. Then we left for our hair appointments with my mom in tow. Jess' was at 11:30, mine at 12:30, and Amy the hairdresser fit my mom into the mix.
Then we headed back to the room to relax and eventually get dressed.
Then off to the venue......
(Most of these are photos taken by friends.)
Off to the Gainesville Garden Club for some photos and the Ceremony...Steve built a beautiful backdrop for the ceremony with the help of our friend Brittany. It really added something special to the ceremony. My flowers were by The Plant Shoppe, Betsy Gardner owner. They were absolutely beautiful. White tulips have always been my favorite flower.
Now the ceremony...My dad walked me down the aisle. He was nervous, it was cute.
And we say our vows....It was quite warm standing in the sun.
Then we exchanged our rings.....
Now we are husband and wife...Woo Hoo!! Our recessional was the Gator Fight Song. We are huge University of Florida fans. We both went there and currently work there. Almost everyone was clapping along, and we watched the video later and heard everyone yell "Go Gators" in the part of the song that calls for it. We didn't notice that when it happened. So cute!
Courtney and Matt
Jess and Carter
Tiff and Ben
Dinner time. The backdrop for the ceremony doubled as a backdrop for the sweetheart table. And put an element on the stage to take away from it's vast emptiness.
The cake table. Originally the letters were supposed to lay down on the table. However, I was told they were lost in the colorful fabric the caterer choose (she did an awesome job finding brown and blue fabrics). So they stood them up. Unfortunately, I wasn't there when they put the decoration on the front of the cake, and they didn't position the "swirly twigs" correctly, and I hate that it looks like Mickey Mouse.
First Dance on the small patio. The guys put up christmas lights earlier in the day and they looked awesome! Especially as the sun went down.
And off we go..........
Steve and I both work for the University of Florida. I work for the Florida Museum of Natural History and he works for Environmental Health & Safety. We have two Museum buildings, and he visits the building I used to work in for training and such. We met via these visits, and struck up a conversation over a Gator basketball team poster that I had in my office. Several months later we were dating, 6 months later I moved into his house, and the rest is history.
I am the Membership Coordinator and I work in the Development Dept of the Museum and plan member and donor events. On September 25th I was working at an exhibit opening fairly late. Steve was supposed to come, but didn't show up. On my way home I got a call from dad and was yapping away as I walked through the door. Mind you this is at 10:30 at night, after working about 14 hours. Steve is quite agitated that I'm on the phone. He asks me to get off the phone. I finally get off the phone, but when I do he is nowhere to be found, so I start to make another phone call to Jess (who becomes a BM). He starts yelling from the back of the house "Get off the Phone!!" Ok ok. "Come back here" He wants me to go back to our office. I go back there and he's on one knee. He starts saying all these really sweet things and says "Will you marry me?" And I'm thinking he's kidding, so I say "Are you kidding?" And he shows me the ring. And I say "You aren't kidding?" And I starting acting like a spazz. And he says "I guess that's a yes?" "YES!" Of course I couldn't go to sleep after that. And I was sooooo tired.
This was the fourth dress I tried on. I was ho-hum about all the others, but when I put this one I loved it. I'm very simple and didn't want a lot of lace, pouf, or beading.
- One Side (she notes "very little"): $22.00
- Bustle (currently the American, unless I change my mind): $12.00
- Hem gown/ Cut Crinolin: $65.00
- Velcro "trick" (to keep bra and dress up and together): $12.00
- Steam and Spot clean (if needed) Dress: $25.00
The bridesmaid dresses:
All the bridesmaids have different body shapes and are different heights. Therefore, I opted to let them pick their own dresses that best fit them and their styles. My only requirements were that they got the color truffle and that they were long. I thought if they got short dresses with their radically different heights the the different hem lines would be bizarre and look off. Luckily they agreed. Pictures are of Me and Jess (left), and Me with Courtney and Tiffany (right, and Courtney is the one of the left). Dress 1: Tiffany, Dress 2: Jess, Dress 3: Courtney.
The Groomsmen Tuxes:
Men's Warehouse provides a vest tie combo that matches with David's Bridal dresses. So the guys will have a black tux, with truffle vest and tie, and white shirt.
I'm a redhead so I decided to just search other redheads and try to keep it simple.
Now my trial pics:
A couple things we will change: I won't be as "sparkly" as I am in these pics. And I need to talk to her about the mascara, it was a little clumpy. I am thinking that maybe the smokey eye needs to come up a little higher? We are also using liquid liner (pic 2 versus pic 1), we both thought it would make my eyes pop more.
My Hair trial pics:
I ordered my shoes today and I am soooo excited. I opted for something different. I really wanted some Naughty Monkey shoes, but they didn't have the right blue color combination. I did find these fabulous crazy shoes by Nine West. There are a periwinkle blue and I think they would be a fun surprise under my dress. Keep it under wraps Andrea. Shhhhh!
I also am thinking of a second comfy shoe for later in the night. Even though I am used to heels, and wear them for work for hours on end for events, even my poor feet can experience some pain after awhile. So these shoes fall into my color scheme, and I think they are sweet. Ooorrrr the Anne Klein Blue Reptile flats. Hmmmm. Decisions. Steve's (FI) vote was the gingham. I have to admit I was surprised. UPDATE: I bought the Ann Klein shoe.
The Save the Date:
I got the great idea that I would design everything, the save the date, the invitation, the programs, the seating cards. Then I did the save the dates. I searched hours for the right graphic that represented my colors and something that I thought was sophisticated and beautiful. I found it on iStock.com. The graphic itself cost me a whopping $7. With that I can do sooooo much. The first thing I did was the save the date. I used Adobe Photoshop for that. I just resized it, added a blue box, and added the text in the blue box. I printed it at Kinkos. I should say that I went back a couple of times before I got it the right resolution. Now I know what I am doing. And I used the Museum's paper cutter to cut them. I bought business card magnets, cut them in half and stuck them to the back of the cards. This project took longer, was more work, and cost more than I had planned. But I liked how they turned out. Some of them printed a weird color, thanks to Kinko's odd printers.
I ordered from a company. I decided that after the amount of work the save the date took, and knowing I still had the program and the seating cards to do, plus the favors labels, I wasn't about to do the invites. So I found ones on DaisyDays.com that are made by Paper Duvet. They cam in last week, and we have to address them this weekend and mail them out next week. I forgot to buy stamps this morning. Oops. UPDATE: Invites have been mailed!! (1/23/09)
The Programs: UPDATE! 4/10/09
Steve wanted fans. He loves them. So I found a company online that sells them in packs of 50, DIY, with sticks and adhesive. Well Adobe wasn't going to work this time. So I had my graphic design friend teach me a little Adobe In Design and Illustrator. With that I learned how to isolate portions of the iStock.com image and move them around, resize, and just use parts of it. AMAZING!! I'm very happy with the programs. Those are going to be revealed at the wedding. UPDATE: I was stupid made a big mistake, and had to toss the fans. So here is my replacement idea. And I will reveal them now, b/c It's been such a huge ordeal.
The Program Basket Signs: UPDATE!! 4/6/09
I will have this attached to the front of the two baskets that will hold the programs. They will be suspended by blue satin ribbon. I will NOT be using these baskets. Due to a stupid mistake on my part I won't be using the fan programs, and the new programs won't fit in these baskets. I could kick myself! But I will still be using the signs somehow.
The Seating Cards:
I did a version of those, and I decided with the help of a couple of friends that they didn't match the programs. So I am redoing them.
The Table Numbers:
I used the same iStock image elements. The font is repeated from one of the fonts from the program.
Not exactly designing but these are the votives I'm using:
1st Attempt at a Monogram. I'm having so much fun with InDesign. Every time I use it I learn something new! The second monogram is for the favor tins.
My bouquet includes: White tulips (my favorite flower), something blue (either blue hydrangea or blue delphinium), and salal leaves. In this photo I'm not crazy about the bow and the ribbon hanging off. That would probably drive me crazy. Plus that blue is too baby blue. The salal leaves will add a slight tropical look to it.
The BM's will have white tulips with blue hydrangea and brown hypericum berries. See board above for the sample of my flower elements.
Steve the (FI) picked out his bout's. Originally I wanted a single tulip with a salal leave behind it tied in black ribbon on the stem. But our wonderful florist, Betsy Gardner of The Plant Shoppe, informed us that tulips at bouts don't hold up well through the night. All the hugging and dancing around makes the outter petals fall open and crinkle. So Steve chose a white spray rose with brown hypericum berries and some greenery. This picture shows a large rose,and green hypericum. The groomsmen will have the white spray rose with blue delphinium.
These are the bud vases for the pub tables for the cocktail hour. There will be one or two vases per pub table, and the large 9 hole vase will be on the bar. There are very unique and I can't even find them anywhere online. A local florist used them at our venue and left them for us. I was able to get enough for my pubs. Oh, they will have white tulips in them.
The Card Box:
I looked and looked and couldn't find anything I liked for a card box. I am totally against a basket or the birdcage ideas, b/c I have heard so many stories of cards with money or gift cards being stolen out of them. I want something more protective. But the wedding white boxes aren't for me and don't match my decor. So I switched my searching to a DIY box. I went to about every store in my hometown, Gainesville. My last ditch effort was Target. They had the PERFECT chocolate brown fabric covered photo box! Yay! Then at Jo-Ann Fabrics my friend Janice pointed out some cute ribbon flowers that matched the box perfectly. Score! Next was the search for the blue ribbon. Ugh, periwinkle blue, I don't think it exists in satin ribbon. That was really the only thing I had to compromise on. But I'm ok with the color I got. My wonderful friend Brittany came over with her magic glue gun and we put together the card box. I LOVE it.
The Seating Card Board:
The idea came from a picture DirtyMartini posted. I used foam core, light blue shantung fabric I purchased on clearance from JoAnns, chocolate brown satin ribbon, and I invested in my own glue gun instead of borrowing one. They are cheap, why not? I made 2 of these boards. I will use easels to support these.
Guest Book Instruction Frame:
The "Guest Book" (which is not a guest book) instruction sheet needed something to go in. I tried to find a frame that I didn't have to do anything to. But that was useless. SO I bought a white shadowbox frame and painted it blue. I got some more of the brown ribbon flowers like I used on the card box. I cleaned out JoAnns of these.
The Vase and Pen Cup:
This vase and pen cup will be used with the above frame. It will hold the well wishes that people write for us.
"WE DID" letters for the Cake Table:
First, paint. Second, paint again. Third, paint one more time. So it took a few coats, and I had to do it in phases, b/c the shape of the letters and I had to have dry areas to hold it by.
Then bling it out! I used blue self-adhesive crystals from Martha Stewart. I got all the supplies at Michael's except the paint. Paint from Lowe's.
Step One: Get your supplies. Step Two: Paint the letters. Step Three: Bling the letters.
This will go on the front of the cake. For reference, basically this is the cake.
There are several benches at the venue, and I thought they needed some pillows. My friend Brittany and I made some pillows out of a chocolate brown shantung fabric. This fabric will be used for another project later. The first photo shows the pillows, the second shows a more accurate color.
Wedding Directional Sign:
As you can see I have a little mishap to fix. But I really like it.
I have 2 of these tins that will hold sand in them, so that people can safely extinguish their sparklers. I added our monogram using sticky paper. It's hard to see the actual design, there are some flourishes up in the corners.
I worked on my aisle runner finally. I felt like my back was breaking leaning over the table working on it for hours. But I love it!!
Sometimes brides have to make extremely difficult and gut wrenching choices.<!--StartFragment-->
My Fi procrastinated on his proposal. (I say procrastinated, others say he had to do it in his own time). We knew it was going to happen for several months. Everyone knew, and I was antsy for it to happen. But planning shouldn't commence until it finally does. Well, a month before the actual proposal I finally broke down and said that I had to start planning b/c I knew when we wanted to get married. I KNEW that we running out of time to book a venue, a caterer, and a photog, ones we wanted all on the same day. I was freaking inside. Our schedules for the spring suck, but that is our only time to get married. I have a fundraiser in early March. He travels for March Madness. Then in late May early June he starts work at the Billy Donovan Basketball Camp. This year we also lost another week in the end of May with his Sister going out of the country and my only aunt going out of state. So basically we had half of March, all of April, and half of May, oh wait, no we have a wedding to go to the first week in May. Scratch the week before and after that. So now we have Half of March, all of April, and May 16th. Let me also note, waiting a year is not an option for me, I am 33 and ready to get my family started.
There was only one venue in town that was really in our price range that wasn't fugly. I called to check dates and my heart fell into my stomach when she said the only dates she had was April 18, and May 30. Well May 30 wouldn't work (sister and aunt gone). April 18. Really? That's all you have? "Yes sweetie, and I have someone coming by to look at it tomorrow afternoon for that date. But if you come tomorrow morning at 11am and put a deposit down it's yours." A series of expletives ran through my head. I panicked and called FI. What do we do? I was really hoping for May 16th. 2 weeks POST friend's wedding. Not 2 weeks PRE friend's wedding. I called one more place hoping that 1. they would have magically lowered their prices and 2. they had May 16th open. Nope and Nope. We were too late and a dollar (ok about $2000) short. I knew we had to take the date. My first big wedding decision, and it sucked. I was happy for like a second, Yay! We have our wedding date, it's real. Crap, this sucks how am I going to tell my friends? Miserable place to be in.
Not all brides make a decision like that lightly or do it to be crappy/rude or are horrible friends. If I had unlimited funds, I would have put up a tent in the middle of a field somewhere and had it after and not worry about the venue.<!--EndFragment-->
I have had so much fun sharing planning notes with her, and chatting about the details of each of our weddings. Our weddings are so completely different and in completely different places. Both will be amazing and I am soooo stoked about going to hers. I CAN'T wait!!
My Venue: The Gainesville Garden Club
The GGC includes the building, 2 patios,12 tables and 125 chairs, and a kitchen with two refrigerators (one big enough for a cake). For a mere $500. Additional time can be added for next to nothing. A beautiful setting for a steal. I keep saying that as an event planner I need to sit down with them after my wedding and rework their price structure with them, b/c they are practically giving this place away!
I originally wanted Kanapaha Botanical Gardens. To do both the ceremony and the reception there (not including tables or chairs) it was going to be approximately $2400.<!--StartFragment--> <!--EndFragment-->
I carry a notebook around with me as a constant reminder of what needs to get done. With just a few weeks away, I thought would type them out one last time as a mental check....
- Contract Photographer: Couture Weddings (Jamie Smith) Final Payment: 4/4 (send form)PAID
- Contract Caterer: Celebrations Catering (Leah Sherer) Deposit PAID
- Contract Venue: Gainesville Garden Club (Lynn) Final Payment: 3/18 PAID
- Contract DJ: Doug Carbaugh
- Contract Florist: The Plant Shoppe (Betsy Gardner) Final Payment: 3/19 PAID
- Contract Cake Baker: Danette Dragesset Final Payment: 4/4 PAID
- Contract DOC: Avie (Angela) PAID
- Contract Officiant: Charles Seligman
- Order Dress
- 1st Fitting: Feb 23rd
- 2nd Fitting: March 30th
- 3rd Fitting and Pick up: Thurs April 16th 11:30am
- Buy shoes (2 pairs)
- Buy earrings
- Buy Veil
- Buy Bra
- Pick out tuxes
- FI fitting
- Pick up Tux: Thurs April 16th
- Buy wedding bands
- Insure e-ring and wedding band
- 6 month check up: March 7th, pick up March 14th
- Blue/Brown Vase
- Die cut tulips from FI's mom
- Something to put well wishes in at the end of the night
- Blue/Brown Pens
- Pen Holder
- Design Instructions
- Re-Print Instructions
- Buy and Decorate Frame for Instructions
- Buy Brown and Rhinestone flowers
- Buy Floral Sticks (From The Plant Shoppe)
- Buy 2 pails
- Buy Sand for pails
- Buy acryllic spray paint
- Buy Sticker Paper
- Print Monogram on sticker paper
- Order Sparklers
- Order Fans
- Design Programs
- Redesign Programs
- Print Programs
- Print programs AGAIN!
- Assemble Programs
- Buy 2 holders for programs (Pier 1 Baskets)
- Design Signs for program holders
- Print signs for program holders and assemble
- Design Table Numbers
- Buy Paper for table numbers
- Print Table Numbers
- Buy frames for table numbers (14 from Target)
- Print Backgrounds for table numbers
- Assemble table numbers
- Buy chocolate accent for top of cake (Thornebrook Chocolates)
- Design decoration for front of cake
- buy "WE DID: letters for cake table
- buy brown paint for letters
- buy blue crystals for letters
- decorate letters
- Send decoration and brown ribbon to Danette for cake
- buy 3 gallons buckets
- buy concrete
- buy pvc poles
- Assemble and paint lights stands
- Blue paint (already have)
- buy brown shantung fab ric
- get lights from Ashleigh (blue c ontainer)
- Pick up borrowed uplights from board member Carrie Lee
- buy 2x4 wood
- buy 2" dowels
- Assemble Backdrop
- buy blue shantung fabric
- Buy brown paint
- Nails and hammer
- Print monogram large scale (Elecia)
- Paint monogram on aisle runner
- Blue Paint
- Buy small detail paint brushes
- Borrow cylinder Vases: Leah @ Celebrations
- Bud Vases: 6 for pubs and 1 for bar
- Votives from work
- Buy tea lights
- Buy lighter
- Buy flowers (The Plant Shoppe)
- Design placecards
- buy small crystals
- print placecards
- Assemble placecards
- Buy 2 sheets of brown posterboard
- buy foam core
- buy blue shantung fabric
- buy brown satin ribbon
- assemble placecard boards (2)
- 2 easels from FLMNH
- Assign someone to take care of this
- Dawn and Wanda bringing some games
- Order monogram bags
- Buy individual personalized gifts
- Buy identical gift for bag
- Make FI get this done!
- Extension Cords
- Emergency Bride Kit Courtney Completed
- Order Favor tins
- Design Stickers for Favor tins
- Print Stickers for favor tins
- Buy M&M's for favor tins
- Assemble favor tins: Put stickers on tins, put M&M's in tins
- Get Mom's dress
- Make Photography List (Started)
- Make Music Selection List (Started)
- Make DJ Schedule (Emailed 3/23)
- Make Placement Map for Decorations for Avie (Started)
- Revise Dorn's order and confirm
- Get our marriage license
- Paint wedding direction sign for venue
Well this will be a mini blog on the bridal shower(s) and the fun stuff that I do for that. I will have 2 showers, one for work and co-workers who are friends and the other will be for family and my other friends.
- Date: March 21
- Time: 2 pm
- Place: a very cool and funky cafe run by my caterer
Here are the invites: They were a Brides kit I got from Michael's.
I am making little origami fortune cookies for my shower:
Some photos from my shower thrown by my bridesmaid Jess:
This is by no means an original idea for us. Fi's sister had her rehearsal dinner her, our good friends had theirs here. It is a great venue for a small party like this. Napolatano's Italian Restaurant. It has a couple private rooms, that can be opened up to the main room when your party is over and you want to take part in the larger scene. A great bar and tv's for the sport watchers. On friday nights they have karoke. So once our dinner is over, a party will ensue!
The People that Make it Happen!!
I am so lucky to be working with a bunch of skilled and amazing vendors. Many of them I have worked with before or have known for years.
The wonderful amazing: Celebrations Catering! Leah and her staff work super hard to make every event special and unique. I have done a gazillion events with them at the Museum. They did my graduation/birthday celebration and now they will do my wedding. I am so excited to see how the plan unfolds!!
Jamie Smith with Couture Weddings. I have known Jamie for what seems like Eons! We went to high school together...Go Bobcats, class of '94!! She has an amazing eye and I LOVE LOVE LOVE her photos. So it should not only be beautiful but so much fun!! I have a feeling with her around there will be a lot of laughing.
My bouquets and bouts will come from the Plant Shoppe, owner...wait for it....Betsy GARDNER! :-) Betsy has come highly recommended by 2 friends that used her for their weddings, and they had beautiful flowers and arrangements for their weddings. I'm super excited see mine. This is one thing that I have dreamed of for a very long time. I always knew what I wanted and I can't wait to see what Betsy does with it.
I am a bit of a control freak. Doing events at the Museum has made me even more so. So I decided to release my family and friends from the stress of me, and hire a professional that could release me from the stress of me as well. Avie event planners was the logical choice. We recommend them to every bride that rents our Museum. We almost insist that they use Avie to have an event with us. It makes our job so much easier. Angela and her staff are professional and know the vendors in town. They go above and beyond to make sure that every detail is taken care of. I know that I will be able to enjoy my day and not worry about the small details.
My cake will be made by Dannette Dragesette. She came recommended by Avie. Steve and I had a tasting with her and it was yummy!! We hope that everyone likes the flavors we picked. If they don't...oh well. More cake for us!
Our Dj is well interesting. Doug used to work for a local DJ company and then broke out on his own. The last few years he has mostly been doing trivia at various restaurants. Which we love and partake in on Wednesday nights. He is slowly getting back into DJ gigs and ours will be his first wedding he's done in a while. He's very laid back and that's what we like about him. But the planner in still wants to nail things down very firm early, while he's like "yeah it's all cool..." Love him, but oye!
Army Chaplain Sgt. Charles Seligman. "Chuck" is a childhood friend of mine that I have known since I was in the 4th grade. He offered to make the trip from Mississippi back to the 'Ville for my wedding and I feel very lucky for that. His very pregnant wife will be making the trip with him, and I'm very excited to meet her. She seems like a very awesome chick! Having someone I know do the ceremony was important to me, and will hopefully ease my nerves on the big day.
I need more lists. Really do I?
- Book Resort: Wyndham Cozumel Resort and Spa (Sabor Section)
- Book Flights
- Book Chichen Itza Tour: do this when we get there
- Buy Biodegradable Sunscreen for Mexico
- Get Passports
- Buy FI shoes
- Buy sun dresses
- Buy Bathingsuit for FI
- Buy Bathingsuit for me
- Buy hiking backpack
- Arrange for Dog/Cat Sitters