Jun 08, 2012

  • Last updated on December 19, 2011 at 8:57 am
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Centerpiece mock-ups for the tables!


Food buffet tables (the food will go on cool display pieces in front of the line of flowers):

Table Semi Mock Ups photo 1


Guest book, card, and gift tables:

Table Semi Mock Ups photo 2

Table Semi Mock Ups photo 3


Guest seating tables (we're having a standing reception, but will have some tables available for older guests to sit down):

Table Semi Mock Ups photo 4

  • Last updated on October 31, 2011 at 2:45 pm
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Dress   $790   Marcella's Bridal in Spokane, Wash.

Shoes   $100   eBay UK

Groom's Shoes   $30   Nice flip-flops

Veil   $35   DIY flop ($5); bought pre-made from PW bride ($30)

Undergarments   $100



Venue   $375   Riverfront Park Northbank Shelter (Spokane Parks & Rec)

Dance Floor   $325

Chairs   $190   75 chairs (standing reception)

Catering   $1000   Madeleine's Cafe & Patisserie (Cake included)

Plates   $80   200 6" dessert plates

Table Cloths   $100   DIY (cost for supplies)

Napkins   $15   Recylced Napkins (Amazon)

Extra Platters   $25   Bought on WeddingBee

Cake Serving Set   $50   Registered on Target; will buy if not bought for us

Water Glasses   $60   50 old-fashioned

Sparkling Cider   $65   Costco

Toasting Flutes   $70   175 flutes rental

Security   $120   Riverfront Park

(my dad insists on having a security guard at the reception site during the ceremony)

Fabric for draping   $150   Chiffon on sale at Joanns, 120 yards, I think

Kid's stuff   $100   Activity books, hop scotch, etc.

Tags & Signs   $25   Printing tags & signs

Card Holder   $60   Bought one too small for $30, bought a good one for $30

Decor misc.   $200   Tissue paper for poms, ribbon, twine, etc.



Chairs   $375   150 chairs

Location   $175   Riverfront Park Canada Island


Stationery & Paper Goods

Map printing   $30

Invites, RSVP, STD   $100

Postage   $125

Envelopes   $25

Attendant Cards   $15   Printing @ Staples, postage



Hotel Rooms   $400   Red Lion Hotel

Attendant Gifts   $75   women-hangers & jewelry; men-Ninja swords

Photography   $800   Erika Ellis Photography

Coordinator   $200   Cameo Events

License   $58   Spokane County

Flowers   $500   Posey & Bloom (independent florist)


That's $6,943 total. :) Still pretty good, if you ask me.

  • Last updated on August 30, 2011 at 10:42 am
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  • 1 Comment

Here goes the tale of my shoes. (You can click links to see what I'm talking about or to see forum posts from the time.)

January Found shoes I loved, right after getting engaged (1.5 years from the wedding). I decided that I didn't want to jump on anything, and regret spending my money on shoes I didn't end up wanting. So I waited.

February Decided that I really loved the shoes, and was going to buy and wear them for every-day if I decided not to use them for the wedding. Went to purchase, found out they were sold out. Posted my first "help" post on PW.

March I go silent on PW about shoes, but continue to look on my own. A lot. I email my mom at least once a week with a new shoe idea. I don't find anything that I like, only things that I'll "settle" for.

July I find two pairs of shoes that are okay. I consider purchasing, and even post on PW about it. In the end, I realize I'm just trying to settle.

August 9 I start getting desperate. I post a plea to PW-ers. I email the manufacturers of the original shoes to see if they have any left overs. I start a pinterest board dedicated to shoes that I can't have.

August 15 I consider a shoe from Light in the Box, but decide I'm trying to settle again.

August 21 I start searching international sellers & sites. I find a gorgeous pair on eBay UK, but it says they can't ship to the USA. I email the seller, and she agrees to send them to me if I win. I bid.

August 28 Someone else bids on my shoes, 24 hours before the auction ends. I kick that bid in the butt and send myself over budget.

August 29 I win!

August 30 They are shipped from UK and should arrive to me within two weeks or so!

Here goes the tale photo 3116674-1

  • Last updated on July 20, 2011 at 9:02 am
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Since I can't officially review vendors until the wedding, I'm going to keep track on here. I will post reviews both of vendors I have worked with for my wedding, and those I have worked with for my blog.


Erika Ellis Photography - Spokane, Wash

Overall Rating: ★★★★★

Value: ★★★★★  Quality ★★★★★  Responsiveness ★★★★★ 

Flexibility ★★★★★ Professionalism ★★★★★ Budget-Friendliness ★★★★★

Erika is absolutely great to work with. When I interviewed her, she came prepared with a very professional folder of information, her portfolio, and a copy of an example contract. She also offered us a GREAT deal. She is very willing to work with budgets. We did our engagement pictures with her, and she had them edited and sent to us within a day. Her creativity and sweet personality also serve well.


Madeleine's Cafe and Patisserie - Spokane, Wash

Overall Rating: ★★★

Value: ★★★  Quality ★★★★  Responsiveness ★★ 

Flexibility ★★★ Professionalism ★ Budget-Friendliness ★★★

So far, working with Madeleine's has been lovely. My fi and I love to go there for dates, so we figured they would be perfect for our catering. We haven't done much with Madeleine's yet, but the price they are offering is very good. The only complaint I have is that the owner doesn't always respond to emails--she just makes the changes. I much prefer when the vendor emails me back saying they got my message and understand.

We went in to make finalizations on our catering, and the owner ended up changing their quote, berating at me about being unfair and trying to screw the business on price (even though the price I was asking for was what they had previously quoted), and was generally rude. No fun.


Couple of Chefs Catering - Spokane, Wash

Overall Rating: ★★★★★

Value: ★★★★★  Quality ?  Responsiveness ★★★★★ 

Flexibility ★★★★★ Professionalism ★★★★★ Budget-Friendliness ★★★★★

We had a consultation with Couple of Chefs, and they seem very impressive. They offered us 2000 pieces of desserts for our dessert reception for less than what Madeleine's had quoted. And they respond to emails very quickly. Additionally, they showed flexibility when I asked for some specific items which had not been on their list of menu options.



CatPrint - Online and Rochester, NY

Overall Rating: ★★★★★

Value: ★★★★★  Quality ★★★★★  Responsiveness ★★★ 

Flexibility ★★★★★ Professionalism ★★★★★ Budget-Friendliness ★★★★★

CatPrint printed all of our Save the Dates, invitations, and RSVP cards. The print quality was very good, and the price was unbeatable (less than $100 total for 120 copies of each--that's 360 pieces!). The only complaint I have here is that, like Madeleine's, they don't always respond to messages, but instead just make the changes. I also left a message on their answering machine once during business hours, and they didn't call me back for three hours. I finally called them again. I LOVE that they offer free hard-copy proofs and free paper samples!


Cameo Events - Denver, Colo and Coeur d' Alene, Idaho

Overall Rating: ★★★★★

Value: ★★★★★  Quality ★★★★★  Responsiveness ★★★★★

Flexibility ★★★★★ Professionalism ★★★★★ Budget-Friendliness ★★★★★

I have not worked with Cameo Events as a bride, but I ahve worked with them as a blogger. If I choose to hire a coordinator, Cameo Events will definitely be the company I go with. They are super understanding of budgets, they are very experienced, and they are extremely friendly. I highly recommend this company.

**EDIT** I did decide to hire Cameo Events for my wedding. :) They are giving me a great deal, and I just KNOW that Misty is going to be super helpful!


Spokane Parks & Recreation - Spokane, Wash

Overall Rating: ★★★★★

Value: ★★★★★  Quality ★★★★★  Responsiveness ★★★★★

Flexibility ★★★★★ Professionalism ★★★★★ Budget-Friendliness ★★★★★

Spokane Parks and Rec has met my every request so far. They are very flexible, offer great prices, and even went so far as creating a diagram of my reception space specifically for me. The sales director (the couple's main contact) is very friendly and helpful. He responds to emails very quickly.


Envelope Mall - Online and Chicago, IL

Overall Rating: ★★★★★

Value: ★★★★★  Quality ★★★★★  Responsiveness N/A

Flexibility N/A Professionalism ★★★★★ Budget-Friendliness ★★★★★

I ordered our invitation envelopes from envelope mall because they had by far the best prices. I paid $22 inlcuding shipping and got 100 kraft paper envelopes (other stores had them for $40 and more). The only thing that caught me is the high shipping costs--shipping costed more than the envelopes themselves, but that was okay because of the low product cost.


Marcella's Bridal - Spokane, Wa

Overall Rating: ★★★★★

Value: ★★★★★  Quality ★★★★★  Responsiveness ★★★★★

Flexibility ★★★★★ Professionalism ★★★★★ Budget-Friendliness ★★★

I bought my dress from Marcella's, and I loved the experience. It was like getting the "Kleinfeld" experience in my own little city. They have you fill out a form explaining your vision for the wedding, which I thought really helped my consultant understand me. They offer flexible payment plans, which help a lot since their selection of budget dresses isn't the best. Marcella is just a joy to have skipping around the store and helping her consultants. I have gone back to see my dress a couple of times, and have not had anyone complain. I love Marcella's!


Bridal Collections - Spokane, Wa

Overall Rating: ★★★

Value: ★★★★  Quality ★★★  Responsiveness ★★★

Flexibility ★★★★★ Professionalism ★★ Budget-Friendliness ★★★★

I went to Bridal Collections to look for a dress. The women there were very standoff-ish, and didn't really help get me pumped about my wedding. They just gave me rings to put on dresses I liked, and then brought those dresses to my fitting room. It felt less special than shopping with a nordstrom stylist at the department store. I expected better customer service at a place where I was expected to pay so much money. The only thing that I liked better here than Marcella's was the larger selection of budget-friendly dresses.


Purple Parasol - Walla Walla and Tri-Cities, Wa

Overall Rating: ★★

Value: ★★★  Quality ★★★  Responsiveness ★★★

Flexibility ★★ Professionalism ★★ Budget-Friendliness ★★

I have been to Purple Parasol many times to look at various dresses--prom, homecoming, and now bridesmaid dresses for my sister. However, I have never left with anything, because the poor customer service always drives me away. When I went with my sister to look at bridesmaid dresses, we made an appointment. We went, and they showed us some books, and then left us to help some girls shopping for prom dresses. Then, they told us that we were way too early (which we were early, but we wanted to get ideas for styles since my other girls are shopping at different stores and getting different dresses). They also told us that all of the dresses we were picking out were too mature for my sister (who is 11, so I get that she's young, but these dresses weren't bad and it wasn't their place to say that). All the while they were putting barely-there dresses on young teens. The prices at Purple Parasol are much higher than any other formalwear store I have been to, including the upscale Marcella's Bridal in Spokane. Much better going to Mann's down the street.


Mann's House of Brides - Walla Walla, Wa

Overall Rating: ★★★★★

Value: ★★★★★  Quality ★★★★★  Responsiveness ★★★★★

Flexibility ★★★★★ Professionalism ★★★★★ Budget-Friendliness ★★★★★

After our awful experience at Purple Parasol, my sister and I decided to pop in at Mann's to see if we could look around there for bridesmaid dresses. They were more than willing to accomodate us. They were so friendly and courteous, and their prices were reasonable. We didn't find anything we loved, so we didn't purchase, but we will probably go back. I went there with a friend the next day to look for a prom dress for her, and she ended up falling in love with a short wedding dress that was over her budget. They did some calculations, and were able to help her get her dress. Just goes to show the professionalism at this store.


Off the Wall Events & Florals (DIY Flower Shop) - Spokane, Wash

Overall Rating: ★

Value: ???  Quality ???  Responsiveness ★

Flexibility ★★ Professionalism ★ Budget-Friendliness ???

I met with Sonja from DIY Flower Shop by Off the Wall Events because I felt like this was going to be a perfect solution. They offer stem delivery and tutorials on putting your flowers together, and then you do the rest. Perfect medium between DIY and not. We had our initial consultation, and it seemed to go relatively well. Sonja said she would send me a quote within a week, and I heard back from her a week and a half later with a few more questions. I responded with an answer to her questions, and she has yet to respond back. It's been over a month, and I have received no quote. I put question marks for value, quality, and budget-friendliness since I am not sure of these since I have not actually worked with this company past the consultation, and don't know enough about the company to draw conclusions from its portfolio.


Posey and Bloom - Spokane, Wash

Overall Rating: ★★★

Value: ★★★  Quality ★★★★  Responsiveness ★★

Flexibility ★★★★★ Professionalism ★★★ Budget-Friendliness ★★★★

Posey and Bloom is a small independent florist that does its work from owner Amanda's basement. Amanda was fairly easy to get an appointment with, and she was flexible on times. Her portfolio is also absolutely gorgeous. I felt like her personality was going to be a perfect fit for our wedding. Unfortunately, it has been almost three weeks since our consultation and I have not heard from her. I have emailed her numerous times to find out if there are any other questions that I can answer for her, and I have even seen her liking posts about me on facebook, but she still does not respond to my emails. She had promised to have a quote to me within a week.

EDIT: Amanda finally emailed me back, and it looks like we might hire her. She had good reasons for having fallen out of communication, and I totally understood once I heard back. It looks like she is going to be able to apply her gorgeous aesthetic to our small flower budget of $500.

EDIT: We continued to have communication problems with Amanda, and decided to go with a different florist.


Special Touch Florist - Spokane, Wash

Overall Rating: ★★★★★

Value: ★★★★★  Quality ★★★★★  Responsiveness ★★★★★ 

Flexibility ★★★★★ Professionalism ★★★★★ Budget-Friendliness ★★★★★

Esther at Special Touch is such a sweetheart to work with! At our consultation, she went through the different flowers that we might want, the look we want, textures we are looking for--anything and everything flower related! She quoted us a lower cost than the previous florist had, and is much more responsive to emails and phone calls.

  • Last updated on July 14, 2011 at 6:31 am
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Since we want an overall laid-back feel at our wedding, our groomsmen will be wearing super laid-back clothing (for a wedding, fo course!).

We bought their shirts because they were on sale for $10 each!

Groomsmen will be in a light sage shirt and khaki jeans. Accessories will be brown flip flops and yellow ties (my mom's making them). :)

Menfolk photo 1Menfolk photo 2Menfolk photo 3Menfolk photo 4

 Sources shirt: JCPenney | pants: Wal-Mart | shoes: random google search (old dessy design) | tie: Me and matilda etsy shop

Ushers will be in a pale yellow shirt with the same pants as groomsmen. They will also be in flip flops. Tie color to be determined (what do you think: yellow or green?)

Menfolk photo 5

  • Last updated on July 4, 2011 at 8:00 am
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I enter giveaways like crazy during the week. :) This time, we won! We got a gorgeous $50 value guestbook from pinhole press on Oh Lovely Day blog.

Guest Book We Won photo 1