Saturday, February 28, 2009

35. Flowers in her hair, flowers everywhere...

We're out of town right now for our couples' shower in Louisiana, but I wanted to post at least a few pictures. Here are the inspiration pictures of the flowers for our wedding. We are using Aaron Fowler at Anything Grows florist.

For my bouquet, ivory roses with green orchids peeking out. From The Knot.

For the ladies, a mixture of green flowers. I think this is a great pop of color! This picture and the next are from Style Me Pretty.

For the groomsmen, just a couple of buttons. Cory will get something like this plus an ivory rose, like my bouquet.

I love these flowers because they are modern, colorful, and still have that romantic touch that flowers bring.

Friday, February 27, 2009

36. Cake!

It took us a while to figure out what we wanted our cake to look like. I knew I wanted something simple that incorporated our colors without looking tacky or like a kid's cake. Then I found a cake on Style Me Pretty that I knew would be our inspiration cake.

Ours will be very similar, except the bottom tier will be round. It will have aqua fondant ribbon around the base of each layer, and a white scrollwork design on the white icing. For accents, we will use flowers like the ones in the picture.

As far as flavors, we are pretty sure that most or all of the cake will be vanilla, but I'm debating having the middle layer being something different. Have you ever been to a wedding where the cake wasn't vanilla, but you loved it?

Thursday, February 26, 2009

37. Invitations

One thing I knew I wanted to do myself was the invitations. I didn't go overboard with detail and artistic flair, but I tried to make them simple, but unique. I used Adobe Illustrator to design a circle logo with our wedding date on it, and used it with a polka dot ribbon at the top. Then I found a great script font for our names and a simple font for the information.

I designed our RSVP's, too! They are postcards (cute and saves on postage, too). For those, I designed a simple scroll frame logo, with our names in the same script font as the invites.

I think the coolest thing about making our invitations has been seeing the RSVP's come in the mail. Kind of neat to think that my artwork is making its way through the postal system to me from all over the country!

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

38. One more check off the To Do list - honeymoon booked!

I am so excited to say that we finally took care of booking the honeymoon! We had been going back and forth about this for awhile, because I really wanted to go someplace with a beach, but beaches aren't Cory's favorite place (he's not fond of the heat). Also, we were debating how much money to spend (well, neither of us really wanted to spend a lot).

We talked about going to an all-inclusive like Sandals, which I would still like to do one day, but it was just out of our price range for right after the wedding. We also talked about going to San Francisco, but I was worried that being there for a week, with food, hotel, and airfare, was going to be just as pricey. We have some friends that are part of a vacation rental network, and we thought about going someplace through them for a bargain price. But a lot of the places were near the beach but not on it. So I did a little hunting around and found a great place in Destin. It's a condo on the beach called Sealoft, it has private beach access, and it has a Jacuzzi tub in it!

Here she is!

The weather in Destin in early April is mid 70s during the day, and mid 50s at night, so it's warm and sunny but not too hot for Cory. With the beach right there, we can go out to the water or just enjoy watching the surf from our patio! Really, I think the Jacuzzi was what sealed the deal for him. I'm just glad we can look forward to it now!

One last picture - the view from our patio.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

39. Pretty maids all in a row

When it came to the bridesmaid dresses, my first idea was to have all of the girls pick out a color dress near aqua, from wherever they wanted. Kind of like this (from my aim is true):

So I spread the word, and when my beautiful maid and matron of honor heard about it, they decided to make it even easier on me! They actually preferred going to David's Bridal (where I got my dress). So I picked a particular color, and all five of the girls got different dresses in that color.

What is so great is that I didn't put any restrictions on the style, and all five of them ended up picking different dresses, which was exactly what I wanted in the first place! That way, everyone feels comfortable because they are in the style they felt was the most flattering to them.

I can't wait to see how they all look on the big day!

Monday, February 23, 2009

40. The location.

I never really thought too much about where I would get married until I got engaged. Then, all of a sudden there are a million questions. Would we get married in a church? Would we get married outside? What date were we even thinking about? What would we have to rent ourselves, depending on the venue (like tables and linens)?

We decided to pick April as the month, and choose the date based on availability at our favorite venue. Because we're not regular churchgoers, we figured we would probably not get married in a church. I did a little research and fell in love with the Pink Palace. Then I called. As much as we loved it, the venue was way too expensive for our budget.

So what next? Well, my sister did some Googling for me and came up with a place called the Balinese Ballroom. We made an appointment the next day, and the loft style ballroom, with its hardwood floors, huge windows, and downtown setting, totally sold us. Tables and linens were included, and the fee was really reasonable, so we put a deposit down that day! The last two weeks in April were booked, and we really wanted to get married on a Saturday, so that led us to our date: April 4, 2009.

The only real regret I have is that we did not check to make sure that the ballroom was handicap accessible (it isn't). We have a couple of relatives in wheelchairs, and we only thought of the number of guests when we booked it, and not about any of the individual needs of our guests. I know not everyone will run into this problem, but I wish someone had made me think about it beforehand. We think we may have found a workaround, but it was something we wouldn't have had to worry about if we had planned for it.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

41. Fun stuff - colors!

I think one of the most fun (and at the same time, difficult!) things to do for the wedding was to pick the color scheme. We didn't really have a "theme" we wanted per se, so we tried to just narrow it down to a couple of colors that could tie everything together.

We went to Home Depot and picked a bunch of different paint samples, and mixed and matched until we came up with a combination of lime green and turquoise. The turquoise was a little dark, so we lightened it up to an aqua, and it ended up looking a lot like the color scheme of this wedding.

Style Me Pretty is a great site with lots of beautiful weddings, and I'd recommend it to anyone trying to figure out what they want their wedding to look like! Snippet & Ink is another site that has tons of different color schemes. You can even select one color you like and look at all the others they have paired with it.

I love our color scheme because it's fun and lively, and really matches the tone of our spring wedding without being too feminine. I can't wait to see it all come together!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

42. Probably the least fun thing to talk about...

The budget.

I'm generally an open person when it comes to things like this, and budget weddings are definitely the trend right now, so I'm just going to put it out there. I wanted our wedding budget to be $5000.

It's currently about $10,000.

Yes, we are paying for this wedding ourselves. And with wedding averages in the mid $20,000's, we're not doing too badly. Our goal is to pay for the wedding without going into any debt, and right now I think we are doing pretty well on that. We have even come in under budget on some items, like our wedding rings (I got mine from a jewelry store that was going out of business)!

Here are some things we are doing to save money:
* No favors. Well, we are technically having matchbooks with our name and wedding date on them, but they came in at around $30 for 200. Most of the time, people don't even pick them up!
* No programs. Everybody looks at these once, then throws them away, and that's if they even look at them. Need a better argument? See here.
* I bought my dress at David's Bridal for $349, and Cory's tux is free because his groomsmen are renting there. I found a veil I liked at DB, but instead of buying it there, I got it for $30 cheaper on eBay.
* We price shopped for our location. Ours is $1200 but includes all table/linen/plate/glassware rentals. The first place we looked was three times as much and didn't include anything!
* Our wedding and reception are in the same place. Only one location fee, and no need to rent transportation.
* We're serving wine and beer instead of doing a full bar, but we have the option of buying a couple types of liquor to bring if we want. This is saving us around $800.
* I made our wedding invitations myself. Instead of paying 3 or 4 dollars per invitation, I probably spent around $1, and they have my own personal design!

There are lots of other ways to save money at weddings, and we did have a couple of splurges. But our cutbacks in other areas are allowing us, at this point anyway, to stay under our budget.

Friday, February 20, 2009

43. Where it all started...

I guess if I am going to start on a new path with this blog, I should begin at the beginning. The proposal.

It was August 1, 2008. We were in Baton Rouge for the weekend. Cory's parents had just bought some land in southern Mississippi, and we went there for the day to see it. It was really quiet, kind of in the middle of nowhere, and very relaxing. We walked around the property, went fishing for awhile (Cory almost caught one, but that was the closest we got), and then went to dinner with his parents before heading back to the city for the night.

We had talked about going to our favorite bar in Baton Rouge, the Chimes, for a few drinks when we got back, but I was starting to get tired and took out my contacts. I was sitting at the bar in the kitchen, picking at some leftover fried chicken from dinner. Cory, on the other hand, wasn't tired at all! He wanted to know if I still wanted to go out, but I didn't really feel like it after our long day. Then, he told me, "I think we should go out and celebrate." My immediate reaction was, "Celebrate what?"

At that point, he got down on one knee, and pulled out the ring!

As you might guess, I really wasn't so tired anymore after that. I said "Of course!", and put the ring on my finger, and it fit perfectly! He picked it out himself, and had told no one until proposed, and it is such a beautiful ring. I love looking at it still because it reminds me of that day and all the effort he put into finding the perfect ring and surprising me.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

44. Hm, blog, what?

I haven't written in this blog in a long time. I am setting a new goal for myself. I am getting married in 44 days. Every day until then, I am going to write a blog. I want to have something to remember my wedding by, other than just a couple of pictures of the day, and maybe it will help someone else trying to plan their own wedding! Anyway, stay tuned!