Saturday, May 30, 2009

Chicken or Fish?!

I was far more focused on doing my cake tasting than the tasting with our caterer. Somehow tasting lots-o-cake was far more appealing than chicken or fish. But when we finally were headed to our tasting last week, I was SO excited! We were getting closer and closer, deciding the menu, making more of these important decisions.

When we first booked our venue last May, they had an in-house chef that handled everything. However, we knew that they might be making some changes but were ensured it wouldn't make any significant changes for us...except for one important detail - the bar! Originally we would have had to stock the bar ourselves, an extra detail I just didn't want to deal with. Our reception site's recent partnership with 2MayToz Catering (a part of Cucina Paradiso Restaurant in Oak Park) means they'll take care of the bar! Whew.

Prior to meeting with Anthony at Cucina Paradiso last week, we sent over our choices of hors d'oeuvres we'd like to taste, the salad, and two entree options. We went in there ready to eat!

Mmm - our platter of hors d'oeurves! We tasted mini quiche, parmesean artichoke fritters, bacon wrapped scallops, mini beef Wellington, gorgonzola, pear and proscuitto crostini, crab cakes, and caprese skewers. Yum! I was stuffed. We were able to choose four to be passed at the cocktail hour - we landed on the artichoke, Wellington, crostini and the caprese, a mix of vegetarian and meaty!

Our salad choice was this delicious and simple spinache salad with oranges, pine nuts and a raspberry vinagarette.

For our entree choices we tried a chicken dish that was crusted with pistachio and panko, covered with a red pepper cream sauce, with the sides of thyme glazed carrots and herbed polenta. It was good, but a very heavy dish. We had also selected (pictured above) a simple piece of salmon season with herbs and lemon with garlic mashed potatoes and green beans on the side. Simply delicious! Mr. S and I were fighting each other to finish this dish. So well seasoned and prepared, the fish is very light and the mashed potatoes were to die for!

We also decided on our linens (I won the debate with Mr. S - black!) and made our beer (Fat Tire & Amstel Light) and wine (cabernet and pinot grigio) choices. We left the tasting happy, incredibly full and excited to have yet another decision crossed off the list.

Did your tasting exceed your expectations?


Friday, May 29, 2009

We Together Make a Limb

Oh, the struggles of the first dance song. THE defining song, it seems. I was a little bummed after my last post about this that the lyrics of two of my favorites just didn't jive with the wedding day. It was difficult deciding if the lyrics mattered as much as how the song made Mr. S and I feel. In those instances, the lyrics seemed to have won out.

Don't worry, we have another contender! It's a song that Mr. S suggested a few months ago and I immediately said "It's a pretty song, but not for this." Needless to say, he was a bit upset at how quickly I shot it down. I feel bad that I didn't give it a chance, especially now that he played it for me again last week and I immediately wanted to use it. Hmm, what a difference a few months can make!

So, without further adieu, I give you "Red Right Ankle" by The Decemberists (remember?! I wanted to use a Decemberists song before, but the lyrics just weren' right).

I absolutely loooove his voice. I also love that this is just a straightforward love song with beautiful lyrics:

This is the story of your red right ankle
And how it came to meet your leg And how the muscle, bone, and sinews tangled
And how the skin was softly shed

And how it whispered “Oh, adhere to me

For we are bound by symmetry
And whatever differences our lives have been
We together make a limb.”
This is the story of your red right ankle.

Doesn't that just fit? "We together make a limb" - two different lives coming together?

Has it taken you awhile to get your first dance selection just right?


Thursday, May 28, 2009

Guy Gifts

We've gone through a lot of gift ideas for the guys - we've considered ties, beer mugs/highball glasses and/or money clips, and even chucks. But the mister just couldn't decide, so we tabled the discussion for awhile. Guy gifts are so hard...a lot of guys don't wear ties or cufflinks regularly. I don't want to gift them something that they wouldn't really have a use for...that doesn't feel very much like a gift!

Mr. S was looking the other night online for ideas when he thought of the Flip video cameras. Small. Handy. Kind of fun. And a lot of people don't have separate video cameras these days. They may record video through their phones and cameras, but a Flip would be fun to have when you're on vacation or somewhere you don't really want to risk damaging your nice digital camera. So...enter the Flip!

Source: Amazon

So cute and compact. These babies come in a bunch of different fun colors, but fun colors come at a price. And white is manly, right? Flips also come with different recording length capabilities, the cheapest being 30 minutes. So, Amazon has these white 30 minute flips for $60. Not too bad!

Source: Amazon

They're easy to use, gadget-y and somewhat within the budget. I can pretty much see all of our groomsmen using these at some point in time. So, these are definitely leading the groomsmen gift race! We'd love to be able to give these to our 3 ushers as well, but after buying 5 of these for the groomsmen (and, you know, maybe one for us...) we probably can't afford to buy any more. So, the ushers may be getting..duh, duh, duh...ties! I know, I know. But we're not going to ask them to rent tuxes, so that seems like a fair trade off.

Also, we're not having a videographer. Wouldn't it be fun to attach a little note to these when we give them to the groomsmen at the rehearsal dinner and encourage them to take little snippets of video throughout the wedding day? What a fun keepsake!

Have you chosen to give something "gadget-y" to your groomsmen?


Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Burn, Baby, Burn

Among my many wedding panics, a couple of months ago I started fretting about all of the tea lights that were going to be on the reception tables. Wouldn't the room look awful if all of them weren't twinkling? Especially since we bought all of these pretty "bubble" tea lights from Crate & Barrel. Not nearly so cute if they're not lit up! I'd heard that most tea lights burn for around 4 hours on average...not ideal for my 6 hour reception.

I started researching tea lights like crazy and did find some web sites that had "super tea lights" that lasted for 8 or 10 hours. But they didn't come cheap, and I struggled to find the ones that come in the clear cups (vs silver).

Of course, I ended up doing what I always do and checked out Etsy. I started finding different sellers with soy tea lights and learned that not only do they burn cleaner (better for the environment!) they also burn longer. I saw somewhere in the ballpark of 7 or 8 hours (depending on conditions - sheltered from a lot of breezes and burning all in one sitting are optimal).

Etsy seller Worthy Soy Candles had an amazing deal on these tea lights, and I snagged 75 unscented white soy tea lights (in clear cups!) for $32.85 - that includes shipping. This was much cheaper than I'd been pricing out other places. But...once they arrived, I had to put them to the test!

Fortunately, they threw in a free tea light with my purchase so I didn't have to use one from the wedding stash. My free candle was purple and lavendar scented, yum! But, unfortunately, I had to leave in the middle of the "experiment" so I had to burn this candle in two sittings.

First Burn

Start: 3:40 pm

Stop: 6:25 pm

Time elapsed: 2 hours, 45 minutes

Second Burn

Start: 3:55 pm

Stop: 7:15 pm

Time Elapsed: 3 hours, 20 minutes

Total time candle burned: 6 hours, 5 minutes

Knowing that my tea lights will last for my 6 hour reception: priceless

To what lengths have you gone to ensure your decor really goes the distance?


Tuesday, May 26, 2009



Changes are afoot in the Stiletto household. As September continues to draw closer, we've had to really look at some projects and make some final decisions in order to get started on things. Expect some new projects and different ideas to come!

After posting here, here, here, here, and here about our candy buffet, of course we're still planning on offering the buffet-o-sweetness as our favor at the reception, right? I mean, who would post so obsessively about something and do so much research if they're just going to nix the idea in the end?! Oh, that's right, ME.

All of the candy was starting to give me nightmares. So many logistics, expensive things to buy, just far too much to think about. For months now, I had been dreading the summer and actually putting this whole thing together. To top it off, when Mr. S and I did our tasting with the caterer last week, he mentioned that at the end of the meal, in addition to wedding cake, each table would be served a plate of cookies and cannolis. Hmm. With my plans to have both cookies and candy as a part of the buffet, that would be a whole lot of sugar.

So....we completely crossed out the candy buffet. I ended up in a minor panick attack last week. What's in budget but not just giving people stuff?! Since I work in the non-profit/fundraising field, there are always different organizations I would like to support. I like the idea of making a charitable donation, so I started thinking about what organization we, as a couple, would want to support.

Not far from Mr. S's and my condo in Albany Park (Chicago neighborhood on the northwest side of the city) is a placed called Blue Sky Bakery. While true to their name, they churn out some fabulous baked goods, they're a bakery with a mission. They serve as a training ground for homeless and at-risk youth who go through an established program working at the bakery, where the goal is for them to gain enough work experience to then gain employment elsewhere. Just opening last fall, I think about the bakery a lot and hope that they survive during these tough economic times. With such a strong mission and so close to our home, we try and support them when we can. And...well...they also have REALLY tasty maple cashew granola!

So...why not take a mass quantity of that really tasty granola, package it up in these great muslin bags (probably first in ziploc bags, then in the muslin bags) - Etsy seller Essence of Gaia currently has these 3x5" bags priced at $9.50 for 30 bags. We'll need around 120, so these are incredibly affordable.

Source: Etsy

Then, using a stamp that says "thank you" or simply "love" or whatever we decide, we can stamp these babies. I love this one I found on Etsy that says "lovely things." Too cute.

Source: Etsy

Once we're done, we'll make up little tags to attach to the bags, providing a brief overview of the bakery, that a donation has also been made to support them, and then a little message of thanks to our guests.

Sweet. Simple. Tasty. I couldn't be happier with this idea! We'll be supporting a cause in our community that we feel strongly about and sending our guests off with a little treat that Mr. S and I both enjoy. We still have to approach the bakery and ensure we'll be able to the get the quantity of granola that we need, but otherwise, we're ready to get going on this idea.

Are you choosing to make a donation in lieu of or as a part of your favor? If so, how did you decide on the organization you'll be supporting?


Thursday, May 21, 2009

Ring From the King

Miss Bruschetta's recent post on wedding band decisions not only got me thinking, it led me to a great site to search for the perfect wedding band! I've had it in my mind what I've thought I wanted, but I always struggle to find a good example. Michael C. Fina was a great place to go to ooh and ahh over beautiful, sparkly rings!

My engagement ring is exactly what I'd said I wanted...simple, classic, round cut solitare. Mr. S took a lot of time and care in picking out this sparkler!

Now, I wish I could have been a fly on the wall the day my ring was purchased. Our good friends S & B (who were married last year) took Mr. S to a shop in Chicago's jeweler's row. It was here, from the "Rolex King of Chicago*" my diamond was purchased. Mr. S had to pay cash for the e-ring - visiting the bank beforehand and nervously pulling lots of cash out. After picking out the diamond, the setting, and forking the cash over, S & B took Mr. S across the street to a bar for a few drinks while the ring was being made.

Rumor has it he was bright red and incredibly nervous when they went back to pick up the ring - apparently the jeweler even asked him at one point if he was ok, then wondered aloud about S and her obvious excitement for Mr. S and I and the impending engagement! While all of this was happening, I was at work and had no clue he was just blocks from my office buying my bling. The proposal a couple of weeks later was a complete surprise to me, and I wouldn't change a thing.

When it comes to purchasing our wedding bands, we'll head back on over to the "Rolex King." But that won't stop me from window shopping beforehand to make sure I find the perfect ring we'll use to seal the deal!

As fun as it would be to go crazy with the diamonds allover the band, I think I'd like to go a little less sparkly. This simple ring with diamonds spaced out and set into the band (sorry I don't know jewelry terms!) has captured my heart - the picture isn't the clearest, so follow the link for a better view.

Source: Michael C. Fina

We probably won't plan a visit on over to buy our rings for a couple of months yet...but I simply can't wait to slip a ring like this on my finger and see how everything looks together!What sold you on your wedding band?

*Note: while purchasing my ring from the "Rolex King of Chicago" may not seem like it's on the up and up, it most definitely is! As you'll recall, our friends S & B took Mr. S there, and B knows the "king" through his dad, who's a retired police sergeant. He wouldn't lead us wrong, and that's even where B bought S's ring!


Wednesday, May 20, 2009

On Our Search for the Church

I guess I haven't written very much about our ceremony or church. Don't worry, I fully understand that the most important part of "the day" is what happens in the church! But because we've been planning for quite some time, a lot of the details for the ceremony just simply have not been decided on.

When we started looking to have our wedding in Oak Park and found our reception site, the 19th Century Club, we had no clue where the actual ceremony would take place. While there is space at the reception site should be choose to take advantage of it, we had definitely envisioned being at a church. Mr. S and I don't have a church that we regularly attend right now and even if we did, it would be in Chicago and we'd really like to keep everything in Oak Park.

But don't worry! Oak Park has a lot of churches...but when we started to narrow the search, only a handful of them were either Methodist (my denomination) or Lutheran (Mr. S's). As we started contacting those, we encountered incredibly expensive ceremony fees (I had expected a church to be a few hundred dollars, not $1,000+!) as well as some uneasiness on the part of many churches about the fact that we weren't members and most likely would not become members (as it doesn't make sense for us to join a church so far from our home).

We had already booked our reception last May on faith that we'd find a church and get the date that we wanted. One of the last churches we contacted - last July - was or last hope, and turned out to be the best fit all around! Euclid Avenue United Methodist in Oak Park was perfect on paper: great location, very reasonable fee, historic church and, of course...Methodist!

Source: Euclid Avenue United Methodist

But, of course, we needed to visit the church and meet with the minister to check out one final piece of the puzzle. While the church could be pretty on paper and beautiful in person, we didn't want to pick a place just for those reasons alone...a reasonable fee or beautiful stained glass tell us nothing about the minister and if he or she is the best person to marry us.

We first visited last summer, attending a service and then sitting down with the minister. She was incredibly warm, welcoming and we knew that this was the perfect decision. I appreciated that she told us that she would never tell us that we shouldn't be married - that's not her job - but if we thought it was a good fit to have her marry us, then we'd all get to know one another over the coming months.

Along with offering a great congregation and minister, the sanctuary is pretty easy on the eyes!

I love the beautiful pale yellow walls and all of the dark wood. The sanctuary is the perfect size for our 120 person wedding!

The stained glass windows are simply gorgeous, and this balcony will be perfect for our photographer to shoot from during the ceremony! The only downside is that the sanctuary isn't air conditioned, so I'm hoping to still be cool, calm and collected on the big day.

Over the weekend we visited the church with Mama Stiletto (she hadn't seen it yet) and Mr. S and I practiced walking up the aisle! We timed it and it only seemed to be around a 20 second if only we could finish our song choices...

Did you struggle to find a ceremony location that was the perfect fit?


Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Final Piece of Bridal Bling

I've had my bridal earrings since last fall - I bought them far before I even had a dress, and considered very closely how the dress might compliment them. In my opinion, they're swoonworthy, made from vintage chandelier crystals!

Source: Etsy's Precious Meshes

So, when it came to my wedding necklace, I knew that I wanted to work again with Emily of Precious Meshes. Her attention to detail is amazing and her work is exquisite.

I decided I wanted to do a netted pendant that would look similar to my earrings. While Emily has some other amazing necklaces that would be perfect for the wedding day, they're definitely fancy! And I'm just not the type to throw on fancy necklaces very often...I wanted something that I would have plenty of opportunties to wear again. Since Emily will "net" a stone that you provide her, I went searching.

I found these great chandelier pieces on Etsy from Epoch Beads! I was able to get four of these for $4.

I sent the crystals over to Emily and since I only needed to use one of them for the necklace (and the other three would just be sitting around my house) I asked Emily if she wanted the other three. She did and in turn gave me free shipping on my necklace!

I was so excited when I got home yesterday and found this little pretty waiting for me!

Source: Etsy's Precious Meshes

Emily added two smaller beads as connectors between the chain and the pendant and I absolutely love it! The necklace is delicate, sparkly and has a vintage quality that will look beautiful with my dress.

Will you be able to wear your jewelry again after the wedding day or is it only for extra fancy occasions?


Monday, May 18, 2009

Cherish, Dream, Live

I've had my invitations since February, but they were designed back in December by my fabulous designer who I hired back in September. Yes, I'm a little crazy like that, but I wanted to start getting this detail worked out. Is it hard sometimes seeing a lot of fabulous invitations out there and knowing that mine have been printed for months? Sometimes - I've had my fair share of invitation envy, but I love what we'll be sending out to our guests in just a couple of months!

Source: Plush Paper

I had originally thought I'd DIY my invitations in order to save some money. I'm not very paper crafty, though, so I think that DIY idea was more of a pipe dream. One evening last summer, Mr. S and I were struggling with the look/feel of our wedding. I decided we needed to pick a font and once we had that font, everything else would fall into place. We both agreed on typewriter font, so I started searching on Google for invitations that incorporated this font. And I landed on these:

Source: Plush Paper

I loved how the typewriter font was used...and how fabulous is the picture?! I'd kill for this picture. I bookmarked Plush Paper's site so that I could reference this great invitation later on, but certainly knew I couldn't afford custom invitations.

A couple of month's later I decided on a whim to contact Plush Paper and just see what it would cost to have invitations designed and printed. Kathleen of Plush Paper gave me a quote that was only $60 over what I'd been budgeting for invitations - what I'd considered to be a pretty small budget overall...her quote covered a custom design, printing, 80 invitations, 80 reply cards, 80 inner envelopes and 80 outer envelopes and priority shipping to me (since she's in Detroit). Woo! I was so excited to know that I'd be able to do something that was unique to us, but wouldn't break the bank.

We chose to use a picture from our engagement shoot, shot by the fabulous Laurie Peacock. While it's not a soft and romantic picture - I mean, we're strutting across a parking lot! - we both kept on coming back to this shot when we were trying to decide on the perfect picture. I like that it's a strong picture and we're walking hand in hand. We incorporated a quote that seemed fitting:

Cherish yesterday
Dream tomorrow
Live today

Kathleen added some great damask details to the front and back to soften it up a bit (on the back our names are on that white stripe in a typewriter font).

Source: Plush Paper

I knew exactly what I wanted the inside to be - Madlibs! Once we had settled on using a typewriter font and wanted a vintage feel overall, Madlibs immediately came to mind. They use a similar font, were started in the 1950s and are very playful. This was a fun way for us to share the details of our day! And, breaking with tradition, we included the ceremony and reception information on the same card - easier for our guests to have the information all in one place, and less wasteful as well.

Source: Plush Paper

In keeping with the Madlibs theme, our guests get to play a little Madlibs too with their response cards.

Guests who are planning on attending get to fill in the sentence:

__________ [name(s)] will be there ready to __________ [verb] with you!

Guests who can't make it get to complete the following:

__________ [name(s)] won't be there on the big day. Don't forget to _________ [advice] after the _________ [advice].

I'm hoping we get some fun little pieces of advice in there and overall some silly responses. I think these could be a great keepsake after the day - maybe even scanning a couple of these and adding into our wedding album!

Source: Plush Paper

And finally, our envelopes. Kathleen did a fabulous job with the damask accents on these. It was an option for us to have the addresses printed on the envelopes, but that would have meant printing these much closer to the send date and me giving up control! I just couldn't do it. While I'm sure Kathleen would do everything perfectly, I wanted to control the final addressing of each one! I've got some plans for addressing these that I plan to share as we get closer.

Source: Plush Paper

What special touches do you think make your invitations unique?


Thursday, May 14, 2009

Scanner Shy

I had wanted to register for months and months and months. I couldn't wait to get that scanner in hand and just go crazy. Last year Mr. S and I started making an Excel list of everything we wanted to register for, researching toaster ovens and crock pots. And then...time just went by. We hadn't really talked about registering, or when we were going to do it. Just some time when it was "nice out." Finally someone asked us where we were registered at, and 2 days later we were headed downtown to the Crate & Barrel on Michigan Avenue. It was time to get down to business.

We chose to register on such a whim that I felt wildly unprepared. I was a bit overwhelmed. Once we were trusted with our handy scanner, the associate told us to start on the top floor and work our way down. The top floor is filled with a lot of furniture. As we worked our way around I refused to scan anything - I wanted to be really committed to whatever we chose. Also, I was very against registering for furniture at CB. It seemed far too extravagant to ask people to buy such high priced items for us.

And then, I saw these babies...

Yep, this was our first scan - 4 of these bad boys. The Allegro Side Chair is all I could ever hope for in a chair - I'm in love with the green! I'd also rave about how comfortable the chair is, but throughout the excitement of finally agreeing on something to scan, we overlooked testing out the chair. Hmm...moving on...

I had been worried about picking out our dishes. I had a favorite, but Mr. S also had a favorite. We had made a pact that morning to not fight about anything. That pact served us well, and I decided to give in just a tad and let him have his Roulette dishes - it's all give a little, get a little in marriage, right?

You know that giving a little on the dishes? It meant getting a little immediately after when we turned toward our silverware choices. I'd been in love with the Hazel design for months.

This serving fork really sealed the deal for me with this set - it's just a fork for a giant. I love it!

Doesn't this Acacia wood salad bowl look great? We thought so. Mr. S has been wanting a nice bowl for salads.

We loved this cute little dish. It did not, however, make it onto the registry. Necessities, people, necessities!

We spent a lot of time wandering through the glassware. Geesh, CB, can you give us any more options here? Nearly impossible for us to decide! But the Strauss glasses with their funky square shape was too good to pass up.

Oh, more struggles with glassware. Wineglasses, wineglasses, wineglases. We opted for the Gala line. I definitely took a step back and let Mr. S make the decision here. They all looked like wine glasses to me.

Our registry Saturday couldn't have been more perfect. Having many discussions about compromising beforehand made the day what it should be - fun, exciting, and spending the day together planning a piece of our life. I'd secretly thought that it might not be all that great. We've been living together for a couple of years, own a condo together, and have bought so many things for the house already. But I think all of these things actually helped us register. We know what we need and what we could live without and what style our home is and how we'd like it to evolve.

So, that scanner shyness I mentioned at the beginning? Umm, ya. By the time we hit the second floor at CB the scanning got a tad bit out of control. $50 shower curtain? Sure! Wine cabinet that we have absolutely no room for? Why not! Good thing you can modify your registry online 18 million times before the wedding.

Did your day of registering end up in a hot mess, or were you and your significant other able to compromise your way throughout the housewares section?


Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Bake Me a Skinny Cake!

I've been having cake nightmares lately. Not because I have any form of doubt surrounding Cathay from The Sugar Syndicate - she is superbly awesome and talented and will make me a fabulous cake! But I became worried that my beloved cake would be a little, well, short. I blame my panic on all of these wedding shows I watch were people have like 8 foot tall cakes. I, however, am having a reception for 120 people and most definitely don't need to have enough cake there to serve 500 people, hence my having ordered a 1 foot tall cake instead.

I had been hesitant to contact Cathay because I knew that I couldn't make any changes to the cake that would impact the price. I simply can't justify it. But I continued to find myself worrying about the cake at odd times, so finally yesterday I emailed Cathay.

If you'll remember, my cake inspiration had been this beautiful cake done by Cathay:

Source: The Sugar Syndicate's Flickr page

Ours would say "congratulations laura & steve" and have tiers in varied heights as theis"bird cake" does, with this sort of tear drop pattern in black going down the left hand side:


Lovely, but still, I felt it might be short. And, I was struggling to find a cake stand that would work for the cake, since the bottom tier would be 12 inches in diameter, so Cathay encouraged me to have a stand that was at least 13 inches in diameter...not easy to find!

Stuck in the back of my mind was this "skinny" cake that Cathay had done before:

Source: The Sugar Syndicate's Flickr page

I liked that that size felt very unique, and it definitely has some more height on it! So when I emailed Cathay yesterday, I referenced this cake...having no clue how many it served and if it would be an option for us (again, with our same design elements was had decided on, just different tier sizes). will work! This cake also serves around 120 people, is 18 inches tall, and the bottom tier is 10 inches in diameter, so that would also help solve my cake stand issues.

I'm still waiting to hear back from Cathay to confirm that everything is golden, but it sounds like we should be able to make the switch and have a "skinny" cake (now, if only this also cut the calories!).

At the end of the day, would I have been happy with the cake we had originally planned? Of course. Am I happy that I didn't dwell on "what if" and just emailed my fabulous vendor to see what other options there might be in order to fit my vision while staying in my budget? Absolutely!

Have you hesitated to make a change after booking a vendor?


Monday, May 11, 2009

Final Floral Touches

I've finally started to wrap my head around florals and have a clear idea of what blooms and greens will be present on the day. I feel...relieved. And excited about my decisions! I've set for myself a very small floral budget, so I've worked to get the most out of what I'm spending while having unique and beautiful choices!

As you might recall from my earlier post about bouquets, I'm set on this great dahlia, ranunculus, sweet pea, gardenia and hydrangea bouquet. I may not have all of these blooms, but dahlias, ranunculu and hydrangeas are the three I would like to see, with a heavy presence of dahlia and ranunculus. I was so fortunate to come across this picture, because not only did it provide great inspiration for my bouquet, there is bridesmaid inspiration as well! The bridesmaid bouquet features dahlias in a great way, so I'm using this is as a starting off point with my florist.


And, of course, how can I forget the green?! I posted about getting some fabulous green integrated into flowers, and hypericum berries completely fit the bill. All of the guys (with the exception of Mr. S) will wear boutonnieres of green hypericum berries, which make a nice modern lookin' boutonniere (and are cheaper than other options I was looking at, woo hoo!). I'd also like to integrate these into the bridesmaids' bouquets to add touches of greens to theirs, while mine will remain snowy white.

Source: InStyle Weddings

But what to do about Mr. S's boutonniere? I was pretty much at a loss because it's my understanding that it's traditional to use a bloom from the bride's bouquet for the groom's boutonniere. Hmmm.

Fortunately, I came a across these great options (whew!). This white ranunculus boutonniere is probably my favorite, but I think that's also because I've recently fallen head over heals for those silly little ranunculus blooms...they're just too cute!

Source: The Knot

But then, of course, I found this great dahlia boutonniere (just imagine this in white...but isn't this orange version with the tie fabulous?!). It's so simple and cute, and I assume this bloom would hold up quite well during a day of hugging.

Source: Martha Stewart

I thought seeing a "run down" of all of the flowers would help me make a decision...but I love both of these options! I am leaning toward one...what would you choose?


Friday, May 8, 2009

Stiletto, do NOT buy this dress

Did I ever mention that I have a shopping problem? Specifically, an online shopping problem. Click, click, click and my new stuff is on its way. Sigh.

But, I do happen to need a dress to wear to my wedding shower this summer. I mean, everyone will be coming in to see me, I must look nice. Right?

And, well, I think I would look quite nice in this lovely damask dress from Ann Taylor Loft. And not just because I'm having hints of damask in my wedding (seriously, I went from all out damask down to a touch here and there...oh where did the damask go?!). Black and white damask, in my opinion, is just the perfect mix of the black and the white, while looking amazing with a great "pop" color like red, yellow or green. It's kind of like a black and white cookie - the perfect combination of black and white in every bite!

Source for both pictures: Ann Taylor Loft

Big sigh. My fingers are simply itching to purchase this little number. It's on sale for a mere $39.50! I know that Ann Taylor Loft always has crazy good sales, so I'm sure this would eventually land on the clearance rack. But it's such a fabulous dress, wouldn't everyone else just snatch it up before me?!

Sadly, like many of you out there, the Stilettos have been hit by the..duh duh duh...economy! We're in a spending freeze until further notice, so new fabulous dresses that are such an amazing deal are not allowed at this time. Please, my lovely damask friend, hold off until my credit cards* have thawed out!

Are there wedding purchases you're considering but can't justify right now?

*Please note: no, the Stilettos have not found themselves in crazy credit card debt or other financial woes, hence requiring our "spending freeze." Other priorities have caused us to pull back on spending for the time being. Even if one of us finds the most AMAZING dress. That's FOR THE WEDDING. Sigh.


Thursday, May 7, 2009

DIY Card Box Idea

I've seen the cute bird cages, mail boxes and hat boxes that brides are using these days for their card boxes on the gift table. So many of them are tailored to fit in perfectly with their themes. I, however, can't seem to get myself to jump onto that bandwagon. Sometimes I wonder why I have to make things so hard on myself.

Anyway. I've been trying to think of creative options for the card box that fits us, but doesn't make me go crazy. Or broke. I started thinking about vintage suitcases like this and how they tell there story of where you've been.

Source: Travelsmith

I've seen from time to time these great card board versions of vintage suitcases. Paper Source actually has a wide variety of them at pretty affordable prices - these black suitcases range from $8.00 - $14.50 each, depending on the size. Because they're cardboard, you could cut the bottom out of the top and middle cases, part of the top off of the middle and bottom cases, a slit in the lid of the top case, and adhere them all together, so when you drop a card in the top, they collect in the bottom case. Unfortunately for me, these are black with red stitching, and I don't want red. And I can't seem to find all black anywhere (or anywhere I can afford)...and really, can I afford to spend much money on this at all? No.

Source: Paper Source

Lucky for me, I came across this DIY suitcase. It's apparently made out of a Bisquick box! Who knew? Find the instructions here for this simple project. This project gives you so much more freedom because you can use whatever boxes you have available to get the size you want, fabric or paper that matches your color scheme, and it will cost next to nothing!

Source: Pecuniarities

I envision creating a stack of "suitcases" in black and telling our story on them through pictures of us - where we've been through our relationship. Since we're not planning (at this time) to do any form of a slideshow of pictures of us, this will be a fun way to display our memories as a couple, with maybe a few baby pictures pasted on for good measure :)

As I get going on this project, I'll be sure to share the final product...hopefully it will be beautiful!

What will guests be dropping their cards into at your reception?


Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Program Progress

I've been watching the countdown to "the day" on my Facebook page continue to shrink. I was excited at the 365 mark (only a will just fly by!) to 200 days left...and now we're getting precariously close to the 100 day mark. And then we're on to double digits!

So...what about all of those projects that 12, 9 or even 6 months ago I wouldn't even let myself think about because it was "too far off"? We're about there. Decisions must start getting made...followed by some major action to make everything happen.

First up - ceremony programs. I had kind of a leave 'em attitude about programs when I first started planning. We don't necessary need them. I don't think our ceremony (which, sadly, I haven't yet given a lot of thought to, either) will be incredibly intricate. But as I continue to go through the planning process, I wouldn't mind having a "play by play" of the ceremony. And a place to give extra thanks to our wedding party and family. Besides, we need to keep the ushers busy. They're there to work, people! (I kid, I kid)

When I saw these poster-style ceremony programs featured somewhere last year, I fell in love. I wish I could have been at that wedding, because if the programs are this great, I can only imagine what other splendid details were at that wedding.

Mr. S loves the programs as well, and we've brainstormed different ways we could make this happen for us. But I'm worried that between printing and then folding, we may kill our budget (well, our non-existent program budget, as I hadn't really factored these in, heh) and would just be adding one more project onto the pile with all of the folding. I don't know that we're up for that, but seriously, how great are these?! Of course, we would only be using these as inspiration.



In my search for other cool, less traditional program ideas, I came across these lovelies. You still get the "fold out feel" with less intense folding. I literally know nothing about printing, so I don't know what costs would be like for that, but I do know that we could easily design these ourselves.



By far one one of the coolest options was this two-sided poster. No folding would be involved and I think it would be cool to have the ushers passing out these one-pagers (assuming they're printed on heavier cardstock). I think I'd change up the style quite a bit and make sure there's a place to list the wedding party, but overall I like that these are more casual in nature and kind of fun. This would also be great to frame after the event.

Source: robeastblog

Source: robeastblog

So, I now have three great pieces of inspiration for the programs I didn't think I was ever going to do. I think that's a pretty fabulous start! Now it's all about making those decisions and implementing them...

What creative elements are you incoporating into your ceremony programs? Where have you gotten your inspiration?


About This Blog

About This Blog

  © Free Blogger Templates Spain by 2008

Back to TOP