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Table Numbers

In my search for some unique table numbers I came across this wonderful idea on OnceWed. Laurie Cinotto originally created the idea for the blog and I sort of ran with it (thanks, Laurie!) The idea is that you put a notebook on each table so that guests can leave notes for the bride and groom - kind of a wish bowl that we can go back and read when the day is over. Since we're using the damask runners I wanted to keep the patterns relatively simple, so I opted to use only three different types of paper. I also decided to use the larger 5.25 x 8.25" Plain Moleskine Notebooks to make sure they could be seen on the tables. The make your own rubber stamp kit is seriously handy, I used it to stamp the insides with two different messages:
And, "Your Wishes for The Couple." I don't expect anyone to write lengthy, heartfelt messages - really I just liked the little notebooks too much not to use them!

Out of Town Totes

I've written about our Out of Town bags before, and while I love them I couldn't stop myself from personalizing them somehow. The term "glutton for punishment" comes to mind, no? I wanted to print them somehow but I also didn't want to slap our names on there in huge bold letters and deter people from using them in the future. So I decided that using the same flourish that I incorporated into the invitation suite would make sense - provide a little consistency and still keep it rather plain. I priced a few options for having them professionally printed and most of those defeated the whole purpose of paying .99 cents for each of the bags. I kept thinking about how I could get the flourish into a stencil somehow, and after one attempt with foam board failed miserably I turned to google and found Custom Cut Stencil Co. They were so easy to work with - I emailed them my design, they added the necessary breaks, and one week and $30 later this was at my door:It's a mylar stencil which means that it's pretty durable, but in retrospect I should have made the lines a little thicker (you'll see why in a second). I went to JoAnn fabrics and bought a fabric paint pen for $3 and away I went! Important tip - put some cardboard in the middle of the bag before you start painting. Bleeding is a bad thing...
I should have made the lines on the flourish thicker because the paint pen doesn't quite fit into the stencil. So, basically I have to trace it once with a pen that will fit into the lines and then go over it with the paint pen. Not the biggest deal in the world, but a little added work. Here is how it looks after tracing the stencil with a pen:
And here is part of the process of going over the pen marks with the paint pen:
To get the line on either side of the flourish I just got out a ruler and tried to line things up as best as possible:
And there you have it! I used a warm iron on each of them to set the paint and make sure they weren't overly wrinkly.
All in all I would say that it takes about 10 minutes per bag for the design and just a few more minutes for ironing. There are 40 bags in total, so when you break down the cost of all the bags, the paint pens (it took two), and the stencil it cost around $2 per bag. Here's hoping our guests get some use out of them in the future as well!

The Invitations

I know, I know....finally! I apologize for the lack of posts last week and thank you for all the sweet emails wondering if I was alright. I am not sure how one gets sick in the middle of summer but I managed to do it! But enough about that though - onto the good stuff. I designed the invitation suite myself and worked with a local letterpress company to have them printed. I didn't actually have the best experience with them but I am really happy with how they all came together in the end, so I suppose that's all that matters! I hate to blur out the some of the information but hopefully you can still get an overall feel for how things looked. The first picture above is the outer envelope, the inner, and how things were all stacked together when they were pulled out of the envelope. I used satin ribbon to hold the stacked invitation and insert cards together and used a circle punch to make our monogram into a seal of sorts:
Here is the whole suite - you can see how I used the one element in different places on all of the pieces, to try and tie it together:
A close-up of the invitation itself:
And the insert cards. Instead of RSVP, Reception, Accommodations etc. we used rejoice, respond, and relax:
Rejoice and relax were the only cards that were letterpressed, I ordered the relax card from Vistaprint so that I could put a map on the back of it.And last but not least, Lola had to make her way onto the invitations somehow! We ordered custom stamps for the RSVP envelopes with her picture on them.
Here is a closeup of the stamp - it's a little hard to tell but she's holding an envelope in her mouth that has the same seal on it as the one on the ribbon. And...well...alright, we were actually holding the envelope up to her mouth and I photoshopped a hand out of the picture. You do what you've got to do, right?
It was kind of a debate whether or not to leave the response card so open ended, but it wound up working out better than I could have hoped. We've received really traditional responses, some that are a little strange, and some that made me laugh so hard I cried. Finding out what people do with blank spaces is pretty entertaining!

More Toss Designs

After I wrote this post about the Medallion collection from Toss Designs, I couldn't help but look through their website a little more. Now it's safe to say that I am totally obsessed with that suitcase! I am still rolling around the luggage that I got for my eighth grade graduation (seriously) so I am really in need of an upgrade. If I had an extra couple hundred of dollars laying around these days I would most definitely be buying it...and then probably sitting in airports wondering how they will damage my cute new suitcase. While I am at it, I'll take this too:
Ahhh, disposable income. I can't wait to have some again once the wedding is over!

The Crew

J.Crew has some new wedding things out again (or, at least, they're new to me). The detail on this metallic rose dress is gorgeous:
I could never pull this off but I can imagine there are people out there who can make it look stunning! The description calls it a "silken parfait of a dress" which for some reason makes me smile:
And although I've seen it before, I am madly in love with Lucinda. There is something about sweetheart necklines and outrageously full skirts that gets me every time.
And notice the back? A certain someone had the back of her dress changed so that it would be lined with covered buttons. I've always longed for them, and when the seamstress was actually the one to suggest it I jumped at the opportunity.
Oh how I love covered buttons.

Barn Wood Signs

Remember how much I loved the sign pictured above? I've been wanting one to call my own ever since I laid eyes on it. Our ceremony venue actually has two it could get a little confusing...and I seized the opportunity for a sign. I showed it to my Dad and he took matters into his own hands, namely getting permission to take some barn wood from a friend's brother and driving 30 miles to said barn with a crowbar in the car. That's dedication for you! He assembled it all this weekend, here it is on the stake:
And here is the finished product! We decided it was best to limit the words and make the letters as big as possible, seeing as how this is going to be viewed from passing cars. It will go up that morning, so the date isn't really necessary.
Put it in front of some hedges, hook a hydrangea on the top, and we're in business!

The Winner Is...

The randomly generated winner of the Wedding Book is, Jamie! Thank you all for leaving comments, if I had enough I swear I would send you all a book of your own. Jamie - just send me an email with your contact information and I'll get it out to you this week! The peony picture isn't for any reason besides I think it's pretty, and I needed to look at something lovely after a long weekend and a raging bout of insomnia last night. Congrats, Jamie!


I have an overwhelming urge to cover every surface of our house with these candles. That's not a fire hazard, is it? It somehow sparks the same excitement in me as boxes of crayons do - there is just something about all those colors with names like "begonia blossom" and "ripe olive." Alas, glassbaby is located in Seattle and they produce these glowing little beauties through a multi-layered glass blowing process that you can see both in their store or online, here.
I've now watched that entire slideshow twice. And look at this picture, where they're being used as bud vases:
This picture might be my absolute favorite. I ask you, how much do you want to be sitting in those chairs? I would have to add a bottle of wine into the mix and then it would be complete perfection:
Swoon. It might not be very cost effective to cover my whole house with them, but oh how I would love it. In the meantime I'll just drool over all these pictures. Have a wonderful weekend!

Peggy Li Jewelry

All of the jewelry on Peggy Li's website is handmade, and there are some really unique options at a variety of price points. You can find bridal jewelry as well as some everyday options (or a combination of both) and even a few things for the men in our lives. I really enjoy that she posts pictures of brides in her jewelry. It's always easier to decide when you can see things in action, no?

Sentimental Things

These are my parents on their wedding day, over 40 years ago. This is one my very favorite pictures of them not only because they're adorable, but because it says so much. My Mom is beautiful in her short lace dress and my Dad, in a final act of defiance, has his pants tucked into his boots. My Mom and Grandma really wanted him to wear his uniform despite his protests, so he did it in his own way. Classic. But the point to all of this is to show you that my Mom cleaned her dress and cut a panel of the lace off of it for me:
I really didn't expect her to just cut it (seriously took me by surprise) but the dress is still mostly in tact and now I have this beautiful piece of lace. We initially attempted to sew it onto the bottom of my veil, but the white just didn't look right next to my ivory dress. So,instead, I am thinking of wrapping it around my bouquet and carrying it down the aisle along with these beauties:
The brooch is my Great Grandmother's and the beautiful pin is my Great Great Grandmother's. The gold earring is my Grandma's...they were given to her by my Grandpa and each of her three daughters wore them when they were married (my Mom included). So my cousin and I split them up and each took one, one of which I tied to my cousin's bouquet when she was married in May. I can't quite decide what to do with all of these beautiful things but the history attached to them means so much to me that I want to use them all! I am thinking of wearing the silver pin in my hair somehow, putting the brooch on my bouquet, and pinning the earring to the inside of my dress. Or perhaps pinning the brooch onto the handkerchief my Aunt made me and the earring onto my bouquet. I just can't decide! I took another picture of the pin on it's own so you can see some of the detail - it's so delicate:
Are you incorporating any heirlooms into your wedding attire?

Just Married!

Please allow me to introduce you to...our getaway boat! To be perfectly honest, the thought of transportation from the ceremony to the reception wasn't even on my radar. It's literally less than a five minute car ride, so I just assumed that we would hop into our trusty Volkswagen and drive ourselves. But there is just something about men and motorized vehicles, and before I knew it mine was talking about renting a boat. I thought he was crazy, but after some research we realized that since we need it for such a short time (less than an hour) it would actually be cheaper to rent the boat than an antique car. And if we're having a wedding on the lake, why not take advantage of it? So, we did our part to stimulate the economy and put a portion of our check towards The Lorelei (rented through Gage Marine). It will just be the two of us and our very small wedding party transported on the boat, and there will be chilled champagne waiting...sigh.

Seeing as how I am not one to let an opportunity to decorate pass me by, I wanted a "Just Married" sign to hang off the back of the boat. When I saw the idea to use these letters in Modern Bride I knew they would fit the bill - cute, made of wallpaper so slightly waterproof, and soft so they won't scratch the boat:
It's $2.95 per letter but I also had a coupon, so this weekend we went and bought all the components to make the sign for under $30. Here is a very bad picture of the letters, rather pathetically laid out on our unmade bed (Mom, avert your eyes):
I promise to share a better version when they're actually strung on the ribbon. Don't forget that you have until Thursday to comment on this post and win a copy of The Wedding Book!

Tressie & Barry

Tressie contacted me several months ago and our conversation about weddings and her newest venture resulted in me writing about her online boutique, MoxieBee. So I was thrilled when she contacted me again this weekend to show me pictures of her recent wedding! They were married in the hotel where Tressie's grandparents spent their honeymoon night in 1939 - The Cactus Hotel in San Angelo, Texas (the town where Tressie also grew up). From Tressie, "To achieve a unique, personal setting at a location where weddings are held every weekend, we had to get creative and very specific with our direction. We also did it all on a budget, and getting married in a smaller town definitely gets the cost down."
Their colors were black and ivory damask, with accents and flowers in bright pink and green. The ceremony was held in the lobby of the hotel and then guests were directed upstairs for dinner, first dances, and cake cutting. While they were all upstairs for dinner the lobby was again transformed into a dance floor.
Again, from Tressie, "Before we walked into the ballroom, we had a love story projecting on the wall. Our videographer had recorded how we met and felt about each other. After that 5 minute video played, we projected Casa Blanca on silent throughout dinner to go with the vintage/Old Hollywood theme. It was perfect!"
The movie on the wall is so fantastic! Tressie's Mom is a baker, so the evening was filled with all sorts of fantastic desserts. They had "welcome cupcakes," the sweet dream cookie favors pictured above, and cookie and milk shooters!
"All of our food was comfort food like burger sliders and mac and cheese. We also had pop rocks, rock candy, cheesecake pops, and an ice cream sundae bar. It was an overload of sweets:) We wanted to incorporate all of the things that we love." And they had a photo booth complete with some hilarious props...
Thank you so much Tressie for sharing these pictures, and to everyone else who sends me their wedding photos even if they don't want them shared on the blog! I absolutely love seeing how beautiful your weddings turn out. Congrats to Tressie and Barry!