Friday, July 31, 2009

And, They're Off...

I debated for quite a while before doing it. The time had come to mail my invitations. Should I skip over to the post office on my lunch break or wait until the weekend when there is no time limit? I was zig-zagging between hand-canceling my invitations and just handing them over.

I pulled up to the post office, 45 minutes left until I was supposed to be back at my desk, stuck a few quarters in the meter and made my way inside. My invitations were all stamped. I'd taken them to two post offices prior to make sure the postage pricing was correct. $1.39 sounded like too much the first time but indeed, it was the same at the second post office. I could've easily dumped them in the big blue bin on the sidewalk since they were stamped but I couldn't bring myself to do it.

In line, inside, I continued to zig-zag in my head. Should I tell her I want to hand-cancel them? I had done it to my save-the-dates only to find that the ink takes at least 45 minutes to dry once you stamp them and you might get a parking ticket in the process because you didn't expect them to take that long. I couldn't find another excuse, though, to explain why I'd waited in line. Why I didn't want to part with my beautiful, paper lovelies. Hand-canceling them seemed like a way to prolong the process, make it a heartfelt, lingering send-off.

But, once I got up to the counter, I could only squeak out that these were my wedding invitations and I just wanted to make sure everything was okay with them. She weighed one. Asked me how much postage I'd put on each. $1.39 I dutifully reported, the taste of vintage stamp gum rising on my tongue.

So took my two boxes, stacked high with thick, filled envelopes and took them...somewhere. I'm not sure where. And that was it. Now I can't wait for RSVPs!

Did you have trouble handing over your invitations?

Thursday, July 30, 2009

A Makeover

I just got word that our ceremony site has undergone a transformation. I never showed it to you before but don't worry, not too much has changed--they replaced long, wooden benches for chairs and added the stone pathway. The minor tweaks have made it less rustic and more elegant.

I haven't put too much thought into decorating it. I don't want to add anything to my florist budget (and as of now, ceremony site decor is not in there) and as much as I love Mrs. Cherry Pie's DIY jar lanterns I just can't bring myself to buy one more thing (like Shepard's hooks).

Now that you've seen it, what do you recommend?

Monday, July 27, 2009


I'm at it again, hive. I thought I'd signed on the dotted line and was all set to go but then my hair stylist went and upped the bejeesus out of her pricing. I wasn't aware of this when I first went to my trial but her pricing was based on me using the original make-up artist I went to, Katelyn Simkins. And then I decided, Katelyn, the first make-up artist just wasn't for me. Here's a link to my successful hair trial.

So, I'm off and running again. Luckily, Liz, my new make-up artist (who Mrs. Cookie came upon first!) is on the books. But, this coming weekend, I'll be taking a second stab at my hair. I was happy with the styles I brought along to the first trial, but since then, I've added a few more inspiration pictures to my file.

Do I go with the messy, low chignon?

Thanks Ms. Bear Cub for sending me this link!


How about the low side ponytail?

More wonderful pony tails on Miss Mascara's post

Or, leave it down a curly?



The options are pulling me in all directions. Do I put it up to be more comfortable and dance? Do I leave it down and be more flowy? Do I do the side pony or is it too trendy? Hmph.

How are you wearing your hair for your wedding?

Sunday, July 26, 2009

More Obsessed Than Ever

For awhile, there was radio silence. But that was actually my fault. I kept heading back to my photographer, Tec Petaja's, blog but nothing had been updated. Apparently, I was going to the wrong blog. He's moved, redesigned and updated over and over again without my knowing!

Now that I've stumbled upon him all over again, I can't help but swoon. You all might recognize him from the iconic duo Chelsea and Tec, who were all over the wedding blogs. To be honest, the weddings he shoots are so darn cool I'm worried ours might not live up to the standards! I guess that helps to keep me motivated when it comes to finishing our creative DIY details.

Between real weddings, though, Tec shot this Nashville Lifestyles wedding edition story. Oh. My. Can we talk about adorable? She's making me want to wear my hair down.

So stunning. Hopefully, our wedding turns out as beautiful as this styled one.

Has your photog's blog got you smitten? Is it making you even more excited for your wedding?

This Made Me Cry

This question came up during my BeeTV segment on Saturday night: What wedding blogs do you read? To be honest, I've shied away from them. I felt like they were extremely beneficial when it came to figuring out what our overall theme would be and then using the blogs to find details we could incorporate. But once you start incorporating those details, you have to turn a blind eye or you'll get overwhelmed. You'll get confused. You'll start re-doing or renovating your plans.

That's how I felt. Until I saw this on Style Me Pretty and cried:

Ashley & Jamie's Same Day Edit from Anguilla from Julie Hill on Vimeo.

I never really considered the idea of a videographer. We can't afford one. I doubt we'd watch it very much. But, now, I've decided I may need to include this detail into our day. Using Ms. Joey's advice once again, I posted on Craigslist in the Denver area looking for someone to shoot and edit a video of our wedding. What I want doesn't need to be genius, but I love how they play with speed in the video above. Quick movement of the clouds followed by slow motion images of the bride and her dress.

While surfing the black hole of wedding blogs, I saw this vintage-y gem on Once Wed.

Myriah + Christopher from joel serrato on Vimeo.

Marry the two ideas--elements of speed and super 8 film (can you put those two together?)--and we'd have a winner.

We're hoping we come across a film student with some raw talent looking to further his or her portfolio. I'll let you know if we discover something good.

Did you hire a videographer? What wedding videos were your inspiration?

Friday, July 24, 2009

The Whole Round-Up

Our invitations came in two parts. Mainly because our stationer had to skip out of work for a week to attend her sister's wedding. So, hey, I can't complain right? Weddings, as we all know, are a very valid excuse for most anything.

Since they came in two parts, I've been staring at the first bunch (about 90% of the goods) for almost two weeks and trying to find ways to "play" with them. I stamped the RSVP envelopes, I numbered the RSVPs in case guests forget to write their names and I tied and re-tied the raffia once or twice. Today, I received the second part, our handkerchiefs. The portion of the invitations that will display our home-drawn map (Mr. CB's drawing, not mine. Luckily). Ready for 'em? Cuz I am.

The whole suite (including our rehearsal dinner invites, bottom right):

The invitation, itself:

The hang tag, featuring our website:

The RSVP card and its return envelope:

Our return address on the main envelope (my favorite part):

The map Mr. CB drew featured on a 14" x 14" handkerchief. Surprisingly, this adds no weight to our $1.39 postage.

The suite, once more.

Ta-da! What do you think? I love gocco! And, I love these.

BeeTV: Saturday, July 25th

Spend your Saturday evening with me, Miss Cowboy Boot, and BeeTV!

With less than three months to go until the big day, I've got plenty to chat about. So, join me, Saturday, July 25th (tomorrow), at 8 pm EST. I might even wear my favorite footwear.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

The Motherload

I've written about my garage sale habits before--those bright orange, yellow, or green signs luring me from street corners on Saturday mornings. This past weekend, though, I hit: The Motherload. In between brunch with friends and an afternoon hike, I turned into a small pocket in Santa Fe following three signs. The first, less than exciting, but the second? A vintage store-owner purging her life of all her old finds.

Everything was in stellar condition. Her driveway (which was very big) was full of vintage kitchen goods and beautiful crystal dishes; racks of embroidered, flared, and flowy cotton; a rack taller than me swirling with adorable aprons; and much, much more.

Here's what I walked away with (for a total of $28):

A blush-colored pearl clutch. There are a few pearls missing but I love it anyway.
(That's my dress fabric around it)

A beautiful vintage junior bridesmaid dress. We'll replace the lavender ribbon with something in our scheme.

The front two cake stands. I'm trying to build a collection of 12 for our pie bar.

I mentioned to the woman running the yard sale that these items were for my wedding. She was so thrilled she gave me five little goodies for my bridesmaids as gifts as well as a bunch of vintage fabric. I'm using this (along with other fabric I've collected) to make napkins, tablecloths, and other pops of color.

Have you checked out garage sales for goods for your wedding? What have you found?

Monday, July 20, 2009

Escorting the Escort Cards

Now that I've given you the basic idea of our escort cards or place cards (whichever you prefer to call them), I'm still struggling to figure out how to display them. I'm pretty stuck on two options, but please, expand my horizons.

Tied to horseshoes? Believe it or not, a woman in my office donated a bucket of horseshoes to me, knowing I wanted to use them in my decor somehow. She has horses and, unfortunately, this bucket is full of used horseshoes so I'll be doing some hosing off.

I'm completely ga-ga for all three ways, below (in a wagon with grass, in an antique shade, or strung from a clothesline)...

Our guests will be snagging their escort cards as they head into the barn from its deck (where our cocktail hour will be). If we wanted to do the clothesline thing, I'm not sure how we would hang it (given there are no trees on the deck).

We do have a pretty adorable, rustic, wagon-like table but do I really want to drive it six hours? It's tempting.

What did you do to display your escort cards? Or what are you planning on? Any ideas for me?

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Good Bridesmaid!

A couple of days ago, Bridesmaid AC was skimming through while at work (like a good bridesmaid) when she came across something she thought I might like. Boy, was she right! I clicked on the link she sent over and, bingo, there were our escort cards.


I'd gone back and forth between doing horse breeds as our table names versus the traditional number scheme. I even dreamt of Mr. CB slaving away at drawings of each breed similar to the horse he drew for our save-the-date. Unfortunately, Mr. CB didn't feel the same way and off I went, in search of something to suffice.

Enter etsy seller: seasonaldelights. I contacted her and let her in on my plan. I thought maybe she could make us table cards that matched her adorable gift cards and people could match up the image on their respective tags. We'll most likely have ten tables. She happened to have nine horse images on hand. The tenth? Mr. CB's, which will definitely be our table!

The seller said can replace the string with ribbon and make the matching table cards at any size we want. I'm considering having the escort cards sent to a calligrapher so people's names can be added--I definitely should not write them.

Seasonaldelights has some other gorgeous cards and tags! Check them out these images from her site, below:

Should we do ten tables of horses (that are a little bit similar and might get confusing) or should we intersperse some other farm animals? Would it be weird if we did five horse tables and sprinkled in the others?

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Stop the Presses!

Remember how I had decided to take the cap sleeves from my dress and use them as an embellishment around my waist instead? While in the dressing room, I convinced myself I liked this (even though I've always been into more simple things). The oohing and aahing from my mom and the seamstress had me going. But, I got home and looked over the pictures again and again, wondering if this was really, well, me.

This hint of beading added a silver-y tint to the overall look that I thought I could get past. You see, I'm much more into warm, golden tones, but then I started looking for jewelry and realized gold earrings just weren't going to jive. This silver hurdle was kind of throwing my whole mojo off.

Then, while flipping through my J. Crew catalog today, I stumbled across this silk sash.

And it just made sense. Look how cute you can tie it? And I only imagine it looking twenty times more gorgeous on a wedding dress than on these everyday clothes.


I immediately called Saks to see if the waistband had already been finished and, sure enough, it wasn't. I told them to hold off.

No, the sash from J. Crew is not as formal. And, I may not even end up liking it once it arrives in the mail. But it totally falls under soft, romantic, and feminine and fits all of the inspiration boards I've been using as guides to color and decor and feel.

And, if I decide not to use it, I can look for one I like or have one made via Etsy or just go without, which I love too.

The other upside is I can wear all the gold I want.

Need a reminder of what my dress looks like without the embellishment?

What do you think? Do you like the flower sash? The waistband embellishment? Or completely without?

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

The Handiest Wedding Tool Yet

Months ago, when I started collecting addresses for our save-the-dates, I was stumped. I could call, text, e-mail and delegate to gather everyone's addresses but this seemed like it would take forever and be a hassle to those helping me collect.

Instead, I heeded Mrs. Fondue's advice and created a Google document that would collect everyone's addresses for me. My little robot, if you will.

To be fair, I'm not going to list Mrs. Fondue's steps again, as she so efficiently describes them, but I will let you in on a few tweaks that helped me in the long run.

How it works: you create the document following Mrs. Fondue's steps. It sends it out to your guests inboxes. They fill it out and their responses file, automatically, into your spreadsheet.

1) Be prepared to do a little bit of hunting and gathering. In order to make this Google Doc work, you'll need all of your guests e-mail addresses. I did this by texting, e-mailing friends and family, and using Facebook. Seems like as much work as asking for mailing addresses, right? Wrong. Most likely you already have a lot of your guests' e-mail addresses and this way, you'll have a bunch of their information stored in one place. It comes in handy down the road, believe me.

2) I tried to use the questions that Mrs. Fondue used for her guests as a jumping off point (that's right, you decide what to ask them for when creating the questionnaire). Here are the questions we asked (the starred questions are the ones we required them to answer):

-*Your Name (The name of the person filling out this form; please list your first and last name)

-Significant Other's Name (The name of your spouse or significant other; please list his or her first and last name)

-Children's Names (Names of your children who still live at your house; please list first and last names)

-*Address Line 1

-Address Line 2



-*Zip Code

-*Phone Number

-*E-mail Address (I know, we just e-mailed you! But we want to keep all of your info in one place.)

-Planning to Move? (If yes, please enter your new address and when it will be valid. Not sure when or where? We'll be sending stuff out in January and July of 2009. Let us know when to check in with you--we'll do so before mailing anything)


3) Of the above, we got all of the information we needed. Some left off their last names, listed their dogs as their children (so cute!), and wrote "LOL" after "significant other." Hey, people had fun with it! I even got a few comments about what a great idea it was to use that system.

4) While only three of our guests utilized the "Planning to Move" question, it was a huge help. Some opted to have their invitations sent to their parents' abodes while others signified to check in with them in a specific month as they didn't know where or when they'd be moving.

5) We got adorable notes in our Comments/Questions section. Things like "Crazy kids," "Awesome," and "Let's party like the Red Sox just won the SERIES." This was a playful nudge at Mr. CB who is a Yankees fan.

6) When you send your form out, you want to make sure you don't go to "Share" --> "Invite People." That will give them access to your form. Instead, head to "Form" --> "Send Form."

7) This wasn't foolproof. A few of our guests tried to enter their info numerous times to no avail. A couple weeks after I sent the form out, I e-mailed the remaining guests to find out if they'd received it. No one minded the reminder. : )

8) In the end, you get a pretty little spreadsheet like this:

I've come back to it time and time again, to e-mail guests about airfare sales I see or to ask if they've moved yet. To put together a guest list for my bridal shower--the bridesmaids appreciated not having to chase down addresses.

So, I guess my title rings true. This is the handiest wedding tool out there (that I've come across at least). Have a better one? Please share!!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

What Mr. CB Taught Me

I have to admit something. In a past life (read: when I was a teenager growing up in Los Angeles, otherwise known as La La Land), I've made some very superficial moves. Hey, I was in the land of falsities, right? Nothing really mattered except for what brand adorned your denim, if the hood of your car read BMW, Mercedes, or Audi, and how recent your last mani/pedi was. Yes, I'm exaggerating a little, er, a lot--the entirety of the LA population doesn't fall under the above prerequisites--but there is a lot of pressure put on material things and what "perfect" means.

All of the above is a little abstract, yes, but let's apply it to guys and the reasons I broke up with a few of them. These are going to sound absolutely ridiculous: one wore a mustard-colored shirt I just couldn't get past, one turned on gospel radio on our first date (I was more into pop), one had small teeth, one was short, one was a Sunday school teacher (cute, yes, but not for me), one was a year younger than me (wha? I like 'em older), one called his shoes "sh*tkickers," and one drove a maroon car. In hindsight, all of these guys were probably good catches. Heck, I'll listen to gospel-y bluegrass nowadays and love it. But at the time, er, not so much. And, for whatever reason, I couldn't look beyond these very, very minor blunders.

And then I met Mr. Cowboy Boot. I lived in Boston at this point and was a wee bit further from my previous self. But, just a wee bit. He charmed me, regardless of the fact that I wasn't a big fan of his shoes, the way he wore gel in his hair, and that he didn't fall under my "must-be-a-surfer-from-Southern-California" guidelines. Nonetheless, he surprised me for lunch more than once, went dress shopping with me all day for a work event, and schooled me with his cooking skills (seared tuna, anyone?).

Since Mr. CB and I started dating (over 3 1/2 years ago), I've grown. Whatever image of "perfection" I had in my head no longer exists (if the "person" ever really did exist) or just doesn't matter because what I have now is exactly what I want. It might not fulfill a superficial checklist, it might even have its flaws here and there (it does), but we have enough substance to want to work towards a life together. Enough real substance and that's what matters most. Mr. CB is kind, not only to me but to children and animals and the Earth. He's skilled artistically in a way I can only admire and passionate about the things he loves. He's a great teacher, and a great learner. And simply fun.

If anything (and this is about to get cheesy, thus the title), he's my Noah Calhoun--and certainly not my Lon. (Don't act like you haven't seen The Notebook). Not that there's anything wrong with Lon--he's gorgeous, well put-together, has a great job, and pleases Allie's parents, but Noah is real. He's as real as the dirt that lies around the house he built for Allie (minus the fact that he's a character from a fiction movie).

Either way, Mr. CB struck a chord with me that I'd never experienced before: Realness. Through all of the pressures of growing up, trying to look, act, and be a certain way, it took me a while to realize you can just be yourself. I met Mr. CB after a summer of much self growth and I think it's serendipitous. I was ready for him to help me continue on that journey. No material possessions (metaphorically speaking, of course) to hide behind, just a person with feelings, humbleness, and a quality of life to be proud of.

What has your fiance taught you? How have you grown since you've been together?

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Wedding Crashers, Anyone?

Two nights before the wedding (a Friday), we expect our bridal party and a few other people will be roaming around Devil's Thumb Ranch and the surrounding areas looking for something to do. Our rehearsal dinner won't be going on until the following night and since it's a destination wedding, we're pretty sure quite a few of our guests will already be in town, making a vacation of it! So, we figure we should provide a little wedding-related entertainment.

Enter: Wedding Crashers. Yes, the movie. I mean, who doesn't looooove Rachel McAdams? One of the unique things about our venue is that it has a 37-person movie theater, so we're taking full advantage.

We're renting it out, supplying popcorn, sodas, and candy, and making sure Vince Vaughn and Owen Wilson's fabulous antics are displayed across the big screen for all to see.

Sure, this movie's not serious and it doesn't contemplate the ups and downs of marriage, but we're hoping to put our guests in a silly, laid back mood for the wedding weekend. We want them to have some fun (and we want to have some fun too!).

If you were going to throw a movie night, what film would you feature? Any other great wedding movies I failed to mention above?