Miss Pyramid, New Orleans, LAAge and Occupation: 25, Petroleum EngineerFiance's Age and Occupation: 29, Non-Profit AccountantEngagement Date: December 9, 2012Wedding Date: May, 2014Venue: St. Francis of Assisi Church & N.O. Board of TradeAbout Me: I’m a New Orleans native and enthusiast for all things fun and fabulous like cooking, spreadsheets, fashion & beauty, traveling (but not packing), iced coffee, and giraffes. It took a visit to Europe in high school to find the boy who was next door all along waiting to steal my heart. We love cheering for the LSU Tigers and New Orleans Saints, binge watching our favorite shows (like Game of Thrones and HIMYM), sleeping late on weekends, quizzing each other with Trivial Pursuit cards on road trips to Disney World, working out, spontaneously dancing while washing the dishes, making each other laugh, and generally being the geekiest cool kids in the room (or maybe the coolest geeky kids---jury is still out on that one). Nine years after we first met, we will be celebrating our own happily ever after in the heart of the Big Easy. We’re planning a (mostly) traditional wedding that will be elegant and glitzy but still an all-around awesome Southern bash! I’m so excited to marry my best friend and to be able to share this adventure with y’all. Be warned---I lack a certain amount of artistic ability, but I make up for it in lots of determination (or stubbornness?). My wedding motto? BIY: Buy It Yourself. But always at a discount!
Where we last left off, I was determined to ask my friends to be bridesmaids in a special, surprising way. I had a few details secured, and asking them was next up on my to-do list!
Even though there are a lot of great options, I decided that simple, handwritten cards in the wedding colors would be best for me. I used this design from Wedding Chicks for the cards. It’s simple to use, and has plenty of colors to pick from. Actually, it was while designing my cards that I settled on our wedding colors—teal, dark purple, and champagne. I was playing around with a few other combos and I didn’t like how they came out in the print, but I love how these did. I used “Grape Jelly” for the text and “Tiffany Blue” for the scroll.
Image downloaded from Wedding Chicks
For size, I used a whole sheet of paper for each and I folded down the middle to make the card. I was worried it would be too big, but I had a lot to say to each girl, so I ended up needing that space. I printed the front design as a single picture (5×7), and made sure to orient it the right way (with a test run or two!).
Mrs. Sword, ChicagoAge and Occupation: 28, Nanny/ActressFiance's Age and Occupation: 28, Software EngineerEngagement Date: February 19, 2012Wedding Date: March 2013Venue: Embassy Suites Bloomington West in Bloomington, MNAbout Me: I am a true girly-girl originally from the great state of Minnesota and my fiancé hails from the beautiful country of Scotland. We met and fell in love in our favorite city, Chicago, and are having a blast blending our cultures for "A Highland Fairy Tale" wedding! We are truly a case of opposites attract in that he’s a world traveling introvert and I’m a social butterfly who is never too far from home. We both love hanging out with family and friends, fine dining, and laughing at ourselves. He drinks a lot of beer and I talk too much. We wouldn’t have it any other way!
I’m combining these two crafts into one post because they are so stinking easy that I can’t justify talking about each one individually. That said, they both deserve a mention.
First off, let me just say I’m not the robe-wearing type, not that I don’t wish I was, but it’s not my thing. Needless to say, I won’t be getting ready for my wedding in a silky or plush robe. But I still wanted something special and fun to wear the morning of my wedding and that’s how I stumbled upon bling’d out tank tops.
Over the years my friends and I would decorate tank tops for special occasions, such as birthdays, class trips, and later, Superbowl parties. Tight and trashy, I always say! (I never say that, but as I was typing this post I realized how juvenile and funny it is that I prefer tight tanks to luxurious robes. HA.)
Anyway, I knew I wanted to wear a cute white tank top that said “Bride” but I also knew I didn’t want to pay a ton of money for one, so when I found these appliqués at JoAnn I snapped them up and took them to MN for MOH Big Eyes to assemble.
I wish I could say this is a really budget-friendly project, but it is not. Each appliqué is $4.99 and each shirt was about $8.00—$10.00 dollars depending on my coupons and where I bought them. I ended up making a total of seven getting ready shirts. One bride tank top for myself, a Maid of Honor tank for Sister, three bridesmaid tanks, a flower girl tank, and a t-shirt for Mom Sword.
Speaking of Mom Sword, her shirt is special and does not say Mother of the Bride. Mom Sword and I share a similar sense of humor, and her idea of being “funny” is calling herself a Queen, if I’m going to be the Princess of the wedding. She also enjoys joking about how young she looks and how myself, MOH Big Eyes, and her look like three sisters. Umm, yeaa. Riiiight. (She’s kidding but it’s a running joke in the family now.) Luckily I found something perfect for her, but she (and everyone else) will have to wait until the wedding day to see it!
Mrs. Turkey, PhiladelphiaAge and Occupation: 29, Brand ManagementFiance's Age and Occupation: 28, ConsultantEngagement Date: February 2011Wedding Date: May 2012Venue: The Rittenhouse HotelAbout Me: I'm a marketer who loves a good glass of wine, anything pumpkin-flavored, every crime drama on TV and, of course, Mr. Turkey. It's funny to say out loud, but we're former coworkers turned betrothed---now planning a wedding in the city of Brotherly Love. For three years, we've been eating our way through Philadelphia, playing tourist at home, and cheering for every sports team in the 215. Although we've hit some unplanned snags along the way, we're determined to have a rocking party this spring with our loud, fun families and friends.
Early on in my blogging, I shared with you how, as a bridesmaid, I put together a goody bag for a bride’s entourage at her bachelorette. Well, as my bachelorette approached, I started brainstorming gift ideas for the lovely ladies that would be joining me in the sun.
It started with a couple themes…blue & green + weekend away. Blue & green are our wedding colors and, since we were all flying down to Florida, it worked! The first item I found was a frame that fit perfectly.
I thought it would be fun to have a framed picture from the weekend for everyone to display….which matched with the online description “strike a pose and frame your favorite photo in colorful patterns that will bring a bit of Palm Beach to your mantel” (even better…Jupiter is right by Palm Beach). Read more…
Mrs. Aardvark, Beaver Dam, WIAge and Occupation: 23, Assistant Product ManagerFiance's Age and Occupation: 31, Business Analyst Engagement Date: May 28th, 2011Wedding Date: April 2012Venue: St. Philip Catholic Church/Arcadia Brewing Co.About Me: I am a resourceful lady who love surprises and adventure. At the same time, I value traditions, family and friends. I like to make crafty messes, sometimes, clean them up, and do pretty much anything outdoors. The Mister and I are pretty avid cyclists---we have nine bikes in our home right now...and one motorcycle! We both enjoy eating food we can't pronounce (language doesn't really matter) and going places we've never been. We currently reside in rural Wisconsin, enjoying the cheese and beer it has to offer, and getting outside whenever we can!
I don’t know if it’s just because I’ve had a few days off work, or maybe I am in a bridal-bubble, but this week just keeps getting better and better. Last night bridesmaid sis and I had a sleep-over at Mama-Aardvark’s and worked on crafts and bonded. I took her to school this morning, ran errands, took a nap and made a few practice bouquets.
Yes, in a fit of insanity, I decided, since it was spring and all, the bridesmaids should have real flowers. I also came to this decision because I could not pick an alternative. There were just too many! Of course, I didn’t decide this until…ohhhhh, a week ago. Too late to find a florist. So I decided I would try to put some flowers together the week before the wedding. If I could do it in a timely manner, not get frustrated, and liked the out-come, I would make some bouquets the morning of the wedding. Like all DIY tasks, my secret to feeling good while working on them, and liking the finished product, is low expectations.
After a bit of fiddling around, I came up with this:
Mrs. Hawk, Richmond, VAAge and Occupation: 26, FinanceFiance's Age and Occupation: 30, District SupervisorEngagement Date: March 13, 2011Wedding Date: May 2012Venue: The Chapel of the Sir Christopher Wren Building, 2007 Legacy HallAbout Me: I’m an Arizona-born girl who has spent the majority of my life living below the Mason-Dixon line. The South has definitely earned a special place in my heart (alongside my Virginia born and bred fiance, of course!). We are planning a traditional Christian ceremony at my alma mater in historic Williamsburg, Virginia, followed by a rocking reception filled with Southern cooking and vintage/shabby chic details. When we’re not wedding planning, we enjoy spending time with our three dogs, going for runs together, watching plenty of football (or baseball depending on the season), and sampling new wine.
When I was thinking about gifts for my bridesmaids, I knew I wanted them to be something that would come in handy on the wedding day, something they could enjoy in the future, or possibly both! One of the first things that came to mind was glassware. I don’t know about y’all but I definitely plan on sipping on a celebratory glass of champagne or mimosa with my ladies while we get beautiful pre-ceremony. Enter personalized champagne flutes.
glass paint pen
I started by cleaning the glass with rubbing alcohol and taping the letter I printed to the inside of the glass. Read more…
Mrs. Coyote, Westchester, NYAge and Occupation: 26, Administrative AssistantFiance's Age and Occupation: 30, Computer ProgrammerEngagement Date: August 2010Wedding Date: June 2012Venue: Franklin PlazaAbout Me: I am an overly-caffeinated, sports-obsessed history nerd who loves a good book and hates bananas. Originally from a small town in Upstate NY, I made the move to Westchester County and never looked back! My loves include NBC Thursdays, red wine, fleece pajamas, and my amazing fiancé. Together we are planning a formal evening affair for 175 guests with a mix of new and old traditions and plenty of personal touches.
I’ve mentioned a few times that I will be having two maids of honor. I think I always knew I was going to have two, even before Mr. Coyote was in the picture. I don’t have any sisters, but I can say that MOH A and MOH D come pretty damn close. I met BM D in 5th grade and BM A a few years later. For all of middle school and high school we were completely inseparable. Sleepovers, movies, trips to the mall, even vacations… Whatever it was we did it together. We were the epitome of BFFs.
Toddler Coyote and friends circa 2000.
Of course after graduation we went our separate ways, but we kept in touch and made sure to visit each other as often as possible. Read more…
Mrs. Woodpecker, Branford, CT Age and Occupation: 27, Graduate Student/School Psych InternFiance's Age and Occupation: 29, GlazierEngagement Date: Christmas Eve 2010Wedding Date: September 2012Venue: Owenego Beach ClubAbout Me: I’m a Connecticut native planning a coastal beach wedding in our hometown. My loves in life include: food, family and the fiance. I’m a planner/organization fiend, by nature and by addiction, and am obsessed with all things wedding and design. We're trying to put personal touches on everything we can in our wedding, to really make it personal to us, our family, and friends. In the middle of wedding planning, I’m also finishing up grad school, and will be starting a brand new career within weeks of our wedding. It’s going to be an adventure!
Middle Sis Woodpecker was home from Boston this weekend, so we figured it was the perfect time to kidnap her and throw into all the wedding planning fun. I wasn’t trying to put too much pressure on the weekend, since Mr. Woodpecker’s sister isn’t coming up for another month, but thought it would be good for some general ideas for bridesmaid dresses. Bridesmaids dresses have been something I’ve never changed my mind about since I began wedding planning: I’ve always imagined them navy and short.
Mrs. Fox, Washington DC/Havre de Grace, MDAge and Occupation: 26, Massage TherapistFiance's Age and Occupation: 28, Field Support EngineerEngagement Date: April 18, 2010Wedding Date: June 2012Venue: Vandiver InnAbout Me: I’m a dancer turned massage therapist who was born and raised in New York. Alas, true love has brought me “south” where I still maintain my penchants for pretty shoes, wine, crossword puzzles, cherry blossoms, and the Mets. I own more sunglasses than a normal person should and don’t eat red meat (though I make up for it by eating my weight in sushi). I tend to be a big planner who likes to get things started early, but generally end up being indecisive and procrastinating when it comes down to it. I have a (not so) secret crush on Chris Carrabba, but my loyalty and love ultimately goes to the future hubs, of course! Together, my Foxy man and I love to discuss (read: debate) politics and current events, have Mario Kart and Scrabble duels, and just laugh. A lot. We’re hoping and planning for a laid back, fun, summery, rustic vibe to our June wedding that will be genuinely “us” – that is, if we finally make some decisions. Huzzah!
One thing I’ve learned from my time planning a wedding thus far is that no matter how far in advance you plan, things still come up that will stress you out and throw you for a spin.
In an extended effort to keep things real and not just give you all fluff (as wonderful as said fluff may be), I have to briefly delve into a recent stressy and unfortunate situation.
Part of the reason I waited so long to even write a tidbit about my bridesladies is because I wasn’t sure if the original five I asked to be in the wedding…would actually end up being in the wedding. Friendships naturally go through their ups and downs, some people grow apart and some grow closer—and all this absolutely holds true when your engagement is over two years long and you have your party set from day one.
I won’t go into details because it’s really not necessary, but one of my original five is no longer in the wedding party. Things are still fine between us—there was a short guest appearance from the drama llama, who was sent on his merry little way rather quickly—and at the end of the day, after all other situations, my one friend ultimately had to decline from remaining in the wedding due to possible travel and school plans in the future.
Mrs. Lioness, AtlantaAge and Occupation: 25, Physical TherapistFiance's Age and Occupation: 25, AttorneyEngagement Date: August 29, 2009Wedding Date: April 2011Venue: Anthony’s Fine DiningAbout Me: I’m a Southern girl with New England roots. I say "wicked" and "y’all" in the same sentence and I like to drink sweet tea with my lobster. Mr. Lion and I are both former Floridians now living in Atlanta, which fortunately is still SEC country...Go Gators! We both love baseball, coffee, traveling, cooking, and playing Words with Friends with each other on our iPhones all day long. I’m very passionate about the things and the people I love, and I tend to plan things with all of my heart...our wedding, of course, is no different! Oh, and also Mr. Lion is a first generation American of Cuban descent. I may look more like Lucy than Ricky, but I’m doing my best to incorporate some Latin elements into our vintage-garden-Southern wedding!
I had somanyideas of what to give my bridesmaids as a thank you for being there for me on the big day. Then I had a thought: Maybe the greatest gift of all wouldn’t necessarily be the most unique, most beautiful, most thoughtful gift. Maybe the greatest gift would be not having to spend so much money. Being a bridesmaid is expensive! Not to mention the fact that ALL SIX of my bridesmaids are still in school. I hinted about this thought to Sister Lioness and Bmaid Emily, both of whom agreed that they would rather have me cover some of their expenses, even if it meant missing out on this:
Mrs. Poodle, Santiago, Chile/San Bernardino, CAAge and Occupation: 27, Industrial & Web DesignerFiance's Age and Occupation: 24, Firefighter & Mountain PatrolEngagement Date: February 25, 2009Wedding Date: January 2010Venue: Mr. P's Grandparents’ RanchAbout Me: I’m a Chilean girl who's crazy about nature and swimming. I enjoy carving, drawing, reading and sewing; I drool over computers, fabric, pretty paper, purple and patterns. To me, chocolate should be one of the seven wonders, right next to lemon pie. I never thought an exchange work experience program was going to change my life forever, but while working in California, I met Mr. Poodle, and ever since my days are better and brighter. We are two goofy souls that, after finding each other, couldn’t help but want to be together forever. It has being a long and sometimes hard road, since we have to deal with such a long distance between us, but we are now facing the last stage of our Fiancé Visa, and soon we will be together. You know the best part? We will be married! So I’ll be blogging from Chile until just a few months before our “green and purple” wedding.
Back in February, after Mr. Poodle and I started our visa petition, we couldn’t wait to share the news of our engagement with everyone!
Because not all of my girls here in Chile can buy a ticket to go to our wedding in California, I decided that my side of the wedding party would consist of my little sister and best friend from Chile, along with my other 2 ‘maids from California. I wrote everyone an email and asked them to be my ‘maids, but just like Miss Bear Cub, I did that months ago—but I needed to let them know in a more “official” way that I REALLY wanted them there with me .