Friday, February 25

Favorite Instrumental Music - Classical

- Clare de Lune by Debussy
I'm not sure where this piece would best fit into a wedding ceremony- perhaps as guest-seating music. It's one of Mr. Spin's favorites.

Thursday, February 24

Favorite Instrumental Music - Folk/Heritage

- Carolan's Welcome by Turlough O'Carolan
Mr. Spin's ancestors were Irish, and I studied abroad there in college, so it would be nice to incorporate our Irish ties into our wedding. This would be nice prelude music, I think.

Wednesday, February 23

Favorite Instrumental Music - Contemporary

My relationship with Mr. Spin has always had music at its heart. We were both so happy to find someone with similar musical tastes, and we love going to concerts and discovering new music togehter. It would make me very happy to include rock music and movie soundtracks in our wedding ceremony, but in a way that is still respectful of tradition. So today, some of my favorite contemporary choices for potential wedding music:

- The piano coda from Layla by Derek and the Dominos (Eric Clapton)

Even though "Layla" is about one man's desire for another man's wife (seriously- Eric Clapton wanted George Harrison's wife Pattie Boyd in a bad way, and they eventually ended up married), so some people would probably see it as an odd choice for wedding music. Oh well. "Layla" is my favorite song, primarily because of this bit of music right here (which is apparently in Goodfellas? Mobster movies are not my thing so I had no idea. Anyway, doesn't this just sound like a whole love story in under four minutes? That's what I hear when I listen to it - all of a relationship's ups and downs.

Tuesday, February 22

David Tutera @ Jo-Ann Fabrics

I am a frequent customer at all of our local arts and crafts supply stores: Michael's, A.C. Moore, Jo-Ann Fabrics, the craft sections of Wal-Mart, Target, and K-Mart... all nice in their own ways, all convenient to different shopping areas in town if I feel the need to grab a few scrapbooking supplies, spools of ribbon, or rubber stamps while I'm out. Which, if you know me, you know is at least once a month. I loves me some crafts.

Last week, I received an e-mail that bumped Jo-Ann up a few notches, despite the fact that our local store has moved and the new Jo-Ann won't open until April.

Jo-Ann has new line of products designed by wedding planner David Tutera. I kind of became addicted to David's amazingness due to a habit of watching We's My Fair Wedding on Sunday evenings- at first, it was to make fun of the crazy brides. That's what I told myself. Over time, my purpose for watching the show transformed- I was doing way less mocking and way more mental note-taking. David knows how to "make it work," to quote another favorite tv style guru, even if "it" is a Wizard of Oz, pirate, or "bling-blau" themed wedding.

My favorite item from the collection is the cream birdcage veil. A stylish veil for 14.99! Pair it with a flower or feather fascinator and it would be practically indistinguishable from haute couture.

p.s. I am loving the slightly retro hair and makeup of the model in the picture!  I love seeing a birdcage veil paired with long hair.

Monday, February 21

DIY: Flowers - Trial #1

I bought bunches of ivory Vendela roses and purple Alstroemeria (also known as Peruvian Lilies) to play with, grabbed some hydrangea blooms from our indoor garden, and here is what I came up with:

Centerpiece idea #1 - two milk glass arrangements, a mason jar with submerged hydrangea and a floating candle, and an altered book page table number.

Centerpiece #2 - two milk glass arrangement, a stack of books, and altered book page table number. I like this one better because I think the table number seems more cohesive now.

Sunday, February 20

Sunday Simplicity #6

Beautiful peony and sweet pea bouquet from Style Me Pretty

If you'd like to add any the image in this post to your Pinterest boards, please click the link below the image and pin from the source so the creator gets the credit they deserve.  Thank you.

Happy Planning!

our belated valentine's day

Since I was sick last weekend, Mr. Spin and I celebrated Valentine's Day this weekend. He took me to dinner at Carlos Brazilian restaurant, which is always delicious. 

 My gifts to him were The Groom's Instruction Manual by Shandon Fowler (kind of a gag gift) and a giant peanut butter cup from Nancy's Candy Company

 We had a wonderful evening... it's so exciting to think that next time we celebrate Valentine's Day we will be husband and wife!

Saturday, February 19

Blog Heroine: High Tide or Low Tide

I have a new wedding-blogger heroine: Chardonnay of High Tide or Low Tide. The reason? Her diy flowers, which she and her family assembled the day before the wedding.

There are also some nice close-ups of her flowers, including her gorgeous centerpieces, in her details post.

Friday, February 18

Cake Table Idea!

The "Eat Cake" card from Paper Relics is so cute and quirky, I want to frame it and put it on my dessert table!

Wednesday, February 16

Inspiration Board: Letters to Juliet, Sophie and Charlie

Here's my second Letters to Juliet inspiration board. I wanted to incorporate Tuscan sunflowers and the light colored suit Charlie is wearing when he and Sophie meet for the first time. I like to think that being in love with Sophie would loosen him up enough to see it as a great wedding look :)

Sources: Sophie and Charlie on the balcony, floral arrangement from Elizabeth Anne Designs, Sunflower arrangement from Country Living, gelato from Love Luck and Angels, Invitation suite from Pepper Design,
Vintage Bentley, Centerpiece from Kristen and Dale's wedding at Style Me Pretty, Bride and groom from Trendsetting Wedding

And another shot of Sophie and Charlie because they are one of my new favorite movie couples:

Tuesday, February 15

Time to Slash the Budget: UPDATED

For a while there, my nightly habit was signing on to the Knot and zeroing out my budget.

After putting in the estimates we've gotten so far, we're more than $3,000 over budget.

Time to slash!

- On Monday, I will be calling some alternative florists to set up meetings. The florists I met with will be e-mailing me an itemized lists. My mental plan right now is to have a pro do the personal flowers and ceremony arrangements and to DIY the reception centerpieces using a $200 gift card for Growers Box that I won in a blog contest.

- I will also be e-mailing my Mary Kay consultant to find out how much she charges for wedding day make-up.

- I may be looking for an easy hairstyle I can DIY/have a friend do for me.

- I don't know if we'll be able to afford favor boxes. Might just have to do old-school escort cards. Would not be the end of the world because our guests are already getting tons of dessert!

- Speaking of the tons of dessert, I think it will be much more affordable if THAT's all DIY as well, so I'm going to ask my caterer for an updated budget without the mini desserts.

- Cut the champagne toast. Champagne isn't very tasty; our guests can toast with whatever liquids are in their hands at the time.

- Just realized we can register for some things, like toasting flutes and a cake serving set, and even cake stands for the dessert buffet! Although I guess we don't really need toasting flutes if we're nixing champagne... maybe we could have special wine glasses? My BM Penguin kind of specializes in DIY frosted/bejeweled glass. Otherwise, check out these Crate and Barrel toasting flutes under $3; super modern platinum stemmed glassware or etched floral glassware for $3.48-$9 from Pier1.

- DIY enclosure cards and thank-you notes (picture postcards are cuter than plain ol' matchy-matchy notecards anyway, right?)

ETA: The dress shop called this week and I now have to add $80 to the cost of my dress to have it rushed. Otherwise, it would arrive... the last week of June. My wedding is in July. Clearly, the folks at the bridal salon have not been reading this blog.

Monday, February 14

A Little Shakespeare for your Valentine

I was an English major in college, and I can vividly remember my thoughts upon reading Sonnet 116 for the first time. Thought #1 was that it reminded me of my parents. Thought #2 was that it reminded me of Yeats' "When You are Old." Thought #3 was that I wanted to incorporate it into my wedding day, whenever that day came. It definitely will be, either as a reading during the ceremony, on the program, or on one of our table numbers.

Sonnet 116

Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O no! it is an ever-fixed mark
That looks on tempests and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose worth's unknown, although his height be taken.
Love's not Time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle's compass come:
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.

One of my favorite love-related Shakespeare lines is Benedick's "I do love nothing in the world so well as you" in Much Ado About Nothing, so Act 4, Scene 1 will probably make an appearance in our table numbers. Here's another great line, from my favorite Shakespeare play, The Tempest: "Hear my soul speak. Of the very instant that I saw you, Did my heart fly at your service" (3.1). A love at first sign quote!

For more poetry about everlasting love (though in this case, it was mostly unrequited love), here's the other poem I mentioned above. Yeats wrote it about the actress and revolutionary activist Maud Gonne:

When You Are Old - William Butler Yeats

When you are old and gray and full of sleep

And nodding by the fire, take down this book,

And slowly read, and dream of the soft look

Your eyes had once, and of their shadows deep;

How many loved your moments of glad grace,

And loved your beauty with love false or true;

But one man loved the pilgrim soul in you,

And loved the sorrows of your changing face.

And bending down beside the glowing bars,

Murmur, a little sadly, how love fled

And paced upon the mountains overhead,

And hid his face amid a crowd of stars.

Saturday, February 12

Inspiration Board: Letters to Juliet, Sophie and Victor

Since I am in bed with a cold, Mr. Q and I are probably going to put Valentine's Day on hold this year. Instead, I am watching chick flicks. I started with Letters to Juliet and ended up making two inspiration boards based on Sophie's two relationships in the movie.

The first is what Sophie's wedding to her fiancé Victor might have looked like if they *hadn't* made the trip to Verona:

Sources: Flowers from Snippet and Ink, Invitation by Wedding Paper Divas, Valhalla Vineyard, Berries from Snippet and Ink,
Bistro napkin from Style Me Pretty, Veritas Vineyard, Chateau Morisette wedding photographed by Kemper Mills Fant, Bridesmaids' dress by David's Bridal, Foodie details from Snippet and Ink,

Coming soon: Sophie and Charlie's dream wedding :)

Thursday, February 10

Table Numbers

Table numbers are a relatively small detail, yet they are one of the first wedding details Mr. Spin and I settled on. I think this is the picture that planted the idea in my head... I started having visions of pages from old books, or maybe some sheet music, with our table numbers stamped on top, in pretty frames. The "Reader, I married him" page from Jane Eyre. Maybe a little Twilight thrown in for Mr. Spin.

We found clear acrylic number stamps at Michael's, and soon afterward I found some swirly designs I liked at A.C. Moore. I also picked up a pack of off-white resume paper at Office Max; I'll be scanning in our book pages/sheet music and printing it onto the paper, then trimming it to fit into the frames and stamping the numbers and swirls.

Today I saw some pictures on two of my favorite wedding blogs that made me question whether we need to use frames to hold our table numbers!

These altered bottle table numbers from a Malibu wedding are amazing. Since we've decided to use assorted thrift-store containers in our centerpieces, why not have them multitask?

You've got to check out the rest of the pictures from this vintagey-rustic Australian wedding. I love the keys stamped in gold and silver ink on the escort cards, and the table number tied around the centerpiece with twine.

If you would like to add any of the images in this post to your Pinterest boards or blog please visit the original source by clicking on the link below the image and pin/save from there so the creators get the credit.  Thank you!

Tuesday, February 8

Wedding Paper Divas Coupon Code

Wedding Paper Divas is currently offering $30 off orders of $199 or more, $50 off orders of $249 or more or $80 off orders of $349 or more on wedding invitations and matching components, including response cards, reception cards, direction cards, thank you cards, menus, programs and place cards with the code SUITE0211 at checkout. This offer cannot be combined with other offers. This offer expires on 2/8/11 at 11:59 pm (PT).

Wedding Paper Divas also offering free standard delivery on any order using coupon code FREESHIP. This offer can be combined with other promotions and discounts.

Free font and color customization is free on Wedding Paper Divas right now. To redeem this special offer, simply enter the CMYK code for your custom color and/or the name of the font you'd like to use from the selection available in the Special Instructions box during the personalization process.

Sunday, February 6

What Things Cost: Favors and gifts

Favors - We want our escort cards to double as wedding favors - we would like to do a little ribbon-tied box with candy on it. The boxes would have tags with the guest's name and table number.


2 Piece Square Favor Boxes - Ivory
.80 @ Beau*Coup 

Square Embossed Favor Boxes - Ivory
.70 @ Beau-Coup 

Square Favor Boxes - White
.10 @ Oriental Trading

Square Pearlized Embossed Favor Boxes - White
.33 @ Oriental Trading 

Square Favor Boxes - White with Ivory Swirl Design and Scalloped Edge
.03 @ Dollar Tree 

Rectangular Embossed Favor Boxes - Ivory
.65 @ Beau*Coup 

2 Piece Rectangular Favor Boxes - Cream
.70 @ Beau*Coup

There's always the DIY option if our budget can't allow for candy. I am pretty good at making truffles :)

Fudge Meltaways
6.75/lb @ MetroCandy

Asher Truffles
7.90/lb @ MetroCandy

Lindor Truffles
.32 @ MetroCandy

Chocolate Foil Hearts - Silver or Purple
9.39/lb @ CandyDirect 

Chocolate Gems
5.89/lb @

.11 @ Dollar Tree

Attendants' Gifts
DIY Personalized Tote Bags - tutorial here at The Handcrafted Life; 11x9" totes are 2.99 @ Jo-Ann Fabrics

Saturday, February 5

back to the drawing board on flowers! - UPDATE with some new ideas & incpiration

Yesterday morning consisted of: receiving the estimated cost of our flowers, hyperventilating, my mom reminding me that I can't really remember what the centerpieces at most of the weddings I've been to, further reminding me that filling, good tasting food is MUCH more important at a Southern wedding than pretty flowers, and deciding that we are going to DIY the centerpieces. I will still use a professional florist for the bouquets and other personal flowers because they will be in so many photos.

Goodbye, beautiful centerpiece FI and I fell in love with after seeing on Style Me Pretty...

and back to the drawing board. When I mentioned my love of milk glass and feasibility of finding lots of vases at thrift stores, Mom raided the cabinets and we have a lot of milk glass vases already. So now I'm thinking of doing something like this:

but in these colors (and imagine that the tree stump becomes a mirror or tray and the camera becomes one of our table numbers, which are going to be in picture frames)...

Project Wedding

I totally think that my FI, mother, MOH and I, even our complete lack training as florists, could still pull these off, with a little help from our friends. It might even be fun, and I think that FI and I will feel more ownership of our wedding if we can look at our centerpieces and know that we designed them, found the supplies for them, and created them together. Mr. Spin is going to check out the "discards" room at his workplace (he sells interior design products) to see what treasures may be found there.

Ruffled blog has a tutorial on how to diy vases that look like milk glass with regular glass vases and glossy white spray paint. Ebay may also prove to be a valuable resource - a search for "milk glass bud vase lot" turned up a lot of 17 vases for just $25!

I may incorporate a Mason jar into the centerpieces... even though our venue is elegant ballroom, Mason jars are so Southern and Mr. Spin got so excited when he saw them in the vase aisle at Michael's. I think we could make them look classy next to the milk glass, maybe with some submerged hydrangea heads and a floating candle? Weddingbee's Mrs. Labrador proved that Mason jars can look elegant in the right setting! I think our friends & family would love seeing them on the tables, too- a little nod to our country upbringings and especially Mr. Spin's home county (which has a noted history of MOONSHINING!)

We can do this. I know we can. I'm so inspired by bloggers like Weddingbee's Mrs. Tulip and Mrs. Cola who have done their own centerpieces... they prove that do it yourself flowers can be done, and done beautifully.

Today's tasks, then: pricing out wholesale flowers online. While watching Bridezillas and My Fair Wedding, of course (it's becoming my Sunday ritual).

And a task for the rest of the week: having our florist send us an ITEMIZED proposal (she just left me a voicemail with the grand total for the wedding), and perhaps shopping around for other potential florists who may be able to truly give us what we want for less money.

FI's task for the week: talking to our potential officiant, his family minister.

Joint task for the week: figure out who from our list will be invited to the wedding and decide how many out of town guests we will invite so we can start blocking hotel rooms.

hair inspiration: SAG awards

Jayma Mays via FabSugar

I always think it's funny when one hairstyle seems to dominate an awards show- at the Golden Globes this year, it was a modified bouffant that seemed to be every actress' choice. At this year's Screen Actor's Guild Awards, the prevailing hairstyle was down, long, and wavy. It would be a great wedding hairstyle!

Mila Kunis via Just Jared

Hilary Swank via FabSugar

Julia Stiles via FabSugar

things i learned from wedding bloggers: mrs. bee

I like the idea of having regular "series" style posts on this blog, so today, in addition to "Sunday Simplicity," which will appear on schedule tomorrow, I'm rolling out a new idea: Things I Learned from Wedding Bloggers.

There seems to be a huge difference between brides who want to know everything about weddings, and stalk popular blogs for "wedding pr0n." Both of the vendors I've met with so far (florist and caterer) have commented on how "organized" I am and how I know what I want. They've also seemed surprised/confused by some ideas that I thought were pretty common in weddings due to all of the blogs I read (fruit in centerpieces, a dessert table with cake stands, and a sweetheart table instead of a head table with the whole bridal party). Apparently, most brides have no idea of what they want going into meetings with vendors. And apparently, these very blog-worthy trends haven't hit my part of the country yet. I wish my vendors read the same blogs I do- then they'd know exactly what I was talking about.

In this series I will be discussing the wedding blogs I read and the things I've learned (and ideas I've stolen) from their authors. I've been reading Weddingbee the longest, discovering it shortly after I first found the Knot in 2006. Yes, I've been stalking the wedding blogosphere for almost as long as I've been dating Mr. Spin.

Weddingbee began as Bee Kim's personal blog on Xanga while she was planning her own wedding, and has grown into one of the biggest names in wedding blogging. There are a total of 144 pages of posts by Mrs. Bee on the site today, so I am not going through all of her posts again (though I probably read most of them as they went live!). These are the things I've learned form Mrs. Bee's blog posts:

- To make sure that someone gets pictures of the small details (decor, favors, etc.) on the wedding day.
- That if I don't love my hair and make-up trial runs, I should have another trial or find a different stylist; not assume it will look better on the day of the wedding than it does in the trial.
- How to put together the Ultimate Emergency Kit!

- Mrs. Bee created a great stationary guide to help brides sort out all the different paper goods we can have for our weddings.
- She posted a guide to the best weather months for honeymoons in various countries and parts of the U.S. In our wedding month, July, some of the recommended locations include Bermuda, Britain, Ireland, Fiji, and the Northeast U.S.!

Ideas to consider:
- Mrs. Bee raves about the advantages of a day-of coordinator.
- The Bees served signature cocktails at their wedding and they went over very well with her guests.
- Table visits by the bride and groom to welcome each guest.

What I've learned from being a wedding blog reader in general: every bride needs to be true to her personal style. For me, that means I want to incorporate little country/vintage details in my wedding style. And that means I'm going to be on the lookout for cake stands whether my caterer likes it or not. She'll be eating her words when she sees her mini cheesecakes and chocolate covered strawberries on an amazing display! I think I'm going to have our "official" cake baker make a 2-layer vanilla cake with buttercream icing and ask friends/family to make a strawberry cake with cream cheese icing (my favorites) and a chocolate dessert- either cake or pie. I want the dessert table to be so overflowing with goodness that our guests have to take some home!

Friday, February 4

every girl's crazy 'bout a sharp-dressed man...

Mr. Q now has his first appointment to look at tuxes. He plans to wear a black tuxedo with an ivory vest and tie to match my dress. Here are some photos of grooms rocking the black and ivory:

How cute is this picture?

And finally, ivory paired with purple:
the Knot

I am still LOVING our colors!