Tuesday, June 29, 2010

How to get people involved?

As I mentioned in my last post, we would love to have as many of our friends and family involved in the wedding on the day as we can. We think that way it just makes the day so much more personal and special. We just don’t know how to ask.

I know that if someone asked me if I wanted to help out with their wedding I would be delighted. I don’t want to assume that everyone else would be as delighted as I would to help out though. I know we can say “If you are interested in helping out with our wedding…”, but I think 90% of people would say yes even if they didn’t actually want to help out, and that’s not the idea of getting people involved.

We came straight out and asked our Dad’s if they would drive the cars and asked the best man if he would MC. Our best man thought about it for a few days before giving us a response, which I’m very happy about because I now know he’s not just doing it out of obligation, it’s something he decided he wanted to do. I just don’t think that everyone would do that if we straight out asked them though.

How would you get/have you got people involved?

Monday, June 28, 2010

What we want our wedding day to be…

Over the weekend we filled in a questionnaire for our photographer. One of the questions was regarding what we wanted out of our wedding day and what we were doing to make our wedding special to us. I thought that I might share with you what we wrote because I have realised that I have got so caught up in the details that I have never shared our overall ‘vision’. (Not that we have much vision.)

"The aim of our wedding, other than to get married of course, is to celebrate our love and our marriage with our family and friends. To us a celebration should be fun and this is what we want for our wedding. We really just want people to come along and have a really good time. If everyone isn’t up and dancing at the reception, whether they know how to or not, we will be very disappointed! It’s going to be a fairly intimate wedding with only about 50 people at the reception -we aren’t the type of people that have 200 close friends.

Our wedding will be a fairly casual affair. The ceremony will take place in a garden, Amy will wear a ¾ length dress (it’s easier to dance in!) and Justin will be going for the suit jacket unbuttoned, no tie look. We haven’t written our ceremony yet, but it will probably be a fairly simple ceremony. We aren’t the most romantic people, least of all in front of a crowd, so we won’t be writing our own vows or anything like that. We have already picked out some our ceremony music. We have picked songs that we love, not traditional weddingy songs. Hopefully this will add to the fun of that day. Either that or it will give the parents and grandparents a heart attack.

We want our family and friends to be involved in our wedding where possible. We think that this makes it so much more personal and special. Justin’s Mum is making Amy’s dress, our Dad’s will be driving our wedding cars (if we can sort out hiring cars) and the best man will be MC at the reception. Hopefully we can get more people involved along the way.

To give you an idea of the way we want to make our wedding special to us, we’ve decided that the traditional guest book just doesn’t suit our style. Amy reads a lot of blogs and has found a lot about photo booths. We have decided we’d like to set one up, with our camera on a tripod, a simple backdrop and lots of props and blackboards so that people can have fun posing and at the same time leave their own personalised message to us. This will be our guest book. We’ve also got a digital photo frame so throughout the night we can load the photos from the camera onto the frame. That way people can see what others have done and also we can keep the frame afterwards to be our guestbook. We can see the messages people wrote every day, instead of only every 10 years when we think to drag out the guest book.

At the start, we mentioned that we wanted to celebrate with our family and friends. This is also one of the reasons that we have chosen to do a first look. You can’t celebrate with everyone if you are too busy off getting photos taken!"

This also seems like a semi-appropriate time to share a photo of us. I decided that if I was going to post a picture of us on the internet, I may as well make it a terrible one. So here we are, during the making of our save the dates, in all our weird glory (obviously this isn't the photo we used on the save the dates);

Friday, June 25, 2010

A weekend of achievement: florist booked!

This is my final ‘weekend of achievement’ post. I think we did pretty well getting so much done in two days!

We decided that we were going to take the advice of one commenter on my last florist post and ask the lady that we got a really cheap quote from to do us up a sample bouquet. This was the decision… until I got cold feet. We decided that I could just send an email off to another couple of florists to get a quote. We knew exactly what we wanted so we could just do it via email and thus wouldn’t take any extra time. The first lady was booked out for that day already.  The second lady called that afternoon and asked us if we could make an appointment to come and meet with her. Damn. I was in a rush on my way to an appointment so my brain wasn’t working fast enough to come up with an excuse. We locked in a date and time for the appointment. On the way home I called my fiancé to let him know and to apologise for my lack of quick thinking.

So last weekend was our appointment. We rocked up at her studio and I immediately liked her. She was my kind of lady. We showed her what we wanted and she said they were hothouse chrysanthemums – not news to us given how many florists we’ve seen. We discussed how many bouquets we needed. We said that we wanted the groom’s buttonhole to be the same flower. These flowers were huge so that wasn’t going to work. She said she could still do it though. Easy, she’d just pull a flower apart so we’d essentially end up with a ‘man-made’ buttonhole. She could also use the concept to make the groomsmen buttonholes and to do a few flowers for my hair.

The photo we showed her had black ribbon binding it. ‘Don’t worry about that’, I said, ‘white ribbon or something is fine’. Then she asked what colour the bridesmaids’ dresses were. We hadn’t officially picked them at that point but I told her that the ones that were currently a possibility were light pink and navy blue. She went and grabbed some of her ribbons and came back and described how she could wrap them to incorporate the colours. I could begin to see us actually having a colour scheme where everything tied in together. I kept telling myself to not get too excited because we didn’t know how much she was going to quote us.

Once all the details were written down she provided us with a quote - $367. $200 more than our cheap florist... but... this lady had ideas and opinions. Justin and I gave each other the look of ‘hell yes’. This was our florist. Yes, she is more expensive but with this lady doing our flowers I know I won’t worry about the flowers again (and the good news for you guys is that you won’t have to hear about our flowers again)!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

A weekend of achievement: the photo guestbook

Okay, I am back from insanity…. for now.  Time to get back to the fun, exciting, yay we have actually achieved something stuff.

There are so many options for guestbooks out there. We eliminated most of the options by being fussy. We didn’t want a traditional guestbook because we knew we would stick it away and it would never get looked at. Given that reason, the next logical option would be a signature tree or a signature photo frame. We didn’t want a signature tree because we want messages, not just signatures. The signature frame was vetoed for similar reasons, plus even if we got one big enough for actual messages, I don’t really like the look of them. I googled heaps of options but none of them were quite right so I came used a few ideas together to come up with my own – which my fiancé loves too!

This is what I incorporated into our guestbook:
  • My love of photobooths. The budget doesn’t stretch to a professional one though and I’m not sure how a DIY one would work because how small our reception venue is.
  • My wish to have an ‘interactive’ guestbook that people might actually get excited about.
  • Our wish to have a guestbook that we will have on display in our home after our wedding.
  • Our wish to have a guestbook that will also be on display at the reception.
So this is what we will have (logistics of exactly how we’ll work it still need to be sorted);
  • People will write their message to us on a blackboard (I will make up/buy some of these).
  • They will take a photo of themselves holding up the message on the blackboard (we might not be able to have a nice backdrop though because of the size of the reception venue. We will see. Also not sure how we are going to go with lighting)
  • There will be a digital photo frame on display.
  • At intervals throughout the night we (well, probably someone else) will upload the photos off the camera to the frame.
  • At the end of the night we will have photos of all our friends and family with their lovely messages in our photo frame that we will display in our house!
I’m pretty keen on the idea of funny props to get people more into it but we’re not sure on this one yet.

Anyhow, this idea we’ve had for a while so what did we achieve on the weekend? We bought a digital photo frame. It was easier said than done because I generally HATE digital photo frames. I hate the plastic, I hate the little sensors on the front. I don’t know why, I just do. We managed to find one (on sale) that has a wooden frame and no little sensor on the front – perfect! It’s nice and big (10.4 inches) so hopefully the messages will be big enough to read.

I’m excited! It should make for lots of fun on the night!

Image from The Nichols Blog

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The Wedding Party Bus (aka Amy is going insane)

There are still 2 things left I need to post about under “A Weekend of Achievement” but I need to pause from that for a second and throw this post in because I AM GOING INSANE! Wedding cars are killing us.

Ages ago we got heap of quotes for wedding cars. We almost died when we saw the cost of them. Because we are doing a first look and also need transport between the ceremony and the reception, in total we need cars for 4.5 hours… which is expensive.

The solution we had was that we were going to book two Audi A4’s from Europcar. The Dad’s were going to drive them and then we were going to use our ‘contacts’ to try and leave them at a house up by the reception so that the Dad’s could drink. We were going to catch a taxi home and go back the next morning and pick them up. Perfect right? I wish.

So today I called up Europcar to ask a few questions before booking. The lady said straight up that she wouldn’t recommend booking through them for a wedding. She said in one instance there was couple that booked an Audi for their wedding and something happened (I think maybe someone crashed it the week before) and they ended up getting downgraded to a yellow Hyundai Getz because that was the only car available. There are also logistical issues. For starters the A4 is a ‘prestige’ vehicle so the driver needs TWO credit cards in their name to book it. I’m not sure about Justin’s parents, but I’m 99% sure that my parents only have one credit card. I asked if ours could be the second credit card and she said no, it had to be the driver. Next I asked about additional drivers. If we were to be additional drivers would be need to be there at the time of rental? The answer was a big fat yes. We can’t do it the day before or anything. That is an issue because I can not be at Europcar and at my house with the hairdresser at the same time. We could hire them for 2 days but that is starting to get expensive.

So with Europcar ruled out I started thinking of other ideas. Basically the only ones that I think are feasible are either;
  • Use our own cars (we don’t know anyone with awesome cars)
  • Hire a mini bus. Kinda like a limo… but lamer and cheaper.
So far in my mind the last option is winning. We could crank up some sweet tunes to get in the party mood and call it ‘The Wedding Party Bus’ (get it… it’d be like a party bus, but it would transport the bridal party too).Okay, I have officially gone insane. HELP! Any ideas/thoughts would be appreciated.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

A weekend of achievement: groom’s getup

We were meant to be hiring the groom’s suit. He had one picked out and everything. The plan was that we would pop in on the weekend and book it in. Then on Friday he came home and let me know that he wasn’t sure about hiring his suit anymore. He was thinking he’d rather buy a new one. He’d had a look in David Jones and they had some on sale. I won’t go into the reasons for wanting to buy, but we decided that over the weekend we would go and check out new ones.

There were only two potentials to try on. The first one was a poor fit on him… and then there was the second. Damn! He looked damn fine in it but we didn’t buy it straight away. He was still unsure whether to buy a new one or just hire one.

We went to another David Jones a little later in the day and he tried it on again. Drat, the sleeves were too short. I looked at the tag on it and realised that it was a size 36 short, not regular… but they didn’t have any regulars. We asked the store guy if they had a 36 regular at their other WA stores (we weren’t sure if the one we had seen that morning was a short or a regular) and there was none in WA. Frick!

We wandered off to think about it. Maybe we could just get the sleeves taken down. He called his Mum and she said that if there was enough fabric she could do it. More pondering followed.

We went back to David Jones to ponder further. His sister called while we were there and I mentioned our little issue. She suggested that we could ask if there were any in Sydney and if there was his other sister, who lives in Sydney, could go in and get it. Brilliant idea! Turns out there were none in Sydney in that size – damn, damn, damn. Then the store guy, who hadn’t seen the suit on, asked to see it on. Turns out that you have to look at all these other things for fit because the sleeves are the easiest things to alter and apparently all these other things fit perfectly. So we bought the suit! Yay!

The next day we were back at the shops again on a mission for a shirt and shoes. He was just after a white shirt (with a little bit of pattern, not straight white) but it was proving hard to find one small enough due to him being a skinny little bugger a small build. We found what we thought was the perfect one on a sale rack. It was exactly what he was looking for and fitted perfectly. We took it to the counter and then he realised that there was dirt on it. Bah! We went back to see if we could find another one in that size but it was the only one. Usually we don’t care about a bit of soiling with sale items, but this was the shirt that he would be wearing to our wedding! We went to the counter again to ask if they might have another one somewhere. The lady said she’d knock another 10% off the shirt… taking this $75 shirt down to $45. We were sold. A bit of nappy san or a trip to the dry cleaners should sort it out. Shirt sorted!

Next came the shoes. The ones that he picked out were semi-boots. Now I’ll be honest, my reaction was ‘those things look like boots. You aren’t going to wear boots to our wedding are you?’ Bridezilla much?! I said he should try them on anyhow and they actually looked really good. Under pants they don’t look boot-like anyhow. So we got the shoes.

Groom’s getup is sorted!

Monday, June 21, 2010

A weekend of achievement: groomsmen ties

After the purchase of the bridesmaids dresses, we went for a look around the menswear section to see if there were any appropriate ties for the groomsmen. Lo and behold, we found some that would work perfectly. They are navy blue with a bit of a check pattern with splotches of pink. The navy blue and the pink tie in with the bridesmaids dresses and the check pattern ties in with the grooms suit (I’ll post about this later… and don’t worry, it’s subtle checks on the suit, not full on ones) – perfect! Only problem was that they were 30% off and the sale ended that day, leaving no time for the groomsmen to come and look at them. This turned out not to be a problem though when my fiancé called both of the boys and the general response was ‘yeah man, I’ll wear whatever’.

So we have ties for the boys! They will be wearing their own pants, shirt and shoes (we were thinking of going with casual shoes but one of the guys has issues finding shoes that fit so it was decided they will just wear their own black shoes), so all we have left to do for their outfit is to either buy or hire them vests!

My only regret with being able to find ties so easily is it means that I can’t peruse Etsy for them. I thought that ties were finally my chance to make an Etsy purchase! Oh well.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

A weekend of achievement - we have bridesmaids dresses!

What a productive weekend we had. We got so much wedding stuff achieved that I'm actually going to have to post this all spread over the next week or so. I think that this weekends achievements almost puts us back on track with where we should be at according to all of the to-do lists! Big yay!

I'm going to start off with the bridesmaids dresses. On Friday I actually typed up half a post about how hard it was to find bridesmaids dresses.... Well, I can delete that one now and instead show you all our lovely bridesmaids dresses. :)

They are so pretty. They are light pink with a navy blue floral pattern on them. They are a really flattering shape too, which ensures that the girls will look smokin' hot and won't be too horrified to ever look back over the wedding photos again. This also means that we now have a colour scheme - yellow, light pink and navy blue. No idea why we need a colour scheme and what we will do with it but it seems that everyone else has a colour scheme so I want one too dammit!

The only bad point for these dresses is that it was my fiancé that  found them. I know there is no way that he is EVER going to let me forget that it was him that found the bridesmaids dresses.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

From polka dots and sunshine to hail spots and snow...

Originally I wanted to have a polka dot wedding dress and yellow wedding shoes. This isn’t going to happen due to difficulties in finding what I want. Rather than a polka dot organza overdress, I will be having a hail spot tulle overdress. Rather than yellow wedding shoes, I will be having white wedding shoes (perhaps with a yellow bow if I decide to do it). I’m not overly disappointed about this, but I would still like to incorporate some beautiful yellow into what I will be wearing.

Now how can I do this? I like bows, I will be wearing a dress, I need to add some colour…. Hmm….. I need to make a sash for my wedding dress – duh! How hard can it be (touch wood)? Wish me luck on my sash making adventure!

What personal touches did you add to your wedding dress?

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Rediscovering the Library

Back in my uni days I wouldn’t have dreamt of buying a book (other than textbooks). If I wanted something to read I went up to my local library and borrowed what I wanted. Once I joined the walks of the employed, I began to buy books rather than borrow them. There’s something nice about reading a nice, crisp clean book - plus I do love the look of a nice full bookshelf. The catch is that buying books, especially non-fiction books, can be quite expensive.

The other day I decided that I wanted a book on bread making. As we are trying to cut costs at the moment, rather than running straight to the bookshop, I thought I might try the local library. My oh my, did I find some treats at the library. I have never noticed before, but not only does the library have books but they have CDs and magazines (amongst other things).

We have pretty much decided that one our wedding invites we will ask guests to choose a song or two that they would like to hear. I have often wondered though what the older people will pick and how much it’s going to cost us to download high quality versions of all of the songs that we don’t have (this is something that we haven’t budgeted for). Now I know that our first port of call will be the local library. They even have an online catalogue so I can search for what I’m after from the comfort of my own home!

I beg of you, before you spend money on wedding books, magazines or CDs, dust of your library card and see what your local library has to offer. Free stuff is the best kind of bargain (plus you give it back once you’re done so it doesn’t end up at the tip or cluttering up your house)!

PS. I only really mentioned CDs in this, but our library has hundreds of books on weddings – more than I imagine that any non-online bookstore would ever have.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Handicraft Mania – Would You Look At That Bow?!

I have to have one of these bow clutches. And by ‘have to have’ I mean that I will dream about it constantly but never actually get it because it’s too expensive. Can you imagine strutting around with this in your hand on your wedding day, or any day for that matter?! This is one of my Etsy finds that I’m really struggling to let go of.
They are over at an Etsy store called Davie and Chiyo if anyone is lucky enough to have the funds to get one of these puppies.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Heavenly Heels (Or should that be 'Devil Heels'?)

So it turns out that when you go into wedding shutdown mode and stop caring you make progress.

I had given in to the idea of having to pay a lot for wedding shoes and was going to start hitting all of the bridal shoe shops in another month or so… and then I saw them. They are white, which is not what I wanted, however they are the style that I wanted and have a white bow on the front that I am considering either replacing with a yellow one or dying yellow. Wanna know the best part? They were only $50! (I’m a classy girl, they are from Spendless Shoes). 

Now I just have to learn how to walk in heels again. I never used to wear heels very often, but 2 years ago I started having foot problems which resulted in an operation and I haven’t touched a pair of heels since. My feet just aren’t used to them and felt like they were going to snap off.

Heel Breaking in Progress – Day 1: 
Walked around like a cowboy and managed to hack it for ten minutes.

Hopefully by the wedding day I’ll be able to strut like a supermodel in them and wear them for 8 hours straight.