Birdcage Veil

If you haven’t guessed already, I’m drawn to the vintage life.  I love (almost) all things vintage, but I adore the style the most.  When looking for a veil, there was no contest: I wanted a birdcage veil.  They are vintage and glamorous, but incredibly expensive at bridal shops and even on Etsy.  So off to Pinterest I went. I found a  couple great tutorials from: Wedding Chicks, Project Wedding, and Martha.  My MOH  and I tried to make a veil…this is also the same night we decided to try out different alcoholic drinks for the wedding. We tried to make a fabric flower to put on the veil too…we kept burning our fingers. The tutorial is really great though, check it out on The Polka Dot Closet.  Anyway, we learned that drinking and veil making do not go together…so we gave up on the veil making and continued the necessary task of trying out the drinks. I decided instead of trying to make a flower from scratch, I took a stem flower from JoAnn’s and disassemble it.  I bought a 25″ Gardenia Spray (found here).  I also bought a fancy button (sparkles and all) from JoAnn’s, it was under $5. After the flowers were disassembled, I used one of the green center pieces to the flowers and started from the largest petals on the bottom and worked up to the smallest.  I then strung the button with some thread and fed it through the green stem.  I did this back and forth a couple of times to secure the petals.

Flower: Property of LemonDelights

Thankfully my Mom is super crafty (she is also a florist and did all my flowers for the wedding!!) and helped with the veil.  We used a plain hair comb because the flower covered it up. After some adjusting the length, it was perfect! We ended up using about 14-16″ of veiling material. I think it turned out lovely and only cost $5 for the flowers/button, $2 for the hair comb, $3-5 for the netting, a total of $10-12! A savings of roughly $50-$60!

Me: Property of LemonDelights

Post nuptials :)

Post nuptials 🙂

I am so lucky to have such a beautiful MOH and best friend.

I am so lucky to have such a beautiful MOH and best friend.

Wedding Day Reflection: Destress

My mother is a florist (on top of the million other things she does, really-she’s amazing).  She is currently working on flowers for another wedding that is happening this weekend (congrats to you!!), and I’m pitching in where I can.  As I work on some arrangements, under strict guidance of course, I can only think of the bride and if she is stressed or is really sitting back and taking the whole experience in.

When I got my hair done, the hairdresser couldn’t believe I was getting married because I was so calm. I wasn’t freaking out, I was simply taking it all in.  That got me thinking, why freak out? I mean, yea, it’s a big day, it changes the rest of your life, but it’s about you and your partner, it isn’t about the party or if something isn’t right.

 

Don’t get me wrong, I was stressed the month before the wedding (my family and Mister can attest to that! Sorry! :)).  The little things were bothering me (the white’s weren’t the same white, my tan line (rather off-whiteness) wasn’t the same shape as my dress) really, silly little things that I am sure no one noticed.  But it took my Mister to remind me that it was our day, and we only get one, so to simply enjoy it.

And that is what I did.  Our rehearsal was small and intimate, and the dinner was a BBQ in our backyard.  We tested out the garden games for the wedding and had an early night.  I spent the evening frosting cupcakes with my Aunt,  MOH, a very dear friend and the MOH’s hubby.  It was so fun and carefree.

The morning of I woke up around 8 after getting a full 8 hours of sleep.  I wasn’t stressed or worried: at that point, what wasn’t done wasn’t getting done and really, what did it matter if there wasn’t humus for people to dip their veggies in? There was dip! My MOH picked me up for our hair appointment, where it was just the two of us (and Atira!!!) in the shop.  We had so much fun, laughing, relaxing and simply taking in the day.  One of my favorite memories is watching Sara getting her hair curled and realizing how lucky I was to have her as my best friend and MOH (and how darn pretty she was/is).

I was able to get ready surrounded by my incredibly close friends.  We laughed and there was no stress. None, at all.  I loved being able to share a drink with some of the most important women (womyn) in my life.  And being in a room with that much beauty can only make you happy/  I knew I was marrying the right man, I mean, he was the whole reason for the day.  That and I looked good ;).

As I walked down the aisle, there was no one else, just the Mister.  I stopped at the bottom of the aisle with my father and did a little head nod, to let the Mister know everything was okay, I was ready, and to say “Hey, what’s up?” I am sure no one else noticed, but he did, and it set us at ease.   He was/is my guy. I wasn’t stressed, I was so excited, I couldn’t wait to get to the “I Do’s” and to just kiss him! That was the most stressful part, not being able to give him a kiss when I saw him because he looked so darn handsome and I could tell he was nervous (that and it was so sweet when he cried as I walked down the aisle!!!).

But really…thinking about how stressed people become over their weddings…there is no real reason for it.  There are things that need to get done to have the party, but really, no one will remember that the peanut butter brownies weren’t put out (sorry guys…they were amazing though!). They will, however, remember how the Mister and I looked at each other, the love and warmth from the entire party, how comfortable and fun it was, and that is was truly a beautiful day.

So, take a step back from it all, remember it’s only one day and it goes by far too quickly.  Enjoy every second of it, and to the beautiful bride tomorrow: I hope you are totally relaxed and may your day (and lives)  be filled with love and laughter.

 

 

DIY Bow Ties

I love bow ties.  Hands down, I think they are the most adorable things within a man’s wardrobe, well bow ties and suspenders.  But they really go hand-in-hand.  I knew I wanted bow ties for the gents at the wedding.  I, however, didn’t want to pony up a lot of money for them.  So I made them.

I made two pink ones for the Mister and his best man (his brother, who is fantastic), and two yellow ones for my brothers (whom I adore).  I had the yellow fabric and I bought the pink (a fabric quarter) from JoAnn’s-this was on sale, and I spent…oh…$1 or $2 on it? I also bought some interfacing (roughly $2), to keep the bow ties stiff.   This is the tutorial I used from A Beautiful Mess! I cheated and used stitch witchery to put everything together (no sewwwwwing for this lady!).  The only difference between mine and A Beautiful Mess’ is that I used interfacing to stiffen up the bow ties: you cut your interfacing the same size as your fabric, and iron it on (as per the directions).

I couldn’t find bow tie clips (gah, the horror!), but in a moment of clarity, I realized I could make it a snap on! I bought a pack of four from Wal-Mart: I think they ran me about $5 (no more than that for sure).  I measured each of their necks with fabric I attached to the back of the bow tie and stitched on the snaps.  Make sure you stitch them on the correct way or else you’ll be re-doing them. I had to do this twice.  Also, when  you measure their necks, give a little extra space for their collared shirts.  My brother said it was a little snug (as his face was turning purple 😉 )

Anyway, check them out!

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My brothers and their yellow bow ties!

The groom and his best man, Brent

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My brothers and I with their yellow bow ties!

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Groom and Best Man!

 

I think they turned out great and only cost roughly $10 (that’s $2.50 per bow tie!) to make all of them! Amazing, eh?

 

 

 

The Wedding Dress

I know we’ve all see those wedding shows that are far too popular.  The ones where brides spend a crazy amount on a dress and you scoff at their choice and claim you’ll NEVER spend that much on a dress…for one day. But let’s be honest, we all want to look amazing on this big day and will sometimes succumb to those nasty retail demons. I mean, I almost did!

My MOH and I went wedding dress shopping and I knew I wanted lace (cha-ching) and something that was flattering to my build. We found a beautiful dress (Allure 2455).  Oh hello gorgeous! I still love this dress, however, I did NOT love the price tag.  It was so difficult to walk away from this dress, but, I knew I didn’t want to spend that kind of money on a dress…for one day. (A wedding is one day, a marriage is a life time!)

Allure 2455 Wedding Dress

As I love to find a deal and wanted to save money wherever possible, my MOH and I took to the internet.  We tried sites like TheKnot, PreOwnedWeddingDresses, WeddingBee and even Ebay. We looked for weeks for this dress, maybe even months.  The problem with trying to find a dress online is well…the sizing.  So we widen our search to similar dresses.  That’s when my MOH found it! On Etsy from DressbLee‘s shop!!!

Etsy Wedding Dress

I know what you’re thinking…buying your wedding dress off the internet, that’s crazy! And it’s coming from China…”Man this girl is crazy!” You know, I felt I was a little nuts too, I read all of the horrifying reviews online, but there had only been positive reviews from this specific shop, so I took the chance. I paid a total of $250 (including shipping) for my dress. Much less than the Allure dress, and I love this neck line so much more because I’m a bit busty and we were married in a church (hello modesty!).

I sent my measurements in to the shop and within two-three weeks I received my dress! I was blown away at the quality of it and that it actually fit!! I received nothing but compliments on my dress.  Few people actually believe I only spent $250 on it!  I did have to get it bustled and the shoulders taken in a little bit at a local tailors…this cost me $20-$30.  So in total, I spent $270-$280 on my dress.  I had enough left over in my dress budget that I was able to buy a second shorter dress for the reception, which I picked up at JCP for $40! I’ve even worn the short dress twice since the wedding!

Here are some shots from the wedding and of my dress! I just love(d) how it looks:

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Like I said earlier, I bought a second shorter dress (It gets hot in NY in June!) Check it out! 🙂

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This photo makes my heart sing (I mean, all of them do, really…) But this photo is of my girlfriends from Freshman year of college. And it’s us, through and through.

To summarize, how to save money on your wedding dress:

  • Go and shop around, try on dresses and find exactly what you want
  • STICK TO YOUR BUDGET, it doesn’t matter what the lady on Say Yes to The Dress spends, it’s YOUR wedding and you need to stay with what is comfortable for you!
  • Seriously, don’t break your bank on a dress…you wear it once.
  • Don’t be afraid to use a second hand dress, a thrifted find or even a hand-me-down. There’s more love in a previously worn dress.
  • Don’t be pressured into buying a dress: I’m so glad I only had my MOH with me when I found the Allure dress, she is a thrifty chic too, so she knew my budget and didn’t push me into buying something I would feel guilty about later.
  • If you do get a second dress, make sure it’s practical.  I love my little white dress and love that I can wear it again!

Desserts For The Wedding

Okay-I love sweets.  Hands down, I would prefer a piece of chocolate cake over anything else. I knew that when we got married, I wanted to dessert table, but I also knew that it would cost a fortune. So I made my own desserts (with a little help from my Aunt and friends!)

Firstly, I decided on what would be on the dessert table.  I polled the Mister on what he would like and came up with a list.  Our dessert table consisted of:

  • Chocolate-chip cookies (8 dozen)
  • Peanut-butter cookies (8 dozen)
  • Oatmeal Raisin cookies (8 dozen)
  • Oatmeal raisin chocolate-chip cookies (3 dozen)-I use this recipe and added the chocolate-chips
  • Chocolate brownies (these were all bite sized: Thanks Aunt Tasha) There was an assortment of types: nuts, plain, m&m and they all had either chocolate frosting or a drizzle on them! (I have no idea how many we made…like 16 dozen??) Follow the direction on the back of the box!
  • Chocolate Peanut-butter truffle brownies (3 dozen)
  • Lemon loaf (7 loafs)
  • Chocolate cupcakes with a chocolate buttercream frosting-for the frosting, play around with the amount of cocoa powered you use and adjusted the liquid amount accordingly.  (I think there were…4-5 dozen)
  • Lemon cupcakes with a lemon buttercream frosting (use lemon juice instead of other extracts) (same again…4-5 dozen) Just follow the directions on the box: I also added in a couple squeezes from fresh lemon juice.  We coloured the frosting pink and yellow 🙂
  • The only things we bought were from Wegmans: A small chocolate cake, a small lemon raspberry cake, a cheesecake for my Maid of Honour because it was her birthday! and a tiny cake for our 1 year anniversary! A total of $50!

Phew! Just reading that makes me want a cookie! Hahah.  I know, you’re probably thinking, “She’s crazy” and you’d be right, but I didn’t want to spend a lot.  In total my dessert table cost me $150 (including what was purchased from Wegmans!!!).  You can freeze everything, so long as it is in an air-tight container. I made the cookies two weeks in advance over two rainy days and stuck them in our freezer. I then made the cupcakes and froze them (unfrosted).  We made the brownies a couple of days before and froze those too!

We pulled the cupcakes out the day before the wedding and frosted them.  My MOH, her husband (who is amazing at frosting cupcakes) and my good friend spent roughly an hour and a half frosting them all. We also put sprinkles on the cupcakes and brownie bites.  I bought the white pearls from Joann Fabrics with a 50% off coupon.

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Where we saved money:

  • Buy things on sale.  Brownie and cake mixes go on sale all the time.  Stock pile those suckers.
  • Buy your cupcake liners from a Dollar Store.
  • Limit yourself to a few different desserts.  I made what the Mister and I like.
  • Make things ahead when ingredients are on sale and freeze them!
  • We clearly had far too many of everything (uh, that love of sweets kicked in), so make sure you only make enough for a couple of extras.  I was handing out cookies by the dozen to guests!

I hope this helps you!