One week from today.


Hello, Spring?

I don't trust it completely, but spring is trying really, really hard to poke it's head out around these parts.
I'm crossing EVERYTHING that we get some gorgeous rain-free weather while all the out-of-towners are here for the wedding.
C'mon, spring. Get sprung already.


Sequins & Masks

I've never been a big party girl. But what better excuse to hit the town then my own Bachelorette Party??

Along with my ' Maids Emily, Paula, and Rebecca, we dressed in sparkles and sequins and hit the Bellevue nightlife. I managed to dodge major humiliation, only one heeled shoe was damaged, and while there were some minor scratches, blisters and sore-muscles-for-no-reason discovered the next morning, we all came out of it happy, exhausted, and relatively unscathed.
Love my girls. Perfect, perfect night.



I'm struggling away trying to rid myself of a terrible cold, but am still reeling from the amazing-ness that was this past weekend.

A bridal shower that Martha Stewart herself would have been inspired by, and a bachelorette party with those nearest and dearest to me (minus 'Maid Melissa - we missed you!!).

I'll start with a few pictures of the bridal shower, and I'm sure more will come in the next few days. Thank you specifically to Vicki Jo Johnson and Nancy Lang for the amazing hosting and decorating skills, and 'Maids Emily and Paula for planning, scheming, and delegating. Love you all!
The Dessert Table
Gift Opening
The INCREDIBLE Hardanger Ring Pillow handmade by Vicki Jo Johnson
Laughing with ' Maid Rebecca

Pulling Some 'Sugar' Out of Our New Sugar Bowl
I Guess People Know What Colors I Like...
Gorgeous Earrings made by Laura of Laura Bee Designs - Featuring my Boutonnieres!
My 'Bride' Hoodie - New Fave!
Extra thanks goes to MOH Emily for snapping these pics while I was busy being spoiled beyond reason.


Almost Un-Veiled

I almost slipped up.

Nate and I were watching - well, I was watching, Nate was tolerating - some wedding show last week and it just so happened that the bride's veil was the exact one hanging with my dress in the next room.

"Hey! That's the same as my veil!" The words were on my lips, the breath taken to speak, and I caught myself just in time.

I know it's such a little thing, but it's the longest secret I've ever had to keep from the guy, and the fact that he enjoys fashion and clothes make it harder. I cannot WAIT to finally get to show him in just a couple weeks.


What Comes Before Part B?

Why, PART-AAAY of course!! (Laguna Beach reference? Anyone? Just me? Okay then.)

'Maid-Of-Honor Emily trekked her way up from Portland last night with 'Maid Paula in tow to have their innaugural stay in the guestroom in our new house, and we'll be going 100 mph all day.

My makeup artist Yessie is coming to the house at 9:30 to do a wedding day trial run, and then oh-so-graciously fix me up for the rest of the day.
That rest-of-the-day includes my bridal shower hosted by Nate's mom at her house and organized by 'Maids Emily and Paula, then it's off to the bachelorette party with just my best girls : 'Maids Em, Paula, and Rebecca. I couldn't be more excited for some excellent girly goodness.


Box O'Cheer

Rather than plop a bowl or basket on the gift table to collect cards, I decided to make a little container (stop rolling your eyes, I know I'm a crazy person):
my 'Drop Cheer Here' card box
I really wanted a birdcage for cards to slip into, but am too pressed for time lazy to go find one, so made this lil' guy with things lying around the house. A big shoe box (it's finally useful to have giant feet!), the last of my favorite wrapping paper ever, and the rest of the paper and the same stencils from the flower girl flag project.


The Sea of Tissue

The title is true : At this point I could almost add a geographical sea of tissue to the map of where I live.

I said it was all about volume, and indeed it is. I'm racking up the tissue/tulle/lace flowers like my life depends on it. While I'd love to say the end is in sight, it's kind of a 'the more the merrier' deal, so the end just may come when my options are A) I'm going to scream, or B) I need to sit still so I can get my makeup done the day of the wedding.

Hopefully neither.

But probably both.
The staging area...
...the results, stuffed into their bottles and ready for tables.


Licensed to Wed

We're getting our marriage license today! 
Wishing it would look like this vintage beaut, but guessing it's probably a bit more sterile.
3/22/12 Update:
Just to record a few little things from getting our license :
1) Did you know you have to raise your right hand and "swear to tell the truth, the whole truth" and all that?! I didn't. Then I didn't know what to say ... "I do?" "Yes?" Luckily Nate swooped in with a "yes" so I followed suit.
2) We went on a Wednesday afternoon before 3pm, and yet two other couples were there doing the same thing. Three marriage licenses in like 15 minutes. Who knew they hand 'em out like candy?!
3) The Snohomish County Office is a freakin' maze. We ended up coming and going up some side stairs that I'm pretty sure were blockaded. Not well though, so we busted through and continued on our way. No arrests, so I guess we're good.
We Be Official!


Felt Flower Fiesta: Boutonnieres Finished

 Kindly ignore the fact that I said I wouldn't be talking about felt flowers anymore a while back. I'm swimming in these suckers, so I guess they're bound to rear their fuzzy heads here from time to time.

I'm checking another project off the list as 100% complete however : The boutonnieres! I finished the last two for the dads this weekend, so :
1 Groom + 4 Groomsmen + 1 Ring-bearer + 2 Dads = 8 Boutonnieres

Really what that equation should equal is a big ol' sigh of relief from yours truly. With the completion of those last two I am done with felt for the foreseeable future.

Nate's is the only rose in the bridal party, all the others are the dahlia-style in turquoise. The dads are each getting a navy rose in the same style.
I also found the sweetest little freshwater pearl bracelets on Amazon and whipped up a sort of corsage for the moms, grandmas, and my junior bridesmaids (and documented it in the lackluster photo below):
I figure they can snip the threads that hold the flower onto the bracelet later and have a cute lil' piece of jewelry to hang onto and wear again.

Checkity check check CHECK.


Pretty Pretty Parasols

Remember the child-sized-umbrellas-turned-parasols from last week? A couple fabric pens and some pom pom trim and voila, cute wedding parasols!
Trim ordered on eBay from China
Fabric Markers and Glue Gun Fun
Ironically, I had to wait for a break in the rain (and snow, what?!) to take pics of these guys on the deck. The one with the white pom poms is mine, and the rest for the wedding party are all a teensy bit different from one another. I'm free handing it, so whatever comes out of my brain at the moment is what they're covered with.

At this point I kind of think they're cute enough to make it into a couple bridal party photos even if it's by some miracle not raining on The Day.


Mantra : Be The Bride

Came across some great advice on my fave wedding blog, 100 Layer Cake, this week .

It's from Kendra of Summer Street Photography, who recently married her husband & photog partner Matt . Knowing Kendra has helped guide so many girls through their Big Day and is so aware of those little, important moments, I thought her advice was fantastic :

"Three pieces of advice I will always give future brides are: 
1. Hire a photographer that you love. You’ll have two things after your wedding: your husband and the photos. Everything else is a one time use only.  
2. On the day of your wedding you can be NOTHING but the bride, so plan accordingly. If you do this you will be so much more present to enjoying every last inch of it. So many people say it goes by in a second but ours felt like a prolonged daydream that went on forever. It was heaven. 
3. Enjoy life after the wedding (and if you can afford it, go on an amazing honeymoon to get you off to the right start!)" 
Number two is ringing especially true in my ears. With so many projects and people already asking what their wedding day tasks will be, I have GOT to remember that all I have to do is be the bride. I'll have spent 8 solid months on details and execution that I've handled most of by myself, so you know what? Other people can handle it on The Day.

There. I said it. Call me bridezilla, but it's gonna be all about my sanity and enjoyment on April 7th, and that is that.
Rawr (or whatever sound a bridezilla is supposed to make...).

P.S. As for numbers one and three, we have the best photographer ever in Dana Pleasant, and while we're waiting to take our 'real' honeymoon to a warm beach until next December/January, a mini-moon is in the planning-works for the few days we have off post-wedding.


Brown Paper Packages, Tied Up With String...

..These are a few of my favorite things!
I continue to be touched and amazed by the gifts we're receiving. Thank you so much!! We are incredibly lucky to have such people in our lives as you.

P.S. Get a little dose of Julie Andrews Maria Von Trapp here.


Flower Power

At this point it's all about volume.

Since I'm not using real flowers, that means kickin' it into overdrive on the tissue/tulle/lace bloom creation. Nate's been helping with the prep work, which makes the assembly process go much faster. Thank goodness!
So that's what I've been trying to crank through nightly - at least 10-12 per weeknight should get me about where we need to be to create a lovely, full tablescape.


On Paper

This last weekend I made a point to try to get down all the finer points of all the scheduling we've done lately on paper.

I typed out a time table of events and arrival times for both the rehearsal Thursday and wedding Saturday (yes, those of you who need them will be getting them soon!), and then finished up the ceremony programs after making a few tweaks suggested by our pastor.
The poor printer is going to give out from fatigue by the end of all this, but programs are printed, sliced, and ready to be handed out by our lovely Junior Bridesmaids.

Another detail done, yay!


Picture This

I've always loved old family photos, so wanted to be sure to incorporate them in some form into our wedding.

Recently, Shutterfly offered a deal to get 101 prints for free (plus shipping). I snapped it up, using the same photos I used in our photo guest book I ordered a while back. Then came some figuring out of exactly how many tables we will have at the reception, followed by some photo sorting, and what was this...
...will become sheets of trimmed and puzzled together photos for each table to peruse. The plan is to also have a little note on each to 'pass around the table, then trade with a table near you' so everyone can see them all.

I also dug up a photo of both sets of grandparents on each side and both Nate and I's parents on their wedding days to display somewhere.
You may notice one photo is missing : My mom is currently making and sending a copy of a great photo of her parents for me to use. And I'll be picking up this 'French Memo Board' in ivory to tuck them into. Since only 2 grandmothers out of the 8 grandparents in the photos (once complete) will be attending, I love that they'll be represented in other ways.


Under My Umberella-ella-ella

My photographer Dana reminded me of something important the other day : Make a plan for rain.

It is Washington, after all, and if there's anything you can depend on, it's some form of precipitation falling from the sky. Usually when you want it to happen the least.
What I really wanted was to purchase parasols for everyone from Bella Umbrella, a dreamy buy-or-rent local business that pedals gorgeous, fanciful umbrellas. But at $40+ a pop, it just wasn't in the cards.
 Bella Umbrella Parasol
Enter Oriental Trading. I grew up pouring over these catalogs as a kid - My primary school teaching mother would get them to order things for her classrooms. They specialize in bulk orders, thus making it easy for me to pick up a dozen umbrellas in one fell swoop.
These umbrellas happen to be meant for kids, meaning they're the perfect parasol size I was hoping for. Not to mention they're meant to be painted/stamped/decorated, so ordering a set of fabric markers to embellish in our blue palette seemed pretty perfect.

Now all we can do is hope we don't have to use 'em.


Newman's Own... Wedding Vows

Meeting with our Pastor Thursday has my mind on wedding vows. I had no idea there were so many varieties to choose from, and being a bit of a 'Word Nerd', I wanted exactly the right words spoken.

Which leads me to Paul and Joanne Newman. Married in 1958, they've gone the distance, and I wanted to see where they started...
Paul Newman and Joanne Woodward
Las Vegas, Nevada; January 29, 1958

We have come here today in the presence of God to join in holy matrimony Paul and Joanne.

Happiness in marriage is not something that just happens. A good marriage must be created. In the Art of Marriage: The little things are the big things. It is never being too old to hold hands. It is remembering to say 'I love you' at least once a day. It is never going to sleep angry. It is at no time taking the other for granted; the courtship should not end with the honeymoon, it should continue through all the years. It is having a mutual sense of values and common objectives. It is standing together facing the world. It is forming a circle of love that gathers in the whole family. It is doing things for each other, not in the attitude of duty or sacrifice, but in the spirit of joy. It is speaking words of appreciation and demonstrating gratitude in thoughtful ways. It is not expecting the husband to wear a halo or the wife to have wings of an angel. It is not looking for perfection in each other. It is cultivating flexibility, patience, understanding and a sense of humor. It is having the capacity to forgive and forget. It is giving each other an atmosphere in which each can grow. It is finding room for the things of the spirit. It is a common search for the good and the beautiful. It is establishing a relationship in which the independence is equal, dependence is mutual and the obligation is reciprocal. It is not only marrying the right partner, it is being the right partner.
Paul, will you have Joanne to be your lawful wedded wife? Will you love her, comfort her, keep her in sickness and in health and forsaking all others, be faithful to her so long as you both shall live?

Joanne, will you have Paul to be your lawful wedded husband? Will you love him, comfort him, keep him in sickness and in health and forsaking all others, be faithful to him so long as you both shall live?

This ring I give in token and pledge as a sign of my love and devotion, with this ring I thee wed.