Rehearsing in Style

Shortly after getting engaged, I went on a little-white-dress shopping spree. I snatched up just about every adorable white dress you could find – believing I would have the opportunity to wear it at some point during my engaged life. My favorite, is still the “Blakely” from J. Crew, and it’s still the front runner for our rehearsal dinner. (I’m even more stoked that one of my BMs chose this dress for the wedding, it’s so chic & classy!).
RD_Blakely

Then I found the J. Crew “Ginny” which is equally as adorable, but slightly more casual, so I thought it might be good for a shower/party/bachelorette dinner? I love that it has pockets and rugby stripes!
RD_Ginny

I had a mental battle with myself when I stumbled across this Banana Republic dress. I thought for a second it might be more perfect than the Blakely, so I bought it and fell in love. But it didn’t fit… so now I’m actually selling it on eBay (along with some other fabulous dresses).
dressMy other finds have included dresses from Anthropologie, Victoria’s Secret, J. Crew (eyelet – swoon!), and Lula Kate, although I haven’t purchased the Lula Kate one yet.
RD Lula Kate

What’s your vote for the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner? Obviously, I love lace + ruffles (and seer-sucker seeing how I just scooped up a darling Blakely-style seer-sucker stunner from J. Crew Factory). That should be perfect for a spring shower!

Happy Good Friday, y’all. Happy Easter. Happy weekend!

Not your average dress experience

If you recall, I ordered my dress from J. Crew without having seen it in person or trying it on and it was just as perfect as I imagined. However, this has made the rest of my dress experience a little less traditional than most as well.

Last week, I took my own dress to have it altered (instead of the shop/boutique where I purchased it taking care of all of this – many have in-house alterations). I felt a little empty as I walked away, leaving that bag full of beauty hanging in side waiting to be cut-down and made to fit me perfectly for my big-dream wedding!

When they asked when I’d like to pick it up, I was a little taken back… I’ve heard from friends that they haven’t gotten their dress until 2 weeks before the wedding or had to “borrow it” from the alterations place to have their bridal portraits done and then return it for finishing touches. Anyway, I’m going in April for my first fitting. We only tackled taking it in, the neckline and “less poof” on this first round. The hem/train will be the next piece but I have some decisions to make around that.

Speaking of dresses – I bought this beauty  from Banana Republic a while back and unfortunately it doesn’t fit – so I’m selling it. It would be great for a rehearsal dinner/shower (or any fun party you plan on attending!).
dress

AND I just sent an awesome Monday Morning email to my BMs about Jack Rogers… ON SALE… today! Get yours here: Last Call!

Feeling Lucky

Last week, I traveled through Tennessee, Mississippi and Alabama for work. I started in Knoxville, Tennessee with one heck of a tour of the city (a $35 cab ride) from my awesome cabbie. I treated myself to breakfast in bed on day 2 in Nashville – because hey, I deserve it. On Thursday, I left one of my running shoes at our hotel in Mississippi (this is a place I NEVER have to go again and I’ll be perfectly happy!) – so I bought new shoes when I got to Alabama and took a little run around the Ross Bridge area to scope it out. I’m sure you can imagine how excited I was to arrive back home in Charlotte on Friday.photo2However, as I was sitting on the tarmac in Atlanta waiting for my connection to Charlotte, my mom called and told me I needed to come home to see my Paw Paw. My Paw Paw is not just any paw paw – he has really been more like a father to me and my brother, and is undoubtedly one of the most important men in my life. My sweet fiance picked me up at the airport, coffee mugs filled and snacks on hand and we drove 3 hours to Virginia. We didn’t get there until after my sweet Paw Paw was asleep but we saw him and got all the details. We spent lots of time with him on Saturday (most of which he was feeling much better!). I kept telling him he had to get better so he can be at my wedding (I’m tearing up writing this) and he promised he would. He also apparently told everyone that the hydrangea plant that was sent to him needed to be kept alive for my wedding (seriously? I love him).

So it was an exhausting week + weekend, and we missed our food tasting on Saturday. But family comes first – so we were in Virginia instead of South Carolina. We also delayed our meeting with our vendor for tables, chairs and linens that was scheduled for today, just to make sure everything is still improving. We came across “Luck Ave” while in Roanoke, Virginia – and boy could I use some luck! We enjoyed some green beers for St. Patty’s on Sunday at our fave local restaurant – Harry’s, took our boys to Lake Wylie for a long walk and chance to put their feet in the water and the best part, we came home to find these adorable forks had arrived complete with a stamp of our wedding date! (Less than 5 months, folks!!!). You can see all the pictures from my travels last week and our adventures in Roanoke, VA this past weekend on Instagram.
photo1 Although I wasn’t expecting any major set-backs in my planning (or family emergencies), I think we handled this one pretty well and nothing has been majorly impacted at this time. We confirmed our florist and mailed off a deposit and also booked a day-of coordinator (more to come on this!). And most of all, I feel completely lucky to have had such an amazing person by my side through this entire ordeal!

How have you dealt with wedding planning set-backs?

Blogging bride!

Sorry I have been MIA for a few days, I am traveling for work this week through Tennessee, Mississippi and Alabama and heading back home on Friday (is it Friday, yet?). However, I couldn’t pass up the chance to share this goodness….

My blog went live for Carolina Bride Magazine, based out of Charlotte, NC! You can read all of the goodness here! I couldn’t be more excited about this opportunity and it came just one little day after a friend of “the other bride” called and left me a message mentioning that I was selfish. Maybe I am… but I’m also way happier with the way things are now!
option2I’ll be blogging once a week for CB, with step-by-step details on my own wedding through August and then back to being a bridesmaid after that! I would love to hear your feedback on the blog, so leave a comment if you please!

And thanks… for reading and helping make this possible! xox

FRIDAY FAVORITES

1. Etsy
Anyone who is engaged should stay far away from Etsy. Oh my bank account! I would tell you all the things I’ve purchased but then you wouldn’t be surprised when they appear at the wedding. But in all honesty, you can find EVERYTHING on here – and you have lots of different options because there are crafty people all over that can create all the things your heart desires!

2. Shop Sweet Lulu
Our straws arrived and they are PERFECT. I can’t wait to see them sticking out of mason jars all over The Dairy Barn.

3. Southern Weddings Prints
 I’ve been collecting prints and vintage frames for our wedding decor. Southern Weddings magazine has some of the cutest prints you’ll find. They just added more this week so check ’em out. Great for around the house or office too!

4. Pressed Cotton
I was obsessing over their adorable pillows and burlap perfection before I saw them at a Bridal Show but now, I’m just DYING to order something. It’s only a matter of time. Doesn’t get much more Southern than this!

5. J. Crew
It would be a shame for me to leave J. Crew off of this list. My wedding dress, bridesmaid dresses, best woman dress and our incredibly handsome bowties have all come from J. Crew. I am completely smitten with their entire wedding line (obviously) – and it’s perfectly fitting that our wedding party will be decked out in J. Crew since at least half of our closet bears the brand.

I’m sure I’ll have a much longer list of these favorites by the time the wedding gets here, but that’s enough for today. Need to rest up for my half marathon tomorrow… still working on that wedding body!

First Look

After freaking myself out yesterday that we only booked the venue for 4 hours and the photographer for 4 hours (neither of which is true)…. I began emailing back and forth with my photographer regarding ideas for photos. We have been pinning some ideas, and I’ve been saving some others that I plan to present her with before the wedding.

But she brought up the first look question last night and my answer was “I don’t know.” Part of me would love to have a few quiet minutes with just LW and to enjoy each other and all the love of our wedding day – but another part of me wants to see his face when I walk down the aisle. Don’t all girls dream about that moment? I know I certainly have…

I stumbled across these gorgeous First Look photos (also – she is kind of making me want to do bridal portraits!). And found these on Pinterest:

Pinterest
Pinterest

first look 3  first look 4first look

I absolutely love the raw emotion in the pictures. I kind of like the idea of a “door” picture where we don’t really see each other but we can at least exchange gifts and hold hands for a moment and quietly enjoy some “us” time.

What are your thoughts on first looks? Should we stick with tradition and wait until that magical moment on the aisle?

 

*All photos taken from Pinterest.

Wedding Weekend!

High five to the hubby-to-be! We accomplished SO much this weekend (between golf/thesis writing/a 7-mile training run/shopping).

We decided to go with the hotel that offered us a $94/rate that has both king rooms and double-queen rooms but did not have breakfast or an outdoor pool (sorry kiddos!). The Homewood Suites was in the same area and offered an outdoor pool AND breakfast for $98 but only had suite-style rooms with a King bed and sofa-sleeper. I asked opinions of the folks who might end up on the sofa-sleeper and they all said they preferred the double-queen room. So there we have it… contract is being signed today.

My blood-pressure is much lower now that a florist responded positively, confirmed she is available and ALSO told me she was doing a very similar wedding this past weekend at our venue so she definitely thought my floral-wishes were doable! Whew! Happy + relieved to mark that one off the list!

The groom’s aunt & uncle have agreed to play at our ceremony (yay, family!). AND we picked our song to walk back down the aisle together to! (I can’t wait for that moment – eeek!)
DSC_0448

We realized that our timing was a bit off with the ceremony/reception – so we’ve asked to add some time to our big day (more time to celebrate with our family and friends). Fingers crossed that it isn’t too pricey of a deal to do this now.

My something blue arrived in the mail and I am DYING over it. So completely perfect. In the words of my bridesmaid, Michelle, “swoon.”

We decided that we don’t want to spend $3000 to fly to Hawaii, Tahiti or the Greek Isles, so we will be staying in the Caribbean for our honeymoon – and splurging on our stay (with maybe a couple extra days added in). With that said, our only prior location we had done any research on in the Caribbean was Curacao – which is gorgeous, don’t get me wrong, I just wanted to have a few more options – also options that aren’t typical honeymoon spots like the Dominican or St. Lucia. I spent Sunday morning researching Aruba, Antigua, Anguilla, St. Maarten, Turks & Caicos and Belize and provided them neatly in a spreadsheet (duh) to LW with names of resorts, prices, amenities, and flight prices (this spreadsheet also contains budget, invite list, addresses, RSVP list, vendors/deposits, rehearsal dinner – I might be a bit of an organized control freak). I gave him full rights to book whatever he thinks is best after evaluating all of the options, or to even add to the list if he finds somewhere else dreamy.

I ordered straws for the reception. Not a big deal but it’s something – and you’ll love them. My sweet bridesmaid Michelle is constantly sending me the most adorable wedding related sites (I tend to shriek a little each time I get one of these amazing emails!). The straws came from Shop Sweet Lulu – which they offer not just stripey straws but chevron and polka dots too!

So it was a busy weekend – but it feels SO good! Hope y’all had a good weekend too. Stay tuned for the announcement of which wedding magazine I will be blogging for starting Monday, 3/11! So, so exciting!