Northern California Pink and Purple Wedding

The Grasso WeddingThe most important part of any event is the attention detail, and this bride left no corner untouched. However I may have a biased opinion, since that bride was me. None the less, I had a vision and I made sure that vision transcended throughout the entire event. Every piece of paper matched and served a purpose, while every detail fit the theme. Touches of textured flowers, bits of bling and bows mixed together to create the most beautifully romantic yet fun and girly day of my life. [Read more…]

SMU VS. Tulane Engagement Session

pic monkey - save the dateThis lovely engagement session (aka MY engagement session) had a sheek side and a playful side. Kelvin from Geoff White Photography shot the entire thing at my old high school campus, Sacred Heart Prep in Atherton, California. We started sheek in our “fancy” clothes using the beautiful brick Main Building as our backdrop. Then we decided to mix it up a bit to give you a taste of our playful/competitive sides. We threw on our alma mater memorabilia and hit the field. The hubby played football at Tulane, so it seemed fitting.

[Read more…]

Inspiration Board – Mad Hatter Tea Party

One of the worst things about getting married is you can’t plan your own showers. I would have loved to have a Mad Hatter Tea Party! I guess one of my lucky engaged girlfriends will get one instead… I pretty much have it all planned. I am just waiting on the boyfriends to pop the question. I got the idea when Taylor, of the Real Housewives of Beverly Hills, threw a Mad Hatter Unbirthday Party for her daughter last season. It was divine and over the top. I loved every minute of it. My party will obviously have to be downsized a bit, simply because my budget is a tad tighter than hers, but I am sure I can get creative and make it amazing. It is a perfect opportunity to stretch my DIY muscles.

1. Misdirectional Signs // 2. Eat Me Tags // 3. Personalized Hats // 4. DIY Croquet Sticks // 5. Drink Me Tags // 6. Eat Me Desserts

Inspiration Board – Rustic Wedding

1. Chalkboard Door: Making your own chalkboard door is super simple CLICK HERE to learn how.

2. Dark Brown Balsa Wood Flower Cake: When it came to making my wedding cake, I was inspired by the ladies and dudes over at Sweet and Saucy Shop in Long Beach, CA. They are also responsible for this lovely cake. You have to check out their website. They are some of the most talented cake designers I have ever seen.

3: Redneck Wineglasses: I love these. My in-laws actually bought my husband a pair and we used them as our toasting flutes at our wedding. No we did not have a rustic wedding in a barn. Even though I would have love to. We actually had a very elegant wedding, but the glasses brought the little touch of southern that is in both of our hearts. They were perfect.

4. Mason Jar Invitations:  Love these invitations? Guess what… They are FREE! Yep FREE! Just go to The Wedding Chicks and print them off for $0. They have tons of other free printables and downloads.

5. Wedding Signs: Wedding signs of all shapes and sizes are fantastic. And you don’t have to have a rustic wedding to make them work. No matter what your theme is, There are tons of places throughout your event to use signs. You can make them yourself with a little work and creativity, or you can go to etsy.com and find a vendor you like to make them for you. I love Etsy!

Save the Dates

Now that the holiday dust has settled, it is time for all those newly engaged brides to start planning their weddings. First thing on the agenda… Pick a date and tell people to save it! I think one of the most important details that sometimes gets overlooked is Save the Dates. You need to give your guests ample time to plan and prepare for your big event, especially if you are inviting a lot of out of towners. You would hate for someone not to be able to come, because they had a prior commitment. There are tons of fun, creative and inexpensive Save the Date options out there. Check them out!

1. Photobooth Strip: This is a super cute and fun option. It is a way of incorporating a picture of the newly engaged couple without delving out big bucks for a professional photographer. It is also a great way to give your guests a sneak peek into your wedding if you plan on having a photobooth at the reception.

2. Concert Poster: This is great Save the Date for music lovers. It is also a fantastic DIY project if you’ve got some time on your hands to design it yourself. Maybe you can make concert tickets to send as the actual invitation. Not feeling super creative today? No worries. Go to Linzmarie Designs and have Lindsay Zogas create one for you.

3. Pencil Us In: Don’t want to us a picture of you and your fiance? No problemo. This is great option that will still catch your guest’s eye without having to look cute in front of a camera. Get this option now on Etsy.

4.Caricature Magnets: I love these. I think they are so much fun and they stick to the fridge for fun and easy display. Check out Pose Prints and create your own personalize caricature Save the Date. They also make other stationery, like cards, note pads, business cards and even wedding programs.

5. Themed Cards: These are soooo much fun for anyone infatuated with the 50’s inspired tv show. But wait… You have not heard the best part yet… They are FREE! Yep… That’s right… FREE! Just go to The Wedding Chicks and download your own personalized Save the Date template.

6. Personalized Hot Sauce: These are great for lovers who want to share a little spice with their guests, or maybe for the bride and groom who are planning a rustic western inspired wedding, or maybe you just like the idea. You can get personalized hot sauce, bbq sauce, marinades dipping oils, anything really. Check them out on Etsy.

Inspiration Board – Nautical Wedding

1. Anchors Away Welcome Wedding Tote: Go to The Wedding Chicks Shop to personalize and purchase your own tote.$10 each or a set of 20 for $100. Sounds like a great deal to me!

2. Origami Boat Place Card: Go to Martha Stewart Weddings to learn how to set a shipshape table with paper-boat place cards.

3. Nautical Wedding Cake: A good cake can be hard to find. Especially this one, since it was made by Cake Occasions located in Australia. If you love it, have to have it, but aren’t an Aussie, just take the picture for inspiration into a reputable cake designer in your area… I am sure you can find someone who can create what you are looking for.

Best Dressed Celebrity Brides of 2011

Winter is in full force, which means brides are busy busy busy planning  for their upcoming Spring, Summer and Fall weddings. Personally, I am very jealous! It is a mere 2 months since my wedding, and I am already going through wedding planning withdrawals. To get my fix I have been creating wedding inspiration boards of all kinds, but today I decided to create a best dressed countdown for the 2011 celebrity brides. I thought it might offer some inspiration to the 2012 brides.

10. Molly Sims: Model extraordinaire, married Scott Stuber in Napa Valley, CA on September 24, 2011. Her dress was designed by Marchesa and I loved it from the back. As soon as she moved and I saw if from the front I fell a little less out of love. Correction, a lot less out of love. Too bad she couldn’t walk backwards down the aisle.

9. Sara Rue: Jenny Craig success story and actress, Sara Rue, married Kevin Price in Pacific Palisades, CA on May 21, 2011. She wore Amsale’s “Dahlia”, which is beautiful. The texture and caramely color offers so much depth, however, it did not flatter her new-found figure. I was very disappointed with the choice.

8. Reese Witherspoon: One of my faves, Reese Witherspoon, married Jim Toth in Ojai, CA on March 26, 2011. She also wore one of my faves, Monique Lhuillier, in a subtle blush. It was understated and perfect for a second wedding, but I a have also seen better from both Reese and Monique.

7. Tamera Mowry: “Sister Sister” star (or half star), Tamera Mowry, married Adam Housely in Napa Valley, CA on May 15, 2011. The twin donned a strapless Carolina Herrera wedding dress that was pretty from some angles and a little confusing from others. Sometimes I loved it and sometimes I am not sure how I felt about it. It was very hit or miss for me.

6. Lauren Bush: The niece of George W. Bush (Lauren Bush), married the son of Ralph Lauren (David Lauren) in Ridgway, CO on September 4, 2011. Of course her gown was designed by non other than, Ralph Lauren. It was high neck and open back… Enough to earn her the number 6 slot. However, when I heard she accompanied it with cowboy boots, I almost bumped her up a couple spots. I am a sucker for wedding dresses paired with cowboy boots. Do you think she will now go by Lauren Lauren? I soooo would. I might just change my name to Lauren Lauren. Sounds very sophisticated and cute all at the same time.

5. Nikki Reed: The now all grown up actress married Paul McDonald at Saddlerock Ranch in Malibu, CA on October 16, 2011. Nikki wore Tacori’s “Diamond Wedding Dress,” a silk organza gown with a silk satin organza overlay, fit-n-flare silhouette and a 72-inch train. I love a simple dress with a pop of bling.

4. Catherine Middleton: Pretty sure I don’t  need to inform anyone about the wedding heard round the world. I gave her the number 4 slot.

3. Sally Pressman: “Army Wives” star ,Sally Pressman, wore Kenneth Pool’s “Estelle” at her Santa Barbara wedding to David Rogers. The gown was gorgeous and would be perfect for a rustic wedding. The silk bodice offered structure, while the beaded tulle skirt added a sense of whimsicalness. The crystal beaded belt brought the entire look together.

2. Niecy Nash: The host of “Clean House”, Neicy Nash, married Jay Tucker in Malibu, CA on May 28, 2011. She wore a strapless wedding dress by Ines Di Santo with a lace Maria Elena headpiece. I love how fun and flirty her dress was, while still being formal. I definitely hugged her in all the right places!

1. Eva Amurri: The daughter of Susan Sarandon and Tim Robbins, married Kyle Martino in Charleston, North Carolina on October 29, 2011. Her dress was absolutely stunning, which is why she was named our number 1. I love the lace applique and neckline, and how her mother’s dress mimicked her gown so elegantly. Both dresses fit their silhouettes perfectly.

Inspiration Board – Chevron Inspired Wedding

My Northern California Wedding

My WeddingMy Wedding at a Glance

My wedding day was the most wonderful day of my life. Everything went wonderfully and was absolutely beautiful! I could not have asked for more, but of course I am a little biased. I do, however, take credit for the entire thing. I did have a “day of” wedding planner that took everything over the week before and ran the actual event, but other than that, I planned the entire thing all by myself. It was so much fun and I loved every moment of it. So much that even though I love my husband to death, I would totally get a divorce just so I could plan another wedding. Maybe I should spare hearts and just become an event planner.

The Dresses

Wedding DressI knew I wanted my dress months before I ever put it on. It was love at first sight and could not imagine wearing anything else, considering everything else in the wedding was centered around it. The invitations, the cake, the flowers, everything was inspired by my beautiful flowered skirt wedding gown. It was designed by Jenny Lee in Newport Beach, CA. It is from her Spring 2011 collection, however I changed the color from ivory to white and made it a sweetheart neckline. It was perfect! For the girls I decided to put the bridesmaids in purple and my junior bridesmaids and flower girl in a soft pink. All the dresses were the same satin finish with their own version of bow on the back. The flower girl’s skirt pink rose petals floating inside her skirt and little white shoes with a flower poof on the toe.

The Accessories

Wedding AccessoriesWhen it comes to jewelry, I am a minimalist. I am not one for necklaces or pearls. I decided to wear an old pair of clip on costume jewelry earrings that of course mimicked the roses on my dress. For my bridesmaids, I wanted them blinged out. They all wore beautiful (fake) diamond  encrusted earrings, necklaces and cocktail rings to match their blinged out dresses. For shoes, I wanted all of us to match, so my girls wore a black pair of close toed heels and I wore the matching pair in purple of course. I even got my Hubby to wear a pair of pink and purple socks. Lets just say I pay a little too close attention to detail sometimes. I also had a fabric flower in my hair that I had made special by a friend to match my dress. When the bridal party got to the reception, the bridesmaids were given pink parasols to use for our grand entrance. Instead of a normal bridal party entrance, where everyone is introduced and usually tries to do something funny, but ends up being too long and little awkward, we decided to hire a jazz band and do a Second Line into the room. It was perfect, because it fun and upbeat and definitely got the party started on the right foot. Plus we got to use the parasols as the perfect backdrop for our kings table. Halfway through the night the Hubby and I did a costume change for our first dance. We danced to “Time Of My Life” and did the choreographed dance from Dirty Dancing. I wore a short white dress with Mary Jane dance shoes that I stuck little Swarovski crystals all over. It took about 4,000 crystals and weeks to finish, but it was so worth it. Totally adorable! For our toasting flutes we used these awesome mason jar wine glasses. It was a touch of my country girl soul poking out of a very elegant affair. Thanks to my in-laws for those.

The Bouquets

Wedding BouquetsMy brooch bouquet was possibly my most favorite thing about my wedding, except for my dress of course. My mother in law made it for me to use at my rehearsal dinner, however, I loved it so much I decided to use it for the actual wedding. It was far too beautiful, both inside and out, to be wasted on the rehearsal. Along with her beautiful brooches, she got all the important women in my life to add to it. It is absolutely amazing, and I will cherish it forever.

The Flowers

Wedding FlowersObviously I did not need any flowers, thank God, because I wanted peonies, but I got married in late October, and it is very hard to find peonies in October. Somehow my amazing florist, Jeeryn of Tanjeeryn Designs, was able to find just enough for my girls. The bouquets were a beautiful mix of pink peonies and purple hydrangeas. The flower girl carried a pomander of purple mums. The boys had boutonniere with pink and purple roses accented with corresponding mums and greenery. One of my favorite touches, that I am sure a lot of people did not even notice, was our initials made out of flowers on the church doors.

The Stationery

Wedding StationeryAs I said the invitation was totally inspired by how it mimicked my wedding dress, but I fell in love with fullness that the purple gave the pink. Originally I wanted a pink and green wedding, but after I saw this gorgeous invitation suite by Sarka, of Citrus Press, the green was out and it was purple and pink all the way. I used the invitation design on everything from the table numbers and wedding programs to the menus and escort cards. Sarka was amazing and worked so hard to give me exactly what I wanted. The uniformed details were seamless.

The Favors

Wedding Candy BarWe had the most amazing favors. Not only were they adorable and useful, but there was a very special meaning behind them. My Hubby asked me to marry him while playing cards with my family. He discarded a joker with the words, “Will you marry me?”, written on it. It was perfect. So for our wedding favors, we had personalized decks with our picture on it made. We also had a pink and purple candy bar, which served as both decoration and favors. I made personalized Hershey Bar wrappers with our pictures on them and Hershey Kiss labels with our names on them. I know what you are thinking… And yes, I glued about 500 Hershey Kiss labels the week before the wedding.

The Cakes

Wedding CakesI am not a cake person, but I loved everything about my Wedding Cake. Even the way it tasted, which is surprising. I did a little something different for my cakes. I decided to have a fake Wedding Cake made, that had one real pink lemon flavored layer for us to cut at the wedding. The rest of the cake was made out of styrofoam. We then had multiple flavors of sheet cake in the back that we used for serving. This worked out great, because they not only was it cheaper, but I got to keep the top styrofoam part of the cake and have it on display in my house. It gives a whole new meaning  to the tradition of saving your wedding topper. We also had a Groom’s Cake. If you are not from the South, you might not know what that it is. In the South it is very common to have what is known as a Groom’s Cake. It is usually a fun flavor like chocolate or red velvet, and it tends to be decorated in a way that represents the Groom. Both of my cakes were made by Venus, of La Vie Douce Design. She did an amazing job replicating the cake I wanted. Perfection!

Well that pretty much sums up my wedding. I hope you enjoy, and if you are planning a wedding yourself, ohhhh how I envy you! Good Luck!

Cowboy Chic Couple’s Shower

Both of my Maids on Honor threw me the most amazing Couple’s Wedding Shower last summer. One of the most amazing things they did was they let me help. I get so excited about these types of things and wanted to try out some of my DIY ideas that I knew where not going to fit in with my wedding theme. I tried my best not to take over or be too controlling, because honestly this was their party and they were doing me a favor by letting me be involved.

Couple’s Cowboy Chic Shower Inspiration Board

Step 1: Pick a theme

Even though I am a California girl, I am a country girl at heart and had spent most of my adult life in Texas. Plus I was marrying an Alabama boy, so a southern theme was a no brainer. I decided to make it a little girly and call it Cowboy Chic, which really just means wear a dress and some cowboy boots and call it good.

Step 2: Pick a location

My grandmother was ever so generous to let us use her beautiful backyard. One of my favorite movies has always been Father of the Bride and I always wanted to get married in my grandmothers backyard or at least have the reception there. I knew that would never work, so I figured having a shower there would be the next best thing. Plus I did not have to travel very far once I got my dress on.

Step 3: Pick a date

Duh… but harder than you think. Accept the fact that you cannot accommodate everyone’s schedule. Impossible!

Step 4: Invitations

I scoured the internet for western themed ideas and pulled from various sources to finally come up with our finished product. I made them myself in PowerPoint. It would have been nice to have some higher tech software, but I made do with what I had. Maybe someday… I got the invitation paper from Michaels for like $10 (I had a 40% off coupon) and printed them off at home. It was so easy and fun!

Step 5: Decor

There were a couple of signature things I knew I wanted right away… I had been eyeing the Martha Stewart Pom Poms for a while and knew how fabulous they would look in my backyard in shades of pink. I think I ended up making about 50 of them. I loved them so much I could not bare throw them away after the party. We ended up saving them and used some for the rehearsal dinner, some on a sign my grandmother had made for us, and I even used a 3 of them as my bouquet at the rehearsal. The second item on the decor list was Mason Jars. We used the larger ones as vases on tables filled with Peonies and Sunflowers (Peonies are not cheap) and the smaller jars we used as drink glasses. You could fill them with your choice of liquor, Shiner Beer, Pink Signature Drink, Sweet Tea or wine (My girlfriend had labels made with our baby pictures put on the bottles. It was adorable and possibly my favorite detail at the party!)

Step 6: Food

Since it was a country, western, southern, cowboy chic, whatever you want to call it party, we had to have BBQ. We ordered the best California BBQ you can find (which is hard) and went to Armadillo Willy’s. I smuggled some Rudy’s BBQ Sauce home from Texas and had some friends make corn bread muffins and homemade potato salad. For dessert we had non other than warm apple pie and cold vanilla ice cream. Mmmmm I am getting hungry just talking about it.  It was absolutely delowcious!

Step 7: Favors

What is a party without favors? We made little S’More Favors for each guest with little personalized tags that said, “S’MORES, Y’all!”

Notes: It turned out to be a great party. We had way too much alcohol and food left over due to my fear of never having enough (sorry girls), but other than that no complaints here. It was fabulous and the girls did an amazing job. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.