Dearest brides to be, if I could give you one piece of wedding advice, it would be this: buy your groomsmen nice socks as part of their bridal party gifts. If not, you might just end up like me, with a photo like this one…
Gotta love boys and their inability to prepare for things ;) Hehe…At least I can happily say that my hubby was prepared with some nice dress socks.
As promised, this is the second of many in the “Meet My Vendors” series. In an attempt to help other East Tennessee brides choose wedding vendors, this series will present my dead honest reviews of the people who made my big day possible.
So without further adeau, meet Lisa of Knox Planning, my day-of coordinator…
If you’ve been a long-time follower of this blog and/or my old blog, PRetty Social, you may have heard of Lisa before. As discussed, in a January 2010 post about social media and online engagement, I knew Lisa before Michael and I were planning a wedding, and when I first got engaged and began tweeting questions and crowdsourcing to find my wedding vendors, Lisa was one of the people who really helped me. She provided tips and vendor referrals as a friend, never once plugging that she wanted me to hire her. Long story short, at the point I decided I wanted a day-of coordinator, I didn’t think of anyone else but Lisa.
So now that my big day has come and gone, how would I review Lisa and Knox Planning? I would highly recommend her to anyone! Honestly speaking, I don’t know how I could have pulled off the wedding without her!
Even though I only hired her for the day-of, she still offered answers to any and all questions I had leading up to November 6. In addition, when my wedding DJ canceled just 4 days before the wedding, Lisa was the one who found me a replacement that fit my very tight budget.
Having Lisa around was the key to my sanity in the days leading up to the wedding, and of course on the wedding day itself. Thanks to Lisa, I was able to relax on my wedding day (at least when it came to the setup of the ceremony and reception) knowing that everything would be taken care of when I arrived…and it was. She kept Michael and I on track all day, and really just made everything run so smoothly. Honestly, I don’t think I could have done it without her, and needless to say, Lisa gets my seal of approval.
Lisa and Knox Planning are based in Knoxville, but she currently coordinates events throughout the US, so if you’re looking for an awesome and super-helpful event planner, definitely check out Knox Planning!
And to Lisa, thank you! We really could not have done it without you and we appreciate everything you’ve done for us!
Long before the wedding, I had already decided I wanted to find an alternative to the traditional guest book. But while I had a ton of ideas, when it came down to it and we began to run out of wedding budget, I really just needed to do something cheap. That’s when I decided on this super-cheap non-traditional take on the guest book…
Honestly speaking, this cost me about $10-15.
All I did was get four different colored card stocks from Jo-Ann (the same ones I used for my DIY banners) and cut them into rectangles slightly larger than your normal index card. Then, I just grabbed some cool sprapbooking gel pens (also from Jo-Ann, purchased on a 50% off coupon), a little vase to put them in, and set it all up on a table with a sign printed from my computer in a frame from the dollar store. And voila!
And now that my wedding photos are back, I’m planning to take the wonderful notes everyone wrote us and put them in a scrapbook with our favorite wedding photos. I’m sure I’ll be blogging it when I’m done : )
This is the first of many in the “Meet My Vendors” series. In an attempt to help other brides in East Tennessee (and beyond in this case) choose wedding vendors, this series will present my dead honest reviews of the people who made my big day possible.
Within days of choosing our wedding date, I went on the hunt for a photographer for our big day. Honestly, having an awesome photographer was my top priority and I wanted to make sure I was able to get who I wanted. After all, the longer you wait, the faster the good ones get taken up. And once the wedding’s over, the photos really are the things that help you remember all the details of the day for a lifetime.
Anyway, after a LOT of Googling and crowdsourcing, I reached out to a TON of photographers. I narrowed them down first by style, then by price. (It’s important to note here that photography was something I knew I’d splurge a bit on, so price wasn’t my main focus. However, I did come across photographers who were trying to charge around $20K!!! Needless to say, they didn’t make the cut.) Long story short, Jennie seemed to fit exactly what we were looking for, so Michael and I scheduled our first meeting with her.
Upon meeting with Jennie, we knew she was the one. We didn’t even bother interviewing anyone else because not only is Jennie’s portfolio amazing, but she is just one of those people you automatically love. She was just a perfect fit for us and our wedding!
Michael and I had an absolute blast doing an engagement session with Jennie back in the spring, and she did an awesome job capturing our personalities in our photos. Take a look at a few of my favorites from that session…
And then I was seriously floored when I saw what she was able to do with our wedding photos. There really are no words. She’s just awesome at what she does and was totally able to take photos completely reflective of us and our wedding. See for yourself…
Needless to say, I would HIGHLY recommend Jennie Andrews Photography to any bride. While Knoxville’s her home and she has a bad-ass office downtown, Jennie services the entire Greater East Tennessee area and most of Western North Carolina with no additional travel charges (up to 120 miles). So seriously, if you’re looking for an awesome photographer who will give you amazing photos, you must talk to Jennie! I promise you won’t regret it : )
So to Jennie, thank you! You made our big day so fun and officially have given us the hardest job in the world trying to pick out our favorite photos to print. They’re all so great, and we can’t wait to have another life milestone so we can work with you again in the future!
Ok, so this post originally appeared on the blog the month prior to my wedding, but now that wedding photos are back, I’ve decided to re-vamp this post to show the complete project, as my initial post just showed the frame — not the full escort card display. Enjoy!
One thing I knew all along in my wedding planning was that I did not want the traditional escort card display with a bunch of folded cards on a table. I knew I wanted something a little unique that I could turn into a fun DIY project for myself, and this was the result…
This was actually a pretty easy project. Here’s what you’ll need:
Large picture frame (or a few depending on how many escort cards you need to fit)
Spray paint (unless the frame is already in your desired color)
Batting (I just used the cheapest, polyester one they had)
Escort cards (I used gift tags that I embellished with lace)
First, I spray painted all 3 of my frames gold, along with my push pins, as they didn’t sell gold ones at the store that I went to. After everything was dry, I started to assemble my display like this…
Cut the foam core so that it fits into the frame. If the frame came with a cardboard back, you can use this as a measuring tool.
Cut a piece of batting so that it fits around the foam core. I made mine about an inch or 2 longer on each side.
Staple the batting to the foam core, making sure it fits very tightly around it.
Cut your fabric the same way you did the batting — about an inch or 2 longer on each side.
Staple your fabric to the foam core, pulling each side tightly to ensure a snug fit.
Take your finished piece of foam core and place it into the frame. It should fit snugly. Use the tabs that normally hold the picture in place to hold your foam core.
Pin your escort cards to the display.
And there you have it! How are you doing your escort card display?
Well, it’s been a long two months, but our wedding photos are finally back (all 900 of them)! And now it’s time to begin the wedding day recap I’ve been dying to share with you all.
Michael and I were married on an abnormally cold November day. It was the 6th to be exact. Luckily, we had an awesome photographer who somehow managed to make it look like we were perfectly comfortable outside in 30 degree weather. She’s good.
Our nuptials took place on the back veranda of the gorgeous and historic L&N train station, overlooking World’s Fair Park, and our reception followed inside. It was one of those receptions where everyone drinks, dances, and ultimately has an absolute blast. (That was what we were going for.)All in all, it couldn’t have been a more perfect day.
Here’s a brief sum-up of our wedding ceremony & reception, in photos…
But of course, because it’s my own wedding, I can’t boil it down to one real wedding post. So instead, I’m going to share the details of Michael’s & my big day piece by piece over the next few weeks. This will just serve as your teaser for the time being : )
From DIY projects, to a “Meet My Vendors” series, in addition to the wedding planning lessons I learned along the way, I’m going to share it all. So stay tuned. Tomorrow, we’re starting with some DIY.
Also be sure to check out my Flickr page later this week for the full gallery of photos!
This weekend, I finished up one of the projects I was really excited about — my DIY cake stands!
I originally saw this idea mentioned on Pizzazzerie and have been pretty smitten with the idea ever since. After all, I’ve swooned over Rosanna cake stands, but I really just couldn’t bring myself to spend all that money. Instead, these past few weeks I’ve been hunting for supplies and assembling these beauties. All in all, three cake stands cost me about $50 total to create.
And (in theory), they were pretty easy to make and assemble.
[SIDE NOTE: First try through, I did coat number 1 in matte finish spray paint, but coat 2 in glossy finish. Bad call. Coat number 2 cracked as soon as it dried, and I then had to use paint stripper -- which is a super intense chemical -- and remove all the paint and start over. Needless to say, this project was a little more time-consuming than I planned. Choose your spray paint wisely.]
But yeah, easy to assemble ; ) If you’re thinking of making your own gorgeous little cake stands, here’s how I did it…
First, I started with a few key supplies:
Candle stick holders — I found mine at HomeGoods and Ross for $6-9 a piece.
Plates — The large one is from HomeGoods ($15) and the smaller ones were from Walmart ($1.50/each). I also happened to see plates at the Dollar Tree after the fact that would have worked.
Gloves — I hear Gorilla Glue is a nightmare if you get it on your skin.
Then, I began to assemble like so…
I took the candle stick holders outside and spray painted them. Because the ones I chose had lots of ridges, I flipped them over half-way through to make sure I got the paint in all the cracks. Be sure to cover the surface you’re painting on!
Once dry, I brought the candle stick holders back inside to glue them to my plates. Following the instructions on the Gorilla Glue packaging, I affixed the candle stick holders and the plates, put heavy books on top to hold it tight, and let it sit for a few hours.
Because of my first spray paint mishap, I waited a full week to do the final step — adding another coat of spray paint, this time to the whole stand. I placed the cake stands face down (spray paint is not food-friendly) and painted the candle stick holders and the bottom of the plates, thus making it look like one nearly seamless piece. Because the edges of my larger, square plate came up a bit in some areas (guess that’s why it was at HomeGoods), I then used fine sandpaper to sand any paint that went too far onto the top of the plate.
And voila! Cake stands!
Now I just can’t wait to put these beauties on my dessert tables. The larger stand is for Michael’s 3-tiered rice crispy treat groom’s cake, and the 2 smaller stands are for some delicious Italian cookies that my grandmother is bringing down from Jersey!
And once the wedding is over, I’m going to re-spray paint these babies red so they match my kitchen! Gotta love items you can recycle!
As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, I spent this past weekend working on as many DIY projects as I possibly could. Today, I’d like to share a very fun and easy project that I think will really add some oomph to my reception decor and to Michael’s & my getaway car – these cute DIY banners!
I initially made this first one for our dessert table. However, I might end up using this one for our bridal party table and creating another for the dessert table. We’ll see.
I’m planning to put the “Just Married” banner on the back of Michael’s Subaru AKA our getaway car.
Both were super easy to make! Here’s what you need:
4″ x 4″ cards — I actually used nice cardstock/scrap book paper from JoAnn’s and cut it down to size
3″ circular labels
Basically, all you have to do is print the letters on the labels, stick the labels to your squares, punch two holes in each card, and string it all together. Ta da! Easy enough, right?
As I write this, it’s 9pm on Monday night, and I’m having a celebratory drink. Why? Because my wedding invitations are finally in the mail!
After about 4 consecutive weekends of assembling these guys, this DIY project is finally complete! (And that doesn’t include all the design time I spent a few months ago). But it was all worth it! Want to see? Take a look at each piece…
I uploaded my own design and printed them at VistaPrint on linen card stock. They came out surprisingly well!
Of course, I’m a detail-oriented person, so I wasn’t going to just stuff all that into an envelope and send it off. I had to put my own personal touch on each set. And because the craft store only had a limited amount of supplies, I ended up with two different finished styles…
I was also pleased to find some adorable King and Queen of Hearts stamps at the post office. While I initially intended to go the vintage stamp route, post office stamps just proved to be easier. As a perfectionist, I used the post-it technique to keep the stamps perfectly attached. Check it out…
All in all, I’d say the hard work was worth it, and I’m very happy with the finished project! What do you think? Which finished invite package do you like better?