Friday, July 31, 2009

just because it's friday...

i thought i'd post some lovelies to celebrate the end of the longest week in the history of the world. good grief, i'm glad it's friday!


okay... so, normally i'm opposed to cutting up perfectly good books.
but some of mine are beginning to show mold spots.
this would be a lovely way to repurpose them
rather than just throwing them away.
plus, come on... seriously?
books + plants = gorgeous
the most adorable garden stationery suite i've ever seen.
+ wouldn't that butterfly bouquet be PERFECT for a flower girl?
* sigh *
so lovely + whimsical.
i love the shapeliness + simplicity of the vases + the white
so airy.

original cake ideas rock.

this is tim's IDEAL wedding cake.
such a fun idea!

trees are old friends.
wouldn't it be fantastic to be able to pull something like this off
at an indoor venue?
long, swirly veils = love

this is going to be us in less than a month + a half!
happy weekend!!!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

moving week begins

it's started. last night we went to our new place to hand in our first month's rent + pick up the keys. we had packed up tim's car with things we had been storing at his mom's house + so have even moved in our first "load."

our landlords are completely awesome people + we love their dog. i'm thinking we'll probably have them over for a beer quite often.

tonight i'm having some girlfriends over to the old place to watch the best show EVER...

meanwhile, i'll pack up the last of the kitchen stuff + begin the dreaded process of cleaning the apartment thoroughly. (erg)

at least i have the consolation of a clean new home... it's really spotless, thanks to theresa + eric (the landlords).

pics of the move are on their way...

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

our first home

well... it's official. we have a place to live. (she releases the breath she'd been holding since the first of july)

we spent all of last week and some of the previous one looking. and looking. and looking. we found some gems + some real dives. but this was our favorite... and will become our first home together.

it's at the southeast corner of 23rd + dupont. north minneapolis is not my favorite part of the city, strictly speaking. but, honestly, our neighborhood is a little pocket of goodness in the heart of the dodgy side of town.

so... let me tell you about all the awesomeness that is encapsulated in our soon-to-be nest. front porch (i'm getting a porch swing!), fenced-in back deck (read: grill that won't be stolen), 1-car garage, free laundry (heck yessss), dishwasher, sweet woodwork, fireplace, french doors on the bedroom, newly remodeled bathroom, a backyard with space for a garden, wood floors, big picture windows... it's my dream place. i just completely love it.

here are some pictures. i can't wait to get all our stuff moved in. the super sweetest part of all is that i'll get to live there for six weeks before the wedding + before tim moves in. six weeks to make it a home for us. i'm so excited!

this is from the living room, looking into the dining room.
the entry is to the left (not pictured).
the bedroom is just off the dining room (on the left wall).
the kitchen is directly through the doorway on the far wall.
this is looking into the dining room from the bedroom.
the bathroom is through the bedroom on the left wall.
(not pictured)
kitchen with dishwasher + exposed brick.
love it!
on the wall opposite to the dining room
is a little sun room that will become
our office/guest bedroom.
this is our bathroom.
it's tiny, but gorgeous.
there are all these little "nooks" that are tiled into the wall.
the shower/bathtub is tiled floor to ceiling.
the owner did a really nice job of remodeling it.
so... there you have it! your own mini-tour of our new place. i'm planning more than a few dinner parties in the months following the wedding, so you'll have to come over + see it in person.

Monday, July 20, 2009


i realized that i still hadn't posted any pictures of the invitations. i thought it was about time to do so.

we purchased all the paper, the stamp, the "belly bands" (ugh! gross), the envelopes, the adhesive + the printing for 250 invitations for under $140. the total cost to assemble one invitation was $0.54.

we were able to keep the weight of the invitation down by not including rsvp cards (i mean... who really uses those things, anyhow? just a bunch of wasted paper + postage), so it was only $0.44 to mail each envelope. tim's mom (who is a genius), bought about 750 "forever" stamps just before the postage went up. she was kind enough to sell them to us at the $0.42 rate.

so... each invitation only cost $0.96 to assemble + mail. pretty danged awesome, if you ask me.
a whole bunch of my girlfriends volunteered their cutting, folding, glue-ing, stuffing expertise + we were able to complete the entire process in four evenings.

i hand-stamped every single invitation three times + every envelope once. between the save-the-date cards + the invitations, i used that stamp over 1,250 times. i got our money's worth out of it, to say the least. but i tell ya what, if i never see that stamp again, it will be too soon for me.

alright... here are the pics.
the front of the invitation.

belly band. (such a terrible name!)
little swatch of paper, dictionary page background

with our initials + the date of our wedding.


close up of the inside

i used century gothic + edwardian script

information sheet.
this included info on hotels, how to rsvp, our wedding blog, etc.

there is a map to the church on the back.

the labels were a take on an idea i got from martha.
you can get the template here:

the labels wrap around the envelope so that the return address is on the back. pretty great, huh? especially if you're lazy like me + don't want to hand-address 250 envelopes.

i printed the labels on the same paper as we used for the center of the invitations. we used a rotary cutter to dice them up + that double-sided permanent adhesive tape that comes in the handy-dandy cartridge to attach them to the envelopes. we didn't have any trouble with the post office or with people receiving their invitations. i was a little worried, so... phew!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

tying it all together - volume 1

i've been to a lot of weddings in my time. roughly 72 in the past decade alone. i've been to weddings that cost the bride's family hundreds of thousands of dollars. i've been to weddings that took place in government offices. i've seen fountains of expensive, well-designed floral pieces. i've seen bouquets of wildflowers hand-picked that morning. i've seen brides freak out over the tiniest inconvenience. i've seen terrible things happen + watched brides laugh them off as no big deal.

my favorite weddings, though, have usually been the ones that are full of things that show the personality, the journey of the bride + groom. the ones where ingenuity + originality, rather than one's now-empty pocketbook is on display.
one of the things we are determined to avoid in our wedding is the tendency to spend tons of money on things that look pretty, but have no emotional or symbolic connection to our relationship. we've scrapped everything that felt like an expected motif or rote tradition + tried to incorporate things that felt like us.

we've entered the "fun" stage of the wedding planning. the invitations are mailed, the bridal party accounted for, the dress + suit purchased + fitted... now it's just the details. i adore details. + so, i thought i might clue you all in a little...

the color scheme: ivory-champagne-caramel-chocolate brown-black...

we want the wedding to feel like the well-worn pages of favorite volume of old poetry, or a sepia-toned photograph of a long-lost relative. rich + warm. faded + comfortable.

we've chosen this palette not for the look alone, but because we wanted to incorporate the feeling of history. i'm wearing tim's great-grandmother's wedding ring. it's been in the family since 1910. we're both interested in the roots of things. much of our time together has been spent whiling away the hours in 37-room bookstores, dusty map shops, historical museums. we love to go visit with our grandparents, to listen to their stories + the stories of those who went before them.

my dress is ivory. tim is wearing a black suit, ivory shirt + tie. the honor corps will be in black: the women in black dresses of their choosing with a wrap in varying shades of the spectrum listed above, the men in black suits of their choosing, black shirt + a tie in varying shades of the same spectrum. the only stipulation for attire (aside from the primary color: black) is that the honor corps member choose something that he or she would actually wear again.

i've purchased some pretty radical shoes. bright red satin slides. they look like something from the forties. i just completely love them. they don't exactly match the color scheme, but i couldn't be all wedding-y about the shoes. i just couldn't.

we've already covered the topic of hairstyle in a previous post. so i won't go there again. i guess the next thing to cover would be the ceremony space + all other elements therein.

we're getting married at hope presbyterian church in richfield, minnesota.

we'll have the main aisle roped off with ribbon + little paper birds made from antique sheet music, old buttons (that a sweet lady i met on craigslist mailed me for free) + twine.
i saw this idea of using flower petals to make a pattern up the aisle. loads of flower petals can get expensive, though. my thought was, "hey... let's make confetti from old books + use that instead!" reduce. reuse. repurpose. recycle. confetti is easier to clean up, too. i'm thinking big confetti... a la ticker-tape parade. about an inch wide + 2 inches long.

we will be using books in several ways: the ring "pillow" will be a stack of books (each significant in its own right -- a family bible, the book tim used to propose to me, a journal i've kept since childhood, etc.) tied together with ribbon. we'll use piles of books around the stage as foundations for candles, jars of flowers + the like.

as for the ceremony itself, we'll be doing things a little differently. we want to keep it short. 30 minutes max. i will walk myself down the aisle + my parents will be waiting at the end of it to give us their blessing. there will be no unity candle, though we will take communion together. grandma joyce will play a hymn during communion. there will not be the usual scripture reading. rather, rachel heaner (sister of the groom) will read an excerpt from one of our favorite books. we will use the traditional vows -- there's just something so holy + solemn that is missing without them -- as well as some that we write ourselves. the songs that we've chosen for the processional + recessional are far from traditional... so, uhhm... prepare yourselves.

tim + i wrote (+ continue to write) literally hundreds of letters to each other while we were dating. i have a box full of them in my bedroom. i saw this idea for programs that looked like telegrams + thought it was spectacular. it didn't really fit with our theme, nor did it have any real connection to either of us. but it started me thinking of the letters we wrote. i decided to incorporate the idea of written correspondence into the wedding by making the ceremony programs look like letters written from tim to me + vice versa. (i'm so excited about this! can't wait to make them.)

okay... enough detail for now. more next week.

Monday, July 6, 2009

it's almost real now...

i'm currently printing the invitations to our wedding. that makes me happy in ways i cannot even name. i think that the elation comes from the sense that, once the invitations are out, i will have jumped one of the final hurdles.

not sure if that sense is in any way based in reality... but for now, any relief is a good thing.

yep. we'll take it.

up next: find an apartment.

i'll post pictures of the invitation making process sometime this week. for now, though... keep your fingers crossed that the printer doesn't give up on me!