Thursday, April 30, 2009


So, the inspiration was abound, now the reality had to be laid... yup, it was time for this engineer to bring out a little ANTM (yes, I love that show more than a fresh bride-to-be loves 'say yes to the dress'). I had worked on my poses... you know, got a friend to take some pics and tried to see what works and what doesn't. While I didn't have Tyra scrutinizing my fierce-ness, I thought I had an idea of when to smile with my eyes, when to think about something sexy, and when to be bold and downright gorgeous. Did this work in the actual e-session... uh, well, let's just say that I probably wouldn't continue on "in my hopes of becoming blogger-brides next top e-session model", but overall, I am pretty happy with how the pics turned out. (OH, and I did learn that profile shots are NOT on the "must-shoot" list... let's try to minimize the nose people!!)

I will share with you the photos that our artistic visionaries posted on their blog, and when I actually get around to purchasing the whole set of files from them (that is, if I can manage to massage our post-thanksgiving-dinner-TIGHT wedding budget to find room for the expense), I will post more. But, for now, feast your eyes dear friends...

This next one makes me laugh every time, because we were having so much trouble kissing this way. Our photogs told us that Ian's nose had to be behind mine in the kissing shots, and we never kiss this way (we always tilt to the right, and here we had to tilt to the left)... felt so weird, and we could barely keep straight faces!!

I really like this next one...

OK, this one might be my favorite... city, red shoes, and heh, I'm not gonna lie... I think the legs look good... what do you think??

So, there you have it... the whole session was pretty fun, and although a bit awkward at the beginning (especially the whole, 'pretend we're not here and kiss... but do it really slowly so it adds drama to the picture!'), it was great experience for the actual wedding pics. We really have a fun comfort level with Kevan and Duane at 6:8 Photography, who made things really simple, not too pose-annoying, and kept things light. I definitely recommend this practice round to get the jitters out, and preferably with your wedding photographers to learn about each other!

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So if you read my post about wedding stress, marriage, and love, you had a glimpse into the day that was our engagement pictures!! Although the lead up to the shoot was shaky at best, I did eventually find something to wear that I was pretty happy with, I did remember to enjoy the moment, and yes, I (we) did end up having a blast! Our photographers, Kevan and Duane from 6:8 Photography have been the objects of my affection since I first saw their work back in September. Actually, it was these pictures, of Zoe and Quinn, who got married at our wedding venue, that really hit me... (PS... check out our venue... gorgeous right??)

all pictures from 6:8 Photography

Kevan and Duane have shot some really amazing engagement sessions too, ranging from nature-inspired to edgy urban shoots. Here are some of my favorites from their e-sessions...

the nature pics:
and the urban beauties:

Of course, all pictures borrowed from 6:8 Photography

So, with our wedding being in the mountains, the urban pics really sent me a droolin... please please please can we have graffiti and parkades in our e-pics?!?!

Stay tuned today (I swear I promise I will be back!!) for OUR session... I think you will likey :)

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Thursday, April 23, 2009

Practical, brave, and insightful

Please, head over to A Practical Wedding (the image of course is from her blog), where Meg offers such great insight into the Wedding Industrial Complex. Her words are to the point, always practical, and her perspective of weddings and marriage are down right brave.

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Wednesday, April 22, 2009

A heavenly perch

So, my man and I have decided to fore go the option of having a ring bearer or flower girl, mainly because we are trying to keep things simple, and because my little brother and sister, who filled those jobs at my sisters wedding, are getting a bit old to do it now, and my nephew who would be my first choice, is just too little. So, this should mean that we don't need a ring pillow right?? Well, this get-out-of-jail-free card was a sigh of relief until I saw this:
I originally saw the post over at weddingbeePRO, then found the bride's blog, and ultimately found the website of the amazing designer, LLubav. This is simply beautiful. Honestly, the thought of paying ANY money for a sleazy white satin pillow with a colored ribbon holding onto our rings made me cringe. But this pillow is dreamy. Sent from heaven like a Westin mattress, all for the comfort of our symbols of love. Did I mention I love it?? Well, I am sure it is out of our price range (a design deposit is $50), but for those of you out there who have a bit more cash to spend, seriously check this girl out. She does tonnes of other great things too, like garland and headbands... adorable!!

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Monday, April 20, 2009

My bride crush... and my shoes!!

So, inevitably, with the overwhelming amount of wedding porn out here in cyberspace, you will crush, swoon, envy, dream, drool, even whimper over some of the dresses, shoes, rings, flowers, stationary, or food posted on bridal-blogs. Have you ever had a downright crush on a bride?? I have!! I'm talking, make your heart skip a beat, red in the cheeks imagining what it would be like to be her for a day, looking at yourself in the mirror and wondering if you could ever look so dreamy... oh ya, I have a serious bride crush!!

I first met Beka over at Snippet and Ink, where her stunning wedding to Jesse was documented. This wedding is clearly an out-of-my-league wedding, complete with calligraphed invitations and a custom painted dance floor, Armani and Louboutins, and surprise vintage cocktail rings, but still, I dream of being her. Just look at this picture of her getting her hair done...
I still get little pitter-patters in the ol' heart when I see that picture.
Don't even get me started on the shoes people... come on, these are simply the PERFECT wedding shoes... ever!! Here's a close up:
Hers of course are Louboutins, and her sister's are Manolos... definitely an out-of-my-league-er!! These next pictures really seem to capture her confident sophistication. In my bride-crush love story, she is young, but wise beyond her years, and is comfortable knowing she has met her soul mate. She is exquisite and unique, fashionable and understated, and secretly, I think she has a wicked sense of humour (I wasn't lying when I told you this was a serious crush!!). Her beau is her best friend and confident (not to mention cute!), and together they are bliss.

I just wonder what it would be like to be so friggin beautiful...

So, where has the bride-crush left me?? Well, I know I am not her, and our wedding is definitely not theirs, but rest assured, she has inspired me in one small way... well, maybe two! First, I absolutely adore her hair... I like it in that 2nd picture, where she is still getting it done... half down. I haven't had a hair trial, but I will definitely be taking that picture in for inspiration. But the major inspiration came from those shoes. It is out of the question for us to be spending Louboutin $$ on footwear, considering our small small small budget, but I swear to gosh, if I had scene those shoes in a store, I probably would have died and gone to heaven (and charged them!!). But, suffice it to say, I am not the proud of these amazing shoes... (PS, I am definitely NOT the only bride swooning over these... they were also posted over at Elizabeth Anne in blue)

Now, I had told myself explicitly that I would only buy shoes if I found just the ones for me, and that I would wear something out of my massive shoe closet if I didn't find the fabulous pair that I dreamed about. I knew I would know when I saw them, and this ended up being true. I had my eye out for my-wedding-shoe when I found these... first pair I tried on, and they are perfect!!
I adore my shoes... they are purple satin t-straps with a gorgeous rose-bud at the toe. I found them at Town Shoes, and just knew they would be perfect. They look amazing withe the purples in my hair piece, and add that perfect little pizazz to my ivory outfit!! Whatcha think?? Crush worthy?? Well, definitely crush inspired!! Have you crushed over any bride in particular?? What did they inspire you to do??

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Thursday, April 16, 2009

A little thing called love...

found here

So, this isn't exactly a wedding post, but more of a marriage post. Life doesn't stop when you're getting married, and the last couple of weeks has definitely been testament to that. Background info for this post: I am ~3 months away from finishing my PhD... raise the roof people!! (Do you remember when raising the roof was cool?!?! Those were the good ol' days!) This means that in addition to planning a wedding, and more importantly, a marriage, I am working around the clock analysing data, writing chapters, banging my head against my computer (hello shaken computer syndrome!!), and occasionally, crying!
The crying is like a nameless beast, that rears its ugly head at the most in-opportune time... like 1 hour before our engagement pictures on Friday night. Makeup... check! Hair... check! Outfit... oh-my-god, I have nothing to wear, which reads like "she's vulnerable, an attack by the nameless beast would be effortless... let's get her!!". What the f?? Puffy red eyes is really not my best look, so I quickly got things under control, but let's be serious people, the stress in my life is overwhelming at times. And it would appear the stress is being carried in a really crappy way when you are trying to slim down and tone-up for all these damn photo ops that is wedding life!! Yes, that's right brides, I am carrying my stress around my waist... attractive right?!
So, in addition to the list in my life that reads something like this:
  1. Figure out what the mutha my data is trying to tell me
  2. Write my chapters for my thesis
  3. Graduate
  4. Wedding... hold on, lets break it down into things that are on my mind now:
  5. Invites... and my gorgeous envelopes... get em done!!
  6. Ceremony... my creative (ie. romantic) juices have dried up like Joan Rivers' ovaries
  7. Dress... alterations, undergarments, etc.
  8. Talking to my dad about the fact that he will not be walking me down the aisle... (that's a story for a whole nutha post)

... in addition to those immediate issues, I now have to figure out a way to manage stress, so my cortisol levels come back to normal, so I can shed this stress weight that has found the prime real estate around my mid-section!!

But wait, love... the little thing called love I alluded to in the title of this post... let me tell you about the saving grace I have in my life right now. My man has unconditional love for me. full stop. sigh. It's the kind of love that I don't have to think about, because it is safe and sound in our hearts... going absolutely nowhere. He loves the crap outta me, and I can see it, past the alligator tears that well up when confronted by seemingly insurmountable barriers, can hold onto it, like a lifeline out of a raging river. He pulls me out of it, into safe waters, where we can discuss my fears, anxieties, hopes, expectations. He has helped me realize that if life throws curve balls, you gotta hit 'em outta the park! So, engagement session... done! We really did have fun, and while some of the pics can't hide the weight gain, they also can't hide our love for each other.

check back soon to catch a glimpse of some of the photos!!

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Thursday, April 9, 2009

Colour Combos Considered

Created over at

OK, I considered, and selected, mostly by default, and then I made a gorgeous image!! Here's the evolution of the colors that will be seen at the wedding...

You will notice I refuse to say my "wedding colours", instead hinting that different colours will be seen, incorporated, or suggested. One thing is for sure, my dress is IVORY. After that, the colour choices have been somewhat organic, inspired by our setting.. the mountains!! We will have greys and indigos (think mountains and river rock!), browns and greens (think forest and meadows), and wheat!! Yes, I have a thing for wheat!! It has no doubt popped into the whole planning process once or twice. I am a prairie girl, so the wheat is mandatory!!

this makes me swoon...

The story of my three bridesmaids definitely needs a bit of explanation. Here's the family tree: I have an older sister, Candy-Cane. Candy-Cane (or CC for short) is the 2nd oldest cousin on my dad's side, preceded by Jelly-Bean (JB) by9 months. JB's sister is Pea-ah (P-ah), who is only 2 months older than me. Did you get that... JB (32, my cousin), CC (31.5, my sista), P-ah (28.5, cousin, JB's sista), then me = 4 Musketeers!! OK, you got that sorted! CC got married first, 3 years ago, followed by P-ah who got married 2 years ago. The bridesmaids in both weddings were the remaining 3 of the 4 musketeers... and the same will hold true in my wedding.

So, the point of this discussion, is of course, bridesmaids dresses! Well, in CC and P-ah's weddings, the 3 girls wore the same dresses, and while some considered one or the other pretty nice, there was also a few very negative responses to wearing named dresses... and I should know, cause I wore one that made me look like a stuffed sausage (see if you can spot the dress I didn't like, below)! Of course, all my whining and complaining (to non-involved parties of course) is coming back to haunt me, but I am fighting off the demons with one chosen defense: PICK YOUR OWN DRESS GIRLS!!

moi!, JB, CC, P-ah

P-ah, CC, Moi, JB

Seems like a fair approach right? Well, it has gone extremely well, the girls each chose a dress in one of the three named colors (brown family, purple family - but more on the greyish side, and the grey family). P-ah just had a baby, and was 8 months pregnant when the other two girls were buying their dresses, so I picked one up for her on a whim... in the grey family. It was $99. Not bad right?!?! Well, fast forward three months, she has a beautiful baby boy, and the dress fits, but more importantly she, she like it!! YAY!! CC picked up an off-the-rack (ie. CLEARANCE-RACK) Banana Republic dress in the brown family... and it is STUN-ning!! How much you ask?? $65!! YEEAAHH!! And finally, when CC and I were out shopping for my mom's dress, we picked up a gorgeous little number for miss JB, the pickiest of the bunch. It is sexy, stylish, and the most beautiful purplish-grey colour ever! And the final number... $68!! WHAT?!?! Three dresses for $233!! This of course was less than the cost of ONE of the dresses in each of the prior weddings!! SCORE!!

So, here is the lineup of dresses:

CC's dress... it looks purple here, but in person it looks brown from afar, and on closer inspection, has a metallic purple undertone

Next in line, the gorgeous P-ah... Charcoal grey silk with sequin embellishment

And then we have JB and sexy little number... love it!! It's the grey-purple, and JB is getting the neckline adjusted to a V-neck to match the other girls.
So, those are the dresses... I wish I could figure out my cheap digital camera so I could show the actual colors of the dress, but I think you get the idea. In the end, I will have 3 bridesmaids that look amazing, are comfortable in their dresses, are NOT broke after having bought them, and, if they like, can most certainly wear them again... I know, every bride says that, but I think they will!!

Whatcha think??

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Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Back it up now... meeep... meep... meep...

Sorry for the title, but that is what I was saying in my head... you know how the trucks make that noise when they are in reverse?? anyone??

Ok, so what I wanted to do was back up to the beginning... I'm talking pre-engagement, pre-ANY-vendors, right about the time I learned of this amazing world of wedding blogs... and etsy!! Two amazing finds right?? Well, it took no time at all to get turned out to Miss Myra over at Twigs & Honey. Before I knew where we were getting married (ok, we had a couple ideas, but nothing was finalized), before I knew what my dress was, before I had even thought of my hair, ladies, I knew what my boutonnieres would look like!! No jokin', Myra's bouts were my new found obsession. Her collection of simply spectacular creations was the inspiration behind my first inspiration board... oh, who am I kidding, it WAS my inspiration board...

created using Mosaic Maker

I wasn't kidding... I swooned over this girl like a tween over Zac Efron... I needed her designs to be a part of our wedding!!

It is no secret that Myra is crazy busy, so I contacted her back in December (nope, still wasn't engaged, still didn't have a venue??) to get the ball rolling, to get in queue, to reserve my spot, to get on the VIP list!! Yes, it was a bit early, and yes, she did subtly tell me she needed a couple weeks, not 10 months to prepare my order, and that I needed to know what I wanted before I put my order in, BUT, the important part was... she was gonna make them girls!! I felt like I had backstage passes to a Britney concert... I was in!!

Long story short, she was an absolute DREAM to work with, and made me feel like I was the most important, if not her only, customer/bride. She worked with me to figure out which veil I actually wanted (apparently "I love them all" doesn't work the best), to get the feel of our wedding, and ultimately, I left the design decisions up to her... and I think I made the right choice!! I received my purchases in the mail 2 days ago, and I LOVE LOVE LOVE them!! She did such a great job!! For now, I will show you the pics from her site of my items, until I can take some decent shots of them on my own... I still need to figure out how to wear the veil, after which I will show you all!!

my veil and headpiececlose-up of my headpiece

mother of the bride hairpiece
bridesmaids hairpieces (the centre had the small beads added after the photo was taken)Wrist corsages for VIP women (grandmas, moms, etc)

The bouts... in all their glory!! (1groom, 3 groomsmen, the rest VIP males)

So, what do you think?? I am super happy with how they all turned out. I LOVE the elements of wheat in the bouts, which I requested, and the mix of browns, purples, greens, and greys (the colors I have ended up incorporating for the wedding day). Admittedly, I was expecting the bouts to be a bit more purple, in line with the GORGEOUS hair pieces and corsages, but I love them all the same!!

It is just so satisfying knowing that you can get what you want, as long as you budget for it... these were a pretty big chunk out of our very conservative budget, but I was willing to compromise on other flower elements (ie. centre pieces, more on those later) to afford these unique, whimsical pieces that I simply adored.

So, in the end, it is the uniqueness of these bouts that spring-boarded our vision for the day... weird? I dunno, I think when it all comes together, it will be just right, if not perfect! Of course it is family and friends that are our main focus, but if the look surrounding the laughs is one of creativity, whimsy, and simplicity, I have met my goal!!

What served as inspiration in the early days of your planning??

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