Thursday, June 23, 2011

72 days and lost in color

...paint colors that is. I've been looking at color swatches for months now trying to decide the color palette for our soon-to-be new home. When I was little, I hated spending Saturday afternoons trudging through boring Home Depot with my parents to buy DIY things for the house (my Dad doesn't believe in hiring handy man or gardeners)....but now I actually find myself begging Will to take me to Home Depot on the weekends so I can hoard paint color swatches and pick out small samples of wood flooring that we can use to envision the look of our future home. Even with our growing collection color of paint and floor samples, I am still having trouble committing to a particular color. The two main color groups we have been considering are green or beige. We have been leaning more toward a light and calming green until I saw these beautiful creamy rooms that bring so much warmth and light. I just fell in love~

three above via delightbydesign

I also found great inspiration from reading Young House Love, a blog by a talented young couple who renovated their old home to look bright and beautiful. My favorite work of theirs is the dark, dreary, red-brick den that they reworked into a comfortable and airy space absolutely overflowing with light. 

What a lovely and functional space! Read more about their amazing transformations here. I wish Will and I were this handy...

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Chair with Flair!

I adore the idea of embellishing the bride's and groom's chairs for the reception~

Will and I decided to have a "family style" round table as our head table instead of a long presidential head table or a sweet heart table. We felt that a sweet heart table with just the two of us would be too isolated-- we definitely want to celebrate the special day feeling like we are surrounded by friends and family. The long head table, on the other hand, would feel too much like we are being put on display...Will and I would feel most truly comfortable at an ordinary table where we can simply talk and laugh with our friends. We will be distinguishing our head table with decor and I also thought it would be fun to have something special for our chairs. It's one of those little details probably not many will notice (especially since the embelishments will be on the back of our chairs, away from the rest of guests) but it's a unique touch that just makes things more personal~

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

74 days

It was a long and busy Father's Day weekend! We finally had our engagement photo session at UCLA on Saturday and luckily it turned out to be a beautiful day with glowing sunshine and blue skies-- in fact, in was much better than the weather on the day we had originally scheduled for the photo shoot. After another full day with church and family on Sunday, I was absolutely exhausted.

On top of it all, I am having growing frustrations and trouble with our rental vendor. I really don't want to sound like a spoiled, high maintenance bride who just complains about every little superficial wedding frustration, but I just feel that with this particular vendor, I've had to stretch myself way beyond what is acceptable for a customer to accommodate them. 

I was actually in the middle of writing out an angry post about the latest childishly rude email I received from them when another new email popped into my inbox-- from a leader at church. Reading the email, though it was simple and short, I was reminded of how much my family of God cared for me and Will and our marriage. Though very special, our wedding day will only last one day while our marriage will be a lifetime. I shouldn't let the little frustrations or hiccups in the planning (which actually seem terribly large in the moment) distress me because at the end of it all, Will and I will be married, so it will be the most perfect day anyways. There will always be ill-mannered people, miscommunication, and unforseen challenges... but I know it is more worth-while to focus on my patient fiance and preparing my heart for a God-centered marriage.

Of course this doesn't mean I won't express my opinion and experiences with this vendor to other potential customers. There will definitely be a review on the way to wedding wire at the very least-- but after the wedding (because I'm a pansy). I'm nervous about having any more trouble with this company before the wedding and giving them the benefit of the doubt (yet again), these next few months will also give them time to redeem themselves.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

81 days and 3 ideas

Most of the big items on our wedding check list have been completed, save for a few in-progress tasks such as DJ, cake, and tuxes. I am now thinking a bit more about the details. These are four little ideas I'm just loving at the moment~

Wedding activity book: I have a few vague memories of a couple of family weddings I attended when I was a child… and while I was always well-behaved (I think...) an activity book would have been a great way to quell the temperaments of the more impatient little guests.

Personalized wedding dress hanger: For that one (but staple) photo featuring the wedding dress, a pretty hanger is a lovely detail. Also, since I have decided on renting my wedding dress instead of purchasing it, an extra special hanger would be a nice momento in lieu of the actual dress and it would also be much more useful in my closet after the wedding.

Pretty drinks in a glass beverage dispenser: wonderful colors and also nice and refreshing for guests on a hot summer day. From LA almanac it shows that the average higher temperature for our wedding day from past years is a balmy 84 degrees. The record high was a boiling 103 degrees! Goodness I certainly hope not...

Friday, June 10, 2011

Happy Graduation!

90 days. This week my brother and many of my friends will be donning caps and gowns to finish off another important chapter of their lives. College was definitely some of the most memorable and important years of my life and I miss pretty much everything about it except all of the actual schoolwork...

I spotted these beautiful bruin-colored desserts from a summer pool party that would actually be really perfect for a graduate from my beloved alma mater UCLA

I can't believe its already been a year since I graduated (for the third time). Time goes by so fast... 

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

87 days and paper pretties

Today I stumbled upon a treasure trove of paper crafts and invitation inspiration. I could spend hours poring over the beautiful card creations of Homespun with Heart by Danielle Flanders. Each lovely handmade card is absolutely overflowing with creative details and it takes me a good few minutes looking at each photo to take in all of the intricacies of her designs. Here are a few of my favorites~ (it was so hard to choose! everything was so adorable)

 love the cute moss detail~

the aqua and lime green are so summery and pretty together

"lifting you up in prayer" and hot air balloons~ so clever

I love the creative use of all the various materials like thread, twine, felt, lace, and buttons. So many fantastic scrapbook and card ideas! See more at her lovely blog here

Monday, June 6, 2011

Paper resources

Just thought I would share some of my great finds for specialty paper and envelope retailers. These are great resources for card making, crafts, and of course DIY invitations, programs, seating escort cards, menus, and pretty much all other wedding stationery on a budget.

Cards and Pockets
Cards and Pockets was the first DIY paper materials site I came across that really inspired me to make my own wedding invitations. Will and I really like pocket fold-style invitations because they are elegant and keep everything neat and simple...but ordering them through an invitation designer typically runs more than $5.00 per invitation. Cards and Pockets, on the other hand, has all of the materials for pocket fold invitations for under $2.00 per invite. Their color selection in pretty basic so they didn't have exactly what I was looking for but its a pretty fair selection and a great place to start when thinking about DIY invitations.

Paper Presentation
Paper Presentation is a wonderful boutique paper shop without snobby boutique prices. Their website is adorable and they have a great unique selection of pretty paper patterns and unique styles and shapes for their pocket folds. There's also pre-cut cardstock in many useful shapes like tags, circles, squares, and hearts. Makes putting together designer-looking invitations super easy!  

Paper and More
Paper and More is like a paper wholesaler but you don't have to buy in ridiculous bulk like some of the other online retailers where the minimum order is 250. I like their collection of recycled paper products, the colors are nice and earthy and they are made from 100% recycled materials so its perfectly green! Also, pretty much every product I've browsed on their site has rave reviews from customers about the high quality items for affordable prices.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Most brides diet before their wedding...

...but me? I had steak and shrimp for dinner. Will surprised me with a delicious dinner at Ruth's Chris tonight. Three scrumptious courses, fluffy bread with whipped butter, juicy steak, creamy garlic mashed potato and creamed corn....It's ok, my wedding dress fitting isn't until August anyways...

Our filet medallions and shrimp on a sizzling plate

Dessert was heavenly. Warm apple pie crumble with vanilla haagen dazs ice cream and creme brulee with fresh berries... I'm so lucky~

Food coma happiness,

Saturday, June 4, 2011


I know its a little weird to be really excited about paper (and up past 1am in the morning writing about it)...but I've been searching all over the internet for paper goods and found some pretty wonderful things. It's just paper-- but with colorful patterns, scalloped edges, linen texture, luster finish...and in every imaginable shade of color. Well, not exactly every imaginable shade, which is why I've been doing an extensive online search just to find the perfect color combinations of paper materials for our wedding stationery.

These pretty cards are actually made of wood not paper but how cool is that? via thenewlyengaged and nightowlpapergoods

The above are all via parcelpost, a great blog resource for all kinds of lovely paper inspirations

So I've pretty much decided we are just going to dive head first into this DIY-our-own-wedding-invitations idea. It will be the most budget-friendly option and we will be able to customize and design all of our own stationery so it will be more special and personal. It's been fun so far....planning out potential designs and finding the exact shades of colors that we want for all the paper materials. That's not to say I won't regret my decision in about a month when we actually start putting things together and attempt to make over a hundred of these things....but right now I'm pretty excited and ready for the challenge!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Home Garden

Our friends Min and Esther have a fantastic home garden. Recently when we visited them, they treated us to a delicious dinner with a salad of home-grown greens picked fresh from their garden. The salad was crisp and full of flavor.... nothing like the bag of limp store-bought lettuce we usually make-do with at home. They even packed us some artichoke (which we later tried to use, unsuccessfully, to make artichoke and smoked ham fettuccine...a story for another day), fragrant sprigs of rosemary, and fresh flowers from their garden to take home. The lovely calla lilies, white irises, and lavender were really the cherry on top.

It was all so wonderful I began to fall in love with the idea of someday having a garden of my own where I could grow my own flowers and vegetables-- until I remembered I don't exactly have a green thumb or even a fraction of the talent and patience that Esther has for gardening... It will probably be a while before I have a yard large enough for a garden anyways (or even a plot of grass) so I suppose I will just work on keeping my potted plants at home alive in the mean time.
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