Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Practice Makes Perfect So You Better Rehearse!

Hey Guys,
I haven't posted in a while because I've been extremely busy with wedding stuff lately! I finally got the invitations out this week so everyone should have them by week's end, whew! The ceremony and reception are coming underway thanks to all the help provided by my wonderful bridesmaids! I know I've said this a lot, but I honestly could not have done this without them!

We've been planning up a storm including the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner believe it or not. For those of you who don't know I have Indian and Arabic roots so we wanted to incorporate this during the rehearsal portion. Reason being it is not being included in the wedding ceremony or reception. I tried to get the guys involved in this, but they refused, so it's the ladies will be all decked out! Check out how pretty the sarees below are!

As part of their bridesmaid present I gave each girl a sari, which will be worn to the rehearsal and dinner following. One of my best friends, Ren (freelance makeup artist) is going to do the makeup super dramatic and it's going to be fabu! I can't wait! We're also going to straighten our hair to go along with the look. I know that we're definitely going to make a scene at the restaurant, yikes! The below looks are the kind of dramatic makeup we're going to about hot!

Speaking of the restaurant, my fiance and his mom have been on the hunt for months, trying to narrow down the perfect spot. They've gone to the restaurants, tasting and getting a feel for the place before booking. I highly recommend this because you'll often notice things you may or may not like. This is also a nice way to keep everyone involved and allow some bonding time between mother and son.
Some factors to consider when finding a rehearsal dinner spot: What's the space like? We have a rather large wedding party, so we'll need a space to fit around 30 people. This is why it's important to go to the location because they can sometimes be too small/crowded. What's the noise level? You don't want to have a dinner where you're yelling while giving speeches, talk about a strain! This should be a sentimental/reflective time for all to enjoy. What's the food like? Umm, why go to a restaurant if the food sucks? So please try out the food, it really does make for a better time! What's the budget? I don't care who you are, you need to consider the money that you're going to shell out for this. The mother of the groom is the one who takes care of the rehearsal dinner, so she makes the final say on this aspect, as she should.
Another important tip is if you have a wedding coordinator make sure you communicate everything with them post the rehearsal if you notice anything that needs to be focused on. They are a great help and alleviate a lot of stress! Thanks to one of my best friends Brooke for helping me find one of the best out there! More info on this to be posted in the next session!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Want Wedding Gifts, Then You Better Register!

Hey Guys,

After being reminded over and over by my bridesmaids (thanks girls!) we finally finished our wedding registry. I know that this probably should have been super exciting, but for some reason it was a rather tedious task for us. Reason being we already have a lot of household items needed in every room. However, after some exploring we found some needed items and registered at the fav Target!

We also registered at another site called A Great Affair.Com Gift Registry. I definitely recommend that any engaged couple register here because it is essentially a cash registry. With this registry guests can give away how ever much they choose to different categories. For instance, we have a category called "New Wheels." Both Jon and I will probably need to get new cars soon (hopefully not!), so if guests want to contribute to that fund then they can with an amount of their choosing. We like this because it doesn't put pressure on our guests to spend a certain amount and it is definitely something that will be used and not packed up on a closet shelf.

Some last points:
  • Remember that you can get what you want, but also remember to be considerate to your guests and give them choices.

  • Guests, you know who you are, don't show up to a wedding without a present.

  • If you don't feel comfortable purchasing anything on a registry, give money, that's the safest bet.

  • When doing your registry research into the various ones out there because there's a lot and you can find one that suits you as a couple.
Next time we will discuss the Rehearsal and Rehearsal Dinner!

Monday, July 6, 2009

A Token to Remember Us By!

Hey Guys,

Sorry for the lag in posting! I have been a busy wedding bee lately so this will be a short posting. After wracking my brain on what to give our guests, I finally decided on something of significance. I think that's important and a good way to create that special touch.

When picking a wedding favor there's more to think of than you would expect. For instance I've been to weddings where donations were made to an organization of importance to the couple. Not only was this endearing, but it also created awareness among the guests. It honestly depends on what you as a couple what to portray.

Another tip is to make sure to purchase your favors close to your wedding so that you don't order too much or too little. Remember every little bit adds up!

Some cute ideas for wedding favors are: for those couples that love to read, bookmarks; the gaming couple can give a deck of cards; or if you want to be friendly to mother nature give away personalized plant seeds.

Next time we will explore the Wedding Registry!

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Feel the Beat!

Hey Guys,

I finally booked all of our musicians for the big day! The DJ (Hal was the easiest to find because we ended up picking a DJ off of the vendor list for the Park Tavern. We had tea/coffee/desserts with him at Cafe Intermezzo and asked him tons of questions. Our first meeting lasted about 1.5 hours, so we made sure everything was covered. We told him the things most important to us are: appropriate music, timing, getting everyone on the dance floor, smooth transitions between songs and not only being a DJ, but also a MC or master of ceremony (he's gotta work the crowd!). There's also a surprise for the guests that he's involved in...I'll let you guys know that after it's been done. Just know it will definitely be hilarious and entertaining!

Okay, so finding ceremony musicians was a more stressful task. Being on a budget I shopped around to find the best deal and thought I booked this quartet from Emory, but they never called or emailed me back, talk about unprofessional :(, luckily I we had not paid anything. It seems like that's the risk you take when not booking certified professionals. I was bummed about this at first because I had to search again, but had to get over that quickly and find some replacements. Again, the vendor list for our wedding location came through and we booked Amadeus String Ensemble ( They have a contract so I know they won't run off with our money!

We hope the music in our wedding will create a sense of elegance and class for the ceremony and allow everyone to have fun and enjoy themselves at the reception.

Here are some tips that we learned on our hunt:
  • Interview/meet your musicians

  • Ask lots of questions

  • Get a time frame on when they will contact you, etc...

  • Make sure there is a contract

  • If it is difficult to get in contact with your musician they you may want to consider booking someone else

  • Bargain, bargain, bargain!
Next time we will explore wedding favors!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

It's Raining Men, Hallelujah!

Hey Guys,

We recently went to Savvi Formalwear to pick out the attire for all of the handsome men in our bridal party. I would recommend this store because they have a nifty online wedding manager that allows the guys to input their sizes, making it simple for pick-up upon their arrival to Atlanta! This is really helpful, especially since most of the men in our bridal party are out of towners. The guys were much easier than than the girls and we were really happy with the choices. I'm so excited to see everyone because they're going to look fabu!

Ok, so down to business, first let's start with the groom, Jon! My bridesmaid Tonya and I initially went looking for a black suit, but when we spotted the chocolate suit we were pleasantly surprised. We're pairing the suit with brown shoes, brown socks, white collared shirt and an orange striped tie that looks great! We finalized this as our choice after getting Jon's approval of course! If he's going to wear it then he must like it, especially since there will be pictures of him in this for the rest of our lives.

Check it out below. I purposefully put pictures of the chocolate and black suit so you can really see the difference in colors.

The groomsmen will be wearing the same color suit as Jon (chocolate), shoes, socks and collared shirt. However, their ties will be different; instead of the striped tie, theirs will be a plain orange that matches perfectly with Jon's tie. They're going to look so handsome!

The next little man we had to consider was my nephew, our ringer bearer Omar. He's going to be decked out in an ivory suit with ivory shoes, socks, shirt and the same tie as Jon. How adorable is that!
Finally, we had to consider the dads of course! They will be wearing the same suits as the groomsmen, but in black with ties that compliment the colors of our wedding. It will most likely be the copper tie you see below without the vest.

None of the men in our wedding party will be wearing vests, reason being we don't want a formal wedding look/feel. We also think this will be good for the guys since our wedding is outdoors and we don't want them to overheat.
I am already envisioning what everyone will look like walking down the aisle and can't wait! Next time we will explore another essential part of any wedding, the music!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Let's Get Our Grub On!

Hey Guys,

Jon and I recently went for our reception food tasting and loved it! We were a bit apprehensive because we did not hear the best about the chef at our reception location, but our tasting session definitely turned around any doubt! Luckily for us they hired a new chef whose style favors seasonings and flava.

Our foods are centered around a Mediterranean menu, which is one of our favorite cuisines! I'm not going to reveal much more in terms of the menu because we want our guests to be pleasantly surprised, but just know it's Greek inspired.

Speaking of eating, I can't forget about the cakes! We will be having 2 different flavors in the wedding cake because we just couldn't pick one (they were all so good!). Jon picked the flavor for his groom's cake, so that consists of some chocolate. They were quite yummy at our tasting, so we are keeping our fingers crossed that they will be a hit at our wedding. Check out a couple of cakes that I thought were beautiful. Again, I'm not going to show my actual cake because of the element of surprise.

Next time I will give the guys some time to shine! What will they be wearing???

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Make Me Beautiful!

Hey Guys!
It's been a while since I last posted! I have to admit that I've been slacking on the wedding to do's, but I'm back on the train since it's now 5 months away, yay! I thought it appropriate to go from the hair styles to the makeup , so let's see what I have in mind my for my beauties! I want them to all have a fresh faced glowly look accented with golds, browns and coppers/bronze. Here are some ideas of what I'm going for with these celebrity photos:Of course these looks will have to be tailored to each bridesmaid as they are all different tones/shades. I want them to play up their eyes more and tone down the lips. Also, instead of a rosy blush I want more of a bronze so that it gives them that glow I'm going for. I will of course seek the advice of my makeup guru Ren who is not only a makeup artist, but also one of my best friends! I really lucked out because I can get great advice from her. And no, she's not going to do the makeup for the big day because I want her to be able to enjoy the day and not get stressed.

You've gotten a taste of what my bridesmaids are going to look like, so here are a few pics that emulate what I want:

I'm going for that vintage look with the hair and makeup. Blake Lively's look on Vogue most resembles what I want. I am going to have to find colors to compliment me (that red lip has to be on point and I want drama with the black eye liner and eyelashes), but you get the jist.
What do you guys think?

Monday, April 20, 2009

Getting the Hair Did!

Hey Guys!
We've been on the hunt for the perfect hairstyle to compliment our attire and we've been finding some great styles on the Knot for the bridesmaids. I want an updo for those who are able to achieve that look and for the bridesmaids with shorter hair, I want them to have a curly half up half down do. I have to pinpoint a half up do, any suggestions??? Which updo do you guys like best? I'm partial to the side chignon with the swirls.
Believe it or not, finding my hairstyle was the easiest! It's a Veronica Lake, Jessica Rabbit inspired hairstyle that matches the vintage look I'm going for! Check it out, I love it! Hopefully the hairstylist will be able to recreate this...
That's all for now! I'm still on the hunt, so I guess we'll have to wait for the big day to see the final looks!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Who Knew Invitations Could Be So Expensive!

Hey Guys,

Recently some of my bridesmaids and I went looking for materials to make our wedding invitations and we were definitely enlightened. After an endless amount of searching I noticed that the invitations I want are crazy expensive, like $1000 expensive for just 100! I didn't think that these pieces of paper would amount to so much, but I guess I have expensive taste :(. Luckily, to achieve the desired looks for more than half the price I have great bridesmaids who offered to help me by making them! They are the best! I'm going to show you some options of the various styles, but I'm not going to reveal the one that I picked until it's sent out to our guests. It's all about the element of surprise. The invitations do create a first impression (thanks Alex!) and I wanted them to exude elegance, modernity and style.

I thought about the color of the invitations as well and instead of being too matchy matchy I picked a color that would accent my chocolate and coral. I can't wait to make the invitations with the girls because we're going to make a fun day out of it with great foods, drinks and of course great company!

Just in case you were wondering we went...we visited the Paper Source in Virginia Highlands and found the great ideas and materials! They have a website that you can check out at .

Friday, April 3, 2009

Finding a Florist!

Hey Guys,

After a continuous effort to book a florist I finally found one, which was such a relief. I had consultations with around 5 florists and ended up picking the final one! I didn't want to attend so many appointments, but it was something that needed to be done to find a match in terms of style and cost. I'm not going to lie, this was really annoying and my bridesmaids had to motivate me to continue. I'm glad they did though because this is recommended especially if you're a bride on a budget, like me :) Many thanks go out to my wonderful bridesmaids who attended these consultations with me, giving great input as usual!

At these appointments the florist would try to get a feel for the style that we preferred and they usually ran with ideas from that. We discussed all the girly things like colors and flowers, which, let me tell you, we all learned something from these consultations because there are so many beautiful and different flowers out there! I ended up focusing more on mango calla lilies and orchids to accent the coral color. I'll give you a sneak peak into what the the bridesmaids bouquets will resemble and the groomsmen boutonnieres, aren't they lovely???

Since our wedding is going to be in the evening from 6-11pm Jon (my fiance) and I decided that we wanted to focus more on the lighting to play up the decor. Our ceremony will be outdoors in the meadow and then our reception will be held in this beautiful tent draped with white fabric and chandeliers. With that we decided that we wanted to have candles everywhere with large vases filled with water, flowers and even more candles. This would play up the romantic lighting in the tent with a more modern effect. Not only does this suit the atmosphere we're going for, but it's also a great way to cut down on costs! This is something to keep in mind because the flowers will suck up most of your funds if you don't watch out!

Below are a couple of pictures from our wedding venue at the Piedmont Garden & Tent so you can get an idea of where we're going with the decor. We absolutely love it!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Getting my Gown!

Hey Guys,
I wanted to give you a peek into my search for the perfect wedding dress! I thought this would be a really tedious process, but it was surprisingly easy and I found my dress at the first boutique we went to. It was a really cute boutique by the name of La Raine's Bridal Boutique in Virginia Highlands. The owners and staff were sooo nice and I would definitely recommend this place to any bride-to-be. The dresses were beautiful and they had so many styles! Two of my bridesmaids, Ren and Tonya went with me and it was a great experience. They were really supportive bridesmaids and gave me good advice in helping me pick my dress!

I didn't post pics of my my actual wedding dress because a girl's gotta have some surprises, so check out the dresses that I liked, but didn't make the cut. We started first by pulling all the dresses that I liked and I tried all of them on, eliminating the ones that weren't my cup of tea. I tried on dresses that I never thought I would like and I'm glad I did because it helped narrow down the type of dress I wanted. I strongly suggest you do this when wedding dress shopping because it's always good to have an open mind. For instance, my wedding dress is ivory instead of the white I was set on. This may not seem like a big deal, but it was something I had to come to grips with in my head (my dress actually looks prettier in the ivory than white).

When I finally found the dress and tried it on I loved it! Ren got teary eyed and I heard an awwww from everyone...that's when I knew I found the dress (Tonya doesn't tear up so easily, but she loved the dress just the same, lol). I also tried on veils with it and narrowed down the style and length of that too! Now the only things left to complete my attire are my shoes and accessories.

As far as my hair and makeup are concerned I'm going for a different look. That topic will be another posting where I'll also explore what I want my bridesmaids hair and makeup to look like!

Monday, March 30, 2009

What Are The Girls Going to Wear???

Hey Guys,

So I have to admit that the bridesmaid and maid of honor dresses stressed me out more than finding my own gown! I wanted to find dresses that would compliment all of the beauties in my bridal party (trust me, they are beauties!), be practical, not too pricey, elegant and sassy all at the same time. Man, that's a lot! After searching and searching I finally found what I was looking for. It has a classic flair with a youthful look in a chocolate color (dress found at We're going to shorten the dresses so that they're right above everyone's knees and match them with some pretty pearl accessories and gold peep-toe pumps. For my Maid of Honor, my beautiful sis, she actually found a pretty coral dress from David's Bridal which paired perfectly with the bridesmaid dresses (coral color not shown below, they only had a pic in pink)! I was so happy because even though the dresses are obviously different they still have similarities that compliment one another! My sister is also going to wear a gold peep-toe pump and pearl accessories to match with the bridesmaids. I thought this would be nice in tying everyone together.

We're still working on finalizing the shoes and accessories, but here are some options that we think are cute...what do you think? I know the shoes are high, but I just think they will look adorable with the dresses since both styles flair out a bit. My bridesmaids and I are on the hunt, so I know we'll find shoes and accessories we all love! In my next post I'll give you a sneak peak into my search for the perfect wedding dress!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Thought I Should Finally Do This!

Hey Guys!
So after seeing so many bride's blogs I kinda felt like I was missing out on something! I decided that it's important to detail my wedding planning with all of its ups and downs. I also thought this would be a good way to keep all of my friends and fam in tuned with what's been going on and the various looks incorporated into our special day. Luckily, I have great bridesmaids who have kept me on point with wedding timeline and items on the monthly bridal checklist, so things have not been stressful thus far, whew! I'm actually watching the "Wedding Date" while doing this...I love that movie! It got me in the wedding mood. I have to say that I'm not one of those brides who has been obsessing or constantly thinking of her wedding day...not sure if that is good or bad? For me it's worked though in keeping my stress level really low and making all the planning really fun!

Anywho, let's get started! First thing's first...what are my colors you ask? They are coral with more of an orange hue and chocolate brown, like the colors shown. I thought this would be a perfect pair especially since our wedding is in October and will be outdoors. It's a way to accent nature by drawing out the natural colors during this time of year and I thought that would be beautiful. It's also a compromise (hey, marriage is about compromise) between Jon and I because he definitely doesn't want girly colors, so the orange let's me get the pretty pop of color I want (I love bright colors!!) and the brown let's him have that strong masculine color.
In my next post I'll show you guys the bridesmaids and maid of honor dresses, so stay tuned!