Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Lent

Hello reader(s),

I'm giving up social media for Lent. See you soon!

~ACH

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Oh, by the way...

I bought a wedding dress!

Date Night?


Have I mentioned that I love a good deal?

Today's deal by Living Social is from Fandango. They are offering 2 movie tickets for $9! The voucher is good wherever Fandango is accepted (so, pretty much everywhere).

Forget Netflix or the Law School Library (our "go-to" for movies); why not throw caution to the wind and actually go out for date night?

*Full disclosure: if three people purchase the deal through my link, I get my deal for free! But, come on, two tickets for $9? That's a great deal!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

For the rehearsal dinner

The event:
The night before the wedding, held at a fun/dressy casual restaurant Southwestern restaurant across the street from our church. 6pm, June. Indoor/outdoor patio.

The inspiration:
A little bit Palm Beach, a little bit picnic, a little bit Santa Fe. Turquoise, yellow, or white. Short. Cotton. Cardigan? Jack Rogers and pearls.

The dresses:
I'm having a much harder time finding dresses online that I like for this event. Here are some of the contenders.


Suzi Chin


Watters


Talbots



Amanda Archer @Etsy


J. Crew


Anthro

Help, please!

Friday, February 25, 2011

For the bridal shower/engagement party

The event:
Bridal shower in the morning, followed by co-ed engagement party for lunch. Thrown by my aunt, at a fancy-pants hotel in DC, in May. Guests include family and friends.

The inspiration:

Audrey.


Jackie.

The dresses:


Talbots


Target


Ann Taylor


J. Crew

I've also considered LulaKate and Elizabeth McKay. Any other suggestions?

Thursday, February 24, 2011

The Dress(es)

Until recently, I've been focusing my energy on finding The Dress (and with only four months until The Big Day, I'm finally going in over-drive). I've spent days searching in bridal salons, department stores, and online, only to realize I don't just need to find The Dress; I need to find The Dresses. As in:
  • The Dress for the bridal shower/engagement party
  • The Dress for our engagement portrait
  • The Dress for the rehearsal dinner
  • The Dress for Sunday Brunch
  • and, of course, The Dress
We are also planning to have a reception (or two) after the wedding, but I can't even start on that yet.

Help!

Over the next few days, I'll be posting some of my ideas for these different events. Maybe I'll even do a Polyvore. Maybe not. Any suggestions would be much appreciated!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

I really want to wear this dress:


by the lovely Jules Reid, of course.

(can I justify brocade in June in Santa Fe?)

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Anthropologie Wedding Dresses



Anthropologie's new wedding collection. What do you think?

More pictures here!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Wedding Dress Shopping: What to Bring



  1. Moral support. Mom, godmother, grandmother, future sister-in-law; whoever you can trust to give you honest feedback--but also tell you that you look beautiful!
  2. A strapless bra and Skinny Britches (or similar slimming shorts). You'll be hopping in and out of a lot of dresses, and it's nice to be a little more covered. Many of the nicer boutiques will have strapless bras you can use, but it's nice to have your own (especially if you're not a 34B, which is apparently a very popular size).
  3. A hairbrush for primping between dresses and veils (I chose my Mason Pearson, of course). Also: hair ties or clips for imagining updos.
  4. High heels (or whatever shoes you plan on wearing). They don't have to be "the" shoes, but I chose to bring the tallest shoes I could walk in. Especially if you're short (like me), the dresses are going to look very different with varying amounts of added height! Again, nice stores will have ones you can borrow, but it's nice to have your own.
  5. Water, chapstick, and mints. They won't let you eat or drink anywhere near the gowns, but it's good to hydrate between shops or during breaks!
  6. Camera or camera phone. Many boutiques won't let you take pictures, but just in case, it's nice to have with you. It can be hard to keep straight a dozen different white dresses!
  7. Pen and paper. If you can't take a picture, at least you can write down the information! This is also helpful to keep track of information (like when you have to order by, rush shipping fees, tailoring fees) that you'll want to compare later on.
  8. Not much else. You don't want to be lugging around a duffel bag between boutiques. I would recommend scheduling 2-3 stops a day (but not any more!). That seems to be the right amount to keep all the dresses in your mind's eye, without totally exhausting you. Okay, you'll be totally exhausted, but at least you'll still be able to think at the end of the day. Any more than 3 is too much!

What did you bring wedding dress shopping? What do you wish you'd brought?

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

I'm busy dress shopping, but...

Here's a little blast from the past:

My mother (the very tan blonde) in a bridesmaid dress from the 80's

Friday, January 28, 2011

Dress Shopping



I'm headed back to DC to go dress shopping next week. I definitely want to check out Hitched. Any other suggestions in the DC-MD-VA area? Any dress shopping tips in general?

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The R-word.


Registry.

To me, it's both exciting, and terrifying. So many options! But how can I know it's what I really want? I've been putting it off, and putting it off...and then, the other day, I was contacted by CSN stores to do a sponsored post. I started looking around their websites, and easily came up with a (very long) wish list. They have everything for newlywed bliss, from modern office furniture to eco-friendly cookware. Maybe registering isn't going to be so bad after all...!

Needless to say, expect a longer review coming up soon...

P.S. Forget M*rtha for M*cy's; I can register Thomas Paul Scrimshaw dessert plates? Yes!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Engagement Photos

T and I had some engagement photos taken while in New Mexico, and I've been meaning to do a post on what I wore...but not that I've finally gotten around to it, I can't find any of the pieces online! I hope to get the actual photos up soon, but in the meantime, here's a little taste.

I found out the hard way that the outfits I'd originally packed for our engagement photoshoot were simply not going to cut it in the freezing New Mexico weather. So, the day before we were scheduled to meet our photographer, I dragged T all around Santa Fe looking for something to wear. I tried all the regular spots (J. Crew, Marshalls, Brooks Brothers), but nothing looked quite right. I was about ready to give up, when we passed by a Talbots. I wasn't even going to walk in, but I was desperate!

Well, am I ever glad I gave Talbots a shot. The sales associate, Lucille, was just as nice as she could be, and helped me pick out a number of sweaters and tops that would go with the J. Crew side zip skinnies and brown knee high boots I already had. She was so patient as I tried on outfit after outfit! I actually found a couple different options I really loved, and a few were on sale, too!

This is (sort of) what I ended up with:



The Audrey sweater and a shawl collar sweater. I chose a really pretty pink for the Audrey, and a soft cream for the shawl collar (with a pink turtleneck underneath). Both sweaters were so comfortable, and ultra-flattering, too!

Here's one shot where you can get a better idea of the colors:


I am so happy with my Talbots purchases! I don't know what's changed (or maybe I just "grew up"), but Talbots is definitely being added to my regular shopping circuits. I can't wait for their spring collection to hit stores!

What did you wear in your engagement photos? Are there any retailers that have surprised you recently?

*Note: I did not receive any compensation from Talbots for writing this post!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Cake Stands

T's ├╝ber-talented step-father has graciously offered to hand make us a cake stand for our wedding. He asked for some pictures of stands we liked, and this is what I came up with:





I love little details like these:

Inlaid stone.


Engraved initials!

What do you think?

P.S. Hungry? Go here.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Santa Fe Goldworks



I love this ring. Or, one really close to it (the diamonds were slightly larger and closer together). T and I saw it at Santa Fe Goldworks while shopping in the plaza, and it's the first wedding band I've seen in a store that I got that "ohmygoshihavetohaveit" feeling about. But I wasn't even shopping for a wedding band, because I don't really need one...

You see, I already have a band I can use. I have a beautiful band that my grandfather bought my grandmother from H. Stern when they were in Rio years ago. I love that its a family ring, and that I'd wear a ring from my grandmother and one T's. The ring itself is beautiful. The only thing that makes me hesitate is this: its white gold. And my engagement ring is yellow gold. This doesn't really bother me now, because I do mix metals (silver class ring, silver bangles, silver charm bracelet, gold necklace, gold rings, etc.). I would love to keep wearing my silver jewelry, and having a white gold band to wear (either with or without my engagement ring) would make the look more cohesive. Plus, the rings look good together (despite the difference in metals), IMHO.

But, what if, in 15 years, I don't think that mixing metals is a great look? Am I going to wish I had a yellow gold band too?

I also love the idea of getting a ring handmade in Santa Fe. We were going to get T a Tiffany's band, but I would love to find him a ring at Santa Fe Goldworks, too. Then our rings would coordinate (not match), and would both come from a very special place to us. We love having family heirlooms, but it would be nice to have something "our own," too.

What do you think?

Saturday, January 15, 2011

(Vegan) Cake Tasting

The Treehouse Pastry Shop + Cafe
1600 Lena Street, A2,
Santa Fe, NM

(505) 474-5543

yellow + chocolate cake


white + lemon + ganache + chocolate + local organic raspberry


I adore this cake from Maria's repertoire!

The Chocolate Maven
821 West San Mateo Road,
Santa Fe, NM

(505) 984-1980


Whoops. But some of the best lemon "butter"cream I've ever tasted!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Question:

Does one have to wait until her wedding day to have things monogrammed with her new initials? If not, when is it appropriate to start?

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Pretty little things



Not exactly wedding related, but don't you love my new New Mexico necklace? Read more on my other blog.

Monday, January 10, 2011

The Ultimate Wedding Planner & Organizer



If you're planning a wedding, go buy this. Seriously. My godmother gave mine to me months ago, and it was so big (and pink) I didn't even open it until recently. Now that I'm actually planning a wedding (instead of just dreaming about one), this book has become invaluable. To be fair, I'm considering taking out the planning pages and putting it in a less...pink....binder, but still. There are sections for everything, with great information and charts for comparing vendors. There are slots for business cards and a pouch to collect "stuff", plus tabbed folders in the back to organize information and inspiration for everything from cakes to transportation. Sure, you could organize this all your self, but for $20, this binder sure makes the process a lot easier!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

The Big Announcement:

We're getting married in Santa Fe, NM.


...and it's time to get to work.

After a year of being engaged and lazily perusing wedding magazines and blogs, it's time to start planning this thing! A few months ago T and I started talking about our Big Washington Wedding (as it had somehow become), and we decided that wasn't really our style. We didn't want to spend our Big Day trying to say hi to each of our 250 guests, and we didn't want to spend the next few months worrying about valet parking and monogrammed napkins.

So, instead of having a Big Washington Wedding, we're having a small wedding (with just immediate family) in Santa Fe, NM. Why New Mexico? Well, while both of us are East Coasters by birth, we met while living in Santa Fe. Santa Fe will always be a special place for us because of that, and now, we'll have an even better excuse to return for a visit every year (I hope!).

But back to business: We've set a date, we have a church, and during our week vacation in Santa Fe over New Years, we planned a lot of this wedding. Over the next six months, I'm going to be using this blog less to collect inspiration (although there will be some of that), and more to organize our options and help T and me (and our families) make some decisions.

And, even on a small scale, there are a lot of decisions to be made. As always, I'd love to hear your input. It's tough to plan a DIY destination wedding, so any suggestions or comments would be greatly appreciated. I think it's going to be a lot of fun!