Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Venue...BOOKED! A rare post on our actual wedding.

So El Fiance and I have finally booked our venue. As I've mentioned, we were originally planning to do a ranch wedding in San Luis Obispo, but cost and logistics didn't end up making sense for what we could afford or what we wanted--proximity to bars for after-party, no portable toilets, an open bar where we could purchase the alcohol, etc etc. We still wanted to have a mini-destination from where we live, the San Francisco Bay Area, so we decided on Santa Barbara, where my fiance went to college. Santa Barbara is awesome, and like many beautiful places, expensive.

We narrowed it down to three places within our budget and decided on Rockwood Women's Club. Here's our space:

I love the venue for so many reasons: it's beautiful, close to downtown Santa Barbara, we can have the ceremony on the patio and then convert it into a lounge space for the reception with TWO fireplaces, the dance floor space is huge, they have FREE overnight parking and Sue, my contact, is a doll. It's hard to get a feel for how large and lovely the venue is from the pictures, but it's wonderfully spacious and airy. It was built in the 1920's and has that Santa Barbara, Spanish style feel. My only problem is I think I suffer from over-blog-itis. I hadn't originally envisioned a space so...classy, I guess. When I came up with words to describe my overall vision, I used adjectives like, rustic, sweet, charming, home-spun, fun. The boards, Amelie's Carnival Wedding, Spanish Vintage, and Rustic Brown and White, were originally for us. Of course, I plan on keeping the fun, but rustic works a little better for a barn than an indoor space with a red-draped stage and iron chandeliers.

I love vintage touches, and want to keep it closer to casual than formal. I'm thinking of a base palette of shades of brown, (darker wood chairs--not chiavari because we can't afford them, burlap, nude <--my favorite) and shades of white, (ivory, cream), and maybe some other accents like pale blush or yellow. Fortunately, they don't allow or need anything on the walls. There are worse existential dilemmas to have, but I'm just not sure where to go decor/theme/design-wise. I know I want to DIY as much as is possible/reasonable, keep the florals to a minimum, maybe even do some loose arrangements with wholesale flowers, but what should I do for centerpieces? Vintage birdcages and books? Lanterns? Small frames? Indecision ack!

So, blog-world, any ideas for me? :)

Classic Cocktails and Retro Style: A Mad Men Inspired Wedding Board

I haven't caught an entire episode of AMC's "Mad Men" but I've seen enough to know I love the style and feel of the show. Refer back to my first post for a little on my dreams of having 60's style cocktail parties every weekend. Although I first envisioned a board in black, white, and red, along the lines of how I'd imagine the Rat Pack designing a wedding, I was drawn to the cheeky, fun palette of blue and orange mixed in. Alongside my secret inner RenFaire nerd, and my steampunk cosplay geek, there resides a girl who dresses like Donna Reed and drinks Old-Fashioneds while baking things in Jello moulds. This is her board. P.S. That awesome wedding dress? Only $595 by Dolly Couture!

Mood: Retro cocktail party

Artifacts of Inspiration: "Mad Men", classic cars, geometric design, retro cocktails, one button suits, Jackie Kennedy

Color Palette: Blue and orange against a backdrop of black and white

The Credits, Deets, and Maybe Where to Buy Them:

The Beverlywood by Dolly CoutureCigar Bar by Sarah Q Photography via Wedding ChicksTurquoise Linen Tiffany Dress by Etsy artist digforvictoryMad Men Inspired Save the Date by Wedding ChicksMartini Glass via Paper Doll MBirdcage Veil via Brides.comCouple in Classic 60's car by Chicago Illinois Wedding PhotographyBlue and Orange Retro Cake by Jason McGrew via Merriment EventsMad Men Suit by Brooks Brothers via Make Pretend

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

High Glamor Inspiration: A Black and Gold Wedding

I love gooooold! As much as sweet, rustic weddings hold a special place in my heart, I can't help but love the kind of wedding that oozes glamor and drama, and dare I say, even a little sexy. This isn't just a party--it's the event of the year. Oddly enough, I don't think it needs to break the bank. Some wooden candle holders spray painted glossy black and shimmery gold, a few glass centerpieces wrapped in black tulle, some feathers, and some gold and black frames, and voila! You have yourself a wedding with more drama and class than Lauren Bacall.

Mood: Glamorous evening fete

Artifacts of Inspiration: Vintage brooches, black feathers, gold plate, texture, Old Hollywood meets modern aesthetic

The Credits, Deets, and Maybe Where to Buy Them:

Candle Centerpieces by Angela Renee Photography via Elizabeth Anne DesignsBlack J. Crew Bridesmaid Dress via Bridefinds.comGold Tray by One and Only Paris Photography via RuffledblogGold Badgley Mischkas via Omwall.comBirdcage, Invitation, and Mercury Glass by Aruna B. Photography and Style Me Pretty via weddingsunveiled.blogspot.comBlack tux and yellow bout by Catherine Guidry Photography via Style Me PrettyBlack and Gold Brooch Bouquet by Ewan Phelan via Green Wedding ShoesGold Plate by Amy Nixon Events via WeddingwireGold Chiavari Chair by Mimmo & Naz via Caketress

A Little Something Extra:

That brooch bouquet is awesome (and eco-friendly!). I found another black and gold vintage brooch bouquet by Etsy artist BoxFairy83. You can purchase it here.

If you're into more traditional florals, or just want lots of bling, you could also accessorize with this amazing necklace from Etsy artist talulabelles. Click here to purchase.

Not feeling black bridesmaid dresses? J. Crew also offers these pretty little numbers in a muted gold here.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Yellow and Gray Wedding: A Modern, Fun Inspiration Board

Happy, fun, fresh. These are all adjectives that spring to mind when I think of the color yellow. Although I think a yellow and gray palette could fit many different types of weddings: indoor/outdoor, traditional, rustic, vintage, a modern aesthetic with clean lines and a fresh, whimsical appeal is what spoke to me today.

Mood: Sipping lemonade after you've exhausted yourself laughing.

Color Palette: Lemon yellow and pewter gray

The Credits, Deets, and Maybe Where to Buy Them:

Bridesmaids in Yellow and Gray by Chloe Murdoch for Mike Larson Photography via Style Me PrettyGray Bridesmaid Dress via Once WedYellow and Gray Pinwheels by Etsy Seller ElizabethStYellow Tie and Gray Vested Groom by Rebekah Westover Photography via Duet LetterpressYellow and Gray Clutch by Etsy Seller PaperFloraYellow and Gray Banner by Etsy Seller liddabitsBalsa Wood and Billy Ball Centerpiece via BridalHood.blogspot.comSweet Little Daisies Cake via Martha Stewart WeddingsWedding Couple and Yellow Balloon by Ampersand Studios via Soiree Boise

Friday, April 29, 2011

The Royal Wedding

What kind of wedding blogger would I be if I ignored the excitement and buzz surrounding what has been dubbed "the wedding of the century." Big label considering we're only 11 years into 2011! Happily, it didn't disappoint! My favorite details:

Like pretty much everyone else on the planet, I am swooning over Kate Middleton's dress!

A white bridesmaid dress? Her sister, Pippa, looked absolutely stunning while managing not to detract from Kate's bridal beauty. Tres chic!

And that sweet getaway car is so fun!

Images courtesy www.thedailybeast.com

You know there's an inspiration board coming your way!

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Rustic Elegance: A Wedding Inspiration Board in Chocolate and White

Rustic weddings have become extremely popular, and for good reason. They evoke that warm family feel, the sweetness, fun, and intimacy most of us crave for our weddings. While I could do about a bazillion boards that take their cue from country fairs, I also love the juxtaposition of elegant romance and rustic rawness. I wanted the board to feel fresh and effortlessly stylish, so I chose a palette of chocolate brown, hay, and white. I wanted to show off how a barn, ranch, or farm wedding could still feel pretty and elegant by contrasting soft and dreamy florals against burlap, rough wood against the sparkle of chandeliers. Plus who can resist cowboy boots with a gorgeous gown?

Mood: Farmland sweetness gets a city stylist

Color Palette: Chocolate brown, hay, white

The Credits, Deets, and Maybe Where to Buy Them:

Santa Barbara Wedding by Mark Brooke Photographers via Style Me PrettyBridal Party and Cowboy Boots by Priscilla Valentina via Green Wedding ShoesWedding Decor by Jack Wittbold for Sarah Yates Photography via C Star EventsDIY Rustic Cake Stand by Once WedEarl Grey Sandwich Cookies by The Sweetest OccasionSkeleton Key Placecards by Z Media via Red Carpet BridesHanging Mason Jars by Paloma Images via Wish Special EventsPeony and Burlap Centerpiece by Aileen TranBarn with White Drapes via Project Wedding

A Little Something Extra:

I love this ranunculus bridal bouquet by Etsy Seller braggingbags. It's gorgeous and soft with a hint of rustic from the burlap ribbon and a touch of sparkle from the brooch. At $59.99, the price is pretty hard to beat for a bride bouquet, and because they're silk flowers, it's also green! To purchase or view more pics, click here.

I also couldn't resist sharing this awesomely styled bridal party. I love how the bridesmaids are wearing different dresses in the same palette, and again, the boots! Ooh, and those belts! Le sigh. This image is by Leah Noble via Caitlin Carty.