Orla Kiely at Target

I went in to Target to buy cat food, and I came out with these adorable tumblers and dishes by Orla Kiely:

Totally cute and affordable at $3.50 a piece. I can already see them on our back patio this spring filled with fruit and lemonade. And since I have weddings on the brain, how cute would this serving tray ($19.99) be for cupcakes/pastries at a dessert table? It'd add such a nice pop of color.

You can see the entire Orla Kiely line at Target here.


What I'm Reading

Because I am getting married and having a lot of fun: 
The Offbeat Bride by Ariel Meadow Stallings

I love Ariel's blog so I really wanted to buy the book. I mostly wanted to buy the book just as a commemorative "yay! I am getting married!!" present to myself, but there are a lot of gems of wisdom in the book so I am glad I did end up buying it. 

One of the pages I dog-eared was about getting engaged. There was a lot of discussion in our relationship about what would happen when we would officially decide to be engaged. Would I propose? Would he propose? Would there be a ring? Would we both get rings? There was all this pressure surrounding how we would make it official, and in the end, the boy told me that he wanted to do the traditional down-on-one-knee proposal. And so that's what happened, even though we both knew beforehand that the answer to his question would be yes. It was such a happy day for both of us.   

I rarely read about people's decisions to become engaged (maybe I'm too distracted by the pretty diy projects and dresses on blogs,) so it makes me really happy to read Ariel's story about their engagement being more a decision between the two of them rather than a surprise champagne dinner in a hot air balloon in the French countryside. Which, by the way, if that happened to me, I wouldn't be complaining. =D 

OB has also given me the idea to put my STDs in my holiday cards. Two birds with one stone, sweet. 

Because I want to be a children's librarian and need to be reading more children's books:
I have to kick my reading into high gear. It's hard with all of the blogs and magazines I have lying around for the wedding! If you have any children's/YA book that you know I NEED to read, send them my way!

Because I want to be a children's librarian and find out what happens to Bella and Edward:
I was pretty hooked by Edward's charms and Bella's spunk during the first book, and then I started getting more and more annoyed with Bella's obsessiveness. But I feel I need to finish it, so I think I'll plow right through it this weekend. So please, if you've finished it, please please please don't tell me what happens!

Hope everyone has a good weekend!


Free Pancakes

I heart pancakes. You can have a free short stack of pancakes at iHOP from 7 AM-10 PM, February 24th. Details here: Come Hungry. Leave Happy.

Wedding Photographer for a Day

Back in December, my sister had a civil ceremony at San Francisco City Hall. Here is a super small sampling of photos I took that day as "The Wedding Photographer".

[Just married at San Francisco City Hall!]

[My dear grandmother, or 'Popo' in Chinese]

[I took an obligatory shoe picture. Aren't they cute though?]

[My sisters and I went to the flower mart super early, gathered all of the flowers, scarfed down some sausage mcmuffins, and made three bouquets: my sister's, my mom's, and one for my grandmother. I think her bouquet came out really well! I was so proud of us.]

I am fortunate to not only have blogs keep me sane during wedding planning, but also my older (and wiser) sister who is getting married/having a rockin' party this summer in New York. We are constantly calling each other and swapping thoughts about anything wedding related---from dresses to Chinese banquets to how we're walking down the aisle sans the whole 'i'm being given away' part.

After much thought and debate, my sister has decided not to have a professional wedding photographer. Instead, she has asked me to take pictures. In return, she is very generously buying me a brand new camera. {!!!!!} This is like a dream come true, since I have been wanting a new camera for ages, and have fun taking the pictures anyway. I know I can't replace a pro, but I'm going to try my hardest with what I can do.

Back in December, sister and her partner had a civil ceremony at San Francisco City Hall so I got to practice being a Wedding Photographer. It was hard. Rounding up family to look at me to take group shots, getting the right angle, making sure objects were in focus, totally tiring but FUN.

My brother-in-law let me use his camera for the day at City Hall. I believe it is a Canon EOS Rebel XSi, and it was also recommended to me by a friend. I am considering asking for this camera.

Does anyone else have any recommendations for a good beginner digital SLR camera? Any tips for someone who has no clue what she is doing?


Dress for Less

I've discovered the dress gallery on brides.com. I have gotten less sleep in the past two days because of it. It's become an addiction. But it is sooo much fun. I'm seeing more and more dresses that are more in my budget, so I am very happy that dresses out there actually exist below the 1k mark. 

This WTOO gown looks very similar to the Christos gown I tried on about a month ago, and based on what other Watters gowns cost, it would be a fraction of the cost of the Christos dress. 

[Dress from Christos' 2009 Spring Collection, image from brides.com]

One of the common comments about these chiffon/empire waist dresses was that it makes me look preggers. I'm not so sure I want to look pregnant on my wedding day, but I'm still drawn to them because I love how they flow and are comfortable.

I will be going shopping again in about a month, so I anticipate more hours spent searching for dresses I want to try on and obsessing more than is humanly necessary. 

Some things to look forward to:
-hearing back from graduate schools in April (whhhy are they making me wait so long?)
-having ample time to do a lot of reading at the cafe
-a big trip up north in March to look at venues and go dress shopping (wheeeee!) with one of my favorite girls in the world, Rosanna



Paper Source Wedding Events

Itching to exercise your craftiness? Want to hang out with some other brides-to-be? Then you need to move it to Paper Source. I want to sign up for the event at Carlsbad, let me know if any other SD brides are planning to be there!

Complimentary Creative Wedding Demos

February 21, 2009

All Paper Source Store Locations

We invite you to join us for an afternoon of complimentary demos, make-and-takes and inspiration for your big day!

11:30 am - Announcing the Big Day
12:45 pm - Inspired Invitations
2:00 pm - Tasteful Tabletop D├ęcor

No matter what your style or budget, Paper Source can help you achieve a wedding invitation & stationery suite that reflects your sense of beauty, creativity and personal expression.

Whether you're looking for classic whites, elegance with a twist, romantic flourishes, or a fresh modern look, we've got the materials and inspiration to help you do something creative for your big day!

Visit our store locations to find a store near you.

Bring this Raffle Ticket to our February 21 Wedding Event to be included in the Raffle.

OR if you want to pay the big bucks:
Exclusive Event: The Wedding Suite
March 5, 2009 - 6:30 - 9 PM
$35 per person

All Paper Source Store Locations

Sip sparkling champagne and enjoy chocolate dipped strawberries while you create a full suite of wedding samples — including a select group of letterpress invitations, escort cards, favors and table accents.
Registration is required to attend this special event. Seats are limited to 15, so don't delay.

Sign up with a friend and receive $5 off each seat!

To register for this exclusive event, please visit your store's workshop registration page.


My DIY List

My wedding sounds more and more like an art project everyday. Things I plan to make:
save the dates
thank you cards
the website
celebratory wands/pin-wheels for ceremony (inspired by this post on Once Wed)
table numbers

I'm also planning to do a lot of diy decor for the wedding, like these cute paper rosettes:

You can view how to make them here. I think in addition to a fun garland or some paper lanterns, these would look great! I'm also planning on making two wreaths out of paper like I did in this post.

I'd like to hang them on the back of our bride and groom chairs and add labels.

Anyone else diying a whole lotta stuff? Think of anything I might have missed in my list?


Anatomy of a spectacular vday dinner

[Wine, chocolate, bread, pasta---am I missing anything?]

[The boy was sweet and brought home pink roses.]

[Our friends, Tiffany and James, cooked the meal with us.]

We had a sweet little home cooked meal at our apartment with our friends for Valentine's Day. We had a lot of chocolate, bread, and wine, which combined, just produces a whole lot of happiness.



Are You My Venue? #3: Ponte Winery

[Images from Ponte Winery]

I think today was the first day I have encountered in which wedding planning was not fun. I suppose it had to happen at some point.

Where to begin? First, we missed our site visit appointment at Ponte Winery. Due to poor planning on my part and the boy sleeping in later, we missed our appointment time. I called the venue several times asking if 30 minutes later would be a-okay, but unfortunately no one had checked their voicemail. So when I arrived, I was out of luck. The coordinator at Ponte was very nice about it and told me she was very sorry that they couldn't squeeze me in, but that I would have to look around the venue myself.

This normally would not have given me the headache that it did, but Ponte Winery is in Temecula, a good hour away from La Jolla. So we spent 2 hours driving today for a quick 15 minute walk-around the vineyard. I did my best "it's cool, we're totally fine, totally" face when the coordinator gently told me that no one could meet with us.

At this point I was kicking myself about not planning better, and getting increasingly frustrated with the boy. $%^&*#!!!

Anyway, enough of my silly trivial drama--despite the fact that we didn't get to meet with a coordinator, I am still glad we got to see Ponte Winery in person...because it is not the right match for us. BUT I can see how its benefits--an all inclusive package (WITH chiavari chairs,) on-site coordinators, ample parking, an outdoor ceremony and permanent tent--would make a great wedding.

We're taking it out of the running for the following reasons:

1. The drive is way too far. For some reason, a one hour drive in the Bay Area doesn't seem like much, but when you're driving in North County San Diego, all of the sudden that drive seems super.duper.long. Since a majority of our guests will be coming from out of town, the extra one hour drive just seems totally inconvenient. We wouldn't want them to fly and then have to drive another hour to our wedding.

2. It costs a bit more $$$ in comparison to other venues.

It just felt too big and commercial, and I was hoping for a more secluded, intimate ceremony and reception. There were a ton of people there, including two tour buses, and I just didn't envision a whole gaggle of people on site during my wedding day. We're quiet people who enjoy quiet places.

Three down, five to go. We have a whole half week planned in March in which we'll be parading around the SF Bay Area looking at venues, so I'm pretty sure I'll be all venued out by the time I roll around the last place, probably going crazy and babbling about bar options, chairs, and the earliest time we can arrive to set up.


too sexy for this post. {happy valentine's day}

I had these take out boxes from my sister's baby shower, so I decided to make Valentines out of them. I made the labels for a gocco project, but I never got around to re-ordering supplies. {I should get on that soon for all of the wedding goodies--yikes!}

Big thank you to Twigs and Thistle for the brownie idea! I totally cheated and bought a Betty Crocker mix, and then I filled each take out box with heart-shaped brownies. Betty Crocker makes a mean brownie, and I'm really good at adding the canola oil.

It's been a while since I've diy'd something but I figured I needed to get my hands slightly dirty before I take on lots and lots of wedding diy (paper wreaths? celebratory wands? I'm on it.)

Things to look forward to this weekend:
- Cooking dinner with friends
- Eating dinner in Point Loma
- Seeing venue possibility #3

Happy Valentine's Day!


Dear Economy, Please Don't Take Another Magazine Away

First I had to take Blueprint off my list. And then Domino. And now CRAFT?
My "Read a Magazine" list on my sidebar is getting pretty wimpy and appallingly lonely.

Read all about it at Craftzine.com, I got the news via d*sponge.


Free Shipping: J. Crew

[Images from J. Crew]

Had your eye on a J. Crew wedding dress? Now's the time to buy it with FREE shipping.
Just enter LOVE at the checkout, it should be valid until February 11th.

**update**: take another 20% off, enter SHHH at checkout.


Valentine's Day Cards by Katie Muth

[mixed tape card, cupcakes card, sweatervest card by Katie Muth]

I heart mixed tapes. I have a drawer full of them back home from friends. I would {probably} heart anyone who gave me this mixed tape card by Toronto-based artist Katie Muth.
These are all fantastic designs and prints.
I should figure out how to get the boy to wear a sweater vest...
Check out Katie's amazing shop here and her beautiful home tour by d*sponge here.

[Note: In the third photo down in her home tour, you can see a little Miffy pillow on the chair. That just makes her home ten times cooler.]

Flowers at my Feet

[Avignon patterned peep toes, JCrew; Crocus Bud Peep Toes, Anthropologie; Julia Driver Flats, Elie Tahari]

I think my favorites are the J. Crew peep toes and the Elie Tahari pink flats. I think the bow and the flower would look super cute peeking out from underneath a dress.


Some Gorgeousness Tied Around My Waist

[Images from Twigs and Honey]

Myra at Twigs and Honey has made yet another gorgeous piece. How cute is this belt?? I totally see it rocking a simple Jenny Yoo or JCrew dress.

How am I ever going to decide on a dress when there are too many amazing options?


Sarah Perlis - 25% Off

Had your eye on some of Sarah Perlis' work? Now's the time to buy it! She is offering 25% off online orders until February 15th if you enter the discount code 'love' at checkout.

If you've been following my blog, you probably already know I LOVE Sarah's work. This is a great deal, so take a look around her shop here.

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