Camp Stationery

Usually when I find something that I want to share, I wait until the morning when my brain seems to be in best working order, but this stationery from the PH Design shop was just TOO CUTE!  As a former camp counselor, this made my heart sing.

campstationeryphdesignship

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Moving on up. New gig!

I mentioned previously that I was interested in doing this blog thang fo’ real!  I love writing, I love researching, and I love interacting with you all that come visit and stay awhile.  I guess this would be an occupational hazard of a talkative librarian who is getting hitched.

If you remember, I had contacted a local wedding website because I had noticed that they had started a blog to accompany their home website.  I shot them an email stating that I was interested in posting on the blog and that I had a ton of ideas.  Over several emails back and forth and a meeting at their headquarters, I have stumbled upon a lovely little side job.  I will be writing a few posts each week for QCWeddings.com that feature wedding related info that local brides can use.

I am so thrilled to have this opportunity!  I really feel like the stars aligned with this one.  I’ll be writing on a wedding blog (which I love) while working around my own schedule (which I need) and trying to make this eventually a full time gig (which I hope).  For now, it’s about ten hours per week of work which equates to a couple of posts each week, but I really do believe that there is a need for this blog and that it can go very far.  At this point, this is by no means a living for which I could quit my other job, but who knows?  It has potential.  BIG potential.

I will still be keeping this blog going along at full steam.  I see this blog as my baby.  I can do whatever I want on this blog.  In fact, right now, I’m typing this post in the nude…just because I can.  When I write for QCW, I will probably put some clothes on.  I will also probably have to watch my mouth.  Fuck.

But seriously, this blog is just in it’s baby stages, and there is some tweaking and reorganizing that needs to happen, but it is going to be FANTASTIC!  Whenever you’ve got a spare moment, you can visit me over there!

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Easy Inexpensive Environmentally-Friendly Engagement Invitations

I love paper.  I luuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuv paper.  I like the look, the feel, even the smell of paper.

But yesterday, I found a pretty close second in the world of invitiation possibilities.  I want to introduce you all with a website that I stumbled upon called Paperlesspost.  This website lets you design custom invititations and announcements.  They will deliver the “envelopes” to your guests email accounts, and they will monitor the rsvps as they come in.  How awesome is that?

They literally have thousands of options to customize your invitation, and the quality of imaging is so good that you can see the texture of the paper you have selected.  You can manipulate the lay out, color, font, wording, everything!

When you sign up for an account, you receive 25 “stamps” for free.  After that you can buy them for a fraction of what you would pay with actual stamps.  For example you could buy 200 “stamps” for $10 which is the postal equivilant to $88.

I decided to try out my free stamps for our engagement party that is coming up this fall.  A and I want to have a casual cookout for our famlies and wedding party at our house.  Nothing fancy…just good food and good drink.  So I played around with the options and settings and found something that I love!

My guests will get a cute little envelope in the email that I send them, and when they open it, it will look like this:

engagement invitation_0001How cute is that?  They can click on the “click to rsvp” on the invite, and it will take them to a page where they can do so.  All this will be tracked for us.  Now, we are only inviting about 20 or so people to this engagement party, so it’s not huge.  But I could see this service being of great value to someone who is looking for an environmentally friendly, inexpensive, yet beautiful way to invite guests!

Has anyone else used Paperlesspost?  Let us know how that has worked for you!

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Faux-cinda!

So sorry that I have been missing in action this last week!  As mentioned in the previous post, we ended up going on a weekend trip to visit family in Minneapolis.  On Monday, my summer classes started, and I’ve been burried ever since.

I did have a pretty exciting wedding-related day on Wednesday.  I’ve talked about before how I am having my wedding dress made to resemble the Lucinda dress from jcrew.  Lucinda, I love you, but you are priiiiiiiiii-cey!  Way outside of my budget.  Just to recap, I had decided to put an etsy alchemy request out, and etsy user, BeyondTheReflection, aka Brandie Thomas,  accepted my proposal at an amazing price!  We worked out a contract with all the dress details, and I sent away my deposit and my measurements.

Until Wednesday, I really had some trepidations about what I had gotten myself in to.  She could have been a con artist.  She could have been unskilled.  I had no idea.  I figured that the worst case scenario would be that I’d lost my deposit and learn a lesson.

On Wednesday, my mom and I had a 1pm meeting with Brandie who lives in Chicago.  As non-Chicago land people, we knew that there were good parts of Chicago and baaaaaaaaaaaad parts of Chicago.  As we entered the city, we talked about escape plans should Brandie’s place be in a questionable area.  As we turned we’d breathe in a sigh of releaf if the street looked nice and sucked in a breath if it looked…rusty.  Turn, turn, turn.  Nice, rusty, nice, rusty.  Ever heard of Cisero?  As in the street mentioned in the Chicago musical?  Yeah we turned on and of Cisero a couple of times.

After about 10,035 turns, we entered a lovely little burrow called Rogers Park nestled against beautiful little Loyola Park which was next to Lake Michigan.  Quaint shops and delicatessens were on every corner, and my mother and I breathed a sigh of releaf.  We were even able to park for free in front of Brandie’s building.

Next I met Brandie in person for the first time.  She is awesome!  Funny and quirky, and the girl knows her shit about sewing.  Her apartment was a virtual who’s who of sewing machines and materials.  As we entered her apartment, she was finishing the last stitches on my muslin mock up, and soon I had tried on the dress for my first fitting.

Here is a picture of Brandie doing some alterations to the muslin mock up.  Why am I holding my arms like that?  Note to self:  work on posture before the wedding.

dress 4

Here’s me holding the dress up while Brandie fixes a panel in the back.  Can you see the inverted box pleats?  They are just like the jcrew dress.  Brandie is an artist!

dress 2

I am really happy here.  I think this was the moment that I realized that Brandie is not a fraud and that I am going to get the dress of my dreams.

dress 5

Things to keep in mind:

1)  This is the muslin mock up.  We still have one more alterations meeting with the muslin mock up before Brandie starts to cut the silk dupioni for the actual dress.  We forgot to get a head to toe shot while we were here this time, so next time I will get some of those.

2)  The skirt is going to have more volume after an extra panel and the crinoline layer are added.

3)  My roots are really, really, really bad.  I have made an appointment with my hair lady for next week.  I also have really bad Iwaslazyandhadtobeinacarforhours-do on this day.  It looks like I rolled right out of bed in Brandie’s apartment.

4)  If you are in love with a dress but cannot afford it, contact Brandie.  She’s absolutely fantastically talanted!

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Spontaneity

Very last minute, A and I decided to go on a road trip to visit his brother and sister-in-law in Minneapolis.  We are here shopping and eating and fishing and drinking.  I’ll be back on Monday!  Have a beautiful weekend!  ~JB

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Trend Watch: Parasols

After several hours of rearranging my blogroll yesterday, I finally found an organization that wasn’t too complicated.  I was trying to keep the list of blogs in each category fairly short.  If I had a category that seemed a little overwhelming in size, I found sub-categories to divide and conquer.

I ended up with the following categories:  brides who blog, general design afficianatos, do-it-yourselfers, flowers, foodies, health, inspiration, paper, photographers, planners, Quad City area sites, shops, and trends.  Whew.  I think the new organization helps my blog roll to be more of a resource rather than just a list that’s there.  I really do try to keep the best of the best on my blog roll, so if you’ve got a fantastic wedding or design related site that is not featured, please drop me a little note because I adore finding new blogs!

The most difficult distinction in my blogroll was between “inspiration” blogs and “trend” blogs.  I finally defined them as the following:

Inspiration – These are the websites, in my opinion, that are the source for wedding inspiration.  They often feature original ideas, inspiration boards, and seem to be on the up and up on the latest breaking wedding events.

Trends – These blogs are run by fantastic researchers who are totally in tune to who is doing what, and the resources that they cite are invaluable for other lovers of wedding research (such as myself).

Okay, enough blog mumbo jumbo… Here are some pretty things to look at for today:  Parasols!  They are so delicious!  The ones featured here today are from Raindrops and Bella Umbrella.  How much fun would it be to have these on hand in case of rain, or even to keep the sun out of your guests’ eyes.  These could be fantastic props for a bridal shoot as well!  Enjoy!

parasol 2parasol 11 bella

parasol rain drops toparasol 10 bella

parasol 4parasol 8 bella

parasol 5

parasol 9 bella

parasol 3

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Under Construction…

Hi, folks.  Today, I am revamping my blog roll.  Up until now, all the links were under only three general categories, and I found myself kind of lost in it.  I am experimenting to see if I like seperating the wedding links into things like design, brides, flowers, stationers, etc…or if I’d rather go back to one big list.  If you have a thought one way or another, feel free to give me some feedback!  ~JB

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