It’s My Party…

For ProteaGroom, choosing his groomsmen was one of the easiest things in the world. I went out on a girls’ night and he invited his closest friends to a braai at our home. In between drinking their brandy and Coke, he asked them if they will be his ‘best men’ on his wedding day. To his best friend, he asked if he will be his ‘top best man’ and make a speech.

Seriously, that was it. Nevermind getting the terminology wrong, they all said yes.

For me, it was a bit more complicated (isn’t it always?). First of all, I was in a difficult situation with my friends. I waited a long time to choose my bridal party, even though my best friend kept prodding me gently to make it official. I waited more than a year to ask the girls, and this was absolutely the best idea ever.

When comparing the group I had originally considered at the beginning of the engagement, to the group I actually chose, only one person is still constant. However, I know the girls that I have in my bridal party now will be in my life for the long run and we will always support each other, no matter what.

So for popping the big question so to speak, I wanted to do something special to ask the girls.

I found my inspiration in Bethany’s (of rinse repeat blog) original bridesmaid boxes. These boxes are so sweet and I liked the idea that my ladies would be able to use them again after the wedding as a jewellery box of some sort.

Bridesmaid Boxes

Image via rinse repeat blog

I went off to the craft store and brought all the items I would need and merrily started working on them as soon as I got home. It turned out to be the biggest wedding DIY failure.

Actually now that I look at it, it doesn't look to horrible... Might re use them later on. Personal image.

Actually now that I look at it, it doesn’t look too horrible… Might re use them later on.
Personal image.

I didn’t like the way the crackle effect came out, or the way the green colour came out and my lofty plans for making liners for the inside of the box was a complete failure. Soon, I abandoned the project and didn’t think about it for a while.

Finally, it came down to crunch time for me to ask my girls, and by then I had purchased the awesome Silhouette Cameo machine (my other other right hand for anything wedding related).

I designed a little card personalised with their name and a little poem asking them if they would stand by my side on the wedding day.

This wasn’t enough, so I purchased a few ‘supplies’ they might need while serving as my maids.

These were:

–          Tissues – For tears of joy

–          Chocolate – To de-stress

–          Cape Velvet Liquer – For when they need liquid courage

Sorry to blur. MOH J holding the package because I forgot to take a picture earlier! Oops! Personal image.

Sorry to blur. MOH J holding the package because I forgot to take a picture earlier! Oops! Personal image.

ProteaGroom helped me to tie these items to the cards because I was going crazy trying to do it by myself. BM M’s package looked a bit different, because she is blind. I really wanted to personalise hers, so I sneakily stole her slate one day (we were working together at the time and she is teaching me Braille) and wrote the letter at home. I also didn’t include the alcohol in hers due to religious reasons, and rather included a pack of energy sweets for when she is in need of energy. I rolled the piece of paper up and tied everything together with the same ribbon.

Braille closeup. Personal image.

Braille closeup. Personal image.

I would have loved to ask all my ladies at the same time, but unfortunately at the time we lived in two different cities and our schedules were too hectic to coordinate.

I took MOH J and BM T for breakfast and coffee and asked them there. There were tears (MOH J) and they said yes.

BM M I took to lunch after work one day and there were also tears and she said yes.

Finally, I couldn’t meet up with BM A anytime soon, so I asked that BM T take hers (they are sisters and live in the same town!) and she called me up with a resounding yes.

So in the end, even though my ambitious plans for asking my ladies didn’t pan out, they still loved their little gifts and they all said yes.

How did you ask your wedding party to be involved in the wedding? Did you have any lofty ideas which turned into a DIY failure?

Advertisements

Finding the Right Venue – Part 1

For me, the logical first step of wedding planning was to find a venue. All those wedding websites and magazines that give you those handy dandy timelines (I’m being sarcastic here – I hate those timelines) say that the first step is picking a date and then finding a venue and other suppliers, but for me it just makes sense to pick a venue and have everything else flow from there.

So a few weeks after getting engaged, we set off to find the perfect wedding venue. We had a few non-negotiable points:

  • The venue should have facilities for the ceremony and reception. Neither ProteaGroom nor I was fond of the idea of travelling to another location after a church ceremony.
  • Either the ceremony or reception (or both!) should take place outside.
  • The venue should be within a 50km radius from where we live.

ProteaGroom suggested the perfect venue for our wedding. One of his uncles owns a beautiful farm, with stunning views and lots of open space to host a wedding. It is literally a blank canvas. The bride part of my brain started practically salivating at the idea of all the amazing decor we could implement.

farm_inspiration_1

Image source (clockwise): 1 2 3 4

We started to research this idea, but soon realized that in order to execute this successfully; it would take a lot of planning, effort and money. I also realized that the stress related to planning a wedding completely from scratch would cause me to go absolutely crazy a few days before the big day. So, the idea of a DIY farm wedding was nixed fairly quickly.

We looked around at other popular venues in our area. They were beautiful, but the atmosphere and set-up was so far removed from what we were looking for, that none of them sold us.

We’ve been to many weddings held at these venues, and we were looking for something a bit more unique than the typically cookie-cutter South African wedding.

I was beginning to think we would have to settle on something that just didn’t represent us as a couple.

Did you find your dream venue easily? Do you hate cliffhangers as much as I do?

Let’s Jump Right In…

After taking a few days to adjust to the beautiful sparkly that now adorned my ring finger, we jumped right into wedding planning. We discussed the vision each of us had for our perfect day, and we set off to combine those ideas.

We both love nature and being outdoors, so one of our requirements was that all or part of the wedding needed to take place outdoors. In the same vein, we love summer and hate winter, so we wanted our wedding to take place under the warm summer sun.

outdoorsummerwedding

Image source (L-R): 1 2 3

Drawing our inspiration again from nature (and my favourite colour) we decided on a rough colour scheme of khaki, cream, light green and dark green.

1 colourscheme

We decided that we wanted to incorporate lots of handmade touches to make our day special and reflect us as a couple, so we compiled a list of projects we wanted to do ourselves.

handmadeinspiration

Image source (L-R): 1 2 3 4

And then, I took to Pinterest and started pinning like a beast.

inspirationboard

Image source (L-R): 1 2 3 4 5 6

Even though our wedding was nowhere near ‘planned’ at this point, at least we had a vision to guide us as we set off to start booking vendors and tackle DIY projects.

Did you sit down with your fiancé and decide on the look and feel of your wedding before starting to plan?