Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Procrastination is the Name of the Game

So Jay decided... back in May... what he was going to give his groomsmen. He came up with a GREAT idea and I was soooooo jealous that I still had no idea what I was going to get for my girls.

Fast forward 7 months. 

My girls' gifts are done! They're awesome, practical, and I LOVE them!! They're all wrapped up and ready for their debut on Saturday at our Rehearsal Dinner.

My dear fiance... well he's been a little busy the past few months... you know, just painting and updating an entire house, running for public office, working... little things really. To say he hasn't had time to tie his shoes would be the understatement of the century.

So his grand idea for groomsmen gifts was slightly waylaid. Enter his amazing fiance and Super-Mom mother-in-law and their sidekicks, Alyssa & Cathy... 

Seriously, we saved his ass.

cut 7"x7" squares so that you have some seem allowance

My mom said they're 6x6 and 2 cups of corn... but we wanted to be sure so we did a little re-con. First, we asked my dad about the size of bean bags he said he thought my mom was right and he knew they should be 15 ounces... then my brother stepped in and told us to go here, it's a real website

My mom was right. Surprise, surprise! She's made quite a few bean bags in her day and was spot on. So we got to work cutting out squares... 48 squares since we needed 24 bean bags.

have someone who knows what she's doing handle this step

I cut. Mom sewed. Alyssa and Cathy stuffed. It was quite the team effort

In the end, it took us just over 2 hours to finish them.

And they look great!

 And just in case you thought the love of my life might have been slacking... here's what he sent me when we were finishing up and chatting.

"fabrication is done"
He worked all night on building the frames and puttying the holes/rough spots. Tonight's job is to sand them all down and prime them so that we can paint them tomorrow. We're on a pretty tight schedule as they have to be ready to go for our Rehearsal Dinner on Saturday night... plenty of time...

He better know how lucky he is to have me (and my mom, and my best friend, and my best friend's mom/mom's friend)!!

Monday, November 18, 2013

Our Last Anniversary

Today marks my and Jay's 5th Anniversary together. Big deal, right? We think so!

This is our last anniversary before our first 'real' anniversary. We get married in exactly 11 days and we took today to just relax and enjoy being together.

I met my wonderful fiance at Guppy's for lunch. This place is super fun and we can't wait to go back again. We are big fans of the original bar/restaurant a few towns over and were so excited that they opened another location closer to us... just 1 town over from home and smack in the middle of our respective offices, so it's nice for us to meet and get lunch together. Especially when our weeks are as hectic as they've been... if it weren't for lunch dates, we would only see each other to say "good morning" or "good night".

Jay brought home flowers and wrote me the sweetest card and we actually did get to spend some time together tonight after we finished up a couple projects we've been working on for the wedding and we sat down to watch our favorite shows.

 We cracked open a bottle of homemade wine and I baked brie then smothered it in this AMAZING caramel sauce from Wegman's... once we were bundled up in our pj's, we caught the CBS Monday night line up. Let's talk about the caramel pecan sauce...  it was seriously so good a mixture of pecans, cranberries, dehydrated apples, and caramel...  I can't even put into words how much we loved it (sidebar, it would also go great over ice cream, but I think ice cream goes with everything). 

All in all it was a great night and we enjoyed taking a break from the madness to just enjoy the night together. I can't believe how fast five years have flown by, this last one was seriously a blink... I'm so happy we get the rest of our lives to do all the crazy things we love together and I'm looking forward to celebrating our FIRST ANNIVERSARY next year!!!

seriously, we need a liquor cabinet/bar STAT!

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Glitter + Spray Paint = Duct Tape of the Craft World


I might have a problem.

I'm have more than a minor obsessed with all things that glitter. It's to the point that Little Miss Elisabeth tells my sister that she and I have the same favorite color: sparkle. We've got it BAD!

Let's start with my arsenal... Silver Glitter Glue. Iridescent Glass Glitter. Rose Gold Extra Fine Glitter. Rose Gold Hexis Glitter. Pewter Extra Fine Glitter, Silver Iridescent Extra Fine Glitter, Silver Hexis Glitter, Silver Micro Slice Glitter, Gold Extra Fine Glitter Gold Micro Slice Glitter, Iridescent Hexis Glitter.

Surprisingly enough, I had all of this on hand... I know, you're shocked! Most of which I purchased in a giant variety pack (Recollections Glitter in a 30-pack!) or a small variety pack (Wow! Glitter in a 4-pack) at TJ Maxx. The glue and the giant glitter are both from my local arts and crafts store, Rainbow.


These German glass glitter letters (clearance bins at Michaels... very similar to these Pottery Barn letters... but only 75 cents! The ribbon is Domain gray velvet - TJ's) were the beginning of the end for me. Originally, I was going to make 2 banners, 1 for each of our chairs, but the way our reception is set up, it will be more visible to hang it across the front of our table, which meant I'd only need 1 banner... which meant I needed to make a glitter & for between the M-R and M-R-S.

I cut apart a Woodchuck 6-pack and just drew a & with permanent marker until I liked the shape of it. Then I went crazy with the exact-o knife and some scissors. Last, I painted it with glitter glue and sprinkled the crap out of it with glitter. Let dry, repeat on other side.

This is where things got completely out of hand... While I was waiting for one side to dry... I went to town with the glitter and the spray paint. I literally attacked anything I could find (that Jay wouldn't kill me over). From jars, to vases, to votive cups... everything and anything I could get my hands on got tarred and feathered glued and glittered.

In my defense (clearly, I'm marrying a lawyer, otherwise I wouldn't feel the need to do this, EVER) the signs I printed for around the reception sometimes came up short in the frames I had for them so I couldn't just leave the edges white! So I glittered up some mats I had from a previous project, when they weren't the right size, I just glittered the edge of the paper... overkill? Nope!
 Red and White Traditional Christmas           Glitter & gold mason jars, gold spray painted coffee beans for filler
I had seen these pictures on Pinterest of straws like these at the bar and I knew I had to have them to give the wedding that little nod toward Christmas without it looking like Santa crashed our party. I also loved the look of the tray holding straws and stirrers... so again, I went crazy making my own version of this.

More pictures... forthcoming. Can't give it all away just yet!

I had some of this spray paint leftover from the fake-80-surprise-party-that-was-really-my-bridal-shower so I used it on a few jars. I also taped off some glass doodads I had lying around (vases, champagne coupes, wine glasses, etc.) and sprayed just the rims or bottoms. It worked out beautifully and these things will be pulling double-duty! Rehearsal + Reception.

I will say, this spray paint looks great but it definitely pulls more rose-gold than brass/bright gold. Of course, I ran out mid-project so Jay had to pick more up for me on a Home Depot run. He grabbed a Rust-o-lium can and it definitely is a brighter truer gold color. I like the mix of both, but be careful if you are not a just-go-with-it kind of person.

I'm fairly certain that, after this weekend, anyone who comes to our house in the next YEAR will leave with glitter on their person. Our dog... well he'll either look like a HomeGoods holiday decoration, or he'll have sparkly poops for a good few months... won't keep you posted... even I know when enough's enough.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Death By Crafting.. the tassels from hell

Surely, if I die before our wedding day it will be as a result of making a tassel backdrop. I've been eying this up forever and I knew I wanted one for our wedding. Unfortunately, the garlands from ConfettiSystem are out of my price range and this seemed easy enough to create on my own.

confettisystem confetti system garland tassle fringle metallic tissue paper DIY piƱata

Enter Amazon.. I had a ton of white tissue lying around from Christmases and birthdays past, so I ordered silver mylar, gold mylar, ivory and gray tissue. When it arrived, I got to work cutting and twisting.

How to Make Tissue Paper Tassel Garlands! Tutorial!
I followed this tutorial

If I could do it over again, I would purchase a rotary cutter as suggested in Camille Styles tutorial. It would have made my life 10 times easier and this project about 30 times faster.

I've been making tassels since April. 

Literally, every spare moment I have for wedding crafts has been dedicated to cutting and twisting and I still do not have enough tassels for this grand photo back drop I've planned in my head.

This should be one of the crafts that I should just skip. I should just cut my losses, throw all the tassels into a plastic bin labeled "New Year's Eve" and call it a day... but I'm in too deep. 

I've cut too many. I've twisted my little heart out and the results are fabulous... I just need about 100 more.

Some nights, I twist while drinking wine and cooking dinner... sometimes I stare at the stack of tissue paper I have left to twist and wonder what drugs I should be on for this...

Lately, I've been in bed watching Christmas movies on the Hallmark channel and twisting away... every so often apologizing to Jay for my crazy and thanking him for just letting me be nuts.

I have a feeling its going to look fabulous in the end so I'm not too worried... yet... I have all the tissue cut at this point and am making great progress! Thank God for Christmas movies every night!! I just hope I can convince my wonderful husband-to-be to build me a frame for this bad boy since I talked to our venue and they said I would not be able to use command clips on their walls. (boo! but understandable)

Wish me luck!! (does anyone else find it particularly hysterical that I used the word 'easy' at the beginning of this post?)

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Crisis Averted... Table Numbers

I've had table numbers printed and ready to go for months... Literally, these have been sitting in a folder since May... MAY!!!

My cousin had 20-25 table number frames that she used for her wedding. She gave them to my sister to use for hers. A few months after that, they were used again for my best friend's wedding. Then stashed in storage. No big deal... I'll get them from her later... plenty of time.

"Oh you're so ahead of the game, Leenie!"

Never. Should. Have. Said. That.
Enter: Murphy's Law.

Warning: I'm about to let you in on what went through my head today... it's a scary place right now. I'm sorry if it causes you to have a panic attack, seizure, or any other kind of meltdown.

Then life happened. My best friend got knocked up (wooo hooo!!) and then we all got really busy... her planning the arrival of her baby girl and me planning a home renovation and wedding, and well... we forgot about table number frames. Plenty of time. Until your BFF goes on bed rest! Son-of-a!!!!!! Ask her about them... can't ask her to go digging through storage boxes in the basement now.... oh shit! Don't panic. Plenty of time. Tell Kerri Not to cry. Don't worry. It'll be ok. What am I going to do for table numbers? Brainstorm... think about every idea I've liked over the last 6 months. (more ideas in this post and on my pinterest boards). 3 weeks til the wedding... I start freaking out to get a little anxious. I really don't want to spend any more money. This isn't one of those craft projects I can just skip.

In the car, on the way home from buying a rehearsal dinner dress (for the 3rd time) and have literally a light bulb explode in my head!

I turn to Nicole (my own personal savior and bridesmaid extraordinaire) and ask if it's ok to have mis-matched frames. We agree this is fine since nothing-the-same is kind of my thing. Thankfully in a past life... I was a shopoholic and bought things for my house that I didn't have. A lot of times those things were picture frames.

Nicole and I dig through a box in my guest room and find about 25 frames. Perfect. I'm left in a state of delirium to my own devices . Now to doctor them up a bit... kind of Christmasy - kind of wintery - silver & gold, black & white, ivory & gray - sparkle - metallic... I need glitter. I need gold spray paint. Good thing I have a minor obsession with both so I have them on hand. Get to work.

Finished product: Some of the painted frames mixed in with the glittered mats and other frames that have some of their own inherent sparkle. Looks like this was The Plan... the whole time.Crisis Averted.

I'm actually THRILLED with the way these all turned out and am so excited about them. I have a few numbers to reprint - you can see that 1 has no swirls and in 17, 20, and 21 all could use a little help since their doodads are covered by the frame, but all in all, I'm so happy with it. I did find that need some plate stands for 3 frames that don't stand on their own but I talked to my mom about it and she was happy to help out there!

*Disclaimer: pay no attention to the bottle of champagne, Fireball, or the 6-pack of Anchor Brewing Christmas Ale... we do what we need to survive wedding planning.

Friday, November 8, 2013

Crossing Fingers... and Toes... and Legs!

Can someone please get me a tissue?

My best friend in the entire world is having a baby! A little girl baby and I could not be more excited for her because she already has 2 little boys and has pretty much been talking about "her little girl" since her last son was born 6 years ago.

She called me today in tears...full on sobbing! I panicked immediately thinking something had gone seriously wrong, wondering what happened and why she was upset. Then she started apologizing... Wait, what?

Turns out this baby girl is a little brat (but I love her to pieces anyway) and due to some complications, my BFF can't come to the bachelorette party :( super sad about this. What's worse, she's on serious bed rest and probably won't be able to come to the rehearsal dinner or the wedding. (cue my own rush of tears)

So there we were sitting on the phone crying to each other... hot messes, the both of us. Feeling sorry for ourselves and each other... but then we thought about it and she's having a baby! A BABY!!! this is fantastic, regardless of the trouble the little chick is giving her! I'm getting married (to my other best friend)! Maybe I'm setting myself up for major disappointment, but I'm pretty sure this is going to be the best day of my life so far!

She's my human... So despite the fact that my best friend may not be able to come to my wedding and is feeling pretty damn awful and that I may have promised her I'd come to the hospital in my wedding dress if I had to... we're both truly blessed. We're also crossing our fingers (and she's crossing her legs) in hopes that the baby will cooperate and she'll be able to make it to our Big Day... at least part of the day.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

November + Wedding Love List

Since we decided on neutrals and metallics as our wedding colors a few months back... I can't seem to shake them. I am LOVING all things black, white, gray, ivory, beige, and oh my god do I love anything that shimmers.
Let's just say if sparkle was a color, it would be my favorite. German Glass Glitter has completely stolen my heart and I want it EVERYWHERE! (which is a good thing because if you've ever worked with glitter, you know that it's going to get all over the place)

Give Thanks Glitter Garland
Pottery Barn Kids

I promised Jay that I would not decorate for Christmas until after Thanksgiving. Marriage is all about compromise, after all. I have literally been listening to Christmas music (on the not-so-sly) since June 24th - Half-Christmas Eve- so we know that it's my favorite holiday, but Jay's favorite is Thanksgiving... so I'm not allowed to skip it... or call it Christmas practice...

I have to admit, my favorite stores are helping me manage my need to decorate by making fall things all kinds of sparkly and cozy... and I'm actually kind of in love with the idea of being able to decorate my house to the nines... twice.

Made by me :) all supplies via Michael's - I've used these glittery letters from Michael's
on quite a few of our wedding crafts as well as around our house.
Finally, my faves this month... I'm completely head over freaking heels for all of these things!! The birch straws, mercury glass votive cups, and antler candle holders will even be pulling double-duty... making our house festive when not in use at either the wedding or the rehearsal dinner :) Don't be surprised if more of these goodies wind up making their way onto the guest list... because I'm obsessed with them

Crate & Barrel - Garland, Wreath, Turkey Towel
Jones Design Co. - Thankful Tree Tags (Free Printables)
Dear Lilly - Give Thanks Pillow
Marshall's - Antler Pillar Candle Holders
(available online at One Kings Lane - but more $$ than I paid)
Acorns (from my parents' yard)

Friday, November 1, 2013

Happy Wedding Month!

I cannot believe that it's already November! We've officially reached the month of the wedding and I couldn't be more excited! I still have SOOOOO much to do but I think it will all come together just fine.

I had grand ideas of having everything finished by Halloween but have completely blown that deadline.

I have a lot of 50-75% finished projects (and some not even started)... Among things left on my to-do list are:

Hotel goodie bags (something like these)
Country Wedding Decorations - Rustic Wedding Decor and Photos for your Rustic Country Weddingwelcome gift with local flare

Favors (apx. 80% finished)
-design tags in publisher, check! print on card stock, check (thanks Dad!) cut into tag shapes, check (thanks Dad!)  hole punched, check! strung tags with bakers twine, check! tied to favors... one last step... hopefully checked this weekend!

Table numbers
-printed, need frames... or to do something super clever like these... I'm also completely loving these ones below
brides of adelaide magazine - table number - wedding decorations - centrepiece - wedding table number
Silver Glitter Table Number Holders $64

Seating chart/escort cards
 - the wedding is less than a month away and I'm still trying to figure out what I want to do here... I figure I have til next week to decide since response cards are due back on the 8th.

Parent and attendant gifts (have in my possession, just need to be put together and wrapped)

Finalize music choices (for church and for reception)

have earrings - I think... need a bracelet and maybe a necklace... but if I get a necklace, I need smaller earrings.

Old, New, Borrowed, Blue
No, yes, yes, yes.

Frames for signage
and let's be honest, I have a few signs I need to finish too.

Props and frame for photo-wall
this might be one of those things that just doesn't happen...  but I do have a couple hundred tassels already made so we shall see...

imagine this in shades of ivory, white, silver, gold, and gray
or this but a bit more random
Photo booth tassel garland backdrop

church/pew decor
 bows? wreathes? candles? flowers? I haven't the slightest idea what I'm going to do here yet, but it'll be gorgeous :)

Finalize flower choices
meeting with my aunt in 2 weeks to place the order, and I can't wait to see what she does!

Confirm vendors
gotta sick Jay on them. Limo/trolley, videographer, photographer, hair/makeup, DJ

Rehearsal Dinner
another Jay task - he will confirm all the food/beverages and timing. I'll do the decorating

On top of that, I had a little chat with my photographer about adding 1 more little surprise to our agenda and I couldn't be more excited about it! (even if it does pile on another craft project to my already mounting list)

Time to get on the ball! I have a lot of work to do and not a lot of time to do it! Thankfully the election is just a few short days away and then I get my husband-to-be back for a few weeks!