Sunday, December 30, 2007

like martha stewart needs my dollars

I bought my first wedding magazines today!

I know, right? Half of you read that sentence and said "You haven't bought any yet, are you crazy?" and the other half thought "Jesus, so?!"

I thought I didn't want to buy any...the internet is such a valuable resource and the magazines just seem to cater to the kind of wedding I am not having, and I thought, who needs em? I've got like fifty wedding blogs I can read every day for free, suckas!
But (and on hallowedding there is always a but) I was kind of expecting Santa to bring me a bridal magazine this year AND HE DIDN'T. And a few days after Christmas I thought, boo, Santa. You should've bought me a wedding magazine. Well, today I FINALLY got my refund check for financial aid (only five months late...great job, university system!) and I said "I'm doin' it!"

You guys, I was wrong about wedding magazines. Wedding magazines are. So. Fun.
And pretty.
And unlike, say, Cosmo, where I always wonder where the content is hiding under all the ads, in bridal magazines, the ads are the best part! and everybody knows it! and everyone is okay with it! It's kind of like a Playboy...if you do end up reading the articles they're really good but if you just look at the pictures you'll get off just fine.
Sorry Mom. Sorry Jesus. That was inappropriate.

But back to weddings, these things are huge! I sat paging through one for over an hour and I'm only half way through--and I was flying through that bad boy. So I still have half of Modern Bride and a whole Martha Stewart Weddings left to go. Remind me that I have things I need to get done in the next week...lots and lots of things. If you see me sitting in a chair, folding over pages, ask me if my costumes for the Moving Company are done. That should get me up pretty fast.

Oh, and Greg and I spent a good chunk of a car trip to Wichita talking wedding shop and we have a LOT figured out. I'll also be doing some quick posts about Christmas gifts that are doubling as wedding prep presents and how I managed to bank AGAIN on post-holidays sales. Hallowedding stuff in post-Christmas clearance: it is a MADHOUSE. Target is a MADHOUSE.

Goodnight internet.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

happy holidays

Going back to the hometowns now. Have a Merry Christmas (or whatever) and a fantastic New Year!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

that's it, we're goin' to lincoln!

Good morning!
I had plans, big plans about me staying in bed until 9 a.m. this morning, but after letting the dog out for his morning wee I thought, oh, I'll just check the old email to see if there's anything that needs dealing with. There were weddingy emails in there, which make me happy, and then I'm like, oh, a quick pop over some of my favorite wedding blogs and back to bed!
Uh, no. No, that isn't going to happen anymore.
Okay, so it's not like I haven't heard of Watters before. I'm sure I have a dozen of their dresses in my inspiration bookmarks. But someone linked to them and I was all over their site...short dresses, dresses with sleeves, oh my god such prettiness! The downside: the only place around that carries their dresses is in Lincoln (about 45 min away) which isn't too far but...sigh. My maid of honor is modeling in a bridal show this month and she has tried on more dresses than me. Bad bride! Get thee to a fittery!
Anyhoo, you guys want pretty pictures, right? I KNOW I DO! But I can't make them work and I need to go Christmas shopping. So I'll go Christmas shopping, I'll try to post the pretty pictures later, but until then here are the LINKS to the pretty pictures, if you're interested:

Where did they get this shawl,
does it come in white and how fast can it be at my wedding?

I even like some of their long styles. I think I want straps or sleeves on my dress, just to minimize the pulling/back fat problem most brides have with strapless. Great, another quality I want in a wedding dress that NOBODY EVER HAS EVER. Baaaaaah.

BUT-Watters has a lot of dresses with sleeve and straps and SHORT DRESSES! Some of them are obviously too springy, but this one looks very fall fashion and fifties courthouse. Can we talk about the fact that there's a jacket? And lace? I know it would probably make me look matronly and would look terrible on me but I kind of love it. Is it okay if I kind of love it? Because I do.

And finally, bridesmaids look away, lest your hearts be broken:
I love this bridesmaid dress SO MUCH.
But I know Watter's bridesmaid dresses run in the 125-200 range. It comes in off-white, I guess, so maybe I could have it, but oh god. Oh it is the prettiest. If I can only post one picture later it will be that one.

We're going to Lincoln to try on dresses. We must!

Speaking of the bridesmaids, there is one I haven't asked yet! Because I wanted it to be personal and she lives in Maine and I never see her and now I don't think I'll be around when she's around for the holidays. Whoops. How tacky would a facebook bridesmaid invite be? So tacky, I know...but I might just have to.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

overstock = overawesome

I have never been to, but someone suggested them for bridesmaid dresses and oh my gosh. There are a lot of dresses (like the one above...I love chest buttons more than pleats, even) that I want to have justification to buy. Rehearsal dinner dress? Erm, prolly too chilly for October. Engagement photo dress? Wear it around so people will call me pretty?...(is that a wedding justification?) But I DID find some very interesting finds. These dresses will probably not be around in a few months when I need to buys them but just knowing that we have these options makes me feel so much better. This dress comes in rich, dark orange and shiny orange. I know, it was pretty much decided that pencil skirts were out, but I think those people would reconsider for pretty orange dresses...maybe?
And oh, WEDDING DRESS TIME! Oooooooh, ahhhhhhhh. And, and, and, $120. Yup.
If I had any disposable income I would just buy it. Just...because.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

ah hell

Email message from The Knot

"Shannon and Greg!
Eleven months to go! Here's what you should do this month:
Book a reception site!"


Monday, December 10, 2007

Do Your Part

Sorry, I just had to post this. I think this is the first video invite I've ever seen, and it's certainly the first YouTube invite I've ever seen. But it really is a pretty smart idea, and it's beautifully executed. It doesn't hurt that these are two very funny people, the groom hailing from Hard N' Phirm and the bride from Respecto Montalban.

The only X-factor is how you make sure that only the right people see it, I suppose, and that you don't get monstrous guys in LOLcats shirts showing up for cake and the chance to be near a woman.

Anyhow, enjoy the video. And watch for the ending. And leave some feedback! If you've got fun ideas in this vein, let us know. It could be up our alley, potentially. We are wedding bloggers, after all.

On a more serious note, our friend/professor/mentor Paul summed up my feelings on the Omaha shootings very truthfully in his most recent blog entry. You can find it here. It's smart talk and apparently a good chunk of the Omaha press is going this way. Glad to hear it.

Friday, December 7, 2007


Ah, Stephanie James. With all your beautiful tea length dresses. Some with pleats. Some named after beloved characters in musicals. All of which would be so, so perfect for me.
I finally broke down and just emailed the woman. Just to see if there was a boutique carrying her line somewhere closer than Denver. There isn't. But she was kind enough to offer to ship me a dress and gave me prices. Less than I thought. Still too much, though, I think, for something that only I get to enjoy. It shouldn't cost as much as the catering.
Right? Right? Right?
The first dress is Dahlia. Pleated and pretty and new.

And then there's Audrey, "her most popular dress," and Audrey just breaks my goddamn heart.How cute would I look in that? Seriously. I must say, though, Stephanie James is like the nicest person I have talked to about wedding stuff so far. She's unbelievable.

again with the target?

I have been left alone at my office job to answer phones while everyone else is at a faculty meeting. That means internet funtimes. And internet funtimes equals pictures.

Let us address the bridesmaid dress issue. My ultimate hope for the girls' dresses is for them to NOT be bridesmaid dresses. BM dresses (ha, bm!) are notoriously poorly made and over priced, and are kind of unwearable. There are a couple of REALLY CUTE versions that disprove this theory but they are $150 to $300 dollars and I'm just not going to do that to one of my friends. That's just ridiculous. I'm limiting myself to the $75 and under range...and they'll only be $75 if they're really ridiculously gorgeous.
jcrew has a lot of adorable options (a few of which are in the $150 range and will therefore will not be mentioned, but are still much beloved)

This one is about $80 but is circling the sale drain and will probably go down. I think it's a really flattering cut and will probably be the highest quality.

There are also a couple of similar styles in the Anne Taylor celebrations collection that frequently go on sale for about this price. I think this style has major rewearability, but might be a little too popular...a brown tea length dress is not as sensible if you have more than one, you know?
(Yes, blogger, I know "rewearability" is not a word. But neither is "internets." Just go with me here)
So of course, since this is my wedding and I apparently like to buy my life at Target, I started looking around their website and I've got to say, I'm intrigued. Very, very intrigued. Most of these dresses are $40, some are cheaper. And Target makes some cute stuff. Actually if I could get the t-back dress Ashley wore to our engagement party in other colors, that would be a major contender for either the bridesmaids or even myself.
Here is another variation on the classic shown above, only with a pencil skirt. I love pencil skirts. But they don't look good on everyone, so maybe not.

This option is similarly sleek, but with a little bit of lace. If my dress has lace, this could be a cute way to go. It'll also make the dress a little more different.

Is this dress not adorable? I'm so in love with it. The navy version is in our Target and I constantly stop by to say Ooooooooh to it. The only problems I could see with this dress are that it could potentially be a fuller skirt than my own dress (again, why does this not come in white?!) and also, it's made of that weird taffeta that has an almost woodgrain pattern on it. Since I make costumes I should probably know what that's called but I just always call it woodgrain fabric. Meh.

I looooooove this one. Look at how much fun the girl is having in this picture. I see nothing wrong with this dress. It is also goes very well with the sort of fifties ish feel we're wanting and would look darling on all the girls.

Of course, just like Greg's post about the suits, this is something that can't be decided until I find my dress. Which, if I want to REALLY stay on budget and have a forty dollar wedding dress, Target has some ideas about that one too:

So, if you were in my wedding, which would you rather wear?

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Keep Calm and Carry On

Greg with a quick message. Anybody who knows us is probably aware that Shannon and our best friend/maid of honor Ashley work at The Afternoon in Westroads Mall. And if you know us and live in Omaha then you're aware of the fact that there was a tragic mass shooting in Von Maur there today. I thought I'd just let everyone know that both Shannon and Ashley are okay, fine, super good, but many people at this moment in Omaha are not. Please keep them and their families in their thoughts and prayers this evening.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007


Sorry for the title, but I guess I feel obligated to carry on Shannon's unflagging enthusiasm. Anyhow, I'm here to get some responses on the suits I've been looking at.

It turns out that brown tuxedos are not exactly the most popular things on earth. They seem to be getting a bit of a resurgence, but the pickings are still slim. So let me preface this post by saying that if you happen to run into a suit that I've missed in this post, please let us know about it. But let us begin.

The first option is from Men's Wearhouse. It's a Versini wool suit, so there isn't a lot of flash to it. Here's some pictures.

One thing I like about this option is the simplicity. It has a casual feel to it, which perfectly matches with the 50's courthouse vibe that we're looking for. It's not a tuxedo, which is honestly a draw for me, and it would pair with our chosen colors of orange, purple, and red (red for me) really well. The pinstripe is subtle but still noticable, and the color is perfect.
This suit would probably go without a vest, if we go that route, and would look good with the chosen footwear for my side of the aisle.
Problem is, I can't rent it, since it's not a tuxedo. They're only $175 a piece though.

Next up is a more dressed-up number, but still casual. This is from Fubu, apparently, and I do like it a bit. It's less reserved and a bit more flashy, but not excessively so. A big part of this decision hinges upon Shannon's dress, so if that side of the equation ends up being somewhat modern, this suit could work really well. Also, since it's an actual tuxedo, I should be able to find it for rent, unlike option 1.
This suit would be much better, however, if the lapel fabric matched the rest of the suit. For this cut and style a contrast lapel doesn't make a lot of sense to me. But despite that, it's still a front-runner.

And last we have the maximum fancy option. This one is nice because it blends a classic cut with a modern fabric, and the contrasting lapel works for me in this case. But because it's a little out there, it may call too much attention to my side of the aisle. I want to look nice, but I'm beginning to see why people gravitate towards black suits, because other colors really can pull focus from where people should be looking: at the bride. This is another actual tuxedo, though, so I should be able to track it down for rental. The website I found it on, however, listed it in their Diamond collection, so it may not be cheap.
I'm also concerned about this suit given our other elements. The groomsmen will be wearing Chuck Taylors in a burnt orange or deep purple, while I'll be wearing red ones. Each of us will have vests and pocket squares to match. But this suit gives me the idea to maybe make the vest a complementary brown color while keeping the ties and squares bolder to match with the shoes. In any case, a suit in this style may not blend with casual footwear.

So yeah, there's my first bit of legwork on suits. As always with this blog, feedback is not only encouraged, but necessary. Otherwise this thing's going to be a fiasco!

Also, Shannon posted the first picture of the ring and mentioned that I might go a little more deeply into the symbolism of it in one of my posts. This is not the case, because it feels corny and I'm shy about it. But I do need to dispense some ring props.
First and foremost to Shannon's mom for providing the accent diamonds. Julie was going to give Shannon a necklace with these diamonds, but the jeweler never got the job done. So thanks to that jerk-off, too! But in all honesty, the stone that my modest means could afford would have looked very insignificant without those, and they lend a personal connection to the ring that I think is really important to Shannon.
Next up is to Paul Pape, for directing me to the jeweler, and then in turn to Custom Gems. I went there initially just to get the stone, but they also do custom jewelry orders. They have in-house jewelers to complete these orders, but the owner also has partners in Hong Kong. One of the samples they showed me was essentially a finger-mounted pagoda made out of diamonds and gold. It was a little intense for my budget and tastes, but it was really stunning work. Also, while I've vowed that Shannon will never learn the price of her ring, they did the work for about 25% of the cost quoted at another establishment, I believe largely due to the fact that I purchased the stone there and then came back to get the ring made. I really value that kind of loyalty and consideration, and you will not get that kind of treatment at Borsheim's or a similarly impersonal jewelry store. I should also add that the only reason the ring wasn't done in time for the proposal was because I was too late in arranging it, so don't hold that against them. They did a phenomenal job and I strongly recommend them to anybody. The place is small and tucked away in a little corner of a strip mall, but don't let that turn you off. They work hard and work well, and I admire that.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

wedding superbargain

I know what you're thinking. Or at least, I know what I'm thinking: Shannon, pick a damn venue before you start buying things like ceremony decorations. I know guys, I know. But listen! This was a serious bargain. And I got to stick it to the man just a little bit. Or at least I felt like I did, which feels equally good.
I found this in the fall Pottery Barn collection and bookmarked it because buying a high quality plastic garland pre-assembled would be much easier than trying to twist a bunch of decomposing natural leaves myself. Even though $34 didn't sound like too much, I'm not really into paying "full price" for things for this wedding, you know? So I waited and waited. And after Halloween it went on clearance, but it was still like $20 and I was planning on ordering four of them and that still sounded like too much. So I waited.
And then last night before I went to bed, as I sat waiting for my severe cold medication to kick in enough to ease my fears of suffocating in the night, I started randomly clicking things in my "Wedding Ideas" bookmark folder. I do this from time to time so things don't get forgotten in the mess of hundreds of sites. And I clicked on the Pottery Barn link and lo and behold, these garlands are $14.99. Ohhh, ahhhh. But Shannon, you say, even at a $20 discount I don't know if this is a superbargain.
OH BUT WAIT, it gets better.
As is the PB way, they know that their usual clients are type A personalities and love symmetry. So they give you a little bit of a discount if you order two of the same thing. Before these went on clearance, you could buy two for $64 and save four dollars. Not a big reward, just a little something to say, hey, thanks for being anal.
Well, I don't know if there was a typo or if PB is suddenly very, very into rewarding multiple buys, but two of the $14.99 swags cost...$16.99. Which is $8.50 a piece and that, brothers, is something I AM willing to pay. Enthusiastically.
Do I know exactly what I'm using them for? Do I know WHAT BUILDING they will be used in? No to both. But, oh, the savings. Just roll around in it for a while.

(if you want some of this action for your house next fall, superbargain swags are still available at Pottery Barn online)

Saturday, December 1, 2007


So, ignore the puffiness of my hand and the chipped nail polish. Any closer and my camera got blurry.
I don't know if you can see it in the pictures, but it's not a complete circle around the center diamond, it's two arms sort of hugging it. There are six little diamonds, three on each arm, those are from my mom's wedding band. It was designed by Greg and made overseas and is white gold, one carat total weight (most of which is the tiny diamonds...I'm not really a 'big diamond' girl). It's got a very art deco feel to it and is very very shiny. It also sits almost completely flat on my finger, which is PERFECT, because I haven't scratched myself or chipped the diamond.

It is perfect.

Also, although it embarrasses Mr. Fiance to have me say so, he made it all symbolic. Each of the little arms is one of us and between us is something bigger, something special. He says it much more poetically so maybe he'll go into it later but yes. Come see me in person and ask to see it!