June 18, 2010

Wedding Recaps: Gettin' Ready - The Dress!

So I'm finally getting around to more wedding recaps.  Though I've already revealed the wedding dress I bought in a post prior to my wedding, here are some actual pictures of me in my dress!

All photographs by the talented Seth Kammueller of Chicago.

 My sis painstakingly buttoning the back of my dress (using a crochet hook, which was the best advice EVER) while I wait, slightly chilly!

Still gettin' buttoned up!

Random artsy shot, not sure what I'm doing :)

My amazing hairstylist Jess helping me with my veil

Finding the bustle on the veil. It was a small flower!

Ready to go get hitched!

Brides, what was your getting ready process like? If you are still engaged, how do you envision the morning before your wedding?

Stay tuned for more wedding recaps and dress pics!

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April 30, 2010

Daily Inspiration: Beach Wedding Invitation with a Twist

I was recently perusing the blog of the talented Anne Ruthmann (who is now an official local vendor, as she has moved to Massachusetts!), and found this lovely photo:


This is a beach wedding invitation that arrived in the bottle pictured above. Wouldn't it be perfect for a Cape Cod Wedding? I love how this is a spin on the traditional "message in a bottle" theme by sending it in a vintage Coca-Cola bottle. I also love the detail that the bride and groom lined the bottle with local sand to get guests geared up for their wedding day!

What are you doing for your STD's and invitations? Do you have any creative ideas for sending out something quirky and fun, or are you going the traditional route (as I did)?

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April 29, 2010

Rustic Wedding Inspiration: Wine Barrels!

A friend of mine from grad school and I were recently discussing her vision for her fall 2011 Chicago nuptials.  She told me about the perfect venue she'd found, which she described as beautiful and full of "rustic romance."  I too, adore weddings with rustic elegance, which got me thinking about how to further incoporate this idea into a wedding theme.

When I recently came across a great way to include wine into this theme, via my favorite wine brand, Red Truck (see related post over at my other blog, The Lovely Nester), I knew I just had to share it with the masses.

Red truck winery sells barrels of their most popular wines, which hold appoximately 4 bottles of wine. The wooden keg is so charming, that I knew it would make a fabulous centerpiece on each reception table.


Another reason to buy Red Truck wine is its affordability, which is important to any budget-minded bride, as well all know that alcohol costs can eat a large chunk of your funds.  Most of their bottles cost around $10, and when you buy a barrel, the price drops to about $7. How great would it be to get one barrel of white and one barrel of red for each table, and allow guests to serve themselves from the spout?


One of the best reasons, though, is that Red Truck strives to be an environmentally friendly company.  All of their wines are certified vegan, meaning that no animal products are used during the filtration process (yes, that really happens!). Furthermore, they recently launched a new line of exclusive organic wines, called Green Truck.


And, if you still need further inspiration of how the wine barrel would fit perfectly with a vineyard wedding, check out this inspiration board, courtesy of Style Me Pretty.


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April 26, 2010

Vendor I (literally) Heart: Stories of Gen

This time, my featured vendor is very near and dear to me, as she is my new sister-in-law! Let me explain:

I don't know about you, but as the bride, I made the majority of the wedding decisions and would consult with Cape Cod Groom for his approval.  But since I wanted Cape Cod Groom to have some aspects of the wedding that were his decision (and take a few things off my plate!), one of the tasks on his to-do list was to choose the gifts for the groomsmen.  Now, I will admit that this was a challenging task, as it's always easier to find pretty things for bridesmaids, so I was not surprised when he turned to our SIL, the creative mind behind Stories of Gen for assistance.

Our SIL started Stories of Gen to create a unique gift giving service to suit any budget.  You provide her with the details on who, what, where, why, and how much you want to spend, and she will send you at least 3 fantastic finds from which to choose.

In our case, we were looking for attendant gifts for two very different groomsmen.  One was a bachelor in his early 20's, the other a married father.  Neither would have been into the traditional monogrammed flask. Stories of Gen found the perfect gifts for both, and since Cape Cod Groom waited until the last minute, she was even able to ship everything to us in time, in stylish packaging no less.

For my cousin, the young bachelor, she found this hip wallet, made of recycled seatbelts (courtesy of interrobang)!


For the best man, she found these Chicago Transit cufflinks, to remind him of his hometown now that he's relocated to Atlanta:


Overall, our Groomsmen could not have been happier with their gifts, and we were thrilled with Stories of Gen's unique and tasteful choices!

With wedding season quickly approaching, I highly recommend you contact her for all of your attendant gift needs.  She also does gifts for any occasion, so don't forget to do something extra special for your parents for Mother's and Father's Day as well (especially if they are helping you out with your wedding)!

Finally, if you are going to be a guest at a wedding and want to give the lucky couple something unexpected, or are attending a wedding without a registry and have no idea what to purchase, here are some really cute items she has found for the bride & groom:

My personal fave, a customized silhouette of the couple:


Solar powered birdhouse to adorn the newlywed's home:

Love jar, also perfect for DIY wedding sand ceremonies!


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April 25, 2010

Wedding Season Oh'Ten!

Sorry it's been so long since my last post folks. Turns out this grad school thing is hard work! Ok, I already should have known that since I'm in my 4th year, but it's the end of the semester, which equal finals time (boo!). I have some ideas for great posts in my head though, which I promise to churn out soon.

On the plus side, wedding season is near!  I want to give a special shout-out to my friend Cupcake Wedding, whose wedding will be my first of the season (we go way back to our liberal arts college days).  I cannot wait to attend her nuptials next month in Florida and rock out with her!

My hubby and I have reserved our hotel room, purchased our plane tickets, and I recently ordered her gifts from her Macy's registry. We are pretty much all set to go (still need to get a rental car), and I purchased this pretty ditty from J.Crew to wear on the big day, which I'm gonna glam up with accessories:


To me the dress is perfect for her wedding as it's bright, pink, and fun, themes I know her wedding is all about.  I still have to buy a killer outfit for her bachelorette party pub crawl, though, which gives me a great excuse to go shopping soon! I'll certainly need some retail therapy after the end of finals!

Do you have lots of weddings to attend this season? Which one are you most excited about?

March 18, 2010

Premarial Counseling - A Must?

Now that Cape Cod Groom and I are married, I've begun to look back at our wedding process and reminisce.  One element of our ride to the altar that I have been pondering, but never blogged about before, was our marriage classes.

Because we were getting married by my father at the church I grew up at on Cape Cod, we did not do premarital counseling with him since that would be downright akward.  But, it was important to my MIL that we take marriage classes at the church where my husband was raised.  Initially I was not looking forward to the classes.  I felt that as a couple, we already had very good communication and the capability to do so maturely in the event of future disagreements.  Plus, as a therapist myself, I have experience with counseling couples, so I felt I already knew the "basics" of couples counseling and could implement these skills in my own relationship.

That being said, I acquiesced and enrolled in the classes (they were public, not one therapist per couple) because it was important to my husband's family.  Although I won't go into details about the classes here, the gist of them was that each class had a lecture, often by a married couple, about their relationship and what we could learn from their trials and tribulations.  While I did not always agree with their perspective, the class was useful because afterward on the drive home, my then-fiance and I would compare our thoughts on the class, the couple that taught, and communicate about our views and beliefs.  And it was nice to learn that we nearly always agreed with each other on the important issues (perhaps that is why we were getting married, LOL)! 

Overall, I think that it is beneficial and important for all engaged couples to do some sort of exploratory counseling before their wedding.  If you are not getting married in a church or a place that provides these services, I would recommend going to an independent therapist if you have health insurance.  Most health insurance policies cover a select number of counseling sessions per year (usually 6-12), so why not use them if you have them? If you are on Medicaid, you can also find clinics that accept that as well.

Finally, if you are uninsured, or just want to learn more about your partner or work through any relationship issues on your own, I recommend a great book by Dr. John Gottman called the Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work (click link for image source).  It is an easy to read, practical book about relationship advice, and even includes a fun and comprehensive quiz about how well you know your partner!


Are you and your fiance taking any sort of premarital counseling? If so, has it been helpful for you? Do you think it is something all couples should engage in prior to their wedding?

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March 17, 2010

A Word of Advice: Stranger Danger!

I have learned a very important lesson about financial security while planning a wedding, and I think it's important enough to share with everyone. 

When my then-fiance and I decided to start making wedding related purchases, we decided, at the suggestion of Cape Cod Groom, to open a new credit card in both of our names. This was exciting because not only did it signify I could start making wedding purchases, but it was also our very first joint account of any type! We agreed that all major wedding related purchases would be made using solely this credit card. 



For Cape Cod Groom, though, the importance of having a credit card was not so much about having a shared account. While that was a perk that streamlined our wedding purchases and made it easier for both of us to keep track of our spending and budget, to him, a credit card signified something that I did not have the foresight to think of: insurance. 

You see, when you book a wedding vendor, you are mostly doing so on faith. While you may research a vendor to the best of your abilities to make sure they are credible, vendors are still people, and they are people who are usually total strangers to you. That being said, the potential for scams does exist. If you pay someone with cash or check and it ends up being a scam, there is nothing you can do about it. Once your hard earned cash is spent by the vendor, your money is gone forever, unless you embark on the burdensome and expensive route of litigation.

Therefore, to avoid the hazard of getting scammed, either when planning a wedding or making any large purchase, it is always best to pay with a credit card. That is because credit card companies all have a fraud department and carry insurance for these occasions. So if you do have the unfortunate circumstance of being the victim of a scam, you can call the fraud department, explain your story and dispute the charge, and if the credit card company agrees with you, they will refund your money.

In my experience, some vendors will insist that you pay by check. If that is the case, this should raise a red flag. Now, I'm not saying by any means that everyone who wants you to pay with cash is a con artist, but I am saying that you should be extremely cautious in this situation. You can try to negotiate with the vendor. Remember that if they really want your business, especially in today's economy, they may also be willing to let you pay by credit card even though that is not their preferred method of payment.

Unfortunately, I do not think that this is something people often think about when planning their wedding. It is really easy to get caught up in the excitement of booking vendors and planning your big day that you can forget to protect yourself and your groom financially.  Also, if you are an optimistic person like me who tends to give people the benefit of the doubt, it can be easy to assume the best in others. Finally, when the victim of a scam, many people are simply not aware of their rights or the fact that they can rely on a credit card company to back them up.

I'm glad I had Cape Cod Groom to bring a financially wise perspective to our situation. But I am also aware that others may not be so fortunate, so I hope this post will make people stop and think about their options when planning the event of their dreams. With all the stress that goes along with planning a wedding, being the victim of a scam is not something you want to add to your plate.

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March 15, 2010

The Bling Thing

All brides know that the first thing anyone asks you once you're engaged is "What does the ring look like?" (if you tell them over the phone), or if you happen make the announcement in person, you will experience the immediate grabbing of your left ring finger for inspection and approval.

Having experienced my own engagement and the recent engagements of my friends, plus reading about other's experiences in the world of wedding blogs, I've quickly learned that engagement rings are a big source of controversy these days.  You have the traditional brides who want the Tiffany & Co. platinum setting, the hipsters and practical brides who want a vintage and/or cruelty free bauble, and the budget minded brides who want something simple that won't break the bank. There are even some who are on board with men wearing engagement rings as well, to symbolize their equal commitment to their relationship.



But all of this bling controversy begs the question, why have an engagement ring at all? 

When I was home for the holidays and visiting one of my best friends from college, her mother stated that she was never given an engagement ring.  In fact, neither my mother nor my MIL ever had engagement rings either.  According to my friend's mom, their generation, which pioneered the feminist movement, felt that engagement rings were completely unnecessary, and worse, a misogynistic symbol of a man buying a woman.  Why not just have two people make a consenting, adult decision to get married, and then be done with it?

"Well Mom," my friend replied, "I may not need a man to buy me a diamond, but I'd still like one."  

My friend's statement is the perfect representation of my generation's attitudes towards engagement rings.  As woman who grew up in a world where we were taught we are independent, capable, and equal to men, we don't need a ring to symbolize that we are a man's property, but most of us still like the tradition of wearing something sentimental and meaningful to us.  We are able to choose how traditional we want to be (through our engagement ring choice and other life choices) because through their rebellion of cultural norms, our mothers paved the way for us to have any opportunity and freedom we desire. 

To be honest, my husband and I took a more practical route and had already made a mutual decision to get married and even enroll in marriage classes before we made it "official" by him getting me a diamond ring. And while I love my ring and what it represents, I always found it silly that people still don't consider you really engaged until you have that ring on your finger.

What are your views on engagement rings? Do you view them as necessary in our current culture? Would you be willing to get engaged if your fiance did not present you with a diamond? 

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March 14, 2010

Want to be on TV?

I was recently contacted by a casting director for the CW network, who asked me to share their blurb about a new reality show that wants to cast engaged couples that are looking to shed some serious poundage before their wedding.  Though reality shows aren't really my thing, I am on a new fitness routine myself and think health should be number one, so I can get on board with the idea that it would be great for a couple to earn the chance to win a dream wedding while becoming healthier.  

Here is the info from the CW:

The CW is currently casting engaged couples wanting to lose weigh before their BIG DAY!

The CW along with the creator and producers of “THE BIGGEST LOSER” have come together to give one lucky couple their DREAM WEDDING.  With help from our fitness experts, couples will compete in weekly challenges to shed those extra pounds. We are looking for OUTGOING, COMPETITIVE couples that want to lose between 30 to 60 lbs each. If you and your fiancĂ© are up for the challenge and want to win your dream wedding, now’s your chance.

Please submit at least two pictures of the happy couple, a brief description of your dream wedding and your complete contact info to: shed2wedcasting@gmail.com

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March 8, 2010

Vendor I Heart: Origami Bijou

With all the recaps of my wedding and my recent giveaway, it's been awhile since I've had a post about a featured vendor that I love.  I decided it was finally time for one again when I was contacted by Origami Bijou, who wanted to know what I thought of their line of modern jewelry and was interested in offering a special discount to my readers!

I immediately headed over to their website and was enthralled with their work. They create really unique, modern pieces of jewelry (earrings and necklaces) that are perfect for special occasions or everyday wear. 

I love their heart collection, which is much more subtle and creative than your traditional Tiffany's heart line.  The earrings and necklace set would be lovely for bridesmaids or a bride looking to add a romantic touch to her wedding.


Another one of my favorites was their modern alphabet collection, which would be great to customize for a bridal party. I should also note that they offer most of their pieces in silver and gold. Here is a gold necklace with my initial:
 

For someone looking for a more dressy or classic look, they also sell a pearl collection.  One of my favorites is the lotus flower necklace pictured below, which I could totally picture wearing to an outdoor garden wedding:


And last but certainly not least, no Cape Cod Bride would be complete without wearing something from their nautical line! Preppy brides having a coastal wedding (like me) will adore their sail boat collection, which features pieces such as this:


The best news is that the company is offering an exclusive discount for readers of Cape Cod Bride.  From now until April 5th, enter capecodbride as the coupon code during checkout and get 15% off all orders! Enjoy :-)

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February 27, 2010

Well Wed's Cape & Islands Wedding Affair Contest Winners!

As promised, I am announcing the 2 winners to my Cape & Islands Wedding Affair ticket giveaway, hosted by Well Wed.

Just to recap, I have 2 pairs of tickets to giveaway to 2 fortunate brides. Brides could enter by posting a comment on my blog post, or by tweeting about the giveaway on Twitter. I had lots of entries, mostly via Twitter (I guess people don't like to comment, lol). 
This morning I used a free online generator to randomly pick the names of the two winners. Despite all the Twitter entries, both of the winners of the contest were people who commented on my blog!

So without further ado . . . . 

Congratulations to Mickey and Shannon!!!

I hope you guys have a fabulous time at the show on March 6th and get to bring someone special with you! I wish I could be there to meet you in person, but alas I will be in Miami, so let me know how you liked the show :D

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February 24, 2010

My First Giveaway: Tickets to Well Wed's Wedding Affair!

Hello readers! I'm estatic to share the exciting news that I am having my first giveaway, starting now!

I was fortunate to be contacted by the great team at Well Wed, who specialize in weddings for the Northeast, and publish fantastic magazines that are your guide to weddings on Cape Cod, Vermont, New York and the Hamptons. As a bride who was recently married on Cape Cod, I know how important and challenging it can be to find trustworthy local vendors. Therefore, I'm excited to partner with them to offer 2 pairs of tickets to a couple of lucky readers to their Cape & Islands Wedding Affair on March 6th!

The Cape & Islands Wedding Affair is a bridal show like none other, and I have heard amazing things about it from some of my readers who have attended in previous years. Click the link above to see some great photos of the Wedding Affair. If only I were not currently living in Chicago, I would be there myself in a heartbeat!

Here are the details, courtesy of the Well Wed team:

Cape & Islands Wedding Affair Itinerary
Saturday March 6th, 2010
Ocean Edge Resort
Brewster, MA
3:00-7:00 PM

"Meet with some of the area's most celebrated wedding professionals, spend time in the Groom's Lounge (cigar rolling & micro-brews), relax in the bridal bar with complimentary facials & pedis while nibbling on chocolate."

The Bridal Bar:
Pedicures
Brow Shaping
Mini Facials
Hair & Makeup Consultations & Styling

Workshops & Seminars

3:30 - 4:00 - Wedding Coordination & Budgets:
Meet one of the area's most renowned wedding coordinators who will share with you their tips & tricks for creating a dream wedding - without breaking the bank!

4:30 - 5:00 - Plan The Perfect Menu - Wine Tasting & Pairing:
Taste the area's finest locally grown wines & learn how to pair your selections to create the perfect wedding menu.

5:30 - 6:00 - Practical Planning Tips:
One of the area's most celebrated wedding professionals shares their wealth of knowledge on wedding trends, budget planning, & DIY ideas, followed by a Q & A session.

6:30 - 7:00 - Couture Fashion Show:
Sip martinis & champagne while enjoying a "runway" fashion show featuring the latest trends in gown design.


Doesn't this sound amazing?! How could anyone not love fashion, beauty bars, wedding planning, and wine tastings all rolled into one? One of the best features about this event is that they sell a limited number of tickets to create an intimate setting (which my loyal readers know I'm a big fan of) and to provide brides with individual attention, unlike at your traditional bridal expo, which can be enormous and completely overwhelming.

The best news is that I have not one, but two pairs of tickets to give away to you lucky brides, at a value of $40 per pair! Bring your MOH, your mom, or your FH and have a ball while planning your wedding!

The only catch is that you have to be able to go to Cape Cod to attend this event, and it will focus heavily on local (Cape & Islands) wedding vendors. I know some of my readers are from Massachusetts, but if you are not and know of any friends or family who might be interested in this event, be sure to pass along this opportunity to them (trust me, they'll thank you :)

There are 2 ways to enter this giveaway. Note that doing both will automatically give you two entries into this contest!
  1. Enter a comment below about why you wish to attend this fantastic event, being sure to include your email address so I will be able to contact you quickly and easily in the event that you win a pair of tickets.
  2. Tweet about this giveaway, being sure to mention me, @Cape Cod Bride so I know you did it.
Since we are on a tight deadline with the Wedding Affair being on March 6th, I will only keep this contest open until this Friday, February 26th at midnight! So be sure to enter asap so you don't miss out on your chance!!

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February 22, 2010

Contest Shout-Out

I just wanted to give a quick thanks to Backyard Bride, who recently announced on her blog that I won her ULTA gift card giveaway! As you may be aware, the past couple of weeks have been pretty crappy for me, as I was dealing with some health issues, among other things.  Hopefully some retail therapy will help :)
 

In all seriousness, though, I realized that with the stress of work, school, and everything else I have had on my plate that I was not properly taking care of myself, and as a result, my health suffered.  I am an optimist, so I do believe that the positive that has come out of this experience and some other recent personal events is that I have taken the time to reexamine my priorities, and will make sure I am mindful of working towards all of my personal goals, so that I can become the best version of me!

So I just wanted to remind brides out there who are still amidst the stress of wedding planning to remember your priorities, and take care of yourself! Because a healthy bride is a beautiful bride!

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All About You!

Hello to all of my lovely blog readers!

When I first started blogging, my hubby installed some sort of gizmo that tracks all sorts of cool stats about my blog, including how many readers I have per day, week, and month.  I totally forgot about it until recently. When I went to check it out, I was shocked by how many page impressions I get!

That led me to wonder . . . Who are all of my readers? I know I have some faithful followers and commenters (props to you guys), but I had no idea I get so many other anonymous readers.

So instead of writing about myself for a change, I've decided that I want to learn all about you! And being the dedicated graduate student/researcher that I am, I created a reader poll to find out who you guys are!

You can click the above link to take my short survey. There is also a new tab on my blog that contains the survey, called Tell Me About Yourself. 

I promise it's short and I'd love to learn more about everyone! Any link sharing, retweets, facebook status updates, etc. would be much appreciated!

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February 14, 2010

Transportation on a Budget

Cape Cod Groom and I lamented over what to do regarding our wedding transportation.  We considered renting a traditional limousine, but the prices in our area to transport us and our wedding party were outrageous.  Plus, given that Cape Cod Groom loves cars, he wanted something more flashy than a typical limo.

Given that we were also having a vintage theme to our wedding, I suggested renting an antique car for the day.  My groom was pleased with this suggestion, until I looked at renting the antique cars through valet/limo companies.  They were just as expensive, if not more costly than renting a limo, and held far fewer people! I was beginning to feel a bit discouraged, but, knowing that Cape Cod has lots of wealthy retirees with car fetishes, I decided to post an ad on Craigslist to see if I could negotiate a price with someone who owned a vintage ride.

I still had plenty of time until my wedding, so I wasn't worried about taking my time to find the right vehicle.  I got a few responses right away from the Craigslist ad, but they were muscle cars and convertibles at that, which would not do for my December nuptials. I was beginning to think that old men with nice antique cars probably do not have any idea what Craigslist is, nevermind frequenting the site regularly.

At the suggestion of my friend at Cupcake Wedding, I contacted a local antique car club on the Cape to see if any members would be interested in renting me their ride for the day.  To my dismay, I got no response from them! Now I was starting to panic, because there was not much time left until the big day, and I feared that I would end up riding to the ceremony in my father's Buick.

Miraculously, about 8 weeks prior to our wedding, I got an email via the Craigslist ad from a man who owned a 1948 Dodge.  He said he had chauffeured a couple of weddings before, sent me tons of pictures, and after seeing the car in person, my groom and I knew this was it! It was way cooler than any limo we could afford, and about 1/3 of the cost!

Here are some pictures of our ride, taken on our wedding day by our photographer Seth Kammueller.

Car with a view of the Chatham Lighthouse in the background:


 The grill!


 Waiting for the bride:


In the end, we were really happy with our decision. The car fit with our vintage theme perfectly, I loved the color, and my groom loved riding inside an antique car.  Plus, since we saved money on not having to rent a limo, our parents decided to rent a couple of large passenger vans to transport guests to and from the reception.  While it is by no means necessary to provide transportation for your guests, I will say that this gesture made guests really happy since that they could drink as much as they wanted without having to have a designated driver.  Plus, the cost of the vintage car plus the two vans was still lower than renting a limo for the day!

I highly recommend doing something similar if you are in a similar situation and have a tight budget. My only advice would be to start your search earlier than I, to avoid the stress of all of the last minute negotiation and planning!
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February 13, 2010

Going Against the Grain: DIY Table Names

As a bride on a budget, many elements of my wedding included DIY projects, and my table numbers were no exception.  I initially considered purchasing table numbers because I did not want to create too much work for myself and my groom the week of the wedding, but after scouring Etsy and finding some decent deals, I decided to create them myself.

One reason was that even though there were some reasonable prices from Etsy vendors, after calculating the cost of making them myself, I just couldn't justify spending the extra amount of cash to have them pre-made.

Another reason was that I did not want simple signs with a number on them.  Since were were having a Christmas wedding, and my family and I have always adored Christmas movies, I decided that I wanted each table to bear the name of a Christmas film.  Thus, I knew if I wanted custom table numbers, it would make much more sense to just do them myself.

My groom and I thus went to Paper Source to purchase the supplies for our project, and fortunately had help from a very experienced saleswoman, who helped us find exactly what we needed. We decided to make our table numbers double sided, so we purchased table tents, navy paper, and silver shimmer paper (see below).




My groom and I chose the movies and created a custom monogram for the top of the table names in Microsoft Word.  As you have to use a high quality printer that will not smudge, we went to my father's office and printed the table numbers in navy ink on the silver shimmer paper.  

The hardest part was cutting the navy and silver paper to fit the table tents, which were smaller than the standard 8.5" x 11" paper. Thankfully, my groom used his mad paper cutter skills (I highly recommend using a paper cutter and not scissors!) and made everything fit perfectly. 

Overall, making the table numbers was more tedious and time consuming than my groom and I had anticipated, but we were really excited with our creation.  Here are some images of the final products (you're also getting a sneak peak of my DIY centerpieces, which I will soon detail in another post):

This was where we sat the groom's family, since this is their favorite Christmas movie:



 My family was sat here, since this is my mother's favorite Christmas movie:



I couldn't resist throwing some humor into our table names!




 And last but not least, my personal favorite, the Bad Santa table:



Overall, our table names were a huge hit with our guests (fortunately our guests all had a sense of humor).  Our friends at the Bad Santa table jokingly asked what they did to deserve that label, and all of our other guests were jealous that we did not deem them worthy of sitting at the Bad Santa table!

In the end, I'm so glad we decided to go against tradition and created table names that reflected our personalities and interests.  I highly recommend doing the same for your wedding, as it is not only a great conversation starter for guests, but also makes your wedding more unique and personal, while saving money! 

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