Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Sharp Dressed Men

Now that I've introduced you to the men who will be standing next to BRG, let's talk about what they'll be wearing. I've never been a fan of the tuxedo, really. They're ok for others, I even like seeing BRG in a nice one, but they're just not for me or BRG. Especially the matchy-matchy ones. You know, where the vest and tie match the BM dresses which match the bride's sash which matches blah Not in my wedding. If Stacy and Clinton have taught me anything, it's that clothes don't have to "match" they just have to "go." With that in mind, we're asking the men to wear their own black suit. If they do not own a black suit, they can purchase a new one, preferably the same one BRG will sport, as he is buying a new suit for the occaison.

Honestly, I think it's completely fair to ask the guys to buy a new suit if they do not already own one. Guys get off so incredibly easy when it comes to weddings. Usually all they need to do is rent a tux and show up. Girls? Have to worry about a dress that they have to keep, alterations, hair, make up, shoes, jewelry, etc. That adds up! We'll be gifting the guys ties, pocket squares, and possibly socks (more on that in a minute.)

Here is a picture that illustrates my vision pretty damn well. I thought I was being creative with the pocket squares...guess not.


I love cool sock shots. Especially when paired with a great bridal shoe shot. Here is what I'm envisioning.


Hopefully the guys will humor me for a day. I mean, I'm feeding them and getting them drunk, after all! Our bridal party is going to look great, dontcha think?

My only problem (if you can call it that) is we're unsure of what color tie BRG should wear. White? Black? Green and black patterned? He wants to stand out...his words.

So fess up...whose wardrobe was harder to choose? Boys or girls?

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Our Amazing Photographer

Let's face it, we all love wedding photography out here in blog land. Before BRG and I even got engaged I started looking for photographers. I was nervous that because of my location (crappy Cleveland, OH) it would be hard to find some one who did artistic and photojournalistic wedding photography. It seemed to me that photographers like that only existed in NYC and LA. Thank God I was wrong.

I found some amazing photographers. They were so progressive and gave me hope that one of them would photograph *my* wedding. One of the first photographers that I found was Linczak Photography. After browsing their site, I realized that I was really in love with their work. But I convinced myself to keep looking. I couldn't possibly book the first wedding photographer I saw. So I kept looking. I found RAD, Genevieve Nisly, and Corey Ann, among others. My photog blog list was a mile long. And I checked each of them for updates every single day for a good 6-7 months. But I always kept going back to Linczak. Their photos were so bright and clean. They were the perfect mix of traditional yet progressive. They put a twist on the dreaded family formals. They were, in a word, perfect.

Back in January I decided to nail down some vendors. We were over a year away, but I was eager to get moving. I e-mailed the husband and wife team of Ted and Rachel Linczak to express my interest, give them my date, and see if they were attending an upcoming bridal show. Rachel responded to me extremely quickly and said that they would not be at that specific show, but they already had 2 dates in May 2010 booked. $*&#*$&@!!!! I immediately set up a time to meet. I did not want these two booking some one else for my date. By the time I got to their house, I practically had the check written for the deposit! We had an amazing conversation where we went over packages, products, and procedures (ha, try saying that 5 times fast.) They are 2 of the nicest people ever and I cannot, let me repeat, CANNOT wait to have them photograph our wedding day. And the best part...we get another e-session, included with the package!! I have no doubt that these will be leaps and bounds better than our last photographs.

Here are a few of my favorite images from their website (used with permission, of course.)

This shot *almost* makes me want a winter wedding.

This is our venue!! I want a shot like this.

Love the emotion in this one.

This is the exterior of our venue!! Love it.

This is at Cleveland Browns Stadium. I think BRG would die if we could take pics here.

Seriously, there are so many more. These are just from their wedding portfolios!! Definitely go check out their website, and it wouldn't hurt to put their blog on your Google Reader, either. Our e-session is scheduled for Sept. 2...SO. EXCITED!!

How did the search for your photographer go?

Friday, July 17, 2009

All Eyez on Me

I've come to the conclusion that I'm a minority. Not in the sense of race or sexual orientation (what up to my gays, though!). No, I think I'm in the minority of people who don't mind attention. Now, this will probably come off sounding bad, but I don't know any other way to put it: I have no problem having all eyes on me. I often read posts on Weddingbee about girls who are distraught with the idea of having 400 eyes on them on their wedding day. Hell, some girls don't even like being the center of attention at their own bridal shower! I really just don't see myself having this problem. Now before you go on thinking that I must have been one of the "popular" girls in high school, I must tell you that I wasn't always this way.

When I was a kid I was extremely shy. When I tell this to people who know the present but not the past "me," they cannot believe it. But it's true. When I was a very little kid, I didn't want people looking at me, touching me, picking me up, nothing. Leave me alone, thankyouverymuch. This didn't stop at just strangers, but family members (mostly my dad) as well. As I went through school I made friends and had boyfriends, but maintained my shyness. Then suddenly, freshman year of college came. I was 4 hours from home and had no choice but to put myself out there. If I didn't, I knew I'd be miserable and lonely. I'm not sure what came over me, but suddenly I was entertaining to others. People liked me, invited me to come out with them, and I could make my way around a party by myself (after arriving with friends, let's not get too crazy now).

I have to attribute some of this to BM Despina. We lived next to each other freshman year at OU and she was always an attention-getter. When she walks into a room, people turn around. She just has this presence about her. She's exotic looking, has crazy long curly hair, and has one of the best personalities of anyone I've ever met. Being around her encouraged me to come out of my shell. I've said it 100 times and I'll say it again: I could not have survived college without her.

Although I love it, I understand that there is a difference between loving attention and NEEDING attention. If I get it, great. If not, I'm happy to take a backseat. I realize it's not all about me all of the time. Gosh, how boring would THAT be? But I'm not scared of it and I've learned to embrace it. On my wedding day, I know there will be many many sets of eyes watching me say very intimate things to BRG and watching me *gasp* KISS him. I think some people would be mortified to do that in front of not just parents, but 150 friends and family. Personally, I'm looking forward to it. Luckily, BRG is an extrovert as well, and is looking just as forward to having his time in the spotlight.

So what about you, readers? Are you an introvert or extrovert? Are you going to throw up with all eyes on you, or revel in it til the last guest leaves?

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

A big fat Greek/Italian wedding

BRG was in the most incredible wedding this weekend. One of HIS groomsmen got married to his beautiful bride in Little Italy. The Cleveland weathermen, always known for their calm demeanor and accurate forecasts, were calling for severe storms starting around mid-morning and ending sometime around 3pm. Well, for once they were actually nearly accurate. This was one helluva storm, people! Here is a picture I took at around 10:30am. Yikes.

Luckily, by about noon I started seeing blue skies, and by the time we left for the church (around 1pm) we had sunny skies! The ceremony took place at Our Lady of the Most Holy Rosary Catholic Church (what a mouthful), located in Little Italy. Father Racco, who I'm sure is a lovely man, must have had a bit of a brain fart going on that day because he called the bride the WRONG NAME for nearly half of the ceremony. Her name is Rachel, he was calling her Rachelle. Close, but no cigar, Father. Other than that snafu, it was a beautiful and emotional (and LONG) ceremony.

The bride and groom invited the dates of the wedding party to accompany them on the party bus after the ceremony, which was incredibly nice of them. There was a 2.5 hour break between the ceremony and cocktail hour, so we drove around taking pictures during that time. Here is a picture of BRG and myself enjoying the luxurious leather seats on the bus.

The reception was held at the Intercontinental Hotel located in downtown Cleveland. It's actually the hotel for the Cleveland Clinic. Cocktail hour was beautiful, but I only ate one hors d'oeuvre! I was busy chatting with my FILs. I hadn't seen them in a few weeks, which is a lifetime in my world! I did manage to get a pic of this cool table decoration, though. That's dried pasta!

When the opened the doors to the ballroom, I gasped. It was perfection. Black linens, white napkins, black chair covers, and white sashes. Love. My tablemates probably thought I was crazy because I was taking pictures of everything, but I'm a bride, it's what I DO! Here is a picture of the amazing centerpieces. They were so fragrant, which I personally loved.

Funny story: My in-laws are big jokers, especially my FFIL. I've pretty much stopped believing most things that come out of his mouth because it's usually a big fat LIE. My FMIL, on the other hand, hardly ever pulls jokes. She'll get a small one in here or there, but for the most part she's a good woman. Well, after we sat down, my FMIL tells me "Did you know that there is a star on one of these chairs, and whoever has that star gets to take home the centerpiece?" My eyes lit up. "Are you serious?!?" I asked. I'm sure the look of pure joy and elation on my face was priceless. At this point, my inner dialogue was saying "I don't care who has that f*cking star, I'm taking that centerpiece home with me." My FSIL was actually lifting up her chair cover to see if she had the star! It was then that my FMIL started to die laughing. I looked around...what was so funny? Yeah, she was kidding about that whole star thing. I forgave her, of course.

Their favors were, get this, mini bottles of CHAMPAGNE!!! You better believe I took one of these suckers home with me. Their colors were black and white with touches of electric blue, I don't know where they found electric blue mini champagne bottles, but I think that is awesome.

After dinner was over, we danced the night away to a Jerry Bruno band. They kept people on the dance floor all night long.

I love the above picture so much! It's the bride (duh) and her handsome Daddio!!

The party continued well after the band ended their set. A good number of guests along with the bride and groom gathered in the hotel bar until nearly 2am! All in all, a fantastic wedding. We're going to another wedding next weekend and I'll be sure to blog the highlights of that one, too. Apparently the guest count is at 700. You read that right...700 people. It's gonna be a big one!

Are you going to many weddings this summer?

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Dressing the 'Maids

So now I've introduced you to my fabulous BMs, I'd like to discuss what they'll be wearing. To be honest, I have no idea! Well, that's not entirely true. I know each of the 6 girls will be wearing a black cocktail length dress, but I can't show you which one because they will be choosing their own. This morning I sent an e-mail to the girls to give them each others contact info and show them examples of dresses. Here are a few (I'm pretty sure most are from Nordstrom, and no, I don't remember the dress name/style number. Bad bride, I know.)

My bridesmaids are a variety of shapes and sizes, so I knew I couldn't pick just one dress for all of them. I also know that "traditional" bridesmaid dresses are crazy expensive. Allowing my girls to pick their own dresses means they can spend whatever they can afford. I can't wait to see what they all choose, I know it will be fabulous.

Are you going for a "non-traditional" BM dress?

Monday, July 6, 2009

All by mysayeeeyeellfff

That is me singing Celine Dion, in case you didn't know. So remember this post from back in May? The one about me going crazy while BRG was away? Well, today I'm singing a different tune. My guy is in North Carolina until Thursday night for work and I'm actually kind of excited. Of course I'll miss him, but I'm really looking forward to some "me" time.

I've mentioned before that after a 6+ month bout of unemployment, I recently started working. The minute I gained employment, I lost all of my "me" time. And I'm a girl who loves her some "me" time. So for the next few nights I'm going to watch the silly shows he wont watch, stalk the WB Boards, and pee with the door open. (TMI?)

And just because no blog post is complete without a picture, here is one of us on the 4th of July.

Do you ever need a break from your FI? Just a bit of alone time once in a while?

Saturday, July 4, 2009

A very special holiday

Happy 4th of July! Today is not only the day we celebrate our nation's independence, but also the day BRG and I celebrate our 1-year engage-aversary! I just thought of this...should I get him a card? Oops. I just want to take this time to write a lil somethin' to BRG (which he may or may not see...I don't know if he reads this.)

Dear J,
Can you believe it's been a whole year since you asked me if I wanted a sparkler? These past 12 months flew by. I can only imagine how fast the next 11 or so months will go. Thank you for sticking by me always. It hasn't been the easiest year for us, but we've made it work and we're all the more stronger. You've been my shoulder to cry on, my ear to vent to, and my arms to hold when words wouldn't do. I'm so glad we will be able to always celebrate the day you asked me to marry you with fireworks. I hope to not only see, but also feel those fireworks for many many years to come. By this time next year we'll have said our vows, partied with our friends and family, honeymooned somewhere fabulous (and hot), and celebrate our 41st (yes I just counted) day of wedded bliss. I cannot wait to call you "husband." I love you :)