Invitation Design


Today I get to show off my invitations! I worked with graphic designer and E&I blogger alum, Kimberly Roth, to create my invitation suite. I love how they turned out.

Along the way, I feel that I really solidified the vision I had for my wedding. We pulled inspiration from the location - Mount Hood, Oregon - by featuring the mountain, the muted lavender color from the lavender fields in the area, and the overall whimsical feel.


BRSD-3Photo credit: Kimberly Roth

I also got a chance for some DIYing. Kimberly designed and coordinated having stamps made for our 'belly band' and return address. During a visit to Paper Source, I realized embossing with white would show up much better on the Kraft paper than just a white stamp. Embossing is really fun and easy (but time consuming when you are doing it for 100+ invitations).

Here's what I used:

- Stamp

- Stamp pad

Embossing powder

Heat tool

Once I got the hang of it, it went by pretty fast. I would stamp three at a time, apply the powder, lay them out on the table (until it filled the table) and then use the heat tool on all of those. Much faster than doing the whole process for one at a time. Two of my bridesmaids came over one night to help and that really speeded things up. Note to self: make sure cat doesn't get to them before you set the powder with the heat. :-)

After embossing, I folded each belly band around the invitation and secured it with a strip of double sided tape.

InvitationsPhoto credit: me

BRSD-4Photo credit: Kimberly Roth

Polish Perfection

All I can think about are pretty, polished, shiny nails this week! I love when brides go bold and pick a bright shade. It makes me think the bride is fun and laid back. And, then again, there's nothing like the perfect, classic nude to let your dress take center stage.












While I plan to go neutral for my own nails, I'm thinking it would be really fun for my bridesmaids to do bright colors - best of both worlds!

Will you be going for a bold or nude hue for you big day?

Taming the Locks

This week I'm trying to find a hair stylist in the small town where we'll be getting married. And while looking for someone, I've been searching for a lot of inspiration. I've known from the beginning that I want to wear my hair up - but that was about as much as I had decided. Source: left, right



Source: left, right

Source: left, right

It looks like I'm drawn to styles that are soft, romantic, and a little messy. :-)

Which one is your favorite? Did you know from the beginning how you wanted your hair?

{rehearsal dinner, turned} Welcome Party

From the moment we booked our wedding location, we knew we wanted to have a 'welcome party' as opposed to the traditional rehearsal dinner. Mainly we just wanted more time to spend with all of our guests - it isn't too often you have all the people you love in one spot! And with many people traveling to our destination for the weekend, we wanted to thank them by having a second party!


Because we decided to have a larger party and invite everyone who is invited to the wedding, we had to keep it more low-key than we would if we were hosting just our immediate family and wedding party. In other words, we couldn't do a full-on sit-down dinner. And that is fine with my fiance and me since we will be having the sit-down dinner the next night.

Luckily we found a bigger venue that also happens to be a winery (score!) and we found our exact vision of the food we wanted - a traveling wood fire pizza oven. When we found the place that had a traveling brick oven, we knew we had to get them for our welcome party. It was just what we were looking for - casual and cost-effective, but, at the same time, quality, local ingredients, delicious, fresh food, and a fun vibe. If you are hosting an event in the Columbia Gorge, I highly recommend checking out Solstice Wood Fire Cafe!




I love rehearsal dinners/welcome parties because it's like a mini wedding, minus all the pressure! You can make it what you want. Go all out, or keep it casual. It gives the bride and groom a chance to greet guests and catch up with everyone before the wedding. It's a great way to ease into the wedding weekend and get into the relaxing frame of mind for the big day. And, the way I see it, the more time your guests have to get to know each other before the wedding, the more fun they will have the day of, right?

If you haven't noticed, I'm almost as excited for our welcome party as I am for the actual wedding.

What are you doing the day before the big day?! If you are having a 'welcome party,' how did you cut back so that you could host a bigger group?

Six Month Countdown {check-in}

I am officially less than six months away from my wedding date! I keep counting it out on my fingers, thinking I'm wrong :-) The wedding planning is continuing to move along, but I have a feeling these next six months are going to fly by, especially once the festivities start getting under way. This week I booked my bachelorette flight and can not wait to be in Palm Springs with my favorite ladies celebrating my last days as a 'single' woman!

This week I needed to step back and look at the bigger picture before I delve into the little details like invitation design, table-scaping and bride accessories. So, I thought what better way to 'step back' than to get inspired by images from my wedding photographer, Sean Morrison Photography.

Love these kinds of shots. Is it called a fish eye lens?


Nature, laughs, and love.

How cute is she?!


And some fun shots...


Looking at these pictures has me excited to dig into my next few tasks on my to do list. Nothing like some great images to get the inspiration going. The thing I love about my photographer is that he does wedding photography because it's his passion, not just his job. During the school year, he teaches digital photography at a high school in Washington. It's great to know my photographer really loves what he does. I think that comes through in his work.

My To Do List for the next few weeks:

- finding my hair and makeup person/people

- florist

- bridesmaid dresses - coordinating the mix-and-match look

Do you have any advice for me in the six-month countdown? Are you getting married this summer? Would love to hear how your planning is going!

Setting the Mood {with Food}

Hi E&Iers! I'm back after an amazing long weekend in Southern California at fellow blogger Taya's wedding (aka my future sister in law!). It was such a great weekend filled with laughs, dancing, friends, family, new friends and new family, in a gorgeous was everything a great wedding should be. I could go on and on, but I'll let Taya tell you herself when she gets back from her honeymoon. :-)

Onto my topic of the week - food! You might remember my post, here, on finding a caterer who would work with us in making everything affordable, while still including the elements we really wanted - quality, local food, family style dinner, etc. Well, we finally found them and it was worth the wait! My favorite thing about the caterers we found was that the owner, and lead lady of this husband-and-wife-owned catering company, really listened to what we wanted and figured out where to cut corners and where it made sense to splurge a little.


I am so relieved to have our catering booked! I believe food can really help set the mood of the day - the cuisine is just one more place to infuse your style as a couple. Loving how these weddings used food to help set the vibe of their wedding day.





My advice to fellow brides out there is that if you are not finding what you're looking for and you are getting a lot of 'nos' to what you believe is a reasonable request, keep looking and don't give up! Ask lots of questions and reach out to new vendors until you find someone who is ready to have a conversation and work with you. I think it's also good to know what things you absolutely know you want and what things you would be okay not having. For me, I knew I wanted family style dinner, but I was okay giving up the filet mignon.

If you are getting married in the Gorge and looking for a caterer, check out Boda's Kitchen. Ask for Sirota Johnston, the owner and boss laday. She's awesome.

Location Inspiration

As someone who is engaged, I'm asked all the time what my 'theme' is. I had a lot of trouble in the beginning figuring out what my theme was because I didn't want to restrict myself to one thing. The more I thought about my theme, I realized that without really consciously trying to come up with one, I already had! I would say my 'theme' is simply, the location. From the very beginning I knew I wanted to incorporate local elements whenever possible - from the decor to the cuisine. With our wedding location being in near Mt. Hood, we will be surrounded by great views, pear orchards and fields of lavender (not all at once, but you get the idea).

Source: Erica Ann Photography, lower left, lower right



Source: left, top right, lower right

Source: His & Her Photography, bottom

All these local inspirations were part of the reason I was drawn to our location in the first place, so it seems like a natural fit.

Did you use your wedding location to drive elements of your wedding or did you come up with a different 'theme' entirely?