Monthly Archives: August 2009

Our Color Palette

Originally, our color palette was going to be black, white, and bright green.  We knew we were having a formal event, and I completely fell in love with these apple favors.   What a perfect color combo!  Alas, it was not meant to be, for several reasons…amongst others, I feared it would clash with our venue and I was just sort of SICK of green after awhile.  As soon as we picked that color combo, I felt like everyone had picked that color combo…it was suddenly everywhere!  (I imagine this is how the damask brides felt a few years ago when damask was really hot.  It still is, obviously, but you get what I mean).

So, the quest for a perfect color combo ensued.  Something formal, that would go with the venue, and something that felt a little more…us.  Flipping through bridal magazines led me to this:

Color Scheme

(Image ripped and scanned from one of my Brides magazines)

SWOON.  I was instantly in love.  It was so perfect, so unexpected…so US!  Red is my favorite color and I KNEW Dr. Groomy would love the gold ties.  I was sold.  We discussed, we decided…this is it!  Our colors will be black, champagne gold and a deep red.  With that in mind, I created this inspiration board:

Red & Gold

Images from Lisa Lefkowitz, Corbin Gurkin Photography, Atrendy Wedding, Adeline and Grace Photography, Orchard Cove Photography, Sedona Bride

I am THRILLED that our wedding colors have gone in this direction.  I feel like I can do so much more with this color palette and it is really going to look fab with our venue  (And hello, those Stewart Weitzman’s in the inspiration board up there are TOTALLY on my own shopping list!)

How did you arrive at your color palette?  Did you know immediately or did you change your mind like we did?



Filed under Colors

Our Venue

Our venue wasn’t so much of a struggle to find as it was a source of worry for me.  I knew we were picking a very popular date, in a very popular month, and that if we didn’t nail down a venue quickly, we would be hard-quipped to find a place that would fit our needs in the area we wanted.  So, being the type A bride I am, nailing down our church and venue was one of the first things we did…at 22 months out. 

I know, I know… we could have waited much longer to find a venue (and in fact, most “normal” brides probably would have done so!), but I literally tossed and turned about this for weeks.  You can read more about my venue search here, here, here…oh, and of course here (obviously this was a big issue for me since I wrote so many posts about it!) but today I want to show you the pictures!  I stopped at the venue on my lunch hour to grab a few snapshots and make sure that our new color scheme will work with the room (yes, we are changing it…more on that later!).  So without further ado, I present to you The Grain Exchange.

Wedding Venue 019 
This is the view as you walk in the doors of the Mackie Building, where the Grain Exchange is located.  The floors and walls are a beautiful white marble.  We could opt to have our cocktail hour down here if we wanted (we are the only ones using the building on our wedding day, as normally it’s actually an office building), but with a guest list of 250, that probably is not going to happen.


Wedding Venue 018 
This is the view as you look up towards the second floor from the entry way. Those big wooden doors are the entrance to the room!  I am in desperate need of floral inspiration for the banisters.  Ideas?

Wedding Venue 021   Wedding Venue 020

Walk up either flight of stairs, to your left or right, to get up to the room.  (There is an elevator for older guests).

Wedding Venue 001 
This is the view as you enter the room.  It is GRAND, no?!  Obviously they were setting up for an event when I was here.  The onsite kitchen is through the double doors on either side of the picture. 

Wedding Venue 004

This is the view of the loft area.  Underneath the loft area is a bar area, where we will most likely have our cocktail hour.  The bars are on wheels, so we can move them to any area we’d like! 

Wedding Venue 005

Bar area.

Wedding Venue 015

To the right of the bar area are the steps leading up to the loft.  Gorgeous, no?  Can’t wait to be announced as husband and wife and come down through these!

Wedding Venue 007 
View heading up the stairs.  Aren’t the ceilings and columns incredible?!

Wedding Venue 008 
This is the loft area.  We’ll probably do some cocktail tables, etc. up here for the cocktail hour and so that guests can come up and relax and watch the dancing from above later on in the night.

Wedding Venue 009 
Now here you can see the actual scope of the room.  This is the view from the balcony.  Isn’t it AMAZING?!

Wedding Venue 012 
This is the view looking down from the balcony.  Pretty awesome, no?

Wedding Venue 010   Wedding Venue 011

A look at some of the architectural details:  the murals…the columns…

Wedding Venue 014
And the naked ladies in gilded gold.  (Hee hee!)

So there you have it…our reception venue!  I snapped some pics of the chairs and the bathrooms as well, but we’ll save those for another post.  Up next, the unveiling of the new color palette!!!

What was your venue search like?


Filed under Venue

Rehearsal Dinner Dresses

If you’ve been reading for awhile, you know I love this gal:

CB 1 

Carrie Bradshaw, fictional as she may be, is a total style icon for me.  She rocks the most amazing outfits and always looks great.  I wish I could get away with wearing the types of clothes she does, but sadly, Milwaukee is just not as fashion forward as I’d like!

Regardless, that doesn’t mean that I can’t infuse a little Carrie Bradshaw into my every day—or my wedding day—style.  And one of Carrie’s best EVER outfits on the show was this flashy little number here:

Watermelon Dress (Source)

The famous watermelon dress.  She wore it so well, too!  Carrie is the QUEEN of these types of dresses.  Evidence:

Pink Dress (Source)
Another favorite of mine.

So this week I’ve decided that I think I want to rock a short, flouncy dress for our rehearsal dinner.  I say this week because I’m sure I’ll change my mind between now and then, but it’s still fun to look at all the short and fun dresses that are out there!

Like this one:

flouncy dress(Source) 
(Minus the veil, flower, and atrocious white shoes, of course!)

Or this one:

short dress(Source)
(Sadly, this one does not come in white, and I’d sort of like to wear white to the rehearsal too, but I am open to other color options.  Plus, this one is more party appropriate, I think—it’s a little LESS flouncy but still has the bounce I’m looking for.  Special thanks to bridesmaid KDoc for finding this one!) 

Or even this sassy little number from Saks:

Saks 1(Source)

Alas, I’ve got plenty of time to choose a rehearsal dinner outfit (hello, I haven’t even picked my bridal gown yet!)…still, I’ll definitely be scouring racks from here on out to find a great dress to wear for my last night as a single lady!  I’m not going to be a two dress bride (one dress for the ceremony and one dress for the reception), so the rehearsal dinner is the perfect opportunity to appease my “wants a short, poofy garden-style tea-length dress” side!


Filed under Dress & Attire

Style Me Pretty Strikes Again!

Man, I love that Style Me Pretty site!  Every time I think Abby can’t make the site any better, she surprises me with another lovely feature.  She’s just recently launched The Style Circle, which will function as Style Me Pretty’s online community.  Way cool—but the best part about it is the Inspiration Board creator!  For someone like me, who SUCKS at inspiration boards, this idea is a godsend.  It is easy peasy to create an inspiration board just by dragging and dropping.  You can choose from the gajillions of Style Me Pretty images Abby’s featured on the site, and save and edit inspiration boards anytime you want.  This is truly an awesome idea.  Hats off to Style Me Pretty for giving me ANOTHER wedding site to be addicted to.

Here’s the first inspiration board I made—I call it Formal, City Wedding.

Formal, City Wedding Inspiration

Seriously, what a cool feature!  I am going to be doing this all the time at work now ahem, on my lunch hour.

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Filed under Inspiration

Another Lovely (and Dramatic) Dress

Can you tell I love dresses that are really dramatic and out there?

Rosa Clara 155 Rodeo

Sorry the quality is not that great—this is actually a screen capture from a flash player website.  The dress is 155 Rodeo, by Rosa Clara (image sourced from  I love it!  It’s so DRAMATIC…full skirt, tight bodice, one shoulder strap.  Very interesting, indeed. 


Filed under Dress & Attire


Seriously, I should not be allowed to look at wedding stuff past 7:30pm!  Last night, I was up until 10pm looking at fonts and things of that nature…and after that, I just couldn’t fall asleep.  My mind was racing with all sorts of ideas about the wedding and our invitations!  Lesson learned, because today I am really slow and sluggish from being up past midnight. 

So, as I’ve mentioned in the past, I think I want to DIY our invitation suite.  I really love paper products, and I know I am creative enough to do it…I am a little fearful about it, but still excited at the prospect of pulling it off!  How cool to be able to say, “I made those myself.”  And what a great memory and keepsake, too!  Needless to say, I have been doing a lot of research into how to design the invites in the most painless—but most at-home professional—way.  I want to give myself plenty of time to learn some cool tips and tricks so our invitations really rock!

Here are a few of the designs I am coveting right now:

Glossy Invitations

The invitation suite by Miss Glossy, from  Can you believe these are DIY invitations?  Her wedding was nautically themed.  I love these invitations not for the font, or even the design, but for the tiny details—like the wedding date shown on the envelope liner and the main invite’s painted edges:

Glossy Edges

Seriously?!  I love, love, LOVE this look and it only cost her $4.59—the total cost for a jar of acrylic paint and a foam brush from Michaels.  (Above two images courtesy

These invitations aren’t formal enough for our almost-black-tie affair (I still feel weird calling it black tie, but that’s basically what it’s going to end up being), but I definitely would like to incorporate the envelope liner and painted edges into our invitation suite.

What else? THESE fantastic invites from Cheree Berry Paper (image courtesy of

Cheree Berry Invitation

This invitation suite was used for the annual Today Show wedding back in 2007, where the couple’s theme was Breakfast at Tiffany’s.  What do I love about these invites?  I love love LOVE the gold envelope liner and the little note near the envelope flap—it says “A Most Joyous Occasion.”  So cute, although I’m not sure how many people would see that when opening up the invite.  The other things I love?  The fonts used—you can’t see them very well here, but they are gorgeous!  I also love the three-tiered invite.  It’s thicker, almost poster board like paper with painted edges that have been stacked, bringing visual interest to the invite.  Seriously?  I love the way it looks!

I have just one more invitation suite to show you.  It’s Miss Bruschetta’s invitations, again from  I love these invites for one reason, and one reason only:

Bruschetta Invitations

That AMAZING script font.  I LOVE it.  Alas, it’s actually done by a calligrapher, so it’s not a font I can download from the Internet.  I am actually thinking of contacting the calligrapher, however, to see if I could get her to do some lettering for me for our invites.  Seriously, I LOVE LOVE LOVE this font and I want it for my invites!  (As a side note, aren’t the colors on the invite cool too?  This is also a black tie affair and I really love the formality of this design.)  Again, above image sourced from

So, that’s what’s been keeping me up at night!  Seriously, I love thinking about designing our invites.  I know I’m going to have a blast doing it!  Do you guys know any tips and tricks you’d want to share with me?

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Filed under Stationery

On Finding The One

No, I’m not talking about THAT one.  And I’m not talking about this one, either.  I’m talking about finding our photographer!

They say finding your photographer is like finding your wedding dress.  You just know when you’ve met the right one.  I knew I had met ours the very first day I met her at a local bridal show.   Photography is very important to me—I knew I wanted a specific style of photography (namely, more photojournalistic qualities in the photos rather than posed shots), a knowledgeable and experienced photographer who could help make us look fab all day long, and a package that could meet our needs (engagement session, proofs, CD with images and release, an album or two, and plenty of coverage on the day of). 

While stuffing my face with cake samples perusing the aisles at one of the area’s largest bridal shows, I stumbled across a photography booth with photos that just screamed, “Come look at me!”  The photographer’s name was Sarah Immel, and with every photo I looked at, I was more and more hooked.  Sarah and I got to talking and I felt like we immediately clicked.  She took beautiful photos in both black & white and color, every shot was fabulous (she had multiple albums for me to look at) and as we discussed our wedding, she had some really great ideas.

I met her again at several more bridal shows, and each time, I felt her booth drawing me in like a magnet.  I looked at other photographers, crunched our numbers, and discussed with Dr. Groomy our various options.  Each time, I kept going back to Sarah…especially after I met with her one on one—we ended up talking for more than two hours!  It felt like I was hanging out with a good friend rather than a vendor.  While I knew that going with Sarah was going to be a bit of a splurge for us, Dr. Groomy and I both feel that it is definitely worth it.  Her package had everything we wanted, and most importantly, we really clicked!  We are thrilled to have her as our photographer!

And now, for your viewing pleasure…a few of the reasons we picked Sarah as our photographer.

*All photos by Sarah Immel Photography.

Engagement Photos like this one:

Third Ward Area Engagement 
Technically, this couple is already married…but they wanted to do an “anytime” shoot with Sarah.  Cool idea, right?  I love the shot on the left, mostly because that’s the neighborhood Dr. Groomy and I live in and this photo shoot gave me great ideas for our engagement session.

And this one:

Engagement 2

Detail Shots like these:

Detail Shot

Detail Shot 2 

Vibrant color photography like this:

Vibrant Colors  Do the colors on these photos just pop or what?!

And fabulous group shots like this:

Group Image  I seriously love this wedding, by the way.  Isn’t the color palette really cool?  And I LOVE the old school style tuxes. 

Men Image  Love this shot.

Bridesmaids  I really love this shot too…this is sort of how I picture my bridal party looking!  Black dresses, green flowers…

And you can’t forget the sweet moments like these:

Moment 1  Love it when a photographer captures a random moment in time. 

Shoes I am obsessed with shoe, hand, and any other shots where the couple’s faces or main bodies are left out.  They are so classic—almost like artwork rather than photos!

Milwaukee and Wisconsin area brides, be sure to check out Sarah for your next event…she not only does weddings and engagements, but family, maternity, baby, and senior photos too!  You can find her at:  And for more lovely photos, check out her blog:

We’re so excited to work with you, Sarah!


Filed under Photography