Friday, October 31, 2008

Registery: Bloomingdale's

We registered at three stores: Crate and BarrelBloomingdales, and Bed, Bath, and Beyond.   
Below is a our experiences at Bloomingdale's.  Here is a link to our experience at Crate & Barrel.



This was the store that I was the MOST excited to register.  Hello, Bloomingdales?!  

My husband and I attended a morning registry event where they closed down the store for us. After listening to some demos, we were given some freebies as well as drinks and small brunch snacks.  Off with the gun we went.  

We spent a really long time here picking out our china and crystal to match the flatware I already owned.   We picked the china without a problem but we couldn't agree on a crystal pattern to save our life.  The super wonderful sales associate helped set a table for us with various types of crystal to help us make up our minds.  I appreciated her help enough to write a thank you note to corporate headquarters.

Shortly after registering, our crystal was no longer available.  I was crushed but glad that their gift tracking system told me the news.  I was also thankful that the store told me when a gift had been purchased.  If I wanted to sneak a peak, I could find out who purchased what item before even getting the gift.  Technically, Bloomingdale's gets an A+.

The bad news: Bloomingdale's has a gift with registering program as well as a gift with registry completion program.  For example, if you register for $2,000 worth of china, the Manufacturer will send you a gift.  If the registry is completed, you can get a second gift.  Awesome, right?

Notsomuch.  I qualified for two gifts.  After 2 months, told that it takes time to get the gifts in the mail.  6 months after that, I was still gift-less.  When I called the second time, the sales associate told me that their hands were tied.  I told her that I would have to give the store a poor review (although I didn't specify where).  She called me back two days later to say that the gifts were in the mail.

Vera Wang Thank You cards





Christofle Champagne Flutes

A few of my Favorite things from our registery:



Kate Spade Toasting Flutes
My husband hates glassware with a squared bottom.  Since I compromised with our every day china, I snuck these on the registry without him realizing it!  He noticed as we sat down for dinner.


Kate Spade Larabee Dot Cake Plate
The funny thing is that I hated Kate Spade for years.  But I am obsessed with polka dots!!

My goal is to move into a larger home so that I can one day put this frame out.


Thursday, October 30, 2008

Task 2976: Picking Your Nail Color

  • Getting a mani?
  • Real or Fake?
  • Are you getting a pedi?
  • What nail color(s)?

Decisions, decisions.  Seriously, though, I didn't want to leave it up to chance for my nails.   Luckily, OPI has a tool on their website called the OPI Studio.  You can click on it to pick your skin tone and then "try on" various shades of nail polish.  I just wish that you could change the nail length and shape!  




In this photo, I have on Mimosas for Mr. and Mrs. which is what I wore on my wedding day. Another good option is the Garden Party line.  If you are a fan of dark colors, I'd suggest my all time favorite, Lincoln Park After Dark!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

New Chicago Wedding Blogs







It's always great to read blogs about weddings but it is a little extra special when the blogger is also from Chicago.  Here are 4 Chicago wedding bloggers that I added to my blog list.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

M+D: Bridal Party Introductions

Around 8PM, guests were asked to be seated for dinner.  I took a peak inside beforehand.  I was so pleased with the way that the room looked!  Everyone pitched in to make the room look PERFECT.

The room looked amazing.  
More tables with the candy buffet in the background.
To drive home the point about dancing between the courses, the designer, Katrina, wrote dancing six times.  It created a visual break in the menu as well!

The Head Table with the Cake in the background.  Amy Beck did an amazing job.


Once the guests were seated, the Bridal Party got ready to be introduced.


Boas?  Absolutely!  Bridal Party Introductions, by definition, are a little cheesy.  
I wanted us ham it up.

The Bridal Party walked into Chicago by Frank Sinatra.
Our St. Louis contingency.
The Best Man with the Maid of Honor
Sassy Me.
We were introduced to Mambo Italiano by Dean Martin.

Monday, October 27, 2008

M+D: The Cocktail Hour

Post Ceremony, we were busy!  First, we wanted to have a few minutes alone. There is a small conference room that we snuck into without telling anyone where we went.  It was nice to be alone (even without the photographer)!

Escaping from there ceremony.


Then, there were family portraits.  Since we had to take photos with four set of families, our Day of Coordinator, Marilyn, got everyone upstairs to take the photos.  We had a quick and efficient system to get all of the photos taken and were able to get 20 family portraits taken under 12 minutes.

One of the many family portraits...


Afterward, I headed up stairs to get un-veiled and bustled.  The Catering Manager was kind enough to have hors d'oeuvres and champagne brought up.  It was a fun especially since there was only a half dozen of us.

Up to the Stardust Suite.

Denton pours us some champagne.


The veil is off. Thank goodness! It drove me crazy after a few hours.
This photo makes both of us laugh.
Denton is giving me a look like "yeah, you better love that ring" while I admiring it.

Being bustled by three of my ladies.


Finally, we joined the party!
It was so awesome to come downstairs and see everyone having a great time.


Since the room has a baby grand, we opted to hire a pianist to play during the cocktail hour.



To keep with the black and white theme, the escort cards had a damask border.


I'm totally happy that I bought the personalized napkins and matches from For Your Party! They were pricey but worth it.

Our Signature Drink, the Misselini.  I stole the drink tag idea from Martha Stewart.


The photobooth was packed during the cocktail hour.  


Friday, October 24, 2008

M+D: Our Ceremony Details

Call it an occupational hazard, but details are the favorite part of wedings planning.  Here are the details from my ceremony.


The Walnut Room set up for the ceremony.

Outside of the ballroom is the Music Room.  We had In Memory Candles set on my Mother-in-law's beautiful silver platter.  There was a candle for everyone that we have lost.  
Additionally, we had the names of those that had passed listed in our program.

Our gorgeous thermography programs designed by Le Le Designs, inside my damask box.
Our guestbook on of the marble tables outside the Ballroom.  It was included in our engagement photo package from Kevin Weinstein.
We kept our bouquets in water before the ceremony.  
My bouquet included my "something old", "something borrowed", and "something blue"!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

M+D: Our Ceremony

For couples that are designing their ceremony, it can be really overwhelming as well as challenging. We spent a lot of time planning our ceremony. We opted to customize the entire ceremony to reflect us as a couple. Nothing reflected our personalities more than our ceremony. One of the ways we did that was through music.


Welcome

Since we are both big fans of street musicians, we had a saxophone player greet the guests as they arrived at the hotel. I found the musician, Mike, while I was picking up jewelry from Tiffany's on Michigan Avenue. He was excellent!


Prelude

Since I love String Quartets, we splurged to have them play for a full half hour before the ceremony so that the guests could enjoy the musicians. As a wedding coordinator, I know that there are always those few guests that arrive early.


Our fabulous string quartet, Accolade Musicians
Just as I had anticipated, there were some early guests.



Bridal Party Processional

The first bridesmaid heads down the aisle. It was exactly as I had envisioned.

Bridal Processional

My song choice was absolutely perfect. I love this song even more when performed by a string quartet. I'm very happy with our decision to use non-traditional songs. Everytime I hear it on the radio, I think of walking down the aisle.


Welcome

The guests were greeted by our Officiant. Bridget is a friend of ours that we had ordained online.

Bride’s Reading

I chose "I Carry Your Heart" by ee cummings. It was read by my oldest neice, Ashlynn. When I was in the early stages of wedding planning, we sat in Border's reading wedding magazines. I mentioned that it was my favorite poem, and she told me that it was hers too. I couldn't have been more pleased that my once shy neice read our favorite poem.



Scottish Handfasting

As I have mentioned in a previous post, we opted to have a Scottish Handfasting during our ceremony. We included a detailed explanation in our programs.



Groom’s Reading

Love sonnet xvii by Pablo Neruda was chosen by Denton. Part of the reason that he chose the poem, other than enjoying it very much, was that we visit Pablo Neruda's home in Santiago, Chile. It seemed fitting for the occasion. Denton chose his former roommate and fraternity brother as his reader.

Exchange of Wedding Vows

As I had mentioned in a previous post, we wrote our own vows. It was important for us to express how we really felt. My husband's vows were so much better than mine!



Exchange of the Rings



Pronouncement of the Couple

It was the most romantic kiss.


Recessional


Only Time - Enya


I will follow up with the details tomorrow.

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