Welcome to August Vows

This blog started a year before the big day, and chronicled the wedding-planning from a bride's perspective. I considered closing it and starting a new one as a Mrs., but you know... our vows were the most important part of the day, and will be our backbone as we develop a life and family together. I can't think of anything more appropriate than continuing to call my blog August Vows, and so it's here to stay.

Monday, December 29, 2008

That Veil Again

There was one important task to be done over the holidays, and that was to take my bridesmaid Hannah to the dress shop to get her measurements done. I was definitely looking forward to this trip because I thought Hannah would actually fit the sample dress in the shop, and it was very exciting to see it on her!

So about that veil... I took it with me to see if there is any chance that it goes well with the dress. It does, and I think it's beautiful. Everybody seems to love it. I'm going to post pictures as soon as I can get some to get further opinions, because I worry that its a simple case of everybody's enthusiasm being cued from mine. But I do adore it. And I've now been told twice that I simply HAVE to keep the vintage headpiece intact.

I have to get it cleaned. It's been sitting in my mom's closet for almost 30 years, and it has to be cleaned. I worry about two things here:

1. That it will be TOO white once it's clean. My dress is not white, and really, an ivory piece would be a better match.
2. That cleaning will somehow damage the delicate lace. 

The owner of the dress store I'm dealing with, Michelle, gave me a card for the dry cleaner she recommends. I'm going to take the plunge and do it. Fingers crossed!

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Scents and Sensibility

Why has choosing a wedding perfume consumed me for months, to the point of being the most difficult decision I've made?

Choosing a special cologne for Dan to wear was simple. One late evening at a Shoppers Drug Mart he tried a squirt of Dolce & Gabbana Masculine, and we both liked it. I even liked it a lot. We decided there and then that this would be what he would wear on our wedding day, and it felt right. We didn't buy it right away, but he did buy it soon after when we learned it was being discontinued -- a fact that still annoys me now that I'm certain it will become an addiction.

Picking a perfume for me, however, could not have been more complicated. I wanted something that felt out of the ordinary and special. Burberry wasn't going to cut it no matter how much I loved it. I wanted something pretty -- the very bottle that was going to later sit on my dresser reminding me of my wedding day had to be simply gorgeous. And importantly, it couldn't be bothersome to my father, who abhors most perfumes and would be walking me down the aisle.

I became obsessed. EVERY time I walked through a drug store or a department store I would spritz the scent du jour, sniffing it frequently throughout the day, running it past Dan and sitting near my dad while he watched T.V. to see if he would complain. He usually didn't. I would research online and in wedding magazines the perfect top notes to compliment my gown, and get more and more confused. I fell in love with many scents -- Dior's Cherie, Nina Gold, and more than one by Chanel -- but none of them felt right. I realized that most of the scents I truly adored smelled fantastic in the cold of the fall and winter, but would likely be too heavy and nauseating in the August heat. And I'm not kidding you... this went on for months.

My most recent obsession was Vera Wang's Princess. Ordinary for a bride, perhaps, but so classic. How could one resist the charming purple heart under the wedding queen's label? And has anybody noticed that you can get anything in this scent, right down to wedding-eve bubble bath? I still don't love it quite as much as Nina Gold, but it seemed to have a higher approval among my many consultants (Dan, Mom, Michelle and my unaware Dad).

The deal was sealed on Christmas morning when I unwrapped a lovely small package from Dan. Perfection in a beautiful purple bottle with a crown top, and I couldn't be happier about it.

I still wonder why I became so overwhelmed with such a small task, when choosing a dress was so easy. They say scent is the strongest sense associated with memory, and I know that is certainly true for me. I can still smell Tommy Girl and I'm in my 14th summer again (hello California!), Chanel Allure and I'm in Paris for the first time. 

Maybe choosing a scent for my wedding IS in fact a big deal that will be important and memorable forever. And maybe I'm just an escapist who needed something to take her mind off more complex realistic matters.

Monday, December 22, 2008

The problem with Christmas shopping

The problem with Christmas shopping this year, is that I'm officially a bride. I'm officially planning a wedding, and I officially have projects to do and things to buy. And the real problem with Christmas shopping is that I'm in the stores finding these things.

It started with my beautiful ring bear, moved onto a few GREAT deals on jewelry, and headed right into the shoe store today.

That's right, I bought shoes and I love them. What am I wearing? 4" heels? Strappy sandles? Kitten heels? No no my dear reader... I have bought myself a beautiful pair of ivory Skechers, complete with lace detail and a perfect prim bow.

I admire Skechers often by the dozens, but buy them rarely. These summer shoes were on clearance though, and a bride can't pass up a good sale. So I bought them. It is still possible that I will find that perfect pair of kitten heels, but if so I'm happy to become a two-shoe bride (or to relegate my ivory flats to weekend wear with a great pair of jeans).

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

A Ring Bear for my Ring Bearer.

I have this totally adorable ring bearer, and tonight I bought him a bear. The little guy who will be carrying our rings is very young, and I've decided that I'm going to give him a "ring bear" to carry instead of a pillow. Cute idea, right? And since our colours include chocolate brown, it was just too easy, and too hard to resist.

So tonight I bought a beautiful, soft curly haired bear. I actually bought two, because I want to keep one for ourselves and make sure our little guy gets to keep one as well. He already has a beautiful brown organza ribbon, and I'll be sewing on some thin peach ones as well.

I can't wait to see how this idea pans out!

Monday, December 15, 2008

I've Fallen In Love...

With a veil. My mother's veil, to be exact. So here's the scoop. I've been away in Vegas, with my dad, schmoozing with clients. While we were there, Dan & my mom were cleaning out the master bedroom in preparation for new carpet. I'm talking MASSIVE cleanout, everything must go, right to the back of the walk in closet.

They found her veil, and I adore it.

My parents got married in the late 70s, and, while mom's veil fit perfectly with her 70s dress, I think it is truly a classic. It is double-layered, waist-length with a simple rolled edge. It is exactly the fullness and length I wanted with my own dress. I love the slight vintage look of the lace appliques scattered throughout. I love the sentiment behind wearing my mom's veil.

Here I admit that Dan has seen me with it on my head, completing an outfit of jeans and a hoodie. I was on my way out to meet my MOH Michelle, and my hands were otherwise full. He laughed at me when he looked at me strangely and I simply said "I'm going out," but I assure you I did NOT wear it to the shopping mall.

So, what's the problem? It's a little old and dusty, but that can be fixed. It's also very white, and my dress is not white. I'm trying to figure out whether it can be dyed, but I don't want to risk ruining it either. I'm conflicted -- do you have any advice? Do I have myself a project, or is this beyond what I should attempt?

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

The Easiest Shopping Ever

So... I'm shocked.

Selecting bridesmaid dresses is literally some of the easiest shopping I've ever done. I really didn't expect it to be, I thought it would be one of the more difficult tasks. Looking through www.realbridesmaids.com, I was worried to choose something that the gals hadn't all managed to try on. I'm aware that most bridal shops don't carry much in a range of sizes, and knew that we couldn't go by catalogue picture alone.

I knew what I wanted for the basics: deep chocolate brown, tea length, summery material like chiffon.

A couple of the girls knew what they wanted for sure: straps that provided a bit of support (and who can blame them, really?).

We tossed around ideas including having them made, but it turned out to be much simpler than that. My friend & bridesmaid Heather & I stopped at the bridal shop to put the deposit on my dress (YAY! Another post coming soon!). I literally pulled this chocolate brown, chiffon little beauty off the rack and said "see, I was thinking about something sort of like this."

She tried it on, and it looked fabulous. We both fell in love with it right away. We wanted to capitalize on the same sale that I was taking advantage of for my gown, so we had to move fast. Within a couple of hours, photos had been shown to the other 3 girls online, and we had unanimous approval! Deposits were placed the very next day, and I even had measurements ready to go all the way from Newfoundland.

Did anything you expect to be hard turn out to be really easy?