Monday, April 30, 2012

Let's Get Emotional

I usually try to avoid anything emotional or cheesy-sounding in my public life. But I'll be honest with you, hive: behind my sarcasm, my penchant for jokes, and my discomfort with public displays of emotion, I am an emotional wreck right now. This past weekend was my 2nd shower (I'll blog about the first one soon too!) and my bachelorette party, and now that they're over, I feel...I don't even know how I feel.

Personal pic
Me and the bridesmaids in my shower dress.

I feel relieved that my time in the spotlight is over (for now), sad that these events I looked forward to are now done, overwhelmed with all the nice things my friends and family did for me and said about me this weekend, and shocked that so many people care this much for me (I'm pulling a Sally Field here, I know).

Image via Nathan Eide

I'm also feeling nostalgic about past life chapters when I reflect on the fact that I'll soon be moving out of my childhood bedroom, never to return (now I'm pulling a Kanye), and just generally emotional about marrying Mr. Unicycle. I'm getting nervous and excited about the wedding, crying at Fancy Feast commercials, worrying about making each day of this engagement count (kudos, Jack Dawson), and since I'm already crying over here, I really, really miss Mr. Unicycle. Above all, right now I feel overwhelmed with gratitude toward everyone who came to my shower and/or bachelorette party, gave me a gift (even if we're talking peen straws and questionable balloons), said something nice to me, paid for my fancy bachelorette dinner, and just generally made me feel so special this weekend. I'm so overwhelmed with gratitude that I'm feeling insanely guilty--the phrase "I can't thank you enough" comes to mind. No, seriously--I can't thank these people enough. But I'm sure telling them how guilty I feel about all the nice things they've done for me is the exact opposite of what I should do.

Personal pic.
Feasting on crème brûlée at the appropriately named restaurant, Balzac.

I'm anxious about making sure everybody who comes to the wedding has a good time. I'm so worried I won't be able to say hello to everyone in attendance, or a friend who doesn't know anyone else there will be miserable, or I won't be able to pick someone up from the airport who flew in just to see me. I don't want to be in the limelight the entire day, yet I worry about coming off as ungrateful for shying away.

In the past few weeks, people have been asking me if I'm nervous about the wedding. The first time it happened I was sort of taken aback. Nervous? No, the only thing I was nervous about was getting all of my to do's done. But now that you mention it, I'm getting more and more anxious each day, and it's causing me to be physically ill. I always assumed the engagement period and wedding events would be 100% positive experiences, but I can't help but feel all kinds of bad emotions now that it's crunch time.

My blog post-ending question: Is this normal? Or am I a psycho?

Thursday, April 26, 2012

I May End Up Throwing Something

I've already admitted that part of the reason I want a candy buffet is so I can make a cool backdrop for it. Well, sadly, that's also part of the reason I want a photobooth. Of course I also want to see all the hilarious photos of my guests, and I think they'll enjoy it too. But I really just want to make a cool backdrop. Is that a crime?

Mr. Unicycle and his dad worked on building a PVC pipe frame a few weeks ago, inspired by Pin Cushion's design.

So now I just have to figure out how to pimp that shiz.

I love the mix of colors and textures in this backdrop, though if I did it myself, it would probably be all white, partly because my color scheme is not very colorful, and partly because I wouldn't want to distract from the people in the photos too much!
Image via Style Me Pretty / Photo by Arrow & Apple

I also love the texture of this fringey, mylar-y backdrop, but at this point in the game, I'm too lazy to figure out the logistics of bringing this idea to fruition. Plus, how would this actually attach to my PVC frame?
Image via Confetti System

I nixed this one for the same reasons. I'm guessing this would turn into a craft fail, and I can just picture myself angrily trying to throw the tissue paper across the room and growing frustrated because, as we all know, it's impossible to angrily throw a piece of paper. Gosh, I'm getting pissed off just thinking about it.
Image via A Beautiful Mess

This backdrop is adorable too, but I've actually made some of those fringe/pom pom thangs already, and they're too time consuming to make a whole backdrop out of at this point. Maybe this is why it's not hard for me to picture myself angrily throwing tissue paper around and verbally abusing my scissors...
Image via Smilebooth

For a while I had decided to do something like this. I know how to make those 3D paper snowflake thingies, any fool can figure out to to string coffee filters into a garland, and it looks like they just haphazardly knotted some tulle and muslin and called it a day. I like it.
Image via Ruche

To make this backdrop, you laser cut all of the names of your wedding guests and hang them up! I admit I considered this idea for about 5 minutes before coming to my senses. I do have access to a Silhouette Cameo, but let's be real, people. I'd probably end up throwing the machine out a window, becoming disappointed at the lack of damage caused, and retrieving the machine, only to throw it out of a window on a higher floor. I'm just being honest with myself.

So, now that I've admitted my proclivity for throwing things whilst crafting (and the fact that the clock is ticking), I've started to consider some simpler backdrop ideas. For this one I could just tie some ribbon, strips of fabric, or even streamers to the frame and be done.
Image via Ruffled / Photo by Krista Mason / Event design by Chic Celebrations

To spice it up a bit, I could fringe the fabric/paper strips and somehow orchestrate floating gold polka dots to hang among the fringe.
Image via Tres Sugar / Photo by Valo Photography via Style Me Pretty

But...I've been holding out on you. The first photobooth backdrop I ever considered, and the one I am still planning on making, is this:
Image via Brass and Linen / Photo by Therese Jacinto

I was originally inspired by Mrs. Moonbeam, who was inspired by Chanel's spring 2009 show, to make a wall of giant paper flowers. Here's her completed flower wall:

I've already found some good tutorials/inspiration for making giant paper flowers:

But here's the prob: I've got less than 2 months until the wedding, with approximately 0% of this project done. And by "approximately" I mean "exactly." I'm still trying to finish my dang centerpieces. My other problem is that I don't know how I can make this work with a PVC frame. Mrs. Moonbeam attached her flowers to plywood, but I don't think I can hang plywood from PVC.

Here's where you come in, hive! How can I make this project work??

Monday, April 23, 2012

Swarming Milwaukee

This past weekend must have been a good time for bee meetups, because there was one in lovely Milwaukee too! I met hive members forevermandy, Flower Fairy, and futuremrsbauer at local brunch hotspot Trocadero. I had only been to Trocadero once before, on my 20th birthday in fact--we had sat outside and a gigantic spider made its way into my lap somehow, and in response I made an involuntary gutteral grunt in front of my future in-laws and flung the thing to the ground. Needless to say, my experience at the bee meetup was much more pleasant.

Personal pic
From left to right: Me, forevermandy, Flower Fairy, and futuremrsbauer

The brunch drinks flowed freely--I tried my first mimosa ever and it was the best thing I've ever tasted. Besides chocolate. And bacon. And lasagna. And several other things. But seriously what have I been doing with my life thus far to never have tried a mimosa before? The food was great too, but best of all, the conversation (all together now: awww). We all talked about weddingy things, jobs, fiancés, and general Milwaukee life. I love how a small thing like reading the same website can bring people together like this, and I already can't wait to get together again (all together now: awwwwdgfhgghh {sorry, I gagged a little}). But seriously, you girls rocked, and now I'm not quite so scared of being friendless when I move up there.

Who else lives in the Milwaukee area? Let's make the next meetup huge!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

How to Make 5 Minute Fabric Flowers

PSA: The Milwaukee meetup planned for this Saturday 4/21 has changed location. We're now meeting at Trocadero at noon. Anyone is welcome! But please RSVP on our thread because we need an exact count for the reservation (I know, meetup fail).

I finally finished all 5 paper flower bouquets--4 bridesmaids plus mine--and all the paper corsages using good ol' Martha's tutorial. Needless to say, I was beyond tired of making flowers. Alas, I still had the mothers' and grandmothers' corsages to make. Instead of wrestling with more floral tape, I decided to go back to a medium I feel a lot more comfortable with: fabric. This way, the corsages could be worn again in the future if our mothers and grandmothers wanted. 

I used the Fabric Lotus Flower tutorial from Create and Delegate, but instead of using georgette fabric or chiffon, I recycled a white sheet. I was going to use some tulle I had in my stash too, but after I made the first 2 I got fed up with that too, so only the two moms will have tulle in their corsages.

I began by cutting a long strip of fabric about 3 inches wide and several feet long. If you're going to make corsages I would recommend making them more like 2 inches wide. Since my fabric was a little stiffer than what the tutorial used, my flowers stood out too straight when I pinned them on. 

Then I rolled the fabric strip up into 2 inch sections...

...and cut a curve across the top.

So it looks like this when you unroll it.

Then ruffle it on the machine... it looks like this...

...and roll it up like a boss.

Hot glue as you go, and you'll have a lovely flower. Voila! Or if you're a typical American: Wah-la!

Finish it off by hot gluing a circle of felt to the underside

And attaching a pin. But DON'T make my mistake and pin it across the middle!!! Why not? Read on.

Because if you glue the pin there the corsage will just flop around on your boob, just chillin' like it owns the place:

I give side eye to this floppy corsage, which is also admittedly not pinned in the correct spot. Seriously where do you pin a corsage??

I ripped the pin backs off (this was extremely difficult, but at least that means the hot glue was strong) and reglued at the top of the felt circle so gravity wouldn't take its toll.

Yay, now it looks perf.

Glamour shots:

So what do you think? Would you wear these again if you were our mothers/grandmothers? Are you making any fabric flowers for your wedding? Where the hell do you pin a corsage? (Are these even called corsages?? Now I'm second guessing everything in life.)

Monday, April 16, 2012

Us in Legos

Way back in the summer, Mr. Unicycle and I had a conversation about cake toppers. I don't remember much about the conversation since it was so long ago, but I do remember that he suggested we do a Lego cake topper. We both love Legos (though who doesn't, really?) and we both wanted something a little different while still having a traditional bride and groom atop the cake. A Lego bride and groom would be perfect! Kudos, Mr. U.

We first went online to get inspiration, and Mr. Unicycle found this on Etsy:

At the risk of embarrassing Mr. Unicyle, I have to share with you that he suggested we just buy these instead of making them ourselves because "they're only $7!!" I was like "wut." I know cake toppers can be pretty expensive, and I was guessing that even the materials used to make these would be more than $7. Yeah, turns out the shipping cost was $7, and they actually cost, drumroll please, $100. No thanks. 

So Mr. Unicycle played around with his Lego stash, downloaded the Lego Digital Designer program at the suggestion of Miss Scone, and ordered the Legos he thought he'd need. 

After months of putting it off, searching for individual Lego pieces (did you know you can order any Lego brick online in any quantity?), and waiting for the bricks to arrive, Mr. Unicycle finally got around to assembling the cake toppers last weekend. He even superglued them together so we can cherish them forever. I photographed them on the paper towel they were drying on.

Personal pics

If you're ever in need of specific Lego bricks, I highly recommend using the Lego Pick a Brick site and Digitial Designer program. The Lego customer service was also extremely helpful when Mr. Unicycle had questions about bricks he couldn't find. They got him in touch with Lego brick sellers that were not officially affiliated with Lego to find a few "out of print" bricks.

I'm so excited to put this bad boy atop our polka dot cake! I made a ghetto mock-up for you guys. It's gonna be awesome, basically:

What do you think of cake toppers? Are you a fan of having a bride and groom atop your cake? Would you prefer to just use fresh flowers? Are Legos too quirky?

Saturday, April 14, 2012

We Tied 150 Knots

Weddingbee bloggers always refer to their invitations as a "labor of love" which is bridal code for "These mofos took a lot of effing work and I'm so glad to be rid of them." I vowed not to call mine a labor of love because I was going to go simple--there would be one piece for the invitation, one for the response card, and a return envelope. I wouldn't freak out about stamps, there would be no belly bands, and there would certainly be no pocket folds. But then, I saw this:

And I fell in love with stacked invitations. I don't think a stack would look very cool with only two pieces, so I decided to add a Reception card and an Information card. We would also be needing a belly band now. I really liked the heart belly bands Mrs. Cannon used:

And then I saw this (the moral of this story is STAY OFF PINTEREST):

Image via Bridal Musings / Design by Christina Moralego
So I decided to forgo my plans of having quick and simple invitations and just go all out. I still wouldn't call it a labor of love. Maybe a labor of hate? Here's the sneak peek I showed you before:
Personal pic

I had my friend and bridesmaid Barbara design everything for me, and she did a fabulous job! She also designed our save the dates for free. One thing I know about design from watching Project Runway is that a good designer needs to take the client's wishes into consideration while still maintaining aesthetic integrity. In other words, I knew what I wanted in an invitation suite, but I know nothing about graphic design, and Barbara did such a great job bringing my vision to life while still making it look professional. She designed four pieces for us and made multiple edits (we're talking a month-long email thread here), all without ever complaining. I wish she was a real vendor so I could recommend her here, but you should visit her blog anyway because she's a really good artist.

Without further ado, I present to you my labor of hate:

Here's what they saw in the mailbox:

When they removed the bellyband and unstacked the stack, they'd get the whole suite:

I made the envelope liners and belly bands from wrapping paper with help from my mom and FMIL. I designed the map in Powerpoint using Mrs. Ballet Flat's tutorial, and Barbara designed the Reception, RSVP, Information, and Invitation cards. Here they are close up:

And now, for the pièce de résistance, the main invitation:

The dirty deets:
  • The swirly font is called Memoriam Pro, the sans serif font is Winterthur, and the date is written in Pistilli Roman
  • The address font is called Witched.
  • We got the gate fold cards from Cards and Pockets.
  • We got the yellow outer envelopes, white response envelopes, and yellow mounting paper from
  • We had everything printed from Catprint, which is awesome because they allow custom sizes!
  • The polka dot wrapping paper is from Target.
 All in all, we spent approximately a million dollars and an infinite amount of time on these. I suppose they could be called a labor of love because they certainly were laborious, and I do love how they turned out.

Were your invitations a labor of love, or a labor of hate?