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6.13.2009

Oh Happy Day!


Our day has finally come! In a few hours from now, Mr. Yorkie will become my husband and I will become his wife. (Just typing those words causes tears of joy to stream down my face.) I have loved every moment of our journey over the past three years and can't wait for us to embark on this new adventure together!

The last few days have had their share of trials, be it cancelled flights due to bad weather in Dallas and Atlanta to my bridal shower-gone-awry yesterday that ended almost as soon as it started with my aunt's visit to the emergency room. In spite of all that, there's an overwhelming sense of love and excitement in the air. Prayers have been answered. There isn't a gray cloud anywhere in the sky. This is the day we've been waiting for!

I'm honored to have been able to share the last bit of our planning here on Weddingbee. The time has sure flown by fast! Your encouraging and supporting comments have given me just the boost that I've needed to make it to the finish line in this wedding planning marathon. Just a few more steps to go!

Thank you again to the readers and to my wonderful fellow Bees! You are all such amazing and inspiring women!

With much love,
Soon-to-be-Mrs. Yorkie :o)


6.12.2009

Remembering & Honoring

As I sit here at the dining room table, trimming, gluing and tying our programs, I can't help but think of everything that's brought me to this moment in time. I'm not talking so much about the journey that Mr. Yorkie and I have shared for the past three years which, believe me, has been amazing. What really makes me well up right about now is thinking about the generations and marriages that have preceded mine.


Abuela & Abuelo Yorkie in Cuba, 1947

I think about my four grandparents who will not be physically with me on Saturday. (They'll definitely be in my heart and on my mind, though.) Most recently, my family lost Abuela Yorkie last August. I swear I can still hear her familiar refrain "Una sonrisa es una arruga menos"... or "every smile is one less wrinkle". She would constantly remind me, "Yorkisita, don't worry so much!" I credit her live-in-the-moment example for my relatively calm approach to planning this wedding. Oh, how I wish that she could be here!

In an attempt to honor Abuela Y (and all of those from whom Mr. Y and I have descended), we're working a number of details into the special day. To start, I'll be wearing Abuela Y's antique white gold and diamond drop earrings. They're gorgeous and match perfectly with the rest of my wedding day accessories.



In addition, Mr. Yorkie and I will be toasting with the exact same etched crystal coupes that Abuela and Abuelo Y sipped champagne from on their wedding day in 1947. Here they are, decorated by Momma Y with bits of lace from my dress.



As I've mentioned before, both of us have done a bit of research on our family histories. We will be displaying some of the treasures we've unearthed over the years during our reception. Each of the 16 tables will feature a different last name found in either of our family trees, as well as a photograph of those direct ancestors. Here you can see a photo of my great-great-grandparents, displayed in one of the vintage-looking frames we've collected, along with the table sign. On the back of the sign is a brief biography of the family.


There are a few other lovely things that we have in the works, but I'll have to share those with you in a future post. The programs are calling my name!

What kinds of special details will you be adding to remember and honor those who came before you?

6.09.2009

Here's Your Sign


It's a long and winding road that leads to our venue. If it weren't for the three forks that diverge toward park offices, the marina, and God knows where else... I'd feel pretty confident that even the most disoriented guest would be able to find our
venue. While we included turn-by-turn directions on the backs of the maps that accompanied our invitations, I'm quite certain that few guests will actually remember to pack theirs for the trip. So I've decided to add an extra layer of planning protection (and a quick last-minute DIY project) with some simple signs.

Here's what I used to make them:



1. 12" unfinished wooden plaque
2. Indoor/Outdoor satin finish spray paint in Ivory

3. Martha Stewart Crafts rub-on alphabet decals

4. Cricut Cuttables adhesive vinyl in black (not pictured)



Here's how I made them:


1. After laying down a few sheets of newspaper outdoors to protect the grass, apply three coats of spray paint to each wooden plaque, allowing a few minutes of drying time between coats. (TIP: Disposable gloves are a great idea! I didn't use them and got paint all over my hands, which explains why there is no photo for this first step. :oP)

2. Allow the paint to fully dry for about an hour. Using a light colored pencil and a straight edge, sketch a faint guide line where your letters will be placed.

3. Position a on the plaque decal with the ink side down. Apply by rubbing all over the surface of the decal with the included craft stick, using a good amount of pressure. To ensure a clean transfer, make sure the rub over all of the little detailed areas and especially the edges of each letter. Slowly peel back the acetate backing. If you notice that parts of the decal have
not transferred, lay the acetate back down and keep rubbing. Repeat for all letters.


4. Using leftover adhesive-backed black vinyl from an earlier project, I free-handed an arrow shape in Sharpie on the paper backing. I then cut it out with a craft knife and adhered it to the plaque. The nice thing is that the vinyl is repositionable, meaning that the arrow can later be changed to point in a different direction and the sign can be used again.



We'll probably tack some small nails or screw eyes into the backs and tie them below already existing signs along the road using twine or fishing line. I'd love to staple them onto wooden stakes and stick them in the ground, by anyone who's ever tried to dig a hole more that a couple of inches deep in Miami knows all about limestone rock!

Will you be using anything to point the way to your venue?


6.07.2009

Getting the Look: Hair & Makeup Trials


I have a confession to make. I went into my hair and makeup trials with only the vaguest idea of what I wanted the end result to look like.

I put off these very important decisions until just last week and found myself scrambling the night before my appointment to find appropriate inspiration photos. The problem is, there really wasn't any combination of photos to illustrate exactly what I wanted... mainly because I really didn't know what I wanted. (Oh how I envy the Bees who've known exactly what they wanted when it came to their wedding day looks!)

As far as my hair, I was only sure that I wanted a natural looking (ie. not lacquered to my scalp) updo. These are the photos that I took to Mayerly, my super-patient stylist at the Biltmore Hotel Spa.

I asked her for a little bit of volume in the front, à la Eva Longoria. After all, it should look somewhat different from the plain 'ol ponytail that I tend to wear more often than not!


I just love how loose and romantic Kate Beckinsale's style is here. The messiness in the back is fabulous, but may come off as a bit too casual for my dress. So I asked for the "height" of this style instead.
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The final component of my Frankensteined wedding hair was this image of an updo with pin curls. I hoped that something like this might add the polished touch that my Kate B. style lacks.



Compared to my search for makeup inspiration, the pieced together hair style was a piece of cake. Like Miss Swan, I tried to find a celebrity look-alike to emulate. The only problem was that hispanic stars with similar coloring to mine (like Selma, Penelope and Eva) tend to opt for much more dramatic looks than I'd feel comfortable with. (Remember my Carmex/mascara/blush regimen?)


So I looked for a clean and natural style that is light on the eyeliner (which tends to make my eyes look tiny). I came across this photo of Sandra Bullock and asked Mayerly to do something kind of like it, except with a slightly deeper rose lip. She suggested going with a pink eye shadow and I let her. What do I know about makeup?!

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In spite of my apprehension, I was pleasantly surprised by how everything came together. My hair was curled, teased, and pinned into an elegant woven updo that will look great with my veil and also on its own during the reception.


The makeup application was a bit more of a challenge, ha! My eyes just never got used to having brushes, pencils and wands working their way around them. (I'll have to bring Visine with me on the Big Day, since my eyes got a bit irritated.) It took me a while to feel comfortable with all of that makeup on, but eventually I did, and liked it! Whew! :o)


Ugly Makeup Face, perhaps? :o)


I've even decided to wear false lashes. Can you tell?

Did you have a hard time figuring out your wedding day look?

Project Runway


I know it's been a while since I've blogged about any DIY projects. That doens't mean there hasn't been plenty of crafting going on at Casa Yorkie. Here's one project that I've been holding off on posting about until I was able to get a decent photo of the final product... no thanks to the pertpetually rainy weather lately.

Next weekend (when the skies miraculously dry up), our ceremony will take place on the beach. Considering the sand, a traditional paper or fabric aisle runner just won't do the trick. From the start, I'd had in mind something made of natural fibers that would fit in well with our tropical setting. I quickly learned that what I wanted was called lampac, a material made of woven grass, often used in tiki-style decor. The only problem was that a 3' x 26' roll cost WAY more than I was willing to pay. On a rare trip to Walmart (that place makes my head ache!), I spotted exactly what I needed: woven beach mats! At $5 a pop, I was a happy Yorkie!

Over the past few months, friends have joked that I'll be crafting my way down the aisle. In a way, they're exactly right! :o)

Here's what I used to make it:


1. 3' x 5' Woven grass beach mat (I used 5 mats)
2. Elmer's All-Purpose Glue
3. Mini binder clips
4. Tapestry sewing needles
5. Coats "Dual Duty Plus" button and carpet thread
6. Single-fold bias tape (I used 6 packs)
7. Low-melt glue gun and sticks (not pictured)


Here's how I made it:

1. Trim the ties of off each mat. To create a clean edge, fold under the last 1" from each end of a mat. Glue and hold in place with mini binder clips until dry. (Repeat for all mats.)



2. Prepare a tapestry needle with heavy thread that closely matches the color of the mat. Stack two mats together (with right sides facing out) and sew along the glued edges using a blanket stitch. Make sure that your stitches are not too tight. After every 4" - 5", pause to work the seam with your fingers to help it lie flat. (Repeat, attaching all mats end to end.)


3. If desired, hot-glue (or sew) single-fold bias tape along the entire legth of the runner. (This step is optional. The seafoam green trim that the mats came with really clashes with our wedding colors. We simply can't have that!) :o)


Here is the finished aisle runner. The length is slightly less than 25' and the entire project cost under $40. I can't wait to walk down it next weekend!


Are you making your own aisle runner? Are you using non-traditional materials?

6.03.2009

Plans A, B, C... and D



"Expect the best, plan for the worst, and prepare to be surprised."


~ Denis Waitley

With our ceremony outdoors on a public beach in the middle of June in Miami, there's no telling what conditions will be like on the Big Day. For starters, there could be pouring rain (as there has for the past 18 days straight). Another concern is that on the section of beach that Mr. Yorkie and I have identified as our "perfect spot", there could be any number of bathing suit-clad park patrons, camped out with their coolers and umbrellas. Since the beach officially closes to the public at sunset (about an hour after our ceremony), we really aren't allowed to ask them to move. Aside from asking someone to hang out on the spot for us, for who knowJustify Fulls how many hours before the wedding, there isn't much that we can do about it.



One of the few things that we can do, though, is plan. That's exactly what we did yesterday after work when we met with the manager at our venue. Together we came up with a few possible "worst-case scenarios" and back-up plans for each of them.

If the skies are clear and our "perfect" area is free, the conditions for Plan A will be in place. (Yea!!!) This section of the beach is wide (perfect for our bamboo canopy) and faces east (so the early evening sun will be at our guests' backs). Granted, there may still be a few children splashing around in the water, but I can live with that. After all, I used to be one of those kids!


Plan A site: Ready to go!

If our ideal site doesn't quite look like the photo above, no worries! We've got a Plan B! This would involve setting up a bit further north on the beach. The strip of sand there is narrower, but should still work. Also, the late sun may be shining on our guests from the side. The ceremony will be short, though, and the guests will be provided with fans. It's all good!


Plan B site: It'll do!


In the event that both of our sandy settings are unavailable, yes, there's a Plan C. I'm not terribly excited about it, but am ready to use it if needed. This little lookout point is just that, little. There probably wouldn't be a canopy, it would be difficult to seat too many of our guests due to the cramped quarters, and I'd have a longer walk around the lagoon's paved path. On the bright side, though, if the skies are clear, there's an amazing view of the city in the distance.

Plan C site: Hey, we'll work with what we've got!


Now if our problem is more with precipitation than people, that's when Plan D comes in. (I pray to God that we don't need Plan D.) Considering the afternoon downpours that have soaked Miami every day for nearly three weeks now, the chance of rain is very real. So, we'll move the ceremony under the cover of the reception venue's brand-new awning! There are even transparent "walls" that can be rolled down on the three open sides to keep everyone nice and dry, while letting natural light in. There's also an alternate arrangement for the reception tables so that everyone can be seated either indoors or under the awning. Whew!


Plan D site: In case of a rainy day...

Whatever the conditions are on our wedding day, only one thing will matter: we're getting married! I won't lie. There is an ideal image of the day in my mind, but I'm OK with the idea of things not quite going to plan. We've come too far in this process to let a few sunbathers or a little rain ruin the moment. I can't say enough about the manager at the Red Fish! He's been quite helpful with the alternate plans and will have his guys ready to move no matter what the day holds. That's reassuring!

Do you have a back-up plan (or two) in case of the what-if's on your special day?

6.02.2009

Gettin' with the Program

Considering the we're getting married NEXT weekend (yikes!), I figure it's about time that I start working on our programs. Last weekend (in addition to hair and makeup trials, finishing the aisle runner and stocking up on OOT bag goodies) I did just that.

With a couple of fabulous inspiration examples to work from, I set to designing a pocket-sized program that would fit right in with our silhouette-sprinkled wedding details. Here are the images that got my creative juices flowing.

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If the second two photos look familiar, there's good reason. They are the amazing accordion-fold programs designed by the very talented Mrs. Cupcake! I've taken a little bit from each style and combined them into something that will be perfect for the Yorkie wedding.

Using the free trial of Adobe InDesign (see Miss Bunny's how-to), I laid out the front cover and four-paneled accordion-fold inside. Here's a sneak peek of what our guests will receive as they arrive at the ceremony. The covers will be flat printed on cream colored cardstock by the same wonderful little shop that handled our DIY invitations. I'll laser print the inside panels on 11" x 17" paper (two "strips" to a page) and assemble them with Mr. Y's help by the end of this week. Fingers crossed! :o)



The fuchsia border will be in the same ink color as the accents from our invitations and the open area in the middle will feature a sweet little khaki ribbon closure. I'll be sure to share more about the assembly process as it begins.

Have you mixed and matched inspiration sources to come up with a perfect detail for your wedding?

6.01.2009

Alternative Bachelor Party

Like most soon-to-be-married men, Mr. Yorkie can't wait to get some quality time in with his guys before the Big Day. With friends flying in from all corners of the country, he really wants to show them a good time. Unlike some soon-to-be-married men, though, Mr. Y isn't up for the typical bachelor party activities. To be honest, I'm secretly relieved to hear that, but not at all surprised. He's just not the stripper-loving type.

Mr. Yorkie wants to be able to kick back and relax doing something he loves. Along with his Best Man (aka BIL Yorkie), he's come up with a plan to do just that. I've mentioned before how much Mr. Y loves baseball. (Our first date was actually to a Marlins game!) So it's only natural that he's choosing to spend the day hanging out with his buddies at the ballpark.

Cheering on the Giants at the 2002 World Series

The party will start with a tailgate at Land Shark Stadium. There they'll chow down on ribs, chicken and all of the fixings catered by
Shorty's BBQ. While BIL Yorkie is the family's official grill master, Mr. Y wants him to be able to enjoy himself, so they've decided to call on the local favorite. After that, the guys will take their club-level seats for the early afternoon first pitch as the Marlins take on the St. Louis Cardinals.

Mr. Y watches BIL Yorkie work his beer can magic

Since a number of guests won't be arriving until later that day, Mr. Y has planned an encore event that night at one of his favorite hangouts, Titanic Restaurant & Brewery. There the guys will continue bonding over Sriracha chicken wings, local smoked fish dip and house brews.

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BBQ, baseball and brews are the perfect combination for Yorkie-style male bonding. All of the guys who've been invited to the wedding are also invited to the game and get-together, including FFIL and Papa Yorkie. I'm so glad that they'll get a chance to know each other, without the awkwardness and tension of typical bachelor party offerings.

Will your fiance be doing something different with his guys?

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