First Dance

RZ & I don't have a song. I have no idea what songs were playing when we first met, we shared our first kiss, we took our first road trip, etc. I remember the ocean crashing in the background as RZ proposed. None of this helps as we try to pick the best song for our First Dance.

A few weeks ago, we spent the evening in our guest bedroom/office & ran through the possibilities. We threw out suggestions, we listened to them on You Tube & we rated the song a winner or a loser. It was such a fun night in our wedding planning process; I want to keep it in my heart forever.

One top contender:

Available at Amazon

"How Sweet It Is," by James Taylor. The lyrics are sweet & fitting for us. My mantra for our wedding is "Sweet & Simple" so this song fills the requirements. We like this one a lot, although it's not a favorite for either of us.

Another top contender:

Available at Amazon

"Fly Me To The Moon," by Frank Sinatra. RZ thought it would be fun to choose a Frank Sinatra song because we live in his hometown of Hoboken & this is my favorite Sinatra song (yes, I realize he covered it). It's an upbeat, unexpected choice. If I was forced to pick my top choice for our First Dance, this is it.

The last top contender:

Available at Amazon

"At Last," by Etta James. This is a perfect song with fitting lyrics. Had I gotten married ten years ago, this would have been my First Dance. The problem is, I work weddings & I've heard this song countless times; it's lost its charm. RZ really likes this song (I believe it's his top choice) so it remains a contender.

Choices, choices! All good choices. I have no idea how we're going to choose. The one thing we know is that The Love Jones Band will rock it!!


Riviera Engagement, Part Two

Glam Thank You Note
Note by Exclusive Collection II
Available at Koru Wedding Shoppe

Shortly after our engagement party, I realized we had a lot of thank you notes to write. My Riviera Bride experienced this exact same revelation. I had a frantic email requesting matching thank you notes the Monday after her wonderful engagement party. Easy! I ordered her the Riviera thank you notes in Grape & Champagne with "Thank You" in the coordinating script font. We handled the entire order over email & about two weeks later, these beautiful thank you notes arrived.

Now the Riviera Bride is busy writing thank you notes!


Glass Slipper

I'm having as much trouble finding my wedding shoe as the Prince had finding the woman who fit the glass slipper in Cinderella. I have two problems: heel height & price. I may have taken ballet for years yet somehow I have the grace of a bull in a china shop. If I don't want to trip down the aisle, I need a kitten heel. Also, I'm not interested in spending a small fortune on shoes that barely anybody sees. That being said, I would like to love my wedding shoes!

So the search began. I'm talking hours & hours of searching any & every shoe web site I know.

My very favorite shoe is the fun Lalita from Kate Spade:

Flirty Lalita shoe
Available at Kate Spade

Lalita is now available in ivory at Nordstrom & well, I swoon at the mere sight. Sadly, the price & the heel height don't work for me. I did find the comparable Camille Bloom sandal at Ann Taylor that brings the shoe into my price range but doesn't help my high heel issues.

The search continued & I found the sweet Evie from Kate Spade that I like:

Sophisticated Evie shoe
Available at Kate Spade

The heel height is perfect & I like Evie, I really do. But at that price I want to love the shoes. And I don't love Evie.

I turned to Unforgettable Moments & I found these acceptable, well-priced Catherine shoes:

Simple Catherine shoe
Available at Unforgettable Moments

Catherine may be the winner! The heel is right & the price is right. Do I love Catherine? Not really. More that I like the price. I may buy these & jazz them up a bit. Dye them purple (for free!) & add sparkly shoe clips (or brooches) & I just might love Catherine.

Plan B: Winter wedding = my favorite Uggs!


Dream Day

A girl & a guy can dream. That's exactly what RZ & I did on our lazy Sunday afternoon yesterday.

First, we peeked in an open house on historic Willow Terrace.

Cobblestone street of Willow Terrace
Image via Forgotten-NY.com

As we wandered through the beautiful four-bedroom, three-bathroom, two-balcony row home with original hardwood floors & exposed brick walls, we pretended it was ours. Just for a few moments. Here is where I could curl up with a good book & enjoy a Fall afternoon. Here is where we could host a fun dinner party. Here is where we could put the dog bed for Bailey. Imagine, imagine!

Sadly, we couldn't afford the fabulous home so we came back to reality. Sort of. Next up was a trip to Home Depot to cruise the model kitchen section.

Lovely Skylands kitchen
Image via Home Depot

We dreamed & remodeled our current kitchen into our ideal kitchen. Tile backsplash, yes! Gorgeous granite, yes! Clever cabinets with handy pullouts, yes! We had no limits. Give us anything & everything!!

In the end, we returned to our perfectly lovely condo. It was fun to dream. However, our reality is pretty dreamy.


Charming Bouquet

Paloma's Nest, the home of modern heirlooms, has been on my radar for awhile. I've always admired their Ring Bearer Bowls as a chic, meaningful alternative to ring bearer pillows.
Since we don't have a ring bearer, I counted them out for our wedding. Imagine my surprise & delight when I came upon their custom bouquet charms:

Image via Paloma's Nest

I'd love to have a bouquet charm to carry down the aisle with a few sweet words & our wedding date. I'm a complete sucker for little touches like this! After the wedding, we can use the charm in a wedding shadowbox (we're registered for this one) or as a holiday ornament. My wheels are spinning!

And if we had a ring bearer, this is the ring bearer bowl I would choose:

Image via Paloma's Nest

The Sun. The Moon. The Stars. For You. Does it get any sweeter than that?!


Love of Autumn

Autumn Harvest Wreath
Available on Etsy from NHWoodscreations' shop

Let me count the ways I love Fall . . .

Crisp temperatures. Hot apple cider. Apple picking.
Hay rides. Halloween costumes. Pumpkins. Cozy sweaters. Changing leaves. Thanksgiving gatherings.

Welcome back Fall!


More Carnation Loving!

Lovely DIY carnation centerpiece
Image via 100 Layer Cake

Remember way back when I declared my love for carnations?! Indeed, I did choose carnations as our main flower for our wedding. I've been having a blast bringing my vision together with my talented florist, Liz. Tons of white carnations will be clustered together with no greens for a modern, romantic look that is affordable. Liz made us a gorgeous sample of our reception centerpieces that I contemplated sharing on the blog but, in the end, I'd like the end result to be a surprise for our wedding guests. Until then, you'll have to imagine! Trust me, the flowers will be spectacular!

Yesterday, I spied this fabulous, DIY carnation centerpiece on 100 Layer Cake. Wow. The look is so delicate & pretty. So many people count carnations out but this clearly proves they pack quite a punch.

For one, brief moment, I contemplated revising my entire floral look. Then I gazed at our sample centerpiece photo & reminded myself how much I love them. I'm going to stick with the original plan.


Fall Into Savings

The chill is in the air, the leaves are changing & Fall savings are HERE! Just in time for Fall & Winter Brides, Koru is happy to offer 15% off ceremony program, escort card & menu orders now through November 24!! All you have to do is follow three, easy steps to receive this generous discount at Koru Wedding Shoppe. For full details, please visit our Noteworthy page.

Ceremony programs are wonderful keepsakes of your marriage ceremony. They're the perfect place to detail the ceremony order, the bridal party, the special customs & the thank you. We recommend one per couple, although some Brides prefer one per guest. Naturally, we can customize the program to perfectly coordinate with your wedding. Now 15% off ceremony programs like these:

Classic Program with Ribbon
Program by Chloe B. Weddings
Available at Koru Wedding Shoppe

Escort cards are displayed in the Reception entryway & indicate which table the guest is assigned for the Reception. Some couples also provide Place cards at each setting, indicating the guest's seat at that table. Escort & Place cards can be arranged for a beautiful display at your Reception. Now 15% off escort cards like these:

Traditional Escort Card with Ribbon
Escort Card by Chloe B. Weddings
Available at Koru Wedding Shoppe

Menu cards announce the wedding meal is being served at the Reception. Brides may order one menu per guest, one per couple or one per table. It depends on the design & look of your Reception tables. Now 15% off menus like these:

Lavish Menu with Ribbon
Menu by Chloe B. Weddings
Available at Koru Wedding Shoppe

Visit Noteworthy for the Fall 15% off Savings details & I hope to see you soon to assist you with your program, escort cards &/or menu orders!


Pretty Poms

You may remember that I chose my first DIY wedding project: Fabric Pom Poms. Then I started the project with a sample from random fabric. Now here is the still a work-in-progress pom:

Ta-da! The finished sample pom:

The sample pom looks quite nice in our dining room! Here is a close-up of the pretty pom:

I loved, loved making the pom & I adore the finished pom! I've officially signed myself up to make eight beauties in white & ivory for our ceremony & possibly for our reception too. I may re-use the poms to decorate the sweetheart table. TBD. I'm going to make four 6-inch diameter poms & four 4-inch diameter poms for a bit of variety. I'm quite happy that there will be some personal touches at our wedding.

Next week, crafty Jen, of Craftiness NOW fame, is taking me on a hunt in NYC for the perfect fabric
for my poms. Wish us luck!


Invitations: K & R

RZ & I tend to mark our territory with our first initials when we're on vacation. Here, we wrote in the sand at a beautiful Cabo San Lucas beach:

Here, I created a cool monogram for us on the chalkboard in our fun hotel room at the W Hotel San Diego:

Best of all, we commemorated the exact spot on the winter Hamptons beach where RZ proposed:

It only seemed natural to include a monogram with our first initials on our wedding invitation. In fact, RZ insisted on it, much like I insisted on the meaningful swirls. Luckily for us, Marsupial Invitations created a very cool monogram with our K and R. The monogram didn't look right on the invitation but it's used on the accompanying cards. One more way that our wedding invitations are uniquely ours!


Fast Track

The closed pocket invitation in Snow, Pear & White

I love the quote featured on the pocket seal

The open pocket reveals the invitation & additional inserts

The elegant wedding invitation

Lots of helpful information for the wedding guests!

Pear envelopes add a fun punch of color
Invitation by Marsupial Invitations
Available at Koru Wedding Shoppe

This Bride had three problems. She had a pocket invitation that she didn't love. She & others found the green ink on the invitation hard to read. She needed new invitations done pronto for her wedding at W Hotel Hoboken. Could I help? Not one to back down from a challenge, I agreed to try.

I laid out the requirements & timeframe for the rush job- a two day wait for proofs, a rush fee & overnight shipping fee to receive the invitations two weeks after the proof approval. The Bride said it was fine & we got right to work. The next three days passed in a whirlwind. The Bride selected her new wedding invitation from Wedding Four by Marsupial Invitations & I placed the order. The proof came the next day, along with some bad news- the Lemongrass backer & envelopes the Bride had chosen were no longer available. It's never easy! We waited for the new, green paper samples to be overnighted. The samples arrived, Pear was deemed the winner & the order was approved for printing. Phew!

Two weeks later, just as promised, these beautiful wedding invitation arrived. The White/Pear color scheme is crisp & clean for an elegant look. I adored them, the Bride loved them & everybody was happy. I adore happy endings, don't you?!


Proud to be a Soon-to-Be Mrs.

At last, my wedding hoodies are HERE!

I have been planning to get a Soon-to-Be Mrs. hoodie since we got engaged. Seven months passed. I never placed my order despite good intentions. Now that crisp, Fall nights are upon us, I got myself in gear & ordered my hoodie in chocolate brown with turquoise thread in brush script. Isn't it awesome?!

I can't wait to give it a test run tonight during our walk with Bailey!

While I was placing an order, I killed two birds with one stone & ordered my honeymoon hoodie too. This cutie features my new last name & our wedding date on a white hoodie:

I'm looking forward to wearing the hoodie to keep me cozy & warm on the plane ride to our TBD honeymoon destination! Until then, it's going to lounge at Koru Wedding Shoppe as a sample to inspire other Brides. Feel free to stop by & admire it!


Hyatt on the Hudson

Created by the Bride

The Mercury envelope adds a touch of color

The whole invitation suite in its glory
Wedding Four by Marsupial Invitations
Available at Koru Wedding Shoppe

Just as every wedding invitation is unique so is the process of creating it. This makes my job varied & interesting. Often, I learn a thing or two along the way from my Brides.

This Bride claimed (*) she did not have a creative bone in her body, yet she was determined to create her wedding invitation on her own. She chose to work with the Wedding Four by Marsupial Invitations book & she didn't want her invitation to look exactly like any of the samples shown. I explained the endless options available, then sat back & relaxed (**) while she did the dirty work of making the perfect invitation for her wedding.

Now look at the final results: a sleek, sophisticated invitation. *If she didn't consider herself creative before, she may have to change her non-creative motto after this beauty. The Bride picked a square invitation with a Mercury backer, Magnolia printed layer, Mercury ink, a Lavender graphic & combination lettering. The outer envelope was Magnolia & the response card envelope was Mercury for a fun punch of color. All in all, the wedding invitation speaks of a formal, classic affair.

Not only did the Bride create a gorgeous wedding invitation, she made a great suggestion about our shared venue. The hotel used to be known as the Hyatt Regency Jersey City. Recently, it's become Hyatt Regency Jersey City on the Hudson. Phew, it's wordy! However, the "on the Hudson" addition is nice because it details the waterfront location. The Bride simplified it to Hyatt on the Hudson. Simple & sweet. I stole her good idea for our wedding invitations!!

**I didn't let this Bride flounder as she worked on her wedding invitation- I was there at all times to offer my advice & opinion. Still, she gets the credit for her pretty invitation!


Fiance's Big Day

BIG Birthday Wishes for my fiance!
Cookies available at Eleni's

Today is my fiance's birthday! RZ has a full, happy day planned for his birthday. He had a short day of work, a wonderful gift in itself. They bought him a cake & sang "Happy Birthday!" much to his embarrassment. Then he rushed off to cheer on his beloved New York Jets in their first game of the season. When all those fun & games are over, Bailey & I are waiting at home with present & Crumbs Bake Shop cupcakes.

Cheers to a year full of good health, good fortune & good times! RZ deserves the very best today & always.

Happy Birthday RZ! XOXO


Copper Beauty, Part Two

Here's Copper Beauty!
Available at Koru Wedding Shoppe

Remember way back when I showed you the Copper Beauty save-the-date invitation & I promised to show you the wedding invitation too? The Fall beauty arrived this week so I proudly present you . . .

The Copper Beauty wedding invitation! Isn't she pretty??!! Those copper leaves, the copper shimmer envelope liner & the simple, mocha font are a match made in heaven. The Bride chose this invitation suite because she is from Colorado & the copper leaves remind her of the plentiful Aspen tree leaves in her home state. She's getting married in her new hometown of Manhattan, yet she manages to include a tinge of home on her wedding invitation. Very sweet reason, very gorgeous results.

If you're local, swing by Koru Wedding Shoppe & admire Copper Beauty who is spending her Fall days in the front window!


Invitations: Swirls

The Koru necklace that . . .
launched my business
and inspired our wedding invitation!

The beautiful logo of Koru Wedding Shoppe

After picking the paper color for our wedding invitations, the next step was choosing the graphics. Well, that would have been the next step. Except I had already done it. Let's back up.

I love swirls. I bought my gorgeous, swirl necklace years ago simply because I liked it. As I learned more about the legend of Koru & the swirl associated with it, I quickly went from like to love. So much so that I named my business Koru Wedding Shoppe & picked a swirl for the logo. Don't worry, I didn't slap Koru Wedding Shoppe's logo on our wedding invitation. I wouldn't go that far.

However, Wedding Four by Marsupial Invitations offers awesome, swirl graphics. Those swirl graphics are shown on sample invitations throughout the book; none of the samples were quite right for us. I flexed my creative muscles, picked two swirl graphics & created a wedding invitation. This may be the most fun I've had to date while wedding planning. I adore the swirl designs on our wedding invitation & I love that they represent the inspiration & celebration of our positive new beginning. Beautiful & personal.

By the way, I had designed said invitation before we'd decided between Monique Lhuillier & Marsupial Invitations. I never said I was following the book step-by-step in this wedding planning process.


A Dog's Life

Who's that doggy in the window?

Bailey hard at "work"

Bailey is a working dog. Kind of.

When I work, Bailey comes to Koru Wedding Shoppe with me. He has a comfy set-up next to my desk with a blanket, a bone, a toy & water. He spends much of his time there snoozing & relaxing. Sometimes I wish I could join him! Or he sits at the front door & watches the world go by. The front door glass is always smudged with his nose prints. I'd give anything to know what's going through his mind as he drinks in the world around him.

I wouldn't be doing Bailey justice if I failed to mention that he does greet everyone who walks through the shoppe door. He puts on his happy face & wags his tail. Just the least bit of attention is rewarded with Bailey dropping on his side for a belly rub, his absolute favorite. He truly thinks everyone is coming to see him!

Just another day in the life of Bailey.


Invitations: Frost, Snow & Magnolia

Olivia & Edward pocket invitation
Image from Marsupial Invitations; Available at Koru Wedding Shoppe

Boy, what sweet relief to check one thing off our wedding timeline- invitations done!

I already explained how we chose our wedding invitations. The Olivia & Edward invitation was the invitation we chose as far as the basic shape & overall look; we had a lot of work to do to make it our own. What was the next step? Choosing paper colors. One of the things I adore about Marsupial Invitations is they offer a rainbow assortment of paper colors. We could choose from the color options for our pocket, envelopes & printed layers.

Our wedding theme is a winter white wedding with white, cream & champagnes with a touch of purple. Thank goodness for a theme because it truly makes decisions easy- simply choose things that work within your theme. RZ declared there would be absolutely no purple on the wedding invitation. My stipulation was that some or all of our paper colors had to be shimmer papers because I'm semi-obsessed with the touch of shimmer. So we had the white, cream & champagne family of shimmer & matte options to work with for our wedding invitation.

I played & played with the paper swatches until I had the ideal combination: Frost, Snow & Magnolia. Perfect names for a winter wedding, right? I swear, it's coincidental. We picked Frost, a textured, white matte paper for our pocket. Even I realized there is such a thing as too much shimmer. Next is Snow, a pure white, shimmer paper, chosen for the outer envelope & response card envelope. Finally, Magnolia, a cream, shimmer paper for the printed layers. Together, Frost, Snow & Magnolia are a beautiful winter combination.

Stay tuned to find out how we chose the image for our wedding invitation!


Happy Long Weekend!

Let your worries fall away . . .
Print available from one of my favs, jessgonacha's shop

Ahhh, a long weekend. One extra day of rest & relaxation means everything. RZ & I don't have any plans which is honestly the best thing ever. Three, long days to enjoy each other &, of course, our beagle boy, Bailey.

What are your plans? Whatever they may be, stay safe & be happy. Let those worries fall away & have FUN!

Happy Labor Day weekend!


Next Project

Celebrate Fall!
Craft Kit from Paper Source

It's pretty laughable that I'm considering my next project. I haven't finished my sample pom for our ceremony. Once the sample is done, I have to find fabric & buy more supplies before I can start the eight poms for our wedding. And time is ticking with only 4.5 months to go!

Still, this pretty Fall wreath in those gorgeous colors caught my eye. Mostly because my Winter wreath is hanging on the wall. Yup, from last Christmas. The poor thing needs a break & this mum wreath seemed like the perfect solution. The wreath is a craft kit from Paper Source so it shouldn't take too long. And wow, it would look so beautiful on our living room wall.

All in all, I'm a huge fan of celebrating the seasons. The mum wreath may be the ticket for celebrating Fall!


Invitations: check!

We ordered our wedding invitations from this company!
Jennie & Mark invitation from Marsupial Invitations

Yesterday was a red-letter day in our wedding planning: we ordered our wedding invitations!

We were debating between a classic invitation by Monique Lhuillier & a stylish invitation by Marsupial Invitations. Back & forth, back & forth. Then some more back & forth, back & forth. Finally, with patience running thin, we came to a final decision: a pocket invitation by Marsupial Invitations.

How did we arrive at our final decision? Blood, sweat & tears!! Just kidding. What it came down to was me. I'm a creative person who loves designing things, especially stationery whether it's a Mother's Day card or a wedding invitation. It simply made sense to work with a stationery company like Marsupial that allows me the freedom to design our wedding invitation using their paper colors, ink colors, font styles, monograms & images.

I worked really hard over the past two weeks to design a wedding invitation that reflects us as a couple & our wedding. I spent a lot of time on every last detail. I believe I created an invitation that is traditional, yet modern & very us. I'll write more in another post about the creative process. For now, I'm basking in the glory that we ordered our wedding invitations!!!!
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