Friday, August 28, 2009

Topanga Wedding

Hey there,

In the months leading up to the wedding I regularly visited your blog for trusted bursts of inspiration. It was a pleasure to escape the hellish wedding magazine culture and find a place dedicated to like-minded brides. So, I suppose this is my little way of giving back...

The ceremony took place at the
Topanga Community House (site of the annual Topanga Days music festival). We were lucky enough to share the ceremony with some goats hired to clean brush around the grounds this summer. They were a great audience - their BAAAing throughout the ceremony kept everyone from getting emotional (yay!).

I turned some craft birds from Michael's into a bride and groom to top the cake & had a groom's cake made in the image of Darth Vader for Mark, my Star Wars-loving hubby. We nixed the idea of a traditional wedding party and instead had our sisters accompany us at the alter adorned in matching Milly dresses (in different colors). Most of the pictures were taken by Mollie Jane Photography. The flowers were provided by my friend Rebecca at Lily Pad Floral Design, and help was provided by another dear friend who is starting up her own event planning company, Jen Peterson Events.

There were wildflowers, vintage doilies, mason jars, mismatched plates & silverware, bluegrass music, a country band (Old Californio featuring Dave Gleason), a kids table (which I highly recommend! ..kept them busy all night!!), a candy buffet, my vintage dress and headpiece from Paris 1900, and a delectable buffet from Joan's on Third - all of which came together to create a truly memorable evening! Everyone really seemed to enjoy themselves and we heard over and over that the wedding was just so "you guys," which made us feel like the mission was accomplished!

Thanks again,

Hell. Yes.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Dear ESB: we're eloping... (part two)

Okay but srsly. Brandy doesn't have time for any of that crafty shit. She's eloping.

Messy bouffant. YES. Bubble veil. Why not?? (I don't even know what a bubble veil is.) Now all you need is pair of kick ass shoes.*

Here are the contenders:

The Prada Ruched Bootie, on sale for $239 at Barneys.

And the Mogil Pineapple Peep-toe Bootie, $245 at American Rag Online.

I'm feeling the booties. What can I say? I'm also in deep lust with these Loeffler Randalls, but they're $625.

*As long as you have great hair and great shoes, the rest of it doesn't matter.

Dear ESB: we're eloping and I'm on dress #3

Brandy just emailed me:

Reading your blog for a while now and L.O.V.E it so I thought I would ask you this very important question and hopefully you (or your readers) can come up with an answer. See we're eloping(shhhh) after ten years of dating and I'm having a bit of a dress dilemma. I'm currently on dress #3. I won't get into the deets of the first two but the third I'm confident will make it to city hall. It's JCrew and it's cotton and it's...plain:

I want to dress it up some but obviously not too much as were getting hitched early afternoon. But I want it to look less summer dress and more unique and awesome wedding dress that just happens to be cotton. I'm a wee bit eccentric so I'm willing to hear any and every idea that is thrown at me. I'd normally be able to figure it out myself but with less than 22 days to go I'm focused on other things. I think I'll be wearing a short bubble veil and my hair in a messy bouffant. But neither of these are set in stone. Oh and shoes suggestions?

Please help me!


Um, I thought the whole point of eloping was to avoid worrying about this sh*t. You throw on a little dress, eff the veil, and run off to city hall. You did say you're getting married at city hall?

p.s. J. Crew is neither unique nor awesome.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

The bridesmaids wore KNUCKLE RINGS

They also wore Betsey Johnson dresses and, yes, carried baby's breath. (Check out the photos by Christine Chang Photography on Lolliblog.)

blind irish pirate was right when she said "baby's breath is very 1990." But hey, the 90's are back.

p.s. Shop Heist Jewelry to get your own knuckle ring. me melodia already has one. Naturally.

Speaking of brides and giant flowers....

Traci emailed me with this question:

I just started reading your blog and I LOVE IT. I love your use of expletives. And I love your (sometimes brutal) honesty. Your posts about hating engagement sessions and balloons makes me sad though because I used red balloons in our photos because it had meaning to us. My fiance popped out of a six foot red balloon to propose to me. It was pretty fucking awesome. I hope you don't judge me because I don't hate things that you say fuck this to. :)

I have a bride style question for you because I love your style. I am wearing a simple dress with a sweetheart (strapless) neckline with a big bow in the back (but no beading, lacing, or adornments). I am planning on wearing a necklace with a lace applique, similar to one you showed in a previous post, but in black:

I am not planning on wearing a veil and I am going to wear my short black hair down. Do you have any suggestions for what to wear in my hair? Would a big flower be overkill?

First of all Traci, I would never judge anyone for disagreeing with me. I love a good disagreement. And did I say I was over balloons?? That must have been weeks ago.

As for your hair dilemma, I think a big mess of FEATHERS would look vintage-y and fabulous with your short hair. Much cooler than a (yawn) big flower. This headpiece is by Sara Gabriel:

(Photos of Melissa by Weddings by Two
via 100 Layer Cake. You may recall that Melissa's husband also has good style.)

I would also like someone to get married in the "she enjoys shakespeare in the park" by because it reminds me of Jane Birkin. Who doesn't wanna look like Jane Birkin?

I am so. over. the GIANT FLOWER headpiece.

IknowIknowIknow. Some of my best friends got married with big flowers on their heads.... But I must say I was stoked when this Topanga Canyon wedding showed up in my inbox yesterday. Sara has it goin on with her vintage headpiece.

I'll put up more pics later this week.

Blame cevd if it makes you feel better. She told me a month ago she was sick of seeing GIANT FLOWERS everywhere.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

on expletives

Two weeks ago an uptight reader took issue with my "f*ck peonies" post, commenting, "your unrestrained use of expletives make you sound very dumb, i.e, can't find words to express what you mean, and down right trashy."

My mom quickly responded by emailing me a link* to Dr. Andrew Weil's Weekly Bulletin and his description of a study from the August 5, 2009 issue of the journal NeuroReport... Turns out there's a reason it feels so good to say FUCK THIS. According to the study, "Swearing may actually reduce the pain of, say, slicing your finger with a kitchen knife or accidentally banging your toes or your head."

I know from experience it reduces the occasional pain of wedding planning.

*Okay, my mom hasn't quite figured out how to send me a link. But she pointed me in the right direction.

I have taken the liberty of illustrating this post with a polaroid of Amanda from, YES, Peony :: Love. I have a feeling she won't mind.

Monday, August 17, 2009

morning wedding bonus: the afterparty

Photos courtesy of kidchamp

Friday, August 14, 2009

now here's a shrug I can get behind

via {a glamorous little side project}

Did I say I'm not a shrug person??

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Emily & Royal's Amelie-meets-Fiddler-on-the-Roof wedding

Finally! Noa's photos and all the sweet details from the long-anticipated (by me, anyway) feather love wedding.

Here's what Emily had to say:

Where to begin? Our wedding planning was a journey… and it was well worth all the time and effort! We wanted every detail of our wedding to reflect who we are and what we love. We chose Friday evening because we wanted our guests to be able to relax and have a good time with the weekend still ahead of them. The location was at Michael and Laura’s beautiful creek side property. The property was really the perfect palate for all the sweet details. We wanted the ceremony to be very intimate, and that’s how it turned out! I’ve always loved the wedding in “Fiddler on the Roof” and it inspired us to have our guests stand around us during the ceremony. My mom walked me down the flower petal path to our friend on the piano playing Yann Tiersen “Comptine D’un Autre Ete” (from the movie Amelie). We stood under a Chuppah draped with lace tablecloths that belonged to my great grandmother.

The Chuppah was made from wood found on the property the night before the wedding- not procrastinating at all… Our family spoke for the ceremony and my brother officiated the ceremony, so this made it all the more emotional and personal to us.

For the reception we rented picnic tables and Royal hung wire from the trees surrounding the area to hang the old fashioned lights over the tables. The lights looked like they were suspended in mid air, and the area had such a romantic feel about it. The feast turned out amazing! Royal and I have always had a soft spot for Mediterranean food because that was the meal of our first date, and the night we got engaged. Our friends Zach & Amy made the whole meal from scratch (they are now getting many suggestions to start a catering business)! The meal was family style so all the food was ready to go on the picnic tables when the guests sat down. We wanted the meal to have a communal feast feel, so everyone was able to sit and immediately serve themselves up some good food, without waiting in a line. Zach grilled the lamb on site the day of the wedding, and on the tables we had humus, tabouleh salad, and pita bread. My sister made the best sangria ever, and Royal and Michael brewed three kinds of beer on the property.

My mom and aunt made the three cakes, and we had my grandparents’ wedding cake topper. There is a French patisserie in Portland that Royal and I absolutely love, with our two favorite desserts, the Royale, and the Amelie (our French names!), so we had them make us large versions of the desserts. Somehow the two desserts imploded on the car ride over and could not be saved, so we had the small versions instead… I didn’t notice until we were cutting the cake that they looked unusually “mini,” but I was too happy to be bothered.

Almost all the decorations were hand made. It seemed like for days we were making tissue paper puffs… We made doily garlands, and ribbons with flowers hung from the trees. Royal’s mom sewed the runners on the tables. My friend Natalie is becoming quite the florist and helped me choose the flowers that she arranged in glasses, bowls, and jars that we had thrifted. The property felt magical and we really wanted our friends and family to explore all the areas, so my sister sketched and printed maps for all our guests that illustrated the different areas to walk to and hang out.

We hung paper lanterns down a tunnel of a path that led to the creek where we had a secluded spot for a couple to sit at a bistro table and chairs. Instead of doing a picture slideshow we hung photos of us from a wire line with clothespins. There was a vintage tent on a wood platform beside the creek with chairs for people to relax at. We had a bonfire area where kids could make s’mores that went late into the night.

I caught myself many times throughout the night standing and looking at the beautiful scene of our friends and family all having a good time together in such a magical place, and many times it would take my breath away. Overall the celebration turned out perfect. Royal and I both felt like it was our “coming out” as a couple. We are so happy with our wedding!

PS- many people wonder if Royal is Jewish, and although I always wanted to marry a Jewish boy, he is not- we just like their wedding traditions. (Editor's note: Jewish or not, please observe how well Royal wears his suit. Whether it is two-button or three-button, the bottom button of a suit jacket should always be left undone.)

p.p.s. There are a kajillion more photos on the feather love blog.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009


Sitting on the plane about to take off for Victoria, BC and a much needed two weeks with my dad in the gulf islands.

But I had to get you, somehow, this fab Holga by Noa of Feather Love. Feature + more photos to come from this wedding when the bride and I get our act together...

p.s. Did you see the polaroid of Meg (who had the nerve to get married on our first anniversary)??

Thursday, August 6, 2009

John Hughes, we won't forget about you.

You will live on in Samantha and Ferris and Allison. And in all of us.

Dorky, but true. As my best friend from high school emailed me this afternoon, "Can you imagine what our teenage years would have been without his movies?" No. In fact, I'm not sure who I'd be today if we hadn't watched The Breakfast Club every weekend from age 14-17.*

Please read this interview John Hughes did with Molly Ringwald for Seventeen in 1986. And of course play this while you do it.

(Photo courtesy of Everett Collection/Rex Features)

*You would be amazed by how slightly I am exaggerating.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

f*ck peonies

I'll take Queen Anne's Lace any time. Especially when it can be found on the side of the road.

Check out Chelsea's linen and lace post on Project Wedding.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

pls put me on ice.

bourbon optional.

Lorick Fall 09 Lookbook by Tom Hines via Life in Lomo

Monday, August 3, 2009

brooklyn wedding full of JOY!

I hope you can forgive me the pun. I mean, just look at the photos from Joy and Michael's wedding. (Okayokay. H-town and my first anniversary is this Sunday, and I am turning into an enormous sap.)

Anyhoo, here are the details Joy sent me last night:

overall i have to say planning our wedding was so fun, i found great people and let them do their thing.. our venue, Smack Mellon Gallery, was perfect and set the tone... our caterer, Kaegan Welch couldn't have been more spot on- not to mention that he and all of his peeps that assisted were devastatingly good looking.. our photographer, Kim was so fun.. ended up hanging out with us for the afterparty- love her! and our DJ, Barlow came to the rescue at the last minute and rocked!

it ended up being more of a party that just happened to start with a ceremony.. no bouquets, no sit down dinner- we didn't even have tables and chairs! no toasts, no toss, no cutting, no wedding cake... our ceremony was short and sweet: we had our friend marry us, my brother played a rock n roll wedding march on his electric as i walked down the aisle, readings from sex & the city and juno, and the dj played MIA 'Swagga Like Us' for our big exit..

the party was cocktail style- we filled the room with wood benches, giant cozy ottomans, lavender and organic cotton plants.. our caterer passed food all night and set up various stations as the evening went on.. including a table for all of the King Crab my dad brought (he's a crab fisherman in AK).. for dessert we had several cakes (PBJ was the best) and a cheesecake bar!.. at one point my dad grabbed the mic and rocked his harmonica with a wedding blues song he wrote for us.. oh and can we talk about how god damned cute boyfriend's nephew is.. he was the mini-me-michael with the long ass hair!

boyfriend played a slideshow he had put together- he had spent weeks having all of my friends and random strangers give wedding wishes on a giant homemade speech bubble.. fn hilarious! (Editor's note: I love that Joy still calls Michael "boyfriend.")

we had around 50 wedding crashers show up for the last hour and head to the after party with us..


(Photos by Kimberly Craven)