Subdued royal wedding

May 29, 2008

I just got around to looking at the photos from this recent royal wedding. I love the subdued tones of the castle, horse and carriage and the bridesmaids celadon gowns.

And oh, the hats!

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Ten years ago today…

May 29, 2008

Sorry for the breakizinho! I’m been busy engagement partying, graduating and turning 26! In honor of this, and the fact that it has been exactly 10 years since I turned 16 today, and in light of my recent croquet post, I am posting this photo from my famed sweet 16 croquet party. I’m that happenin’ gal in yellow.

Me likey: online shopping

May 16, 2008

Ann Taylor dresses I’m digging as engagement party/ garden party/ rehearsal dinner frocks:

Cynthia Rowley “Dirty Dishes”

Bags from Mabel’s shop:

Texas v. RI

May 14, 2008

When I have pangs of sadness about not marrying in Texas, I now have a reference photo:

Am I crazy, or does it look like sweat is literally dripping from their faces?  Looks like it was a hot one for Jenna and Henry!  So when I the occasional mixed feelings about having an Ocean State wedding I just need to remember that no matter how hot it will be here in June 2009, it will be much, much hotter in the heart of Texas.

Friday is Art Day on Ocean State Bride

May 10, 2008

Since the lilacs are in full force here in RI I thought I would post my “Self Portrait with Lilacs” that I did today.  This was the most fragrant painting experience I’ve had yet.

Look what we’ve got!

May 9, 2008

I woke up this morning still feeling irritated by a Seasonique commercial I saw last night. It starts off with two identical 20 something ladies, one says “Hey Logical!” and Logical says, “Hey Emotional!” and Emotional says “Look what we’ve got:” and Logical says, “It looks like birth control?” (I put the ? there because they are both doing the up-talk that the girls on the Hills have perfected). Emotional goes on to explain what Seasonique does, and then Logical says, “You know how I feel about ‘different.'” Then the obligatory doc in a white lab coat pops up and tries to assuage Logical’s concerns. The whole commercial is so condescending and it’s irritating because you don’t need to pay $25/month to skip the placebo week.

This brings me to the SNL ad Annuale. If you haven’t seen this clip yet, watch it now!

Now that my rant is completed, here are some beautiful peony bouquet and centerpiece ideas:

(photos and instructions from Bridgewater Gardens)

How To Make Wedding Bouquets Using Peonies

1) Cut the peony stems and any other flower you are using to about 10 inches.

2) Place a peony stem in one hand, add a stem of greens if desired, then add another peony and alternate between the two until the bouquet reaches the proper size.

3) Wrap the stems in decorative ribbon.

4) Store the peony bouquets with the stems in water until the time of the wedding. You may put them in water in a small vase and then refrigerate.

We recommend making all of the fresh wedding flower bouquets the day before the wedding and refrigerating them until the time of the wedding. Be sure to remove all fruits and vegetables from your frig as they give off a gas that damages the flowers. If it is not possible to refrigerate all of the floral arrangements then keep your house cool. If it is summer time turn up your air conditioning.

Breakin’ dishes!

May 8, 2008

Spoke to the coordinator of the reception site yesterday and he made me feel much more comfortable about the wedding planning process, partly because he kept saying in various permutations “we want to help you have the day you’ve dreamed about…” Finding out that they will make the wedding cake there also helped to allay some anxieties, I think because the more ‘extras’ there are the more it seems like $2000 here, $2000 there. So we scheduled a tentative and ominous date in June (Friday the 13th) for me to go down to Narragansett to check out the scene and see some photos. An event will be going on that night so I will be able to see what things look like in the prep period.

(from Hull Grenier Studios)

Since I feel much calmer about the wedding planning, I thought that today I would muse on something more nesting-related: dishwashers. In June A. and I are moving to a gorgeous neighborhood of old, gingerbread-y houses near Jamaica Pond, and everything seems great except that there is no dishwasher. When we lived together before there wasn’t a dishwasher, and I would say that about once a week one of us would spend a half hour doing the week’s dishes. Maybe this sounds energy efficient, but this article on slate indicates that hand-washing dishes rarely is more water or energy efficient than using a dishwasher. Apparently, in a German study they found that the average handwasher uses “27.2 gallons of water, which requires 2.5 kWh of electricity to heat” while an efficient machine washer uses “3.96 and 5.81 gallons of water, and between 1 and 2 kWh of electricity.” Interestingly, in the study “the most careless hand-washers were Spanish and Portuguese, while the most economical were German.” Well, I am not German, and the washer with the most positive consumer reports on Amazon, the Edgestar model, uses a maximum of 3 gallons of water, according to the specs on CompactAppliance.com. It is a smaller dishwasher, and can only hold a 4-person ‘service,’ but sounds like a good idea to me! One common consumer issue is that the tube that connects the washer to the kitchen faucet sometimes falls apart after a few months, but Edgestar sends an extra for free (it has a year long parts warranty). Let’s take a look:

Anyone have any experience with this type of thing? Any words of wisdom?

Par for the course:

May 7, 2008

Of course, before anything else is planned my sister-MOH has come up with a bachelorette party theme: bar golf or ‘pub golf.’ She recently received an invitation to beer golf, a similar complex drinking game, and then I posted about croquet, and we realized that it would be a great fusion of the heavy drinking involved in bachelorette parties and the fundamental element of my sartorial inclinations: argyle. Then, as it turns out, I discovered that Boston has a famous (infamous?) event called the Boston Bar Golf Invitational where people go from bar to bar in the Fanueil Hall area and keep scorecards on their T-shirts. I looked at a few websites, and there is a range of ‘rules’ for pub golf, but generally you consider the number of bars that you’re going to the ‘holes’ (so you could play a 9-hole game), and, like in golf, you choose your clubs, which are in this case beverages, and different bars are assigned different things for ‘par,’ so, for example, at The Hot Club (to use a RI example) the par would be two beers and a mixed drink, and you must finish them in the time allotted.

The best part? Proper golf attire is required!

Peonies, daisies, hydrangeas, oh dear.

May 6, 2008

I’m beginning to think that I don’t want to have super slick floral arrangements, and instead just aim for simple bouquets tied with light blue grosgrain ribbon.  I like the idea of getting the flowers from one of a number of local farms in southern RI (many can be found here on Farm Fresh RI).  Yes, I know, how faux-ho, bobo, or yuppie (whatever is your preferred phrase for people who half buy in to the ‘green’ movement) of me, but after eight years of living in Rhode Island I know that lots of flowers grow here, especially between May and August.  Did I mention that the hot-pink dogwoods are blooming and that I have a bowl of lilacs sitting on my counter?  One thing, though, that I’m not totally clear on, is how people purchase wedding flowers wholesale, or whether I would need to do that, versus just pick up a bunch (or have the MOH pick some up) at the farmer’s market the day of the nuptials.  Plenty of time for research of this nature (no pun intended!), though.

Speaking of the MOH, a friend of hers sent me this link, which shows ladies in all of their bridesmaid dresses.  How appropriate now that 27 Dresses is now out on video, dvd and “Blue Ray” (whatever that is!)  If you did not fork over $9 to see this fine film in theatres, now is your chance!  It was filmed in jolly Providence (although the movie is set in NYC) and there are tons of great shots of the Ocean State!  And, btw, who doesn’t love James Marsden?  I loved him in the WB’s short-lived Jack and Jill and I love him now!

Swooning in little Rhody

May 5, 2008

The lilacs are finally out, the circus is in town and another Ocean State bride has emerged (thank God because I was beginning to think it was just the ladies on “Chatty Brides”)! Her website is here, and she has a fab Ocean State proposal story! I have a few guesses about the beach where the proposal took place, but since she says that it was near some rocks Elephant Rock in Little Compton is my top guess.

Engagemental brought the new Whim by Cynthia Rowley line at Target to my attention, and today I headed over to find some great kitchen/party items and picture frames. There are even yard games like bocce ball and badminton for sale, and, my favorite game of all: croquet. My sister still will never let me live down perhaps my dorkiest teenage moment, when, for my 16th birthday, I planned a ladies’ croquet party, complete with Hoagy Carmichael tunes and finger sandwiches. I still plan (fantasy) croquet parties, especially when I come across croquet sets like the one in the Whim collection (which was at the store but not online yet apparently). LL Bean also used to sell a croquet set, but it does not appear to be online today either!

Speaking of croquet, wouldn’t it make a photogenic addition to a Victoriana-themed wedding? If you have any doubts check out this Winslow Homer painting:

Below is a real wedding from Brides that took place in California at a place called Meadowood, where “traditional croquet attire” is required!

Another bridal croquet look from wedding photojournalist David Crane.

And below is a photo of the Dunes Club, in Narragansett, RI with some croquet hoops already set up!

(Photo from here.)