Perhaps it's best to reintroduce myself for those who found Weddingbee after our planning ended and our marriage began. I started blogging for the bee last November. Mr. Mink and I met at a concert through a mutual friend. I was the city girl from the north and he was the outdoorsy guy from the south. On the surface, we might look like opposites, but we share a love of music, travel, animals, and great food. We never felt pressured to get married, but talked about it a lot after a few years together. Just before our fifth anniversary, Mr. Mink proposed on the beach in the Outer Banks of North Carolina.
Our golden retriever is constantly with us and Mr. Mink suggested calling him Junior Mink on Weddingbee. Junior Mink was with us when we got engaged and we thought it made sense to include him on our save the date card. We debated having him at our wedding for a while and we wound up hiring a dog loving woman who has an errand service to watch him on our big day.
We searched for venues with an outdoor ceremony in mind. After considering many options, we settled on a venue that wasn't built yet because we loved their plans, trusted their team, and were getting a discount on the rates they'd charge once they were built. When the venue finally opened, it was gorgeous and it quickly became one of the most sought after venues in the area!
Though I haven't been particularly excited in fashion in recent years, I became interested in wedding gowns. My dress search started with an appointment made to help a friend get pictures for a newspaper article she was writing about wedding gown shopping. After that appointment, I realized that I preferred to shop for a wedding gown alone. My wedding gown search came to an abrupt end when I won a one-of-a-kind dress by Jorge Manuel. I flew to Charleston to pick up my dress, which I had never seen in person before. A year later, Jorge asked me to help him announce the next winner of one of his beautiful gowns. Mr. Mink's journey to his tuxedo took far less time.
We decided to have a simple ceremony without the extra symbolic rituals that have become common in recent years. We also decided to keep our bridal party small, with three bridesmaids and three groomsmen. I let our bridesmaids pick dresses from J. Crew and we were able to find two of them for $30 each at one of the warehouse sales that the nearby headquarters holds every year.
When it came to ring bearers and flower girls, we asked all of our nieces and nephews to participate (one was one there in utero). We knew having a gaggle of children involved would make things fun and I can't wait to show you how cute all the kids were!
We worked with some fabulous vendors, but collaborating with Tasha Montgomery of AmpersandInc to create a poster to use instead of a guest book was so much fun. Tasha wound up giving me permission to reuse the image she created on our programs. Other favorites: our amazing floral designers, our day-of coordinator, the couple who run the restaurant where we held our rehearsal dinner, a friendor, who did our lighting, and another friendor, who made fabric clutches for my bridesmaids.
The influence of blogs on our planning was something I mentioned a lot. I was a DIY/design blogger before I was a bee blogger. From finding the right blue dresses for our bridesmaids to wear, to working with a great fabric to use for some craft projects, I used tools from my home improvement activities to help with wedding tasks. I wasn't sure about my ease with home projects translating to wedding crafts, but I wound up DIYing quite a few details for our day, from moss letters to personalized corn hole boards.
There were times when the wedding blogs made me feel a bit old because most feature young brides. I had to remind myself that at the end of the day, the times when things felt less-than-perfect wouldn't matter and that was true. Things weren't perfect. I had a few regrets. But, at the end of the day, I was married to my very best friend.
We have so much more to share with you! I can't wait to get started.
All images by Elisa B Photography