ALISON LOVES | Martha Stewart Weddings is seeking 2 brides-to-be for a special reason… are you who they’re looking for?

[Opportunity now closed; more in the future, of course.] I just ended a blog title in a preposition so, it’s been that kind of day.  Good thing I have this opportunity to share with you, it really brings a huge toothy smile to my face OMG I SWEAR TO YOU, PUN NOT INTENDED.  God you’ll never believe me though.  Meh.

Last day for casting: Friday 3/15/2013

If getting a great smile for nothin’, blogging for Martha Stewart Weddings online AND appearing in Martha Stewart Weddings magazine all together appeal to your sensibilities, then this one my dear friend, this one’s definitely for you (everyone reads on including me…)

I know I know.  It’s an awkward thing to talk about your mouth.

Really, when it comes down to it, you’re not human if you don’t want to have a really nice smile; one that you’ll feel like people wanna look at (oh god the grammar today, I am so sorry you guys).. it’s just the way it is.  And since not everyone has the time or the money or the 100% lack of abject fear, all of which are necessary, in unison, to engage in the bettering of one’s chomper situation, things like this beauty suddenly come into play and are truly lifesavers.  (Quick story: I literally waited 3 years before my most recent teeth-cleaning couple months ago – don’t do that btw, was not a picnic – and I had approximately a lot of cavities it turned out.  I was SHOCKED.  You need to keep those teeth on the up and up, guys!)

Anyway, I felt visceral excitement when we were presented with this partnership, and I certainly felt great about bringing it to the blog’s big fat pink face.  I hope some people who are searching for this kind of experience get to read this post!  It’s a personal thing for me because I know from experience how life-changing a good straight coupla rows of teeth can be/do to change your world.  It’s beyond words and measure.

Now I realize I’m being a little repetitive but here’s all the info written out, if you’re not into images-with-text-information-in-them…

We’re Looking for Two Brides-to-Be!

Martha Stewart Weddings is looking to cast two brides-to-be who would like to straighten their teeth before their wedding to participate in this exciting initiative.  If chosen, you will:

·         Receive free professional treatment from a well-known company to straighten your teeth.

·         Be a regular guest-blogger on MSW.com and appear in Martha Stewart Weddings magazine to share your experiences getting ready for your wedding.

To be considered for this opportunity, please email the following to marketing@marthastewart.com:

  • Your name
  • Wedding date
  • City of residence
  • 2-3 photos of your yourself (at least one showing your smile)
  • A few sentences about why you’d like to participate.

Last day for casting: Friday 3/15/2013

We look forward to hearing from you!

- The team at Martha Stewart Weddings

I’m just curious.  Have any of you ever had some work done to your teeth, like braces (raises hand) or whatever other work there is for teeth?  The change was phenomenal, right?  Changes your whole disposition.  Aright I’ll shut up now.

xx, and good luck my friendlies..

Alison

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DIY + PRINTABLE LOVE | Free Banner Printable + DIY FAVES LIST!

Happy Monday!  Hope everyone had a marvelous weekend!  The boy and I spent some time at Renegade Craft Fair on Sunday and aside from the gale-force winds and intermittent murderous rain droplets, it was a pretty fun experience.  More on that a bit later in the week.  And by the way, no I didn’t drag him.  He came willingly.  But I should note that I’ve sat through my – and your – fair share of uneventful baseball games.  (I say “uneventful” because I rather enjoy the eventful ones.  No matter the sport.  Well, save for soccer.  “Uneventful” games are those that even the guys don’t really enjoy, but they watch, just in case something happens.  They are a FUN FAIL.)

Ok, so here’s the news: I love banners.  Look, if you will, at the banner-related adorableness below, which I plucked from a past post.

Everything about that lovely mustached couple’s dessert table is perfection, but, for me, the “Sweet Love” banner takes the cake. (:

And here’s a little e-sesh banner action, which I scoped out on Love and Lavender:

Ohh, the many fine uses of grocery store doilies.  They aren’t just for tea overflow anymore!

(Click here to see the rest of this e-session if you’re digging it!)

{Photos: SoCal wedding photographers Gabriel Ryan and Carlie Renee}

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Ok, so given my penchant for the above, I think it’s quite obvious why I lurve this DIY project from Martha.  It combines my unwavering obsession with beautiful, easy DIY projects with my love for all things involving and/or related to typography.  Hence, my happiness over this find.

By the way, you do know how much I love typography… right?  Here‘s your proof.  Here, too.  And here.  If you needed it.

Also, I’m pretty sure there’s no confusion out there over whether or not I go batty over beautiful, eye-catching DIY ideas and free printables meant to make a bride’s wedding day that extra bit of special we all crave… but here‘s the proof on that, too.  Want some more?  No problem; why don’t you check out this partial list of my posted projects and printables!  Hope you enjoy!

There’s this one, which is SO cute

I LOVE this one – it’s labeliscious (:

This one‘s LOADED with inspiration for your own pretty packaging…

Here’s some more Martha DIY project love…

Ooh, and another a lovely labels find

Some of my favorite holiday DIY + free printables

You can scroll down to the last four project pics of this post; they are just sooooo perfect…

Love this treat packaging idea, which is also ideal for your wedding favors…

… And the list goes on, of course.  So, yeah, I really enjoy doing it [my]self.

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Wedding banners have been around for a long time; everyone has seen the words “Just Married” – the most traditional phrase – on at least one rear window, bike seat, or even cake topper in their lives…

Oohh, speaking of toppers…

(Click the topper to go to that post!)

However, maybe you’re looking for something much more unique in your wedding banner, but don’t really want to have to make it yourself?  Or, maybe you’re searching for a less classic/traditional look in your banner.  Of course, that’s no problem at all these days, given the choices that have come out of the woodwork over the past several years.  There are a number of vendors out there who would be thrilled to help you out with that.

Here’s today’s alternative idea: howsabout a wedding papel picado banner, or maybe some custom flag centerpieces?

If you likey, check out aymujer’s Etsy shop for these and more!

Hope you enjoyed this one!  Let me know – are you a fan of wedding/e-session banners?  I think it’s obvious that I am, but I’m super curious what you guys think.  Can’t wait to hear your thoughts!  And if you’re ambivalent, you can just tell me about your weekend.  (:

xoxo!  -Alison

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DIY WEDDING MADE EASY | free designs for your diy desires | My Favorite Picks! (Plus a crazy update regarding the site & GoDaddy servers…)

Ok, before I get into what the above is all about, I just wanna say that I really hope everyone had themselves super enjoyable/rewarding/relaxing Memorial Day weekends!  For the most part, the weather ’round here was ridiculously gorgeous, and it seemed pretty hard not to have a good time, regardless of what we were doing.  In fact, just stepping outside made my day.  Though playing a little tennis and getting half my body into a pool certainly didn’t hurt matters.  What does that mean?  That means that I was faced with frigid pool waters, and I was the only one – among numerous children – who could not get my body to dip past the belly button point.  What I had always believed to be the most difficult body part to submerge, the “undercarriage,” was already safely tucked beneath the icy surf.  But the water remained intolerable.  Mind you, six-year-olds with arm floaties were all around me, having a collective ball.  And I’m sure none of them quite understood or cared about what I was going through.  I seriously hung there, perched with my ass beneath the water line.  Oh, the shame.  (For the record, it was really, really cold.)

But I did push the fiancé in the pool about five times.  That was awesome.  Mainly because I always waited until his body had warmed sufficiently to make the cold water startling again.  Good times!!  (;

Anyway, y’all know how much I love Martha Stewart, right?  Well, it’s almost as much as I love southern dialects.  But seriously, I cherish Martha Stewart Weddings for all the DIY goodies and inspiration the resource always has to offer.  So I decided to sort through it all and I’ve collected a hefty bunch of my favorites for your consideration.  I hope you love!

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So, you see those jam jars up top?  Ok, well I am OBSESSED with their lid labels.  Completely obsessed.  Jam jars are such a popular idea for weddings these days, and these labels are my current favorite way to top them!  Get the clip art here!

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Totally in lust with this idea.  Make your girls their very own lace clutches!  How gorgeous are these?  Not to mention crazy simple to create – all there is to do is print the clip art onto heat-transfer paper, then just iron the designs onto fabric!  Get the clip art here!

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I seriously covet these monogram labels; they’re just perfect for your favor boxes, and whatever else you’d like to monogram!  :)  Get the clip art here!


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I absolutely adore these place card designs and highly recommend them for your wedding.  They’re really quite elegant, and all you need to do is print them on preperforated card stock.  Done and done!  Get the clip art here!

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How much do these lil cupcake flags rock?!!  Get the clip art here!

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Also loving these miniature gift bag prints!  Get the clip art here!

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How about creating your own uniquely designed cookie tins with Martha’s download-and-print doily labels?  I know – so cute.  They come in red, blue, and green, too.  Get the clip art here!

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I am in love with the beauty of these custom Blueprint wrapping papers!!!  I think they’d look amazing as part of your decor.  There are five in all, and only Martha has them.  Pretty rad.  Get them here!

-♡-

Last but not least, there’s this too adorable cookie gift sleeve label.  You have a whole bunch of different label options, for pretty much any occasion (for a wedding, go with “for you to enjoy“).  All you’ll need besides the clip art are CD envelopes and adhesive paper.  Get the clip art here!

So, what do you think?  Do any of these catch your eye as a fabulous DIY?  I’m curious what you guys think!

xoxo!  -Alison

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By the way, check out some of my favorite posts from the recent past:

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WIDESPREAD PROBLEMS WITH GODADDY’S SERVERS

After at least a month of server error messages, random admin logouts and a constantly spotty at best site connection, GoDaddy FINALLY admitted yesterday that it’s their servers, and not anything we’re doing wrong.  This, after being told upwards of 40 times that it’s something we’re doing wrong.  I kid you not.  Upwards of 40 times.  Finally, after much anguish and through-the-night-every-night-troubleshooting on our part, downloading and restoring databases, uninstalling, installing and reconfiguring plugins, tears (yeah, I cried a lot, I’ll admit it), GoDaddy revealed yesterday that “certain servers are not functioning properly.”  That my site “is on the list of affected sites.”  That they’ve “got their best guys on the job.”  Progress thus far?  “Umm, well we haven’t solved it yet.”  When will it be solved – ballpark?  “We can’t seem to pinpoint the problem, because, you see, we aren’t seeing the error messages that everyone else is seeing outside of our network.  So we’re having trouble figuring out why the servers are malfunctioning… but we’re hard at work on it.”  Can you do something, like migrate me to a new server that isn’t shitty?  “No, nope, we can’t do that.  Sorry.”  Really?  “Yeah, sorry.  That’s not something we can do.”  Oh.

Can you stand it?

I can’t anymore.  So I’m letting the world know, after too many sleepless nights and lost traffic.

GoDaddy is dishonest and chooses to blame the customer for its own failures.  The people on the front lines have been as kind as possible, but their supervisors have perpetuated a cover-up, and are hardly if at all concerned with customer satisfaction.

That’s all for now.  Just thought I should spread the word at this point, since I am now aware that this is a widespread problem, and that GoDaddy is not making efforts to alert anyone affected.

Lastly, THANK YOU to everyone who contacted me to see what was wrong with the site and where it disappears to at random times throughout the day.  I can’t tell you how much we’ve appreciated your concern.  Thanks so much for caring!  At least we finally have the knowledge that weren’t doing anything wrong this whole entire time.  But it certainly doesn’t make it any less frustrating.

I’ll be providing updates, mostly on twitter, regarding GoDaddy’s behavior and how things progress as far as how we decide to proceed from here.  I hope there aren’t too many of you experiencing these same issues!  It’s traumatizing, truly.

‘Til later!

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The Wedding of Lily Fink & John Harrington IV ♥ Santa Barbara, CA ♥ Featured in Martha Stewart Weddings

Lily and John dancing together - possibly the best photo ever?

There are a few weddings that truly have my heart.  These weddings accomplish what I personally consider to be among the most important details in planning one’s perfect wedding.  Here’s the short list, in no particular order:

1. They are brilliantly colored…

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Bridesmaid Bouquets

2. They reflect the personalities and interests of the bride and her groom…

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Photo Booth

3. They foster an atmosphere of merriment and togetherness…

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Reception

4. The details are as elegant and charming as they are playful and sweet…

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Favors

(And they don’t get much sweeter than this!)

One of these weddings I’ve shared with you already, and that is the incredible wedding celebration of stationer extraordinaire, Cheree Berry.  Let’s think back on that red, orange, pink and blue masterpiece for a moment.  (Or click on it to refresh your memory.)

But there’s another one that, to this very day, continues to inspire me as I plan my own celebration.  It’s the wedding of Lily Fink and John Harrington IV, and it was featured in the Summer 2008 issue of Martha Stewart Weddings.

Feast your eyes on the inspirational goodness, below.  If you discover that you love this bride’s style as much as I do, be sure to check out Lily and John’s feature in Martha Stewart Weddings, where you’ll find each and every delightful detail.

MSW Lily Fink Wedding - bustle

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Bridal Party

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Cake

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Ceremony

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Bride and Mother

Lily arm in arm with her mother, Sharkey. (How great is that name, by the way?!!  Love it.)

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Bouquet

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Centerpieces

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Monograms

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Cornflower Boutonnieres

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Groom's Family

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Bridesmaid Gifts

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Bride's Hair

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Stationery

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Bride's Family

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Rice Packets

MSW Lily Fink Wedding More Favors

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Table Settings 3

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Table Settings 2

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Table Settings

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Groomsmen

MSW Lily Fink Wedding Guestbook

{All photos courtesy of Martha Stewart Weddings}


Lily and John’s wedding vendors/details:

Florist: Livia Cetti for The Green Vase

Photographer: Melissa Musgrove

Gown and veil: Carolina Herrera

Suit: Marc by Marc Jacobs, from Zappos.com

Vintage millinery flowers: Tinsel Trading Co.

Calligraphy: Nancy Howell Calligraphy

Invitations: Grosvenor Stationery Co.

Custom “Sally Holmes” Paper Rose: Jude Miller

Bridesmaid Dresses: “Tulip” dresses in azalea with peony sash, from Simple Silhouettes

Custom bridesmaids handbags: Lauren Merkin

Photobooth rental: Photobooth Scrapbooks

Cake: Christine Dahl Pastries

Cake topper: Livia Cetti for The Green Vase

{Photo and vendor/detail list, courtesy of Martha Stewart Weddings, Summer 2009}

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Wedding Inspiration ✴ Color & Detail ✴ Should We Leave It to the Birds?

They’re staring at that horizon for a reason…

natureandart on Etsy - Love birds 14 - original oil on canvas painting

Thing is, I’m not a bird, so I’d be lying if I claimed to know why.  What I can tell you is why I would fix my eyes on that view:

To me, a sunset horizon is peaceful and soothing to the soul.  Its colors are awe-inspiring; they capture our attention and bring about a moment of calm reflection.  Perhaps most of all, a sunset is evocative of a bringing to an end… an end which sets the stage for a new beginning.  

I don’t know about you, but to me, that spells wedding!

So it’s no wonder that the painting above, entitled “Love Birds” by natureandart, captured me with its blended tones of that most beautiful time of day.  

When I saw this image, I got so excited.  You know that feeling you get when you find something that speaks to you?  (Bear with me.)  This is part of the fun of planning your own wedding.  When you discover something – maybe a new piece of artwork, or a brilliant piece of jewelry, or an especially beautiful and carefully detailed handcrafted good – and its tone, or its shape, or its meaning… fits seamlessly into the scene you are working so hard to create.  I love it when that happens.  And this painting is SO that.

I hope you like these colors and details… remember, just hover over the image if you’d like to learn more about where to get it and what it’s called.

By the way, stay tuned… later, I’m going to share with you a few new details I’ll be infusing into MY wedding.  (Hint: one of those details is below!)  You have no idea how excited I am to post them.  And I certainly hope you’ll let me know what you think.  I love getting your suggestions!  :)  

***

Recognize this bewitching bouquet of butterflies?  It was handcrafted by a young woman named Laura, whose incredible Brooklyn wedding was featured in none other than Martha Stewart Weddings!  And guess what?  If you love this image as much as I do, then you’ll be quite pleased to learn that Martha has launched a brand new line of invitations on Pingg, an online invitation service!  Many of my absolute favorite images from the magazine are now available as personalized invitations.  Seriously, how cool is that?!  

Butterfly bouquet featured in Martha Stewart Weddings

If you’re hosting a luncheon, or throwing a bridal shower in the near future, these invitations are pretty much made for such an occasion.  So if you need some invites, you’re in the mood to create, or you just want to fix your eyes on some fantastic photos… go check out Martha’s invites on Pingg.

But if it’s this butterfly bouquet that’s got your gaze, and you’d like to fashion one similar to Laura’s, visit the Butterfly Bouquet How-To over at Martha Stewart Weddings.  

Here’s a closer look at Laura’s masterpiece:

MSW Laura's butterfly bouquet of silk and feathers!

The perfect cherry berry red…

claireishino on Etsy -  Red and Pink Washi Leaf

LOVE these handmade butterflies.  And they are SHOCKINGLY inexpensive!

thegildedbee on Etsy - Bubble gum pink_Cherry red Vintage-style Butterfly

Searching for bouquet alternatives for your bridesmaids?  This is a top choice in my book.

thegildedbee on Etsy -  Scarlet Roses

Ahh, I just love that blue background.  The boutonniere’s nice, too.  ;)

Rationale on Etsy -  boutonniere - Trista

Okay, Camille Chung is a favorite of mine when it comes to creative instinct.  Her marriage of coral and blue in this Save the Date is pure, bold beauty.  

camillechung on Etsy - Save The Date coral and blue

WHY HAVEN’T I PIERCED MY EARS YET?  It pains me when I see something as brilliant as these red roses…

TheBumblingBird on Etsy -  Sweet Vintage Coral Roses

Uhh, yeah.  That’s a nice piece of jewelry.  Like it?  Nab it now, if it isn’t sold already.

verabel on Etsy - The Vintage Feather Bracelet one

Gold jewelry has truly made a remarkable comeback, and for that I’m grateful.  Because if it hadn’t, we might not have rings like this… 

artisanlook on Etsy - Rolling stones - 14k rose gold band inlaid lab grown opals

(Just had to show you the butterflies again.  Too cute, right?)

thegildedbee on Etsy - Bubble gum pink_Cherry red Vintage-style Butterflies

 

I just really like the bold red lettering here.  Not exactly about to set up a kissing booth at the wedding, not that there’s anything wrong with that.  :)

 

rollandtumblepress on Etsy -  Kissing Booth Handprinted Letterpress Poster

 

These cupcakes are adorable.  Uh-door-uh-bull.

millalove on Etsy - 12 Cupcake Toppers Millalove's Paper Flowers

I love these tags.  They’re so cute and oh-so perfect to attach to favors, or to use as escort cards.  

~thegildedbee on Etsy - Cherry Red Scalloped Tags

This ring is THE PERFECT SHADE of red. 

rachel323 on Etsy - red poppy. vintage german glass flower close

I realize there isn’t any gold to be found in the ‘Love Birds’ painting – the centerpiece of this here post.  But I’m sure that if there’s one thing that comes to mind when you imagine a sunset, it’s the golden rays of that shimmer and shine as the sun begins to set… am I right?  

So, here’s some loveliness with those golden rays in mind: 

~Seehara on Etsy - Pearls with gold filled necklace

And here’s the most precious shade of pink… still related to the painting because there are a couple of birds (HA!)…

modernartstamps on Etsy -  Birds in Love Modern Art Rubber Stamp - A51

And, finally, an accessory from a well-known favorite, the Little White Dresser.  A lovely accent, no matter how you choose to dawn it…

~LittleWhiteDresser on Etsy - English Garden sash or headband

 

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The Wedding of Stationer Cheree Berry! Colors: Red, Orange, Pink, Robin’s Egg Blue Courtesy: Martha Stewart Weddings

Cheree, Jeff et al

Cheree Berry’s my hero (of weddings).  Here’s why.

As you know, I’m a big fan of the wedding wow factor – whether it be an inspirational color scheme as unique as it is stunning, details that inspire the crafty creative inside me, or invitation suites that seamlessly tie into the wedding they are so dutifully announcing.  How do you know if a wedding has, as some would say, brought it, or, as I would say, achieved a wow factor of patentable heights?  I liken it to what inventors… or at least what Greg Kinnear who played an inventor in a movie… call the “flash of genius.”  This doctrine held that “the inventive act had to come into the mind of an inventor in a ‘flash of genius’ and not as a result of tinkering.  The new device, however useful it may be, must reveal the flash of creative genius, not merely the skill of the calling.”  Well, replace inventive act with wedding, and new device with innovative theme, colors and details, and you’ve got a (pretty underdeveloped and possibly flawed but works so far) formula for determining which weddings rise above.

Sometimes, if we’re lucky, we stumble across these standout performers and, when we do, our reactions are quite uniform: we get really excited, we sit back (or if you’re me, scrunch the shoulders and hunch over like Gollum protecting the ring and get as close to the screen as possible), and revel in the beauty.  Many try, and while countless weddings I’ve come across achieve near perfection, there are the few, the precious, precious few, that achieve a certain divine Greatness.

Cheree and Jeff

Featured in Martha Stewart Weddings, the transcendent beauty of Cheree Berry‘s wedding decor, which employed a brilliant palette of reds, oranges, robin’s egg blue, and splashes of pink, is beyond inspirational… it’s perfection, pure and simple.

So Martha et al, I would like to extend my grandest appreciation for this, another miraculous gem of a wedding spread from the kings and queens of Layout Land.  While the majority of images I’ve featured below are directly from the lustrous, silken pages of Martha Stewart Weddings Magazine – which unfortunately you can’t access unless you have one, or you’d like to grab coffee with me and my copy – a handful of them can be found over at Martha Stewart Weddings, the online version.  Isn’t the internet wonderful (mostly)?

1. MSW Cover

Those sunbursts – whether real or a Photoshop flourish – are so beautiful, aren’t they?  Sunset is the best time of day for a lover of brilliant colors and tones.  I get so excited about a sunset inspired wedding palette when I look at this photo of Cheree and Jeff:

MSW Cheree Berry 1

It shouldn’t be a surprise that I am very excited about her shoe choice.  Need I remind you?

MSW Cheree Berry 2

Deserving of a close up…

Cheree's red Stuart Weitzman open-toe pumps

Now, check out the brilliant reds, oranges and pinks of her bouquet, comprised entirely of ranunculus, as well as the tiny golden bee, one of her stationery motifs.  How I love the robin’s egg blue ribbon at the base of the floral arrangement.

MSW Cheree Berry 3

Her bouquet, up close:

Cheree's ranunculus bouquet

The mother of all superb invitation suites.  I tip my hat to you, Cheree.  Will you do mine?  I’d like it exactly the same as yours, except with my name and that of my future hubby.  Please?  ;)

MSW Cheree Berry 4

Cheree stated that a palette of reds, oranges, and pinks is “too perfect,” adding robin’s egg blue to splendid mix of bright, bold tones.  I love her details – the red calligraphy, the little bee she added to her reply card, Love Mail printed in the upper right corner of the envelopes – it’s art, and, at least for me, she accomplishes what she states is her goal with the suite… “to evoke a big smile.”

MSW Cheree Berry 5

Here’s a close up of that adorably delicious looking (and, I’m sure, tasting) lollipop stand:

Cheree's lollipop stand

And here’s a close-up of the dashing couple:

Cheree Berry and Jeff share a sweet treat after getting hitched!

MSW Cheree Berry 6

Her napkins:

Cheree's reception napkins

Another couple of shots of her rectangular reception tables, which have been draped in orange tablecloths, and are topped with the most stunning centerpieces, which feature floral arrangements of red, orange and pink flowers.

Cheree's reception table decor, upon rectangular tables

Cheree's reception table decor, featuring her centerpieces

That cake takes… itself?  (Cheesy?  Yes.  A pun anyone would be hardpressed to resist?  Also yes.  So it stays.)  Simplicity coupled with color is a fine combination, done quite expertly here:

MSW Cheree Berry 7

Wait, what’s that?  That huge red board that reads, “PLEASE TAKE A SEAT”…

MSW Cheree Berry 8

It’s her AMAZING seating chart!!!  Now, up close:

Cheree's Plinko style seating chart

I love everything about this – the personalization, the hard work involved, the fun, the color, EVERYTHING.  Cheree told Martha it was styled after the Plinko game on The Price is Right, which was definitely my favorite game on that show.  I have to give this a difficulty rating of *Intricate* and potentially *Frustrating* but if you’re looking to really wow your guests and you’ve got some time on your hands, check out the How To for detailed instructions.

MSW Cheree Berry 9

The favor bags:

Cheree's favor bags

What’s inside the favor bags, you ask?  Well looky here:

Cheree's favor bag contents

A breathtaking image from her ceremony (don’t you LOVE those signs?):

Cheree's LOVE signs - what an idea!  That's why we love her.

Awwwwww.  Now that’s a photo.

MSW Cheree Berry 10

Cheree and Jeff’s wedding vendors/details:

Ceremony Location: Graham Chapel at Washington University in St. Louis (St. Louis, Missouri)

Reception Location: Lumen

Event Planning: Rebecca Boillat of St. Louis Wedding Design

Catering: Lumen

Flowers: Bloomin’ Buckets

Cake: Mathew Rice of Niche Restaurant

Stationery: Cheree Berry Paper

Calligraphy: Cheryl Tefft of Calligraphics

Music: The Ultraviolets

Wedding Photography: Susan Jackson

Gown: Carolina Herrera

Bride’s shoes: Stuart Weitzman

Bridesmaids’ dresses: Siri

Groom’s Suit: Jos. A. Bank

Tie: Murano from Dillard’s

Hair: Jennifer Jones of Jones & Co. Hair Salon

Makeup: Suzy Bacino

{Photo and vendor/detail list, courtesy of Martha Stewart Weddings, Summer 2009}

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DIY Wedding Projects, Courtesy of Martha Stewart Weddings

Men often say that they read risque magazines, eh-hem, “for the articles.” Well, I love Martha Stewart Weddings, and I’ll admit it’s almost entirely for the pictures.  They are MESMERIZING.  The golds and pinks, the reds and blues, the sparkle and shine, the glitz and, of course, the glam.  I have no shame about this.  But that’s probably because there are no bare chests and questionable positions in the PG world of Martha.

Anyway, there are oodles and oodles of exceptional ideas to be found on the pages of MSW, and I highly recommend getting yourself a copy next time you pass a newsstand, but in the meantime, I just have to share with you some of the shimmering inspiration I so enjoy each time I pick up the mag…

MSW Fall 2009 Cover

This project – which features do-it-yourself golden flower pin wheels (you can purchase the party picks to which they’re attached here) atop mini vanilla cupcakes, which themselves are encased in itty bitty cupcake shells… which you can also make yourself – makes me so uncontrollably excited about what I can actually achieve for my wedding that I might pass out.

MSW Fall 2009_1 DIY

You see that precious little gathering of varied punches on the left, below?  Those punches, by Martha Stewart Crafts, are responsible for the entire DIY STYLE spread in Martha’s Fall 2009 issue.  Those adorable punches made it all.   Ah-mazing.

MSW Fall 2009_2 DIY

Weren’t planning on adding the wow factor to your wedding tea tags and place mats?  WHAT’S THE MATTER WITH YOU?  Honestly I hadn’t planned on getting quite that detailed in my efforts, either.  But now as I’m writing this sentence, I am totally falling in love with the place mats.  Those edges are darling, are they not?  They are.  Love it.

MSW Fall 2009_3 DIY

Look.  At That.  It’s a crown of paper flowers for your (well-behaved, careful with delicate things) flower girl.  OMG.  That’s some kinda wonderful.

MSW Fall 2009_4 DIY

Got votives?  Got vellum (or a craft store in your neighborhood)?  That’s all you need for these vellum-wrapped candles, which have been spruced up using Martha Stewart Crafts punches, seen in the third image from the top.

And take a closer look (you can click on the image and then zoom in to view the directions) at the bottom project, which features miniature escort cards (created with those punches you keep hearing about) tucked into slits in the branches.  Too.  Cute.  … I just hope there isn’t a draft by the seating card table.

MSW Fall 2009_5 DIY

Love all of this...