Friday, February 27, 2009

Weekend project

I'm going to tackle a DIY project this weekend. I'm going to try and make round decorations that look somewhat like paper lanterns.

The "recipe" for them makes a small Christmas ornament type ball, and I want to try and make something bigger. So, I'll use thicker wire and a more durable paper or even a wall paper or vinyl. If you have any ideas, let me know. I'm probably crazy for even trying this-- but hey, why not?

I can imagine these with a strip of a blue and gold brocade type pattern alternating with a champagne strip... and hey, what is stopping me from throwing a little LED light in there too?

Stack the sheets atop one another and use your craft knife to cut them into 1/4-inch-wide strips. You'll need 14 strips total (7 of each color).

Using an awl or needle, make a small hole in the center of each of the guidelines across the back of the strips (in the center and at each end of the strip).

Cut a 6-inch length of floral wire and make a small loop in one end.

Thread wire through the center of each strip (the loop at the end of the wire prevents the strips from falling off).

A detail showing the strips threaded onto the wire. Note that I have alternated colors: a light strip followed by a dark strip followed by a light strip, etc.

Begin with the bottom-most strip (nearest the loop end of the wire).

Fold this bottom-most strip up and insert the end of the wire through the hole at the end of the strip of paper.

Continue folding strips up and threading them onto the wire. Be sure to always draw the bottom-most strip so that your colors alternate light and dark.

At the halfway point, you will have threaded 14 strips onto the wire and your ornament should look like this illustration. Continue in the same direction around the model until all ends are threaded onto the wire and the model is complete.

Once your model is completely folded, trim excess wire and fashion a small, tight loop in each end of the wire and attach a small cord or ribbon from which to hang the ornament.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Wedding Ring delimma

I'm having a little bit of a dilemma about my wedding ring. I'll need to give you a little background so that you can fully understand.

My engagement ring initially was set crooked. The stone was tilted and there were a number of delays resulting in Chris being unable to present the ring on my birthday, on this amazing hike we did (where he had the proposal all planned for), and a weekend where we planned to go out of town. We wrote a letter expressing our dissatisfaction, and our jeweler fixed the ring, gave us a coupon, our setting for 1/2 off, and generally worked really hard to make us happy. We felt happy to be working with them despite the glitch.

So, when we went back to get my wedding ring, we didn't hesitate to work with them. They offered to do a custom wedding band to match complete with matching pave diamonds. They took a mold of the engagement ring, and sent if off to be made.

We received the ring last week and it was... well, less than perfect. The milgrain was crooked and sharp in areas. It caught on my skin, cloth, and pretty much everything else near it. Some of the diamonds were set too deep and not symmetrically. It didn't sit flush to the engagement ring because it wasn't straight.

Now to be perfectly honest, it's a small 2 mm band... No one would even notice the multitude of imperfections. But I look at it and I'm just kind of "Grrr..."

I'm not mad at the jeweler, and we only paid $300 for a heavy platinum/diamond ring. But I'm having a hard time deciding whether to bring it up with the jeweler or let it go. What would you do?

The pictures I'm including aren't meant to be artistic, just to kind of show you the defects (as much as we could without a good macro lens). You have to click on the enlarged version to see any of the defects!

Friday, February 20, 2009

New E-ring pictures

I have been learning how to use our Nikon D80. I'm not very good at it yet, but trying not to get frustrated. Lighting is a huge issue with this lens. It is a non-automated old macro lens, so you can't use flash to augment the light. Here are a few attempts at some macro engagement ring pictures... Just in time... My wedding ring arrived yesterday. I'll blog about it tomorrow.

I took these photos on top of the scarf I knitted over Christmas (first knitting attempt ever), and on top of a really great bottle of wine.

Thursday, February 19, 2009


I found some cool vases on They are affordable, sustainable and come in many different sizes and shapes. What do you think?

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Invitation final image!

After much thought, we opted to combine the mountains and trees of the second image with the sky of the first image. We're completely thrilled with the outcome. I think it really makes the whole graphic pop!

Now we have to figure out how we're going to put it all together into an invitation suite. We went to Paper Source yesterday and scoped out #10 paper and envelopes. Did you know Stardream is 50% off right now? I have some ideas about what we might do, but I'm open to your thoughts as well!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

I just went crazy for an Etsy store

New love courtesy of Jen!

Jen has been concerned about what I'm going to use to ward off the summer evening chill during the wedding reception. It is so fun to have her thinking about it and occasionally emailing me pictures of options she found. Boy, did she find the most awesome stuff today!

She just introduced me to an Etsy seller named Holly Stalder, and I've fallen in love.

Holly is totally vintage inspired. I'll share with you some of her dresses and shrugs. Enjoy! (and let me know which shrug you like best...)

She has some dresses that would be perfect for a rehearsal dinner or after party!

Friday, February 13, 2009

Surprise shower: or how I spent last weekend.

(Sorry Bean, didn't mean to leave you hanging, but I knew this was going to be a long post)

It was so amazing!!! These girls went so far over the top for me, that it humbles me.

Friday night I flew first class to San Francisco on Virgin Atlantic (how appropriate!). One of the girls had been tricking me for weeks about what was going to happen, so I thought I'd get her back by telling her I missed my flight. I felt a little bad, because she seriously got scared. I told her right away that I was just kidding... I had a few drinks on the plane, then was picked up by another friend at the airport.

She took me to the Park 55 Hotel in San Francisco, where we met a bunch of my friends... 29th floor suite. It was amazing. They had me change my clothes, and then we went to my coolest friend ever's cousin's restaurant. It was the most amazing Vietnamese fusion cuisine that I've ever had! At dinner, two other friends walked in and surprised me. They were girls that I wouldn't expect to have made it based on their schedules. One flew in from LA (taking time off during the Grammys, when she was supposed to be working), and another who I haven't seen in a long time. The champagne, wine and food were all flowing, and we stayed at the restaurant pretty late.

Then we walked down through the Castro and went to the Orbit Room (art deco decor fitting with the wedding vintage theme). There we had somedrinks, and we all recounted the stories of the various events that led up to Chris and I meeting and dating. They had to kick us out of the bar at closing because we were having so much fun!

The next morning, the plan was for us to have a bridal brunch with my family. We were running a little late, and so my mom, and sisters decided that they didn't want to come :( We opted to cancel that event, since all the girls were going to drive up with me to Tahoe to go snowboarding, anyway.

Once in Tahoe, we had dinner and made bingo cards to play Bar Bingo. We went out that night for our Bar Bingo game (so fun), and went home early to get some much needed sleep. I'll post more about Bar Bingo in a separate thread, because it was so fun that we are thinking of doing it every time we go out!

The next morning we had breakfast and went snowboarding. It was such a great day. There was really great snow in the trees, and it is always great to ride with the girls.

I surprised all the girls with a sushi dinner that night. (It was hard to trick them, but I gave the restaurant my credit card before everyone got there). During dinner, we all decided that this is so much fun that we're not waiting for bachelorette parties to hang out like this again.

We made a plan to reconvene at a concert (Bloc Party) in Seattle in April! I don't think I've ever had so much fun for a continuous 48 hours in my life... Seriously!

It's so great to have a group of friends where we have bonds that are as strong as a family! Huge shout-out to all the girls!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Painfully adorable ring kids!

I've been loving this look for some time now, but am having a devil of a time finding it in the US. This particular outfit was made in England by a very fancy kids designer. Not only is she no longer making this, but the prices are unrealistically high.

Anyone know where I can get something similar? I can find Eton suits, but not with the mandarin collar, which is what I would prefer.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Invitation possibilities

Here are a few of the color schemes that Mike mocked up for us. Any opinions. I think I like the one on the left best, but I do like the middle one as well. Maybe the sky of one and the blue of the other?

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Guess where I'm headed this weekend?

But even if you guess correctly, I couldn't tell you that you were correct.

Laura and Jen (and presumably others) are planning a surprise for me this weekend. All I know is that I have a 4:30 flight to... well... somewhere on Friday.

I'm really hard to surprise, so this is kind of a huge deal. I'm so excited just to see the girls. They could be flying me to Battle Mountain, Nevada (armpit of Nevada, which is in my opinion the armpit of the US) and I'd be happy just to be with them.

Laura was cracking me up. I kept asking her, "What should I bring?" She was totally oblique about it, but the more I pried, the more I realized that I really have no clue what to bring. The list included "going out clothes"-- which to me means a hoodie and jeans (she says this is ok) to "snowboarding gear" (but not my snowshoes, but yes on the transceiver), and "Oh, by the way... If you can fit your sleeping bag..." and "Oh, bring your passport."

Now I know very well that some of this is to throw me off the trail, but which parts? My bet is that I'll end up in California (but who knows?).

I'll keep you posted!

Sunday, February 1, 2009

It'll be the bee's knees!

Save the dates *finally* are going out as we speak! We worked on these all weekend, and I still don't know if I have every address that we need. They went out electronically. It is an html file that opens when you open the e-mail (like a flyer). When you click on the picture it takes you directly to the wedding website.

We took one of the graphics from our invitations (the moon), a free font from dafont called decotech, one of our favorite engagement photos and the colors of my Fluevogs (blue and burgandy) to incorporate into the design. Chris and his friends love the expression "It's the bee's knees" and since it's a very 1920's vintage phrase, we wanted to incorporated to set a vintage tone. I love that it brings a very real part of Chris to it as well.

You've got to love Chris and his computer savvy ways!

OK, here it is:

What do you think? We're at 6 months until the wedding. Do you think it's too late?