Early Planning

I absolutely loved planning our wedding.  I even thought I wanted to be a wedding planner after going through it all (okay, I still love the idea of it).  We had our chapel booked right away – we knew we wanted to get married after I graduated, and we knew we were going to get married on the campus where I grew up – Miami University.  They have 2 beautiful chapels and we ended up booking the Sesquicentennial Chapel.  We originally set the date for June 6, but due to a number of reasons (including the fact that the chapel was double booked for that date), we moved our wedding date to June 27.

We had our colors picked pretty quickly too.  I played with the idea of sage green & yellow, but Pat wasn’t crazy about it.  I also thought about burgundy (it’s my favorite color), but it seemed like it would be better for a winter wedding.  We ultimately decided on black and white – easy to match colors, simple but elegant, and I really do like black and white.

At the end of May 2009 (less than a month after being engaged), I went home to Ohio for a few days.  My mom and I got a TON of planning done that weekend.  First, we chose our reception site.  We picked the Marcum Center, a hotel on campus, not far from the chapel.

Doesn’t it look grand?  That balcony out front was the balcony off of the honeymoon suite we stayed in.  We liked the idea of having the reception in a hotel since so many of our guests were coming in from out of town.  We also liked the fact that we would get 2 rooms at this reception site.  Everyone would start in one room for cocktails and appetizers, then we’d move into a second room for a sit down dinner.  Afterwards, we’d move back into the first room for dancing.

That same weekend home, I also found my dress – on May 21st!  I’ve had some really bad experiences with David’s Bridal as a bridesmaid, but my mom talked me into at least looking there first before going to more expensive bridal boutiques… and it was a good thing she did!  The sales people were very nice to me this time – maybe because I was the bride?  There was one new dress that had come in that morning, and after trying on just 3 dresses, the sales person asked if I wouldn’t mind trying the new dress on so she could see if off the hanger.  So, dress #4 was the new dress, and I loved it!  I knew it was right when I didn’t want to take it off.

A month later we picked our DJ – DJ Phil(thy) from DJ Toad.  I just call him DJ Phil lol… he had worked a wedding for one of my friends and I really liked him, so we felt good about that decision.  He ended up being really awesome – he met with us to get an idea of what kind of music we wanted to hear (and what we didn’t want – We Are Family… YMCA… the Chicken Dance).  He was just awesome – the dance floor was packed all night.

I spent the summer at my internship in Texas, so my trip back to Ohio in August brought another wave of wedding planning.  First, we had our engagement pictures taken by one of my mom’s very talented friends.  Here are just a few of my favorites:

We also did 3 cake tastings while we were home.  One bakery truly stood out – not just for the taste of her cakes, but the fact that she said she was able to do the design of the cake I wanted in the way I wanted it.  One bakery told me he would have to add little beads along the edge of the ribbon, and the other didn’t seem to quite understand that I really did want a 4 tier cake.  Here is my cake inspiration (on the left) and my actual cake (on the right).  We used real mini calla lilies on ours.

I also began my search for someone to alter my dress.  I started with a woman who was recommended through friends.  Let’s just say it was a traumatic experience for both me and my dress.  My sister went with me, and it was a good thing she did!  The woman’s house was filled with cats.  She ushered me into a bathroom to change, and the bathroom was dirty… with dirt.  Then, while she was pinning up my dress, one of her cats came and sat on the train of my dress.  And her response?  “Oh, don’t mind him…” Um, don’t mind the dirty cat sitting on my white wedding dress?!  My sister quickly removed the cat from the bathroom, and we booked it out of there.  No way was I going to leave my dress in that house.  I ended up going with David’s Bridal for my alterations because I knew what to expect.

We chose our officiant that week in August.  We met a minister who was referred by one of my parents’ coworkers.  He was really nice and laid back, and said he would do pretty much whatever kind of ceremony we wanted.  He had a binder ready for us with ideas for transcripts and readings, and even told us that he doesn’t charge anything for weddings.  Of course we paid him, but it was nice of him to let us set the price.

In September, we sent out save the dates.  I designed and ordered them through magnetstreet.com.  I was very happy with how they came out.

Stay tuned for more planning stories!

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