Not sure if you noticed or not, but I’m a huge craft junkie. This wedding has given me the opportunity to try different projects that I never would have otherwise been interested in. One of my favorite projects have been adorable little pomanders!

I first came across pomanders while looking at bios on The Knot, and I was interested in finding out what the heck they were and what they were made out of. I found out that the original pomanders where made out of fruit where used to keep people from being too….well, smelly. Haha.

Little flowers! First step! This version of pomanders is obviously not the tissue paper kind. First I found little flowers (these are about an inch wide) at a local craft store. You know the kind that are basically used as “fillers” in an arrangement? They come in bunches with probably about 30-50 little flowers per stem. I got them on sale for 70 cents each. I figured I’d probably need about 30 to make 20 pomander balls. This math is still a work in progress. haha.

As you can see, I basically tore everything apart. I took the little flowers (mine basically had two layers of silk “flower”) and stuck a corsage pin through the center. I used pins with a pearl head, but there’s dozens of colors out there that can be used for matching. This is the tedious part, pulling the flowers apart and sticking the pins through them one at a time. One. At. A. Time. Patience is not one of my virtues, but these are so cute they are worth it.

Half Done Once you get through the tedious process of pulling apart the flowers you get to the fun part of stabbing the Styrofoam ball until it’s covered in cute little flowers. Obviously the colors for my wedding are red and white, but you can find the little flowers in any color imaginable if you have a good craft store nearby.

Unfortunately I don’t have a picture of the finished project. I plan on stringing ribbon through the Styrofoam and hanging the little pomander balls on the back of the wooden chairs for the ceremony in the gazebo. Because everything is all outside, I figured the scenery is really the main decoration, these just add little personalized elements to the ceremony.

We’re officially sitting at 51 days until we tie the knot! Wedding festivities start this month beginning with my Bridal shower on the 18th. I’m so excited! I have an amazing Matron of Honor who has been working her butt off to pull it together, and I’m so grateful for her. August 8th is the bachelorette party, I’m so excited to tear up Pittsburgh with my favorite girls. The tentative plan is to have dinner at The Melting Pot, then we’re going to catch a show at the dueling piano bar in Pittsburgh, Sing Sing. After that everything’s kind of up in the air. We may just bar hop on the south side until it closes down.

So many things to look forward to, can’t wait!!

My newest creation, our wedding invitations! I’m seriously proud, those are 100% handmade! (Ok, I didn’t actually make the paper, but you get the point.) The paper is embossed linen finish cardstock with a really cool texture to it. I printed out all the wording on our printer at home (it didn’t even break a sweat!) and hand stamped every single one with a rubber stamp I bought at a craft store. The finishing touch was added because I still thought they looked too white, so I hand tied a ribbon onto all of them. I’m proud, seriously proud! All together the invitations still only cost about 10$ to make 100. I think they look like they cost 100$ 🙂 I hope, anyway. If they look like crap please do not make me go bridezilla on you 🙂 haha.
I think I’m going to join the rest of the world and open a Flickr account. It seems like a good way to have a nice backup of all my favorite pictures in case my hard drive takes a nosedive (and then Justin’s backup hard drive fails as well…ok, not very likely) And because I’m a big photo bug and like pictures, ok?

Tomorrow Justin and I are going to pick out our wedding bands! I think that seeing Justin trying on rings will make everything a lot more real. Justin doesn’t do jewelry, so something like that will definitely be interesting. I also hope to maybe, finally, hope and pray to all that is holy make a final decision about center pieces tomorrow and figure out what I want to go with. Maybe.

I’m pretty sure I’m losing my voice. I’s been pretty rough the last couple days and having a job talking on the phone for eight hours straight it surprisingly unhelpful. hmm.
So that last entry was maybe borderline angst-y. I think I was channeling my seventeen year old self for awhile there. Anyway, I’m trucking along with my manuscript, but I know I have many mountains to climb before I finish it.
Anyway, I thought I’d share my latest wedding craft, my toss bouquet. I basically wanted some more practice before I attempt my real bouquet, as I want it to be slightly more elaborate than the others. Forgive me, I didn’t write down the names of the flowers, like this one. I liked the grassy-type accent, and at the top of the greenery it looks like it has little mini lilies that I love, so this is the first step, choppy choppy! All together it really looks like a tuft of grass, which isn’t exactly cute. I drove Justin crazy while we were looking at flowers because I kept picking up the grass stuff then deciding against it, over…and over…and over again. Justin was a very good sport about it though, and he said he liked it, so I kept them. Basically, I cut each and every individual leaf off of the main stem one at a time (Justin tried to get a picture of that, but he may or may not have been drinking, so by giving him my camera it was basically like saying “here! Do as you please and take lots of random pictures of me with a lap full of flowers!” Yeah..) anyway, I’m sure you can picture the cutting process, it took some time, but not as much time as the next step…hot glue! Yes, after cutting all the leaves apart, I glues pieces of them back together, as the picture shows. Why? I’m a little crazy and neurotic when it comes to my crafts. I wanted to be able to have the green accent throughout the bouquet and with exactly how much green/flower I preferred, so I spent about an hour hot gluing. I also do not recommend hot glue guns to be in the hands of semi-drunk fiance’s, as they seem to think it’s funny to try to wax your arm with hot glue! He’s lucky he’s cute.
Here are the bulk of the flowers for the bouquet. Again, I’m pretty horrible with remembering to jot down what type of flower I picked up, so all I know from this bunch are the roses in the middle. I get pretty obsessive when I’m picking out flowers for all this. I think I spent half an hour just in flowers holding different combinations of flowers together asking Justin “what do you think?” like a parrot. I’m sure Justin could care less if I went with the small white rosebuds or the small red rosebuds, but again, he has the patience of a saint and is a great sport. I chose white and red for this bouquet to reflect the one I have mapped out in my head for my ceremony one. All my bridesmaids will have the white bouquets I made up earlier, and will be wearing red dresses. Since I’ll be wearing white (ha) my bouquet it going to be primarily red. Kind of off-set things a bit, I think it will work! Btw… this is what I’m thinking for my bouquet, only in red. I’m in love with the cascading look here, and especially because my dress is a big on the simple side and solid white, I want a major pop of color to really bring it out. I’m really at a loss for how to get the cascading effect without having to worry about it falling apart, but I’m sure I’ll figure it out.
Back to the bouquet at hand. This is how it starts out, I take a few pieces and secure them in place with flower wire. I add a couple pieces at a time because I really, really, really like to change my mind about every single little detail. Doing the arrangement part in steps allows me to 1) keep it together without enlisting the help of an extra pair of hands and 2) let me change my mind and go back without starting from the beginning. I do a lot of trial and error with this. I literally have no expierience with flower arrangement. Not with real flowers or silk ones. Nada. I do think I have a little knack for it though, but if I were handling real flowers I’d probably kill them, I’m really rough when I’m tying things together. This bouquet got extra wire and hot glue, since it’s going to get thrown, haha. and here is the semi-finished result! I wrapped the ribbon by hand and secured it with hot glue and added the different color accent and pearls on the handle just to give it a finished touch. I really didn’t want it to look like it was just a second thought since someone is actually going to catch it and look at it, I want them to think I did a good job (or think it’s professional! haha) But honestly, I really love arranging flowers! I’m actually thinking of maybe setting up a Etsy.com shop once the wedding is over so I can continue to create things when all is said and done. I’m just loving the expierience, and I love accomplishing things myself. I mean, in the big scheme of things these little details really don’t matter that much, but it’s the work and the satisfaction I get that really counts. Here’s a view of the toss bouquet from the top. I wish pictures could really give it justice, it looks pretty awesome. I like how my green accents came out, Justin did make the right call telling me to go with them! haha. Tonight I’m going to attempt the corsages for our moms, dads, and his grandparents. That will leave 4 more bridesmaid bouquets (I’ll probably finish those up next week), my main bouquet, and I’m going to try my hand at a “real” arrangement in memory of my grandmas. I’m not sure what I’ll put into that, I’ve been sticking to red and white, but I might add another splash of some color to make those flowers really special. After that the flowers will be finished! Completely done and with seven months to spare. Tonight after the corsages are done I’ll start printing the envelopes for the save the dates, which I printed up last night. I’ll post a picture of those along with what our invitation looks like all printed. It’s really not anything super fancy, I really wasn’t going to put a whole lot of money into something people will read once, reference maybe half a dozen times, and then toss. As much as I’d love to go all out, I realize there are more important things we can spend the money on, like booze =)
In completely unrelated news, the sky opened up yesterday and dumped more than 6 inches of snow on us. I seriously hate the snow/cold, but the only alternative is to move somewhere warm where there are spiders as big as my fist, so I’m pretty much screwed. At least it’s pretty snow, I’ll have to take a picture of our yard to keep during summer when I complain about how hot it is.
I’ll probably be updating tomorrow with my adventure in corsage making, until then you can entertain yourself here. Hope you’re staying warm, wherever you are!

This post is slightly image heavy, I just wanted to share the visual details of our engagement day =)

This is where he proposed =)

I took this about 15 minutes before he proposed. He was quiet, now that I think back. He’s hiding the ring in his belt pack.

Me, T-minus 10 minutes before. I’m so oblivious.

And there it is! Have you ever noticed it’s impossible to take pictures that do any justice to jewelry? Anyway, it’s so much mroe amazing in person, I can’t even begin to tell you. Justin did an amazing job!

I’m trying to to get too gun-ho yet about planning, but I do plan on doing a LOT of DIY. So I’ll probably start figuring out what I want in the near future so I can work on things over time. I can’t wait! This is the best thing, best person, that has ever happened to me, and I am so lucky to have found a man like justin =)