A Wedding Story
So Ryan and I got our wedding pictures! I’m super excited to share them all with you! But first I really wanted to tell you about my experience on planning this wedding. Each step was a learning process and I hope that prospective brides find this at least a little helpful when it comes to planning their own wedding.
A little background, Ryan wrote the story of how we met for our wedding website.
It was during the summer of 2007 when Ryan and Kathleen first met at work. But on the 4th of July, Ryan finally had the courage to get Kathleen out on a “date”. At that time, Ryan drove an old beat up 240SX and on that day, it wasn’t running. Knowing that Kathleen was working late, Ryan volunteered to work late as well hoping that he’d have an opportunity to get Kathleen to take him home. I suppose that was his ideal first date, the lady taking him home. Ryan conspired with the rest of the team at work, asking each one of them not to volunteer to take him home. All were confused but agreed to the plan anyway. At the end of the shift, as they all sat waiting to leave the store, people started asking Ryan how he was going to get home. It was the fourth of July and the strip was going to be shut down. He started saying “I will walk home;” “I will wait for a couple of hours for a ride…” As everyone looked at him with pity, the team also started glancing at Kathleen. She felt everyone looking at her waiting for her to say something. Ryan turned his gaze on her. He didn’t want her to think that anyone was signaling for her to say something but also crossing his fingers for her to say “I can take you home!” And she did.
Kathleen volunteered to take Ryan home.
As they walked to her car, she said “you can drive…”
At that moment he knew something special was about to happen for the rest of his life…
As for that night well, let’s just say there were some fireworks in the air.
It took us 8 years to get to the wedding vows but we certainly had some amazing adventures along the way.
Ryan and I had approximately 1 year to plan our wedding. Ryan did help a little but let’s face it ladies you are the one who will be doing most of the work especially when it comes to all the little details.
First things first, set your date and figure out what theme you want. Pinterest is the perfect place to get lots of ideas on what you want your wedding to look like. We went with a rustic chic theme.
Go on line and set up an account with The Knot or Weddingwire. these site have all kinds of helpful tips, local vendors lists, budgets planners and more. Be sure to set up a Wedding Web Site this is a great way to get information to all your guest.
Now you find your invitations. I went with a local company Paper and Home. They designed these lovely ones for me. You want to make sure to give your guest plenty of time to make arrangements to come to your wedding so make sure to send these out as soon as possible.
Now one of the best parts wedding dress shopping! I went to 4 different bridal boutiques before I found something I love. The only advice I can give for this part is to be open minded during the process. Try different styles to find what you like best. One of the sales woman told me that most brides end up in something they never though they would. Bowties Bridal was the special place where I found my gown. It can take up to 8 months to get your dress so don’t procrastinate.
Once you have your dream dress picked out and ordered it’s time to dress your bridesmaids. I had 3 women standing up for me. My oldest sister Nichole who lives in Austin Texas, my other older sister Ashley that lives in Las Vegas and my best friend Amber who lives in Virginia. With two of my bridesmaids in different states I went with Alfred Angelo to find them dresses. They have stores all over the country so these lovely ladies could all try them on and order them. It takes about 3 months to get a dress from Alfred Angelo.
Now for the venue. Ryan and I love living in Vegas but for someone that always dreamed of having her wedding in a wine vineyard it’s pretty hard to find a replacement in the Vegas desert. Then Ryan came upon Historic 5th Street School. This place is not a typical wedding venue, we basically just rented the space and the rest was up to us/me. It also came with some pretty strict rules on what you can and cannot do.
Now that you have a venue it’s time to gather the rest of your vendors.
One of the most frustrating parts for me was finding our caterer. Obviously food is really important to me and Ryan so I wanted to find someone amazing. I struck out on the first two meetings. The first didn’t like any of my ideas and they didn’t get back to me until 3 weeks later. The next didn’t even show up to our meeting and left me waiting for 45 minuets. Finally after some emailing back and forth Ryan and I met with Masterpiece Cuisine. We came up with a fun BBQ menu that everyone loved. I think the mac and cheese was the most popular. I was able to get most of the recipe from Masterpiece so keep any eye out for a future post 🙂
The rest of our vendors went more smoothly. We found Melissa’s Bakeshop to make our wedding cake. She makes simple rustic cakes that are absolutely delicious! Coconut cake with lime curd filling and vanilla butter cream frosting our video guy had 5 slices 😉
We hired All Events Production to DJ. They turned out to be pretty amazing at keeping our guest entertained and on the dance floor. They also did a special voice over during our first dance. Ryan and I had prerecorded messages to one another and All Events layered this over our song.
We stocked our own bar with wine from Whole Foods Market, Champagne from World Market and beer from Total Wine. I absolutely recommend doing this if you can. It is much cheaper to stock our own bar then to have a company do it for you. We simply hired two bartenders from Masterpiece to serve the drinks.
Finding our party rentals was also pretty easy. We needed everything. Tables, chairs, a bar, plates, cutlery, wine glasses, champagne glasses, table cloths and napkins, RSVP Party Rentals was prefect for the job with same day drop off and pickup.
Then, I had to find an officiant. after some research online I found Pastor Kevin. Ryan and I had our first meeting with him and hired him on the spot 😉 He was a wonderful man to work with.
The last thing I did was arrange for the flowers. Because I work at Whole Foods I went with the florist I work with Xem. She did an amazing job helping me pick out flowers and figuring out how much I would need. Xem arranged my bridal and bridesmaid bouquets along with a head wreath for our flower girl. The rest was up to me. Xem and I ordered a few boxes of loos flowers that I could arrange for centerpieces and other decorations around the venue.
Here is some advice when it comes to picking your vendors. Figure out what is most important for the two of you and spend your money on those things. For Ryan and myself it was very important to have great food and an open bar. We have both seen weddings fizzle out when people have to start paying for drinks.To keep them from getting drunk we stayed with only wine, beer and champagne.
We also wanted to make sure to keep our guest entertained. So we were willing to spend a little more on our DJ. Chondell LeLand from All Events was an amazing personality! she was great with all our guest and kept the party going with table games and dancing.
Tips on how to save money.
Use your friends and family! If you have talented people to help you by all means use them 😉 Ryan and I really lucked out when it came to a photographer and vidioagrapher. One of my good friends is a professional photographer. Kris Mayeshiro and I have been friends for almost fifteen years and he did all our pictures as a wedding gift! How fabulous is he! Kris also arranged for our videographers at a total steal 🙂
I also didn’t have to spend a thing on my hair and makeup. My sister Nichole is a hairdresser and was very patient when it came to finding out what I wanted. My other sister Ashley is an esthetician and great at doing makeup jobs.
The Day of the Wedding!
Ryan and I had assembled a team of a few family members and friends to help us with the set up and break down of the venue. At 8am and with a car load of decorations I drove over to Whole Foods to pick up all our flowers. Now with my car bursting at the seams with wedding flowers and decorations, it was off to 5th Street School I go! It takes us about four and a half hours to set up the venue and I must say it would not have been possible without all the generous help we had on that day.
Ok so now that you have have a little glimpse into what went into our wedding. I think I will leave it here for now and show you all our pictures on the next post. In two days it will be our one month wedding anniversary and I think that will be a prefect time to share everything with you all 😉
See you soon!