Thursday, December 13, 2012

The Wedding - Part 1: The Theme

Yay! It's time to share some photos from my wedding! I'm sure you're not quite as excited as I am about the prospect of me blogging endlessly about the BEST DAY OF MY LIFE thus far, but I do hope you enjoy the upcoming posts about the wedding and my planning process. While my best advice to a DIY bride would be not to get caught up in the details, I also do believe that a wedding is a culmination of well thought out details. Step one to creating the details is to figure out the theme, or look and feel of the wedding. In this particular post I talked a bit about what I had planned for some aspects of the wedding. It's been fun for me to go back and read it knowing now how everything turned out.

lake havasu wedding

The best way I could describe the theme of our wedding would be "playful" and "natural with pops of color." Also, since we are such big beer people (Adam works in the beer industry) we knew we had to incorporate our love of craft beer into the theme as well. In the above photo you can see our escort cards were bottle caps (that were magnets to take home!) and you matched your bottle cap to your table. We used growler jugs as decoration along the bar and featured 3 different beers from local brewery, Mudshark, at our reception. My favorite was the "Peaceful Pumpkin" which was served with a nutmeg and cinnamon sugar rim and whip cream! 

Refuge Golf and Country Club wedding

I wanted to take advantage of our beautiful venue: The Refuge Golf and Country Club and the fact that the wedding was in Arizona. Inspired by the look of a desert landscape with it's dusty coral hills and sage bushes, I choose coral and sage green as my colors. I made gold the accent color once I learned that my venue had "champagne" colored tablecloths. Now, coral and gold is one of my favorite color combinations and I'm shocked that the idea hadn't come to me sooner. 

Granted, gold basically translated to yellow when it came to the flowers and the printed materials. 

lake havasu wedding

I knew from the very beginning that the gentlemen would be in khaki, I just couldn't imagine all these guys standing out by an Arizona lake in stark black. Plus, I didn't want the event to feel terribly formal and black felt formal to me. There were moments where I was nervous about the suits. But let's be real, there were moments where I was nervous about everything. Many moments. Adam and I debated whether the men should where vests with the suits. I eventually won - no vests. I like the clean and casual look of the khaki suits with a white shirt and a pop of color coming only from the tie and boutonniere.

After these initial decisions were made I had an idea of where I was going. But one person was key in making my theme come to life. And that was Xiomara of Love Notes Paperie (formerly Something Modern) on Etsy. Basically, I knew from my extensive research (read: exhausting, obsessive, crazy frantic searching of every crevice of the world wide web) that I would need to start from scratch. Xiomara was mentioned on Emmaline Bride for the work she did designing a bride's invites from scratch. There was even mention of 60 back and forth emails to get the final product. BINGO. I found my girl.

{photo by Jeff Janke Photography, Invites by Love Notes Paperie}

My Save The Date was a Lake Havasu postcard and I wanted to keep the travel theme going since almost all of our guests would be coming from out of state. Only my parents, my husband's dad and a few of their friends live in Lake Havasu City, so we approached our wedding as a mini destination wedding. With this in mind, and a few samples and drawings exchanged between emails, Xiomara created my invitations. I told her I wanted them to be bright and fun and I couldn't be happier with how they turned out. And, honestly I don't think it took that many emails to get to the final product, but Xiomara might feel differently. :) 

DIY wedding invitations
{photo by Jeff Janke Photography, Invites by Love Notes Paperie}

One of my favorite parts of the invitations are the little details. The bride and groom holding the "we do" balloon. The signs pointing the way to California and Arizona. The plane toting the "love is sweet" banner and the tiny cacti. I packaged the invites by tying the pieces together with colored bakers twine and attaching a kraft paper tagged stamped with our wedding website. I finished it off with a kraft paper envelope stuffed with colorful tiny hearts that I hole bunched from sparkly paper so that they floated out when the guests took the invitations out of the envelopes.

budget wedding invitations

But my very favorite part of the invitations are the RSVP postcards. I can't get over how great they turned out. Xiomara took my sketch and ran with it. The rays coming from the sun -  all her idea -  but it's like she knew me even though we had never met!

mad lib wedding RSVP

To keep the playful theme going we decided to do "mad libs" on the back of the RSVP card. Our guests had fun filling in the blanks and we had a ton of fun reading them! We only got 2 back with no names on them, which was one of the things I was worried about since there was a front and back to fill out, but I numbered each invite and the numbers correlated to the guest list so I could match up RSVP cards that weren't fully filled out.

DIY wedding invitations

I used Digital Lizard to print the invites and was amazed at the affordable prices and quality work! Not only did I love my invitations and feel that they really represented the vibe of the wedding and gave our guests a good idea of what to expect, but I managed to stay within my $300 (with postage!) budget.

pint glass wedding favors
{pint glass. photo by Jeff Janke Photography}

To keep the theme consistent I continued to use Xiomara of Love Notes Paperie to design the graphic for our wedding favor pint glasses and to design our programs. I loved the little bride and groom on the invites so we decided to play off of that. I couldn't be happier with how everything turned out! 

unique wedding program
{wedding program. photo by Jeff Janke Photography}

The programs were a last minute decision and ended up costing more than I expected them to since I had to print them at Staples the day before the wedding. I'm not entirely sure it was worth it, since most people didn't even realized there was a front and back to them, but I had my mind stuck on it and Xiomara worked with me to get them done in speed lighting fashion. 
And they did turn out pretty damn cute. If I do say so myself. And I loved that the theme was carried through in all the little details.

How did you or would you approach the theme to your own wedding?

Love, Luck, and Happiness!


  1. Beautiful photos! I'm in love with your dress! Loving that playful theme of your wedding!! The shot glasses were adorbs! Love the little clipart!


  2. How adorable! I love reading about your special day! :)

  3. lovely--i'd be so overwhelmed!

    xoxo from nyc &

  4. those RSVP postcards are insanely cool! but seriously, all the details are really beautiful and so special. great ideas and definitely the way you described your day: playful! :-)

  5. I really loved your invites! They were so cute and creative. I really wish Kevin and I could have made it to your wedding, everything looked so beautiful <3



    Southern (California) Belle

  6. No wedding is complete without a wedding dress. The wedding dresses in long island are one of the best that you'll ever see. Their design line showcases different styles to suit the taste of the bride.

    traditional marriage


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