a white dress to rehearse in.

I have been searching for a dress for our rehearsal dinner for a few months now. I originally wanted to take advantage of the fact that, as the bride, it is perfectly acceptable for me to wear a white dress. Alas, I don't think that is in the cards for me. I have searched and searched and searched and cannot find a white dress that is semi-casual (since our rehearsal dinner is being held outside at Mr. M's parent's home) and that you cannot see through. I don't think those two criteria are very stringent, but apparently they are.

Exhibit #1.
Oh yeah, I can't even show it to you. I fell in love with this cute strapless white and metallic silver BCBG dress at Lord & Taylor months ago, but they didn't have my size. Anywhere in the US. I looked all over the internet for it as well and couldn't find so much as a picture of it. Sad.

Exhibit #2. This dress made me swoon from the second I laid eyes on it. I waited for it to go on sale online and ran (okay, drove) to the nearest Banana Republic to try it on. In the store it was only $39.99, and I grabbed the last one in my size. I tried in on and it fit perfectly. It was flowy and silky and wonderful. Imagine my disappointment when I looked in the fitting room mirror and could see everything I was wearing underneath it. I felt like I was wearing an invisible sheath. Again, sad.
Exhibit #3-23. I'm too lazy to find the pictures. I have tried on at least 20 dresses at various department stores and all of them are either not flattering or completely see-through. Sad, sad, sad...

I did try on a very cute dress from Anthropologie today that I have been eyeing for awhile now. One thing it is not? The bridal white I was going for in a rehearsal dress. But it is pretty, light-colored, semi-casual, and you can't see through it! It's also a dress I can wear again! Needless to say, I gave up on my dream white dress and bought this one instead.
So it's not white. But metallic linen is close to white, right? Okay, no it's not, but I like it anyway!

Did anyone else want a white rehearsal dinner dress? Where did you find one?


an unnecessary project.

With a little more than a month left to go, you would think I would be taking projects off of my list at this point. Instead, I added one on. Uninspired when it came to designing our programs and sick of teal taffeta table runners being the only sewing I've done in months, I decided to make a simple garter to wear on the wedding day.
It's made of ivory silk duponi, which is one of my most favorite fabrics ever. We won't be doing the garter & bouquet toss since those traditions have never been our cup of tea at other weddings we've been to, so I really do not need a garter at all. But who can resist a quick and easy sewing project (with beautiful silk duponi) when in need of some instant gratification?

I have no doubt that I'll need to prioritize within the next few weeks in order to get the important elements on my list finished before the wedding, but for now, I'm still hoping we can finish most of the projects that we've been hoping to bring to the big day. And admiring my completely unnecessary, yet still gratifying ruffly little garter!

If you want to make a simple garter, check out this tutorial from the purl bee!

Did anyone else add a last minute project onto their list? What was it?

has it really been a year?

Sunday, July 27th, 2008. That's the day that Adam got down on one knee in the middle of the Chicago Botanic Gardens and asked me to spend the rest of my life with him. It was an incredibly special moment, and I was the happiest girl in the world.
Then he gave me this...

and so it began!

I can't believe we've been engaged for a year, planning this wedding for a year, and anxiously waiting to become husband and wife for a year. The wedding cannot come soon enough!

Mr. M...happy one-year-of-being-engaged!

xoxo, your fiance.

How long have you been engaged?


guest post!

If you're like me and have a ton of weddings (besides your own) to attend this summer, you are probably in need of a gift! Check out my guest post on the Wishpot Wedding Blog for some handmade wedding gift suggestions! Leave me some love while you're there!


a slight change of plans.

Weddings plans can change at any minute, and our wedding has been no exception! I had told you all how we had won a fabulous photography package for our wedding, and that part has not changed, thank goodness. The part that has changed though, is the photographer duo that will be snapping the pictures on our big day. Our original photographers were worried they may not be able to make it to the wedding due to some unforeseen circumstances, so they called their photographer friends to see if they’d be willing to offer us the same package. After approval on both our end and their end, the switch was made! Enter the husband and wife team at Deborah Cull Photography!

Deb and Matt will be coming up to the UP a few days before the wedding, and they have even offered to take some engagement pictures of us in the days prior as well! We had taken engagement pictures last winter, but it will be nice to have some summer/fall shots of us without our wedding attire. Check out these engagement pictures that the talented pair have taken recently.

And then there are the gorgeous weddings they’ve captured…

I am always a sucker for the detail shots.

This is my favorite shot ever. The couple just looks so happy and the colors are so vibrant!

I am so grateful that Deb and Matt are making the trip to be a part of our special day! I know they will help us to capture some beautiful memories! You can find more pictures of their work on their blog and website.

Did you have any unexpected changes during planning? Were you happy with the result in the end?


the bachelorette party: beaches, boats, babes and beer.

As I mentioned last week, my bachelorette party was this past weekend! I drove up to Milwaukee on Friday, picked up my bridesmaid Anna at the airport on the way. We started with a dinner of fish and chips and Summer Shandy at the Miller Time Pub and waited for the rest of the girls to arrive. Everyone joined us at the hotel as they got into town and we just chilled out, drank a few beers, chatted and went to bed relatively early. We had a big day ahead of us!!

In the morning we got up and took our time getting ready before heading to The Wicked Hop to start the day off right. I began the day with a delicious mimosa, while my matron of honor Dona opted for the "liquid brunch" aka the sickest looking bloody mary I had ever seen.

We had to pose with Fabio before moving on to our next stop. As you can see, my BM Kiera got a little more friendly with him than I did.
Our next stop was the beach, where although the weather was not the warmest, at least it wasn't raining! We spent the day relaxing, eating some delicious food that BM Anna's mom had made for us, drinking beer on the beach and building sandcastles.
Oh, and posing with random models who were taking pictures for their portfolios, naturally.
After the beach, it was back to BM Angelie's condo to prep for the night. The condo was decked out with pink streamers, ribbon and brightly colored daisies all over the place!

Never missing the little details, my sister/MOH Dani even drew our little flourish pattern on all of the gift bags!
After getting ready, we all gathered and the girls all explained how they knew me and gave a little toast to me and the mister. All the toasts were great and made me appreciate my wonderful group of girls.

Next up, the gifts. Complete with a hangover kit from BM Dana and her sister Jenna, which included some Sprite, disinfecting wipes, gum, Advil, Tums, Altoids, Vitamin Water and animal crackers. Oh yes, and a garbage bag, just in case!

The last present I opened contained the items I had to wear that night. Thankfully, they were all pretty tame (my friends know me very well). My ruffly satin sash was very cute, and wait a second...what does that say? The "future Mrs. Mascara" of course! A not-so-subtle nod to my Weddingbee moniker!
After opening all the gifts that my friends had so generously given me, it was time to head out for dinner! We had reservations at Swig, a restaurant in the Third Ward. We had some cocktails in the bar before heading to our table for a delicious appetizer of rustic flatbread. I had the wild mushroom gnocchi for dinner, and it was soooo good!

When all of our bellies were full we headed back to the condo to regroup for a second and gather up supplies for the next phase of our adventure....a river cruise on the Brew City Queen!

We spent a few hours listening to tunes, enjoying the view, and playing a good old-fashioned game of "Never Have I Ever".
The tour was capped off with some peppermint patty shots, which I'm pretty sure were the beginning of the end for this bachelorette. But who can resist Peppermint Schnapps and chocolate syrup from the bottle?

Our last stop before calling it a night was a club called Decibel. Our VIP bottle service was spectacular, and the bartenders and owner were so great to us!
We ran into some interesting people there, including a fantastic dancer! BM Anna went up to him to tell him he should try out for So You Think You Can Dance, only to find out he was Cedric Gardner from Season 3!
Being a huge SYTYCD fan myself, I was pretty excited! Anna took the opportunity to play our bachelorette scavenger hunt game, and asked him to marry her. She took it pretty well when he said no.
Not to worry Bees, remember that collective Bee shot I promised you? This one was especially for you!
After lots of dancing in some sweet Kanye shades, it was time to call it a night! I had such a great time with my closest friends and sisters.
I could not have asked for a better bachelorette party!! Special thanks to my bridesmaids, especially Dani and Angelie for the putting together the best bachelorette party EVER.
xoxo, The Future Mrs. Mascara
Did anyone else have a crazy bachelorette party?