Tag Archive | bride

A Highland Fairy Tale: We Wait Half-Naked and See the Bouquets

By now it’s 11:30ish and I’m in my parent’s hotel room wandering around in my corseted bra and jeans, ready to complete the transition into a Bride.  Mom Sword is dressed and ready to rock and roll, but we are waiting for Sister/MOH Big Eyes to finish getting her hair done before I can change.  Laura and her hair and makeup team could only work so fast with a list of 10 gals to get ready for a wedding!

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I remember our cinematographer asking me if Mr. Sword would care that he was seeing me in my underwear and I had to laugh as I reassured him that Mr. Sword is the least jealous person I’ve ever met.  He takes it as a compliment if someone hits on me, and he’s so laid back that he doesn’t get worked up over little things like a wedding videographer seeing me in my bra and panties.  Which is pretty much ideal for someone like myself who will post practically anything on the internet.  Awkward.

I especially love this artsy shot.

I especially love this artsy shot.  Notice my dress in the background.

As I stared at myself in the mirror (to pass the time of course) we realized I wasn’t wearing my tiara or veil on, oops!  Laura came over to my parent’s room and she glam’d me up in no time.

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Checking my tiara in the mirror before adding the veil.

Checking my final look.

The below picture describes my sister and I’s loving but funny relationship: Me looking at myself in a mirror like the princess I am and her questioning me with those BIG EYES!  🙂

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This was also the moment I first saw my bouquet.

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YUM.  Our bouquets were insane.  Everyone was in love with them, myself included.

Adding my BEE charms!

L Dawg and H adding my BEE charms! Notice the tartan wrap.

(The bridesmaid bouquets looked just as lovely and you’ll see them when I recap our bridal party portraits.)

For someone who didn’t put flowers very high on the list of priorities, who went to ONE florist, and who had no idea what she was doing when ordering, I’m pretty sure they turned out perfectly.  Glamorous and dramatic, our flowers fit our day and theme beautifully.  I couldn’t have dreamed of anything better.

All photos by Crystal Liepa Photography.

Up next, I finally step into my wedding gown!  🙂

Anyone else wear a tiara or plan on wearing one?  How lucky did I get with my bridal bouquet!?!

Sword Wedding footer FINAL

Skipped some of the Sword saga?  It’s OK, catch up today!

Pre-Wedding
Teaser video!
Final preparations, snow, and tears!
Ladies’ Luncheon!
Elevators of anxiety!
Rehearsing and screaming!
Burgers and surprises!
Kisses at midnight!

The Big Day
Bacon for bridal baby!
Hair and makeup!
Men in kilts!

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I Miss My Self-Esteem Most of All

We tend to lose a few things during the wedding planning process, but of all the things I’ve lost (free time, spending money, quality sleep, eating whatever I want), I think I miss my self-esteem the most of all.

I’m sorry, but I’m going to talk about body image.  I don’t want to, but I need to get this out somewhere and I figure this is the most ideal place.

Last week I picked up my dress for the rehearsal dinner and not only did it not fit, but the shotty zipper broke while they were trying to get me in and then out of it.  Talk about depressing.  I’ve now had TWO horrible first experiences with ordered dresses and I’m pretty frustrated/annoyed with my body.

This is a 200+ dollar bridesmaid dress from a shop* in downtown Chicago.  I wouldn’t normally spend so much on a rehearsal dinner dress but it was a gift from Boss Lady.  During the summer of 2012 Boss Lady bid on a gift card to this shop and won!  We didn’t have time to go shopping until this past January and we brought Littlest C with us to try on their flower girl dresses as well.  I had Littlest C take a few photos of some of the dresses we looked at that evening.

Wedding stuff and Museum Jan. 2013 007

Wedding stuff and Museum Jan. 2013 008

In the end we found this beautiful strapless color-blocked dress (ivory, silver, black) with a pencil skirt bottom, and we decided it would be perfect for not only the rehearsal dinner, but also to wear again to other semi-formal events!  The problem was I was in between sizes, which is the STORY OF MY LIFE.

This is my ever-constant first world problem, everything on me is two different sizes, my shoes, my bust, my body.  I always seem to need two different sizes which inevitably causes problems when it comes to purchasing clothing/shoes.  Well, I decided to go with the smaller size in the case of the rehearsal dinner dress when I probably should have gone with the bigger size.  Ugh.

In the end it was a crappy zipper that did me in.  Much like the bra fiasco from scenario one.  The ladies at the salon were very nice to me and offered a credit for the broken zipper.  But the irritating part was that they called the designer and she proceeded to blame me for the broken zipper based on the fact that I chose the smaller size, which could be partly true, but it could be partly true that her zipper was crap as well!  Also, the dress has shearing over the mid-section which makes it difficult for zippers to get past seams, AND I remembered the sample I tried on previously had a broken zipper as well.  And seriously, did she have to make me feel like a fat ass two weeks before my wedding?  I think not.

To be honest, I’ve always had pretty awesome self-esteem.  I was raised to feel confident about my self image regardless of “flaws,” and I like my body, if not love it most of the time.  So it sucks that I’ve been picking apart at myself these last few months.  My teeth aren’t white enough, my skin isn’t tan enough, my body isn’t thin enough.

The shocking part is that I’m the thinnest I’ve been in a while and I’m still feeling like crap.  It’s all in my head.  I get this.  I’m smart.  And the brain is a powerful thing.  I know I look damn good, and I know I will be a beautiful bride.  All that aside, can I please wear a paper sack for the next few weeks?

I can’t even blame the wedding industry or bridal magazines/blogs (well, I guess I could…)!  It’s my fault for imagining myself a certain way on my wedding day and it’s my fault for putting unnecessary pressure on myself to be perfect.  Don’t be like me.  Don’t put pressure on yourself.  It’s one day.  And you’ll look beautiful too.

NOTE: I’m not searching for compliments, just some commiseration!  And I literally CANNOT WAIT until after the wedding and I go back to being my normal, confidence exuding bad-ass sexy self (she says with a grin).

*I don’t want to make this a review of the shop but if you live in Chicago and want more information, just send me a private message.

(all photos personal)

Does anyone else feel like their self-esteem did a 180 during wedding planning?  Anyone else have frustrating experiences with ordering dresses and them not fitting or zippers breaking?  Tell me I’m not alone!  🙂

Charts and Graphs by Mr. Sword

Since Mr. Sword is too scared busy to write a guest post, I am sharing this post on his behalf, but all of the information gathering and graph making done in preparation for said blog post is courtesy of the ever-cute, ever-Scottish, and ever-skinny Mr. Sword.

Mr Sword edited

Awww! Isn’t he adorable in his kilt jacket?

I know everyone loves to see a good breakdown of the guest list and how many people are attending or not attending, and I’m no different.  Except instead of just breaking it down by family and friends of the bride or the groom, I think, especially in our case, it’s equally if not more interesting to look at the breakdown by in state, out of state, and out of country.

Our total number of attendees is officially 122 people not including Mr. and Miss Sword.  We had invited 187 (yes that number went up by one from my last post) guests but this includes children, partners, and plus ones.  Like I said before when I talked about the beauty of online RSVP’ing, sometimes it makes more sense to look at households or invitations that were sent out instead of counting each person.

For the sake of these charts and graphs, we will be counting and including each individual person.  It makes the most sense because, for example, a family of five might only have two people attending so we wouldn’t know whether they counted as a yes or a no.

For future reference: in state = Minnesota, out of state = any state other than Minnesota, out of country = mostly Scotland with one invite going to Canada, one going to England, and one to New Zealand.

Wedding color motif per request of Miss Sword.  🙂

Attending by Location 2

Guests By Location 2

Something I noticed right away was that we actually have more people attending from out of state than in state, but we also invited more out of state folks.  And something that is not clear from this chart is that we only have one family not attending who live in Minnesota, the other three not attending are plus ones that aren’t being used.

Now, for the breakdown of who invited who.  I was hesitant to post these charts because my number is significantly higher than his, but that is mostly because we are getting married in my home country and because Mr. Sword’s family is rather small.

Even though quite a few people from Scotland had to decline, I’m still eternally humbled and happy that Mr. Sword has such great family and friends who are willing to make the long and expensive trip to be with us on our wedding day.  Words cannot express my thankfulness.  This wedding will truly be a mix of BOTH of our favorite people.  We are blessed.

Guests Invited by Total 2

Guests Invited by Attending 2

The most interesting thing to me about these charts is the fact that Mr. Sword does not use a period when he writes Mr. Sword (like I do and just did, twice).  It’s a simple difference based on whether or not you’re using American or British usage, but it’s funny the things you learn about the person you love after years of being together.

I feel bad closing this blog post without a few words from Mr. Sword so I’ve taken the liberty to write out what I’m guessing he would have wanted to share with all of you.

Cheers* mate!  It’s baltic outside right now!  I’m well chuffed to be guest blogging today for my lovely fiancée Miss Sword.  I hope you’ve enjoyed the charts and graphs I was forced asked to make.  Unfortunately, I’m pretty knackered from all my traveling and I have to fill up my car with petrol and load the boot.  Thanks for having me on Weddingbee, Aye!  xx

Translation:  (And yes I know I put in some random crap he would never say on here but it makes me laugh.)

Hey friend!  It’s freezing outside right now!  I’m very happy to be guest blogging today for my sexy fiancée Miss Sword.  I hope you’ve enjoyed the charts and graphs I was begged asked to make (because she had no clue how to make them).  Unfortunately, I’m really tired from all of my traveling and I have to fill up the car with gas and load the trunk.  Thanks for having me on Weddingbee, yea!  hugshugs

(all photos personal and created by Mr. Sword)

*Before someone from the UK corrects me, yes I know the word “cheers” is normally used as a goodbye or a thank you but I looked it up, it can be a greeting or a hello as well!

Did you or will you have a higher percentage of in state guests attend your wedding vs out of state or out of country guests?  Are you pumped for having all of your favorite people in one room like we are?  Didn’t Mr. Sword write a sweet blog post?  🙂

Consummating Without Libations, Whaaa?

(Here goes a really awkward and embarrassing post.  Especially as I have lots of family who read this blog.  Please continue to read my entries after today, I beg.  Thank you.)

I want to talk about the wedding night.  The ooo la la, after the party ends, sexy post-reception time of the night…

I know this subject can be a bit taboo, especially on public websites, but when we plan our wedding day we tend to think about all the parts of it, even the late night parts.

And my disclaimer is this: Everyone’s situation is different and completely unique to them, but at the top of this blog post it says by Miss Sword, so remember these are my thoughts on the subject and my thoughts only.  Let’s dive in, shall we?

While I consider myself to be sexually liberal, when it comes to my wedding night I consider myself to be quite old-fashioned.  I believe that it’s important to consummate your marriage, and that’s exactly what we Swords plan on doing.  (Yes, we’ve talked about it.)

At the same time I understand that for some couples, wedding night sex just isn’t a priority whether it be because of exhaustion from a long day of hosting, familiarity/years together, or getting a little bit too drunk and passing out before anything can happen.  I’m sure it’s different for every couple!

For me, it’s not only about sex, it’s about intimacy.  It’s the only first night of marriage we’ll have, and as a true romantic, I can’t help but think it will be an extra special night.

Plus, I don’t know about you, but I’m so excited to dance and party with all of my awesome guests as well as my awesome soon-to-be-husband so I imagine the amount of quality time Mr. Sword and I will get together during the reception will be pretty limited.  I look forward to being alone and relishing in the last few moments of our wedding day together.

But what about my wacky post title??  Here goes the most embarrassing thing I will put on the internet probably ever.  One can only hope.

When we were in MN over my holiday break I was out to dinner with BM L Dawg and this conversation really happened.  I swear.

(Wedding chatter that somehow led to this topic)

L Dawg: Are you going to drink on your wedding night?
Miss Sword: Well yea, probably.
L Dawg: Are you sure?
Miss Sword: Why?  I’ll just have like one or two drinks.
L Dawg: Do you really want to spend your wedding night in the bathroom?

BAHAHAHA.  The funniest part is that she’s not implying I’ll be in the bathroom throwing up due to excessive drinking, but because I’ll have to go, go, go… number 2.  That’s right.  Alcohol makes me have to poop.  Like right away.  Like a couple of hours or so after I start drinking.  Like I can’t sleep because I have to get up every hour to go to the bathroom to either pee or poo.  Needless to say, that doesn’t scream sexy times to me or Mr. Sword for that matter!

And yes, I realize everyone needs to get rid of the toxins in their body post drinking, but I’m talking about one or two girly cocktails, not a night of beer and shots!  Clearly something is wrong with me.  Blame it on years of vomit related anxiety from drinking, a quick digestive system, a nervous tummy, or a slight allergy, but that’s the icky truth.

Mainly, I just want to feel good about myself and I want to wear my wedding night lingerie without feeling bloated or sick.  For me, having some uninterrupted private time with Mr. Sword is much more important than getting tipsy.  Trust me when I say I’m equally IF NOT MORE fun without booze.  Remember my post on drinking?  It’s just how I was raised.  And while I want everyone else to have fun and get totally hammered if they so choose, I want Mr. Sword and I to remember our Big Day and enjoy it without any fuzziness.  (Luckily for Mr. Sword, his tolerance is pretty high.)

Of course I will definitely pose with our signature drinks and have some champagne during the toasts but I’m pretty much set on staying hydrated with water and having the time of my life sans alcohol.

And I look forward to being one of the most loud, obnoxious, and hilarious people at our wedding.  Look for me, I’ll be the one hanging on Mr. Sword, drinking diet coke, and flashing my cleavage at all my girlfriends.  Mom Sword will be so proud.

How important is wedding night nookie to you?  Does anyone else plan on not drinking at their own wedding but still having a rockin’ good time?  Tell me I’m not alone!

A Fair Bride

It’s been awhile since a bee or two has discussed the pros and cons of rocking your natural skin on the Big Day, and since we’re in the midst of winter weddings, I thought I’d share my thoughts on tanning/not tanning.

It’s been a running joke in my family for years that when I was growing up I was desperate to get a real tan by the end of the summer.  I say by the end of the summer, because as all fair-skinned girls know, it doesn’t happen for us with one or two days in the sun.  IT’S WORK. IT’S A PART-TIME JOB.  And frankly, it’s nearly impossible.  The comical part is after working so hard all summer, laying out with friends, hitting the pool, and begging my family for some beach time on the annual camping trip, my tan is all but gone by the time end of September rolls around.  I would work so hard for months to see it disappear within a few weeks!

I used to fake and bake as well, but that quickly lost it’s luster due to money and the fear of getting skin cancer.  It wasn’t until after college that I finally gave up tanning altogether.  Enough was enough, and I decided to give up my goal of being a bronze goddess.  And let me tell you, it was pretty freeing.  I felt like a weight was lifted off of my shoulders.

Cut to the “year of the wedding,” and people are asking me if I’m going to get a spray tan (which I have done for other weddings and before a trip to LA), use tanning lotions, or fake and bake before the wedding, to which I reply, “I’m marrying a Scottish man.  I won’t be the palest person at my wedding.”  Nothing against Scottish people, but I’m sure we can all agree they aren’t the darkest group out there.

When I visited Scotland for the first time it was during a week in June, and everyone told me it was the warmest week they were going to get all summer.  It was a heat wave.  And it was like 65 degrees.  I was wearing jackets and shivering!

Then there’s me, blonde-haired and blue-eyed with the fairest skin of anyone in my family.  I’m Swedish and Norwegian from Dad Sword’s side and German and Russian from Mom Sword’s side.  I like to joke that Mr. Sword and I are going to have translucent children.  Lord help us.

This is us at the MOA right before Christmas looking like us.  Thank goodness for bronzer!

This is us at the MOA right before Christmas looking like us. Thank goodness for bronzer!

Pale but happy in an engagement photo on the beach/ photo by Jennifer Jackson

Pale but happy in an engagement photo on the beach this past May/ photo by Jennifer Jackson

I’m convinced this tanning thing is a fad and my goal is to live long enough to see pale skin come back in style.  Here’s hoping!  2045 baby!!

I believe in doing whatever makes you feel amazing on your wedding day.  But I don’t need to be tan to feel beautiful.  It may have taken me a few decades to get to this point, but I’m OK with my skin color.

And word to the wise, if you want to make a lighter-skinned person happy, call them fair instead of pale.  Fair also means beautiful, but pale is a negative term meaning “less than” such as when something pales in comparison to something else.  Not as nice.

(all photos personal unless otherwise noted)

Are you a fair-skinned bride who is going au naturale on your wedding day or are you trying for that golden glow?  What about other skin types (non Caucasian) people?  What pressures do you feel from society in regards to beauty?

Bling to Get Ready In and Tags for Bags

I’m combining these two crafts into one post because they are so stinking easy that I can’t justify talking about each one individually.  That said, they both deserve a mention.

First off, let me just say I’m not the robe-wearing type, not that I don’t wish I was, but it’s not my thing.  Needless to say, I won’t be getting ready for my wedding in a silky or plush robe.  But I still wanted something special and fun to wear the morning of my wedding and that’s how I stumbled upon bling’d out tank tops.

Over the years my friends and I would decorate tank tops for special occasions, such as birthdays, class trips, and later, Superbowl parties.  Tight and trashy, I always say!  (I never say that, but as I was typing this post I realized how juvenile and funny it is that I prefer tight tanks to luxurious robes. HA.)

Anyway, I knew I wanted to wear a cute white tank top that said “Bride” but I also knew I didn’t want to pay a ton of money for one, so when I found these appliqués at JoAnn’s I snapped them up and took them to MN for MOH Big Eyes to assemble.

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I wish I could say this is a really budget-friendly project, but it is not.  Each appliqué is $4.99 and each shirt was about 8-10 dollars depending on my coupons and where I bought them.  I ended up making a total of 7 getting ready shirts.  One bride tank top for myself, a Maid of Honor tank for Sister, three bridesmaid tanks, a flower girl tank, and a t-shirt for Mom Sword.

Speaking of Mom Sword, her shirt is special and does not say Mother of the Bride.  Mom Sword and I share a similar sense of humor, and her idea of being “funny” is calling herself a Queen, if I’m going to be the Princess of the wedding.  She also enjoys joking about how young she looks and how myself, MOH Big Eyes, and her look like three sisters.  Umm, yeaa.  Riiiight.  (She’s kidding but it’s a running joke in the family now.)  Luckily I found something perfect for her, but she (and everyone else) will have to wait until the wedding day to see it!

The process for applying each word was very easy.  You just have to make sure you line up the words against a straight edge and decide where you want them to lay on the “girls.”  Then you peel off the backing and stick the words directly to the fabric.

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The only tools needed are a wash cloth, an ironing board, and an iron, the ruler is optional.  Place the cloth on top of the appliqué and then use an iron to adhere the appliqué to the shirt.  Miss Sword Tip:  Leave the iron on longer than it says on the package!  The little jewels can be a bit tricky to work with.

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Slowly peel back the piece of plastic and admire your beautiful work!

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Next up, I made these adorable tags for our out-of-town guest bags and I did them all by myself!

ootg tags edited

Sorry for the blurring!  That part says Miss Sword and Mr. Sword and the date of our wedding in fine tip black sharpie.  The “all you need is love” part is a stamp.  This was so easy.  I bought tags, the stamp, and purple ink from JoAnn’s, and I used the leftover ribbon from wedding invitations to tie the tags to our OOTG bags.

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I guess I forgot to take a picture of the tags tied on the bags but I’ll just let you visualize it instead.  Go.  And I promise to do a post on what when into our OOTG bags at some point too!

(all photos personal)

What are you getting ready in on the big day?  Anyone else make tags for their OOTG bags?

Do Not Disturb DIY

Ohmygosh, I can’t believe it’s almost 2013!  The year of my wedding!  A big congrats to all of the bees who got married in the lovely year of 2012, but I’m pretty excited about the next set of unique weddings that are on the horizon (even though I used to wish I could have been married in an even year.)  OH the battles you never pick and never mean to share on the internet!

Anyway, I can’t wait to get started sharing all of my updates with everyone, so to start things off here is a little DIY (destroy-it-yourself) done by yours truly!  But first:

sword guests

Most of the DIY’s for my wedding have been orchestrated and constructed by Sister/MOH Big Eyes.  She is my personal wedding slave craft-er and she did an amazing job on everything.  But these DND signs were my baby!  🙂

I’m not sure where I first saw the Do Not Disturb sign used in a wedding but I knew right away that it was something I was going to incorporate into my OOTG (out-of-town guest) bags.  My search began online trying to find templates and ideas for wording where I was fortunate enough to stumble upon a forum where someone had commented about Vistaprint having a deal that included 50 free rack cards.  So to pay it forward, make sure you go to Vistaprint to get your free rack cards too!  (Hopefully the sale is still going on.)

For those who don’t know what a rack card is (I didn’t realize that’s what they were called), it’s a long skinny brochure cut of paper that is usually used for advertising, but they are also the PERFECT size for hanging signs off of doorknobs.

Luckily, I was able to design both the front and the back of the card and at first I was completely stumped at what to do.  I thought of using another engagement photo but thought that too redundant.  I thought of leaving the background blank while focusing on fancy/fairy tale type of font but thought that too boring.  And then it hit me, the tartan!  OF COURSE!

So I uploaded the image we have of our family tartan and hoped for the best.  Unfortunately, the website informed me that the quality of my photo wasn’t very good so I was not expecting them to turn out the way I pictured them in my head, but in the end, I think they turned out great!  They’re definitely not perfect, one side looks really shiny, and the colors might be a bit too bright  but I’m so happy I found another place to showcase our tartan.

On the one side I put, “Welcome to Minnesota! We are so happy you could make it!”  We added the name of our family tartan (in case there is any confusion haha) in the bottom right-hand corner which is written as Hislastname-Mylastname personal tartan.


DND back edited

And on the side that will hang facing out on the guest’s hotel room door, I put the standard wording of “Please Do Not Disturb.  We’re still recovering from Mr. and Miss Sword’s wedding celebration.”  And I’m sure most people will be!!  🙂  We also added the date of the wedding in numbers in the bottom right-hand corner.

DND front edited

Side note: When writing out our wedding date this past year on save-the-dates, invitations, and whatnot, we intentionally chose to spell it out instead of using numbers because the in the UK they put the day first followed by the month.  For example 04/05/2012 would read as the 4th of May in the UK and the 5th of April in the US.  We decided everyone would know the wedding was in March by the time the actual wedding rolled around but my apologies to our guests who have to read the date backwards!  Does anyone else need to be aware of this with their paper products?

Since I’m making about 48 OOTG bags (don’t ask me how I’ve come up with that number when not everyone has RSVP’ed yet), the 50 free rack cards ended up being the perfect amount.

The actual crafting or DIY’ing part came when they arrived in the mail to my parent’s house.  I decided against punching a big hole in the top because I thought adding ribbon would be prettier/fancier.

Here are my supplies (I’ve always wanted to post one of these pictures!):

DND supplies edited

Step One: Find a line in your image (in my case the tartan) as guideline for punching holes at the top of the card.  I used the same spots on each one and it made punching holes take no time at all.

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Step Two:  Measure the size ribbon you want after first seeing how low you want it to hang on a door handle.

Step Three:  Thread the ribbon through each hole tying a knot on the side that will not be displayed.  Cut off the excess ribbon.

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And you’re done!  I know this craft didn’t need an explanation (or photos for that matter), but I had to share it because I’m proud of my crafting skills!

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(all photos personal)

Anyone else making DND signs for their guests hotel rooms?  Did my really extensive tutorial make sense!?!?  😉