Texas Forever: Texas Part 2!

Just wanna make sure y’all catch my Friday Night Lights reference there in the title? I think one of my favorite parts about visiting Texas is the fact that I got to tag all my Instagram pics #texasforever. If you don’t know what I’m talking about Netflix the show already, alright?!

Here is the glorious dress I bought for the wedding of one of my very dear BFFs. At the very end of this post you’ll see a picture of the gorgeous bride, but first check me out! I got this vintage inspired dress from Hello Holiday, an online store based out of Omaha very near to us in here in the Midwest. I love the colors, the fit, the pockets! It’s an exceptional dress and the quality is outstanding as well. Overall a great party dress and I got tons of compliments (yay!)

The day of the wedding we got our hair done, and I knew ahead of time I wanted some big Texas hair. Since I keep my hair short I wasn’t sure how big we could go but thanks to the help of some magical texture powder and teasing my hair like crazy I got some cute hair to go with my cute dress. Success!

I have to say I love a good wedding, and kitties, this was one of the best! The ceremony was very beautiful and magical and I was bursting with joy for my friends. And after the ceremony I was bursting with joy because of all the delicious food that accompanied the reception! We’re talking mini grilled cheeses, stuffed mushrooms, a food truck with gourmet sliders annnnnnd a Poutine station! Oh wait, did I mention 4 different cakes and handmade Popsicles?! I mean, heaven on earth, for real.

Be sure to check out the pictures at the end of this post for a peek at the bride and a group shot of me and my two oldest friends and the men we’ve gathered along the way!

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Outfit details: Dress :: Hello Holiday | shoes :: vintage

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Dress Rehearsal Dress :: Texas Part 1!

Earlier this month John and I drove to Texas because one of my very best friends from childhood got married!! We took this opportunity to turn a mere weekend trip into a week-long vacation!
On our first day of driving we made it to Tulsa, Oklahoma just in time to grab a bite to eat and see a band that’s been on my bucket list for a long time: Interpol. They were very fun to see live and although they didn’t play my favorite song they otherwise lived up to my expectations. Success!
The next day we made it to Dallas with several days to spare before the wedding. This gave us plenty of time to help the bride and groom with any last minute details and hang out and catch-up before the big day! Because they live in Texas our reunions are few and far between so getting this extra time with friends was crucial for us all. We had a couple of nice dinners and some downtime together before the rehearsal dinner the night before the wedding.
The venue they chose was absolutely beautiful! It was almost like being in a whole other world apart from Dallas! The house had a lovely vintage feel and there were beautiful flowers and lush greenery everywhere. There was also this little koi pond, which is where I chose to take the pictures you see here.

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The rehearsal dinner was a low key pizza party with some DELICIOUS pizzas, salad and homemade (by the bride herself!) pound cake.
I chose this wrap dress last minute. I wouldn’t normally ever buy a wrap dress; they’re just not my style. This one stuck out to me though because of the pattern. I’ve discovered a few things that are quite nice about a wrap dress: 1) since the waist is adjustable there’s lots o’ room underneath which makes for a comfortable and flattering fit. 2) no need to slip this dress over your head! Just wrap it around your body to avoid messing up your hair (if that’s a concern for you, and it usually is for me.)

We were in a hurry to get ready post-pedicures so these sandals were the perfect choice to throw on and go and I think it turned out great!
Stay tuned for part 2 where I show off my wedding attire and fancy Texas hair!

Outfit details: Dress :: Charlotte Russe | Sandals :: Hello Holiday | necklace :: Urban Outfitters (several years old)

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Honeymoon (or J & J in the big city!)

As you can imagine our honeymoon to New York was pretty much the best thing ever! John and I both agree it was so interesting to spend our honeymoon in such a big city surrounded by people, yet it felt like we were pretty much in our own little world the whole time. We’re definitely city people more than relax-on-the-beach kind of folks, and New York was really the perfect pick for us.
Last week I gave you a little glimpse into our time at Central Park, and now here are some pics we snapped with our iPhones throughout the week!

Our last Brooklyn brunch

Our last Brooklyn brunch

A beautiful walk through Brooklyn looking for, what else? Brunch. | Our sweeeet loft room at the Ace hotel

A beautiful walk through Brooklyn looking for, what else? Brunch. | Our sweeeet loft room at the Ace hotel

we made a brief stop in Times Square and I was mostly just impressed by this sparkly McDonalds sign! | His & Hers Swatch watches

We made a brief stop in Times Square and I was mostly just impressed by this sparkly McDonalds sign! | His & Hers Swatch watches

Every time we take a trip we make sure to find a photo booth and take pics as a souvenir. These were taken at the Ace Hotel | Our heart shaped hot tub in our wedding suite. Sooooo relaxing!

Every time we take a trip we make sure to find a photo booth and take pics as a souvenir. These were taken at the Ace Hotel | Our heart shaped hot tub in our wedding suite. Sooooo relaxing!

this bar in Brooklyn was totally awesome because: every time you bought a beer you also got a pizza. For free! | The view of Manhattan from Williamsburg

this bar in Brooklyn was totally awesome because: every time you bought a beer you also got a pizza. For free! | The view of Manhattan from Williamsburg

Look up! | seeing this Warhol in real life at the MoMA was outstanding!

Look up! | seeing this Warhol in real life at the MoMA was outstanding!

Thanks so much for looking at our honeymoon photos!!

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A big geo heart and little bitty birdies

As Jessi mentioned in her last post, the day before her wedding we were up bright and early for mani/pedis (which were amazing! thanks cupcake!), and then after a quick lunch we went to the venue to start decorating. It was a fun-filled (and work-filled) day and the dress rehearsal/dinner was even more fun. I bought this dress just for this occasion, and while I do like the little bitty birdies on it, I have to admit when I put it on I was little disappointed about how positively short the bottom layer is. Luckily these tights are thicker than most so I think I made it out without anyone seeing my ass, but who knows for sure?

You’ll have to take notice of the Iowa necklace, the most adorable bridesmaid gift ever! All of us lucky ladies are from Iowa, so it fits perfectly. It also added a pretty cohesion to all of our ensembles the next day at the wedding!

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I loved that J&J were able to get the venue for the whole weekend for many reasons, but one was because after dinner a few of us ladies were able to tackle this gold & teal heart. Jessi found this great idea from the Oleander & Palm blog. Isn’t it super cute? We used wrapping paper that Jessi’s mom had on hand already, which was totally awesome, but it definitely was a bit more challenging. I think if I were to redo this I would use scrapbooking paper like Jeran suggested on her blog, and I’d also be a little more conscious of making the triangles uniform, haha. Luckily our friends Jes and Jessi N (soooo many Jessi’s!) are masterminds and we made it work! I love it in this picture at the wedding because you can really see how giant we made it:

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Hope you’re having a lovely Friday so far and a happy weekend to come!

Outfit details: Dress :: Urban Outfitters | Iowa love necklace :: Gift from the bride! | Tights :: Target | Amber ring :: gift | Shoes :: Thrifted

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Wedding Rehearsal

I get really into celebrations and because of this, I don’t have a birthday, I have a birthday week (or month, if I can get away with it!) and likewise, our wedding wasn’t just one day, it was a whole wedding week! I made the fantastic decision to take the entire week before my wedding off of work and I have to say I am SO glad to have made that decision. This gave me the chance to rest, tie up loose ends before the wedding and spend some extra time with friends that came from out of town. By the time the wedding itself actually rolled around I felt really prepared and fairly calm.

The day before the wedding I took to my bridesmaids to get manicures and pedicures, something I’d never done before but something I will definitely be doing again! It was the best, most relaxing treat!! And, a month later, my pedicure is actually still holding up really well. Bonus!

From there an army of friends and family helped decorate the venue and before I knew it it was time to get ready for our rehearsal and rehearsal dinner!

We really lucked out in that we got our wedding venue for the entire weekend, which afforded us the luxury of decorating the day before as well as deciding to host a low key rehearsal dinner in the venue. We loved our wedding venue a lot, it was such a great open space and looked so lovely all decorated up to our taste, so we decided to throw a pizza party there instead of planning a fancy dinner elsewhere. I admit the thought of foregoing a fancy rehearsal dinner wasn’t my first choice, but once my husband suggested it it made sense and I’m so happy we chose something low key. Especially after all the wedding planning we did; planning a rehearsal dinner was the last thing I wanted to do. So we got pizza from our favorite local pizza place and my mom very generously made desserts (super delicious tiramisu!) and we broke into the beer and wine supply we had set aside for the wedding.

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Now this dress… I’m in love with it and have been for years! I got it at a vintage store in Omaha and have only broken it out on a few occasions. Our wedding rehearsal was definitely a special enough occasion for this dress. It’s made so well, as many vintage dresses are. They really don’t make clothes like they used to. Having bought a lot of vintage over the years I have realized though, a sad fact of vintage dresses is that they are often pretty uncomfortable. This is not the case with this dress, thankfully! The material has a nice weight to it and it actually has a good amount of stretch, which I always appreciate!

I got these wedges recently from Modcloth, and they are so super comfy. They come with a detachable ankle strap, which I like. An ankle strap can be nice but I’m just not always in the mood for it, you know?
The bow was a last minute decision- it’s very hard for me to go anywhere without some sort of hair accessory on. I got this one at Vitae and think its pops out of my black hair very nicely!

Over the years John has done a great job of getting me antique rings (great guy!) but ever since I got my engagement ring I stopped wearing them, I guess to showcase it as being the REALLY special ring! But I loved the other rings he’s given me and I always will. The ring on my right hand here is the first one he gave me (well, technically the second, I lost the first one he gave me, which was kind of devastating to me at the time…) and I have always loved this one, especially. He got it at a flea market, and now after some years it’s missing some stones but I still love it as much as I always have.

Now that I’ve made it through planning a wedding, some people have asked me for advice, which is this (maybe a tad cliche but all true):
• Do what you want to do, it is your wedding after all.
• Let other people help you, because they want to help you!
• Take time off of work beforehand 🙂
• And finally, have fun and appreciate everything as its happening!

Outfit details: dress :: Thrifted | bow :: Vitae | shoes :: Modcloth | tights :: Target (last season) |

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My wedding!

We don’t have our professional photos back yet, but here’s a glimpse via Facebook, Instagram and our iPhones at our awesome wedding festivities.

All hitched up!

All hitched up!

The wedding party + cat masks

The wedding party + cat masks

the best, most beautiful bridesmaids/friends a girl could ever ask for!

the best, most beautiful bridesmaids/friends a girl could ever ask for!

We made it through the ceremony | The luxury of being the bride!

We made it through the ceremony | The luxury of being the bride!

Heart garland decoration | Bridesmaids chowing down on some cake pre-ceremony

Heart garland decoration | Bridesmaids chowing down on some cake pre-ceremony

Rehearsal dinner with ladies! | We were so hungry here!

Rehearsal dinner with my ladies! | We were so hungry here!

Here, Pretty Kitty with our husbands!

Here, Pretty Kitty with our husbands!

Dancin' with Scott | I feel like this obit looks fake/posed but it's totally genuine!

Dance floor time! | I feel like this looks a bit fake/posed but it’s totally genuine!

First dance to Yo La Tengo | Our desserts!

First dance to Yo La Tengo | Our desserts!

And just a peek at some of the fun Polaroids from our wedding photo booth!

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Xoxo!

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DIY: Confetti Hearts!

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For Jessi’s wedding, we agreed that confetti would be so fun to throw after the ceremony. I searched high and low for a fun way to hold the little morsels. This post on Ruche’s blog was perfect because guests could just rip open the little hearts when they’re ready and throw. I didn’t want to put as much effort into it as that post, though, so without further ado, here’s my super easy way of making confetti hearts!

SUPPLIES
scrap paper
vellum paper (I got this polka dotted type at Michaels)
pen
scissors
glue pen (Mine is this one from Martha Stewart’s line)
confetti (I just used a hole punch + construction paper. It’s time consuming; I suggest buying!)

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DIRECTIONS
1. Make a heart template by drawing a heart and cutting it out on a separate piece of paper. I used a green piece of construction paper.
2. Place your heart on the vellum and cut your hearts out. I didn’t trace around the template because I didn’t want any sort of pen mark to show since it’s transparent.
3. Using the glue pen, draw around each heart edge, leaving part of it unglued so you can put in the confetti.
4. Place another heart on top of the glued heart.
5. To put the confetti in the heart, I found it useful to stick a finger or a pencil or something in the heart to sort of balloon it out a bit. Then just dump in the confetti!
6. Glue the seam shut. Repeat!

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TIPS
Make your hearts pretty large, otherwise you won’t be able to stick much confetti in each one. I’d suggest about 8 hearts per 12 x 12 sheet of vellum. The hearts shown here aren’t that big but I wish they were!
Don’t overstuff your heart or the seams will start bustin’ out and it’s pretty annoying.
I also tried a glue stick and scrapbook adhesive. The glue pen worked the best; if you have a steady hand and more patience than me a glue gun would work.

I have to admit that in the end, we are using these little hearts as decoration on the dessert table instead because a) they are cute without ripping them open and b) I ran out of time to make enough for all the confetti we had!

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Jessi’s Bridal shower

Part two of the best weekend ever consisted of an all ladies, super brunch buffet, complete with a mimosa bar and otherwise known as my awesome bridal shower!
Brunch is, 100%, one of my favorite things about any weekend. And a brunch buffet is basically heaven. Two kinds of Quiche, Mac and cheese, Brie bites, crab rangoon, coffee (with coffee ice cubes!), blueberry muffins, cheesecake and more!! My bridesmaids worked their asses off to prepare this feast and I couldn’t have been more blown away!
It seemed very indulgent to have a whole weekend dedicated me and my upcoming wedding, but this only happens once, so I embraced the good times and enjoyed every moment! It was so nice to talk with all the ladies, eat delicious, delicious food and, I have to say, it was pretty fun to get some wedding presents!!

This white dress was a gift from my mom and my brother’s girlfriend, and I absolutely love it! It fits me perfectly and isn’t like anything else I already own. I don’t wear a lot of white, but I figure I might as well live it up as the bride and embrace some white in my wardrobe. I love this dress because it’s a little more ivory and not bright white.

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While I absolutely love these shoes, they are TOTAL killers! My poor feet can’t stand them for much more than a few hours, but it’s still worth it to break them out every now and then. One of my bridesmaids, Shannon, gave me this inflatable cupcake, which is too cute. The perfect prop! And the tattoo on the back of my neck is a remnant from the bachelorette party two days prior.

All in all it was such an amazing weekend (have I mentioned that yet?) The biggest shout-outs ever go to Marlena and Mindy for meticulously planning and putting together the best shower a girl could ask for. And I can’t believe we still have a whole wedding to look forward to! Yay!!

Outfit details: dress :: gift | shoes :: Urban Outfitters (similar) | necklace, rings :: Forever21

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Ladies Weekend

Hey there pretty kitties, want to know something I’ve discovered about getting married??? For one, you get to be with the one you love for the rest of your life and throw a huge party (duh!) But two, it’s an excellent reason to get to spend lots of quality time with all the other totally awesome people in your life, celebrating not only the relationship you have with your betrothed, but the great relationships you have with your best friends and family. Sorry to sound cheesy and sentimental! But I have some of the greatest friends on the planet who threw me pretty much the best bachelorette party and bridal shower weekend a girl could ever hope for. It was incredible (and we have the blurry pictures to prove it)!!!

I don’t think anyone would ever say I’m a traditional girl, and my bridesmaids took that to heart. I was not forced to wear a sash or veil, there was no penis paraphernalia and no embarrassing scavenger hunt. Those things are all good and fine for some, but just not my cup of tea. There was, however, a limo (an absolute MUST, I say!) a hotel room, Cards Against Humanity, great dinner, great friends, great speeches, and many, many, many drinks!

Highlights of the night included (but are not limited to):
– a rapid-fire questionnaire, stolen from our favorite podcast Totally Laime (shout out!) and personalized by my lovely maid of honor, Miss Marlena
– riding in the limo, drinking champagne and cranberry cocktails and singing along to some awesome jams
– answering many questions wrong on the Newlywed Game questionnaire filled out by my honey
– bar hopping around to some of my favorite bars, and running into my husby-to-be at the end of the night
– getting to hang out and love on all the awesome ladies in my life, both local and from far away (minus one beautiful bridesmaid, who couldn’t make it. We missed her dearly!)
– and lastly, passing out in the hotel from too much fun at the end of the night while everyone else partied on….

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The limo arrived and it was a beast! But it had to be to fit all those girls. This picture is post-hotel drinks, pre-dinner. And, I have to say, there’s not one, not two, but three Jesse/Jessi’s here. Outstanding!
There’s also a Mindy, Marlena and Shannon there, and I love them all the same, even though we don’t share a name 🙂

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Me with some of my oldest and dearest friends, also 3 of my four bridesmaids. What beauties!

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I took the liberty of appropriately labeling my own cup. | Once the gift bags came out we didn’t put the party favors away all night!

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Near the end of the night we thought it appropriate to take selfies in the bathroom. Makes sense, right? | This limo was intense, as evidenced by the lightning screen in the background.

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Shannon making it rain with her mountains of cash! | I told you we didn’t put the party favors away all night. They made perfect unicorn horns!

I really have the best bridesmaids, am I right???

Stay tuned for details on the bridal shower that blew my mind, coming up later this week.

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What I Wore to a Spring Wedding

I love any reason to go out and get myself a new dress and what better reason than a wedding to do so?
This is normally my philosophy, but recently I cleaned and reorganized my closet and was reminded of all the great dresses I had jammed into the back of my closet that I so rarely get to wear. So this time I decided to not get something new and just go shopping in my closet instead!
I had a few vintage dresses in mind, but when it came time to get dressed nothing felt quite right. Then I stumbled upon this beauty. I’ve had it for years and it’s the perfect dress to wear to a wedding- it’s cute, comfortable and a real standout. Winner!
I bought this a few years ago on my birthday at Vitae Design Collective, a local store in Des Moines East Village. I wear dresses a lot, and this one is like nothing else I own, which makes it fun to pull out for special occasions!

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I recently discovered the beauty that is an adhesive bra and this was the perfect dress to put it to use. I hate strapless bras- they’re uncomfortable and never stay up. This adhesive bra I got from Target definitely looks weird, but its strapless, backless and isn’t uncomfortable in the slightest. Ladies, I definitely recommend investing in one for the summer!!

I love these gray t-strap heels I got from H&M when I was visiting LA. But I can only wear them for a few hours before they start to do damage to my feet, so I made sure to tuck a pair of flats into my purse for later in the night. I’ve killed my feet before for a pretty pair of shoes, but no more! Live and learn, right?

The wedding was fun, the reception was great (dancing, open bar and super tasty food!!) it also made me realize I need to really get into the swing of things in terms of planning my own wedding… It’s only a few months away!

outfit details: dress :: Vitae Design Collective | shoes :: H&M | purse :: thrifted | earrings :: forever21 | ring :: Hill Vintage

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