The Big Day: front & centre, and behind the scenes
We be hitched! Thanks for all the ‘woohoo’s and kind words from y’all!
The ceremony, dinner, reception and all photos were at the Museum of Civilization in Gatineau, Québec (just across the river from Ottawa). You can see that it was darn impossible to take a bad shot at this venue. Lucky for us, the weather was gorgeous (albeit quite chilly) — this time last year, there was already plenty of snow on the ground!
And besides this, everything else exceeded all expectations. I can’t emphasize enough just how much help we got from terrific friends and family — all of whom said “It’s nothing!” but whose cumulative effort came together to make everything happen like clockwork.
For anyone who’s interested in the DIY details, keep on reading… there are lots!
All the beaded pins and clips and leaves that I put in my hair were put together by jewelry-maker Melonie Higashi (featured here before). The main elements were made from skeleton leaves that my sister had picked up for me from The Paper Place in Toronto. Melonie also made the clip-on earrings to match my necklace (which was a gift from my grandmother); since I’ve never had my ears pierced, they were clip-ons.
I made my and my sister’s bouquets and all the boutonnieres out of coffee filters, floral wire and tape, and more of those skeleton leaves; I also painted the petals an off-white so that they weren’t quite so stark bright. I learned how to make these from youtube videos!
Above is one of the three signs I made for the event (left: in full, right: close-up) — to point people to the ceremony. I found the ornate frame and vintage wedding photo by tooling around on flickr, making sure to get photos that were very high-res so that I could print at this size (20″ x 30″). Then I photoshopped John’s and my faces into the picture… how ridiculous is that hair!? I was half-flattered, half-shocked when someone asked if we’d staged that photo — I guess it looks convincing, but hey, I’m only 5 foot 3!
I bought the handbound guestbook from an etsy shop called bookwright. It’s beautifully made and coptic-bound, meaning that it lays flat when opened to any page.
Hanging from the ceiling at both the ceremony and reception were gorgeous paper ornaments, which I got from another etsy shop called PomLove. [Special thanks to Bridgett of Perideau Designs who introduced me to these by featuring them on her blog!]
We had a dessert buffet, which included jars of sweets, plus loot bags so people could pack a snack:
Homemade cookies by my Aunt Mei and Dad:
And cupcakes baked by my dear friend Pascale:
(fixed the polymer clay cupcake topper FAIL posted last week — phew for bunny ears!
For each of the guests’ tables, we put a vase of twigs — some of which we’d gathered ourselves. There were also glass beads and tealights with paper covers:
I made the tealight covers out of a thick natural hemp paper. There are two main panels that I cut the leaf shapes out of, and then a third thin panel I used to hold the sides together with two-sided tape. Here’s how they look from above:
You have to make sure that the tealight you use has glass that is taller than the flame, or else this would obviously be a fire hazard. This was my first time using one of those precision exacto knives, and it was very easy to do. What’s nice is that when you take the covers off the tealight, they fold flat.
Also on the tables were the guests’ namecards — when I wrote people’s names, I put leaves to indicate vegetarian meals:
The cards were made out of plantable seed paper that I got online from Botanical Paperworks; they blew me away with their terrific customer service and gorgeous product. The paper is slightly tough to write on because of the seeds, but after some practice (and a few screw-ups), I got the hang of it.
Some of the most fun photos from the evening came from our Photobooth, which we asked everyone to partake in — as our photographic guestbook:
The chalkboard, which is magnetic and was made with a recycled frame, was purchase from a lovely etsy seller by the name of PoshPilfer.
Other shout-outs and mentions:
- Alpha Media (Ottawa) provided all the AV equipment and were just stellar in helping set up and get us exactly what we wanted.
- Pritchard Packaging (Ottawa) was a terrific place to pick up all sorts of handy things — from ribbons to gift boxes, from the candy loot bags to paper.
- … and I frequented these places a lot during our planning: Wallack’s, Michael’s and The Bulk Barn.
And hugely grateful thanks to the folks who made it all happen. Steve & Eva were the pom-pom crew, Mags was the table decorator, Amanda was AV/MC/DJ specialist, Pascale was the dessert guru, and Dalaila handled details. How lucky we are to be surrounded by such helpful supportive peeps. It all went
If there’s anything here that you’d like to know more about, let me know. I’ve already blabbed a ton and feel self-indulgent enough that I won’t bore you with the details of how to make paper flowers or tealight cut-outs… unless you ask, ha ha!