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Blog — "wedding"

My Style: Wedding Edition

Heidi Shenk "fashion" "my style" "wedding"

As you know, this past August, Andrew and I got married. We decided that a big wedding just wasn't us, and opted for a short and sweet courthouse wedding with a close friend in tow as our witness. After our wedding, we decided to take an epic trip to Australia instead. For us, traveling seemed to make much more sense in terms of where to spend our money. Travel is something that we both enjoy immensely and we knew a trip would make us a lot happier than a wedding that would be over in just a few short hours.

However, despite our quick wedding affair, we still decided to have fun and be a little classy. Many people commented on our wedding photos and loved our color theme and attire, and some even asked me to do this post (you know who you are...). To be truthful, we always travel on a budget, and our wedding attire was also on a budget... ok, except maybe not the shoes. Buuuuut, would you expect any less from me? So without further ado, here's the breakdown.

Her /// Dress - Nordstrom, $148 // Sandals - Kate Spade, $228 (splurge!) // Clutch - Milo and Molly, gift (similar) // Earrings - Target
Him /// Pants - Express, $59.90 // Shirt - Michael Kors via TJ Maxx, $19.99 // Tie - Macy's, $49.50

The total new cost of our attire was $445.49, which was half due to my splurge for shoes. We had a little money left over from our budgeted travel expenses, and Andrew insisted that I get the shoes and dress that I wanted. He knew that the shoes would be worn more than once and get some good use, so despite my qualms, he insisted I get them. This in itself is amazing as he most recently was heard saying, "You already have too many shoes!" as we browsed the new DSW that opened up nearby. I also say "new cost" because Andrew already owned the pants as part of his work clothes wardrobe.
I chose the mint cork wedges and tie to compliment the clutch that Kristen made for me as a wedding gift. I had initially found a mint dress at Nordstrom Rack that I was going to wear, but in a last minute fit of wedding panic (I say this jokingly of course, as this was the most stressful part of our wedding and it wasn't even really stressful!), I decided it'd be more fun to do a traditional white dress.
For me, this was a bit more than I wanted to spend on our wedding, but at the same time I realize that our entire ensemble cost less than all of the actual "wedding" dresses I looked at. I'm not sure why they can charge more just because it is dubbed as a wedding dress! And with a mere $15 needed to use the courthouse for 10 minutes, why not splurge a little?
Were you on a tight budget for your wedding? Anyone else out there do a courthouse wedding like us? What were your splurge items for your wedding attire?

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Courthouse Wedding

Heidi Shenk "daily life" "wedding"

I've been a really bad blogger, but I don't really care. Sometimes the pressures of keeping up with this are more than I feel like dealing with (more on that soon, I hope!) and it's more fun to do other things instead. However, I thought that I should probably share with you all a pretty important event that just happened. This Tuesday, as in three days ago, we got married!

For me, it seems rather silly to make a big deal about it. Andrew and I have been together for about nine years, have owned a house together for three, and have lived together for six. To be honest, the only notable difference in how things are for us post wedding is the fact that we both have wedding bands. Other than that, I'm pretty sure it's safe to say we both feel the same way we did a week ago, a month ago, or even a few years ago. I would assume that's probably a good sign, right?

Either way, we had a short and sweet, ceremony at the Circuit Court of Baltimore City that included the two of us and our good friend Marshall as our witness and photographer. The ceremony itself lasted probably all but three minutes. We waited in the the marriage licensing office prior to heading to the civil marriages room longer that our ceremony took, and I'm quite fine with that!

Highlights from the day included the random congratulations we received from all sorts of people when we came out of the courthouse-- businessmen and addicts alike. Apparently no matter what situation people are currently at in their lives, they still believe in and are happy about love.

After our ceremony, we headed to Fells Point to one of our favorite pubs, Koopers, where we had a few beers and enjoyed some crab dip. Probably about five years ago, Andrew made a fake proposal when we were having dinner at Koopers and not so seriously chatting about the future. I even suggested that I should wear a twisty tie on my ring finger from that moment forward. As we enjoyed our beers, we realized that we had come full circle, sitting at Koopers yet again.

We then went home and took naps. Yup. We're awesome like that. Who doesn't want to take a late afternoon nap in a chair in the living room on their wedding day? After waking up from the nap, we just looked at each other, laughed, and said, "Now what?"

We had late dinner reservations at our favorite restaurant, Woodberry Kitchen. We dressed back up in our outfits for the day and headed out to dinner after a brief prom-like photo shoot that involved our neighbors and a whole lot of joking and laughing. Then it was off to dinner-- a two and a half hour event that involved some of the most amazing food. Naturally, the night ended with us passing out on our couch and sofa chair in the basement in a complete food coma. Now if that isn't a low-key day, then I don't know what is. And after all is said and done, I can't even fathom how anyone would even want to subject themselves to the stress of planning a bigger event than a courthouse wedding.

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The Anti-Bride

Heidi Shenk "confessions" "keeping it real" "wedding"

Remember this post from forever ago? No? Figures. It took me a while to dig back into the archives and dust it off. And if you do remember the post, which part was most memorable? For me, it was the wood-fired oven and the Frank Lloyd Wright house. But if you read the little side note at the end, you'd probably find out that I also told you we got engaged. In Chicago. In the rain. In Millennium Park. It was one of those little side notes that wasn't super important, but I figured you all would love to know. And I wrote that post, oh you know, almost two years ago. No biggie. Post engagement photo? This is as exciting as it gets.

At this point, some of you are probably suddenly remembering that Oh yeah, she did get engaged. So when is the wedding? Truth? I hate weddings. I suppose I am the epitome of the anti-bride. While others have been planning their weddings since they were a little girl, I have thought absolutely nothing of it. And quite frankly, I get sick of the question, "So have you set a date yet?" followed by the maniacal laughing as if it is the funniest joke that has ever been told.

Here's my thing. I'm not a lovey dovey, gushy mushy type of person. I hate ceremonies of all kinds. I am not religious. I am a complete introvert. Getting married is about me and Andrew, not our family and friends. Yup. I just said that last bit. And I'm not afraid to say it again. It's all about us! So why should I have to have this ginormous wedding just for the sake of friends and family? Why would I want a church wedding? Why would I want to partake in a huge ceremony? And why would I want to be in front of dozens upon dozens of people proclaiming my love from now until forever?

Here's another thing. I did a little research and found this awesome site. Click the link and you'll see that on average, a wedding in Baltimore costs between $18,000 and $31,000. Ummm, excuse me? Say that again? You mean a wedding in this city would most likely cost me more than I paid for my car? I don't think so!

With that same money, I could travel around the world for several months. Or I could purchase ten round trip tickets to Sydney, Australia. And I've been dying of homesickness (even though it's not my original home) since I left Australia after living there in 2005. I think that sort of experience is much more warranted when it comes to celebrating spending the rest of your life with another person.

Speaking of spending the rest of your life with another person, why is it that it is only socially accepted that marriage is what must happen? I think I got more congratulations from our engagement than when we moved in together five years prior. We like to do things backwards-- we moved in together, we got a dog together, we bought a house together, then we got engaged a while later. However, just because getting engaged was the last of these things to happen did not mean that we had already planned on being together for the rest of our lives.

Actually, we got engaged several years prior at one of our favorite bars as we discussed that we would eventually get married. I think Andrew asked me if I'd marry him, and I'm pretty sure I said yes and told him that I should wear a twisty tie on my ring finger from here on out. All joking aside, we are partners in crime for life and always knew that. So why the formality? Well, health insurance benefits would be pretty nice I suppose if I go self-employed. And it is probably a good idea to have all of that legal stuff worked out. However, it all seems a bit of, well, a formality.

So how are we going to get married? We plan on going to the courthouse. I don't really know when-- probably sooner than later. Then, we're going to have a giant cookout with cornhole and beer and grilling and invite our closest family and friends. There. I've planned my wedding! Now for those of you that keep asking about if we've set the date-- you'll know as soon as I do! ;)

P.S. Don't forget to enter the group giveaway going on right now! 

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Jersey City Wedding Weekend

Heidi Shenk "new jersey" "nyc" "wedding"

It's nice to be back today after taking a much needed break on Monday to rest. We spent the weekend in New Jersey to attend a college roommate's wedding. It was an amazing weekend, but it left me exhausted as we drove back immediately following the reception on Sunday night and arrived home around 2:30 on Monday morning. We arrived in New Jersey on Saturday afternoon just in time to quickly change and head to the rehearsal dinner. Afterward, we checked into our hotel and enjoyed a walk along the Hudson. I finally had the perfect opportunity to try out my wide angle lens for the first time.

We caught up with my other college roommate, Sally, in Hoboken at a fantastic outdoor beer garden. It was perfect weather-- no humidity and in the 70s so it was great to spend time outside. After heading back to our hotel, we decided to take another walk along the water for some night time skyline photos.
 After successfully boring Andrew with my nerdy photography talk until 1:30 in the morning (yes, I really was out that late taking photos) it was time to crash, so we headed back to the hotel. In the morning we woke up to a fantastic view of the New York City skyline from our hotel window.
And we also were greeted by a fantastic view of Aerosmith's tour buses in our hotel parking lot. Whaaaat? Time to Instagram that shit.
After enjoying a huge breakfast (when I'm on vacation, I ALWAYS go for the scrambled eggs, hash browns, bacon, and toast combo) we needed to check out of the hotel. And of course spy on Joey Kramer in his coffee tour bus.
Wait, what? You don't know who Joey Kramer is? He's only the drummer for Aerosmith. Yes, I might have been obsessed with them when I was in high school and know all of the band members names. I might have even gone to a couple of their concerts and bought some Aerosmith t-shirts. No shame in that!
Total, there were seven of these bad boys, but this one was the only one that was super fancy schmancy since apparently Joey Kramer recently launched his new coffee company. (See, I told you, I still know too much about this band.) Either way, I was kind of excited.
But then I forgot to capture my sad face from when I didn't really get to see any of the band members. I sort of may have wanted to ask the lady at the front desk which room Joe Perry was staying in while I was checking out of the hotel, but I was good and didn't ask. I'm sure Andrew was glad I saved him from that embarrassment. Anyway, this was supposed to be about a wedding, right?

Next we had some work to do. My friend Steph, who also happened to be the bride, was having a Warhol themed wedding. She had created some amazing Warhol-esque photos of her family and the wedding party and had asked us to hang them for her in the reception hall. We spent the afternoon hanging each photo with fishing line and leveling them so they would be perfect for the reception.

The wedding took place at Maritime Parc in Liberty State Park. To be honest, if you live in New Jersey near the city, I can't imagine a better place to have a wedding. The ceremony was held in a  beautiful space filled with natural light with a skyline of Lower Manhattan as the backdrop. As you walk back downstairs to the reception hall, you have a beautiful view of the Statue of Liberty.
The ceremony was followed by a cocktail hour that was held both inside and on a beautiful wrap around outdoor terrace. The cocktail hour included drinks, a sushi bar (my favorite touch!), barbeque sliders, and a spread of bread, cheese, and spreads. It was the perfect opportunity for photos as well. And clearly, I must post this classic photo of a near dress malfunction thanks to the wind as we prepare for photos. In case you wondered why I never post photos of myself, you now have another glorious example.
Thank you heels for making me tower over Andrew. Thank you late night before for the bags under my eyes. Thank you wind for my crazy hair that had to be thrown up last minute. And thank you Nordstrom Rack and Tory Burch for the fabulous last minute dress after my dress freak-out on Friday night.
It was so, so good to catch up with my dear friend Sally as well. We don't get to see her often, but when we do it's as if we picked up where we left off last.

And on to the reception. The flowers were beautiful.
The food, fabulous.
The cake, perfectly simple.
The reception hall, so incredibly classy.
And an ever so amazing view from our dinner table.
 And of course the bride and groom-- stunning!
And of course we needed a roommate shot for old times sake. Sorry that you will have to live through my photo mishaps again. This is the classic eyes half way closed shot. I warned you people, these sorts of things happen 9 out of 10 times when I am in a photo. I should have just spared you, but I needed this photo for posterity's sake.
Now, I'm definitely not super into weddings. Trust me, I haven't even started planning mine nor will it be traditional in any way. However, that being said, I have to admit that this was perhaps one of the most fabulous weddings I have attended. Everything was simply perfect and made for a really amazing weekend. Congrats again to Steph and Mike! We were so glad to have been able to celebrate with you guys and know that you will enjoy a lifetime of happiness together!

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Design a Day Challenge: Day 1

Heidi Shenk "cards" "design a day" "design" "invitations" "save the dates" "stationery" "summer" "wedding"

My challenge is underway and going well so far! But that is to be expected for the first day! :) In reality, I've designed more than one thing a day, knowing that there will probably be a day here or there in which I'll be out of town or time slips by quickly enough without me being able to get something done.

The first design is one that was inspired by my browsing on Pinterest. So many creative things happening out there and they all collide on Pinterest! I decided to make these cute popsicle save the dates in lots of bright colors. I used white font to keep them light and summery, attached a popsicle stick to the back to give them the full effect, and finally converted them into magnets using some magnet tape. The end product is this fresh design, perfect for a summer outdoor wedding!

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