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Burgundy and Gold Color Palette for your Wedding Day

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Burgundy and Gold Color Palette for your Wedding Day

With the chill in the air and leaves falling off the tree’s you know it’s time for holiday weddings. The holidays are a time for celebration and perfect for hosting your event. Everyone is in a cheerful mood and spending time with friends and family comes naturally. Choose a deep burgundy with gold accents for a formal and warm feeling. Everyone will dress up in their best and toast to the newlywed couple. Here are some images of the two colors together.





DIY Floral Design for the NW Bride

So, you’re thinking of foregoing a florist to do your own wedding flowers? Bridal bouquets from florists can be beautifully designed, but can also be as much as the price you paid for a wedding dress! (Kate Middleton’s relatively simple bouquet alone was estimated by some to be as much as $1,000!).
Doing your own flowers is a great way for brides to maximize their flower budget while not sacrificing quality or the type of flowers that they’ve always dreamed of having. Flowers can be easily ordered online and shipped directly from the farm at wholesale prices. This means you can get really fresh flowers at a much more affordable price (avoiding the markup that florists and other retailers tack on). However, this does require some leg work on your end. To help you out, here are some tips and examples to help guide you through the process.

Getting Prepared

As a bride, you have enough to worry about, so if you have an aunt or bridesmaid with an eye for design, enlist their help!
Next, make sure you have the right materials and tools that will make creating a beautiful bouquet a cinch:

• A good pair of floral cutters
• Floral tape
• Ribbon
• Bouquet pins

If you’re working with flowers that need a little more support, then some floral wire may come in handy. All of these things can be ordered online or you can find them at a local craft store.
For flower types, going mono-botanical (one flower variety) will be the easiest and allows you to maximize your budget if you’re buying online in larger (bulk) wholesale quantities. Working with a single flower type and color will be the easiest to arrange and you can still create a vibrant and beautiful bouquet. Here are the top 4 flowers that work great for DIY bridal bouquets:

1. Single Stem Bouquets

For the design challenged, there are 2 easy and simple single stem “bouquets” that really don’t require any arranging at all: jumbo hydrangeas and cymbidium orchids.

Jumbo hydrangeas are fittingly named. A single stem is at least 9 inches across (some get as big as 11-12 inches!). These come in a variety of colors – white, blue, green and antique versions (which have multi-colored “antique” hues on their petals). A single stem alone can make a simple, yet elegant bridal bouquet. Just wrap the stem in ribbon and if desired a nicely tied bow can be added for an extra embellishment. This can be easily done in no time at all and smaller hydrangea sizes (Medium, Petite or Mini), can be used in the same way for bridesmaids and flower girl bouquets.


Another flower that works great as a single stem bouquet is the cymbidium orchid. A good quality cymbidium should have at least 8 blooms on a single stem. They come in a variety of colors: white, pink (light & dark), green, yellow and brown. They may need a little more support and some wire carefully wrapped around the stem can help reinforce the stem so it doesn’t sway around when you’re walking down the aisle. Otherwise, add some ribbon and you have yourself a great looking “bouquet”!

2. Traditional Rose Bouquet

For brides looking for a more traditional bouquet, I recommend the following three varieties that work well in a bouquet all on their own. Roses, of course, are a top choice and they have the most available color options of any type of flower. You shouldn’t have a problem finding the right shade of red, pink or any other color to match your wedding theme. A very small number of rose colors are sprayed or dyed (this pretty much only includes bright blue roses, black roses and any type of “rainbow” colored rose – the vast majority of “bi-color” roses are not artificially colored). If you are planning an outdoor wedding and some rain might be in the forecast, then you might want to avoid these. The last thing you want is for color to leach on your beautiful wedding dress!

A rose bouquet can be simply created by slowly building the shape you want stem-by-stem and periodically taping the stems together as you go. As you build, you should slowly rotate the bouquet in your hand and spiral out the stems until you get the size that you desire. You can use as few as 6 roses to create a small bouquet all the way up to two dozen for a larger more stunning bouquet. You wouldn’t want to go too much larger than that as the bouquet may become a bit unwieldy to manage (not to mention a little heavy!).
Once you have the bouquet you want, you can trim down the stems leaving about 2 inches more than your desired length. A larger bouquet should have longer stems to give it better support. You can cover up all the floral tape with the ribbon color of your choice using pins to secure everything together. The extra 2 inches allows you to put the bouquet in water without getting your ribbon wet.

3. Modern Mini Calla Lily Bouquet

Another flower that can be arranged in a similar manner for an absolutely stunning look (with almost no work at all!) is the mini-calla lily. These are sturdy flowers that don’t need any time to open like other varieties. The soft stems make them easy to arrange into a bouquet with some floral tape to keep them all together. I like to wrap ribbon around the stems and place a row of coordinating floral pins in a vertical line.

This not only helps keep everything in place, but also ads a nice accent to the bouquet. The mini-calla flower probably has the most “bang for the buck” as a DIY flower. Many florists or other retailers charge ridiculous prices for these, but you can find them online at great prices. As long as their “look” works for you, I cannot recommend these flowers enough. They are super easy to arrange and they are incredibly durable; they are pretty much the perfect wedding flower.

4. Whimsical Peony Bouquet

Lastly, peonies are a favorite choice of many brides. They don’t come in quite as many colors as other types of flowers (white and shades of pink and red), but it’s hard to compete with how gorgeous and whimsical the blooms are.
Historically, these were only available in the spring (roughly May-June), but now you can find them throughout much of the year. If you order these online, don’t freak out when they show up as tight little balls. You just need to cut the stem about 1-2 inches and place them in at least 2-3 inches of water. They will start to open after 4-5 hours in water and will look like the peonies you know and love in 24-48 hours!

This is not a long lasting flower and I highly recommend getting these direct from the farm to ensure that you have blooms that last as long as possible. As few as 6 stems can make a nice bouquet but you can add more to create a full and colorful bouquet. If you love peonies, you know that there is simply nothing that can replace their lush petals and beautiful textures. The great news is that their natural beauty makes these flowers a really easy DIY option; you can have a $1,000 bouquet look by spending a small fraction of that when you use peonies for your DIY bouquet.

Prepping Your Flowers

If you’re planning to order flowers online, the five varieties above should be ordered for delivery 2-3 days before your event. Once your flowers arrive, immediately cut at least one inch off the stems and place them in 3 inches of water, except for the mini calla lilies. Mini-callas only need 1-1.5 inches of water (I know that seems weird, but because of how they store water in their stems this really is all they need and is the best way to keep them looking amazing).
Arrange any of these bouquets the day before the wedding and place them in water until you need them. Don’t forget to leave the stems a little longer so they can sit easily in water overnight. Just trim them to your desired length (you can also use a paper towel to wipe excess water off), just below the ribbon on your big day and they are ready to go!
For those of you who are still a bit nervous about doing your own flowers, you should do a practice run before the wedding so you can work out any kinks that you may come across and also make sure you like the results. For those with more advanced skills, you can go crazy with more complex designs. By DIY-ing your own bridal bouquet, you can get beautiful flowers at an affordable price.
Jane Vance is a floral design expert for Flower Muse, an online flower retailer that specializes in delivering fresh flowers directly from the farm. Jane is passionate about design and loves helping a bride choose the perfect floral arrangements for her special day!

Engagement Ring Boxes

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Engagement Ring Boxes

So you’re thinking about getting engaged.  You’ve bought the ring, planned where to pop the question, how to do it, what to say and even what to wear, but what about how to present the ring?  Will it just be floating loose in your pocket or tucked away in the standard store engagement ring box?  Why not put the ring in something a little more interesting?  While there are endless proposal ideas that include putting the ring somewhere less traditional (i.e. inside the last item of a scavenger hunt or in the glove box of a car during a planned stop by the police), today we’re focusing on engagement ring boxes off the beaten path for the less daring proposers.  These trinket boxes, ring caskets, vintage compacts, wooden ring boxes and mini ring pillows provide a safe place to store engagement rings, but are also a beautiful way to present engagement rings.  If you’d like to amp up your marriage proposal with a special engagement ring box, start by looking at these ideas:

Antique Ring Casket by Her Majesty’s Pug (SOLD)

 Vintage Compact with Side Lipstick Canisters

 Vintage Compact with Flower Design

 Antique Art Nouveau Jewelry Box

 {LEFT} Clam Shell Trinket Box  {CENTER} Sea Cave Tile Trinket Box  {RIGHT} Hummingbird Trinket Box

Klotz Jewelry Packaging by Designer, Gerlinde Gruber

 Wooden Ring Box with Inlaid Compass

Marry Me Engagement Ring Pillow

{LEFT} Silver Plated Engraved Heart Trinket Box  {RIGHT} DIY Lump of Coal Ring Box


Honeymoon Destinations: Yoga Retreat in Tulum, Mexico

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Honeymoon Destinations: Yoga Retreat in Tulum, Mexico

Calling all yogis who are about to tie the knot!  Portland yoga studio, Yoga Bhoga, is hosting a tropical yoga retreat to Tulum, Mexico February 13th through February 20th.  Of all the tropical honeymoon destinations to choose from, this one is sure to take the cake.  Not only do you get to relax on a warm, sandy beach, but you’ll get to enjoy yoga sessions twice each day to help melt away the stress of planning a wedding.  The retreat takes place at Amansala resort, the perfect place for an escape to paradise.  Amansala consists of 24 beautiful cabanas set in a village like setting along with a beachfront restaurant, lounging terrace, yoga shalas and massage rooms.  (Psst!  If you’re in the market for a destination wedding, they’re fully equipped to host your beachfront wedding, too.)

Here’s what Yoga Bhoga has to say about this tropical yoga retreat to beat all honeymoon destinations:

Looking for the perfect antidote to the Northwest Winter?  Join Scott and Sarah for a week long yoga retreat at Amansala resort located in Tulum, Mexico. Swim in warm ocean waters, walk on beautiful powder beaches and nourish your spirit with twice daily yoga practices. Build physical strength and cultivate mental relaxation with fluid and mindful asana, pranayama and meditation practices appropriate for all levels.

This retreat includes delicious and healthy meals (with vegetarian options) that leave you feeling revitalized.  Rooms are airy, spacious and beautifully styled and the beach sand starts at the door!  Check out the view from one of the rooms you’ll practice yoga in – can you hear the ocean yet?

Yoga Journal magazine recently declared Amansala a “spectacular retreat center!”  The following prices cover accommodations, meals and all yoga gatherings.

  • Shared room – $1649,
  • Semi-deluxe single room – $1999
  • Deluxe single – $2,249.

Space is limited.  Last day to register is December 31st.  A $500 deposit secures your spot!  Please contact with any questions.

Bamboo Wedding Party Favors

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Bamboo Wedding Party Favors

In keeping with our Zen wedding theme of the week, we would like to show you how to make lucky bamboo wedding party favors.  You might not realize this, but the plant is actually not bamboo at all, but stalks of Dracaena sanderiana, a plant native to the equatorial West African region.  Most likely, it is called “lucky bamboo” simply because cuttings of the Dracaena look like bamboo.  For centuries, the Chinese have associated bamboo with good fortune, fortitude and resilience, which makes it a wonderful gift to bestow upon someone.  Guests who receive these wedding party favors are encouraged to place them in any spot in their home or office to enhance the good energy, to revitalize the bad, and to bring growth into their lives.

When putting together your lucky bamboo arrangements, you’re bringing together five essential elements of Feng Shui – earth, wood, water, metal and fire.  The rocks or pebbles in the plant container symbolize earth.  The vertical stalks symbolize wood.  The lucky bamboo are placed in water.  Metal is found as a small ornament or coin in the container.  Fire is any color of red, pink, burgundy or maroon that can be added.  You don’t have to incorporate all of these elements in your wedding party favors, but it’s something to think about as you choose your materials and assemble all the jars or vases.

A month or two months before your wedding is a good time to order the bamboo stalks.  This will prevent months of caring for the lucky bamboo.  It will look healthier and lessen the possibility of yellowing leaves.  Keeping all your lucky bamboo in one large container or a few larger containers makes watering an easier task.  Once you are ready to assemble the favors, rinse all the bamboo with water to remove any debris or dust that may have collected.  One week before the wedding, insert the lucky bamboo stalks into the pre-assembled jars or vases and fill them with water.  Put your completed party favors in boxes the day before the wedding for easy transport.

You can easily buy lucky bamboo stalks in bulk on ebay (100 4-inch stalks for $32). has stellar deals on glass jars ($2.99 per case of 6 jars when you order 3 or more cases).  You can also find really affordable pebbles at pet supply stores like PetSmart ($2.79 for a 2 Lb. bag of polished river rock pebbles).

This tutorial on how to make your own lucky bamboo wedding party favors was brought to you by

Bridesmaids Gift Ideas: Private yoga session

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Bridesmaids Gift Ideas: Private yoga session

When I happened upon this bridal shoot by Andrea Lee Photography and Erin of Red Sole Events, I knew I had to share it with you.  If you’re looking for unique bridesmaids gift ideas or a fun, relaxing way to start off your wedding day, a private yoga session and tea party is a fabulous way to do it.  With your closest friends at your side, you get to spend the morning of your wedding releasing all the stress of planning.  By the end of your session, you’ll feel rejuvenated.  Your mind and body will be present in the day, ready to fully experience the joy as you marry the man of your dreams.  So, before the hair and make-up begin, why not treat yourself and your bridesmaids to a nice tea party and yoga session, and zen out!

Erin Daniels Holme of Red Sole Events and Andrea Cook of Andrea Lee Photography, both out of Dallas, Texas, envisioned the perfect wedding day bridal yoga session and tea brunch. Breath, release stress, enjoy the moment, and stretch your body by attending a private yoga flow class with your bridesmaids. Let the instructor know what level yogis your group consists of, and move through simple, intermediate and difficult poses, as demonstrated by models from Allen Yoga Center and Vertical Fitness, Dallas.

Ask the instructor to read for the group some passages that invoke thoughts of love and happiness. Finish your yoga session with fresh brewed tea and keep your body clean by eating healthy finger sandwiches. Finish off your bridal get together with hair and make-up and by having your friends help you into your gown!

Wedding Vendors in Texas:

Photographer: Andrea Lee Photography / Floral Designer: Red Sole Events / Bride’s Dress: Gowns Of Grace / Calligraphy: The Butler’s Pantry Calligraphy / Venue : Allen Yoga Center / Caterer: Eden Restaurant & Pastries / Model: Stephanie Brinlee (JBS Supplies) / Model: Lisa Willis (Lisa Willis Yoga) / Model: Kim McCarter / Model: Jessica Harris (Moxie Mischief) / Model: Christian Kramer (Allen Yoga Center) / Makeup Artist: AW Wedding Hair and Makeup

4 Top-Rated Yoga Studios in Portland, Oregon:

What To Do With Wedding Cards

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What To Do With Wedding Cards

Do you ever find yourself wondering what to do with all the cards you receive?  Do most of them end up shoved in a box, the back of a drawer or in the recycling?  If all the cards say “Happy Birthday!” and nothing more, that’s understandable, but what if they’re your wedding cards and people you care about have left heartfelt messages in them?  These words of wisdom, advice, love and support are valuable and worth keeping.  While your wedding is only one day, your marriage is a journey over a lifetime.  Whether you think you need it or not, sometimes it’s good to remind yourselves why you entered into a marriage together and how you want to nurture that relationship.  Compiling your wedding cards into a book or time capsule are two great ways to do this.  They make it easy to hold onto those memories and they’re pretty to look at!  Check out these tutorials on how to save your wedding cards.

Accordion Envelope Books:

Tutorial brought to you by Whimsy Love.


-glue stick
-razor blade
-scrap papers

{Step 1}

The first thing you’ll want to do is put glue on the flap of all but 1 envelope and glue them to the front side of each other.  The flap of the first envelope will not be glued.  It will become the front cover of your book.

{Step 2}

After they’re all glued, you’ll fold them, accordion style, back-n-forth to form a book.  (See above.)

{Step 3}

Place an envelope flap on some pretty scrapbook paper and trace around the flap onto the paper.  Cut it out using regular scissors, then use decorative scissors to give the side nearest the envelope fold a decorative edge.  Glue the finished piece of scrapbook paper onto the flap of the first envelop in your book.  This is your book’s cover.

{Step 4}

Open your book all the way and measure the very last envelope to find the center point on both sides.   Cut a small slice through the envelope on each side just large enough for your ribbon to slide through.  You’ll have to reach inside your envelope to slice the side where the bottom of the last envelope lays.  It’s easier this way.

Now slide your ribbon through both slots.  When your book is closed, your ribbon will tie everything closed nicely.


Ring Album:

You can find the (very) complete details for this tutorial on how to turn your wedding cards into a ring album at Something Turquoise, but here’s the Cliff Notes version.  Cut out 2 cardboard pieces slightly larger than your biggest card, decorate them however you please, punch holes in the corners of the covers and cards, then slide a ring through the holes to bind it all together!


Paint Can Time Capsule:

You can purchase new paint cans at your local home improvement store and decorate them using scrapbook paper, stickers, paint or whatever you want.  Inside, you place any wedding cards with important messages, a copy of your wedding invitation, save the date, programs, dried boutonniere, or any other mementos you’d like.  Put the lid on and save it for your 1st, 5th or whatever anniversary you want!

Custom Wedding Hangers

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Custom Wedding Hangers

Details are everything in a wedding.  There are so many of them!  I needed a notebook to keep track of all the details for my wedding.  If you’re not already completely overwhelmed by your list of details, consider adding personalized wedding hangers to your pile of bridal accessories.  Every photographer takes a million pictures of your dress.  If you’re going to hang it in the window, over the door or from a tree, why not make the hanger holding the dress add to the image rather than detract from it?  Luckily, you can find these fun wedding hangers right here in town from a Portland-based seller on Etsy, Your Bridal.  Here are a few examples of their work at $20 per hanger:

Do-It-Yourself Wedding Hangers:

Want to try your hand at a little wire bending of your own?  Here’s a step-by-step guide for how to make your own custom wedding hangers brought to you by fellow wedding planners, Chris and Michelle:


  • Wooden hanger.  Target has a 5-pack for $3.99.
  • 12 gauge floral wire.  A craft store like Michael’s should have some.  Buy more than you think you’ll need, because you’ll probably need the practice!  If you want colored wire, check out the jewelry section.
  • Craft glue.
  • Needle nose pliers
  • Wire cutters
  • Dremel or drill (use a 5/64″ bit or something similar)
  • Pen or marker

Step 1:


Start to shape the letters.  Try not to make the letters too big.  Use the pliers to help shape the letters and tighten the loops.  Make sure you leave enough wire on either side of the name to make sure you can get the name centered on the hanger.

Step 2:


Determine where you want to attach the name on the hanger and make a mark.  Clip any extra wire off to make it centered.  Use the dremel/drill to drill a hole where you’ll put the wire in.  If the hanger starts to smoke, go slowly!  You might need to start by drilling straight into the hanger to get the hole started, and then drill in at an angle.  Don’t drill all the way through.  The hole should be just big enough for the wire to fit securely in the hanger.

Step 3:


After drilling the hole, make sure the wire fits securely into the hole.  Put a little glue on the ends of the wire and insert them into the hanger.  Let it dry overnight.