I can’t believe it’s 6 months already. It has gone by so fast! I love him so.
I keep meaning to write this post and 5 months on, here we are!
Below is one of my favourite photos from our big day. I’m so excited and happy and coming downstairs to finally tie the knot with the love of my life. The shot also captures all of the beautiful lace and details on my gown.
I’ve written before about my wedding dress and the process I took to find it. Stressful, let me say!
Sometimes the experience is just not all girliness and tears and a special time with your mother and/or sisters and friends. Sometimes you can only take along one bridesmaid, and you just try stuff on in a sale, decide, and buy. The lovely Helen came along when we found my dress. And there it is!
I always wanted lace. I’m a pretty old-fashioned kinda girl and I was enchanted by the idea of finding something very delicate and classic. I needed straps or small sleeves, a train, a good fit at the waist to give me shape, and for it to be cream or ivory, not white. Above and below are shots from the maker of my dress, Alfred Angelo #2440. I was taken by the train, the cap sleeves (no sleeveless for me), the beauty of the lace, and the low back:
Helen got a shot of me leaving the shop clutching my dress in a bag on our way to the pub and it’s pretty cute. Maybe I’ll ask her to share it one day.
Searching veils on Etsy, I discovered that I really liked the style of the mantilla veils, and wanted to bring the lace in from my dress. I found a veil online for a ridiculously-cheap price, and was startled when it arrived to find that the shade of ivory and the style of the lace was identical to my dress. A definite win.
Another thing I wanted to do was to embellish the belt a bit. It came with a simple ivory satin belt, and I wanted to add a bit of sparkle to it. I ended up finding a sparkle applique from John Lewis and then I sewed it onto my belt myself! They have a pretty good DIY wedding section. I don’t have any close-up pictures of my belt, but the best view of it is in the above shot with my parents.
I think if I never have another day in my life when I feel this beautiful, I’ll be perfectly okay with it! I have to thank my wonderful team – if you’re getting married in the Wairarapa, they are highly recommended! I used Beneath the Veil (Nicole) for our hair – Nicole took my request and made it even better (so retro!), Latasha at Alluminus in Greytown for our stunning but natural makeup, my dreamy flowers (below) were by the lovely Mindy at Twig & Arrow (she whipped up an extra buttonhole on the day, on the spot!), and our amazing cake (also below) was by Sweet Bakery & Cakery (Karori).
My shoes were custom-made for me by Christy Ng Shoes (Malaysia). I found them on Etsy originally, and their customer service/turnaround time is amazing. I love my shoes so much and they are hands down the most comfortable heels I own.
And finally, all of our decorations and accessories were found on Amazon. Seriously. Cheap and cheerful and easy! If you want to know about anything in particular, let me know. The Mr & Mrs letters were plain and I painted them with a test pot!
I’ll write a more sentimental rundown of the day at some stage, too, but just know it really was incredibly special and everything we hoped for. We only wish we were both from the same place, so more of our friends and family from Edinburgh could have joined us. We didn’t want to exclude them in any way and we missed them! Our Edinburgh party was fun but disappointing in a few ways (so many things went wrong sadly and I wish it was able to be a bit more special). But this was our choice and we couldn’t have wished for a better location/day/vendors.
I also want to give a special shout-out to our incredible photographer, Mary Sylvia. Mary went out of her way (so above and beyond) to give us an amazing set of photos that we will treasure forever. We said from the start that photography was always going to be a top priority in our budget, and we are so glad we chose her. She captures your day without being intrusive and caught so many emotions and special moments. She has a wonderful talent and we love our photos so much.
1. So, apparently freaking out over trying to lose a bunch of weight to fit into a dress (that you subsequently find too tight after dinner on your wedding night and end up busting the zip open hugging people) leads to what I would like to call the “Post-Wedding 15” as in, well, all the weight I lost for the wedding I put back on with fast food in about 3 months. Go me! I’ve always been an overachiever. And stubborn. Take my bad food away, I’ll go back to it with a vengeance.
2. Did you know that Wedding Ring Eczema is a thing? So apparently if you’re not used to wearing 2 rings together (and they’re on the small side to begin with after the aforementioned weight gain), you can develop eczema under your rings if you don’t dry/air out your fingers enough. So take those rings off at night, ladies, and dry your hands properly after the bathroom.
And then when you go on honeymoon in Italy for 2 weeks where it’s 32-37C every day, your weird finger eczema gets way worse and then kinda scars and turns very red and you can’t wear your rings very much anymore. It’s healing, but hey. No one warned me about this! (Hydrocortisone cream and tea tree oil help a lot!)
3. You’ll kinda get the blues. Like, the wedding was an incredibly expensive and stressful hassle but your life suddenly is devoid of something huge to focus you and you’re just left with the debt and the photos and need to find a new purpose. Other people are engaged now. Move on.
4. Time suddenly has no meaning. Like, I got married? What the heck happened. I spent all that time wanting to be engaged and then wanting to get married, and now it seems like a million years ago and bam I have this husband and what. I feel like I just woke up. It’s wonderful but it’s so surreal that this has happened in my life already.
5. The little things from the wedding stay with you the most. I’ll never forget the looks on the faces of my uncles, who aren’t people you can usually get to dance, up on the floor. Such a mix of delight and terror and confusion. This is what I call ceilidh face, and I’m so glad they experienced it. I’ll never forget my darling Chris singing as we signed the license. I’ll never forget the photobooth, or the fire alarm going off during Dave’s speech, or being carried across the threshold. These are the stories for your kids and grandkids.
What surprised you about/after your wedding day?
I’m a married lady.
And it was wonderful.
I’m sorry I haven’t written. In the lead up to the wedding I had so much to say, but I just was beside myself with stress. When I actually arrived in New Zealand, a lot of that had dissipated, but it was a crazy time.
It’s hard to believe it’s been 2.5 weeks since the big day – it feels like I’ve been back at work forever. My name has changed everywhere around me at the office, and I’m in the process of completing a gazillion forms and processes to get it changed everywhere else. I’m committed to it, though.
Life has ticked on and not a lot has changed for us – but we do talk about our day still and look forward to celebrating our marriage again in June with Edinburgh family and friends.
I love my husband, and I’m so excited to call him that. He is my one and only, my happy spark, the best part of my day.
More photos to come soon.
On the last weekend of February I had my first Hen Party. Being an International Woman, I’m being treated to a few!
My Edinburgh-based bridesmaid, Helen, organised a really fun weekend with all of my favourite local women.
And of course in my typical style, I Instagrammed a lot of it! Above is the cake that Helen put together – in my favourite shades, with a fabulous drunk Ariel on top. Hilariously, as I’d curled my hair on Friday night, my hair did end up resembling her on Saturday morning…
What’s a hen without a few penis marshmallows?
We spent Friday night playing Mr & Mrs, where I ended up drinking shots or taking forfeits, and as I got drunker, I got more answers wrong.. and you know where this is going.
By the end of the night I was too drunk to sit upright, and ended up being very gently put to bed. I was not a well woman in the morning.
But after a bit of sleep and some heavily-applied makeup, I was ready for part two. Afternoon tea at The Tower restaurant! Swanky. We were also joined by wee Elsie:
And I like this shot of me and Charly:
Then we moved on to Paradise Palms, which is actually a pretty awesome joint. We had an excellent waitress and after some fries, I started to feel pretty good. We were also joined by a work friend for a drink or two and played some dirty Pictionary (Dicktionary!) invented by Charly. She has an impressive knowledge of terms I’d never heard of.
After a wee bit there, we moved on to Las Iguanas for an amazing Mexican feast.
And then, karaoke! Finally, we ended Saturday on the dance floor.
Sunday we topped off the weekend with a very late brunch, where we were joined by another wee baby pal, Meriel.
All in all, it was a fantastic weekend and I felt very special. It was so great to have my favourite women join me for the silliness and chat.
I feel a bit like I wrote my last post and it got a bit deep so I then dropped the mic and ran away. But hello! I am here.
And holy cow, it’s basically the end of February. I knew 2015 would go by fast but it is disappearing in the blink of an eye. Tomorrow is 4 weeks until we fly to New Zealand and I suddenly feel the time crunch of it all – so much to do before the big day, but I know we’ll get there.
I’ve said it before, but I’ve had a bit of wedding dress body stress, and that has changed quite a lot since I last wrote about it. My first dress fitting went really well, and the seamstress was fantastic and helpful and so, so cheap! I almost fell off my bed when she told me how cheap it was going to be, and she had some excellent suggestions for amendments if I didn’t meet my fitness goals by the final fitting. I’ve got 11 days until the next fitting, but I’m feeling pretty happy with where I’m at so far. I’m still about 15-20lbs over where I (in a perfect world) thought I’d be on my wedding day, and about 25lbs over where I’d ideally like to be (which is actually lighter than I’ve been in geez, probably 15 years, so I’m just being pretty ambitious here), but since September I’ve lost nearly a stone (14lbs/6.5kg) and this year alone I’ve lost 8lbs, so I’m pretty stoked with that.
I know we’re all about not focusing on weight loss these days as a society, and accepting ourselves as we are, and I applaud that. But this to me was never about people thinking I was hot, or having a flat stomach, or buying into anything I’ve been told. It’s always been about my confidence level, and fitting into my clothes, and feeling healthy and strong.
The key to it for me has been diet (though yoga has been wonderfully beneficial as well) – once I started eating right, the cravings for stuff stopped, the self-control grew (like, I can have chocolate next to me and not eat the entire block, which a while ago was tough work) and I’ve become pretty obsessed with Nakd bars and stuff. A huge help I’ve found has been not eating much at night/stopping eating before about 7pm – even when I’ve had an unhealthy day (cause, not gonna lie, there has been some fast food), I’ve managed to keep the weight loss going.
I also do a bit of 6:1/the occasional 5:2 and find that helpful too. Not that common, though. And more work to do!
Ultimately, it has been a huge boost to my confidence and to my happiness. I still weigh so much more than I did 5 years ago, but my stomach is so much smaller, my thighs are awesome and I just feel good about my body for the first time in a long time. Also, the yoga has contributed hugely to my mental health – my stress and anger levels have been pretty high over the last year, but they’re getting better.
I hope you’re all well and good! I have some more posts planned for the next wee bit, so I’ll be back soon – especially to share some amazing shots I got while travelling last week. And I’ve got my Edinburgh hen this weekend – super excited!
Reading: I’m still on Game of Thrones – eternally. I’ve lost track of what’s actually happening, but I’m getting it back. I’m also trying to catch up on my RSS feeds, and discovering new blogs all the time. I still love reading blogs and following along with peoples’ lives and families. Reminds me that I need to write more, as always!
Thinking about: Work and how I feel about it lately. What I want out of it, what I want to do, how I want to progress. Deep thoughts, dudes! In short, I’m just not feeling what I’m doing just now, and I’m not sure how to move on or improve it. I have a whole post in me about this, but I better keep it brief, really. Let’s just say that I don’t like who I am when I do this, and that’s not a good thing. I’m also always thinking about this dude above. I mean, seriously. He’s so cute.
Listening: I recently changed mobile providers and now have unlimited data, and this means that I’m finally able to stream all of my tunes using iTunes Match (which I’ve had for a while, but now can finally use to its full potential!) – it’s a magical thing when you can Shuffle All and get everything from Musicals to French rap, Taylor Swift to Meatloaf. Surreal yet fun. I’m still really into the Pierces, who I’ve now seen twice, and I’m not sure I’ll ever stop listening to Sara Bareilles’ album The Blessed Unrest. It just speaks to me.
Watching: The leaves change, and the light change and the days bleed into each other. It’s scary how fast this year has gone and is going, and how we’ll soon be living in this darkness again for almost 18 hours a day. It’s strange but comforting in its own way. And in these longer nights, we’ll be inside more, which means more TV and more couch time – we’ve been rewatching The West Wing again, which has been great.
Trying: To take stock of life where I can, to appreciate moments when I have them, to keep in touch with people, to grow a little bit every day. And to work fitness back into my life. It’s a struggle, kids.
Loving: This man, who puts up with my shit and lets me pause TV shows while he explains what I missed (because I was on my phone or asleep), who’ll play PS3 games I am really keen on but too scared to play, so I can watch (though he enjoys them too!) and does all of the washing because I am a slacker, and is just generally the best. As we get closer to our wedding day, I get more sentimental and soppy about it, cause I am a huge sap and I can’t wait to be his wife.
Wedding and stuff: My veil arrived last Monday, and I got to try it on Saturday night with the dress, because, y’know, not all “ivory” stuff is the same, and also who am I kidding, I don’t need an excuse to put on my wedding dress. It still doesn’t fit, but I’m working on it (it hasn’t got far to go to zip up). It was a dreamy moment, standing there with the dress and the veil and feeling very bridal. I also sat on the bed for a few minutes and a got a bit weepy and then noticed you could see my feet when I sit, so hurray, maybe my pretty shoes (that I have not yet purchased) will be seen after all.
I also, as planned, got myself the new iPhone 6, as I am subtly showing off above, and it has been a total pleasure. Because of this, I put myself on financial lockdown until the end of the year, unless it’s for the wedding or clothing on my H&M account (which is quite limiting). And of course holiday gifts. One of the purchases I made before I said/decided this was of 2 dresses from Etsy that arrived on Monday and are very sweet, here’s the top of the navy one:
I also got it in mustard yellow (which has white dotted lace at the top), so I’ll instagram that when I wear it, of course.
I hope y’all are doing well! I can’t believe it’ll be October soon.