Happy Wedding Wednesday! Today marks exactly six months until S and I say “I do!”. I cannot believe it’s been seven months since S got down on one knee. This fun time in our lives is seriously flying by! Today I wanted to do a wedding planning update. I feel like I’ve been sharing little snippets of planning through Instagram and every day blog posts, but I wanted to write out everything we’ve checked off our list to this point and what we have on deck the next few weeks.
2.PICKED OUR HASHTAG
Before sharing the news online, we thought of a few hashtags and decided on #HellotoServello! The marketer in me couldn’t announce until we found something unique, catchy and cute. To find our hashtag, I brainstormed words that started with S or ended with O. After having a few to pick from, #HellotoServello was our favorite.
3.ASKED OUR BRIDAL PARTY
I shared here how we asked our friends to stand by our side here. This is easily one of our favorite wedding planning moments to date. We each have six of our besties within our bridal parties so sharing these moments with os many different personalities has been so fun. Many of our friends live across the country, so it was fun how everyone seemed to receive the news on different days.
4.BOOKED RECEPTION + FINALIZED DATE
After we took time to soak in engagement bliss with friends, we started thinking about what type of wedding we envisioned. We started with the reception search. I’m originally from Maine and S and I actually met in high school when he moved to my hometown his junior year of high school, so we always envisioned a Maine wedding. S and I debated between a small coastal wedding outside in Southern Maine or a larger ballroom wedding in Portland. After vetting through different locations, we ultimately decided on a larger ballroom wedding reception for a few reasons.
An elegant ballroom felt more our style than a rustic, outdoor venue and it fit a large guest list [S comes from a huge Italian family]. We also put a lot of thought into convenience for our guests. Everyone is traveling from out of town, so the location is right on the coastline in the Old Port which gives our guests lots of fun things to do through the weekend [Portland is second in the country for food per capita!]. There’s also a lot of options when it comes to lodging. There are hotels, bed and breakfasts and air bnb right nearby which we felt hit every budget.
Right when we visited, we knew it was “the one”. It’s odd to describe, but we just knew! I was relieved that our first choice venue was the one we sealed the deal with and let’s be honest, the fact we don’t need to worry about the weather makes me one much less stressed bride! Plus, we can still capture the beautiful Maine coastline in our portraits since our venue is right in the Old Port.
5. BOOKED CEREMONY LOCATION
Probably the most researched part thusfar! Literally the week we got engaged, S came home with a twenty page printed out booklet on the details of marrying in the Roman Catholic church. I was like, someone’s throwing a big hint, ha! From there, we looked into the different requirements to marry since we have different religious backgrounds. We found a local church that we have been regularly attending and everyone has been so sweet and welcoming. S and I have met with our priest a few times to better understand the requirements [due to varying religious background and since we’re getting married in a different state]. We’ve completed and reviewed our answers for the FOCCUS pre-marital test with our priest too. This was so fun and we were happy to see the strengths in our relationship really shine though – communication, healthy friendships, etc. We’ve also booked our pre-cana marriage counseling preparation program which starts this month for a four week duration. We’re really excited for this! That’s a lot, huh?! You’re telling me! So with all that said, we’ve booked an absolutely breathtakingly beautiful Roman Catholic church only a mile away from our reception location. The huge cathedral is made up of all white marble structures. #AllTheHeartEyes I’m so excited to see the next steps once we visit with the church wedding coordinator this month.
6.BOOKED OUR PHOTOGRAPHER
I had a specific wedding photographer bookmarked on my computer for two years which makes me sound very creepy, but I own it because he’s just that amazing! So right when we were inquiring for reception locations, we jumped on inquiring to our dream photographer. Once we had a consultation with him and had our official date, we booked him. We’re so excited for him to capture our wedding day!
7. BOOKED ENGAGEMENT PHOTOGRAPHER
We wanted to shoot our engagement session in Portland before the seasons turned cold. I found Amanda from A.Fogarty Photography through Instagram and we scored the last warm weekend of the year! We shot in a few locations, one being in front of the ferry boats that we rode to Peak’s on the day we got engaged! We adore these photos and shared them here and used them for our holiday cards here.
8.DECIDED ON MENS FORMALWEAR
This may seem like an odd next step before a theme, colors, my dress etc, but I wanted S to decide what he wanted himself and his groomsmen to wear on our wedding. I think him feeling his best in his formalwear is just as important as me selecting my dress. We had two themes to run with and the decision ultimately relied on if he would have navy suits or a traditional tuxedo. I left the decision completely up to him so it was cute seeing him weigh the options and decide. We found that most traditional rental places are so frumpy and after a trial run, we decided to go with The Black Tux because the tuxedos are so sleek and their services are super convenient because S’ groomsmen are all over the country.
9.PICKED OUR WEDDING THEME, AESTHETIC + COLORS
Now that we know our locations and S’ formal wear preference, finalizing our overall theme was pretty easy. I I don’t want to give too much away on that until the big day, but think champagne beading, romantic greenery and gold touches.
10. ORDER BRIDESMAIDS DRESSES
Yep – my girls and I found the dresses before I even found my dress! I had one dress I was in love with for them and luckily it’s figure flattering for everyone so we ordered! Plus, it fit our theme and would go with any dress I eventually chose. Some of my girls just need to get inches taken off the bottom, but other than that we’re good to go there. They are so gorgeous and I cannot wait for you to see them come September!
11.SAID YES TO THE DRESS!
After we nailed down our date, location and bridal party, I focused on my wedding dress search. Maybe this happens to every bride-to-be or maybe I had a large influx because everyone knows I love fashion, but one of the most frequent questions I received the first few months of our engagement was weather I knew what type of dress I wanted! Maybe this is something people search for off the bat or always envisioned themselves in a particular style, but it’s so funny because I didn’t even look at dresses online until three months after.
After I started browsing online, I fell in love with multiple dresses by one specific designer. I could picture myself getting married in every single one of her dresses. I kept telling my dad that I 110% need to try her dresses on before I could explore anything else. I couldn’t believe it when I found a truck show for this designer at my local boutique, Flair on Newbury Street in Boston! I reserved a Saturday afternoon and was so excited for the special day! My dad lives four hours away, so he came down to Boston and stayed the weekend with me and S. It was so fun exploring Newbury Street with him [he’s never been!!!!] and trying on dresses with three of my bridesmaids.
I went into Flair knowing that I had to try on two specific dresses, but went in with an open mind to all different styles and fits. I ended up trying a total of eight dresses, but left being in love with the two I wanted to try from the get-go, haha. After weighing the details with my girlfriends over lunch and via text that evening and chatting my dad’s ear off for hours [he was so patient and helpful], I slept on it and woke up feeling refreshed and knew exactly which was “the one”!
One tip for all those bride-to-be’s out there, make sure that you have someone taking pictures. As the bride, you don’t remember in the moment. My dad was in charge of taking images of each dress from different angles for me yo review after and my girls snapped a bunch too! Once you leave, you forget little details and you want to see what the dress looks like photographed too.
12. ORDERED FAVORS
I don’t want to give this away for guests, so I’m keeping my lips sealed other than the fact that we’re so excited for the favors! What we selected to say thank you to our guests was our #1 pick and fit perfectly within budget which was great.
13. BOOKED OUR DJ
We weighed between a band and DJ and ultimately selected a DJ. S took the lead on this which was awesome! We’re currently digging through music selections which has been so fun. We definitely get off track puling up throw back 90’s songs on YouTube though!
14. BOOKED OUR FLORIST
After vetting through many florists, we found the perfect one! She’s so sweet and really understood my vision. We’re meeting with her at the end of the month and cannot wait!
15.CREATED OUR REGISTRY
Oh my gosh guys – this has been so fun! I didn’t realize how much building a registry makes you think of the future. Who would have thought browsing drinkwear and China would bring up emotions?! Haha. We’re trying to consider pieces for the long term since we’ll probably be buying a house in a couple years, rather than focusing on what will flow with our apartment. Traditional registries can be a pain to organize. I remembered seeing Zola advertised on Pinterest and checked it out which is what we decided on. Zola consolidates all your registry items from different retailers so that you have one sleek
16. REFLECTED + ADJUSTED
While I’m not a fast food eater, big drinker or anything of those sorts, I really reflected on my eating habits, skin care routine, hair care and fitness regimen. I did’t need to overhaul any area of my life too much, but made a few small tweaks and became more regimented.
Skin care: You can read all about my bridal skin care regimen here.
Fitness: S and I are very active and go to the gym many mornings together throughout the week, but I got in a slump. I dreaded going to our gym, so I decided to get back into spin which I love love LOVE. I have a monthly unlimited membership and have been trying to go five+ days a week. I recently grabbed these leggings which are hands down the best work our leggings EVER and a couple of these awesome tanks. I like how they aren’t tight around the core like most work out tanks are.
Hair: I visited my hair dresser to get a natural ombre and remove my blonde highlights. I wanted my hair looking more natural and aimed to get it taken care of well before any engagement or wedding festivities began. I also invested in a top notch wand to do a bit less damage than a drugstore one, upped my heat protectant [I use this when wet and this when dry], use a deep conditioner once a week and ultimately try styling/washing my hair only once a week.
Health: S and I typically eat a lean and clean diet. We only eat once about once a week and love cooking together. I’m really spoiled because he cooks most the time and is great at it! My two areas of focus are increasing my H20 and cutting out refined sugar. When I did Whole 30 last spring, I felt my best ever. Through the holidays, I picked back up sweets so I’m cutting out refined sugar with the occasional ice cream treat this summer ;-).
17. BOOKED BEAUTY
My girls and I will be getting our hair and make up done in my bridal suite the morning of and I could not be more excited. We vetted a few options and ended up going with the premier salon in the area. We’re having two hair/make up artists come to my bridal suite. I cannot wait to treat my girls and get all dolled up while sipping mimosas together!
18. RESERVED HOTEL BLOCK + ROOMS
We set up the room block for the reception so that our guests can have a preferred rate. We’ve already extended it THREE times before even sending out Save the Dates! We made sure that the bridal suite, groom’s room and other needed dates for rooms nailed down. Woo!
19. SENT SAVE THE DATES
We designed and sent out our Save the Dates which was so much fun. All last week I was receiving texts from friends which was so exciting. My dad said that he’d maybe pencil us in, haha. I’ll be sharing them on the blog within the next few days.
20.BOOKED BRIDAL SHOWER
I helped pick the location, date and theme so now I’m sitting back and cannot wait for my bridal shower! Sergio’s been so involved in the little details which is so sweet that he cares so much.
21.STARTED PLANNING LITTLE DETAILS
We’re working with Kelsey from BackBayBride to pull together our little details and nail our overall theme. She’s so sweet and really gets our vision. I can’t wait to share more about her wedding planning experience and the details into planning our own over the next few months.
22. SCHEDULED ON-SITE VENDOR VISITS
We’e so excited to meet with all our vendors in person over the next couple months, along with closer to the date. Eeek!
23. BACHELOR + BACHELORETTE PARTIES ARE BOOKED
S wanted to go on a trip for his so him and his best friends booked a cabin right by Yellowstone National Park. I opted to stay in Boston to reduce costs on my girls since dresses, shoes and such add up REAL quick. My MOH and bridesmaids have kept all the details secret which makes me so excited! I cannot wait to spend time with everyone together and see what they have in store! All I know is that they planned A LOT 🙂
It was really fun putting this post together and reflecting on everything we’ve accomplished. I’ll be sure to have another update sooner than later so that it doesn’t become a novel like today’s post, haha! We still have a lot ahead of us, but time flying by so quickly. You can check out more wedding posts here. Thank you for following along and being so sweet during this exciting time in our lives! Xo Mindy