Sunday, November 30, 2008

#446: dear gentlemen...

via eastsidebride.

thanks for agreeing to stand by mr. tto as he commits to yours truly for the next 100 years of his life. good luck mr. tto.

we will not be going the traditional route of renting tuxes. please don your own black suit, white shirt, and black shoes. we will supply the tie.

if you don't have a black suit, let me know and we'll figure something out.

the soon-to-be-mrs.

#445: hi martha.

a crafy martha project via we met in a bar.

martha project via style for style.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

#444: next week.

i'm throwing a baby shower for one of my dear friends.

it was planned last minute so there will probably only be about 8-10 people. i loves me an excuse to host an intimate get-together.

i was inspired by emily style and researched some new recipes. if i don't use these on the day of, i think i might just cook them up for the fiance.

baked egg custard with gruyere and chives
quick sausage and mushroom lasagna
lentil soup with italian sausage and escarole
steak with parmesan butter balsamic glaze and arugula
sweet potato and kim chi pancakes
beet and goat cheese tartines
mixed berry and cassis sundaes
orzo with garbanzo beans, goat cheese and oregano

Friday, November 28, 2008

#443: #1 or #2?

no, not that kind.


i'm kind of really loving april right now for these two Loverly invitation designs. you know she's all sorts of awesome because the only criteria i gave her were my three words, this picture, and the fact that i like cursive.

and she created these beauties.



which would you choose?

p.s. i don't plan to include the above rsvp return cards. it will most likely just be a separate card with instructions to rsvp online and hotel info for our out-of-towners.

p.p.s. a real conversation:

me: thing i noticed...the first word is spelled incorrectly.

april: the repondez?...i double checked the spelling...i must be missing it...

an hour later.

me: i'm a complete loser. i totally thought it was supposed to be reSpondez.

april: no problem. have a great day!

moral of the story? she's really nice. and i don't know any french. mai oui!

#442: crate & barrel.

on sale for $6.95 at crate & barrel.

#441: so is mrs. pineapple.

read how to make her centerpieces here.

including the amazing paper roses.

#440: mrs. lemon is cool.

read how to make her centerpieces here.

instead of plumerias (which are so gorgeous), i'm thinking maybe just a jewel colored dahlia or two at each table.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

#439: personal shopper.

fendi dress via eluxury.

Runway Seamed Dress
$1,950.00 SALE PRICE: $780.00

#438: go get them.

major giveaway on style me pretty.

"The set includes 100 invitations and response cards, each with printed envelopes, all letterpressed on 100% cotton bright white paper."

you have until friday to enter to win.

p.s. i myself doth had my invitations designed courtesy of april, multi-tasker-of-the-universe, of blu sky designs fame. more to come on this.

#437: call me.

i loved the SNL cheerleaders. cheri oteri + will ferrell = geniosity.

"call me!"


although my soon-to-be betrothed and i live together, if we weren't already, i'd order 100 of these nuggets with our new contact information and put them in a little basket at our wedding for guests to take.

"call us!"

the mandate press via black eiffel.

they've got that simple but bad-ass vibe with designs called "the secret agent" and "the pirate".

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

#436: an essay.

i was asked to talk about my motives for starting the blog, about me, my fiance, and my personal process as it's been thus far. i responded to the person but thought it'd be fun to share the story with you as well.


i was working a finance job in l.a. when i met my fiance. 9 months into our relationship, i was promoted and offered a position in SF. and i decided to take it. future fiance was actively looking for another job at the time and decided to explore his options in SF. he ended up getting a great offer and we decided to move to SF together.

i happened to be a bridesmaid in 3 l.a. weddings that same year and ended up flying to l.a. at least once a month for bridal showers and bachelorette parties. i had also attended 7 weddings the year before. and i was starting to feel a bit like bill murray in groundhog day.

i witnessed a lot of the same things at the weddings - expensive dresses that looked the same, guests leaving pricey favors behind, bridal parties looking exhausted, rooms clearing immediately after dinner at the reception, and couples talking about their budgets and how much they did/didn't recoup through gifts.

and i made a few decisions.

1) i decided that i didn't want a cookie cutter wedding
2) i decided the fiance and i would pay for our own wedding
3) i decided i did not want any of our budget decisions influenced by how much we thought we would recoup
4) i decided i wanted the planning process (and day of) focused around the right things

in my gut, i knew my wedding would have to be different. not spectacular-over-the-top-different. more like...i-will-not-do-something-just-because-it's-standard-different.

without knowing much about the cost of 'all things wedding' other than knowing that my friends had spent upwards of $30,000 for their weddings, i decided that i would be comfortable with a $10,000 budget. i convinced myself that if i had the time to research and be creative, i could really make it happen. i knew there wouldn't be any obvious or easy solutions and i knew it would especially be a challenge because i'd have my own standards of satisfaction to meet...but i also knew there were a lot of things on wedding-checklists-as-of-late that i just didn't care about.

i kept these thoughts floating around in my head and never really talked about it.

until i moved. the move to SF is what really brought TTO to life. when i moved, i didn't have much to do other than my job. it was cold so i never wanted to leave the apartment, my family and friends were in l.a., and the fiance worked much longer hours than i did. i know. cry me a river, right? so i turned to the computer and began the research i had always wanted to do. i had known about and read it religiously and through that site, linked to others in search of anything i thought would help me with my goal. i had the time. and no. i was not yet engaged.

TTO was supposed to be more of a journal than anything else. a place to help me keep my eye on the prize and organize all my research in one place. but, as you know, it's become much more than that. it's become a forum for me (and hopefully others) to gain support, face constructive criticism, and receive advice. and since TTO, i've gotten engaged and learned even more.

if you've read my blog for a while, you'll know i have an affinity for fashion, food, and travel aka i like expensive sh*t. and at the time when i started TTO, i was working really hard to spend really hard. meaning...i didn't not have the means to spend more than $10,000.

but it's funny how things work.

2 months ago, my fiance was offered a job opportunity in l.a. and we decided he should accept it. knowing we'd be moving back to l.a. from SF, i tried to transfer within my company you know, the great world of finance isn't doing so hot and there wasn't a spot available for me. so with the fiance's support, i quit my job and we made the move.

i decided to take the opportunity of being unemployed (for the first time in my life!) to explore one of my 'passions'. and so now i'm in fashion. i'm clinging to the bottom rungs of the industry along with a 70% paycut, but still completely grateful to be experiencing it. *finally*

point being, the 'budget' aspect of our budget has become more prominent all of a sudden. and i appreciate TTO now more than ever.

have some of the choices i've made been a direct result of having TTO? i'd say most of them have.

and am i glad? i'd say i'm thrilled.

do i sometimes want to yell at people or hesitate about my choices when asked about "white wedding shoes" or "favors" or "flower girl dresses"? i'd say fo sho.

but then i remember that it's not about right and wrong. it's about what's right for you.

and what i've done so far in my wedding planning (both mistakes and successes) has been completely right for me.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

#435: butter.

$349 butter by nadia dress via diy bride.

diy bride is having an "under $500 bridal ensemble contest". see all entries here.

p.s. speaking of butter, we took the challenge and we're making the butter version right now. can't wait to taste it.

#434: the placecards.

we've collected about four of these since i was first inspired to do so. and we have 6 months left to collect even more.

i was thinking about using them to make my invitations but, well, i don't need to anymore (more on this later).

however. i still need placecards. so i'm planning to cut up the cardboardish things to direct peoples to their tables.

and i'm pretty happy about it.

#433: "what are your favors?"

i was asked this question over the weekend.

and i didn't have an answer.

if i had space in my budget, i would have definitely thought a lot harder about what to give the guests as a parting gift. but i didn't. plus, i felt like a lot of favor ideas were done and done again. and what's unique about that. so i had kind of stopped thinking about it.

but now i'm seriously considering this whole favor thing again.

because i thought of something.

via lawrys.

why salt?! oh, i don't know. maybe this?

besides, couldn't everyone always use some extra spice? natch.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

#432: status.

bm dresses.


to do:
ceremony schedule.
my vows.
seating chart.
fiance's wedding ring.

i mean. i think i'm pretty much done. what am i missing.

need to add a few things to the to do:
rehearsal dinner.

*thank ya*

#431: one of them days.

it must be a full moon tonight. or something.

i just began my day and so far...

1) during my morning run, i fell. hard. and landed on a sprinkler head.
2) i spilled coffee on my new dress on my way into the studio.
3) i pressed 8 in the elevator. i work on 9.
4) my shoe is broken.

good times.

it doesn't really matter. because regardless. i love love.

le love image via from diamonds to vows.

i like it spicy.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

#430: polaDroids.

via oh happy day.

read how to give all your digipics the special polaroid look at poladroid.

is it strange that i want to do this to ALL of my photos?

Monday, November 17, 2008

#429: to give is to receive.

erica of a history of architecture set up a little doo ditty. and i dig the concept so much that i thought you all should know about it.

especially if you like pretty clothes.

here's an excerpt taken from her blog a few weeks back explaining her decision to start the new blog.

blog no. 2--still working on a name--will be open to everyone who is interested in giving away or swapping clothing and accessories online. my only rule is that if you'd like to participate, all you can request for compensation is a small amount to cover shipping and handling ($5-25ish), plus a nominal amount if it's something that was ridiculously expensive. if you would like to post several items over time, i can add you as a team member so i don't have to spend too much time uploading your photographs and descriptions. anyone else can email me their postings, but obviously my life will be a lot easier if i don't have to become the sole site adminstrator. it should hopefully work on its own, more or less.

i don't think there will ever be an easy solution to online swaps, so i'm going to encourage members to do random giveaways instead. if you want to do a swap, that's up to you. it's a pretty simple thing, no? if you're a recipient, it's always nice to offer up something as a giveaway or swap in return. obviously, everything should be gently worn and in wearable/usable condition. it's a place for people to give away neglected but lovely things that deserve better than the goodwill racks but can't be sold for whatever reason on ebay (plus i hate ebay's fees and rules). it should be like a craigslist, but based on trust and not really for profit or self-promotion. if you're new to the blog, be sure to introduce yourself so we don't feel like we're giving things away to total strangers who may turn around and sell it.

i love buying clothes, and i probably spend too much time and money on it. i started this blog hoping to curtail my spending habits--obviously it hasn't been successful! it has, however, taught me to be more careful about what i buy. being able to give away some things is another way of reminding myself both to be cautious about future purchases and to be happy that someone else is going to enjoy something that didn't work out for me. i suspect that others are in the same boat as me, so maybe we can use this new blog to do justice to our unworn or neglected sweaters, necklaces, bags, and boots.

hopefully i'll have the site up and running in the next few weeks, maybe after the election madness blows over. email me if you're interested in being a team member.

the blog has been set up and site is aptly named laws of general economy.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

#428: sassy.

$210 tibi.

$379.80 mayle.

$240.10 anna sui.

$336 vera wang.

$273.75 thread social.

$265 3.1 phillip lim.

$547.50 lela rose.

$333.75 alice + olivia.

$468 miu miu.

$255 tory burch.

$297.50 diane von furstenberg.

$385 chloe.

more dresses here.

Friday, November 14, 2008

#427: three little words.

via style me pretty.

this image captures how i want to 'style' our wedding, from the invitations to the photos to the ceremony...

romantic. bold. simple.


what are your three words?

#426: g-l-a-m.

got this announcement today:

Glamour Closet, a bridal sample sale boutique headquarted in San Francisco, has opened its second location in West Hollywood in Los Angeles, CA.

NEW designer wedding gown samples such as Monique Lhuillier, Vera Wang, Reem Acra, Amsale, Kenneth Pool and MANY MANY MORE are priced 25-75% OFF its original retail prices EVERYDAY!

Learn more about us at

Hours of Operation:
Wednesdays to Thursdays, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Fridays to Sundays, 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

CLOSED Mondays & Tuesdays

NO appointments necessary, we are on a walk-in basis ONLY.

324 S. La Brea Avenue (cross street: West 3rd)
Los Angeles, CA 90036
Tel. (323) 938-2000

it's about time. the SF boutique is where i tried on the first, last, and only wedding dresses before i purchased my amy kuschel. there were tons of options, for every body shape and size and the staff was patient and helpful. and just recently, the SF boutique had a major sale on top of the 25-75% discount. so. could be worth your time to check it out and get yourself on their mailing list.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

#425: just say no.


please read this.

and this.


a wedding should never be defined by its tangibles, no matter how complicated or simple. and it's disheartening to know that it's become status quo to put ourselves under so much pressure to impress (either monetarily or craft-ily or even first dance-ily).

let's say no to all that. and just revel in being ourselves. let's be confident enough to spend a millllllllion dollars or bake our own 15-tiered cake only if we want to. not because WIC or Martha or our peers are demanding it.

a wedding is, in its simplest form, an announcement to your close ones that you're committing to your betrothed for forever...and that you're going to come into some tax benefits as a couple.

all the rest of it is...stuff.

*note to self*

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

#424: what do ralphs and trader joes have in common.



real simple via a cup of jo (who, by the way, is now engaged! very excited to start reading about wedding related stuffs on her blog.)

since i'm not going to have much going on as far as flowers are concerned, i'm planning to be a supermarket bouquet bride.


in fact, oftentimes, when fiance and i go to the market, he'll lose me for about 10 minutes only to find me roaming around the flower section, looking all sorts of crazy.

"are you thinking of getting flowers from here?! for our wedding?!"


"oh, ok. just asking."

and i'm not worried at all about the selection of colors the market will have on the day-of because there's always a variety of stuff to choose from. and regardless, i will tim gunn it all the way. you know. make it work.

Monday, November 10, 2008

#423: not so flush.

i've been going back and forth about whether i need to get a wedding band.

1) some people wear their wedding band on days they don't want to wear their engagement ring. but that will never be me. my engagement ring is on my finger every single day. i never take it off, i never leave it at home and i accidentally bang it on things with no remorse to show for it. not unlike other parts of my body.
2) my ring is not the typical engagement ring. literally. the fiance designed it with a jeweler with inspiration from a regular ol' ring. it's meant to be worn on its own, not stacked with other rings. so.
3) does a wedding band symbolize something the engagement ring doesn't?
4) if not, why bother with the extra expenditure?

1) it's tradition.
2) i like jewelry.
3) what will he put on my finger when we exchange rings during the ceremony?

well. if i do decide to get a wedding band, it'll be something like this.

$100 via helen ficalora.

1 mm of rose gold lovely.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

#421: THE ONE.

very special thanks are in order to each and every photog who contacted me, each and every reader who referred my blog to their photog friends, each and every reader who gave me such amazing recommendations.

and i'm extremely pleased to announce that as a direct result...

...i found THE ONE.

{details to cometh.}


Thursday, November 6, 2008

#420: cecelia.

$395 at


#419: a "classifieds" post.

um, for myself.


so while i haven't decided whether to keep or sell the wedding dress i "like a lot but wouldn't be devastated not wearing" (anyone want it?), a good photographer is a must.


i can't spend thousands upon thousands on photography. like not even close to $3000. best scenario would be closer to $1500. i know. it's not much.


i'm also not asking for much (or so i think. but what do i know. i'm not a photographer. just a blogger who sets unrealistic goals for herself.)

i need someone who:

1) is currently building a portfolio (or anyone else who is ok with low price points to help a sister out).
2) has an eye like mine.
3) has 6-8 hours free on that saturday in may 2009.
4) knows how to edit photos to make them pretty in print.
5) provides a high-res cd of all images.

know of anyone?

tenthousandonly at gmail dot com

and seriously? it'd just be cool to find my photog through this blog.

help me help you and thanks.

p.s. i'm located in l.a. hizzy! (l.a.)

p.p.s. the wedding ceremony and reception will be in beverly hills.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

#418: a big holla... everyone who voted.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

#416: the venue.

lawry's is a tried and true restaurant establishment in beverly hills (and elsewhere around the country). and yes, i think they're the same company as the seasoning.

it's been a while since i've had their prime rib...but i used to go often and know that the food and service is an unbeatable value. in fact, i'm a vip member.

say what, you say?

go ahead and laugh. i'm laughing my way all the way to lawry's with a stash of $25 gift certs to consume buckets of their creamed corn and mashed potatoes with gravy (or i will be once i get points on my vip card for the money i spend on my wedding there!).

i think the ceremony room is a bit sherlock-holmesy...but i'm looking forward to changing it around with some hocus pocus. hopefully, the magic turns out to be the good kind.

also, let me tell you a little something about this place.

  • free parking for guests
  • no cake cutting fee
  • no per person alcohol minimum
  • $20 kids meal
i know.

*random images courtesy google*

we've set the date for a saturday in may 2009.

party people.

#415: ahhhhhhhhhhh!

it's perfect. PERFECT. exactly what i want. EXACTLY.

thank you something old, something new. thank you thank you. to you and and to johnny lavoy.

time. to. practice.

can you hear me now?