Getting the bridesmaids together

For a while now I’ve wanted to get the bridesmaids together (my sister and Scott’s sister). I think it’s nice to build up relationships before I throw them in on the wedding day/ hen do, or whatever it may be. Because they’re my sisters as well I think it’s nice to bring the families together.

We went out for a meal at a local pub and ended up staying and chatting for hours afterwards, oops!

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The main aim of the first get together was just to let them get to know each other, and feel less like strangers. I know if I was in their shoes I’d want to know the other bridesmaids so we could get our heads together with hen do plans and have a great time on the day.
Although this was my main aim, I had a few things jotted down on my phone that I wanted to bring into conversation (slightly bridezilla I know). Some were what I wanted to know now, and others were just extras. The conversations didn’t revolve much around the wedding though, which I didn’t really mind because to me it sometimes doesn’t feel real. I’m not an adult yet!

One thing we established was what dresses they want. I’m quite laid back with this but luckily their ideas fit in with my vision. The perks of only having two bridesmaids is that they are so much easier to please and come to agreements with things. They both agreed on light blue, straps, skater dress style and short. We also chatted a bit about when it’s going to be (times, dates) and where, which has been something I’ve been debating with in my mind slightly.

I’m really pleased I got them both together and I feel so lucky to have a pair of laid back but interested bridesmaids and sisters. I know neither of them will let me down and they will be there for me through out the planning.

Stay down to earth: you aren’t just a bride

It’s become apparent to me that quite a lot of people start referring to themselves as ‘the bride’. Although there’s absolutely no issue with that, I’ve been reflecting recently on how this could change you when you become ‘the bride’ in ‘wedding mode’ following your engagement.

I have been thinking about the language we use when we get engaged and enter ‘wedding mode’. As a psychology graduate and teacher, I know all about how people change their behaviour dependent upon the role they are in (even if this role isn’t even real – thinking about Zimbardo’s prison experiment). Now I know this isn’t that extreme, but it really got me thinking about how we respond and behave in situations, depending on the role we identify with.

To put it into context, I was planning a get together with both of my bridesmaids. This didn’t end up happening because one of them is having a difficult time at the minute. Now, this wasn’t an issue for me, all that matters is that she is ok. I ditched the whole ‘team bride’ mentality and my focus turned to letting her know I am there for her. I got thinking about how brides in mega planning mode would have reacted. Maybe they would have been fine (which I’m hoping most would be as this is one of the most important girls in your life, which is why you picked her). But, I’m pretty sure that there would be some bridezillas who would have adopted the ‘I’m the bride and this is the most important thing’ mentality, which is a real shame.

So reflecting on this, I’m glad my whole identity hasn’t been sucked up by ‘the bride’ mentality. I’m still a sister/sister-in-law to be and friend to them both, no matter whether we are bride and bridesmaids or what. I’m not just the bride, and they aren’t just my bridesmaids. We are all human, and have things going on, and people can’t jump to your tune because you have a wedding to plan. I think it’s important to remember that to avoid becoming bridezilla. I’d like to think I’m quite bridechilla, and I want to stay that way right up until we are married. It’s important to stay down to earth and to remember that although the wedding is important, not to get too caught up in it all. I really hope I stay down to earth through out it all, I think I will. Hopefully remembering what is important and keeping everything in perspective will keep me in budget too (hahaha).

So after all of that, it’s got me thinking, are bridezillas caused by the role they take on, their personality or a mix of the two? Or can we all be bridezillas in different ways?

DIY Bridesmaid Proposal Boxes

I always love having a project and when I saw all of these bridesmaid proposal ideas on pinterest I knew I had to do it. I think it’s an American thing but from what I can see it’s also getting big over here in the UK. I had so many ideas for asking them but I decided to create them a little gift box in the end because I couldn’t decide on one thing and wanted something for them to keep.

Lucy has been a bridesmaid twice in the past when we were kids but this is her first real experience of being one and being involved in the wedding. For Amy it is her first time too and so I really wanted to make it special for them both and really let them know that they are important to me and that I want them to be part of the whole thing.

I will write below where I bought all of the items to make the box. Here are what I made:

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The outside of the boxes

Usually I’m a monochrome kind of girl but with this for some reason I went about as out there as you can be.

The outside of the boxes:

  • Box from savers (home bargains)
  • Gold letters cut out from sparkly envelopes from savers (home bargains)

 

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Inside the lid of Amy’s box
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Inside the lid of Lucy’s box 

I found the quotes and sayings on Pinterest, but I changed them around and altered them to be more how I wanted them to be.

Inside the lid I used:

  • Pink paper from a pack of paper I already had
  • Gold sticker letters from Wilkinson
  • Scrapbooking/ card making gems from Wilkinson

 

On opening the boxes, I covered the contents with gold tissue paper and wrote them a little note inside an envelope with poems that I had found on Pinterest but changed slightly.

  • Gold tissue paper – Card Factory
  • Tiny envelopes – Savers (Home bargains)
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Inside Amy’s box
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Inside Lucy’s box

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For the contents of the boxes, I started buying little bits, the wedding day Yankee Candle was the first thing. I intended to give them their boxes in summer 2017 after returning from Sorrento, but after I started I just couldn’t stop and the boxes became a project that I just had to complete!

In the boxes:

  • Ferrero Rocher chocolate
  • Baci chocolate
  • Wedding Day sample size Yankee Candle
  • Riviera Escape Yankee Candle wax melt
  • Rose gold compact mirror –  Primark
  • White and gold polka dot notebook  – savers/home bargains
  • Images of Sorrento and where we are looking at getting married
  • Personalised ‘Team Bride’ mugs – Vistaprint
  • Soap and Glory Righteous Butter (Amy’s box) – Boots
  • Soap and Glory Hand Food (Lucy’s box) – Boots
  • ‘Beautiful’ make up bag (Lucy’s box) – Primark
  • Days until I’m a Bridesmaid chalk countdown plaque (Amy’s box) – Candletime

They’re made up of lots of little bits and bobs, but I tried to keep a bit of a theme. Both chocolates are Italian. The candles are wedding themed, with the Rivera one intending to mean the Neapolitan Riviera. I absolutely love the mugs I created on Vista print. The quality turned out really good and I’m really happy with them. I would love one for myself! I altered the contents depending on who I was giving it to. I didn’t think Lucy was the kind of person to have a countdown plaque so I replaced hers with a makeup bag. I also considered putting nail polish in there but didn’t end up doing so. On Pinterest lots of people put alcohol in there but neither of my bridesmaids really drink. My original intention was to get lots of Italian bits to put in there from Sorrento, but like I said I love a project and once I get started there’s no stopping me.

I loved making these boxes and I really hoped they liked them. Of course they both said yes!

Introducing my bridesmaids!

A few months after our engagement party, I was itching for something else to plan for the wedding. I was going to wait until this year, 2 years away from the wedding, to ask my bridesmaids. But me being me had to go ahead and do it. I always have to have something to do and some kind of project and so I made my bridesmaids a bridesmaid proposal box (pinterest inspired). I think it’s an American trend but it seems to be becoming popular over here. I’ll do a blog post on that later on.

Anyway, I knew I would always have my sister, Lucy, as my maid of honour for the simple fact she is my sister. Despite us always having our ups and downs as sisters do, she is my sister and she will always be there for me and I will always be there for her. I would never not have her involved in my wedding. Family is something in my eyes that is there for life and that to me is important. I know not everyone will share this view, and families can be tricky, but she was my first ‘obvious’ choice.

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Me and Lucy on our last holiday together in Sorrento in 2013

Bridesmaid 1: Lucy
Lucy is my younger sister. She is 2.5 years younger than me. We have been bridesmaids as children twice for our cousins. She will make a great bridesmaid because I know she will tell me exactly what she thinks and won’t hold back and I appreciate honest opinions! She is also very familiar with the Sorrento area so that’s a great advantage for all sorts of reasons. 

I see the wedding as bringing our two families together, and I’d like to think I’m becoming part of his family like he is becoming part of mine. Making his sister, Amy, my bridesmaid seemed perfect because I’d like to think I’m gaining another sister when we get married.

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Amy and me on holiday in Kos, 2016.

Bridesmaid 2: Amy
Amy is Scotts sister. She is 5 months younger than me. She has never been a bridesmaid before and I’m hoping she will have a great time being mine for the first time. She will be a great bridesmaid because I know she will always be up for all things wedding and she will never let me down. 

 

I’m so excited that I get to share my wedding day and the whole experience with these two. They will both be with me for life and I hope this is a time we will all be able to look back on. Before I asked them, I spoke to my friends about the fact that I would’t be asking my friends to be bridesmaids. I have close friends and not many friends that are just friends. I wouldn’t be able to ask one or two without the others, and I was facing the prospect of having 6 possible bridesmaids. Having a wedding abroad, trying to keep within a budget, and having a small guest list anyway just meant that 6 bridesmaids wasn’t practical. It’s the first time in the wedding process I’ve had to be harsh! But I’m happy with my  decision and I hope that my close friends can still make it to Sorrento for the wedding.