Behind the Scenes with a Bride-to-Be: Under 3 Weeks to Go!

UNDER. 3. WEEKS. TO. GO.

Holy moooooley.

Here’s how this excited bride-to-be has been keeping busy of late…

Health & Beauty

 

No-one had the heart to tell Rachel that she’d mistakenly covered her face in Betty Crocker Vanilla Icing. 

The lowlight of the week was definitely spending Wednesday doubled-over in pain with… get this… kidney stones. I know – what? All is well now but I definitely won’t be rushing to experience that kind of pain again. Eck. 

Kidney stones aside, on the beauty front I’ve been madly slathering Sodashi’s beautiful new Brightening Marine Mineral Mask all over my face twice a week and hand-on-heart, I can honestly say that this is the best mask I’ve ever used. Period.

I always look for ‘brightening’ properties in my skincare (to counteract pigmentation – I live in sunny Queensland after all) and the consistency and way the mask leaves my skin feeling is just divine. It’s nice and thick ‘n’ creamy and comes with a handy mini “spatula” (I’m sure this is the technical term) for applying the product. Winner.

I also start my 12 Hypoxi sessions next week so will do a full wrap up before the wedding as I know a few of you were keen to know more.

Mood

 

I’m not going to sugar-coat this – my moods over the past week have been kinda up and down (and up… and down). So fun, you guys!

On Tuesday, before The Kidney Stone Adventure, I was feeling so “un-me” that I left work feeling sick, called my naturopath to see if she could squeeze me in for an appointment ASAP and literally had to hold back tears as I walked through the door and she greeted me with a big hug and a knowing smile.

The conversation basically went like this:

Her: “So lovely, what’s up?”

Me: “I’m just feeling a bit… you know… UGH… and…”

Her: “You’re melting?”

Me: “Exactly.”

Her: “Mmm hmmm.” (knowing smile)

We chatted about what was on my plate at the moment and the ways I could make the last couple of weeks before the wedding less crazy-crazy and more crazy-good, and I instantly felt better. She made a very good point that when you try to live/ do live your life at an ambitious 10 out of 10 most of the time, dipping down to a 7 out of 10 can have a huge effect on the way you show up in the world, and that often, there may be other things at play.

Sam (naturopath wonder woman) is a specialist in female hormones and previous tests had revealed mine were quite out of whack, so she stocked me up with some fantastic supplements to help them along and I feel eleventy million times better already.

If you’re ever feeling slightly left-of-centre and you feel like “something is just not right” I can’t recommend getting a hormone test enough. The results may surprise you. Burnt out adrenals and weird cortisol readings ain’t cool in the long-term sweet thangs!

Random tidbit:

In discussions with Sam, we came up with a plan for a Wedding Week, which will kick off on the Sunday night prior to the wedding and entail a bushwalk, reading, pampering, lots of quality time with Ramai and absolutely no planning (until the day before, which is Decorate The Venue Day). Sounds pretty much perfect to me!

Organisation

 

I think in my last update I said that we were aiming to have everything pretty much sorted out by May 6.

So, did we get it all done? Not quite. Lots of it, yes, but there are still a few things to wrap up, and following a trip to our venue last weekend we realised that there are some decorations required for areas we hadn’t previously considered. Never-ending I tells ya!

Some of the things we have been doing:

THE ARCH 

As you can see above, this morning we wandered across to the beach to go on a stick finding mission so we can create our very own “rustic arch” for the wedding. I love the sun/ salt-bleached ones we found on the rocks and looking forward to seeing how it all comes together!

THE FLOWERS

All has been decided, and they are going to be epic.

THE SIGNS

Ramai visited his parents yesterday, who were getting rid of some weathered old fence palings, and what do you know – WE need weathered old fence palings! Win win.

THE LIGHTING

Is freaking expensive. But necessary. Currently going through a gargantuan quote and picking the essentials, but we’re thrilled to be working with two guys that just ‘get it.’

THE VOWS

Are nearly complete! I had to stop writing them on the plane to Melbourne yesterday as I was tearing up too much, and then had to pretend I was reading a really sad book (Danielle LaPorte’s The Fire Starter Sessions, FYI, which is anything but sad).

Note to self: finish vows off in a private place. Second note to self: practice like a mofo to avoid full-on tear-fest at altar.

THE DRESS

Now I’ve been saving the best news for last. As mentioned above, yesterday I flew to Melbourne for the day, and for a very special reason – to pick up my wedding dress!

Seriously, is it legal to marry a dress? I’m crazy about it! Love love love. It’s everything I dreamt of and more, and my girlfriend who accompanied me as I picked it up simply said (tears in eyes): “Oh Rach, it’s just so YOU.”

‘Til next time! Drop me a line in the comments to tell me what’s going on in your world, I’d love to chat. 

Image: via JustB


Behind the Scenes with a Bride-to-Be: 5 Weeks to Go!

Well, if we’re going to get technical, it’s actually 4 weeks and 5 days til THE BIG DAY but to keep the butterflies at bay for this prone-to-overstimulation soon-to-be-wife (also prone to hyphenation) let’s just say 5 weeks shall we?

Here’s the scoop on what’s been going on since my first update.

BEAUTY

 

I’ve had 1 x beauty treatment in the past week and 4 x compliments on my skin so I think I’ll take that rather decent ratio and run with it. Hey-yah! It’s a nice feeling to know that the results of the sessions are visible to people that aren’t examining my face closely in a rearviewmirror, which, let’s face it, is one of the most flattering mirrors on the planet (do you agree?) and one of the only mirrors I do the wink/ side-mouth tongue-click/ trigger-finger point thing at myself.*

On a serious note – now that I’ve easily earnt my ten points for modesty – the noticeable improvements to my skin can only be credited to the below:

1. The Hydrazone package from Pure Indulgence that I mentioned previously. Winner. My last sesh – a microdermabrasion – is tomorrow and I’m going to miss these gorgeous treatments dearly.

2. Being vigilant with taking my Nails, Hair & Skin vitamins (2 a day).

3. Ensuring I add chia seeds into my day somehow – either in smoothies or sprinkled on salads. They work.

4. Fish oil capsules!

5. The delicious combo that is Dermalogica Skin Smoothing Cream and Trilogy’s new Rosehip Oil Antioxidant + (and just when I thought Rosehip Oil couldn’t get any better!)

The combination seems to be working so far, and now that I’ve made a commitment to myself to seriously overdose on vegetables over the next month, my hope is things will only get glowier. And that the under-eye wrinkle fairies might come and magically erase the expression lines under my eyes while I sleep. Dream a little dream.

* jokes. I do that in all mirrors. Ha!

HEALTH

 

I’m thrilled to be part of a fabulous online event called Selfish for 27 days, run by superstar Susana Frioni, and my focus for the 27 days is going to be on a “Happy Body, Vibrant Mind.” I think I’ll make that my unofficial mantra and what it means to me is:

Happy Body = a body that is nourished by energy-giving foods; food that leaves me feeling clean and satisfied, as opposed to sluggish and wired/ uneasy. A body that moves with ease, that sweats, is flooded with endorphins on a regular basis and as a counterbalance, is stretched and nurtured.

Vibrant Mind = a mind that is full of electric thoughts – sizzling creative energy, a steady stream of optimism (regardless of what’s going on around me). I’m not normally much of a TV watcher but got sucked in to a few hours of “couch potato-ness” over the weekend when it was raining torrentially outside, and by last night, I felt flat. I realised that the next month needs to be about reading uplifting books, choosing a few stellar affirmations, writing notes and love letters (!), connecting with friends and fam, and injecting as much happiness into my life as possible.

I also came to the conclusion as I was talking to Ramai last night that I need to seriously switch off from regularly checking Twitter and Facebook for a while after a few incidents on the weekend where I realised that people’s updates were directly affecting my mood. It was a lesson in detachment I really needed, and a reminder that repetitive whineging on social media won’t only make the complainer feel bad, it’ll bring down the mood of the people reading it as well. Not ideal.

MOOD

 

Despite a couple of low energy moments over the weekend, I’m feeling pretty damn ahhh-mazing at the moment, and as Ramai mentioned to some friends on Saturday, it seems like the closer the wedding gets the calmer we both feel.

We’re both not fans of public speaking, which is something I will really be working on post-wedding (I look forward to the day where I’m literally begging people to let me rock the mic like nobody’s business!) and even so, Ramai said he’s not feeling nervous about his groom’s speech and is actually looking forward to saying a few words. I’m sure that will change a little on the day of course, but I think it’s easy to build these things up and freak yourself out when really, you’re talking to a room full of your favourite people in the universe, who are there to love, not judge.

We’re writing our own vows and I’m sure the heady combo of nerves and emotion will make it quite overwhelming to come out and say these to each other straight off the bat (pass the champers darling! No… the bottle!), but I’m kinda vibing on the vulnerability of it all. You can plan a wedding down to the last detail but the rawness and real emotion is something you can never plan… and that’s where the magic lives.

*** I should make mention here that I still get teary over some of the sweet messages and emails Ramai sends me daily, so I can only imagine what his vows will do to me. Just call me Blubber. Blub blub.

ORGANISATION

 

There are 26 things left to do on my list – do you think I can get them done by my self-created deadline of Sunday 6 May? Here’s hoping, I love a good challenge!

Some things that we got sorted over the weekend were getting our notes done for our vows (I now just need to pull mine together properly), sorting out the photobooth, approving the menu design and getting all the details for the ceremony programs off to the designer.

Big ones this week are the script for the MC – is there some kind of template for this, married friends? – choosing all the songs, booking beauty appointments, making the “R & R Wedding Bible” for our day-of coordinator which will have a complete start to finish run sheet with every little detail and images, and finally, doing the big meet up at the venue with all the suppliers. We also need to hunt down a timber yard.

Fianlly, another notable event is that we’re about to start this really fun game where we see how fast we can get our bank balance to go down. It’s just like gambling, only there’s less chance of getting any back. Yippee.

THE CONUNDRUM

Last but not least: hair up or down? Half up and down? In a crimped side pony? I can’t decide!

I may even post some pics in the next few weeks and you guys can tell me your thoughts! (not of the crimped side pony, silly billies, although I did rock that at my 7th birthday in 1989 and it was quite delightful).

So there you go, 5 weeks and counting and a lot to do before then, but bring it on! I was just reading my horoscopes on AstroStyle and it said that 2012 has been the busiest year of my life, and ain’t that the truth?! Maybe 2013 will be the slothiest year of my life to balance it all out? I realise slothiest may not be a word.

Big love and hugs to you all, and thanks for understanding my random posting schedule at the moment, I can’t tell you how much I appreciate it! x

Images: Beauty | Health | Mood | Organisation | Hair


Our Engagement Photos!

Gooooood morning and happy Monday to you all!

I’m so excited to share some of our engagement photos today, shot by our mega-talented wedding photographer Ali Mitton (who I raved about here).

It was kind of a funny experience doing this shoot as Ramai and I have never had photos taken together as a couple (hence some of the awkward poses) but I’m so glad we did this “trial run” before the wedding. Ali made us feel really comfortable and it was all very flowy and organic, and we’re both thrilled with the result.

I can’t wait to blow some of these up and frame them as I love how they look on my large screen at home. It’s a bit hard to see some of them properly due to the image width restrictions of my blog, but you get the idea anyway.

For all the brides-to-be out there, I can’t recommend doing an engagement shoot with your wedding photographer enough, it definitely gives you things to think about as far as posing/ angles/ the kinds of shots you love and wants oodles of on your Big Day.

So without any further ado…

Extra deets:

Location: Tallows Beach/ Slow Dance on Tallows beach house, Byron Bay

Flowers: The beautiful florals were crafted by Elise from Elyssium Blooms (new website coming on its way, so check her out on Facebook). Elise was an absolute dream to work with – so much so that we’re bringing her in to work on a bunch of things for our wedding now. The girl is a star – check her out!

Props: The majority of the vintage props including the brass vessels, crochet linens, furniture, bottles and so on were kindly provided by our friend Judi from Little Gray Station. I mentioned Jude in my last post but it’s worth mentioning her gorgeous business again – you should see her inventory, it’s incredible and growing by the day. Find her on Facebook here.

Make-up: By the lovely (and stunning) Ashlea Penfold. What a gem!

Styling/ set-up: yours truly.

+ So that’s it! I’d love to know what you think of our shots so leave me a comment below. x


6 Weeks Today: The Wedding Countdown is ON!

In 6 weeks time, I’ll be walking down the aisle and exchanging vows, rings and kisses with the love of my life – who, coincidentally, I’ve been with for 6 years (our 6 year anniversary is the day after our wedding).

To continue the 6 theme, the reason I’ve been missing in action around here is because I’ve given myself a deadline of May 6 to have pretty much everything planned and locked away for our wedding. We’re visiting our venue that day to meet with a few of our superstar suppliers for the last time and I’ve always liked the idea of having things sorted a few weeks out so that the remaining weeks before the Big Day can be dedicated to some serious quality time with my love before we do this thing called marrrrrriage.

I’ve had thoughts of doing a “Diary of a Bride-to-Be” type series starting a month out so let’s get up-to-the-minute with a mish-mash of random things I’ve been doing/ thinking/ loving/ trying out of late. I’ve missed you guys.

BEAUTY

 

I’m on session 4 of a 6 session Hydrazone facial package at Pure Indulgence, which means alternating between gentle lactic acid peels and microdermabrasion. I’m obsessed with facials and they advise you get these close together (once a week) so I definitely look forward to “facial day” when it’s approaching!

The sessions have made a noticeable difference to my skin and following Zoe Foster’s glowing (geddit?) review of Omnilux Revive, I may do a sesh or two under the light in the week leading in to the wedding. Has anyone tried Omnilux? I’ve actually got the hand-held version, the New-U, and I promise myself I’ll use it at least every second day… and never do. I must, I MUST.

HEALTH

 

1. Hypoxi

I’m going to do a separate post on Hypoxi to explain all the finer details, but let’s just say I’m a huge fan! I’ve got 12 sessions booked for the next 6 weeks – 6 of which I’ll probably do right before the wedding – with the aim of not only feeling as toned as possible, but because it’s awesome for circulation and lymphatic drainage. Yes!

2. Bootcamp and PT 

I do bootcamp twice a week at the moment but the structure is changing so I may be doing once a week plus a few smash-it-up PT sessions. Argh, help me!

3. Running 

I’m currently running about 30 – 40kms a week.

4. Eating

This is where I’ve been a little up and down. I find it very hard to be super, super strict on what I’m eating when I’m really happy. I know that might sound a little weird but thinking back over time, the only times I’ve ever been really full-on with following a “diet” as such has been when I’ve been unhappy (hello ex-boyfriend mistake).

My approach is definitely 80/20 (or 70/ 30, if I’m honest) and while I’ve still had my sneaky chocolate or a wine here or there, I’ve been eating lots of veggies and keeping my protein up so I feel satisfied after a meal.

In saying that, I’m definitely going to give the no-chocolate thing a solid go over the next few weeks – I don’t need it and I know I’ll feel better with less sugar in my life. Also: less sugar = glowy skin = WIN.

PLANNING & ORGANISATION

 

* my work computer (this folder system is replicated on my home computer too!) 

I was telling some friends on Twitter that I have spreadsheets for spreadsheets and Master Lists for my lists… and I wasn’t exaggerating.

I’m a bit of an organisation nut by nature anyway, but it’s surprised me how many times I’ve “re-done” the moodboards for the different areas of the property where we’re getting married (all up there are 5 areas that need to be decorated quite substantially).

I blame Pinterest. Just when I think I’ve got all my ideas sorted, I see some shiny new pin pop up and thus unfolds the “Should I do something like that? Do I have time/ budget/ the inclination?” debate in my head. It’s a rollercoaster ride through paper lanterns and fabric strips, I tell ya (it would be remiss of me not to say here that Pinterest has actually been amazing for wedding planning).

I’ve found Evernote to be a saviour and I have a variety of Notes set up that I add to quite regularly, including:

Songs: Music is so important at a wedding and there’s a lot to choose. Music for when the guests are gathered waiting for the bride to arrive, the processional, signing of the registry, drinks and canapes, dancing – you name it. I type songs into a specific Note when I hear or think of them, which is making it easier to narrow down our faves. I’ve also got a dedicated “Wedding” playlist in iTunes to pass on to our DJ.

Vows/ Readings/ Wording: This is where I jot down great quotes or ideas for readings or thoughts about Ramai that I want to write into my vows.

Wedding Bible: We haven’t got a wedding planner (that’s me guys!) but we’ve hired a friend to do our on-the-day coordination and I’ve created a comprehensive run sheet for her to follow. I’ll be printing it all out – along with moodboards and other visual info – and sticking it in a nice notebook for her for the day. Preparation is golden.

Random notes:

Wedding forums scare me slightly. I find them helpful 10% of the time (and note, I haven’t become a member of one, I normally stumble into them blindly when I’m googling info on something) but 90% of the time, I find them strange.

Every time someone uses an abbreviation it takes me a good minute to work out what they’re talking about (apparently MOH does not stand for Messages on Hold) and the majority of the time, the style preferences of the forum users and myself are… erm… different. Vastly. Which is neither good nor bad, but not very useful for me personally.

MOOD

 

I think calling a bride-to-be a “bridezilla” is about as derogatory as calling someone who’s looking after their health an “anorexic psychopath” but in the same token, I don’t agree that getting married gives you license to abuse anyone that crosses your path because you happen to be in a crappy mood (not that anyone here would do that of course, but you do hear the horror stories!) Respect, always.

The thing is – and I work in marketing/ PR, so this is speaking from experience – when you’re organising any event, not to mention the biggest event of your life, there will be hours or days where it will all get too much. It’s a given. I’ve been there and have had several moments where I’ve uttered “Ugh, I’m so over this!” and then an hour later, have called Ramai excitedly because everything has fallen into place or I’ve found an alternative.

The best remedy to wedding planning madness is:

1. Stop what you’re doing and focus on something completely unrelated to your wedding. Step awaaaay.
2. Understand that losing a day or two of planning time isn’t going to matter in the long run.
3. Acknowledge that you’ll get twice as much done when you’re in an electric, throw-anything-at-me mood – we all know this feeling, you can conquer the world when you’re like this!

That’s it. I’ve noticed that this real sense of calm has washed over me over the past couple of weeks and it’s purely because everything is now taking shape, so just know that it WILL come together. Wedding planning is a huge job and the easiest way to get through it is by plotting things out on a timeline/ checklist and working your way through the list, doing the most important things (like venue booking, dress buying and so on) first, and then plodding through the rest as time goes on.

Random notes:

I love running and it’s been my saviour throughout the planning process. I’m sorta training for a half marathon – the race is 3 weeks after our wedding, so haven’t made a decision on whether I’ll run it yet – and the benefit is that there’s no way I can come back from a 15km run without a clear head. If running isn’t your thing, I really recommend trying some form of exercise to help keep stress levels at bay.

Also, delegating is crucial – something I’ve only learned in the past month (and something I’ve never been very good at, it’s definitely been a learning process to get over the self-imposed guilt about asking for help). This morning 2 of my girlfriends came over and helped me make a tissue paper tassel garland, and with 3 of us doing it we got it done in no time. Whip them up a fruit platter or pour them a glass of wine, and you’ll be amazed how fun your little crafting sesh will be. Ask and ye shall receive.

STYLING

 

Unfortunately I can’t show you a great deal of what we’ll be doing style-wise without spoiling the surprise, but just know that there have been a million trips to Bunnings and Spotlight and fair bit of DIY-ing going on!

We’re also utilising some of the fantastic inventory from Little Gray Station (the business owned by our friends Judi and Kris) and Jude has been great, texting me when she’s purchased something new to see if we want to use it. How good is that?

Speaking of styling, looks like I’ll be styling a wedding in September. Woohoo!

SHOPPING

 

Having limited time to get out to the shops means I’ve been shopping online like a boss. (I’ve been waiting to use that).

There comes a point where you have to weigh up whether it will actually cost more to DIY something or cause unwanted frustration and because Australia is quite limited/ expensive when it comes to craft supplies, there are some things I’ve just gone ahead and bought because it’s easier.

Recent purchases have been a vintage ring pillow (Etsy), white paper lanterns (eBay), the above vintage photo display (The Wanderlust – awesome store run by Danni from Oh, Hello Friend), an Instax Mini 25 for our guestbook photos (Amazon) and a few other small items.

THE STUFF WE HAVEN’T DONE

 

+ Rings and jewellery – although we’re meeting our jeweller tomorrow so should have the rings sorted asap!
+ Vows/ speeches
+ Final song list
+ Organising desserts
+ Hair and beauty decisions – hair up or hair down? Eek!
+ Buying the alcohol 
+ Wooden signs and a bunch of other decorations
+ Running through the day with our MC
+ Venue meet-up with suppliers
+ Paper goods (programs, signs, tags and so on)
+ Gifts

So there’s still a bit to do, but we can do it! Feeling positive.

I hope you enjoyed a little insight into what we’ve got going on at the moment, and that life is absolutely brimming with goodness wherever you are and whatever you’re doing! Leave a comment below to tell me what’s going on for you – or some wedding planning advice if you have any, it will definitely be gratefully received. x

Images: Beauty | Health | Girls | Styling Brownies


Making Me Happy: The Hens Party Edition!

It began on Thursday night.

Ramai (fiance man) and I met my brother at my parents place so we could exchange cars/ vans (for clarity, the van was my brother’s – although owning a banged up white Ford Econovan has always been high on my wishlist) and after jamming – and I mean jamming – two massive wooden tables in the back of said van, we were off.

Second stop: a friend’s storage shed half an hour down the road. More jamming of vintage props and furniture, in the rain, in the back of the van and car, and then it was us and the open road once more. Do you ever do that crazy thing where you’re driving next to your partner or friend on the highway, waving like a deranged loony – you know, as if you haven’t just seen them 10 minutes prior? There was that.

The next day rolled around quickly, which was awesome because WE. WERE. EXCITED. Mainly me, but Ramai a little bit too. Definitely Ramai too.

We spent the morning unloading and unpacking Things Weighing Ten Tonne from the car (so much fun! You should totally try it!) and then the amazing Elise Tomlin from Ellysium Blooms, florist extraordinaire, rocked up and got to work making my incredible flower crown (baby’s beath and the most divine David Austin roses) and arranging all the gorgeous florals she’d brought along.

Shoving flowers in vases this was not – floristry is seriously an art form and I think the results speak for themselves, yeah?

Meanwhile, Ramai kicked back took video footage (our first attempt at making a video, I’ll show you the result once it’s all edited up) as I fussed over decorations and then the make up artist who will be beautifying my bridesmaids and I for the wedding, lovely Ashlea Penfold, came over to do my makeup. Ash assists for Rae Morris when she’s up this way, and does a lot of the shoots for Element et al, so I knew I was in good hands.

* Can I just say here that we have been so lucky to assemble the most incredible crew for our wedding. Photographer, videographer, make-up artist, caterer – the lot. They’re all mega-cruisy but ultra-professional people who are amazing at what they do. Unpack the gush-o-meter, I think we’re in love!

Carry on.

After Ash was done, our wedding photographer, the beauteous Ali Mitton arrived and we headed down to the beach out the front of the property for the first round of shots. The weather was ahhhmazing and despite never having done a photo shoot together, Ali made us feel so comfortable that it all felt pretty easy and not all awkward as we thought we might be. The funniest bit was Ramai whispering random things in my ear to “make it natural” – oh, and the dog called Buddy that came up and tried to eat my bouquet. Cute.

We then headed back to the house and got some more shots there, as well as some pics of the table setting and Elise’s arrangements.

I’m dying to see all the photos Ali took (we’ll hopefully receive them next week) and you know I’ll be sharing them all right here for you guys to see, so hold tight!

The Day Of The Hens Party!

 

My bridesmaids – Megan, Erin and Jess – had arrived at the house late on Friday and after a wine and pizza (my healthy eating plan definitely went out the window over the weekend) we retired early to conserve energy for what we knew would be a huge day and night. And it was.

The girls prepared all the food while I did all the decorating and some serious cleaning up before everyone arrived. Actually, it was just like a Spray ‘n’ Wipe ad – there was stuff EVERYWHERE until about 15 minutes before everyone came at 1:30pm – but by the time our girly crew filtered in, everything was immaculate and we were cool, calm and collected. WIN.

I love that feeling where everything just comes together. I also realised how much of a perfectionist I am when it comes to things looking good and being “ordered” over the duration of the weekend. Major win if you want to hire me to style your wedding. Not a win if you’re more in the mess-is-best camp.

And now for the rest of the day/ night. Let me summarise it in photos and one mega-long sentence for you…

Apple martini’s, mojitos, photobooth shenanigans, story time, laughs, jelly shots, laughs, dancing, kola nut (disgusting natural powder that is similar to guarana), WOWSERS, exclamation marks, bent-over-nearly-wetting-our-pants laughs, champagne, way too much food bursting out of the fridge (overprepation – ALWAYS happens!), funny taxi rides, selfies, busting a move on the d-floor at The Beach Hotel and LaLa Land, more drinking, more laughs, staggered home times (not to be confused with ‘staggering home’).

Basically, the best girls weekend evererer. More fun than you can poke a vodka jelly shot at. And not a glow-in-the-dark penis straw/ tiara/ greasy male stripper in sight.

Weekends like that one leave you feeling so utterly blessed for the female friendships in your life, and special mention must go to my glorious, glorious bridesmaids who made my hens do everything I’d dreamed of, and much, much more. Love them so much.

It’s a funny feeling having my hens party ticked off the list now actually – everyone keeps saying “Must feel like the wedding is so close now!” but it hasn’t really sunk in. I think I must still be high on all that deliciously fab female energy after one of the best weekends of my life, to be honest.

+ What’s thrilled the socks off you over the past week? Go on, share your juicy love lists below!


Our Wedding Invitations, Designed By Tabitha Emma!

Hip hip hooray, I can finally show you our gorgeous wedding invites. TA DAH!

Like our wedding website, our invitations were designed by creative maven/ illustrator extraordinaire Tabitha Emma (but you probably guessed that, right?) and I’m seriously so happy with how they came up.

The Creative Process

When I was talking to Tabitha initially she asked me to tell her a bit about “Rach and Ramai” so she could get some ideas on the direction we’d like to go with the invites, so I told her we’re often branded ‘R & R’ – hence the monogram – and that we love natural, rustic elements, which she took into consideration when coming up with the design.

I also shared my love of calligraphy-style type and native flowers, in particular King Proteas, and was delighted to see them included in her illustrations when she sent through the first concepts!

(It would be remiss of me not to mention here that Tabitha is an absolute dream to work with, can’t recommend her enough).

Assembling the Invites

I’ve always loved the mix of white and brown (wood/ hessian) and I wanted to give the brown kraft envelopes a bit of a “lift”, so I added a paper doily to each at the top to make the envelopes a bit special.

Let me tell you, spray adhesive is your friend if you’re thinking of doing something similar (I also managed to get it all over the carpet – hello sticky feet!)

Photos are OK, but you really need to see these “in real life” to get a proper idea – the paper stock is divine and has a bit of texture through it. It’s the perfect thickness, and Tabitha had sent me some samples prior to our invites going to print so I knew what the end result would be like which is always nice.

Finally, I haven’t shown it in these shots, but after tossing up whether to get a calligrapher to address the envelopes, we took an easier (and just as beautiful) route and used the stunning Carolyna font.

The RSVP card and the invite were tied together with some twine I picked up at Mark Tuckey Home in Avalon and we used Australia Post’s ‘Special Occasion’ stamps (vintage brown roses/ wedding ring images) on the outer envelope and on the RSVP card, which was designed to be like a postcard. Easy for guests to just pop in the mail and send back.

And that’s about it!

+ I’d love to know: what do you think? I know there are a whole bunch of stationery nerds amongst us, so please leave your thoughts below in the comments.

+ Also, feel free to share this post with your lovely bride-to-be friends or Pin the images using the button below. Spread the love around!


Presenting: Our Wedding Website!

I’m so excited to share this with you! I’ve been seriously DYING to show everyone our beautiful wedding website for weeks now, and I just couldn’t hold on any longer, so here she is…

(drum roll please)

May I now introduce to you, the gorgeous, the fabulous, the so-pretty-it-brings-a-tear to my eye, rachandramai.com!

(confetti and cheering ensues!) 

The Backstory, Or Why We Decided To Create A Wedding Website

I got in touch with the extraordinarily talented Tabitha Patterson last year because I’ve been a ginormous fan of her work for quite some time and knew she’d be the perfect person to help us capture the mood of our wedding day creatively.

Because we’re having our wedding in Byron Bay and most people are making a weekend of it (hooray!), there are a bunch of details that didn’t quite fit on the invitations, so Ramai and I decided to pull together a website that contained all the necessary information, as well as giving us a platform to share our photos, talk about our love story (and how we got engaged) as well as write something special about each member of our bridal party. The idea is that it will give everyone a little taster and set the tone for a very special day.

I think you’ll agree Tabitha has absolutely nailed it with the site design. My favourite parts are the hand-illustrated R & R monogram and the flowers that pop up when you scroll over the main nav bar. It’s all in the details!

I’m going to let you head over and see for yourself, but I really hope you enjoy reading the words we’ve whipped up. I have to tell you that I sat at the computer sobbing on more than one occasion when I was working on this site. Writing about the most important people in your life is an emotional undertaking!

* I should also mention, I’ve made one of the pages ‘The Details’ private for now, so please excuse the strange looking text when you click that one, and also, the site looks best on a Mac. As most sites do. 

+ What do you think? Tell me in the comments! Are you swooning over Tabitha’s work as much as I am?

+ If you get a chance, I’d love you to leave us a comment in the guestbook too. All words of wisdom or ‘hi there’s’ will be gratefully received x