Sunday, April 28, 2013

Turn (Back) Around

Struggling with your workouts? A strapless gown or dress with an open back should be a little motivation to keep going. But it gets tough when you have work, meetings, and happy hours to attend. When you do make it to the gym, try these easy 5 exercises for a sexy back and wait for envy to set in. (Other's envy that is.) ;)

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Worth 1000 Words

Aaaaah!! It's been a month since I last posted. I'm slapping myself on the wrist as we speak but I have been productive in the meantime, which means I have awesome info for you, so be nice to me. On top of planning a wedding, Matthew and I decided to do some house shopping as well so that has taken up every second of my free time. But, I'm back, I'm ready, and I'm more excited than ever.

The one category of wedding planning that was stressing me out the most was Photography. Taking photos is a hobby/side job for me so it made me very anxious to try and pick the best fit for my style and taste. It's my big day! I don't want to worry about saying 'hey, will you take a shot of that..' or worry that the details I want captured won't be captured. I confidently want to hand over all of my expectations and say 'hey, I trust you, here you go.' It took almost 5 months of research, several skype sessions, countless phonecalls and endless googling for me to finally narrow the search down to a person/company I was ready to commit to. (Wow, it's only photography). (Yeah, but it's the ONLY professional pics you'll have of your day. For forever.) SO, I'm going to make you a list of very talented, helpful, AND reasonably priced Photographers that I found. I liked different aspects of each one. I just made my lovely final decision yesterday. So, here ya go. Skype away:

adam + alli Photography -  (collections starting at 3500)
A husband and wife duo who specialize in weddings. Located in central Mississippi.
Property of adam+alli Photography

Whitney Bower Imaging-  (collections starting at 1950)
A pretty girl with a pretty great eye. Located in Arkansas.
Property of Whitney Bower Imaging

Studio 6-23-  (collections starting at 3900)
A husband and wife duo who specialize in all things creative. Located in Grand Rapids, MI.

Property of Studio 623

Glass Jar Photography- (pricing unavailable)
A Katie Holmes and Adam Lavigne look alike couple who specialize in vintage and fine art weddings.
Located in Huntsville, AL.
Property of Glass Jar Photography

And the lovely lady that I've decided to go with is:

Annabella Charles - (collections starting at 3200)
A darling who shoots beautiful, light + airy pictures with an assistant. Located in Memphis, TN. 

Property of Annabella Charles Photography

Just a few TIPS for your picking:

  • Try and find someone who includes an engagement session, or at least offers it. 
  • Shoot with 2. Find someone who has 2 photographer or shoots with an assistant. You'll get another set of eyes with different viewpoints and twice the photos. 
  • Decide if you want extras. Add ons can include anything of a guest book of your engagement session to a photobooth set up at the reception for your guests. 
  • Talk in person. Never rely on email only. Call, skype, or meet in person with your potential photographer. Chances are you will hit it off, or maybe not at all. You want someone who gets you and your vision. 
  • Talk hours. Make sure to get the details of when and where they'll be the whole day. 
  • Hand it over. Once you make a decision, breathe, and let them make you pretty. 


Thursday, February 21, 2013

Detail of the Day

An amazing rendition of a one tier cake with blush ruffled icing on top and bottom with silver edible beads adorning the outside served on a silver platter. Lovely.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Detail of the Day

Ivory striped organza strapless bridal ball gown with sweetheart neckline, full flounced skirt, and taupe raw silk sash at natural waist with chapel train. Dreamy.

Find this dress!

Soo Pinteresting

   What would a girl DO without Pinterest these days? It's genius, super helpful, and what I've recently relied on most to get ideas on wedding decor, dresses, food, and photography. I've come across some amazing little things lately and I wanted to share Bouquets/Flowers with you today, my dears.

   I didn't realize that when I started envisioning flowers for my big day, my dreams would be cut short by someone telling me they are out of season or very expensive. Of course. Champagne taste on a beer budget. But I'm hard headed so I researched ways of getting around this and basically my conclusion is that I can a.) pay more for flowers to be imported from far, far away or b.) find similar ones that look almost identical to the budding blossoms I had hoped for. Let's go with option B. (But feel free to choose A if your budget allows).

Red Dahlia Bouquet
(available year round)
Zinnia Queen Red/Lime Bouquet
(available year round)
Yellow Acacia Bouquet
(available Spring + Summer) 

Bouquet Mix of Roses, Succulents + Baby's Breath
(available year round)
Blush Pink Peonies
Similar Seeds: English Tea Roses, Ranunculus 
(available Spring + Summer)
Mason Jar White Flower  Centerpiece 

White Bouquet Mix of Peonies, Roses + Ranunculus

As great as Pinterest is there are times when I want to throw my computer across the room because I found something so amazing only to find when clicked, it leads me to Tumblr or somewhere in China. Use this tip: Save the picture to your desktop. Pull up Google in a separate browser and click on Images. There should be a tiny camera icon in the search box. Click on the camera and it will prompt you to upload a picture from your desktop. Google (being the awesome guy that he is), will reference every single website, image, or download that your selected pictured has ever been on the Internet. Find a safe and desirable website and order away. :)

Monday, February 4, 2013

Detail Of The Day

Bridesmaid Dress of the Day:

Ms Prom
Luxury One Shoulder Dress in Buff

Dressed To Impress

235 Days to go until Wedding Time!!

I have a checklist that shows big things to nail down each month- in that handy Mindy Weiss Wedding Organizer. Months 12-9 go as follows:

  • Draw up preliminary guest list. { still in progress }
  • Set wedding date. { done! }
  • Scope out/book ceremony/reception sites. { done! }
  • Hire wedding planner. { i'm not using one, so, done! }
  • Hire photographer. { still in progress }
  • Book officiant. { done! }
Some of these still aren't complete but that's okay, don't fret if you are a couple weeks behind. Just keep in mind that more affordable companies/dates will book up faster and you could be left having to choose another route than you had hoped. If you see something that is oh-so-lovely and in your price range, jump on it quickly. Then, mark that thing off of your list and you're a little closer to your big day. {It also helps to spread out the finances so you aren't paying for everything all at once. If you break up the payments of each venue by when you book them, it's easier on your (or dad's) wallet.} 

So, since it is now February and 8 months are left in my journey I need to get on this checklist:
  • Select bridesmaids. { done! }
  • Refine guestlist. { still in progress }
  • Start looking at invitations. { done! }
  • Book blocks of rooms for out-of-towners. { still in progress }
Bridesmaids are the easy part. Deciding what they'll wear is the challenging (fun!) part. I found a picture (on Pinterest, of course) that inspired me to go a different way from the traditional taffeta trends and venture off into the world of selecting different dresses for each bridesmaid. AHHH! Just kidding- it's actually quite awesome. Most of you have probably seen Molly Sims' amazing bridesmaids photo floating around every woman's Pinterest board. These stunning dresses were obviously made to order with a custom theme and personal seamstress at hand. In my case, that's not the case. BUT! Here are some tips to help ensure that our collection turns out cohesive.  
  1. True Colors- {Pick a color and stick to slight variations of it. Don't get too far off track or one bolder dress could stick out like a metal chair at a chaise lounge party.}
  2. Material Girl- {All satin, all chiffon, all beaded, etc. - this will help make the group look as if they came from the same store, same website, same designer- even though this was all mastered by you! Chiffon and Taffeta are the 2 leading textures in traditonal dress shops so keep that in mind as you start researching options. More options, more dresses to choose from.}
  3. Day Dream- {When you think about your day, the best thing is that it's your day. It has a flair to it, a speciality, details that make it your style. Keep your 'theme' and YOUR dress in mind while picking out your bridal party dresses. All dresses are not created equal and aren't always the traditonal color! Choose accordingly. Those gowns need to flatter you, not forget you.}
  4. To Each Their Own- {Everyone is different, especially with style. This is why having options for dresses can be awesome. Skinny Minnie, Precious Preggers, and Average Annie proooobably won't all get excited about the same threads. Let each girl's personality shine through and find them something they will actually like. I know, I know- but it's only a myth that you have to find dresses that no one will every wear again! It's 2013, demand a hot bridal party!}
  5. Accessories Not Included- {Style your sisters right. Let the person whose dress is very simple adorn a bigger/better necklace. If another girl's dress has some bling, assign her with understated stud earrings. Be smart and use the jewels to accentuate the gals' gowns.}
via Meagan Mitchell on Pinterest

Dress shopping has been one of the funnest (yes, I use that word) parts of this process. I won't reveal what dresses I have picked yet but I will share with you some websites/stores that have been very helpful in my selection. Here we go:
Dessy Bridesmaids
Strapless Style 2882 in Cameo

Watters Bridal
Dress 1341 & 1346 in Positano + Smoke

Adrianna Papell via Nordstrom
Sequin Blousen Dress in Gold

Virgo's Lounge
Nicola Dress in Mustard

Badgley Mischka via Rent the Runway
Rosalind Peplum Gown in Black
(Retail $695, Rent $135)

There are a thousand ways you could go with bridesmaids dresses so figure out your main colors and go from there. Be creative, let loose, and have some fun! 


Friday, January 25, 2013

Get Your Skinny On

Ok hot mamas, listen up.

To get your body the way you want it on your wedding day may not be as difficult as you think. No miracle pills, no 10 days of juicing celery stalks, no starving yourself and forgetting what happiness feels like. I'm calling this The Duh Diet. Let's face it- we go about our day to day routines and get in the (bad!) habit of eating & drinking whatever is yummy or convenient. Now, keep in mind that I'm a big fan of yummy and I'm not easily persuaded to gravitate towards the opposite of that. So something better be really freakin' great at the end of the tunnel. And it is. I decided at the beginning of the new year I was going to get healthy and get hot. It is a process, and it won't happen over night, but I can promise you if you want something bad enough, you can have it. Here are the steps I've chosen to follow in order to be a hottie with a body before I get married in September.
  • White Out- eliminate all (ok, most) foods in your life that are white. This includes pasta, bread, fries, ranch, chips, and Queso. DUH! How could you ever get a body to kill for if your stuffing yourself with these things? Some carbs are good for you but pick your battles with these. 
  • H20hh, Look At You- replace the sodas, sweet teas, and other sugary drinks with water. Replace beer with wine. (I didn't say we wouldn't have any fun.) And if you're not a wine girl, go for a vodka drink with a whole fruit juice like grapefruit. DUH! A bottle water with 0 everything or a Dr. Pepper with 250 Calories? It takes me running 2 miles to run off that DP. So once I start getting in the groove of working out, it doesn't seem worth it anymore. Bye-bye rundown, Hello refreshing. (Water has more benefits than just whittling your waistline. It is also good for your skin and makes it glow, acts as a mood booster and clears up acne.)
  • Go Nuts- start choosing foods that are organic. < scary word! Not really. In reality this just means to bypass foods that are processed, are sold in a box, are fried, or seem too good to be true (i.e. Ramen noodles for .98). Instead, go for fruits! veggies! fresh produce! juices! nuts! (honey roasted almonds are jackpot) water! anything green! You're smart.. You know. 
  • Ready, Set, Goal- have several checkpoints along the way to your final goal. Example:
             My Ultimate Goal is:
        *Wedding Day- September
         (This is the day I'm working for)

My (keep me in Check)Points are:
*Wedding Dress Shopping- January
        *Family Wedding- March
        *Engagement Pictures- April
        *Friend's Wedding- June
        *Bachelorette Party- July
           These dates and big events will help me stay on track when it's sometimes hard to stay on the 
           healthy eating train. And don't think you have to have an lb number you have to lose. Trust me, 
           if you are doing these steps and sticking to it you are guaranteed to feel refreshed + amazing.
  • Do Something- do anything. Walk around the block a few times, find a good workout video, jog for 20 minutes, take the stairs instead of the elevator (and then skip every other step), swim some laps, throw the football with your man, bend over and touch your toes (kidding. but if you want to..) Do something! If you are sore, that is good. DUH! That means you have somehow, in some way exercised. (< there's that word- you did it!) And stretch it out. Stretching elongates muscles and leads to you looking lean + tone. That's a W in my book. It doesn't matter what it is, but do something everyday. 
  • Buddy System- find a friend to hold you accountable and vice versa. For some reason it's more fun when you have someone to do painful ab workouts with you. Laugh, cut up, reward yourself with smoothies afterwards. DUH! More reps, lifts, and miles means smaller all over. Look out! 
  • Trophy Dear- ok, you don't have to buy yourself a shiny gold medal but DO reward yourself every week. Go 10 days without drinking your favorite soda and then have it for a 3 day weekend. Set a day a couple weeks ahead to be your cheat day and eat whatever you want. Life is too short and food is too good not to enjoy it. Enjoy it! Just do it in moderation. DUH!
  • Sleep It Off- Dr. Oz is not kidding. He recommends 7 hours of sleep a night for our physical, spiritual, and emotional well being. After working, working out, dealing with kids + bosses (maybe those are the same thing), grocery store, pick up, clean up, drop off, drop dead kind of days- sleep is what we need most. I know it's difficult to juggle getting to bed early when you have a schedule of a super hero but as often as you can, get the most rest possible. Once again, feeling good = looking good. 
  • Stick To It- it won't always be easy. But it won't be the hardest thing you've ever done. That's why I tell you, DON'T GIVE UP!! The best feeling is being proud of yourself so just conquer one hill at a time until you get into a good routine. Soon, the (bad!) habits will become great habits with benefits. A total package you are. A win win. A bomb ass lady. Now, go take a hike hot stuff. 

Monday, January 21, 2013

Pretty Little Wires

eat. sleep. plan a wedding. eat. sleep. plan a wedding.

Gilded Arrow Bangle

Ladies! Stella & Dot have introduced their new Spring line of jewelry and I wanted to show you a few fabulous things. I ordered some staple pieces that you can easily pair with anything. The Gilded Arrow Bangle above is just $39. I'm also thinking these bangles might be great Bridesmaid's gifts. Here are some of my favorites. Happy Shopping!! 
Jolie Necklace

Fiona Earrings
Eden Bangle

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Put A Ring On It

   Most ladies, I assume (because I did), at least have glanced at the bling from time to time. If you're not sure which rock you wanna rock start with picking out the shape you like best and go from there. Some rings come with bands included and some do not. But that's okay if you're wanting to customize and pick it out yourself! Here's my advice:

  • Try Them On! -Bling looks better on your finger, not in a case. There are probably more styles that you like when you see it on and it could sway your decision. 
  • Shop Shop, Shop Around! -Prices, clarity, quality, service.. It all matters when making such a big purchase & even though you may not be the one footing the bill, your diamond could go up in size with a comparable store willing to do business with you. And! your man will love you   even more. 
  • Let Him Know! -Let your better half know what is going on in that brain of yours and tell him what you're leaning towards. They're right, they can't read our minds, so give him an idea to go on. If you're the kind of girl who doesn't want to involve the man, tell a best friend or family member so they can relay the message. 
(Emerald Diamond Rose Gold
w/ Double Halo)
Ziva Jewels
(Marquise Diamond)
SYLVIE Collection
Genesis Diamonds
There are a couple things to do after the question is asked & you receive your dream bling:
1. Shout out Oh, Happy Day! 

2. Tag your ring on Instagram or Twitter with #martharings and #ringoftheday for your chance to be on Martha Stewart's Wedding Blog online and on their Instagram! Here is my picture that was featured on the Ring of the Day Blog. Good Luck!! 

Moving On!
{ one last thing }

   I don't know about you but picking out my bridal party was a cinch. These are my closest friends, my gals, and partners in crime. I used this precious folded card from Rifle Paper Co. to send out to my bridesmaids a couple weeks after the proposal. The cards come in a box set of 8 and they also have Matron of Honor + Flower Girl cards.

Have a fantastic week!   xoxo

Man of the Hour

   Matthew and I met at Delta State University in 2008. He was a baseball boy, and a good lookin' one at that, so I kept him on my radar and snagged him up real quick before this keeper was kept by another woman. Opening doors and paying for meals was something I thought had gone out the window long ago, but I found it in a boy from Brandon, MS and chivalry was alive once again. I fell in love him with him, then in love with his amazing family. Now, every relationship has its roller coaster moments and in 2010 we spent some time apart but (not) to our surprise we found our way back to what was fate and perfect timing for the two of us. The way things fall into place is uncanny to me, and worth writing a blog about.

   So, on Thanksgiving night Matthew proposed to me on the Keesler Bridge in my hometown of  Greenwood, MS. Our families were able to be present and witness the entire thing. I knew it might be in the near future but never did I guess that night I would go from girlfriend to fiance. 12 hours later, I was planning a wedding.
 My first purchase for the big day was a Mindy Weiss Wedding Planner book. Every single detail you could ever think (or not think) of is in this fantastic organizer. I also got one as a gift for a friend who was also starting the process of planning a wedding- it's that good. It covers Budgets to Bouquets, Food to Photography, and! has a step by step checklist for monthly, weekly, up-to-the-day duties! Whew..

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

From Miss to Mrs. I Go

Boy meets girl. Boy buys ring. Girl makes blog. 
At least in my case, that is the order of events. 

    Let me introduce myself. My name is Meagan Rae. Rae is not my last name, but my middle one. Yep, that's how we do it down there in the South. I say down there because I am from a small town in Mississippi but I'm currently a resident of Nashville, TN. I've started this here blog because my last name will soon be changing. You guessed it, I'm engaged! You would think after twenty five seven years of dreaming up your big day it would be simple when the day came. I mean, you've had plenty of time to pin DIY crafts and gowns to your Wishful Wedding Pinterest board. Not the case. In fact, I've found that there are so many options these days that you lose track of the important factors of your wedding day. Everything does not have to match or be traditional, break the bank, or create madness within your family tree. I've created this page as a go-to, a guide, a story, and somewhere to land in case all other options fail. If you are also a soon to be Mrs., please feel free to follow along and take the steps with me in choosing every single detail of our day. I'm going to journey through hundreds of options with a Southern flair and pick out my very favorites. Ready? Let's get married.