Be Warned, Gemz' Very Detailed Planning Thread......

Discussion in 'Planning your Wedding' started by Gemz2702, Nov 16, 2011.

  1. Gemz2702

    Gemz2702

    Joined:
    May 4, 2010
    Messages:
    123
    Likes Received:
    3
    So back in June a lovely lady on here suggested I start my planning thread after I posted some pictures of my dress (I got some really nice comments, thank you!) However with 14 months to go I felt it was a bit soon. Now with 9 months until "W day" things are starting to feel more "real" so to speak and I figured now was as good a time as any. So here goes.....

    The beginning

    I thought I'd start with the proposal, everyone loves a good proposal story after all! Not that ours was particularly eventful, though I wouldn't change it for the world and it was very "us" The other half, or "dude" as he is more affectionately know to me, was gutted (I use this term lightly) that I didn't cry and seems to have made it his W-day mission to have me blubbering into my hankerchief. My argument is that as he didn't make a big grand speech I didn't feel the need and to be fair I was too flipping excited. MIL2Bs argument is that "She probably thought it was about blooming time!!" In all honesty, it's not that I'm not an emotional person, I just always end up feeling like a plonker when I cry in public and I'd rather not have my eyeliner running down my face. Anyway, I seem to have gone off topic.....


    It is February 2010, we are both coming up to 22 and have been together for 7 years without so much as a hint of an engagement. Yes I know what people are thinking, we are still young etc etc. This actually became my own personal mantra for a while when people asked, not that I believed it or anything. It was just easier than saying "I don't bloody well know why, so stop flipping asking me!"

    D is beginning to act really weird around this stage, being very secretive about where he's been and his stories just weren't making sense. He told me He was going shopping in bath with his best friend to get my valentines present and then on valentines day I was presented with a 50p fake rose that is no bigger than my hand? I knew something was up and I was hoping beyond hope that he was going to propose soon.

    So anyway, D has the idea that for our anniversary we should go to the beach for the day. Baring in mind it's February I suggested we go and stay for the night in a hotel too, so then if the weathers rubbish we can stay at the hotel in their swimming pool/ sauna during the day and go out for a meal in the evening. So that's what we did. We arrive on the Saturday to torrential hailstorm showers but we brave the weather anyway and head into town. D buys me a "build a bear" as an anniversary present, he sure knows the way to my heart, give me a new teddy any day and I'm happy. I don't know if you have ever seen these shops? Once they have stuffed the bear they ask you to take a heart from the box, rub it on your own, kiss it and make a wish. The poor guy had to do this with a line of children behind him, but bless him he took it all in his stride. We then proceed to writing his name on the computer and printing out his certificate, we call him "Dude" (I know, I know we are very sad, but this is our sense of humour.) We go out for a meal in the evening to a really nice place that overlooks the sea front, D seems a bit distant again and it's hard work getting him to have much of a conversation.

    I didn't sleep well, D was being really fidgety and kept me awake for a lot of the night.

    We didn't have to be out of the hotel until 10am on the sunday, but we were up, fed and checked out by 9. D suggested a walk to the beach along to the pier, I love the beach at any time of year and walking along the beach hand in hand on our anniversary seems like the perfect way to spend it. Once on the beach, he stops to look out to sea:

    D: "Look at that man canoeing out there?"

    Me: Craning to look at the insane person canoeing in the sea in FEBRUARY?!

    Whilst I'm busy looking out to sea, he puts his arms around me and puts something pretty and sparkly in front of my face.


    Oh my god! This is it!

    D: "Gem.......... Will you marry me?"

    Me: " Oh my god, are you serious? Really?"

    D: "So......What's the answer then?"

    Oh yeah, I have to answer don't I!

    Me: "Yes, of course I will!"

    He then had to ask me for my hand so he could put the ring on my finger. I always imagined what it would be like when he proposed to me, but for some reason when he did it I completely forgot what it was that I needed to do. So there we were, on Bournemouth beach on 21st February 2010, 7 years to the day since we first got together, a newly engaged couple and very very happy.

    We didn't stay at the beach long after that, D had kept the engagement a secret from both his family and mine, except to ask for my dad's permission and we wanted to get home to share the news with them. As you can imagine, they were all really happy and we had 3 toasts that day. One with his parents, one with my mum and one with my dad.

    I don't have a great Picture of the ring, but this will have to do:

    [​IMG]

    If you are still with me, well done. Sorry it is so long, but I am writing this for myself too, so that I never ever forget the whole planning process!
     
    Gemz2702, Nov 16, 2011
    #1
    1. Advertisements

  2. Gemz2702

    sammy

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2011
    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    What a beautiful story, that brought a tear to my eye! He sounds very romantic, poor thing feeling all nervous beforehand. Was the photo taken just after he proposed? I love your ring, it looks really classic and elegant xxx
     
    sammy, Nov 16, 2011
    #2
    1. Advertisements

  3. Gemz2702

    MrsC2Be

    Joined:
    May 1, 2010
    Messages:
    1,171
    Likes Received:
    98
    Location:
    Lymm, Cheshire
    What a lovely story, nice that it's so 'you' :-D
     
    MrsC2Be, Nov 16, 2011
    #3
  4. Gemz2702

    Gemz2702

    Joined:
    May 4, 2010
    Messages:
    123
    Likes Received:
    3
    I know bless him, he never got round to asking me out in the first place as he was nervous, so I always knew it would be a big deal to him to ask me, even knowing the answer was obviously yes! Yep, we took the photo a few minutes afterwards. He chose the ring himself :) x
     
    Gemz2702, Nov 16, 2011
    #4
  5. Gemz2702

    sammy

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2011
    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    0
    Your marrying a man with good taste then! :D
     
    sammy, Nov 16, 2011
    #5
  6. Gemz2702

    Gemz2702

    Joined:
    May 4, 2010
    Messages:
    123
    Likes Received:
    3
    I sure am. Although having good taste does bring out the "groomzilla" in him sometimes!

    Will probably write some more tomorrow, I'm off work with a horrible cold at the moment so it will keep me busy :) x
     
    Gemz2702, Nov 16, 2011
    #6
  7. Gemz2702

    Becky

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2010
    Messages:
    2,858
    Likes Received:
    83
    We like nothing better than a detailed planning thread! :D

    Aw, your H2B sounds like a real sweetheart, that's a lovely story! What is it with men wanting to make us cry? When Ian asked me to marry him he was clearly anticipating tears... as soon as he saw me well up he whipped a tissue out of his pocket, and seeing how prepared he was just made me laugh which stopped the tears anyway!!

    Can't wait to hear more. Sorry to hear you're not feeling well, I hope you're on the mend!
     
    Becky, Nov 17, 2011
    #7
  8. Gemz2702

    Gemz2702

    Joined:
    May 4, 2010
    Messages:
    123
    Likes Received:
    3
    Haha becky that made me laugh, at least he was well prepared though! :)
     
    Gemz2702, Nov 17, 2011
    #8
  9. Gemz2702

    Gemz2702

    Joined:
    May 4, 2010
    Messages:
    123
    Likes Received:
    3
    The venue search


    We started to look at venues pretty much straight away as even though we had over 2 years to plan we wanted to get married in the summer (I work in a school) and we knew it would book up early. We were driving through a village on the way to my mum's house one day when I pointed out a possible venue to Rich, a very pretty Victorian house set back in the countryside just 2 minutes from my Mum's house. He suggested we pop in to arrange a meeting with the wedding planner there, we were in awe as we drove up the drive, the house and grounds were beautiful and the entrance hall was very grand with all the original or restored features inside, we made an appointment to go back the following week. After looking around the venue and negotiating a deal with the wedding planner, she came back with a price we were both happy with and it took all my will power not to book there and then, after all I thought we should give some other venues a chance, but I wasn't optimistic about them. What could possibly beat the dream venue?

    The second venue we looked at was a barn restoration deep in the heart of the Wiltshire countryside, it was ok but nothing wow and nothing compared to my dream venue. Rich on the other hand loved it, he loved the big draped ceilings with fairy lights in and the big comfy armchairs, but for me it lacked any kind of character and it definitely wasn't what either of us had imagined when talking about what we wanted in a venue.

    Aaaaaaand on to number 3.

    Venue 3 was also very pretty and the idea of getting married in a conservatory really appealed to me, as did the price. But the older part of the house reminded me of my Nan's living room, with the outdated brown flowery carpets and curtains. It's such a shame really as the venue has the potential to be a lot better than it is and as it happens my MOH's friend got married there and I didn't want our mutual friends to attend 2 weddings at the same venue so that was out too.

    The last venue we were to look at had an open evening about a month after we had seen venue 3, this gave us a chance to slow down and take a bit of a breather from the wedding venue searching and gave me a chance to realise something quite important too. I'm quite an impulsive person and tend to jump into things quite quickly without really thinking things through and my "dream venue" I'm sad to say is just yet another example of that. You see when I started to think about the dream venue I started to get niggly doubts about things that I hadn't thought about before, was it really what I wanted? I already knew Rich wasn't 100% set on it. Was it too pretentious? Yes I think it might be. Wasn't it a little bit old fashioned? Hmmmm, yes it was that too. Did it really suit either mine or Rich's personalities or was it more about putting on a show? No it didn't and Yes I think it was.

    "If I'm really that happy with our venue choice why is it that I'm still pouring over wedding venue websites trying to find the perfect place?" was the question I put to D one night. If I really was that certain about it surely I shouldn't have been looking for something better? Also I wanted D to be as happy with the decision as I was, after all it was his day as much as mine.

    I had a good feeling about venue 4, without even seeing it I was feeling excited about it and the pictures on the website just seemed to fuel this even more, the thing that worried me was that it was in Bath and likely to be way out of our budget. On the day itself D happened to be in a particularly bad mood, he didn't want to go, he'd been working all day and was tired, but I insisted we go along and take a look at the place. We turned into the long sloping driveway and round the corner to the most beautiful Georgian house.......
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    Wow, wow, wow. We went to the reception where they sent us to a side room with various canapes to try and different wines and champagnes to taste, I had something pink and yummy. We were there about 5 minutes when a lady popped in ready to show us round. She took us into a room that is often used for ceremonies and has big sliding windows that lead out onto a massive balcony and looks out over the whole of Bath, by this point I'm sold, no question about it, this really is the perfect venue. I look at D, he's pleased but is not entirely wowed at this point and is beginning to think that he will never be happy with anywhere; especially as I have found something positive in all the venues we have seen together.

    The woman took us down to the conservatory area (I like my conservatories after all) where the drinks receptions are usually held, it has it's own private garden, bar area and nice big comfy squashy sofas; great for the older members of our families. Perfect. D again thinks it is nice, but he still hasn't spotted the wow factor in the place, anyone would think he was walking around with his eyes shut!
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    The last stop is the Brunel suite, I had already seen this in the brochure and I knew it wasn't anything spectacular, in fact they use it for big meetings so I was expecting it to be quite businesslike. We walked in and I actually blown away, I looked at D and he was smiling for the first time, we both knew this was it. The room had been transformed into a marquee, tented and lined with silk, something D had loved in venue 2. From the ceiling hung twinkling fairy lights that could be turned up or down according to the time of day, there was a wooden dance floor in the middle with the round tables surrounding it. The tables had lovely pale green tablecloths and wooden chairs, that didn't need a chair cover! (I was particularly excited about this because I'm not a fan of chair covers, they make the room look too white in my opinion) We both knew it was the one. The woman asked if we wanted to see the bedrooms and gym and sauna. D, now being very enthusiastic, was talking about staying over the night before the wedding, using the gym and sauna and maybe having a football match on the courts outside on the morning of. D doesn't like to let the wedding planners know when he's impressed with a place, something about making them work hard to show us the best bits about the place apparently, but it was written all over his face, this was it.
    [​IMG]

    We sat down with the wedding woman (I say that because she wasn't the wedding planner and I can't for the life of me remember her name) to talk numbers. I knew it wouldn't be good, especially as we would now be wanting the marquee effect which would add on a few thousand alone, add that to the fact that the venue is in Bath and we wanted August and you have yourself a recipe for disappointment. We told her an idea of the numbers we would be having for the day and evening and she promised that the wedding planner, aptly named Jemma too, would be in touch in the next few days. It had started to get dark when we left and the fairy lights had lit up in trees further adding to the romance of the place.

    D: "Right, I think we've found our venue."

    Me: *squeals with delight*

    Now just to wait and hear back about a price.

    Jemma emailed me the next day and quoted us at 2,000 pounds over our budget. Oh dear. I guess it's back to the drawing board then. But this was the only venue D had truly loved, sure we could get married in the lovely conservatory with the grannyfied (Is that even a word?) carpets; after all, the most important thing is that we are getting married, but every girl dreams about the perfect venue and this was mine (or should I say ours.)

    Me: "Why don't we go back and talk to Jemma, tell her we love the place, but that our budget won't stretch to what they are asking. It can't hurt right?"

    D: "Ok, you better ring and book an appointment then."

    So I did.

    More oohs and aahs ensued as we pulled up the drive once again, D told me not to get my hopes up. We had a long chat with Jemma and she agreed to break down the costs so that we could include what we wanted, she said she would come back with a quote by the end of the following day and we were to let her know what our decision was. If no, she would have to let our date go.

    And you know what? We managed to knock 1,500 off the price.

    2 weeks later, 50% of the deposit was paid and the date (11th August 2012) was ours.

    Another picture of the Marquee layout. Not a great picture, but you can get the gist:
    [​IMG]
     
    Gemz2702, Nov 17, 2011
    #9
  10. Gemz2702

    Zoe

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2010
    Messages:
    260
    Likes Received:
    17
    Location:
    Chester
    Wow, your venue looks gorgeous. Well done with the perseverance and getting the cost down. Also, your engagement story is lovely.
     
    Zoe, Nov 17, 2011
    #10
  11. Gemz2702

    Becky

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2010
    Messages:
    2,858
    Likes Received:
    83
    Your venue is gorgeous, I bet you're glad you waited now! That's excellent work on the haggling front too!
     
    Becky, Nov 17, 2011
    #11
  12. Gemz2702

    Helen

    Joined:
    May 1, 2010
    Messages:
    1,744
    Likes Received:
    70
    Location:
    Powys
    Your venue looks gorgeous! Also loving your proposal story, I love an out of summer season beach! :D
     
    Helen, Nov 18, 2011
    #12
  13. Gemz2702

    Gemz2702

    Joined:
    May 4, 2010
    Messages:
    123
    Likes Received:
    3
    Thanks ladies, I do love our venue :)

    Right, the next bit is going to be far less wordy and a lot more pic heavy. So here goes....

    Dress, shoes, undies and accessories

    I actually bought the dress before the venue was booked. I wasn't actively looking per-se, but I had seen a dress I like in a wedding magazine and emailled a few local stores just to see if they had it in stock. I wasn't planning to go see it, but I figured if it was going to be discontinued at least I could go try it on. Only one store had it in stock and coincidently had a sample for sale in my size. I enquired about the price, but she said I'd need to go see it first. Well I knew what would happen, I'd go in, love it and she"d knock 100 quid off. I wanted more off than that, so I pointed out that it was a long way for me to travel (it wasn't) if I didn't end up liking it. She ended knocking off 50%, meaning I got it for 450 :)

    On the model:
    [​IMG]

    On me (I was a stone heavier in this picture than the ones below and it didn't do up, but it's the only full view one I have)
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    The dress is by Ellis bridals and is 11135.

    The shoes were easy, I worked in next as a christmas temp last year and got them with discount (I don't think I've paid full price for anything wedding wise yet!)
    [​IMG]

    I need them to be quite a small heel, as although I love uber high heels, H2B isn't that much taller than me. I'm considering getting a second pair for the evening as I don't think my feet will last all day. I'm thinking maybe some ballet slippers could be cute?

    The hairpiece goes quite well with the shoes, not that I planned it. I'm not that great with accessorising!
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    It's called Elle by Eden and was supposed to be 120! However, I found it on another website for 80. Still a small fortune, but I got it as a birthday present from D :)

    I'm currently trying to decide on a veil and finding it quite hard, I can't try them on with my dress as it's at home, but I don't want to make the wrong decision!

    I bought my undies on the debenhams website on Tuesday as they had a 20% and I've been eyeing them up for months. If anyone hasn't bought theirs yet, I'd highly recommend them.
    [​IMG]

    I haven't decided on jewellery yet, but will add that in when I do.

    So the question is, What kind of veil do you ladies think I should get? And, Do you think my dress needs to have a petticoat to make it more puffy at the bottom? Any suggestions would be great!

    x
     
    Gemz2702, Nov 18, 2011
    #13
  14. Gemz2702

    Zoe

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2010
    Messages:
    260
    Likes Received:
    17
    Location:
    Chester
    Wow, that dress is amazing. I think you do need to try different length veils on with the dress as both long and short would suit it.
     
    Zoe, Nov 18, 2011
    #14
  15. Gemz2702

    Gemz2702

    Joined:
    May 4, 2010
    Messages:
    123
    Likes Received:
    3
    Thank you :) I'd love a long veil, but it would need to be sheer enough so that it didn't hide the detail. I know it's going to cost me a fair bit though! x
     
    Gemz2702, Nov 18, 2011
    #15
  16. Gemz2702

    iPrincess26

    Joined:
    May 17, 2010
    Messages:
    970
    Likes Received:
    58
    Location:
    Lake District
    It doesn't have to cost you loads, there is a woman on eBay who makes them (I'll see if I still have her details) if you tell her what you want I'm sure she could do it, I got a single tier cathedral length plain veil from her for £26 way way cheaper than I had seen anywhere else. Don't loose your bargain finding streak now!

    Love your dress, it looks fantastic on you and what a find!
     
    iPrincess26, Nov 18, 2011
    #16
  17. Gemz2702

    Gemz2702

    Joined:
    May 4, 2010
    Messages:
    123
    Likes Received:
    3
    ok, thank you :) I've already bought one disaster veil off of ebay so I'm a little apprehensive to try again, but will take a look! x
     
    Gemz2702, Nov 18, 2011
    #17
  18. Gemz2702

    MrsC2Be

    Joined:
    May 1, 2010
    Messages:
    1,171
    Likes Received:
    98
    Location:
    Lymm, Cheshire
    Your dress is stunning and it really suits you. Good work on the bargain hunting!
     
    MrsC2Be, Nov 19, 2011
    #18
  19. Gemz2702

    Becky

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2010
    Messages:
    2,858
    Likes Received:
    83
    You look incredible!! I wish I had your waist, the dress really suits you. I'm seriously impressed with your bargaining too - good work!!

    I don't think you need a petticoat with that dress, it looks lovely as it is. Have you tried it with one before?

    On the veil front, I think a shorter one would look nice although I see what you mean about a longer one... here's a sneaky thought, could you see if any local wedding dress shops stock it, and then go and try it on with different veils?! :ph34r:
     
    Becky, Nov 19, 2011
    #19
  20. Gemz2702

    Zoe

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2010
    Messages:
    260
    Likes Received:
    17
    Location:
    Chester
    Oh, I like your thinking Becky - good plan!!!
     
    Zoe, Nov 19, 2011
    #20
    1. Advertisements

Ask a Question

Want to reply to this thread or ask your own question?

You'll need to choose a username for the site, which only take a couple of moments (here). After that, you can post your question and our members will help you out.