Saturday, June 30, 2007

dahlias of the week

i do love dahlias! we went driving through perhaps the last affordable neighbourhood in kirkland near the water, and lo and behold a large dahlia stand - 2 for a dollar. and the kind lady says they have over 80 dahlia plants and sell them every day through to september!

i mentioned the name dahlia for a future girl and andrew seemed to like it. my only concern would be that it's too pretentious to name a child something that sounds so much like drawling "dahling"


i'd never really envisioned my wedding before, but i always assumed some asian bakehouse would create a lovely anna's cake house in east van, michelle's bakery in kerrisdale, or goldilocks on broadway. i'm sure they make contemporary, martha-worthy cakes, but everything on their website looks like it's from the 1980's. and bon ton's window display cakes in kitsilano have a layer of dust on them like they truly are from the 1980's. anna's gave some helpful dimension information:
"have the tiers step up in constant increments (ie: 6 - 9 -12 where each tier widens by 3 inches or 8 - 11 - 14, NOT 6 - 8 -16 unless that is the look you are trying to achieve)"

enter: cupcakes (and vanessa's cute new kicks). i prefer betty crocker "muffins" topped with real whipped cream, buttercream is the sickest dessert-related stuff i have ever tasted, but they do cakes as well.
i think they mentioned their wedding cakes start at $8 per slice....which, even if it has fondant i'm sure is the plainest cake with a few strips of grosgrain ribbon. so 8 x 100 = $800.

cupcakesbut, they also have "regular" buttercream cakes which are actually quite cute...and affordable (see pricing, left)!! okay, so following anna's dimensions rule - if i did 7, 11, 13" cakes and tiered them myself, it would run $185 and feed about 112 people with 2" slices (although their wedding cake looks to break the even increment rule with a four incher on top). and i realize tiering these cakes could be disastrous, so even buying three vintage milk glass cake stands and having three 11" cakes would still make martha proud. cupcakes2look how pretty their cakes can be in this price range - they had a mini fridge in the store that had a few of these very same cakes and they really were true to these prices. now i imagine there are equally talented cake makers out there that don't have the overhead of a store located on both denman and broadway.


so the last time i was in vancouver dan, the best man, kindly took vanessa and i out to rangoli, the restaurant of the son of the man behind the famed indian restaurant "vij" - vij's son i guess, and they're right next door to each other.
vanit was something i can only describe as fusion indian, which i've never had curry contained not only paneer but portobello mushrooms. if you look behind dan, they have a fridge full of premade curries all aesthetically packaged up, and they even sell cookbooks. it wasn't the best food i've ever had in my life, but i love the fresh concept of the place. and the fact that there's a tv set into the mirror in the bathroom that airs east indian dancing while you pee.

vanessa made an awesome bbq (mmm steak), and yams!, i jammed on the guitar with jesse, and she and i ripped apart an old typewriter. ooh! and we went to a flea market where i bought 7 vintage hats! haha.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

here is the andy warhol pop-art in me coming out, and this is perhaps why jenn envisions me with a "mod" wedding. i hate gardens, i'm not one for flower bushes...and if i ever owned my own photography studio - i would make sure i had a little outdoor courtyard with several walls painted in bold colors.

below are my three favorite vancouver (?) photos from chris plus lynn. i do love their candid photos, but there something about every photographer's formal photos that bores me right now. maybe it's the same disillusionment i've encountered with wedding dresses, like wen nothing on what not to wear's wedding episode seemed to impress me in the least because i've seen way too many. chris and lynn are great, and their destination weddings are gorgeous - but vancouver isn't quite as an exciting backdrop.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

wedding photojournalists in vancouver

i'm getting to the point where all wedding photographs are starting to make me bored. but i still LOVE the candid photos, so that i am happy about.

so the wpja is certainly not an exhaustive list of photojournalists available, and it is doesn't necessarily guarantee their quality of work, especially considering some of them become a part of it based on a single photo - so it is by no means an evaluation of their work as a whole. so i've found some more via aisle walk again, and i've omitted a few from their list that i wouldn't rate as A1. i haven't had a chance to explore these in detail yet, but i'm crossing them off as I narrow them down.
erin gilmore photography
fractured light
leanne pedersen
match studio

here's my top picks from the, list :

Jeanie Ow BC $3100+ ---um this one has yet to answer an email

Tying the Knot Photography

HEE creations Photography
Kumiko and Masaki Leung BC $2195+

Chris+Lynn Photographers
Chris Jaksa BC $3999+

Lucida Photography
Melia Sorenson BC $2400+

C.J. Scott BC $2000+

Sean Flanigan and blog WA USA $2000+ - this guy would be great, i love the contrast, but i don't want to risk him getting trapped at the border

and of course, reine and jana. i found hycroft through their website! they shoot with film, and i love the high-contrast - it almost looks like the negs are cross-processed. the only downside is that their website doesn't showcase a lot of their work.

Friday, June 22, 2007

minnekhada lodge + decor, decor, decor!

i think the gvrd is an untapped resource for heritage houses and other similar wedding venues but i find it hard to navigate, or at least to easily weed out picnic areas and dog parks from my search. check out cammidge house in boundary bay for an affordable tent wedding with a wonderfully huge grassy field (i'm anti-golf course but i'd love a natural field).

enter yet another legitimate contender - we're at hycroft, swaneset (my interest gets piqued and then often wanes at this option), and now: Minnekhada Lodge in coquitlam.
one bonus is that it's not waaay out in pitt meadows (seriously, who thought there could possibly be a place that was equidistance from vancouver, whiterock, and abbotsford, the drive approximating over 60 minutes!). other exciting features:
a)$950 for the rental and liquor fee
b) 13 hours of use
c) a much nicer bridal room than hycroft (why couldn't the green room, blue room, black and white room, or any other gorgeous room there have been the bridal room?!)
d) bridal room is pink
e) "japanese gardens"
f) if you look at the japanese garden closely there's some sort of chuppah in there - i could have the ceremony IN THE FOREST!
g) the flower girl can wear feathery wings!!!
h) i can wear feathery wings!!!
h) i can incorporate peacock feathers simply because i used the word feathers in the last sentence, this whim has nothing to do with the site and shouldn't count as a pro
i) there's a pool area that i could decorate really nicely with couches?
j) i bet no one has been to a wedding here

con: banquet hall is kind of dark
con:'s not hycroft?

but - if i save $2000 from hycroft ($3500 vs $950, not to mention i could find more affordable caterers than $140-$200/head) - i could put that extra money toward actually making use of a fancy schmance decorating company!! or at least renting everything they have to offer and making best use of the 13 hour rental.

i mean look at their before and after photos of swaneset - not that these are even their best photos, and not that i really care for chair covers:

it sounds like this coquitlam secret has a lot of pluses, but i still love hycroft in a sick way. and if i can get the member rate of $1400 something, which comes with the liberty to choose my own (more affordable?) caterer....then the wedding doesn't have to top out at thirty-five grand..........

oops it looked so promising until i just read it can only hold 60 people - seriously: these are the only tables it can hold click

vancouver vendors

jenn i might be coming home this throw some money down on hycroft or explore a couple other places... seems like a great resource for information such as a comprehensive list of the top notch greater vancouver venues. has some great, independent, non-1980's cake bakers to explore later on.

wedding designs studio puts together some absolutely stunning weddings. where is this wedding? must be on vancouver island or the sunshine coast if they get to make use of the beach......

at any rate, yes, yes YES this is what i want to do at hycroft, except i bet a long table will only seat 60 folks, max....:
but perhaps the head table could go here which is just a few steps off the patio - i think it would look lovely but it might be too isolated from everyone else? or we could have a few tables down here too. so that we get us an extra dozen people with seats.....someone at work pointed out that by the time inivitations roll around in a year i'll have probably made some american i'm going to stick to my current "small" guestlist? i'm really into the rectangular tables for hycroft rather than the round ones.

here is hycroft's dim dim ballroom:
but at least it's yellow! i love yellow but it'd be nice to contrast it with something bold like black rather than white white white......but i doubt that's possible. if it rains, the ballroom's the place to be and i won't be disappointed if we have it there.

aaand.....another gratuitous hycroft photo because i want to live in the hycroft fairytale:

Thursday, June 21, 2007

dead things

so here are my beloved "dead things" that i'd like to have at the wedding because i can't imagine spending $2000+ on flowers that will die within a week's time and that i couldn't even bring home across the border! i seriously walk into florist shops and exclaim, "dead things!" with great glee, to the dismay and embarassment of my BM's. i could even reuse a lot of these pieces in the home. i adore the bell cups. so here they are - images from nettleton hollow, that is by no means a new topic to weddingbee


Wednesday, June 20, 2007


who says bridesmaids have to be blobs of bold colors? who wants to own a hot pink dress anyway? not only that, but i feel like 90% of bridesmaids dresses are strapless tube tops (could they not have put any thought into a nice sweetheart neckline at the least?), they're overly shiny (ugh, taffetta), and somehow they're three to four hundred dollars! what a money maker.

hello macys, where a well constructed, totally rewearable dress can run $50-200. i think that the following two lines: maggy london, and london times, are particularly bridesmaid appropriate and i'm excited to see what they'll have to offer over the next couple seasons.

so why not do prints? this dress i saw at macys with a palatable price tag of around $60. here's my mod side taking over. so maybe i don't mean "print" so much as black and white mod graphics. so here's a few things from


i particularly like 7, but perhaps 8 is more bridesmaidy. i also like 1. i find the texture of 12 to be so enticing. 13 through 15 are available in black although i guess i wish they were just a little longer? macy's even has bride-worthy dresses at around the $200 mark:

Sunday, June 17, 2007


i've never thought of myself as a "blue" kinda gal, but i've always loved aquas. and of course, the notion complimentary colors - blue/orange being more favorable in real life, organic settings than red/green and yellow/purple. here's a cake from pailloncakes back east. i the flow to the lines a lot better than a 1 inch strip of grosgrain ribbon encircling the layers so mechanically.

colors here's a really neat color picker at
i'm drawn to these mod combos, perhaps because they're mod shapes to begin with. however neither swaneset nor hycroft are going to match boldly contrasting colors....

there's a huge clothing shop in gastown that is two levels, kind of store on robson, but with considerably less clothing....there's a downstairs, and an upstairs and it's all big and open. and i thought it'd be a cool place to have a chic party there, although i think i need to yaletown condo and the paris hilton dog to pull it off.

Friday, June 15, 2007

i'm all about the "one flower" thing - so andrew knows never to buy me a bouquet, that i'd be happier with just one flower. my flower of choice is always a gerbera daisy, but despite the fact that i love them, i don't really feel like having them at my wedding for some reason. maybe because i'm shying away from really bold flower reds and oranges all mixed together seems overwhelming to me unless we do a stark white loft or tent.
via martha. is it just me or do peonies seem really easily bruised?

yay for jenn - a listing of what's in season, when: some californian wholesale company

swaneset, pitt meadows

here are the two money photos that i like which showcase that it's "upstairs" and that it's well lit


okay so what is this about?! "Swan-e-set reserves the right to offer a cash bar at any evening function." so if i say i only want beer and wine, if someone approaches the bar and asks for cognac they'll be asked to pay??

the outside looks dated to me:
but that notion somewhat dissolves away in the evening when it transforms into something out of "the bachelor" or, at least that one show where the construction worker was pretending to be some multimillionaire

here are outdoor ceremony option(s?):

and it looks pretty blank canvas to decorate so i could almost go for something clean and bold: swaneset8

it is a golf course after all, so i guess the view outside the window would be a lot of greeeeen

and so flickr has been my resource for a lot of actual wedding photos, especially when the resorts' websites have been pretty sparse. so here i am looking at some random couple and look who they turn out to be, laila! i've seen their wedding photos before but it was funny how they popped up in my venue search.

At the capilano suspension bridge:

capilano"The Canyon Lookout is unmatched in spectacular beauty. Located at the north end of Capilano Suspension Bridge, this private area features a deck cantilevered 300 feet above the rushing waters of Capilano River (click here for a virtual tour). Heated tents allow this area to be used during any season and it is unsurpassed in its uniquely West Coast appeal."

well. it's definitely got that real "westcoast" feel....i'm from vancouver, hear me roar. we could even do a salmon barbeque. and another upside is we have the roaring water below us rather than the roaring traffic at granville and 16th...too bad i can't find more pictures of the damn place

Seating capacity: 150 guests
so, here's a pdf breakdown, sans the food
$1500 + $5/guest as a park service fee ($5 x 100 = $500) which includes tent rentals to a max of one 20'x30' and four 20'x20' tents....does this mean i have five tents? one can be for dinner/dancing, one can be for lounging perhaps with couches like the fancy pants wedding books suggest?? big downside: we run into a 6:30-10pm limitation, which ends earliier than brock house if we do the ceremony there. also, the lookout is a non-exclusive venue, which means i'll have german tourists parading through my wedding? "additional charges" for "equipment rentals" run 30-40 per person (whatever that means??) and then it goes into more pricing that seems like what they've already discussed, but somehow it's in addition it! additoinal $2500 for outside catering, and a park service fee of $15.95/per person - it does come with a cd player with background music, a podium and a mic (ipod-friendly it seems), easels (artwork to display?), a stage and "mirror centerpieces and vases." cake cutting is $1.50 per person, and printed menus are $4 per menu! 1 per table i guess it will be.....unless i'm allowed to make my own which i bet they won't allow. four course dinners run $40-50 a piece which is decent. i have to use their alcohol.
and since it's at the canyon lookout, there's an adiditon surcharge of $6/person (in addition to the $5 and the $15.95 mentioned earlier? this is going to kill me with the kid guests - maybe i can get cheaper meals for them, but they're still running an additional $27 each just exisiting on the property)