Discussion in 'Planning our Happily Ever After' started by Freckledginger, Oct 4, 2011.
I really like your engagement story . Thanks for sharing with us.
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Sorry it's been so long in between updates!
I do have a bit of exciting news though. We're officially booked for a DP at Sago Cay on Saturday October 27!
As I mentioned earlier in this thread, due to the Food and Wine Festival at Epcot, our options for a DP were limited to Wishes or Fantasmic for that particular date. We had initially hoped for Fantasmic (LOVE the show), but when it came time to book a venue, a bit of a hiccup occured. SCP was available to book, but the dates for Fantasmic had not been scheduled yet. We had a choice: I could either go ahead and book SCP (with the option that if Fantasmic turns out to be scheduled for that night, we may be able to switch to a Fantasmic DP later on) or hold out for Fantasmic (but if Fantasmic wasn't scheduled for that night, Disney couldn't guarantee a venue for the DP ). Ultimately, we decided it would be better to be safe than sorry, and I'm pretty happy we made that decision. The photos I've seen of DPs at SC from other brides are really gorgeous. Plus it's located on the water, so I think it'll tie back to the DCL wedding nicely.
I'm really excited about getting to plan an ancillary event to the CC wedding. One of the things that concerned DF and I about having a DCL wedding was the limited options for customization available. However, by adding a DP as a welcome event before the cruise, we'll be able to personalize the wedding a bit more and extend the festivities
Great news about the dessert party! I'm so glad we added it to ours. We will be at Sago cay as well! If you nt to add a personal touch, I highly reccomend ordering some custom napkins. Check out my pj for ours (prepare for the ridiculous)
Oh and I recommend the ap or website called shopstyle to help find a dress. It's a very customized search over tons of clothing websites so you can narrow down by color, style, size, price etc.
So we've been transferred from our DFTW planner to the coordinator, which means the planning of the DP has begun!
DF and I have decided to customize a dessert menu. Initially, Karen emailed me menu options, but none of them were exactly what we had envisioned. We then sat down, wrote down all our favorite desserts from WDW, and sent them to Karen for pricing and availability. We would like to spend roughly $35-40 pp, so it'll probably take some fiddling to get a menu in the correct price point.
The items we were interested in were:
- Bananas Foster Station
- Dole Whips
- Key Lime Pie Tarts
- Brown Derby Grapefruit Cake
- Chocolate covered Strawberries
- Sunshine Food Fair Strawberry Shortcake
- Mini-Chocolate Mousses
- Mini Fruit Tarts
We'll definitely have the Bananas Foster Station (DF's favorite) and hopefully dole whips (one of my true loves in life ), but we're flexible on the rest of the menu. Hopefully we'll be able to have about 5 items or so...
As our cruise reception will be fairly simple, we've decided to offer drinks at this event for our guests. We were debating between BOC and packages, but Karen said we could base the number of packages ordered on our guests' beverage preferences. In other words, for our guests that do not drink alcohol, we can pay for just a soft drink package, and for those that do, we can buy one of the alcohol packages. This seems like a pretty good way to go as some of the guests that are attending are pretty enthusiastic drinkers We haven't decided on a particular package yet... It'll depend on where our menu is going to fall price wise.
We'd also like to offer sparkling wine/champagne (my favorite alcoholic drink), but none of the packages offer this. Karen said that bottles can be ordered in addition to the package, but they start at $37 a bottle + tax and service charges. I've heard about some brides bringing their own champagne, and then just being charged service charges + corkage. I think I'm going to look into this as I think we'd be able to get better champagne for the overall price. Will let you know what I discover!
DF and I would really like to have music at the event. I looked into having Wishes soundtrack piped in for the event, but then I found out that the charge for that would be $500 + tax. As much as I would love to do this, I really can't swing it with the budget. From what I've read in the Passporter's Guide to Disney Weddings (LOVE this book), private musicians would also be quite costly. I have noticed on the DIS that some brides have DFTW place an iPod setup at their receptions for music. I inquired about this option to Karen, and she said they could provide an iPod setup at SC for $350 including tax. I think we're going to go with that option, so we'll just have to come up with a playlist to run during the evening
My parents have graciously offered to pay for the DP. It takes huge financial pressure off of us, and allows us to afford a nicer event than we would have been able to on our own. My father said around $3,000, so I'm shooting for that overall. I would really like to do some decor on the tables, so DF and I will probably pay for that.
Depending on the size of the menu display, Karen said the GF usually sets up 5-8 tables. Decor items, such as chairs, centerpieces, specialty linens, etc, can be added. I'll probably go with the standard chairs/tables and linens to save money, but I'd really like to add centerpieces to the tables. I've been going through different options (there's some really neat light up ones that other brides have done), and will hopefully send Karen a couple choices this week to price out for me.
Dress shopping next week!!!
You have a bunny also?! Awesome!!! They're such wonderful little animals, aren't they?? I actually have two bunnies... Archie (who was pictured) and Dolly (a blue fawn butterfly velvet lop). They're quite the pair. Archie's the sweet, big galoot of the two and Dolly's the pretty, high maintenance one that refuses to use her litterbox. Sigh.... But as you put it, I love them both dearly.
I highly recommend experiencing a spray tan. It was quick, not too messy, and I felt like I looked a lot slimmer with a tan--always a huge plus in my book, hehe. I'm super dark in that photo (I left it on the full length of time in an attempt to near Jersey Shore tan), but depending on how long you leave it on to develop, it can be super natural looking and not streaky at all. I'm undecided about whether to do it before the wedding though... It can start to flake a bit around day 3 or 4, and don't really know if I want to deal with that on the cruise. I, unfortunately, do not have your gift of tanning easily, so I may just have to err on the side of pasty looking. When I was trying on wedding dresses, I found the white washed me out a bit too. I suppose that's the disadvantage of having fair skin and hair...
Yeah, I was super bummed about Fantasmic as well... I agonized for a solid week over deciding whether to go with SCP (it's an area next to the water at the Grand Floridian; I hadn't heard of it either until it became a DP option) or take my chances with Fantasmic. I'm sure my planner was getting very sick of my "should I or shouldn't I" emails by the time I decided on SCP. It turns out, however, that Fantasmic is running on that night. I've spent so much time planning the event at GF though that I can't be bothered changing everything around. I'll just have to get my Fantasmic fix with the rest of the crowds on another night--I like sitting at the very front best anyways
Loving all the DIY projects on your blog!! Your wedding is going to be so nice!!
I finally selected my wedding dress!!
After trying on roughly 30 gowns at 3 different bridal salons (yeah... it was sort of a lot), my wedding dress will be....
Monique Lhuillier's "Peony"
The whole dress shopping process was quite different than I expected it to be... I suppose I had been watching too much Say Yes to the Dress, but I thought that I would have a passionate/guttural reaction toward the dress that was meant to be the one. Unfortunately,that didn't happen. I tried on different styles and shapes, and the majority (to my utter shock) looked very nice on me, but I never felt a sense of "yes, this is my dress" let alone tears of joy.
My criteria I entered the salons with were the following: like strapless & sweetheart necklines, like lace and flowy fabrics (I thought satin and taffeta would be too heavy for a beach wedding), & want something a little different, but still bridal.
My inspiration dress was a Spring 2013 Monique Lhuillier "Belle":
So Gorgeous!! Unfortunately, this dress was not in stores yet, so I couldn't try it on It was probably a good thing though, as it was way out of my price point.
Out of the all the dresses I tried on, I ended up with a short list of favorites:
1) Monique Lhuillier Peony
2) Monique Lhuillier Sahara
3) Monique Lhuillier Bellflower
4) Liancarlo 5803
Without the belt
They all were lovely dresses, and I could see myself wearing any of them on my wedding day. What really set Peony apart was I felt like myself in it. It was a beautiful dress, comfortable, and flattering to my figure and complexion. I really wanted to fall in love with an ivory ball gown, but the blush mermaid gown just seemed to fit me better.
As I started dress shopping later than most brides, the dress won't be in until mid Sept, but I'm very excited to try it on again
My quandary now is wedding colors... Any suggestions for soft colors that will go well with a light blush wedding dress??
Hi!! Just found your PJ and read your plans so far! Congrats on graduation and booking your DP!! All exciting. Your dress is really beautiful!
Can't wait to read more
Thanks so much, Jess!!
I had a look through your PJ, and your wedding was absolutely gorgeous! Your photographs are really beautiful, and I love your color palette. Fit perfectly at SBP!
Thank you for reading!
Since we're currently under 6 months until the wedding, DF and I decided to send out a planning/informational newsletter to our guests. I ended up using a template on microsoft word, and just amending it with photos found using google images.
Just wanted to pop in and say I LOVE your newsletter! I wish I had done something like that, though I'm sure it would not have been nearly as gorgeous!
Your dress is also amazing!
Best of luck with the rest of your planning!
After much back and forth with Karen regarding details, I almost have the DP planned!
-Bananas Foster Station
-Key Lime Pie Tarts
-Brown Derby Grapefruit Cake
-Chocolate Covered Strawberries
-Sunshine Food Fair Strawberry Shortcake
-Mini chocolate mousses
Cost: $39 pp for 1 hour of service.
Disney will allow the food to be available for an additional 30 minutes after service finishes, and then it will be removed. I was worried this might be disruptive to the event, so I looked into extending service to 1.5 hours. Unfortunately, DFTW wanted an additional $10 pp (making it $49 pp total) That seems like a lot to me for an extra 30 minutes, so I'm currently leaning toward no on that one.
As an alternative, Karen suggested having individually wrapped Mickey shaped rice cripsy treats ($5 pp) or individually wrapped carmel or candy apples (price TBA) passed out after the food trays are removed as a favor. I'm giving this some thought as it might be cute...
After reading recommendations from other DIS brides and in light of the fact that sparkling wine is not included in bar packages, DF and I have decided to go the BOC route. The bar will be available for the full 2 hours, and we're going with the Premium Brands + bottles of Sparkling.
Estimated cost for 50 people: $2,290.
I'm told that guests often do not consume as much as DFTW estimates, so hopefully we'll be refunded a portion of the bar cost.
I had previously mentioned how DF and I were interested in getting an iPod setup for music for the event. Even though it would be nice to have ambient music, I was a bit bummed about the prospect of not having Wishes piped in. I spoke to Karen about this, and she told me that if I added the Wishes Audio package, they would include an iPod setup for no additional charge. So instead of spending $350 for just an iPod setup, we'll be able to have both for $495. I'm definitely excited about this development as I think it'll make Wishes feel like a more immersive experience.
Our wedding photographer, Jessica Cumbie, has also agreed to photograph this event
Rosie Carabbia has been helping me plan decor for the party. I'm going to keep the linens and chairs simple, and use what is provided (white linens and green garden chairs), but I'm hoping to do some decorations. Rosie sent me a photo of a DP with white lanterns in the trees, and I absolutely loved that
The cost is $285 for 12 x 8-10 inch white lanterns.
I'd also like to do centerpieces on the tables. The two flowers I'm really loving right now are Hydrangea and Astilbes.
I looked at a bunch of different arrangement photos, and decided that I wanted centerpieces that incorporated a few elements from the following photos:
Each cocktail table will have one arrangement (either hydrangea or astilbes). For hydrangea arrangements, we'll have a vase like #2 with marbles and LED light, but the marbles will be clear like in #1 with a ribbon tied around like in image #3. The astilbe arrangements will be similar, except the vase will be taller like the blue hydrangea arrangement in image #2. As far as the colors of the flowers, Rosie told me she could get Astilbes in October in both the white or blush color. For hydrangea, colors available are: purple, lavender, pink, green and white. I was hoping initially for blue and white hydrangea, and then blush and white Astilbes, but since blue is not available, I'll have to go another route. I'm toying with going all white... What do you all think?
I'm told that the cost for the centerpieces will probably be $60 to $70 per table. Depending on how many tables we have, I may have to simplify the arrangements further to make things a bit more budget friendly.
6) Room Block
As the DP is the night before the cruise, I was hoping to offer guests a room block at a Disney Resort hotel. When I asked Karen about the possibility of this, I was informed that DFTW does not offer room blocks to Escape or DCL brides. Not to be thwarted by this, I checked with Disney Vacation Groups (http://www.disneyvacationgroups.com/). Provided my group would book at least 10 rooms, I was offered a nightly rate of $119 + tax at the Coronado Springs Resort. This is roughly $70 less than the advertised rate online, so I was super happy about this The rate is also good for up to 3 days before and 3 days after the night of the DP for guests who wish to stay longer.
Since the bulk of our guests (assumedly) will be staying at a Disney resort for the DP, we recommended that they use Disney's Magic Express for transport from the airport to the hotel. I looked into transport from the hotel to the DP through DFTW and I was told a motorcoach would be $509.25. To save a bit of money, I'm thinking we'll just all meet up and use Disney's public transport to get to the GF. Hopefully this is not a bad idea...
For transport from the hotel to Port Canaveral and from Port Canaveral to the airport (on disembarkation), we're going Escot Buslines who are willing to do both trips for $625.
Whew.... Sorry for the huge update. It's exciting to be nearly done planning the DP though. Now all I need is an approximate guest count and decor prices, and then I can have a better idea of what the BEO will be. I'm sure that won't be a fun document to receive
Working on invitations at the moment, so hopefully I can post photos of those soon Thanks for following!
So you have two floppy bunnies? I love that! They're just the cutest! I still think I'll be skipping the spray tan, though- I've just heard too many horror stories! Also, I just had my first fitting, and even without tanning, I didn't look too pale- so I'm going to keep wearing sunscreen at work to avoid BAD tan lines, and I'll only take a few short fake-bake sessions and I think that'll be plenty for me
SPEAKING of dresses, I love that you have a BLUSH wedding dress! I didn't even find any to try on, or I absolutely would have! I also never had that "feeling" they convey in Say Yes to the Dress- No tears, No butterflies... But once I had mine on, I knew it was the one when I didn't want to take it off, and I didn't want to look at ANY more dresses (I must've tried on at least 50... at LEAST!) and I had the same problem you did - most of them looked really good on! I'm glad you made a decision, and I love what you picked! I'll be regretting my HUGE ballgown once I'm outside in the Bahamian heat! Just standing completely still for an hour for my hem and bustle to be pinned while standing in my heels seemed to be taxing!
Thanks for the kind words about my crafting! Most days I feel as if I've bitten off way more than I can chew! The date is looming closer and closer and I never see any of my girlfriends since we all work for and have VERY different schedules (especially in the BUSY season!), so scheduling a "crafting" party seems impossible! To be honest, I think Michael enjoyed making our pixie dust vials as much as I did- even though it involved mixing 7 kinds of glitter together! And I still find miscellaneous sparkles on the couch or on him or on me when we mixed it a couple weeks ago!
BY THE WAY! I love your newsletter! Beautiful! I'd never thought to do something like that! The first "newsletter" I'd sent out was just a mass e-mail to all my guests, and I didn't get a single one response! So I'm totally jealous about that
I'm excited to see you've priced out a way for your guests to get to/from Port Canaveral! That's another huge item on my checklist that I'm not entirely prepared to handle! How many guests is Escot taking to/from the port? Are they giving you one of the big buses with all of that cargo space for luggage? I've got roughly 50 guests, so that's a lot of people and luggage! ANY information you can bestow on me about this is GREATLY appreciated!
I'm also totally jealous of your DP! Everything appears to be coming together beautifully! You're going to have such a wonderful time!
Good to hear from you again
Thanks so much for your compliments on the dress! I haven't really shown it to very many people (only my mom, MOH & future mother-in-law), so it's really exciting to get positive feedback from another person, especially a fellow DCL bride!! It also makes me feel so much better that you had a similar shopping experience to me! I was worried I was deficient in the bridal gown gene or something, lol. I absolutely love your dress!!!! There are very few times in our lives when you get to wear a ball gown, so I think it's fantastic you picked one for your wedding. I really wanted to get a ball gown, but the slimmer silhouette just spoke to me more I guess. I know you'll be so happy with your choice. You've got to do one of those photos--standing in front of a window, back turned to the camera, train flared out behind you, lots of natural light pouring in! I think that pose is just so beautiful, and you can only really do those with ball gowns
Loved your anecdote about glitter everywhere from the crafting I've had a similar experience with metallic confetti from a baby shower. I kept finding "baby boy"s all over the house for weeks! I'm excited to see photos of your finished pixie dusts though, and all your other amazing projects!
Thank you for the kind words about the newsletter. You're too sweet I'm not really creative, but vet school forced me to do loads of powerpoint presentations, so I figured I might as well use some of that knowledge to do a newsletter. I haven't heard back from any of the guests though, so hopefully they'll find it useful. The main thing I liked about sending out something like that ahead of time is that it meant I could do a basic invitation, without having to provide a lot of inserts. I've been spending money like a crazy person on this wedding, so I'm trying to simplify things where I can.
Hope you have a nice weekend!!
Yeah, transport was something I really wanted to arrange for the guests. Since they're paying so much to join us on the cruise, I figured was a simple thing I could do to make things easier on everyone. Plus the busing service that DCL offer is crazy expensive--$70 per person, really?
I checked with a couple different companies for quotes--Escot, Mears, and Jet Set USA. Of the three, Escot was much more budget friendly. Escot's quote of $625 was for a mini-motorcoach that holds 36 people, but also has cargo space for luggage. They also have buses that can hold up to 47 or 57 passengers. I'll send you a PM with the exact quotes and details the three companies gave me. Overall, all the companies were pretty quick getting back to me with quotes, and I found this to be a relatively painless thing to plan
Wow all your plans are coming along great!!
I love your dress, so pretty!!
Your newsletter is awesome and I love that you are doing a welcome DP in WDW then bringing everyone to port for the cruise. That would totally be something I'd want to do had I had a cruise wedding. Love it! I'm sure all your guests are going to love it. And your menu looks amazing!
Just before Shanda left DFTW, I had sent her an email with several questions I had. Today, I received an email from someone at DFTW with answers. Thought I would post his or her responses in case they may be of use to any other DCL brides
- I'm leaning toward selecting the Oceanfront Elegance option for my bridal bouquet. In lieu of the white rose that accompanies the bouquet as the groom's boutonniere, would it be possible to have a white calla lily?
Yes Just please make note of it on your planning guide
- For the main dining seating, it is possible for me to put together the seating chart? If so, what size tables should I plan on arranging?
We need to know how many total guests are sailing. Once we have that, we will request the table configurations from the dining coordinator. The tables cannot be reconfigured (moved or chairs added/removed). You may assign your guests to the tables based on the configuration (example: two 4-tops, one 8-top, one 6-top). There must be an adult at each table.
- We're still debating whether to try and book the private room at Palo the night before the wedding for us & the family, or just have an intimate dinner with the two of us at Remy's. If we decide on Remy's, can the credit for Palo be applied there? Would you be able to book reservations at Remy's, or would we need to book that online?
The Palo dinner is just for use by the bride and groom at Palo. It may not be transferred to other guests, dining times, or restaurants. Bookings at Remys are based on availability. You may begin booking Palo, Remy, Port Adventures, spa appointments, etc. beginning 120 days prior to the sail date. Please try to book online first. You do not have to use your confirmed Palos reservation on the night of the wedding. You may use it on another evening if you wish.
- Can you give me an idea of the difference between the Maid of Honor bouquet and the small clutch bouquet? The description said "a smaller version of the bridal bouquets." Does that mean all the bridal bouquets are options? If I selected a rose bouquet for the Maid of Honor, what would be the difference in size between the Bridesmaid bouquet and the small clutch?
The small clutch bouquet usually has only three stems and is used most times for the Mother of the Bride and/or Groom and for children or Junior Bridesmaids. The Maid of Honor bouquet is a smaller version of the brides bouquet.
- In terms of the ceremony decor, I would love to create an aisle look similar to the photo below. I saw in the elements and enhancements guide that there are several available packages of rose petals. Would the cruise ship be willing to make a aisle out of rose petals? If so, what size package would be required to achieve something like this? On the subject of rose petals, do I need to order petals also for guests to throw at the cake & champagne celebration?
To achieve this look, it would require at least 4 of the large boxes of petals. Please keep in mind that wind may be a factor. If the wind is blowing, even our Disney magic cannot keep the petals from blowing about.
We have a very small amount of petals for a toss at the Cake and Champagne Celebration. If you desire each guest to have petals to toss, then additional petals would need to be ordered. The small box is a corsage box, the medium box is like a long stem rose box, and the large box is a 12x12.
- We're also considering the Under the Sea option as our cake. Would we be able to order this cake, but still bring our own cake topper? In other words, can the white chocolate shells be arranged so that the top layer is available for a cake topper? Or would that be too busy looking?
The Under the Sea cake does not allow for the addition of a cake topper. However, we are happy to place your keepsake Mickey and Minnie Figurine and/or your personal cake topper on the cake table next to the cake.
Thanks for posting this - I had similar questions regarding the flowers and the cake!
Vendor: Something Printable by Victoria Ann (http://somethingprintable.com/)
Oh my gosh, I'm super duper excited!! We have our invitations!! Well, the digital copy at least, and we are so thrilled with how they turned out!
Reply Card Front:
Reply Card Back:
After spending the better part of two weeks looking at different invitation options, I decided that a custom design would be the way to go. I kept finding elements of invitations that I liked, but never found one particular invitation that I was head over heels for. I had heard other DIS brides talk about Something Printable by Victoria Ann, who a DIS board member does lots of Disney inspired stationary design. I loved the playfulness that she infuses into many of her creations, so I contacted her about a custom design. I sent her a couple of sample invitations showing the things I liked, and then described what we were hoping to achieve (in short: a whimsical map-style invitation). Within 48 hours, Victoria Ann had created a first draft! It only took a few minor adjustments, and we had our invitation suite!! Amazing!! I cannot say enough wonderful things about her. She's incredibly talented, fast, patient, nice, and creative. If you're looking for any special occasion stationary (invites, programs, welcome bag letters, etc.), I highly recommend Victoria.
We also asked Victoria to customize her Fastpass Save the Date design for a Welcome Party invite to enclose with the main invitation. We also purchased a lifesaver poster design that was listed on her etsy site. I thought it'd be really cute drop off with Guest Services on the Dream and have the characters sign it.
Welcome Party Invitation:
Poster for Characters to sign:
We're having everything printed through Vistaprint, and should arrive in two weeks. I'll update with photographs of the hardcopy invites when they arrive
Separate names with a comma.