Real Wedding: Thomas and Joanne


We love a good surprise wedding at Just as Planned and the surprise wedding of Thomas and Joanne is no exception.

Thomas and Joanne have been together for 10 years and wanted to do something a little different for their wedding, so their chose to surprise their guests!

Guests arrived to their house expecting an engagement party and were floored when they found it was to be their surprise wedding.

The theme was garden party, with lots of florals, food and drinks flowing. Take a look at these stunning photos

Thomas and Joanne

Thomas and Joanne Thomas and Joanne Thomas and Joanne Thomas and Joanne Thomas and Joanne Thomas and Joanne 154756657 154757438

Thomas and Joanne Thomas and Joanne Thomas and Joanne Thomas and JoanneThomas and Joanne

Dress: Raffinato Bridal Flowers: Moss and Fern Photographer: Alana Blowfield Shoes: Etsy Jewellery: Etsy Bridesmaid Dress: Review Men’s Suits: Connor

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French Inspired Wedding Style Look


This week I was inspired by the gorgeous gowns from Anna Campbell in particular this stunning “Trish” Gown from the Gossamer collection.

The Gossamer collection is inspired by French romance and features a classical elegance.   Combined with some Just as Planned style and some beautiful accessories we are sure you will love this French inspired look.

You can view more of the Anna Campbell bridal range here

Anna Campbell Bridal Gossamer Trish back view

Anna Campbell Trish Gown from the Gossamer Collection

Anna Campbell Bridal Gossamer Trish

Anna Campbell Trish Bridal Gown from the Gossamer Collection

David Jones Lancome Tresor in Love

Lancome Tressor in love perfume from David Jones

Jodie Florist Sydney Wedding Flowers

Flowers by Jodie McGregor

Badgley Mischka Scarlett shoe

Badgley Mischka Shoes “Scarlett”

Tiffany and Co Fleur Earrings

Tiffany and Co Fleur Earrings

Images from the website of each vendor.

Birthday Cake Inspiration


We love all special occasions at Just as Planned and if you are planning a birthday take a look at some of these delicious, mouth watering cakes and cupcakes we have found to help get you inspired.  Best of all all of this cakes are made by Australian cake designers.

Cake sisters - pink princess castle birthday cake

Pink princess castle birthday cake by Cake Sisters

Cakes 2 Cupcakes

Sesame St by Cakes 2 Cupcakes

The cupcake co - Anzac

Anzac cupcake from The Cupcake Co

Sweet confessions - butterflies

Butterfly cake by Sweet Confessions

Planet cake - Transformers

Transformer cake by Planet Cake

Rubys Cakes - pirate

Pirate cake by Ruby’s Cakes

Images from the website of the cake makers.

Celebrity Wedding: Vanessa Williams + Jim Skrip


At Just as Planned we love a unique and beautiful wedding and the wedding nuptials of Vanessa Williams and Jim Skrip on the 4th of July is no exception.  What I personally love is Vanessa and Jim chose an Australian company to design and create their wedding invitations.

The Egyptian-themed wedding was held in Buffalo USA.  The wedding ceremony was held at St. Stanislaus Roman Catholic Church and the reception at The grand Statler City. Complete with belly dancers and drummers, this wedding was filled with music and love.

Giant Invitations were personally contracted by Vanessa to design her Egyptian-themed invitations for her wedding that took place in Buffalo on the 4th of July.  Vanessa was so pleased with the outcome of her invitations that she has given Giant Invitations access to her exclusive wedding photos.

I am extremely excited for Just as Planned to showcase these fabulous invitations.

The Briefing:

The team at Giant Invitations first needed to understand the tone in which Vanessa wanted to set for her wedding day. By gaining an insight for this they were able to capture the formality and ambiance needed in order for them to begin our creative processes.

Giant Invitations asked Vanessa to create a Pinterest board where she can pin all her wedding inspirations. The pins consisted of her desired styling, wedding theme, décor, etc. All these elements were essential in contributing to the designing and outcome of her wedding invitations.

After initial communication between Giant, Vanessa Williams and Jim Skrip, we finally locked down the colour scheme. Implementing some burgundy with a gold contrast to match their Egyptian floral theme; our designs were set to match their nuptial celebration. Giant came to learn that their romantic Egyptian floral theme was actually a representation of their international love affair where the couple met in Egypt three years prior to their wedding. With this in mind, we were adamant that this needed to be a very special design.

You can read more of the design process here from Giant Invitations.

See the wedding video of Vanessa and Jim from Shutter Dream Studio Cinema here

Vanessa Williams Wedding Invitations by Giant Invitations Vanessa Williams Wedding Invitations by Giant Invitations Vanessa Williams Wedding Invitations by Giant Invitations Vanessa Williams Wedding Invitations by Giant Invitations Vanessa Williams Wedding Invitations by Giant Invitations Vanessa Williams Wedding Invitations by Giant Invitations

 

The Party Planner in You!! Part 2


Budget and saving money

Setting your wedding budget and how to save moneyKnowing your budget is critical to ensure that you know what you have to work with and gives you some idea how creative you may need to get to stick to your budget.

But outlining your budget into each category (see our budget spreadsheet below), helps you understand if you can afford to bring in additional help such as hiring a catering company or if you will need to rope your friends into help you cook.

When you have your budget outlined, consider thinking about how much you are willing to spend on each item. Be realistic. It may also help if you have had a friend of family member who has recently been married to give you an estimate on what they spent. This will help you confirm that you have allocated enough in your budget or that you need trim some of the items.

 

Here is a mock up on a simple budget spreadsheet you can create in word.

To create a table:

  1. Open up a new word document
  2. Click on insert and select table.
  3. A pop window will open. In the number of columns enter 3 and for the number of rows you can enter 2 and then click ok.
  4. When the table is inserted to add more rows, press the tab key in the last column on the last row
Wedding item Estimated cost Actual cost
Dress $1500
Flowers $500
Boys suits $400
Reception venue

($75 per head x 55 guests) does not include drinks

$4125
Drinks $3000
Wedding cars $800
Wedding photographers $2200
Rings $1500
Wedding night accommodation $350
Hair and makeup $450

Once you have your budget locked down, make sure you stick to it!

This is extremely important. It can be easy to get carried away and keep adding more money into the budget, to have the best of everything however remember you are starting a new life together and you don’t want to be drowning in debt before your marriage starts. It also creates additional stress that you don’t need.

Now for the fun part, how you can save $$ on your wedding.

Some people think that as soon as you mention the word “WEDDING” the cost goes up. Well that maybe the case in some aspects but you must also remember that the some vendors specialise in weddings and experience sometimes will cost extra.

However there are a number of ways you can save if you are prepared to think outside of the box.

  1. Consider hiring a student or less experienced vendor

Photographers, florists and beauticians all start learning their craft in school and are always looking for ways they can refine their skills. You can contact your local school such as a Tafe or beauty school and ask if any of the students would be interested. You can always ask for a trial or to see some of their work.

For example by hiring a student photographer you may only have to pay for their transportation costs and other expenses such as editing time. Most students would then use your wedding day photos as part of their portfolio or towards their credits. This could save you hundreds to thousands of dollars

Photo from Pinterest

  1. DIY

Now this can also turn into an expensive trial as you need to take into consideration trial runs and the cost of the materials. I suggest speaking to all of your family and friends and see if anyone has any hidden talents. You can have a working wedding bee and supply some drinks (be careful not to have too many as it may look good through rose coloured glasses) and nibbles and create your own favours or invitations.

There a number of sites and computer programs you can use to create custom invitations. To be even more cost effective consider sending e-invites. Yes electronic invites. It will save you money on the cost of postage and printing.

Making your own favours such as home-made cookies is another great way to save money. You can also consider giving every some seeds of your favourite flower and attach a hand written note “Watch our love grow”.

Image from Pinterest     3. Decorations

 

This is where you can start to think outside of the box and have some fun.

 

When Jaime King wrote some advice for our followers, Jaime mentioned that you can save money on decorations by choosing a venue that has lots of natural beauty. This is such a fabulous idea and I think it is one area that is overlooked that most. If you think of a ceremony venue such as rose garden, on the beach or in the botanical garden. The list is endless. Make sure you check with your local city council as their maybe a small cost involved or require you to book the space.

 

When it comes to the reception you can add impact, and mood lighting with candles. Candles are cost effective and help create some romance. Before you start buying lots of candles, check with family and friends as they may already have some that you can use on the day. You can also use a scented candle which adds to the ambiance.

 

Another option is using old book pages as a table runner. I love this idea as it creates a taking point for your guests and you can find old books from book exchanges and second hand stores. It will require you be a bit creative to put it together but the best part is it can look rustic so you don’t need to be a crafter to make it.

Image from Pinterest

  1. The dress

 

Now before you start to say “there is no way I am compromising my dress” there are still a lot of ways you can save money.

 

Start by contacting the major wedding dress suppliers and find out when they generally have their sales. During sales you can save over $1000 on your dress. You must be prepared to buy an off the rack design and there may also be an additional cost for any alterations. This can also be a great time to pick up the bridesmaid dresses.

 

Think about hiring. This can be a great way to save money. This should also be an option for the mens suits especially if the groom and/or groomsmen don’t generally wear a suit. Save having all the money just sitting in a closet.

 

  1. Pre loved

 

There are a number of wedding buy, swap, and sell sites on Facebook that you can join.

 

Items are either new or used. You can pick up a items from decorations, candy buffet supplies (glass ware etc) to the dress. You must be prepared to check in each day to see what has been added and popular items will go very fast.

 

Make sure if you say you will buy an item you commit to it.

 

Remember to have fun and think outside of the box and the amount of savings are endless.

 

To see more DIY inspiration follow us on Pinterest and Instagram

 

Simple tips to care for your Wedding Dress


We have been searching the archives and this was one of my favorite posts.  Brides spend a lot of money on their wedding dress and it is important that you know how to care for your Wedding Dress.

Hello, I am Rosario Intelisano, my specialty, my passion, the core of my ambition is hand restoring and preserving bridal gowns. With many years in the industry, I am excited to share with you my little black book of tips to help you care for your dream gown.

image 1 wedding dress b4 repair

As well as tips, I will include some of my personal experiences from working in this industry and the dresses (plus their stories).

Here are some common questions and tips I am asked:

  1. “What do I do if I stain my dress?”
  2. The second best tip is to avoid direct heat. Heat in general weakens material causing the fabric to yellow and age. This is why dry-cleaning is thought to “torture” the fabric and is avoided when it comes to restoring bridal dresses.
  3. Lastly, I would recommend you take the garment to be professionally cleaned within a month of the stain occurring, the more time that passes, the more difficult it is to remove the stain making it harder to restore the dress to its original state.

I hope this article helps you next time you are in a state of frenzy from an incidental stain. Collect yourself and remember to leave the stain, let it air dry and take it to be professionally removed as soon as possible.

www.xpressservices2u.com.au

How to Create a DIY Candy Buffet


Candy buffets are still popular for weddings, engagements and birthday parties.  A few years ago we put together this post on how to create a DIY candy buffet and we wanted to share it again for you.

Here are 6 simple ideas to help you create a beautiful, fun and yummy Candy Buffet for everyone to enjoy.

 Glass Jars or Candy Vases

You don’t need to spend a fortune on Jars or Vases.   Most people have a vase or two at home.  Also make a few phone calls to your Mum, Sister, Aunty or Friends and find out what vases they have hidden away.  A cost-effective alternative is to visit your local flea markets or thrift stores.

You can always find a great bargain there and it wont break the bank.  Also consider using decorative glasses for items such as lollipops and musk sticks.

Scoops and spoons

Whilst out searching for your vases, also look out for some great scoops or spoons.  You may not need one for every jar as you can scatter then around the table.

Another great option is to visit your local kitchen store and purchase some white serving spoons.  White is great for any colour scheme you have chosen and you can always use them again at home.

  Favour Bags and Boxes

There are so many options available now.  Favour bags are cost-effective and are available in a variety of different colours and styles.  To add some extra flair, consider using items such as Asian take away container or Popcorn Cartoons.

 

Candy

Now for the fun part, Candy.  You can still be really creative when purchasing your candy.  Consider your style, theme and colour scheme when purchasing your candy.  When buying Candy, I stick to the brands I know.  This way you know it tastes good and your guests will enjoy.

You should allow about 250  – 300 grams of Candy per guest.  If the Candy Buffet is going to be used instead of dessert I would suggest adding just a little be more.

Some of my favourites are:

Candy Buffet - Selecting the perfect candyJelly Beans:  Everyone loves Jelly Beans.  You can purchase Jelly Beans in single colours or as a mixture of different colours.  They are very affordable and a lot goes a long way.

Strawberries “n” Creams: A classic. Great for weddings, kids birthdays and even Pink themed baby showers.

Conversation Hearts:  A great way to get everyone talking.  Printed message on delicious candy.

Milk Bottles: Another Classic, but great for any theme of colour scheme.

Lollipops:  Available in different shapes and sizes that can be matched to your theme.  Consider using lollipops to add some height and a splash of colour to your Candy Buffet.

Decorations

This is where you can let your imagination go wild.  Decorating the Vases or Jars are a great way to add some extra colour and WOW factor to the Candy Buffet.

One of my biggest tips is to go out and buy some sticky dots.  They are a small round double-sided dot which can be used to hold up your ribbon around the Vase or Jar without ruining the surface.

Here are my favourite decorations:

Table Cloth

A printed table cloth or runner can add that extra bit of flair to your Candy Buffet.  An affordable option is to visit your local fabric store and ask them what is currently on special or for what is on the cutting floor as you don’t need a lot of fabric.

Paper Lantern

Have them used as a hanging decoration above or place on the table o add some more colour.

Table Scatters

Simple and effective way to grab everyone’s attention.  Available in varies colours and themes there is one to match every event.

Telephone books and Novels

I am not going crazy.  Simply wrap in decorative wrapping paper and you can place your Candy Jars or Vases on top to add some extra height to your Candy Buffet.  They are great as they are sturdy and you can unwrap and use again for your next event.  Another great decorating idea is to visit your local second-hand book shop and purchase some classic hardcover books.  Glue a number together and use them as a feature stand for your biggest vase or jar.

Check with your local craft store as the best glue to use.

Placing

There is no right or wrong way when setting up your Candy Buffet.

The first step is to grab all of your empty decorated vases and jars and place them on the table.  Then spread them out ensuring that your guests can access each vase easily.  This is  so they are not having to lean over and potentially knock over the vase or jar.

Once you are happy with the layout, then you can place the Candy in the Vase or Jar.

Now enjoy.

Happy Planning Everyone!

 

Wedding cake inspiration


They say you eat with your eyes and with these beautiful wedding cakes these will surely make you want to dig in.

Faye Cahill (Image from their website)

Faye Cahill
(Image from their website)

Cake Ink (Image from their website)

Cake Ink
(Image from their website)

From Planet Cake Bec & Lleyton Hewitt (Image from their website)

From Planet Cake
Bec & Lleyton Hewitt
(Image from their website)

Cake This (Image from their website)

Cake This
(Image from their website)

Le Pink Petite Patisserie (Image from their Facebook page)

Le Pink Petite Patisserie
(Image from their Facebook page)

The Cake That Ate Paris  (Image from their Facebook page)

The Cake That Ate Paris (Image from their Facebook page)

 

The Party Planner in You!!! Part 1


Some people may find planning a wedding or an event overwhelming or they just don’t know where to start.

Over the next few weeks I will writing a series on how to draw out the party planner in you.  Each post will help you feel more confident and help you be more creative with your wedding or event planning and most of all how to save $$$.

I encourage to share you thoughts and journey with us by posting comments below and feel free to ask any questions you may have each week for me to answer I try my best to answer them all.

Part 1

All of my friends know I love entertaining and when I get the opportunity to plan any type of event, you can always count me in.

Sometimes when trying to be creative, I get a bit carried (I say a bit, my friends and family would much more than a that) with thinking of outside of the box and how I can add that extra WOW factor to the event.

I hear so many brides say…”All my friends are engaged or recently been married, how can I make sure that our wedding day is unique?”

If you are like me I am addicted all of the wedding shows, my favourite show is “My Fair Wedding” hosted by David Tutera.

From watching the show (and yes I record every single episode) and by planning events and weddings I have learnt that you need to have a concept.

To start creating your concept, I suggest you start by creating a mood board.  A mood board is a type of collage that may consist of images, text, and samples of objects in a composition of the choice of the mood board creator. Designers and some wedding planners use mood boards to develop their design concepts and to communicate to other members of the design team and clients.

When you start planning an event such as a Wedding, Engagement or Birthday party, creating a mood board allows you to see different colours, textures and ideas all together.  You don’t need to have it over complicated just use some cut out from a magazine or favourite pictures you have found on the internet.

A mood board is also a great way to ensure that your decorators, florists, reception venues or wedding planner has a clear vision of how you envision your special day.

Mood board concept

Example of a simple mood board

As you start to progress in your planning and start to buy some of the decorations, I suggestion you set up a mock-up of your table setting as this will give you an overall concept of the design and feel.

When it comes to adding more, I always remember the Channel quote “Before you leave the house remove one item”. Essentially you can have too much.

Consider taking a photo so you can see the full effect. If you are able to, try to match the lighting that you will have on the day. So many people forget the importance of great lighting.

You can also include your concept and colour scheme into other aspects of your weddings, such as:

  • Invitations
    • So many people forget that your Save the Dates and Invitations are the first glimpse your guests get about the style and theme of your wedding. Make sure you speak to your supplier to ensure that share your concept with them.
    • You can include your colours scheme into your paper colour choice.
    • For the theme, if you are having a rustic country wedding, you could include twine or dried flowers to add that extra touch
Chalkboard Wedding Invitation

If you are a teacher you could consider a Chalkboard Wedding Invitation

  • Bridal party attire
    • If we stick with the country theme, why not include cowboy boots as part of the attire
  • Ceremony and reception venue
    • Having a venue that complements your theme is one of the simplest ways you can add that extra bit of excitement to your wedding day. I highly recommend that engaged couples think outside of the square when looking for venues. Generally every city has an untapped new venue. For example, having your reception in the auditorium of a new high-rise building or on the roof top of a new bar. There are soo many new and funky buildings being completed every year. When you have a venue that matches your concept, you can also spend less on other items such as decorations and lighting.
  • Favour (bonbonnieres)
    • Favours (bonbonniere) are one of the easiest ways you can inject your personality to thank your guests for coming. It could be a card stating you have made a donation to your favourite charity or if you are teachers, you could give everyone a toffee apple. The choices are endless.

Next week we will look at the budget. Don’t get scared as we will also share some creative ways for you to save $$$.

Examples of different and creative favours.