Grey Likes Weddings Rockin' a new rock?!
After much internal turmoil and debate, I decided to design and print our save the dates {I briefly toyed with this idea in this post}. I went through many drafts before creating the final save the date that we mailed to our guests. In addition to using a photo from our engagement session, we added a magnet backing so our guests wouldn’t easily loose our save the date weeks from now. I printed our save the dates at my office as well as mailed them out through our office mail room, this allowed to me to save money on all aspects of this process.
I initially scoured Wedding Paper Divas and Minted to find the perfect design, however; the price tag halted me from ever pulling the trigger. A girlfriend of mine used Paperless Post to email and print her destination wedding invitations and I briefly looked into that as well. In the end, for our budget, it worked out best for me to design them. Next up on the design block is our invitation suite which I will be designing as well!
Below are a few drafts that didn’t make the cut for one reason or another, I can’t wait to reveal the final product!

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Did you send out Save the Dates, did you do a paper invite or magnet? A postcard by chance? Leave a comment below letting us know your plan for Save the Dates?

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Well happiest of New Years to you my fine Readers! I hope you’ve all had a wonderful holiday season. I, for one, am not entirely sure where the last six months of my existence have gone. Regardless, it’s long gone, that’s for sure. I’m happy to say that we’re five months out from the big day. Yes, that’s right. The photographer, caterer, venue, DJ, dress, bridesmaids—they are all either done, bought or booked. Glory. Now we just need to pay them all. Gulp. Allow me to bring you up to speed on all the details below. But first, I’m in need of some HELP!

HELP NEEDED: Bridesmaid dresses

The bridesmaid dresses have absolutely been the bane of my wedding existence. Does anyone know where I can find mauve colored dresses as cute as these? Help a bride-to-be out!

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W&E Photographie

On to more concrete details…

VENUE: LaBelle Winery, beautifully nestled into the rolling farm land of Southern New Hampshire


Photo by: Mary Costa Photography


PHOTOGRAPHER: Zac Wolf, working his magic on some of our more recent engagement photos below. More on that in my next post! Wait until you see him work his photog magic!

Kate and Paul

Zac Wolf Photography


THE MUSIC: The oh-so-fabulous, DJ Doug Boucher of SOWA Entertainment

THE DRESS: Nice try. I will say, it has pockets. Yeah, pockets. So I can keep the essentials in there, like gummy bears. Best. Thing. Ever.

Also, I recently heard a great old wives’ tale that I thought was pretty sincere and funny at the same time. A recently married woman approached me at my company holiday party last month and asked about my engagement ring. This got us talking about the actual wedding day and if there was any advice she had for a soon-to-be bride like me. She mentioned lots, but my favorite topic was the weather. She told me that if the weather starts to act up, all I have to do is dig a little hole in the ground and put a piece of chocolate in it, then cover it up with the dirt. By feeding Mother Nature chocolate, I will have pleased her and in return she will give me great weather. This woman swore by it. She said the clouds literally formed a circle around her ceremony and reception the whole time. Overhead, it remained sunny the whole day. I thought, if nothing else, it’s a great little story because I’m such a chocolate lover myself. Lord knows, if someone gave me a piece of chocolate, I’d be sunny for them all day, too. We shall see!

Things we are still pinching our little pennies for? A videographer. Our honeymoon. A slow motion booth. Fireworks. Yes, I said fireworks. It is summer after all!

xox, Kate




It’s been awhile since I’ve checked in! There is much to catch you up on in regards to the #McClellandWedding {still testing out hashtags…#five31fourteen #CodyAndSamantha}. Since I last wrote, we’ve captured the second half of our engagement session with our photographer, Aly Carroll, finalized our table decor and floral arrangements, and I successfully designed and printed our save the dates, which I hope to get in the mail next week!

Below are a handful of my favorite snaps from our engagement sessions. We split our session into two rounds, capturing a warm summer evening and my favorite season of all, fall. We ended up having to reschedule the second session multiple times due to weather but we were finally captured the last bit of sunshine before winter arrived in full force. Let’s just say I have a special place in my heart for fall and the changing leaves.

My advice on dressing for your engagement photos is to simply dress like yourself, just elevated. In twenty years you will not want to look back and say, “Why did I wear that?!” If you are comfortable with what you are wearing, your true emotions will be captured of how much you love your fiancé!

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Images: Photography by Aly Carroll Photography | Styling by The Brunette One

Dearest readers,

Surprise! I wore a pink wedding dress! I am one of those 2013 brides. Inspired, perhaps, by Jessica Biel and Anne Hathaway and this beautiful Aussie bride.

But also inspired by matters of practicality. I live on a small island in the middle of the Mediterranean where bridal fashion options are limited. So I turned to the cocktail dress rack at Pronovias, where I found this sparkly number in a size four times too big, with attached sleeves and shoulder pads. I kid you not!

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Lesson number one in finding your wedding dress: See the potential.

Since this was a cocktail dress it was significantly less expensive than a traditional white wedding dress. I could afford to have it taken apart and put back together, so I did. A Maltese seamstress took the dress down to my size, removed the shoulder pads, made the sleeves detachable (a day look and an evening look), and hemmed it for my short frame.

I know everyone says not to make too many changes to your dress, but I’m here to tell you to try it. See the potential. Find a seamstress who sees the potential. And then, while she cuts away at your dress, have a glass of champagne or two (it makes it all much less stressful).

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giant balloon wedding

Lesson number two in finding your perfect wedding dress: Trust your gut.

A few weeks before my wedding I made the big mistake of going to and looking through their new collection of bridal dresses. The panic began. Would I feel like a bride in a pink wedding dress? Had I made a horrible mistake? Does it still fit right? What about that neckline, is it too narrow? Should I just go out and buy a new dress? Was I going crazy? Was I turning into a bridezilla?

I sent a panicked email to my mum, spent a week oscillating between emotions (I love my dress! I hate my dress!) and confusing my fiancé (I couldn’t very well tell him exactly why I was panicking without revealing what colour my dress was).

And then I made a plan.

I trusted my gut, which told me when I first saw my pink wedding dress – even when it was four sizes too big and had shoulder pads – that it felt like me. I trusted my gut, which was now telling me something wasn’t quite right.

So my mum and I agreed to make a veil together when I arrived in Canada, which would make the pink dress look more ‘bridal’ (it did). And we contacted a seamstress in my hometown who was willing to do some last minute adjustments to the dress.

And that panic went away.

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On my wedding day I was so pleased with how my dress looked – and how I looked in it.

Modern, but traditional. Sparkly, but soft. A train and a veil, but an unexpected colour.

It all felt right.

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If you’re worried about pulling off a coloured wedding dress – worried because it might not be ‘bridal’ enough – I recommend sitting down and thinking what, if not the white colour, makes a bridal outfit ‘bridal’ to you.

Is it the veil? The train? The hair and make up?

Take that element and adapt it to your outfit.

For me, it was the tulle veil. My veil cost about $20 to make and involved no sewing. I found soft tulle at a fabric store, cut it, and didn’t bother finishing the edges (tulle can be forgiving like that). It’s a Juliet Cap veil, so to fasten it to my head my mum found two small beaded brooches which we attached pins to, and then pinned onto my veil and into my hair above and behind my ears.

It couldn’t have been simpler, and I couldn’t have felt more like a bride while wearing it.

Even my husband, who hates veils (something about female oppression), liked it!

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Tell me, were you a 2013 colored dress bride?

Would you rock a pink wedding dress?

I’d love to know! Comment below!

Photos by Evan McMaster / Dress: Zenit by Pronovias, Veil: DIY’ed / Suit: Separates by Gagliardi

DIY DJ’ing my wedding was pretty much a no brainer. My husband and I aren’t big music people, so it was one area of our budget I happily skimped on.

It turns out there are next to zero helpful resources on the Internet for DIY DJ’s who want to avoid playing “The Chicken Dance” and other wedding party classics (cringe). And, most people who DIY DJ do so because of their love of music and so their playlists end up being too personalized to recreate. We spent hours figuring out right blend of songs everyone would like (DIY DJ’ing is not for those who are pressed for time!)

DIY DJ wedding
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 my husband and I during our first dance, photo by Evan McMaster


Here are the ‘lists my husband and I created for our wedding party: Four hours of cocktail hour (more obscure) music, and 3 hours of dancing music (more popular). Where possible, I’ve added links to YouTube.

I hope other DIY DJ brides find this to be a helpful starting point!

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cocktail hour playlist

I wanted this part of the evening to feel like you had stepped into a bistro playing old 20’s-40’s European music.
These songs would work well for a vintage themed wedding (even though ours wasn’t). 

Let The Good Times Roll – Louis Jordan and His Tympany

Tea For Two Foxtrot – Victor Silvester Orchestra

Je suis seul ce soir – Swing 41

Si tu vois ma mere – Sidney Bechet

Ain’t She Sweet – Enoch Light & The Charleston City All Stars

Papa Loves Mambo – Xavier Cugat

La Conga Blicoti – Josephine Baker

Skyliner – Charlie Barnet

Padam Padam – Edith Piaf

One O’Clock Jump – Count Basie & His Orchestra

Take The A Train – Duke Ellington & His Orchestra

L’Accordeoniste – Edith Piaf

Diamonds Are A Girls Best Friend – Marilyn Munroe

When The Saints Go Marchin’ In – Louis Armstrong

Ballad du Paris – Francois Parisi

I Feel A Song Coming On – Peggy Lee

Le parc de plaisir – Francois Parisi

La Vie, L’Amour – Edith Piaf

Skylark – Stan Getz

La Dolce Vita – Xavier Cugat

Milord – Edith Piaf

Ciento Lindo – Mills Brothers

Mon Manege a Moi – Edith Piaf

I’ve Got You Under My Skin – Frank Sinatra

The Way You Look Tonight – Frank Sinatra

Polichinelle – Edith Piaf

Let’s Get Lost – Chet Baker

cocktail hour playlist wedding

I wanted these songs to transition the evening into a fun, party atmosphere.
They were also a good transition between our vintage themed music and our dance party music. 

Here Comes Your Man – The Pixies

Choo Choo Ch’Boogie – Louis Jordan

Oh My Heart – Jenn Grant

Be OK – Ingrid Michaelson

Sugar, Sugar – The Archies

Heart Attack – Raphael Saadiq

Love That Girl – Raphael Saadiq

Paradise – Coldplay

Mambo Swing – Xavier Cugat & His Orchestra

All You Need Is Love – The Beatles

Princess of China – Coldplay

I Want Candy – Bow Wow Wow

Jungle Drum – Emiliana Torrini

Roller coaster – Major Maker

Go To Hell – Raphael Saadiq (one of my personal favourites)

Houdini – Foster the People

Sweet Child o’ Mine – Taken by Trees

Ho Hey – The Lumineers

Crazy in Love (Kid Koala Version) – Emeli Sande & The Bryan Ferry Orchestra (Great Gatsby Soundtrack) (another personal favourite)

Over You – Raphael Saadiq

Love Roller coaster – Ohio Players

Alive – Empire of the Sun

Hotel Song – Regina Spektor

It’s Cool to Love Your Family – Feist

Build Me Up – The Foundations

I Can’t Dance – Genesis

Beautiful Day – U2

Staying in Love – Raphael Saadiq

You Really Got Me – The Kinks

I Get Around – The Beach Boys

Do You Believe In Magic? – The Lovin Spoonful

Walking on Sunshine – Katrina and the Waves

God Only Knows – The Beach Boys

Deny, Deny, Deny – Joel Plaskett

How Long Do I Have To Wait For You? – Sharon Jones and the Dap Kings

Dancing with Myself – Nouvelle Vague

Dreamgirl – Dave Matthews Band

Seven Days in Sunny June – Jamiroquai

What I’d Say – Ray Charles

I Feel Good – James Brown

wedding speech playlist

These songs have a more sentimental feeling, but that doesn’t mean they are slow or sappy.
We played them before our toasts and first dance.

Signed, Sealed, Delivered I’m Yours – Stevie Wonder

Postcards from Italy – Beirut

Non Je Ne Regrette Rein – Edith Piaf

Marry You – Bruno Mars

This Will Be – Natalie Cole

Sexual Healing – Hot 8 Brass Band – we also played this during our ceremony and it is by far my favourite wedding song ever, hands down, no contest!

Sweet Disposition – The Temper Trap – I also walked down the ‘aisle’ to this song because I think it’s so beautiful.

first dance playlist

Since we don’t know much about music, this was certainly not an original choice.

Into The Mystic – The Wallflowers (American Pie Wedding Soundtrack)

slow song playlist wedding

Again, nothing very original, but lovely nonetheless.

Come Away With Me – Norah Jones

L-O-V-E – Nat King Cole

Turn Me On – Norah Jones

wedding dance playlist

We never expected them to, but these songs got everyone on the dance floor.
Even our grandparents!

Jump (For My Love) – Girls Aloud (Love Actually Soundtrack)

Beer Barrel & Wedding Polka – Al Cherney – my mom requested that I play a polka because my grandfather loves to polka. I thought not one else would like it, but the dance floor was packed! I dare you to try a polka at your wedding!

Blurred Lines – Robin Thicke feat. T.I. & Pharrell Williams

Bang Bang – (Great Gatsby Soundtrack)

Girls (Who Run The World) – Beyonce

Where Have You Been – Rihanna

Get Lucky – Daft Punk feat. Pharrell Williams

Quimbara – Celia Cruz

Hey Ya! – Outkast

I Love It – Icona Pop

Feel the Love – Rudimental feat. John Newman – a surprise hit! the dance floor was shaking!

Scream & Shout – feat. Britney Spears

Wild – Jessie J feat. Big Sean & Dizzee Rascal

Danza Kudro – Don Omar feat. Lucenzo

A Little Party Never Killed Nobody – Fergie, Q-Tip & Goon Rock – a personal favourite of mine

Waiting All Night – Rudimental feat. Ella Eyre

Call Me Maybe – Carly Rae Jepsen

Thrift Shop – Macklemore & Ryan Lewis feat. Wanz

Brown Eyed Girl – Van Morrison

Can’t Hold Us – Macklemore & Ryan Lewis feat. Ray Dalton

Champagne Showers – L.M.F.A.O. feat. Natalia Kills

I Need Your Love – Calvin Harris & Ellie Goulding

Oh La La – Britney Spears

Sunshowers – M.I.A.

Rise Up – Yves La Rock

Paso – Sak Noel

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By this point in the night our DIY DJ station had been hijacked (it’s a risk of DIY DJ’ing!) and these songs hit the dance floor. Turns out, they were even better than our choices to end the night with.

Paradise by the Dashboard Lights – Meatloaf – everyone over the age of 30 loved this one!

Get Low – Flo Rida feat. T Pain – everyone under the age of 30 thought this was hilarious!

Have you DIY DJ’ed your wedding, or a party?

Do you have other good wedding music recommendations?

Do leave them for other readers in the comments below!