Wedding dress shopping in New York City

Today I’m taking it back to this time last year for a little throwback post! Time really does fly and it’s hard to believe that last American Thanksgiving weekend my mom and I were in New York City. I didn’t mention it in my NYC post on here (the reason being that I didn’t want to give away any hints to Tim) but the whole POINT of that trip was to look for (and buy!) a wedding dress!

Yes, sometimes in life fairytales do happen. Finding a wedding dress was a task I was not particularly excited about. I had been daydreaming on BHLDN‘s website and had found the perfect gown (the Penelope). Can I just say the increase in the Canadian dollar is cray cray since this time last year? Anyways, knowing it’s not in my personality type to ever just order a wedding dress on a whim without trying it on (because who would ever do that…?), I knew I would never own this dress. Even though it was the only one at BHLDN in my price range. And it was the most beautiful thing I’d ever seen. Ever. Sigh. However, the daydreaming continued and I found myself on their ‘make a try-on appointment’ page for their NYC location (my favourite city), only to see that nothing was open. I vented all this to my mom, to which her reply was to just keep checking back. This was in the middle of October but check back I did. Until one day, RANDOMLY, the one time spot on the one ideal day for us to visit NYC for this dress appointment opened up and I booked the time slot, just in case. Seriously, it was the only opening from then until the beginning of February. So, with my mom working for WestJet and everything, I casually told her about the booking and, being the incredible person she is, she decided to use two flight vouchers she had been saving for us to go to NYC for a few days at the end of November. All for this dress. I was flabbergasted and SO happy. So, so happy.

So yes, we ventured all the way to NYC to try on the Penelope gown at BHLDN. Let me tell you, hailing a cab on Fifth Ave on a Saturday night on American Thanksgiving weekend is no easy task. I was nervous, asking the fuzz how to best hitch a taxi (desperate Canadian alert) but, eventually, we got a ride to BHLDN and all was well. When first entering the boutique I was awe-struck. As you can see from these photos, NYC’s BHLDN is a vintage-inspired, classy dream. The stylist I worked with was named Amy, and she was quirky and calming and lovely. It was a bit stressful, having ventured all this way for one dress — if it didn’t go as I envisioned then I felt bad everything would be all for not. But I tried on a couple dresses way out of my price range (as one does in this situation) and eventually slipped on my beloved Penelope gown. And, you guys, it was amazing. Better than I ever anticipated. My mom and I are pretty practical so no tears ala Say Yes to the Dress were shed, but all the feels were going on. All of them. And I was officially in love. THEN Amy slipped the most beautiful headband ever on me, and I was hooked. As cheesy as it is, I believe it was all meant to be. We purchased the gown (which arrived to our house in Calgary nine days after ordering it?!) and headed over to Shake Shack in Grand Central Station for dinner. Dreams happening everywhere, seriously.

The entire experience was so fairytale-like I can’t even explain. NYC as a whole and the BHLDN appointment alone… Words really don’t do it justice. I’m so thankful for my mom being the person she is and wanting to take me all the way to my favourite city to try on the dress of my dreams. It was the only dress I ever considered purchasing and it just worked out so perfectly, it’s hard to believe. This trip will always be special to me because it was to prepare for my wedding while being a girls’ trip with my mom. I get emotional thinking about it one year later, but that’s how you know we did it right:)

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Shake it like a Polaroid picture!

At our wedding we decided to include a sort-of photo booth and encouraged our guests to get their picture taken via Polaroid camera, and write on it in place of having a guest book! My cousin did this at her wedding and we totally copied the idea, and it turned out even better than we could’ve expected. I cherish these so much and have resisted the urge to store each one in an air-tight bag (or in a secret safe that we keep behind a painting?) since the wedding. Plus, just looking through any wedding-related photos always gets me a little misty eyed!

For the backdrop we just bought a piece of sparkly fabric and sewed it (thanks, mom) to fit over a skinny rod. We then hung the rod/fabric up by stringing rope through the rod and tying it to some of the scaffolding of the tent we were in. And, voila! A perfect little Polaroid booth. Huge shout out to our friends Colton and Angel for being incredible, and being on photo taking duty all night long. We were so happy they agreed to the job.

Anyhow, here is a curation of our favourites. Enjoy!

^ This will forever be a favourite because at my cousin’s wedding we all took this same photo. This was round two at it! ^

^ This is Lindsay, our wedding’s month-of coordinator, of Lindsay Sue Organization & Events. She was a LIFE SAVER during the end of the wedding planning process and we probably wouldn’t have been married if it weren’t for her. You can read her thoughts on being our coordinator here. ^

^ First dance. Heart eyes everywhere. ^

Our best friend’s wedding

Near the end of September one of mine and Tim’s dearest friends, Caleb, got married to his fiance Megan. It was a great day spent at the golf course they chose for their venue, as well as in Fish Creek Park for photos. Both Tim and I were even part of the wedding party, which was pretty awesome — not many couples can say they walked down the aisle at their own wedding and at a second one, too! We are super happy for Caleb and Megan, and were really grateful to be so closely involved in their day. A few photos from their wedding, below.

Wedding photos by Kristyn Harder

On our wedding day, Tim and I were beyond blessed to have Kristyn Harder (of Kristyn Harder Photography) take our photos. She did the most unreal job — when looking through her photos we were basically in tears! I couldn’t believe how well she captured the day — her photos are dream-like, ethereal and perfectly show the sprit of the day. Beyond her talent, Kristyn was also such a calming, fun presence to be surrounded by. She really helped make the day flow by maneuvering Tim and I through pre-picked locations, and this made time fly by and brought an ease to the day that I wasn’t anticipating. I would recommend her over and over to anyone looking for a wedding photographer. Click here to check out her blog post on our day!

Our wedding day

We got married:) On August 22, Tim and I had the most perfect day of our lives — our wedding day. We poured so much of our hearts into this day and it all came together in a way we never could have imagined. The love that was present was overwhelming and beautiful. There will never be anything like it and it was my favourite day of my life so far. The day was warm and calm and filled with so many tears and laughs and I just can’t even believe it was real life. In many ways it was a dream. A perfect dream. I love this man so much and can’t believe how blessed I am to spend the rest of my life with my best friend.

There are countless moments and memories that I frequently look back on from this day, all of them too priceless to try and describe here. From hearing our pastor speak before marrying us, to feeling the look in Tim’s eyes all day, to the speeches during the reception, to our first dance — it would be a disservice to try and describe it all here, so I’ll try and let these few photos do the talking.

Below is a mish-mash of some photos I stole from various sources; they’re mainly iPhone and none are my own. It’s a very small glimpse into our day but I hope you enjoy! Expect more wedding posts to come in the future.