Thursday, July 15, 2010

our wedding: the tents

I've said it before and I'll say it again: no matter how much preparation we did during our year and a half long engagement, the days leading up to the wedding were still insanely busy and stressful. I sort of saw that coming, but experiencing it first hand is... insane? unbelievable? something that made me think more about why we didn't elope? Well, let's just say that it's a whole new game.

And yep, for us, the morning of the wedding was like a whole new game. We'd been planning like crazy, but pulling it all together is more work than I was mentally prepared for.

We were up at 7am on the morning of the wedding and rather than wake the wedding party and the rest of our friends who had spent the night before the wedding at the cottage, Mr. FP snuck out to lay out the linens, centerpieces, and tent decorations. Looking back, this probably wasn't such a good idea. It was awesome because it gave us a head start on the day's work. But it was a bad idea because I'm cranky in the morning. And with all the accumulating stress of the past few days, I was even crankier. So we got a lot done, but we were a little snippy with each other. Can you say bad start to the wedding day?

On the plus side, the linens, tables and chairs from the rental company were exactly what we'd ordered and we encountered no problems there. Other than the fact that we dropped one of the white linens on the ground while we tried to put it on the table. Grass stain central. Good thing we had ordered extra. And instead of renting linens for the rectangle food/gift/guest book tables from the same company, I decided to buy some vinyl ones which has been on sale at a local grocery store a few months back. Although they didn't drop to the floor like the rentals would have, they cost $8.99 to buy versus the $17.99 it would have cost to rent. Plus, they had a pretty blue argyle pattern which is much more attractive to me than plain white. Score. Especially since I'm hoping to resell them through a local classified site. Here's to hoping someone out there has a wedding coming up.

(photo by one of our guests... than you, Flickr cards)

Our table cloths in action. Pretty, pretty. The only downside is the fact that vinyl wrinkles like mad, so by the end of the day, they weren't as pretty as they could have been. But for a savings of almost $10 for each, who the hell cares?

Soon thereafter, our friends starting coming to and began to help us. By 11am, we had the tent entirely decorated with pom poms, paper lanterns, centerpieces, linens and twinkle lights. I say that like it was easy. It was not. The night before, my sister, brother, his girlfriend and I were desperately attempting to fluff out a ridiculous amount of tissue paper pom poms (some more successfully than others; my brother seems to have a hidden talent for it) and tying string to paper lanterns. That morning, we were a rotating mess of tape and fishing line as 6 people attempted to evenly space out the poms and lanterns. That part didn't exactly turn out how I would have liked but only because I would have preferred a tent entirely covered in hanging decor. Pretty? Yes. Practical and worth the time? No. It took a whole lot of people and a whole lot more time that I would have liked, but it was finally done.

And when we'd finished, I honestly couldn't believe it. Planning out how we wanted the tent to look for a year is one thing, but seeing it executed almost exactly how we'd pictured it was ridiculously fantastic. For me, it was an affirmation that we'd completed our plan for the tents but for Mr. FP, it was a full on shock. He told me later that he never actually understood how the reception tent plan would happen. He'd listened over the months and helped me pick out colors and fabrics, but his knowledge of tent decor pretty much ended there. So as much as he'd encouraged my vision and inserted his opinion, he wasn't so sure how it would work out.

And as stressful and frantic as the execution was, I remember looking at the tents and being elated that all our guests would be sitting beneath them in a matter of hours as we celebrated. Small moments like that make the hours of tissue paper folding worth it, let me tell you. (Not that I would ever want to do that much folding again.... ever).

(photo by my nana, the photo-taking fiend of the family)


Gaynor said...

Sounds so busy but so glad you had lots of helpers; looks great!

Margaret said...

Oh, it looks so pretty!

Also love this: "That morning, we were a rotating mess of tape and fishing line as 6 people attempted to evenly space out the poms and lanterns"

because that's *exactly* how it felt!!

Lisa said...

it looks beautiful! what a labor of love. You did such a fantastic job!

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