THREE FACTS: (1) Erin and Josh are planning an outdoorsy fall wedding on a budget in Virginia’s Shenandoah mountains. (2) Erin recently completed her conversion to Judaism, and she and Josh are looking forward to filling their big day with Jewish traditions while keeping it enjoyable and understandable to friends and family from all backgrounds. (3) Erin is a member of Smashing The Glass’s Brides Club!
So, it’s been a while since I actually talked about my wedding. (Mostly thanks to COVID-19 and how it’s turned life upside down.)
In late February, my fiancé and I went to Boston (him for a work trip, me to visit one of my best friends/bridesmaids.)
My friend and I cheesing in the gift shop of the Museum of Fine Arts, in Boston.
While we were in Boston, I took the chance to go to several bridal stores. One of the ones that was definitely on my list was BHLDN. I had a wonderful appointment there (probably aided by the fact that I had religiously stalked their website for months), and I ended up saying “yes” to the dress.
Tip for whenever we are allowed to shop in stores again: find a friend who will take photos from every angle – they are so helpful. It’s also great if said friend is an amazing hype-person and makes you feel good even when you aren’t sure!
The dress I picked ended up being a completely different shape than I envisioned, but I still think it gives a similar “vibe.” That’s all that I want to say about it now, but here are a few pictures of some close runners-up from BHLDN!
This is the Nouvelle Amsale Diamanche gown – it was much closer to the silhouette I envisioned, but it didn’t quite have enough support. I loved the gorgeous detail on the back, though!
And here I am in the Eddy K Beloved gown – another beautiful gown with an amazing back detail, but it just didn’t hit my quite right.
Once my fiancé and I got home, it was almost immediately time to quarantine. Since we had put a deposit down on our reception location (who is providing in-house catering), I figured this time would be a good time to get to work DIY-ing some items for our wedding.
The first thing I did was create our save the dates to look like a vintage national park postcard using a beautiful shot my fiancé took of us in front of the Milky Way in Shenandoah National Park.
This is a work-in-progress shot of our save the date (essentially just missing the personal info.) We want our wedding to feel like a night in the mountains, so we thought this would set the mood! By the time we were crafting these, it was clear that COVID-19 was going to be tougher than many people in the United States originally hoped, so we included information on the back to try and put people at ease – that we will do everything possible to keep others safe, but would understand if they don’t feel comfortable traveling. It’s a bit bittersweet to put so many caveats in a save the date, but c’est la vie!
Next up was designing the chuppah! We are planning to make our own free-standing copper pipe chuppah (so no one needs to stand too close to hold it) and we plan on having Josh’s bar mitvah tallis, as well as the talliot of two of his ancestors. Running along the poles of the chuppah, we also plan to string fairy lights. It is a bit of a process to fully build the chuppah, but I’m hoping to share the final results in a later post!
Another project my fiancé and I are working on is our ketubah. Similar to our save the dates, it will be a (different) photo of us in front of the Milky Way. However, this time it won’t be posterized. We will add the text we have chosen (with our rabbi’s permission) and I hope to add some gold foil to give it a little panache.
My fiancé, Josh, and I on a recent walk.
Ultimately all of these projects are serving as a welcome reminder from the grim reality that if things do not change in the United States, it won’t be safe for a majority of our already small (50 person) wedding to attend. We have made plan Bs and Cs with our caterers and reception area, have added masks to our wedding budget, and have a plan B to get married somewhere on a mountain if it’s not safe to get married in the sanctuary of our synagogue.
So much is up in the air right now, but these projects have been something to keep my hands busy, and remind me how much I just can’t wait to marry the man of my dreams in just a few months.
Click here to read all Erin’ planning posts to date.
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