Wrapped Up in Love: Wedding Theme Music Part One “Sailing Through the Sea/To an Island Where We’ll Meet”

As we moved across the Pacific Ocean there was a song playing in my head: “Lucky” by Jason Mraz and Colbie Caillat. I heard it over and over again while we were planning the wedding. So much that it became one of our wedding theme songs, as if “Getting Married on Catalina” was its unofficial name. The lyrics rang so true “I’m lucky I’m in love with my best friend/Lucky we’re in love in every way.” Watch the music video below.

(sorry for the annoying ad, by the way)

While the lyrics are a little bit more about longing and rejoining each other than applies to us, here they are for a read.

[Jason Mraz]
Do you hear me,
I’m talking to you
Across the water across the deep blue ocean
Under the open sky, oh my, baby I’m trying

[Colbie Caillat]
Boy I hear you in my dreams
I feel your whisper across the sea
I keep you with me in my heart
You make it easier when life gets hard

I’m lucky I’m in love with my best friend
Lucky to have been where I have been
Lucky to be coming home again
Ooohh ooooh oooh oooh ooh ooh ooh ooh

They don’t know how long it takes
Waiting for a love like this
Every time we say goodbye
I wish we had one more kiss
I’ll wait for you I promise you, I will

I’m lucky I’m in love with my best friend
Lucky to have been where I have been
Lucky to be coming home again
Lucky we’re in love in every way
Lucky to have stayed where we have stayed
Lucky to be coming home someday

And so I’m sailing through the sea
To an island where we’ll meet
You’ll hear the music fill the air
I’ll put a flower in your hair

Though the breezes through trees
Move so pretty you’re all I see
As the world keeps spinning round
You hold me right here right now

I’m lucky I’m in love with my best friend
Lucky to have been where I have been
Lucky to be coming home again
I’m lucky we’re in love in every way
Lucky to have stayed where we have stayed
Lucky to be coming home someday

Ooohh ooooh oooh oooh ooh ooh ooh ooh
Ooooh ooooh oooh oooh ooh ooh ooh ooh

Wrapped Up in Love: All Aboard the Catalina Express

Catalina Express Long Beach Terminal

We caught a cab from Long Beach’s low key airport to the Catalina Express terminal. Mr. Pashmina and I went in the cab with the two pre-teens and it was so fun seeing their reaction to experiencing California for the first time. They were in awe of all the palm trees, how wide the freeways were–and that they were free!

Catalina Express

We met my mom, sister, and nephew at the Catalina Lounge, ready to set board the Catalina Express all together. Waiting for the captain to call for us to get on the boat was something akin to waiting in line for Disneyland. We were so excited!

Mr. & Miss Pashmina

Wrapped Up in Love: Catalina Island Adventure

We began our Catalina Island adventure in New York City. The first “scene” was picking up the dress from the bridal shop just minutes before it closed. I ended up staying late at work to finish up a few details before our two week vacation-wedding.

The Gown Ready to Travel Across Land, Air & Sea.

My husband picked me up with our best man as our driver. He raced down NYC’s Amsterdam Avenue from the Upper West Side only to hit major Midtown traffic. Then after barely making the cutoff to get my wedding dress by a few minutes my co-worker called. We left my niece’s bridesmaid dress at work. I had picked up from the tailor during my lunch break earlier in the day. So we promptly made a U-turn! But the real excitement came the next morning.

Have you ever seen the getting-to-the-airport scene in the movie Home Alone? There are so many people to get ready that something–or someone–major is missed. That was how our morning was. Our driver overslept and did not pick us up. We were too busy getting ourselves ready to notice. All of us ended up on the curb late, then scratching our heads: “Wait, where is our van?” After a few too many phone calls we ended up on course, an hour and a half later than expected.

When we got to the airport we barely made the 1 hour until departure cut off. Then came getting everyone through security. The older generations didn’t understand why they need to take off their shoes, and why couldn’t they bring in an unopened water bottles when they would be thirsty and “you know how expensive buying at the airport is.” Then came the issue with the young one.

When all eleven of us finally got to the gate and were ready to board we hit our final road block. As each of us presented our ticket and boarded the plane, one board pass was not there. Some how my sister-in-law misplaced one of the tickets for the little ones. My sister-in-law franticly went to retrace her steps while the rest of us boarded the airplane without her. My last view of her was going down to ticketing with an airline staff member. And in the most dramatic moment, about five minutes after the last person boarded–she showed up!

Flying to Long Beach, CA

Finally, all of us together, heading to our wedding across the country. From New York City’s crowded JFK airport to California’s beautiful and rustic Santa Catalina Island! As we set out for this experience of a lifetime we were nothing but smiles. We knew that this was going to be a super fun–yet not with out obstacles–family adventure. The Pashmina’s “Wrapped Up in Love” wedding recaps now begin!

On the Plane and Ready to Wed.

How Many People Will Attend a Destination Wedding?

A few months before we ordered our invitations we finalized our invite list. Initially you might think this would be a quick task since we were hoping to only have 75 people. But think again! It wasn’t at all.

We really had to pare down and limit the invites. This was fine with me and my groom since we really wanted a small, intimate wedding but the parents were a little tricky. Each of the parents had different ideas about who had to be invited. My parents are divorced and have small families on each side, while Mr. P’s parents are married and come from large families. Our unequal family size complicated things because it had to be “fair” in terms of number of invites, but it also had to be fair in the degree of the relationship. My parents couldn’t be inviting their co-workers while Mr. P’s family weren’t able to invite his aunts!

Basically, after Mr. P and I decided on our must-have people, we asked our parents who was on theirs. First I asked my mom. She was super easy and understanding saying whoever I wanted was fine with her. Phew! What a relief. My dad wanted to invite all of his friends was so sweet because he was so excited. But I had to explain that the venue could only seat 100 people, but really we only wanted 75. So he had to select only the most important. To that he replied “they all are important!” My in-laws really wanted to include all of Mr. Pashmina’s family and all of their extended network of acquaintances, but from the beginning we knew to be ready for this. So we had to explain that only immediate family members would be invited (meaning no second cousins and beyond) but if they really wanted someone outside that then let us know. We calculated that each set of our parents could invite up to six of their closest friends. Mr. P’s parents are constantly going out with about twenty people, alternating parties at each others houses. Initially they felt it would be rude only to invite a few of them but there was no way that 20 of their friends were going to make the list for our small wedding, so we had to stick firm. All of these guidelines made our parents happy enough. My mom invited her best friend (who was already on my list), my dad went over his six friends, while Mr. P’s parent ended up only inviting 4 people from their group–the two closest couples. Then they gave me all their addresses and I added them to my running Google Doc list.

The only thing left to do was decide on something I had been putting off. My co-workers, would I invite them or not? It is a cross-country wedding, should I not invite them because it is so far? Would it make them feel pressured to go and use their precious vacation time? Should I invite them because it would be very unlikely that any of them would actually go, but it would be nice ask to them? I finally decided that yes I should ask to be nice. But then should I invite only the people I hang out with outside of work? Or should it be democratic and invite everyone from the office–about 30? Or only people in my department? After lots of deliberation I decided to invite everyone in my department–close to me or not–and then the people that I hang out with outside of work. This felt right to me.

So how many people in all did we invite for our 75 person wedding? 138! They say that about 85% of the people you invite will attend. But this figure goes dramatically down if you are inviting people from out-of-town or if it is a destination wedding. About.com uses this calculation to estimate your actual attendance: (# of out of town guests * 65%) + (# of local guests * 90%) = total # estimated to attend. I figured that since we were in the middle of a recession, that the people we were inviting were spread out all over the country, and that it was a destination wedding on an island that we were not going to have a very high acceptance list. Hopefully enough people would be able to come to fill our 75 person payment to the venue! But we were doing what all the wedding websites say not to do: don’t invite more people than you can actually have!

So we crossed our fingers and hoped that the perfect number of people would come. Not too many that there wouldn’t be space, and not to few so we would be paying for unused meals!

How did you decide on your guest list? Was it tough? How many people did you invite compared to who actually attended?

Drawing Up Catalina Island Invitation Ideas

My #1 Invite. Image from Ceci New York.

One of my favorite parts of wedding planning has been looking at invitations online and in-person. I love, love, love invitations! You can go so many different ways and instantly give the opener an idea of what your wedding will be like. After coming across an article in Real Simple Magazine titled, “What is Your Invitation Style,” I decided to show Mr. Pashmina the pictures of the invites (without telling him what style was which) to see what he would like our style to be. According to the magazine there are four different styles: formal (traditional/sophisticated), semi-formal (modern/classic), thematic (reflecting a location or activity), and whimsical (quirky/creative). He couldn’t decided between two: thematic and whimsical. His reasoning for the two he chose: because they looked “fun” and “we are fun people” (yep, that is my man!). For thematic invitations we brainstormed that it could be island themed with palm trees, maps and charts; or nautical with ropes and anchors; cross-country themed with New York to California emblems. For whimsical ideas we mostly talked about how we could mix fonts and use something like the loose, curly one in the picture.

Mr. P's #1 Invite (on right.) Image from RIFLE.

I was super lucky and knew from the get-go that my friend, and bridesmaid, would be able to help me create custom invites so I was pretty much free to come up with whatever I could imagine (how cool is this, right?!). Over the next few months whenever I came across an invitation I liked on the internet I added it to my folder titled “Invitation Ideas.” Then the time came to narrow down my favorites! I pretty much was in love with two companies that made invitations Rifle and Ceci New York (especially their Destination line). They were whimsical and thematic–perfect. I thought the best way to decide on our invitations was to draw a rough outline using these sites as inspiration but use our wording, our names, and our Catalina-inspired elements! Then we would really be able to imagine them, then we could send these to my friend and she could work something up with these things in mind.

Here are a few of the ideas I came up with (I’ve blocked out personal info for privacy):

How did you decide on your invitations? Did you have a fun time researching and coming up with ideas like I did?

With This Dress I Become Superstitious

Image from Maggie Sottero Destinations. RD1044
My Mini BFFs *Personal Photo

On Valentine’s Day my two nieces accompanied me to select my wedding dress. It was four months in the making–about half a dozen appointments. I was ecstatic to take my two helpers with me for this occasion.

It was monumental to me!

When we entered RK Bridal I explained the store’s concept: I’ll put our name on the list, then pull dresses off the rack that you like. When they call our name a clerk will help us try them on. “It’s more of a self-service bridal salon,” I say. Their eyes widened as they eyed the thousands of white dresses hanging on racks! It was like going through Barbie’s closet with the 10 and 13 year old girls. It was just too much fun for us all.

We searched but couldn’t find the Sottero Destination gown we initially came to the store to try on (RD1044). One of the first we pulled was a Maggie Sottero gown with a champagne sash and middle beaded accent. Then we asked the clerk about RD1044 and added it to the pile. The last dress we added was an Allure with a heavy sweetheart neckline and a low dipping back. When my named was called and my little assistants and I were escorted to the room. My shop attendant quickly feel in love with the two girls as did the entire store. Little did they know that these two girls have a fashionista as a mama and talk the terms “empire” and “gossamer” as if it was their native tongue.

The two final selections were exactly the first and the last that we chose: the Sottero’s “Vanessa” and Allure’s Far & Away “922.” Both were chiffon, empire waisted, babydoll dresses. The Vanessa was more polished while the Allure a bit more destination wedding. I really liked both! But it was 1:30 pm and we were due at Saja at 2! So we hailed a cab and went speeding off to the appointment.

Vanessa. Image from Maggie Sottero

I tried on the three gowns that were my original final contenders and they quickly feel flat. They were gorgeous but they didn’t feel special enough. And the girls were way underwhelmed. It never felt so right to leave Saja and drive straight back to RK Bridal.

I could have picked either one but then with the nieces’ seal of approval, we decided the Vanessa was the one. And with that we got our pictures taken so we would always remember the day and my new dress!

When we got back later that night the girls wanted to show their uncle pictures of their day in NYC and then this is when my groom saw me in the dress! This may not be a big deal to some girls but my man is superstitious! He quickly looked up from the iPhone he was staring at an said with shock, “I think I just saw something I wasn’t supposed to!” Later that night he asked me “Isn’t it bad luck to see you in your dress?” I said, “Yes. I’m going to have to get another!” with a bit of a teasing humor. And with these words I was doomed: “Maybe that is better. We don’t want to start off with bad luck!”

For two days I couldn’t decide what to do. I even posted a poll on Weddingbee. 95% of people said I should just keep the original dress. “Pretend that it was a different one, he would never know.” “Don’t pay attention to the crazy superstition, it is modern times now!” All these thing made me feel better about the situation but in the end I felt I would be lying to my man. If it was important to him…and he is a superstitious guy (driving on your birthday is bad luck, don’t bring a pillow outside or someone will die, don’t go to sleep with your hair wet or you’ll go blind, etc.) then it had to be my superstition too!! So with that dress I became superstitious.

Image from Tom's Bridal. Allure 922

With a few frantic phone calls and an in-person visit to RK I changed my dress to my other favorite–the Allure 922!

Do you believe in the superstition? What would you have done?

Today I am in the Sky! Marriage Bound

(I wrote this post on July 27th–the night before I was going to leave for the wedding. I thought I was going to post it to the hive the day I left. But with so much to do I guess I forgot to do that part! Anyways I thought you might like to read how frazzled I was!!! So here it is….)

I am a mess you Bees! My apartment is a disaster. I already left one of my bridesmaid gowns at work (it was delivered there by the tailor but I forgot to bring it home. Thankfully my co-worker was thinking and called me). But by the time you read this I am going to be up in the sky somewhere between New Jersey and California. It is 10 p.m. the night before we leave. At this moment my fiance is doing laundry, I am printing out the Menu cards, and I am freaking out about leaving my cat for twelve whole days. I didn’t think there were so many things still to do last minute but then this month totally snuck by me. July has been crazy!

Image from US Weekly

Fourth of July weekend, then the Bachelorette Party in Vegas the next weekend, then The Bridal Shower the weekend after (more on this later). And then it was THIS weekend. Wedding weekend! Boom, boom, boom. Who knew I was gonna be so busy.

Saturday is the big day! And I am going to leave the comfort of my own home where there is crafting supplies, my computer files, my temperpedic bed. Just a few more hours till we leave. Can I complete all the things that MUST get done? Will I sleep tonight. OMG! I feel like that how Russell Brand looked in that photo that Katy Perry Tweeted. I think the caption was “Bridezilla much?”

So wish us luck these next hours!

Intimate Seaside Decor

I love this cottage seaside decor from Pacific Weddings–it really gets me thinking about the beach! Catalina IS on an island after all!

I am moving on to thinking about more than just the wedding reception decor–which means two things: Friday’s rehearsal dinner and Sunday’s brunch. For both I would like to have a little bit of beach vibe incorporated. Something people would imagine for an island wedding since my reception isn’t beach at all!

For the rehearsal dinner I am thinking we will have a BBQ on the beach. This could go a few different ways–classic all-American picnic at the beach (think red and white checkered tablecloths), soft and intimate seaside decor (starfish, shells and lots of blue), or Pacific Luau kitsch (think Tiki Club, lei’s and mai tai’s).

For the brunch I would like to use lots of retro tissue paper–pom poms, wedding bells, garlands! I am thinking aqua blue & white. I am hoping this will be more of an at home buffet so it will be really relaxed.

Image from Pacific Weddings Blog

My Vintage Travel Save the Dates

My beautiful bridesmaid and owner/operator of Alana Bailey Brand created my awesome save the dates! I just love them!

My 1930s Inspired Save the Date with URL blocked out. Created by Alana Bailey Brand.

After telling Alana of an inspiring vintage wooden sign I saw on the Internet, I emailed her a picture of it. She loved it too and then proceeded to work her magic translating the vintage image into a postcard! Or shall I say, our wedding save the date!

The original image is from 1930s timetable (this is from my detective work based on a similar image with this history). It has a big sun setting its abstract orange rays behind the silhouette of a cerulean Catalina Island. With Alana’s magic as a printmaker she translated this image into the 21st century without losing an ounce of its glory!

Personal Photo.

She added the date of our wedding into the sun, and put our wedding website URL (which is blocked out of the image above for our privacy) so people could go directly to our website for details about the wedding. We didn’t add any of the conventional words like “save the date” or even our names. A while ago I blogged about this–not being sure about if people will miss this wording–on “No ‘Save the Date’ on Your Save the Date?”. No one was confused about what 7.31.2010 stood for–which was a major concern. But a few people didn’t realize that the http://www.x.com was to go to a website. But these people aren’t technical people so it is a bit understandable.

Personal Photo.

We ordered the paper in Cream Lux from papersource.com and used ‘night’ blue colored envelopes.

The envelopes had even more details. Alana put a block of white as a place for us to address them. I used a navy blue ink pen to do this. She also added our return address on back in white text — it was even in the same style script as the “Catalina Island” words on the face of the card. Then she added glittering little waves on the inside of the envelopes for some pizzazz!

The Magnets. Personal Photo.

The finishing touches were when I attached two magnetic strips, cut to fit the two shortest sides of the card so people could hang up the invites on their fridge when they got them.

There you have it! My vintage-inspired wedding save the dates! A little bit homemade/a little bit from the professional. I had a blast collaborating with Alana–she is the best!