I just got back from Key West celebrating my second anniversary. I still feel like a newlywed, albeit an inappropriately old newlywed, as I like to say. So to celebrate my anniversary, I thought I’d look back a little bit and write about how helpful Pinterest can be for wedding planning, even for midlife brides.
I’ve written before about how much I love Pinterest. In fact, I wrote that first sentence and didn’t come back to this post for 30 minutes because I opened Pinterest “for research” and got distracted. That’s a pretty common occurrence for me. But, it’s all too easy to caught up in “Pinterest Perfection”: the belief that anything you try from Pinterest isn’t any good at all unless it’s as perfect as your inspiration pin. And it can seem like a young woman’s game, particularly if you’re a midlife bride planning a wedding. I just did a search on Pinterest for “midlife bride” and the pickings are still pretty slim. They were even slimmer when I was planning my own wedding two years ago.
Our Wedding Goals
We weren’t planning a big wedding, but I did want it to be special. As both the bride and wedding planner, I had a few goals for our big day:
- Stress-Free! There would be no staying up all night the night before my wedding making centerpieces for the tables.
- Cost Effective. There would also be no four-figure flower bill. Flowers were strictly DIY. But easy DIY.
- Reflecting Our Personality. Casey and I both share a strong love of music. I wanted our wedding to reflect that wherever I could weave it in without being too “theme wedding”.
- Love. I wanted the day to be a reflection of our love for each other and our love for the friends and family we asked to share the day with us.
And I had a final goal that I was a little embarrassed about. But it was important to me.
- I wanted to wear a long white dress. I wore a tea-length plain white cotton Laura Ashley dress to my first wedding. There are a lot of reasons why that happened, but the bottom line is I always felt cheated out of my princess day. I didn’t need a full-fledged princess day, but I wanted a long white dress that was appropriate for a 52-year old woman. I also didn’t want to show my arms. Nobody wants to see the bare arms of a 52-year old woman.
Using Pinterest to Plan a Second Wedding
I created an inspiration Pinterest board, Second Wedding Ideas, to track ideas from Pinterest that met the goals I had for our wedding. (It’s possible this started out as a secret board years before I actually met my husband. Shhh.)
At first, I just used the board as a sort of mood board; pinning whatever struck my fancy. And then as the date got closer I started keeping a notebook of all the elements of the wedding along with the inspiration pin.
Our Wedding Invitation
For example, here’s the pin I finally chose to emulate for our wedding invitation.
I created our wedding invitation in Illustrator using the pin as inspiration.
I wanted flowers but I didn’t want to have to pay for them or spend a lot of time creating artful arrangements. So I went for the best of all possible solutions. I followed the inspiration of this pin:
And I made things even simpler. Instead of Whole Foods, my florist was the local farmer’s market and instead of creating the bouquet myself, I outsourced the job to my beautiful niece.
I think you’ll agree she did a fabulous job.
This pin was completely perfect as inspiration for a cake that showed our love for music and each other.
Here’s our interpretation. The lyrics are from The Zombies, “This Will Be Out Year.”
Casey and I dated for a little bit in college and then remet 30 years later so the chorus, “This Will Be Our Year, Took a Long Time to Come” has a lot of meaning for us.
As for the white dress appropriate for a middle-aged woman? It took a few pins to cobble together just the right look. First, the actual dress. I wanted something simple, elegant and timeless and this dress was just the ticket.
But I hated that thing on top of it. So I replaced it with a vintage cashmere cardigan because pins like this convinced me that was a viable thing:
Here’s the final result.
My wedding day was one of the happiest days of my life. We had the wedding in a lovely French restaurant in Atlanta and the food was so delicious. It tasted like love, I swear. As a wonderful added bonus, the building had, in a previous life, been my father’s office so I could feel his presence blessing us even though he’s no longer with us. You can’t find that stuff on Pinterest. But a pretty cake and a princess dress can help make a special day even more special.
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