Guest Post: Advice About The Night Before Your Wedding

You guys! The one and only Kelsey is back for two more posts, sharing the BIG details on her BIG day. First up is today’s post on the night before her wedding and then next week we’ll share ALL the details on her simply stunning wedding back in February (how has it already been two months since the wedding?!?!) Here goes!

Advice About the Night Before Your Wedding | By Kelsey

Well hell, it’s the day before your wedding. Well, my wedding, because you’re along for my ride. It’s been a fun one, yes? A mix of the teacup ride, wooden roller coaster, and wine. You get it.

Ok, here we are. If you’re like me, you have zero things left to do, because I hired an amazing coordinator (props Bree…do people still say props?) and while I was stressed about incoming family, my fiancé was all…

So we go to the rehearsal. I would highly suggest making sure your officiant is down to officiate the rehearsal. Sure it’s practice, but when your mom/aunt/nervous dad ask 459 questions about where they should stand – because it’s their day – it’s nice to have someone who knows what they are talking about.

Once you knock out the run through and test your Snapchat filer (nailed it!) Make sure you run through the day of itinerary with everyone who needs to be aware of things. Sure I sent everyone personalized itineraries two weeks ahead of time, but let’s be honest, I don’t want to be Jessie on my wedding day.

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Renee & Billy’s Harry Potter Themed Engagement Pictures in Maryland

Images: Kathleen Hertel Photography via Two Bright Lights

I was a very bad blogger last week. Correction, I was a really bad business owner last week all around. We haven’t had much down time over here and we had a sick kiddo last weekend that poured into the week and I was strugggggggling to stay afloat. Will try and make it up to you this week as we’ll be off next week as Andy and I take our first kid-less trip to ICELAND. But there is sooo much to do before then. Prepping for Evie’s 2nd birthday party, starting to get our house ready to sell (omg), and you know, all the other every day things going on, including gearing up for the insanity of May wedding season.

Well, we’ll sleep when we’re retired right? For today though, we are kicking the week off RIGHT with a Harry Potter themed engagement session. Marauder’s map, wands, a massive clock tower, and adorable house-themed scarves – love. Here we go!

We don’t really have a cute “how we met” story – we met via a mutual friend and Billy was actually kind of a jerk to me when we first met! Our engagement story is pretty cute though, so I’ll stick with that.

Colva & Jake’s Intimate, Rad Northern Virginia Wedding at Liberty Tavern

Images: Chris Ferenzi Photography

I thought I would be able to finally start running again yesterday, but this cold is STILL hanging around and between the tundra temps & WIND, it just didn’t happen. But I haven’t run in a WEEK now and I need to run 10 miles in a 3 weeks, so it HAS to happen today. So please send me all the motivation you can spare. For today though, we have an ADORABLE intimate wedding that has so many pops of fun, and the most chill engagement story ever. Plus I am in love with the bride’s ink (of course) & the bright colors for the reception. Take it away!

We met on OkCupid, in Spring 2012. We pretty immediately realized that we both worked at Georgetown and lived within a mile of each other. We’ve known each other since April 2012, were together from about May 2013, and really together from March 2014. It happened in stages.

Jake proposed. We were at Chipotle on M St having lunch and discussing the impending nuptials of two of our very good friends. I articulated that I thought it was a good idea for them to get married, as they met all the criteria I find reasonable for determining if a relationship works. Jake asked me what I thought those things were: That the people are adults, not nearly adults, or freshly adults. That they have faced some challenges together, and overcame those. They have lived together and shared a limited space. They have met each others friends and families.

Jake then said that based on these criteria we should get married. He initially wanted to do it that weekend, but I intervened and expressed that what he was really thinking about was engagement.

We then went to Forever21 on M St and bought a pack of 9 fashion rings for $5, and then walked back to campus where Jake got down on one knee in front of the statue of John Carroll (the founder of Georgetown) and asked me to marry him. Students and tour groups cheered, and I’m sure it looked very well planned to everyone who saw it.

DIY Tutorial: How to Make a Gilded Edge, Faux Marble Platter

Images & Tutorial: Jenn Heller Design Co

Slow start this morning Romancers. Was out late volunteering at the N Street Village Annual Gala, and E actually slept til 7 – and so I took advantage of that. As this cold is STILL raging, and the day job kicked off with moldy coffee being spilled all over my desk. YAY WEDNESDAY! But we’ve got an ah-mazing DIY tutorial today for #DIYWednesday thanks to Jenn Heller Design Co. She’s gonna teach you all how to make this AMAZING Faux Marble Platter with a Gilded Edge, which make for some badass wedding centerpieces, or just a nice piece for your home! Check it out!

Gilded Edge Faux Marble Platter | By: Jenn Heller Design Co.

It is no secret I am addicted to shiny things (and the archives prove it.) For anyone who follows my behind-the-scenes Instagram Story, you also know my recent fondness for all things gold leaf. Time to tackle a DIY that’s been percolating for some time! One of the things I most love is to take a faux version of something and hack it for less, so I’ve been thinking about ways to use faux marble contact paper more realistically for a while.

One of the things that faux marble often gets wrong is the thickness of materials – real marble is fragile, and keeping pieces thick keeps them stable.  In addition, one of the easiest ways to spot a piece made of faux marble contact paper is at the edges, where paper peels or seams don’t align.

Put those two together with how much I am loving the gold edges on everything at Target these days and boom: the faux gilded-edge marble slab.  I think this could look just as incredible under your wedding centerpiece as on your kitchen table, or as platters for displaying cupcakes, escort cards, favors… you name it!


Time: 45 minutes + glue drying time

Difficulty level: Easy/Moderate

Cost: If you’re just making one, the upfront cost is about $15 for gilding supplies and $15 for the contact paper + foam.  However, you could make at least 4 for the same cost, since all the supplies are sold in quantities that allow you to make multiple.

What you’ll need:



  • Box cutter
  • Marker
  • Masking tape
  • Foam brush

Step by Step Directions:

Step 1. Draw a shape on your foam.  Real marble tends to break along seams and cracks in the stone, so some straight lines are just fine!

Nancy & Matt’s Lifestyle Engagement Pictures At Home in Virginia

Images: The Girl Tyler via Two Bright Lights

I‘ll be wearing my PJ’s inside out tonight. After a weekend of little to no rest (single parenting for the win), and finally catching E’s wicked cold, I could really use some remote work days in sweats on the couch. Therefore we all know it’s only going to rain. Part of me would be sad that snow might kill a lot of the blossoms, but another part of me is secretly hoping for one last winter hurrah. I never even got to put E in a snow suit this year! Anyway, I have the CUTEST engagement session for you today – a total Jim & Pam romance with so much laughter in the pics from The Girl Tyler, it’s contagious. A perfect way to start the week. Let’s do it.

If you’ve seen the early seasons of The Office, our “how we met” story is very similar to Jim and Pam. I started working at the company where Matt worked, and as luck would have it, I was seated at a desk right across from his. We were immediate friends and had undeniable chemistry, but we were never single at the same time, and dating a co-worker seemed like a terrible idea. Then after about a year, Matt got a new job — he knew nothing would ever happen between us as long as we worked together. I suddenly had to admit to myself that I didn’t want to go a day without talking to him. I broke up with my boyfriend and turned my life upside down to be with Matt, and it’s worked out beautifully.

Here’s an abridged version of our proposal story, which omits the stream of stunned and excited profanity I unleashed as I realized what was happening: When we worked together, we’d always walk to aLatte Cafe (a local coffee shop) in the mornings or whenever we needed an afternoon pick-me-up. We also would write notes to each other on Post-its, then fold them up and address them like tiny letters.

After we’d been officially dating for almost a year, Matt stopped by my work late one Friday afternoon and asked if I wanted to go get coffee. As we approached, a friend’s toddler ran up and handed Matt a tiny Post-it letter — a tiny mail carrier to deliver very important tiny mail. Apparently she was supposed to wear a special mail carrier outfit but refused. Matt looked at the letter, said “Oh, it’s for you!” and got down on one knee while I read it. He got one of our friends to photograph the whole thing.

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