My Wedding Binder

Yes, I have a wedding binder. And yes, it’s deserving of its own post. Because it’s not like I could use just any old binder…I “upholstered” one with red fabric from one of my sisters old outfits, complete with the “Gota” appliquΓ©. I just felt like its only right that the book which would house all of my wedding information be something beautiful to look at itself!! Plus there’s really nothing I appreciate more than pleasing aesthetics πŸ™‚ And so, you can check it out below…and yes I made a trip to Michael’s to get letters to personalize it too…it was my first wedding project when I started this whole process, and I think it played a role in getting it off to a good start πŸ™‚

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The Most Perfect Bridal Shower Dress

I’m fortunate enough to live downtown Toronto, where the vintage scene thrives. Toronto Life recently reported that there are “more than 70 boutiques spread across multiple neighbourhoods and prices that make shoppers in New York and London envious.” And it was at one of these vintage shops, Cabaret Vintage on Queen West, where I found the most perfect dress for my June bridal shower πŸ™‚

I just happened to be walking by the store on my way to meet a friend at Tealish (fantastic little Queen West teashop) and I thought why not pop into Cabaret, a hub of high end vintage…and there I spotted it: an exquisite 1950s pink floral day dress that would bring a smile to Christian Diors face. I tried it on and it fit beautifully; I’m not sure a seamstress could do a better job sizing it for me! The wonderful owner, Tao, with his passion (and flattery – who wouldnt want to be liked to Ms Sophia Loren?!) made my decision to say yes to the dress an easy one!

Here’s a sneak peak of the fabric…will post full pics after the shower, itself πŸ™‚

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The Arrival of My Louboutins

Eeeeeeeeee!!!!! They’ve arrived!!! This was the exact squeal of delight that I let out when my mom texted me at work telling me “you won’t believe what I have for you.”

“My shoes?!?!?!” I replied. So, naturally, I came straight from work (lunch break, people!) to meet them.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words…here’s eight πŸ™‚

They’re perfect. They’re exactly the way I had imagined them to be. Cannot wait to walk down the aisle (if Pakistani ceremonies had aisles!) in these!!!!

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"The Chanel Journey"

Ah, journeys. Who doesn’t love them? Filled with excitement and wonder, they take you to a whole new world, enrich you with experiences that you never had before…

That is exactly what happened to me and my sis-in-law-to-be Sarah when we stumbled into Chanel. (Side note: stumbling into Chanel -always a good idea πŸ™‚

It started with Sarah saying: “you should get a special fragrance for your wedding day, so that then you always associate that scent with that special time.”

I had heard of this before, and loved the idea. Smell has an incredible power to evoke memories, and I loved the idea of having a special scent which I’d associate with my wedding days for the years to come.

And so off we went to Chanel in search of that special scent.

We started off by smelling their speciality line, sniffing a row of over a dozen perfumes, where with each one I would ask myself “is this what I want to wear on my wedding day?” Nothing stood out as the “one” from their speciality line, but then Sarah brought over a sample of a scent from their regular collection. I smelled it and was instantly intriguing, a sensual sweetness, it was light, innocent and pleasant.

It was Coco Madamoiselle.

And that’s when the Holt Renfrew Chanel ladies pounced on us. They lured us into their Boutique area in Holts, sat us down on their arm chairs upholstered in the same fabric as their signature Chanel jacket (they were lovely chairs.) We told them why we were there – the hunt for the perfect wedding perfume – and once they learned I was a bride-to-be they showered upon us more attention and excitement than my own family (Seriously, I left thinking they are more excited than I am about my upcoming nuptials lol). They told us the entire history of the perfume…what the difference was between true perfume (the most potent form of the scent derived from essential oils) vs. the eau du toilette (a less potent version)…they told us how that Chanel is the only perfumer that still seals its true perfumes with a wax seal, and that there are only 10 people in the world who know how to seal a signature Chanel perfume bottle..they told me how Coco Mademoiselle was the most popular choice of perfume for brides and that it was created specially for younger Chanel women… and then, like one pops champagne, they broke open a new bottle of Coco Madamoiselle (big deal, people). They then proceeded to explain how spritzing perfume was just not the same as delicately dabbing the perfume cap on “all the places you want to be kissed.” With their enthusiasm, interest, and what clearly was expert sales experience they completely made Sarah and I feel like we traveled to the world of Chanel; a true journey indeed…and I know how comical that will sound to readers who think we were duped, but the experience of it all is such a wonderful memory of my wedding time πŸ™‚

And so yes…needless to say I ended up getting the true perfume…and the travel size eau du toilette (for the honeymoon!)…and the shower gel…(it’s my wedding, when else is more appropriate to bathe in Chanel?!)…and the body cream (I have extremely dry skin!)…lol so we won’t talk about the final total of this “journey” but l will reiterate it was well worth it πŸ™‚

In Pursuit of my Wedding Louboutins

Oh the lengths a girl will go to for a good pair of shoes!

And how I did, in pursuit of my wedding Louboutins….

Now, I’ve outlined my adoration for this French shoe designer in a post about ‘My First Pair of Louboutins’ on another blog of mine (which I’ve neglected for far too long now)….and in it I discuss how Louboutin is renowned for his signature red-soled heels that have, as GQ’s Matthew Sebra explains, β€œbecome the female footwear equivalent of a Rolex; which is to say they’re exceptionally crafted, expensive, and immediately recognizable.”

And so I will admit – part of the reason I coveted this particular pair of shoes was simply for the immediate recognition of that red sole. And I envision wedding shoot pictures of my diamond ring and band hanging ever so seductively on the back of that beautiful red heel… mmmm

But I have more reasons, too! My dress colour combination: dull gold and red. These shoes? Dull gold and red. If that is not logic; I don’t know what is!

And if that’s not enough, just look at them:

Gorgeous, I know! They are elegant with a nod to “exotic” with those seductive swirls (perfect for my Pakistani wedding). I had to have them. I told my fiance, “when I laid my eyes on these pair of shoes, I had the same feeling that I had when I first met you: that they were the ones.” (“Lovely,” he replied).

And so the mission began.

This pair, I found out, was not available in Canada, or even the US. This pair was only available in Europe, and CL does not ship internationally – you have to have a European credit card that matches a European address. So, like any committed shopper does, I emailed CL customer service. The reps their were great and responsive (yes, I told them how these had to be my wedding shoes) and they offered to try to source them at local boutiques in Europe, and then it would be up to the boutique to send them to me, if they had them in my size.

Ah, the size. That was another issue. In my simple black CL pumps- I’m a size 39. (I’m normally a size 8 (38), but CL shoes always fit small). So, when the Christian Louboutin Zurich boutique emailed me and let me know that they had them in size 39, I was thrilled! Until, they told me that this pair of shoes fit particularly small. Nowww what to do? Should I get them in the 39 and risk it? Or should I get them one size up in a 40? Was there no way to try them on?

Well, eventually there was. I called David‘s in Toronto (the only other retailer of Louboutin, besides Holt Renfrew in Canada – sigh, our small luxury market) and the girl on the phone told me that they had these shoes -but in a different model, not the gold – in a size 40, but they were on hold for someone. So, I decided to run up the street to David’s on my lunch break just to try on the 40 for sizing purposes. When I got to the store, a man there told me that he had sold the 40 on the weekend, and that the system must have shown that the shoes were still there: they weren’t. Oh the disappointment! So, I walked over to Holts to just check to see if they had them (I had called earlier, and the girl said they didn’t) and when I went in the girl there said they had one pair of them in a size 9 (again, in a different model). And so, she brought those out for me to try…they were incredibly small. Trying the 8’s on made me think I definitely needed a 10!

And so, I emailed CL Customer Service back, asking them to find me a pair in the size 10. Soon thereafter, I received an email from their boutique in Madrid. They had them in a size 40. But I didn’t feel comfortable just sending them 561 Euros ($770 dollars – which in Louboutin world, is kinda amazing for this pair of shoes) without knowing my proper size.

So, I decided to call David’s again. And it just so happened that someone had returned the similar model in a size 9. (Why would you return these shoes, I don’t know). If that’s not fate, what is people?! It just so happened that my fiance was downtown, and he picked me up and we went to Davids to try on the shoes, together. (Photo below!)

Trying on the shoes, confirmed my hunch: they were perfect! I imagined the beautiful shoe as the perfect accessory to house my henna adorned feet on my wedding day! And while, as you can see, the size 39 fit, and the men at Davids were intent on slingbacks fitting just they way they did, I felt like a half size of up would be absolutely right. This was confirmed by my cousin, blogger behind the Currently Obsessed, who, if you read her blog would know that she was incredibly encouraging of my mission, lol, “Doesn’t the hunt make this more fun?!?” (It does, by the way.)

And so, back to CL customer service I went asking them if they had a 39.5 (I had totally forgot they did half sizes). But this time CL Europe customer service was not so quick to respond! (I was thinking they were probably sick of me, this persistent bride-to-be by now!) And so I followed up….two or three times, until they got back to me and let me know that they have no 39.5 of the Au Hameau in gold in any of their European boutiques, but I could independently contact their other botuiques around the world to source them. At which point I said, enough is enough, the size 39 in the gold are on hold for me at Christian Louboutin Madrid, and they did fit, and they probably will stretch, so I’m going to do it and just get them. And so two days ago, I did! Went to the bank, sent a wire transfer to the Loboutin Madrid Boutique, and today I got the confirmation that they have mailed my wedding shoes!

So that was my mission behind my bridal Louboutins – I think it will be well worth the chase πŸ™‚

~Safa

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Invitations Have Arrived!!!

Yay! Finally! The invitations have arrived!

And so yesterday, I picked up the 70 cards that I need for the wedding from my fiance’s place, while the remainder (200 cards) remain with them for their anticipated 500 guests on the valima (gulp, lol – there’s a reason my blog is called my big FAT Pakistani wedding!)

So what are my long weekend plans? Handwriting the invitations to my guests and ensuring they are stamped and addressed to Martha Stewart’s liking (See: Martha Stewarts, “Addressing and Mailing Your Wedding Invitations” http://www.marthastewartweddings.com/228650/addressing-and-mailing-your-wedding-invitations/@center/272440/wedding-etiquette-adviser – no, I’m not joking – etiquette is key with wedding invitation stationary! For example, did you know that the return address is supposed to be on the back flap of the envelope and not the same part as the address label? And now you know.)

Will be so happy to get these out!!!

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Four Months to Go!

I  had this realization the other day. When I first had my baat pakki (a “pre-engagement” sorta thing) in the summer of 2011, a wedding in the autumn of 2013 felt like ages away! Even when my fiance officially put a ring on it (in a manner that was nothing short of a production, by the way, fireworks and all) a few months later in September 2011, the wedding was still a whole two years away! Now, it’s May 2013, and it’s finally starting to feel close!

And yes, while I’m really looking forward to the pretty dress(es) and the big part(ies), I think what I’m probably most excited about is actually being married; getting to live with my fiance, and doing the normal, boring mundane things together that we’ve never really  been able to do because of our long distance relationship (previously downtown Toronto, and London, England; currently downtown Toronto, and Mississauga – yes I’m counting the latter!).

So T-4 months. Time to get those invitations out!! πŸ™‚