Mike and I first talked about getting married on our second date. Crazy, right? At the time, it came off a bit creepy…but almost 4 years and one engagement ring later it’s closer to cute than cuckoo on the relationship continuum. As things started getting more serious, discussing who would be in our wedding party became a frequent topic of conversation. No matter what, every single person in the party would have to be someone both of us loved and wanted to stand up for us on our big day.
Once we nailed that part down, it became all about the art of the ask for me. This past weekend, I hosted a Kate Spade-inspired brunch to ask four of my favourite ladies to be my bridesmaids!
I knew I wanted to make a bit of a splash with the ask, so some sort of party/reveal was always in the cards. Around Valentine’s Day, two things happened that helped me to solidify my plans: my good friend Kat Langdon hosted a lovely Valentine’s Day brunch for a few of our ladyfriends and Waiting on Martha featured a Kate Spade-themed Bridal Brunch. Challenge accepted. Marrying Kat’s brilliant brunch brainwave with Waiting on Martha’s design sense, my bridesmaid ask brunch was born.
My decor musts for this Kate Spade-inspired bash were clean stripes, fluffy flowers and pops of pink. The tablecloth is a DIY using this IKEA fabric (all you have to do is hem two edges and bam – custom tablecloth for about $25!) and really set the stage for the whole tablescape.
The napkins satisfied my need for spots and bows. I picked up these linen napkins on sale from Anthropologie for $4.95 each and folded them into bows, securing with my favourite gold & white polka dot washi tape (30-second tutorial below).
My flower selections were cheap & cheerful – I picked up two bunches of tulips and a bunch of pink roses from Valu-Mart for under $25 and placed them into silver vases c/o Gatto Flowers.
Votives added a romantic flicker to the table, upping the girliness by 1000%. The silver votives are c/o Gatto Flowers while the gold Mini Capri Blue candles were picked up on sale at Anthropologie and smell like orchids.
It’s great to have a pretty brunch and all, but these ladies came to eat. I served mini Quiches Lorraine (recipe from Canadian Living) because you can’t have brunch without eggs, Kat Langdon’s overnight Nutella-stuffed French Toast casserole and put together a Yogurt Parfait Bar. Did I mention I also baked some Brie cheese?
Easiest and most delicious appetizer ever. Just top a wheel of Brie cheese with delicious jam (I used PC® black label Black Cherry and Vanilla Fruit Spread) then wrap in a sheet of thawed puff pastry. Bake at 400 for about 25 minutes and let it sit before you cut into it. Evidently I forgot that important step and caused a cheese/lava situation.
When it came to dessert, I wanted bite size, pastel and pretty. Since Mike and I were down on Queen St. E. for a potential wedding planner appointment on Friday, I took the opportunity to visit Bobbette & Belle for some of their signature macarons, meringues and marshmallows. I also whipped up a batch of the easiest cookies ever – palmiers! You literally need thawed puff pastry and sugar to make this recipe happen.
I had planned on serving only bubbly, but I had the timeliest email ever from the PR team repping Skinnygirl and ended up receiving the most wonderful bachelorette-themed package from them the day before the party. I ran out the next morning to pick up some pink lemonade to pair with Skinnygirl White Cherry Vodka and the Cheery Cherry Lemonade was born. Perfectly pink, refreshing and light, it made the perfect signature drink for our ladies’ day in.
Up until probably 15 minutes before the girls arrived, I had no idea how I’d actually do the ask. I’d ordered Sugar Paper x J. Crew bridesmaid cards months before and picked up gold frames from IKEA, but beyond that had no idea how it would go down. The week before, I’d asked my friend Kathleen to be in our wedding while I was in Kingston and it was a much simpler affair – same card, same photo-in-frame, but I had warned her that I’d made her a gift so presenting her with something was a lot easier.
When it came down to it, I ended up wrapping the frames in gold chevron wrapping paper and taping the envelopes on top with spotted washi tape. Once everyone was seated, I announced that I had little party favours for everyone and encouraged them to open the gifts immediately. Surprise! Meet 4/5 of my bridesmaids:
Luckily my brother was on hand to snap bazillions of group photos. In case you’re wondering, the shirt I’m wearing is from J.Crew! I paired it with my favourite Pink Tartan skirt that has a tulle layer peeking from the bottom. To keep my girls from figuring things out before I asked them to be bridesmaids, I wore a cute Anthropologie apron to hide the “bride” moniker…and keep clean.
The Party Favours
I wanted the girls to be able to go home with something cute and also dress up the table a bit more. I was originally going to pick up personal-sized bottles of pink Moet, but fate intervened and I spotted these tiny bottles of Fresita on the brand’s Instagram page on Thursday. At only $5 each at the LCBO, they made an affordable and adorable take-away when paired with a gold chevron straw.
I’m so happy with how my bridesmaid ask brunch turned out! Not only did all the girls say yes – phew! – but we had such a fun, girly time. In case you’re wondering, yes…there were tears. And a group hug. I’m glad I was able to surprise all five of my favourite ladies over two weekends and can’t wait for them to be a part of our wedding!