Archive for Alison Westlake

Vendor Spotlight: The Caterer

Planning » Reception Ideas

Photography courtesy BECatering.

We’re in full wedding swing now but you know choosing our vendors has been relatively easy because it’s about people. The biggest thing we’ve learned is that it’s better to go with someone you really get along with. You’re going to be spending a lot of time with this person and if your personalities clash, it’s a recipe for disaster. I’d say easily, the vendors we’ve chosen are people we would happily have over for dinner. We feel we’re becoming fast friends with all of them. Which brings me to introduce an amazing lady who I can honestly say rocks! We were so drawn to her fun loving energy and talent, no one came close to making us feel as confident and respected the way Bonnie did. She didn’t pressure us into going a head. There was never a point where she made us feel we were wasting her time. Bonnie rose above as the true professional.
With out further adieu, allow me to introduce Bonnie Kubica of BE Catering! Read the rest of this entry »

On the Farm


Wedding planning 101 might suggest you choose certain things before others when getting started. The one thing no one will dispute is deciding on your venue is probably the most important on the list. Our decision came easy as my parents live on a farm in Frankford, Ontario and it’s always been the perfect place to have a wedding. If anything, we wavered for a week or two as we feared having it at home could cause more stress than we would like our families to experience but once we ruled out them having do anything other than have a good time, the choice was simple. And since making this decision, other decisions are falling easily into place because the venue dictates so many other aspects. Read the rest of this entry »

Photographer Found

Planning » Photo/Video

{I love how this picture looks like it could have been taken a hundred years ago. Beautiful.}

It’s that time! I want to start introducing some of the fabulous vendors we’ve chosen for our wedding. This process has actually been a blast so far, I know I’m months away so I haven’t felt the real stress of it all but I’m hoping by being so organized I can avoid all of those sleepiness nights. It’s my job to let the people we’ve chosen do what they do best by trusting them implicitly, it alleviates our stress 100%!

Drum roll please! …Introducing Joseph + Jaime Photography! Read the rest of this entry »

The Planning Continues

Fashion & Beauty » Wedding Shoes

Loving these Kate Spade flats

Hey fellow brides, if you’re anything like me you feel that bridal shows might confuse you more than help with this whole decision making process. I’ve avoided shows until now because some questions were just not getting answered and then missed the ever famous show at the Carlu this weekend. However, the planning must go on, so I decided to turn my search to the cuisine.

With all the local farms around this fine little city, someone should be able to produce a menu that is organic based fresh and delicious at a reasonable price point, right? I’ve got my heart set on a caterer in Peterborough and I’m excited to meet with them this week but my family is urging me to see what’s happening locally and I think it’s a good idea. The first booth I was greeted by was a local caterer and they had me at hello. So friendly and knowledgeable and incredibly helpful — these are the kind of people you want at the forefront, working hard for your business. The more I learned, the more excited I got. I Googled the chef and was so pleased to see he was the real deal. We’ve got some high profile restaurant industry friends (sorry to sound like “that” girl) and they said his food was good. That’s all I needed to hear. I’ll let you know what we decide. Read the rest of this entry »

Fresh Perspective


Delicious almond and coconut smoothies with ground flax seeds

Happy New Year!
I hope you had a restful and rejuvenating holiday. I took the time I needed to regroup and I feel ready to tackle all of the many projects under way at Coriander Girl and of course, the country wedding extravaganza we are planning for this summer. How does a florist plan her own wedding when she has a serious influx of wedding consults and now 20 other weddings to worry about? This is a happy problem and I love a challenge. I do my best work under pressure so bring it on! Read the rest of this entry »

Learning as I go


Just when I thought I was in a rut I got some serious things accomplished this week. I found something BIG when I wasn’t even looking, something major and I promise to share this story with you very soon. I’m learning as I go, I’ve never done this before so I’m far from being an expert wedding planner. Even with all the experience as a florist and working with brides, I still know very little about all of the other elements.  It’s exciting to start seeing the puzzle come together, the border bits are done and now we’re placing the colourful detailed pieces. Planning our wedding is proving to be a truly delightful process and is unfolding just as it should. Read the rest of this entry »

Stuck in a Planning Rut Sort-Of


{Homemade shortbread just like Grandma used to make and a delicious cup of Earl Grey de la creme.}

So here we are. I’m not going to say we’re stuck in a planning rut however, we can’t really move forward until certain things are finalized. With Christmas around the corner progress has slowed as vendors are gearing up for winter weddings and events, so meetings with caterers and such are postponed until January. I’m surprisingly calm about it though, perhaps it’s because there is still eight months between us and our wedding day, but it’s coming fast and I predict a very stressful couple of months before the big day. But isn’t that how it always goes? Isn’t that how most of us work best, with a deadline? The home stretch is pivotal and it’s where most of the action takes place. I don’t want it to happen like this, I’d prefer to head towards the finish line cool, calm and hydrated. In my defense I have been doing a lot inside this incredibly imaginative head of mine. I can almost visualize the entire wedding day from start to finish, and isn’t that what they say, “If you can dream it you can do it?” Read the rest of this entry »

Cupcakes Anyone?

Planning » Wedding Cakes

Lavender cupcakes

There are so many incredible places to consider when choosing your cake or cupcakes, it seems more and more people are leaning toward the cupcake and I find myself moving in that direction also not because it’s trendy but because cupcakes are the shiz. It’s like a cake but smaller and made just for you. But, I think we can all agree that not all cupcakes are created equal. Some look fantastic but follow with a disappointing first bite, dry cake and overly sweet icing. When that happens some times I can’t help but think, “I should have gone for Duncan Hines.” He never lets me down on a cold and lonely night. But he also doesn’t use beautiful ingredients and adds chemicals to protect the everlasting shelf life.  This is why I have fallen in love with what The Sassy Lamb is doing. Read the rest of this entry »

It’s beginning to feel like the real deal


Inside Runway Bridal

It’s becoming real for me. I had my first official appointment at a bridal boutique today and tried on dresses!! My mom and I (arm in arm) walked in excitedly, giggling to one another, I was a little nervous having no clue as to how things would go down but Mary Ann of Runway Bridal eased us into the process with such care. I felt so comfortable expressing my needs to her. I’ve heard horror stories of shops making women feel rushed, unwelcome, pressure selling and even just plain rude to their potential clients. I am so thankful to Mary Ann for making my experience so completely amazing. I was concerned that I might not see anything, I’m extraordinarily picky but I was pleasantly surprised to find that there was a wide variety of dresses that I liked, even LOVED and my mom actually yelped at one point, “That’s the one and I’ll buy it for you I like it so much!” Read the rest of this entry »

Destination: Out of a Dodge


{Cinque Terre}

In a perfect world, Tyler and I would have enough money to fly our entire family to the Cinque Terre for a destination Italian wedding of the century. Another lovely idea is a beach wedding in St. Lucia or in the south of a France. One can dream.

So, how do we live out our destination wedding dream right here at home? Read the rest of this entry »

Sensible shoes? Or blister blues?

Fashion & Beauty » Wedding Shoes

I'm loving these little peep toes gems from Lady Pearls.

What’s a girl to wear on her feet? Obviously, one must consider the venue. We’re on a farm so unless I want to be knee deep in cow patties I better consider my options.

Now, gum boots would be an excellent choice and an extremely cute option but on a hot August afternoon, they could also be deadly in the heat. Crocs might make sense but I’m not sure I’m ready to commit a fashion crime of this magnitude, no offence to Croc lovers out there. I could see myself in the sweetest little pair of vintage heels but realistically Tyler will have to carry me everywhere and as romantic as that may seem, it’s not very practical. Read the rest of this entry »

It’s a Party!


So, it turns out the word ‘wedding’ is totally overwhelming me. I’ve decided I just have to change the word and in doing so I change the psychology.  We’re having a ‘party.’ There, that’s way more manageable!

Not that I’m overwhelmed about being married, goodness, Tyler is the one thing I’m sure of and marrying him thrills me beyond belief, but it’s all the expectations that come with the word ‘wedding.’ Now, that we’re having a party, an extravaganza, if you will, I feel less burdened by what the day should be. The weddings I’m inspired by are not traditional weddings and Tyler feels strongly as well that we stick to our guns and do what we want on our day. We’re bombarded by questions like, “Who’s your M.C.?,” “You’re tossing a bouquet aren’t you?,” “What slow song did you choose for the first dance?” Stop! Hold the phone! What if we don’t want an M.C.? What if we feel strongly about hosting our own party? What if I don’t want to toss the bouquet? Read the rest of this entry »

To Video or Not to Video

Planning » Photo/Video

If there is one thing that people keep telling me over and over it’s that I should not skimp on photography. And have you seen what people are doing these days? We’ve all seen the traditional wedding videos from the 80’s and 90’s but have you seen the full on motion pictures people are having created for themselves? Some of them are like music videos. What an incredible way to remember the big day. I want one! But, I just saw our budget board a train and it’s bound for broke central station. I’m sorry but all the assurance in the world from Uncle Jerry that his SLR with video capability will be fine, is not going to convince me.
These movies are edited so well, they are as unique as the couples they feature and they always leave me in tears. I need one! Now, all I need is to find the Scorsese of the family and call in a favour. I wonder if Sophia Coppola is looking for work these days?

Abby and Josh Nittle from evan scott on Vimeo.

Finding Your Perfect Bouquet

Planning » Bouquets & Flowers

As a florist, in the summer months I’m dealing with weddings on a daily basis. The process can be simplified when a couple knows what they want. However, it’s also very rewarding providing ideas for people having hard time in their decision making and seeing the look of relief wash over them as you describe their dream day. When a couple comes in I always encourage them to bring photos of flowers they like, but even more important is the feel, the overall theme of the day. Is the wedding relaxed and romantic or formal and classic or perhaps its vintage with hits of industrial modern? These kinds of questions are integral in finding just the right tone for the big day. At Coriander Girl we specialize in vintage romantic. It’s a good idea for you to research your florist and know what it is they do really well. If I had a craving for the best burger in town I wouldn’t go to a seafood place, you feel me? So, research the florists you plan to meet with to ensure you like what they do. Read the rest of this entry »