09 February 2009

weekend round-up

It was quite the busy weekend here at Camp Un-Bride. I didn't get any posting done because my work schedule is such that I'm busiest on Saturday & Sunday ... so Monday is actually my day to get some rest. And on that note, "thanks" to whomever rang my phone at 8:30 this morning. But moving on ...

Early Sunday morning, I drug poor Mr. UB out to the Rose Bowl flea market in Pasadena. I'd told him a few days before that I planned to go, and asked if he wanted to join me. He agreed, under no duress whatsoever -- something I needed to remind him of more than once as I tried to coax, then harangue, then physically drag him out of bed before 8 a.m. He's lucky he's so cute when he's grouchy.

Anyway, we had pretty good luck. I found these, which I'll probably use to decorate the table around our cake: They're real crystal pieces from a chandelier. I can totally re-use these afterwards to make a cool light fixture. (You know, when we eventually figure out where we're going to live.) $5.

We also grabbed two pretty metal planters. I want to use one of them to hold the programs at our ceremony, but got 2 to use later ... again, in the Theoretical Home. Whatever -- they need some cleaning up, but a) I have time for such a project at the moment, and b) the color underneath all that rust (pale green) actually goes with our wedding stuff. (left side is partially cleaned; right side is how we found them)

He thought we should leave them all "rustic" looking. I maintained that "rustic" does NOT equal "rusty", and think they'll still have that cool weathered look even once I finish scrubbing off as much gunk as I can stand. The downside to being "right" about this = I can't make him do the scrubbing. Oh well -- my hands always look like hell, anyway. (It's all the rubbing alcohol from trying not to lose my grip on the pole. You know -- at work.)

We also found one Not Really For The Wedding, But Freakin' Awesome Anyway bargain: It's a Nambe serving bowl. I didn't know what these were until my friend Tolley showed me. They're made from an 8-metal alloy that holds temperature -- hot food stays hot & cold food stays cool. I did add two of them to our registry, even though they're pricey. Macy's has the exact same bowl here for $115. I have this one for $20. To repeat a phrase I've used previously: Booyah.

Today's (Monday's) errands led to another purchase that cost less than planned. I went to buy this pretty guest book that I spotted a while back on the Crane's website: ... only to discover that it's no longer available in this color. I failed to find it anywhere else on the 'net (CL, eBay, etc. -- all the usual suspects) so I decided to see if any of the local stores who carry Crane & Co. products still had one in stock. (Besides, shipping charges = my new Enemy #1.) I struck out in the first place I tried, so I ventured a little further afield to a store in Beverly Hills. And while they didn't have that particular book, which by the way was $39 + shipping, they did have this: The flash over-exposed the photo, but it's cream-colored linen with "Guests" embossed in a simple typewriter-style font. The spool of gray ribbon next to it is the one it came with. I switched in with some green ribbon that I already had. (It's lighter than it looks in this pic). Not only do I like this size(about 10" square) better than the teensy 8x6 books that are out there, mascarading as photo album-sized in their web photos, but check this: "Perfect Guest Book"? I'll say. The store in question is William Ernest Brown on Beverly Drive. The ladies who work there are wonderfully helpful and nice. I spotted (and forced myself to give wide berth to) a large notebook labelled "Cartier Wedding Stationary" on a desk, so if you're on the hunt for higher-end goods, this is your store.

I've been doing more online reading about our ceremony venue, the Palace of Fine Arts in S.F., hoping to find out what the diameter of the rotunda is. I'm trying to see how long of an aisle runner we should get -- since they're priced by length, I don't want one that's too long. Nor do I want one that will end up looking puny if it's too short.

I found the answer to my question (1,100 feet -- I guess we better get the long one) and I also found some amazing Palace-related info. First, there's this image from an ad for the Pan Pacific Exhibition:Thank goodness we didn't do hard-copy Save-The-Dates, because I'd be filled with regret that we didn't use this image on postcards. I'd love to find a way to work this into our programs, or some other element that we'll be making/using. But even more beautiful are the Novagems.

"What are Novagems?" you might ask. Well, if you rely on Google, you might think that they're related to something incredibly nerdy. In fact, I had to look through hundreds of entries that were variations on forums talking about "... so are Nova Gems for Star Captains only or can any1 get em?" to find these:

"More than 100,000 Novagems graced the Tower of Jewels at the 1915 [Exhibition]. The gems' mirrored backs created an incredible light show when the Tower was illuminated. Smaller Novagems, like [these], were sold as souveniers." poster & quote source

Can you imagine? Because just in case you can't, check this: Click on the picture to see a larger image. Source here.
The Tower of Jewels wasn't one of the buildings that lasted beyond the end of the Exhibition -- all of its structures were intended to be temporary. The Palace itself survived only because the citizens of San Francisco organized to save it. Somehow I think this image would be just as beautiful if it hadn't been so ephemeral ... I wonder what else was lost before there was a camera phone in every pocket to document things?

Oh, and nobody's selling those babies on eBay. I checked.


elizabeth said...

Wow - awesome about the Palace of Fine Arts...Such a great spot! That Tower of Gems must've looked incredible! Any chance of recreating the Novagems in your decorations?

un-bride said...

I would love to ... if I can only figure out how. I'm open to suggestions!