What Kitty Did… Invites, A Special Collection And Shopping!

Hello! I’m writing this as Al is cooking us dinner and Kirstie Allsopp is talking me through how to get a vintage 50s home – has anyone else seen that on Channel 4?

It’s right up my street as it’s full of old things and crafting, although it has been making me feel a bit guilty about my distinct lack of wedding crafting! Tabitha’s DIY wool letter tutorial has made me feel extra bad, so I’m going to make it my mission to get some crafting in and bring it to you in my next post – pinky promise!

Invitation Station

So, what exactly have I been doing? Well me personally – not much. But the same can’t be said of my fellow real bride Hannah, who has been busy with various stationery designs that include our wedding invitations!

We initially planned to design our own invites and get them printed I’m not sure where. We didn’t get very far down this road, besides creating some super simplistic Save the Dates and having them printed on postcards from Snapfish.

Just after this whole real bride journey got going and after getting to know the other girls, the lovely Hannah mentioned that her day job is a graphic designer and that she was contemplating setting up a wedding stationery business. She asked us if we’d like to be some of her guinea pigs and we agreed. She did us some initial drafts, and from those we ended up with our final invites, which arrived looking like this:

To say we were excited when they arrived is a HUGE understatement, Al and I both shamelessly jumped up and down and did a happy dance. [I don’t recall dancing! – Al]

Here’s me looking just a bit happy with our invites, and a shot of our “invitation station” where they were all written, sealed in envelopes (definitely recommend peel and seal – thanks for the tip off on that Hannah!), addressed and finished off with a little personalised heart stamp with our initials that I found on Etsy.

Hannah worked with our meagre budget to get a design and format that we’re utterly in love with and even helped us get them printed and advise on the type of paper we should go for. Seeing as they are all now sent out, I’m going to treat you all to the finished article!

We also had evening invites in the same style, but in a more simple single card format. I’ve already gushed about them quite a lot but we literally could not be happier with them and the feedback that we’ve had so far from friends and family has been great!

The hardest part of the whole process was doing the guestlist and writing the wording to go on them – and that was just down to us being rubbish and indecisive!

Back To Bridal Heaven

So getting our invitations sent out – that’s a pretty big item ticked off the list right? Well, I reckon I might be able to top that with another item that’s now got a big fat tick next to it.

My dress.

A couple of weekends ago I went back to the beautiful boutique Anya Bridal Couture to try on and collect my dress. I’ve mentioned on here before how much I’d love to just spend the whole day in there trying on stunning dresses, and I did have to be coaxed out of my dress after prancing about the whole barn!

Some alterations are needed to the length and it will need either taking in or some gel padding sewn into the bust to give me a boost in that area (didn’t know you could get those – pretty sure I’m going to go with that option!). I can’t actually describe the relief that I felt when I had it on and it fitted though!

So, my beautiful gown came home with me, and is now hanging up in her bag in Al’s mum’s walk in wardrobe!

Expert shoppers

The same day that I picked up my dress Al’s mum and I planned to go shopping together to start getting ideas for her outfit. As we had my wedding dress in tow we didn’t think it would be a good idea to leave her unattended in the car while we went in to town, so we sort of bailed out, took the dress back to Al’s mum and dad’s house and decided to try our luck in a shop just up the road from where they live.

Charisma of Fawley is a well established specialist in Mother of the Bride and Mother of the Groom outfits, but based on what Al’s mum had told me she liked I wasn’t sure if we would find anything suitable.

The assistants were really helpful and happy to advise even though we told them we were only researching and not looking to buy anything – and they told us that the Spring/Summer 2013 Collections were already starting to arrive! We picked out a couple of things for Chris to try on and…wow!

Two out of the three looked absolutely fantastic! We were so in love with one that Chris nearly bought it there and then! I don’t want to reveal too much, but it complements everything and looks really sophisticated.

It’s by Gina Bacconi – here’s a selection of their outfits:

Chris’s outfit may be among them, but I’m not saying anything more than that! Anyway, after showing Al’s dad she went back and bought it first thing Monday morning!

I don’t often see too much said about Mother of the Bride or Groom outfits on blogs, so would be really interested to see what you all think. Have you helped out with any mum shopping trips? Is anyone else excited about guests wearing hats? (I am so so so hoping for glorious head wear!)

Let’s Get Physical

In other news (not necessarily to do with wedding planning but kind of related to it) I’ve recently joined a gym, as running on Southampton Common is just a bit too creepy now with the dark evenings!

I’m in to my second full week of going 3 times a week and I have to tell you, it’s not been easy. I haven’t psyched myself up to doing any classes yet as I’m worried I’m just not fit enough and will hold up all the seasoned pros, but am thinking about getting a personal trainer to help me out. When it comes to weights and resistance I really don’t have much of a clue, and particularly want to focus on toning up my tummy and my arms.

Has anyone got any tips on good exercises for those areas? What about personal trainers? Does anyone use them?

Can’t believe I’m at the end of another post for you lovely lot – with exactly 6 months today to go until the big day! I won’t be back until the New Year, so I hope you all have a wonderful festive season and I’ll see you in 2013 with some DIY.

Kitty x

Author: Adam Crohill
Adam likes Pina Coladas and getting caught in the rain.

37 thoughts on “What Kitty Did… Invites, A Special Collection And Shopping!

  1. Oh the talents of the lovely Hannah! They look fab, love them!! I love your website too Han.

    Kitty, I’m loving the MoB fashions. In my head that full length blue item is a pantsuit, but I cant tell. It’d be amazing as a pantsuit though.

    Now, back to Etsy I go for some sort of fun stamp! x

  2. I am now regretting the idea of home made invites. Those are so pretty! I would be dancing if I were Al and received them!

    I had never really ever allowed the mothers’ outfits crossing my mind. But now I think about both of them I should work hard to tame both their ‘styles’ down. Any hints and tips getting mothers in to something slightly plainer than floral or robin bird prints (in a very 80’s not good way!).

    And let us know how the gym-ing goes!

  3. YAY! you picked up your dress!!!! 😀
    (so did I, it’s the best, & strangest, feeling ever!)

    Oh & your invites are absolutely gorgeous!!! That Miss Hannah is a very talented young lady 😀

    As for MoB/MiL outfits i feally hadn’t realised how much effort goes into these until recently! I had no idea they were supposed to complement the colour scheme, I just thought they picked out a pretty dress & boom, it’s done!!!
    But I am now realising why my mum has already been looking at options and constantly badgering me to check if her choices are ok!!! ha ha

    Good luck with the gym, I am terrible at gyms, but I am planning on getting back into badminton with Dave (even if he is far too good!!) and hopefully starting some swimming. Mainly because I just need to focus on the dreaded bingo wings!! eek!

    Fab post lovely,l looking forward to the new year DIY 😉 xxx

  4. OMG STef – seriously? I WANT robin bird print!

    Also, Kitty now you have me thinking about stamps. I could totally make one of the secret thing that’s on our invites!! how does one go about making a rubber stamp…? xx

  5. I am afraid Karen I think these are 80’s originals, would they even be 80’s?! I don’t know. But anyway they come in the form of a pant suit. *shudders*

  6. Those invitations are gorgeous! I think we’re going with the wedding tea towels idea as it’s something a bit different (found them through these very pages) but I always feel a bit torn when I see other people’s beautiful stationery!

    I LOVE a hat and always wear one to a wedding and am really disappointed that hats have sort of gone out of fashion for weddings these days except the really posh ones. So we’re having a hat competition as part of our wedding dress code and giving prizes on the day for the best hats. My favourite ever wedding hat purchase was £7.95 for a HUGE wide-brimmed lilac creation with loads of feathers from a charity shop in my parents’ village so hopefully people will have fun looking for them and won’t have to spend too much.

  7. @Karen @Kitty – me too! I want a pretty cute little stamp!! ha ha

    Oh & I totally want that blue outfit to be a pantsuit now!! x

  8. Kitty if your gym has a Body Pump class I wholly recommend it. I find every moment of the class loathsome, but you can really feel it working and my thighs are in the best shape they’ve been all my adult life and the bingo wings are slowly receding. Don’t worry about the gym bunnies, just do your own thing and focus on the instructor. I promise you will find it worthwhile (if utterly horrendous – but it’s only an hour!)

    Gorgeous invites 🙂


    I think I pulled a muscle on Tuesday night as my right calf has been killing me ever since. I have also taken the plunge and booked SIX personal training sessions – first one tomorrow evening!

  10. Im joining the gym this weekend, and Im going to get a personal trainer, otherwise there ‘aint no way Im getting into a dress of even a reasonable size. I dont care if noone can see the tag, I KNOW!!

    Lovely invites, im off to check out Hannahs website now!!

    Good luck with the gym x

  11. Your invites are gorgeous Kitty, I love how they fold out, I’ve not seen any like that before 🙂 She really is clever that Hannah!

    I was so happy when my Mum said she’d be wearing a hat. I have never seen her wearing a hat but she went and tried some on the other day and liked them so yay!

    When we first got engaged my Mum was quite worried about wearing a skirt/dress. She never ever wears them but thought people might think it weird if she wore trousers 🙁 so I had to quickly inform her that no that would not be weird and that I would find it weird if she did wear a dress. Anyway, she’s going to look gorgeous no matter what she wears.


  12. Hmm I’m not sure if the blue is a pantsuit but I am also now hoping it is!

    @Stef Al added a sneaky comment that he didn’t partake in any dancing but he definitely did! Thanks for the comment 🙂

    @Rebecca – You do NOT have bingo wings I’m sure but I know we do all lust after fabulous arms. Does anyone else watch Glee? Seeing Kate Hudson in that is partly what made me want to join the gym – she looks bloody brilliant!

    @Rino – Thanks, Hannah has done such an amazing job! Your hat contest will be amazing, my mum is refusing to wear any headwear as she says it doesn’t suit her, got a while to work on her to change her mind though!

  13. Hi Kitty, I have 6 months to go also!

    My mum and mother in law are both obsessed with TK Maxx so there was no doubt where they would be going for their outfits – I say outfits as plural as both of them have about 3! They are unstoppable. Everytime they go they come out with a new ‘wedding’ outfit. My Mums ‘one’ she likes best is a floor length champagne dress with matching jacket and hat (also from TK maxx!). His mum has so many I am not sure which she will go with. The funny thing is they are both saying they are going to need another outfit the evening to change into! What are the like? Any excuse to buy pretty dresses I think haha.

    I joined a gym, stuck it for 2 months and then lost the will power and cancelled it. I’m now on slimming world but Its hard and I hate it. Fingers crossed I lose some weight at least! xx

  14. Oh and @Kitty – don’t feel bad, I tend to do lots of crafting for my posts on here and then sit on my lazy bum the rest of the time oops – but sshhh don’t tell anyone! xxx

  15. For a fab cardio work out download Nike Training Club on iphone / ipad. Basically your own portable personal trainer and you could follow the classes at home, in a park or at the gym, i’ve even made my fiance do these on a beach in Tobago! Also check out there facebook page out for free classes which might be near you and are really good support too and great fun! I am using this for a lot of my wedding dress body motivation and cheaper than the gym at this expensive time!

  16. @Tabitha @Kitty – Really?! I am ALWAYS working on the DIY!!!!! (no seriously, I am exactly the same as Tabs, wait til a couple of weeks from now I’ll be on another DIY spree!!! ha ha, but shhhhhh we mustn’t let our secrets slip!! 😉 )

  17. I took the plunge and got a personal trainer before I got engaged! It’s expensive but it’s so worth the money as I need someone to shout at me to get me to do anything remotely like exercise. A few months later I am 11lbs lighter; 4 inches gone off my waist and 0.4% off being in a healthy BMI. Now to get the last few pounds off to be back at university weight and to tone up the tummy and arms ready for May!

  18. beautiful invites!!! so exciting! I also love your cute excited face, and is Al not on youtube anywhere dancing with excitment??!

    @Tabitha @Kitty @Rebecca 2013 will be my DIY year! maybe! eek!

    @Kitty so very impressed with your PT session booking! Have just done horrendous exams this morning, hopefully 1 more week and I will be a London based PT!! I’ve really enjoyed doing PT work over the last year, I do a couple of sessions a month to spur me on and challenge me to do different things, I can be a bit of a lazy bum when left to my own devices! Speaking of which, there is too much Crimbo chocolate starting to float around the office argh!! But having lost 35lbs over the last 2 years I must remain strong! 🙂

    @ Philippa totally agree about the awesome evil power of body pump though!

    @Karen I think we all want a pantsuit now……

    @Kitty oh my Mum and Simon’s mum and step mum have all found their outfits nice and early and much easier than we thought. We didn’t even do specific shopping trips, they all spied things randomly when out and about and when they bought them they turned out to be perfect! so pleased! My Mum is wearing a dress for the first time in years as her psoriasis has finally started to get better so i’m very very excited for her! Although she wore trouser suits to all the other family weddings @Tabitha and looked v elegant


  19. @Hels Bels – Good luck! I’m actually surprisingly enjoying it despite the muscle strain. It’s hell when I’m doing it and think I’m about to keel over but have already noticed a massive difference in how quickly I’m recovering after and feel really energetic after! Let me know how you get on! 🙂

    @Tabitha – I know, I love the folding. Although, this has actually proven very confusing for a lot of our guests (I thought it was lovely and simplistic alternative to different sheets!) but the ones we hand delivered were met with confusion as guests turned them this way and that trying to work out how to open them?? x

    @Sam B – hooray 6 months! I’m told it will absolutely fly, especially with the festive season to contend with! How funny about your mums’ outfits, sounds like they’re pretty good when it comes to shopping, I can never find anything! x

  20. Arh Kitty the pic of you getting the invites is so cute! I’m so please you loved them! And I’m so impressed with you and Vix on the exercise regimes..I keep promising I’ll go swimming…humm maybe after christmas! xx

  21. Great post! So many things that I’m thinking about at the mo! Your Invites look fab. I esp love the wording. We have DIYed all our own and while I’d quite pleased we the finished product I honestly hope I never have to make another invite again.
    Mother of the bride outft is a big challenge for my mum at the moment. She wants special, but definately something she can wear again. We made a mistake of going into a boutique and she tried on a dress she loved only to find out it cost as much as my wedding dress!!! Back to the drawing board.
    A big yes to the personal trainer from me. I have one and while I don’t like admitting I have one (I think its a bit poncy?!) its one of the best hours of my week. I feel so good after the session – full of energy and high on endorphins and I work 10 times harder than I ever do by my myself. So go for it. I’m sure you’ll see the benefits. Jo x

  22. I’m a zumba instructor and currently do 4 classes a week – which has been great for toning up / losing weight, plus I get paid by others to do it!!

    Profit aside, I have a lady who has been coming since the summer and she hasn’t changed her diet at all and says she has lost 3/4 stone, so with a healthy eating plan I’m sure you could lose what you want to!

    Much more fun than the gym!

  23. Lovely blog Kitty your invitations looked sooo pretty. I would recommend Zumba as an exercise it is more fun than the gym I lost 1 stone though I did cut down on the bread as well hope all goes well for you
    kind regards
    DEE http;//gwillimflorists.co.uk

  24. Hey Kitty!

    Your invitations look bloody stunning!!

    Gym wise, I have been going for the last two years, on and off. However I started running and seriously, it’s the best thing I ever did. I can really tell I am fitter and leaner and also use a personal trainer who gives me a programme to do. It really pushes you and using mainly body weight exercises you don’t even need all the gym equipment so it’s doable at home sometimes!!

    I started just running for a few minutes at a time but now we are doing 10k three times a week and it’s an amazing feeling! Plus you don’t bulk up.

    Fartlek (dont laugh!) training is also a really good fat burner…it’s where you work really hard/fast for a set amount of time and then rest for a certain time…say two mins each and keep doing it six times. It really gets you sweaty and they say burn a lot of fat!!

    Good luck!!

  25. Hi Kitty Wow I love your invites and the wording they are so different I cant believe its less than 6 months away. good luck x I cant wait till your next blog xx

  26. @Jessica Thanks for the tips! I’ll look it up 🙂

    @Claire Wow that’s great, well done! I’m actually looking forward to my session tomorrow and am hoping after my initial 6 sessions I really start to see and feel the difference x

    @Vix Well done on getting through your exams – you’re already like my virtual PT! You’ve done so well with it already, I need your levels of motivation! xxx

    @Hannah That photo was even taken after I’d calmed down a little bit! I had literally had a horrible day at work and that was just epic! x

  27. Ooh they look lovely!!

    As to the gym – dont be scared!! I have also just done similar and I find the classes make you work a little bit harder for generally longer than you normally would – it just depends what you prefer!! I really like spin classes (you adjust your own bike so its as hard as you want it to be) and also step classes while old fashioned are actually really fun and would easy in gently to the classes!!

    Good luck!!!

  28. 6 months to the day! This is so exciting. Getting the dress makes it all seem real now right? Sounds like you are doing an awesome job on this wedding malarky Kitty. Much love Beki Young x x x

  29. Hi Kitty. I too am Southampton-ish based. It’s great reading your blogs as I recognise a lot of the companies/places you talk about 🙂

    Firstly, fab invites and really nice wording. I have designed and made my own wedding invites (check out my Loopylu Designs page on Facebook) and have gone down the less formal route for the wording. Wishing I’d thought of a few things you’ve put in yours now – good choice of words you got there! How exciting is it receiving the invites? I got mine last Friday and they’re currently with my Auntie to write with her beautiful italic handwriting. It takes a lot to get them out the door doesn’t it. You’ve put me to shame getting yours out six months before the big day – I better get a move on, mines in four months!

    Ahhhhhh the gym! I hadn’t been a member of a gym for five years before joining one in March. I go an average of three times a week and have lost over a stone now since June with Slimming World. But it hasn’t been easy! So I joined SW in January after we got engaged and think I must be the only person in the history of SW to have maintained at my first week weigh in ha ha! At one point three months into it I ended up weighing a few more lbs than when I started whoopsie! But then I joined the gym and got serious and it has fallen off ever since, with some hiccups along the way of course. I only do classes – the gym intimidates me – as you can do your thing, work hard for an hour, then get off home for dinner. Mmmmmm dinner. Never did I think when I started out that I would take up spinning – I love it, I can almost feel the weight coming off as I cycle! Top tip: I often picture myself in my wedding dress as I’m working away, massive motivation! I too thought about getting a PT as I’ve seen some amazing results with friends. At the minute I’m on target to get the weight I want and the toned back/arms/shoulders every bride wants to showcase on her wedding day but the PT is on speed dial and may be called upon in case I have a relapse ha! It’s so satisfying getting the results you want so sending lots of fighting spirit your way – sounds like you’ve cracked the back of it with the running already. I totally recommend the body pump classes that Phillipa does too.

    And lastly ( I’ll make it brief!) who knew MOB outfit shopping could be so exciting! Can you believe how expensive it all is though – her outfit will cost about half mine did, bonkers. Ah well, you’re only MOB once as my mum says… That saying sounds familiar…

    Big ‘You only get married once’ (if we’re lucky hee hee) love

    Lucy x
    (Look forward to reading your next post!)

  30. @JoL Thanks for your comment 🙂 The invite wording was such a ball ache (sorry for the un bride-like language RMWers!) as we did it and then left it for a bit, but when we came back to it we discovered we hated it all and pretty much started again! It’s not very traditional, but then my mum and dad aren’t together and we’re basically paying for most of the wedding ourselves so avoided awkward wording issues altogether! I know what you mean about MoB outfits, we saw some that were £800! We tried something that was lush and Al’s mum could definitely have worn again, but then we thought how awful it would have been if another guest turned up in it which made us decide to turn it up a notch on the special front! I’ve got my PT session this evening after work so keep your fingers crossed for me! x

    @Beccie Thanks for the tips! I really love the idea of Zumba as it looks such great fun but I have absolutely ZERO co-ordination. I tried the game and was abissmal at it!

    @Dee Thanks for the bread tip – I don’t eat much bread anyway but am definitely going to try and cut down on carbs a little.

    @Alex What you just described is basically what I want to happen! I was so unfit before I started running in the summer and have never been one for running but am slowly increasing my distances! I can already feel the difference too, feeling more energetic and happier after I’ve had a work out 🙂 xx

    @Sue – Thanks for commenting, we love our invites and can’t wait to start getting some RSVPs back 🙂

  31. @MissVix No, definitely not a vid of me dancing on YouTube. Give it six months and there may well be one though!

    @Hannah I love that cute pic of Kitty too. Sadly I didn’t get my phone out quick enough to snap her incredibly happy face when she first saw the invites!

  32. ooo i’ve got 6 months to go too! grab yourself a jillian michaels fitness dvd and some handweights off amazon…she’s hard core, but i highly recommend her! serious results, and fast! i’ve got the ’30 day body shred’ which does what it says, really tough work outs but you feel so good, only 20 mins a day and so easy to do in your living room!

  33. AAArgh! Our wedding is a month before yours and I haven’t sent out a single invite – it felt too early! Planning to send them next week though so hopefully all will be fine!

    My mum has got very carried away and has plans for some kind of statement hat – why not, I said? She’s bought a dress and shoes, but is procrastinating about The Hat – she is worse than I was with The Dress!

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