They are your Xanax throughout the wedding process.
One of my favorite parts of the wedding planning process was planning on the gift giving. It was a different way to express creativity and also dote on others that are doing so much for you. I wanted my girls to feel special each month as they planned showers and attended special events for me, this was the time that they should be feeling appreciated, not just the weekend of the wedding. So, I sat down and thought out what I wanted to give them and started sending them little packages in the mail beginning four months out from the wedding, each small gift was something they would use for and after the wedding. Here are some ideas of gifts and where to find them!
I decided to start with something cutesy and simple. I found a nail polish color that I thought they would love to receive, but also the color I wanted them to wear. It is the perfect natural shade of pinky-nude, Ballet Slipper by Essie. I ordered it off Amazon.com and then bought 3 packs of mini emory boards at Ulta. I found small, beautiful cards at a local paper store, Needle in a Haystack, and bundled it all together in ivory sachets from Michael's. I wrote a thank you poem and sent it in a personalized card to each girl.
Three months out, I found a perfect bracelet on one of those Facebook Accessory Auction sites. My favorite one, Accessory Dash (seriously, check it out - Hilary is wonderful!), had a pearl bracelet with a diamond pave encrusted gold ball. It was classy and the perfect look for the day of. I knew this would be something the girls would be able to wear for and far after the wedding - heck, I got one for myself and wear it to work, LBD's and even little red crop pants and peplum top! Thinking about the "pearl," I wrote each girl a special message talking about the symbolism of a pearl and how that relates to our friendship then asked that she wear this on the wedding day. I got one for myself too and we all wore them together, as shown below!
Two months out, I was searching for the perfect earring. I wanted something to compliment the dress and the bracelet when I stumbled across a pair of earrings at Target. They matched the bracelet perfectly and again, would be a classy and timeless look the girls could wear not only for the wedding, but long after. I put them on red ribbon and then in a sachet. I sent them with a simple message to dress up their lobes on December 8!
One of my 'maids lives in New Jersey and frequently goes into NYC for work and fun. I casually asked her if she happened to be going before the end of October and if so, could she get me 6 ivory paschminas. I had bought a blue one earlier in the year when up there and the size and weight of the fabric was perfect. I had planned to buy the girls faux fur stoles that I had found, they looked classy and I thought they would be beautiful in pictures for a winter wedding. However, they were not practical and they would be solely for picture prop purposes, not really something that could be re-used. I wrote them a little note about how it was beginning to get colder and to wrap themselves up in warmth and love with this gift on the wedding day.
Finally, December came and it was wedding time! For their final gift, I went back and forth on a few options but in the end, I decided to go with over-sized, monogrammed buttoned down shirts to get ready in. After borrowing one of Max's button downs for the hair and makeup trials, it was so comfortable and I started wearing it around the apartment to clean or even to just lounge around in. I realized just how much I loved it, and it may be something the girls would use again and again. I ordered them at Lands End a few months before when they were having a "Friends and Family" deal so they were 30% off and only an additional $6 for monogramming. I decided to go with different shades of blue shirts for them, with me in white, and they were my somethings blue! I gave them their shirts at the bridal luncheon so they could arrive for hair and makeup the next morning with their "get ready" top.
It's been four months to the day, thank you ladies for being so special and such wonderful friends to Mr. Max and me. I love you each dearly!