Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Do My Hair

As I told you guys in my hair chronicles, I've been growing my hair for the wedding for a while now in hopes of achieve a wedding look similar to those below.
ballet wedding gown
Photo by: Alea Lovely on Wedding Chicks via
Photo by: Closer to Love on Bridal Musings via
rustic Chic Wedding | Greg Thompson | Bridal Musings (14)
Photo by: GPT Photography on Bridal Musings via
Call me crazy, but I will not only be doing my own makeup for my morning wedding I will also be doing my hair (it will be a joint effort between Mami Boa and me). Last weekend while my little Boa cousins did my nails, Mami Boa decided to hold a DIY hair trial on my slightly damp hair. It's really important to me that my wedding day curls are big, luscious and natural looking and hold all pretty through the morning. I'm not a huge fan of tightly wound curling iron because of the damage it may cause my locks so we decided to try use the pin curl method instead.

Mami Boa used a technique very similar to the one described in the video, the only difference being that  that we started at the bottom instead and used bobby pins to hold the curls up. Since we just wanted to see the overall look and how well the curls held on their own, we didn't use any hair products at all, making my hair super frizzy.
After 1+ hours of sitting while Mami Boa pin curled my hair.
After only 1 minute of being curled my hair was already taking shape

 After sleeping overnight with the pin curls
Curls immediately after removing
the bobby pins the next morning
6 hours later... curls still going strong

DIY Pin Curls : SUCCESS! I got exactly the luscious locks I was hoping for and them some. Totally felt like a Victoria's Secret bombshell for the rest of the day. For the wedding, I would like to define and separate the curls more, do something about all the frizz and maybe shake my head around for a bit to loosen all the curls up.

The plan for the wedding is to pin my hair the Friday night before, sleep in the pin curls, wake up early (like at 5am) the next day and style my hair a bit. We will definitely be using some frizz control and curl creme on the day of to tame the flyaways and help define the curls a little more. As much as I hate it, a healthy portion of hair spray will probably be making an appearance if I have any hope of my curls surviving until mid -afternoon.

What do you think of my DIY curls? Will you be doing your own hair for your wedding? Why not?

Unconventional Bachelorette

One of the cons of having only one bridal attendant is missing out on all the typical bachelorette fun I could have had with my bridesmaids. On the other hand, a lot of my closest college friends are men of the homosexual orientation. A "typical" girls only bachelorette party would have excluded them from the festivities, which I found totally unfair.

For this reason, I decided to go a slightly unconventional route. Since I really wanted the opportunity to party with all my college friends one last time before the craziness of finals/wedding/honeymoon/moving/jobs/real life set in, I invited all of them, gay/straight/guy/girl, to meet me at our local gay bar for karaoke on open bar night. You could say I threw myself a kind of - sort of - bachelorette party

Saying we had a blast that night is an understatement! A drag queen brought me on-stage to serenade me,  the owner of the bar came over to personally to give her congratulations on the upcoming nuptials and gifted our party a round of shots. Over 30 of my friends showed up, some of them even brought me some penis paraphernalia my favorite being the light up penis veil (sorry pictures are not suitable for the interwebs) so I could feel like I lived the true bachelorette experience. After a little coaxing from my part even Mr. Boa decided to pop by for a bit. I invited him from the start but he decided to leave me have my fun before joining me before the party ended.

Here we are being serenaded by yet another person

I also wanted to note that I'm proof that you can have fun while sober! I didn't even get a little bit tipsy during my bachelorette party. I knew  I had only 2 hours to sleep when I got home (had to wake up early to continuing studying for a test) so alcohol was off limits all night and I still had a great time.

Having a "typical" bachelorrete party with only my close girlfriends would have been a little difficult to coordinate. They live all over the island and have totally diffrent schedules, by planning my own party I made sure I would get to have this silly but once in a lifetime event. I plan on getting married only once, meaning I had only one shot at having a bachelorette party and I'm so glad I went the unconventional route.

Lil Boa living all the way in NYC meant she had to miss this party but she more than made up for it by gifting me a hotel weekend getaway with her, at a swanky hotel the weekend before finals. I'm definitely looking forward to some R&R and a gabfest with my little sister. Some rest and relaxation is something I really need now than we are nearing the one month mark!

What did you or your friends plan for you bachelorette bash?

Monday, April 23, 2012

Purple Colored Nails

I'm not a delicate young lady by any means and the normal wedding shades of white, cream and taupe would not do it for me. I want to wear purple colored nails on my wedding day, in a shade that will really pop in pictures and match my overall color scheme. Seeing pictures like this confirmed my NEED for purple nails. 
Photo by: Samantha Maber on Inspired By This via 

As you can see below, while trying to find the perfect shade to wear on wedding day, I went on a nail polish buying binge.

I don't normally wear polish, meaning I had no idea what colors would look good on me so I bought every color I liked. After trying them on, I eliminated both colors to the far left and the Revlon sangria color on my index finger. I have three shades left and I can't decide which one to use for the wedding.

I have to choose between: (I apologize for my horrid looking nails and bad lighting)

the light lavender shade of Rimmel Lasting Finish Pro in Wild Orchid

the dark statement purple of NYX advanced salon formula in Deep Purple

and the bright silver hue with purple undertones of Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in Pedal to the Metal

Hive, I need your help deciding!

Which do you like the best?
Option A: Rimmel Lasting Finish Pro in Wild Orchid
Option B: NYX advanced salon formula in Deep Purple
Option C:  Sally Hansen Complete Salon Manicure in Pedal to the Metal 

Do you recommend any other colors?

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Last Names: Hispanic Style

This is my attempt to tackle the great name change debate, from a slightly different perspective namely Hispanic culture. While in the US, a wife changing her last name to her husband's is expected/traditional, in Hispanic countries it is somewhat uncommon, unless the wife is marrying a gringo (which in Puerto Rico is not a perjorative term, it simply means a U.S citizen from the U.S. mainland).

In Hispanic countries, most people have two last names, the first last name being your father's last name and the second last name being your mother's first last name.

Jose's last names        His father's last names        His mother's last names
Pérez   González        Pérez Mendez                   González García
What happens when you get married? In Puerto Rico most frequently nothing happens, both parties remain with their same last names after marriage. In other Hispanic countries the husband's last names remain the same but it is common for the wife to change her name as follows. Her first last name remains the same (her father's first last name) but her second last name changes to her husband's first last name. Sometimes a "de" will be added between these two last names to indicate that her second last name was acquired through marriage.

Maria's last names        Her father's last names        Her mother's last names
Rodríguez Ríos            Rodríguez Sánchez            Ríos Márquez

If Maria marries Jose, her last names could remain the same or depending on the country, they could change to Rodriguez Perez or to Rodriguez de Perez. If Maria and Joe have children, they would acquire Jose's first last name and Maria's first last name. 

Jose's last names         Maria's last names         Their children's last names
Pérez González             Rodríguez Ríos            Pérez Rodríguez

After that (hopefully) educational culture lesson, here comes my personal debate on the topic.

Changing my last name to my Mr.Boa's was something I never thought about. I took it for granted that my culture dictated that I should keep my last names after marriage. When we both got job offers in Ohio for after graduation, changing my last names seems like a more viable option and this new job opportunity would be the perfect time to pull the switch. I could start my post-college career with a new married name, filling all my new personal and work documents with it and while I might be Hispanic, in Ohio I will certainly be surrounded by people of all ethnicities, some of which will not know about all this Hispanic two last names mess. I have a lot of positive reasons why to make the change and I considered all of them when making my decision.

But I can't do it! My personal, cultural and professional identity is too entwined to my last name for me to give it up. On the personal side, (other than having had my last name for the past 22 years) just like my father, I am frequently called by my last name, which is pretty unique. I love having this thread to my family, especially now that I will be living 1817 miles away from them; it's like having a tiny piece of them with me, a daily remainder of where I come from.

I have lived in Puerto Rico all my life, surrounded by the sights and smells of this beautiful tropical island that holds all the people I hold dear. Moving to Ohio in itself is a HUGE culture change for me. I won't be able to buy some "guineos" at a red light or some "yuca" from the back of a little old man's truck or pick "pomarosas" and "corazones" from a tree in my backyard. I won't be able to listen or speak my native language all day and or hear the salsa music blasting from a passing car. How I will miss the blistering heat of this island during the snowy Ohio winter!

I have decided that I will not legally change my name but as an embrace to the traditions of the new culture I will soon be joining, I'll be happy to be socially acknowledged as Mrs. Boa. Our children will be be named in the traditional Hispanic tradition of Mr.Boa's first last name and My first last name, giving them the space to chose which they would like to use in adulthood. If the occasion arises where someone questions why everyone in my family has different last names, I will proudly explain my culture's influence in my decision. I'm sure invitations will be addressed to The Boas or to Mr. & Mrs. Boa., I will be called Mrs. Boa even at work and people might think my children aren't mine. All these situations, I'm looking forward too as they will remind me that I CHOSE not to change my last name and it's ties to my family and culture. 

Will you be changing your last name after marriage? What influenced your decision?

Monday, April 16, 2012

Paint My Face: Part 2

A week after having mixed feelings about my makeup trial at Sephora, I tried my prowess at makeup application as a practice for wedding day.

45 minutes later this is what I came up with (please ignore my scraggly hair)...



I personally like it much better than my previous trial. I think this new makeup look works much better with my makeup inspiration and with my casual morning wedding and it doesn't hurt that I feel much more comfortable in it. I'm still a bit ambivalent because it's my wedding, in which I will be photographed a million times and it wouldn't hurt to have a little extra makeup oomph.

Here is a side by side comparison

Help me out bees!

Which look do you think I should use for my morning wedding?
Option 1: The more dramatic makeup look (left)
Option 2: The more natural makeup look (scraggly hair and all) (right)

Do you have any suggestions or makeup recommendations? Would you add/eliminate anything from either of the wedding day makeup looks? 

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Making the Invite:The Reveal

We have mailed 2 invitations and hand-delivered 47 others, making the coast clear to reveal the Boa invitations. After a sifting through tons of inspirations pictures, a couple of drafts, dozens of paper samples and wording  the Boa invitations are finally done. The work was ALL worth it, I absolutely ADORE my our invitations - If it were possible to marry paper products Mr Boa would be sitting in dumpsville. 

Without further ado, the Boa invitations;

We chose Silver for the envelopes and the shimmery purple (Violette) for the invitation mat, both from Cards & Pockets and wrapped it all up with some pretty striped twine.

The first thing guests will see when the pull out our invitation is the information card.

Instead of having a registry, reception, RSVP and website card, we got all the information we needed on one piece of paper instead of four, saving us a bunch on paper and printing costs. 

Translation: Left to Right, Top to Bottom
After the ceremony we would like you to join us for breakfast at:....
We humbly request all guests dress in shades of green, purple or gray
There is no better gift than your presence but if you wish to give a present we prefer it be cash (Before condemning me to wedding etiquette hell please refer to Asking for Money )
We have reserved blank spaces in your honor please RSVP by May 1st by calling...
For more information visit www....

Francez and Tomas join their lives in the greatest of all adventures
Share with us the start of our new life together

I had an great experience with the vendors associated with this project. Lil Boa did an incredible job translating my inspiration into a final design and patiently worked with me even after my 5 or 6 requests for an edits. Cards & Pockets and Catprint were both a delight to work with were really responsive during my time with them. 

The budget breakdown for my Semi-DIY invitations was as follows:

Invitation Design - wedding gift from  Lil Boa
240yds Oyster Striped Twine $12.95 + 3.25 shipping = $16.20 (The Country Chicken at Etsy)
 55 - Catprint  4 x 6 Invitation ($42.25 full Bleed)+ Information card ($22.74) + 7.70 shipping = $72.69
 55 -  Cards and Pockets Envelopes ($11.50) + Invitation Mats (11.00) + 12.29 shipping = $34.84
Scrapbook Glue Sticks = $3.99 for pack of 3 
Purple Shimmer Pen for envelopes = $3.21

Total = $130.93 or $2.38 per invite

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Getting Mr.Boa Suited Up

I've been postponing shopping for Mr. Boa's suit for quite some time, not because it was going to be difficult but quite the opposite. Last summer before Mr. Boa left for his summer internship we went shopping for suits at our favorite outlet mall and we both particularly loved a navy striped suit he bought at the Kenneth Cole Outlet Store. Once talks of his wedding attire came along, we both knew no questions asked that he would be getting another Kenneth Cole suit. We had already crossed off tuxedos and black as options for our semi-formal morning wedding, so we naturally gravitated towards gray colored suits. Thankfully when we popped up at the store last week, they had both: the jacket and the pants in Mr. Boa's size (He always takes his pants to be hemmed just so) and in a great charcoal gray color.  

We still have to find a nice purple shirt and tie to complete his wedding day look but I think we are off to a great start. BIL Boa/Best Man will rock a more relaxed look with a gray shirt and pant and a purple skinny tie while Papi Boa will wear a gray suit with a purple shirt which they are both buying on their own. 

Did you choose tuxedos or suits for your men? Did you go for traditional black? Was shopping for the groom's attire a hassle?

Friday, April 6, 2012

An Unconventional Ring Journey

Since I received a heirloom ring at my proposal, I didn't get to go on the exiting ring shopping journey before getting engaged. This time around, you can be sure I was totally pumped up to finally get my chance to finally visit some jewelry stores.

I started the day without a clear idea in my mind of what I wanted to buy. They only thing I knew for sure was that I envisioned myself having 3 rings, in three different colors of gold. I actually found Weddingbee after googling mismatched gold rings way back in April of 2010 and I instantly fell in love with the look of Mrs. Trial Mix's rings.
Swoon... So pretty! / Mrs. Trail Mix's rings 

At store number 7 (or was it 8?) in a forgotten corner of the clearance section, I found a little piece of jewelery that caught my eye. It was exactly was I was NOT looking for, a princess cut solitaire with round diamond sidestones. I tried it out with 2 thin bands like the one Mrs. Trail Mix had and LOVED how it looked and amazingly Mr. Boa did too! 

Out of the dozens of rings I had tried on (most of them more of a traditional wedding band), it was the one ring that really stood out to me. Mr.Boa said my face light up when I wore it and that there was no way he was going out of the store without it. Right now it's sitting in my family's safe waiting until our wedding day when I get to wear it on my finger forever. We decided not to get the thin bands right now since this ring is already a bit over our ring budget. I'll be wearing only this ring as my wedding ring until our first wedding anniversary when Mr. Boa will gift me pretty rose and yellow gold bands.

My ring journey has been a bit unconventional; I used a heirloom ring as my engagement ring for the past year, my wedding ring will actually be what most people would consider an engagement ring and I won't wear a wedding band until my 1 year anniversary. Did you have an unconventional ring journey? 

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Paint My Face: Part 1

I knew from the get go that I would do my own makeup for the wedding. As a gal that only paints her face for special occasions, I am appalled by what makeup artists generally do to me. On the other hand, there was no way I was spending the $100+ on make up for only one day when I could use that money to buy face painting supplies that will last me a long while.

With this in mind I choose to drive the almost 3 hours to San Juan in order to utilize the services of the makeup artists at Sephora. For a minimum product purchase of $50, you can get a 60 minute makeup session by one of their artists and their recommendations on the best products to use for the occasion.

My MUA went right to work after I showed her my inspiration pictures of Kim Kardashian. Kim has dark hair, big expressive eyes and full lips like me and since I loved her delicate bridal make-up I thought it would be a good look.
Kim Kardashian/ Image via Zimbio 

Kim Kardashian / Image via Zimbio 

And here are the dragalicious pictures of me  after my trial

Source of my make up misery
This is what people would see every time I closed my eyes... not pretty
Here is a close up of the eye make up in natural light

I really really hate how she did my eyes! I asked for light delicate eye makeup and got a glitterless drag queen style, which I washed off minutes after leaving the store (After taking some pictures for the Hive) Some people might love this but it is soooo not me! I did however like the products she used for my face makeup and these were the products that I bought.

1. Following Mrs. Rainbow's advice I bought Monistat Chafing Gel as my primer for the wedding and asked my MUA to use Smashbox Photofinish Primer for the trial since they share the same formula.

Monistat Chafing Gel / Image via Amazon

2. The foundation she used, the much recommended Make Up For Ever HD Invisible Cover Foundation in 118. It gave me a flawless coverage while still being light and airy, I felt like I had no make up on at all.

Make Up For Ever / Image via Sephora

3. Conceal FX Camouflage Concealer since it does a wonderful job without feeling cake-y.

Conceal FX Camouflage Concealor / Image via Sephora

4. Make Up For Ever Sculpting Kit which I doubt I'll be using regularly but I like what it did to the angles on my face and following Mrs. Rainbow's instructions I hope I can get it right on my wedding day.

Make Up For Ever Sculpting Kit / Image via Sephora

5. She used Make Up For Ever HD Powder for my trial but following Mrs.Rainbows wise advice yet again, I bought 100% silica  from Coastal Scents for a fraction of the cost.

Did you like the results of your make up trial? If you are doing your own make up, what products are you using? Any suggestions on how to "fix" my wedding day make up?

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

No Stamps or RSVP Cards

Once the (soon to-be revealed) invitations were finished, we thought hand delivering them would be a great way to spend a bit of 1-on-1 time with our friends and family and save quite a bit of money. By choosing to hand deliver the invitations we eliminate the costs of stamps and RSVP cards/envelopes while having the benefit of sharing with people we really care about since all of our guest live close by.

The first invitations we delivered were to our close college friends, W and S, as they hung out in our living room. I had Mr. Boa document the delivery.

* Note the first Weddingbee appearance of The Boa's furbaby, Sushi.
Female version: ooooohhh shiny :)
Male version: I'm getting married. You better be there. Want a beer? 

I also received my first RSVP that night... about 30 seconds after they received it.

We decided on a divide and conquer strategy since having 100 guests means quite a bit of invitations to hand out. Mr. Boa would deliver the invites to all the guests that live close to his hometown while I would be in charge of delivering to those 2 hours away from him, in my hometown. Surprisingly it only took me a day to deliver my part of the invitations. Some visits took only a couple of minutes while others lasted a few hours. At the end of the day I was really really glad we decided to go this route since I had the opportunity to spend time with people I might not see often after the wedding.

Did your guests live close by or were they spread out?Did you consider hand delivering your invitations?