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Chelsea & Josh's PLANNING THREAD - Iberostar Rose Hall Suites, Jamaica - **TONS AND TONS OF DIY AND PICS**

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#1 ChelseaCat802

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    Posted 07 August 2013 - 01:08 PM

    Well time is ticking! I can’t believe it’s my turn to share my planning thread, 102 days until our wedding! First of all, I want to thank all the other brides who have been inspiration! I couldn’t have done it without all of you! Please let me know if you have any questions! HAPPY PLANNING!!


    About Us

    Josh and I met in College and there was an instant spark and we’ve been together 5 ½ years! We’re from Burlington, VT. We always knew that when we decided to get married we would do a destination wedding, in our eyes; there is no other way to be married than on a tropical beach with your closest friends and family! We decided immediately on the IBEROSTAR Rose Hall Suites in Montego Bay, Jamaica on November 17, 2013. We have been there before and while we were there we saw the most beautiful weddings. Jamaica is also a very relaxed country. We have traveled to many places and decided Jamaican’s truly know how to live their lives and there was no better place to exchange our vows! 

    I hope my planning thread is helpful to you all! I will continue to update the thread with current projects and thoughts. I know this thread has been extremely helpful to me, and I wouldn’t have been able to plan everything without each and every one of your help, so please feel free to ask any questions! 




    Our Wedding colors are turquoise and coral. I am focusing on keeping the theme on starfish & sand dollars.


    The Engagement

    Josh proposed to me on Monday October 22, 2012. Little did I know, he actually tried to propose the day before, but I didn’t want to cooperate and go out to dinner and just wanted to stay at home and relax... SILLY ME!

    Josh was leaving the next day for a business trip to Texas so he asked if I would like to meet him out for dinner before he left I of course said yes. Later I found out that our friend, Corey, was going to also be joining us for dinner as well, I was actually kind of upset because I thought it was just going to be a special dinner just the two of us before he left, but he invited our friend Corey to tag along. Corey is a phenomenal photographer. As I was about to reach Downtown Burlington, Josh called and said to meet him and Corey by the waterfront because Corey was taking some shots of the sunset before dinner. When I got down to the pier the two of them were taking pictures of the sunset, I instantly knew what Josh was up to so I was trying to be sneaky and check his pockets to see if I saw a ring box! Once I realized that I was probably looking too much into the entire situation I turned around to take in the view. Sneaky Josh gave Corey the ring to hang on to because he knew that I would know he was up to something, so when I turned back around he kissed me and got down on one knee and asked me to marry him, my initial response was “holy-sh*t – I have a bit of a sailors mouth, but then screamed YES! Everything was captured on camera! I am so beyond thrilled that Corey was able to be there and take photos so we can always remember that moment together.






    T-H-E   R-I-N-G

    Josh had my ring custom designed at a local jewelry store in Burlington, VT because I really wanted my ring to have a European shank (at the bottom of the band it is flat instead of round so it doesn’t spin on your finger). It is absolutely perfect and I’m so beyond thrilled with it.





    Wedding Bands

    Josh decided on a simple platinum 5mm band. Mine was a little bit more detailed J Since Josh custom designed my ring – it was nearly IMPOSSIBLE to find anything I liked to go with it that the store already had, so I worked with the designer who designed my ring to come up with a beautiful design I loved and it was PERFECT! After much debate I ended up getting two of the same band, one for the top and one for the bottom. You can't see it in this picture, but our designer even engraved two small starfish towards the bottom of the outside - it was a complete surprise and I loved it!



    A very special thing about my wedding bands is that my mom gave me her original engagment ring my dad gave to her, they removed the diamond and put it in my ring. Also, for our first Valentine's day together, Josh bought me a diamond heart necklace (SOOOO not my taste) but I wore it a few times so I didn't hurt his feelings. When we were using my moms ring, I brought the necklace along with me and gently suggested we have it melted down and use the diamonds in my band - he agreed and wasn't offended at all! PHEW!


    Here is my mom's ring:





    And the necklace Josh gave me:



    Will you be my Bridesmaid?

    Once I chose my bridesmaids, I knew I wanted to ask them in a special way to stand by my side at the altar. I ended up creating bridesmaids boxes. I purchased the cigar boxes from Michael’s and painted them in my wedding colors. Paint was pretty expensive so I ended up going to Lowes and using the paint swatches to match my colors and I got two paint samples for my colors! I think it ended up costing me around $5 for both colors and I have a TON left over! I plan on using them again in some future DIY Wedding projects! Painting the boxes was quite a process because I am a perfectionist and ended up having to take off all of the hardware on the boxes, then painting the boxes with two coats and then reapplying all of the hardware.

    Inside the boxes I included:

    • Cigar box – (Michael’s) Original $4.99/each (had a 25% off coupon) ~ $3.74/each
    • Flip-flop luggage tag (AC Moore) - $2.49/each
    • Flip-flop Bottle Opener (AC Moore) - $2.49/each
    • Paint chips (Lowes) - $FREE
    • Umbrella straws (Amazon) - $5.34/12 –



        We couldn’t decide whether we wanted to do magnets or not – we ended up going with them and cut them in the shape of a luggage tag in put them in a turquoise card. I love going to people’s houses and seeing them on the fridge. We ended up using the one on left. The luggage tag save the date is for our wedding and the magnet is for our AHR in January.






        Passport Invitations:

        These were such a fun/painful project – in the end, I’m SO glad that I did these myself and didn’t pay someone to do them for me, we took great pride in our work and it definitely shows with the finished product. My fianc© helped me a ton on these! And he actually enjoyed assembling them, and tells all of his friends that he made them – ha ha (I designed/created and he assembled!)

        This was a fun project to work on with my fianc©; we worked on them every night for about 3 hours for seriously – two or three weeks! Well worth it in the end.












        DIY Tumblers

        I found my tumblers at the Dollar Tree – so I picked up as many as I could and then called my future mother in law to go to the store in her town and pick up as many as she could find. For the price – they’re perfect! These will be great to have by the pool! I just used a waterproof sticker to add our logo and VOILA!





        DIY Luggage Tags

        This was a very easy project. I just purchased Avery Business Cards and printed on the front and back and received some luggage tags from a fellow BDW bride (Thank you Aliya! Xoxo)




        DIY Key Card/Tip Holders

        I also used Avery Business Cards for this project, and purchased waterproof, horizontal badge holders from eBay and then I got the coils from Oriental Trading in multi-colors. I also purchased some personalized bottle openers and added them on!



        Attire & Jewelry

        I am so indecisive when it comes to this! I keep going back and forth between heels or flats for the reception, I’m going to be wearing barefoot sandals that I made with Swarovski crystal beads for the ceremony. I think however, I decided on these shows from BCBG – found them at Marshall’s for $39.99!





        I purchased my dress from Vows in Boston (If you watch TLC it’s the show “I found the dress!) – and what a steal I got! I ended up purchasing a Maggie Sottero for $499! And it’s perfect – everything that I absolutely wanted and more.


        Every couple of months they have email sales and I purchased my jewelry from them as well. I picked up two sets just in case I change my mind :)








        I knew early on that I couldn’t stomach to spend $75+ on bridesmaids bouquets (I was originally expecting 8 or 9 bridesmaids) so I chose to go with real touch flowers. I ordered all of my flowers from afloral.com, their service is great and shipping was very prompt and they always have coupons and deals! Each bouquet I spent around $40 and they will be able to keep them forever.

        Each bouquet consisted of:

        • Real touch Cymbidium Orchids (Green) - $15.99
        • 14" Real Touch Small Hand-Tied Calla Lily Bouquet in White - $19.99
        • 11" Iridescent Faceted Bouquet Bead Spray - 12 Pieces -$4.39 – I ended up using 4 in each bouquet.





        We chose to use DJ Kevan. After hearing so many positive reviews, we went ahead and booked him right away, every bride I have talked to seems to have absolutely loved him! But book quickly; he gets filled up very quickly! We chose to have a 2 hour package; we’re going to have him DJ our reception on the beach from 8:30-10:30. The cost was $180/hour so our final cost was $360, we paid him in full when we booked so we wouldn’t have to deal with paying him the rest when we were in Jamaica.



        We chose to use Sandy May – after seeing her photos I was instantly in love. Another perk was that she actually lives in Michigan in the summer but she lives in Jamaica in the winter months. So if you’re considering having a wedding in the winter months I would definitely recommend her. She has been so responsive and emails me right back when I have questions.

        Her website:  http://sandymayphoto.com/


        Happy Planning fellow BDW Brides! Let me know if you have any questions! Xoxo

    #2 ChelseaCat802

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      Posted 08 August 2013 - 04:09 AM

      I'm not sure why some of the posts are in orange and some are in black - but you get the idea :)

      #3 lgerry

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      • Wedding Date:January 15, 2014
      • Wedding Location:Gran Bahia Principe Akumal, Riviera Maya, Mexico

      Posted 09 August 2013 - 08:09 AM

      Great planning thread... I really love your passport invites!! I also bought my dress from Vows... they were great and they have such great deals on beautiful dresses!!! :)

      #4 ChelseaCat802

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        Posted 09 August 2013 - 08:18 AM

        Originally Posted by lgerry 

        Great planning thread... I really love your passport invites!! I also bought my dress from Vows... they were great and they have such great deals on beautiful dresses!!! :)


        Thank you so much! Vows was amazing! And I loved that I could take home my dress that day! I'm contemplating buying a second one for my AHR!

        #5 cocoluv

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          Posted 11 August 2013 - 03:28 AM

          Great thread...

          #6 ChelseaCat802

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            Posted 12 August 2013 - 04:37 AM

            Originally Posted by cocoluv 

            Great thread...


            Thank you :)

            #7 ChelseaCat802

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              Posted 20 August 2013 - 11:37 AM


              My DIY Shoes Optional Sign. Picked up an inexpensive piece of wood at AC Moore and painted it antique white and then used a Sharpie paint pen and added some rhinestone accents and starfish. VOILA. I think I'm going to use a Coral ribbon to attach to the back to hang before the altar.

              #8 BelleOfVA

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              • 6 posts
              • Wedding Date:June 14, 2014
              • Wedding Location:Iberostar Rose Hall Beach
              • LocationMontego Bay, Jamaica

              Posted 23 August 2013 - 07:31 PM

              Your invitations are amazing! 

              #9 KatMcV

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                Posted 25 August 2013 - 10:04 PM

                Hi Chelsea! I am currently looking to book the Iberostar Suites for Nov 2014... How has it been dealing with them so far?! By the way I love your invitations!!

                #10 ChelseaCat802

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                  Posted 28 August 2013 - 09:51 AM

                  I made bathing suits for my bridesmaids and maid of honor last week. Very easy!




                  Check out my DIY thread:



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