Welcome Bags

With so many guests arriving from destinations far and wide, I knew I wanted to give them a little goodie bag of items to munch on during their stay.  It's always nice to have a few little necessities when you're someplace unfamiliar.

On our RSVP cards, we left a space for guests to write in their accommodations.  This worked well if guests had already booked by the time they sent in their RSVPs, but if not it created the opportunity for errors by the time I found out the accommodation information and told my wedding planner for delivery.

We had contemplated favors for our guests, but we just could't decide on anything and I frequently heard that many guests discard them at the end of the wedding.  Instead, we decided to look at the welcome bag as a type of favor and a way to also support our favorite businesses and the charities associated with them.

The tote bag displays our crest in gold, designed by Ceci New York, who also designed the beautiful little thank you tag tied onto each tote bag.  I wanted the tote bag to be big enough to double as a beach or pool bag for our guests staying in Palm Beach.  They turned out perfectly - subtle and functional, yet just a hint of luxe detail!

Here's what was inside...

Custom Map
This adorable custom-designed map by Laura Hooper shows a map of Palm Beach and all the essential locations - The Breakers, The Hyatt, and St. Ann Church.  We also had her pencil in Worth Avenue, Norton Art Museum, Starbucks, and CityPlace shopping and entertainment district.  This gives guests an idea of activities to do and where everything is located. 

On the back we listed the trolley schedules for departures to and from both hotels, the church, and the reception.  Having this information handy for guests is essential.

Hope Water
The people at Hope Water Project are doing incredible things... Namely, bringing people in need the clean water they deserve.  If you have a moment, watch their video about their project.  Our planner tucked two bottles in each welcome bag and we made sure each hotel provided recycling for the bottles. 

Vita Coco
We love coconut water!!  It's a great way to hydrate your body from the inside out.  Vita Coco comes in many different flavors... I had my planner purchase variety packs and give guests different options.    I use the original flavor when making my veggie-protein smoothies, but for drinking alone my favorite flavor is Peach and Mango.  

Vita Coco is packaged by Tetra Pak, a company committed to sustainable, environmentally-friendly packaging.  The company gives back to countless charities and projects.  Their packaging doesn't have to be transported in refrigerated trucks or stored on refrigerated shelving.  They ensure the forests they source from are being renewed and growing.  And best of all, their packaging is recyclable and made from recycled materials.

Boulder Canyon Chips
Boulder Chips represent the city where J went to college and where he first fell in love with Colorado.  These chips are delicious... And they represent our current home base.  The kettle chips are all-natural, contain no MSG and no GMO, are gluten-free, and have no trans fats.

G.H. Cretors Popcorn
G.H. Cretors' Chicago Mix represents the city where J grew up.  A delicious popcorn mix in the distinctive Chicago style - caramel corn and cheddar cheese flavors blended into an addictive combo.  G.H. Cretors products are gluten-free, contain non-GMO ingredients, and are kosher.

Feridies Snack Mix
Feridies is my favorite snack brand of all time.  Ironically, my parents and I discovered it while vacationing at The Breakers.  You can't go wrong with any flavor from them, but my personal guilty pleasure that's always stocked in our pantry is the 5 O' Clock Crunch, which we gave our guests.  I have forbidden myself to order the Peanut Brittle Crunch, as it never lasts long around me!!

See's Candy Bar
The See's candy bar is a nod to Omaha and its significance in our lives.  I went to college in Omaha and have the fondest memories of that little city.  It's also where J and I met in law school, so I couldn't be more thankful to "The O" for providing the perfect backdrop for our love story to begin.  See's milk chocolate candy bar with toffee nuggets is our favorite.

Key Lime Cookies
Florida is famous for everything key lime... And for good reason; it's a truly delicious flavor that complements baked goods perfectly.  Another discovery my parents and I made while on vacation in Palm Beach?  Key lime cookies.  They are these delicious little cookies powdered in a sweet-yet-tart key lime coating.  We put a box of Janis & Melanie's Key Lime Cookies in each welcome bag.  I love that they have no trans fats and use natural ingredients.  You can purchase them here.

We provided guests with necessity bins in the bathrooms adjacent to our reception.  Combs, toothpicks, spray deodorant, hairspray, lint rollers, mini sewing kits, and mints are all essentials your guests might need after a lengthy day spent at the ceremony, cocktail party, and reception.

But we also felt guests might need a couple essentials in their welcome bag for in between events.  We provided a tin of classic Altoids, packet of Advil for post-champagne pains, and a lip balm with SPF custom designed with our logo and crest. 

Happy Wednesday!! 

P.S. Have you entered my Lilly Pulitzer for Target giveaway? I'll be drawing the winner on Sunday!


Lilly Pulitzer for Target Giveaway

Did you survive Lillygate??

You can hear all about my Lilly for Target experience and get a peek at the goodies I'm giving away in the video above.  It's a long one, so watch it while you're doing laundry or doing cardio!

Be sure to follow my Twitter and Instagram accounts so you can enter the Lilly for Target giveaways this week and next.  But also so you can keep up with everything going on here at Torts and a Tiara... I've been working on something exciting and I hope you all follow along with me!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

**A couple notes about the giveaway**

You don't have to type out the Twitter message exactly as I've worded it... Just mention something about the giveaway, tag me @BrittanyPillard, use the hashtag #LillyforTarget, and include the link to this blog post!!

For the Instagram post, use a photo of your favorite Lilly for Target item or one of the photos above in this blog post and create an Instagram post... Tag me @BrittanyPillard and use the hashtag #LillyforTarget.

No international shipping at this time due to the difficulties transporting nail polish.

Had enough #LillyforTarget??  Shop all the Lilly you want at LillyPulitzer.com

Can't wait to find out who wins on Sunday!! 

Shop some of my current favorites from Lilly:


Rehearsal Dinner

Mad Dash

After leaving the bridal luncheon and photos on the beach with the girls, I started to get a little nervous for the upcoming 24 hours.  Picture yours truly carrying a giant gorgeous vase of flowers - a gift from my wedding planner for my bridal luncheon - through hallway after hallway in the Breakers, water sloshing down my arms and dress.  Thankfully, J had moved me into my new room with the help of some Breakers staff during bridesmaid mani-pedis Friday morning, but... I had no idea where I was going. 

Finally I found the bridal suite - a completely stunning set of rooms overlooking the crashing ocean surf and the glowing blue Breakers pools.  It was perfect.  I had stayed at The Breakers many times but never did I have a room so large and elegant.  There were two bathrooms and a mahogany walk-in closet.  A coral chandelier hung above the table in the dining area.  

The problem?  My things were everywhere.  And I had no idea where any of my things to get ready were.  Boxes of gifts for our wedding party... Boxes with things like our guest book and toasting flutes... Our honeymoon luggage.  Shower things?  Makeup?  It was like searching for a needle in a (very chic, very beachy) haystack.

By the time I found everything I had exactly 30 minutes to shower, get ready, and get dressed for the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner.  It wasn't enough time to wash and blow dry my hair that had been tossed around and sprayed with salt water from the ocean that day.  But sometimes you have to cut corners and paint your face as best you can (you just hope it's not on your wedding weekend).  Eeeeek. 

J joined me in the suite just before we left because I had forgotten about the long row of tiny buttons on my dress.  As scatterbrained as I felt (Where were the wedding party gifts?! Do I have my phone?!) J always knows how to relax me.  He is the most calming person I've ever met.

The Outfit

Remember those trips to Chicago we made throughout this year??  We went to Mira Couture; the design studio of an incredibly talented woman who actually started out as an engineer before she decided her true passion was fashion and has been designing couture clothing ever since. We also worked with her designer Julie who has a fantastic eye and was so helpful.  When you're on display, half-naked in a dressing room you can only hope for some kind words and positivity... These women not only understand female bodies, they celebrate them and will make you feel radiant in the pieces they create.

We can't say enough positive things about Mira and Julie... They were a joy to work with and Mom and I looked forward to each time we were able to meet with them!

Mom's rehearsal dress was a floor-length navy number with delicate embellishments and beading in a gorgeous array of blue shades.  I wish we had more photos of the back of the dress... The inside bodice came down a bit lower in the back and there was this feminine beading scattered across her back on the mesh; it was stunning.  I loved the blue color on her and I think she looked so beautiful - it was her weekend to shine as well!

I had a specific idea of what I wanted my rehearsal dinner dress to look like, but I was having difficulty finding it anywhere.  I wanted something a little Kate Middleton inspired on top with lace sleeves and a v-neck, but a fitted pencil skirt on bottom.  I spotted a bolt of lace on one of Mira's shelves and I knew I wanted my dress to be made from it!  We sat down at her table and we brainstormed a design.  I was so incredibly happy with it and I felt like a princess.

For accessories, Julie at Mira's created this fun hairpiece with bits of my lace tucked into it.  I found these pearl earrings at Francesca's and I thought they went with the timeless look I was going for.  I kept it simple with no bracelets and only my engagement ring since the lace sleeves were so detailed and designed to extend just past my wrists.  I carried a white beaded Saks Fifth Avenue clutch from the 50's I picked up at a little antique shop for $15... It's one of my favorites!  For shoes, I wore my "Carrie shoes" - the blue Manolo Blahniks I wore to my first bridal shower.  

For hair I relied on dry shampoo to try and balance out the salt water/humidity from earlier in the day.  As annoying as the dry Denver air can be, I was seriously missing it each time I styled my hair in Florida!  I kept my makeup fairly simple since I had to hurry and relied on my Chanel mascara and super-girly Creme De La Femme lipstick.  

Wedding Party Gifts

After rehearsal, J and I gave our wedding party their gifts before the kids returned to the hotel with sitters.  I had already given my bridesmaids, mom, MIL, aunt, and sisters their gifts at the bridal luncheon. 

We gave our three ushers and one teen junior usher these monogrammed leather key fobs.  I personally think they look better than the online photo and were the perfect masculine gift. 

For the two younger junior ushers, the two page boys, and the ring bearer I found these adorable personalized activity bags and added in more activity books, coloring books, and Legos to keep the kids busy that evening and on the flight home.

For the two flower girls, I found embroidered handkerchiefs like I gave my bridesmaids, MOG, and MOB.  We also gifted them tiny little pearl necklace and bracelet sets that tied closed with an adorable blush pink ribbon and coordinated with our wedding colors.

The groomsmen gifts were unfortunately backordered... I'm telling you, it doesn't matter how far in advance you plan for a wedding, things will happen!!  We sent their monogrammed leather catchall trays to them post-wedding.  

The Night

J's parents gave us the prettiest rehearsal dinner following rehearsal at the church.  It was held at the Palm Beach staple Bice on Worth Avenue.  Bice is an Italian restaurant located down one of the charming vias off Worth where J and I took our engagement photos.

We passed out the "Advice for the Newlyweds" coasters from Bhldn to each table at the dinner; guests were invited to write relationship, love, life advice for J and I.  They have provided much laughter reading them since and I can assure you we'll keep them always to break out when we need a smile or two.

Everything was delicious and the conversation reached a fever-pitch; Dad mentioned room volume being a great barometer of an evening's success when he thanked my MIL and FIL for the evening.  It was so much fun to be there with our family and wedding party.  

After the rehearsal dinner I gave J a personal little gift, we practiced our first dance in his room, then I stayed up most of the night feeling panicked and nervous.  My skin was having some sort of allergic reaction or breaking out from stress, I'm not sure which... And a few hours before I needed to start wedding hair and makeup was the least opportune time for this to happen.  I even called J in the middle of the night I was so nervous about the next day.  J has such a calm demeanor and knows precisely what to say to relax me... I am so lucky to have him in my life to talk me off all the ledges!

There's so much I want to tell you about, I'm thinking I may start including a little video in these posts so I can describe things a bit better!!  Also... I wanted to know if you guys are interested in seeing a post on the welcome bags we gave our guests and the contents??  Or would you rather I skip right to getting ready the morning of the wedding?  

More Wedding Weekend Posts: 


Neon Details

Another comfy, slightly boho outfit courtesy of my time at the ranch last week.  This breezy, soft, twist-back sweater is the perfect transition to warmer months.  As days begin to become a little warmer, mix this look up by putting this sweater over a sundress and pair it with boots.  Or... Tuck the drapey front into a pair of denim shorts and add gladiator sandals

My absolute favorite part of this outfit is the twist-back and the way it allows room to play with pops of color like this lace bandeau.  If you don't feel comfortable showing that much skin, just add a contrasting tank or one in a darker or lighter gray for a more uniform look. 

I stumbled across the maker of these fun beaded accessories on Instagram.  I love the way they pop against the otherwise neutral colors in this outfit.  I had to have this tassel necklace and a cowrie shell bracelet... When they arrived, the company had included the braided friendship bracelet with gold chain detail I'm wearing.  Mix in a stack of neutral beaded bracelets like these for a balanced look.

Counting down the days until I get to see the ranch again... 


Spring at the Ranch

I've noticed that so many bloggers have one particular style they post.  Some are all about layered, preppy plaids and sweaters accented with a Starbucks cup.  Others still seem to be in a full skirt and heels, permanently gliding from event to event as smoothly as their jet liquid liner sweeps across their eyes. 

Although I would consider my style classic and feminine, I find that I dress based on my current mood which is often closely tied to wherever I happen to be.

When visiting our family in the Midwest I prefer cozy sweaters, jeans, and boots suited for snuggling by the fire or going on walks outside.  When traveling, I prefer polished clothes that get me to my destination looking and feeling a bit more put-together.  When I'm on vacation somewhere warm I feel happy and glowing and usually choose bright colors that mirror tropical surroundings.  

I've worried that perhaps my varying "styles" of clothing might prevent me from growing a particular audience.  But instead, I think it's so much better to just be myself and show you all my different sides.  Because just like I do lots of different things in lots of different places, so do most of you.  I just wear whatever I feel like at any given time.

I like to be open with my readers and instead of showing you only what I wear out on date night or in LA/CHI/NYC, I want to take you with me on all my adventures and show you what I wear for every occasion.

This past weekend we were at my family's ranch in South Dakota.  It's so peaceful and relaxing there... I really feel so at home with all the animals, the beautiful views of the pine trees and mountains, and the air that feels so pure and clean to breathe.

A day at the ranch can consist of visiting the new baby calves, hiking up one of the rocky bluffs, or stopping by a local winery for a glass of South Dakota wine.  So when I'm there I like to wear comfy clothes in uncomplicated fabrics that can be easily washed.  My go-to for this trip was this soft top that easily made the transition from activity to activity... It was so comfortable I wanted to sleep in it and I plan on ordering it in more colors.

Hope you had wonderful Easter or Passover weekends if you celebrate!!  I've included a slide below with items from this look linked.  Just click on a photo to shop.  May I highly suggest the top I'm wearing in this look... It's so soft and comfortable!!  It would look great with the front part tucked slightly into jean shorts for summer.  


Mermaids and Mimosas

After being in a few weddings I've realized how quickly the time goes once the wedding day arrives.  You're being whisked around by photographers and makeup artists and visiting with guests you haven't seen in years.  And before you know it, you're on the way home with a little confetti in your hair and wondering what just happened.  It was for this reason my mother and I wanted to create a little girl time during the day before the rehearsal dinner.

I sent out invitations for the bridal luncheon a few months before, along with a little itinerary for each of my bridesmaids.  We met early Friday morning for coffee and my mom treated the bridesmaids, my aunt, and I to mani-pedi's at the tiny Twilight Nails in Palm Beach.  After we were primped (OPI's "Bubble Bath" on nails and toes) we came back to The Breakers for our bridal luncheon with J's family at The Beach Club.

It was the perfect opportunity to catch up with these women who are such a big part of my life.  I chose this time to give my gifts to everyone since I knew it would be more quiet and intimate than during the hustle and bustle of the wedding day.  I had written little notes from Sugar Paper L.A. that I tucked into their gifts, thanking each woman for being there and letting them know how much they mean to me.

For the moms, John and I had custom buttery leather bound books made from our engagement photos.  We designed them in conjunction with our photographer and GraphiStudio, who made them come to life.  I added a mini Laura Mercier hand lotion and a custom handkerchief to hold on the wedding day. 

I gave my new sisters and my aunt little Mariposa trinket trays with "The Breakers" engraved inside; a little memento for our weekend in the sun.  GraphiStudio also created these tiny little flip books of our engagement shoot we tucked into their bags.  

I gave the bridesmaids these classic-looking gold-toned Nadri earrings and necklaces to wear to the wedding.  I was thrilled to find these Swarovski-embellished flip flops for the girls to wear the next day in the wedding suite and for their tired feet for dancing at the wedding!  I also tucked in my favorite Laura Mercier hand lotions and a monogrammed handkerchief for them to carry on the wedding day.  

Post-tea, we headed out to the surf and sand.  Sea spray and salty air whipped in the wind, with a little less sunshine than usual.  The unseasonably windy Florida weather made us a bit nervous for tomorrow's festivities but we would soon find out we would be blessed with a temperate sunny wedding day.

There's nothing I love more than being near the ocean and I just soaked in the moments with my favorite women in the world.  I knew the chances of us being in once place like this again were so slim, so I wanted to enjoy it while I lasted.