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The Bride's Guide Blog

Real Weddings Follow-Up: Lawren and Jesse, Part 2

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Lawren and Jesse's California wedding is featured in our current fall issue. And as we gear up for our winter issue to debut, but first we had to share some behind the scenes from Lawren and Jesse's big day. Yesterday you saw their wedding video and today, a fun story from the bride about her early chats with the groom about the wedding. Tomorrow, we'll hear from the groom himself!

Right after Jesse and I got engaged we took a took a trip to Europe (I think Jesse, planned it that way). While on a long train ride we had a lot of time to think about the wedding. We spent hours talking about everything but, unlike most couples, we focused on things like the plates, utensils. I had always loved the ideas of mixed-and-matched china. But it wasn't an option any of the rental places could offer. I had so many people say Lawren "why are you stressing on the plates? No one will ever notice." But I would notice. So we decided we would buy the plates, and be really thrifty about it.

We started in Los Angeles by hitting all the second-hand stores. The selection was pretty depressing. We were even driving 45 miles out of town just to find one plate or two saucers. We got a little frustrated, but not defeated. The hardest part was walking into a store that had tons of beautiful pieces that were out of our budget. We couldn't spend more that $2 dollars a plate and that was even pushing it.

When we weren't running into budget limitations, this project started to become an extremely fun hobby for me and Jesse. Whenever we saw an antique store or a thrift shop on a trip, we would pull off the highway and make a pit stop. This took us to great little towns we would have never been to all over Southern California.

Over Thanksgiving in Georgia, my aunts and grandmother (all avid thrift store and antique shoppers) took Jesse and I for a day trip to a little town called Brunswick. The third antique store we stopped in had absolutely beautiful pieces. I knew this was going to be one of those I-loved-the-merchandise-but-couldn't-afford-it stops. The price tags proved my gut instinct right. The owner took notice of the five of us falling in love with a lot of their china and told us how earlier in the month, her store had been smashed in by a semi truck driver who had fallen asleep at the wheel. Her insurance covered some of the damage to the antiques, but what the damage had really done was destroyed all of her complete sets and she knew that she wasn't going to be able to get full value since she was missing a few saucers and plates here and there. So she sold us all the merchandise we wanted for a VERY reasonable price. This made our month!

We were almost there. We only needed about 50 more plates! We decided to go visit friends in Vancouver over Christmas and it turned into a successful plate-hunting road trip, when we stopped in small towns throughout Oregon, Washington, and Canada. We met our quota and all the plates were amazing.

All in all this was time consuming, but we had an great time doing it. As a bonus, the price of the plates (we now use our collection for many dinner parties) was equal to what it would have cost to rent boring, white plates. Oh, and all the guest noticed. It was a HIT at the wedding.

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