Snow to Sand

Excited to announce to my friends + followers that we have found our wedding location and have the wedding date! Steve and I will be going from the Minnesota cold to the beaches of Los Cabos, Mexico to get married on Friday, November 15, 2013. We are excited about our adventure this year and can’t wait to experience this with our close family and bestest friends. 

Snow to Sand

If you have ideas, suggestions, travel tips and/or vendors you would recommend me to use for the wedding day and festivities please reach out and drop me a quick line.

We truly are Lovin R life!

Your future Cabo Bride,


This Gal Said Yes to the Dress

say-yes-to-the-dressEveryone has heard the saying and the show is known for it, but it’s true, I said “Yes to the Dress”.

Having never tried on a dress other than my mother’s when I was about 15, I didn’t know where to start. I gravitated to some things due to pins on my pinterest board. But when I started my journey I didn’t know what to expect other than have that feeling I would be the “50+ dress bride”.

I tried on over 30 dresses before finding that dress I did say yes to. Before find it though I have to share a few places that I stopped along my finding my dress story…

Diamond Bridal was a rare find. Driving past it off of HWY 55 in Plymouth I would have never I mean NEVER would have stopped. It sits in a strip mall and the name really would make you think it could be a Diamond in the Rough.


Fit to Flare style shown here.

Joey who has been in the business for over 30+ years was at a wedding show and grabbed my attention with her genuine personality and passion for dresses. She is also a designer and reminded me of my hip grandma with a forward personality that was still warming. Starting there was a great fit because all her gowns are not in plastic body bags and you walk through a little path and see her designs while her one-on-one service was nice. I found my shape, fit to flare, at her store was lovely. It wasn’t glamorous, and the fitting rooms reminded you of a Herberger’s changing room but that didn’t matter because you always remember your first time.

Next on the list was a total different experience off of Grand Avenue in St Paul, Che Bella. Knowing this place had been nominated for multiple awards, and that this boutique was owned by gals were young and friendly. The styles of dresses were slightly more vintage with a total runway feel. The ladies that own it are around my age and the gal that helped me barely could lift the dresses up she was about 18 years old. This tiny place only lets you bring 2 people because of the 1 mirror area. Even though my sister and mom loved two very classy numbers on me, the 4,000 price tag left me feeling a bit numb. Go there after a few drinks off of Grand with a best friend and be one of their last appointments in the day. I spotted a bottle of champagne but ti was empty and I was offered any, bummer! 

Downtown Minneapolis, just a few blocks from sex world is a fabulous large warehouse and the for l’atelier couture bridal. Valet park at Monte Carlo and tell them your headed to l’atelier and it will be complementary. I had booked this one about a month ahead and took a best friend that is also a bride-to-be! This experience was like the movies. Champagne in glass flutes and fancy paper straws we walked and picked Vera Wang and felt at home with Christina Herrmann, to later find out who is the Store Manager.

At L'atelier Bridal trying on dresses.

At L’atelier Bridal trying on dresses.

l'atelier racks

I had asked before coming in if could bring wine or champagne and the lady had encouraged it! Needless to say the experience will be one both Kate and I won’t forget. Christina followed with personal emails to us and I continue to follow her and encourage other brides to try their store. Even though you must be in that price bracket of $2,000+ to think about buying, it’s a great spot to find something you love and take out a loan. l'atelier instagram

After coming back down to reality and going to a few other shops, my mom and sister ended up stopping at a small place downtown Wayzata Posh. It was a Saturday and we didn’t have an appointment (RED FLAG Brides! Always have Saturday appointments). In this case we had the time so it was a walk-thru. We met the owner Marie and instantly we all loved her stylish vibe, sister-like influence and appreciated her candid-ness. She put me in fitting room for a rare 30 minute opening where I quickly fell in love with two dresses. Total opposites but both something I wasn’t expecting to gravitate to… strapless. The last-minute try-on was the off the rack by a Spanish designer. Marie told me she has had to discontinue that line because of the unique style it had for the local midwest traditional market.

Well – I ain’t your Mid-west typical gal am I?

I did end up leaving Posh with no dress and moved on to a few other appointments that we had scheduled for that day. A week later, I still had the Spanish designer dress on my mind. Timing is everything and Marie direct messaged me over Twitter to tell me about her once a year Valentine’s Day private sample sale. Needless to say, I knew I would regret if didn’t make my way back to the store to see both dresses there.

I asked my sister Trina to be my maid-of-honor on the way to our mystery Valentine’s Day stop and we made our way back to Posh.

I couldn’t leave the original sample Spanish design behind this time. The price got closer to my budget, and to seal the deal I had my alterations part of the ticket price of the dress. (Alterations can be up to $300 dollars extra!)

Yes to the dress

I did say “Yes to the Dress” on Valentine’s Day, Thursday February 14, 2013. The dress before the date is the way this bride-to-be rolls…

your future bride gal

Cold Feet

The winter chills has set-in here in Minneapolis. The snow came later than normal and now the cold temperatures have greeted us all through-out almost day in February. (Did I just open my blog post with talking about the weather?)

The snowless day of November 30th will be forever marked as my engagement day. How much does your life, thoughts and life challenges change after you accept a marriage proposal. The month of December was full of Holiday cheer, gushing over the future plans of the big day and random thoughtful advice from others. January brought lots of wedding investigating and planning between the groom-to-be and I. Visiting at least 5 venues every Saturday and then attending my first-ever Bridal convention show left my head spinning. Trying to stay organized, I quickly started spreadsheets and alphabetical order binders full of the possible vendors and venues to work with.

Confident the plans would go fast, easy and smoothly, I’m now stuck at February 10th with no theme, venue, dress, photography, DJ or even church booked. How could this be? How could this experienced party planner not even have her own wedding ready to send out the save the dates?

What occurred to me late January, is that it truly is harder to plan for yourself then it is to plan for others. Maybe it’s the money that you actually spend is yours, and that the special day has so many gathered expectations that every where you turn your ideas compile into this never-ending TO-DO list.

At this very moment, I feel in a good place, knowing that my fiancé and I have a simple plan in the works and we are excited to gather the final details to share with family and close friends.

Until then, enjoy the engagement picture highlights. Photos are presented by Trina Severson, she is a bright-eyed, down-to-earth inspiring-photographer that not only has the powerful camera but the eyes behind the lens to catch those moments. I compiled a few highlights to hold you:

Photos taken In Brandon, Minnesota by Trina

Photos taken In Brandon, Minnesota by Trina

Severson Street Sign

Severson Road in Brandon, Minnesota, where the Bride is from. Photos taken by Trina

Our proposal site shoot, Rice Park in St Paul, Minnesota

Our proposal site shoot, Rice Park in St Paul, Minnesota

Rice Park Proposal moment by Trina

Rice Park Proposal moment by Trina

Snow playing

Snow playing in Rice Park, by Trina Severson

We aren’t getting cold feet, lets just say the cold weather has set back our planning a bit. Stay tuned because the best is yet to come!

your MN design gal

What direction will the wedding go?

Wedding Planning Begins (?!$#)

Well, the Holidays have almost come to a close (one more Christmas today), and my mind is on wedding planning! You will be able to help this MN design gal.

I’m just starting the reception venue process and need your help finding design gal inspired venues that have all or some of my first-thoughts:

-Original and Unique (like me, well, I’m sure every other bride says this)
-Lots of Architecture and Views (why be stuck in a black hole for 5 hours?)
-Location doesn’t actually matter, Minneapolis or Stillwater, Northern MN or Wisconsin… this gal is open
-Priced for a budget
-Venue must be inside with outside options (Come on it’s Minnesota and don’t need Mother Nature stress)
-Eat. Dance & Be Married!
-100 people + (numbers are still being calculated but small closest friends & family)

Round tables in a classy room? Lights matter...

Round tables in a classy room? Lights matter…

Is it a night club location or event center?

Is it a night club location or event center?

Vineyards in Stillwater?

Vineyard side?

Look forward to your suggestions and thoughts! Send me a wedding venue tweet to: @MNdesignGal and I will retweet and blog about my top picks.

Also, once vendors get secured I will post them on the

Wish me luck starting the planning process… because your along for the ride readers!

designing a wedding gal