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Wedding Wednesday: Bride Spotlight

Happy WW babes! It's been a few weeks since I have posted anything for this part of the blog, but I'm back! As I was thinking of different pieces of wedding planning to talk about, I thought it would be fun to spotlight some women who are currently planning their own weddings. It's going to be a fun way to get to know some new faces and also learn about their big day.

Our first bride is Sabrina. I "met" Sabrina when we were both chosen as winners for the TIU21 day challenge in 2017. We've connected since then and will finally get to meet each other IRL this upcoming weekend! I had given Sabrina some questions about all things wedding, and I'm sharing what she had to say with you:

Tell us your name and where you’re from.

Hey, I’m Sabrina. I grew up in small town outside of Toronto, Ontario before moving to Vancouver, British Columbia three years ago for work.

How long have you and Mike other been together?

Mike and I have been together for three and a half years.

How did you two meet?

We met through a mutual friend. I had just moved to rural New Brunswick after accepting a 9-month teaching contract at a small liberal arts university and my next-door neighbor invited me out for drinks with some of his friends and Mike was there. We were both in other long-term relationships at the time, but hit it off famously and talked for hours about our lives, travel, literature… well everything really. There must have been 10 other people at the bar that night, but I only remember talking to Mike. We stayed friends for about 4 months before the other relationships we were in fell away and inevitably we got together. I knew he was a keeper after he rented out a movie theater and played my favorite obscure German film on our first date.

How did Mike propose?

Our proposal was incredibly laid back and casual, which is exactly what I wanted. I never dreamed of having a big romantic proposal. All I wanted was for it to be the two of us, in our apartment, and a spontaneous moment where Mike would ask me to spend the rest of our lives together; and that’s exactly what I got.

I was sitting at home one Friday night in December 2018 and Mike had just gotten back from teaching a class. I was in the middle of making tacos and he had brought home a selection of red wines to go with them. Now, before I continue, there is one thing you need to know about Mike and I, and that is that we are wine enthusiasts. We have a small cellar in our apartment to store the “good” bottles, including one we had picked out months earlier specifically to open on the night we got engaged (you need to be prepared for these things, am I right?!?!?).

So, when he asked me to choose a bottle of wine that night to have with our tacos, I decided on a bottle of Rioja that he had just bought. He paused for a second, thought about it, and asked if we should just open up the expensive Chateauneuf du Pape that we were saving for our engagement. I looked at him and said that I thought we were saving that one, and in that moment, he asked me if I wanted to spend the rest of my life with him. It was so spontaneous that Mike didn’t even have the ring on him. So, he went into our bedroom grabbed the ring after I had already said ‘yes’ and put it on my finger.

While we joke now that Mike only asked me to marry him because he wanted to drink that bottle of wine, it was honestly the most romantic moment of my life. I loved the fact that he didn’t know he was going to propose in that moment and that he just couldn’t wait to ask me to marry him. There is something so magical about just embracing those unplanned moments and living what you are feeling in the instant.

When and where is your wedding?

Our wedding is coming up soon! We are getting married October 13th, 2019 in Vancouver.

Favorite part of planning this far?

I honestly love all of it, and I think that is because Mike and I are both so laid back and undertaking all of the planning together. We set aside time every weekend to tackle at least one thing on our list (with a glass of wine in hand, of course), and I think that taking that time to communicate our vision to one another and equally sharing in the planning has brought us closer together.

The other thing I have loved about wedding planning is the freedom to take this day and make it our own. Mike and I are both academics and neither of us are religious, so we have taken this opportunity to really think about what a wedding and marriage mean to us. One of the things we talked about very early on in our wedding discussions was that we wanted to have a feminist wedding, especially since both of us deal with questions of gender, agency and critical philosophy in our academic research. Navigating what it means to have a feminist wedding and how we can implement that throughout the ceremony has been such a great opportunity think about traditional gender roles and how we can break those down on our big day. For instance, we will not be having a traditional aisle, Mike and I will walk in at the same time (from different directions), and meet in the middle of the room, encircled by our family and friends. We are also not exchanging rings; instead, we will exchange our favorite books, as a sign our commitment to continue to challenge each other intellectually. And finally, we are not having any proclamations of being husband and wife, instead we are agreeing to continuously pursue and negotiate a partnership based on equability. Breaking down the perceived ideas of what a wedding looks like has been the best part of planning, especially since this is an exercise that Mike and I undertook together. And through this process, I fall more and more in love with the man who challenges me to be critical about the structure of – and meaning behind – a wedding, and who has proven to be an even bigger feminist than myself.

Side note- How freakin' cute are these two?! Sabrina shared her engagement photos with me since we both had ours taken the same day. Their photographer was amazing (tagged in photos) and took really cool shots of them.

Color scheme or theme of your wedding?

We are going with a lot of jewel tones, whites and greens. The bridesmaids are wearing dresses in Pewter (dark grey), Chianti (almost burgundy), and Plum and the decorations will include a lot of greenery with white and gold accents. Our overall theme, however, is inspired by Paris in the 1920's.

How many bridesmaids do you have?

I have 6 bridesmaids. My maid-of-honor is my best friend of 30 years, and my bridesmaids include two women I first met in university, my two sisters-in-law, and my best friend in Vancouver who I met through Tone It Up.

How did you pop the question to your girls?

I made them all these gift boxes full of their favorite things with a card asking them to be my bridesmaids. Although two of them still haven’t received their boxes because I couldn’t travel with them, so they will be getting them at the wedding. I asked those two girls over FaceTime.

Have you had your bachelorette party yet? If so, where was it and what was your favorite part?

I was lucky enough to have two bachelorette parties. The first one was with all of my Ontario-based friends and we spent the day/night in Toronto. It was a perfect day that started out with an American Ninja Warrior-style obstacle course, followed by a pool party, bachelorette games, a limo ride and dinner and dancing in Toronto.

The second bachelorette party was organized by my Vancouver girlfriends and took place over 3 days in Manhattan Beach. This place has a special meaning for all of us because we all met through Tone It Up and we wanted to take this celebration to the place where it all began. This bachelorette party included a Club Crawl in West Hollywood, a Barry’s Bootcamp workout, wine on Manhattan Beach at sunset, followed by dinner (where we met the husband of one of the founders of TIU and he bought us all champagne), then drinks across the street (where we then chatted the night away with an NBA player who paid our entire bill), and ended the trip by renting bikes and cruising the Strand from Hermosa to Venice Beach.

Where are you going on your honeymoon?

We are doing a three-week wine tasting trip throughout France (of course our honeymoon would be all about wine lol).

What are you looking forward to most day of?

I think I’m most looking forward to spending the day with our families and friends and celebrating this amazing partnership that we have built.

Any advice for brides who are currently planning?

HAVE FUN! Wedding planning can be so stressful, if you let all of the minutiae get to you. Set aside a little bit of time each week to plan one thing, and make sure that you include your partner in the planning process. Doing this together will bring you closer together and it will give you both a sense of investment in the process. Also remember to soak it all in and enjoy every little step along the way; but also keep in mind that this is only one day in your life, so while we want to invest so much of our lives into the wedding and planning, there is an entire lifetime of moments before and after that are equally worth savoring.

All images taken by Avenoir Pictures, located in Vancouver.

Sabrina, I am so excited for you and Mike and I'm so glad we could be #TIUBrides together! I can't wait to see your day come to life and wish you both all of the happiness in the world.

Hope you ladies enjoyed this bridal spotlight and learning more about Sabrina and her upcoming wedding. If you have any ideas, tips or topics you'd like me to talk about in my upcoming posts, please leave a comment and let me know!

Happily yours,


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