Wedding Wednesday: Kaila and Manuel’s Monterey Wedding

I am so excited to share this wedding with you all today!  Not only are the photos beautiful, but I have a bit of a vested interest… Kaila is a dear friend, and I also had the pleasure of doing her hair for the big day!

Kaila and Manuel have been together for eleven years— since she was just ten years old!  They were neighbors growing up, and have been inseparable ever since!  Check out the photos of their gorgeous wedding at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterey, Ca:

I love to see such a smiley bride!  All of the amazing photos were taken by Amanda Klein at Hearts and Horseshoes Photography.

What do you think of this Monterey wedding?  Which aspect is your favorite?  Share in the comments!

Want to see more photos from real weddings?  Have a wedding to share (either yourself or a friend)?  Shoot an email with the link to professional photos to kim@blending!


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Ikea Wishlist…

Did any of you get the 2012 Ikea catalog in the mail yesterday?!  I squealed with excitement when mine came, and started my wish list right away… we’re moving back up to the city in the next couple of months, which makes the catalog extra dangerous!

Check out my top ten must-have items:

1. Hemnes storage cabinet 2. Boja pendant lamp 3. Snartig vase 4. Nyvoll bed frame 5. Torsby dining table 6. Tobias chair 7. Soare placemat 8. Karlstad sofa 9. Stockholm coffee table 10. Yngaren bowl

I know Ikea doesn’t always have great quality stuff, but it’s hard to resist such affordable, stylish pieces!

Are you an Ikea fan?  What’s your favorite item on my list?  What’s on your Ikea wishlist?  Share in the comments!


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Your Questions, Answered: Help Me Find An Engagement Ring!

I was super excited to receive this email in my inbox!  Reader, Dominique, writes:

Recently my long distance boyfriend and I have decided to make it official and get engaged! We know it’s been right for a while and are completely ready.  I’m so excited, I’ll be flying to Luxembourg to see him, pick out a ring, and have him pop the question one of the days I’m there.

Here is where the problem lies: He is completely against diamonds, which he has mentioned in years past (but I being a girl must have just blocked that out and thought he’d make an exception).  I have never been materialistic at all, but upon finding out he ”certainly” won’t get me a diamond I’ve been in a total funk! I feel so guilty and horrible about feeling this way, I can only guess it’s the whole stigma people have around traditional engagement rings. I was wondering if you knew of any good sites where I could search for ”alternatives” to the diamond engagement ring, that aren’t tacky looking?  I have this horrible pre-consieved notion of what they may look like and I hate feeling/behaving this way!!!  Thank you for any help or ideas, I’d love to know your opinion on the subject too!

First of all, a BIG congratulations to you, Dominique!!  Getting engaged is such an exciting step— enjoy it!  It’s obvious that you love your boyfriend a lot and that you don’t WANT to care about having a diamond, but what girl can blame you for being attached to something that will be on your hand for the rest of your life??

The great news is that there are totally solutions out there!

I’m not sure why your boyfriend is anti-diamond, but if it’s for ethical reasons, you two should check out Brilliant Earth.  All of their diamonds are conflict-free, and they use recycled gold and platinum.

Otherwise, there are a few alternative stones that look very similar…

Moissanite is a mineral that occurs in nature, but can also be created in a lab.  It looks just like a diamond, but it’s a lot more affordable and doesn’t come with the ethical dilemma.  (The ring above is $700 from Etsy.)

Another great option is white topaz.  The ring above is only $76, and it’s absolutely gorgeous!

No matter what you two choose, I promise that you’ll love it.  The meaning behind the ring will always trump the way it looks, and with the increasing popularity of non-diamond engagement rings, you don’t have to worry about people judging it or wondering whether or not you’re engaged.

Good luck on your hunt, and let me know what you end up choosing!

What would you do in Dominique’s shoes?  Are you attached to a diamond, or would you be open to something different?  Did you/would you want to help your boyfriend pick out your engagement ring?  Share your thoughts in the comments!


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Friday Round Up!

Another whirlwind week has passed, and I’ve got a bunch of fun posts to share from around the web!

Spexclub sells all of their prescription glasses and sunglasses for just $88!!

Travis and I want to try cooking these and these this weekend…

Grandma always has the best tips for everything.

Wedding gowns made out of BALLOONS!

What a gorgeous kitchen renovation

I am lusting over this maxi dress from Winter Kate.


And a few {blending beautiful} posts you may have missed:

An updo that works on all hair lengths!

10 key wardrobe pieces that every woman should own…

Get Scarlett Johansson’s look for less.


Have a happy weekend!!

What are you up to the next few days?  Got any big plans, or laying low?  Tell me what you’re up to in the comments!


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Beauty Review: The Best. Hairspray. Ever.

I can’t believe I haven’t shared this with you ladies yet, but a few months ago, I discovered an awesome everyday-use hairspray!  Introducing: Rusk W8less!

What I love about W8less is that it holds really well (I even used it on a bride’s hair and it held up all night), but you can’t really feel it in the hair.  This is what makes it especially great when you’re wearing your hair down or half-up and you still want it to move around freely.

The other bonus: this stuff smells amazing.  By far the best smelling hairspray I’ve ever used.

Granted, it’s a little more expensive than your run-of-the-mill drugstore stuff, but if you’re a hairspray user, I guarantee you… it’s well worth it!  (If you’re interested, you can pick it up here.)

Have you heard of Rusk W8less?  Have you tried other Rusk products?  Do you use hairspray very often?  Share your thoughts in the comments!


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