Monday, 28 February 2011

Menu Tasting

Just got back from the menu tasting and have come away with a full tummy, an agreed menu and a large dose of bridezilla. FoB has differing ideas of wedding etiquette and is much more traditional. This has led to me to getting all GRRRR. 

I hate being bridezilla, but I find myself stomping my feet and whining because I actually want an intimate wedding without bottles of cola and beer cans on the table. Am I being unreasonable? I can't tell any more.

I also seem to be very forgetful nowadays - dates, times, people. But this seems to be contagious, as H2B, CB and FoB have all forgotten invitations and meetings! I hope we'll remember the date for the wedding and get there on time!

On a more positive note, we tasted a lot of scrummy food at the Prince Regent. Not sure if our photography skills do the food justice, but here goes.

Starters
Chicken Liver Parfait with red onion marmalade and Melba toast 
Nice, but as usual with these kind of dishes, too much parfait, not enough toast. The marmalade was delish!


Prawn and Crayfish Salad with dill & creme fraiche - WINNER
Beautifully presented. Light, lemony, very tasty!




Blue Cheese and Red Onion Tartlet with a balsamic oil dressed leaf salad - WINNER (veggie)
Absolutely gorgeous! Deep in flavours, not too heavy. Nicely balanced with the salad, and looked good too.

Wild Mushroom enhanced with fresh garden basil and cream
Looked yuck but tasted quite nice, if a little bland.

Asparagus and Parma Ham
Looked great, but really disappointing. This was specially requested for Luke. But we expected the asparagus to be grilled, not blanched and served cold. They did bring it to us warm, but it was still just blanched and didn't really taste nice.
Mains
Breast of Chicken with a mushroom and tarragon sauce - WINNER
Crispy skin, tangy tarragon flavour in the sauce and tender meat.





















Roast Rack of Lamb with a port, thyme and red currant jus
Lush. CB, H2B, FoB and I all loved this dish. Looked much nicer IRL and tasted nom nom nom! Unfortunately, a number of our guests won't eat lamb :'(

Fillet of Beef Wellington with Madeira sauce
Looked terrible and the meat was really overcooked and dry :P

Saddle of Lamb with a port and redcurrant jus
Quite lamby tasting but quite nice.

Fillet of Salmon with a pesto and Proven├žale sauce
Overcooked, the Proven├žale sauce was just some warmed up canned tomatoes :P  Look at the poor presentation, but a nice wedge of salmon.

Wild Mushroom risotto
Bland bland bland. We'll have to look into another Veggie main as we can't serve this!

Desserts
Mango Mascarpone Cheesecake on a raspberry coulis - WINNER
Light, fruity, creamy. Nice way to finish the meal.

Profiteroles with hot chocolate sauce
Gorgeous pastry, not too chocolatey sauce. H2B thought that the cream was too warm - I think he wanted the cream to be ice cold, but the rest of us thought it was nice.

Traditional Tiramisu scented with Madeira
H2B is not a fan of coffee desserts, but he loved this. I like this interpretation of tiramisu, though I would not have called it traditional, as there wasn't enough sponge or Madeira. Nor did it look traditional.

Chocolate Truffle Torte with a raspberry coulis
Very tasty, but pastry was a bit stodge. Not the best dessert to end the meal. Looks boring.

Apple Tart Tatin served with clotted cream
FoB and CB's favourite, but I wasn't a big fan. It was nice, but would have been better with ice cream and didn't look great.

So there you go, we've pretty much decided on the menu. We'll be putting our deposit down this week(!) and that means we can concentrate on the guest list and order things and book people! :)

Saturday, 26 February 2011

Finished Ring Pillow?

Last night, I pressed the knitted side and sewed it to the Maclean of Duart Hunting Ancient tartan swatch. I finished the pillow off feeding a ribbon through the holes I'd worked in the knit, then sewed a green button to it. I still feel as though something is missing from it - I think it needs a border. H2B thinks it looks perfect though...




I've just got back from shopping on South Woodford high street, where I also picked up some packages. One of which is the red cord that I ordered for making the Chinese knots that I am thinking of adding to the favour box, or hanging from the wine glasses. So I think I know what I'll be doing for the rest of today!

Thursday, 24 February 2011

Update

Haven't updated for a while, so here goes...

Knitted Ring Pillow
I changed the background yarn, to Cascade 220, which is much firmer than Rowan Kid Classic. I also decided to use just shades of purple in the knit.



Bridesmaid Dress
I found the infinity dress, which all the girls like in principle. The fabulous Chief Bridesmaid has organised for us to try the dress at Two Birds next Saturday!


Tiara
I'm doing a Jewellery making course at Beadworks on Sunday. Then I'll have a better idea of what to do.


Cake
We shall be having the wedding cake competition, where each Beacon will bake a layer, which will be judged on the Big Day. Miss Cake Dresser has been collecting more info, which is fairly basic from H2B and myself. I've decided to leave it up to Miss Cake Dresser et al to make the main cake design.


Dress
Measurements have been taken and sent to the dressmaker. Waiting to hear back whether it can be made with the materials that I want.

Venue
Menu tasting at the Prince Regent has been arranged for next Monday. All going well, we'll be booking it!!

Table Centrepieces
H2B and I like the idea of using lavender plants as the centrepieces, as they fit the colour scheme and will smell lovely. Am thinking that we'll use terracotta pots or similar and wrap them with twine. Then using the Wuthering Heights buttons from The Button Company, we'll make the table numbers.


Wedding Favours
Flowering tea + shortbread + kraft boxes


General
Found a great website, which has given me some inspiration, called The Flirty Guide.

Thursday, 17 February 2011

shoes shoes shoes

Luke is a couple of inches taller than me, so wearing heels means I'll look taller than him in our photos, which I don't really want. Plus for comfort factor, lower heels, flats or platforms will work better. I originally went down the route of customised trainers:


This wasn't met with warm welcome by my bridesmaids. Today, I found Upper Street and came up with a few designs. This one comes closest to the dress design I'm going for:


I also had a look at Irregular Choice and quite like this shoe, which has a matching clutch bag:


There is a purple version of the shoe too. I had a look at Jimmy Choo and Christian Louboutin, but didn't really see any shoes of interest. I guess it'll be best to check the materials against the dress when I get the dress, unless I go for a different colour for the shoes.

Saturday, 12 February 2011

Frustration

I designed the chart for the ring pillow last night. I finally settled on:


I was so excited, that spent a few hours of the early morning knitting it. I had to frog the first attempt, as my intarsia in the round is not terribly good. Here's the second attempt:

The ampersand is pulling too much on the background. I think I'll have to switch from 5mm to 4mm. Frustrating!

Friday, 11 February 2011

More flowers & ring pillows

Spoke to Needhams florist today. Saw some gorgeous flowers. Realised that purple anemones exist:



Started on the ring pillow, using Rowan Kid Classic in Feather. I will probably add our initials in intarsia. Will start looking for fonts tonight.

Thursday, 10 February 2011

More ideas

Have decided I will try to make my own cake toppers, so spent a CONSIDERABLE amount of time in John Lewis' Haberdashery and Craft department. Was only meant to get fimo, but also ended up getting some ribbons and wool to make a ring pillow.
I also found some cute heart pegs and a little sign to put on the wishing well, which reminds me that I need to send pics of the wishing well designs to Roma to send to Ron to make. How exciting!
Last night, I also had the idea of making the table centrepieces with Lucky Bamboo - maybe something like this:

but I also like these:


Also, today I found another vendor who sells the dress that I want, albeit in blue, but I'm sure that she can make it in red. She also had some other beautiful clothes, will peruse a little, whilst I'm having my dinner (waldorf salad from JL).
I'm hoping to book the venue today, but needs some more info from people RE drinks, number of guests etc...

Bridezilla and knitting

So Luke and I are getting married this year. We're looking at a September wedding. I've had so many ideas, that my brain is about to overload and it's turning me into Bridezilla. I also had the crazy idea that I would knit my bouquet, corsages and boutonnieres. However, not being a floral designer, my vague ideas are not really coming into fruition.
I thought that starting a blog would allow me to jot my ideas down and get a better view of the progress I'm making. I would like to incorporate peonies, as I really like them and they also happen to symbolise rebirth for the Chinese. I also want thistles, as Luke is half-Scottish. I also like roses and lotus flowers.
I can't visualise the bouquet and wonder if I should ask the florist to design one for me, which I could use as the design for the knitted bouquet and have the real flowers as the throwing bouquet...