{On becoming a wife} The dreaded details.

In complete juxtaposition to yesterday’s post (because we’re nothing if not contrary), I’ve chosen today to tell you about why we had ’details’ at our wedding, and about one in particular which I’ve been asked about a few times, and finally realised that I should show you the pictures of.

Be warned. It is not beautiful. It is not hugely aesthetically pleasing. But it worked for us. It allowed us to inject some of our personality into the day, without feeling like we were just doing these things for the sake of it, because you *should* have details at a wedding. And that for me is the crux of it. If you want details, be they favours or escort cards or bunting or cupcakes, then go ahead and do it and make them you. Except not TOO you – I mean, if they were really about ‘us’ and what we do on a general day, they would probably involve some home cooked food which didn’t work out that well, something relating to pyjamas, some cat hair, and some gin, because that is pretty much what our life is like on a daily basis, but I’m pretty sure wouldn’t go down that well at a wedding (although if that’s what you want to do, please do it, and send me pictures?). But apart from those things, we’re both big readers, and I in particular have a bit of a ‘thing’ for books.

I can’t let books go. I *know* that they’re just books, but I build up such a relationship with them as I read them, that to then give them to someone else feels like some sort of infidelity. Like someone else picking up and reading the books would be somehow taking my place in that relationship. I know. But anyway, I have an ever growing collection of books. When we moved to Russia, I brought three boxes of ‘things’ with me. Two and a half of those boxes were of books that I insisted that I couldn’t live without. I’m pretty sure that when we leave, there will be at least double that, and that Andy will lose the argument that we will no doubt have when he suggests that maybe we don’t need to take them *all* back to the UK. I know. I have a problem. All of our friends and family are aware of this problem. (On that note, instead of a gift list, we asked everyone to pick out a favourite book, or a book that they thought we might like, which worked AWESOMELY. We had so many beautiful and meaningful books and for us, it was so much more practical than a standard gift list. Carrying a breadmaker in your hand luggage back to Russia just isn’t that doable, but bringing the next batch of books back each time? Totally practical AND enjoyable.)

But back to what I was supposed to be talking about in the first place.This particular ‘detail’ was one of the many that I used you guys to help me with. Being chronically ‘creatively challenged’ meant that I relied on all of you lot to be my creative side. So when I put out a cry for help about what to do with my vintage Penguin book cover postcards (which I’d bought on impulse with no idea what I could use them for) you all came up trumps. In fact, anyone looking for inspiration for displaying escort cards should check the comments on that page out. You guys are a seriously wonderful and creative bunch.

This isn’t going to be a ‘how-to’ post, because to be honest, I’m pretty sure you can work out what I did. It involved stacking lovely old books upside down in a vintage suitcase, and sticking the postcards in in alphabetical order. That was it.

I will mention though that a lot of fun was had deciding who got which book cover.

And with that, I give you the finished article…

Oh oh….I just realised I have something useful to say. I was really worried that escort cards might not work so well in the UK because not many people would have heard of them. Pish. They worked absolutely beautifully. Just make sure they’re in a prominent place, and have a little sign outlining what people need to do (it’s really not that hard – take the card with your name on it, your table number is at the bottom, even us British can cope with that), and Bob’s your uncle.

Also? People loved it. It was something different, and it was a talking point – everywhere I looked people were showing each other their postcards, and I know that several are pinned to people’s fridges or propped up on mantle pieces even now. Which is more than can be said for some ‘favours’ isn’t it.
Win on all fronts I’d say.
Categories: Wedding Planning, Wedding Pretty, Wedding Reports
14 interesting thoughts on this


  1. Posted March 16, 2011 at 10:24 am | Permalink

    Awwww, they worked out wonderfully – very lovely!

    Yea for penguin books x

  2. Posted March 16, 2011 at 10:56 am | Permalink

    I'm the same, love books can't bear the thought of getting rid of them, so much so that I make myself go to the library as those must be returned!

    Love this idea working with a bride now who is a big book fan…

  3. Posted March 16, 2011 at 12:19 pm | Permalink

    Okay, completely envious now and wishing I was still planning a wedding so that I could steal a) your escort card idea and b) your "bring a favourite book" instead of a gift list idea. And when I say steal, I mean exactly copy. What an utterly fantastic idea.

    Out of interest, did you end up with multiple copies of the same book? Or a lot of books you had already read?

  4. Posted March 16, 2011 at 12:22 pm | Permalink

    @Kiara – I'm pretty sure it was you who suggested slotting them into books wasn't it? Thank you so much – I'd never have thought of that without you.

  5. Posted March 16, 2011 at 12:26 pm | Permalink

    @Emma – surprisingly no we didn't end up with multiple copies – it was so wide ranging – we had classics through to coffee table design books through to travel books. We did get a couple of copies of two of the 'classics' that we already had, but the copies that people gave us were so beautiful rather than the old tattered paper back copies that we already had, and had such lovely messages inside, that it really didn't matter.

  6. Posted March 16, 2011 at 3:35 pm | Permalink

    That looks fab.

    We had escort cards at our wedding too and initially some people (I have to say it was more the grandparents) did comment about the lack of table plan. But everyone else loved it. I mean when else in your life would you pick a candy cane, with a luggage label with your name on it, off a big branch that looked like a tree?

    Not very often and people still remember and mention it now.


  7. Posted March 16, 2011 at 5:26 pm | Permalink

    I hadnt heard of escort cards either but i love it- the suitcase is fab and its such an original idea. I did laugh at your comment on being you would involve pyjamas and cat hair-sounds like us only substitute the cat for dog! I am also in love with books but have to admit to cheating on them recently- ever since i got an android tab and were once i read a novel on my daily commute, i now read blogs!

  8. Katie
    Posted March 16, 2011 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

    Gorgeous, I love that your escort cards reflect your interests. I'm trying to make sure that all the details, such as stationery and table names are "us".

  9. Posted March 16, 2011 at 8:19 pm | Permalink

    Clare I think it might have been, executed beautifully!!

  10. Posted March 18, 2011 at 8:49 pm | Permalink

    Ooooh I REMEMBER that post! I love the suitcase you went with and the book idea, Kiara, was inspired (ps. sorry to hijack but I LOVED you wedding cine Ms King…wow!) x

  11. Posted March 29, 2011 at 12:43 pm | Permalink

    Love this idea! We have so many books in our house, we could start our own library!

3 Trackbacks

  • By {On Becoming a Wife} More dreaded details on February 29, 2012 at 12:30 am

    [...] them that, so the name stuck. You will have to deal with it. Being creatively challenged (did I mention this before?), I really struggled to know what to give out as the voucher, other than a piece [...]

  • By A little help from my friends…(please) on February 29, 2012 at 12:35 am

    [...] What I eventually did, thanks to all of the fabulous comments, is now shown here* Categories: Uncategorized13 interesting thoughts on this « Looking back… Family [...]

  • By Looking back and looking forward on February 29, 2012 at 9:51 am

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Hello! We're Clare, Aisling and Anna and welcome to a corner of the world where smart, flawed, real women talk about the bigger picture; about their experiences, stories and opinions on all aspects of being a woman today, from marriage to feminism to pretty, too.

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