In honour of this spooky Wedding Wednesday I wanted to post something a little bit more fun and mysterious. Get inspired & have fun! – Madison 


Ch Ch Ch Changes!

Hello All,

I feel I must explain myself for the lack of activity on this blog. I must say, however, that it is for the best! To really explain where I am coming from, I must first tell you a story:

It was with great honour that I planned my first independent wedding, nearly two years ago now in 2010. It was a small affair with only 60 guests, and was a great place for me, as a planner, to really start my business. Throughout the process I really hadn’t put any time in to thinking what my business name would be, until one day the bride asked me for a name for the program. Suddenly I began to stress.

I wanted to please my bride, and show her that I was really forward thinking, and ready to commit to my business, which looking back on now, didn’t really make much sense. When it happens, it happens. Nevertheless, I began the process of picking a name…. within 24 hours. Certainly not my finest hours for sure.

I thought about it endlessly, trying to find a name that really showed off how I am obsessed with coming up with unique and fun ideas…. idea…. hmmm…. what about just Idea!….

So it stuck, mainly because I loved how with the exclamation point it really showed my love of the lightbulb popping up over my head, which happens in nearly every wedding planning process. I love that image. So, without further ado, I became Idea! Weddings. Then in 2011, I realized I loved all celebrations and quickly became Idea! Weddings & Events.

Now, with more than a year passed, I have realized that my heart is no longer connected to the name I chose for my company. I have always felt that my business name should be about me, as I am a one man owner and operator, and I do all the work for the events. I put so much time and effort in to my business, and work so hard to create weddings that are unique, special and intimate, no matter how many guests you have.

I also love the name that my mother chose for me, and she always excellent taste over all. Now that she watches over us from far away, I feel honouring her by using my name for my business would be an excellent decision, and make me even more connected to everything I do. Also, my clients will now have a way to feel like they are dealing with a personal and intimate planer, who loves everything about weddings and events.

I cannot wait to reveal the new name and branding of Idea!, and even though Idea! will no longer be around, it will always be a part of my history, and a part of my business past, forming who I am today as a woman and as a business owner.

Much love to you all,

Ainsley xoxo

Wedding Wednesday – It’s all about red today!


we’re loving red today! here are some of our favourite recent finds!

earrings | dress | type | bracelet

styled by madison hope 

Bridal Blogger – From The Heart – Tuesday Feature

It brings be great joy to constantly get to know Emily and her Fiance through her writing. It makes me dream of being there to share with her in their special day. It also brings me great joy to see everything that she is doing as a DIY Everything Bride. I have great pride in seeing her go through the paces of planning a wedding without someone like me (the planner) by her side. She reminds me of all of my friends who have been or are getting married; sharing in the wonderful world of weddings. It saddens me to read the ignorance of “friends” no matter their intentions and not realizing that you should be happy for a friend who is getting married and help as much as possible. If not, be as encouraging as possible. To find out what I am talking about, please please read Emily’s post, and do your very best to comment:


I’m going to be a little more serious for this post.  Planning a wedding is mostly about the laughs and the fun moments, but it can’t be ignored that there are some pretty mellow moments as well.  Anyway, I guess this post will be less about my plans, and more about some of the feelings I’ve been experiencing this week.  Is that okay?  I hope so.

I’ve spent my whole life dreaming about my wedding day.  I’ll admit, I was one of those girls that frequently thought about my future husband and the life I would live as a “Mrs”.   I grew up drawing pictures of what I thought he might look like.  I wrote in my journals about my dreams for my wedding day and which friends I thought might be standing beside me as I say ‘I do.’  I played dress up wedding in a little white gown my mom made just for me and I would end many of my dreamy days by watching Father of the Bride as often as I could.  I could probably tell you every detail of what I thought my wedding would look like.  But as often as I worked my imagination on these things, it could never, ever prepare me for the real thing.

Six months ago, I said yes to a man who stole my heart so fast I didn’t even have a chance to watch him take it. I knew he was the one after our first date.  Ask my mom; I called her up after our date ended at three in the morning and told her I had just met the man I would marry.
He is everything I have waited for.  I really, truly mean that.   Call it cliche, or ‘cheesy,’ but I believe that all those days spent dreaming about him were worth it.  He is so, so good to me and has gone beyond any of my dreams for what kind of man I had imagined him to be.  Not to make you think he is flawless; he is a man like any other and knows exactly how to push my buttons.  But I know he tries his best to be a man I can respect whole-heartedly–and I do.

(I’m gonna take a second to show you one of the reasons I love him so much.  He’s like, really ridiculously handsome.)

The fact that I am now engaged to this amazing guy still brings butterflies to my stomach.  Six months in and I still wake up in the morning, take a peek at the ring on my left hand and grin as big as I can.  But my thoughts the last couple days have been less about my excitement and more about my frustration—not about the fact that I’m getting married, but about the fact that sometimes these days, it is really hard to share that excitement with other people.

I believe in marriage.  I believe that God created it to last, not just for a few years, but for allyears.  This belief seems to go against the grain of what is the popular thought these days, since divorce is a common option to marital problems.  As I finally plan my own wedding after years and years of pretend, I am forced to think about these things.
I have so many things left to do before the wedding day.  So many projects and shopping trips and meetings.  It puts me in a bit of a ‘wedding fog,’ as I like to call it.  However, even though my wedding is on my mind about 70% of the day, it doesn’t mean I talk about it the whole time.  I was catching up with a friend recently and she asked if we could hang out soon.  Of course! I told her, and I said something about going to a store we were both interested in.  There were a few things I could grab for the wedding there as well, so it was a double win.  Hang out with a friend and take a little stress off the wedding planning.  She said we could go, but on one condition: that it would be the only wedding related thing we would do together, or talk about.

I’m gonna be honest, my feelings were really hurt about this.  It’s not like I was planning on talking about my wedding the whole time, but I felt like I would be in the wrong to even bring it up.  But I also understand that a lot of times for single people it can be difficult to hear about weddings; I’ve been there, and I know it is hard sometimes.

So this is where my thinking kicked in.  I’ve been in situations like this one more than once, where I bring up my wedding and people just don’t want to hear about it.  It makes it really hard to feel happy that I’m getting married.  I am so excited to marry this man, and I want to tell everyone how excited I am, but how can I do that when I feel bad about sharing this excitement?  Have any of you brides had anything like this before?  I know I am probably rambling a bit too much, but honestly out of all the wedding things on my mind this week, even through realizing that I have SO much left to do, my disappointment at feeling restricted in my joy has been on my mind the most.  Engagement should be such a happy time (and trust me, for the most part it really is) and I’m ready to lose the stressful aspects; physically and emotionally.  If anyone else has had similar feelings or simply feels overwhelmed with the emotions involved in planning a wedding, leave a comment!  What better way to bring some joy into the wedding planning than to share it with another bride-to-be?

But here is my thought.

All this wedding planning, all this money and time spent, means nothing to me if I don’t believe it’s going to last.  So when people get annoyed with me when I talk about my wedding plans, or when they tell me they don’t even want to be involved in the planning, it makes me..well, sad.  I don’t talk about all the plans I’m making so I can brag about the fact that I’m getting married or boast about whatever creative decorations I plan on using.  I talk about all the plans I’m making because these plans are the beginning of a lifetime with my best friend.  Since I believe marriage is a forever thing, then all of these plans mean more than a wedding day to me.  The wedding day is just the beginning, isn’t it?  I mean, we make all of these plans because of the marriage that is about to be woven together, not because we just decided we wanted to have a party in a white dress (at least I hope…).

I guess what I’m trying to say is, to those of you who have felt discouraged during your engagement when you feel like it’s hard to share the excitement with others, don’t worry.   It’s not about that.  Think about when you were little, and you dreamed about your wedding day.  Well, it’s finally your turn to be a bride, regardless of how excited people are for that.  It’s your turn to marry the man you’ve been waiting for.  So tell him that.  This wedding is about being with him after all, isn’t it?  He’s the one you should share the excitement with the most, out of everybody else.

Contest Announcement!

We are so excited to announce our biggest competition yet! It is going to be a blast to work with whoever the lucky bride is!

Take a look at the image, follow the guidelines, and share away! The more you share the more likely you are to win! Yippee!

Here are the links to all the different facebook pages you have to like:


We can’t wait to see who wins, and may the odds be ever in your favour ;D

– Ainsley xoxo

Wednesday Thoughts: My career paths.

I am constantly on the lookout for new and exciting things in the wedding world, and really for anything that makes me happy. I think it is a 21st century thing to not be content with anything. I like to think that I am completely content, however I find that I cannot be successful with the same old, same old. I one day hope to abolish that notion of lack of contentment, and fill it with the idea (my favourite word, obviously) that we can be content, but must always be on the search to better our contentment.

Excuse my rambling.

Today dawns a new day for me. I have exciting things happening for Idea! and exciting things happening in my personal life, and somehow they all fit together. 

First off, I have a big interview for a position with David’s Bridal which is opening up in Langley in the near future. I am excited because this is hopefully going to lead to a continuation of my past experiences of working as a bridal consultant. I loved helping brides pick out the perfect gown with the perfect fit, and hopefully, if I am lucky, I will get to continue to do that.

Secondly, I have a little bit of my life to share with you to explain the next little bit of news. I am a singer. Yes, I try and sing to make a living. Shocker, I know. In 2008 I started my Diploma of Music from Capilano University (North Vancouver, B.C.) and had an amazing experience learning about all things “classical”. So now you must be wondering what kind of singer I am… well, first of all, I am not a jazz singer, nor a pop singer (probably why I am not making the big bucks haha) and most women in my genre wear big wigs, and get called Brunhilda. Any ideas?

Yes, yes, I am an opera singer. 

Many think this is the coolest thing ever. So thank you for thinking that. But to be completely honest, I LOVE IT. I love it just as much as I love planning weddings. The two make my world spin, and my knees go weak. I can’t get enough of either of them. Now, more importantly, I need to explain to everyone reading this rambling post why you SHOULDN’T, EVER, get involved in the opera world. (i love it, but it has it’s downs…)

So, this world of opera is highly competitive. There is no room for failure. You must nail your auditions, and if you don’t nail them, then you will not have a career. In fact, it is so competitive, they made a documentary about it. (ITS AWESOME, YOU SHOULD WATCH IT)

That being said, I am just at the beginning of my career. Being so young, I still have room to learn from mistakes and grow from them. I still study at least 3 times a week with my teachers and my coaches, and I practice at least two or more hours a day to prepare my voice. That leads me to the news…

I am so super excited because I am auditioning for The Vancouver Opera’s Young Artist Program. This is a highly intensive program that better’s the careers of young singers, and gains them exposure to the world of opera, through a strong opera company. Luckily enough, this program is based in my home town, which makes me super duper thrilled that I do not have to relocate for a year to participate. YAP (young artist programs) are quite amazing really. They give you the opportunity to work with industry professional’s who can really better your career, and make something out of you. You can quickly become a brand if you make the right connections.


I am thrilled to be auditioning at the end of this month. Hooray! 

Now how does this all come together? how do I fit together weddings and singing. it’s easy.

Most of my wedding things that I do: planning, coordination, decor, rentals, etc, happen during the summer months, when no singing is happening. I am lucky because I get to participate in all the career opportunities I could ever dream of during the autumn, winter and early spring, and the two just seem to fit like a glove. 

I believe it takes a lot of creativity to build a career as a singer, as well as a wedding coordinator/planner, so thankfully I have paired the two so they constantly work together. 

Talk about sheer luck that I find myself talented at both.

Wish my luck, my friends, and I hope that you have a wonderful wednesday!

much love,

ainsley xoxo

Bridal Blogger – The First Meltdown – Tuesday Feature

We totally giggled reading this, and even Todd (my hockey loving, football playing partner) thought that this was funny, but also scary. Really!? IT COSTS THAT MUCH FOR LINENS!? I have never heard of that in my LIFE! Anyways, I will let you read all about it…

Wow.  What a week it’s been.  I officially had my first taste of bridal stress, complete with a minor panic attack, a very crazy emotional roller coaster, and quite a bit of exhaustion.  The cause of my woes?  Tablecloths.

Yea, I know.  Pathetic.

A few days ago, I realized I hadn’t checked “find linen rentals” off my to-do list, so my mom and I took a trip down town to this fun little rental place to check out pricing on tablecloths.

We should have known it was going to be a bad day when we walked up to the building and couldn’t even find the front door for a good five minutes. (This was probably our fault.)  When we finally found the door and got over our embarrassment at the amount of time we wasted, we walked inside to find a totally non-inviting warehouse full of tables and chairs and a couple old guys standing around.  Was this the right place?  According to one of the old men, yes, yes it was, and if you just follow the colorful footprints on the floor you’ll find yourself at the wedding rentals.  So on we went, one pink, blue, green, red, yellow step at a time.

We went in through the office door and stepped into a completely different scene.  Gone were the cold cement floors and stacks of storage.  This room was a wonderland of colors and linens and decorated tables.  Inspiration hit me at a hundred miles an hour (or kilometers if you’re Canadian, I guess!) and I was ready to choose my very own tablecloths.  A very sweet woman came in and asked if she could help.  Of course she could! I needed to see everything.

We chatted about the basics for a bit; where would my wedding be located, how many guests, what are my colors and all that fun stuff.  Then we got into the conversation of tablecloths and whether or not I had anything in mind.  So I told her about my vision.  Rustic elegance, I said.  I want simple, beautiful elegance.  Something unique, not overdone.  I want to look back at my wedding 50 years from now and think “my goodness, wasn’t that lovely?” instead of wincing at my choice of decorations.  So please, give me neutrals because neutrals will last forever.
She smiled at my choice.
Gray and ivory.

Off she went to another room to gather a few crisp, freshly pressed gray and ivory tablecloths to place on a “dress-up” table.  She laid out my colors and I immediately knew I had made the right choice.  This was it.  These were the exact tablecloths that would be at my wedding.  *Sigh.* If only life were really that sweet and easy.

After I felt my heart connect with these precious tablecloths, we went over to her desk to start figuring out the numbers.  The excitement was building up.  Oh, how much we were about to save by renting instead of buying!

Two-hundred and sixty-eight guests?  Let’s see, that’s somewhere around 25 tables, give or take a few.  So your total for all the tablecloths, plus the charcoal gray runners, will be . . .

Here it was.  The beautiful number that would make my little frugal heart leap for joy!

About $992.96



Lady, you are one fantastic joker.  I mean, truly, it really sounded like you just told me it will cost me almost one thousand dollars for my tablecloths.

Oh.  You’re serious?  Right.

On she went, telling me about all the services they could offer, something about delivering or options to pick up.  I really have no idea what she told me after that number, because I was having a mini heart attack.  All I did was smile and nod like “oh, totally! I spend $1,000 every single day! This is absolutely in my budget!”  




One quick glance at my mom told me she was thinking the exact same thing.  Fortunately the plastered-on smiles we were both reppin’ didn’t seem to phase the sweet sales lady.  We took her business card, thanked her over and over, let her know we’d keep in touch, and out we walked, leaving those fake smiles on until we were far, far away from hearing distance.

Needless to say, the rest of my day was spent online, looking for discount linens and recyle-wedding tablecloths.  Cheap.  I am a DIY budget bride; I refuse to spend $1000 on anything. (Except the photographer, my single exception.)  I spent half the day in one wreck of an emotional state.  Tablecloth worries turned into bridesmaid dress worries turned into ‘did I pick the right wedding dress’ worries turned into my wedding is falling apart.

But alas, super-mom came in and saved the day.  Let me just say, my mother is brilliant.   She can take anything, and I mean anything, that’s falling apart and put it back together  even better than it was in the first place.  (She probably learned this skill from dealing with her daughter’s unreasonable emotions for 21 years…)  My super-mom found tablecloths for my wedding.  The very same colors, and basically the same materials, for just $300.  And we’re buying them, which means we can re-sell them someday and make some of the money back.  Like I said, she’s brilliant.

So even though my first experience of bridal trauma was, well, traumatic, it wasn’t as bad as it could have been.  I’m sure all of you brides have had your fair share of this:

The bright side?  I will never have to experience tablecloth debt, thank you very much.

#13 – The Pocket Dresses – 2013 Wedding Trends

There is nothing better in this world than having a dress that holds all your important things (iPhone, lipstick, cards, and bar change)… trust me. I know.

So when the trend of wedding dresses with pockets came along, I was ecstatic! Gone are the days where your MOH is bogged down with your phone, lipstick, touchups and kleenex. With an ample gown, you can store all of those things in your pockets! Hooray!

Now, I have one fair warning for all those planning on stuffing their pockets full of goodies: Avoid bright coloured items! Heaven forbid your photos coming back with your neon pink phone case showing right through your beautiful dress! Also, if you are going to have things like lipgloss or lipstick in your pockets, throw them in a little ziplock first to avoid any chance of them seeping out on your white gown!

Here are some super cute pocket gowns that are super cute for 2013:


Anyways lovelies! I can’t wait to share more 2013 trends with you in the coming weeks!

Much love to you all,

Ainsley xoxo

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Blogging Brides – “So many DIYs to do, so little time!” – Tuesday Feature

We love how Emily is so honest about her wedding plans. There is no fear of the unexpected, and a true passion for DIY! (Those flowers!!! :-O)  Take a look at how Emily is coming along with all the plans for her wedding!

(we also blogged yesterday a sneak peek for a real wedding: Derek and Kristie! Check it out:


Here we are at my second week of Bridal Blogging, and I am as busy as I could be! To those of you planning a wedding: have you hit that moment where you realize how much work is left to be done in just a small amount of time?  Well, today marks exactly 5 months until my Big Day, and I’m already starting to feel that anxiousness about all the plans I have left.  There’s nothing more disappointing than marking one thing off your checklist only to realize it doesn’t seem like it really made that much of a difference in the first place. I marked off two major plans this week—making bouquets and registering for gifts—and still feel like I’m behind.  In reality, I’m really not behind, and getting these things done really did help cut down my to-do list.  And, as a bonus, both projects were an (almost) absolute blast!

I went to a hobby store at the beginning of the week because they were having a 50% off sale on their flowers.  Okay, let’s be real, I’m buying fake flowers for my wedding because 1.) silk flowers are just SO much cheaper and 2.) I really don’t care to have my reception smell like a garden.  So if you aren’t super picky about flowers and you want to save money, go silk, especially if you want to keep your bouquet as a keepsake!  Anyway, I bought seven bouquets-worth of flowers for $100 (which is equal to $ 97.4540 Canadian dollars, you know, just in case you were curious.) plus a little extra for decorative ribbon, then went on my way back home to start my little project.

Yea, the word “little” probably isn’t completely accurate.  I will never, ever underestimate the strength of a florist.  Seriously people, I had to use heavy duty garden scissors to cut the stems on these babies.  By the time I’d finished half of the bouquets, my hands were bruising from the amount of pressure it took to chop the thick wires inside those fake stem nightmares.  It was some serious work compared to spray painting vases or putting together a save the date.  But they turned out so lovely, with ivory hydrangeas and mums, and a few splashes of coral in the bridesmaids bouquets.  (I guess you’d like to know, the colors of my wedding are light coral, charcoal gray, and ivory!) I am completely satisfied, and aside from the bruising it was rewarding to know that I created them all by myself!

My next adventure was Registry Day.  The day where Matt and I got to scan a bunch of stuff for other people to buy for us.  You best believe we scanned everything our little hearts desired, from kitchen supplies, to home decorations, to movies and board games.  I have to say, I was proud of him; he was more frugal with the scanner than I was, and kept me from scanning things we probably wouldn’t ever use. (Although I did sneak away once to scan this adorable rolling kitchen shelf.  He said I won’t need it.  I agree to disagree.)   We proceeded to spend five hours walking around our two favorite stores, and by the time we finished we were about ready to collapse right there in the parking lot.  A word of advice about registering?  Wear tennis shoes, or at least something with support.  Otherwise your foot muscles will burn for the next 24 hours.  True story.

It was just so much fun for us to do this together, though.  We turned Registry Day into one long, creative date, instead of making it a duty or a hassle.  We ate breakfast together at Panera Bagel, sipped coffee, and relaxed until we felt prepared for the crazy day.  We laughed about the ridiculous amount of junk we could register for, like foot massagers, donut hole makers, and toilet doilies (like who really needs that stuff?).  I won’t say we didn’t have a few mini-arguments.  You probably will too; not everyone thinks the same way about what items should be on their registry list.  For example, camouflage hunting boots should not be on the registry.  My fiance believes otherwise.   But when it came to the big decisions, it was more exciting than anything else to think that we were getting a glimpse of the things we might own together as a newlywed couple.

When we finally finished registering, we settled in at our favorite book store and talked about how excited we are to spend our lives together.  I know it sounds mushy, but I wouldn’t want it any other way.  As long and stressful as some of this planning can be, I always remember that it’s really not about what flowers I choose or what gifts we’ll receive; it’s about being with my best friend for the rest of my life.

Definitely worth the bruised hands and sore feet, I’d say.