Broke-Ass Tag: The Purple Pebble


Ally, one of my favorite local DFW photographers and one half of the extraordinary team at The Purple Pebble — you may remember them from brides in glasses fame — recently got engaged (yayyyy!!!) and threw a lovely luncheon to ask her ladies to stand by her side on her wedding day. Of course, throwing a luncheon in and of itself can be a little spendy, and when you add special flare to it because it’s not just any luncheon, the costs can add up quickly. While she still shelled out a pretty penny for the party, Ally managed to be pretty resourceful with a lot of the details and definitely put the BAB credo to work: Creativity is our currency!

Budget Bridesmaid Brunch

The girls I chose as bridesmaids are what I call my “lifers.” Those friends who you can be your true self with, who have proven that no matter what, they’ll be there for you. In my case, these girls are family, high school friends, college friends and girls I met in adulthood. Each one of these girls has been there for me and each one of their friendships means the world to me. When I thought about asking people to be a bridesmaid in my wedding, I knew I wanted to ask in a special way. What a better way than a nice, little brunch celebration? When I asked each girl if she was available for a Sunday brunch on a certain date, they all said yes! Five of the girls in the wedding live where I do. 

Bridal Luncheon Personalized Cards


As I got to planning, I thought of what kind of costs would be associated with this. After looking over everything I wanted to do, and the fact that I had 9 bridesmaids and 2 house party members, I knew I needed to save where I could. First step, host the brunch at my apartment.
For the tablescape:
My mother grew up in the Midwest and has inherited lovely china from her grandmother and mother. I asked to borrow a set. White china with a gold rim was what I went with since my wedding accent color is gold. I also was able to borrow gold silverware. Crystal is timeless and elegant and I thought it would be a nice mix with the china. I was able to borrow crystal water glasses as well as a beautiful round, crystal vase that I put white hydrangeas in. I already had the clear glass tea light holders.
I enlisted the help of Facebook friends for a table runner and had a work colleague let me borrow a gorgeous rose colored sequin runner. I also used Facebook to find another unique piece for the table: I wanted antlers, however, most of the places around town that sell antlers sold them for $25+ a piece. I didn’t want to pay that much for a single antler that I was going to spray paint. I had luck when my fiancé’s mother replied to my post saying that she had a set of antlers in her garage that I could have. Absolutely perfect! I spray painted them gold.
For food and drink: 
I wanted to keep the food low cost and light. I purchased fruit and donut holes to make kabobs, went to a local shop to get kolaches and baked Pilsbury cinnamon roles.
For the mimosa bar, I purchased orange juice with a coupon at a local grocery store chain. As the day of the brunch grew closer, I had multiple girls contact me asking if they could bring anything for brunch. Three girls each brought a bottle of champagne so that was covered!
I purchased adorable black and white striped paper straws from the $1 section at Target. And I was able to find 2 boxes of Libby champagne glasses on sale at Walmart. Two days before the brunch, my mother received a large, beautiful floral arrangement for her birthday. I was able to borrow that for extra decoration. I had a super cute card from my future sister-in-law that said, “You’re Engaged!” and I decided to use that as a cute little accent piece!
004_MintonBridesmaidBrunch_10022014 003_MintonBridesmaidBrunch_10022014
Here is where I wanted to really personalize things for my girls! A wedding planner friend of mine created personalized cards for them. They cost $7 a piece. I went into Michael’s craft store for something a month before I put on the brunch and saw that there were colorful block letters in one of the bins in the $1 section. I was able to find a letter for each girl and each letter cost me $1.50.
Bridesmaid Luncheon Personal Letters
And my favorite part for my crew … a custom cookie! I had a local bakery make me diamond engagement ring cookies for $3.75 apiece. I had to buy a minimum of a dozen so I spent $45 on a dozen cookies. It was 100% worth it … the cookies were decorated with silver metallic paint and large sugar crystals were used as the diamond! They were also very good! For the favors, I spent $12.25 for each lady.
Being a photographer, I was able to photograph all this goodness at no cost!
All in all, I spent $200 on food, favors and accents such as flowers, straws and champagne glasses. Everything else, I was able to borrow. And it certainly helped that my girls brought champagne! For those who do not live in the same city as me, I shipped them a card, letter and cookie from the Post Office so each package was anywhere from $5-$7 to ship.
The girls were all so surprised at the brunch when I asked them all to be bridesmaids! They had no idea it was coming.
I was able to pull off a great, affordable brunch with lovely ladies!

How did you ask your crew to stand by your side, BABs?

  • 7/1

    Hey, Broke-Asses, remember this teaser you saw on our social media pages? Well, the time has finally come!

    rivet and sway teaser

    As a two-decade member of the glasses-wearing community, I often struggle with whether to wear my specs or shove my contacts into my eyeballs. And there are a lots of times that I would really rather wear my glasses, but they just don’t quite go with what I’m wearing — and those times are usually fancier occasions. Granted, my glasses right now are in shambles — broken, smudged, scratched, taped and re-taped — so they aren’t really appropriate to wear anywhere except to the kitchen to get myself a beer. But if I did have a pair that was appropriate for an audience beyond that handsome guy of mine and my kitties, I’d rock the hell out of them.

    Which got me thinking about wearing glasses with a wedding dress, and I immediately turned to the Internetz to see what I could dig up on the subject. And here’s the thing guys — brides in glasses is a relatively untouched subject when it comes to wedding world. Sure, there are a handful of photos out there, and even a couple of other blog posts, but it’s largely uncharted territory, especially when it comes to more formal looks and less Zooey Deschanel quirky-esque (but I looooooove her). You want to look good, I assume, and you don’t want to be blind. And there are a holy butt-ton of grooms in glasses. Also surprising was that BAB staffers all rock the specs, but we hadn’t broached this subject on the blog. Huh.

    Challenge: Accepted. I got in touch with the now-defunct Rivet & Sway (who have joined up with — stay tuned at the bottom of the post for a killer offer) to find my inner glasses-wearing bridal beauty. As part of their former at-home try-on program, they worked with me to find five pairs that worked with my style preferences and noggin shape, then shipped me the frames.

    With the help of Bliss Bridal Salon in Fort Worth and the unbelievably beyond amazing ladies at DFW-based photography studio The Purple Pebble, we tackled the idea of glasses as a bridal accessory — another pretty thing that just so happens to be super functional — for any bridal look.


    Ball gowns and a bold frame with a subtle cat-eye? I felt so freaking glamorous in this look, even if the gown did weigh a bajillion pounds.




    This Watters dress with the illusion neckline and gorgeous lace detailing was like a a pillowy cloud for my body. I’ve never worn something so gorgeous and so comfortable at the same time. And the green tortoise-shell glasses were a perfect complement for a garden party-inspired look. GUYS: I would get married in all of this, and I’m pretty sure I told my cohorts that at least 15 times. I don’t think I’ve ever felt so comfortably gorgeous in my life.



    The girls at The Purple Pebble got in on the action, too, since we all have different body and face shapes. As much as I would have loved to try on ALL THE GOWNS, in the interest of keeping it real, I was stoked to have their help.


    Isn’t Ally adorable? These more streamlined frames worked to add a little extra oomph and perfectly complemented the lacy, curve-hugging trumpet gown she rocked.



    Megan’s look is so classically retro with the lace sleeves, the adorable fascinator and tortoise shell glasses. And homegirl rocked the hell out of it!




    For a more modern look, I was squeezed into a strapless sheath with purple undertones and a big purple sash to match the wire-rimmed purple frames and topped off with a beaded ribbon and fingertip veil for my ‘do. Man, this look had a legit va-va-voom factor going on!




    I had so much fun with these two and the whole experience in general.

    Whether contacts just aren’t an option for you for whatever reason, or you legitimately feel more comfortable and “you”-ish in your specs, that doesn’t mean you’re relegated to the same ol’ pair on your wedding day. I mean, all the rest of you is going to be a more stylized version of your normal self, so why shouldn’t your peeper pals?

    So, how do you find the specs that’ll make you feel extra special? has a really rad 3D virtual app that allows you to virtually try on prospective frames and a rockin’ team of stylists to help you find the right look. Think about this: You could go get your hair and makeup trial done, and then go home to “try on” frames that will complement your wedding day look. That’s pretty freaking cool, and super helpful, since you won’t be left guessing if it all works together., whose frames range from about $60 all the way up to $500 designer brands, also offers free lenses (!!!!) and a 30-day money back guarantee — so if you’re not quite stoked with how they look when you’re all dolled up, send ’em back to exchange for another pair. And if you’ve shopped with Rivet & Sway and were devastated when they shuttered, is currently offering any Rivet & Sway customers $25 off any order over $100. Because they’re awesome like that.

    I’d like to throw out a super huge thanks to Wendy at Bliss Bridal Salon and Michelle, Ally and Megan at The Purple Pebble (Hey DFW-area Broke-Asses, Megan and Ally have prices that are pretty BAB-friendly. You should probably check them out.)


    Also, a super duper huge shoutout goes out to my girl Liz who was super sweet and transported my non-driving ass to Fort Worth for this adventure.

    Will you be wearing your glasses on your wedding day?