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helping brides create beautiful weddings without breaking the bank

Hi there readers! I'm bride blogger Danielle and I'm excited to be a part of BSB!

5 fun facts about me:

  • I'm a middle-school and high-school English teacher. My life revolves around lessons planning, teaching, and grading papers/tests for 125 students between grades six and eleven. This means I am constantly on the go and usually drowning under a pile of marking.
  • In university, I was an event planner for the Faculty of Arts at the University of Ottawa. I had the pleasure of planning everything from Frosh (101) Week to fancy dinner galas.
  • I am Canadian! I grew up in a small town called Gananoque in Ontario, Canada, then moved to the nation's capital (Ottawa) for university. While my parents are Francophone, I grew up in the 1000 islands region of Ontario, so I didn't pick up French as well as I should have. In recent years, I have been unable to escape my French roots–I teach at a French school and am marrying a French guy! 🙂
  • I love designing stuff in Photoshop, but have never been taught how to use it. Back in my event planning days, a few crunch-time situations caused me to dive into Photoshop head-first even though I had no idea what I was doing. I'm sure graphic designers would cringe when they saw my process and way of doing things, but I get it done! This is also how I approach a lot of situations: try and fail, but do not fail to try!
  • When I was five years old, I announced to my kindergarten class that I wanted to be an elephant when I grew up. When the teacher said I couldn't, I was devastated. While this may seem random, I think it speaks well to my desire to think outside the box. 🙂

5 fun facts about my fantastic fiancé, Dan:

  • He is an engineer. I mention this not just because it is his job, but he lives and breathes it. Everything is about efficiency and maximizing results. He also loves numbers. He is most happy when calculating something. 🙂
  • He is also a comedian. Dan has been involved in improvisational comedy for over ten years. He has played competitively in the university improv circuit and is a member of one of Ottawa's most successful improv troupes, Insensitivity Training. He makes me laugh everyday.
  • He was on a reality TV show. If Dan looks familiar to you, it's because you may have seen him before! He was on the Discovery Channel for Canada's Greatest Know-it-All. It was a crazy experience that allowed him to cross a few things off his bucket list.
  • He is Franco-Ontarian. Dan grew up in Ontario, but in one of the little pockets that is predominately French. Dan is bilingual through and through and this will play a big part in our wedding!
  • He has a gluten allergy. This has been a recent revelation for us, and we're currently in the process of getting a full diagnoses to determine how severe it is (i.e.: gluten-intolerance or full-blown Celiac disease). This means we've been on a bit of an adventure lately in terms of food and reworking things, especially when eating out.


So, how did we meet? I met  Dan in university. We were both event planners, but for rival faculties. I was the social programmer for Arts, while he was the social programmer for Engineering. While there was undeniable attraction, we always seemed to each be dating someone while the other was single. Nonetheless, we were great friends and spent many evenings partying and laughing. We even worked together on a campaign to save the university bookstore and succeeded. Finally, after undergrad, the stars aligned and we were both single at the same time. We agreed we should finally give the whole dating-each-other-thing a try, and from there, things just kind of fell into place!

Bride Blogger Danielle

But let's face it ladies, you're here for the wedding stuff! We're getting married in just 3 months on July 28th, 2012. Here is the run-down.

Budget: $15,000 — Originally we were shooting for a $10,000 budget and a 100-110 person wedding. When we started making a guest list, we realized just by inviting our huge French Canadian families, we were already sitting at just under 100 guests. So, now it is a $15,000 budget and a 160 person wedding.

$15,000 is an absolute max. This is also the amount of money we are willing to put out, but not necessarily the cost of the wedding. What I mean is, we have a few cost recovery strategies for the wedding, so in a sense we're hoping this won't be the bottom line. Also, our wedding budget spreadsheet has EVERYTHING in it. I find a lot of people don't put things in their budget by justifying they'll use it later. This is not the case for us.

Location: We're getting married and having the reception at my Godparents' lakeside house. It's also where we've spent our summers for the past five years and where we got engaged (story to come)! It's in the backwoods cottage country of Quebec. We've decided to go the outdoor wedding route, which is risky, but since the venue means so much to us, we're risking it! Fear not, we have a giant tent, but are really hoping to be out in the sunshine!


  • Feel: Rustic, but pretty, cottage party
  • Colors: Coral, periwinkle, and white with a touch of grey and burlap

 DIY Projects We Plan to Tackle or Have Tackled:

  • Our wedding website (which I made from scratch)
  • Photoshopping our save the date and invitations
  • Pinwheel boutonnieres
  • Photo booth back drop
  • Burlap table runners
  • Heart garlands/bunting
  • Old-wood looking signage
  • Guest-book/canvas
  • Cake topper
  • Wedding Cake
  • Centerpieces
  • Writing a bilingual ceremony (French and English)
  • … and the list goes on!

You guys are getting to know me right during crunch-time: 3 months until the wedding and wrapping up my teaching year at the same time! No worries though, I'm excited to blog about my experience and share everything with you! Looking forward to it! <3



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About Danielle

I am a 27 year old English teacher from Ottawa, ON, Canada! Before teaching, I was an event planner at the University of Ottawa for the Faculty of Arts. I love reading, experimenting with gluten-free recipes for my hunny, and being crafty!

Connect with Danielle
  • DIY Wedding centerpieces, YAY! Please let me know if you need help! I have a lot of great DIY tutorials that will help you put together your own floral centerpieces! Blooms is also a long time advertiser and supporter of The Budget Savvy Bride so maybe you should email me and we can figure a way out to help you come in under your budget using floral centerpieces!

  • Aubrey

    When I was little, I wanted to be a unicorn when I grew up. I never understood why grown-ups would tell you “You can be anything you want to be”, when that is in fact, NOT TRUE! 🙂

  • Gluten allergies are so common these days! I’m sure your future hubby won’t be the only one at your wedding who has issues with it, so it won’t be going too out of the way to accommodate it!

  • Samantha

    Wow! You are one talented and savvy young lady. I am sure this day will undeniably be the BEST DAY EVER. Can’t wait to read more in the upcoming months!

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