Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Plan Your Thanksgiving Party or Wedding in Style

The long weekend and cozy atmosphere that accompanies Thanksgiving makes it an increasingly popular time to host a wedding or party. Thanksgiving is the perfect time for an elegant yet relaxed celebration, as the autumn holiday lends itself to natural settings, simple decor and comfort food. And while the general rule of thumb is to avoid having your wedding around a holiday, Thanksgiving presents an entirely different set of circumstances. While you probably don’t want to hold it on Thanksgiving Day, the Friday or Saturday after can be a great option. Most friends and family will either already be in town or planning on traveling anyway - so making the trip to your wedding may not be a burden. Plus, most of your guests will already have the day off. Need more convincing? Here are some creative ways to plan your Thanksgiving Wedding in style…

And if you have a different theme in mind, this theme weddings guides for ideas and advice on throwing any themed wedding.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Ready to Pop the Question? Here are Some Romantic Proposal Ideas

OK guys - if you're here, you're at least considering proposing to her. Take a deep breath, and read on...

Even if you've had conversations with your girlfriend about getting married, and even if you've looked at engagement rings together, you'll probably want the actual proposal to be as much of a surprise as possible. The reason: She's been dreaming of this moment since she first had a crush back in second grade. So you've got to make this special. Not to worry - this article offers plenty of romantic proposal ideas, along with some useful proposing tips. And to keep you on the right track, the article lists plenty of "I Don't" proposal ideas that you'll want to be sure to steer clear of.

Good luck!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

How Much do Wedding Flowers Cost?

Your floral budget can certainly run the gauntlet. On average you should expect to spend about 8-10% of your overall wedding budget on the flowers. This will include the bouquets, corsages, boutonnieres, and any ceremony and reception decor.

While this is a good estimate, you can modify many floral elements to determine the actual amount you will spend on your wedding flowers. Factors such as whether or not your preferred blooms are flowers in season in your area, the number, size and complexity of the arrangements, and the location of the ceremony and reception all influence your final cost estimate.

You should already have an idea of your overall floral budget before meeting with your florist for the first time. That said, there are a number of ways to cut costs without cutting elegance and beauty.

Learn more about the average price of wedding flowers, and get some useful budgeting tips here.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Wedding Guests - To Invite or Not To Invite, That is the Question...

Paring the guest list down to size can be as formidable as predicting the weather for an outdoor spring ceremony. To determine who makes the cut, ask yourself these "To Invite or Not Invite" qualifying questions. If you answer mostly yes's, extend the invite. If nay's have the majority, save the postage - and the meal cost.

1) Guests from Afar:

Some people (siblings, close friends) will make your "A-list" regardless of where they live, but others (second cousins, old sorority pals) fall into a gray area when they reside far from your wedding locale. These long distance guests may be unable to travel to your nuptials, so is an invite merely a gift request in disguise? Decide on a case by case basis.

- Have you seen or spoken to them within the last six months?
- Have you exchanged invites to other milestone events (their wedding, graduations, hallmark birthdays)?
- Are they close with other invited guests?

Rule of Thumb - If your special day would not feel complete without your college roommate who now resides in New Zealand, go ahead and send an invitation. Let your guests decide for themselves whether or not they want to travel.

2) Pint-Sized Partiers

Not inviting children can make for tough planning for some of your guests, but the opposite can make for some interesting moments you hadn't included in your wedding day dreams - like crying babies during the vows.

- Are you planning a relaxed daytime event?
- Does your budget and venue size make inviting all children a possibility?
- Can your caterer provide kid-friendly menu choices at a reduced cost?

Rule of Thumb - Have a blanket no-children policy or make a sweeping cut based on age (no one under 13), as picking and choosing may offend some parents. If you anticipate complaints, schedule a black tie evening affair, which is generally understood to be a kid-free zone.

3) "And Guest"

If space or budget won't allow the extra guests, some single pals may have to come solo.

- Is this person in a committed relationship (living together or engaged)?
- Will s/he be the token bachelor or bachelorette?
- Must s/he travel and plan overnight accommodations?

Rule of Thumb - Sure it's nice to let your unmarried friends bring a date, but unless that date is a long term love (living together or engaged), you don't have to include "and Guest" on the wedding invitations. Just be sure to handle seating arrangements with care - your single friend probably won't appreciate a table of couples sharing stories about how they fell in love.

4) Office Space

Deciding which coworkers to include depends on the size of your office and the nature of your relationships.

- Do you regularly socialize outside of work?
- Is your office or department close-knit and small (fewer than 5 people)?
- Is your work relationship with a few direct supervisors or assistants particularly close?

Rule of Thumb - If you work in a small office, best to follow the all or none policy. In a larger office - you can safely invite your happy hour crew or direct supervisors and assistants without incurring the wrath of the uninvited.

Get even more wedding guest advice, including how to plan the guest list and wedding guest baskets.

Monday, November 17, 2008

How to Pick the Right Wedding Veil

Ah the veil… the ultimate accessory in the transformation from engaged girl to blushing bride. Though steeped in tradition as it is, unless required by your religion, a veil is strictly optional. Today wearing a veil is more of a style statement than a symbolic gesture. Thus, the ideal veil depends largely on the style of your wedding gown and the overall look you want to create.

This guide to wedding veils, has everything you need to know about selecting the ultimate finishing touch to your bridal ensemble.

Friday, November 14, 2008

How to Choose Readings for Your Wedding Ceremony

If you’re writing your wedding vows or personalizing your wedding ceremony with meaningful readings, delve into the world of literature, poetry, quotes and lyrics for inspiration. Spend some time at the library reading works by your favorite authors; listen to lyrics from songs that moved you—even consult Hollywood for some lines that strike an emotional chord. This article lists tons of sample passages for wedding ceremony readings to get you started.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Deck Your Derriere with Stylish Bridal Lingerie

Round out your honeymoon trousseau with sweet little underthings. Elegala.com's Unveiled Wedding Blog has a new post on the luxurious line from couture lingerie brand, Spoylt. (Famously style-privy celebs like Jessica Simpson and Eva Longoria are fans). Designed by women for women, Spoylt’s decadent delicates, handcrafted from carefully selected and dyed fabrics, strike a balance between demure and daring. After all, you deserve to spoil yourself when it comes to your bridal lingerie.

Read more about luxury honeymoon and bridal lingerie

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

How to Plan an Outdoor Wedding - Ideas, Tips, and Advice

Outdoor weddings are romantic and scenic, but there's a lot that can go wrong. Here's your guide to planning a flummox-free, al fresco wedding.

Outdoor Weddings - Things to Consider:

Who will officiate? Some officiants will only perform ceremonies within a house of worship, so you'll need to check with yours in advance before planning your ceremony outside.

Inform your guests - Guests need to know they're attending an outdoor wedding so they can dress appropriately. It's also a good idea to send weather information to out-of-town guests who may not be familiar with the climate.

Be prepared - Combat potential outdoor issues by having the following items on hand:

Bug spray
Water bottles
Paper fans
Cell phone
Tissues/paper towels

Securing your Outdoor Wedding Location

For an outdoor wedding, the draw is the setting, so finding the right spot and coordinating the event around it is the most important task on your to-do list. Your setting options are as limitless as the great outdoors itself. But before getting your heart set on a specific spot, these are some key questions you'll need to ask:

Is There Privacy? - keep in mind that if your location is a public space - or even near a public place (like a street or sidewalk), you may have to contend with onlookers. Try to reserve your space in a secluded spot to prevent unwanted guests or distractions.

What's The Backup Plan? - obviously you'll need a plan in case of inclement weather. If your location doesn't have indoor facilities to accommodate your event should the skies open, you'll need to rent a tent.

Can You Hear? - will guests have to compete with roaring waves, gusting winds, honking cars, or screaming children to hear your vows? You may need to rent a sound system and lavalier mics for the officiant and yourselves. Your band or DJ should be able to provide this for you.

Get even more advice on finding unique and scenic settings for outdoor weddings.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Wedding Reception Rentals Guide

When you book your reception site, you'll need to make sure to find out exactly what’s included in the rental fee. Each venue is different, so you have to clarify with the site manager which items the venue provides and which you must provide.

Depending on the venue – and the type of reception you’re planning - you may need to supply some, if not all of items like tables, chairs, linens, tableware, tents - even a dancefloor. Keeping track of all these rental items can make many brides think twice about choosing non conventional venues like outdoor public spaces and buildings that don't typically host private events. But if you have your heart set on a venue where you'll need to supply most of the items needed to host your event and serve your guest, you can use this handy wedding rentals checklist to help you stay on track.

You may also want to consult this complete wedding receptions guide for even more advice, tips, and inspiring ideas to help you plan your reception from start to finish.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

What are the new trends in wedding flowers?

If you're looking to keep your floral and decor scheme fashionably forward, than you've undoubtedly spent some time searching for a list of what's hot in the world of wedding flowers. Well, here's your answer: Apparently today’s brides are following the old adages, “less is more” and “use your imagination.”

The sayings may be cliche – but the latest trends in wedding flowers are anything but. This article lists the top trends in wedding flowers.

For even more floral tips and advice, visit this complete guide to wedding flowers and wedding decorations.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Luxury Wedding Tents Offer Stylish Alternative To Tent Rentals

Modern-day brides are the past’s fabled princesses, reincarnated with fab stilettos and PDAs, of course. And as such, they deserve a stylish tent to fit their outdoor wedding fairy tale. These luxury wedding tents from Raj Tents are truly a diamond in the white vinyl rough. Brides everywhere can rejoice that there's finally a snazzy way to escape the elements at your wedding reception. The collection of luxury canopies is handcrafted in India with the highest quality cotton, sultry color combinations and exotic embroidery.

Learn more at the Unveiled Wedding Blog

Monday, November 03, 2008

How to Select Your Wedding Cake - 3 Steps

This article on wedding cake ideas narrows down the process of selecting your wedding cake baker and design into 3 easy steps. The complete wedding cakes guide has even more ideas, tips, and photo galleries.

An excerpt from the article is below:

Step 1: Choose your Cake Baker
First determine whether or not your wedding site allows an outsider baker; if so, pick a few local cake bakers and book appointments to view their portfolios. When meeting with potential bakers, consider both look and taste. The one you choose should be able to create the beautiful masterpiece you desire, and it should taste scrumptious as well. Ask to taste some samples to determine the talents of your confection artist.

Step 2: Determine your Wedding Cake Style
As the centerpiece of your reception, your cake should represent the theme of your wedding and reflect your overall vision. Consider the style, shape, color and adornments. Make a list of qualities you like and don’t like, and browse and collect photographs of cakes that inspire you.

Step 3: Factor Cake Cost
Cake cost is based per slice and is determined by the complexity of the overall design. The typical cost per slice can range anywhere from $2-$15 per slice. There are 2 easy ways to keep your cake within budget.

1) Simple wedding cakes are obviously less expensive, so choose a simple design with minimal adornments. Fresh fruit and flowers are inexpensive options, while handmade gumpaste or sugarpaste decorations cost more because they are difficult to create.

2) If you have your heart set on an intricate design you saw in a magazine, don’t worry that the associated cost will break your budget. Many brides opt for a smaller, intricately designed cake to showcase at their wedding, while simple sheet cakes are held in the kitchen to be served to guests.