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Entries from February 2008 ↓

Top 5 Wedding Blog Posts of the Week!

Happy Friday everyone!  It’s time for the Top 5 Wedding Blog Posts of the Week!  I scoured the blogosphere in search of the best, most useful posts out there.  So get your cup of coffee and prepare to learn some new wedding planning information!

 

  1.  First off let’s find out how to stay healthy for your big day.  Weddings and wedding planning can be stressful so here are 25 helpful tips that should keep you healthy for your wedding day.  Check out “The Pre-Wedding Health Guide: 25 Things Every Bride Should Do To Stay Healthy Before the Big Day” on a new blog called LiveSmarter!
  2. Getting ready to order your invitations?  Well there’s some etiquette rules regarding the wording of those invitations that you might want to be aware of.  So I recommend you checkout Liene’s post over at Blue Orchid Designs called “wedding etiquette: honor vs. pleasure.”
  3. Looking for inspiration?  Then I found a great source for you over at Junebug Weddings!  Junebug Weddings announced this week that it started a flickr site for wedding inspiration.  There’s a bunch of pictures, broken down into categories to make it easy to search through.  Checkout the post “Flickr Inspiration Galleries – Save-the-Dates.
  4. Here’s a nice short one but it’s a great tip so I thought I’d include it.  Want to make sure you are hiring the right photographer or videographer.  Checkout Anne Chertoff’s From I Will to I Do blog, specifically the post “Random Wedding Planning Tip.”
  5. Does your maid of honor need direction?  The maid of honor is typically responsible for certain things.  If you want to know what those things are checkout the Aisledash post “Maid of Honor Duties.”

So what did you think of that?  Please suggest new blogs if I’ve been overlooking them!

See you Monday with a great guest blogger!

Rhonda

Belly Up to the Candy Bar

Wedding Candy Bar

Today we have special guest bloggers Marley Majcher and Robyn from The Party Goddess in Pasadena California. Marley has orchestrated gigs for the season opening of the Hollywood Bowl, the Critics Choice Awards, celebrities she can’t mention, as well as exclusive dinner parties and corporate outings. She is also a professional wedding planner and even if your not from the LA area she is also willing to travel!  So here’s Marley and Robyn!

In my recent quest for determining what makes a trend “trendy” and the reasons for these trends going from hot to not, I am currently examining the candy buffet. Some people refer to them as candy bars, causing momentary confusion with the rectangular chocolate kind, a la’ Snickers. Be it a buffet or bar, the candy craze is another one of those trends that for all intents and purposes has moved past its prime and yet still somehow continues to sustain itself. Bridal message boards are abuzz with how-tos and “unique” twists; monochromatic colored candy, classic nostalgic favorites, candies that match the wedding colors, Chinese take-out boxes, clever labels. Is this is a trend we will be seeing well through 2008?

Part of the appeal is that the candy buffet works double time as both reception décor and wedding favor. And while an impressive display requires A LOT of candy (and therefore money), one might rationalize the expense because the sweets kill two birds with one stone. It is much less about calculating a “per-person” amount and more about creating an amazing focal point, or as we event planners like to call it “The WOW Factor.”

The problem I have with candy buffets is that they’ve been around since 2005 – an ETERNITY in the party biz! So as an event planner, I have seen more than my fair share of buffets topped with sugar filled glass vases and bowls. People still love the candy gig but what’s the new, fresh twist on this popular creation? My job is not to rely on what’s already been done (or over-done!) but to conjure up something truly fabulous for my clients.

Of course there are several alternatives that do get me much more excited, like a cookie buffet or popcorn bar, for example. Both have been very well received by wedding guests, are beautiful and delicious and leave plenty of room for personal expression. But still, I get a steady stream of clients, brides especially, who have been waiting for the chance to offer their guests that ubiquitous smorgasbord of multicolored sugar in a cute little take-home containers. And in the end, my job is to be sure that the bride is happy and has the day she’s always dreamed of. How sweet it is and, can we make it even sweeter? Only time will tell!

Thanks to halfninja for the picture!

Are You Going to Divorce over Money?

Financially Compatible

Fighting over money is one of the top reasons for divorce. So you might want to address the money issue before you tie the knot! While you’re dating everything is great, you are trying to impress each other with your generosity and making things special. So, buying / receiving those nice gifts and going out to dinner at nice restaurants might be a common thing.

After spending the average of $27,000 on your wedding, you might be starting your married life together in debt. Add to that a house payment, bills, children and you got yourself a recipe for disaster! So how do you weather the storm? By preparing ahead. Here are some ideas…

1. Discuss your financial situation with your fiancé: What kind of financial baggage are you bringing to the marriage? Are you already in debt? How’s your credit rating? What about your fiancé? Are you already concerned about how your fiancé handles money? Is he willing to discuss it? Then have this discussion to see where each of your stand. If this conversation is a problem you might want to think twice about a long term commitment because it’s not going to get better!

2. Discuss your financial goals: It is important that you are both in sync with regard to your goals. You don’t necessarily have to be in total agreement but you at least have to be able to compromise to the point that you are both comfortable. Do you both want to live debt free? Do you both want to purchase a home? Do you both want to put money away for a college fund? Retirement accounts?

3. Make a plan to achieve your goals: Even if you’re not in total agreement you can still work out a plan. Take a look at your goals and try to come to a joint agreement on how to achieve them. You might find that “you can’t get there from here” with your current salaries. Set up a budget that you can agree on, there are lots of books out there to help you do this. Personally, I love Suze Orman’s no nonsense practical advice. You might want to check out her book “The Money Book for the Young, Fabulous & Broke.” Set up separate accounts if it doesn’t look like a joint account will work for you. Many people find separate bank accounts gives them a feeling of independence and takes a lot of stress out of their relationship.

4. Have regular meetings to discuss your financial status: Money is an easy issue to avoid, especially if you know you disagree about it. Unfortunately, avoiding issues leads to bigger issues. What has worked for me is meeting with my husband every other week to discuss our budget and know what the plan is to meet it. These meetings help reduce our stress level because we know there isn’t going to be any unexpected spending on the other person’s part. Set up a regular set time because it’s always easy to find an excuse not to have these meetings!

Are financially compatible with your fiancé? Are you addressing the money issue in your relationship? Let’s hear your ideas to avoid relationship problems.

Thanks {teegan} for the photo!

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Ann Taylor Celebrations Bridesmaid Dresses

Bridesmaid Dresses

Your bridesmaids should be one of your best assets during your wedding planning. They are some of the most important ladies in your life and hopefully are there to help reduce your stress load during the planning process.

So how can you show your appreciation? By ensuring that the bridesmaid dresses they are required to buy are classy and can be worn again and again. Another thing I keep harping on is allowing your bridesmaids to choose their own dress style to fit their body type and tastes within the overall boundaries that you set.

I’ve provided options in past posts, you can find them in the wedding dress category link on the right side of this page. Now here’s another beautiful yet, not very expensive option.

I’m a big Ann Taylor fan, when I go by an Ann Taylor store in the mall it’s like a black hole sucking me in! I especially like the fact that they also have a great petites section! Anyway, it goes without saying that I love Ann Taylor’s Celebration bridesmaid dress line! Ann Taylor Celebration dresses seem to be becoming very popular these days. I’ve seen them on several blogs and they seemed to be a popular choice on some Weddingbee posts.

Today, while looking at the Ann Taylor website I found that there’s quite the sale going on selected styles! Some styles of dresses are over 50% off! They are also running The Ultimate Honeymoon Giveaway too.

You will be able to find dresses in matching colors in different styles if you want to let your bridesmaids choose their style. If you look around the site a little more you’ll even find matching bowties for the groomsmen.

Anyone using Ann Taylor Celebrations in their wedding? What brand of bridesmaid dresses are you using?

Don’t Miss the Event of the Year!

A Soolip WeddingDo you live in southern California? Do you want to plan an elegant wedding? Then don’t miss “A Soolip Wedding!”  “A Soolip Wedding” is being held on March 30 2008 at Vibiana in downtown LA this year. Soolip is an amazing stationary store located in West Hollywood. It is the place to go for the Hollywood elite. In fact Katie Holmes and Tom Cruise got their wedding invitations there. Wanda Wen the owner of Soolip is the host for the “A Soolip Wedding” show.

I attended A Soolip Wedding last year and thought it was a first class event!  The highlights were the Green Wedding event , the Conversation with the Experts sessions, and the Monique Lhuillier fashion show in addition to all the great vendor exhibits. The Green Wedding is a collection of green wedding vendors and resources to help you plan a green wedding. If you want to have a green wedding and you want it to be elegant, you can definitely get some ideas here. I  also thought the Conversation with the Experts was incredible. Among several interesting expert talks, they had the editor of LA Weddings Magazines giving wedding planning tips and Celebrity Wedding Planner Jo Gartin author of Jo Gartin’s Weddings: An Inspiring Guide for the Stylish Bride giving tips on how to give your wedding a personal touch.  I can’t wait to see who’s on the agenda this year!

So, if you are lucky enough to be in the local LA area on March 30’th try to fit it into your schedule. But, if you can’t make it, don’t worry! I’m going to provide detailed coverage of the event. I’ll provide summaries of the best Converstations with the Experts, The Green Wedding, and the Fashion Show. If you want to see last year’s coverage, just type “Soolip” in the search box at the top right side of the page.

If you want to go this year you can get tickets at the A Soolip Wedding website.

Hope to see you there!

Rhonda

Top 5 Wedding Blog Posts of the Week!

Boy, Friday came fast this week!  Friday is my favorite day of the week since it’s time for me to compile my Top 5 Wedding Blog Posts of the Week!  For those of you who are new to this, I scour over 40 wedding blogs each week and find what I think are the best posts of the week.  I look for posts that make you think a little or provide valuable and unique wedding planning information.  You’re not going to find your standard vendor recommendation here!  I’m also open to suggestions; if you have a blog that you think deserves attention let me know, I’ll add it to my RSS feeds.

So let’s get started!

  1.  First off we will start off with some great green wedding planning info.  My blogger friend Katie from Ethical Weddings over in the UK appeared this week on The Wedding Planning Audiocast.  If you want to see how they are doing green weddings over in England check out Katie’s blog and listen to the podcast!
  2. Are you trying to incorporate DIY aspects into your wedding?  Then checkout Lynn’s post over at The Handcrafted Wedding!  This week she featured a beautiful DIY wedding in which the couples family pitched in to make it really special.  It really turned out beautiful!  Check out “All in Who You Know” to see what I’m talking about!
  3. Okay, you know I love those relationship posts.  If you don’t know this checkout my relationship posts over the last couple of weeks!  So, Twistie’s post over at Manolo Brides really caught my attention.  Are you sure you are marrying the right man?  Just to make sure why don’t you checkout “How to Tell When It’s Right.”
  4. Ah, the agony of uninvited guests and the problem of inviting people to the wedding ceremony that you don’t really want to attend the reception.  This can be a tough situation.  How would one handle this situation?  See what the folks over at MatrimonyInc have to say in their post “Unwanted Guests.”
  5. If you finally feel comfortable with the concept of hiring a wedding planner after reading last week’s Top 5, now it’s time to choose the right wedding planner.  Liene over at Blue Orchid Designs is helping us out with “Questions to Ask Your Wedding Planner.”   These are actually “Frequently Asked Questions”   she is asked and her responses.

Let me know what you thought of this week’s Top 5 and then have a great weekend!

See you next week!

Rhonda

Want to Get Married at Sea?

Cruise Ship Wedding

I’m not sure about all the rules in this area, but I thought the Captain of a cruise ship could legally perform marriages at sea on cruise ships. But, I guess I was wrong. If anyone really knows the rules on this feel free to comment.

Anyway, it was just announced last week that Captains on Celebrity Cruises and Azamara Cruises can now legally perform weddings at sea. Before this point they could only perform vow-renewals at sea and weddings in-port with a local official. Why did this all of a sudden become legal? Here’s a quote from their press release:

“…with the recent re-registration of seven of Celebrity’s eight ships in Malta, where
Azamara’s two ships also are registered, government regulations have
changed to allow for captains to perform legal marriages while the ships
sail the seas of the world.”

Both cruise lines are offering wedding packages from the basic Captain performed wedding package starting at $2,500 to private full-blown receptions. Check the Celebrity Cruise and Azamara Cruise websites for details! This could be quite the destination wedding option!

Anybody planning a Cruise Wedding?

Bachelorette Party Trends

What are your bachelorette party plans?  I-Volution, Inc conducted a study recently on the most popular trends in bachelor parties and bachelorette parties. They found that due to increasing fear of a recession, there has been a trend for more bachelor and bachelorette parties to be held at home and more economical than previous years.

So here’s what they found as the most popular trends this year:

Bachelorette Parties:
- Attending musicals/plays
- Instructional exotic / pole dancing lessons
- In-home exotic male entertainer
- Spa day
- Dinner and drinks out

Bachelor Parties:
- Bar hopping
- In-home female dancers
- Golf weekends
- Paintball
- Attending a concert/sporting events

These actually sound a lot like what we have been doing for years, except maybe the “instructional exotic / pole dancing lessons.”

What are your bachelorette party plans?

Oh, and you might want to let your friends know what kind of party to expect!

Brides Magazine Introduces Wedding Collection: Includes DIY Invitations

DIY Wedding Invitations

If you want to be a DIY bride but aren’t quite to the point of being able to do everything yourself, or you just want to save some money by printing your own wedding invitations or other wedding stationary, then this is for you. Brides Magazine has joined up with Gartner Studios to produce a line of wedding invitations and wedding invitation accessories including print-your-own wedding invitations, save-the-dates, wedding programs, place cards, etc.

Here’s what Brides Editor In-Chief Millie Martini Bratten said about the collection:

“The BRIDES Wedding Collection was developed with the expertise of the BRIDES editors and more importantly with what we knew brides-to be want — affordable current trends, designs and colors, so she can really put a unique and stylish stamp on her celebration.”

The collection will be sold in Michaels Stores starting this month!

Top 5 Wedding Blog Posts of the Week!

Hi everyone!  Hope you had a great Valentine’s Day!  It’s time once again for the Top 5 Wedding Blog Posts of the Week!  I have some good posts from a couple of blogs that haven’t appeared in the Top 5 before so let’s get started.

1. Do you have any deep secrets you haven’t shared with your fiancé?  Are you worried about what sharing this secret would do to your relationship?  Well in this case sharing her secret worked out good for Becky at BrauchTalk.  Check out the article “Sharing Your Deepest Secrets.”

2. On a more lighter note and in honor once again of Valentine’s Day.  I found this article pretty interesting over at Iwillchangeyourlife.com.  It also has some pretty good classical quotes about love.  Check out “What is Love?

3.  Afraid to hand over control of your wedding to a wedding consultant?  Well let Melissa set your mind at ease with this great post (thanks again Melissa!) “Afraid of a Wedding Consultant?”  

4.  Well you probably see a lot of $50 or $100 give aways on blogs quite a bit but it’s the first time I’ve seen a $2000 give away!  If you’ve been following along, Liene at Blue Orchid Designs finally announced the winner of her Wedding Day Give Away. 

5.  I love letterpress!  So I was glad to see perfectbound’s post called “Intro to Letterpress Part II.”  If you want to read about the finer points of letterpress check it out!

Musing

Well, hopefully you have a three day weekend!  Enjoy it!  I’ll see you back here on Tuesday!