Friday, April 30, 2010

Wedding Do: Put Bridal Registry Information in Shower Invitation

A colleague asked me the other day where she should get a bridal shower gift for a bride when there isn't registry information included in the shower invite.  I told her that when she RSVPs she should ask the host where the bride is registered.  If for some reason the host isn't sure than she can either ask the groom - since he'll know and you won't ruin the surprise by talking to him - or check out the couple's wedding website.

Technically it's not proper to include gifting information in an invitation - that's why you don't include it in a wedding invite - but I think that a shower is different.  Simply speaking it's expected that guests will bring gifts.  The whole point is to "shower the bride" with items to use in her married home.

So don't be afraid to include information on the bridal shower invite or the insert cards provided by the stores the couple registers at.  You'll save your guests and yourself a lot of trouble by making it easy for them to shop.

And as for my colleague, I told her if the couple wasn't registered anywhere than she would be safe with a product or gift certificate to a chain store that takes returns and exchanges easily in case the bride doesn't want or need her gift.  And if it's a gift card that she buys, make sure it's from a store with a large selection of products, such as Bloomingdale's, Target or Williams-Sonoma.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Poll: Should I switch my Profile Pic to...

this bling version...

designed by my friends at Nearylweds?

Do you know about Nearlyweds?  They make wedding websites with great templates - some are designed by the top wedding invitation designers.

And if you are making a wedding website you may want to include pictures of your family and friends and not keep it to pictures of just the two of you. You should also update it after wedding related parties like your engagement party, bridal shower and bridesmaid luncheon.

Just my two cents.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Create a Guest Book of Well Wishes

I’m not sure how the guest book began as a book where guests would simply sign their names, but no matter how it started the guest book has evolved to more than a fancy attendance sheet.

Today a guest book can be a book or notecards where guests are encouraged to write well wishes for the bride and groom. You can also make your guest book a scrapbook or craft activity during cocktail hour where guests can take a picture of themselves in a custom phtoto booth or traditional photo booth and glue them to the pages. They can then write messages and add stickers and embellishments to decorate the pages.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Rehearsal Dinner Idea

Just because the name of the event is "rehearsal dinner" doesn't mean it has to be a formal dinner or even a dinner. You can plan an afternoon event if you'll be getting up on the early side or you can plan a themed event, which is great for weddings where a lot of guests have traveled to be there - destination wedding or not.

Think about what your interests are and what you think your guests will enjoy.

You can make it a tournament if your guests are sports enthusiasts: football, baseball, basketball, volleyball, etc...

You can make it a movie night and rent a movie theatre or a screening room at the hotel. Don't make it a film about the two of you. Pick a favorite or a theme that compliments the wedding.

You can plan a casino night or a day of fishing and rent a boat.

So when planning your rehearsal dinner get creative. You can still have toasts or roasts to the happy couple and hand out thank you gifts to the bridal party whatever setting you choose.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Wedding Countdown Clock for the 21st Century Bride

I feel like I was born in 1901 with this line but here goes: When I got married we didn’t have wedding blogs and wedding planning apps and wedding widgets. I did use the Internet but I couldn’t easily find what I was looking for in Google.  Today’s bride has the whole world at her fingertips and can easily find what she’s looking for with a quick Google search.

One of my favorite wedding tchotchkes was a wedding countdown clock that sat on my desk at Martha Stewart Weddings and counted down the days, hours, minutes and seconds to my wedding. With a 20 month engagement it was a very long countdown.

Today you can easily download a widget and it will countdown the time to your wedding. You can add it to your wedding website and get your guests excited about your wedding too.

A new blog, offers 10 wedding countdown clock widgets that you can download for free and put on your wedding website, blog or almost any other social media outlet…facebook anyone? Each one comes in a different design so you can find one that compliments your site and you can personalize it with your names, wedding location and of course your wedding date. The site will be releasing new designs monthly so you can swap out one for another.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Guest Room Gifts: A Guide

At the B-List Conference last weekend all the bloggers received the equivalent of a guest room gift or out of town bag.  As you can see from Kate Headley's photo it was filled with all sorts of wedding goodies, your guest room gift bags don't have to be that heavy.

We had a custom tote made, which we can use again and again, and it was filled with stationery, sweets, books and notebooks, accessories and other fun items.  (The complete list of gift bag sponsors below.)

Anyway, when it comes to your guest room gift you should plan on putting a few items in the bag or box that reflect the wedding weekend.  You can include food or drinks, products that relate to the location (sunblock for a tropical location, wool socks for cooler temperatures) or just fun things that you and your groom enjoy (games, hobbies, general wedding-related products).

You also want to include a note from the two of you welcoming your guests, the itinerary for the wedding weekend and any additional information re: local services and transportation you are providing to and from events, including the wedding.

As for the B-List gift bag, many thanks to Chronicle BooksSmockDavid TuteraPaloma’s NestRust DesignsEmersonmade, WedgwoodSanta Barbara PreservesWhisker WorksFootpetalsiomoiViv & IngridWilliams Sonoma, 9Spot Monk, Martha Stewart for Crane & Co.DelphineBridal Reflections Sycamore Street PressFlory PhotoChewing the CudEnvelopmentsScout BooksPottery BarnThe Pink InitiativeLo Boheme, RembrandtSimple Song Design and Thoughtful Day.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Getting to Know You

If your families haven't met and you're hoping that they'll mix and mingle at all the activities during your wedding weekend -- rehearsal dinner, wedding, post-wedding brunch -- then you may want to place a custom wedding genealogy chart by Melangerie.

The chart lists everyone's names and then you can organize it by how they know the bride, groom or if they know both of you and by location.

We used one at the B-List Conference to show all the bloggers where everyone was based and when they established their blog. It was a great ice breaker and keepsake.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

And a Penny in Your Shoe

Bet you didn't know that's the last line in the well-known something old, new, borrowed and blue proverb - the actual line is, "and a six pence in your shoe."

The line, if you follow it, is supposed to bring you and your husband wealth.

It may be uncomfortable to have an actual penny or six pence in your shoe so another idea is to have the coin sewn into your hem.  Vane from Brooklyn Bride suggested taking two coins, one with the birth you or you and your groom.  Or you can find a newly minted penny with the year of your wedding on it.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

A Unique Catering Idea

At this weekend's B-List Conference we enjoyed a boxed lunch catered by Design Cuisine and served in a "something blue" box by Smock. The presentation included a sandwich, snack, cookie and beverage as well as a napkin and disposable flatware.

Obviously this kind of lunch may not work for a formal wedding, but if you're planning a casual rehearsal dinner or a destination wedding with several days of activities you may want to talk to your caterer about this style meal.

The boxes allowed us to carry our complete meal, napkin and utensils to our seat - some bloggers sat picnic style outdoors while others had luch on their laps - and then we all took the boxes home as a favor.

Monday, April 19, 2010

How Much Do I Register For?

Some brides and grooms worry that their bridal registry list will look like they are greedy if it's too long. At this weekend's B-List Conference the Bridal Registry experts at Williams-Sonoma shared a formula they use with couples to help determine how many gifts they should register for.

I think it's brilliant so I'm sharing it with you:

Since most wedding guests come in pairs, have one gift for every two guests. Simply divide your guest list total in half for that number.

If you are having a bridal shower, add one gift per guest.

If you are having an engagement party take the total number of guests and divide it by two since most guests will come in pairs, as couples.

When you have all three numbers add them together and that is the minimum number of gifts you should register for.

  • 150 wedding guests = 75 gifts
  • 30 shower guests = 30 gifts (This doesn't include wishing-well gifts so add about 20 gadgets or items under $10.  Click here to read what a Wishing Well is.)
  • 60 engagement party guests = 30 gifts
TOTAL number of gifts to register for:   135 gifts plus wishing-well gifts

Now I would round up to 150 in case some guests may want to buy several items, plus the wishing-well gifts.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Pets in Your Wedding

If you're planning on including your pet in your wedding ceremony, make sure that you have a friendly face walking him or her down the aisle.  You may also want to have someone familiar at the end of the aisle for your pet to walk towards.

I don't recommend putting your actual rings on your pet if he or she will be your ring bearer.  Pick up a pair of fake rings at a local party supply store and give the real ones to a human best man or have the groom keep them in his breast pocket.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Quick Tip: Cocktail Napkins

You don't have to have cocktail napkins with your names and wedding date printed on them.  You can get creative and print a saying, an image or leave them blank.

I suggest printing something that compliments your wedding theme but doesn't have your wedding date on them so that you can use leftovers when you entertain guests at your home. 

PS - Sorry for the short, and late, post but it's been a wild few days and bridal market's not over yet!

Monday, April 12, 2010

WARNING: A Massage May Leave Fingerprints

A friend recently told me that she got a massage a few days before her wedding, a deep-tissue massage.  And on her wedding day, in a strapless wedding dress, she noticed that she had fingerprints on her shoulders and arms.

The only way they could have gotten there is from the massage and so now she says as a warning to brides: Don't get a massage the week of your wedding because you don't want fingerprints on your skin.  They show up in photos.

I know this is very rare but I thought I'd pass along the warning.

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Will You Wear your Wedding Ring?

There's all this speculation in the media about Elin Woods - whether or not she'll stay or get a divorce - and a lot of the questions are based on whether or not she's wearing her wedding ring.

Someone told me today about a woman who doesn't wear her ring when she has a fight with her husband.  I guess it just seems strange to me not to wear my wedding ring.

Not that I'm giving an opinion re: Tiger Woods' philandering but I guess it's the idea of not wearing your wedding ring as a sign that you're not happy in your marriage.

What do you think?  If you fight with your fiance do you take off your ring?  Do you call off the wedding?  Just asking.

Wednesday, April 07, 2010

Laser-Cut Wedding Invitations and Stationery is the Next Big Thing

At the New York Weddings magazine event tonight I saw half a dozen amazing invitation and stationery designers and all of them featured something with laser-cut details.  Sorry I don't have pics to share but I'm telling you it's everywhere and it looks fabulous!

No real tip here.  Just wanted to share my observation.  I'll try to get some pics to share and add to the post.


Tuesday, April 06, 2010

How to Find Your Officiant and Not a Guy Who Will Get Drunk at the Open Bar

Someone just told me a story about an officiant at their friend's wedding.  Neither family knew someone in the area so they went online and found an officiant, interviewed him and hired him.

Before the ceremony he did a few shots with the groom and groomsmen and by the time the ceremony came around it was clear that he was, as my grandma would say, inebriated.  He slurred his speech, forgot to say words and phrases that are common in a wedding ceremony and was caught be all staring at the bride's decolletage.  He even forgot to sign the marriage license and had to go to the brunch the next day to make sure it was signed by all. 

I know it's easy to get caught up in all the wedding details - flowers, wedding cake, favors - but the most important part of your wedding is the ceremony.  That is the part that joins the two of you together and unfortunately it is often overlooked.

If you don't have a priest, rabbi or judge that you or your groom, or your parents, personally know then ask friends and relatives who married them.  I wouldn't take a chance just calling someone because you like their Web site.

Monday, April 05, 2010

Asking Dad for Permission

I don't know why but I was thinking about the TV show Little House on the Prairie this evening and I thought, "I have to do a blog post, is there something from Little House that could inspire me." And of course there was!

I don't know how familiar you are with the series but Laura falls in love with Almonzo who is several years older than her and finally, he falls in love with her and wants to marry her.  Before they can marry he has to get her Pa's permission.  Manly, as she calls him, asks Mr. Ingalls if he can marry his daughter and he says yes but they have to wait two years till she's 16 or 18 - I forget which one.

Anyway, Manly says that he doesn't want to wait and leaves Walnut Grove.  Very long story short, Mr. Ingalls finally says they only have to wait a year.

It's an outdated tradition to have your father's permission to marry and I think most grooms won't ask dad for his permission but rather his blessing.  I think my dad was a little upset that Dave didn't talk to him before proposing because once he said something under his breath.  Maybe I should have told Dave that he should talk to my dad before proposing because it didn't occur to him to do that.

If you think your dad would like to be "asked" before you get engaged make sure to say something to your future groom, and if you're already engaged and he didn't talk to your dad, maybe your groom can take the initiative and plan an outing with your dad so the two of them can get to know each other better.

Friday, April 02, 2010

Crafting at Martha Stewart's

Yesterday I went to Stitchfest at the offices of Martha Stewart Living. The reason for the event was the launch of Martha's latest book, Martha Stewart's Encyclopedia of Sewing and Fabric Crafts.

The event featured a number of stations where guests could make their own crafts. They included making tomato pushpin pillows, embroidering pillowcases and some technique of painting an item and stamping them on clothes or linens, but the name of it escapes me at the moment.

I loved the floral embroidery on handkerchiefs and I thought they would make a great gift for moms or your bridesmaids. I'm not that great at arts and crafts but the techniques in the book don't look that scary.  You can see samples of the hankies above.

If you're a crafter this book is definitely for you.  And speaking of Martha, I found (okay I knew they were there) dozens of Martha Stewart Living magazines from the '90s and early 2000s that I don't need and can't store so if you want something let me know and I'll just charge you the shipping.  If you live or work in NYC we can meet up some where.

Thursday, April 01, 2010

Bridal Shower Reminder

Don't forget that you should re-register for gifts about 2-4 weeks before your bridal shower.  Now if your shower is a surprise then make it 3-4 months before the wedding date.

The reason you want to re-register, and you'll want to re-register about a month before the wedding too, is to ensure that your guests will have items to choose from.  Your originally registry may have been purchased as engagement gifts and some items may no longer be available.  Remember that seasonal items (holiday, summer) are only available for a limited time.


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