Flats or Heels?

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The big day is getting closer and you have almost everything planned for. But did you give a thought to your shoes? We are talking more than just how the shoe color matches your dress. It’s going to be a long day, so give extra thought and consideration to your tootsies!

Many brides choose flats or low heels for their wedding dress. Will they really show? They will rarely make an appearance. Consider what you have planned for the day. Is the ceremony going to be outdoors or at a church followed by a reception with dancing and all the bells and whistles? Well, you do not want shoes to slowly kill you as the day progresses. Choose wisely and get shoes that will let you stand for long periods and which you can dance all night long.

So what if you want to wear high heels during the ceremony and flats for the reception without dragging your dress all night? Your shoes can be comfortable, but they don’t have to be completely flat. Wedge heels tend to give you elevation without the discomfort.

That said if you have your heart set on those sky high shoes, with those gorgeous high heels which look perfect with your dress well go for them!

With Love,

Deanna

 

 

Where to Splurge

where to splurgeWhere to splurge… Top 4 Wedding “musts” that should take priority in your budget

Undoubtedly, the union between you and your fiancé is the most important thing about your wedding day, and to ensure a successful event, keep that first and foremost in your minds when planning your event.  Beyond that, prioritizing your wedding budget may not be an easy task, but here are a few tips to know where your splurges will be well worth your dollars.

  1. PHOTOGRAPHY:  At the end of the day, the photographs and video will be all you have left to look back on from your wedding; the portrait sitting on your nightstand that you wake up to EVERY morning and the canvas of you with your wedding party hanging in your living room that you walk past ten times a day. So do your research, hire a professional and dish out the cash or you will be regretting it forever when your ceremony shots are blurry or when there’s not a single picture of you with your parents.
  2. REPUTABLE BRIDAL BOUTIQUE SERVICE:  The bargain shopper in you may lead you to believe that purchasing a gown via the Internet might sound like a great way to save a few dollars, or that skimping on a full-service bridal salon with an experienced alterations department is a safe way to cut corners. However, when ordering online you are risking getting inferior quality, not getting the gown delivered on time, or even worse, not getting your gown at all! And dress sizing is not a simple task, ordering a dress online or from a “Big Box Store” might actually cost you more money in the long run on alterations when you need to rush to an experienced seamstress at the last minute. An ill-fitting gown that you are uncomfortable in or that you are constantly adjusting can really ruin your vision. And back to those photographs you will be looking at every day for the rest of your life, it’s crucial that you are in a dress that you love, that you look lovely in and that you will not look back on and say “what was I thinking?”. Every bride has a vision of her wedding and that vision is focused on her in her dress, this is NOT an area to cut corners. So read reviews, buy from a reputable bridal boutique with an experienced alterations department and budget for a dress you will love for eternity. Remember, it is okay to splurge because chances are you will not remember the shrimp appetizer or the gold leaf on the Thank-You notes on your 25th Anniversary, but you will always remember THE DRESS!
  3. MENU& SERVICE:  Make sure your guests are well-fed and that the service is impeccable. Food and service are some things that people tend to talk about during the reception and beyond.   If your guests leave hungry or have an encounter with a rude server, this is what they will be remembering from your wedding.   Even if you have a tight budget, you can still select a menu that tastes great and fills tummies, well served guests are happy guests!
  4. A BAND OR DJ:  Your ceremony make take 30 minutes to an hour, and dinner usually takes roughly an hour, so what happens during the rest of your five or six hour reception? The entertainment! This is another “wedding must” so decline the offer from your neighbor’s cousin’s brother-in-law who is in a band as a side gig and forget about hooking up your phone to a boom box! Take the time to do your research and actually attend performances of prospective DJs or Bands, it is totally worth your budget dollars to book experienced musicians with good reviews. This is a huge part of your celebration and if you provide your guests with a fun evening of recognizable songs and a packed dance floor, you will have them referring to your event as the party of the year!

With Love,

Deanna

Spice up your Wedding Reception

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Whether you and your partner would like to honor your family’s heritage, or if you simply want to give your reception a bit of extra flavor, adding a cultural theme to your reception can be a great way to spice things up. Try these easy tips to give your reception a unique flare!

SERVE CULTURAL DISHES The best way to incorporate a cultural theme into your wedding reception is to start with the food. In lieu of your average American meal, pick your favorite cultural food and develop a menu of traditional dishes. You could create a Mexican fiesta with traditional Latin dishes, an Indian buffet with a curry station, a Japanese sushi bar with bottles of saki, a Russian meat and caviar spread with bottles of vodka, a Spanish tapas table with sangria, or an Italian buffet of pastas and cheese with a coffee bar! If you and your partner have different ethnic backgrounds, speak to your caterers about designing a custom menu that can blend the cuisines of both cultures into a one-of-a-kind feast.

ADD CULTRAL DECOR & MUSIC After you choose the cultural theme for your menu, you should turn your attention to the decor of your reception. You don’t need to completely transform your venue, but you can make plenty of design choices that will reflect the influences of your cultural theme. Do a bit of research on national flowers and plants that have religious or historical significance to your culture, and add a few stems to your floral arrangements. Hire bands, solo musicians, and DJ’s that can play traditional music and set the tone for your cultural theme. For example, if you’re having an Indian wedding, you might consider hiring a sitar player to entertain guests during dinner. If you’re having a Latin wedding, you may consider hiring a Spanish guitar player or a mariachi band to play between reception activities.

Whatever you decide, take pride in your culture and give your guests something to talk about!

With love,

Deanna

REHEARSE YOUR TABLESCAPES TOO

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Centerpieces aren’t just pretty floral arrangements any more. These days they are mini-showcases or tablescapes for your personality, your theme, or your wedding union. Thinking ahead, reprint some photos from when you were dating, gather up some vintage pieces, ad some flair from your hobbies, or build clever arrangements with wedding favors for the taking. Pinterest can be a great resource for centerpiece ideas. Your tables will be unique, memorable, and, as a bonus, there will be less waste and/or cleanup.

With Love,

Deanna

 

The Theme is Themes…

wedding theme We are more than 20 years into the Internet age and with every passing day, life becomes more and more customizable. At your fingertips, you can share ideas among thousands of people. This means you can create and fashion a wedding of your dreams. Enjoy a full-out Gatsby wedding theme if you have the means, but budget does not have to be a factor. Have a “blue” wedding and request that all guests dress in blue. Even a garden wedding! Fabulous photo ops! Or hats… or high school jackets… Whatever your heart desires! Show us what you got.

With Love,

Deanna

 

Bridesmaid 101

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Being asked to stand up in a wedding is a honor. With that said, it is the brides choice to what style and color she wants for her big day.  Bridesmaids dresses have come a long way and traditional rules do not apply anymore.  A lot of brides will pick a color and fabric and will let the girls choose the style that works best for their body. Also, some brides will go for a more hombre look, different shades of a color.

Frequently asked questions…

What size dress should my pregnant bridesmaid order?

If their was only a way to look into a magic ball and see what size she was going to be.  It is impossible for us to suggest a size, everybody’s body changes differently.  A standard rule is we can only alter a dress down 2 sizes without distorting the look of a dress. Some designers offer a maternity style dress in the style your regular bridesmaids are wearing.

Why do you wait to order all my bridesmaids until everyone has ordered?

When your girls are wearing the same dress or dresses in the same color and fabric, we wait to order so the dresses are all cut from the same dye lot.

How long does it take to order the dresses?

Standard ordering time for bridesmaids dresses is 16 – 18 weeks.  Make sure you also add enough time for your girls to get their dresses altered.

Your bridesmaids will forever be remembered in all your photos.  Choose a look that flatters everyone in your party.

With love,

 

Deanna

Bridal Attire Timeline

bridal atire timeline

The Bride: 1 year – Allow at least one year before your wedding to find your gown.  Most designers take anywhere from 6 – 8 months to receive a gown. In addition, you need to allow 6-8 weeks for alterations.  No such thing as ordering to soon, only to late.

Bridesmaids:  6 months – Wrangling a group of women together and deciding on a dress can be a long process.  The bride has friends and family that are scattered around the world, and getting them all together is almost completely impossible.  However, if you want all your dresses to be in the same color, they need to all order form one location, ensuring they come from the same dye lot of fabric. Allow enough time for the dresses to arrive at our shop and then be shipped to the out of town bridesmaid to be altered for your big day.
Mother of the Wedding:  6 months – Yes, moms dresses can take up to 16 weeks to arrive from a designer.  Don’t limit your options by waiting to the last minute.
Tuxedos: 6 months – Bring in you man and we will dress him up in different styles. The great thing about our tuxedo shop, is we own all of our stock.  What does that mean?  Say your groomsmen live out of state and arrive the day before the wedding, they come in to pick up the tux and it doesn’t fit…easy, we just refit him right then and there!
Let time be on your side and never feel rushed to make a decision.  Happy shopping!
With love,
Deanna

Take Time for Each Other

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Reserve the venue, choose the ceremony hall, find your dj or band, book your photographer, select the perfect invitation…I could go on and on! Planning a wedding can become a full time job, don’t get so caught up in all the detail that you loose track of what is really important…enjoying each others company.  You need to make it a priority to take a break now and then for a fun night out or even a weekend getaway.  Their are plenty of inexpensive things you can do without tapping into wedding funds.  Some of my favorite things to do are a picnic in the park, biking through the forest preserve or even a couples massage.
Allow plenty of time to get all the details together and enjoy what will be one of the most memorable days of your life.
With love,
Deanna

Ceremony Traditions

Deanna’s Tuesday Tip

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A truly meaningful union ceremony is one that beautifully expresses the infinite love you and your beloved carry in your hearts.  I love when brides incorporate something special into their wedding vows.

One of my favorites is sand layering, symbolizing the coming together of separate lives into one.  Each layer of colorful sand represents one life and as they are interwoven layer by layer, the separation disappears and a new complete family unit is created in its place.

Two hearts, one light into a unity candle.  Three candles are set side by side, as the bride holds her candle and the groom olds his, they light the center together.

Jumping the broom means different things in many cultures.  Whether symbolizing sweeping away past wrongs, removing evil spirits or symbolizing the beginning of your new life together, jumping the broom has been around since the 18th century.

Breaking the glass at the end of the ceremony symbolizes that joy must always be tempered, followed by Mazel tov…congratulations on the beginning of your new life together.

No matter what tradition you have, celebrate the beginning of your marriage and forever love.

Deanna

Sparkle without the Shine

Deanna’s Tuesday Tip

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Whether you were a figure skater, dancer or pageant girl you have probably worn your fair share of sparkle. With that said, you are now getting married and it’s time to find your bridal gown.  We often have brides struggle to step away from the “costume” they’ve always worn and see themselves as a bride.  Finding a dress that makes you feel beautiful, fitting not only your body, but your personality, is the most important thing.  You can make a statement and have the wow factor on a dress with sophistication and amazing fabric, with no beading necessary.  In the end, you are the bride and will sparkle from within.

With love,

Deanna