Wedding Favors

Archive for November, 2007

Win a Free Wedding in Hawaii

Posted on November 27th, 2007 by Kori Ellis in Wedding Planning 1 Comment

Parasol Events, a Hawaiian wedding planning company, has partnered with The Honolulu Advertiser to give away a free upscale wedding package. The lucky couple will win a wedding package for up to 50 guests, including a wedding party of six, on March 31, 2008. The elegant package is valued at more then $30,000. The ceremony and reception will take place at the Kahala Hotel and Resort in Honolulu.

Kahala Hotel & Resort

You must be a Hawaii resident to enter!

To win, you must submit an essay of 500 words or less about your romance and why your relationship is meant to last. Their experts will choose four finalists. Then on December 30th, the finalists’ stories, pictures and videos will be posted online at HonoluluAdvertiser.com, where readers will vote for the winner.

You can get more information and details about the contest at ParasolEvents.com.

Photo credit: Kahala Resort

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Wedding Gifts: 10 Thank You Card Tips

Posted on November 27th, 2007 by Courtney in Wedding Etiquette 2 Comments

Thank you cardOpening your wedding gifts kind of feels like Christmas, except that it’s all about you and your new spouse! The only difference is that none of your new gifts came from Santa, and you’ll definitely need to thank each and every one of your guests who gave gifts. It may seem like a daunting task, especially if you leave it all till the end (like I did), but if you consider the following 10 tips for writing thank you notes ahead of time, getting all your cards out to your guests is sure to be a breeze!

  1. Have your fiancé, or husband as the case may be, help you write and send out thank you notes. Maybe he would feel more comfortable writing thank you messages to his friends and family.
  2. Write down what you received and from who immediately after you open a gift. If you open a lot of your gifts at once, like after the reception, that makes keeping everything together a little bit easier.
  3. General etiquette advises that you have all of your thank-you notes sent out no later than 3 months after the wedding has taken place.
  4. Many couples send out thank you notes that match with their wedding invitations, but you can easily choose to go a completely different direction with your thank you notes.
  5. Don’t try to write all of your thank you messages in one sitting; if you do, your notes will all start to sound the same, and they’ll start to sound trite. Instead, try writing only four or five in a sitting so you don’t burn out.
  6. For monetary gifts, you don’t need to mention the amount you were given, but you could easily mention how you intend to use the money. This extra effort actually makes thank you notes for cash gifts easier to write!
  7. If the giver of a gift traveled a long way to attend your wedding, it is appropriate to include a sentence thanking them for the trip. If the giver could not come, you could mention that they were missed.
  8. Both you and your spouse can sign each thank you note, or you can choose to have one of you sign. Just be sure to mention your spouse in the note. (Ex. John and I love the toaster…)
  9. You can sign your thank you card in a few different ways. “Love” is probably appropriate for your close family and friends. A less familiar option for others is “With Affection.” Finally, for gift givers who are more acquaintances than friends, a simple “Sincerely” is probably your best bet.
  10. Etiquette doesn’t specify whether you should sign with your surname or not, so you’ll need to go with your instinct. If it feels to proper to add it, go without.

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Wedding Trends from Jennifer Brisman

Posted on November 26th, 2007 by Kori Ellis in Wedding Attire, Wedding Trends No Comments

Couture Wedding Dress - Janell BerteAccording to Jennifer Brisman, president of jennifer brisman weddings newyork, Manhattan’s premier wedding planning firm, this year bridal style will evoke a more couture feeling than we have seen in previous seasons. Jennifer says we will see plenty of elaborate gowns, rich makeup, jewel tone accessories and decorative shoes.

“You’re going to be seeing incredibly interesting silhouettes and details as designers push the envelope. We’ll be seeing gown styles that we can’t exactly classify just yet – the old language or existing categories of a-line, modified mermaid, and sheath aren’t always going to apply,” says Brisman. “The average wedding gown is going to feel very couture, otherworldly and have a lot of presence – many will look like works of art.”

Brisman also says this season will take on a much more textural and layered feel. Details and accents in velvet and matte silks will appear everywhere in colors such as black, navy, aborigine, grey and dark peacock. Gowns featuring cinched waists that create a more baroque look will be a big trend. Thin sashes and accents in other jewel tones will adorn many frocks. Additionally, we’ll be seeing fewer ‘lace gowns’ but rather, gowns with extraordinary lace accents used in intended and delicate ways.

Makeup will reflect these rich hues as well. Brides should go with a soft lip and smoky eye, complementing the rich accent tones. This look is not overdone, but soft and fresh. Most importantly, is to ‘just say no’ to the spray tan! Brides look their best when their skin has a rosy natural glow. “Your skin should look like your own, but better, not orange and unnatural,” explains Brisman.

As gowns will take on a more fashion-forward look this season, so will bridal accessories. Brisman says this season “is all about the jewel tones and all about the jewels; not necessarily diamonds and pearls, but sapphires and semi-precious stones, which are more weighted and balanced for the couture looks we’re seeing this Winter.” Whether you accessorize with costume pieces, treasured antiques, borrowed baubles or fresh-out-of-the-case Cartier, there are enough options to fit every bride’s budget.

Additionally, the traditional veil will take a bit of backseat to the bridal gown this season. According to Brisman, the veil will be seen more of an ‘accent’ than a major feature of one’s bridal style. Veil styles should be very sheer and soft, and as raw and simple as possible. Brides should avoid matching a veil to their dress or overdoing it with silk or lace trimmings.

Lastly, but never least, shoes will be all the rage. Chunkier styles and strong decorative accents will help to finish off the couture look. Satin heels of color will feel truly in step for today’s fashion-forward brides. Pair a crème dress with a dove grey satin Manolo; try a winter white gown with a patent peep toe. For inspiration, take a look at Christian Louboutin’s new recent evening collection, which showcases such details.

We thank Jennifer for sharing her tips and trends with us. Jennifer Brisman of jennifer brisman weddings newyork is one of today’s most highly regarded, respected and sought after wedding planners located in Manhattan. Jennifer has actually been coined the real “Wedding Planner.” jennifer brisman weddings newyork is a full-service wedding design and consulting firm. They offer customized wedding planning, coordination and consulting services that are tailored to your personal needs and desires.

Photo credit: Janell Berte

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Redfoot Afterparty Shoes

Posted on November 26th, 2007 by Kori Ellis in Wedding Attire, Wedding Vendors 1 Comment

Redfoot Afterparty ShoesAt your wedding wedding reception, your feet will undoubtedly be tired from the day’s festivities. Now, instead of wearing your high heels well into the evening, you can put on your AfterParty Shoes.

Redfoot has created these very cute ballet flats and flat slingbacks that fold up and fit easily into your handbag. This is a great idea for brides who want to relax a bit at the reception. The AfterParty Shoes would also make a fun gift for your bridesmaids! When it’s time to relax (and dance!) at the reception, you can all change into your AfterParty shoes.

These portable shoes come in a lot of great colors, including silver, cream and others that will go nicely with your wedding attire. The Kylie is my favorite because I like the slingback style, but these cute Ada Silver ballet flats are adorable as well.

You can order these shoes for £25 (about $50 USD) at redfootrevolution.co.uk. They ship worldwide!

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What to Wear to Your Rehearsal Dinner

Posted on November 26th, 2007 by Kori Ellis in Wedding Attire 1 Comment

Black DressA rehearsal dinner is a great chance for the couple to thank their families, friends and the bridal party before the wedding. The rehearsal dinner is traditionally held the evening before the wedding, right after the wedding rehearsal. Though it can take place anytime prior to the wedding date.

The rehearsal dinner is normally paid for by the groom’s parents. However, the bride and groom can also choose to pay for the dinner as part of their thanks to their friends and relatives.

Who’s Invited

The immediate families, plus the bridal party are invited to the rehearsal dinner. Also any out-of-town wedding guests should be included. The dinner is normally held at a semi-formal or casual restaurant. During the rehearsal dinner, the bride and groom toast their family and the bridal party. This is also the time that the couple can give gifts to their bridesmaids and groomsmen.

What to Wear

Obviously, the attire will depend quite a bit on the venue and style of the dinner. Rehearsal dinners can be held at casual establishments, but more often than not, they take place in a semi-formal environment.

A traditional suit, a sports coat and slacks, or even a pair of khaki pants and a nice sweater are all appropriate for the groom.

The bride can choose from many options.

The Pantsuit

A classic pantsuit is always a good fashion choice for the rehearsal dinner. Choose dark colors for a more formal event or fun, bright colors for a casual venue. Warm weather fabrics, include silk, linen and light knits. For colder weather, select a pantsuit in velvet, wool or jersey knit. Add a pair of feminine, heeled shoes or boots. Mary Jane pumps, velvet mules or leather boots all will work well.

The Little Black Dress

Always a big hit, the little black dress is very appropriate for a rehearsal dinner. If you husband-to-be is wearing a dark suit, dress accordingly by choosing a dressy style where the skirt falls at or just below the knee. A little black cocktail dress is a also a good choice. Sleeveless, halter style or capped sleeve styles are perfect. For a cocktail dress, short skirts are fine as long as they are not too short. Anything more than two inches above the knee is probably not a good idea. Add a pair of strappy sandals, peep-toe pumps or patent leather slingbacks.

Sophisticated little black dress available at edressme.com

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Cupcake Wedding Cakes

Posted on November 25th, 2007 by Kori Ellis in Wedding Cakes 9 Comments

Cupcake Wedding CakeEverybody loves cupcakes!

A recent trend in wedding cakes is the cupcake wedding cake. Instead of a fancy, expensive multi-tiered wedding cakes, many couples are opting for cupcakes arranged in the shape of a cake. This is a much more affordable alternative to a traditional wedding cake.

Your guests, young and old, will enjoy the cupcakes at your reception. What’s fun is that you can get the cupcakes in a variety of flavors.

If you’d like, you can still have a smaller, separate one tier cake used to do the cake cutting ceremony.

What do you think about cupcake wedding cakes? Good idea, or just tacky?

Leave your comments here and let us know.

Photo credit: Hawaiian Weddings

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Culture Shock Bridal Wear

Posted on November 24th, 2007 by Kori Ellis in Wedding Attire, Wedding Vendors 2 Comments

Culture Shock GownCulture Shock is a bridal gown design company that creates original couture and made-to-measure weddings gowns that feature the color and traditions of different cultures around the world.

Located in Sydney, Australia, Culture Shock uses amazing fabrics and textures to design beautifully detailed gowns. They are a little funky, a little trendy, and very, very different than your standard wedding gown.

For example, this beautiful bride Meghan (pictured here) wore an amazing gown inspired by Japanese culture to honor her husband’s heritage. The gown was made from a vintage kimono, spliced together with silk fabric, a bustle and train.

Culture Shock prides itself in providing individualized attention for each bride to create the perfect wedding dress. Though the price tag is steep, these original wedding dresses certainly are beautiful. Check out more designs in their photo gallery at Culture-Shock.com.au.

The exclusive Culture Shock Couture gowns are priced from $3,500 – $7,500 AUD, while their Fusion line of made-to-measure designs are available from $2,500 – $3,000 AUD.

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Wedding Music – Do Not Play List

Posted on November 24th, 2007 by Kori Ellis in Wedding Music, Wedding Songs 4 Comments

When planning their wedding reception music, many couples concentrate on the “Must Play” list. I believe what’s more important is the “Do NOT Play” list.

These are songs that DJ’s tend to play at weddings, but are really dreadful. I know some of them are meant to get people up and dancing. But really … there are better alternatives.

Wedding Reception - Slide

Here are some obvious choices for the “Do Not Play” List:

“Cha Cha Slide”
“Chicken Dance”
“Macarena”
“YMCA”

I would also add “Hokey Pokey” to the list. But if you have a lot of kids at your reception, it could be cute for them.

Some other songs that are often played at wedding receptions, but really shouldn’t be, include the following:

“Every Breath You Take” (Sting) – Too stalker-ish
“My Heart Will Go On” (Celine Dion) – Umm… she’s singing about her dead husband
“I Will Always Love You” (Whitney Houston) – It’s a breakup song
“White Wedding” (Billy Idol) – He’s singing about hating his sister’s fiancé

What songs are “musts” for your wedding reception? What others have you included on your “do not play” list?

Photo credit: © Bill McCullough

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Wedding Teeth Whitening: Brighten Up Your Smile

Posted on November 24th, 2007 by Courtney in Wedding Makeup 3 Comments

Bride smilingDress—check. Shoes—check. Veil or tiara—check. Jewelry—check. But what about you’re most important accessory?

You know. The one thing that you’ll be wearing all day long, even after the wedding ceremony and reception are over. That little something that no one can help but notice, and will likely make or break your overall look.

Clearly I’m talking about your smile!

Have you even begun to consider what you can do to improve those (hopefully) pearly whites? Well, if you haven’t, now is certainly a good time to start! You certainly don’t want to be walking down the aisle baring yellow-tinged teeth. Especially not in that perfect white dress!

Unfortunately, teeth whitening is often put off, or even overlooked all together because of the many other things a bride has to plan and arrange. However, the sooner you consider your teeth whitening options, the sooner you’ll be able to enjoy your glowing smile!

So what exactly are your options? And what is it going to cost you? Well, the following are the three most common methods of whitening: they each have their own pros and cons, from method strength to cost. Consider all the possibilities before making the right choice for you!

In-Office Whitening by your Dentist
If you choose to have your teeth whitened by your dentist, you’ll likely be spending a fair amount of money (between $100 and $800), depending on your practitioner. However, this is one of the most effective methods of teeth whitening. The procedure takes about an hour, and you’ll see immediate results. This is probably the best option for brides with sensitive teeth, as all other methods will cause either your teeth or gums to be even more sensitive.

At-home Custom Bleaching Trays
These bleaching trays are the kind designed specifically for you by your dentist. Because they are provided by your dentist, and the trays have been molded for your mouth, this method is particularly effective. You’ll probably see the most dramatic results, but it will take a little bit longer than laser in-office whitening. Also, this method costs a little bit more: likely between $300 and $2,000 for a custom fitting depending on your dentist and location.

Over-the-Counter Whitening Methods
You know you’ve heard of these: we’re talking Rembrandt whitening gel or Crest Whitestrips, or one of the other various options at your local drugstore. While this method is definitely the cheapest (between $20 and $50), its results are typically less than desired. Also, because you must treat your teeth for several hours over a 1 to 2 week period, your gums and/or teeth are likely to become much more sensitive, at least for a time. That said, if you can’t afford to spend at least a couple of hundred dollars on a whitening treatment, this could be your best bet.

Teeth whitening might be uncomfortable, and a pain in the rear end, but hey, pain is beauty right? And since we’re already started on the clichés: misery does, of course, love company, so why not make your beau beautify his smile as well? The only thing better than a bride with perfectly pearly whites is her and her hubby-to-be both donning glowing smiles on their big day!

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The Red Wedding Dress

Posted on November 23rd, 2007 by Kori Ellis in Wedding Attire 4 Comments

Red Wedding GownIn recent weeks, we talked about the use of touches of color in your wedding gown. But what about a full-fledged roaring red wedding wedding dress? Does it break any wedding etiquette rules?

Well, I don’t think so. I believe you should be able to wear whatever you want. But the red wedding gown still doesn’t get much love here in the United States.

In China, red is the color for weddings and most special occasions. It’s symbolizes life, good fortune and joy. Red and gold decor is seen in most all Chinese weddings and the brides wear red wedding gowns.

In Europe, though not the norm, it’s certainly not unusual to see a woman wearing a red wedding dress as she walks down the aisle. It’s festive, fun and exciting.

So, what would you think if you went to a wedding and the bride was wearing a red gown? Are there any negative connotations to wearing red?

I say if you love red, go for it.

And it doesn’t have to be bright red either. You could choose a burgundy, brick or rose color dress and be equally as beautiful.

Photo credit: All Things Bridal

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