Monthly Archives

January 2017

Uncategorized

8 Wedding Reception Dances to Never Do

January 31, 2017

While many are stressing out about what dances to do at a wedding reception, a few should consider the dances to never do (you know who you are):

1. The Shuffle

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Source: Pinterest

This song was a huge hit in 2011, but that was 6 years ago. A lot of things have changed within 6 years and the shuffle dance should stay in the past. When business make their animated animals do a dance it’s time to modernize your dance moves.

2. Vogue-ing

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Source: MTVAsia

Models do this because the photographer instructs them to do poses. It is their job, not a kind of dance for people to do. I’m sorry to say, but you don’t look cool “vogue-ing” in the middle of dancing.

3. Twerking

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Weddings are formal events, not clubs or parties. Keep it classy! I’m sure you can go one evening without bumping, grinding, or twerking and still enjoy yourself. You have many other dance moves that are more appropriate for the occasion.

4. Intense Dance Faces

d4Source: DailyMail

While not specifically a dance, it’s important to note that while often hilarious, Intense faces are either frightening and embarrassing. Nobody wants to be remember as that person who makes the face when dancing. Tone it down and just do your best to keep your face calm while dancing. I know that dance helps you feel free and release your soul, but please for your own sake, dial it down.

5. Breakdancing

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If you can do this, then you are talented. However, most wedding receptions are not the right place or time for this kind of dancing. (If you have any doubt whether it’s acceptable you shouldn’t do it.) Plus, you don’t want to show off or scare any grandmothers. The wedding is about the couple being the center of attention, so keep your dancing formal.

6. Cotton Eyed Joe

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Unless the wedding theme is country, I don’t suggest doing the cotton eyed joe. Many weddings don’t use this song in their wedding playlist so it is safe to say that you can leave your cowboy boots at home. Just ask the bride or groom if they plan on playing this song and then you will know for sure.

7. The Worm

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Source: NonStopMusic

It is adorable when kids do it, but for adults that time has ended. You could get hurt doing this, or worse hurt someone else, so it is best to leave it to the resilient-bodied children. Plus the kids will laugh and it is entertaining to see them trying to learn or be the best. Cheer on the kids while they are cute and small enough to do the worm at a wedding.

8. Raise the Roof

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Source: Pick’s Post

This dance move has reached the point that parents and grandparents do this to embarrass their children. It is safe to say that raising the roof is dead in the sense of it being popular. Now it is a dance to be silly and laugh with friends. Don’t do it at a wedding unless you are trying to be funny.

 

Just remember to keep it classy and have fun. It is best to not do the dances listed above unless you want to make people laugh or get the bride and groom upset. And please do not make any grandparents have a heart attack from the dances you do.

Uncategorized

7 Activities to Do with Your Besties before Your Wedding

January 30, 2017
besties

Being a bride brings on a lot of stress to make sure your big day is perfect! Not only are you trying to plan everything so your guests are happy for the whole wedding, but you also need to keep up with your normal life. That includes your social life!

You can’t just leave your besties out to dry; they have been keeping you sane throughout this whole journey. Carve out a day to show them your appreciation and do something you all would enjoy. Here are 7 activities that you can do with your girls to show them the love:

1. Slumber Party

Slumber parties are a chance for you and your besties to have your girl talk, pig out on whatever snacks you want, have a movie marathon, and give each other mani/pedis! You will feel like a teenager again but with the added bonus of not worrying that your little brother will barge in. Take advantage of this opportunity because you might not get the chance again after you start your new life with your groom. If you have to be up early the next day you can still do all of these activities but not have them sleep over.

2. A BYOB Painting Class

A bottle of your favorite alcohol plus painting with your besties while they have their own bottles, how can that not be fun? One of them is bound to be hilarious when they get tipsy, just make sure you all have a safe way of getting home afterwards! Who knows, maybe one of you will scream at a painting? No matter what, you should feel loose and stress-free after this.

3. Spa Day

Need I say more? Massages, manicures, pedicures, facials, maybe a sauna, and a healthy lunch. Yes please! Reserving a private space would be perfect for you and your girls to enjoy a nice relaxing day together.

4. A Yoga Session

You can arrange to do yoga on the beach, in a park, or even in a yoga studio room. This allows you to get your workout done while spending quality time with your besties. Yoga helps you destress and clear your mind. If yoga isn’t your thing, you could look into pilates or even zumba!

5. Picnic

With this option, you can have the scenery be whatever you want. All you need is a day with good weather and you can enjoy the picnic at the beach, in a park, or even your backyard. Each person can make a sandwich how they like it, have snacks for everyone to enjoy, and you can decide if there will be alcohol or not. Enjoy connecting with your friends without technology and really catch up with one another. Preparing the picnic all together could be a fun activity to do as well.

6. Paintball

An active way to have some friendly competition. You all could do a free for all against each other or find a group of people to go against for a “team deathmatch”. In a team deathmatch you and your friends will need to work together to beat the other team. Beware, you could ruin the outfit you wear so choose clothes you don’t care to have splattered in paint.

7. A Cooking Class

Find one that you and your friends can do as a group. You may need to schedule your own class for your group. All of you will have fun cooking together, maybe drink a little, and eat some delicious food you all made. Maybe you will learn a skill in the kitchen to impress your soon-to-be husband!

 

Whatever activity you all decide to do together, focus on your communication. Choose an activity that will fit you and your group of friends and have those heart-to-hearts. You will soon start your new life as a wife, but that doesn’t mean your friends are not important and special to you.

Tips

The 10 Best Ideas to Announce Your Engagement

January 25, 2017

How you announce your engagement sets the precedent for your entire wedding. This announcement shows what kind of couple you are and is the perfect time to let your personalities shine!

1. Engagement Photo Shoot

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It is classic and beautiful! You can pick whatever you want to wear and make your hair look exactly how you want. It is also great that you will have plenty of photos to remember this special occasion. Once you see the prints, you’ll be so excited to send them out and share the wonderful news.

2. Have Someone Capture the Moment

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Going this route will let you reminisce about that day for years to come. Everyone will feel like they were there because your face was actually caught in that moment. This photo will be an important part of your relationship’s history and it will be so great to have as a keepsake.  

3. A Cute Hands Photo

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This is another traditional and cute photo to send to announce your engagement. It shows off your beautiful ring  while showing the love between you two! You could opt for the photo to be in black and white to give it the classic look. However, having it in color is great and will help you remember what you both were wearing for the special photo.

4. A Play on Words

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Using your engagement ring as the ‘O’ in a word like, “f’O’rever and always” or “l’O’ve” would be a cute way to show the new ring and bring out your personality! Scrabble pieces are great to do this with or you could get wooden chips and paint the letters you want on them. The great thing about this choice is that you can use whatever message you want. Maybe you have a favorite quote that would work or even an inside joke! Whatever the message you choose, it will be special to you.

5. Use Your Pets

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Photo Credited to: JoPhoto

Your pets are adorable so why not use them to add some humor to the announcement? They are important parts of you and your spouse’s lives so show off your entire soon-to-be family. Adding a sign saying that “our humans are getting married” or “my mom and dad are getting married” will give the photo that extra cute factor.

6. Starbucks can Help You Out

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Starbucks employees will write what you want on the cup so if you normally go for your morning coffee, take the photo op! Include the ring in the photo to show it off under “Mrs.” or “Future Mrs.” or even “Bride to be”.

7. Be Funny

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Source: On etsy.com

Need I say more? The picture itself is worth a thousand words! It is a funny and cute way to show off your new ring while you enjoy your cup of coffee.

8. The “I said yes!”

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Source: Instagram

Again, the photo says it all! Use a washable marker to write “I said yes” on your hand or you could write it on a sign of your choice.

9. Your Ring and Soon-to-be Spouse

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Source: Instagram

Announcing your engagement this way will show off your new ring as well as your soon-to-be spouse who chose it out! Show people how great they did with their face being a part of the special photo.

10. Use a Sign

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Source: hirerush.com/blog/wedding-gift-ideas-budget-friendly/

Using a sign to announce your engagement will let your personality shine because you can have a sign say whatever you want! You can buy the sign already made or make your own sign with your own clever message!

Decorations

Top Birthday Party Themes for 2017

January 24, 2017

Children are unique and have their own special interests. However, there are certain things that all children love which is why you often see similar themes repeating each birthday party. Here are the themes that will be popular for children’s birthday parties in 2017:

Pokémon

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Source:birthdayexpress

Pokémon has been big ever since it came out in 1996 in Japan and 1999 in the United States. With multiple generations, a TV show, video games, and a trading card game, It is loved by many, no matter a person’s gender. None of the kids will want to be on their phones with a theme this fun! The possibilities are endless and there are plenty of DIY projects related to Pokemon that can be found online.

Shopkins

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Source:birthdayexpress

Shopkins was very popular in 2016 and in 2017 it’s expected to continue to be a popular theme! If you have a girl, you should really consider this theme. By adding cute faces onto inanimate objects this theme will make the objects, feel alive and as if they have personalities. Bright colors, sweet treats, and cute faces on objects; what little girl wouldn’t love it?

Star Wars

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Source: Pinterest

Need I say more? This theme is every boy’s dream, even some girls would love this! There are so many decorations for Star Wars out there and there are plenty DIY projects you can do. You can easily turn your living room into space with some curtains and glowing stars. Your creativity can go crazy with this theme and all children will love it!

Disney’s Moana

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Source: Pinterest

Moana was a big hit when it came to theaters. Boys and girls loved this movie and who doesn’t love a good luau? You can bring a slice of Hawaii to your backyard by getting the children leis, making fruit kabobs, and having flower and tiki decorations. If you want to really impress everyone and get some great pictures, you can get a balloon arch of coconut trees and a balloon statue of Moana!

Petting Zoo or Reptile Encounter

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Source:celebritypartyplanner

Petting Zoos are great for boy and girl birthday parties! You just need to be careful that none of the guests at your child’s birthday party are allergic to the animals.This theme allows for children to learn in a fun way and make your child’s party special. You can also opt to get a reptile and amphibian party if that is preferred. Either way, it is a fun way for children to learn about different animals.

An Emoji Party

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Source: OrientalTrading
If your kid loves emojis then this is the party theme to choose! Emojis are super popular and new ones come out every year. The yellow face emoticons are the classic loved ones that are the icons for all emojis. There are many decorations to get for this theme and all the kids will love to see the cute funny faces everywhere.

Tips, Weddings

Plan Your Dream Wedding with These 15 Online Wedding Planning Tools

January 20, 2017
online wedding planning

 

Here are 15 wedding planning tools that should be used to plan every wedding:

 

VenueCenter

VenueCenter is the simplest way to search for, request a quote, and book venues online. With an extensive collection of thousands of venues and powerful filtering tools you’ll be able to find the perfect venue in a matter of minutes.

 

The Knot Wedding Websites

The Knot’s free wedding website tool allows you to choose from 100+ designs and then customize and personalize the site providing guests with important details such as the date, location, gift registry and more.

 

GigMasters

GigMasters was designed specifically to hire live musicians and DJs for your wedding but has since come to include other vendors as well. It allows you to see photos, videos and verified reviews of a variety of vendors in your area.

 

HitchSwitch

HitchSwitch helps you change your name after getting married. (It’s harder than you think and can take months to do it on your own!)

 

Skipper

Skipper is a hotel booking website that specializes in booking large blocks (8 or 9 rooms) for weddings.

 

Brideside

Brideside simplifies picking bridesmaids dresses, allowing you to choose over 350 styles from the world’s leading designers, and providing help along the way including inspiration, sizing and more.

 

WeddingWire Planning Tools

From a powerful budget tool, to a checklist, seating and more, WeddingWire’s free tools promise to help alleviate stress and start planning.

 

Wedding Hashtag Generator

Wedding Hashtag Generator helps you create the perfect hashtag for you wedding. This is especially important when doing crowdsourced photos or other things which incorporate an Instagram feed.

 

AllSeated

AllSeated is a powerful tool created for event planners (but just as easily utilized by couples) for creating and managing seating arrangements and guest lists. AllSeated offers exact floorplans to scale, and uses 3D viewing, timelines and more to make your life simpler.

 

VistaPrint

Few consider using VistaPrint for their save the dates and invitations, but it’s quality, design and pricing is hard to beat – even when going a DIY route! You’ll wow guests and save time by customizing and sending invitations and save the dates with VistaPrint.

 

TaskRabbit

TaskRabbit is a marketplace originally created for projects like cleaning and small home repairs/improvements. Don’t let it’s original purpose fool you though, if you’re looking for a photographer, DJ, or other vendor you may be able to find them on this platform for cheaper than on wedding specific platforms!

 

NearlyNewlywed

NearlyNewlywed allows you to get your hands on beautiful designer wedding dresses for significantly less by only selling used and sample/showroom gowns. If you do get your dress on here, you’ll save hundreds on the gown of your dreams!

 

Zola

Zola is a wedding registry that enables you to combine different brands, experiences and even ask for cash all on the same page. This makes it easier for both you and your friends and family.

 

The Black Tux

The Black Tux is a Tux and Suit rental service that doesn’t suck. They use high quality fabric, great looking designs, and do it all at a great price.

 

Loverly

Loverly is unique as they offer virtual wedding planning services. You’ll connect with and chat with an online concierge to help inspire, plan and coordinate your wedding!

Corporate Event Venues, Corporate Events

What You Need to Do When Planning a Business Event

January 19, 2017
business event

There is a lot of preparation and planning that goes into making a business event come to life. Here are the key points that need to be met to have a successful business event.

Size

You need to reserve a venue that will accommodate your entire guest list. Knowing your party size is important to get the right venue. For example, a large party size may require an outdoor venue while a smaller party would do better in a more intimate, indoor setting. Once you have your event’s size figured out, you can begin to think about the location.

Location

Your event’s location is the most important thing you need to plan out. Some guests may have special requests such as wheelchair accessibility, a non-smoking environment, designated smoking areas, and more. Make sure you plan for these guests accordingly. If you have an outdoor event you need to account for bad weather possibilities. Indoor venues require extra care as a venue can quickly feel cramped if too many guests are in the space. Different venues can also help inspire certain messages so you need to find a venue that will match the message you are trying to get across. There are pros and cons for both indoor and outdoor events which will help you determine which site is best. It is crucial to reserve the venue early enough because many spaces fill up very quickly and some even have a wait for an entire year!

Food Choices

The food and beverages that are served are very important to making your business event a success. Diverse options are crucial if you plan on everyone being satisfied and happy with the food choices. Your attendees need to be able to choose between an assortment of healthy options. Some guests will have dietary restrictions like gluten allergies or religious requirements that you’ll need to take into account. Variety is key!

Meeting Guests’ Needs

Everyone uses the internet and now rely on having access to it at all times. Having free, fast, and reliable Wi-Fi is key to pleasing your guests, so be sure your venue has it. Creating an app for your event will also make life easier for your guests to check in and keep track of the event’s agenda while also making it easier for you to keep track of your RSVPs.

If the event is longer than 3 hours, guests need to be able to get up and move. Some venues offer creative exercise breaks, like a yoga sessions or a zumba classes. These are great for keeping guests energized and happy!

It’s important to keep guests happy by having good entertainment options. You can look into having a team building exercise the day before the actual event at the same venue. It will help make your team communicate better, benefit those who go, and depending on what you do, the community as well.

Weddings

20 Instagram Accounts to Follow for Wedding Ideas and Inspiration

January 16, 2017
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When it comes to finding wedding ideas and inspiration, many instantly jump to Pinterest, but there are plenty of great accounts on instagram that you can follow if you prefer the Instagram interface more than Pinterest. Here are

 

Bash, Please

Bash, Please is an event and wedding planning company consisting of leading designers, authors, travelers and more. They operate in the Los Angeles and San Francisco area.

VenueCenter

VenueCenter is an online event venue finder. It allows you to research, quote and book a venue all in one place.

Moon Canyon

Kristen Caissie is a florist whose pictures are sure to inspire your bouquets and floral decorations.

Minted

Minted is a marketplace that connects you with artists. Their feed is filled with inspiration because of it.

Geraldine Magazine

Geraldine Magazine is a fine art wedding publication and their instagram feed is sure to inspire and benefit couples.

Our Labor of Love

Our labor of love is a instagram account shared by several photographers and is a great way to get inspiration for wedding and engagement photos.

Style Me Pretty

Style Me Pretty’s Instagram account will help you find inspiration in the pretty details.

Zola Registry

ZOLA’s Instagram account features a wide range of wedding photos and is sure to provide plenty of inspiration.

Cake Bloom

We all need a little more cake in our lives, and Cake Bloom’s Instagram account will provide plenty of eye candy for us to drool over!

Hair and Makeup by Steph

Sometimes you just need a little inspiration or advice on your makeup or hair, in that case look no further than Hair and Makeup by Steph.

Bob & Dawn Davis Photography

Wedding photographers not only capture unique poses, backdrops and more, but also details like the dress, makeup hair, and more. That’s why you can’t follow too many wedding photographers!

Amaryllis Inc.

Amaryllis Inc. is a floral design company and their instagram account will definitely help inspire your wedding’s floral accents.

Alex Events

Wedding event planners are great ways to find inspiration on a large variety of details, and Alex Events is no exception.

Laura Hooper Calligraphy

One of the toughest spots to find inspiration can be for your invitations and save the dates, but Laura Hooper’s Instagram account will provide all the inspiration you need!

Revelry Event Designers

Revelry Event Designers specialize in event & interior design, furniture rental and uber draping. This’ll give you a great look at inspiration in areas that many couples forget to consider such as seating arrangement and more.

Jordan Payne Events

Jordan Payne is another great wedding planner to follow.

Christine Bentley Photography

Christine Bentley is a celebrity photographer, which means that she is sure to capture some of the leading styles and looks – perfect inspiration for the trendy couple.

Empty Vase

Empty Vase is a luxury florist and makes a great account to follow to get floral inspiration.

Ira Lippke Studios

Ira Lippke Studios is a collection of photographers and filmakers who specialize in weddings. It’s like following several photographers at once, so you’re sure to get different styles and plenty of inspiration.

Mindy Weiss

Mindy Weiss is another events planner who’ll be sure to provide loads of inspiration.

Event Planning

The Rules about Plus-Ones

January 10, 2017
plus ones

 

A lot of time, money, and planning go into making a wedding happen which limits how many plus-ones can be allowed. Both the couple and the guest need to be understanding and caring. Since it’s the couple’s big day, it should be both special for them and remain in their budget, which means they may limit plus-ones in order to allow the guests closest to them attend. However, guests don’t want to be miserable and lonely because their loved ones aren’t there. Weddings are meant to be enjoyed by everyone and celebrate the start of the couple’s life together.

So, with that in mind, here are the some rules for both the couple and guests:

The Couple

The bride and groom need to make sure the invitation is set up correctly so people know whether they are able to bring guests and if so, how many guests they can bring. This is best done by writing the list of people invited by name on the invitation and then adding how many guests or plus-ones may be brought at the end. Another way is to write “and guest” alongside the specific people who you’ll be allowing to bring a guest.

When it comes to the wedding party, they should always be allowed a plus-one. Allowing a plus-one will show them the couple’s gratitude for helping with the planning, stress, and giving support.

If the couple isn’t allowing plus-ones for certain guests, make sure to plan so they have an enjoyable experience at the wedding. Don’t have all the single guests stuck at one table, but seat them with friendly people that they have something in common with or already know. It will allow everyone to have a nice time and encourage people to meet one another.

If guests reach out to ask for a plus-one, the couple needs to stand their ground. They already talked about it and planned everything out according to who was invited. Replies should be calm and kind saying that it is an intimate gathering and that they are sorry. Sticking to the plan will allow couples to keep the wedding how they planned and wanted.

The Guest

Guests need to be respectful of the couple’s wishes. Often times, it may feel upsetting, but if the couple did not offer a plus-one, don’t be offended as it’s not personal. They likely are on a tight budget and need to limit the number of guests at the wedding.

If you’re offered a plus-one and can’t think of someone to bring, then you can choose to go solo. Just ensure that you write that you’ll be attending alone on the RSVP so that the couple knows to plan accordingly.

If you are bringing a plus one, it may make it easier on the couple if you write the guests name on the invitation. This will assist them if they are personalizing items at the wedding such as putting names at seats for guests.

If your guest has to cancel, don’t bring a new guest. The couple probably made placement cards and planned the seating arrangement carefully, a new guest could throw things off and the couple might get upset even if the headcount is still the same.

Being offered a plus-one means the couple chose you to have a guest over others so be sure to show that generosity in return with your gift. Your guest shouldn’t feel obligated to give a gift if they don’t know the couple, just make sure you show your appreciation and the couple will be happy in return.
Couples and guests all want to be happy, so just be considerate and reasonable and enjoy the event.

Wedding Themes and Colors

Why Nontraditional Wedding Dresses Will Never Be Popular

January 8, 2017
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Traditional wedding dresses may be the one constant in our pinterest fueled wedding trends. Though spectacular looking, floral print, dip dye, color, crop tops, rompers and other nontraditional wedding dresses will never be more popular than a more traditional styled wedding dress.

nontraditional

The yellow line indicates color wedding dresses, dip dye wedding dresses in blue, and crop top wedding dresses in green. Floral print and romper wedding dresses are shown in red and purple. When we added traditional wedding dresses to the graph, the nontraditional dresses became a little more than a line on the bottom of the graph.

Nontraditional dresses have never seen a true increase in popularity

These nontraditional dresses tend to have one-time spikes in popularity, but they return to their previous levels of popularity (or is obscurity a better term?). These short-lived boosts in popularity are likely the result of a viral article, post or picture of one of these styles.

Looking back at the last 5 years, we can see that these dresses don’t become more popular over time, instead, they remain at their same level of popularity. The only dress which didn’t conform to this rule was the crop top wedding dress, but that may be because it’s a new style of wedding dress.

So the next time you read about the new style of wedding dress that’s “sure to become the most popular style” take it with a large dose of skepticism. At best, the dress will have a momentary spike in popularity but will settle at a lower popularity level.

Does this mean that you should avoid nontraditional dresses?

Not at all! If you feel drawn to a dress that doesn’t conform to the norm, choose it by all means! It’s your big day, and you should feel free to have it just the way you want it. Besides, nontraditional dresses have tons of character and look beautiful! Just take a look at these dresses:

wedding dresss nontraditional

These dresses are modern, colorful, and full of personality. While you may catch some of your guests off guard, their surprise will turn to awe as they marvel at the beauty of your gown, and maybe it’s a good thing that these dresses will never be popular. If they were, they might lose some of their appeal.

At the moment, these dresses are reserved for the daring brides. The brides who are willing to take a big risk and as a result end up with a big pay off. Are you a daring bride? Or do you like to keep things traditional? Let us know in the comments below!

Houston Venues

4 Pet Friendly Wedding Venues in Houston

January 6, 2017
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If a dog is really man’s best friend, is it that crazy to think one could be your best man? Many couples who’s pets occupy a special place in their heart are coming up with unique ways to incorporate pets on their wedding days.

However, many forget to consider the fact that they need a pet friendly wedding venue to be able to incorporate their pets in their big day. These are the top 4 wedding venues in Houston which allow pets:

1. The Rothko Chapel

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The Rothko Chapel – Houston, TX

With it’s understated beauty and serene atmosphere, The Rothko Chapel is an ideal space for weddings in the Houston, Texas area. Considered a sacred place, this chapel is kind enough to allow pets to take part in the wedding day activities (so long as they are well trained).

2. 1940 Air Terminal Museum

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1940 Air Terminal Museum – Houston, TX

For the couple who are both history/aviation buffs and pet lovers, the 1940 Air Terminal Museum is the perfect wedding venue. With exhibit rooms filled with artifacts, photographs, uniforms, vintage aircraft, and airline memorabilia, the terminal turned museum charts the triumph and progression of both private and commercial flight in Texas history.

As an added bonus, the museum also affords a front row vantage point to Hobby Airport’s diverse airport operations. It’s like your wedding will have it’s own private airshow consisting of airline traffic, business aviation, and frequent fixed wing and rotary wing general aviation traffic!

3. Silver Sycamore Bed & Breakfast

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Silver Sycamore Bed & Breakfast – Houston, TX

The Silver Sycamore wedding and reception venue in Pasadena Texas boasts a reception venue, restaurant, tea room, bed and breakfast, bridal cottage, shopping village, coffee house, two gazebos and a lush, five-acre garden.

This is great news for brides and grooms who long for a rustic and peaceful wedding and reception venue where everything is available ‘under one roof’ and the folk really are genuinely hospitable.

4. Hotel Indigo Houston At The Galleria

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Hotel Indigo Houston At The Galleria – Houston, TX

Thoughtfully situated in the trendy Uptown district, Hotel Indigo Houston At the Galleria features cool colors, elegant decor, and boutique-styling that gives an atmosphere of distinction and inspiration.

With many amenities like free WI-Fi, the venue is sure to impress and make for a smooth and worry free wedding day. It’s the perfect pet friendly wedding venue in Houston for couples looking for a simple, yet unique experience.

 

Weddings

4 American Wedding Traditions We Don’t Want to Die

January 5, 2017
AMERICAN TRADITIONS

2016 more than any year before, saw a huge backlash towards (previously) popular wedding traditions. While some traditions definitely deserved to be forgotten, it’d be a shame if we lost all of our traditions! Here are a few American wedding traditions that are seeing a decline in popularity, but should be kept alive:

1. The House Party

No, it’s not that kind of house party.

A house party is the friends and families who aren’t standing at the altar with you, but are still assigned to an important wedding function. These may be the people doing readings, speeches, and even those who are ushering in guests. It’s custom to include your house party in all of the same festivities as you would your bridal party, including lunches, showers, and even the bachelorette party.

The house party originated in the south (and more specifically, Texas). It is where the controversial concept of the honorary bridesmaid came from.

2. A Groom’s Cake

Groom’s cakes were originally a Victorian era English tradition that came over to the states and has lived on in the South. The tradition is simply that the groom gets to choose their own dessert and its decoration. His dessert is then served alongside the Bride’s cake (which is the larger wedding cake that most of us consider to be the wedding cake.”

The groom’s cake can be decorated in his favorite sports team’s colors or in a way that shows off his hobby or personality. He typically decides the flavor as well, and in the past, it was custom to lace the groom’s cake with alcohol. Now flavors are typically rich, unique flavors like peanut butter and chocolate.

3. Venetian Hour

The dessert bar is a popular fixture at today’s weddings, but few realize where this originated: the venetian hour. The venetian hour is like a dessert bar on steroids. It’s a massive assortment of desserts ranging from cookies to pies and even fancy desserts like bananas foster and more. It’s so large that many brides understandably choose to forego a wedding cake, however the venetian hour is typically served after the cake has been served and nobody will blame you for serving both!

If you couldn’t tell by the name, the Venetian hour originated in Italy, but was brought over to the U.S. by Italian Immigrants. Since, it’s become a cherished tradition in New York and New Jersey.

4. Homemade Cookie Table

Originating in Pittsburgh, the Cookie Table is a tradition that basically boils down to having a giant assortment of cookies at your wedding. Typically, family and close friends will make their family recipes for cookies and bring them to the wedding in the hundreds. This enables guests to try a wide variety of cookie recipes.

Now you don’t need to require all the cookies to be handmade, and a few could be bought, but remember the goal is to to have cookies which your guests have likely never tried so if you do go the store bought option, try to find a boutique cookie shop or bakery that sells some of your favorite cookies so that guests can still get a unique experience!

Weddings

The Secret to Throwing an Intimate Wedding, Regardless How Big

January 4, 2017
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Did you know that a larger wedding may make your marriage more successful?

If not, I highly recommend you check out that link as it has some interesting statistics on size of wedding and quality of marriage. One reason couples choose to forego a large wedding (besides price, which is the most obvious reason to avoid a large wedding) is that it is tough to retain intimacy in a large wedding. It’s not impossible though and and with the following tricks, you’ll be able to make any size wedding feel more intimate:

1. The Pre Party

One of the best ways to increase intimacy is to host several smaller events like a pre party or dinner with groups of guests leading up to the wedding.

2. Incorporating Lighting

Lighting is a powerful tool for setting the mood of your wedding, and when used right it can increase the feeling of intimacy and make a large venue feel smaller. The keys to using lighting to create a more intimate feel is to avoid bright lights, make use of non-traditional lights such as candles, lanterns, bistro lights, and to use uplighting. This will create a more romantic and more intimate setting.

3. Semicircular (and Circular) Seating

If your space allows, you can set up seating in a semicircle or even a complete circle to achieve a more intimate feel during the ceremony. This allows more guests to remain close to you during the ceremony.

4. Long Square Tables

For an immediate increase in intimacy, forego round tables and make use of long, recatangular tables instead

5. Small Centerpieces

Tall, extravagant centerpieces look great, but can hinder conversation. For a more intimate wedding, decorate with small centerpieces. This will give guests a chance to see and converse with each other.

6. Food Stations

Many weddings are already starting to feature multiple food stations rather than a traditional buffet line or serving food to guests, so you may already be planning to do this. If not, consider using food stations instead of more traditional options as it’ll enable guests to mingle while getting food – something they wouldn’t necessarily do in a buffet line or while waiting to served.

7. Greeting Guests

While considered a must and tradition for some, not all couples take the time to greet guests during weddings. Don’t settle for letting guests come up to greet you and instead take the time to visit each table and greet the guests/thank them for attending your wedding. This will drastically improve the intimacy of your wedding.

8. Dance Surrounded by Friends and Family

Instead of taking your first dance with guests seated, consider dancing while surrounded by friends and family. Inviting guests to come to the edges of the dancefloor for the first dance will be a surprising and intimate gesture.

9. Lounges, Activities and More

Create spaces which your guests can utilize away from the main festivities. These spaces should be an area for guests to gather, talk and even take part in activities. They can be set up to cater to a small group of guests so that they promote feelings of intimacy most. Ideas for such spaces include whiskey and cigar lounges, areas with small group activities such as board games, and fire pits.