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11 things you should NOT do at your wedding

We have often spoken about wedding etiquette on our blog, and discussed various lists of “Do’s” that you should follow at your wedding. However, we haven’t given much thought to all the things that you SHOULDN’T do!

Not doing certain things on your wedding day is just as important as doing other things. Only then will your wedding progress smoothly and things be fine as they should.Here is a list of things that you should avoid doing on your wedding day! Keep these in mind, and you will save yourself a lot of trouble.

1.Don’t overwhelm yourself with too many responsibilities

From making sure that your bridesmaids are ready on time, to setting up wedding favors and following up with vendors, there are hundreds of tasks that you may have to handle on the wedding day. Pay close attention to this—Don’t do anything more than what you absolutely must, on your wedding day.

You should relax and enjoy your wedding, and even the smallest task that you handle yourself can affect you adversely. So, free yourself up on the day, and delegate most of the responsibilities to those who are capable of handling it. After all, this is why you have bridesmaids, family and friends. This is also why we think every bride should at least have a day-of planner, if not a wedding planner. Trust them to do the job well, and only supervise their activities. Don’t overwhelm yourself with last-minute responsibilities. Save your attention for what is happening at the moment, as this is the best way to enjoy your wedding to the fullest.

2.Don’t test anything out for the first time on your wedding day

Whether it is brand new make-up, or your wedding shoes, don’t ever make the mistake of trying it on for the first time on your actual wedding day. When you experiment on your wedding day, you run the risk of things ending up disastrously. The worst part is that there may not be time for corrections if you do not like what you see. So, prepare for your wedding day in advance, so you know what you will get. Make sure you do the following ahead of time:

  • Have a trial makeup and hair session, so you can comfortably plan your wedding day look and make changes if you aren’t happy with your original idea.
  • Try on your wedding dress after your alterations are done, so you can attend to any last minute changes if required
  • Break in your wedding shoes by wearing them regularly for small amounts of time during the days leading up to the wedding. This will help you get used to the shoes, and will make all activities on the day, including dancing, a lot more fun.
  • Use your rehearsal dinner to discuss, distribute and organize the entire wedding day activities in a planned fashion.

3.Don’t be too busy to meet and greet your guests

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Wedding guests despise couples who are aloof and too busy to spend any time with them. Appreciate the effort every one of your guest who comes to attend your wedding. Even if you aren’t particularly interested in meeting guests you don’t know, (perhaps they are from your parents’ or in-laws’ guest list), be courteous and make an effort to chat with them.

All the people who are at your wedding have spent time and money to be there, and they deserve to be acknowledged. Only then will your guests remember your wedding fondly. So, set aside time and make sure you smile, wave and talk to every one of your guests. This article on the Wedding Wire gives more valuable advice on some of the other things that wedding guests hate at a wedding. It may be a good idea to check it out and plan your wedding accordingly.

5.Never go hungry or thirsty on your wedding day

There are many things to keep you busy from dawn to dusk on your wedding day, and this is precisely why you shouldn’t be thirsty or hungry while coping with all that strain. The last thing you want is to feel light-headed, parched or dizzy because you didn’t get the nutrition you needed for this hectic day.

Although your schedule is tight, factor in breaks to hydrate and munch on something. Choose no-fuss, easy to eat and digest foods that will neither create a mess nor be too difficult to eat, when you are pressed for time. Have a healthy breakfast to kick-start the day on the right note. Plan simple small meals and snacks for the rest of the day, so you aren’t hungry. Also choose clear fluids to hydrate yourself, so you don’t have to worry about staining your dress. This article on the Brides blog will provide you good tips on the foods that would be best for your wedding day.

6.Don’t forget to plan your important photo shoots well

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Some wedding photos, like those that have to be taken at sunset, have to be timed perfectly. Don’t just assume that it will happen as intended. If you miss the moment, you cannot claim it back, and that would be a huge disappointment.

So, if there are shots that you want to take when the lighting is just right, or before you change your outfit or accessories, plan them in advance. Discuss these with your photographer, so you both know when it is time. Also delegate the duty of reminding you about it, to one of your efficient and punctual bridesmaids, and you can worry less about it. With a little foresight and systematic planning, everything about a wedding will progress smoothly and with no hassles.

7.Don’t lose your cool

You may be worried, anxious and irritated by the way things progress or by how some people behave on your wedding day. This may be a jealous bridesmaid, inefficient vendor or even a guest. Whatever be the case, never react in the heat of the moment and do something you may later regret. Even if you are fully justified in blowing your top in such a scenario, remember that it is a happy occasion and everybody becomes uncomfortable when things go berserk and an argument or fight ensues.

Although Bridezillas aren’t very uncommon, remember that nobody likes being around one. When you sort things out by getting angry, nobody including you, feels good about it. So, control your temper, and mentally prepare yourself to be calm and happy, irrespective of what happens. If you are certain that something wrong is bound to happen, consider your options and think of a solution in advance. If you expect a wedding vendor to do a shabby job on the day, warn him in advance. If a guest is bound to kick up an argument, find a sensible solution like arranging a distraction, that will avoid such a scenario. If things still go wrong, hush it up and settle it silently. The fewer the people who know about it, fewer the chances of it becoming a topic of conversation.

8.Don’t complain

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Even if things don’t go as per plan or you are unhappy with certain arrangements, try to focus on the positives and be happy on your special day. If you have genuine reason for complaints, save it for later. This is not the time to secretly bemoan your in-laws or express how disappointed you are with your bridal party.

Remember that your complaints are not going to change anything, except maybe irritate few people. Also, you will spoil your own mood, when you dwell on the negatives instead of enjoying the good things going on. And think of what would happen if you were overheard by the wrong people? How would it be if your complaints were to reach the person you spoke about. This would only irritate them and make them unhappy about being at your wedding. Try to be positive, and brush off thing before they get to you, and your wedding day will be a lot more fun.

9.Don’t be unprepared for wedding day emergencies

Wedding day mishaps happen, and often when you least expect it. The best way is to be prepared for any likely scenario. Depending on your wedding details, there are chances for different things to go wrong. If you have an outdoor wedding in summer, nature may surprise you with a quick shower. Your wedding dress may end up with a stain or a button may come lose. You or someone in the bridal party may suddenly feel dizzy or nauseated with all the excitement. So, there are plenty of opportunities for things to go wrong.

As optimistic as you may be, it doesn’t hurt to be ready for the worst. Pack your emergency kit for any wedding day disaster, or even buy it online, and you should be ready to tide over most emergencies. Find out all about what should go into this kit by checking out this previous post of ours.

10.Don’t get drunk

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We know it is a happy occasion and merriment goes with booze, but don’t drown yourself in it. Things can get ugly if you go overboard with the drinks, and it can ruin your entire memory of the happy event. You do not want your guests to see you drunk and doing things you wouldn’t want them to see. Plus, they will always remember your wedding because of how drunk the bride was.

No matter how well you plan your wedding, if you or your husband create a scene after getting drunk, this will be on your guests’ memories years later. Also, you may miss out or have clouded memory of several details of the special day, if you are soaring on alcohol. So, enjoy the champagne from the toast, and maybe an extra drink or two. But stay away from any more than you really need.

11.Don’t forget to enjoy yourself

We think this is the most important of all of them. Don’t get so caught up with wedding etiquette, meeting and greeting, managing vendors and planning and organizing everything, that you forget to truly live and enjoy every moment of your wedding day. This is a once-in-a-lifetime occasion, and one that you deserve to remember every detail of.

So, while you chat with your guests, don’t get caught up in long conversations that will keep you away from all the fun. Delegate as many responsibilities as is possible, and try not to micromanage every last detail, or you will have no time for fun. Your wedding is a day that you have planned to perfection, and if anyone deserves to enjoy it, it has to be you. Take brief moments to look around and capture those memory snapshots, dance like you mean it and enjoy your first kiss so it becomes a fond memory.

This brings us to the end of the lengthy list of what you shouldn’t do on your wedding day. Didn’t we tell you, it isn’t as bad as it sounds. With a little planning, you can steer clear of trouble. Do you have any more to add to this list? We would love it if you could share your insights with us in the comments section.

Best for Bride is all about making bridal dreams come true. From the perfect wedding dress to the entire ensemble, décor and other aspects of wedding planning, we can help you organize your wedding to the last detail. Check out our online website to find out all you need to find out how we can help you. Our exciting offers, referral bonuses and special sales will make it easier for you to come one step closer to having your perfect wedding.

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10 tips for a minimum-stress wedding day

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Weddings are big events, and big stress is an unavoidable factor when events this big. Even if you will be having an intimate wedding with just family and close friends, you will still have a lot of planning to do. And, unless you have previously been involved in planning an event with as many details as a wedding, there will be moments when you will feel totally stressed out.

There is only so much a bride can do to prepare for such scenarios. Nevertheless, any challenge can be tackled, if you are calm, organized and refuse to succumb to pressure.

Here are ten tips that will help you navigate the unexpected, or at least prepare in the best possible way for it.

1.Insure your wedding

Most couples overlook the importance of wedding insurance, as they are already operating on a tight budget. Nevertheless, it is a worthwhile investment, when you think of the potential mishaps that can throw your wedding into chaos. You will be working with most vendors for the first time ever, and even those with sterling reputations can disappoint or cancel at the most inopportune time. If you have a long engagement, things may change from the time you booked your venue to the actual wedding day. Then there is the weather factor; one of the most unpredictable problem-makers in the wedding world. Instead of worrying about what might go wrong on your wedding day, it is always best to have a safety net. This will help you relax, since you have a back-up and your money will not be lost, should anything unplanned happen.

There are different types of wedding insurances, and you can choose one that suits your budget and needs. Either have the entire wedding insured, or insure only those aspects that are expensive or prone to problems. So, if a blizzard comes along, or your wedding jewelry loses a gem, you can reschedule, replace or re-organize for a minimum difference in cost.

2.Do your lists digitally

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Some brides prefer to do everything the pen and paper way, but this is tedious, time-consuming and error-prone. We think it is best to start all your wedding planning with a suitable wedding planning app. Else, designate a folder on your desktop for all your wedding planning. This will allow you to collate all the information in a single location and this minimizes the stress later on. Google allows you to organize your various documents, and with its many options, is one of the most streamlined ways to plan every aspect of your wedding. This article on the Huff Post suggests creating a Google doc with your potential guest list and all other details pertaining to it. What a brilliant idea! It is much easier this way, and you can add not just the names, but addresses and even RSVP details later, in a single place. Cloud sharing allows you to share this list with all those who are involved in the planning, thus making the entire process very efficient.

3.Take small breaks from wedding planning

You know how it is when you are planning a wedding, when you are either working or planning, planning and planning! Avoid overwhelming yourself this way. When you put together your wedding planning time-line, make sure to incorporate breaks from all the wedding planning. This will help you focus and get back to it with full gusto, after you rejuvenate yourself. If you have a full-time job, it is a good idea to take a day or two off work just to relax. And absolutely no wedding planning during those days! Plan a date with your fiancé instead! Unless you fuel your romance during your engagement, you will miss the best time of your relationship running behind details and not enjoying what you should be doing, at the time. Try to have at least a few normal weekends with friends and family and catch up on some well-deserved couple time. Your wedding stress will naturally reduce, as you will not be burning yourself out.

4.Hire help

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You may believe that you are perfectly capable of handling everything yourself, and we think you are too! Still, consider hiring help for some, if not all wedding tasks. This is just so you aren’t overloaded with responsibilities, and planning is actually fun and not tiring. If you plan to DIY things, do not exceed what you can manage within the available time. Remember that you will be doing everything on a large-scale. So, account for the time, effort and resources that will go into a task. When you overburden yourself, you will not have the time or energy to enjoy your wedding day, and that wouldn’t be fun. So, divert a part of your budget to hire help. For a smooth wedding day, you should definitely consider a day-of planner. And, if you have the budget, and aren’t obsessed about micro-managing everything at your wedding, consider hiring the services of a wedding planner, or at least a part-time planner for some aspects.

5.Have someone else hear the speeches

Many brides look forward to the wedding toasts and speeches, but are equally worried about inappropriate things being said or a speech being long and boring. However, listening to the speeches yourself is not a good idea, as it can ruin the surprise for you. To save yourself any worry, ask someone you trust to hear the speeches and tell you if they sound fine. Your maid of honor or mother, or someone who thinks like you do, can do the job. Provide a crisp set of guidelines of what to look out for, so they can analyze whether the speech is fine or not,. Then, leave it to them. This will be one less thing for you to worry about, and you can relax trusting that the speeches will be great, and not to mention New!

6.Plan the day before

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Just like you plan every detail of your wedding day, plan the day-before as well, and you will find things progressing smoothly. There are a number of things that you should do on the day before your wedding. This includes setting out your dress and accessories, checking on your bridesmaids and vendors, finishing last-minute arrangements and finding time to relax. The day before can be very stressful, as there will be many arrangements to attend to. So, rather than go through the day attacking things as time allows, create a checklist and it will save you a lot of stress. List all the tasks for the day, and schedule in time for each of them. Also add some buffer time, so you can catch up on any last-minute needs, or finish off tasks that take longer than anticipated. Most importantly, you must find time to relax, catch your breath and sleep well on this day. So, if you have your rehearsal dinner on the day before your wedding, make sure you wind it up in time to get home and rest well. We also suggest that you take a look at this previous post of ours, and plan the day before your wedding day based on it.

7.Plan the day-after

You won’t believe us when we say that your wedding day will be over before you know it. Despite all that intense planning and the hundred things you took time to perfect, you will find your wedding day fleeing by. Before you know it, your wedding day will flee, and it will be time to busy yourself with what has to be attended to after the wedding. Make sure to relax and find time to dwell on the memories of your special day, while you can still remember it, by planning a relaxed and laid-back day-after. While planning the your wedding day details, also find time to sort out the things that should be done soon after the wedding. You will have to send your wedding dress to the dry cleaners, pay wedding vendors and do things like taking home the gifts you received at the venue. We think that this suggestion on the GalTime blog of making arrangements for a late hotel-checkout and booking a car service to the airport, is very sensible. It will allow you to relax before you go for your honeymoon. Make arrangements for these activities in advance, and you will not have to buzz around after the wedding worrying about them. Instead, you can enjoy time with your spouse.

8.Tackle things as early as possible

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The days leading up to your wedding will be chock-full of tasks. It may be tempting to put aside some of them for later, so you can relax a bit. But, remember that the pile is just going to grow. As long as there are pending things to complete, you cannot relax. So, do everything in small installments, as and when possible. It is productive to create a list of tasks you must handle, and cross them out as you complete them. Not only will this give you a feeling that you have made progress, it will also get things done faster. One thing you can start with before the wedding is, writing your thank you notes. This is easier to do bit by bit, than when you attempt it in a single go. Start writing your thank you notes as and when your gifts arrive, and it will take you less time to complete. You may even find it relaxing and enjoyable. This previous post on how to write your thank you notes may be useful for you.

9.Choose assistants for everything

Wedding planning can be exhausting, when you attempt to do it all by yourself. Always asking the same person for help may also affect the overall productivity. The better option is to ask the right people to assist you with each relevant aspect. Working with different teams will allow you to relax and enjoy the experience better. You will have family and friends who are eager to help with the wedding. So, take a short while to think of who could best assist you with each aspect of the wedding, and ask them for their help. If one bridesmaid is particularly organized and systematic, she can help you plan the logistics of ordering, altering and getting your bridesmaids dresses delivered on time. If you have a friend who has a great taste in colors, prints and patterns, she can assist you in choosing the right wedding colors, prints and patterns for your décor. So, find out each person’s strengths and make the most of it, so your wedding planning is less hectic.

10.Have a go-to person who knows just as much about the wedding as you do

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Trust us, this is a huge stress-buster. This could be your mother, Maid of Honor or even wedding planner. The person you choose for this role should know everything about the wedding, just as much as you do, so they can be the alternate point of contact. You can direct people to this person, whenever needed, and you can focus on other tasks instead. This article on the Bridal Guide also suggests that you hand over your cell phone to this person on your wedding day, so she can do a complete job of handling any last-minute needs from the vendors or guests.

Hopefully, these tips will reduce the stress on the days leading up to the wedding, and on the day itself. Every bride will have moments where she is overwhelmed with worry and bothers that things will not go as per plan. Should this happen to you, just relax, take a deep breath, and take a look at the big picture. Everything will then fall into place.

For more wedding day tips and advice, and for all your wedding shopping needs, keep visiting Best for Bride—your one-stop destination for all needs bridal. We have everything from bridal dresses to attires for the wedding attendants, party favors, décor, wedding cakes, invitations and more to help you plan the perfect wedding day.

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Bigger the better: Beautiful ideas for fairy tale weddings

Fairy tales aren’t just for young children. They offer hope for a magical tomorrow, and isn’t that what every bride wants? A happily ever after, when she begins the new chapter of her life as a wife.

The fascination for fairy tales, princesses, and Prince Charming never goes away for some women. If you are a bride, who has always been in love with fairy tales, you will definitely want a big fairy tale wedding to mark your union with your real-life Prince Charming. After all, you get married only once and you deserve to feel like a royal princess on this special day in your life.

Planning the fairy tale wedding of your dreams isn’t too difficult when you have plenty of ideas to inspire you. Here are some magical fairy tale-inspired ideas for your royal wedding. Take a look and let us know what you will choose from them, for your wedding.

Ideas to inspire your fairy tale wedding

An invitation card that radiates timeless romance

Give your wedding guests a sneak peek of what they can expect at your wedding with a lovely fairy tale theme invitation. Don’t you just love how this “Once upon a time” invitation card ties to the theme? Small details like the header for this invitation are all it takes to have your invitation reflect the style of your wedding. (You can order this invitation at this link.) If your wedding is inspired by any particular story, find an invitation with motifs or colors that are specifically linked to this tale.

Search for the right castle

A royal wedding takes place at a castle, and you need the right setting to feel like a princess on your wedding day. Whether you are in Europe, the USA, Canada or any other part of the world, there are no dearth of castle venues for you to pick from. You can even find lists of suitable venues on the internet, like in this post on the Knot website.  If booking a real castle is out of the question, you can create a similar scene by choosing a suitable venue and dressing it up with the opulent decor. Explore beautiful banquet rooms, hotels, stately mansions and resorts to find the right choice for your budget and theme.

Plenty of flowers

The perfect fairytale wedding will have elaborate floral decor. Fill your venue with plenty of flowers, and they will create the effect of grandeur, not to mention romance. Light pastel colors like pale pink, yellow and white will look stunning in such settings. You can also go with the theme colors of your fairy tale in your floral decor, to match it to the theme. So, golden yellow blooms for a Beauty and Beast wedding or vivid red roses for a Snow White theme wedding would be just perfect. Mix your floral decor with stunning crystal and glass accents for more impact.

Plenty of bling

This is the perfect theme to go big on bling. Whether it is your venue decor, table linen, party favors or even the dress and accessories, make a statement with lavish touches of gold, silver, and other metals. While gold creates an expensive and deluxe ambiance, silver and rose gold have the sophistication and romantic charm. Pair the metallic accents in your decor with saturated colors or neutrals to create a refined look.

Shimmering shoes

Sparkling shoes are an accessory that will make you feel like a princess in no time. Pick a pair of gorgeous heels that is sure to impress any princess. Don’t hesitate to choose one that is gold or silver, as this is the best opportunity to shine and dazzle to the most. As you dance the night away, the occasional peek of your dainty feet from beneath your gown will be very impressive with beautiful shoes adorning it. Or if your favorite fairy tale is Cinderella, find a glass slipper to play the part to perfection.

Gorgeous napkins and coasters

Impress your guests with your attention to detail with small touches like beverage napkins and coasters that tie to the theme flawlessly. These white coasters with beautiful lettering in gold that is meaningful as well can instantly add a flourish to your table settings.

Similarly, take a look at these beverage napkins with the “happily ever after” that is just right for your chosen theme. The fact that the lettering is done in gold further enhances the effect of this essential table decor element.

Beautiful bridal hairstyles

Princess-inspired hairstyles are anything but simple. Whether you choose an elaborate chignon or a dreamy intricately braided hairstyle, don’t forget to top it off with the perfect hair accessories. A flower crown will instantly enhance your look, while you can choose dainty hair bands, pins or combs for a touch of sparkle. If you really want to make a statement, you can even go with a royal tiara that will easily tie to this wedding theme. Remember that all fairy tale heroines have luscious locks. So, aim for that effect when you choose your wedding day hairstyle.

A stunning fairy tale cake

The wedding cake gives you plenty of opportunities to use your creativity and find different elements that match the theme. Either aim for simple elegance with naturally colored elements like flowers, fresh fruits, and berries or go for classic sophistication with a magnificent sculpture. Beautiful accents like sugary pearls, frosted roses, bows, and ribbons are all ways to create an opulent effect. Play up the theme to the maximum with a big cake with plenty of interesting tiers. Also, choose flavors that are classic and luscious for a beautiful effect.

Make your entrance in full-style

How you arrive at your wedding will receive a lot of attention from your guests. So, make a worthy entrance in a horse-drawn carriage, and it will be grand and memorable. It will also be a grand experience for you. Opt for a vintage-style carriage and it will suit the theme perfectly. Also, make sure your charioteer is in full costume, and that the chariot is decorated with flowers and ribbons to complete the effect. For more interesting and unusual ideas for wedding vehicles for all different themes, take a look at this post on the Hitched UK website

Use plenty of fairy lights and lanterns to illuminate your venue

Twinkling, little lights will instantly transform any venue. Pretty lanterns are also beautiful decor elements. They will enhance the beauty of your venue and tie to the fairy tale theme. Another benefit of this item is that it is suitable for both indoor and outdoor venues. Whether you choose a woodland theme or a royal castle theme, soft lighting in the location of your choice will transform the space and help you achieve a beautiful effect.

Cute little flower girls

Little girls will love your fairy tale theme just as much as you do. So, why not give them a role to play in your wedding and remember the experience even more fondly. Have your flower girls in pretty princess dresses or lace frocks, and add cute flower crowns or tiaras to their outfit. Dressed in pretty layers of tulle, they will look like fairies right out of your storybook. Not to mention how much they will enjoy the role. You will be their favorite real-life princess and they will be a delightful addition to your wedding scene.

Dramatic lighting

Add an enchanting touch to your reception space with dramatic mood lighting with different colors that wash over the room. Place your light sources strategically, so they enhance the effect of the decor pieces and bounce off sparkling tablescapes. Chandeliers and other crystal accents will also help your venue look opulent and magical. You can consider using images of the moon and stars in your backdrop to create a beautiful effect. For a real fantasy effect, hang lanterns from the ceiling with thin strings so it looks like it is floating in thin air.

A beautiful wedding dress for the princess of the day

No wedding is complete without the perfect wedding dress for the bride. With the entire wedding being a picture of opulence and festivity, your wedding dress should also fit the scene. Choose a dress with statement features that make it fit for a princess. Here are some dresses to consider from our collection at Best for Bride.

Spectacular lace appliques spread throughout the fitted bodice and scatter into the skirt of this lovely Mori Lee wedding gown. The delightful scalloped lace neckline and cap sleeves, as well as the breathtaking illusion details in the back of the dress, will stun your guests. Don’t forget that the dress also features a stunning train. This will add the perfect finishing touches to the beautiful tulle skirt.

Strike the right balance between drama and poise with this stunning dress from the Mori Lee Collection. The strapless neckline with a delicate sweetheart detail continues into a snug-fitting bodice with plenty of intricate embellishments. The skirt of this dress enchants with its several layers of ruffles that cascade to floor length in beautiful waves. The flounced skirt ends in a fabulous train that adds a regal effect to the overall design.

Simple in its details, but exquisite in effect, this Sans Pareil ball gown is the picture of elegance. Smooth satin forms the entire structure of this unblemished beauty. It has an off-the-shoulder embellished neckline and a beautiful chevron band at the waist. The neatly pleated skirt enhances the pristine white of the dress, and it has a breathtakingly beautiful chapel length train. With few other embellishments, the dress will work with almost any choice of accessory.

The perfect dress for a fairy tale princess, this beautiful ball gown from the Sans Pareil collection has shoulder straps formed of intricately woven lace appliques. The sheer neckline stretches from shoulder to shoulder, and the satin waistband also has lace appliques enhancing its beauty. The delicate softly pleated skirt flows to full length. The back features a beautiful corset detail and train, with the silky satin that forms a bow.

Here is a classic gown that is trendy at the same time. This Sans Pareil ball gown is a majestic piece with its crystal studded bodice and sweetheart neckline. It also has a voluminous skirt with three-dimensional floral appliques closer to the hemline. The 3-dimensional details also include butterflies and other beautiful nature motifs that add to the charm of this exquisite dress. The entire train of the dress is also embellished in the same fashion. So the dress is a beauty from every angle.

Full-length lace sleeves over a strapless bodice and a beautifully gathered misty tulle skirt makes this dress an amazing princess gown. Not only is the neckline romantic, the scintillating effect of the shimmering lace layer over the bodice spills into the waistline. The hemline is accented with lace motifs that continues into the court train. The volume of the skirt is equally bewitching. The dazzling all-over details make a dress a grand piece by itself. A tiara is all that you need to complete your bridal look.

Carrying off a fairy tale wedding involves a lot of planning and detail. Nevertheless, it is a wonderful theme that will be loved by all your guests. So, don’t hesitate to give it a try. And for the perfect dress to be that royal princess at your fairytale wedding, look no further than in our bridal dress collection. Click here to be directed to our bridal gallery, and make your pick from the choicest princess gowns there is.

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9 Real Rules of engagement ring shopping

Getting engaged is a celebratory event in every couple’s life. It is a historical milestone in your relationship, that makes your commitment to each other binding and official. So, everything about the proposal will be etched in your memories forever. And the engagement ring, being the symbolic icon that seals your relationship status, should be just perfect in every way.

In this day and age, a marriage proposal without an engagement ring is almost unheard of. So, how did this tradition originate? After a little digging, I found all the answer on this article on Psychology Today which explores the origins of this ritual. It so happens that the ring is not just a sentimental icon, but also an economic promise from a man. The exchange of the ring means the man is committed to stay loyal to the woman. This leads to the secondary custom of the woman keeping the ring, even if the man bailed.

Thus history asserts the importance of the engagement ring as a symbol of commitment and trust. Apart from the traditional aspect, there is also the aesthetic factor that makes it important. It is a ring that the lady will wear all her life. It is also an expensive piece of jewelry. Hence, it is natural for any woman to desire a ring that appeals to her and looks flattering on her finger.

If you are at that stage in your relationship where you are ready to propose, and your girlfriend is dropping hints, it is likely that she has a good idea of how her dazzling engagement ring should be. So, it is wise to do your research first and only then buy the ring for this special occasion.

Follow these rules of engagement ring shopping, and you will not go wrong.

1.Set your budget first

This is one area where you shouldn’t be thrifty. Consider the engagement ring to be a lifetime investment, and pay accordingly. Calculate the affordable limit by factoring in your salary and other relevant factors. It is wise to do your research before you step into a store, as you can scan and compare options, re-analyze your priorities and figure out your personal budget before actually meeting a sales person. The budget will also help you narrow down your choices. Since engagement rings come in a variety of styles, sizes and designs, you can avoid confusion by shortlisting the most cost-effective choices.

2.Do your research diligently

Remember that your girlfriend should love the ring, more than anyone else. And women can be rather particular about what they like to wear and what they don’t. So, be serious with your research and identify a ring style that will appeal to her. You could even consult your girl friend to learn what she exactly wants. However, if you want to keep the proposal a surprise, make sure you choose a ring based on her taste. There will be several options in metal, color, stone setting and designs. Each choice will yield entirely different results. So, it can be a daunting task.

If you are serious about getting the perfect engagement ring that will sweep her off her feet, take notes on what she likes and doesn’t like in jewelry. Or rope in a close friend who can help understand her preferences discretely, and go with the clues she gives.

3.Study the basics of ring shopping

Every expensive shopping decision should involve preparation and planning. Only then can you avoid regret. Since most engagement rings feature diamonds, it is a good idea to understand how to determine diamond quality before you embark on shopping.

Diamond quality is determined by the 4 all-important C’s—Carat, color, clarity and cut. These factors are universally used to determine a diamond’s worth. Here is what each of these stand for:

Carat:This refers to the overall weight of diamonds in a piece of jewelry.

Color: Colorless diamonds are most expensive, and the stone becomes progressively yellow or brown as we go down the scale.

Clarity: This factor measures the amount of blemishes or imperfections that are inherent in the stone. The more flawless a stone, the higher its price.

Cut: This depends on how the stone is cut to adjust its shine, hide imperfections and reflect light. The cut has a direct bearing on the appearance and beauty of a diamond.

Each of these C’s further has its own grading scale to determine the final quality level of the stone. So, it is a good idea to understand these standards and what they mean. This will help you establish the value of the diamond you are about to purchase. You can then make a suitable decision that gives you the best deal for your budget. It will also allow you to choose one diamond over another, based on your unique preferences.

When you compare the information available to you and use the Cs to your advantage, you may be able to get a larger diamond or a lower-weight diamond that is radiant and looks more than its actual worth.

4.Never compromise on quality

In the world of fine jewelry, if a deal sounds too good to be true it probably is. Hence, don’t fall for unrealistic claims when it comes to engagement ring shopping. Always shop at accredited and reliable jewelers to ensure you get what you pay for. Established names in the diamond industry are bound to do credible business and are hence less risky. So, visit only known jewelers. There are several international certifications awarded to jewelry organizations that allow you to check for genuineness of the product. Find out whether your chosen piece comes with all the required certifications and guarantees, to ensure it is a quality product. If you intend to get the ring during a sale period, check what the return policy is. If the ring size isn’t correct or you decide to exchange it for another one, you should have enough time after the purchase.

5.Always go shopping with a friend

Just like with wedding dress shopping, engagement ring shopping can become confusing if you aren’t sure of what you want. A second pair of eyes will help you stay objective and steer clear or confusion. So, ask a friend or family member to join you when you visit the shops.

It is a good idea to invite a friend who shares common tastes with your girlfriend, or knows her preferences well enough to help you make the right decision. If your girl friend has a best pal or sister, she should be the right person for the job. Just ensure that this person can keep it a secret, for you do not want them to ruin the surprise of the proposal for you. Or if you would prefer, you could also ask your fiance to join you. Involve your girlfriend in the process, and there is no way you could possibly make a wrong decision.

6.Think of how you can make it unique

Few men make an effort to find a ring that is truly unique. However, when they do this, the proposal becomes very meaningful. Make a statement with a designer engagement ring that is a cut above the common designs we see everywhere. This sounds exciting, but you may be worried about how to go about it. Fortunately, finding such a ring or even having one custom-created is not difficult. Simply seek the services of an expert diamond jeweler like Whiteflash, and choose from breathtaking designer engagement ring collections that are sure to impress. Take this route and surprise your soon-to-be-bride with a special ring that nobody other than her will have.

You can also choose the stone separately, and pick a unique setting for it. This gives you the flexibility to have it set in the metal of your choice. You can also add details like filigree work, engravings or extra side stones for more opulence. This is a great idea if you are an artistic person and your girlfriend is fond of custom pieces. Antique rings are also a good idea, as they come with a romantic history and are usually one-of-a-kind.

7.Make sure you get the size right

Don’t disappoint your girlfriend by choosing the perfect ring, but the wrong size. Although most jewelers offer a resize option, it is always best to get the ring in the right size at the beginning itself. You can always ask your girl friend directly for her ring size. If she doesn’t know, either use a plastic ring sizer to find the size, or have a jeweler measure her finger.

However, if your proposal is a surprise, finding out the ring size without asking may not be easy. Nonetheless, it is likely that her family or friends will have this information already. Check with them to find out, but ensure they don’t break the surprise. Or you could simply grab a ring of hers without her noticing and use it for reference. Just make sure that she wears it on a similar sized finger, to avoid a mistake. If you cannot sneak it away without her noticing, you can always trace the outline of a ring and use that to get the right size. This way, it is less likely for her to notice a ring is missing.

8.Don’t forget to ask about post-purchase care

When you choose the ring, you should also be concerned about how easy it is to maintain and care for. The ring will require regular polishing, cleaning and tightening, as it is constantly subjected to wear and tear. So, discuss these factors with the jeweler before the purchase. Find out whether the stone offers restoration and repair services, or if they can recommend someone for the job. Also ask about the cost for such services. Find out about the frequency at which they recommend polishing. Also inquire if the ring you have chosen needs any special handling or care. Not all women approve of rings that are very delicate and high maintenance. So, it is a practical factor to consider when making your decision.

9.Prepare to wait and get the documentation right

You may not always be able to walk out of a store with the ring you like. The design you like may not be available in the right size, or the jeweler may need time to engrave the ring. If you want a designer ring and have it custom-created from scratch, you should put aside several days for it. Plan for this timeline when you go shopping. Everything depends on your order, and you do not want to make a hasty decision. Plan in advance, do your research, visit the store and get a feel of the entire process before you commit to a choice. If there is a particular date on which you wish to propose, plan sufficient buffer time to get your ring beforehand and not miss it.

Also, ensure that you collect the relevant inspection documents and certifications for the product. This should include the diamond grading report, after-purchase instructions and insurance if any.

Buying an engagement ring is a tedious process. Nevertheless, it is inevitable and fun. It is in fact, the first step in your wedding planning. So, enjoy the process and your fiance will always appreciate the effort you put into making a wise decision.

For more tips on planning your wedding, shopping for your wedding attire and all wedding-related tasks, keep visiting us here on the Best for Bride blog page.

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How To Move Away from the Traditional White Dress

 

Since the age of Pinterest, more brides have resorted to doing something “different” for their wedding day. More often than not, the traditional aspects of a wedding such as a fruit cake for a wedding cake, a white wedding dress and getting married in a church instead of the venue’s chapel, has been tossed aside to make way for new ideas.

The History of the White Wedding Dress

 

By now, most of you might have heard the story before: Prior to the traditional white wedding dress – 1800’s and back – it was considered an elite privilege to have access to white linen. Pure white linen was extremely expensive at that time and only the riches could afford it.

When a bride was to get married, she would wear whatever fancy dress she had.

It wasn’t until 1840 when Princess Victoria married Prince Alfred of Saxe-Coburg. The dress was a stunning victorian style and rounded off with lace. It became so popular, that brides from that time forward only wore white to their weddings.

Fun fact: Queen Victoria was not the first princess to get married in white. In 1559, Mary, Queen of Scots, also wore white when she had wed Francis Dauphin. However, white was the colour of mourning in France at that time, so the trend did not pick up.

Moving Away from the White Wedding Dress

You have probably seen it all on Pinterest or social media: The controversial brides in their non-white wedding dresses. And you will definitely see more of them in the future, too!

There can be many reasons why a bride chooses not to wear a white wedding dress. The most popular reason is because it is not her first marriage. However, it might be the bride’s personality to choose a controversial dress only because she feels like it. And finally, another reason may be in honor of a loved one who passed away. The bride simply chooses the favorite color, pattern or motive, in memory of that person.

The following is a list of options which you can choose from to move away from the great, white wedding dress craze!

  1. Keeping the White Skirt

The whimsical look of a white tulle skirt, paired with a lace top or a blouse, took the world by storm. Even now, in the alternative fashion industry, two-piece dresses are still all the rage. If you are not completely comfortable to move away from a traditional white gown, then this might be a better option for you.

  1. Off-White Options

If you still want the soft, elegant look of a white dress, but you’re not keen on crisp white gowns, maybe you should opt for off-white dresses or pastel colors. The soft tones still gives it that elegant, wedding look and you will still be comfortable knowing that your dress isn’t white.

 

  1. Going the Opposite Direction

If you’re keen on mixing things up to a whole new level, then you will be glad to know that black wedding dresses are also a thing. The black wedding dress doesn’t need to shout “gothic theme” from the rooftops. It may also be incorporated into a very elegant, Gatsby theme when paired with gold. Check out this post from The Pretty Blog, for more inspiration.

 

  1. Bright Colors

You can be bold and go for something bright and colorful on your wedding day. Mix it up by using different materials and textures, or go for plain bright colors. The options are endless!

 

 

  1. Floral Dresses

It has been a few years already since floral patterns became a trend in interior design and décor. And with that, came the floral wedding dresses. So much so that The Gilded Gown did a feature about many popular designers who jumped onto the flower wagon. Also, see this post from The Wedding Chicks for a more elegant, clean floral look.

 

  1. Ruffled & OTT

Over The Top (OTT) wedding dresses also became a thing in recent years. This may or may not have been the origin of the wacky series My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding! Who knows… All we can say is, if you want your day to be truly unforgetable, then wear an unforgetable dress.

 

Author Bio: The Wedding Club is a blog created for brides who want to plan their own weddings, and also for wedding planners who need some guidance in the industry. Follow us on our social media and visit our blog here

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Something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue—3 novel ideas for each

One of the most popular wedding traditions that many brides go with even today, is to have Something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue at their weddings. Including things that fit this description is believed to bring a bride good luck, and this is something that every bride would love in abundance.

Wouldn’t you like to know more about the history behind this tradition? Here it is.

The history

This article on Wikipedia tells us that this practice originated with a centuries old English folklore that goes like this:

Something Old,

Something New,

Something Borrowed

Something Blue,

and a silver sixpence in her shoe.”

Traditionally, the bride is expected to carry these tokens to bring her luck in her married life, as well as to deceive the Evil Eye. Each of these tokens are symbolic in the following ways: Something old represents continuity of the bride’s life without breaking her bond with her past and her own family. Something new is symbolic of an optimistic future. Something borrowed can relate to happiness that is borrowed from an existing happily married couple, and something blue stands for love and faithfulness. Finally, the silver sixpence is for good fortune. The last line of this poem is often unquoted. While many brides may simply be unaware of it’s existence, others choose to forego it.

Nevertheless, don’t you think that following the good luck factors in this poem is a charming tradition? If you do, we are sure you will love to see these few ways in which you can incorporate this tradition into your wedding day.

Following the poetic sequence, let us start with Something Old.

Something Old

Having something old at your wedding is the perfect way to add items of sentimental value into your big day. Even the smallest trinket that links to your past, can do this for you. Here are some suggestions.

Family heirlooms: A string of pearls that belonged to your mother or grandmother, China that’s been in your family for generations or your mother’s wedding gown could be your something old. Just incorporating something that was part of your family’s history into your wedding can do wonders in making your wedding day more special. If your mother’s wedding dress may not be right for you, consider taking some lace out of it and decorating your bridal bouquet with it. It will be a beautiful and interesting way to add that special touch to what you will have with you. Wedding veils are always in fashion, and there is little chance that it will be used by someone past the wedding day. If your mother’s wedding dress is too old-fashioned and not suitable for your taste, consider using her veil instead.

heirloom veil

Old photographs: There is a certain charm unique to old black and white photos. If you have your family albums lying around, you are bound to find at least one wedding photo in it. How about making this your something old? Pick an old wedding photo, preferably of someone you love; like your parents, grandparents or favorite relatives, and tie it to your wedding bouquet. The alternative is to create a locket with this photo and wear it on your necklace or as a charm on your bracelet.

old photo

Something old that belongs to you: You do not always have to go asking your family or friends for something old. Is there something that you hold close to your heart? If yes, you have the answer to your something old there itself. This could be anything from a favorite piece of jewelry, like a christening bracelet or a gift from someone you love, that you’ve always treasured. Add that into your wedding details and you have a beautiful and meaningful addition.

bracelet

Something New

This is easy, as you will have plenty of new things at your wedding. It is likely that everything from your wedding dress to accessories, flowers and décor will be brand new. But, how about adding an innovative touch and choosing something that is not only new, but unique to you as well? Here are some suggestions for this.

Your new initials or last name: From the moment you are married, you are eligible to a new last name and earn the right to using your new initials. Whether you choose to change your maiden name or not, how about flaunting your new initials in the form of a monogram? Have this embroidered into your wedding dress or bouquet wrap. Or you could even have a custom locket made with these initials, and wear it on your wedding day. We also love this idea on the Huff Post of having your new initials monogrammed on your champagne flutes, that you will use at the wedding toast.

printed flute

Brand new makeup: For a twist on the tradition of wearing something new, how about wearing it as your makeup. We think this is the opportunity for you to splurge on some brand new makeup, to dress yourself up with on your wedding day. Pamper yourself with some top-notch beauty products, that will help you stand out as the bride. Not only will it help you have a new look that is fresh and attractive, it will also serve you for much longer after the wedding. Plus it is an economical option that is just right for a tight budget. What do you say? And don’t forget to buy waterproof makeup, to keep those happy tears on the day from ruining your look. Which brings us to our third and last suggestion.

cosmetics-259181_1920

Embroidered handkerchief: Haven’t you noticed how most brides can’t hold back tears on their wedding day? Well, we think crying at the wedding should be a tradition by itself. It is a special day, and one of the biggest occasions of your lifetime, so it deserves to be highlighted with tears of joy. Our next idea for your something new is to get yourself a specially embroidered and good-looking handkerchief to mop those tears, when they arrive. It can also be a perfect keepsake for your wedding treasure box, after the ceremony. Find out more about how to create your own wedding memories treasure box, here on this article.

wedding hankies
Image Credits: in pastel, via Flickr

Something borrowed

This may seem quite easy to do, but not when you understand the real intention of this saying. The original idea was for a to-be-married bride to borrow something from a happily married woman, symbolizing that she was borrowing her happiness. So, your choice should ideally meet this requirement and you should borrow from someone who has an inspiring marriage. Also, when you borrow something, the idea is to return it post-use. What do you add into your wedding that will work this way? Let us find out.

Borrow a wedding accessory: If your parents or grandparents are happily married, we are sure you will see their wedding as an inspiration for you and your partner. Borrow their joy for your own by adding something from their wedding into your own. This could be jewelry that the bride wore on her wedding day, a brooch or even a pin. Or, you could also borrow from the groom if he has kept his cuff links, tie or anything else from his wedding day. You can think of innovative ways to incorporate it into your wedding day look, probably by pinning or wrapping it around your bouquet. cufflink

Borrow a wedding vow: Here is solace for all those brides who have so much trouble coming up with their own vows. How about borrowing a vow that you loved listening to, at someone else’s wedding. With their due permission, you will not only have a perfectly unique “something borrowed”, it will also be of great use to you when you consider that you want a marriage that is just as inspiring. If using the vow as such doesn’t seem right to you, you can consider borrowing a line or two from it and embroidering this into something you wear. You can embroider this into your veil or handkerchief. This great idea was suggested in this article on About.com, and don’t you think it is brilliant?

Borrow a wedding song: Your something borrowed doesn’t always have to be something you wear. It can be anything related to your wedding. So, if you are out of ideas to wear something borrowed, how about borrowing a favorite wedding song instead. Find out what was played at your parents’, relative’s or friend’s wedding, where the couple are people you look up to for their great marriage. Then ask to borrow that particular song for your first dance, and there you have the easy solution to your perfect “something borrowed.” dance

Something blue

Traditionally, the something blue was usually the garter that the bride wore on her wedding day. While brides still continue with this tradition, there are many more creative ways in which you can add that something blue into your wedding. Here are some of our favorites.

Blue eyeshadow: We mentioned earlier, how your something new could be the makeup you use at your wedding. Let the same thing work for your something blue as well, in the form of blue eye shadow to dress up your eyes. Your wedding is a day when you want all eyes on you, and a little color can go a long way in making you look even more splendid. Whether you choose to have smoky eyes or cat-eye makeup, dressing your eyes well is crucial to nailing your wedding day look. Blue eye shadow can add a dramatic effect to your upper eye lids and we are sure everyone will take notice of it. Don’t hesitate to add some sparkle and shimmer to it, or dress it up further with navy blue mascara to see your eyes pop.

GIVENCHY PRISMISSIME EYES 58 POETIQUE BLUES
Image Credits:zaimoku_woodpile, via Flickr

Blue shoe accessories: If wearing a blue shoe is out of question, consider dressing up your wedding heels with a pair of blue shoe accessories. Choose one with extra bling, and you will instantly dress up your feet with glamour. Of the many accessories available, you can consider pretty blue bows, or shoe clips with blue stone details. Since blue is a color that blends beautifully with white, it will go very well with your white wedding dress. The other option is to use blue “I Do” stickers on the soles of your shoe for your mysteriously elusive “Something blue.”

Blue guest book: An interesting keepsake that will remind you of your wedding day forever, choose a blue guest book or a guest book alternative for your wedding ceremony and reception. It is a way you can add this blue detail into your wedding, without actually having to wear it. Here is a beautiful navy blue guest book from our wedding stationery collection at Best for Bride. The classic color and elegant lettering make it suitable for every type of wedding. Find more about ordering it for your big day at this link.

The sixpence in your shoe

The delightful little poem is incomplete without the six pence in your shoe. Once you lay your hands on your sixpence, the only thing you should be concerned about is, how to attach it to your shoe. Remember that it may not be entirely practical to affix it to the inside of the shoe, as it’ll bump against your heel. Instead, consider sticking it to the sides of the shoe or attaching it to the sole, in the raised section next to the heel. This way, it won’t come in contact with the floor, and you can safely walk, run or dance through the evening.

Are there any more creative ways in which you can add your “Something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue” into a wedding? If so, please write to us in the comments section below.

For more articles on planning the various details of your wedding right, continue visiting us at Best for Bride – Your one-stop destination for everything bridal. We pride ourselves in bringing brides everything they need for a perfect wedding day. Visit our online store to find out all about the services we offer, or drop in at one of our stores to see everything for yourself.

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10 smart ways to save on your reception cost

Your wedding reception will take over a big part of your wedding budget. With many things to rent for the occasion, from the décor to the tableware and seating, it will all quickly add up and cost a lot. While there is no way you can escape from setting aside money for your reception, there are some smart ways in which you can have a fantastic reception without breaking the bank. This is what we will look at today.

Read on for 10 tips on how to save as much as is possible on your reception cost.

1.Choose one venue for both the ceremony and reception

church wedding

One of the best ways to reduce your overall reception expense, is to choose a single venue for both the wedding ceremony and reception. There are many benefits of choosing this option and they include the following

  • You have more flexibility in timing, as you do not have to account for the transportation time between the two venues
  • There is no need for additional transport arrangements to help guests travel to the reception venue, from the wedding venue
  • Guests will be happier if everything is staged at a single venue, as the likelihood for delays and waiting time are less
  • This is obviously a cheaper option. Even when the ceremony venue is a church, you will have to spend more in terms of a donation or ceremony fees.

2.Choose items that do double-duty

By this, we mean you can make your money work more if your décor, seating or anything else can work in more than one way. For example, if your wedding ceremony and reception are at the same venue, consider having the flower arrangements done in such a way that it can be reused as reception centerpieces. That way, all it takes is a few extra minutes to move the arrangement to the reception venue and set it up. Although it may involve a certain labor cost, it will be much cheaper than having the entire reception venue decorated from scratch using fresh décor items. You can also choose wedding favors that act as place cards. Similarly, here is a suggestion we found on the Knot web page, that sounds sensible. Consider using simple glasses in a universal design to serve all your drinks, instead of having to rent various types of glasses for the different drinks that will be served at the reception. The same idea is useful for every wedding aspect you can consider, including your wedding dress. A two-in-one wedding dress that can give you two different looks, is a brilliant idea for a wedding. The Mori Lee 5316 with a detachable tulle skirt is one such dress.

3.Look for all-inclusive packages

all inclusive

Unless you have the talent, time and practice to handle most of the details by yourself, rather than depend on independent vendors for each of the décor essentials, DIY weddings can be very expensive. The cheaper alternative is to choose an all-inclusive package, and customize it to meet your specific needs without spending too much money. The other benefit of choosing an all-inclusive package is that you needn’t worry about arranging all the aspects and have them all come together at time. It is usually taken care of by the vendor-in-charge, and you only need to follow up. Without too many options at hand, it is also a relief for brides who are easily overwhelmed with too many choices. Check with your venue for whether they offer package deals, or ask your vendors for the additional tasks they can handle. This way you will not have to follow up or work with too many people, and this makes the process streamlined and easier.

4.DIY or outsource it to a known contact

Although we said that DIY may be expensive, it needn’t always be so. This may in fact, be the cheapest route available to you, if you are organized, have the time for it and are confident in your abilities. If you have done things previously on a scale similar to that of your wedding, or you have the time and resources to bring it all together perfectly, DIY can help you cut the costs to a great extent. You can try your hand at anything from creating the wedding centerpieces, to assembling the party favors and even baking the cake. Or if you have a trusted friend or relative who is a wedding vendor, this may be the route to consider. As an associate you personally know, you are more likely to get a considerable discount on their services, and this can ease the financial cost greatly.

5.Be on the lookout for discounts and offers

sale

If you have a long engagement before getting married, you have time to attend wedding fairs and shows. Here, you can find interesting deals and good discounts for your reception. You will easily find several vendors offering their services and also discounts to stay ahead of the competition. So, if you find one that you like, this is the time to snag it. Wedding exhibitions will also have stalls with wedding décor accessories and other items, and they may be cheaper and unique compared to what you find outside. Also, don’t overlook items that cost nothing, but are a valuable add to your wedding. Free wedding fonts, for example, can help you personalize everything at your wedding, from coasters and place cards, to menu and sign boards for little to no cost. Additionally, we suggest that you sign up for bridal magazines and join the mailing list for newsletters and updates at popular bridal shops and vendors. This way, you will immediately know of any discounts and offers that come up. When you go shopping for your wedding, also check out whether there are any benefits of booking or buying more from a single place. For example, your wedding baker may give you a discount if you ask them to do edible favors as well. It is likely that you will also be able to save more on service and delivery charges when you go with a single vendor for more than just one service. So, explore the options and ask around, you may just be lucky to find a deal that will work.

6.Stay on top of your expenses

Wedding finances can be tricky, unless you are in full control. Before you go shopping, it is best if you create a budget spreadsheet and divide it into the amounts you have put aside for each aspect. This way, you will know what amount you can afford to spend on a certain factor. One way you can stay in control, is to note it down and add it into your accounts as and when you incur an expense. Unless you consistently do this, you can easily lose track of all the small expenses you have already been involved in. This can all add up to a shocking extra in the end. If you however, keep your budget updated and have a clear idea of how much has been spent already and what is remaining, you can make sure you do not overstep your budget and spend beyond control. Also, if you get a good deal on certain items, you can adjust the profit into another aspect, and splurge on it instead.

7.Choose less risky wedding reception venues

garden venue

Planning an outdoor garden reception in the summer? Don’t ever rule out the likelihood of rain. In case Mother Nature decides to shower her blessings with a drizzle on the day, you will have to risk your guests getting wet. The sensible alternative in such a case, would be to have an alternative venue where you can move your reception to, in the likelihood of rain. But, this would mean paying money for all the extra arrangements and that would simply cost you more. If you want to avoid such risks, settle for a low-risk reception venue. An indoor venue that has no risks associated with it, would allow you to breathe easy and be done with the funds you have allocated for this. You can also think of getting yourself insured, so that you are covered if any unforeseen circumstances that cost money, arise out of the blue.

8.Find cheaper but working options for your décor essentials

There are many ways in which you can find cheaper options for your wedding decorations, if you keep your mind open. For outdoor weddings, barn weddings and rustic styles, bistro lights and twinkling fairy lights are beautiful but inexpensive décor items. The romantic effect they create is really worth the insignificant price you pay on them. Similarly, if you want a shabby chic wedding, consider switching out table cloths for newspapers under a glass table top. If you are unhappy with the chairs you have at your reception, but cannot afford hiring new ones, consider getting them covered with chair covers. This will not cost too much, but you can instantly add more life to your wedding venue with this single change. It is also sensible to consider a venue that comes with seating and interesting décor already. Restaurants are such examples. Since they are already set up for service, they will have all the necessary items for the food service and good décor too. So, you can save on planning and preparing the venue specially for your wedding, when you book such venues.

9.Keep the timing fixed and stay organized

Venues and service staff charge by the hour. So, it is necessary to stick to the timeline. You may get a better deal if you cut short your booking hours. Simple steps like cutting short your cocktail hour to 45 minutes, and similarly polishing off few minutes from various aspects can save you precious time. This will translate into a reduced bill. Also, your guests will be relieved that there is minimum waiting around, as long as everything progresses smoothly. However, make sure that you stick to the stipulated time and it is a reasonable time frame that you have set for each event. All in the wedding party should be aware of what time slot is allotted to which activity, and not overstep the time limit for each of them. Also discuss the working hours with your wedding vendors in advance. Ask for how much their overtime charges are, rather than run into a long bill after you simply employ them for much longer than initially agreed. Wind up early in the evening, and you can head home or off on your honeymoon much earlier.

10.Take the paper-free route and think outside the box for everything else

sheet cake

There are many things at a wedding that you can do without, and still have a great wedding. Wedding programs are one such item. You can choose to skip these, as they use up a lot of paper, and also cost for the printing. They aren’t really necessary, and are usually tossed at the end of the day. For your guest’s reference, you can use a single chalkboard or signboard display at the welcome, and this will do the job just as well. To really cut your budget, be open to options like using a sheet cake at your reception, and substituting the reception dinner with a tea-time affair or brunch. Although this may be one of the most economical options around, it may not be for everyone. But definitely do consider it.

Can you think of more ways to save money on the wedding reception? If so, do let us know in the comments below.

For more tips and wedding planning advice, visit us at Best for Bride—your one stop bridal destination. Don’t forget to check out our online bridal store, where you can find everything from stylish wedding dresses to dresses for the entire wedding party, and also chic evening gowns and beautiful prom dresses. Apart from this, we also have a range of wedding-related services like wedding cakes, invitations, favors, photography, flower arrangements, décor and more. Check out our website here, to find out more about how we can complete your wedding perfectly.

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Alternatives to Traditional Flower Trends

It’s finally starting to warm up; the bees are buzzing and the sunshine is out! Which also means that you’re probably starting to notice all the spring and summer flowers coming into bloom. Flowers can be a nice touch to a wedding, but they can also come with a high price.

Here are some ways you can incorporate flowers into your wedding without breaking the bank:

BRIDESMAID CORSAGES: Instead of purchasing a full bouquet for each bridesmaid, consider the simple alternative of using a corsage. They are less expensive than bouquets, which can really make a difference if you have a large bridal party. There are also many different styles of corsages and even different ways of wearing them. For instance, instead of wearing them on your wrist, you can wear them on your upper arm, which is a very trendy style for 2017.  Several places will be able to make an arrangement to match with your wedding colour palette, but Best for Bride is one of few bridal shops that also can provide you with this service. You can check out the lovely corsages they have to offer here!

SILK FLOWERS: Some people may hesitate to consider using fake flowers for their wedding, but I’ve been to several weddings where the bride and groom chose to use silk flowers and people were amazed at how real they looked. Also, if you go with this option you can both buy them from people who previously used them for their wedding and sell them to people after your wedding – it’s a win-win all around.

SINGLE STEM FLOWERS: Another option for those who cannot part with real flowers is to use single stems of flowers. For example, instead of a whole bouquet for each bridesmaid, you could purchase one bouquet of single stem flowers and have each bridesmaid carry a single flower. Single roses, tulips, and peonies create a very delicate and romantic look and people are opting into this trend now more than ever.


FLORAL ACCENT:
 No one said you have to have flowers, real or fake. You could add in the element of flowers in other ways, such as a simple floral print overlay for the tables in your reception hall. Another way to add une touche de fleur is to incorporate it into your bridal wear. Best for Bride has several dresses that feature floral aspects, whether it be floral appliqués on a wedding dress or veil, or even floral print bridesmaid dresses as seen below. Check out dresses on the site here to see the unique flower inspired styles Best for Bride has to offer!

Mori Lee – Style 21502

Alfred Sung – Style 2644

Alfred Sung – Style D724CP

Any of these options would look amazing at your wedding, so before your splurge on tons and tons of real, expensive flowers, Y Knot consider some of these options first!

Author Bio: Chantel, the Founder of the Y Knot Jump the Broom blog, considers herself to be just “an everyday girl who has a passion for weddings.” More than just focusing on all the hustle and bustle that weddings bring, she hopes her blog will bring you back to the heart of it all—LOVE—and maybe even inspire you to say, “Hey, Y Knot Jump The Broom?”

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6 helpful things to know before you start wedding planning

Now that you are newly engaged and finished celebrating your engagement party with your dear folks, are you all set to dive into wedding planning? Just wait a second! There are certain things that you should be aware of, before you start wedding planning. These will help you save a lot of money, as well as make your planning process a lot easier.

Today, let us take a look at a handful of helpful tips to use when planning your wedding. Trust us, it will save you a lot of confusion and regrets later. And, here they are!

1.Booking the venue—what to remember

castle venue

While factors like matching your wedding theme, the ease of reaching the location and number of people it can accommodate are all relevant factors, there are some things to remember, if you are on a budget. They are:

Peak wedding months are expensive: June to August is peak wedding season, and everything is at a premium cost during this time. Consider getting married earlier in the year, when winter is no longer as severe, and spring is just about to arrive. Or, you can consider early fall for your wedding, as venues often slash their prices this time of the year.

Don’t hesitate to ask for a discount: Don’t assume that the price you receive on your venue is final! Even if it is just falls within your budget, don’t quickly jump at the quote and book the venue right away. Negotiate with the venue manager and find out if there is any possibility of getting it at a lower price. If you are lucky, you may get yourself a better bargain.

Look at alternatives, before visiting your preferred location: This helps in two ways. First, you will know which option you will consider, should your first choice not work out. Secondly, it allows you to know what else is on offer, and make a wise decision based on it. As with anything wedding related, it is a good idea to research and explore your choices before you settle down with what you actually choose for the wedding.

2.Wedding planner—what are the options

shopping

Booking a wedding planner will make your wedding planning a lot easier. However, you should know that there are different options, and depending on what you choose, the service you receive and the price you pay will be different. So, let us take a look at what are your options.

Event planners: This is the whole package, where the planner will be involved in every aspect of planning your wedding. They will literally do your job for you, and will be responsible for executing everything at your wedding and making sure there are no hassles on the day. Event planners are quite expensive, as they will be working on your wedding for several months and you have to compensate them for their time and effort.

Part-time planners: This is where you do not outsource the entire wedding planning process, but only selected aspects that you aren’t able to handle yourself. This is more budget-friendly, as you can delegate the tasks that you do not have the time for, and pay only for it. Since you will be doing the greater share of the work, you will find it much cheaper than booking an event planner. If you are naturally organized and want to personally oversee your wedding details, this may be the right option for you.

Day-of coordinator: Even if you are handling everything about your wedding yourself, a day-of coordinator should definitely be considered. This is because you do not want to worry yourself with last-minute details on your wedding day. If you want a stress-free wedding day, a day-of coordinator can take charge of managing the various factors on that day. They will see that everything progresses smoothly and as per plan, leaving you to enjoy your wedding as you should.

Once you choose which of these services meets your needs best, again discuss the charges with the people you consider for the job. Compare the rates for an all-inclusive package with one for customized services, and choose the one that is best for your budget and needs.

3.Before paying for Wedding Entertainment

Choosing between a DJ and a band can be really confusing. You may be under the general impression that a DJ costs much lesser than a band. However, it can be quite expensive to book a good DJ who can actually make your party come alive. There are ways in which you can get a reasonable quote for a band too, and here are some tips for that.

Look for experienced student groups: If there is a music school in your area, you may be in luck. Student groups are usually energetic, exciting and just as efficient as a trained band in creating a lively party atmosphere. The bonus is that they cost much less. So, if you are up for the risk, look around for such a band.

Ask for the breakup charges: Instead of just being shocked by the overall quote from a band, ask them for the breakup costs. If it includes transportation, see if you can arrange a cheaper alternative and save some cash that way. Also, look at the list of musicians and ask if you can downsize to just those who you actually need.

4.Before you go wedding shopping

Cool wedding accessories for the winter bride

Wedding dresses are crucial to transforming you into a splendid bride, however they can be quite pricey. Before you step into the shop, do your research and know your options. Here are some ways to make the most of your wedding dress budget.

Consider more than one style: If you keep your options open, it is easier to find a dress that falls within budget. Do your research ahead of time, and identify which styles will look good on you. Then look at dresses in these styles and choose the one that you are satisfied with, both in look and in price.

Look at the clearance and sale section: Many bridal shops like Best for Bride, will always have dresses on discounts and on sale. Before you look at the latest collection, it may be a good idea to see what is available in the sale section. You may find a dress that is quite similar to what you love in the current collection, at a fraction of a price.

Wait for trunk shows: Trunk shows are a bride’s dream-come-true, especially if you are in a standard 8-12 size group. These shows allow you to find the dress of your dreams at a reduced cost. If you are engaged for a year or more, it is likely that you will come across at least one trunk show during this time. So, call up the boutiques in the area and find out whether they have one scheduled in the near future. Put off your wedding shopping session till after wards, so you can take a chance and hope to find your wedding dress at the trunk show.

Save on alterations: When you fix your wedding dress budget, you also have to account for the alteration charges for the dress. It is highly unlikely that you will perfectly fit into a dress you find off-the-rack. So, you will have to pay extra to alter it to fit you. However, you will have to pay less on alterations if you take care of the following factors

  • find a dress that is closest to your actual size, neither too big nor too small
  • not make expensive custom changes, like altering the neckline or design feature as any amount of rework will cost more money

Rent your dress: If you really want to make the most of your wedding dress budget, consider renting the dress instead of buying it. At shops like Best for Bride, the rental section has ample choices in different sizes. You can rent the dress along with the accessories for a fraction of the original cost, and not worry about boxing or caring for the dress afterwards and put the money to some other use. Alternately, you can also scour the internet for unused dresses on sales, that usually are a great bargain as they are brand new, but not as expensive as a fresh piece in a shop.

5.Before you take any pictures

la-perouse-343446_1280

Wedding photography is an essential for every wedding, and you can choose from different types and packages based on your preferences and budget. Before you even set out to look for a photographer, consider how you want your wedding photographs to be captured. The different types of wedding photography include:

Traditional: The classic portrait style photographs with group pictures in specified poses.

Casual: Candid photography, where the photographer captures casual and original moments of the day, and shoots from unconventional angles. The photographer aims to recreate the memories of the day, by capturing the wedding with the most relevant and unique pictures that characterize the wedding.

A mix of the two: Here, the photographer uses both casual and posed portraits to completely cover the wedding.

Art-style: Here the focus is on creating one-of-a-kind photographs that transcend into the realm of art. It is anything but traditional.

Depending on your personal taste, you can decide upon the type of photography to have at your wedding, and then find photographers who work with the style you choose. Some tips to help you, before you start shortlisting photographers are as follows.

Compare packages and custom deals: You may not always require all that is included in a photographer’s package. If this is the case, ask if you can have a custom quote based on what you require. This is also useful if you need an extra service from what is included in a package deal.

Discuss how many hours you will need the photographer to cover your wedding: Before you meet with a photographer, be clear on how much time you will need his services for. You must make sure that he will be available for the important events both at the start and the end of the day. If he charges overtime rates for staying beyond certain number of hours, and in case your wedding goes on for longer than anticipated, make sure you know in advance.

6.The food factor

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There are many factors that decide the food expenses you will have to incur. Factors to consider when choosing your caterer are as follows.

Choice of menu: Remember that gourmet meals will cost more than standard meals. So, let the choice of cuisine be one of the guiding factors in determining your food budget. The overall presentation and whether the dishes have to be created fresh on-site or can be prepared in advance will also decide the catering cost.

Buffet or plated-style: Buffets and plated meals, both have their own pros and cons. The sensible and budget-friendly option is to have a mix of both styles. This means you can use shared platters for the main meal, while individual portions are served as starters. This will minimize wastage and maximize the value for money.

This brings us to the end of the various factors that will prevent a headache for you, later. Do your research and plan the possible workable options for each of these choices, and you will be able to work it out very easily.

Best for Bride is a wedding shop that brings you the latest and trendiest in wedding gowns, bridesmaids dresses and attire for the wedding party. We also have invitations, wedding favors and services like wedding cakes, décor arrangements and florists. Visit our online bridal shop to learn more about all our services, and also find out about the latest offers, discounts and sales we have. Experience the best of bridal shopping with our seasoned bridal consultants who will assist you in finding the dream gown for your big day. For a fun-filled and enjoyable experience, contact us today and book your appointment.

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How to Choose a Wedding Gown for a Beach Wedding

 

Wedding season falls between spring and fall for a reason – couples adore the clear, blue skies, warm (and mostly consistent) weather, and that laid back summer feel that stays with people even if they do have to go to work everyday.

Summer is nostalgia and swimming pools and catching fireflies after sunset. It’s ice cream and palm trees and sweet peach tea. It’s such a fun season, myself, Vincent, and my team here at Pixan Photography came up with more than 100 summer wedding ideas just to inspire couples getting married then.

And if there’s one place that embodies summer the most, it’s the beach. Balmy breezes, toes in the sand, salt-water skin.

The beach is such a perfect place to be during summertime, many couples figure ‘why not spend one of the biggest days of our life there too?’

If that sounds like you and you’re planning a beach wedding, you might be wondering what kind of gown is best to wear.

There’s no doubt that a beach wedding has all kinds of pluses, but it also comes with its negatives. And sometimes, the pluses can also be negatives, which is why you should put extra time into choosing a wedding gown that will work wonderfully oceanside.

As Mexico destination photographers, Pixan Photography shoots a lot of beach weddings…a lot. Along the way, the Pixan team and I have made a few keen observations about the top considerations a bride will have when choosing a beach-ready wedding gown and I’m ready to spill the beans.

So put on your sunshades, slather on the sunblock, and keep reading for how to choose a wedding gown perfect for a beach wedding.

TYPE OF SAND

One of the first things you’ll want to think about while shopping for a beach wedding dress is what kind of beach you’ll call your own (for the wedding day, of course).

Where is the beach and what kind of sand does it have?

  •       Coarse sand will not do well for long trains and trailing dresses.
  •       Fine sand is easier to walk through and there’s not as much worry about rips and tears in the bottom of the dress.

STYLE OF VENUE

Take a good look at your overall venue as well and select a gown that matches the formality of your venue, decor, and theme.

If you’re splitting time between a ceremony by the sea and a reception indoors, and you don’t plan to squeeze in a costume change, you’ll want to choose a dress that can transition between the two.

What kind of venue is it?

A simple cabana will give off a very different feel than a ballroom with an ocean view.

What is the build of the ceremony space?

A wedding on the beach doesn’t necessarily mean a ceremony in the sand. Some venues own beach real estate and have built their own custom structure right on top of the sand.

If the ceremony space is full tiled, built on a wooden deck or a raised dock to the water, you’ll have fewer concerns about the style of dress because you won’t be walking on sand, except perhaps in a beach photo shoot.

What is the wedding theme?

Same goes for the decorations and wedding theme. If you’re aiming for a laid back beach vibe and your reception space is decorated in bright colors and bohemian details, you’ll probably want to steer clear from a more formal, sleek silk wedding gown and go with one that embodies the same laid back chic feel of your wedding.

How far will you need to travel to reach the venue?

Lastly, think about how far your venue is from home and all the little things that come with having a beach wedding.

  •       Will you have to check your dress at the airport or drive it cross country?
  •       Is it easy to pack and move? Will it wrinkle?
  •       Will it cost a fortune to get to your destination? A dress that is lightweight and fold-friendly is your best bet.

Packing Tip: When traveling with skirts and dresses, you’ll minimize wrinkles and creases if you roll the item, rather than fold it. Or, if you’re flying with wedding attire, consider packing it in a garment bag.

FABRIC & DETAILS

Now let’s talk fabric.

Think light and airy fabrics like organza, chiffon, charmeuse, cotton, and crepe , which all provide breathability and movement, not to mention they’ll dreamily billow in the breeze, which makes for stunning wedding photos.

For more lightweight fabric options, as well as heavier ones, check out The Knot’s epic Dress Fabric Glossary.

You can also attain airflow by choosing a dress with a lace bodice and skirts with slits.

Be mindful of lace trim, as it can easily pick up debris, like sand and everything that has washed up in it. If you’ve been drooling over lace or highly detailed elements, consider a dress that features these in the bodice, not in the trim of the skirt.

Keep embellishments to a minimum. The more frills you add to your dress, the heavier it will get. If you want to add sparkle, consider a simple draping neck piece or a garter belt with a little bling that wraps around your waist.

DESIGN

The overall design of the gown will influence your comfort significantly, so it’s probably a factor you don’t want to ignore.

Although you may have fallen in love with a certain style of dress, it might not serve you well on the beach.

  1. Keep the dress volume in mind. Ideally you want something lightweight, something you can move in, especially when it comes dancing time.

The heavier a dress is, the harder it will be to walk through sand. Plus, heavy = hot, and with the possible humidity your area might have, hot, sweaty, and sticky is definitely not something you want to endure.

  1. As for silhouettes, A-lines and shift dresses are ideal, as well as shorter lengths. Short wedding dresses eliminate straggling sand and other debris you might pick up on the beach.

If you’ve had your heart set on length, consider a shorter dress with a longer, lightweight veil to bring in that dramatic trailing effect.

Just as it is important to know what to wear, it’s equally as important to know what not to wear. Mermaid (I know, it seems so appropriate, but trust us!) silhouettes, ball gowns, and empire dresses should be avoided.

  1. When comparing bodice types, consider that crop tops with a separate skirt, strapless dresses, halter tops, and backless dresses will do wonders for keeping you cool.

Even though that quarter sleeve dress you may have your eye on seems like a lovely fit, think about how it will feel when you’re under the summer sun. And let’s not even think about sweat stains. No thanks!

COLOR

This decision might seem as easy breezy as a day at the beach – white, obviously – but keep in mind that there are various shades of white. Even non-white colors can be beautiful, especially in a tropical setting.

A champagne or ivory dress you see in the bridal salon might look different once you’re strutting it in front of your home mirror. Different light spectrums will change the color of your dress, even if just slightly.

Since you’ll most likely be spending quite a bit of time under blue skies and sunshine, take your potential wedding gown into natural light to see what it looks like to the naked eye and in photographs. Better to be safe than sorry.

And if you have a beach nearby that has sand the same tone as where you’ll be wed, bring fabric swatches in various shades of white, ivory, champagne or whatever other color you’re considering to compare against the sand. Because sand tends to fall in these same shades of neutral colors, your dress could blend in too much in your beach wedding photos. Finding a shade that contrasts well against the sand will enhance your photos drastically.

DECIDING ON YOUR IDEAL BEACH WEDDING GOWN

To recap what we’ve covered: your beach wedding gown should ideally be lightweight, cool, and easy to move around in; should match the formality of your venue and wedding theme; look great under natural light and against a sandy beach backdrop; and most importantly, look and feel beautiful on you!

With all that in mind, in the end, you have to go with your gut and pick the dress you’re gaga about. This is a day you’ve been dreaming of for years, so you may just choose to throw all caution to the wind and get the dress you’ve been pining over, regardless of the drawbacks.

And, you know what? That’s OK! It’s your day to experience as you wish. Hopefully, these tips will simply give you some insight into considerations that can maximize your comfort and enhance your wedding photos too.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Vincent is the owner of Pixan Photography, a team of destination wedding photographers in Mexico that are as passionate about their clients as they are their work. When he’s not shooting destination weddings, Vincent loves traveling the world with his wife and son.