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Guides & Advice
It’s your wedding and you can do what you want to. So feel free to break the mold and make it everything you’ve ever wished for. Get inspired by a few of our ideas for making your ceremony and reception anything but cookie cutter.
Not into traditional long veils? No problem. There are plenty of options when it comes to adding a little glamour and grace to your look with a headpiece. Consider your dress and hairstyle, and then pick an elegant alternative to match.
'The decision to have wedding insurance is a personal one. And knowing the facts before you decide to get insured or not will help you make a smart decision that’s right for your ceremony and reception.
'Obviously you’ll check the couples registry first. But if the registry is cleaned out or you don’t know the couple very well, a gift card is a perfectly acceptable alternative. And it’s always appreciated.
'Attending the ceremony and reception entails certain responsibilities for guests. When to arrive, cell phone etiquette, attire, behavior. And last minute cancellations. All the basics are covered here.
'A wedding is a big event that comes with plenty of traditions to consider. To help you out, here’s a list of the ten basic wedding traditions that you’re sure to encounter.
'Want a one-of-a-kind look and feel for your wedding? Think outside the box and go beyond flowers to add a personal touch to your wedding décor. Get some ideas on how to make your wedding reflect you and the groom as a couple.
The formal group shots will probably be covered by the couple’s professional photographer. Do what you can do best: candid shots, casual poses, fun crowd pics and guest images.
Busy people have busy schedules. So it’s not always possible to accept every invitation received. It’s an understandable situation and easily handled with a simple, graceful note declining the invitation.
'After the time and date is set, you’re ready to get the invites in the mail. But before you go in search of invites, follow a few simple guidelines that may help avoid some common mistakes when it comes to prepping and sending invites.
'If merely choosing an item from the happy couple’s wedding registry isn’t special enough for you, consider ways to personalize your gift. Monogrammed items and autographed books are good suggestions.
'Writing your own vows is one of the ultimate personal touches that can make your ceremony extra special. Follow a few simple words of wisdom and make vow writing a piece of cake.
'Sure, a gift card is an easy gift option. But there are ways to make it more exciting or intriguing than putting it in a simple envelope. Here are ways to make it more personal and special.
'Finding the perfect dress for your happily-ever-after can be overwhelming. But if you know exactly what you’re looking for before you head out to find the perfect dress, it will help make your wedding dress shopping fun and easy.
'Planning a wedding on your own can be time consuming. But before you go in search of backup, think about what kind of help you’re looking for. Then weigh your options and find out if a wedding consultant or wedding planner is the right man or woman for the job.
'Beyond getting a dress and standing at the altar with the happy couple, what else is expected? Overall, she’s there for support. But, there are things she needs to do that go above and beyond just that. So get the full scoop on all the duties needed – and wanted.
'Your best friend is getting married and he’s given you the honor of being best man and giving the toast. If he wants to win over the crowd, give him these guidelines for giving a heartfelt – and amusing – speech.
Generally there should be at least one groomsman for every 50 guests to help manage the crowd. But there’s more involved than just dancing with the bridesmaids and planning the bachelor party. Check this out.
'Being the maid of honor is quite a coveted position. But there are a host of responsibilities and expenses that accompany the honor. What’s is expected of the role? Here are generally accepted guidelines.
An out-of-town wedding can be great fun filled with adventure. It can also be expensive for both the couple and guests. Make the most of the experience by following these tips.
Although not required, the groom’s cake is a tradition originated in the South. And many of these cakes make their way into rehearsal dinners or receptions in various shapes and forms that reflect the groom’s interests.
'You and your fiancé can modify traditions, but when it comes to wedding formalities, here’s the rundown of what to wear for every type of wedding. Whether it’s a black-tie event or beachfront nuptials at sunset, find out what attire is appropriate.
Today, everything about wedding planning can be found on the web. Not just picking a dress or engagement ring but also creating a personalized wedding site and managing details and budget.
The engagement ring is as unique and beautiful as your relationship. But if you’re confused by the jeweler’s jargon, we’ve got a quick gemology lesson. Just remember your 4Cs.
Celebrity weddings are usually full of glam. What is it about those ceremonies that make them the star-studded events they are? Brides don’t need to spend millions on their wedding like these stars did, but they can use them as sources for inspiration and ideas.
Alcohol will be one of the largest line items on your reception budget. What you serve – or don’t serve – is totally your call. You can offer a full bar or limit choices to beer and wine or a few select spirits. It’s your party…it’s your choice.
Most of the time, kids and teens are excited to be in a wedding and consider it a big deal. It’s important to let them know their roles and make them feel special. It’ll make your big day run much more smoothly.
Here’s some helpful advice on how to get a marriage license, where to get it, and what proof of identity will be needed. Requirements vary from state to state, but these tips make it easy.
Remarriages can present a unique set of challenges. Here’s how to incorporate friends, family and children. Most importantly, it reassures you to be comfortable and plan the wedding you want.
Wow! There’s so much planning to do, it’s practically a full time job. That’s a problem especially if you already have a full time job. Don’t panic. We have some workaround ideas to help.
Something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue. Weddings are ceremonies built on traditions – often centuries old. Here are some fun facts about weddings (they also make a great game for showers.)
You have lots of choices for music depending on your taste and budget. Think of your ceremony and reception separately. The responsiveness of the DJ or band manager while planning is a good indicator how they’ll perform on your wedding day.
Driving off into the sunset as newlyweds is a key moment on your big day—so do it up right! Get a few tips on how to keep the car decorations safe and fun as guests cheer you on after the ceremony.
An outdoor wedding may not be right for a control freak. But if you’re a little more laid back, there’s nothing as beautiful as nups on the beach, in a lovely garden or a green glade. Before you commit, think outside the church.
Every bride and groom has one of those “should have/would have” moments or thoughts (and that’s completely natural). So get the rundown from couples who have “been there, done that.”
'Just because the groom doesn’t make his grand entrance doesn’t mean he shouldn’t look or feel his best. Get tips on finding a suit or tux that makes your man (and his best buds) look sharp and sophisticated.
'The groom should be honored to be standing next to his best friend on one of the biggest days of his life. The following guidelines should keep you on top of the best man’s duties.
Your big day isn’t over when it’s over. Rekindle the memories each year on your anniversary with a special celebration. An intimate dinner, a party with the wedding party or a family event. Fall in love all over again.
Many of your guests may have traveled long distances and they will appreciate even a few minutes of “face time.” A receiving line is a perfect way to be sure you don’t overlook anyone.
There are as many types of parties as there are types of grooms. The traditional “last fling” might be centered on a live sporting event, a weekend in Las Vegas or an informal bash at a club. Do it well in advance to permit “recovery time.”
While the happy bride-to-be is likely to have several bridal showers, this is a more casual event. No gifts, just a fun night out with your besties. You should time your party well in advance of your wedding day to allow recovery time.
The traditional bouquet toss has passed from favor for many brides. While some still think it’s a fun part of the reception, many people now see it as an anachronism that makes many singles feel awkward.
Bridal shows are like shopping centers for your wedding. You’ll find them in every area of the country so there’s sure to be one nearby. It’s a great way to shop for vendors, get ideas and look for registry ideas.
Guests look forward to toasting to newlyweds at the reception. Here are some great, money saving options for having a champagne toast and desserts other than the wedding cake (and how to present them).
When everything is captured digitally these days, it’s important to hire an experienced videographer. Here are some things to help you decide what you want out of a videographer, so you’re confident with your decision.
Often times, the dinner menu is the most expensive item in a wedding budget. To ensure brides get the most from a caterer and the most for their guests, be sure to ask all the right questions. Here are some.
It’s easy to be overwhelmed with choices, options and budgeting. This is when a professional wedding planner can be useful. Here’s how they can help make the wedding planning process a little less stressful.
Whether you’re planning a chamber group, rock band or MP3s to provide the music for your big day, choose song selections wisely. Create separate playlists for your ceremony, recessional, first dance and reception.
Now it’s time to bring your vision to life, and it’s your photographer’s job to capture every moment. How do you ensure your photographer won’t miss a shot? All it takes is a little pre-planning.
The groom should look his best, too, which doesn’t always mean the traditional tuxedo. Here’s a few ideas to craft a groom’s look he’ll love, no matter what kind of wedding you’re hosting.
It’s time to gather the ladies for the bridal shower. It may be it a luncheon, brunch, backyard barbecue or day at the spa. Be ready to be showered with love and gifts.
This is an intimate evening spent with family and friends who are part of your special day. Many have been there for you throughout the planning process. Let’s create an evening everyone will enjoy.
It takes two to create a marriage…and to plan a wedding. Discuss what you both want and be willing to compromise. Remember, the day is about both of you. Here’s some advice on being a successful dynamic duo.
The ring bearer is part of the wedding processional. Traditionally they carry the small symbols of unity – the rings. If you decide to include a ring bearer here’s what you need to know.
Your wedding registry may be the best part of your wedding. But creating your perfect registry can get a bit tricky. Don’t worry. We’ve got the answers to all your worries.
She’s the mother-of-the-bride (or commonly shortened to the MOB). She’s been part of your life since the beginning, and chances are she’ll be a huge part of your wedding day, too.
Questions from curious family and friends are about to fly at you. The first one you’ll likely hear: “Have you set the date?” There’s more to picking a great date than circling it on your calendar.
The traditional may love the mere custom, but most brides appreciate its symbolism. The bride’s custom of carrying something old and something new is a wonderful tradition.
Your last name is a part of who you are. But as you say “so long” to singlehood, you may need to prepare to part ways with the latter half of your signature.
As a courtesy, you need to give your guests ample time before your big day. You’ll also need to let friends and family know if you’ve moved or changed your name. We can help.
Don’t forget those special girlfriends who’ve been with you through your life. It only makes sense that you want them to share in every moment. Here’s a list of dos and don’ts.
You can still take a moment out of your special day to honor a special person who has passed away and show how special they are to you. Here are a few ideas to incorporate their memory into your ceremony and reception.
While you know the ins and outs of your day, it’s all new to your guests. The program is their ceremony cheat sheet, so give them all the answers to who’s who and what’s next.
Destination weddings aren’t just for eloping couples and a few family members. They are elaborate affairs that can be as costly as a hometown gathering. But the vacation-esque setting and days-long celebration could be well worth it.
'You’ll be receiving china settings, kitchen appliances, towels and more. So thank guests for the time and money spent with a thoughtful, appreciative note.
The wedding party will consist of your close friends. They’ll spend a lot of their own money and time to be in the wedding. There are endless gift ideas in this article, as well as advice on how to pick the ones right for your party.
'It’s one thing to know there will be bridal showers, bachelor parties and rehearsal dinners, yet it’s another thing to make the most of each celebration. Here’s how to do each party right.
Who doesn’t love watching the ring bearer busting a little move? But at an event that mainly caters to adults (especially after dinner), it can’t hurt to give the kiddies a place of their own. The parents will love you for it.
'Today's monograms aren't the same-old stuffy swooshes and flourishes you've seen. They are an illustration of your style and can be as personal as your signature.
'For many couples, the wedding is the beginning of a multi-cultural life. Embrace the uniqueness of dress, décor, food and music to celebrate the happy couple’s traditions.
'Wedding planners are not just for those with a money-is-no-object attitude. They’re also not all control freaks who will take over, leaving little room for your style. Here’s how you find a good one.
'Feel free to follow creative themes, letting them dictate the design of the day. Earthy nups in a barn or garden. Maybe classic Hollywood. Or a unique color scheme that speaks to you.
After the bride, your wedding cake is likely to be the star of the show. If you want yours to be a standout, we have a few suggestions. With so many specialty bakers in your area, this is not a job for your caterer. Go to the experts.
Your wedding party shoulders much of the burden for making your event a success. A bridal luncheon – hosted by you – is a wonderful way to thank them for all of their hard work. It’s the least you can do.
Aside from its sentimental value, your engagement ring is likely to be one of your largest jewelry purchases for many years. While diamonds may be forever, the proper care and cleaning of your ring requires some periodic maintenance.
While liquor is traditionally served at wedding receptions, the final choice is yours. Usually your decisions will be based on your budget, your venue and your religious preferences. The good news is this is a good place to get creative.
Planning for an interfaith ceremony is hardly any different from planning for any other wedding ceremony. The bride and groom still need an officiant, a location and a guest list, but this article shares that communication is the key when planning.
Virtually nothing is ruled out when it comes to transportation for the happy couple. It’s all about your style and how fancy (or not fancy), your wedding is. Depending on your budget and style, we have several creative options.
Whether you make your own favors or buy them, they’re a chance for you to be creative. Here are some great ways to budget, brainstorm and present favors for your family and friends.
'Beautiful fresh flowers set the tone for guests as soon as they walk in. What’s your style? Large floral displays? Small bouquets? Colors that match? Or simple spring bouquets? Be sure to be clear and direct with your floral planner.
Invitations give a glimpse into your big day. When picking the style, keep this in mind and think about the kind of event you are trying to create. Uber-formal affair or casual rustic-style…invitations come first.
If you want guests to come in black tie or cocktail attire, consider the etiquette guidelines we've outlined here. If planning a more casual-style day, we give you a few thoughts on how to loosen the rules.
Start your married life together on new bed linens. Of course you’ll use the bedding you choose for a long time so you deserve a beautiful bed.
There’s more than one way to announce your engagement. While Facebook and Twitter will get the word out quickly and easily, there’s something truly special about a finely engraved, mailed announcement.
Should you greet every guest even if you don’t have a receiving line? It’s really up to the couple to decide the best method to say hello to guests.
Creating your seating plan can be as complex as negotiating a peace treaty. Eccentric Aunt Rachel sitting next to your boss? Yikes! The key is getting your RSVPs returned in plenty of time to arrange and rearrange as much as necessary.
There are a few things every kitchen needs to function. Here’s a handy checklist to ensure your culinary tool pantry is well-stocked.
'Before the invitations can be addressed, an invite list has to be made. This can often be a long and sometimes difficult process, but this article offers clear advice and etiquette on making (and trimming down) your guest list.
Budgeting is often the most stressful part of wedding planning. But you don’t have to take out loans, rack up credit cards or spend your life savings if you read these tips on how to cut back expenses for things no one will notice.
Read others' proposal stories then share your own. See how others turned ordinary events into a walk down the aisle. This collection of stories will amuse you, enchant you or touch you.
You will find more than 30 money saving tips when it comes to planning the perfect honeymoon. Whether you’re on a budget or not, there are some things every bride should know when it comes to booking a romantic getaway.
Use flowers to display your cultural backgrounds. It’s not uncommon to blend the bride and groom’s flowers together to make floral displays, if they’re different. Find out which flowers represent what countries.
Pictures taken on the wedding day are what will hang on walls and be displayed in albums on coffee tables for generations. Choosing a photographer with a similar style to yours is important to getting photographs you know you’ll love.
Whether you have an officiant in mind immediately, or are considering several people to conduct the ceremony, there are some pretty important questions to ask and details to review before the big day. Here are important questions to ask before you say “I do.”
A fabulous dessert is the perfect end to your perfect day. But a white butter cream tower isn’t for everyone. Imaginative designs, colors, shapes or even – gasp! – cupcakes may be more to your taste. Whatever you choose, flavor rules!
There's more than just showing up on time. It's important to do your part to help make the happy couple's special day perfect. Here's advice on sending your RSVP, adding guests, sending regrets, attire and more.
'Mishaps happen, and when they do, be prepared. Check out this list of quick fixes for life’s little emergencies that may happen on your big day. Even better, print out the list and assign a bridesmaid to make sure everything is there, if – and when – you need it.
'Today, not only is the best man asked to give a speech, but the maid of honor typically gives one as well. So here are a few tips that will help her deliver your toast with elegance and style.
You’ll certainly want to purchase a gift for the happy couple when you receive your invitation. What to buy? How much to spend? Send it or bring it to the reception? Everyone asks. Here are the answers.