Saturday, August 25, 2007


By Nily Glaser of A-wedding Day
Copyrights© 2007 Nily Glaser, All Rights Reserved

Both bride and groom should be involved in most wedding planning activities. However, the wedding dress or gown and bridal attire purchases are strictly the bride's domain.
So, here you are, a bride to be with a wedding date and a lot of wedding planning activities to take care of so your dream wedding becomes a reality and your first thought is - your bridal attire.
Shopping for a wedding dress or gown and bridal attire is a lot of fun but can be extremely expensive and rather frustrating. Guess what! You can reduce both expense and frustration and enjoy the process without sacrificing quality.

This is how:


As soon as your wedding date is confirmed start researching in magazines, on the Internet and by visiting bridal shops and trying on dresses and gowns so that you have at least a general idea of the style of dress or gown you want.
Look for seamstresses who specialize in wedding gowns and dresses and ask for a price range. From $ but no more than $.
As you choose your style, consider the following:
Choose a classic dress or gown. If you opt for a ball gown style be ready to spend more money because the more fabric it takes to make a gown, the more it costs.
Remember that sometimes less is more and opt for no embellishments or with embellishments only on the bodice. Having embellishment on the sleeves, waistline, hemline,and or train, will raise the price of the gown and may actually make the gown over embellished and less elegant.


Time your gown and wedding attire shopping with samples, closeout, discontinued items and inventory reduction sales.
Bridal stores and salons pay a hefty price for their floor space. They need to make room for the latest new styles.
Take advantage of it and you win! How?
Simply call up the shops and salons in your area and find out if and when they're having their next sample and inventory reduction sale.
Ask if they will allow you to preview the dresses that will be offered.
Some, especially privately owned stores, will be glad to comply and may even encourage an early purchase. After all, they want to sell the items and reduce their costs and inventories.
Note that samples are usually available in size 6, 8 or 10.
Closeout items come in all sizes.
While you are there, check out about other wedding attire for you and your wedding party.

If you must wait for the sale itself, arrive early. Better yet have companion.
Wear clothes that's are easy to slip in and out of. Do not stop to consider every dress you see.
Pick up anything that you think you might like and let your companion hold it.
Once you are done, try the dresses on as quickly as you can as time is short and competition may be great and have your companion eye other brides for more possibilities for you.
She may pick up dresses other brides tried on but did not choose, yet have the exact features you want.
Once you have narrowed your choice to one two or three dresses, unless they fit you perfectly, lucky you!, check out if the store offers alterations the costs and the time frame. If the cost seems too high, contact the seamstresses you have already interviewed.


But do not stop there. You do not need to wait for a special sale, check all of the clearance racks at the bridal sections in department stores frequently. You'll be favorably surprised at what you can find.
The only drawback is that what you see is what you get. You purchase any sale item as-is.
Though you can have a gown altered to a smaller size at an additional cost and risk, it cannot be made larger.
You cannot add sleeves to a strapless gown.
The color and designs are set so you may have to compromise.
Also, take into consideration that you may need to dry clean a dress or gown that has been sold as sample, discontinued or inventory reduction sale.


Do not disregard the power of the Internet.
Go to google and search for wedding gown or wedding dress.
Visit as many web sites as time and patience allows.
You'll come across bridal shops that have web sites and see many designers names their styles, colors and price ranges.
You'll also come across online only shops.
The online only shops are not saddled with the huge overhead that brick and mortar shops pay and often pass their saving on to their customers by offering lower prices.
It is important that you are aware that for some reason, most wedding gown sizes run small (A small 6, a small 8 etc...) So, unless you are sure of your size and have an alteration seamstress available, you may be disappointed.
If you plan to shop on the internet, be sure to provide the vendor with the following measurements: Size, Bust, Waist, Hip, Hollow to Waist, and Hollow to Hem. Hollow to Hem is the measurement from the hollow of your neck to the floor, taken while you are wearing the shoes and slip you plan on wear at the wedding.

Buyer Beware

There are many online wedding dresses - gowns retailers on the Internet.
Some offer actual designer products and others offer replicas or gowns designed to look like, but with moderations, while others have their own designs.
So before you order a dress or gown, check the web site thoroughly.
Look for an address, and a phone number and by all means CALL the owner personally and interview him or her.
Be sure that ALL your questions are answered and that you are COMPLETELY satisfied and comfortable buying from that PERSON's web site. Base your decision on the person not on the web site.

IMPORTANT! Never store your wedding dress or gown in plastic. Depending on the material used, it may yellow or become gray and never lay it flat as it may crease. Store it in a cloth bag and hang it in a closet free of heat, dust and other impurities.


You need shoes to go with your wedding dress or gown. But do you really need wedding shoes?
Think about it. The difference in price between purchasing shoes at a shoe store or at a bridal salon may surprise you.
Yes, adding the simple term wedding to the description of a pair of shoes may double even triple its price.


These items are much less expensive than a dress or gown. Therefore your risk of purchasing them on the Internet is small.
Yet, you can save a lot of money.
Look for a pair of gloves you saw offered on the Internet for less than $20.00 in a bridal salon and figure out your savings.
The same holds true for veils and tiaras.
Do the math and cash in on the savings.

Article Copyright © Nily Glaser, All Rights Reserved 2007

Copyrights © 2007 All Rights Reserved Nily Glaser of A-wedding Day and Gan Publishing

Wednesday, May 9, 2007


Flowers and candles are an integral part of every wedding, though the types and amounts used will vary depending on the formality and size of the wedding and reception, the time of year, the time of day, and whether the event is held indoors or out.

Flowers: The following flowers are needed, even at small weddings:

• bouquet for the bride
• bouquets for the bride's attendants
• boutonnières for the groom and his attendants, including ushers*
• corsages for the mothers and grandmothers
• boutonnières for the fathers, grandfathers, and ring bearer, if a boy
• corsage for the guest book attendant

* If the groom or any of his attendants wear military uniforms, it is a violation of military protocol to wear a boutonniere on the uniform.

You may need the following additional flowers, depending on the size of the wedding and the facility where the ceremony and reception will be held:
• boutonnière for the minister or officiant, unless he or she wears a robe
• corsages for female candle lighters and female ring bearers
• corsage for the wedding coordinator
• petals for the flower girl's basket/baskets unless your facility doesn't allow them
• corsages for those serving at the reception if friends or family members serve
• centerpiece or large arrangements for the front of the sanctuary or the altar
• centerpieces for one or more of the serving tables at the reception
• centerpieces for the guest tables at the reception
• a toss bouquet for the bride

Whether you use fresh or silk flowers is a matter of choice. If members of the wedding party are allergic to pollen, silk flowers may be the better choice. However, if a florist arranges the flowers, silk ones often cost as much as real flowers because they are labor-intensive. When choosing fresh flowers, those that are in season will be less expensive than those that have to be imported.

When choosing flowers, consider the size and lighting of the rooms where the wedding and reception will be held. If the wedding will be held at night or in low light, pale-colored flowers such as pinks, lavenders, and yellows, may not show up well, or may look gray, including in your wedding photos. If the room is large, centerpieces or standing arrangements should also be large and contain larger flowers, such as lilies, so that the arrangements are clearly visible from the back of the sanctuary or room.

Many brides choose to use fresh flowers on the wedding cake. Your florist can provide loose flowers that the baker will use on the cake, or the florist and baker might work together to decorate the cake.

Candles: Candles can add elegance to an evening wedding or a church wedding. For weddings held earlier in the day, the amount and type of candles used will vary. The amount of candles needed will also vary with the season and with the location of the ceremony. Generally, more candles are used at winter weddings than at summer ones and more are used in churches than other locations. If an outdoor wedding is planned, you may choose to forgo the use of candles, particularly if the location is prone to be windy. If candles are used at an outdoor event, they should not be tall and they should be surrounded by a glass enclosure.

The following candles are often used at indoor weddings:

• candelabra in the front of the church or place where the ceremony will be held
• a unity candle to be lighted by the bride and groom
• side candles that the bride and groom use to light the unity candle
• candles on the guest tables at the reception

Many event centers no longer allow candles to be used unless they are surrounded by a glass enclosure (you don't want to set off the fire sprinklers). Therefore, if you want to use candelabra for the ceremony, be sure to ask if it is permissible. Churches are usually more relaxed about the use of candles with open flames.

Most churches have candelabras. If yours doesn't, you can rent them at most rental centers. You can also rent votive candleholders and tabletop candelabras.

Incorporating flowers and candles into your decorations will add a special touch to your wedding. With a bit of creativity, you can add elegance without spending a lot of money and transform your wedding location from ordinary to extraordinary.

Copyright ©2002, Glenna Tooman, all rights reserved
Memory Makers Event Planning LLC

Choosing a Coordinator

Exactly one minute after becoming engaged couples are expected to become experts in all the areas they will need or desire to procure services. They call their friends, recall past weddings they enjoyed, spend a small fortune on bridal magazines and traipse to weddings shows far and near in search for the perfect vendor. The arena for wedding industry vendors is broad and full of talent. It is easy to be wowed by a photographer’s work blown up life-sized or a sliver of wedding cake that was "to die for", but when it comes to signing on the dotted line The question becomes which one? Cost is always a factor as is quality. What about referrals? How long have they been in the business? These are all great questions, but inevitably it’s the questions that weren't asked that pose the most problems for brides. And vendors are only the tip of the ice berg what about "etiquette" and dealing with RSVP's and guest seating charts—that alone has caused a number of couples to elope.

There is help out there in the form of a wedding coordinator. Whether referred to as a wedding consultant, bridal consultant or wedding planner; in a nutshell this person is the encyclopedia of weddings in your area and most importantly, once hired, your advocate. A coordinator is essential to the well planned affair. Your coordinator will be well worth every dime spent (and saved). The immediate experience you gain on your team in the areas of negotiating contracts, design, etiquette and most importantly logistics management.

With the average wedding taking nearly three hundred hours to plan paired with the fact that most of today's brides are working professionals, finding the time to adequately compare vendors and review deals can be near impossible.

Take into account that most reputable wedding coordinators have planned numerous events at venues in your area that you are probably considering. They have also worked with many of the vendors in the area and can help to pair you with the vendors best suited for your type of event. An additional plus of using a coordinator is that the relationship that they have with your vendors can only benefit you. Vendors enjoy working with other vendors they know, and as vendors get to know each other their work flows smoothly and seamlessly.

Being a subjective third party also works to your benefit. Your wedding coordinator is there to advocate on your behalf, they will fight your battles in dealing with difficult vendors or situations. You want more than anything to feel like a guest at your wedding as you attend to your new spouse and your guests who have come to share this day. A coordinator will allow you to do just that while making sure everything stays on schedule and to manage all the details.

How to you choose a coordinator? You should feel completely comfortable with the coordinator and feel assured that he or she completely understands what your needs are. View their work. Have they accomplished any events that appeal to your sensibilities? What are their credentials? This will let you know how much pride they take in their trade. Is this their full time occupation? Do they have referrals from former brides? These questions will help you identify the coordinator that is right for you. As for their fee structure, it can vary greatly from planner to planner. Examples you can expect to see are a percentage of the total cost of your event (anywhere from 10-20%), flat fee packages or hourly rates. Many consultants will offer a la carte services to allow you to build the package of services that best suit your needs. Most consultants will offer full scale planning or day of wedding coordination others will have a myriad of specialized services for you to choose.

About the Author
Vicky Johnson is a full time, certified Professional Wedding Consultant and owner of Holy Matrimony with offices in Washington, DC and Baltimore, MD. She has coordinated weddings nationally for more than 15 years.

"How-To" Get Started Planning Your Wedding

He’s finally popped the question. You’re now engaged and have set a wedding date…."Now What?", you ask yourself.

You have purchased the latest bridal magazines from your local grocery store and there are pages and pages of photos of beautiful wedding gowns, rings and articles on weddings. Some give you a brief idea of what you need to do to plan your wedding, but you’re still not sure how to begin the process.

The key is to start organizing and planning earlier than later.

You first need to create a system to keep all the details in one place. You may choose to use a binder with a tab for each category you will be using. Examples of categories are: Bakery, Ceremony, Catering, Florist, Music, Reception, Photography, Transportation. An accordion file is another choice, using the same category tabs. You will be able to see each category at a glance.

Whichever system you choose, use it to keep track of all receipts, pictures, brochures, business cards etc. that is related to each category.

Once you have your system in place, you can then do some research. There are many wedding planning books out in the market, even online websites (like this one). Visit your local bookstore or library to pick up a book to help your with the entire planning process.

Find a "wedding timetable" layout. This timetable will include a list of to-do’s for the entire months/year before the big day. Some of the first things on this timeline may be: Consulting with fiancé and parents to decide budget and financial support. Another may be deciding the number of guests to invite to your big day (always dependant on budget $$ available), deciding what type of wedding - formal or informal or even interviewing wedding coordinators. This timetable is a basic guideline. You can recreate on your computer to fit your wedding and time line.

Once you have an idea of all the details involved in planning a wedding and all the dedicated time you will have to spend, you can start recruiting help from family and friends. Delegate tasks to help you check off all the to-do’s on your list and by the time you know it, it‘s wedding day.

About the Author
Maggie Puertas, owner of Wedding Dreamz

Monday, April 16, 2007


As you are considering the style of your wedding, you may find yourself imagining the scene in each different season. The mood and weather of the month you choose have an undeniable impact on the tone of the occasion.

Rites of Spring

Weddings that take place in March, April, or May have the advantage of being first on the year's wedding dance card. Depending on where you live, March may be an unpredictable month, often bringing winds and rain. April and May are unpredictable, too, but less so. April is an unabashedly romantic month, with many of the year's loveliest flowers. May weddings offer all the benefits of these held in April, plus the likelihood of better weather.

Summer Weddings

June, of course, is the most popular month in which to marry. The tradition began centuries ago with the ancient Romans. The month of June was named Juno, goddess of women and marriage, who vowed to protect those who married in her month. In may areas June is also the first month of predictable fair weather. Another June offering: roses, the quintessential romantic flowers that bloom profusely during this month. And school ends in June, freeing guests to travel and college-age newly weds to take their honeymoons. But getting married in June has challenges, too. Wedding locations, musicians, florists, caterers, and clergy are in high demand during this month. Being a June bride is worth the extra planning, if you've had that particular dream since adolescence, and the month does carry undeniable joyousness. Just be sure to allow enough time to make arrangements for services you need and want.

For couples who want a summer wedding but are not emotionally bound to the month of June, July is a fine choice. It's the height of summer, nights are long, and outdoor weddings run little risk of bad weather (although humidity can be a formidable problem in some places). Family members who live far away may be more able to get time off from work to travel in summer months, and children are out of school. The same goes for August. It is such a popular vacation month that if you don't send your invitations out well in advance, you might receive a higher number of regrets.

Fall is for Lovers

There are numerous good reasons to consider getting married in September or October. The weather is mild and crisp, and the tide of summer travelers has ebbed a bit. In many parts of the country, the scenery is spectacular in the fall, making it easier to lure far-flung family and friends to your celebration. Some couples make the autumn foilage a key part of their wedding design using wreaths, harvest motifs, and a warm, firery palette in their decorating schemes.

Another advantage to autumn weddings: honeymoon destinations are less crowded, since most schools start in September.

Winter Weddings

Fewer people get married in November than in summer or fall, which allows popular wedding locations to be available then. The same holds true for musicians, florists and caterers, all of whom are eager to spend extra time with you in the slow month before the Christmas holidays.

December is an age-old favorite for nuptials. What is more romantic than exchanging vows in a candlelit chapel, with snow falling outside? The scent of pine in the air, the yuletide spirit, and the notorious holiday feasting all lend themselves perfectly to a wedding celebration. Many hotels and restaurants are lavishly decorated for the season, so you may be able to save on decorations and still have a festive affair. Families and friends traditionally get together for the holidays, anotherbenefit to planning your wedding at this time. According to Irish folktales, the last day of the year is an especially lucky one on which to wed.

Scottish lore, meanwhile, has it that January 1 is the most fortuitous day for a wedding. Tying the knot in January or February has the same advantages as doing so in November, with many sites and services more readily available to you. These months are also a perfect time for a honeymoon wedding. In quiet winter months, family and friends will welcome an invitation to travel to a ski village or an exotic ( and possibly warmer ) locale. If you're considering a winter wedding, remember that February has the most romantic wedding date of all- Valentine's Day.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Wedding Insurance – A Good Idea or a Waste of Money?

You insure your car, your home, your health, and your life. Now you can insure your wedding too. Insurance for your wedding is one of the newest products on the market. But do you really need it, or is it a waste of money?

Wedding insurance has been popular in Great Britain for a few years. Today, a number of companies in the U.S. are also offering wedding insurance. Most policies offer varying amounts of coverage for varying fees with the most expensive policy costing less than $400 for a wedding held in this country. If you are planning a destination wedding, coverage can be obtained at a slightly higher fee.

Most insurance policies will insure you against:

• Unforeseen weather problems (are you planning a wedding in Florida or the Bahamas during hurricane season?). This must be a major problem that will prevent you from holding the wedding as scheduled or that will prevent a majority of your guests from attending, not an afternoon thunder storm.

• Cancellation or postponement of the wedding. If you or the groom is in the military and is called to active duty, you might need to postpone the wedding. One of you or a close family member could be injured in an accident, have a sudden illness, or even die, necessitating a change in wedding plans. Insurance would cover the lost deposits.

• Failure of merchants to perform their contracted services. This might include a caterer who goes bankrupt just before the wedding or an event center that closes just before your event. Or perhaps the florist takes your money, then skips the country (all of these things have actually happened to unsuspecting clients). If you have paid a deposit or the full fee to such merchants, you will be reimbursed. Some policies will also cover the cost of legal fees to collect from errant merchants.

• Damage to the wedding attire. If the bridal salon catches fire and your gown or your attendants' gowns are ruined, or the airline sends your gown to Timbuktu, you can be reimbursed.

• Photographs and video. If the photographer fails to show up or he neglects to put film in his camera, his equipment is defective, or the video camera doesn't work, you may be able to recreate the wedding photos at a later date and receive payment for the recreation.

• Theft of the wedding gifts or the wedding rings. If you leave your gifts in another room while your ceremony is occurring and they are stolen, or someone breaks into the car in which the gifts are being transported, you can be reimbursed. You can also be reimbursed for loss or theft of the wedding rings, but not the bride's engagement ring.

• Professional counseling. Some policies will pay a limited amount toward counseling if you are left standing at the altar and you need therapy to work through it.
Most policies will not cover the lost deposits if either the bride or groom changes their mind and breaks the engagement.

Before you purchase wedding insurance, check with the company that writes your homeowner's or renter's insurance policy and find out exactly what is covered under that policy. Also check the liability insurance policy at the venue where your wedding will be held. Depending on your coverage, you may not need a separate insurance policy, or your current insurer may be able to add a rider to your existing policy to cover the wedding.

Whether wedding insurance is right for you will depend on your circumstances, but it may be worth the cost, particularly if you are planning a destination wedding.

Copyright © 2004: Glenna Tooman, all rights reserved
Memory Makers Event Planning LLC

What You Need To Know Before Decorating for Your Wedding Ceremony

By Stephanie Smith

Wedding planning can be fun and sometimes a little overwhelming, especially when it comes to decorating. There are a lot of little things that can have a huge impact without taking a lot of time. While many facilities will take care of the decorating for you, most ceremony locations don't. They just don't have the staff or the demand to provide that kind of service, although they can sometimes offer advice as to what other couples have done in the past. Ask lots of questions and keep an open mind. The ceremony location, whether it be a church, park, or backyard, will likely be where you spend the least amount of time on your wedding day, but it's where the most important thing happens! You don't want to spend your entire decorating budget here, but you do want everything to be perfect.

There are a few different areas you can focus your attention on and some areas you may not want to get too caught up with. With some advanced planning and a little help from friends on the big day, your ceremony location can look almost as fantastic as you do.

Altar - A couple of well-placed flower arrangements close to the altar will have a huge impact to the atmosphere of your ceremony. The flowers can either match the bridal bouquets or be all white, or even an assortment of colors that complement your bridal party. When choosing these arrangements consider reusing the bouquets at the reception location after the ceremony, and what kind of arrangement will suit both venues. Also consider whether you want to use real or silk flowers. Silk arrangements can be a great fuss-free alternative and can be prepared well in advance of the wedding to minimize last minute stress. All you need on the wedding day is someone to set them up at the ceremony location and then bring them to the reception.

Entrance - A great way to welcome your guests to your ceremony is to add a special touch to the door or entrance so the mood is set as soon as they walk in. You could hang a wreath or two on the doors, put a planter with some potted flowers on either side of the door, or even put a sign on or near the door welcoming your guests with a love poem. Many couples use wedding programs as a way to introduce their bridal party to guests and to add special messages they may not have an opportunity to say out loud. Extra programs can be arranged in a decorated basket, or on a small table just as people enter. Plain baskets can be decorated with silk flowers or vines, which can also be prepared well before the wedding day.

Pews - You're likely to find conflicting advise about pew decorations. I personally think they're overrated and are often more hassle than they're worth. The traditional pew decoration is to tie or tape a tulle bow to the end of the pew. I've seen many weddings where the bows start to fall off as guests walk past and are seated, not to mention when the bride walks down the aisle with her fancy dress and train! If not secured carefully, pew bows can look more messy than festive, and no bride wants to be wearing pew bows an an extra accessory. An alternative to is to have a spray of fresh or silk flowers (securely) attached to the pew.

Those are the basics covered off. If you want to go all out with decorating, consider using an archway at the entrance or beginning of the aisle. The arch can be decorated with tulle, flowers, ribbons and/or garlands. Just make sure you and your escort can fit through it with ease.

You can also decorate the table where you and your honey will be signing the record of marriage. Try using some ribbons around the edge of the table, or a bouquet that complements any flowers you have closer to the altar.

A word about candles... they can be a great addition to a wedding ceremony, especially during evening celebrations, but think ahead before getting your heart set on them. During outdoor weddings, the slightest breeze can blow them out if they aren't properly protected. For indoor ceremonies, make sure you have the appropriate holders for them. I once attended a wedding where most of the guests paid more attention to the wax dripping onto the carpeted church floor than they did to the exchanging of vows. The couple had dozens of candles in fancy candelabras which looked great at the start of their sunset ceremony, but had melted into a big mess by the end. If you intend to use candles, check with the facility to make sure they will allow it, then ensure that the candles and the hot wax will be well-contained.

Make sure you visit the ceremony location often to make your decorating plans. You don't need to have any decorating surprises on your wedding day, so measure areas you want to decorate and plan accordingly. Also bring with you the person who will be setting up your decorations so they are comfortable with the arrangements and may notice if furniture has been unexpectedly moved. You won't likely have time to do the decorating yourself, and your sweetie will be too nervous to remember where things go and what they're supposed to look like, no matter how early he gets there.

For more tips on how to decorate for your big day, visit