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Weddings are tough to plan, with a variety of factors going into making sure the day of your dreams is everything you’d hoped for. Orchestrating your nuptials is a tough task, and requires strict attention to detail to ensure everything goes off without a hitch—no pun intended. Keep these unique tips in mind as your wedding day approaches.

Give Your Feet a Break
In all the hustle and bustle of picking out the dress and shoes for your walk down the aisle, it’s easy to forget you’ll be on your feet for hours after the ceremony. Make sure you bring along a pair of comfy flats that will complement your dress but give your feet a necessary break from the painful heels you’re probably sporting for your vows. If you’re not completely devoted to wearing heels down the aisle, consider wearing flats from the beginning—you’ll be a lot more comfortable.

Drop Off an Overnight Bag
Few couples actually head out on their honeymoon mere hours after celebrating their vows, but most do tend to stay in a hotel or special venue for their wedding night. Instead of having to head home after to get a change of clothes and all of your toiletries, have a bag packed and ready to go. If you can, ask a friend to take the bags over to the hotel room to ensure it’s waiting for you when you finally check in that night.

Keep Snacks On Hand
The nerves are going to be in fine form on your wedding day, and that’s to be expected. If you find your nervousness makes it hard for you to eat real meals, make sure you have plenty of snacks on hand that are easy to pop into your mouth. Even if you’re not feeling hungry, you’ll need your energy—the last thing you want is to faint on your way down the aisle. You can order a delivery of fresh fruit for you and your bridesmaids to snack on in the hours it takes to get ready, or grab a few protein bars and keep them handy in case hunger starts to gnaw at your tummy.

A Smoke Free Ceremony
One thing we don’t tend to plan for in weddings is the presence of smokers, but it’s likely you know a few. If you have friends or family that are avid smokers and you don’t want acrid clouds of smoke filling up your wedding reception (and wreaking havoc on your skin!), section off an area out of the way where relatives and friends can smoke without affecting you and other guests. You may also request that they use electronic alternatives instead of normal options, like NJOY e-cigarettes. These don’t put off smoke and are often odorless, so there’s no chance of disgusting secondhand smoke ruining your day.

Taking the Wedding Cargo Home
After your wedding reception ends, you’ll be saddled with a lot of new cargo; from mementos to décor you’d like to save to all the wedding gifts piled on the table. The last thing you’ll want to do after the final song plays and the last guest leaves is spend your first night of marriage hauling all of these items back home. Before the night begins, enlist a friend or family member to be in charge of taking your things back to your house after reception. You can provide them with reusable moving boxes rented from BungoBox.com to make the transport quick and easy.

The Legal Nitty Gritty
While reciting your vows and kissing your new spouse signifies the start of your married life together, the marriage isn’t truly official and complete until you sign the paperwork. Stay abreast of all of the legal requirements and keep the necessary documents in order. In most states, you must sign the marriage license at least 24 hours before your ceremony, so find out the local regulations and follow them to a “T” to make sure you start off on the right foot.

As your wedding day draws closer, keep these essential wedding tips in your arsenal to ensure you and your beloved have the wonderful day you’ve always imagined.

 

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Everybody loves a good wedding, and after the engagement period is over and you’ve decided to set a date thus begins the very serious task of planning you and your partner’s ideal wedding. More and more couples each year take to breaking conventions with throwing a themed wedding with traits of tradition mixed in. Themed weddings are also a great way for you and your partner to show off your own personalities and identities. Whichever theme you decide on, your big day will be something you, your partner and guests will never forget.

In Season
Once you have set a date for the big day, if you’re undecided on a theme why not stick to the time of year the date you’ve chosen falls under. As there are plenty of different ideas depending whether your wedding is in spring, summer, autumn or winter. If you have chosen a particular season then each season will have their own colour palate as well as in season foods that you can base your wedding and the setting, food  and everything else around, which saves you a lot of hassle you will only need to choose the smaller details of your big day.

Vintage
When it comes to a vintage wedding theme the beauty is that there are so many decades to choose from. This year’s most popular decades being 1920’s Gatsby-eques party theme or a more refined make do and mend 50’s theme. With vintage weddings, setting is one of the key things to consider if you do go for a traditional Gatsby 1920’s theme then a hotel would be the perfect destination especially one with a grand staircase and chandeliers.

If you are considering a classic 1950’s theme think Jubilee street party style if you don’t want to brave the outdoors opt for a massive party tent to keep you, your partner and all your guests warm and dry. A party tent or even an outside setting for a 50’s theme can easily be decorated with lots of fairy lights and bun tin, to create the ultimate vintage look.

Casino
Some couples have chosen to have more entertainment based weddings which could include a casino or Las Vegas style wedding. Or if you and your significant other are looking for a more intimate ceremony you could even elope to Las Vegas and get married at one of the most popular wedding chapels located on the Vegas strip. If you end up eloping you can always surprise friends and family and have an official reception when you get back.

If you both want a more traditional wedding you could always have the reception decked out like a casino, as there are lots of classic table games that could be a part of the fun. To find inspiration why not try looking at games on best deal casinos,  as you could earn some winnings playing some games and put that money towards the wedding or the honeymoon. Little touches like creating personalised chips or playing cards with you and your partner details could be a great idea for wedding favours for your guests.

Superheroes
If you and your other half have a rather quirky style and have a favourite superhero why not try that as a theme? If you don’t want to go all out you can have subtle nods to the theme like having a bouquet made from comic book pages which will not only be an accessory but one that you get to keep forever and the groom could even have superhero cufflinks. As a favour to the guests, if you really wanted to splash out you could have your own comic book created and printed about you and your partner. There are plenty of ways to incorporate the theme in a big way through outfits, reception, setting, wedding favours, or you can have subtle ways like capes and disguises just for fun pictures with guests.

No matter what theme you and your other half choose, the best way to get ideas and inspiration is to search through wedding websites, magazines and even read about previous weddings with a similar theme. You will also be able to accommodate your budget to whichever theme you have decided on.

Fill up your wedding day centerpieces with storybooks and florals. It’s unique, you can personalize it and it’s so much more fun than the traditional candle or two. From eclectic to romance, this idea can blend within a variety of themes. Let’s have a look!

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There are many things to think about when you’re planning a wedding. Food, drinks, guest, table plans, venue hire, equipment hire; the list goes on! A great way to to add style and class to your wedding is to hire a marquee. Whether you’re hiring a marquee for a backup plan or it’s your first preference, it’s important you know how to utilise the space to its full potential. We’ve come up with our top 10 tips for how to perfectly style a marquee wedding. Read on to create the most magical wedding experience you can.

1. An exciting entrance
This is your big day, so emphasise this by creating a grand entrance for you and your guests. This also gives the space some structure and direction. Treat the space as you would your home, and create a personalised, homely entrance. Have one opening of the marquee decorated with flowers and lights, so guests feel a warm welcome as they enter the space.

2. Lighting
Lighting is an essential part of styling a marquee wedding. Most marquees come with uplighters, but it’s common practice to add your own personal touch of lighting to create the atmosphere you desire. Fairy lights placed over the dancefloor, or even the entire ceiling, give off a beautiful, delicate twinkling effect that is sure to enhance the magic of your special day.

3. Create specific areas
Because a marquee is a blank canvas of a space you can work with, it’s important to signify and section off certain areas. For example, a great way to personalise the bar area is to create hand made signs in your wedding colours, stamping your names and wedding date on the signs to make the space your own.

4. Hanging decorations
The huge space that marquees have is just crying out to be decorated. There are many ways you can decorate your marquee ceiling to add ambience and atmosphere to the space. Large, colourful flower arrangements offset by greenery are a gorgeous way to emphasise the space. For something a little unique, you can choose to create rustic candelabra, which can be suspended from a marquee ceiling at different heights.

5. Flooring
Some marquee hire companies, such as Marquee Monkeys, offer flooring as an option. Depending on the season, grass floors can add texture and enhance the space. However, in cooler months you may want to consider hiring some carpet to warm up the area and add an air of luxury.

Each and every wedding reception is going to come with it’s own organisational and decor challenges. Marquees can look somewhat empty if they aren’t styled the right way. However, when the space is utilised to its maximum potential, a marquee wedding is a magical and memorable sight to behold. A grand entrance, alongside beautiful lighting and decorations will make the space sparkle. Think about an appropriate flooring option for the weather, and ensure the guests are well aware of the specific areas of the marquee. If you stick to these 5 marquee wedding tips, you can be sure that your wedding will be the most magical it can be.

 

 

Add a certain pop to your groomsmen with texture and color that’s a bit outside-the-box. With these berry boutonnieres, you’ll give them a unique spin on the tradition of the day!

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Sweetness and a bout of tartness can infuse your celebration with fun and flavors that guests will love. Serve up one … or two … of these raspberry cocktails at your reception!

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There are literally hundreds of articles out there on cutting wedding costs or getting the perfect wedding day look on a budget, but not a lot that focus on the costs after “I do.” It goes without saying that starting a life together comes with its own expenses. Not to mention that when you add in the costs of the wedding and the honeymoon, and for some those looming student loans that still aren’t out of the picture, that first year can feel pretty strapped and like all of your money is going out of the window to pay for the past instead of your future. That’s not to say that you should regret the money you invested in your wedding; absolutely not, it is a memory to last a lifetime! However, there are a few ways to cut the costs and reduce the constraints after the big day has come and gone, and they involve thinking practically about your wedding registry.

Going for Practical Over Pretty

I know the word ‘practical’ may sound like a threat to burst the beautiful bubble around your dream wedding plans, but I promise you it doesn’t have to be. Being a little practical can go a long way to making your first year of marriage a dream as well. Maybe you think that a the fancy gifts and jewelry are the most relevant things on your wedding registry, but swapping luxury items that you can survive without for something that meets your needs as newlyweds, can help with the costs in the aftermath. For example, adding practical “big ticket” items that you need to check off, like a good mattress, dining room set or cooking equipment. These options certainly don’t have to be mundane though – a beautiful matching set of cutlery or a plush new memory foam mattress, like one from Eve, are both practical and exciting additions to your wedding registry. These items that guests can pitch in to buy can go a long way to help you save the money you would have to invest in it yourself, especially for when you are just starting out.

Think Ahead and Think Outside of the Gift Box

Once the honeymoon is over, though, you still have to come home and settle back into reality. This can be a really exciting time, but as you settle back into life in your rented apartment and the day to day grind, that dreamy novelty of all of that can wear off a little. One of the most intelligent wedding registry options we’ve seen, which is starting to appear more and more, is asking guests to put money into an investment account to go towards a down payment  for a house. To most this type of registry probably sounds pretty unromantic at first, but keep in mind that getting you one step closer to crossing the threshold of your own home is getting you one step closer to ‘happily ever after’. Buying a house is probably one of the biggest investments that most newlyweds will make, so adding this to the registry not only helps you achieve this goal faster, but it keeps you looking forward to and excited about the future, giving you something to strive after and a new focus of anticipation.

 

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Your wedding is an incredibly special time in your life, so we understand that every single detail matters to you. You pick a color scheme and a theme and put an incredible amount of effort in, hoping for it to be your perfect day and that your guests will enjoy the occasion as well. One of the ways that you can convey your taste and theme to your guests, as well as to get them excited about the event and to know a little of what to expect on the day, is to put it right there in the wedding invitation with your own personal style.

For the Destination Wedding

We came across this destination wedding invitation idea and thought that it was as cool as a tropical drink in your hand. To amp up the destination appeal, the invitations were printed to look like flight boarding passes. We found this idea to be simple but fantastic because it gets your guests in an excited pre-travel mood that makes them start counting down the days before your wedding.

For the Mysterious Appeal

Obviously since everyone knows about the engagement, they expect a wedding invitation in the mail as the days go by. But this neat idea got us thinking quite a bit about personalization and going beyond print. The printed invitation was only a card with a website URL, and nothing else. The guests had to go and visit the website URL to see what this whole thing was about. Once they did, they were directed towards an incredibly beautifully designed and extraordinarily personal wedding website. This hosted not only the invitation details and allowed the guests to RSVP, but they could also sign up to do something as part of the wedding program, could browse the wedding registry, and had opportunities to leave comments and funny stories about the bride and groom, as well as browse through a large selection of pictures of the couple.

All of this clicking through gets your guests incredibly involved in the whole invitation process, and it ensures that no one can really “lose” their invitation. With so many beautiful templates out there to choose from, this type of invitation is incredibly easy to make and is always unique and personal. See here to get started if this is your type of idea. Of course an attention-grabbing invitation is just one of the many ways to make  your wedding more memorable, but we think it can be a pretty effective one if done right.

Nude is having a major moment in the makeup world right now. Barely-there shadows, blush, bronzer, lip stick, liner and gloss are at the heart of every beauty line out there. And brides are jumping on the bandwagon!

Nude is neutral, easy to wear and versatile — fitting for the bride who wants a more au naturel look on the big day. Remember: it’s easy to look washed out with a nude lip, which would be a complete disaster for wedding pictures! Avoid the white-washed effect by playing up your eyes with smoky shadows, liner, defined brows and, of course, false eyelashes. Voilà! Natural drama with ideal blend and balance. Now, go knock ’em dead, gorgeous.

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Gloves got a bad rep in the 80s and 90s (think elbow-high, Cinderella-like fashions made from shiny fabric) — but they’re back — and we’re happy to report that they aren’t the same styles from the days of yore. Rather, we’re seeing short fashions that are dainty, demure and oh-so-feminine accessorizing couture bridal collections on the runway. They are a particularly popular accessory among Spanish designers like Rosa Clara and Aire Barcelona.

We adore gloves and the feeling of class and sophistication that they exude. Have a pair on hand and wear them as you wish on your wedding day. Maybe you just want to wear them for the ceremony (remove when you give your bouquet to your maid of honor), or maybe you want to wear them for your pictures outside, or maybe just for cocktail hour. Any way you wear ’em, they’re a classy touch of old-world elegance.

Find a stunning set to suit your fancy from BHLDN or Etsy.

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Navy, white, clean lines, stripes — when it comes to wedding themes, we are crazy about nautical. Preppy, classic and modern at the same time, nautical-filled nuptials inherently have that cool factor. However, here’s a little piece of advice: don’t opt for a nautical theme unless 1) The event is by the water; 2) You have a passion for boats, water sports, etc.; 3) Your love story somehow involves something boat/water related. For example, opting for nautical decor in a barn venue would be a major no-no. Holding it at a yacht club? Much more fitting.

Try suiting your groomsmen up in boat shoes, tying rope around your napkins, serving fresh seafood, gifting salt water taffy or entering your wedding reception by boat (a major “wow” factor”) — all fun ideas. Just make sure there are plenty of navy and white stripes to go around to bring your nautical theme to life.

We’ll leave you with a little nautical inspo.

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Photo Credit: Rachel Vogt Trends

Photo Credit: Rachel Vogt Trends

By: Araceli Vizcaino-S

Four months into the year and everyone is still obsessed with Pantone’s 2016 Color of the Year. Rose Quartz and Serenity are an elegant duo that make for a serene combination that has us all inspired. We love how expressive and fluid these colors are; they balance each other out perfectly. Take a look at these subtle yet stylish ways to incorporate these colors into your everyday looks!

Wrap It Up
A simple yet chic way to incorporate these colors is by throwing on a wrap or scarf! This look is pretty versatile – just pick a lighter scarf for those warmer months and switch to cashmere wraps and knit scarves as the weather cools down.

Twirling in Tulle
Tulle skirts give off an ethereal and romantic yet simple chic vibe. Tulle skirts are the perfect piece in your closet to add a touch of Rose Quartz or Serenity to, giving off a cool vibe. Pick a longer skirt for a more feminine look while shorter skirts keep it casual!

Nail Designs
Nail designs are a great way for adding subtle hints of color to any outfit. Pantone selected two colors for the year, there’s a huge variety of colors that can be used for designs! Try playing with geometric designs for a more edgy look or an ombre nail color with a more feminine outfit!

Chic Clutch
We love versatile accessories! That’s why we love the idea of incorporating Rose Quartz and Serenity by adding a clutch in the same colors. These two colors blend well and easily match any outfit, making it the perfect accessory for an on-the-go simple way to add a Pantone color!

Pantone’s Color of the Year is meant to inspire creativity, don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone with these gorgeous colors. Whether you like subtle hints or big displays of color, Serenity and Rose Quartz are defining colors that can be incorporated into our own style color palette!

Araceli Vizcaino-S is the Community Manager for Azazie, an online bridal boutique that specializes in a made-to-measure dress experience. At Azazie, dresses are designed in-house and wedding parties are provided with custom fitting for over 200 styles and 57 colors of bridesmaid dresses, wedding gowns, mother-of-the-bride dresses, as well as a wide selection of bridal accessories.

Bouncy, beautiful and filled with that childlike wonder we want to hold on to forever, balloons are a fun alternative or addition to traditional wedding decor. Coming in every size, shape and color of the rainbow, balloons are playful and seemingly retro (believe it or not!) in this day and age. A lovable throwback.

Choose giant balloons to hover above your ceremony space, letter-shaped balloons to spell out something special for a photo op, or numbered balloons to float above reception tables — however you use them, they’re equally whimsical. Did we mention how affordable this type of decor is? WAY more so than big bouquets of flowers. Also, subtracting even more cost, is that balloons are DIY-friendly, so grab a couple of eager relatives, rent a helium tank and put them to work! They’ll be happy to help.

Now fly away from here and get lost in balloons for days.

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We all know that the wedding cake is the center of the reception, and one of the most photographed details of the day. So you better make it good.

With cake baking majorly trending (think tv shows, cupcake shops on every block, etc.), we’re seeing a departure from the traditional chocolate and vanilla flavors to more inventive, fun and delicious takes on the wedding cake. After all, chocolate and vanilla aren’t one-size-fits-all, so why not choose a flavor that you really love? Funfetti = fair game. A s’mores cake? You betcha.

STICKY SALTED CARAMEL: If sweet and salty is your thing, a salted-caramel cake is just the ticket.

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LIVELY LEMON & BLUEBERRY: Bright blueberries and tart lemon are a dynamic duo for a spring or summer soiree.

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{FUN!}FETTI: The flirty flavor will have your guests begging you to cut the cake, already.

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PEANUT BUTTER & JELLY FOR ALL: Capture your inner kid by paying homage to the classic childhood sammy.

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CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE: Everyone’s favorite cookie in cake form? Um, yes please!

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LUSCIOUS LAVENDER: Fragrant and the most perfect shade of purple, lavender layers achieve rustic elegance.

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HAZELNUT BLACKBERRY: Part nut, part berry, all yummy goodness.

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WHITE MOCHA: For those coffee fiends, what better way to get your fix than through a mocha confection?

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S’MORE, PLEASE!: Turn the campfire concoction into a cake? We’re in.

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Spring, Easter, colored eggs, sunshine, new buds and fresh blooms — come this time of year, we can’t help but want to paint ourselves completely in pastels. And it doesn’t stop there. When it comes to selecting your color scheme for a spring-themed wedding, there’s nothing prettier or more fitting than a pastel palette.

Choose from creamy shades of minty green, soft yellow, sky blue, lush lavender and barely blush. Are you swooning yet? We are.

From pastel tulle bridal skirts to sweet-colored confections, makeup hues and floral arrangements, we invite you to get lost in everything pastel.

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You may have been wondering just what type of greenery it is that’s been woven through almost every wedding floral design in the past three years. Search no more. It’s olive branch!

The definition of rustic elegance, everything about olive branch is dreamy — the shape, color and how it naturally bends and arches so perfectly that you’d think it was made for wedding decor.

Draping from bouquets, lining long reception tables, framing cake layers — incorporating olive branch into your weddingscape will no doubt create that country chic vibe you’ve always dreamed about.

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Colorize your wedding with a variety of full and rich shades. These colorful, inspirational ideas will have your big day popping with bold flavors and style. From the flowers to the ceremony, give your decor a punch of color.

‘Tis the season for hauling out shovels, putting on gardening gloves and tending to your green thumb. Thus, we’re excited to bring you a little wedding-meets-planting inspiration!

If there’s one trend that’s hot, hot, hot in weddings right now, it’s pulling off that effortless, organic, just-out-of-the garden feel for your big day. From free-flowing bouquets to hair wreaths and plant favors — why not take the garden theme to the next level and incorporate planters into your floral arrangements? The result? Rustic elegance to the max.

Whether you choose moss and greenery, garden roses or a mix of both, you can’t go wrong with lining your tables with these super-cool centerpieces. If you’re feeling like using hundreds of cut flowers seems like a waste, plant flowers in your planters and enjoy them long after the sun sets on your wedding day. These would also make great gifts for family members!

Check out these planter-perfect arrangements.

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Hello, hydrandeas. You’re beautiful, bountiful and we love you.

Blooming from early spring through fall, hydrangeas are around for half of the year, so take advantage of ’em! It’s sort of a no-brainer to incorporate hydrangeas into your wedding decor — they’re incredibly versatile — whether you use them as a filler flower or as the star of the show. They shine every time.

The biggest predicament you’ll face with hydrangeas is choosing a color. From deep purply greens for a fall fête to creamy whites, soft pinks and blues for spring, to vibrant purples for summer, there is no shortage of color options when it comes to hydrangeas. Gather hydrangeas into a bouquet, cascade them over your ceremony arch or bunch them on your cake — stunning every way.

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Not every boutonniere or bouquet has to be filled to the gill with petals and lace. Instead, you can get really creative with their design, add some personal style and embellishments that fit the theme of the day. Check out these 10 unique boutonnieres that will add a special pop to the groom and inspire your own big celebration!

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These whimsical and romantic Nurit Hen wedding gowns are flawless. Check out our favorites from the Spirit of Love collection.

These Paolo Sebastian wedding gowns will knock you right off of your feet and have you dreaming of your wedding day. Couture, luxurious, glamorous and show stopping, check out these stunning designs.

Elegant, timeless and feminine, pearls are the perfect addition to your big day. If you’re looking to bring a little sheen to your decor and wedding-day embellishments, pearls are the way to go. Perhaps what we love most about them is their understated quality — you won’t find pearls trying to steal the show like other types of “bling.” Rather, pearls are understated and classic with a luxe luminosity when set against the warm glow of candlelight.

We challenge you to think outside the studs and strand and incorporate pearls into your bouquet, stationary, hair piece, veil, cake, table decor and more — the options are endless. Take a look.

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From creamy white and blush to bright fuchsia, yellow and orange, ranunculus come in all colors of the rainbow, and are absolutely ravishing for a wedding. Varying in sizes and accompanied by buds and thick green stems, ranunculus have that freshly-picked-from-the-garden organic feel that every trendy bride seeks.

With a whimsical round shape and endless layers of petals, ranunculus pair perfectly with garden roses and peonies. They’re practically made for each other.

Whether you tuck a stem into your napkins alongside flatware, nestle them between cake layers or bunch them for a centerpiece, ranunculus will wow your guests.

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It’s in the back of every bride’s mind: “What if it rains on our wedding day? The day will be ruined, all plans will shift, it won’t be what I have always imagined” and so on. Relax.

Even if you picked the sunniest of sunny locales, there’s still always a chance of precipitation. Example? I got married in Mexico in December, where there was the lowest possibility of storms imaginable. We planned an entirely outdoor event under cabanas on the beach, with pictures, dinner and dancing all set to take place outside. Come the day of the wedding, gray clouds loomed over the beach, and at 1 p.m. (with a start time of 5 p.m.), I was waffling with my mom and wedding planner about what to do. I decided to stick to our original plan and hope for the best. “If it rains, it rains,” I told myself. And sure enough, the clouds parted and spared our outdoor soiree.

DON’T DO WHAT I DID and wait until the last minute to ambush your already overwhelmed and emotional self with decisions.

Here are five tips for you to make sure showers don’t rain on your wedding soiree:

1. MAKE A RAIN PLAN: As soon as you settle on your venue, discuss the rain game plan in length with the wedding planner and vendors. Decide on a tent, alternate on-site location, etc. Don’t leave any details left undiscussed! This ensures there will be no surprises on your wedding day, even if it’s your plan b.

2. RAINY ACCESSORIES: Grab some inexpensive matching umbrellas and rain boots for the bridal party so you’re prepared for wet weather in style.

3. TRUST THE PROFESSIONALS: Once your rain plan is put in place, trust the experts and relinquish control. They know what they’re doing, and it’ll be fabulous — we promise!

4. KEEP AN UP-DO ON THE BACK BURNER: We all know rainy, damp days = flat, scraggly hair. If you’re planning on wearing your hair down or half-down, it might be a good idea to have already tested and approved an up-do alternative with your stylist.

5. OWN IT, LOVE IT AND CAPTURE IT: Rain on the big day brings good luck, or so they say, so soak it up, Your day will be perfect no matter what. Also, rain makes for some of the most memorable wedding photos, so grab your groom, an umbrella and get out there! Check out these gorgeous rainy moments:

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ipad-820272_1280In order to keep you sane and help you make it through the almost overwhelming task of planning the perfect wedding, there are certain wedding planning must haves as well as some tried and tested tips and tricks to make the big day a big success. In this day and age, though, wedding websites are becoming a popular method of coordinating the big day.

What’s The Point of a Personal Wedding Website?

Quite simply because it makes everything 100% more efficient, easier to keep track of, and generally more fit for the 21st century. Plus, setting up your own site and managing the webspace isn’t nearly as complicated as it once was. Many web hosts, like 1&1 for example, offer entire packages for hosting and designing your own wedding website to your personal taste. I know efficiency and easier management doesn’t sound all that sexy and romantic to most, but trust me, you will want to include a wedding website among the rest of your wedding planning arsenal. Here’s why.

Your Wedding Website Checklist

Invitation Information

Although the majority of people will still want to go with the traditional wedding invitation route, including this information on your website can help those few friends and family members who will inevitably lose the invitation. More generally, it keeps all the essential details of your wedding publicly and easily accessible to everyone you’ve shared the site with. This way, everybody’s on the same page.

RSVP Option

One of the biggest benefits of the wedding website is allowing your guests to RSVP easily online instead of having to head out to the post box. Not only is this easier for your guests, but having everything come in online will also help you more quickly and easily tally up your guest list so you can finalize your seating plan.

About the Couple Section

This is practical because not everyone invited will know both the bride and groom equally well, or their love story, so this “About Us” section can help family and friends get to know the couple a little better and feel more included in the celebration of your love.

Gift Registry

Another of the other most important aspects of a wedding website is the online gift registry. This allows guests who might like to contribute to the occasion with a present to do so online in a more orderly way. Vitally, it makes sure that people are looking into what you have already on your registry and cuts out a lot of the hassle involved with gift shopping in general. Or if physical gifts are not desired for whatever reason, this can also be identified here.

Reception Program

This all depends on the couple, but often guest contributions need to be fielded through whichever close friend or family member is in charge of the program. You can include a section on the website that allows friends and families to submit their desired contributions through a contact section, which then goes directly to the groomsman or bridesmaid responsible for the program. From your aunt who wants to sing at the reception, to your younger cousin’s crazy skit, or your sister’s slide show, everything can be easily organized through this section and make the program planning a lot easier for whoever is taking on this responsibility

Logistics

This is any additional information that guests should know about the wedding itself. For example, if it is going to be outdoors on the grass and perhaps high heeled shoes wouldn’t be the best idea, or if there is going to be a cash bar. In the logistics section you would also include all of the basic details, like time, location, driving directions, lists of hotels in the area, etc. This allows you to be able to give your guests a whole bunch of information, a lot of which wouldn’t be included on the paper invitation, and maybe avoid a whole lot of phone calls and headaches closer to your special day.

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The wedding registry has evolved quite a lot over the years. What you need on your wedding registry will be different for each couple, however. For some, the list will be pretty obvious, as starting off a new life from scratch can indeed require many essentials and some assistance. Others who already have everything they need can find it a little more difficult to narrow down, but it is still necessary to give your guests a little bit of guidance towards your taste and wishes.

Getting the Word Out

It should be general knowledge as wedding etiquette rule number one to never include registry cards in with the wedding invitation. This gives off the wrong message and is incredibly tacky. Directing your guests towards your own wedding website, however, that so happens to contain a registry – as well as all of the other details of your wedding – can be a little more tactful. Just include the domain URL to your wedding website on your invitations and let your guests do the rest. With the various list of new top level domains on the internet, you can even get creative and include your name and your fiancé’s name in the domain, with .wedding instead of .com or something else cute and to your taste. See here for available options if you’re interested in this idea.

Timing

You want to set up your registry early enough that people aren’t scrambling to buy a gift at the last minute. Normally 4-5 months before the wedding is a good enough amount of time to finalize your registry. If you do go the personal wedding website rout, which includes your registry, you will be able to add to or revise items at will, which can help aid the time constraint of seasonal items, as well as give you more freedom if something comes to mind or your wishes change.

The Stores

It is important that you practice a little restraint here. If your guests visit your registry and see 20 different stores on it, they will most likely get overwhelmed by too many options. The general rule of thumb is to limit your store choices to a maximum of three, and don’t register for similar items at each store. If you choose stores that have a wide variety of products instead of incredibly specialized, you are more likely to cover all of your desired gift areas. On the other hand, if you already have all of the things that you need, you can easily set up a specialized registry for guests to give contributions to charities of your choice, or even set up a honeymoon registry so that guests can contribute to your honeymoon instead.

The Price

Ultimately, you should stick to a price range that you yourself are willing to pay at a friend or family member’s wedding. Or, if you do have “big ticket” items, then set it up in a way that more than one guest can contribute towards that gift. Also, stay away from anything that seems like a “gift grab.” Although you may want a hot tub or a plasma TV, you should include gift items on your registry that seem practical as well as romantic. After all, you really want your guests there to share the day with you, gifts themselves are a secondary kind gesture and not the reason for the invitation.

We’ve all seen (and have taken!) the staged wedding photos of families, bridesmaids, groomsmen, flower girls and ring bears lined up perfectly. Are these essential? Yes. Are they boring? Yes.

While those photos are necessary, no doubt, we guarantee that the pictures you’ll drool over are those fleeting candid moments that only a camera can capture in a flash. The stolen glances, ear-to-ear grins, boundless belly laughs, nose nuzzles, eskimo kisses, cake fights and more.

Candids tell the emotions of the day — you’ll want to remember how you felt, how you looked at your new spouse and how teary you were during the toasts, and candids will capture just that.

Tip: Ask your photographer for a mix of posed and candid moments when you’re compiling your shot list. You don’t want any surprises when you get your pics back post-wedding.

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The cake. It’s the centerpiece of your entire wedding day, so it better be memorable.

We’ve seen several different cake decorating trends come and go — fondant, ruffles, naked, rough iced, pies even — but one cake take we’re really loving is painting. Instead of piping or cutting out fondant designs, elaborate decorations are painted directly onto fondant for a clean, intricate look that’s awe-inducing.

Nothing is off limits when it comes to designs, either. Think geometric, water color abstracts and, the most popular cake painting design we’re seeing — frilly, feminine florals. Can’t decide on one pattern? Mix and match correlating designs on alternating layers!

Check out these picture-perfect painted confections.

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Home décor is important; it can have an effect on your self-image, stress levels, and overall mental health. If you’re moving in with your new spouse for the first time after the wedding, you’ll both have to determine how to combine two distinct styles. Taking the time to consider each other’s design ideas will ensure you have a cohesive cohabitation space during this exciting
transition time. From his to hers to a perfect combination of the two, these tips and tricks will help you create a unified home décor style that will appease both hubby and wife.

The Non-Negotiables
You both are likely coming into your new home with furniture, so a purge is going to be a necessity. This is your chance to get rid of items you might have been hanging onto unnecessarily, and throwing away or selling old pieces will give you more space to work with in your home and more reason to shop for new pieces you both might like. This is also your chance to sit down and talk about your non-negotiables on each side. You both need to be honest and open about the pieces that have meaning to you. Listening to each other’s concerns will make it easier to compromise on items you might not have been okay with before. For him, it might be the coffee table from his grandfather’s study, for her, a floral patterned couch she fell in love with the moment she saw it. Marriage is all about compromise after all, so consider this a crash course. You might find your pieces blend together perfectly with a few accents, so get to taking inventory and decide on the things you won’t be willing to part with.

The Thing About Clutter
A surefire way to have you both at each other’s throats over design? Clutter and chaos. One of the easiest ways to avoid clutter is to focus on modern clean lines, within your furniture and décor. Stay simple and experiment with different mediums. Wood, metal, and cement may sound like masculine materials, but with the right lines and sleek finishes, you’ll wind up with the perfect feminine touch to make the room appeal to both parties. Find art pieces with modern appeal that both husband and wife adore at a site like www.touchofmodern.com, keep shelves free of clutter by being extra selective with your décor, and take time every week to organize together.

Neutral Big Ticket Items
When it comes to furniture and appliances, your best bet is to go neutral and add individualized accessories. Stainless steel appliances in the kitchen will fit both styles with the addition of vibrant colors, a basic entertainment stand will be easily dressed up with smaller pieces that reflect both styles (but don’t expect the fights over what to watch to be easier to handle), and a neutral headboard and bed frame can be individualized by sheets and bedding.

His and Her Spaces
If you just can’t seem to agree on his sports posters or her penchant for pastel furniture, it might be in the best interest of your marriage to dedicate separate spaces for each spouse. A man cave for him, a woman cave for her, of sorts. That way he can hang up that beer sign he’s carried since his dorm days, and she can use all the chevron she wants on the walls. We all need alone time every once in a while, and this will give you both the chance to design a room exactly how you like. When compromise just won’t hack it, this is the route to take.

Have Patience
It’s going to be a slow process, and it may take months or even years to finally get to a place where you both feel like you have equal input on a space. If either of you have drastic or unique design ideas, give the other time to warm up to it. You can draw out your plans, allowing for better visualization, and slowly gather the pieces that will contribute to your overall vision. That way, neither of you will feel blindsided and both parties will be eased into your new cohesive living space.

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With bachelor and bachelorette parties gradually becoming more tame, more couples are electing to throw co-ed, joint bachelor and bachelorette parties. If you and your betrothed aren’t looking to celebrate that cliché “last night of freedom” consider throwing a joint shindig that will serve as a wonderful party for you two and your friends before the wedding arrives. This is the perfect idea for the groom and bride who want to spend the evening together, and there are brilliant ideas that will keep everyone in high spirits.

A Camping Trip
If the groom and bride are the outdoorsy type of couple, what could be better than a weekend spent camping with all of their best friends? Rent out a cabin in the woods or bring along tents and sleeping bags to really rough it under the night sky. You can also play games that emphasize the battle of the sexes out in the great wild, like good old-fashioned tug of war, foot races, and all those “summer camp” games we secretly miss.

Twists and Turns
Harken back to the joys of childhood and take your crew to a local amusement park to hop on some rollercoasters with twists and turns, partake in that fried food that you can’t justify anywhere else, and nom on your fair share of cotton candy. A day filled with laughter can’t go wrong, and the happy couple will enjoy getting to sit side-by-side on all of the death-defying rides, not to mention all the hilarious pictures that will ensue.

A Party Bus
You might not be heading to the strip club or Sin City like the classic stories of bachelor and bachelorette parties, but that doesn’t mean you can’t get your party on. Book a party bus and plan a pub crawl around your town. This assures no one will drive while under the influence, and you’ll have everyone you love shuttled around to the destinations of your choice. Pick a theme for the evening (anything from neon to Hawaiian shirts to pajama onesies), crank up some fun tunes, and enjoy the evening cruising around town.

For the Adventurous Couple
If the celebrating couple always seek out adrenaline-pumping feats, then you can’t go wrong with planning an experience style adventure. Check out Funsherpa.com. This awesome website will give you all the local options for a fun experience, including white water rafting, bungee jumping, skydiving, and even Ferrari racing. No matter what kind of adventure you choose, the happy couple is going to love getting their blood pumping and hearts racing.

A Scavenger Hunt
If you’re planning the party for your friends, consider putting together a scavenger hunt that will have you all running around the city hunting for clues. If you know them well enough, hide clues in areas that are special or particular to their relationship. It can be their first date spot, the place she told you they had their first kiss, or at the wedding venue for an early sneak peek at the festivities.

An Escape Room
Test the couple’s ability to work together—along with all of their friends—by taking part in an escape room game. These rooms are popping up in cities all over the world, and come in all types of themes. From escaping your worst fears to figuring out clues like a modern-day Sherlock Holmes and Watson duo, the happy couple will enjoy putting their heads together and discovering the mystery behind unlocking the door.

A Sports Game
If both the groom and bride are sports fans to the extreme, could there be a better party idea than attending a game they’ve both been looking forward to? Whether it’s baseball or football, taking the whole crew to the stadium to enjoy some hot dogs, pricy beer, and good old-fashioned game-playing is sure to create memories that will last a lifetime.

The One Tradition That Stays
Going modern with the party doesn’t mean you can choose to forgo the sentimental gifts. Whether you’re the bride, groom, or a best friend looking to plan a fun bachelor/bachelorette party, make sure you grab gifts for him and her to commemorate the event. Personalized cufflinks will add a refined feel to his tux on the big day, while a customized charm bracelet will dangle from her wrist with grace.

Long gone are the days that grooms and brides-to-be must host stripper-filled bachelor parties and take part in drunk shenanigans. Shirk tradition and embrace the new trend of Jack and Jill combined bachelor/bachelorette parties. Keep the groom and bride together and laughing with all of their favorite loved ones for a day or evening of his and hers fun they’re both sure to enjoy.

 

Math has new meaning.

Modern, cool and on-trend, geometric styles, shapes and patterns are popping up in everything from interior design to fashion, art and now, weddings.

From hanging hexagonal flower arrangements to triangle-topped tiers and terrarium centerpieces, geometric-inspired weddings are the coolest — unique, hipster and chic all rolled into one. You can opt for a multi-colored spread of shapes for a fun spin, or keep it neutral with shapes in metallics and wood materials. Either way, we can’t get enough of the clean lines of geometric design.

Now go ahead, get lost in shapes.

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Lush, abundant and the most decadent shade of green, fern-filled wedding-day decor is a look we’re mad about. Did we mention it’s an unconventional take on wedding foliage? While big, bountiful blooms are stunning, we can’t help but go gaga for a greened-out floral theme — unique, interesting and just as beautiful.

Baby ferns, big ferns, tall ferns, short ferns — they’re all equally amazing. Whether you cascade ferns down your reception tables, bunch them as a bouquet, or nestle them in between the layers of your cake, ferns create an ethereal, fairy-like feel that’s sure to add magic to your wedding day.

Here’s some of our favorite fern inspiration if you’re planning to go green!

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The first signs of green are starting to bud as we transition out of winter — and with good ol’ St. Patrick’s Day just around the corner — thus, we are majorly crushing on the earthy hue, and expect it to be a big trend for spring and summer weddings.

Modern brides aren’t afraid to brush other colored blooms aside and embrace all things green. The trick to pulling off a greened-out event is to incorporate several different varieties of greenery in a similar hue. The end result? A monochromatic yet interesting look laced with texture and appeal.

Sage, mint, pistachio, emerald, lime, forest — whatever the tone, go green or go home.

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ring-1167513_1280Melbourne, being both dynamic and cosmopolitan, has become known as Australia’s hub of style and culture. This is why it is such a great destination to find the most stunning wedding rings in the country.

Just as with anything however, when there is a lot of choices, it can get tricky to spot the average from the amazing. When it comes down to jewellery stores, being able to differentiate the two is essential so you can walk away with something you can treasure for years to come.

When looking for a fine jewellery store in the Melbourne area, start by finding someone or a place you can trust. Simon West Jewellery offers the finest handmade diamond engagement rings around. With their personalized service and reputable track record, you can be confident when purchasing anything from their store.

If you want to know how to spot the best jewellery stores in any location, look out for the following signs and you will find it:

Do They Have a Good Reputation?

Sometimes it’s hard to tell this just by walking into a shop. That’s why online reviews and social media testimonials are so valuable these days. Even better, if you know someone who has had a positive experience in a store this will really boost your confidence.

It can be almost impossible to tell the quality and style of the perfect engagement ring you are looking for. Especially if you have never shopped for diamond rings before! So asking the right questions to the jeweller is essential to making a great purchase.

Simon West has a page especially dedicated to testimonials which instil you with confidence that they truly care about your purchase and experience. Click here to view details for more jewellery collections and discover what stunning handcrafted pieces they offer.

Spotting a Brilliant Jeweller

It really helps if you can build a relationship with them. Get to know them so you can form a bond of trust and this will really help the whole purchase go smoothly. You should be able to tell whether the seller is worth your time firstly by how well they listen to your needs. Knowing you are speaking to an observant and astute jeweller is key in the buying process.  If they know what they are doing they should focus on the bride and her personal style whilst listening to you. Once they start going down their own route or getting too pushy, this is a red flag!

You Know They’re Good When They Offer Lots of Services

The more services they offer to help you choose the right engagement ring, the better. For example, a great engagement ring store may have a resident gemmologist or a bench jeweller. These trained and certified people can help you choose the right stones for your style and budget.

Now you know some key signs to look out for, you should be able to find the most exquisite jewellery stores in Melbourne.