Wedding Ideas – What’s New, Fun, and Gaining Popularity?

After seeing more “what’s the latest trend” articles, I wanted to see what is new and popular in our area (Dayton, Ohio). And where best to find this out, but to go right to the source.

Thanks to some of our local wedding pros, here’s what’s new in their areas of expertise.

Textured Wedding Cakes

Textured wedding cakes are still quite popular, from structured art deco-ish designs to an icing with a rough finish.

Textured Wedding Cake

Bobbi and Brittany with ele Cake Co. tells us that one of the more unexpected, yet popular wedding cake designs (and a unique texture) is their Geode Wedding Cake.

Geode Wedding Cake

Elegant. Stunning. Simple. And totally gorgeous!

Geode wedding cakes look like the real thing, but are completely edible, made from rock candy and granulated sugar.

Slow-Motion Video Booths

Photo booths combine a fun activity with a nice take-home for wedding guests.

So, what’s better than a photo booth? A 240 frame per second HD Slow-Motion Video Booth, of course!

Mark’s Camera Bag’s Slo-Mo Video Booths are a big hit , with guests showing their best dance moves, tossing confetti, making outrageous faces, and overall, having an awesome fun time. A 40” monitor that sits outside the booth allows all of your guests to enjoy the live action.

Check it out here –

Yes, guests get a ‘take-home,’ receiving a download of their slow-mo session. And the happy couple get a final edited production of all sessions with special edits and music on DVD.

Thematic Elements in Unexpected Places

Themed weddings are still popular, with the theme commonly being expressed in the couples’ choice of color pallette, centerpieces, and menu choices.

But what about your ceremony?

Rev. Cindy Lee Carver embraces different themes by donning coordinating attire – including Cosplay, Halloween, Steampunk, and recently Gandalf from Lord of the Rings.

Steampunk
Gandalf

Besides the off-beat and themed weddings, she also specializes in officiating traditional, inter-faith, humanistic, alternative, non-traditional, and LGBTQ weddings.

Up In Lights

Sure, you can put your initials on top of your cake, and have your monogram projected on your dance floor or printed on your programs.

Why not put your initials up in lights – classic theater marquee letter lights?

Initials
L-O-V-E

Event Lites specializes in these unique, four feet tall décor pieces – including numbers, letters, and some symbols.

Light up your night with your initials. Spell out Mr. & Mrs., Love, or even your names.

The possibilities are endless.

Perfect for helping you build the right environment and decor for your event. Use them for:

• A modern ceremony backdrop
• A fun, diy photo booth backdrop
• A cool prop for your engagement photos
• Reception décor

Looking for fun ideas for your wedding? Weddings From The Heart can help. Contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

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5 Quotes about Love and Marriage

Love Marriage Romance Hearts
Romantic Red Hearts

Although much has been said on the topics of love and marriage, sometimes nothing sums it up so succinctly than a good quote.

Short, sweet, and to the point, here are five lovely quotes that you can use on your wedding invitations or ceremony programs, include in readings, signage at your reception, or just as inspiration.

Love with Red Heart
Love with Red Heart

1. “Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.” ~ Lao Tze

2. “Happy is the man who finds a true friend, and far happier is he who finds that true friend in his wife.” ~ Franz Schubert

3. “A good marriage is one which allows for change and growth in individuals and in the way they express their love.” ~ Pearl S. Buck

4. “Men always want to be a woman’s first love and women want to be a man’s last romance.” ~ Oscar Wilde

5. “A successful marriage is an edifice that must be built every day.” ~ Andre Maurois

Heart with Arrow
Hearts with Arrow

Be sure to share with us in the comments below other quotes on love and marriage that you particularly love.

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

Need inspiration or ideas for your wedding? Contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

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Tungsten, Titanium, and Alternative Metal Wedding Rings: What’s the Difference?

Titanium Rings

Today’s bride and groom are ready to think outside the box. With so many options available in wedding planning, dresses, and rings, the time is now to have a unique, memorable ceremony that is totally you. But with all those options comes a new kind of stress: how do you choose between all these possibilities?

Luckily, the jewelry world is full of beautiful, affordable rings made out of alternative metals like tungsten and titanium. Every kind of metal is different, and each has its own properties. This infographic, courtesy of Titanium Style, can help you understand the differences. That way, you can pick exactly what you want—and get on the road to having a wedding that is totally you.

titanium ring infographic

There are no “right” or “wrong” choices here. Whether your tastes lean more towards the traditional or more avant garde, there are many designs and metal choices to suit your personal style.

Thanks to Titanium Style for sharing this information on alternative metals for your wedding ring.

For more ideas, contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

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Sunshine, Rain, and Your Wedding Day

lightning

Sitting here in my family room listening to the rain. Not a relaxing patter on the window. It is thundering and coming down hard.

I mean HARD!

So hard, that even with a rain coat and umbrella you’d get drenched.

The sun was shining not just 20 minutes ago! It was nice enough to do a little yard work, or sit outside and have lunch.

But now we’ve got a thunderstorm.

“Why in the world is she talking about the weather?” you’re probably thinking.

From weddings held at parks and shelter houses, to backyards, and venues with lovely outdoor settings – outdoor weddings are on the rise. And with outdoor weddings, you’ve got to contend with the weather.

In a perfect world, it would never rain (and the wind would only be a comfortable breeze) on your wedding day.

In the real world, Mother Nature may have other ideas. And it’s not just rain. There may be wind storms, an unusual cold front, or high humidity or a heat wave.

Sun

You can’t really combat this (the weather is going to be what it is), but you can plan ahead in case the weather isn’t cooperative.

Have a “Plan B” with an alternate indoor (or appropriately sheltered/air conditioned/heated) site, and discuss this with your wedding coordinator, as other set-up logistics will be affected. Inform your venue manager and other vendors of your “Plan B,” and let them know who the person is who will designate if “Plan B” has to be put in place.

rainy wedding ceremony at seashore

Some things to take into consideration:

1) Your other vendors needs
• How long does your florist need to set up? Is she decorating an arch and placing lots of flowers along the sides of the aisle, or does she just have to set down a couple floral arrangements?
• Your photographer, videographer, dj, musicians all have equipment that cannot get wet.

2) The comfort of your guests.
• Will there be high humidity, compounded by guests having to sit in the sun?
• Even if the rain has stopped, has the ground been left so slick and muddy that it is unsafe to walk on?

3) The proximity of the site for “Plan B” from your original site
• Is it close enough to be able to direct guests to the “building on the right” instead of the “clearing on the left?”
• Or will your guests have to drive to a second location?

Most of the time plans go as intended, and here’s hoping that you have beautiful weather on your wedding day. But, have a solid “Plan B” in place, and remember, you’re marrying the love of your life, and celebrating this with your closest friends and family!

Just Married Rain

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

For more wedding planning tips and ideas, contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

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Old, New, Borrowed and Blue – Origins and Meanings of This Familiar Rhyme

Lucky Sixpence in the Bride's Shoe
“Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue”

We all know that singsong rhyme but may not know where it came from or what it means. Most brides just buy a blue garter and hope that covers it.

But the traditions surrounding it are quite charming.

The something old is usually covered by the bride choosing a piece of jewelry or other accessory to represent the chain of happiness flowing from one generation to another. When a bride uses her mother’s wedding gown or other family heirloom she is recognizing that this item symbolizes the ties between generations of family.

The something new is the marriage itself. It is symbolized by wearing something new (a new wedding gown or new earrings for example) that helps bring good fortune and success to this new union.

The something borrowed is usually on loan from a married friend or family member to help bring happiness to the new bride. The something borrowed item can be a piece of wedding attire (like a veil), jewelry, or even a handkerchief or family bible.

The something blue belongs to a tradition which dates back to biblical times when blue stood for purity and fidelity.

The English addition of the phrase “and a sixpence in your shoe,” is a favorite. If a bride places a coin in her left shoe, it is said to ensure wealth and that she will always have money.

Looking for unique ideas for your wedding? Weddings From The Heart can help. Contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

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Photo Credit: Jo Ann Snover | Dreamstime.com

A Fun New (Old) Approach for Your Wedding Processional

wedding ceremony aisle ready for processional

What’s an easy way to set the tone and mood of your wedding?

Make an entrance, of course! Your ceremony processional, where the wedding party and the happy couple enter, is the official start of your wedding, and is full of drama and anticipation.

Unless you’re having an extremely casual wedding, having everyone just sort of walk in is anti-climactic. (And who wants to start off that day like that?)

Walking to the pace of a slower tempoed song, such as Wagner’s Bridal Chorus (aka Here Comes the Bride), or Canon in D is more solemn and traditional.

These days, it’s not uncommon for couples to choose more current songs to walk down the aisle to, such as “Kiss Me” by Ed Sheeran or “A Thousand Years” by Christina Perri.

Other couples are taking it up still another notch. They’ve got to come in somehow, right? So to get the energy going, and expressing a light-hearted and whimsical tone, they’re dancing up the aisle.

Hundreds of years ago, the wedding ceremony was preceded by dancing to the ceremony locale. This represented the celebration of the joy of life. Through the years the dancing evolved into the modern processional.

Go back to the wedding ceremony roots and dance in.

Check out this fun wedding, featuring Bruno Mars and “Marry Me.”

“Well I know this little chapel on the boulevard we can go”

Love the song (yeah, I’m a Bruno fan). But really LOVE the energy of this processional. You can already feel the joy through the computer screen. Can you imagine how the guests were feeling experiencing this in person?

What do you think of the dancing wedding processional? Would you consider this type of entrance for your wedding ceremony?

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

If you’re looking for fun ideas, or need help with your wedding plans contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

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Photo credit: The Flower Studio in Austin, TX via photopin

11 Ways to Save Money on Your Wedding That Actually Work

Save Money on Your Wedding
It’s no secret that weddings cost a lot of money.

Here are 11 easy ways to save money without sacrificing your wedding style.

  1. Individual programs or menu cards look pretty, but you can save a bundle by providing this information on a pretty calligraphed sign.
  2. Serve only beer and wine instead of offering a full bar.
  3.  Skip the champagne toast (or just have it for the head table). Your guests will be fine drinking what they have.
  4.  Some vendors offer discounts for a wedding on a weekday or during a non-peak month such as January or March.
  5.  You can save on catering by having a morning or early afternoon ceremony/reception.
  6.  Trim your guest list. You’ll save on food and beverages. And less people means less seating, which = less tables/chairs, centerpieces, and linens.
  7. Offer a meatless entree. A veggie or pasta entree costs less than one with meat.
  8.  Have your ceremony and reception at the same venue. No need for a limo or party bus to transport the wedding party, and you’ll save on multiple site fees.
  9.  Omit favors, your guests won’t miss them.
  10.  Use more greenery and less flowers in your arrangements.
  11.  If your ceremony and reception are at the same location, have your DJ provide the music for both instead of hiring live musicians for the ceremony.

Looking for fun ideas, or need help with your wedding plans?
Weddings From The Heart can help. Contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

Photo credit: rrraum / 123RF Stock Photo

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How to Have Happy Wedding Guests (With 5 Super Easy Tips)

11229839_10206380169797323_821285514982644025_oPhoto by Jack Hoying

You’ve invited friends and family to help you celebrate your wedding. If you are like most couples, you plan to feed them, entertain them, and thank them for being a part of your special day.

While the quality of the food and music can definitely make or break their level of enjoyment (no doubt about that), don’t forget the little things that can impact your guests’ experience.

1. Keep your guests informed (before the wedding day).

Wedding guests appreciate being informed of what to expect. Your invitation will give them some clue, but a wedding website is a wonderful, inexpensive (and even free), convenient place to provide further information your guests will want or need.

Look at it from their perspective. Having clear info – locations, directions, time schedule, hotel accommodations, gift registry options, etc. – easily at their fingertips makes it easier for them to participate.

Many couples include a page for guests to conveniently RSVP, and leave comments or questions they may have.

2. Keep your guests informed (on the wedding day).

You’ve shared plenty of info prior to your wedding day. On the big day itself, make sure guests understand what you want them to do with appropriate signage at your ceremony and reception sites.

Guests tend to err on the side of caution. They need that gentle guidance to let them know what we want them to do, such as: yes, please sign the guest book; yes, please take a favor; and don’t forget to turn off your cell phone (you don’t want someone’s phone to start ringing in the middle of your ceremony!).

It doesn’t take a lot of time or money to create signs that are memorable and in keeping with the theme of your event.

3. Plan for a variety of foods available.

Think of your reception dinner as Sunday dinner only amped up a few notches. You don’t have to stick with the tried-and-true – it’s ok to be adventurous – but keep it familiar. Consider guests’ dietary needs, perhaps offer a vegetarian and gluten free options there are any dietary restrictions.

If you are adding a regional specialty or a nationality dish that may be unfamiliar to your guests, explain what it is with elegant tent cards, (remember #2 from above?)

4. Add a little pampering.

Your venue will have some sort of restrooms (either with running water, or hand sanitizer station). Pamper your guests with a few extra amenities like hair spray, hand lotion, tissues, band aids, breath mints, and a mini a sewing kit.

5. Smile, and really enjoy your day!

Make sure that on your wedding day you wear a happy face. You have planned a great event, it’s now time to relax and let the good times roll. You’ve done your best, and you have helpers (family, friends, wedding coordinator) to handle the details. So smile and enjoy what you’ve planned.

Smiling and being happy is contagious. It has a “trickle down effect.” If you are happy and enjoying yourself, your guests will feel it and also be happy and have fun.

On the other hand, if your are grumpy and complaining, your guests are going to feel that negativity. They are less likely to have fun, and will probably leave early.

Weddings From The Heart can make your wedding day stress-free, enjoyable, and just the way you want. Contact me at 937-235-2586, 937-581-3647, or jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net and schedule your free, initial appointment!

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

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Want Happy Wedding Guests? Here Are the Top 5 Things to Avoid.

11218244_10206380177437514_8387486570021473394_o

Photo by Jack Hoying

Your wedding guests have taken the time to come to your wedding to witness your wedding vows, and many have probably travelled great distances. They want to enjoy themselves, have a good time, and celebrate your first day as newlyweds .

To make their experience more pleasant and memorable (for the right reasons!) the following is a list of the top 5 things wedding guests hate.

1. A long gap between the ceremony and the reception
Try to have the reception start as close to the end of the ceremony as possible. If the ceremony and reception are at the same location this is super easy. If at different locations just figure out the end time of the ceremony and the drive time from there to the reception.

If a long gap between ceremony and reception can’t be avoided, provide something for your guests to do. A list of local sights to see, area shopping, A hospitality room at the hotel where your guests are staying is a simple, yet inexpensive touch. Light snacks (chips and soda) are all that’s needed. Maybe a friend or family member who lives nearby can invite guests over for cookies and light beverages.

2. A ceremony that doesn’t start on time

untitled-354pp_w850_h566Photo by Zac Fisher

A delay of a minute or two is fine. Making them wait 20 minutes or more is not.

3. Slow dinner service
Your guests have already sat through your ceremony, and although you may have provided some yummy appetizers and cocktails, by the time dinner is served they will be hungry. And when your tummy is on the verge of growling, nothing is worse than long buffet lines that take forever, or seeing another table get their dinners served but having to wait for what can seem like an eternity for them to get around to your table.

This can be avoided by having enough wait staff. Rule of thumb is 1 to 2 wait staff per 10 to 12 guests for a served dinner, and 1 wait staff per 25 guests for a buffet. Another easy buffet trick is to have the buffet table(s) double sided instead of having it pushed up against a wall (this gets people through the line twice as quickly).

4. Long lines for the bar or restrooms
bar-50038108_s

Photo by kadmy / 123RF Stock Photo

You can’t celebrate when you’re stuck in a line. For bartenders, figure on having 1 bartender per 50 to 75 guests. For restrooms, 1 potty per 35 to 50 guests (with a minimum of 2 – 1 for the men and 1 for the ladies).

5. Sitting in the hot sun for an outdoor ceremony

violet-outdoor-ceremony-53136495_s

Photo by 279photo / 123RF Stock Photo

Yes, I’m a fan of readings and music during the ceremony, and love the symbolism of the unity candle. But these things take time.

If your wedding ceremony will take place outdoors on a hot, humid day with little or no shade, use the KISS method (keep it short and sweet). Provide hand fans (they are inexpensive, and will help make the heat more tolerable).

Consider providing something to drink before the ceremony. Bottled water or urns with iced water is inexpensive, yet refreshing. Having pre-poured beverages looks nice, will quickly attract little bugs.

Weddings From The Heart can make your wedding day stress-free, enjoyable, and just the way you want. Contact me at 937-235-2586, 937-581-3647, or jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net and schedule your free, initial appointment!

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

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Not All Money Saving Ideas Are Good

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I love saving money just as much as the next person. And I love it when the money I’m saving belongs to my brides and grooms. (Believe me, nothing is better than staying on, or under budget!)

But not all money saving ideas are good ones.

Recently read an article that suggested couples skip appetizers, since the guests would be filling up on dinner during the reception.

Bad idea!

These days, most couples have their wedding ceremony and reception at the same location, and schedule the reception to immediately follow the ceremony. This makes sense, as it would be rude to expect your guests to leave then come back.

Even if your ceremony and reception are at two different venues, most guests appreciate not having a lag time between the ceremony and reception.

Usually the happy couple and their wedding party will be busy with photos right after the ceremony, so a majority of wedding receptions start off with a cocktail hour, since the reception can’t “officially” start.

What does this have to do with skipping appetizers?

Think about this – what are guests to do while waiting for the bride and groom to arrive?

Enjoy some beverages and little nibbles during a cocktail hour. Offer a cocktail hour and your guests will happily stay occupied until you arrive (with DJ or band playing some light music in the background).

With nothing to drink or snack on, after about 10 minutes or so, they will become antsy and bored. Giving them alcohol to drink but nothing to eat, is a bad idea. Alcohol on an empty stomach is asking for trouble.

The only way that skipping appetizers will work is if there is no time lag between ceremony and reception.

Appetizers don’t have to be fancy. Inexpensive cheese and crackers, fruit and veggie trays, chips and dips will do nicely.

And no, you don’t have to serve alcohol during the cocktail hour if you prefer to have a dry wedding. Sodas, iced tea, lemonade, and flavored waters will work.

Have any questions or looking for fun ideas? Weddings From The Heart can help. Contact me today at at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647 or jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net!

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

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Photo credit: magryt / 123RF Stock Photo