A – Is for Apples – IB #15

We all want to find interesting and different centerpiece ideas and one of my favorite ones is Apples! It adds an organic feel to the event. Place them in a large bowl or hurricane vase…it’s a green option to your wedding and a far less expensive alternative. Here are a few examples of how you can turn an ordinary apple into a modern centerpiece for your event. They can also be coordinated with other apple items throughout your event.

{images: theknot}

Art.Of.Things – IB #9

ArtFool Event Designers are some of the best I’ve seen…They create unique and vibrant looks to events and I couldn’t help myself but share with you some of my favorites.

Fancy.Ring.Pillows

Modern Bride & Bride Magazine featured these incredible ring pillows in their issues…so I wanted to show them off as well. Estilo Weddings features these stylish pillows that can go with any color palette. Who wants to stick to the standard white pillow anymore? Adorned with ribbons and accent floral pieces they will run you only $59.95!

Wedding.Trends.A-Z

Cupcakes.With.Style

Every now and again I stumble across a random wedding site that is truly exceptional. Estilo Weddings is just that…stylish and exceptional! Whether you have a modern, classic or romantic flair…this site has it all. After browsing the site I wanted to show you some of the more amazing things I came across.

I wish I had these at my wedding…they dress up any normal cupcake wrappers and depending on your style it can work with any theme. They even have a beachy seashells cover. You can order them in packs of 12 or 50, and the pricing is $12 or $46 for the big pack.

{cupcake wrappers: estilo weddings $12-$46}

Fall.Country.Affair – IB #8

I’m always inspired by Real Weddings…and Lori O’Toole captured a beautiful fall country wedding.

{photographer: lori o’toole}

One.Stop.Shop

I came across this site that I found really helpful. It’s called MyGowns.com and it’s really a one stop shop. Everything from gowns, accessories, favors, ceremony & reception needs this place has it all. Wrapped up in a one neat package. So instead of heading to a bunch of different places for your wedding shopping needs, check out MyGowns.com and make it a little more seamless.

Theme.It.Up – IB #7

For every season there are favors and decor that you can really accentuate your favorite time of the year. Check out these inspirational boards to get you in the seasonal mood.

{favors: beau-coup, cake and centerpiece: theknot, sea glass, shells & coral: saltwater obsession }

{bottle stopper & round placecard holder: beau-coup, all other images: theknot}

Pretty.Headbands

Jennifer Behr creates stunning headbands for brides and ladies who want to add some pizazz to their wardrobe. Celebrities love to wear her pieces and I think they are a definite head turner when you walk down the isle.

Romanian.Wedding

I recently went back to my home country where I was born to visit. I was also lucky enough to be invited to a Romanian Wedding…and let me tell you…any wedding that lasts anywhere from 10-14 hours is sure to be a good time! The wedding traditions were very different than ours here in the states…but I have to say some were extremely fun and unexpected.

Unlike American weddings…there isn’t a set time that you have to show up. The ceremony is usually 3-4 hours prior to the reception…and although the reception officially started around 7pm…people were trickling in throughout the evening. You walk in…find your seat…and then the waiters starting bring you food upon food.

The bride wore a beautiful ball gown style dress with pick-ups throughout the skirt and gold embroidery on the bodice. The color scheme of the wedding was champagne and a deep burgundy shade that you saw in all the details. From the napkins, to the floral arrangements and the sashes on the back of the chairs. It’s customary that when you first walk in…you are greeted by the bride and groom and they pin a small silk flower to wear on your dress or suit.

The centerpieces were these long vases with an arrangement of burgundy daisies. At the bottom were candles that illuminated the crystals inside the vase. Also on the tables were place card like items that were in front of each place setting…the interesting part was that when you opened it up…they also served as an envelope to place your gift and give to the bride and groom. Unlike in the US the main gift that is given to the bride and groom is only cold hard cash. The guests do this to help the couple start their new life with money for a new home.

They had a band with several singers and performers…a pop singer and incredible violinist that at one point played the violin behind his back…

The most amazing tradition by far was the “The Stolen Bride” tradition…because the receptions last so long this is a game that’s played in the middle of the night. Right before midnight…someone…anyone…can steal the bride from the reception…while the groom isn’t looking. You can put her over your shoulder and wisk her away…THEN…you take her to a bar, nightclub or anywhere you like! I was asked to take part in this tradition and we took the bride to a local nightclub.

On the ride to the location…someone in the car calls the groom asking him “Do you know where your bride is?”…You then proceeds to ask for ransom. For the kidnappers and usually for the bride too. I know it sounds crazy, but the brides always look forward to this because the ransom is usually a bouquet of flowers and maybe her favorite dessert. The kidnappers usually ask for a bottle of their favorite alcoholic beverage or something else more desired.  Keep in mind this usually takes place around midnight…the challenge is then to find a place to get these items.

Once the requests have been made…the bride and the kidnappers (usually best friends)…spend about 30-45 mins at the location of choice…and maybe have a few cocktails…The best part about watching this happen is that when we initially walked into the bar there was another bride leaving the place…and then a few mins later we were surprised with another kidnapped bride arriving…

So the bride had her fun…now it’s time to get back. We arrive back at the reception site…and we carry the lovely bride back to her ecstatic groom…happy to have his lovely new wife back in his arms. Part of his ransom payment was to get down on one knee and sing to her a love song in front of everyone. We all enjoyed the groom being silly for a moment!

Throughout the evening there was food upon food being placed in front of me. All menus usually start with the following:

1. The appetizer plate -This included all sort of cheeses, salamis, vegetables and caviar.

2. A fish dish – Grilled fish with roasted potatoes and vegetables on the side.

3. Traditional Romanian Dish called “Sarmale” – Pork & Rice rolled in pickled cabbage in a tomato based sauce with a side of polenta. It’s incredible…definitely my favorite dish from Romania.

Then…there is more…

4. Plate with beef filet, chicken & pork chop with herb roasted potatoes…Yeah you read right…ALL THREE…Here you get to pick one…but there food is the major expense of the wedding. If you don’t have these basics it’s not a wedding.

AND then…you of course have the cake & dessert…With the cake they always serve ice cream with it.

There were all sorts of dances all evening…traditional “horas” and couples dances.

And lastly…the cutest tradition that I as able to witness was the unveiling of the bride and turning her into a housewife…A little old fashioned but traditions are still very important in this country…

The bride sits in a chair and the godmother of the bride starts to unveil her…she has to appear sad…then once it’s off a scarf is then placed on her head that symbolizes her transformation from a single woman to a wife. During this time she has to reject the scarf from being placed on her head 3 times, throwing it down every time they put it on her head. But finally….she allows the transformation and she’s officially a housewife!

With that new position comes money…all the guests come up to the bride and congratulate her while stuffing money down the front of her gown…This one was indeed a little interesting…but who cares…money is money!

I had a fantastic time…it was a lively crowd..and I really wanted to share some fun traditions and images from a different land. I left at 5am…but the party was still going…my flight back to the states was in 6 hours.

Hope you enjoyed a glimpse into a different culture!

1.Dress.10.Styles

Twobirds has designed a dress that bridesmaids can finally be happy they are wearing…The concept is simple…Have one dress, but let it have a few ways to wear it…and in turn creating 10 unique styles that can flatter any woman.

Twobirds dresses are made with a blend of jersey spandex and nylon. These dresses are also hand washable. It comes in a variety of 10 different colors…but they also offer custom coloring as well. This dress is versatile and even after the event is over you can change it up and wear it anywhere you like. Here are a few ways to make it work at a wedding and outside.

[images from: twobirds]

No.Wilt.Flowers

About a year ago I did a wedding at Lyndhurst Castle where my client wanted to do something different with the flowers. After a few brainstorming sessions we came up with a wonderful alternative that really caught people’s eye and we received wonderful raves about what we came up with….Paper Flowers!

I sounds different, but the end result was vibrant…unique…and unexpected…more importantly the flowers didn’t wilt!

Paper Source was where we went to pick out these wonderful alternatives to fresh flowers…Here are a few suggestions…not only for the centerpiece, but for accents throughout your event.

Starting with some beautiful bouquets…you can walk down the isle and turn some heads with these colorful creations…

Or maybe you would like to just add some floral accents to the cocktail tables…Place an orchid by the bar and if it’s an outdoor event create some butterflies and place them in some pots or in the ground surrounding the event. The large flowers can be places on the station tables…

And lastly…why not add some handmade paper wreaths to the doors or on the backs of chairs…

And if you aren’t convinced by the images above…here is the real deal at a real wedding…

[photography for real wedding by: blonde tulip, venue: lyndhurst castle, planner: vow weddings]

Click here to go to the Paper Source Kit Section

The.Color.Purple – IB #6

Fall 2008 color trend calls for rich deep purples. Here are a few inspirational shots…

[left to right images provided by the knot, photography by: christine johnson, invitation: spark & flourish, third image photo by: kristen taylor, flowers by: french’s flower and gifts,] [bottom row left to right, photography of purple bouquet: chris guillen, floral design: kehoe designs, cake: photo: brooke mayo, baker: sanderling resort catering, centerpiece photo: leigh miller, design: the flower cart]

Few.Favorite.Things

I’m a gift giver…what can I say…and I’ve always turned to Red Envelope for those special occasions when I didn’t know what to get someone…and at the same time…wanted to give something meaningful. Red Envelope was always there for me…So I wanted to share with my readers some of my favorite things…wedding related!

1. I absolutely love the multi-frame wall sets. I have one of these up in our house and whenever people walk in they always admire how wonderful it displays our wedding pictures.

2. We actually gave our parents the vertical engraved name frame to our parents for their wedding gifts. We put an engagement picture of us on top, we wrote something wonderful and personal to our parents on a 4×6 colored card and inserted it in the center and then we gave them the family wedding portrait to put at the bottom. It was a huge hit with the parents and a truly unique idea.

3. I think couples sometimes forget about the little romantic moments they can have together…I absolutely love the bath tray as a gift..not only to yourself…but to another couple. We all need to take time away from the chaos that envelopes us on a daily basis and spend some QT with our honey…

So visit Red Envelope and see what special items they can offer…it’s the thought behind the gift that makes a world of difference…

[images provided by Red Envelope]

So.Organized

Russell & Hazel & We VOW To Inspire wants you to get organized! They have created some wonderful wedding list templates that you can download for FREE!

They have sample wedding timelines, budget worksheets, vendor contact lists and much much more. Not only do they offer these easy to use templates, but they have an incredible range of wedding ideas such as creating a very functional guestbook. Instead of doing a book, why not create a colorful Rolodex where you can have people write down not only a wonderful wedding message…but their contact information. You’ll never have to worry about contacting family & friends again…

[images and ideas from Russell & Hazel]

Sophisticated.Packaging

When I first came upon Sunflower & Sage I was blown away by their simple elegance. No matter what your tastes are they offer sophisticated packaging for your favors, petal/flower holders or any wedding gift. These boxes and cones are handmade which really says that you wanted a personal touch to the gifts. You can discuss your wedding color palette with the designers and they will create something truly unique for your wedding.

Check out these beautiful creations by Sunflower & Sage

[images from Sunflower & Sage]

Major.Nordstrom.Sale

I was tipped off on a major Nordstrom ONLINE sale that starts this Friday, July 18th. I wanted to share the information with my readers because there might be some last minute wedding shopping you need to do, or just a proactive purchase for the big day….Nordstrom offers wedding needs such as dresses:

Bridesmaid attire:

Wedding Accessories….and much much more…

[images from: nordstrom.com]

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