Thursday, April 17, 2014

Celebrate Bridal Fashion Week!

There’s nothing we love more than pouring over the gorgeous dresses at the semi-annual New York Bridal Fashion week. The Spring 2015 collection – unveiled last weekend – is no exception. From the romantically traditional Carolina Herrera to the edgy style of Vera Wang, here are some of our favorites:

Carolina Herrera’s show fit all of our traditional dress needs. With plenty of lace and tulle, her work has a timeless quality.

Also sweetly romantic is one of our favorites from his days back at Project Runway: Austin Scarlett.

Monique Lhuiller wowed us again with pops of color inbetween traditional white gowns.

Jenny Packham began and ended her show with plus-size dresses, a great reminder that ladies of all sizes are seeking great fashion.

And Vera Wang? Well, she was the talk of the show, mostly by not having a runway show. Instead, she presented a moody, edgy video for brides to review.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Gifts for the people who are there for you – the wedding party!

As you’ve planned your wedding, there have been those people who stood by your side, helping along the way. They’ve dealt with dresses, tuxes, bachelor and bachelorette parties, wedding showers and the late-night emails asking for help for “one last thing” – the members of your wedding party. Those ladies and gentlemen who will be standing with the two of you while you celebrate your wedding deserve a “thank you” gift!

What to spend: Make sure honor attendant gifts are accounted for in your budget, and then stick to it. Whether you choose something small and meaningful, extravagant and breathtaking, or something in-between, make sure you’ve planned for it!

Give yourself time: Give yourself a deadline on getting wedding party gifts in your schedule. Particularly if you want things personalized, you need to give yourself time to shop and choose the best items.

What to get: This is where you can have fun. Do you have a specific theme for your wedding? Your gifts can reflect that theme as well. Perhaps you want to get something useful for each of your attendants. Or something fun they wouldn’t get for themselves. The best part? Your gifts don’t have to be the same for each person. As long as you’re staying in the same price range for everyone you can mix and match gifts to each member of your wedding party!

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Making sense of the wedding registry

While it seems like so much fun – it’s making the ultimate wish list! – you’ll want to keep some things in mind as you create your wedding registry.

Timing is everything. Make sure you give your guests enough time to choose a gift, at least four months before your wedding. Six months is better, if possible!

Options, options, options. You’re giving suggestions to everyone, from your college roommate to your future spouse’s grandmother. You’ll want to be sure that there are plenty of options at many different price points. You also will want to register at more than one store; and at least one of those stores should have an online option for people who prefer to shop online.

Plan ahead. But at the same time you want to give your guests options, you don’t want to register for things you don’t need. Get a list together of what you’ll actually need to start your married life together before you head to the store, scanner in hand!

But don’t put it in print. It is still considered an etiquette “no-no” to put any wedding registry information on your invitations. If you have a wedding website, that’s a great place to put all those types of links. Otherwise, let the members of your wedding party or other family members spread the word where to find your registry.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Hair today, accessorize tomorrow?

You’ve bought the dress or the tux, and you know you want to look your very best. Time to think about hair, makeup, nails and accessories! Whether you’re a bride or a groom, the same basic rules apply!

Hair. If you’re trying out a new hairstyle, practice it a few times before the ceremony. Or, if you’re having a professional style your hair, go for at least one practice run first. If you’re planning on getting a haircut, make sure it’s about a week before ceremony day; you want to give your hair time to relax AND give you time to get it fixed if there’s a problem! If you’re expecting to have any adornments in your hair – veils, tiaras, etc. – bring them with you to your trial run. Your stylist will need them to create your whole look.

Nails and hands. Most brides get a shiny new manicure for their wedding day; but it’s important for grooms to have a little hand care, too. While many men enjoy a simple manicure, some still feel uncomfortable with the concept. That’s ok, but at minimum make sure your hands and nails are clean and trimmed. Both of your hands will be in a lot of pictures!

Makeup. Like with hair, you’ll want to make a trial run of any new looks. Whether you’ve decided to go with a glamorous or a natural look, you’ll want to be sure the final result is what you’re expecting.

Accessories. Earrings, necklaces, bracelets or any other jewelry should also be tried on ahead of time. If you have an intricate hairstyle, you will want to bring your earrings to your hair appointment so you can be sure of a balanced look. You also want to make sure none of the clasps or parts of the jewelry will snag on your dress or suit.

A little advance planning will make those small, but important, details shine on your big day.

Thursday, March 20, 2014

What to expect from the littlest members of your wedding party

Many couples look forward to having younger children as part of their wedding party – whether the kids are close relatives, friends’ kids or even their own. Having children in the wedding party does add its own share of challenges and rewards.

Match the duties to the kid. Your 3-year-old niece may be the cutest thing ever, but if she’s terrified of people and won’t let go of her mom when you visit, she may not be the best choice to be a flower girl. Likewise, a young man who loves being in the spotlight might enjoy being a ring bearer or junior groomsman. Ask the kids’ moms and dads to help you decide if their little one is suited for being in the wedding.

Practice, practice, practice! No matter what the child’s duties are, they should be at minimum at the rehearsal! That will give them an idea of how far they have to walk, where they have to turn, and what will be expected of them. Any child who is expected to perform a particular task (tossing rose petals or making a short announcement) should be practicing at home, too!

Be prepared. Pretty much for anything. When the time comes, the kids will be nervous and excited. Your little charmer of a flower girl may panic and run. Or the junior groomsman will refuse to come down the aisle at all. Make sure there’s someone in the audience who’s prepared to jump in and help, no matter what the situation.

Accommodate them at the reception. Little guests have different needs during the party. Our previous post on keeping your littlest guests entertained has some great tips.  

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Those special family heirlooms

One of our co-workers told us a great story about her family’s wedding dress. It had been purchased in the 1940s by an aunt and then (in those thrifty times) worn by her mother.

Fast forward to the 1960s, and she and her cousin both wore it. Now, the next generation is looking to re-use the dress (with some minor modern updates). The family’s rule was no major alterations for sizing changes; as long as you fit into it, you could wear the dress. It certainly makes for a special connection between the (so far) three generations of women, and it’s an heirloom that has marked this special day for each woman.

Of course, not every bride can – or wants to – fit into an heirloom dress. But there are plenty of ways to use a beloved older piece or start a new tradition.

For the brides: Veils can fit a variety of women, and can be changed easily from bride to bride.  They can even be repurposed from an out-of-style dress.  Jewelry can be shared from generation to generation as well, like a favorite ring, pair of earrings, necklace, or even a brooch. If you don’t want to wear the piece as part of your wedding attire, you can always use it as a decoration in your bouquet.

For the grooms: Accessories like ties, cuff links or a handkerchief can easily be passed from generation to generation.  And, just like for the brides, a piece that the groom doesn’t want to wear in its original form could always be used to complete a boutonniere.

What are your family traditions and heirlooms? Tell us in the comments!

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Yum! Wedding cakes for all couples

It’s one of the highlights of the wedding reception: the wedding cake. Tradition makes us think of a tiered, white cake covered in sugar flowers. But, like with most wedding traditions, couples have taken the wedding cake and made it their own.

One of our favorite new trends is the naked cake. Instead of being covered with frosting, fondant or marzipan, the cake is left in its natural form. It can be decorated with flowers, or left plain. It’s a great way for a wedding with a nature theme to stay simple.

Another trend that has stayed popular is cupcakes. Instead of one huge cake, many couples choose to have a small cake to perform the cake-cutting ceremony and serve cupcakes to their guests. This gives couples the options to offer multiple cake flavors, as well as use the cupcakes as favors to bring home in cute bakery boxes.

If you still want a big cake, but want it to reflect your personality as a couple, pastry chefs can decorate cakes in any style or color. Here at the Heritage, we’ve seen everything from a skull cake at Halloween to a pink-and-white multi-tiered cake.

There’s really only one thing that is a “must” for any couple – make sure you get to have a piece of your own cake!