Vendor Spotlight: Melissa’s Jewelry and Accessories
A bride-to-be is always looking for beautiful keepsake jewelry for herself to wear and as gifts for her bridal party. This is why we loved working with our March featured vendor, Melissa’s Jewelry & Accessories. Her wonderful jewelry company offers handcrafted pieces for everyone’s individual style, budget, and occasion. From earrings to purse charms, to military jewelry and bridal jewelry; there’s something for everyone to love. Melissa specializes in hand-stamped custom pieces like the silver Mrs. necklace pictured below. Whether you would like your piece of jewelry to show an important date, names, and/or initials, Melissa can make sure to create that special piece for you. We’re really eying that knot bracelet!
Melissa’s Jewelry & Accessories offers a great deal of 15% off if you order 4 items or more for your bridal party! Have a unique design in mind? Contact Melissa and she will be able to make your vision come to life.
Do you have a product you would like to include in The Bride Box? Click here to contact us.
How to decorate the reception tables in a cost effective way when you aren’t having a plated dinner but a buffet instead.
Instead of hiring a florist, DIY your centerpieces! First, you’ll need to decide what type of look or theme you are going for and then you can begin to choose your centerpieces from there! While you can find hundreds of ideas on our “DIY” Pinterest board, here are two of my favorite ways to DIY your décor on a budget:
Floral in Water: Buy tall thin vases, fill with water, and submerge a single stemmed flower (choose your favorite!) or let it float on the top! You can even dress it up by adding a waterproof light in the bottom to light it up when the lights are dimmed!
Vintage Beauty: A couple of vintage books with a small potted plant or succulent makes the most beautiful centerpiece! And don’t worry about having every table match – switch it up and add vintage items such as a birdcage or some pearls to dress it up!
And by adding a couple of tea lights to each table, you can never go wrong.
How to choose the flowers and food for a rustic/country wedding in May.
There really aren’t any specific flowers that are “supposed” to go with a rustic wedding – you can make any type of flower go with your theme, depending on the look you are going for! My best advice to you would be to chat with your florist about the types of flowers you like, your budget, and what look you are going for, and they will have tons of ideas to get you started so that you can narrow it down!
What to put on a table with your guest book for a rustic wedding.
Some items I love to dress up a rustic wedding are box crates, personal photos in rustic frames, and mason jars with simple flowers. And of course, with a burlap or lace runner, you can never go wrong!
What are the most affordable pink flowers for a Spring wedding?
There isn’t really a correct answer to this question, because it all depends on the florist you choose! Some florists have access to every type of flower year round and won’t charge you more even if they are “off season.” And some florists just don’t have that access (typically it depends on where you live) so they may not be able to get some flowers and they may be able to get them at a higher cost.
In addition to that, it depends on the shade of pink you are going for! Some are more of a pale pink, and some are more bright so it all depends on the look you are going for and what palette you’ve chosen! I would speak with your florist about specifics and they can steer you in the right direction!
If you use the “pick a seat not a side” sign for the ceremony, should you still have ushers?
Ushers are never a requirement, but they are a great way to involve friends and family who are not in the wedding party! They can usher grandparents and/or parents to their seats as part of the ceremony, formally walk each guests to the seat of their choice, hand out programs (because wind and programs placed on chairs don’t mix well!), or be there to tell guests to take their seats when the ceremony is about to start!
How do you set up a wine table for guests that will be user friendly, with no bartender?
First of all, check with your venue to ensure this is allowed! Some venues only allow this if all guests are over 21, so just be sure to ask before any plans are in place! You would hate to show up on the wedding day and be told that no wine can be served!
The easiest and most guest-friendly way to do this is to place two bottles of wine on each table – two is generally good to start! I typically place one white and one red on each guest table at the start of dinner and that way, guests don’t even have to get up from their seat and there’s no waiting in line!
If a bottle is used, have the catering staff or your planner replace it with a full bottle, or you don’t need to replace it at all if you want to limit the drinking. From experience, I rarely have to give more wine to tables of 8-10!
How far out in advance should you send out Save the Dates when your wedding isn’t until May 2016? I just don’t want to send them too close to the invitation.
I am going to answer this question with a question…
Are you having trouble narrowing down your guest list?
If the answer is yes: Don’t send out save the dates. This is the easiest way to narrow down your guest list because the later guests know about your wedding, the more likely they are to already have other plans! If they know two years in advance, then most likely every guest will be attending! I know this may sound harsh, but if your guest list is at its maximum, then you can pick and choose who you want to send them to!
If you’re not worried about your guest list, then send them as soon as you’re venue is chosen and your date is booked! And when I say booked, I mean a deposit is given and a contract is signed. DO NOT send out save the dates until then…or you may have to re-send new ones!
How much should I budget for alcohol? What’s a good formula to figure it out when doing a signature drink, wine, and bear instead of a complete open bar?
This is going to differ based on your family and friends. Do they drink a lot? Or are they lighter drinkers? Are they more of a wine and beer crowd? Or do they go right for the shots? The first step is to know your guests and what you expect them to drink that night and how much!
But always remember, you know your guests better than anyone else does. And you can always use leftover alcohol later on!
Are you supposed to tip the alterations person?
Tipping is a tough subject when it comes to weddings but in my experience, tipping your alterations person is not a requirement or expected. Of course, it will depend on your specific area and the shop you choose!
The best thing to do is to just ask! They will tell you the honest truth as to whether or not they expect a tip.
What are the best websites for ordering invitations that won’t break my budget?
Wedding Paper Divas is probably my personal favorite save the date and invitation site for brides. They have a HUGE variety (almost too huge) for all types of weddings and for brides on a variety of budgets!
My close second favorite are the Etsy shops who make invitations. They personalize your invite, send you the images suite, and you print at home or print anywhere that will work with your budget! This way, you get the personal experience of designing your own invitations, and you’ll be able to work on a very tight budget! Also, they can even personalize other aspects of your wedding to match your invites, such as escort cards and favor tags!
Check out great wedding planning advice and much more from Jenn at The Overwhelmed Bride and look forward to more expert advice and planning tips in future editions of The Bride Box. Check by often to read more wedding planning questions answered by Jenn.
What are your wedding planning questions? We will get them answered in our next blog post!
10 Things to be Aware of When Planning A Beach Wedding
I grew up in the beach town Delray Beach, working city events held on the beach and along our beach-side downtown strip. Now that I own a wedding planning and styling company, I am very aware of the beauty and hazards associated with a beach event or wedding.
Here are my top 10 Things to be Aware of When Planning A Beach Wedding:
Wind, rain, and high tides are all something beach brides should be cognizant of when beginning the planning process. Beach weather can be extremely fickle and can affect everything from the landscape to the hair dos. Check average temperatures and rainfall in an area around the time of year you plan to tie the knot.
Sand is just one of those things that gets everywhere and will stick with you for the rest of the night. Wear a dress that is comfortable and light that allows you to wash off any sand that may sneak up your leg and on your feet. Consider going barefoot during the ceremony and wearing flats at your reception so you do not have to worry about the length of your dress being perfect in heels, but dragging down the aisle.
Beaches are natural landscapes built on tiny particles of broken down shells and other sediment. My beach changes constantly. One week there are large drop offs from the sandy beach to the breaking waves, the next it is flat as can be and seems to stretch on for eternity. Check with your city to make sure there are no dredging projects planned around your wedding date.
Grandma Sue and her walker are going to have a hard time treading through the sand to your ceremony. Consider your guest list and their needs before committing to a beach wedding. Many rental companies, or beach side venues will have flooring available to rent, but these will of course result in additional costs. Consider what is most practical for your guests and budget.
Shade and Lighting
The thing about the beach is that it is ideal for a tan. No awkward intrusion from foliage lingering over you. However, this can prove a little tricky and at times uncomfortable for guests. Plan on having your wedding begin as the sun is beginning to set. This will give you the best light for pictures and the highest level of comfort for you and the guests. If you plan to have the party continue on the beach after the sun has set, you’ll need to bring in lighting that meets city and environmental regulations and provides enough light for guests to navigate the reception space.
Have a Backup Plan
Whenever I am planning a wedding held outdoors I always stress the importance for a back up plan – especially during hurricane season. Many cities have strict rules as far as tents are concerned so if it is raining that perfect beach wedding may need to move to your indoor reception site.
Finding a secluded private beach is always the most ideal option. Public beaches with high foot traffic can equate to large men in speedos checking out your first kiss. Not always the most ideal photo album cover. Finding a reception venue located on the beach or with views of the ocean, will allow for a private beach space for the ceremony and a perfect back up plan.
Everything from broken bottles to broken shells find a way onto the beach. Be sure to rake the ceremony’s location and pick up any pieces that may lodge themselves into your foot while walking down the aisle.
Parking near a beach can be a real pain, especially during “season” in most places. Plan to either have transportation provided from your reception venue, a hotel everyone is staying for the evening, or a public parking garage.
While many people believe that opting for a beach wedding, or an outdoor wedding is more cost effective, it can end up racking up the same amount of dollars as an indoor wedding. It will take some research, but it is possible to have the beach wedding of your dreams, for a dreamy price tag.
Hiring a wedding planner familiar with the beach will help you sort out the details and keep your budget in line. They will pull together a team of vendors familiar with the landscape and your dream beach wedding will become a reality.