4 Unique Bridal Accessories to Make You Swoon

4 Unique Bridal Accessories to Make You Swoon

These days, having a bridal style that is totally unique and all your own is the way most brides are going. Whether it be the addition of a custom necklace to a family heirloom to a one-of-a-kind veil, having your own signature look is a key feature when choosing your bridal accessories. With that said, we are pretty sure you’ve seen almost everything out there when it comes to bridal accessories — countless veils, jewelry, shoes, etc., etc. But don’t assure yourself that you’ve seen it all just yet. We’ve got four unique bridal accessories to share with you today that are making us swoon and we know you will too! So sit back and get ready for unstoppable pretty.

The Bridal Cap

The bridal cap has experience off and on popularity over the years, but with the release of the box office remake of “The Great Gatsby” they have risen again on the popularity scale. Reminiscent of the 20s, jazz age style of the film, the bridal cap is all about glamour and femininity. If you are looking for a bridal accessory that is a definite showstopper, you can’t go wrong with a bridal cap.

bridal caps

Bridal Gloves

Although they haven’t been popular for many years, bridal gloves are one of the most unique bridal accessories that are making a comeback. They are perfect for almost any bride because there are so many different styles and options. From vintage to edgy, this bridal accessory is one of our favorites.

bridal gloves

Bridal Socks

One of the most unique ideas we’ve seen in terms of bridal accessories is the idea of wearing socks with your wedding shoes. Don’t get us wrong. We don’t mean the standard cotton socks you wear on your morning jog, but gorgeous, detailed socks. This look has a retro feel that is just out of this world when paired with vintage shoes and a short wedding dress.

bridal socks

Bridal Cuffs

For a more traditional look with a twist, we recommend incorporating bridal cuffs into your bridal accessories. Not much different from standard bracelets, bridal cuffs are one of those bridal accessories that just has the “WOW!” factor. Wear one bridal cuff for a more traditional style or wear two for a more glam, chic style — either way, the results are beyond pretty!

bridal cuffs

 

Tell us. Which of these unique bridal accessories is your favorite? We’d love to hear your thoughts!

~Blog contributed by Audra Jones

3 Simple Ways To Make Your Wedding Enjoyable In The Eyes Of A Guest

3 Simple Ways To Make Your Wedding Enjoyable In The Eyes Of A Guest

What Makes A Wedding Enjoyable?

Would you like to know 3 simple ways to make your wedding enjoyable? One of my favorite “ploys” so to speak of being a wedding planner, is often times as I’m coordinating on-site at the wedding, I completely “blend-in” with the guests. I’m dressed like a guest (no, it’s not like hotel staff, we don’t wear name badges or anything), and so guests just assume I am one most of the time. So you’ll never believe the conversations and comments of “wedding-chit-chat” I overhear as I’m moving about. This inspired me to pass along this knowledge so that you’re “in the know” about what makes a wedding enjoyable in the eyes of a guest.

 

FOOD

Food is like the weather, it’s there in front of everyone and just begs to be a topic of discussion. Anything that is “ordinary” (fruit and a veggie spread during your cocktail hour) is fine, people will still eat it, and may actually prefer it versus anything that they wouldn’t recognize…but how it’s delivered or arranged can really make an impression; this is especially true if you’re budget conscious. Think fruit skewers instead of a fruit platter, or passed “fruit cones” (think a snow cone, but full of fruit instead, and guests are given fancy toothpicks).

View More: http://gallery.pass.us/andy-and-jill

Photo by Caroline Frost Photography

BAR

Trust me, guests will remember (and comment) if they had to pay for their own drinks or not. As a wedding planner, an open-bar is the one thing I always encourage my clients to consider—even on a tight budget—because remember, you are hosting an event in your honor, the same as you would in your home…You wouldn’t ever charge anyone a glass of wine in your home, right? Guests feel pampered when they’re “taken care of”, and one way that’s quite simple to make a wedding enjoyable in the eyes of your guests, is with an open-bar. Even this route, there are many ways to keep the costs down.

bar

 

 

WAIT TIMES

Let’s face it, no one likes to wait, whether it’s in line at the post office, waiting for transportation to arrive, or waiting at a traffic light, waiting makes people cranky. And impatient. So a simple way to make your wedding enjoyable, is to try to reduce wait times at any particular area of the day: decrease the number of your attendants in your bridal party, to trim the length of the ceremony (this decreases your costs as well); have only your parents or just your best man and maid of honor in your receiving line so your reception can get underway quicker; do not have a large gap between your ceremony and reception; and lastly, ask those who are giving blessings and toasts to deliver kind words, but skip personal jokes that only you or your spouse would get, and remind them that they don’t have to relive every year since the third grade when you met. And please do yourself a favor and have the speeches done early in the reception—tongues get very “loose” after alcohol, and mixed with nerves from speaking in front of others, this can become an uncomfortable combination for the speaker.

View More: http://gallery.pass.us/andy-and-jill

 

 

Whether it’s help on how to make the most impact with your menu, where to scale-back and where to spend, or writing those public speeches, Down The Aisle, LLC  is your prime source to assist in offering ways to make your wedding enjoyable. Contact our team today to learn how we can help.

You’re Engaged! What’s Next?

You’re Engaged! What’s Next?

So, you’ve just changed your status and posted the pic with a spouse-to-be on your arm and a sparkler on your left hand, so now what? We’re sharing a how-to guide for what steps to take after you get in engaged. Yep, we’re serious — in our book, it’s always good to be proposal prepared!

Photo By Jason Loves Maggie

Photo By Jason Loves Maggie

1. Enjoy the moment together.

We know that you’re dying to post a ring selfie and announce to the word that you’re gonna be a Mrs., but trust us when we say that you’re life won’t end if you don’t immediate take to social media. After the proposal, take a few moments to just be with each other and revel in the moments. This is a time you’ll never be able to get back, so make sure to really soak up the memories while they’re unfolding before your eyes!

2. Call your close friends and family first.

Once you guys are ready, go ahead and make the big announcement to your closest friends and family. This doesn’t mean send a mass text or post a generic “for all the see” post on social media — this means calling those that are closest to you and personally letting them know. Or, better yet, sharing the new in person. Those that are near and dear to your hearts will appreciate the kind gesture and it will make them feel special that they didn’t find out that you’ve gotten engaged through a Facebook or Instagram post.

3. Announce on social media when you’re ready.

Then, when you’re ready, feel free to post the details, the ring picture, the post-proposal pictures, and all that jazz to all your social media sites. We promise that within seconds flat, you’ll have the most comments and likes you’ve ever received in your whole online-present life.

4. Get the ring insured.

Obviously, we don’t expect you to call up your insurance company immediate after he drops to one knee, but we are serious when we say that having your engagement ring ensured is a VERY good decision. The purchase was a big one for your spouse-to-be, so make sure the investment is covered should you lose your ring, drop it down the sink, etc. Yes, this kind of stuff happens all the time.

Photo By Candace Jeffrey Photography

5. Treat yourself to a manicure.

In the months after you get engaged, you better bet that everyone and their brother is going to want to see your new bling. Prepare your hands for their big performance by treating yourself to a gorgeous manicure!

6. Start looking at potential dates. 

As wedding planners, we know that the date is key when it comes to budget, snagging all the vendors you want, scoring a great local venue, etc. So, start talking about potential dates of your wedding early. Pick out 2-3 potentials and go from there. Usually, you’ll find over time that one date works out much better than all the others.

7. Start brainstorming & browsing ideas. 

It’s never too early to start thinking about what you want your big day to do look like, so go ahead and browse on Pinterest, flipping through magazines, having brainstorming sessions with your fiancee and family, and envisioning what you want for your dream day! Having some idea of what you like early on will help guide you to the right vendors right off the bat, which is an amazing advantage to have when you’ve got a million details to figure out.

8. Set your wedding budget.

As soon as you and your fiancee are ready to start looking into booking a venue and hiring vendors for your wedding day, we suggest that you first sit down as establish a budget. Doing this will help narrow your search and will give you a realistic idea who and what you can afford to include in your day.

9. Hire a wedding planner.

Sure, we’re biased, but there are definitely real benefits to hiring a wedding planner as soon as you get engaged. First of all, it helps you figure out important details early and gives you immediate access to the planner’s recommendations for venues and vendors (we know what things cost to save you that research). Plus, hiring a wedding planner early in the game also helps you save money and have a stress-free experience all the way from “yes!” to “I do.”

10. Have an engagement party!

Finally, don’t forget to celebrate! If you aren’t the big engagement party type, keep things small – have an intimate backyard BBQ, invite your best friends and immediate family over for a dinner prepared by you and you fiancee, or go for cocktails as a group. Whatever you do, remember that getting engaged is a big deal — don’t get bogged down in wedding planning details and forget all about the reason for the ring.

There you have it, current and future brides-to-be! Are you looking for expert help to get you started, now that you’re engaged? Explore more about our services here

 

~Blog contributed by Audra Jones

 

Holiday Survival Guide For The Bride-To-Be

Holiday Survival Guide For The Bride-To-Be

It starts with Black Friday…The holidays can be a time of wonder and marvel, but then it could also be a true test of our inner strength. Juggling the demands of added pressures from our families or work to “do more” (bring-in festive “healthy” treats for the kids’ school), can easily put us over the edge. The holiday season can surely reconnect us, but the disrupted schedules, travel, cooking, decorating, and last minute shopping stress can bring on stress faster than a sugar rush from a cookie swap indulgence. Hmmm…sounds familiar, right? Because it sounds a lot like wedding planning!

Whether you’re newly engaged this holiday season, months into your planning, or days before your wedding, each level brings its own amount of stress similar to the holidays. We have the Holiday Survival Guide!

001a_Snowflake Invite

 

Don’t Over Indulge Just Because The Moment Grabs You – The holidays are a time for gathering with friends and loved ones, and with that brings the feeling of “why not just one more…”. Whether that be the extra cookie (or two) you added on your plate, the extra guest (or two) added to your list, or the extra thousand (or two) you just added to your dress budget, all of these can become intensified when you’re feeling spiritual/giving/festive. If you want to stay within your budget, you may want to postpone some of your wedding-planning decisions until after the new year when you’ve passed the temptations and gained insight.

 

Fill Your Cup To Fill Up Others – Yes, it’s the truth that we’ve all heard many times, but at the holidays, we may get to the gym less, sleep less, and re-connect with ourselves less. Whatever way you feel most relaxed and at ease, be sure to take the time for yourself so that you don’t get burnt out. Chances are if you’re exhausted and you have a mile long to-do list for your wedding tasks, your fiancé will certainly appreciate your calm demeanor when you’ve had some “you” time.

 

Setting The New Tradition: Where To Spend The Holidays – Deciding on which side of the family to spend the holidays with, is always a tricky subject for newlyweds, however, it’s really not that different for those who are engaged. When the invite to attend Aunt Margaret’s soiree is put out there, set the precedent now by not giving the tried-and-true answer of “let me get back to you, I need to talk with my fiancé first”. This sends the message that you’re a combined team now, and won’t just say “yes” to the first invite. Read more on “How To Decide Where To Spend The Holidays”.

 

The Holidays Are Everyone Else’s Holiday Too – You’re surrounded by many, and you may want to spend time chit-chatting the latest planning news—the new bridesmaids color you’ve found, or details on the tasting you just went to—just keep in mind that while your family is interested in learning the newest details and they are interested, it’s still the holidays for everyone else. Consider catching everyone up in a “New Year’s” letter/email update.

While the holiday season is the slow time for wedding professionals, it’s yet a busy time in meeting prospective clients. Give us a shout, and we’ll connect you with the best talent, to help you skip the January rush!

Happy Holidays!
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4 Tips for Scoring a Perfect Wedding Cake

4 Tips for Scoring a Perfect Wedding Cake

Wedding magazines are full of them. Pinterest has more than we could ever fathom. And everyone has an opinion. So yeah, selecting a wedding cake design and style that’s right for your wedding day is a bit of a difficult task. The pretty options are endless, and if you’re like most brides, your budget can only handle one wedding cake, despite the fact that you’re head over heels for at least 8 different looks. As wedding planners, we know the conundrum as well as any — and have seen many of our brides vacillate over this detail throughout the last 5 years.

In fact, a bride-to-be recently reached out to us with a similar dilemma: “Should I go with one big cake, many small cakes, or cupcakes? Do I ever need a cake at all? Is it fine to have a dessert station instead?” she asked. Her question is a common one, and it often leaves brides feeling frustrated about what should be a fun part of planning (you do get to taste cake, after all!). So with her story and our past brides in mind, we decided it was time to put together our top 4 tips for scoring the perfect wedding cake for your day. Don’t get us wrong, there are many great tips out there, but our picks really get to the heart of solving this big wedding planning puzzle, so keep them in mind as you set out to select yummy treats — whether you go for that dessert station, an assorted cakes display, or one big beautiful wedding cake — for your upcoming celebration!

Tip 1: Hire a reputable baker/bakery.

Having a wedding cake that you love all starts with the baker. The better their reputation and their quality of work, the more likely you are to have a great experience and adore the final product. To begin your search, we suggest asking for suggestions from friends, talking with your wedding planner, and doing some searching online (be sure to read all the reviews you can). Once you find a few who have great ratings and work that makes you’re heart go pitter-patter, reach out to set up appointments. When everything is said and done, choose the baker/bakery who really clicks with your personality, fits your budget, and gets your vision!

Tip 2: Don’t forget that your cake is part of the decor.

It’s definitely okay for your cake to stand out a little among the wedding decor. But, problems usually come up when you go too far off in left field with your cake design. If you’re having a rustic wedding, a cake covered in pearls is probably not the design that’s right for you or a look that’ll you be happy with in the long run. So at the beginning of your search for a design you love, limit your search to options you know your budget can handle (however, it is perfectly okay to choose something extravagant and talk with your cake maker about how to make it work with your budget) and that really fit in with the theme or look of your day. You’ll be much happier with the end result and your cake won’t stick out for being out of place among the decor you’ve selected.

Tip 3: Consider the size of your wedding & portions.

When selecting a wedding cake that’s going to be great for your big day, it’s essential to keep the size of your wedding and portions in mind. If you’re having 250 guests, you may not want to go with cupcakes or a dessert bar (that’s a lot of cupcakes and various desserts to pay for). If you’re having a small wedding, having 3 different cakes or a big wedding cake is probably not right for you…unless you want to be eating cake for months. So before you start making plans and picking out designs, consult with your vendor and/or your wedding planner for ideas about what will work best for your guest count and the portion size you’re looking to have at your wedding.

Liji Jinaraj and Ladybug Cakes & Catering via Flickr (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Tip 4: Don’t wait until the last minute.

Of all the mistakes we’ve seen brides make when picking out a wedding cake, this one if the more disastrous of them all. And it’s also the most crucial element for insuring that you’re really, really enchanted with your wedding cake. Why’s that? Well, if you don’t start early, it’s likely that you won’t be able to book the baker that you have your heart set on. From there, you’re rushed when it comes to design selection and available ingredients (it often takes time for special fillings and favors to be delivered to your cake maker). Then, on top of it all, you really won’t have time to establish a backup plan if what you really want for your day doesn’t work with your budget. So as you can see, the waiting until the last minute to hire a baker and make decision is a BIG no no if you want to love your wedding cake.

 

Got a wedding cake dilemma on your hands? Contact us for advice!

 

~Blog contributed by Audra Jones

 

 

 

6 Tips To Ensure You’ll Love Your Wedding Gown

6 Tips To Ensure You’ll Love Your Wedding Gown

Well I don’t think my job would be “my job” without a little wedding gown drama now and then. Recently one of our “encore” brides “Paula” (name changed for privacy) decided at her most recent gown fitting—just 3 months before the wedding—didn’t like her dress, and felt down about her body image. Believe it or not, this is not the first time a situation like this has happened in our experience.

In an email sent to me, Paula wanted to be sure I fully understood exactly where she stands about her mishap, because I was going to attempt to work with the gown shop in trying to finagle a way to make this work. Again, this wasn’t a situation where she put a gown on “hold” or placed a “deposit”, this was Paula’s chosen and fully paid wedding gown, which was supposed to be ready for the first round of alterations. In Paula’s words (note: Paula has given me permission to share her email in this blog):

Dress shopping for my first marriage was a breeze.  You try on one fabulous dress, it fits perfect, you have that “feeling” and you move on.

You do what every bride to be does, look at the magazines, look online, watch all those fun TLC shows….you think you know what you want, you certainly know what you don’t want.

Fast forward 12 years and a baby later.  You go into the process thinking you will have the same experience, that magic moment.  What your brain forgot is there’s some body issues going on and stuff is not in the same place.

Paula's gown

Paula’s Original Gown She Chose

Even if it’s not your second wedding or you are not a mom, I’m sure you could relate to Paula’s situation. Did Paula go about it the wrong way or make  some terrible error in the wedding gown selection process? No. Even with our 6 Tips To Ensure You’ll Love Your Wedding Gown  as informative guidance, Paula simply felt that after 9 dress shops and 80 gowns later, she really felt the pressure to pick something.

This story does have a happy ending though. The dress shop’s specialty seamstress has begun working with Paula to redesign the gown (a little trim here, take from here, reattach here) so that she will have a gown that she will love, without sacrificing her payment and needing to start from scratch.

6 Tips To Ensure You’ll Love Your Wedding Gown

gowns

1)      What’s NOT to Love. It’s easy to pin/cut-out images of gowns that you like. Do yourself a favor and also have a board/folder for those designs and details that you DON’T like. Sometimes focusing on what not to wear helps your stylist in determining the right shape, silhouette and gown for you

2)      The Top Has All The Glory. Remember it’s the top of your gown that usually gets the most attention, especially in photos, as your mostly captured from the waist-up. Don’t spoil the mood with something “trendy” but doesn’t work for your body type (i.e., modest bosom).

3)      Designer Gowns, CHEAP. If you’re considering a designer gown, find out if the designer does sample sales (yep, running of the brides), or consider second-time bridal stores or even Ebay.

4)      When To Schedule Your Fitting. Try to schedule you’re fitting for the first available morning slot. This tactic usually results in a more energized and focused style consultant.

5)      Don’t Stare At It, Try It On. You know the drill—don’t just stare at it on the hanger, try it on! Really, a dress can look absolutely stunning on the right body frame versus hanging on the hanger.  However trying on more dresses doesn’t necessarily make it easier to find the right one; it might even backfire actually. If you’re at the point of stress, take a break from gown shopping and reconsider numbers 1 and 2 above.

6)      Leave Behind The Drama. Don’t pay attention to the drama or negativity of others. Select the gown that you love, even though it might not be everyone else’s favorite. When I selected my wedding gown but decided to not wed the man I was engaged to at the time, everyone thought I was nuts for choosing that same wedding gown years later when I decided to marry my now husband. Ten years later, I’m still in love with my gown!

Need help finding the perfect gown? Let us help!

DTA Expert Advice: 5 Effortless Ways To Maintain Wedding Etiquette And Tradition

DTA Expert Advice: 5 Effortless Ways To Maintain Wedding Etiquette And Tradition

Although the engagement ring has been a long standing wedding tradition, thee sign of a pledge to marry, it is certainly not necessary to have a ring in order to be engaged. Some forgo the ring altogether and just have a wedding band, while others wait until after their marriage, when they’re more settled to purchase the ring.

This leads me to an area for discussion. One of the most commonly asked questions I get as a CT wedding planner, usually starts with “is it proper to do ___?” or “is it okay to do ___?”. Ahh, the inescapable wedding etiquette question. Funny how in our modern times, somehow brides are still interested in maintaining a bit of tradition….Good for you!

There is actually, a distinction between “Tradition” and “Etiquette”. Traditions evolve and change with the times, etiquette simply holds firm to the notion of how we interact with each other. Sure, maybe someday soon it will become common for brides to send save-the-dates and wedding invitations via Facebook or Instagram (tradition), but publically discussing invitees on social media may be hurtful for some was not invited (poor etiquette).

Below I’ve outlined 5 Effortless Ways To Maintain Wedding Etiquette And Tradition when planning your wedding:

1. The Tradition Of Announcing Your Engagement

You said yes! It’s traditional to inform the bride’s parents first of the engagement, then others. It is proper etiquette that if you have children from a former relationship/marriage, you should share the news with your ex before he/she finds out from someone else.

 

 

2. Hosting A Reception

Photo by Jason Loves Maggie

It is traditional to host a post-nuptial celebration (reception) and invite guests. Divvying-up and trimming the guest list are a completely separate discussion, but I can tell you that it is appropriate to be sure to invite these 3 groups of people:

  • The officiant who performs your vows and his/her spouse
  • The parents of your youngest bridal attendants— ring bearers and flower girls
  • The spouse, live-in partner, or fiancé of each invited guest (regardless if you’ve never met them before)

 

 

 3. Use The British Spelling For Formal Invitations

A long-standing wedding tradition dictates the British wording and spelling for a formal invitation. When a ceremony is religious or held in a house of worship, the phrase “the honour of your presence” is used. Also keep in mind that your invitation sets the tone for what guests expect, so it is recommended etiquette to be sure all your wedding elements should be consistent (a handwritten invitation would not be suitable for an ultra-formal wedding).

 

Photo By Kasey Matson Photography

Photo By Kasey Matson Photography

4. The Wedding Toast

It’s so exciting to have so many parties and events to attend in your honor (or is it “honour”?) and one of my favorite traditions at the reception, is the toasting of the bride and groom. Usually the host of the event (bride’s father) is the first person to give the toast, followed by attendants and anyone else wishing to give one. Etiquette suggests that the person giving the toast should welcome the guests, keep it light and courteous, and express their pleasure for the future newlyweds—raunchy humor, attacking rants, or overly-embarrassing details make guests uncomfortable. Oh, and a tip for the bride and groom: since you are the ones being honored, you DON’T take a sip from glass, but simply raise them.

 

 

5. The Hand-Written Thank You Note

Flickr Photo By Betsy Weber (CC BY 2.0)

Okay, I hope this last one is obvious, but just in case, always, always, always send a hand-written thank you note to each and every guest who comes to the wedding thanking them for attending and their wedding gift (if you are given cash, it is proper to list how much in the note). And contrary to the wedding tradition rumor that has somehow surfaced in our generation, you don’t “have up until a year” after the wedding to write a thank-you note—just get to it sooner rather than later!

 

 

Need more ideas and wedding advice to keep you on the right etiquette path? Reach out, we’d be glad to help!

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Venue Spotlight: Simsbury 1820 House

Venue Spotlight: Simsbury 1820 House

Traditionally, the most important decision a bride and groom made while planning their wedding was choosing the right venue for their celebration. Today’s couples, however, place just as much emphasis on the food. As a result, some couples go the route of renting an “empty” space and bringing in a high quality caterer of their choosing in order to deliver on both. I recently rediscovered a venue that offers both a gorgeous space and phenomenal food in one of Connecticut’s most picturesque towns. Welcome to the Simsbury 1820 House in Simsbury, CT!

Simsbury 1820 House / Metro Bis

Simsbury 1820 House / Metro Bis

Perched atop a hill overlooking Simsbury’s charming downtown, the Simsbury 1820 House is an elegant country inn with a rich history. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this quintessential New England bed and breakfast and its 31 guest rooms have been graciously restored and feature luxurious, modern amenities in a period setting. After attending a friend’s wedding here years ago, I became smitten by its classic beauty and timeless charm. Now as a local resident, it strikes me as a place that strives for excellence and prides itself on being a gathering place for both the community and intimate celebrations.
As if all this wasn’t enough, it has now joined forces with the award-winning Metro Bis restaurant. Since its days as a snug bistro on Route 10 in Simsbury, Metro Bis has had an outstanding reputation for superb food and great service. Ranked in the top five restaurants in the state for American food according to the Zagat Survey, Metro Bis moved into the Simsbury 1820 House back in 2013. I knew the combination of the two was something special and would be a very attractive option to engaged couples planning their big day.
Recently, I had the chance to chat with its Innkeeper, Pamela Gutlon, and Courtney Febbroriello, co-owner of Metro Bis and wife of its celebrated chef, Chris Prosperi. Courtney is an accomplished author (her memoir, “Wife of the Chef”, was published in 2003) and runs both the front-of-the-house and back-of-the-house operations at the restaurant.

Q: How long has Metro Bis been in business?

A: Metro Bis has been in business for 17 years–15 years at our bistro that was just up the road, and we’ve been here at the Simsbury 1820 House for the last two years. During that time, we’ve hosted numerous weddings, along with a variety of other private events including rehearsal dinners, showers, anniversaries, birthdays and retirements.

Q: Tell us about hosting a wedding here.

A: It’s a great place for hosting a wedding. Many of our couples choose to have both their ceremony and reception here, while their guests enjoy the convenience of staying on the property.
We host a large number of weddings on Sundays, when the restaurant is closed for business. They have access to the whole restaurant, so they can hold their ceremony on the restaurant’s large porch or at our ceremony space behind the Inn. The reception itself can be in the actual restaurant. If a couple is interested in a Sunday wedding, we just ask that they meet our $2,000 food and beverage minimum for opening up the restaurant. We also host weddings Mondays through Saturdays while the restaurant is open for business. In this case, our couples usually get married at the ceremony space and then move into our downstairs event space through its own private entrance.

Q: How many guests can you accommodate?

A: If the wedding reception is being held inside the restaurant, full seating is 70 guests. The downstairs event space can accommodate 120 guests.

Q: Do you offer wedding packages, or are they customized to the couples needs?

A: While we do have a couple of menus that we’ll provide to couples, the majority of the time they are customized for each wedding. We work with the bride and groom on what they’d like to serve their guests. We’ve even themed out the food for certain weddings. We’ve done Thai food, Indian food, French food. The reality is that our chefs are at a higher level, so we’re able to do this. We’re flexible and try to accommodate the couples’ wishes as best we can.

Q: What sets Metro Bis apart from other Inns that feature a restaurant on the premises?

A: We’re a full-service restaurant, so we have flexibility with the bar. There’s no need to bring in the alcohol from other suppliers. It’s all here.

Q: What is your most popular time of year for weddings? How far in advance should couples book their wedding?

A: We’re pretty busy Spring through Fall, although we do host winter weddings as well. We recommend couples book with us as soon as possible. We’ve had couples book two years in advance, while we’ve also accommodated last minute bookings.

Q: What makes the 1820 House special as a wedding venue?

A: The Inn gives you that destination feeling without having to go to Vermont. You’re local, but still have that feeling of being away, and you’re not spending a fortune to experience that atmosphere.
Sims 1820 Hse Lobby

The Lobby of the Simsbury 1820 House

Q: What is the Inn’s best feature?

A: Everything is right here…the whole experience. You can have the ceremony here, the reception and your guests can stay at the Inn. You don’t have to miss a minute of the celebration.

We want to thank Courtney and Pam for being a feature on our blog! Should you be interested in hosting your wedding at the Simsbury 1820 House and Metro Bis, please contact us . Together Down The Aisle and the Simsbury 1820 House along with the Metro Bis team will make your wedding day extraordinary!

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Finding A Way To Conquer The Fear Of Wedding Planning

Finding A Way To Conquer The Fear Of Wedding Planning

With most planning couples we work with, there comes a time where there’s a bit of fear—fear that you might be doing “it” wrong…fear that you’ve chosen the wrong style gown, that the centerpieces may not be the right fit, or that the menu you’ve selected should be more formal/less formal/more hors d’oeuvres/less hors d’oeuvres—the list goes on and on.

In our most recent tasting appointment with one of our brides, “Sally” was nervous and was left wondering: what if the tasting-station menu she’s been imagining wasn’t enough for the guests to feel full? What if her future in-laws didn’t like the already-chosen-and-deposited venue? What if the open-seating floor plan arrangement wasn’t accommodating? Sure enough, all of these items made it into the discussion during the tasting and the tour of the venue.

 

Mmmm! Sampling Tasty Treats.

Mmmm! Sampling Tasty Treats.

 

 

Tasty! Sally's Idea Of A Pot Roast Upon Hand Mashed Potatoes Served In A Sundae Glass.

Tasty! Sally’s Idea Of A Pot Roast Upon Hand Mashed Potatoes Served In A Sundae Glass.

But the most common fear I hear from our brides, is that the wedding won’t be the epitome of what they envision in their mind. Despite many books, posts and well-meaning family members who recite “don’t let the true meaning of marriage overshadow the wedding planning”, when there are so many design tasks and logistics to tackle, the fear of wedding planning is inevitable.

Sally Weighing Options In The Dining Area

Sally Weighing Options In The Dining Area

Just as there is no perfect marriage, no two couples plan the same way, and there is no “right” way to plan a wedding—just what works for you. We’ve had one bride who was a newly-promoted school principal who knew the minute she was engaged, that she wouldn’t have a single moment of time to do any of the research, so we did all the legwork for her. We met one bride at a bridal fair who hired us on the spot because she realized she’s a procrastinator (and confided to us that college was stressful because it was full of all-nighters and last minute term papers), so our customized planning timeline and budget sheets were a God-send, which decreased the fear of wedding planning.

Fear Of Wedding Planning Solution: Down The Aisle’s Budget Worksheet

 

With Mother Nature and People (guests) both playing the unpredictability card at your wedding, it’s best to take the approach that you will not be able to be in control of everything, and this means that not everything may go perfectly; however, nothing trumps preparation, and with this list of top wedding planning tips from the area’s top wedding planners compiled from Liz of Makeup Artistry by Liz—one of our favorite make-up artists—you’ll be rest assured that the fear of planning planning will be minimized.

Overwhelmed with your wedding planning? Have no idea where to get started or how to create that “wow” factor? Down The Aisle can help! What separates us from others is that we have a realistic, systematic approach to creating a customized wedding that’s centered around the joy that brought the two of you together—because of this, our brides experience a stress-free wedding planning experience, which allows them to let loose and relax on the day of. Contact us to learn more about how we can help.

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The Top 5 Bridal Registry Tips Every Bride Should Know

The Top 5 Bridal Registry Tips Every Bride Should Know

Registering is often times one of the things a newly engaged couple looks forward to the most! This may be your only time to get everything you’ve ever wanted, so you want to make sure you get it right. Currently I’m interning with Down The Aisle as a social media and marketing intern, but I’ve been a bridal registry consultant for over three years now (at Bed, Bath, & Beyond) so I’ve learned a thing or two about the process.

I’m here to share the top 5 bridal registry tips every bride should know:

Stefani As A Bridal Registry Consultant For Bed Bath & Beyond

Stefani As A Bridal Registry Consultant For Bed Bath & Beyond

1. Make an Appointment

While appointments are not required, it is only beneficial for you and your consultant if you make one – especially if you’re coming in on the weekend when it’s the busiest! This way, a consultant in the store will be prepared for you. When couples don’t make appointments, there is a good chance that the consultants on staff that day could be with another customer, meaning you might need to wait.

2. Be Open With Your Consultant

We are here for one reason, and that is to help you and make your wedding planning process less stressful! Therefore, it helps us when you are open and share things about your life: your background, if you currently live together, what your goals are for your registry, etc. That way, we get to know you more and are able to build a trusting relationship. It also enables us to better share our expertise on products we think you may need, and to give recommendations.

3. Don’t be Afraid to Register for Expensive Things

If there is one thing I always tell my couples, it’s to register for the things you have always wanted! This is your special day, and likely the only time you are going to do this, so don’t be afraid to put something on your registry because it has a higher price point. Your wedding guests want to buy you nice things, and often people come together to buy a more expensive gift. So go ahead – scan that top of the line $600 AllClad cookware set, or that gorgeous $150 Riedel wine glass set!

4. Get your Future Hubby Involved

It is very beneficial for a groom to be there for this process as well. Of course I have seen grooms come in who are just as excited as their brides, but I’ve also seen the other end of it – isn’t enthused at all and has no opinions on what to register for. As a bride, you are going to be sharing all the gifts you receive with your soon to be husband, so it’s important he likes them too! Encourage him to come, even if only for a little. He gets tired after you’re only in the store for 30 minutes? No problem – make an appointment to come back and bring your maid of honor or Mom to finish up!

5. Have Fun!

Who doesn’t want to go around and scan everything they have ever wanted, so that others can buy these gifts for you?! No one I know. Have fun with this! It shouldn’t be a strenuous process. Going a little scan crazy? You can always go online and delete excess items or add new things you may have missed. This also isn’t a process to complete in one day. It can be overwhelming, so you can come in to add things as many times as you like!
Interested in learning more or need help with your planning? Let us know – we’ve got your covered!

~Stefani Sholtis, Social Media & Marketing InternStefani signature