Ideas From Down The Aisle: 5 Ways To Reuse Your Wedding Dress

Ideas From Down The Aisle: 5 Ways To Reuse Your Wedding Dress

When you finally find the dress, it can understandably be difficult to part with after you spent such a special day wearing it. However, instead of zipping it up in a bag and hanging it in the back of your closet for the rest of your life, why not find a fun and sentimental way to use it again after the wedding day? Because we love the idea of putting that one-of-a-kind dress to good use more than once, we investigated some of the great ways are brides are doing just that — and my oh my are they fabulous. So before you resort to holding on to it as an unwearable memento, check out our top 5 favorite ways to reuse your wedding dress!

1.  Have it turned into a special memento 

Hmmm, can’t bear the thought of spending money to have your gown cleaned, preserved then stuffed into a box to never take it out to look at it again?  Hire a seamstress to recycle pieces of it into different keepsakes, such as bedding for your baby’s crib, a Christmas ornament or tree skirt, curtains, pillows, a cocktail dress, etc. That way every time you see that item you can be reminded of one of the most significant days of your life. Our personal favorite is bra and panty set as this bride featured below did and used it to have a one-year anniversary shoot to surprise her husband.

 

2. Take pieces from the dress to use around a wooden photo frame 

Preserving a wedding dress long after the big day is a lot of work, especially in certain climates, so we love the idea of taking a portion from the dress to use around a photo frame. Place a wedding photo within this frame and voila–not only is there a picture of you in the gown, but a piece of it sits around the frame! This would also work nicely within a scrapbook.

 

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3. Make it into a necklace 

The idea of reusing your wedding dress to make into a necklace definitely has the creativity and beauty to make us swoon. Whether it is turned into a pendant or a more intricate style like the gorgeous example below that the bride made from rosettes from her gown, you can’t go wrong with refashioning your dress into something you can wear again and again.

 

Flickr photo via lambsandivydesigns.com (CC BY 2.0)

Flickr photo via lambsandivydesigns.com (CC BY 2.0)

4. Trash it in morning after or anniversary photo shoot 

Trash the dress sessions has become increasingly popular with brides across the world, and for good reason. For starters, they are stunning and make for incredible photos of your and the love of your life. We think a morning after the wedding trash the dress session or a one year anniversary is the best time to get wild and crazy with the dress. You had an amazing time the first time your wore the dress, why not wear it again? Truly a fab way to reuse your wedding dress after the wedding day!

 

5. Start a new tradition: Try it on every anniversary! 

Can you tell this is my personal favorite? I love the excitement of taking it out every anniversary, and trying it on with my children. I’ve been married over a decade and while I cannot fully zip up the back, I look forward to this annual tradition where I can not only see, but touch a moment of when I became “Mrs”.  

 

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This is owner Christine with her two children.

 

For more ways that other Connecticut brides have reused their wedding dress, contact us, we’ll give your our insider resources!

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Etiquette 101: Do I Have To Ask My Friend To Be A Bridesmaid In My Wedding If I Was In Hers?

Etiquette 101: Do I Have To Ask My Friend To Be A Bridesmaid In My Wedding If I Was In Hers?

So you and your fiancé  are trying to decide on your wedding party members. You have siblings, many friends—some local and involved—others who are out-of-state but you’d be there in a heartbeat if they needed you, and some…well, some you may have drifted apart from.  This drifting-apart-friend is the source of the nagging question: Do I have to ask my friend to be a bridesmaid in my wedding if I was in hers?

As a wedding planner, I’ve been asked this question a few times, and the simple answer is No. There is no “bridesmaid reciprocation” etiquette rule out there.

But—even though I just gave you the answer—I bet that nagging question still floats in your consciousness.

 

So now, I have a question for you: If the two of you are not as close as you once were, what’s the reason that you’ve drifted apart in the first place? Is it because you’re both too busy (lazy) to maintain the friendship? Is it because you can’t share conversation together? Or is it that you’re too busy in your new relationship status “Engaged” while she may be still single? Or newly married? Or just welcomed the birth of a baby?

Anytime there is a milestone in one’s life, even a joyous occasion as welcoming a new baby or getting married, it doesn’t come without stress. According to the Holmes and Rahe Stress Scale (good to see my Psych classes paid off), Marriage is in the top ten of this list, and a New Family Member and Pregnancy both outrank a Child Leaving Home, the Death of a Close Friend, and Foreclosure (even Christmas makes this list!). No wonder…

Okay, back to bridesmaids…My point on bringing this stress scale up, is that if this friend is a newlywed or a new mommy, she may not even being thinking about your wedding (I don’t mean this in a derogatory sense) let alone about being a bridesmaid; she’d probably welcome the opportunity to just be present at the wedding and not be in the wedding.

If it has nothing to do with marriage or babies, then do I have to ask my friend to be a bridesmaid has a different meaning: You wouldn’t be asking this question if you didn’t feel some kind of pressure or obligation. Or, perhaps there’s guilt because you were once really close, and that’s not the case now. If it’s the latter reason, and you do decide to ask this friend, you’ve now decided to use your wedding to mend a fractured friendship—not a wise decision.

In closing, do not base your decision on who did what before, base it on those who mean the most to you now. And if you can’t say “I Do” without this woman by your side, then by all means, ask her. Otherwise you can always ask this “if-y” friend to share a reading, hand-out programs, walk the Eucharist down the aisle, or other special role in your wedding.

~Happy Planning!

I Don’t Need Another Toaster: How Am I Supposed To Know What To Register For?

I Don’t Need Another Toaster: How Am I Supposed To Know What To Register For?

So you’re engaged planning for your wedding, and now you have to think about the bridal registry, too? When should you register? What should you register for? And where? Read below for some key guidelines to help you along:

Photo by jenandjon Creative Commons License (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Photo by jenandjon Creative Commons License (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

 

1. When Should I Plan To Register?  Many brides often ask “how early should I register” and I would recommend as early as possible. Some guests may want to have the “top pick” from your registry list. Take our word from one of our interns who works as the manager of her retailer’s wedding registry who suggests 6-9 months prior to the wedding. Anything beyond that, and the registry software may have gone through an update (and you may need to make some additional updates on your end…or worse!), or your taste(s) may change, and you’ll be deleting and adding to the registry, causing yourself more work and angst.

 

2. How Many Stores Should I Register At? – There are no “correct” amount of stores that you need to register at. Instead of thinking “how many”, think about variety. Your guests will feel more at ease if there are several options within all price ranges, both online and in-store options. Also, some guests go-in as a group when purchasing a gift. Keep in mind if your registry is “up” during the holidays, you may have friends/family who wish to make a selection from your registry.

 

3. Where Should I Register And What Should I Register For? – You may want to consider specialty stores or national department stores for the widest variety. But you’re not limited there—maybe you want to remodel a certain room in your home, so you may want to register at a home improvement store (that’s what we did!). Or perhaps you do a lot of traveling, and want traveling necessities like luggage, organizers, iPad accessories, etc. Or perhaps you are the “outdoorsy” type and want to register for a tent, grill, umbrella, etc. Can’t make a decision or are you two polar opposites? You can each “part ways” – I know of a bride who loved to read, and wanted to stock their library, and so she registered for books. Or if your fiancé likes to cook, or is concerned about the bar, he can take “that area”. One gem we love, is MyRegistry.com, which syncs all of your registries from different retailers into one location (psss…you can also register for cash! See tip #5 below!).

 

 

4. How Do I Let Guests Know Where I Am Registered? – This one is easy. You can let guests know where you are registered in any fashion except in the wedding invitation (shower invitation of course, is fine). So word of mouth, save-the-dates can have info listed, or on your wedding website.
5. Can I Register For Cash? – If you’d like, sure! It’s not just about vases and bed linens anymore. Many couples are choosing to register for cash, honeymoons, or even frequent flyer miles! Just understand that not all guests may be “ready” for this hip, new swanky wedding registry idea (Aunt Matilda may think it’s tacky). Some firms charge a fee above and beyond the amount of the gift (which the bridal couple can elect to pay so the guests don’t have to), so be sure to do your research first. We love HoneyFund for honeymoons,  or www.usairwaysgiftregistry.com.

The point of your bridal registry is to make sure you don’t end up with 10 toasters, or vases, or two closets full of towels that you may not need. Keep it personal, and you may also snag some discounted items from your registry after you’ve been wed, since many registries let you make a purchase from the registry at a reduced price after the wedding date.

Stressed in other areas of the planning? Want more tips like these? Join in on the fun, here!

The Top 7 Mistakes That DIY Brides Make And How To Avoid Them

The Top 7 Mistakes That DIY Brides Make And How To Avoid Them

There’s not doubt that DIY weddings are at the top of the list when it comes to wedding trends. But is being a DIY bride all it’s cracked up to be? Is it always fun? Is it always cheaper? Do DIY weddings always look gorgeous? The honest answer is no.

Not all experiences are the same and not all DIY weddings are created equal. Don’t get us wrong, just because we are a wedding planning company doesn’t mean that we don’t love a fabulous, hand-made affair. In fact, crafty projects are one of our favorite things, so we can easily see why so many brides are jumping at the chance to create one-of-a-kind and personal items for their day. There’s just something about being surrounded by your own work on your wedding day that’s special and fun.

However, as we mentioned, it isn’t always rainbows and blue skies when you choose to become a DIY bride. As the people who get the call when cool ideas don’t go as planned, we’ve seen clear patterns emerge when it comes to the most common mistakes that DIY brides make. Actually, 7 big uh-ohs have presented themselves over and over again in our history of working with DIY gone wrong. If you are opting to go this route with your upcoming wedding day, here’s the breakdown of those no-nos.

Mistake #1: Not testing out the finished product before the wedding. 

We cannot even begin to tell you how many times we’ve seen our DIY brides snag an adorable idea off Pinterest only to have the final product be a total mess on the day of the wedding. Therefore, it’s essential that you make sure that your DIY projects actually work before the big day arrives. Nobody wants to spend hours making cute lanterns, mason jar cheese cake favors, etc. and realize a few hours before the wedding that they were a waste of time and must be thrown out. So taste test, do a trial run, and make sure your creative ventures actually turn out right!

Candace Jeffery Photography

Candace Jeffery Photography

Mistake #2: Overestimating how much time you’ll have.

Planning a wedding is a HUGE time commitment, but brides often assume that it won’t be that difficult and that their months-long engagement is plenty enough time. This thinking immediately leads to problems, especially when it’s taken for granted that you’ll have all the time in the world to fold 1,000 paper cranes, paint 500 candle sticks, and bake 22 mini pies. The truth is that being a DIY bride requires more of your free time than you could ever imagine. A sure way to help avoid this mistake is by being realistic about what you can accomplish on your own and hiring vendors when you need help.

Mistake #3: Not thinking of bad weather backup plans. 

As planners, we are always thinking of what could go wrong on the day of the wedding and how to fix it as quickly as possible. When you haven’t planned countless weddings before your own big day arrives, it’s easy to forget about the “what if” details. One of the most catastrophic oversights that DIY brides make is to forego bad weather backup plans, especially when it will cost more money. Trust us, go ahead and spend a little extra for that tent or backup indoor venue now before rain wrecks your dream day.

Candace Jeffery Photography

Candace Jeffery Photography

Mistake #4: Forgetting important details.

As we mentioned above, first time brides tend to forget about minuscule details. And it makes sense. Your agenda is full of meetings, your to-do list is overflowing with wedding plans, and you also have a life outside of your wedding, so, of course, it’s going to be easy to miss something. Our advice is to as least hire a day-of coordinator to help you on the day of your wedding. This way you can relax and enjoy your wedding and he or she can help you uncover any important factors you might have looked over during your pre-wedding prep (like, how are the items getting back home, and who they are going back with).

 

Mistake #5: Assuming that DIY is always cheaper. 

Let’s us debunk this idea now: DIY isn’t always cheaper than hiring a wedding vendor. All the little materials can add up over time and, many times, it would have just been less expensive to hire someone to print those invitations rather than you shelling out hundreds of dollars to do them yourself. If you are set on making something yourself, do a quick price comparison first before you opt out of hiring a pro. Another factor to consider is that your vendors will know how to work with your budget and stretch it as far as it will go; this is because they have inside connections and info that you may not, also the materials are usually of better quality preventing you from making errors. Sometimes, hiring a vendor is just better in the long run. Sometimes, it isn’t. It’s up to you to make sure you are getting the most for your money.

Candace Jeffery Photography

Candace Jeffery Photography

Mistake #6: Not reading the fine print on contracts.

Our brides inevitably have a lot of questions when it comes to the details on the vendor contracts. Thankfully, we’ve been down that road a time or two and know exactly what to look for and negotiate out before our brides sign. As a DIY bride, you will not have that luxury, so it’s up to you to make sure you comb over every sentence of these important documents before you commit yourself. You’d be amazed how many hidden fees and pesky rules are tucked away in the small print.

Mistake #7: Using friends or family members instead of hiring vendors.

Just because your friends and family love you doesn’t mean that they want to be your busy little wedding workers. In fact, it really takes a lot of fun out of the wedding for them because instead of soaking up your day and spending time with you, they are busy putting together bouquets, serving food, etc. Additionally, even if a friend or family member volunteers to help, it could lead to some serious problems, such as fights, unmet expectations, and amateur work. Unless the person is an experienced professional, you are better off passing on the offer and hiring an expert.

Candace Jeffery Photography

Candace Jeffery Photography

Don’t make one of these tragic mistakes, so plan carefully, give yourself plenty of time, and know when to hire and when to DIY. In the end, you’ll be a happier bride because of it.

Have a question about one of the mistake that DIY brides make? Not sure if you should hire or DIY? Contact us for advice!

~Blog contributed by Audra Jones

Wedding Guests Who Don’t RSVP Or RSVP “Yes” But Pull A No Show

Wedding Guests Who Don’t RSVP Or RSVP “Yes” But Pull A No Show

Seeing as we’re experts on all things wedding planning, there tends to be a surge of excitement and nervous tension (sometimes downright drama) within the planning months. But then as the wedding date draws closer, the pressure is on to now pay close attention to the guest list and also the room block. It’s a game of who is coming and who is not, who’s bringing a plus-1 who wasn’t supposed to, and of course those that don’t RSVP.

Why is that?

Perhaps, like all of us, your guests are busy. Or they forgot. Or they’re waiting for something “better” to come along (sorry). Whatever the reason is, sometimes we have seen relationships between the couple and the non RSVP-er become strained due to frustration and hurt feelings, especially when it comes to co-workers, as it can become very awkward to walk up to a colleague to ask “so, are you coming to the wedding?” while other non-invited colleagues are near by.

DTAs Guest List Sort-3Way Color

DTA’s Preferred Guest List Spreadsheet

 

So is it okay to send that person, or any non RSVP-er, an email? Absolutely. If you want an accurate headcount—ummm, of course you do because this is costing you a small fortune—then it is certainly acceptable and leaves you no choice but to phone or email with a pleasant “’just wanted to check in to be sure you got the invitation, as we haven’t heard from you…”. Here at Down The Aisle, we take that discomfort right out of our clients’ hands by doing this step for them, regardless of which package they’ve booked with us, if this were ever the situation. We take the reigns as a non involved third party, and we keep it friendly versus accusatory. Now, if this unresponsive guest still becomes a fence sitter or is still unsure and your deadline has passed? Then the general rule of thumb we follow, is consider this couple a “no”. There are deadlines in place for the caterer for a reason—the food/beverage order has to be ordered quite a few days in advance of the wedding.

So, next point…what happens when a guest either responds as a “yes” or has to be followed-up with to get their “yes”, but then they pull a “no show” at the wedding. They simply just don’t bother to make it to your wedding. While we haven’t seen this as much with our couples—the failure to not RSVP is much more common—this happened at my own wedding with a few guests (yes, not just one or two but a “few”) who “no showed”. It was certainly annoying of course, but nonetheless, it didn’t stop me from following-up with them afterwards to ask what happened. Turns out—believe this or not—there are parts of North America (where I am from) that simply sees an RSVP as “no big deal”, a cultural difference if you will, if they either don’t RSVP at all, or say “yes” but then don’t come. Either way, the “no-shows” will most likely feel a tad bit of guilt, while you, your in-laws or your parents can box-up some meals to save as leftovers (note: some places have policies in place that disallow this). Just don’t send the “no-shows” a bill for their meal, as this won’t take the cake.

 

We'll Tackle Your Invites And RSVP's!

We’ll Tackle Your Invites And RSVP’s!

Need help with those fence-sitters? Wanna help close the loop once and for all on your guest list RSVP’s? We’ve got that covered!

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Wedding Event Uplighting

Wedding Event Uplighting

What makes wedding event up-lighting such a popular choice?

Wedding Event Up-Lighting has become such a popular wedding trend, because other than slipping on that glamorous gown, nothing else can transform in an instant from “mediocre” to “amazing” in an instant like lighting. Architectural Room Lighting, or “up lighting” creates a romantic and elegant atmosphere, while accessorizing with drama, illusion, and magic.

For instance, an experienced lighting design team, can instantly create a moon-light sky night at your reception, where one didn’t exist before, using a “gobo” on the ceiling. “Dull” tent ceilings, “typical” cake tables and “drab” dance floors also come alive with ambience when wedding event lighting is properly used.

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Wedding event up-lighting

Lighting is one of the major design elements of your wedding day, because it can accentuate the positive while detracting from the negative. When selecting wedding venues with my clients, sometimes they fall in love with a particular area or an element of the location, but are not thrilled when it comes to the ballroom, or where guests will sip on their cocktails during cocktail hour. I often explain that with a small investment (versus splurging on another higher-priced location), wedding event up-lighting can instantly transform a “so-so” space into a breathtaking setting, just from the colors and depth that lighting brings. And just like no two engagement rings are the same, each wedding held in the same location/venue will never look the same—one of my personal favorites of the “perk” that comes with architectural up-lighting.

Want to learn more about how to bring out the beauty of your reception space/location using Wedding Evet Uplighting Ideas? Contact Down The Aisle today!

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His and Hers Wedding Reception Cocktails

His and Hers Wedding Reception Cocktails

Should We Serve Alcohol?

The decision whether or not to serve alcohol at your wedding reception can be a difficult decision to make. And once you make up your mind, the more questions that follow: “Are we killing the fun of the reception?” “What kind of drink options should we serve?” “Can we afford a bar?” “What will the guests think?”

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via Lynne Brubaker Photography via Easton Events

His and Hers Wedding Reception Cocktails

Needless to say, making the call to serve alcohol is a tough one, but if you do make the decision to serve drinks at the reception, there are plenty of different options. A personal favorite of ours is to serve his and hers wedding reception cocktails. That’s right, your favorite cocktail and his favorite cocktail. Not only do you get to enjoy your favorite personal drink during the reception, the choice to serve only his and hers wedding reception cocktails can be beneficial in so many ways.

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Our Labor of Love Photography via Green Wedding Shoes

Cut Down On Your Cost

As always, cost is a major factor in any wedding planning decision. Serving alcohol can be very expensive, especially when you offer many options or have a large wedding. Serving his and hers wedding reception cocktails can cut down on the expense by cutting the need for various types of alcohol and ingredients. With personalized cocktails, you can offer two options and cut down on cost without it being blatantly obvious that you wanted to limit the size and scope of the bar. Nobody will notice if it appears to be just a special element of the reception and it will help cut down on those guests that tend to over indulge.

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Joileala via 100 Layer Cake

 Show Your Personality

An additional benefit is that his and hers wedding reception cocktails give you another outlet for incorporating your personalities into the event. Guests will love that they can enjoy your favorite drink and learn more about each of you during the reception. Plus, his and her cocktails can allow you to get really creative! From adorable drink stations to delicious and surprising drink combinations, the room for adding creative details to your signature drink is endless.

So get creative, start experimenting, and find your signature cocktail for your wedding reception. There is only fun to be had in the process!  Can’t get your creative juices flowing? We can help! Contact Us for ideas!

~Blog contributed by Audra Jones

Trending: Bridal Cover Ups

Trending: Bridal Cover Ups

Fashionista brides of all seasons, not just the winter months, have been taking the lead on the trend of covering up with bridal cover ups such as boleros, shrugs, capes, even cardigans. Most of these trends have been around for decades (I remember wearing my white-fringed knitted cape over my Easter dresses), but they’ve slowly been modernized into bridal wear.

So want to catch the wave on the latest bridal cover up’s but are confused by all the technical lingo? For those who are seeking extra glamour, extra sparkle,  to make a statement, or to just keep warm, these descriptions and photos will entice you to explore the options in bridal cover ups. 

Bridal Cover Ups Revealed

Jacket – The jacket has long since been an endless choice in the world of bridal cover ups as it is fully functional.  This sheer lace and long-sleeved jacket makes this look light and airy, as if it’s part of the gown, but of course as a jacket, it’s completely removable.

Sophia Tolli Lace Jacket

 

Bolero – A short, tailored jacket, made famous by Kate.

Brida Cover Ups

Trending Bridal Cover Ups – Bolero

 

 

Cape – A cape is a sleeveless fabric garment that drapes over the shoulders and fastens around the neck (generally speaking, some have slits for the arms to come through, some don’t). The cape is also a great alternative for keeping warm as it doesn’t restrict your movement (and  in case you were wondering, a “cloak” is a longer cape…what Harry Potter wears.

Pronovias 2012 lace cape

 

Shawl -A loose piece of cloth, often triangular shaped, loosely worn over the shoulders and arms.

Bridal Shawl

 

Wraps/Stoles – A piece of fabric, similar to a shawl, that drapes over the shoulders and upper arms. A stole is a narrower, longer piece of fabric worn freely or sometimes tied in front of the bust.

Fur Bridal Gown Wrap

Lace Bridal Stole

 

Shrug – A shrug is a short or long-sleeved cardigan-style has a higher back, tight, and more tailored than a shawl.

Cap-sleeved Alencon Lace Shrug http://www.etsy.com/shop/Rohm

 

Dupioni Silk Blush Pink Shrug http://www.etsy.com/shop/Rohm

 

 

Cardigan – A modern trend in the bridal cover ups, the cardigan is an open-front sweater that can be buttoned, zipped or hooked closed.

Purple Cardigan Over Gown

Mint Sequined Cardigan

Ivory Cardigan

For a great resource and shopping experience, shop BHLDN’s line of bridal cover ups.  Read more about this bridal fashion trend on ABC’s Today’s “The Look” featured article.

Happy Planning!

 

Your Wedding Anniversary: 10 Ways To Keep Wedding Traditions Going After You Say “I Do”

Your Wedding Anniversary: 10 Ways To Keep Wedding Traditions Going After You Say “I Do”

Most modern couples today face many decisions when planning their wedding—whether to have a formal or less-casual affair, who to invite, what to spend, and which traditions to embrace or reject. With traditions, there’s really no right or wrong way—they’re there as guidance—but most couples let their personalities, style, and personal beliefs set them on the path to creating their own traditions. Sure, wedding traditions have been around for decades, but they’ve been created because of the shear fact that brides keep repeating them over and over.

So after all that planning, what will you do when it’s done? Some brides suffer from post-nuptial doldrums, or the “wedding blues” where newlyweds enter everyday life, no longer being the center of attention, and no way to re-direct that energy they used to plan. If you think you’re going to miss wedding planning after you say “I Do”, why not keep that in mind when planning your wedding, and think of unique and fresh traditions that you can repeat again after the wedding? Sure, the wedding is for one day, but that doesn’t mean you can’t recreate the nostalgia of it months and even years afterwards. Your wedding anniversary will always be a day to remember (so THAT’S why he wanted the wedding date engraved in the ring!) so why not start your first anniversary with a tradition that you will plan on repeating each anniversary?

10 Ways ToKeep Wedding Traditions Going After You Say  “I Do”

 

Signture Drink Wedding Traditions1) Eat, Drink, and Be Married…Again

Some couples tell me they were having so much fun, they didn’t even eat the fare served at the wedding reception. Or the photos took so long, that they missed their cocktail hors d’oeuvres.  So why not have the chef recreate an entrée or hors d’oeuvres from your wedding day for the two of you to savor again? Serve the same wine or mix-up the same “signature drink” that was served from your wedding day. One thing I absolutely loved as far as fare from our wedding day, was our wedding cake. We had plenty more than just the top layer of the cake to take home, so that pleased me for a while, but each year, my hubby purchases a small “top layer” cake on our anniversary for us to enjoy (oh, and it gives us an excuse to re-use that cake serving set, too).

 

 

hair accessory2) The Wedding Bouquet

Remember the heavenly scent of your wedding bouquet? Relive it again by stopping by a local florist (or the same florist from your wedding), or farmer’s market and pick up some of the same flowers from your bouquet. Or instead of an arrangement, ask the florist to make a mini-wreath or something wearable, such as a hair accessory or corsage to wear on your date that evening.

 

 

 

unity candle3) What Do We Do With The Unity Candle, Anyway?

Some couples chose to light the unity candle during their wedding ceremony, signifying two individuals uniting together as one. When the ceremony is done, it will be boxed for the two of you to keep…so what do you do with it, afterwards? Allow it to become a part of your décor—display it on your dining room table or credenza, bedside table, or shelf, and light it from time to time. You can light it every month on the date you got married (so if you were married on the 2nd, light it each month on the 2nd),  you can light it for a particular reason you agree upon in advance, or you can light it on special occasions (I know a bride who lights hers to signify to her hubby that she’s feeling “frisky”). The point is, it can become a part of your day-to-day life, it doesn’t have to sit in the box, let it become a wedding tradition for you.

 

 

holding wedding pic4) Pose For A Photo The Same Way Each Year

Take a picture of the two of you together—mimicking the same pose—(i.e., sitting on the front steps holding a framed photo of your wedding picture in your hands) and then frame them or scrapbook them so you can see the side-by-side transition from year to year.

 

 

 

Lace Gown5)  Try Your Gown On Again

Reminisce about the beauty of the day—the day you were a Bride! If you didn’t have your gown preserved and are feeling daring, take it out and try it on! Don’t worry if it’s a bit snug or impossible to get on again, instead try on your veil, hair accessory or shoes you wore from your wedding day.

 

 

 

Southern-wedding-first-dance6)  Dance To Your Wedding Song

Surprise your finance by playing your wedding song, and dancing together, just the two of you without dozens of eyes staring at you. If you’re willing to take a risk, try serenading him or have a friend who plays guitar, offer to play your song acoustically.

 

 

 

 

cards7) Read Through Your Cards

In the fast-paced technology world we live in today, receiving cards on your wedding day is a tangible way to have others write their well wishes for the bride and groom, usually done ahead of time. While many couples may choose to look through their guest book, it might be fun to go back to read through your wedding cards that your guests were thoughtful enough to select or make for you.

 

 

 

wedding perfume8)  Your Wedding Day Perfume

Have you ever noticed that a particular smell can trigger certain memories? Scent can be a powerful memory trigger, which is why your perfume/scent you wore on the day you married, will instantly allow you to reminisce about your wedding day. Besides wearing it, take that scent with you by purchasing the lotion (slip it in your purse), thin it with water for an instant room spritzer, or create a candle of the scent. A great way to take a “bit of the day” with you, if you or hubby has to travel.

 

 

 

wedding video9) Watch You Wedding Video Or Look Through Your Wedding Album Together

Perhaps you have photos of the two of you all over your house or on your desk at work, but when was the last time you saw photos of yourself getting into your wedding dress? Or hearing each other taking your vows? One of the classic wedding traditions is seeing footage from your day by going through your wedding album, entire “proof” album, or wedding video. It’s one of the best, loving ways to reminisce together about the smallest details that made your day unique.

 

 

Where and when are important with proposals: it’s a romantic time. Plan well – and skip the experience of proposals gone wild.10) Celebrate The Day You Became Engaged

Not really a part of the wedding traditions per se, but celebrating the wedding anniversary doesn’t have to be the only date on the calendar for romance, there’s also the day you became engaged. Mark your calendar each year to be sure to celebrate with a momentous date—share a bottle of bubbly, reminisce about how you first met, and became engaged. Better yet, if possible, reconstruct parts of the proposal by having dinner with the same friends who were present when he popped the question, or return back to the same location where he proposed. This is the day that brought the two of you together where you are today.

Advice from Down The Aisle: 5 Reasons You Don’t Need Wedding Programs

Advice from Down The Aisle: 5 Reasons You Don’t Need Wedding Programs

There is a question that Down The Aisle has received by almost every bride we’ve ever worked with – “Do I need wedding programs?” It’s a fabulous question and one that has been address many times over the years by the top wedding gurus in the business. Their answer?

For most of us who work in the world of weddings, the short answer is “no” or, “it depends.” We know it seems quite controversial to say this, but right off the bat, we came up with five reasons why you don’t need wedding programs. Here’s why:

1. They are just an extra expense 

If you’ve priced wedding programs lately, then you are well aware that they are a huge drain on your wedding budget. Even if you DIY, the material, ink, and construction process can begin to wear down your wallet and your patience as well. If you are trying to be conservative with your funds, then this is area where you can save and not have to be concerned with thoughts that you might be missing out on a very important wedding detail. The truth is, they cost way more than they are worth.

2. They usually end up in the trash 

It’s true that some guests keep the wedding program as a special memento of their attendance at your wedding day. Most people, however, leave them in their seat or toss them in the trash as soon as the ceremony is over. Why waste your time, energy, and most importantly money on something that your guests really won’t give a second thought? Plus, the trees will thank you!

3. It is easy to use an alternative 

If you want to have something that functions as a program, but doesn’t waste paper and your much-needed marriage reserve, then you can easily find thousands of wedding program alternatives at the click of a button. Thanks to sites like Pinterest, you can discover that a chalkboard sign, a upcycled mirror or even a printed tapestry can take the place of handing out programs to each individual guest.

 4. Guests are already familiar with the usual sequence of events 

Unless you are taking a more offbeat approach to your wedding ceremony and the events that happen therein, or you are having a very long and ornate religious wedding ceremony, there is no need to inform your guests what will happen from the time you walk down the aisle to the time you say “I do.” Your guests have been to enough weddings to be familiar with what will most likely occur, so don’t worry about them being lost. Plus, a great way to avoid any problems (should the unlikely event that they arise), you can simply have the officiant explain as you go. For example, perhaps you are including a sand ceremony in your day. At the moment this ceremony is to take place, simple have your officiant announce what you will be doing and why it’s special to you both.

 

5. They are another thing to worry about —

From agonizing over the exact wording (just like you did with the invitation) to appointing a person to make sure everyone received a wedding program, it becomes clear that having wedding programs at your day really just adds to you list of things to do and worry about. Take our advice, let them go and embrace the freedom of doing things your way!

 

Wedding programs are a wedding tradition that stills hands around for very few good reasons, so let’s change things up! Say goodbye to the wedding program for one and for all! And as always, if you have questions about how to plan your day or any of the ideas we’ve discuss, contact us for more details and all your wedding planning needs!

~Blog Contributed by Audra Jones