12 secrets about choosing wedding veils all brides should know

(Veils above by The Wedding Veil Shop)

Choosing the perfect wedding veil veil can be a complicated task for many brides. One-tier or two-tier? White or ivory? Tulle or lace? This bridal task becomes one you'll relish with these goof-proof tips.

 

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  1. Choose your bridal gown BEFORE you decide on a veil (unless of course you're wearing a family heirloom)
  2. Expect your mom, sister or friend to cry when they first see you in a wedding veil
  3. Think carefully about your hairstyle if you're wearing a veil
  4. Take the veil to the hairdresser to experiment
  5. Practice taking it off for the reception with your chief bridesmaid 
  6. Wear a birdcage veil if your dress is short or retro. You can keep it on for the reception too
  7. A blush veil is one which folds over the face when you're walking down the aisle, then lifted when you reach the altar
  8. For a bit more coverage, choose an elbow-length veil. Particularly if your dress has an ornate bodice you want to show off
  9. Fingertip veils are good for full-length gowns, particularly if the bride is tall. But it won't look good if your wedding dress has a train
  10. A cathedral veil is floor length and dramatic. It looks wonderful with a formal gown (think of Kate Middleton on her wedding day) and falls six inches past the train
  11. A white veil suits a classic white wedding dress. Or choose 'antique white' if you're wearing an off-white dress. If your dress is ivory, choose a champagne colored veil
  12. Try on several different veils when you're choosing your wedding dress and listen to what the salesperson suggests. Although you may have always had your heart set on a particular type of veil, you could surprise yourself

Finally, if you want your wedding photographs to remain classic, then try not to choose a wedding veil that's too on-trend as it will look seriously dated in a short while.

5 Things to DIY On Your Wedding Day and 5 Things to AVOID!

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So you're all over Pinterest picking up ideas, checking out crafting blogs, on Instagram, YouTube ... 

It's easy to get the DIY bug when you're planning your wedding and decide that you're going to make as much of everything you need as you can. And it's certainly a way to personalise your wedding day.

However, experience and stories from past brides have shown that some things are best not DIY-d unless you are a professional. Whilst others are simple and a cinch.


Via Not On The High Street

These are ok to DIY for your wedding day

Your wedding stationery

You can make a start by downloading these free "Will you be my bridesmaid?" cards from Dessy here

Don't underestimate the amount of time it's going to take you to make your own invitations and stationery - and don't demand that your bridesmaids help you either. Be realistic about what you can achieve - but if you decide to go for it, then enjoy! 

Your wedding cake

Seriously? Yes. The trick is to buy a plain, white tiered cake from a reputable source - Marks & Spencer and Waitrose do some excellent plain iced cakes. Then decorate it yourself using fresh flowers or butterflies as Fiona Cairns shows above. (She made Kate Middleton's wedding cake, so she's certainly got a reputation to uphold). 

Flowers

Ok, we'd advise you not to make your own wedding bouquet. But you could certainly do the flowers for your table centrepieces. If you're having a countrystyle wedding day, wild flowers in jam jars can look fabulous.  

 

Your make-up

You don't need to get it professionally done. In fact, in some ways it's better if you don't, as a make-up artist might give you a new look that makes you unrecognisable. Instead, visit a few make-up counters in the run up to your wedding day to get some ideas on how to accent your best features and have some lessons. Then you can do it calmly yourself on the morning of your wedding day.

Your wedding favors

You don't want to spend a lot of money on these that can be better used elsewhere. We've talked a lot about DIY wedding favors which could be as simple as a beautiful beach pebble with the guest's name written on.

 

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Wedding DIY to avoid

Your wedding dress

Don't even go there. Even if you're a professional. Making your own wedding dress is time-consuming, stressful and it's got to be perfect. If you are a professional, well, perhaps that's ok. But make sure you have some help along the way. If you're tight on budget and that's why you're considering making your own dress, then there are plenty of other options - you can check out wedding dress sample sales, hiring a dress or finding a vintage gown that you can make your own.

purple wedding bouquet

Your wedding bouquet

This is going to take centre stage on your wedding day. If you are a florist then maybe you can consider it (although you're going to be pushed for time the day before you get married, which is when it's likely to be made). Take our advice and have it made by a professional (although of course you can diy floral items like your wedding tablecenters).

Your wedding music

You might think that a Spotify playlist or playlist you've created will do the job, along with wireless speakers. But best not to go down this route. Your music is an integral part of your guest entertainment - it could go wrong and then what will you do? Better to hire a professional DJ or a band. The bride and groom were DJs at their wedding

Photography

Try and put a chunk of your budget towards hiring a professional photographer. You might have a friend who takes good photographs who offers to help, but the result won't be nearly as good and in any case your friend might drift off to enjoy the party and miss some key shots. A professional photographer will be on duty, take the images you need and make some useful suggestions. 

Manicures

Your hands are going to be on show all day and be a focus in your wedding photographs. So even if you've never had a manicure in your life, then this is the time to go for it. Have your nails professionally manicured, don't varnish them yourself. You'll get a better finish and be confident that your hands look their very best. coloured nail varnish

Trash the wedding dress? Or treasure it for ever?

The Best Trash the Wedding Dress Ideas We've Seen!

The wedding is over, the guests are gone and your wedding dress now hangs in your closet ready to be sent to the dry cleaners and stored away for eternity.

Or maybe you're a trash the wedding dress bride?

In recent years, there's been a vogue for brides to have photographs of themselves literally 'trashing' their dress in the most spectacular ways. They do it in all sorts of ways:

  • Lying down in the waves at the seashore as above
  • Running romantically through wheatfields with their partner
  • Wearing it to a festival (when it's muddy)
  • Worn it during a food fight
  • Used it as a canvas for a paint splattering session 

Well it's your call, but we don't really think trashing your wedding dress is particularly romantic. In fact, you may well come to regret it in years to come, particularly if your daughter or granddaughter asks if they can wear it on their own wedding day.

Trashing the wedding dress photos


TrashTheDress1_V2-585x391
Photo featured on Blissbride.net and taken by Jeremy Wolfe.  WinterTrashtheDress
 Photo by Journey2amrs.com  

knoxville-wedding-photographer
Photo featured on TheBrideLink.com by Sullivan Photography. 

So what about treasuring your wedding dress?

You'll have spent a lot of time (and probably money) choosing your beautiful wedding gown. So doesn't it deserve to be professionally dry-cleaned and stored carefully in tissue paper in a box in your home? Just think how wonderful it will be to pull it out in years to come to show it off to your daughters/nieces/grandaughters ... 

 

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In which case you might like to think about having a professional photography shoot after your wedding day that is the opposite of a trash the wedding dress day - rather a 'cherish the wedding dress' day. 

You can book a photographer, after all the stress and fuss of your wedding day, and pose in your wedding gown looking relaxed and beautiful (particularly if it's just after your honeymoon). 

You can wear your gorgeous wedding shoes again, pick a location that means something to you and have the photography taken at your leisure. 

It's certainly a thought - and gives you a chance to wear your wedding gown all over again ... 

Download this FREE kids activity book

DIY Wedding Activity Book for Kids: FREE Printable

Having kiddies at your wedding? That means you need some kid friendly entertainment ideas to keep their little hands busy. I have one great addition to add to your stockpile of ideas. Found on Lovely Indeed these DIY wedding activity books are sure to keep the kiddos happy. And the best part? They're free and downloadable. Here's a peak:

idocoloring1.jpgidocoloring2.jpgidocoloring3.jpgidocoloring4.jpgidocoloring5.jpgidocoloring6.jpgTo get your own activity book head on over to Lovely Indeed and get printing!

Just a few notes for you: 

All you have to do is download the PDF file, hit print, and go make some copies!  You’ll have to do a little double-sided action to get the pages in the right order, but you get the idea. 

A few pointers for printing and using the template follow below.

  • The template prints best if you actually download it and print from a Preview program. Choose Print Options, then under Scale, select “Fit to Page” for the best results.
  • The pages are not out of order. If you are printing at home, print out the page with the car on it, then on the back of that same sheet print the front cover of the booklet (ensuring that it doesn’t end up upside-down). Next, print out the page with the cake on it, and on the back of that same sheet, print out the tic-tac-toe page. 

Dressing it up

For a fancy finish, get some striped twine, punch two holes in the spine of the book, string the twine through from the inside, and tie a little bow on the outside.  (All available from a good craft shop.) Set out some crayons and pencils at your kid table, and they’ll have a ball. Have fun!

Pale blue bridesmaid gowns you'll want to keep for yourself

(Bridesmaid dresses by Dessy)

Most girls suit blue. And it's a wedding color that works for bridesmaids at spring, summer and winter weddings. (Fall has different hues to offer of course and we'd go for oranges, browns and reds at that time of year).

It's like that old wedding rhyme:

"Something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue..." Which just shows that weddings and blue should go together ...

What does blue say?

The thing about light blue as a color is that it really does whisper elegance and glamor whilst eschewing overt prettiness. And it tends to suit all complexions, which is always a consideration when choosing bridesmaid dresses.

Take a look at these one-shouldered bridesmaid gowns we've picked out. They're all beautiful - and because they're by Dessy they come in a variety of shades of blue - from delicate pastels through to sophisticated midnight blues. 

(All frocks above from the Jenny Yoo collection at Dessy). 

Different blues for different venues

If you've having a destination wedding or you're getting married under hot sunshine, then you can choose bright blues - turquoises, azures and a jade blue. Bright colors can stand up to bright light without looking faded, although they'd look more out of place if you're having a country garden style wedding. 

Then again, you could have chosen to have a more rustic theme; so choose more delicate shades of blue like cornflower - which will look beautiful with wild flowers and less formality. 

Maybe you're having a city wedding or a wedding that's being held in the early evening. Then your choices might veer towards elegant deep blues with a touch of shimmer - maybe like these gowns from Dessy below. 

 

Choose the right shade of blue for your maids too. Don't feel that you have to dress them all in one color - you can graduate the shades of blues to get an ombre effect as below. (Check out Dessy's Instagram feed for images of real girls wearing Dessy at real weddings.) 

 

 

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How to set a wedding budget

 

What's the first thing you should do when you get engaged?

Actually it's not booking a venue, buying a dress or even setting a date. It is actually planning a wedding budget.

Now we know that doesn't sound very glamorous or exciting. But actually, it's not until you know how much you actually have to spend (and how you want to allocate it) that you can really get on with your wedding planning.  

Budgets are crucial 

Because your budget it going to affect everything. From the venue to choose, possibly the time of year you get married, where you get married, how many guests you have ... and so on. 

The two of you need to sit down, write down your monthly income and outgoings (mortgage, rent, loans etc) and then how much you have left over after you have allowed for your financial commitments. That's what you can put towards your wedding and then you need to work out how long you need to save up to have the wedding you want. One thing is for sure, you don't want to start out married life with a big wedding debt hanging around your neck. That's a stress you really don't need. 

Of course, maybe you're lucky and have a good bulk of savings in the bank, or you've just had a bonus at work, a windfall or have won the Lottery! Or maybe your parents and relatives are happy to help you out. 

That's great, but you'll still need to allocate your wedding money into different areas - for flowers, catering, clothing, music, wine, champagne, gifts ... and all the other things that will creep in. 

The Knot has come up with a very handy infographic that we like which shows very clearly how you should allocate your wedding budget, with some useful suggestions. 

We think having a float of about 5% of your budget could prove lifesaving for unforeseen emergencies. 

Take a close look and study this, because there may be some aspects here that you hadn't considered. 

 

wedding budget infographic

 

Wedding table decor ideas that will get you inspired!

(Image via Pinterest)

Wedding table decorations set the scene from the moment your guests arrive at your reception. You want your friends and family to have an AMAZING time. Make the decor in your venue inviting and you'll get the party started the way you want it.

Ceremony to reception 

Don't forget, some table decorations will make the transition from the wedding ceremony to the reception venue very easily - doubling your wedding budget potential. (See the illuminated Mason jars below.) 

 

Here's a creative idea for a kids' table. Not expensive either. Package up crayons, add a lollipop and a plain notepad. It's the way they are put together that is so appealing, don't you think? 

Put these coasters on your wedding tables and guests can fill them in with their advice on being happily married. You might want to add the finished product to a wedding album or include in your wedding guest book. Fantastic idea and not expensive either, they work out at $1 each. 

From BHLDN and you can order here.

If you're having a winter wedding, or maybe a summer wedding that looks likely to go on until late, then these illuminated Mason jars from Amazon are just perfect. They contain battery-operated fairy lights that will brighten your tables so romantically! 

This idea is so easy. Place a flower in a vase, add water and float a candle on the top. Waxy flowers work best here - orchids are ideal, although you can use roses too. Ask your florist for advice. 

Love this idea for an autumn wedding table centre. It's so simple but so perfect. 




Here's an idea for a Christmas or winter wedding (via Pinterest). You'l have to spray the cones with frosting, 

Candles are their own decoration too - place an array of candles (Mason jars look good) along the centre of the table. Mirrors aren't expensive and can work very effectively on a bridal table setting, especially when combined with candles.


5 Ways You Could Damage Your Engagement Ring

(Image by Jennifer Dickert)

Now that you’re engaged you probably don’t ever want to take your beautiful engagement ring off, you want to just stare at it and watch how it sparkles.  But even though we totally agree with you, there are moments that could in fact damage your engagement ring


If you’re cleaning and washing anything

Whether you’re at the sink doing dishes, or down on your knees scrubbing your tub,  you should not be wearing your engagement ring.  The chemicals can damage the band of the ring and the diamond.

If you let anyone try it on

There will always be one person who will ask if they can try on your ring, whether it is close family member, friend or co-worker.  We strongly suggest not allowing anyone to try your ring on,  especially if they do not have the same size finger as you do.  

engagementring1

 Image by Noble Photography


If You Do Manual Labor

If your job requires you to do any kind of manual labor, don’t wear your ring to work.  It can easily get lost and/or damaged.   

Gardening

If you're a keen gardener, it's best not to wear your ring when you're weeding or cutting the grass - you could scratch the stones or worse still, lose it. 

If you play any kind of sports

Like to play golf or tennis?  Don’t wear your ring.  Enjoy rock climbing and softball? Not a good time to be showing off the bling.  Don’t wear it while swimming either, the chlorine can ruin any precious metals.

If you’re cooking/baking

If you don’t want to lose your ring in the cupcake mix that is about to bake in the oven, don’t wear your engagement ring here either.

So you’re probably thinking when can you wear your engagement ring?

You can wear it at work, if you don’t use your hands in harsh ways.  You will want to wear it to any wedding-related function like your engagement photo shoot, your bridal shower, your bachelorette party (be careful at the bachelorette party with your ring, especially if it’s a nice bit of crazy fun!).

Wedding guest book ideas all DIY brides need to know about

I love the idea of wedding guest books - after all you want a record of your big day, remembering who came along and shared all the fun and excitement.

Don't hide your guest book away

I just don't like the idea of a formal book that gets shut after the wedding and then spends its life sitting on a shelf in your house - being pulled off to be looked at when you happen to remember.

There are so many other ways of remembering your guests. There's a wedding guest tree, which you can frame afterwards and hang on the wall. (Here's a free template for making one.) You can theme the fingerprint colors to your season - blues and yellows for spring and summer, rich reds and golds for fall - you get the idea. 

A wedding guest book plate


If you're into junk shop finds and have a creative streak, then you'll love this quirky idea for wedding guest books that I found via Martha Stewart Weddings.

Just rummage through jumble sales and junk shops looking for white plates with a colored patterned rim. They don't have to match but you need to have some sort of a theme going on - florals, geometrics, golds, silvers or a color.

At the entrance to your reception, leave the blank plates out with a note encouraging the guests to sign them and write their good wishes and messages. Use a permanent marker pen in black, silver or gold that is water resistant (although these plates are ultimately designed to be hung on your walls, not used for serving food!)

Then you'll have a visible reminder of your big day to look at.

Did you have a wedding guest book? Was it a traditional book or did you do something a little different?


Credits: Main image via Martha Stewart. 




6 ideas that will make a beach wedding really stylish

(Image by Suki McDonald Photography on Destination Weddings)

So you're going for the option of blue skies, palm trees, the sea breaking on the shore .... in other words you're having a beach wedding ceremony.

Whether it's an intimate occasion for just the two of you and a couple of witnesses - or whether you're making a party of it with a host of family and friends, there are a few do's and don't with beach weddings.

Beach Weddings Need To Be Thought About In A Different Way

For example, it's not a good idea to wear an ornate, really detailed wedding dress.  Don't go for the long veil and the heavy, full skirted wedding gown.  Think light fabrics like chiffon ... it's going to be hot.

To help you plan your beach wedding ceremony, here are six ideas to get you thinking. 

1. Get your guests ready for the beach by giving personalised beach towels as favors in advance of the ceremony.

(Image by Marcella Treybig Photography via United with Love)

2. Dress your bridesmaids in aqua colors to echo the azure blue of the sea and sky. Dessy has some wonderful bridesmaids dresses in greens and turquoises.

 

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3. Make the most of a hot balmy night by getting the table laid up on the beach.

 

(Image via Gray Likes Weddings)

 4. Keep your jewellery simple and understated. Forget the bling ... freshwater pearls are a classic...

Pearl bracelet by Dessy

5. Your invitations should echo your theme. Maybe give a hint of what's to come by using the same colors you're planning on having? You can use bright shades or delicate pastels and golds as below. 

(Destination wedding invitations by Ananya)

6. Never thought we'd say this, but sometimes heels should not be worn and if you're getting married on a beach then that's one of those times. Flip-flops work much better on beautifully pedicured toes.

(Flip flops by Dessy in different colours)