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Where to Register

As part of the wedding planning you and your fiance will need to decide where to register! If you already live together it might be a great time to get some upgrades or try new appliances. But, if you’re still living separately then you both should decide what you’ll need when you move in together. You will need to decide which stores suite both your needs and style! And, for the couple who already has it all, perhaps you’d like to raise funds for a charity!

The first places you can register are the usual suspects like Crate and Barrel and Bed, Bath and Beyond. These stores can be found all across the U.S. and they offer affordable and great styled pieces for a new couple. It can also make it a little cheaper for your guests to browse through some options that aren’t all over $100 or more.

The second place you should think about is Snowe, an online registry that caters to those who enjoy minimalist looks and modern silverware/place settings. It’s easy to register online and they have free standard shipping across the States. A fun detail on this site is that you can also request “Hold Gifts Until” option and Snowe will wait to ship gifts until a certain date. They also have discounts: 15% post-wedding discount, 20% discount on the couples first year anniversary and $20 discount post wedding for wedding guests with their purchase of $100 or more.

The second fun place we recommend to register is Etsy. This is a fabulous online shop where you can find hand crafted treats or vintage treasures. Since it’s so broad there’s bound to be something for everyone on here. And, since most sellers are self contracted they’re happy to personalize things for you and the communication is personal – not through a corporation. You can easily register online. The only possible con to this is the return policy – each seller is individual so the policies will differ.

Wherever you choose to register have fun with it! Try not to go overboard since you won’t get everything you register for.

Anniversary Gift Guide

Anniversary Gift Guide

Anniversary Gift Guide – Summer is the pinnacle of wedding season, that’s for sure. And if you’re anything like us, you have your rotating wedding guest attire on high speed and high frequency at the dry cleaners.  And with so many new and fun wedding to go to, we can’t help but daydream about weddings past and think of special ways to wish our dear friends and family a Happy Anniversary! And if you were ever a bride or groom of summer then you know it’s time to get the facts on what to give for each Anniversary. We compiled a list of traditional anniversary items with some clever and modern updates for our eager gift seekers!  We have you covered for at least the next 10 years of celebrations! Check it out!

Year 1- Paper
Gift idea: plane tickets, first edition copy of classic literature, art print

ticketsYear 2 – Cotton
Gift idea: cashmere scarf, monogrammed robe

scarft

Year 3 – Leather
Gift idea: wallet, handbag, overnight travel case

handbag

Year 4 – Fruit or Flowers
Gift idea: landscaping installation, trip to a vineyard

vineyard

Year 5 – Wood
Gift idea: Furniture piece, lacquer storage box

wood

Year 6 – Candy or Iron
Gift idea: golf clubs, favorite childhood candy

golf

Year 7 – Wool or Copper
Gift idea: This is where things get a little tricky, but be creative! Not every year has to be a huge, expensive gift. Sometimes a little homage to the traditional gift is good enough! For copper, we like a cool set of Moscow Mule mugs with a fun date night in to make some super fun cocktails with friends!

moscow mule

Year 8 – Bronze or Pottery
Gift idea: bronze statue or paperweight, lamp, large potted planter

lamp

Year 9 – Pottery and Willow

Gift idea: Come on! You’ve come this far! This would be a good chance to add to the potted planters for your yard or front of your house. Or for the super literal, try planting a willow tree that will grow for years to come!

willow tree

Year 10 – Tin or Aluminum

Gift idea: We say take a modern approach and upgrade tin to fine jewelry! 10 years is a huge milestone and definitely the time for a ring upgrade or an extra band of bling to add to our wedding band set. A good time for diamond stud earrings or a gorgeous bracelet! Make it something timeless that you can wear everyday!

jewelrey

How to Pull off a Surprise Wedding

A darling wedding was recently featured on one of our favorite go-to wedding blogs, Style Me Pretty.  The bride was absolutely stunning in her classic ¾ length sleeve Chantilly lace gown and her groom was flawless.  Their décor was subtle and had guests seated at a large outdoor restaurant venue that looked like a cobblestone street in Paris. Every detail was perfectly executed, but one thing made this wedding uniquely one for the books: None of the guests knew it was a wedding!

Tara McMullen Photography

When guests arrived to the venue for what they thought was the groom’s surprise 30th birthday party, they were greeted with a beautifully scripted note letting them in on the little secret. The photos are absolutely priceless; full of tears and screams of joy. We can only hope to be a guest at one of these of the moment fetes sometime soon!

Tara McMullen Photography

So we got to thinking: What does it take to pull off such a covert operation as a surprise wedding? Here were a few tips we found from the bride in this story and a few industry insiders who can only hope to see more of these type of weddings in the future!

  1. Keep it quiet, and let it slip: This has to be the trickiest part of all. Not telling your nearest and dearest about the biggest day of your life can be torture, but is well worth the pay-off in reaction. Of course there are always exceptions in a surprise scenario. Some of the guests that might think they are merely missing a birthday or engagement party might skipped the event since it may require travel – in this case, trust us, it’s worth spilling the beans. You want to make sure your secret doesn’t stop your favorite people from being there. They may never let you live it down!
  2. Make something up! : Some brides decide to surprise guests at their “engagement” party, while others create an entirely new scenario like a birthday or Bon Voyage so that their guests are completely caught off guard. Sometimes the more casual the event they think they are attending, the more exciting it is when they realize they are at a wedding.
  3. Gift or no gift?  No one gets married for the gifts. But for some couples that expect to leave their wedding with a little extra to start their new lives with , may be disappointed with the lack of envelopes they see since guests don’t come prepared. While this is hardly a reason not to have the wedding you want, most guests gladly send a gift after the wedding as they would with any other.  They understand the time and money spent and want to show they wish you well.  Some guest might even be inclined to be more generous than usual given the once in a lifetime memory you shared with them.

Your Post-Wedding To-Do List

Now that you are engaged, most of your time and brainpower is probably going to planning the wedding. However, many brides forget about the things they should do after the wedding. Some of these tasks are enjoyable, while others just have to get done. To help you remember the things you have to do after the big day ends, here is your post-wedding to-do list.

1)      Write and Send Thank You Cards — Different people have different theories on how much time you have to send thank you cards. Basically, the sooner you get them out, the sooner you can stop worrying them. (And the sooner grandma will stop asking you about them.) Since this task can be time consuming, enlist your husband’s help.

2)      Take Care of Any Left Over Wedding Business — Once the wedding is over, pay any remaining balances and return all borrowed items. Your vendors will appreciate not having to hunt you down, and the people who lent you items won’t have to worry about you losing, breaking, or forgetting about the borrowed pieces.

3)      Play With All Those Pictures — One of the most fun post-wedding tasks is creating your wedding album and any photo gifts you plan to make for family and friends. Let your husband help you sort through all the great shots and decide how you want to display them.

4)      Preserve Those Keepsakes — There will be plenty of items from your wedding that you want to hold on to, so be prepared to preserve them after the wedding. Some options include preserving your gown or bouquet or creating a shadow box of mementos.

5)      Open All Those Gifts — This is possibly the best post-wedding task. You’ll love reading all the heartfelt messages in the wedding cards and opening and using all the great gifts people bought. Plus, you can usually expect to find some cash in those envelopes.

6)      Begin the Name Change Process — You’ve been looking forward to the day you’d become a Mrs., but if you decide to change your name, there is a long-list of to-dos. Once you visit the social security office and motor vehicle department, be sure to change your name on all important documents such as credit cards, bank information, insurance companies, etc.

7)      Consider Your Finances — Now that you are married, you may want to open a joint account with your husband. While it isn’t necessary to combine all of your money, a joint account will help you pay the bills you both will share. You may also want to create joint accounts for your insurance or phone bills. Often times, married couples can receive a discount by being on the same plan.

4 Unique Wedding Gift Ideas

You need wedding gift ideas for your bridal party, family, and fiancé, but you’re tired of the same-old-same-old engraved flask and make-up bags. Get ready to be tempted to go shopping after you read this.

Prevent Cold Feet

We love these adorable “In case you get cold feet” socks on Wanelo. This humorous gift is sure to ease any fears your guy may be having.

Hang with Style

For your bridesmaids (and self, of course), get these adorable personalized hangers. This keepsake can be reused for years and years after the wedding.

Wrap Them in Love

Buy pretty robes for your bridesmaids to wear while you girls get ready on the big day. They will feel like stars as they spend the day getting pampered.

Show You Future Hubby Some Love

Some guys worry that life after the wedding won’t be as great as it was when you were dating. Prove him wrong with this unique gift idea: Plan and prepay for a date for each month of the year. Put the information in envelopes labeled for each month. Throughout the year, you and your guy can enjoy these fun dates together.

When picking out gifts for your bridal party, family, and fiancé, think outside the box. You don’t have to buy gifts from those wedding catalogs you keep getting in the mail. Consider the personalities of each person and buy something you know they’ll love.

 

Calling All Grooms

The following list was created by The Man Registry and is a must read for every groom-to-be.

10. Marriage license: Don’t wait until the last minute

It seems so simple. All you have to do is go to the courthouse, answer some questions, and be presented with your marriage license. Not so fast. You need to be familiar with your state’s requirements and waiting periods.  Most importantly, don’t wait until the last minute! This may seem like a minor last-minute item on the to-do list, but without it you can’t legally be married. Click here for marriage license requirements in your state.

9. Writing vows: Leave a personal mark on the ceremony

Many of today’s grooms are leaving the stock vows behind and penning their own unique commitment words for the bride. If you’ve decided to go this route, remember to include your intentions for marriage, what marriage and commitment means to you, and state the promises  you intend to keep. More about writing vows.

8. Wedding bands: When and what to look for

Just what a guy wants. He’s already shelled out for an engagement ring and now he has to make another trip back to the jeweler to select weddings bands.  Do some research beforehand and decide if you’ll be looking for matching bands or something unique. It’s recommended to have the bands picked out a minimum of three months in advance of the wedding. This leaves time for them to be ordered, shipped, and re-sized, if needed. You can buy a great wedding band in our wedding store.

7. The wedding party: Whom to select

Most grooms have a solid gut feeling on whom they’ll select as their Best Man. This is usually a brother or other life-long friend. It’s considered courtesy to include your soon-to-be brother in laws in the wedding party as well. Depending on how many groomsmen/bridesmaids there will be, there’s always room for more friends to serve as ushers. A common rule of thumb to remember is one usher per 50 guests.

6. Bachelor Party: It’s not just about beer anymore

When you heard the words bachelor party, common thoughts have always been bars, beer, and more beer. This isn’t necessarily the case today. Adventure and destination bachelor parties are all the rage for today’s weddings. Many grooms are trading in visits to the night clubs for golf outings, camping trips, and even sky-diving.  Some couples are even having joint bachelor/bachelorette weekends that involve a weekend trip to wine country or a beach house.

5. Wedding day attire: Stay on top of things

What the groom and groomsmen wear on the wedding day is usually coordinated with the wedding colors and bridesmaids’ dresses. Men who are taking an active role in the selection of attire should think about whether they want a tux or suit, the style and color, and whether they’re renting or buying. Arranging tuxedo rental can be tricky, especially if you have a large wedding party. You need to make sure everyone is measured and picks up their tuxes on time. The last thing you want is one of your groomsmen showing up in a tux that doesn’t fit (or not showing up in a tux at all). It’s also a courtesy for the groom to pick up the cost of the tux rental for the fathers.

4. Groomsmen gifts: Flask, cuff links, or money clip?

If you’ve ever been a member of a wedding party, then you know it’s standard for the groom to present his attendants with a gift to thank them for being a part of the big day. Many grooms opt for a practical, engraved gift that can be put to use (think business card holder, cuff links, or watch). However, just as the groom’s roles in wedding planning have evolved, so have groomsmen gifts. Creativity is key for men today as popular gifts have become tickets to sporting events, bottles of aged wine, and even weekend excursions (with the groom footing the bill). Great gifts for the groomsmen are in our wedding store.

3. Wedding speeches: Toasting with class

One of the scariest things for the groom is to stand up in front of friends and family and toast his new wife.  Statistics say that public speaking is the No. 1 fear of Americans (even beating out death)! One of the best ways to quash the nerves is to apply the age-old adage of practice, practice, practice. Here’s a quick guide for preparing for a successful toast:

Thank everyone for attending.

Keep humor to a minimum (we all know the gut-busting toasts are reserved for the best man).

Thank your wedding party and both sets of parents for their support on the special day.

Close with words directed at your new wife. We can’t tell you what to say, but say it from the heart (obviously).

2. The groom’s cake: A cake that’s all about the groom

Yes, you read that correctly. The groom’s cake is a themed wedding dessert that’s selected and paid for by the groom and his family. The theme is generally styled after a major interest or hobby in the groom’s life.  Some examples include a favorite sports team logo or a past-time such as fishing, fixing up cars, or traveling. The groom’s cake is often served at the reception along with the main wedding cake (just make sure it’s smaller in stature than the main cake), but can also be served for dessert at the rehearsal dinner. You can purchase a wonderful cake at Cocoa Bean.

1. Groom showers: In the name of equality

It’s definitely not your parents wedding shower. Instead of place settings, bath towels, and platters, the gifts given at a groom-friendly shower are power tools, speakers, and BBQ equipment. It’s become common for a couple to have at least one couples or “man” shower during their engagement. Popular shower themes include backyard and garden, home improvement, and bar and grill. The best part: These are gifts that both the groom and bride will enjoy.

source: elegance & simplicity.com