Asking for gifts is tacky, isn’t it?

Aside

You might think a gift registry is old school. Maybe you think it’s tacky. You don’t want to seem greedy “asking” for gifts.

Well guess what?!

People are going to buy you a gift for your wedding anyway. It may as well be something you would like and can use.

With that being said, you don’t have to go overboard. A gift registry can be as simple or as crazy as you want.

I was married at 27 and had been living on my own for a while. My husband was in the same boat (29) We had many of the common household items already. We used our Target gift registry as a way to upgrade and update some of the items we already were using. Once we received gift items, we were able to “donate” our starter items to younger siblings.

Maybe this is your circumstance, maybe not.

If you are new and just starting out, think of the little things. You and your future spouse might need a lot as you get settle into married life. Register for items such as towels, measuring cups and even serving spoons. All these things add up and when you are just getting started.

A traditional gift registry might not be your thing, that is okay. Contact your local travel agent and have them set up a “honeymoon registry” for you. This way, you can go on your dream honeymoon or do extra excursions while there if you already have one planned.

Tech savvy? Amazon has a gift registry as well. You don’t even need to leave your home- and neither do your guests. This is very convenient for those who might be traveling from afar (or celebrating from afar). Nothing beats 2 day prime shipping.

If you truly don’t need or want anything for your wedding, there are registry options for you too. Ask guests to donate to your favorite (or their favorite) charity in lieu of wedding gifts. There is a worthy cause out there that could use your support, trust me.

Now that we have established why you should register and gone over some options- consider these etiquette suggestions.

  • DO NOT – I repeat do not put your registry information on your wedding invites. This is tacky. Your registry information goes two places. (1) your wedding website (2) your shower invites. People will find out your registry information.
  • Register for different items at different price points. You want your guests to have options that fit the budget. Registering for only high end items is not the way to go.
  • Check on your registry often. If the selection for people to pick from is dwindling- add more items. This is really important in the two weeks leading up to a shower or your wedding day.
  • After every shower, after every party and after every gift is opened- Send a “Thank You”. A handwritten message is the way to go. There is nothing sweeter than a personalized “Thank You” expressing gratitude for a gift received. You might not dig the squirrel feeder your cousin gave you- but they thought it was neat. They thought you would like it. That is what matters.

Even though a gift registry might seem like a thing of the past, it’s not. There is a reason why they exist and most importantly- why you should have one.

You get married one time, embrace the motions. Just get registered.

 

 

Advertisements

Asking for gifts is tacky, isn’t it?

Aside

You might think a gift registry is old school. Maybe you think it’s tacky. You don’t want to seem greedy “asking” for gifts.

Well guess what?!

People are going to buy you a gift for your wedding anyway. It may as well be something you would like and can use.

With that being said, you don’t have to go overboard. A gift registry can be as simple or as crazy as you want.

I was married at 27 and had been living on my own for a while. My husband was in the same boat (29) We had many of the common household items already. We used our Target gift registry as a way to upgrade and update some of the items we already were using. Once we received gift items, we were able to “donate” our starter items to younger siblings.

Maybe this is your circumstance, maybe not.

If you are new and just starting out, think of the little things. You and your future spouse might need a lot as you get settle into married life. Register for items such as towels, measuring cups and even serving spoons. All these things add up and when you are just getting started.

A traditional gift registry might not be your thing, that is okay. Contact your local travel agent and have them set up a “honeymoon registry” for you. This way, you can go on your dream honeymoon or do extra excursions while there if you already have one planned.

Tech savvy? Amazon has a gift registry as well. You don’t even need to leave your home- and neither do your guests. This is very convenient for those who might be traveling from afar (or celebrating from afar). Nothing beats 2 day prime shipping.

If you truly don’t need or want anything for your wedding, there are registry options for you too. Ask guests to donate to your favorite (or their favorite) charity in lieu of wedding gifts. There is a worthy cause out there that could use your support, trust me.

Now that we have established why you should register and gone over some options- consider these etiquette suggestions.

  • DO NOT – I repeat do not put your registry information on your wedding invites. This is tacky. Your registry information goes two places. (1) your wedding website (2) your shower invites. People will find out your registry information.
  • Register for different items at different price points. You want your guests to have options that fit the budget. Registering for only high end items is not the way to go.
  • Check on your registry often. If the selection for people to pick from is dwindling- add more items. This is really important in the two weeks leading up to a shower or your wedding day.
  • After every shower, after every party and after every gift is opened- Send a “Thank You”. A handwritten message is the way to go. There is nothing sweeter than a personalized “Thank You” expressing gratitude for a gift received. You might not dig the squirrel feeder your cousin gave you- but they thought it was neat. They thought you would like it. That is what matters.

Even though a gift registry might seem like a thing of the past, it’s not. There is a reason why they exist and most importantly- why you should have one.

You get married one time, embrace the motions. Go to the store or grab your laptop – and get registered. 

 

 

Buying Suits is better… or is it?

Rather than renting menswear for your wedding, your considering just purchasing suits. It’s cheaper and everyone can use a suit… right? Not necessarily.

This popular thinking is very popular among couples right now. For some weddings, this is a great choice. For most though, rentals are a better idea. You are given a better product at a lesser price.

Weighing out the pros and cons of purchasing versus renting is so important before making your decision.

Myth: Suits are cheaper.

Reality: Suits are the purchase of a jacket and pant (sometimes a vest).  Yes,  those two pieces might carry a minimal cost. Ask yourself this..

Are the gentleman in your party going sans shirts, shoes and accessory?

We hope not! Along with the purchase of a suit comes the rental or purchase of a shirt, vest and tie, shoe, cuff-links  and pocket square. Shoes also need to be considered. Not everyone will have an acceptable pair of shoes at hand. Purchasing or even just renting these items will add up quickly.

Also, suits require alterations to obtain ideal fit. Not only does this add to the budget. It requires time and an appointment.

Myth: Everyone can use a suit.

Reality: Not everyone can actually use a suit. Today, most professional jobs only require “business casual”. Most people do not wear suits to work. As far as other social events go, the average person only attends a formal event every 2 years. Most formal events are also “business casual”…

If you are thinking they can wear it in another wedding, think again. Each designer has a unique fabric, fit and lapel style. Even thought you have impeccable taste..the selection for your big day will likely not be the same as someone else. 

Myth: Rentals are so expensive

Reality: Most full service stores offer a free groom and discounts of up to $50 off each additional rental. The savings, especially during bridal shows and peak booking season can be amazing. You can easily gain leverage with a large wedding party.

Myth: Buying gets you a better product.

Reality: Renting gets you a better product. A typical rental coat and pant would retail for $500-$800. They are made from fine fabrics, high thread count wool (meaning a soft feel) and have a designer name brand behind them. The typical suit is purchased for around $100. The suit is $100 suit. They are polyester, imported from China and have no designer or brand name to stand behind them. It’s nice for day use or for a guest to wear to your wedding. Next to your bridal gown, your perfect dress- it might look a little cheap.

Myth: At least we can try a suit on…

Reality: Your full service store will offer a complete try on for you before you make your final decision. If you are on the fence about accessory items or unsure of fit. You can try it on.

 

 

Even though it’s popular right now, and might seem like a good idea- consider your options before making your final decision to purchase suits. It’s your wedding day- your wedding photographs. The average bridal gown costs $1589 .. what would it look best next to?

Rentals get a bad rep sometimes. Today, styles are different than they were when you went to prom. Found something on Pinterest? Rent it. It will complete the other half to your perfect wedding look.

 

 

Healthy You: Cookie Season

It’s the most wonderful time of the year, the holidays. Family and friends are almost always accompanied by cookies, treats and other “Pinterest” recipes. Although they taste good at the time, these seemingly  unavoidable foods will stay with us long past the holidays if we are not careful.

The struggle is real.

We may or may not be quite the cookie connoisseurs ourselves and have figured out these little tips to help us through this tough time.

1.Friends Share

So the treat platter has 6 different selections to choose from, how will you ever decide? The answer is easy: Pick them all. Get enough to SHARE. That’s right, put all the selections on one plate and bring them back to your table. Try each one out without committing to the entire portion.
2.Stay active
Cookies+ Sit= More to cuddle
Cookies+ Go to the gym= Same amount to cuddle and the joy of cookies
Think of it this way, you can easily burn 100 or so calories doing the following. Running 1 mile, 10 minutes of elliptical work, 1 hour of yoga, or 30 minutes of weight lifting. Commit to being active a few times a week and you are paving the way for success.

3.Search for Healthy

Another way to avoid carrying those treats into 2016 is to simply make them healthier. Instead of searching “Holiday Cookies” on Pinterest, try “Healthy Holiday Cookies” – the possibilities are endless. Who knew flaxseed vegan dough balls could look so pretty?
 4.Just avoid it
Just kidding!
 If you read that and considered it, we are amazed. To us, this is not possible. You are stronger than we are.
At the end of the day, we are human and we have a sweet tooth. Cookies and other holiday treats are a part of life and we choose to embrace it. Enjoy this holiday season! It only comes once a year.

Your Engaged: Shopping tips for Wedding Fashion

Your engaged! Congratulations, you are about to begin a great lifetime experience: Planning your wedding. You must have a crazy mix of emotions going on right now, not to worry though- just take a deep breath and relax.  This is going to be a blast! With the exception of your fantastic fiancée one of the most important factors of your wedding planning experience will be the fashion. Ever since you were a little girl, you have been picturing exactly what you want to wear, your color scheme, and who your maid of honor will be, Right? For some: Absolutely! For others: Not so much.  Don’t worry though,   below are some guidelines to use in shopping for your wedding fashion:

“The One”

This is one of the first purchases you should make in your wedding planning; it sets the tone for the whole event. With a minimum of 9 months before and never being too soon, start getting ideas! Although buying an in-store gown is always an option, order times can and will take up to 16 weeks.

Get Inspired:

Look in magazines,  on websites, and at bridal fashion shows to start getting ideas of how you want to look and feel on your big day. Soft and Romantic? Preppy chic? Modern and Sexy? Gowns, just like the brides who wear them, have their own unique personalities.

Time to go Shopping!

Weather you walk in or make an appointment, make sure you are prepared. Bring with you the following:

1. A strapless bra, nude panties or shape wear, and heels.

2. 2-3 trusty people from your family or wedding party to give you opinions and to share in the experience.

3. An idea of your budget, you do not want to fall in love with “the one” if it is out of your price point.

4. An open mind. Trust your consultant, she know what she is doing. Different materials, styles, and shapes look so different on a bride than on a hanger. She knows the inventory and might have just the right thing in mind for you.

Your Glam Squad:

Once you have purchased your wedding gown, it’s time to shop for your girls! Bridesmaid delivery time can take up to 14 weeks.  Your girls will need to be sized and have their deposits in place before an order will be placed

A few Pointers:

1. Your consultant may have just the perfect complimenting style in mind for you. Ask their opinion, this is what they do.

2. If you have a larger bridal party, it might be best to bring 2-3 girls for starters. Pick out a couple styles to have everyone look at. Within a large bridal party, it is sometimes hard to get everyone to agree on 1 style. Everyone has different opinions on fashion and it might simplify the process.

3. A-line, styles with higher waist lines, and ruching are most flattering on all body styles. Everyone will enjoy your special day even more if they are looking their best.

The Gents:
Tuxedo and suit styles can be selected at any point up to 2 months before the wedding. At this point it is ideal to have all the sizing information and the final order placed. Many times, the groom will have a free rental = Bonus!

A few pointers:

1. Tuxedo vest and tie selections are easily matched with your bridesmaid swatch make sure you have yours with you.

2. Sizing takes only a couple minutes to do; gentleman can email sizes if they are from out of town. This happens to be the case in many weddings.

3. A two button jacket is by far the most flattering on many body types. Same as the ladies, if everyone is looking their best, they will enjoy your special day even more. Your consultant should be able to help determine the best rental selections for your wedding party to ensure the best fit all around.

Ways to annoy your bridesmaids

Ways to really annoy your bridesmaids:

   Expecting everyone to love each other the same way you love each of them

Even though your leading ladies are your besties, it doesn’t mean they will become best friends with each other or even get along. Different personalities can clash and often times do. To avoid a potential disaster, casually introduce everyone to  ahead of time. This might make for fewer surprises during wedding related functions.

Annoy1

   Pretending the dress is so cute that they will wear it over and over again

You know the saying: Chop it off and wear it again!… ya right. We all know this isn’t the likely case when it comes to dresses. Make sure your girls know how much you like the dress and appreciate them for wearing it on your special day. If you are concerned about potential re-wearing, opt for black or navy and something in a shorter length.

Having multiple expensive wedding related events

Weddings are expensive enough to be a part of: Dresses, gifts, travel days, and spa time all add up quickly.  Throw in a few showers and a get-a-way bachelorette weekend- you are asking for some upset girls. Be mindful of costs and consider making some events or things optional to keep everyone happy and on budget.

Annoying3

   Saying that “You don’t care” when it comes to shoes and hair

Face it: You do care. Telling your girls that you don’t will do nothing but cause stress on them and set up for disappointment. You may be laid back, but give some direction on what you are expecting. Share a few ideas, some photos, or even make a little list describing some things you like for your big day.

 Giving out last minute details

Get a list or an itinerary together so everyone can be prepared. If you don’t let people know until the last minute it will do nothing but create stress for everyone, yourself included. Be clear about the details as soon as you can so your girls know what to expect and where to be when.

annoy4

  Being a know-it-all

Knowing how you want everyone to look and act on your big day is one thing, being a snotty B about getting things that way is UN-acceptable behavior. Asking your pale bridesmaids to tan, your blonde to touch up her roots, or your lip gloss queen to go easy is not okay. You know and love them for who they are remember why you asked them to be there in the first place.

Nobody likes a bridezilla 

Your big day is finally here, enjoy it! Don’t snip at your girls because you are stressed out. They are here to love and support you. Remember that when someone accidentally steps on your dress while giving you a hug.

  Annoy2

Honeymoon Planning Tips

Anyone else miss the Spring-like weather we had last week?

The recent temperature changes have us dreaming of sunny skies and bright clear waters.

No matter what stage of planning you are in, surely you have to include a honeymoon! Lisa  from Travel-Travel Fargo-Moorhead Inc. has sent us some tips to help with your dream honeymoon.

You and your new life partner, cocktails with umbrellas and a romantic sunset- Does it get any better? Didn’t think so.

Take a tip (or a few) from Miss. Lisa and be prepared for the trip of a lifetime:

When is it best to plan for your honeymoon?

At least 6 months prior. Some couples who get married in the summer months put off their honeymoon until the winter..

Where should you go on your honeymoon? 

The possibilities are endless! People are really starting to think outside the box. Walking along the beach at sunset in Hawaii isn’t everyone’s dream anymore. Mexico and the Caribbean are always going to be popular. However, I have had clients go on a tour of Ireland. Or going on an Alaskan cruise, or mountain climbing or stay in a bungalow in Bora Bora.

How much should you budget for your honeymoon? 

This isn’t a simple questions to answer. It does come back to the saying though: You get what you pay for. Typically, your honeymoon will be the highest ticket trip you ever take. Also, take into consideration the destination you select for your honeymoon. Most countries require passports or travel visas- you will need to take that cost into consideration.

Should I book my honeymoon online? 

When booking your honeymoon, I strongly suggest using a travel agent. They have the knowledge of the different resorts and destinations. They have either stayed there themselves or have had clients that did. Also, if something were to go wrong during your honeymoon – having a travel agent to deal with the problem is much easier than using some 800 number. Travel agents can help you get more bang for your buck. They are familiar with the extra amenities you will receive for celebrating your honeymoon.  From room upgrades, breakfast in bed and couples massages to limo transfers and private dinners on the beach.

 

You can contact Lisa for more information, tips or to get your honeymoon planning started:

Lisa 701.492.5000

Did you know about the honeymoon registry? Find out more here

Facebook VIP Wedddings

Online at Vows in Paradise