By Taylor Trimble | Spring 2018 Intern
You're in the midst of planning your big day and you and your partner have decided to write your own vows. This is one of those tasks that is definitely easier said than done. We may think it's easy to put our love for someone into words, but this can be a very daunting part of the wedding planning process for couples. After all, we can't all be romance novelists like Nicholas Sparks or flawlessly profess our love like Harry in When Harry Met Sally (a girl can dream though). Hopefully this guide will help you to write the vows you envision for yourself and your future spouse on your big day!
1. Have a conversation with your partner. The hardest part of writing your own vows is knowing where to start. Sit down with your future spouse to discuss the logistics of your vows and to ensure that you're both on the same page. How long do you want your vows to be? What's the tone of your vows? What should you include and what should you leave out? Do you want your guests to laugh hysterically or have tissues on standby? These are all important elements that will help guide you through the writing process!
2. Reflect on your relationship. Take some time to reflect on your relationship alone. Think of aspects about your partner and your relationship that you would like to highlight in your vows. If you want to dig a little deeper or need help with reflection, there are thousands of prompts for vow writing that can be found online. These include questions such as "What promises can you make to them?" and "What has your partner taught you?". One of the most important parts of this step is to take notes! Make sure you write down everything, whether it be a silly memory or sincere, heartfelt thought you had about your partner. You may still be unsure of what direction you're going with your vows, so it's important to have as much information to pull from as possible.
3. Look for inspiration. Whether it be watching your favorite wedding television show, reading samples online, or binging YouTube videos of couples exchanging their own vows, there's unlimited inspiration to help you with the writing process! My personal favorite is searching for videos of vow exchanges online or watching shows like Four Weddings on TLC. Videos of real couples and real vows can help you to create a vision for your own vows. It can also help you to realize what you would like to do differently. While it's important to keep your vows true to yourself and your partner, looking for inspiration can ignite the spark you need to craft your perfect vows!
4. Put time and effort into your vows. Don't wait until the last minute! Your vows shouldn't be put on the back burner. The vow exchange is an important part of your day and something that should have deep meaning to both of you. These are the promises that you will be making to your partner in life and best friend forever. Your wedding day is all about you two and the vows are where you can put your love for one another into words. Make this a priority and put your love for your significant other into it!
5. Make it your own. Vows are all about you two and who you are as a couple. Incorporate memories, inside jokes, or special details about your relationship. Don't feel pressured to include cliches (unless you want to, of course!) or to sound as perfect as Monica and Chandler did while exchanging their vows on the iconic Friends wedding episode. Make sure your words to each other feel authentic and genuine - it's all about you as a couple!
6. Practice! We've heard it since we were young - practice makes perfect! After you've composed your vows and have come up with a final draft, practice by reading them aloud. You may feel silly at first, but it's worthwhile to try it out. It can help you from stumbling over your words and changing your tone if needed. Once you feel more confident, try watching yourself in the mirror as you read them. You'll probably feel even sillier than before, but it will make you feel more comfortable with yourself - my public speaking professor swears by this trick! Your vows don't have to sound perfect, but feeling confident is important. Don't overdo it or be too hard on yourself - this can make you more nervous than you already are. With some practice you can assure yourself that you'll be able to get through your vow exchanges with grace on your big day.
Vows are an important element of your wedding and will give your guests insight to your love for each other. They're something you can look back on as a memory and as a reminder of how much you value your spouse. They are the commitments and promises that you make to your partner for the rest of your lives. Now comes the challenging part - putting these steps into action! It's my hope that this guide was helpful and puts you a little more at ease about this important part of your big day.
By Jackie Furia | Spring 2018 Intern
When planning for your wedding day, there is a lot of thought that goes into it between the dress, venue, and everything in between. It is important to not forget about your bridal party. There are many possibilities and choices for dresses for your bridesmaids and this guide below reviews some important aspects to keep in mind. So, here are some tips for how to pick out the perfect dress for your bridesmaids!
Most likely, not everyone in your bridal party has the same budget, so this should be something that is taken into consideration. Never assume that every bridesmaid can afford the same dress or that they don't have a budget in mind.
If being on-trend is important to you, than research is key. Magazines and websites are very helpful when starting the process. After research it is time to visit stores that will have options that you and your bridesmaid's will love.
Time is also very important. Allow yourself to have enough time to pick the dress you want the girls to have, and time for it to come in, get altered, etc.
It is always better to have your bridesmaids order a bigger size than a smaller one. Why? You can easily alter bigger dresses.
Also take your season into consideration when selecting color. Winter weddings often call for deeper colors, while summer and spring weddings traditionally have lighter tints. If the aesthetic of the day is important to you, you might want to consider going for dress colors that match the vision, but it can also be important to consider the skin tones of your bridesmaids as well. It's incredible what color can do to either make you look vibrant or washed out.
Give some thought to what the weather might be like on your wedding day. While Mother Nature has certainly thrown us off a time or two (we've seen snow in October and 60 in December), you'll want to ensure that you're dressing your girls appropriately. Whether it's a freezing winter day, or a scorcher in summer, be prepared for all potential scenarios and make smart and informed decisions about your dress style(s) based on the time of year you'll be getting married.
Make sure to give some consideration to what goes under the dress. Avoid a bra peeking out where it shouldn't in your pictures by shooting out reminders to the bridesmaids that they'll need to acquire the proper underthings for whatever neckline or dress style you've selected or are having them select.
Pleasing your Party
One option for ensuring that the bridesmaid's dress makes everyone happy is to go for a dress that is offered in a few different necklines. The idea of having to tug a strapless gown up all night is pretty uncomfortable for many, and some can't even with sleeves. Allowing the neckline to be the decision of the individual means everyone is sure to find something that they are comfortable in.
Feeling extra gracious? Assign a color and allow your bridesmaids to choose their own dresses entirely. Make sure to give your girls a few ideas of styles you prefer or overall vision of what the party would look like for guidance. You might even ask that you get veto power on their options! Going this route guarantees that every girl will find something that she's comfortable and confident in.
At the end of the day, by following these guidelines, you can pick out the perfect dream dress for your bridesmaids and keep your wedding party happy.
By Erica Sonlin | Spring 2018 Intern
Your big day is coming up before you know it, and it's now time to decide which venue will be the perfect fit! If you're thinking to yourself, how am I possibly supposed to come up with a way to choose the right place for this ... don't worry, you're not alone! This can be a very stressful time for the bride-to-be, but lucky for you - you've landed on the perfect blog post to take you through each and every necessary step. Here at Alexandria Catherine Events, it is our number one priority to make sure we are providing high quality and excellent wedding planning services for our clients. As you read along, remember that we are here to help you throughout every step of the way should you need it.
Step One: Create a vision. When you picture your wedding, what do you see? Your first step should be to envision a theme or color palette. That way, if you can't visualize your theme at a certain venue, it's safe to say you can cross that one off the list. If your theme is vintage, industrial or rustic looking venues would be worthwhile to check out. If your theme is more natural and modern, outdoor venues such as backyards, ranches, and parks could work. Think about all of the photographs and how many pictures will be taken on this day. Which venue will complement your theme/color palette the best?
Step Two: Choose a location. Where do you want to get married? Have you thought about any specific areas or locations? Do you want to stay local? Do you want to branch out, and have your guests travel? After all, it's your wedding day - otherwise known as one of the most magical days of your life! The venue you choose should be one that you have absolutely fallen in love with, but also one that is appropriate for the time of year.
Step Three: Choose a season. This step goes hand in hand with the previous one. When do you want to get married? Do you have a season in mind yet? Although you do not need a set-in-stone date just yet, I would recommend having a couple of prospective dates. That way, if you end up falling in love with a certain venue that is booked on your day of choice, you still have alternative dates that could potentially work. Do you want your wedding to be in the summer or fall? In the winter? Spring? The time of year is significant. Do you want to get married on a beach if your wedding is in March? Do you want an outdoor venue for your November wedding?
Step Four: Make a guest list. Try to think about how many guests you plan to invite, so that you can envision a space for the right amount of people. Although this is your big day, it's important to make sure your loved ones are able to safely travel and/or comfortably sit. This includes keeping different things in mind, such as whether or not your guests have children that are coming along, if any of your guests have restricted mobility, etc. For instance, if your grandmother being a part of your big day is important, but she isn't the most mobile, you'll want to make sure your venue doesn't have too many stairs, or has an elevator option. You want to choose a place that will accommodate your needs in this space.
Step Five: Agree on a budget. This might require sitting down with your fiancee and discussing your financial situation, in detail. You don't want any surprises coming up later down the road. In addition, you should be aware or the qualities and quantities of food and alcohol, for this is a large part of your budget and might dictate how much spending room there is for the venue itself.
I hope that you're feeling a bit more confident about choosing a venue that fits just right for you. While there are different factors that must be put into perspective, just remember that this planning is all so that your big day is absolutely perfect. Remember how important your vision, location, season, guest list, and budget are - these five steps will help you carefully decide which venue is perfect for your wedding day. Most importantly, be true to yourselves.