Today there are more choices than ever for wedding venues and themes. When you think about it, it’s both liberating and intimidating. You can choose absolutely anything you’d like. Would you like to get married in a barn or a large cathedral? Is a Halloween themed wedding right for you? Or would you rather be a Disney princess for a day?
When you think about weddings you’ve been to and weddings you’ve seen pictures of, you probably like a little bit from this one and a little bit from that one, but if you try to mash it all up together, you’ll just get a mess. That’s why a unifying theme can help, but how can you choose?
Make a Pinterest Board for Your Wedding
Start the pre-planning process by making a Pinterest board for wedding ideas. The more you pin, the more you’ll start to see a theme emerge. For example, you may have one image of a beautiful cathedral wedding, but all of your other Pins are of grassy outdoor weddings and garden weddings. You’re telling yourself something, and when you look back at your board in a month, when you start really planning, you’ll have a better idea of what you really want.
What’s Your Style Like?
When you look at wedding gowns and bridesmaid dresses, what do you gravitate toward? Do you love the fairytale look? Are you swept away by draped, flowing, semi-formal designer bridesmaid dresses? Do you find yourself entranced by flowing, long bridesmaid dresses? Do you tend to linger over chiffon bridesmaid dresses? The style of gowns and long or short bridesmaid dresses you like the most will also inform the style of décor you choose and your venue.
What’s Your Personality as a Couple?
Now, think about your relationship with your groom-to-be? Are the two of you adventurous? Are you always out on the town? Or are you happiest when the two of you are cuddled up in a blanket on the couch? Answering these questions will help you determine how formal you want your wedding to be and where you want it to be.
Taking the time to think about your favorite wedding details, bridesmaid dresses, and your relationship will help you come to a great decision for your wedding theme.
You’ve chosen your bridesmaids because they’re your best friends. They’re the women who’ve been there for you every time you needed them over the years, and now you want them to share your special day. Choosing your bridesmaids was easy, but now you have to choose your bridesmaids’ dresses.
We’ve all heard (and lived) nightmare stories of terrible bridesmaid dresses – dresses that fit horribly, with itchy fabric and colors that made everyone look sallow and sickly. You don’t want to be the bride to choose that bridesmaid dress, but what can you do?
1. Look at Your Bridesmaids
First, take a look at the women who will be standing next to you on your big day. What styles of dresses do they normally wear? What silhouettes fit them best? How tall are they? What are their problem areas? It might seem mean to focus on your friends’ imperfections, but you don’t want to highlight parts of their bodies that they aren’t comfortable with or don’t like on the big day. That’s just going to result in awkward pictures and memories.
2. Choose Designer Bridesmaid Dresses
Designer bridesmaid dresses generally have better cuts, colors, and fits than off-the-rack dresses, and they’re much more likely to fit everyone in a flattering way. If you’re worried about price, you can usually find great deals when you look online for , even designer dresses.
3. Choose a Universal Style
A-line, princess-waist, and Grecian inspired dresses look beautiful and graceful on almost all body types. These styles of bridesmaid dresses such as Dessy dresses have room to move and will often hide imperfections and flaws. Wide straps, cap sleeves, and three-quarter sleeves are also usually safer than strapless gowns unless, of course, all of your bridesmaids have been in the gym working on their shoulders, in which case, let them show off!
Choosing the perfect palette for your wedding isn’t as easy as picking your favorite color. You may be a huge fan of sunny yellow hues, but if you choose yellow and all of your bridesmaids don’t have pink or bronze undertones to their skin, they’ll end up looking washed out and sickly.
You also have to think about your venue and its color scheme. The last thing you want is to spend a lot of time and money just to find that your décor clashes and looks glaringly bad in your wedding photos. So, here are a few helpful tips for choosing your wedding colors.
Start With a Selection of Colors You Like
First, choose a few different colors that you like and that you would like to see accenting your beautiful white dresses and décor on your wedding day. You can grab some paint samples from the hardware store for visual aids. Spread these out in front of you and think about each one. If you wouldn’t be happy with one, take it out of the selection.
Ask Your Bridesmaids
Next, take your color selections to your bridesmaids and talk to them about which colors will work best for their bridesmaid dresses. Remember that you can go online for designer bridesmaid dresses at discount prices and that many of them come in a wide variety of colors.
Your bridesmaids should be able to help you narrow the selection down even more. Once you’ve done this, take your color samples to your wedding venue and see how they match. This should tell you which color(s) will work best for your bridesmaids’ dresses, your décor, and your general wedding theme.
Now you just have to find the right bridesmaid dresses in that lovely hue!
There’s so much to choose from when you’re thinking about your wedding dress. If you’re starting from the point of saying, “I’m getting married, and I need a dress,” then you really have the whole world in front of you. It can get really overwhelming, really quickly. You could go short or long, lace or satin, white or cream, and the list goes on.
Let’s talk about narrowing it down. Before you even decide what length gown you want, let’s talk about your different neckline. It’s going to be visible in almost every picture taken of you on your wedding day. You want it to be perfect for your shape and features. Here are some examples of necklines and how they work with different body types.
Bateau (or boat) necks don’t show much, if any, cleavage. The scoop from one shoulder to the other, symmetrically, showing off your clavicle. They’re great for apple-shaped women who want to minimize bust and waistlines. They also lend a delicate look to just about any figure.
Sweetheart necklines are classic and gorgeous. The bustline of this gown will dip just slightly in the middle, giving the top of your gown the shape of the top of a heart – hence, the name. A shallow sweetheart neckline can be good for either bustier brides or ladies who’d like the illusion of being a little bit bustier than they really are.
Strapless wedding dresses that cut straight across or in a convex curve over the bust line are great for women with toned shoulders and arms. You’ve worked hard for those; show them off!
Asymmetric and one shoulder neckline dresses elongate the neck, minimize the waist, and accentuate the bust without over-accentuating cleavage or showing any décolletage.
Once you’ve found the right neckline, you can narrow your search to length and material. Before you know it, you’ll be set!
For years, it seems, strapless gowns have been de rigueur for wedding dresses. You actually have to hunt for gowns that will flatter a busty figure or a bride who doesn’t have perfect shoulders and arms. However, really, there are all kinds of shapes and styles of gowns out there, and there’s one that will fit you perfectly.
If you’re a little bit top-heavy or you don’t particularly like your shoulders and upper arms, don’t try to make it work with a strapless gown. You’ll look and feel better if you go with cap sleeves or long sleeves instead. Even if you go with an arm-baring dress, you can cover up problem areas with a matching wrap.
If you don’t want to worry about sucking in your tummy all day, an empire waist or A-line dress will do wonders for you. You’ll be able to feel loose and relaxed, and the high waist will still create a beautiful hourglass silhouette.
If you’re petite, you might actually want to consider a shorter style of dress, as all that fabric can be overwhelming. If you want a long gown, consider something that’s a bit lighter and more figure skimming. Remember, the goal is to wear your dress, not to let your dress wear you.
If you’re pear-shaped, dressmakers and fashion experts recommend that you look for a skirt that flares out slowly toward the floor. This will balance your top and bottom. If you’re apple-shaped, the experts recommend a dress with a cinched waist at your natural waistline. This will create an hourglass silhouette instead of a round one.
Most importantly, choose a dress that makes you feel gorgeous. No matter what anyone tells you, if you don’t like it, it’s not the right dress for you.
As you approach your wedding, you’re going to get a lot of advice, and a lot of people will come up to you with some pretty silly-sounding rules about your big day. Well, guess what. It’s your day. Here are just a few of the rules we think every bride should break.
Wearing a Veil
Veils are pretty, but they just don’t go with all wedding dresses. Some brides like them and some don’t. You don’t have to break this rule, but we’d love to see some more interesting headgear on the beautiful brides walking down the aisle this year.
Tossing the Bouquet
Let’s face it. Not all of your single lady friends want to get married. Not all of them want to compete for the chance to get married next. Your bouquet is beautiful, and you spent a lot of time picking it out. We think you should preserve and keep it. There’s even a new trend of paper and jeweled bouquets that aren’t made from actual flowers. Why throw that away when you could keep it for your daughter’s wedding one day?
It Must Be White
White is beautiful, and it’s traditional, but if you don’t want a white wedding dress, you don’t have to wear one. What’s your favorite color? Would you prefer to wear something that will make your skin glow and your eyes stand out with their beautiful sparkle? You can! We give you permission to choose a gown in whatever color you like.
If you love the way your skin looks against darker colors, you could even be so bold as to wear a black gown on your wedding day.
Remember, it’s your day. Don’t let anyone tell you what you can and can’t do, especially when it comes to your wedding style.
You know the old rhyme. They say you need something old, new, borrowed, and blue, but what you really need are some great accessories that make your ensemble look especially you. There’s so much emphasis on the gown, the bridesmaids’ dresses, the shoes (that no one sees!), and everything else that it’s easy to forget to accessorize.
You don’t have to go all-out with your wedding day jewelry and accessories, but you shouldn’t go without, either. Whether you’re one for tradition or not, wearing a piece of family jewelry or a borrowed necklace from an old friend can be fun and inspiring for your special day.
A lot of brides wear pearl necklaces or earrings. These are a great addition to the look. They don’t make a huge statement, but they’re delicate and traditional. Sometimes that’s all you want in an accessory. On the other hand, you might want to accent your glowing white gown with a bright blue or purple necklace. Remember that your bouquet will act as an accessory, too, though. We’re seeing larger waterfall-style bouquets all over the place for spring weddings this year, and we love them. You might want to match your necklace or earrings to your bouquet if you go this route.
Whether you choose contrasting or matching jewelry, we recommend keeping it understated. Choose either a necklace or a bangle bracelet, large chandelier earrings or a statement ring on your right hand.
As traditional and expected as you might think they are, veils have become almost optional for many brides. Instead, a lot of brides are choosing fascinators in white or contrasting colors. Consider a deep green or red one as a beautiful and unique accessory with a tiny white veil instead of a traditional veil.
Source: www.perfectbridal.com, www.dessy.com
Of all of your friends and family members, you’ve picked your very best and closest to be your bridesmaids. They’re going to stand up at the altar with you and bear witness to your beautiful day. You get to decide what they wear (be nice!), and you get to boss them around a little bit (be really nice!).
So, of course, you’ll want to show them how much you care that they’ve been there for you through it all. You need to come up with some really wonderful bridesmaid gifts. Here are a couple of ideas.
Delicate Charm Necklaces
It won’t cost much to get them each a silver chain, and then you can add a charm to those chains to make beautiful necklaces that they can wear to the ceremony and any time they want to think of you after that (see why we said you should be nice?).
Choose a charm that will remind them of you and your friendship without being too cheesy. Steer toward something symbolic and pretty, like a bird or a flower, rather than a date or initials.
Clutch Wallets or Totes
What you get for your bridesmaids will absolutely depend on your relationship with them and the kind of ladies they are. If you’re planning a beach destination wedding, tote bags full of sun block, sunglasses, and beach essentials could be perfect.
Are you going to Vegas? Why not give them each a sparkly clutch wallet with a lucky $20 bill in it? You can all go out and try your luck at the Black Jack tables for your bachelorette party.
Whether you choose jewelry, bags, robes, or any other fun accessory for your bridesmaid gifts, make sure that you choose something that will be meaningful and unique to your friendships.
Planning a wedding is a lot of work. It can be stressful, and drama can creep in when you least expect it. Your mom pitches a fit. Your best friend suddenly doesn’t want to be your maid of honor. Your fiancé doesn’t seem to care whether it even happens. What can you do? Take a deep breath. Now let it out. Good. Now do it again. And again.
Everyone gets stressed about wedding preparation, but stress and drama don’t have to take over. Here are a couple of great tips for getting through and keeping things in perspective.
First of all, let’s talk about the quickest way to get mired in a bunch of family drama: letting them pay for it. When you let your parents (or his) pay for the whole shebang, you may feel like you’re getting the best wedding gift ever. However, you’re probably actually getting a whole lot of extra cooks in the kitchen.
Money is power. When you let them pay for your wedding, you’re telling them (no matter what they say to the contrary) that they have control over your big day. Try to pay for as much as possible. Don’t insult your family by not letting them pay for anything, either. When they offer, tell them that they can cover the venue or the floral arrangements. Pick something for them. That way you still have control.
The next big issue that a lot of brides deal with is a “lazy” groom. Your husband-to-be wants to marry you. He wants to be a part of your life for as long as you both shall live. He just probably has no clue how to get involved in all this wedding planning. Give him specific tasks and deadlines. He’ll appreciate the structure, and you’ll have a load off in the planning process.
Above all else, stay positive. This is your big day. You’re going to look back on it with wonder and fondness. You won’t remember the stress and drama when you look back; so don’t worry about it now.
You just have a week to go before your big wedding day. Remember that it is important to write down details and list for last minute items. Here is our timeline to help you with the last 7 days.
7 days before your wedding day
Make sure you have someone assigned to take your wedding gown to the cleaners to get it pressed or steamed. The gown should be stored hanging at full length – if the wedding dress touches and is gathering on the floor make sure that you hang it from a higher spot.
Assemble task list for your wedding planner or bridal party if necessary. Having them in charge of items such as final payments to vendors or in charge of bringing the accessories will take a load off your shoulders.
1 day before your wedding day
Pack an emergency kit. Should include:
Extra pair of panty hose
Checkbook (you may need to make the final payment to vendors)
Nail polish, etc.
Take your gown out of the bridal bag and do any necessary pressing or steaming.
Lay out all of your accessories including veil, jewelry, shoes and makeup.
The day of your wedding day
Have your bridesmaid inspect your gown, looking for wrinkles, stains or loose threads.
Make sure to wear a robe or a button down shirt before you get your hair and make up done. (Wear white or ivory if possible to get the right color application.)
Have your bridesmaid or wedding consultant help you slip into your dress. Make sure that you have a kerchief over your face to protect your gown from your makeup and vice versa.
View your full reflection in a full length mirror and savor the moment. You are getting married and you look fabulous!