10 articles Tag wedding

Summer Weddings: Finding the Perfect Dress

Husband and I have been invited to a wedding in August, and I am SO excited about it – not only do we get to dress up and have a fun evening with our best friends, we also get to STAY AT A HOTEL for the night, which is something we haven’t done in literally years! Of course, going to a wedding means finding the perfect outfit, so when Fashion World got in touch to ask if I’d like to take a look at their range of women’s dresses, I jumped at the chance!

I knew that I wanted something in either blue or grey, as they’re the colours which suit me best, and if it was blue, ideally it would be navy. I’ve had an obsession with peacock feathers for ages, and wanted to be able style whatever I wore with a peacock-feather fascinator, so it meant that I could narrow down my search on the site by not only size, but also colour and occasion. Here’s what I chose:

BEADED PROM DRESS

To be totally honest, the picture doesn’t do it justice – the beading on the front is not only very intricate, but the peacock-inspired colours really pop, shimmering with blues, turquoises and purples in the light. It’s going to be absolutely perfect with my dream head-wear and I can’t wait to see what the whole outfit looks like together.

My mission now is to find the perfect shoes and bag to go with the outfit. As we’re staying, the bag only needs to be big enough to fit my phone and bank card, so something clutch-sized. The shoes would ideally be a mid-sized heel (I don’t want flats but I walk like a baby giraffe in skyscraper heels!), and would compliment the colour of the dress. I saw an incredible pair or purple platforms in a Kurt Geiger sale, but I wasn’t brave enough to buy them and now they’re sold out! Any suggestions of accessories to complete the outfit would be much appreciated!

What do you think of my choice?

Ideas to make weddings more kid-friendly and fun

Kid-friendly weddingsMany couples prefer adult-only weddings and receptions, but many feel the need to include all the children in their lives and families. This is especially noticeable in the case of couples getting remarried. If you’re planning a black-tie function, then children probably won’t be invited, but if not, then most families have kids of all ages where weddings tend to become boring for the children present. Most couples getting married are very attached to their nieces, nephews, cousins, or even their own children. If this is the case with you and your partner, then it is usually a good idea to be prepared with a few kid-friendly provisions.

Katie from Orla James attended a wedding recently where almost all the invitations were sent out to couples with children. The wedding was planned around kid-friendly ideas that made it a fun event for the adults and children attending and many of the adults actively took part in playing with the children! This made the entire wedding a very loving, family-oriented event with the couple being blessed by adults and children alike.

Let us look at a few ideas to make weddings more kid-friendly.

Kids Meals:

There is nothing more important than ensuring there are kid-friendly meals available. Speak to your wedding caterer in advance and look at several finger food and dining options for kids. Avoid spicy foods and foods that can be messy to eat. With kids present, the idea is to have simple, yet tasty food. Have ample cheese platters, fruit platters, chicken fingers, and French fries. In drinks, opt for fresh juices, smoothies, chocolate shakes, and non-alcoholic drinks with funny names to make it more enjoyable. Avoid foods and drinks that might have an allergic reaction, and avoid keeping seafood on the kid’s menu.

 Have some activities planned:

Have an activity station or area cordoned off for kids so that they can remain occupied throughout the reception. If your event planner has some kid-friendly ideas for activities, incorporate those too. Keep an ample stock of non-toxic crayons, coloring books, story tales, and organized games like hopscotch and group games. You can also have a Lego station to keep kids occupied in a fun manner.

One couple also had a wedding themed coloring book made with outlines of their special dates for kids to color. You could also set up a ‘Kids Only’ tent with an attendant to ensure they are well taken care of. If possible, hire an entertainer and sitter to keep the kids busy throughout the ceremony and reception. This will help parents also enjoy the wedding without having to constantly look after the children.

 Give kids useful wedding favors:

Planning wedding favors for kids is always an impossible task. Most kids love getting gifts. Tie the wedding favors with little bows in colorful wrapping paper to make them look extra special. You can pot for little treats of marshmallows and gummy bears as wedding favors. If you want to avoid treats, opt for small board games, coloring books, non-toxic crayons, school bags, lunchboxes, craft kits, and so on.

 Set up special seating for kids:

Kids find it difficult to sit on chairs meant for adults. You could organize mini bean bags, small chairs, and tables. Speak to your wedding organizer about décor and seating arrangements for children. Many times, these services are also offered apart from regular table décor and decorations and seating arrangements. You could also include placemats with little puzzles to solve as table décor for children. Small word search puzzles, join-the-dots, and color by numbers, or mini quizzes are always great entertainment and fun for kids while being seated.

 Get the kids involved in your wedding:

Let kids know that they will be welcome on the dance floor during the reception and should let the DJ or band playing know what music they would also like to dance to. If you are aware of this in advance, you could include some kid-friendly songs in your music selection. You could also give them disposable cameras and tell them to take lots of pictures at the wedding so that you can add the best ones in the wedding album. Let the children also know that you will send them these photos later.

Whatever you decide for children’s entertainment at your wedding, make sure to budget for it in advance so that it does not seem like an additional cost. Making your wedding child-friendly is a wonderful way to include all your loved ones in your special day!

Vow To Involve Your Kids More With Your Wedding

Wedding planning when you have children around is never easy. And if they’re not yet school age, just getting to some of your appointments is a challenge. Of course, any ready-made family usually demands a different approach to these o

ccasions anyway. So why not make this a family wedding? Here are just a few ways you can involve your children of all ages in your wedding ceremony and reception:

Venue

The Registry office on the main road into town probably isn’t your best option when there are small children running around. Instead, pick a venue where the kids can run around a bit more safely. A beautiful estate or stately home like Clevedon Hall usually has sizeable rooms and grounds that could be perfect for family weddings. Make sure you can order child meals and drinks and that the toilet facilities are family friendly.

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Outfits

If you’re wearing a wedding gown, you’ve got next to no chance of keeping hold of them or chasing after them. Pick someone from your wedding party to be on childcare duty for the day. Alternatively, consider an outfit that allows you to play games and hold your children. You can still be glamorous and beautiful. Slightly older children might enjoy being bridesmaids. Usually, dresses need to be made for little ones, and Page boy outfits can be hard to come by. Remember – they might grow between the fitting and the wedding!

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Jobs On The Day

Older boys are often selected to be Dad’s best man, and daughters like to be flower girls and bridesmaids. There are plenty of different jobs for the kids to get involved with. Little performers might love the idea of singing a song or starting the dancing off. Perhaps there could be a poetry reading or even a speech? Ask your kids what they would like to do to celebrate the family coming together. Of course, you might be nervous enough already. Make sure you’re not feeling nervous for the kids as well.

Official Roles In The Hands Of Your Kids?

DIY weddings are perfect for families. Everything can be covered by someone when you have lots of loved ones around you. You’ll need a photographer or videographer, a cake baker, a menu writer, and even a centrepiece maker. Children are often delighted to be asked to take on important roles for such a big event. Even if the results aren’t as professional as when you pay big bucks, you’ll love knowing that everyone was involved.

wedding with kids

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2 Families Become 1

When there are kids from both sides coming together, it can be nice to include them as part of the wedding proceedings. After all, they’re joining as siblings, and that is quite a commitment to make on their part! Maybe they can make promises to each other, just as you’ll make vows with your new spouse? They might even be offered a few gifts for their big day, just like you!

Weddings often include children, but not in a big way. If the children at your wedding are yours, why not make it their day too? How would you involve all of your kids if you were getting married soon?

Craft Wedding: Add A Personal Touch To Your Day

Instead of spending unnecessary amounts of money on decorations, guest books, and favours, get out the craft box and make them yourself. It will add several personal touches to your wedding, and you can make an afternoon of it by getting your wedding party to help you. Here are some ways you can save a few pennies and still keep your day special.

Paper bouquets

Fresh flowers won’t keep for long, but paper flowers seem so stiff and impersonal. The solution is to have something meaningful printed on the bouquet to make them special to you. If you don’t like the idea of ripping pages out of your favourite book, then type your favourite poems, paragraphs, or speeches and then print them out on coloured paper of your choice. Your bridesmaids can have their favourite passages printed on their bouquets, so they know which one belongs to them when the big day comes along.

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Wedding invitations

You’ve already had the great idea to create your own wedding invitations, but how exactly will you make them unique to you and your partner? You could print the lyrics to the song that will play on your first dance, or make it a short booklet detailing the story of your relationship. If your wedding has a specific theme, then continue it on your invitations. If your budget allows and you’re planning on delivering your invitations in person, then why not combine it with a box of chocolates?

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Photographs

You will want to remember your wedding for the rest of your life. Everyone has a camera on their phone these days, and they will all be posted on social media, so it seems like a bit of a waste to pay for a professional photographer. That said, you do want to have some official photographs of the day that you can print out and frame. You could hire a professional camera just for the day – or maybe a few days so you know how it works and so you have time to get the film developed after the wedding. All your guests can take turns posing for photos, maybe in a designated area or against a backdrop, and you will have wonderful memories of your friends and family having fun on your big day.

Decorations

No matter what your theme is, you can usually find a way to add a personal touch to your decorations. If you have a travel theme because you and your partner have gone abroad a lot, ask if people kept the postcards and souvenirs you sent them so they can be used as centerpieces. If your ceremony is taking place outdoors, use elements from the site to decorate the dining tables or the cake table. Ask any older relatives if they have any photographs from their weddings and use those to decorate your venue somehow. It will combine your family history with your partner’s and suggest how the two families are coming together.

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Maid of Honor Duties: What You Should Do on the Morning of the Wedding

WeddingOn the morning of the wedding, the maid (or matron) of honor has certain duties to fulfill to help the bride’s preparations run smoothly and make sure things go off without a hitch. Here’s a rundown of some key things the bride’s right hand girl is responsible for before the wedding.

Keep everything running smoothly: Being chosen as a maid of honor is a true mark of trust and friendship. You’ve been helping the bride plan this day for the past twelve months. Now it’s her time to sit back and relax, while you keep everyone on track. You should have a copy of the timeline so you know exactly what’s scheduled and when, including hair and make-up appointments. It’s your job to keep things flowing so the bride is ready in time for the ceremony.

Deliver any reception items: Drop off any last minute things that need to go to the reception venue, such as champagne flutes, candles or the guest book. You should do this as early on in the morning as possible, so you can be back with the bride as quickly as you can.

Arrange breakfast for the bride: On the morning of her wedding, the bride is bound to be excited and nervous. Breakfast is probably the last thing on her mind, so it’s up to you to make sure she eats. The wedding day has to begin with a healthy meal, so the bride can sustain herself throughout the ceremony and the reception.

Help the bride get dressed: It’s no small undertaking to get a nervous bride into the most expensive dress she’ll probably ever wear. Make sure everything is laid out beforehand so you’re not rushing around trying to find a missing earring or a spare stocking. You should also be prepared to help the bride into and out of the bathroom in the period before the wedding.

Be the go-to girl: While your best friend is busy making herself gorgeous for the big event, she’ll need your help fetching and carrying things for her. You’ll probably have to answer her phone and be available at all times to sooth her nerves. While you’re juggling all this, you might want to check that the bridesmaids are getting into their used bridesmaid dresses on time.

Keep the groom’s ring safe: Whatever you do, do not let the groom’s wedding band out of your sight. Guard it with your life.

Make sure the bridal suite is perfect: You should have time to do this later in the day, once the bridesmaids have finished getting ready. Make sure they haven’t left any belongings in there and that everything is spick and span. The bride and groom should not have to return to a messy room when their reception is over.

As a maid of honor, it’s your job to make the wedding morning run as smoothly as possible, keep the bride calm and act as a gateway to people who are stressing her out. Most of all enjoy helping your BFF have an awesome wedding day.

Maisie Stephens shares her wedding knowledge online with her informative and very useful articles aimed at all members of the wedding party.

Been Invited To A Wedding? Here’s Everything That You Need To Know About Being The Perfect Guest!

I don’t know about you, but when it comes to being invited to weddings, I always like to make sure that I am the best guest that I can be. I mean, it costs thousands to plan a wedding, with the happy couple having to pay extra for each guest that they invite, which means being invited to any wedding is a real privilege. So as a guest, I always like to ensure that I am aware of wedding guest etiquette and behave in the best way possible.

In case you’ve been invited along to a wedding but aren’t sure of what’s expected of you as a guest, I thought I would put together this handy guide. Have a read, take note, and implement the below advice.

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Be respectful of the bride and groom’s wishes

When you receive your invitation, pay attention to what it says. If your invitation only mentions you and doesn’t say ‘plus one’, then don’t bring a date. Unless you and your partner are married, living together, or engaged, then don’t expect to be able to bring them along. If they’re not mentioned on the invitation, that’s because they’re not invited, so don’t bring them along or ask the bride if you can – the bride and groom will only have a certain budget, and it’s important to understand that.

Make sure to pay attention to the dress code on the invitations and adhere to it. Whatever the bride and groom have chosen for their dress code, don’t question it, just dress in that style. Whatever you do, don’t wear white – this should go without saying, but you would be amazed at the amount of people that don’t adhere to this rule. It’s also a good idea to find out what colour and style of dresses the bridesmaids are wearing so that you can avoid wearing a similar outfit. The last thing you want is to look like you wanted to be a bridesmaid, so you dressed like one.

Pick the perfect wedding gift

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When it comes to choosing a gift for the happy couple, see what their invitations say. Many couples choose to start a registry list somewhere – if this is the case make sure to pick something suitable that is on the couple’s list. If they don’t have a list, you need to get creative. To find the perfect gift for your next wedding, take the time to have a browse online, get some ideas, and find something that’s unique and that you know the happy couple will appreciate.

Be on time

Turning up late to a wedding is incredibly rude, so it’s important to ensure that you are on time. Aim to arrive at the venue at least 30-minutes before the wedding ceremony is set to start, that way you have time to park your car, find a seat, and so on before the ceremony starts.

So there you have it, everything that you need to know about wedding ceremony etiquette. Take note of the tips above and you can ensure that you are the model guest.

Getting Married Abroad – Where to Choose

As most of the Mum’s the Word readers know, Husband and I got married abroad. After a lot of to-ing and fro-ing, we decided that a wedding in the UK wasn’t for us and we flew off to the Maldives to take our vows on a sandy beach in the middle of the Indian Ocean. We did a lot of research before we finally decided on the destination for our wedding and had to turn down a lot of other amazing options in the process, so I thought I’d share with you the other options that we had on our list.

A Carribean Cruise

The closest runner-up on our list was taking a cruise and actually getting married on the ship! Most cruise liners offer the opportunity to get married on board (Planet Cruise even have wedding chapels on their ships!) and it means that you can combine your wedding and honeymoon with everything that a cruise has to offer.

Getting Married on a Cruise Ship

Costa Rica

Husband and I are both nature lovers and there are companies which offer wedding packages where you’re actually married in the canopy of the rainforest. Imagine, instead of a choir or chapel bells, getting married amongst the cries of howler monkies!

Las Vegas

Let’s face it, Las Vegas is THE classic destination for a wedding with a chapel on every corner and any number of Elvis impersonators waiting to officiate for you! My cousin got married in Vegas and it looked absolutely incredible.

Gretna Green

If you’re going to elope, Gretna Green has to at LEAST be considered for a moment, with over 1500 couples choosing this as their place to elope to. It makes an amazing story to tell your friends and relatives and the anvil makes for a truly memorable photograph! Ultimately, Husband and I decided that we wanted a bit of sun at the same time which is why Gretna got bumped down the list.

Sri Lanka

Husband and I actually stopped in Sri Lanka on our way to the Maldives but only for a layover, however it was a serious contender for our choice. Many people who choose Sri Lanka do so because of the opportunity to have an elephant at your wedding and while it makes for an incredible set of photos, ultimate it wasn’t for us.

Did you have a destination wedding? Did you choose to get married on a cruise ship? I’d love to hear all about your special day and where in the world you chose to do it.

Seven Year Itch?

seven_year_itchToday is mine and Husband’s 7th wedding anniversary, seven (very eventful years) since we walked, barefoot, along the white sand on a tropical island and promised to love each other for the rest of our lives. Our anniversary is the day after Sausage’s birthday, so it tends to fall by the wayside, in fact we’d both forgotten about it altogether until my mother-in-law reminded us yesterday. We’re neither one of us much for cards (unless you count my frankly amazing Alternative Valentines ideas) or mushy displays of affection, but the whole thing has got me thinking.

I’m a huge Marilyn Monroe fan, and the film Seven Year Itch keeps popping into my head. It’s based on a play which focuses on the supposed decline of interest in a monogamous relationship once you reach the seven year mark.

I have to say, I feel the exact opposite.

My husband and I are by no means perfect. We’re both liable to grump and take things out on each other when we’re stressed and we’re guilty of not making proper time to be a couple, but I genuinely couldn’t be happier with my choice of life-partner. Yes, we have differences, but I think our relationship has got to a stage where it’s matured and our differences largely compliment each other now.

My Husband knows me better than anybody else; he knows what I’m thinking before I’ve even said anything and after 7 years of marriage, I know that he has my back, 100%. Far from feeling like our relationship is stale or worn out, I feel like we’re approaching new challenges and becoming stronger together than ever.

He, Sausage, Chuck and I are a great little unit, a team that functions brilliantly together and enjoys each other’s company. I couldn’t ask for much more than that.

When we met and married within 6 months, we had a lot of critics, people who insisted that we were rushing into things and that it wouldn’t last. I like to think that we’ve proved those people wrong – not that either of us cared what they thought in the first place! We both trusted our instincts, knowing that sometimes when something feels right you just have to go with it.

Far from feeling a Seven Year Itch, I cannot wait to see what the next seven years with my Husband will bring. And the next seven years, and the next. I feel blessed to be with someone who just gets me. I’m no picnic to be around during times when I let my issues get the better of me and knowing that he’s stuck around in spite of all that reaffirms how lucky I feel and reminds me of how loved I am.

In short, I suppose what I’m trying to say is this: Happy Anniversary, Husband. Thank you for putting up with me. I love you.

Wedding Bells – Part One

“I haven’t married the woman I want to live with; she’s the woman I can’t live my life without”

Husband and I have been together for six and a half years, and in that time we’ve only been to one wedding…until this week when we have two to attend in the space of five days! Yesterday was the big day for our friends Sam and Alex. They’ve been together a similar sort of time to Husband and I and have a son who is about nine months older than Sausage – in fact they’ll both be starting school this September.

It was a rare day for Husband and I because it was a ‘no kids except for close family’ wedding, although for a while it looked as though we didn’t have childcare and the happy couple kindly offered to sort out an extra place for Sausage so we could bring her along, but we managed to rope her Nan in at the last minute, so all was well.

The ceremony was held in Holy Trinity church in Rayleigh, which was originally built in Norman times and has been renovated and updated over the last couple of hundred years, and although I’m not religious I thought the setting was beautiful. The church was just the right size for the ceremony to feel intimate and personal and the vicar who performed was affable and comical. He encouraged Sam and Alex, as well as the rest of the congregated friends and family, not to ‘give and take’ in a relationship but to ‘give and give’, which is a lovely message.

I didn’t take any tissues with me as obviously I’m not the sort of sap who cries at a wedding….until about three seconds into the ceremony when Sam, who looked simply stunning in her gown which was made of about a billion layers of tulle, walked down the aisle accompanied by her eldest son, who gave her away, followed by her gorgeous bridesmaids, her daughter who looked like a miniature of her Mummy, and their youngest son who looked so scrumptious that I wanted to pick him up and squeeze him harder than is probably healthy!

The ceremony was beautiful, a mixture of traditional hymns and contemporary music; while we were seated in the church we were pleased to hear mine and Husband’s favourite song played by a string quartet, but to be honest both the bride and the groom are heavily into music so we knew there’d be good tunes. The whole thing went without a hitch, although, Alex later told us that at the rehearsal last week, when the Vicar got to the “any reason why they should not be joined in Holy Matrimony” part, Sam’s eldest son shouted “YES, BECAUSE HE BEATS ME!”, which Husband and I found hilarious, but obviously had Sam and Alex holding their breath during this part of the real ceremony!

After they official pronouncement of ‘Husband and Wife’ was made and the signing of the register taken care of, it was off to Lords Golf Club for pre-dinner drinks and canapés, and some relaxing on the deck while the photos were taken. There was a lovely man tinkling the ivories with a mixture of contemporary hits and classical tunes, as well as a magician who really helped people to relax into the festivities. It was a really nice way to loosen up, chat to people before the meal and generally get into the swing of things. Obviously, the Pimms, Buck’s Fizz and mozzarella sticks helped a lot, too!

The golf club provided a really nice backdrop for the photos, with the greens, lakes and huge weeping willows and watching Sam and Alex interacting with each other and their family was a privilege – Husband and I commented on more than one occasion about how happy they all looked together. Of course they were happy, it was their wedding day, but it was deeper than that. There’s a closeness and bond between not just the Bride and Groom but between their three kids, Alex’s mum, brother and sister and their closest friends that just shone out and made everyone present realise that love is about more than just two people.

The meal was just A. MAZING. The starter was a rustic pâté with a tomato chutney and a green salad which was just so yum, I could have eaten it twice. I’m glad I didn’t, however, because the frigging HUGE lamb shank that I was presented with for my main almost beat me. Almost. It’s not often that I find a meal that’s too big for me to finish and if I’m honest I polished this off out of stubbornness and not wanting to waste such delicious food! Dessert was a lemon tart with cream, which was just perfect after such a hearty main. The speeches came next and ranged from the touching (the quote above is from the Groom’s speech and it got an ‘AWWWW!” from the whole room!) to the tear jerking (Alex sadly lost his Dad five years ago to the day and his Grandad a year ago and I don’t think there was a dry eye in the house when his Mum told us how proud they’d both be of him) to the downright hilarious (Alex’s brother’s Best Man speech had just the right amount of smut, innuendo and ridicule, without being too naughty and had the whole room in stitches. I heard several people say that it was the best Best Man’s speech they’d ever heard).

Once dinner was finished, we went back down to the deck for drinks while the main room was prepared for the evening’s festivities and a chance to cool off and chat for a while was brilliant. Everyone was well and truly loosened up by this point which was great as the evening guests started to arrive, the band kicked off in the main room and we watched Sam and Alex take their first dance as man and wife. I must say, the band they chose were absolutely brilliant. A mix of new rock and old party classics, they got the tone of the day completely spot on and were really slick and professional.

Sadly, as Sausage had been with Nanny for about 10 hours, we had to say our goodbyes before the end of the party (although, I must give a nod to the buffet which came out just before we left. Mini burgers and Yorkshire puddings filled with beef and chutney? GENIUS!), but Husband and I had SUCH a great day, catching up with old friends, making some new ones and just generally sharing the love that exudes from Mr. and Mrs. Bakonyvari (the Master of Ceremonies managed to cock-up the pronunciation of their name EVERY SINGLE TIME – apart from once, when his microphone decided to fail, which raised a huge laugh!) and their family. We’d like to thank them for such a wonderful day and feel genuinely lucky to have been able to share it with them, and want to wish them a long and happy marriage, filled with love and luck.

xoxo

Wordless Wednesday – Weight Loss Inspiration

I decided to take Pippa’s lead this week and get involved in Wordless Wednesday (although, this doesn’t feel very wordless…). I’ve chosen a photo of myself, about 20 minutes before I became Mrs. C. I chose this because the weight I am there is what I’d like to get back down to, so it’s a reminder that it is possible for me to get back there.