Thursday, December 6, 2012

Trash the Dress, Could you do it?

The newest trend in weddings seem to be "trashing your dress" this is where you spend more money on pictures and ruin your dress that you took months (and lots of $$) picking out and get fitted.

I will be honest, I am actually alittle on the fence (I know it doesn't sound like it) about this.  On one hand, I think it's pretty cool.  Most of the pictures I have seen are beautiful.  They are creative, and fun.  Since you aren't going to wear it again what is the harm?  Check out some of these pictures from Ryan Howard and his Bride's photo shoot.


On the other hand, my dress made me feel like a princess and I don't think that I could hurt it.  I remember being concerned all the dirt would come off of the bottom of it.  It is now perfectly clean, boxed and shrink wrapped and sitting at my parents house, next to my Mom's dress.



This is about as close as I got....



Not to mention the expense.  I don't think I could intentionally hurt something that I paid that much for.  My dress was a good price  not cheap but certainly not designer outrageous, so I can't imagine crawling into a river in a dress that would have made a nice down payment on a house.

Will I ever wear it again?  Who knows, maybe when we are old and gray and decide to renew our vows, I'll pull it out.  I harbor no thoughts that any of my nieces would want to wear it, but maybe they will, who knows.

The bigger issue to me?  The dress to me is a symbol, a symbol of the marriage, and I feel like it would be a jink to intentionally trash it.  

It is also apparently dangerous, some poor woman died doing this.  Read the story here.

So has anybody done this?  I would love to see the pictures.  I would love to know how you came to the decision, email them to me at cynfullywonderful.com and I'll share them on my Facebook fan site.

~Cyn

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Bridal Shower Saturday

I am off to a Bridal Shower today, so I'm out of here...please enjoy some wedding related posts...


Bride's Demanding Email to Bridemaids

Wedding Trends: Love/Hate Edition

Things that do not belong at your Wedding

What to get the Bride and Groom

The (Financial) Cost of being in a Wedding

How to be a good Wedding guest



Enjoy and have a Great Weekend!

~Cyn

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Bride's Demanding Email to Bridemaids

I am hoping beyond hope that this email that is making it way around the Internet is a joke, or fake at least, which I guess would make it a joke.  While I embrace the organized Bride, and I'm not opposed to communicating what you want to those involved with the wedding, this is over the top.  There is such a harsh tone to this is completely unacceptable.   I pulled this off of the Gawker, take a minute to read it (and I really suggest heading over to Gawker and reading their take on it) and just soak it in.


To m lovely Bridesmaid: [Names removed to protect the brideslaves]
 
As you all know I picked 10 wonderful ladies to stand by my side, share and make happen my special day to Jake. Each of you individually have a reason and a special place in my heart of why I picked you to be a bridesmaid. We have set our date for Saturday, August 31, 2013 in Vail, Colorado. That seems far away but it really isn't, the earlier the planning the better. You may have already knew that my wonderful sister L— will be the Maid of Honor, she's in charge under me. Also my lovely mom will be a big help as well. L— has a big role in throwing me a bridal shower and bachelorette party, of course all of you guys do but at the end of the day shes the go to person and makes it happen.
You all have a big roll in this wedding, so before we continue I'm going to be setting some ground rules and its very important you read and think about everything through before you accept this honor to be a bridesmaid. If you guys email anything I would also like you to put L— in the CC. Not all the bridesmaid need to be CC'd unless its coming from me or L—, if it something everyone needs to see then well do it. We set the date to August 31, 2013 if that's a problem we need to know NOW. Also by the end of the week we will be setting dates for the engagement party, bridal show and bachelorette party.
Our wedding party is really the most important people at the wedding besides my self and Jake so we want every single one of our bridesmaid and grooms at our parties, I have 10 not 8 where two couldn't make it so if you already know you cant make one of the parties then we have to find someone else, not to be harsh in the slightest it would sadden me and of course you'll still be invited to our wedding, engagement ect. But it's different if your not in the wedding party and couldn't make it. We'll give everyone well advance dates for the parties and it will always fall on a weekend. The wedding as I stated will be in Vail the engagement party will either be in NY or CT and the bachelorette party will be in Vegas, cliche yeaa but I've never been.
A few girls live out of town so if there is going to be a problem with coming to either one then I need to know now because after this week I don't want to be surprised. I would like everyone to send me any dates they are going away or planning to go away after February so if your going away in January I don't care. I want any dates from February to the day of our wedding in August, that way we know not to plan something when your away. But after this week the dates are set in stone. Also if money is tight and you cant afford to contribute to say the bachelorette party or wont be able to afford a dress etc then L— and Myself don't have time to deal with that, I'm sorry. This includes flights as well, everyone knows the states where the parties are going to be held so if you wont be able to afford a flight then that means you cant make a party which ultimately means I cant have you as a bridesmaid. Obviously we'll get the best deals and were not gonna books flights for $1000 and shit that's why were doing this in advance, that goes for bridesmaids dresses as well everything will be affordable but if you think by affordable its going to be a $25 forever 21 dress then your going to the wrong wedding.
If your out of state though don't think you have to fly in for all fittings, that we will work with you, find stores in your town, get measurements..you don't have to worry about that. Also if you accept this honor another thing is that you need to be available, I'm not going to harass you with wedding stuff every hour of everyday but if its something important and it takes you a week even 2-3 days to get back to me seeeee ya! I don't have time to wait around for responses, everyone has their phone on them, it shouldn't take you more than a day to get back to me, even if your out of the country, check your email!
Furthermore, Ever since I could remember I have dreamed about this day all my life. I want to share it with the people that are most important to me. You only get one time to plan your dream wedding and I couldn't pick a more amazing group of girls to make that dream come true! So please, what's stated above think about it all and by Wednesday I need to know if everyone is 100% in, and what I have asked about sending me dates if your gonna be away between Feb-Aug ill need that on Wednesday. If you don't think you'll be able to attend one party but can make the rest of them I'm sorry but I'll have to take you out as a bridesmaid and put you as a guest. If you want to get back to me before Wednesday, that's fine. Really think about everything I've said. This is really going to be the most epic wedding ever so I hope you girls can share this special day with us!
Love,
There are so many ways to respond to this, I 'pretended' to one of the lucky ten and decided to write a reply.
Dear Bridezilla (name changed to protect the crazy) –
 
Here it is 11:50 pm on Wednesday and I’ve finally found the time in my busy schedule to respond. It is with deep regret that I will have to decline the honor (as you put it) of being a part of your EPIC dream day. After sitting down and taking a look at my schedule, I was astonished to learn how many weekends were booked up between February and August of next year. There is so much to do, with all the dentist appointments, getting my taxes done, and volunteering to pick trash on the sides of major highways I have planned.  I was also very surprised to learn that August 31st was the date of the vacation I just booked about an hour ago to South America, so no need to worry about inviting me to the wedding either!
It probably would not be worth the effort to even invite to any of these events because I probably won’t have the cash, since all I seem to do with my disposable income these days is put it in the bank saving up for the house, I’ve had my eye on, that I'm not sure that I can afford your version of a 'affordable' bridesmaid dress, or all the jetting around the country your wedding involves.
 
I really hope that you enjoy Vegas, please do not forget to walk up and down the strip with one of those cheesy veils and “Bride” sashes on. Remember, you want to draw as much attention as possible to yourself. But, with 10 Bridesmaids walking behind you, I’m sure that will not be a problem.
 
I’ll let you go, since I know that your time is precious, and you don’t have deal with me anymore since I will not be able 100% comment to your wedding.  I positive that you will have no problem at all replacing me, since you seem to have replacements already in line.  Please send your Mom, Sister and Jake my love, and tell them I will be thinking of them during this their time of need.

Love Ya Lots

Again, let's all hope that this is joke and there is not a crazy Bride running around alienating everyone in her life!

~Cyn

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Wedding Trends: Love/Hate Edition


Alot of people tell me about weddings, their weddings, weddings they were in, weddings they have been to, and my favorite, weddings that other people tell them about.  I love it, I love hearing about what people loved, and what people could have done without.  This was a pretty good wedding season, and I’ve heard a lot, so I thought that it would be fun to explore some of the trends.

Let’s start with the Love….

Little Boys Announcing the Bride
 
This little guy was at my Sister-In-Law's Wedding in August.
 

Seriously, is this not the cutest thing?  It’s a great way to involve the little ones. 

Photo booths

These are great, they help the guest interact with each other, entertains them, and creates memories. 

Midnight Snacks

Have you heard of this?  Couples feed their guest alittle snack at the end of the night.  I have heard of pretzel carts, and hot dog trucks.  These are great because they serve two purposes.  The first, it helps absorb some of the alcohol your guests have been drinking all night (admit it, we have all ran through Taco Bell after a reception), and secondly, they signal the ‘end of the night’ a cue for your guests that you are wrapping it up.

The Cupcake Tower
 

I love cupcakes, they are easy to eat, they do not require silverware, and you can snack on them all night.  You can still ‘cut the cake’ you just have the baker make you two small round cakes (one to cut, one for your anniversary) and you are in business.

Bring the Hate (ok, I really don’t ‘hate’ these trends, most of them just need to be done the right way.

Unity Sand
 
 

Many couples have drifted to this instead of the unity candle in their ceremonies.  I love the sand, in fact, my Hubby and I did at our wedding years ago, and I think it’s past its prime. 

Waiting around at the Reception

If you, as a Bride and Groom, feel the need to drive around drinking and taking pictures for 3 or 4 hours between your ceremony and reception, that is perfectly your right, just remove the phrase “reception to immediately follow” from your invitation, replace it with a time, so that your guest don’t sit around waiting for you.

Cocktail Party Receptions

These are totally great in theory, but they need to be done the right way.  These should take place immediately following the ceremony, in the same venue or a venue that is close by.  Do not schedule these for later in the evening.  Do not take your Bridal Party to dinner between the wedding and reception and then feed your guests appetizers.  Have a drinks and appetizers after your ceremony, then everyone (separately) can do to dinner afterwards.

Giant (Wide and Tall) Centerpieces
 
Photo Credit : Bridal Flowers.org
 

Do not get me wrong they are beautiful.  They are stunning to see when you walk in a room, then you sit down.  While trying to balance your dinner plate, bread plate and all the glasses on the table (which is smaller now), and trying to have a conversation with your college roommate on the other side of the centerpiece, you will remember why these are not the best choice.
 

Again, I love to hear about weddings and all the craziness, so feel free to let me know what you love, and what you could do without!

~Cyn

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Things That do not belong at your Wedding

There are so many things that belong at your wedding.  Family, friends, cake, the list goes on and on.  But, there are however, things that do not belong at your wedding.

Exes (wives, husbands, boyfriend, girlfriend, friends)  - I  don't care how well you get along, whether or not you share children, it will be awkward.  It will be, for you for them, for your family and friends.  They will not be expecting an invitation, and if they are shame on them, they should know better and grow up.

Costumes - you know that I am all about carrying out a theme.  Costumes are not appropriate, for the wedding party or guests.

Babies (under 6 months) - they should not be in the ceremony nor should they attend it.  They can be there for pictures, I understand that, but there needs to be sitter (in separate area of the venue) to attend to them. 

Dollar Dance/Money Tree/Wishing Well - your guest have already given you a gift, please don't ask them to give more cash during the reception.

Can you think of anything that I've missed?  Anything you think shouldn't belong at a wedding?  Please let me know I would love to hear what I missed!

~Cyn


Monday, August 6, 2012

What to get the Bride and Groom

Have a wedding coming up?  Not sure what to get the new Mr. and Mrs.?  Well, hopefully I can help with that.


Cash is King.

Honestly, this is what most new couples would like for you to give them.  A couple of tips to giving cash.  You will want to pick an amount that at least going to pay for your dinner, so you should at least plan for $15-$20 per person, depending on the venue.

I would also suggest that you write a check.  That way you will know when it's cashed that they have received their gift.  Also, if there are any issues, you can stop payment (say if someone runs off with the card box.)

Gift Cards are Nice.

You know what I like best about giving gift cards for weddings?  You can buy that the supermarkets (you know when you stop en route to the church to get a card?)   Since most stores that offer registries give the Bride and Groom a discount when they go to close their registries, try and target (no pun intended) stores they are registered at, they will get more for their (or your) money. 

Other fun ideas are gift cards (or certificates) to restaurants (maybe the one they had there first date at?)that you know the happy couple frequents.  The same rule on amount applies here as it does with cash. 

Picking Off the Registry.

This is another popular way to go.  It is also the best place to try and save some money on a gift.  By checking the registry you can monitor when items go on sale (I suggest checking every Sunday or at least once a week).  You will want to buy this present early, because the registry usually gets raid before Bridal Showers which are typically held anywhere from 2 months to 2 weeks prior to the Big Day.

Not sure where the Bride and Groom are registered?  The Internet has made this so easy, most stores will let you search by the Bride and Groom's names and state.  Below is a list of stores that are good bets:

  • Target
  • Bed, Bath and Beyond
  • Macy's
  • Kohl's
  • Crate and Barrel
Going Rogue.

Going off on your own is risky.  If you know the couple well, this is probably not a bad idea.  Think about what they like?  Do they enjoy wine?  How about a bottle of something somewhat expensive that they would never buy for themselves?  Golfers?  Get them a round at their favorite course.  Just think for a minute and I'm sure that you will come up with something wonderful.

Good Luck and Happy Shopping!

~Cyn

PS - Since you are heading to a wedding anyhow,  check my post on Being a Good Wedding Guest.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

The (Financial) Cost of being part of a Wedding

On the way in to work this morning on the radio they were talking about how much it costs to be a bridesmaid these days.  Now I haven't been in a wedding (that wasn't my own) in quite sometime, but I do not remember it costing $1,700!!  I bet you are thinking that the same thing that I am, you have got to be kidding.  When I did a quick google search on the cost of being a groomsmen that  comes in at just $400 dollars.  I don't believe that number either, how is it $1,300 cheaper?  So, I got to thinking about all the expenses related to a wedding and how quickly they can add up.



Aren't we pretty?

Wedding Outfit
  • a bridesmaids dress with alternations will run about $200, add another $75.00 for shoes. 
    • Tuxes average around $100 and include the shoes (boys apparently don't care)
Hair and Make Up
  • a bridesmaid will probably spend around $150 to have their make-up and hair done on the big day
    • Groomsmen, $20 for a haircut
Bridal Shower
  • if a bridesmaid is helping to host (which she should be) it will run her around $150 (at least) $200 with present
    • Groomsmen = n/a
Bachelor/Bachelorette Party
  • So with the travel (from what I understand now, these are 'weekend getaways') you are looking at $500 to $600 dollars for travel and hotel alone, add in the new clothes and drinks $1,000
    • Add in the strippers and take away the new clothes and you are even at $1,000
So, these are only a few of the big spends that are associated with a wedding, there could be travel to the wedding, engagement & wedding gifts.  So much. 

This just seems outrageous to me.  I would love to know what everyone thinks....send me your thoughts, I would love to hear them..

~Cyn

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Reader Mail Bag: Do-Over Weddings

I'm always amazed when I'm asked my opnion on something.  I mean, I love to give my opnion, but's usually to people who don't care.  So I was surprised, and flattered, when I received this email the other day.

Dear Cyn:

I'm wondering what your thoughts are on an invitation I received in the mail the other day.  It was invitation to a bridal shower for a second cousin of mine, who I haven't seen in years and would not recognize if I ran into her on the street, who is already married.  The invitation contained a picture of her and her husband on their wedding day.  After a call to my Mother, we concluded that they this was a 'do-over' wedding.  She and her husband had a actually gotten married a couple of years ago while they were stationed overseas while he was military.  Here is my question, how should we respond?  I have no intention of attending either the shower or the wedding.

Can't wait to hear what you think of this.

~Darlene


Dear Darlene:

This is the 3rd or 4th wedding like this I have heard about over the last couple of months.  Is the economy that bad that people are getting remarried? 

In my humble opinion is that you get one chance, let me clarify that, one chance per couple.  If you decide to run off to Vegas or City Hall (or on base overseas) that is your one chance.  The best part of a wedding is being there when a couple starts the lifelong journey of marriage, part of that is watching the joy (and nervousness) as they take those vows for the first time.

If having the showers, parties, and the big wedding are important to you, you need to have that wedding first.  I have a strong desire to be married by an Elvis in Vegas, but Hubby and I wanted to have a big wedding and be surrounded by family and friends when we took that step.  So Vegas was put on hold, and we started planning.

Since you are not planning on attending the shower or the wedding, your responsibility is simply to RSVP your regrets to the planner of the shower, and return your RSVP card for the wedding.  If you want to go one step further, you can send the happy couple a card with a note wishing them continued success.

~Cyn

While that was easier than I thought. 

Monday, April 23, 2012

How to be a good Wedding guest

Oh, that time of year is upon us. The smell of buttercream and flowers are in the air. The words to the chicken dance (or at least the melody) is stuck in your head. Your mailbox is filled with save the dates, and invitations to showers, engagement parties and weddings. It's a wonderful time of the year. So, let's just take a few minutes to refresh ourselves on how to be a good guest.

#1 - Return your RSVP card.

Honestly, there is nothing more irritating than people who do not return their RSVPs. It takes 2 minutes and it is already stamped.  For the happy couple it is very frustrating trying to figure out how many people to plan for when you have 20 RSVP floating around.  I understand, I slipped on one last week and heard it from my mom. I did return the it with a note to the Bride apologizing for being late. One final note on this, if you return your RSVP that you are coming at the last minute you can't make (I know it happens) - call the Bride (or her Mom or the Groom or his Mom) and tell them please.



#2 - Attend the Ceremony

I know the reception is the fun part, but there has been alot of planning and time spent on the ceremony as well.  Go and Enjoy.  Hold your partners hand while the Bride and Groom say their vows, it will remind you of yours.

#3 - Dress Appropriately 

No Shorts, no flip flops, no jeans, no t-shirts, and no gym shoes.

#4 - Watch your fluid intake

The open bar is tempting.  It's like going to a buffet, it's like they want you to stuff yourself and feel awful later (or in the morning).  This will cause you to say things that you don't mean, for example "When did your wife start dressing like Michael Jackson?" -- yes I did overhear that at a wedding.  A couple of drinks will get you loosened up for the 'Electric Slide' - just don't get too loose, if you know what I mean.

#5 - Thank the Bride and Groom

It's important that you get alittle face time with them.  Thank them for the lovely dinner, and sharing their special day with you.  The best way to excuse yourself?  "Well, I know you have alot of other people to see, I can't wait to catch up with you after your honeymoon."

#6 - Don't Forget the Gift

Get a card, write a check.

#7 - Enjoy Yourself

Eat, drink, dance.  Catch up with family and old friends, make some new ones!

#8 - Put your Phone Down

Turn it off before the ceremony.  Only use for pictures and important calls (or texts) and I am talking babysitter important, calls and texts during the reception.  Do not post any pictures until the reception.  Be engaged in the event.  Sit back and have an actually conversation.  Dance with your date.


~Cyn

PS - So now you know what how to act, find out What to get the Bride and Groom.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Golf Themed Wedding Shower



We had so much fun putting this together.  It was a whole family effort including my Dad and my Hubby, who stamped out flowers and made weights for the balloons.  But most of the credit goes to my Mom, my sister, and my niece without them we wouldn’t have gotten anything done.
The color palate was easy, we went with the colors of the wedding apple green, and royal blue, and we used those for the table cloth colors and then added paper flowers for decoration.  The centerpieces were simply balloons with golf balls used as weights.




The cake balls were the hardest to put together.  We started with chocolate and strawberry cake and mixed them together with vanilla frosting (neapolitan cake balls).  Then we added some more vanilla frosting and white ball sprinkles to finish off our cake ‘golf’ balls.  We frosted sugar cookies to look like ‘greens’, and added a tee to tie the whole thing together.



The cake was beautiful and big Thanks to my sister for arranging it.

Since this was a shower that spanned across two families and a lot of friends, we decided that name tags were definitely in order.

The games were short and sweet.

Guess the number of balls and tees in the jar.


Then two more, one the being the famous, here are a bunch of kitchen gadgets, see how many you can remember.  My favorite one (yes, I know have a favorite shower game) was the game were we ask questions (were all the answers were numbers) and then one with the lowest (like golf) number difference between their total guess and the right total wins!  Thanks to my other sister for this one!


Like I said it was a wonderful day and weekend, I'm still tired!

~Cyn


Wednesday, January 25, 2012

When the Bride Needs a Shower

We have like a ton of weddings of this year.  I have to tell you, I'm pretty excited.  My family has even has the honor of throwing a shower for one of these weddings.  I haven't thrown a shower in a long time, so that got me thinking that maybe it's time for alittle refresher on the rules.

Who should throw one?  This is tricky, some people think that it should be the bridesmaids, some people think it should just be family.  The correct answer is either.  The shower we are planning is for my cousin, who happens to be my Mom's god daughter, so that is perfectly acceptable.  I don't think that the bride's mother (MOB) should be responsible for throwing one, she should be able to sit back and enjoy that the day along with the Bride.  Other than that, I think that almost anyone associated with the Bride can host one.

Who should you invite?  This is always hard.  Of course, anyone who is invited to the wedding is eligible.  But, you should really invite immediate family (aunts, cousins, grandmothers) and those friends who you are close to.  I also think that it's good idea to invite women that are new to your circle of friends (think the best man's new girlfriend) so that everyone can get to know each other before the wedding.

To Theme or not?  If the wedding has a theme incorporate it.  In my experience it is much easier to plan around a theme that just around colors.  If the wedding doesn't have a theme, think about giving the shower one, maybe an afternoon tea or laundry and linens.  Coordinate your invitations and decor around that theme.

What to serve?  Finger foods work the best.  Something that will not fall, when the paper plate is balanced on Grandma's lap when she is trying to make a veil out of toilet paper.  What to drink?  I would limit it to one custom drink (think champagne with raspberries) and then just cola and water.  If you have children coming, make sure you have a few drink boxes on hand.

Games?  I'm not a huge fan of games, but I think there should be at least one.  Something simple, I like '20 questions about the Bride' which helps everyone get to know her, or if you have members of the Groom's family involved, change it to '20 questions about the Happy Couple'

Just a few more things to remember...

-Invitations should be mailed, not emailed.
-You should not throw a shower for a second wedding, just plan a special girls night out instead.
-Couples showers are not fun.  Plan an engagement party instead.
-Do NOT ask you guests to address an envelope for the their thank you note, you had their address to invite them, you have their address to send a thank you.  To the Bride - you are not that busy, they took the time to shop for a gift for you, you should take the time to address an envelope.

Now you are ready, go out and plan! 

Did I miss anything?  Need help getting started?

Leave me a note below!

Later
~Cyn