Saturday, January 26, 2013
As I am going through this amazing year of helping to plan a wedding for my daughter, I was told about a lovely book called
The Magic Room: a story about the love we wish for our daughters by Jeffrey Zaslow.
The Magic Room is the room at a specific bridal salon called Becker’s Bridal in Fowler, Michigan. It’s a room surrounded by mirrors which reflects each potential bride and all her dreams for her special day. And one man has interviewed a myriad of women and their mothers or their fathers or their grandmothers or sisters and came away with a portrait of marriage, American style and how weddings and indeed marriage has evolved over the years.
So you’ve gotten through that particular magic moment and are ready for the rest of the planning phase. Here are some books that can help you move on:
Where: Fodor’s Destination Weddings: the World’s Most Extraordinary Places to Tie the Knot. From a castle in Ireland, a simple house in the Cotswold, to a resort in New Zealand, this book will tell you how to do it and what you need to accomplish it.
When: Jennifer Shawne can show you how to throw Instant Weddings: from Will You? To I Do in Four Months or Less
How Big: How to Have a Big Wedding on a Small Budget by Diane Warner. This particular copy is so well used, some thoughtless customers have written in it and circled what they wanted. There is also a money breakdown, and although the book is a little dated, it should provide some groundwork for you.
How Much: Bridal bargains : secrets to throwing a fantastic wedding on a realistic budget by Denise Fields.
What do you say: Words for the Wedding: Creative ideas for choosing and using hundreds of quotations to personalize your vows, toasts, invitations and more by Wendy Paris and Andrew Chesler
Wedding Words: Toasts by Jennifer Cegielski. This tiny blue book not only gives examples, but when and where to use them, and toast etiquette as well.
Bridesmaids…yes or no? The Bridesmaid Guide: Etiquette, Parties and Being Fabulous by Kate Chynoweth. Another little blue book, this one even gives you quizzes to test how “bridesmaid worthy” you really are. She includes planning checklists and “fabulous tips” throughout.
Who officiates: Celebrating Interfaith Marriages: Creating your Jewish/Christian Ceremony by Rabbi Devon A. Lerner. This includes sample ceremonies between a Catholic and a Jew, and a Protestant and a Jew, explanations of Jewish wedding traditions, wedding blessings, an example of a Catholic ceremony. In short Lerner has provided the framework for any type of ceremony that pleases everyone (like that’s going to happen!)
Protocol: Emily Post’s Wedding Etiquette: the definitive guide to your wedding experience by Peggy Post. This big purple book should be your bible. She covers every aspect of this age old ritual from the engagement, through expenses, multicultural weddings, the groom’s role, the guest list, children, wedding attire, really everything you could ask for.
So relax (but not too much) and enjoy this wonderful time in your family’s life.
Wednesday, September 12, 2012
The topic of my last blog post was the DIY wedding, and the vision of my particular DIY daughter. I am happy to say that all went well at the DIY wedding, and it was worth all of the little crafty touches that personalized the day. The bride was lovely, the groom handsome, the beer cold and the crabs hot.
However, I am now in possession of things purchased for this wedding that neither I nor the happy couple need, such as an extra wedding gown, six three gallon drink dispensers, two one gallon containers of lime juice, four wooden vegetable crates and so on.
I will be selling off these uneeded items (hopefully!) by using Craigslist and Ebay. I've already sold off the vegetable crates to two happy buyers.
Yard sales are the traditional route for making some cash while getting rid of things you no longer want, and fall is big time yard sale season. Local fall festivals are often accompanied by many local yard and garage sales. Boonesborough Days, which is held the weekend after Labor Day, just finished up, and Main Street was gridlocked for a mile with shoppers perusing the trash and treasure on offer. Another giant festival with dozens of associated yard sales, Catoctin Colorfest in Thurmont, MD, is coming up October 13th and 14th.
TV shows like American Pickers and Storage Wars can whet the appetite for searching out yard sale diamonds in the rough. We’ve all heard about people who bought an ugly painting at a garage sale, and found out later that it was by some obscure American master, worth thousands!! If you'd like some advice on how to find, bargain for, and use other peoples unwanted items try these library offerings -
A former host of "Antiques Roadshow" , Lara Spencer is a life long yard-saler. In " I Brake for Yard Sales and Flea Markets, Thrift Shops, Auctions and the Occasional Dumpster" she explains how to rescue, recycle, and reinvent secondhand items and details the simple fixes that turn someone else's trash into your instant heirloom.
"How to Make a Fortune with Other People's Junk" by G. G. Carbone is packed with insider tips on finding bargains in dozens of venues--including garage sales, flea markets, white elephant sales, tag sales, eBay, and then shows you how to resell like a pro.
In "Good Things from Tag Sales and Flea Markets" author Ellen Morrissey offers advice for entering the world of bargaining and flea markets. This book was inspired by Martha Stewart's love of bargain hunting.
In the meantime, need any lime juice?
Wednesday, May 23, 2012
You have probably never had to figure out how many cubic feet of helium will fill a 36 inch round balloon (14.1 cf), and how many cubic feet of helium are in a particular size of helium tank (it depends).
I solved this particular math problem this week in my capacity as the Mother of the Bride, colloquially known as the MOB.
Yes, my darling only daughter will be taking the plunge this summer, along with her cousin (two weeks later) and a childhood friend (the month before), so wedding planning
is a big topic in our family.
My little bride-to-be is going the Do It Yourself route, which those of you who are not involved in a wedding this summer, might not realize is VERY popular. There is a website devoted to just that - the DIY Bride
. You might think that DIY would mean easy and inexpensive, but just like traditional weddings, DIY can range from a backyard cookout for 10 guests to an all out extravaganza for 250 people.
DIY brides are not happy to just hand over several thousands of dollars to let someone else worry about the table linens, the wedding favors, the sweets table, the photo booth (!) – they want things to be completely personal, reflective of their style, the bridegroom’s style, and inclusive of all their friends and family.
But where do all the personal and fun ideas come from? Well, a DIY wedding means countless hours spent looking at wedding blogs and boards, or the wedding section of Pinterest
, If you can rope your family, wedding party and friends into the DIY frenzy, so much the better.
DIY wedding blogs are not the standard giant collections of all things wedding like The Knot
or Wedding Wire
, but smaller sites targeted to those brides and grooms who want a "charming" wedding. These personal and lovely events seem to often be held outside, under the trees. In some magical land where it rarely rains, and if it does rain, that's just a chance to provide your guests with cute and quirky umbrellas as wedding favors.
The suggestions on these blogs, (excuse me, I mean inspiration, a very popular DIY wedding term) range from asking each guest to send in a quilt block, which will be quilted together and used as a canopy during the ceremony , to growing 100 tiny succulents in tiny cute pots to be handed out to each guest as a favor (Succulents VERY popular for weddings), to collecting vintage skeleton keys to be used as part of the invitation (Not easy to find).
Or making your own seating for 100 guests from a fallen 100 year old tree on your parents 200 acre farm. Or growing all the flowers for the bouquets and centerpieces. Oh, wait - I'm actually doing that, it's not from a wedding blog!
There are many wedding blogs that provide wonderful inspiration for quirky, personal weddings, and as is often the case, the blogs have morphed into books. Below is a selection of some of the wedding blogs that have helped with my daughter's wedding planning - even if you're not planning a wedding you can appreciate the gorgeous photography and chuckle at some of the ideas - a tattoo artist and a fire eater as part of the entertainment???
Green Wedding Shoes
- "trends and inspiration from Southern California" Where it never rains, remember?
Style Me Pretty
- the best part of this blog is the section devoted to real weddings. Some of the DIY projects undertaken by couples are truly jaw-dropping!
- mentioned above, this site has downloadable templates for invitations and other paper necessities. Personalized water bottle labels, anyone??
- The Weddingbee boards are full of posts from real brides who are obsessing about rain, sick of the whole thing, or have the Mother In Law from hell. Other posters write back with soothing advice, much of which is useful for any stressed out bride.
Montgomery County Public Libraries