Author: Anne Robb
Bridal gloves are a beautiful throwback that’s making a comeback. Bridal gloves are available in many lengths, multiple fabrics, designs, and closures. From gloves that cover the hand and hug the wrist, to medium length gloves that reach just below the elbow, to those that reach all the way past the elbow and nearly up to the shoulder. Brides can choose from satin, silk, lace, knits and leather, and in any color of their choosing. Whether you want a simple plain style or an elaborate embellished style, there is a perfect pair for every bride. So if you decide to fit that princess role on your special day, here are some tips you should know for choosing the right length, when to wear the gloves, practice tips, and to know that it is acceptable to break the rules of etiquette in order to express one’s personality.
Choosing the Right Glove
As a major accessory, most brides choose a glove based on the style, color, and fabric of their dress. The point of the gloves is to accentuate the dress style. Simple dresses pair with ornate gloves and complicated dresses are balanced by understated gloves. Remember to keep in mind the time of day your wedding takes place, the formality of the occasion, and your venue. For instance, long gloves worn for a beach wedding would not work, but if it was for an evening wedding in an indoor venue that would be more appropriate. The most important factors in choosing gloves are the length and sizing.
The length of your gloves should compliment your dress. Gloves that go over the wrist or just under the elbow will do for most dresses. Dresses with long sleeves require only short gloves. Dresses with short sleeves will do well with any length up to and just above the elbow. Sleeveless and strapless gowns can of course bear the longest length, which is all the up to the shoulder. Keep in mind if you plan to wear a bridal jacket or shawl, the glove length should be adjust to compliment the whole outfit.
The size of the glove is also important. Make sure to not buy ones that are too tight, or too loose. They should fit snuggly and feel comfortable. Make sure to consult a proper measuring chart, and keep in mind that brands vary slightly in size. However, to properly measure your hand for gloves, wrap a tape measure around the hand at the widest part around the knuckles, without including the thumb and match the measurement with the proper measuring chart.
Knowing When to Wear the Gloves
Gloves should be removed for the ring ceremony after you hand the maid of honor your bouquet, worn or not worn for the receiving line after the ceremony, worn for the first dances and pictures, worn for throwing the bouquet and removed when cutting the cake, eating and drinking.
Practice Makes Perfect
After purchasing and receiving your gloves, make sure to spend the time practicing putting them on and taking them off. You want to make sure to avoid that awkward struggle at the altar. Make sure when rehearsing for your ceremony that you also practice handing off your bouquet to your maid of honor, removing your gloves, and handing them over to her as well. This way there is no confusion and the officiate will also be aware of the time needed for this moment.
Finally. . .Do Not Pay Attention to the Rules
While I have just provided you with some tips when wearing gloves for your wedding, I also want to encourage brides to always remember to express your personality. If you want to wear red leather gloves with a white silk dress, then do that. If you want to wear gloves while cutting your cake, by all means cut with gloves. Long gone are the days of proper wedding etiquette. Rules are meant to be broken. After all, the only pair that should be noticed that day is the bride and groom, not your gloves.
So you can’t decide who will play your wedding tunes? When it comes to wedding planning, the question of hiring a band versus a DJ has been a debate between couples for quite some time. Ideally, if you can have both, that would suffice both sides of the argument. Strings for the ceremony and cocktail hour, a couple of cover songs by the band to get everyone involved, and then a DJ for the late night party. But lets be realistic. Most couples just can’t allow that within their budget. So here’s a little inside perspective of the good and the bad when looking at bands vs. a DJ.
First, when weighing your options it is important to consider your venue. Check with your reception site to see if they’re even capable of handling a live band. They know their event space, the acoustics, and whether or not they have the electrical power to supply such equipment. Also, they may have certain restrictions on the number of musicians and equipment you may bring in, and whether there are certain noise limitations. The answers to these questions might just make your decision right there.
So, since we are already talking about live bands. Let us continue and dive right into the pros and cons of hiring a band for your reception.
Who doesn’t like the heart-pounding beats of a live band, the classic elegance of a string quartet, or the swinging sounds of a Big Band? I mean lets be honest the music from a live band can get even the most adamant chair sitter up on their feet. However, before you sign on that dotted line there are a few things to consider.
The pros: Bands, like I have said, can get any crowd going. Bands give your guests a special performance. Bands can personalize music to match the theme of the wedding, and a good bandleader can also play the master of ceremonies.
The cons: They are much more expensive, and the price can go up depending on the time of year, the number of musicians, and the amount of time you want them to play. They will never be able to offer the variety and selection a DJ has to offer. They have limited control over their volume, so they can potentially blow away your Grandma whose sitting at the table in the front row. They can sometimes overshadow the bride and groom. They have a long setup and breakdown. And most importantly they take breaks. So you have to make sure that you have some backup entertainment while yours is on their break.
So now onto the DJ. Everyone knows that if you hire the wrong DJ your party will be ending a lot sooner than you anticipated. And with all that money you spent you want them to stay and have a good time. The same, however can go for hiring a bad band. So here are the pros and cons to a DJ.
Pros: First and most importantly Djs generally cost less. Depending of course, on the extras you want. Such as any type of uplighting, light shows, slide shows, etc. Celebrity Djs can be just as expensive as bands. The variety and selection of a DJ is wider than that of a band and close to unlimited if they have access to the internet. They tend to have more experience than bands when it comes to being the master of ceremonies for your wedding. They can control their volume level and adjust appropriately for your dear old Grandma so she won’t be blown away during dinner.
Cons: It does not have the “energy” a band provides, so if you do not have a good DJ not many people will be dancing. It is very hard to find a DJ with that stellar personality to keep the party going. You generally have to provide the DJ with a list of songs to “play” and songs “not to play”, since they are more likely to take all requests.
So there you have it. Now I’m not saying that one is better than the other, or one works better than the other when it comes to wedding. When it comes down to it there are two things that will help pick which will be best: Personal taste, and of course budget. Whatever you decide to go with make sure to get references, go see the DJ or Band in action if possible. If not ask for a recent recorded performance so you can see what to expect. Gauge their personalities in person not over the phone, or via e-mail. Provide a “playlist” and a “do not playlist”. Most importantly give your bandleader/DJ a wedding timeline and make sure they are able to pronounce all members of your bridal party, and any other family members that will be recognized.
The day of one’s wedding is supposed to be one of the most significant events in one’s life. No matter how big, lavish, quaint, or quiet you envision your wedding to be, “perfect” is what you and your fiancé strive for. Months upon Months can be spent planning, budgeting, and balancing. Patience, time management and control are necessary requirements, but as one can imagine that can prove to be quite difficult to say the least. To avoid the dreaded Murphy’s Law, anything that can go wrong will go wrong, many couples decide to hire a wedding planner to ensure their wedding goes off without a hitch. Or at least believe it will.
In addition to the obvious questions, here are some additional questions of equal importance to ask when interviewing your planners and ensuring that they are the best fit for developing your wedding vision, and making your day unforgettable, and not in the way that makes you cringe.
First things first. . . Before interviewing there are a few things you and your fiancé must have an idea of:
- Budget- How much are you willing to spend on the whole event. Remember you must be reasonable. You can’t expect to be given the world for next to nothing, so familiarize yourself with the costs of a wedding.
- Number of Guests- You do not have to have the exact amount, just a ballpark at least.
- Preferred Wedding Date- I suggest having a few fallback dates as well, in case you run into conflicts with vendors, churches, or venues.
- Finally. . . Your Vision for Your Wedding- Now I’m not saying you have to know everything from the choice of venue, all the way down to the color of the napkin. Just know the basics. I want a small, private beach wedding with a close family reception, maybe a nautical theme. Just an example of how in depth your description needs to be.
Now that you have answered your questions, it’s time for theirs.
1.) How much experience do you have? Not just anyone can plan and coordinate a “Great Wedding”. It takes a lot of meticulous planning, and extreme attention to detail to be a good wedding planner. Experience can play a key role in how smoothly your wedding experience goes, and can prove to be very beneficial when dealing with vendors, and their contracts. It’s important to ask to see their portfolio of previous weddings and any referrals from previous clients. Make sure that their experience in the field is equivalent to your wedding vision. If you want a big wedding and all they have done are small wedding, you may be out of their league. Keep in mind that a lot of people take this as a second job to bring in extra cash and it may not be their first priority, or worse you may be their first client. With that being said, hiring your best friend or cousin with no experience to cut cost may not be the best idea.
2.) Is this your full time job?- Wedding planning takes a lot of time and crucial coordination so time management is key to making this day run smoothly. It is important for you to know how much time your planner is willing to commit. If this is a part time thing for them, how demanding is their other job and to what degree of interference will it create when planning? Not saying that they could not take on the challenge and be successful, but make sure you follow up with such questions as: How will you communicate with me, to make sure you’re available when I need to contact you? How involved will you be in the planning and coordinating, as far as services you provide?
If your planner is full-time make sure to inquire on how many clients they have in a year, especially during your wedding month. If you’re a bride who requires a lot of attention this will give you an idea of how much of a commitment they can afford to give.
3.) How extensive is your scope of work (services offered)? – Many planners have different services they offer which are important to be aware of before hiring, to avoid hearing the ever so popular statement “Well, that isn’t my job”. How far are they actually going to be committed to assisting you? Will they read over contracts with you? Meet with the vendors? etc. Many planners may not even stay for the reception, which can be potentially risky depending on how extravagant your reception is. Ensuring you and your planner are on the same page and quite clear on what they will and won’t be doing is crucial. Make sure they clearly lay out everything they offer their brides and the things that you will be responsible for.
4.) Will you devise a master plan, and execution?– This plays a part in how extensive their scope of work is and experience. Make sure they will be responsible for coordinating the delivery, arrival, and set-up times with the photographer, florist, musicians/DJ, caterer/banquet manager, et al. How will they ensure that all goes as planned? What have they done with prior clients that will ensure that all will be taken care of that day so you won’t have to worry? Will they create a timeline that tells everyone involved in the planning process what to do and when to do it? Since it is impossible to guarantee that nothing will go wrong, that leads to the next question. . .
5.) What is Plan C to our Plan B?- Heaven forbid something was to go wrong during your special day, but let’s just say for now you can expect it. So what are they going to do to make it all better? If something was to happen a good wedding planner would be prepared and adapt to the changing situations as quickly as possible, making it as easy as possible for the wedding party and guests.
And finally. . .
6.) What type of wedding do you envision for me?-This question should be presented at the end after questions on details about the wedding are answered. Remember a planner should have questions for you as well. So by the end of the consultation she/he should have a pretty good idea of what you expect and picture your wedding to be like. It will also demonstrate their commitment to your budget and whether or not they will push you in a direction of what they want not you. This can be very important to make sure that you and your planner are on the same page in terms of the look and feel of your wedding, without breaking the bank.
Whenever you enlist a planner, if anything else to keep in mind, just follow these simple rules. Do not hire a consultant who doesn’t want to listen, is bossy, tries to convince you of what’s best for you, critiques your ideas, has no references, and won’t sign a written agreement.
Alright ladies I understand that this day is meant to be “yours”, but your guests are there to celebrate with you so why not make it fun for them also. Here are some unique, along with the popular, ways to make your guests get out of their seats and interact, and keep the party going.
Tour the Town- Hire a local tour company to transport your guests to the reception tourist-style while giving them a brief tour of the area. Perhaps personalize it to spots that are significant to the bride and groom. Look for a trolley, ferry, double-decker bus, party bus or even the new bicycle bars! Whatever will accommodate your number of guests.
Say Cheese!- The ever so popular photo booths! Either rent a photo booth and attendant for the night or do it yourself! Create personalized back drops and props for your guests to go wild and loosen up. Your back drop can be a simple sheet or wallpaper, or as extravagant as a homemade kissing booth that couples can pose kissing in, and can also serve in lieu of a receiving line. Props can be funny hats, glasses, chalk boards, vintage frames, mustaches on a stick, and of course colorful boas. Photos can be personalized with the date, and make as a great party favor for guests to keep as mementos.
Hire a Professional- Make the cocktail hour or dinner more interesting. Hire a Live artist to paint the event as it is taking place, a cartoon artist, or silhouette artist. Magicians, illusionists, fire blowers or spinners, and for the more mystic couple Tarot card readers, or palm readers. Professional dancers, Singing servers, an Aerialist, or even a comedian can keep the guests amazed and entertained.
Bar Stations- Display top picks of the bride and groom for their choice of drink. Wine tasting, beer tasting, or signature drink stations significant to the bride and groom. For added authenticity hire a sommelier to introduce wine and teach guests of proper tasting. Not a drinker?, Perhaps a cigar bar! Hire a professional cigar-roller to roll cigars and teach guests the art of enjoying a good cigar, from cutting it correctly to puffing it properly. Monogrammed glasses, pints, and wine bottle holders along with the cigars can act as favors for guests to take home.
Game Night- From an over-the –top Vegas type feel with card tables, craps or roulette; to a fairground themed with classic side stall games; all the way to casual board games, trivia, corn toss, and lawn Jenga, games are perfectly suited fun for kids and big kids alike. Extend cocktail hour a little longer to get guests to test their skills and competitive edge. Party favors or centerpieces can be given as prizes to those who try their luck.
Wedding Party Poster- Instead of the traditional guest sign-in book, opt for a simple black and white line drawing of quirky characters holding blank sign boards. With a set of brief instructions and a pot of felt-tip colorful pens on the side, allow the guests to gradually fill the print by picking a character, coloring it in and writing a message on the board their character is holding.
And Last but not Least. . .Late Night Munchies- Hire a local food truck vendor (favorite of the bride and groom) to pull up to the reception for a late night snack for the guests. Remember a long night of dancing and celebrating can burn a lot of calories!
‘Tis the season, as they say, and love is in the air!!! Christmas and New Year’s weddings are perfect for a themed wedding, and can be considerably easier to plan. Now I am not saying by any means that any wedding is easy, there is no such thing. I am just referring to the more centralized theme. Certain colors, flowers, and even foods are associated with the holiday season and therefore can make the decision process move a little quicker. Here a few things to consider while planning.
Décor is the easiest part for a Christmas or New Year’s wedding in my opinion. Most churches and venues are already decorated for the holidays so sometimes all that is needed is a little “self-flare”. Try and use what you are already provided as your base and build from there, because it will be less of a headache for yourself. You never know your color palette and flowers may be inspired by your surroundings. Christmas and New Year’s themed ice sculptures are great for decoration at the reception. Nutcrackers, swans, the New Year, even a Baby New Year Ice luge are just a few ideas, have fun with it. Mother Nature can also help with your décor; snowflakes, bare branches spray painted, acorns, pine cones, Poinsettias, Christmas trees, and for the inspiring lovers- Mistletoe! For New Year’s themed weddings make sure to have your ceremony late at night to make sure the reception is close to the midnight hour. Perhaps, a balloon drop, party hats, horns and confetti to bring in the New Year and don’t forget the champagne toast!
Now my favorite part. . .Color! Consider the colors of the season- blues, whites, silver, gold, red, greens. For New Year’s themed weddings I would stick more with the silver, gold, or the classic black/white (consider adding a little accent color to really make it pop and not be so cliché). Lace the colors throughout your wedding from bridesmaid’s dresses, cummerbunds, bouquets, ties or hankies, vests, and décor.
Location, location, location! Your choice of venue can enhance your Christmas or New Year’s themed wedding. A ski lodge, a hotel/resort nestled in the mountains or overlooking the skyline of your city, maybe even a centralized park complimented by a sleigh ride entrance. Whatever your preference, keep in mind the travel and lodging costs, and proximity for your guests. The holiday season can be both expensive and difficult for Wedding attendance. Don’t get discouraged by numbers and remember to give enough notice when sending out your invitations.