Fall Cleaning Can Deliver Extra Wedding Money! FYIs on Heirloom and Antique Silverware

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While fall cleaning this past weekend, I found a super-tarnished silver fork. Thinking ‘this could be valuable!’ I researched it, and found out that it’s International Silver, likely something one of my great uncles brought home from Europe after WW2. Having seen Antiques Roadshow and American Pickers, I knew that these kinds of finds can bring sizeable ‘cash in the kitchen drawer’ windfalls, and while my little fork is awaiting its visit to the silversmith for weighing and ka-ching delivery, I thought I’d help you ID any family silver sets that are in your attic, or given to you as an heirloom gift prior to your wedding from an aunt or Grandma who knows that heirloom goodies can be used in wedding details.

So let’s say you have some tarnished silver, one piece or a whole set. Your first steps will likely be to find out what that piece is, to help in your research to find out if it’s something valuable. I found this site with helpful photos to help you get the name of the design, the maker, and when that piece may have been made:

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Patterns in silverplate:

Now onto the mark on the back of the silverware. Martha Stewart offers a great tutorial on what some silverware marks mean, also helping in your research.

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Photo by AntiqueSilver.org

If you wish to get rid of that tarnish before taking your silver pieces to a silver expert or reputable  jewelry store that buys silver and gold (yes, even forks and knives!) here are some tips on using natural ingredients to help remove those dark marks.  Be gentle when you clean, though, since you don’t want to nick that valuable silver piece. I used baking soda and water on mine, and it did the job well.

Who knows? That found silverware in your attic, kitchen drawer or in a case handed over as a gift (not a borrow!) from a relative, could net you a pretty penny, which you could use for more dream wedding details!

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Check Out My Wedding Registry Tips in This Fab Guide by Wedding Paper Divas and Best Buy!

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It’s an excellent morning here! We’re so excited to share this fabulous Wedding Registries Guide, created by Wedding Paper Divas in partnership with Best Buy. It’s filled with phenomenal gift registry tips from an array of wedding experts, and WPD included a great collection of my own wedding registry tips and trends!

Check out all the sections of their amazing wedding registry guide, and get ready for your gift registry to surpass your expectations, for your wedding guests to be really impressed by your gift list, and for each wave of wonderful gifts you receive to fully delight you both!

Thank you, WPD and Best Buy, for including me in this awesome guide!

Why Stop Taking Fabulous Photos of Your Engagement Ring and Wedding Rings?

What a tasty surprise!! 💕💍 . . . 📷 @everandeverbridal

A post shared by Stella Event Productions (@stellaeventproductions) on

Who says that taking styled photos of your engagement ring and wedding rings only happens at your wedding? This adorable image got me thinking: if our wedding photographers can place our rings inside roses — and inside this cupcake! — for Big Day ring close-up photos, so can we on any day! We love our rings even more over time, so styling fresh and fun photos like this one should be a Thing. Especially on anniversaries.

I hope you’re inspired to slide off your rings — carefully, of course! Not near a sink! — and snap some Insta-worthy images of your sparklers!

 

Fab Find! Shari’s Berries Hand-Dipped Champagne Strawberries

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Just when you thought chocolate-dipped strawberries couldn’t get any better, here are Shari’s Berries Hand-Dipped Champagne Strawberries.

How gorgeous are these beauties?! I just received my 20% off brochure in the mail from Shari’s Berries [I’ve sent chocolate-covered strawberries as gifts in the past, and ordered platters for my parties, so I know they’re delish!] and I noticed a few new items on their list: with these Champagne Strawberries standing out as the most perfect gift for bridesmaids, a stunning dessert buffet addition, and I would give out-of-town wedding guests a half-dozen of these as their welcome gift in their hotel rooms!

Here are a few details about these indulgent and upscale chocolate-dipped champagne berries in a dozen assortment (and they have lots of different assortments, so go to their page!:)

  • 12 Strawberries Dipped in White Flavored with a Hint of Champagne and Topped with Gold Shimmer Sugar*
  • 12 Strawberries Dipped in White Flavored with a Hint of Champagne and Topped with Gold Swizzles*
  • *Contains no alcohol

This is definitely a fab find! And they’ll work beautifully in any wedding season. And let me remind you to get your wedding coordinator an excellent thank you gift after your wedding – these would be perfect!

Wonderful Wording at the Blue Pig Tavern in Cape May

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Our recent visit to the Blue Pig Tavern in Cape May (make that two visits, since we just had to have that awesome, farm-fresh breakfast again!) revealed a wonderful inspiration: the wording on the placemats. Get this: on the bottom corner of the delightful, soft blue-toned menu says, “A report of any indifference or inattention will be appreciated as a favor by the management.” Isn’t that fantastic?! It’s such an elegant throwback to the days of propriety, to the rich history of Cape May, which brings to mind images of well-mannered families dressed for breakfast, and manners still mattering.

On my husband’s menu (and yes, I took them both home with us, so that I could get this post just right!) it says, “In the event of any item not proving entirely satisfactory, we will be favored to have Patrons direct our attention to their requirements.” I am swooning! We will be favored! I love that!

This is definitely wording you’ll want to copy for your wedding menu cards, to impress your guests with your own elegance and propriety.

Thanks, Blue Pig Tavern, for that wonderful return to the past, and for bringing a little taste of polite times to our modern era!

Freebie! Bridal Shower Game Makeover: Wedding Day Predictions

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‘People will always remember how you made them feel.’ – Maya Angelou

The great Dr. Maya Angelou wasn’t talking about bridal shower games, but her wisdom rings true for bridal shower games that make people feel out-of-the-loop, like they have a great big spotlight on them for being the one person who doesn’t know where the bride and groom met, or what kind of ice cream the bride loves best.

Not every guest at the bridal shower knows her like a best friend would – think future sister-in-law from across the country, or great aunts who know the bride’s mother best of all. So a bridal shower game that hinges on knowing the bride best could very well make some guests hate bridal shower games even more than they already do. Especially if their scorecards or answers are read out loud.

(Is there anything worse than a roomful of people egging you on to read your wrong answers out loud, or booing if you don’t want to? Ugh!)

So to avoid any discomfort for your bridal shower guests, it might be best to offer a game that has no wrong answers, and doesn’t require knowing the bride’s dating history.

Like predictions about the wedding. Now, closest friends will know about her venue, and maybe even her wedding gown designer, but overall, guests can let their imaginations soar, and write down their predictions about the wedding plans that can be read aloud on a volunteer basis, with the rest tucked away for the bride to read later.

And this game works well at a co-ed bridal shower, too. Everyone gets to use their humor, coming up with silly or out-there predictions, and of course super-sweet predictions like ‘…and this will be the best wedding ever!’

Here is your bridal shower game makeover:

Wedding Day Predictions:

What time will the bride wake up on the morning of the wedding?

What time will the groom wake up on the morning of the wedding?

Who will the bride text first on the morning of the wedding?

What will that text say?

Who will the groom text first on the morning of the wedding?

What will that text say?

Which bridesmaid will be the first to arrive at the bride’s house?

Which bridesmaid will be the first dressed?

The bride’s gown – sexy or elegant?

What silly photo pose will the photographer ask the bride and her bridesmaids to do during their pre-wedding photo shoot?

What color will the bride’s manicure be?

Will the groom be able to tie his own bowtie, or will he need help from someone else?

Will there be a crying baby at the ceremony?

Which kinds of musicians will play at the ceremony?

The first kiss: proper or passionate? (A more proper way to say ‘tongue or no tongue.’)

What will guests shower the bride and groom with after the ceremony is done?

What will be the couple’s first dance song?

Name a dish that will be on the cocktail party menu.

What will the signature drink be? And what’s the story behind it?

What will the wedding cake flavor(s) be?

Name one song that’s on the couple’s Do Not Play list for their deejay or band?

What’s the song that gets everyone on the dance floor?

Who’s going to be the first to be cut off at the bar for having had too much to drink/getting sloppy?

Which guests can you see hooking up at the wedding? And dating afterward?

Name the couple’s wedding hahtag:

 

Use some, use all, or scrap these and make up some of your own, remembering to keep it proper for mixed company. Parents are likely to play, so you don’t want to predict anything improper.

Have fun! Print up card on pretty paper, use decorative hole punches, and skip the glitter!

Get more bridal shower game ideas from my Kindle book The Ultimate Bridal Shower Idea Book.

A Dazzling Jewelry Event at Braunschweiger Jewelers

Sparkle in Spring event with Braunschweiger Jewelers
Step into Spring with Sparkle!
Braunschweiger Jewelers, a 5th generation, family-owned jewelry store with two New Jersey locations, will be hosting its exclusive “Sparkle in Spring” event on April 28th from 5-8 p.m. at their New Providence store located in The Village Shopping Center, 1260 Springfield Avenue, New Providence, NJ.
New collections will be debuting and on display from designers including David Yurman, Roberto Coin, Marco Bicego, Elle, Monica Rich Kosann and Belle Etoile.
Attendees will enjoy light fare & wine, preferred customer pricing and the first 100 guests will receive a gift bag. 
 Additionally, when customers fill out their jewelry “wish list” during the event, they will be entered to win a $1,000 gift card to Braunschweiger Jewelers. The winner will be selected and announced the day following the event.  
For more information, please visit braunshweiger.com. 
About Braunschweiger Jewelers
Braunschweiger Jewelers is well-known for personally selecting styles with modern yet timeless design, impeccable use of exquisite colored gemstones and diamonds, and distinctive details. Our elite collections cater to a savvy clientele that seeks renowned designers like Marco Bicego and John Hardy, premier bridal selections and unique estate pieces.  Our philosophy is to offer the highest quality and superior craftsmanship while staying up-to-date with the newest trends. Braunschweiger Jewelers has been providing unparalleled service and selection since the 1930s. We are regularly featured in top magazines and have received “Best of” awards from NJ Bride (2012), NJ Monthly (2011-12), The Knot (2013), Best of Morris Essex (2015) and The Daily Record (2010-11). For information and store locations, visit www.braunschweiger.com.
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 Laura Perillo/FIORE
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