Freebie! Ways to Honor Family and Friends at Your Wedding — Part 3: Heirlooms

debeers2

You’re loving your freebie tips on personalized wedding elements to honor family and friends on the big day! Here is some more from my ebook, focusing on using family heirlooms in your wedding plans:

Family Heirlooms

  1. Since wedding gown styles are now accented with a sparkling brooch – either on the bodice or in the back, you can honor your mother, grandmother, great-grandmother or an honored woman on your groom’s side by wearing her brooch as part of your ensemble.
  2. Brooches are also popular accents for bouquet handles, so perhaps that brooch, or a cameo pin, can be your bouquet accent in tribute to its owner.
  3. Wear the necklace your mom or grandmother wore on her wedding day. It might be a demure piece you wear only for the ceremony, and then you can change into a more dramatic sparkler for your reception.
  4. Bracelets may be more fitting to your gown’s style, so wear an heirloom diamond tennis bracelet, or it may be that piece that your mom wore at her wedding, either as an heirloom or a gift from your father…which actually honors him as well.
  5. A saint medallion owned by your grandmother can be pinned underneath the skirts of your dress or pinned onto your bouquet handle.
  6. Rhinestone hair clips are often found in grandmothers’ jewelry boxes, and vintage hair accents are in for today’s weddings. If you slip these into your wedding day hairstyle, you add an element of your beloved grandmother’s style to your look.
  7. Sisters can be honored too, by wearing their jewelry or hair clips for your wedding look.
  8. Have your mother’s wedding-day headpiece re-made to include a slightly altered design, perhaps more or fewer rhinestones or faux gems.
  9. You don’t have to be the one wearing the heirloom piece! Perhaps your mother can wear her mother’s jewelry, or if you have a daughter, a small rhinestone hairclip owned by her grandmother or great-grandmother is a pretty way to include honored relatives.
  10. If an heirloom piece of jewelry doesn’t work for your wedding day look, wear it to your rehearsal dinner or engagement party.
  11. Take some lace from your mother’s or grandmother’s wedding dress and use that as the wrap for your wedding bouquet.
  12. Birdcage veils are in now, and if your grandmother wore one at her wedding, you might wear hers for your ceremony, or just for some post-ceremony photos if you’d rather wear a different style of headpiece for your ceremony.
  13. Your groom can wear his father’s or grandfather’s pocketwatch, wristwatch or cufflinks during the wedding.
  14. Handkerchiefs were musts in wedding days of old, so bring your grandmother’s along to the wedding to capture in some of your wedding photos.
  15. Don’t forget that your future in-laws would love to be so honored, so ask if there are any costume jewelry heirloom pieces that you might be willing to work into your wedding look. It’s quite an honor!
  16. If your mother’s or sister’s ring pillow fits with your ceremony style, and is in perfect condition, you might use that as your ring pillow. You can always pin on some pretty faux flowers or ribbon to make it your ‘own.’
  17. Save a little bit of money and honor your parents by using their original cake topper for your wedding cake, or use it as the topper for your engagement party or rehearsal dinner cake if you have a different style in mind for your wedding cake’s accenting.
  18. A mom’s or grandmother’s wedding shawl or wrap, or winter stole, can be a wedding day accessory – just be sure to get at least one pro photo of you wearing it!

Find more wedding freebie ideas in my book The Bride’s Guide to Freebies.

bride's guide to freebies

Advertisements

Fab Find! Popcorn Bar Flavors from The Popcorn Factory

popcorn traditional flavors

Get your popcorn here! It’s the call of the popcorn vendor at baseball games, and it can also be the wording on the sign you make for your wedding or bridal shower popcorn bar. Guests of all ages love popcorn, especially in the trendy, gourmet flavors available today. Check these out:

popcorn savory 2

popcorn sweet 2

And there are more sweet, savory and chocolate options, plus classic flavors: http://www.thepopcornfactory.com/flavorguide

Provide the right size of popcorn scoop — I get mine at a restaurant supply store — so that guests can easily scoop their picks into decorative bags or paper cones.

Newly-Engaged? “Minute One” Ways to Have the Happiest Bridesmaids Ever

bouquets05

  1. Host a party for them right at the start, so that you’re treating them and their entire bridesmaid time is not just them shelling out for you. Lunch, brunch, a dinner at your place or out at a restaurant – just a fun get-together to kick off your wedding planning season and so that they can get to know each other.
  2. Tell them what the wedding will be like. In order to decide if they can be bridesmaids, and afford any travel or lodging that will be involved, they need to know if you’re planning a destination wedding, especially.
  3. Ensure that you’ll make every effort to keep their expenses on the low side. They’ll love hearing that you’re one of Those Brides who cares about their finances and stress levels.
  4. Tell them what you DON’T want, like a bachelorette party if you’ve decided that’s not for you, nor is a girls’ getaway instead of that party. When bridesmaids can eliminate the pricy things they think might happen, they get more comfortable.
  5. Share your freebie sources, like the printables at www.weddingchicks.com and other terrific freebie-filled blogs and sites. And hand each one a copy of Bridesmaid      on a Budget.
  6. Tell them if they’ll be able to pick out their own styles of dresses, and invite them to send you links to dresses they like for themselves.

bridesmaidonabudget

And here’s a DON’T for you: don’t make a ton of promises right now, like paying for their dresses and hotel rooms. You might think you want to do these things for them, but if your budget explodes later, you might not be able to. And they’ll feel deceived.

NEW! DIY Wedding and Bridal Shower Recipes Series from the Weekend Table Blog: Corn Chowder with Crab

For fall and winter weddings, soup bars are a top trend, as well as a budget-friendly option to create a fabulous menu, and treat guests to soups they probably don’t make for themselves. Soups can be served as mini ‘shots’ or in generous bowls — with guests helping themselves to the soup and to the toppers you set out, like homemade garlic croutons, crunchy Asian noodles, sprinkles of seafood [a great way to indulge guests without spending a fortune on seafood — but hey, you have lobster, crab, and shrimp on your menu, even if it’s just a garnish! I LOVE making soups for parties, and there’s something so calming about being in the kitchen, whipping up a big batch of soup, filling the house with amazing aromas, and serving a hearty, wholesome bisque or chowder with some crusty bread. It’s comforting to make and to serve.

I discovered www.weekendtable.com when I was checking out the Babble Awards for best mom foodie blogs, and I fell in love with this blog for its fabulous recipes, its collection of gluten-free dishes, and Julie du Pont’s wonderful stories about her family and her inspirations for these dishes. So I’ve asked her to be the Top Chef in my series of recipe recommendations for your showers, wedding and all the fetes you’ll throw for your wedding celebrations. So get ready for more of her amazing soups [or go to www.weekendtable.com to get a jump on what I post,] salads, sides, starters, sweets and drinks. You’ll be seeing a lot more of Julie’s creations here, and you’ll love her simple recipes and smart tips for budget-stretching with second-uses of recipes and ingredients.

Here’s her Corn Chowder with Crab recipe: http://weekendtable.com/2012/08/12/corn-chowder-with-crab/

“Bridesmaid on a Budget” is on Kindle Super-Sale!

bridesmaidonabudget

Tell your Bridesmaids: my new wedding book “Bridesmaid on a Budget” is on super-sale at Kindle for $4.27 right now! Help your bridesmaids save tons of money on everything from their bridesmaid dresses to the bridal shower to their travel and lodging, gifts, beauty expenses, accessories and more! Bridesmaids shouldn’t have to pay $1,000+ to be in your bridal party! They’ll love you for looking out for them, and showing them this post so they can get their own Kindle versions of the book!

Bridesmaid Master Class, Lesson 1: Bridesmaid Budgeting

Bridesmaid budgeting is a lot easier than you think! Welcome to the first session of my new Bridesmaid Master Class, your FREE guides to being a fabulous bridesmaid, on a budget, with plenty of style, and with unforgettable class and grace. Your bride is going to love you!

I know you’re busy, so I’ll keep this quick and easy: today’s bridesmaid spends an average of over $1,200, according to The Wedding Report, and The Knot puts that number up around $1,600 in their recent survey. When you add up that $400 dress, travel and a hotel room for a few nights, the bridal shower, gifts, hair and makeup, things can get very expensive very quickly.

Mty book Bridesmaid on a Budget is filled with hundreds of tips to help you save on all the big and little things on your new shopping list during the year or so that you’ll be a bridesmaid, but I thought I’d start you off with the Bridesmaid Master Class top 3 Money-Saving Commandments:

1. Don’t just say no, suggest something else. If the other bridesmaids want the $500 dress and you can’t afford it, don’t just email a ‘No, that doesn’t work for me,’ email with ‘That one’s really pretty, but out of my budget range. Sorry! What do you all think of these dresses?” And provide 3 to 5 URLs of pretty bridesmaid dresses. That’s how you get things done.

2. Go in on a group gift. If all five of the bridesmaids share the cost of a big-ticket item on the registry, each woman pays a lot less than a solo gift. For instance, that $300 cookware set divided by the five of you equals $60. Very do-able. Or, give their $200 beddding set, making your share $40.

3. Work those coupons! Coupon Sherpa on your iPhone, Retail Me Not, Target, even Costco all offer phenomenal savings on everything you need for the bridal shower. Check out www.coupons.com to get valuable discounts on everything from hummus to salsa and chips, colas, cake mixes and frosting, and more. At the craft store like Michaels Crafts, you’ll get 40% off or more with store coupons, often handed to you after you buy a little something. Tell every bridesmaid, and the moms, to start coupon-hunting, and checking Groupon and Living Social, so that the bride can get an amazing bridal shower…and you’ve saved over 80% on the cost of it!