Flowers can become costly when you factor in bouquets, boutonnieres, ceremony decoration, centerpieces, and even if you want to add some to the cake or cake table. They can add up to more than $2,000 (depending on the size of your wedding). As a DIY project, I plan on ordering bulk flowers online and having them delivered to the hotel in Hawaii for our wedding. They would be delivered two days prior to the wedding so we could make the bouquets and boutonnieres (slumber party!).
I came across the dilemma of ordering silk rose petals, freeze dried, or fresh rose petals for our ceremony decoration of the aisle. One DIY floral package I looked at included fresh rose petals but it was the most expensive. I love being able to reuse things especially since we’re having two receptions! The fresh rose petals would obviously go to waste after the ceremony in the hot humid air of the Big Island. So I started looking into silk rose petals and freeze dried.
Silk rose petals are fake and often smaller than fresh rose petals. They are the most cost effective but lack the feel of fresh or freeze dried rose petals. There are also more color options with silk rose petals than freeze dried.
Freeze dried rose petals are natural and biodegradable. I originally thought they were “frozen fresh” petals but the “freeze” only refers to the process used to dry the petals. They cost a little more but could be used again and again they lose their color (I’ve read up to 1 year).
*Note, these have been sitting in hot, humid conditions for the past month because I forgot about them
I ordered these samples from Petal Garden. For $2 (shipping included), you can sample 10 color choices for freeze dried rose petals and as many silk ones as you like. They also include a $5 coupon towards your next purchase so it’s a win-win!
The rose petals are stamped with a number to match their Color Key (the darker petals are hole punched).
I basically ordered all the pink freeze dried rose petals (10):
- Hot pink
And a couple of the silk ones (unlimited):
Ivory with pink
Can you tell the difference between silk rose petals vs. freeze dried rose petals?!
After comparing the two rose petals, I would recommend couples going with the freeze dried rose petals. They arrived looking full, natural, and colorful. To loosen the freeze dried rose petals and give them an even more soft natural feel; place them in a humid environment such as a steamy bathroom or hot summer day outside. Hopefully I’ll be able to update with photos from the wedding ceremony when we get back!
For our second registry, we decided to go with Macy’s because of their selection of items, convenience, and Star Rewards system. We went to the Macy’s Sip and Scan at South Shore Plaza in Braintree, MA hosted by Off the Vine Catering.
Similar to the Crate and Barrel Registry Party, begin by registering for one of the Macy’s Sip and Scan events near you. We had to register online two months in advance for an evening Sip and Scan spot at the Braintree location. While shopping at the mall one day, the FI and I decided to get a head start on the Macy’s wedding registry (I think he was just anxious to use the scanner gun again). A wedding registry consultant at the Burlington Mall took us on the spot and reviewed the Macy’s registry process in about 15 minutes. Then we were off with our scanner gun! It worked out better because we got to skip the long registration line at the actually Sip and Scan event.Love their little “the happy couple is registered at Macys” memo insert cards
One advice I wish someone told us about: the Macy’s Star Rewards program! We bought 8 suits from Macy’s prior to our whole registry process and then learned about their reward incentive program. :T
If you create a Macy’s wedding registry and add your Macy’s credit card to the registry account, you’ll receive 10% Rewards on purchases made on the Macy’s credit card from the day you enroll in Registry Star Rewards until the wedding day. You also receive 5% Rewards on purchases guests make from your gift registry. 45 days after the wedding, Macy’s will send you a gift card based on the rewards earned through the “engagement” period. So if you’re planning to buy bridesmaid dresses, suits, shoes, or any other purchases from Macys, make sure to complete your wedding registry with them ahead of time to start earning rewards/cash back!
A memorable wedding lies in all of the details which have the power to make a wedding unique and special to the couple. One of the recent trends for weddings which can represent both the couple’s taste and theme of their wedding is a spin on the traditional cake……Cupcakes! It is now being incorporated or altogether replacing the wedding cake. Cupcakes offer so many creative ways to represent what the bride and groom likes, by choice of flavor, frosting, and decoration.
A great advantage of choosing cupcakes is that they can all be individualized, each one distinct from another. The options are endless which means the guests no longer have to be limited to one flavor cake and now can choose their favorite from chocolate to vanilla to red velvet! Embellishment no longer has to be the same design, it can be different colors, different adornment of bows, flowers, and/or writing. A great idea is to have the cupcakes alternate between the couple’s wedding date or a simple saying of “I do.” Whichever way the bride and groom chooses to personalize the cupcakes it will display their style and create a lasting memory for their guests.
It’s a new way to add whimsy to your special day and is definitely worth some consideration!
Pictures from Mom’N Pop Cakes, Cotton and Crumbs and All Things Weddings.
Imagine a photo booth that prints out edible cookies. Neat right?! Wicked Good Cookies will help you add “a little bit of sugar and a whole lot of spice” to your next event with their Photo Cookie Station. Guests can take a picture from the booth and it’ll be printed directly on top of the cookie! I love the idea of it being a wedding favor and activity in one!
Similar to the average cost of renting a regular photo booth, the Photo Cookie Station includes the following:
- 4 hours of printing
- 200 freshly baked cookies
- Customized borders (i.e. Thank you and date)
- “Green screen” setup
- On-site technician
Wicked Good Cookies also offers customized cookies for bridal showers, wedding receptions, and other events. I can’t even begin to tell you how deliciously moist and tasty their cookies are – they really are wicked good!
Wicked Good Cookies is also offering our clients a special discount on orders (also applicable towards the Photo Cookie Station) so feel free to contact us for more information.
9am on a Sunday morning, I dragged the FI out of bed for our first Crate and Barrel Wedding Registry Party! You could always register online through the store’s website but then you would miss all the fun of the scan gun!
Here’s a little 411 on getting started with a wedding registry:
1. Check on the store’s website for their calendar of event dates
Crate and Barrel Massachusetts generally host the Wedding Party Events on the first week of each month during morning hours where the stores are closed to the general public. Select the date you desire and click RSVP to This Event. They’ll send you a confirmation and reminder for the event. If you’re looking to register for furniture items at Crate and Barrel, make sure you select the store that features their Furniture Collection since they are not available for show at every location.
2. Sample, Shop and Scan
It’s like a kid in a candy store. Where to begin?
We arrived a few minutes late but just in time for the introduction/tour (5 minutes) and then the store associates let us walk around on our own to shop and scan.
So we walked around a couple of times before actually starting to scan things. Every item has a bar code to scan and if the item doesn’t scan, the product code can be manually entered. Select the quantity, hit enter and it’s added!
The sales associate suggested to add on more small gadgets so guests have filler items to choose from the registry. Couples should also consider their wedding season when selecting items on their registry as some of the colors on display now for spring/summer may not be available for fall weddings (i.e. a lot of the placemats were pink floral for spring/summer – fall will feature more earthtone colors).
3. Upload and Register
We shopped around for about an hour before “checking-out”. The sales associate took our scanner to the registry machine to upload the items and to create a wedding registry account. It also gives you an option to add gift certificates to purchase. Once an account is created, you can always add or change items on your registry in-store or online.
At the end of it, you’ll walk away with a print-out of your registered items and a Crate and Barrel wedding gift.
It’s a good idea to have more than one store on your wedding registry to give guests a choice. Check back for our wedding registry experience at Macy’s!
Photo: The Knot Wedding Channel
Camps used to be just for kids but now couples are turning them into their wedding venue playground. Camp weddings offer exclusive usage for your ceremony/reception on acres of green grass land, convenient accommodations for guests, numerous activities, and simply a fun and unique wedding experience.
We attended a camp wedding over the summer and thought it’d be great to offer some tips for couples planning a camp wedding and also to guests attending one.
For the couple:
Since it is a camp ground, the available dates for a wedding may be limited so it’s best to check with the camp coordinator regarding their off-season. Most camps are busy through Labor Day weekend but some may be able to squeeze in a weekend summer wedding.
Clambake anyone?! So will the camp’s kitchen operate during off-season for your wedding or are you allowed to bring in your own caterer for the event? What about drinks? It’s important to make sure the camp ground has a licensed permit to serve alcohol for events. What about drinks outside the reception hall i.e. around the campfire? Couples also have to consider providing breakfast and lunch to guests if they turn it into a camp wedding weekend.
Roasting marshmallow s’mores and chatting by the campfire after the wedding may be the best after-party idea but will the camp allow it? Double check the curfew time for guests.
Camp weddings are awesome because your “hotel’ room is located right there. It will be a little extra work as you worry about coordinating place settings, now you have to figure out cabin arrangements. Some camp sites have individual cabins to for you to rent to guests while others have bunk beds to share. There should be a check-in table at the camp entrance that will guide guests to their designated cabins.
Couples should consider making a day-of-schedule for guests which includes breakfast time, available activities, group games, lunch time, ceremony, reception, and post-wedding events. The schedule can be picked up at the check-in table or slipped into a welcome bag in the cabin rooms. Maps of the camp ground should also be readily available for guests to explore.
Creating a personalized wedding website will be extremely useful for guests. There should be a page about the camp location, activities, schedule, cabin assignments and payment options if they plan to sleepover. Mikado Weddings Full Service Diamond Package offers personalized websites for couples – contact us for more information.
For the guests:
What to wear to a camp wedding? Do you go formal or casual? Even though the venue location is at a camp, it is still a wedding so fellas should still wear a suit and tie. Also, the ceremony may be held outside on the grass area but the reception will most likely be at the camp hall indoors. Guests should also bring a other outfit to take advantage of the camp activities. An extra sweater or hoodie is also recommended for night time since it’ll get chilly with the lake nearby.
This might be the only time you’ll pack a sleeping bed to a wedding. Cabin rates for guests at camp grounds are generally more cost effective than hotel rooms (probably because there is no housekeeping service).
The best part about camp weddings are all the activities you can do with the couple, family, and friends – swimming, kayaking, tennis, basketball, football, baseball, biking, hiking, golf, and rock climbing! The wedding we attended in Maine at Camp Manitou had everything! They even had a mini Fenway Park for baseball games!
Below are some local camp grounds available for events and weddings:
Bournedale Function Facility – Plymouth, MA
Camp Wing – Duxbury, MA
Becket-Chimney Corners YMCA – Becket, MA
Camp Kiwanee – Hanson, MA
Camp Lenox – Otis, MA
Camp Evergreen – Andover, MA
Choosing a father-daughter dance song for your wedding can be a daunting task. How do you select a song that appropriately honors the first man in your life? You want something that’s meaningful without being cheesy, fun yet danceable, and memorable enough that 20 years from now you won’t ask, “What was I thinking?!” I tried to come up with some suggestions that I think fit the bill. From country to pop to rock, these touching tunes offer a new spin on that dance with Dad.
2. “The Best Day” by Taylor Swift
3. “Constellations” by Jack Johnson
4. “Count on Me” by Bruno Mars
5. “Daddy” by Beyoncé
6. “Daughters” by John Mayer
7. “Dream Big” by Ryan Shupe & the Rubberband
8. “Gracie” by Ben Folds
9. “Hero” by Mariah Carey
10. “I Hope You Dance” by Lee Ann Womack
11. “I Loved Her First” by Heartland
12. “Kind and Generous” by Natalie Merchant
13. “My Girl” by The Temptations
14. “My Little Girl” by Tim McGraw
15. “My Wish” by Rascal Flatts
16. “Somethin’ Special” by Colbie Caillat
18. “Butterfly Kisses” by Bob Carlisle
19. “Your Song” by Elton John
20. “You’ve Got a Friend” by Scotty McCreery
I’ve done a little research on the best and worst ways to save on your bar tab. While nothing is worse than an angry crowd since you ran out of alcohol, you don’t want to go broke in the process.
DO limit the liquor. You’ll save big if you reduce the main ingredients to just, say, vodka. Be sure to stock an assortment of mixers.
DON’T blow your budget on a champagne toast; swap in a less pricey sparkler instead, like a Spanish cava or an Italian prosecco.
DO ask your bartenders to use bottle pourers, which dispense a set amount of alcohol so they wont go over the top.
DON’T go nuts with rentals. If you want more than one all-purpose glass, I suggest renting three at most: a water goblet, an all-purpose wineglass, and a rocks (or old-fashioned) glass.
DO cater to your crowd. If you have big drinkers, go for an unlimited bar, for which you pay a set fee. Otherwise, pay by consumption, meaning only for what guests drink. (Regardless of which option you choose, ask that servers clear only empty glasses that way you won’t waste any alcohol in the process)
Hope these helpful tips come in handy when trying to save on the bar tab!
After a nearly 65-year climb to the top of the bridal industry, Priscilla of Boston has decided to close its famous doors to business. By Dec. 31, the company’s 19 salons across the U.S. will close and all current orders will be filled, according to the website. The move reportedly comes in an effort to devote all of Priscella of Boston’s resources to its parent company, David’s Bridal, to support and continue to promote David’s growth as an industry leader.
PoB began in 1945 when Priscilla Kidder opened The Bride’s Shop on Newbury Street in Boston. In almost no time, Priscilla made a name for herself in celebrity bridal couture, designing Grace Kelly’s bridesmaids dresses and Presidential daughter Tricia Nixon’s wedding gown. The PoB portfolio is quite large and hosts a variety of brands such as Platinum by Priscilla and Melissa Sweet, both of which will be discontinued in the shut down. And with this, we bid a farewell to a Boston icon!
As we all know, the reception can take a huge bite out of the wedding budget. Of course you want to make sure that you have enough food for all your guests, but you shouldn’t break the bank with inflated catering costs.
Here are some tips on how to cut costs on your catering bill.
avoid seafood: Foods such as lobster, salmon and shrimp will definitely raise your catering bill. Instead of offering these expensive foods as entrees, use them as appetizers instead. Also, many people are allergic to shellfish and its better to be safe than sorry.
offer a signature drink: By having one or two signature drinks to offer instead of an open bar will significantly cut down on your bar tab.
change the meal: Choose brunch over dinner. Since the meal runs at least an hour shorter, you’ll spend less on space rental and waitstaff. Also, guests will likely drink far less than they would at an evening event, so you’ll save on the bar.
take a stand: Cocktail receptions continue to gain in popularity. Rather than having a formal seated dinner with multiple courses, serve a variety of appetizers; from spring rolls to veggies with dip and you’ll cut down on the cost of tables, chairs, and centerpieces.
do a different dessert: Instead of a pricey wedding cake, create a sweets table or a cupcake, cookie, ice cream or brownie bar. These budget-friendly options always wow the crowd. If you’re dead set on a cake, make styrofoam layers and have them decorated like a cake. It gives the illusion of a full cake and you can serve a sheet cake to your guests. They’ll be totally clueless!
change the date: Set the date in the month that hotels and caterers are the most starved for business. For the most part that would be November to March.