Monday, April 27, 2009

The Cost of Weddings Today

Happy Monday everyone (and happy wedding week Sarah (that's her and Patrick above))! Thought this might be interesting for readers today...

The Indy Star has an article on its front page today about weddings and couples cutting back their budget due to the economy with some tips. Click here to read the article.

Also it states that the average US wedding will be $20,398 this year (decreasing again this year). Bloomington's average has been below the US so I expect that the Bloomington average will decrease as well.

I'm going to look into this area's average and will try to post it this week.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Cute Gift Idea!

I'm in love with these new placemats from Bailey Bea Designs and I just had to pass them on. They are so many cute designs! Perhaps a great wedding or housewarming gift for your favorite couple this spring and summer (and maybe a set for you too!)? I think they would be great for an outdoor patio set!

Take a look at the Bailey Bea website.

They also have cute personalized return address stamps and other items. The address stamps are also GREAT gifts!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Eco-Chic Weddings!

Today in honor of Earth Day, a few resources for Eco-Chic Weddings!
Green and eco-chic weddings are becoming more and more important and popular. Many brides want to have a green wedding and there are more resources available to them, for all of it or for just portions.

Here are a few good websites and blogs on green weddings:

And a few local vendors who might be able to assist you with your eco-chic wedding:
Twisted Limb Paperworks, for custom stationary on hand-made paper at their studio near Bloomington, its beautiful and earth friendly!
Harvest Moon Flower Farm , complete wedding flower service grown just outside of Bloomington, you can go to the Farm to pick your flowers!
Lemley’s Catering, Caterers out of Columbus, Indiana that can help with your green wedding. Their presentation are beautiful, selections are fresh and they are happy to customize a menu.
FARM Bloomington, a green restaurant in downtown Bloomington and their menus feature seasonal and local products, the FARM Root Cellar is available for rehearsal dinners and other private events.

There are also simple ways to consider Mother Earth in your wedding:
*Consider recycled or re-purposed items such as jars or canisters to add to your d├ęcor.
*Serve organic coffee and tea for after dinner.
*Use locally grown items in your menu, those are often favorites as well! What else is local—wine? chocolates? honey?—could those items be used as favors?
*Jewish couples can now marry under “green” huppahs.
*Check out eco-friendly linens for your tables.
*Have bridesmaids carry matching clutches or locally grown flowers.
*Choose beeswax or soy-based candles over those made with paraffin, a petroleum byproduct.
Seeds of Life and The Magnolia Company, great gifts for parents or others, possible favors with seedlings or other beautiful products. Also the Magnolia Company has beautiful wreaths and magnolia blooms.

Happy Planning!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Local Vendor: Grise Photography on Engagement Photos

Today I'm excited to be debuting local vendors in the Bloomington area as guest bloggers. I'm starting with a great photographer who I've been fortunate to work with on fun weddings in the past and am looking forward to working with her again this summer, Jenny Grise of Grise Photography. She's very talented and provides tips on Engagment Photos here today...thanks Jenny!

I recommend choosing solid colors that work with your skin tone/eye color. Black is always good, as is chocolate brown and other dark colors. Jeans look great in pictures, especially darker washes, and be sure to compliment one another! As Stacy & Clinton say on one of my favorite TV shows "What Not to Wear", "You don't have to match, you just have to 'go'". :-)

There are many amazing spots in Bloomington for engagement photos! There's the campus, of course (one of the Top 5 most beautiful in the country for a reason!), but don't forget to look beyond this to places like Oliver Winery (gorgeous gorgeous gorgeous!) and downtown Kirkwood. I love the contrast of beautiful couples and industrial locations, so even graffiti-filled alleys can look totally great in pictures.

1) Just be yourself! It's up to your photographer to help you feel comfortable in front of the camera, but it's up to YOU to truly be yourselves. You know who you are and how you are together. Natural smiles & laughter look best! No fakes!
2) Think of it, not as a portrait session, but as a casual date with your fiance(e) (and oh, there happens to be someone following you around with the camera). Take a walk together like you normally would. Bring your pets if you've got them.
3) Be up front with your photographer before your session about the kind of photos you'd like. Be sure your photographer matches the style you're into. Artsy & creative or more traditional. Send along some photos before your session of other engagement sessions you liked. This is not insulting to your photographer, but actually quite helpful in determining what you like! Maybe even send along a short bio of the two of you or meet in person so your photographer can really get to know you before your session. This aids in getting the best, most personal shots.

Jenny Grise
Wedding Photojournalist
Grise Photography

PS: Jenny was featured on one of my favorite blogs-Elizabeth Anne Designs in March, check out her beautiful photography here:

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Fall 2009 Color Report

Sorry I’ve been MIA this week…where has the time gone?
Wedding season is just around the corner and I’m looking forward to it! I’m going to be unrolling some great new features here including local vendors, real weddings and more. Stay tuned.

For now, as I get excited about summer 2009, Pantone’s Fall 2009 Fashion Color Report has come out. For fall brides out there, check out these beautiful colors from burnt sienna, rapture rose, and majolica blue. I love so many of them. A “true red,” “timeless neutrals,” “refinement and sensuality,” a “vibrant blue” and “feminine touches” come out in the colors, many of which look spectacular together.

Happy Planning!
PS: coco + kelley's blog, also has some beautiful photos of rooms with these colors. Great inspiration for decorating your home.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Wedding Planning Binders

Almost every bride has a binder of all of her wedding related information...this is good. A binder helps you stay organized and keeps everything in one place. There are a ton out there. I think you can purchase one that you're comfortable with and has the tools you need. But remember you want something that will be useful to you, so maybe creating one on your own might be the best option. Here are some of my thoughts on purchasing and making your own...

A couple of planners to mention:
*Mindy Weiss's "Ultimate Wedding Organizer", $99.00
The name says it all--it does have everything and is quite cute to carry, but the price tag is also hefty.
*"The Wedding Workbook" by Kimberly Schlegel Whitman, $24.95
Much more affordable, and also designed really well. It includes many helpful features!
*Real Simple's Wedding Planning Guide is also great. I love Real Simple, so I'm a big fan. Has the great look and style that Real Simple has.

But, I still love , love Russel + Hazel's wedding binder (pictured above) for $75.00. Yes, its pricey, but I think you might feel its worth the investment. It includes 12 sections, business card pages, and adhesive notes for adding notes to the pages. They also have over 50 (!) downloadable lists and worksheets to use! These lists include budget worksheets, a "do not play" list for the DJ, stationary worksheet, floor plans, day-of checklist and more. Love Russel + Hazel!
As I mention above putting together your own binder is also great! A cute and functional place for all of your information and its affordable. Some things you'll need to create your binder:
  • A sturdy 3-ring binder (you'll use it a lot and carry it with you everywhere for awhile, make sure it will stay together). Russel + Hazel has a wide selection of colors of binders and they're also well-made. There are also quite a few eco-friendly options available and options at your local Target or other store.

  • Tab divider sheets you can mark with categories. (Flowers, Stationary, Music, Cake/Baker, Reception, Attire, Rehearsal, Honeymoon, etc). You'll probably need at least 12, if not 20.

  • Sheet protectors for you to put clippings and ideas in (and potentially receipts, keep them all together!). A business card page to keep all of your vendors or potential vendors cards together.
  • Blank sheets of paper for notes, questions, for vendors, etc.

  • Downloadable checklists and worksheets from R + H! The budget worksheet is a must! Also the timeline/checklist, day-of checklist, vendor contact list, and others you feel will be helpful to you. (Real Simple also has a few downloadable tools as well if you like their style.

These are the basics and should get you started as an organized bride! You can get as crafty and creative or as simple as you want. The possibilities are endless. Happy Planning!