Brides on the other side.

[Image: Brides Cafe]

So-you've walked down that aisle. You've said, "I do!" and kissed the man of your dreams. You've celebrated with family and friends and now you're on the other side. They say hindsight is 20/20--so tell me and all my wonderful readers out there, what is one thing you would do differently? Leave a comment and use this post as forum to give upcoming brides your best words of wisdom. I know I could've used some sound advice as a bride!

Would you have chosen different colors?
Spent less money?
Chosen a different caterer?
Changed something in a vendor contract that ended up biting you in the butt?
Had a larger or smaller bridal party?

Do tell!


If you've been reading this blog for a while, you know that I have quite the love affair with the wedding gown. It doesn't matter if it's worn for a garden soiree or a glamorous ballroom, I can find a few that I love for any affair. Here are a few that have captured my eye lately.


Program content.

Programs are one DIY project that almost every couple can do to save a little money. But even if you aren't taking on your own program-making project, you'll still have to decide what to include in it. Although programs are optional, they are nice for guests to have while they are waiting for the ceremony to start and for them to use as a guideline for the service. Some guests will want to save your program as a keepsake, so it's a great idea to personalize it and put some thought into how you want it to look and who (and what) you plan on including.

Here's a basic guideline for your content:

  • Names of the bride and groom

  • Date, time and location of the ceremony

  • Specific parts of the ceremony, i.e. service, readings, passages, music (you can personalize this even further by explaining why these specifics are meaningful to you as a couple)-if you are having someone conduct a reading, include the name of the person

  • Name of the officiant

  • Names of the bridesmaids and groomsmen--you can also put a small note explaining how you know each person

  • A special thank-you to your families and/or guests is always nice

  • If your ceremony location is separate from your reception location, it might be a good idea to include the address and/or direction of the reception, as well as the time it begins
  • It's also a good idea to think about the formality of your ceremony when designing your program and then choose the paper and font accordingly.

      [the above images from the knot]

      [photo of one of my friend's programs--she's a true DIYer]


      Real wedding: Mike and Abby

      Oh, the eye candy.

      Not just of the amazing wedding photography but also of the gorgeous couple. This wedding took place in the Bahamas and I seriously think it could be the leading ad campaign for island weddings.

      Jody and Zach of Zorn Photography are also fashion photographers and I think this gives them a fresh, modern approach to their wedding photography. No stuffy formal portraits here.

      I love the easy, breezy feel of these photos. And the wedding colors the bride and groom chose are beautiful and soft, and the orange gives just the right amount of kick.

      There is so much more to see of this fabulous wedding here, under 'featured weddings--Harbour Island, Bahamas'.



      [Yes, those are pearls in my wedding day necklace. Uh-oh.]

      With a big part of today's wedding budget going toward photography, I have more than once suggested that a bride and groom see each other before the ceremony in order to have more time for photos. However, many of them opt to wait until the infamous walk down the aisle.

      This tradition began because it was considered bad luck for the groom to see the bride before the actual ceremony. Today, I think most couples simply want the element of surprise.

      Here are some other lesser-known superstitions and folklore:

      ~Pearls are the symbols of tears. For each pearl a bride wears, her husband will give her a cause for weeping.
      Just another reason for diamonds, right ladies?

      ~It is bad luck to make your own wedding gown.
      Now you have an excuse for not learning how to sew.

      ~The bride should drink a glass of water after the ceremony.
      Does champagne count? It's made with water...

      ~At the wedding, the bride should see the groom before he sees her.
      Another reason for the bride to peak out at all the guests and her groom-to-be before she walks down the aisle.

      ~Give the clergy an odd sum of money for good luck.
      I suppose with this reasoning, you should avoid the number 13 and include the number 7.

      ~It's good luck for the bride to dream of her wedding day.
      I don't know about you, but that means I should have great luck for years, because I did plenty 'o dreaming of the big day before it happened.

      Are there any unusual traditions you are planning to include or ignore on your wedding day?


      DIY Friday: Crepe Magnolias.

      I love this idea and will be trying it very soon! What an inexpensive way to get real looking blooms. These would be great for a church alter, a chuppah, pews, or even a toss bouquet.

      Get the instructions here.


      Worth the wait.

      And the groom arrived to the wedding ceremony by helicopter...

      I have been counting down the days for the photographer to send over the photos from the wedding I coordinated in Phoenix last month. They turned out absolutely gorgeous and I can't wait to show you more. Here's a little tease for now...

      All photography by Light Rain Images.


      The first dance.

      Choosing our first dance was a cinch. For us, there is special meaning to Led Zeppelin's, "Thank You" and we knew that would be the song we'd dance to in front of our friends and family as we celebrated our marriage.

      Sample lyrics:

      "If the sun refused to shine,
      I would still be loving you.
      If mountains crumbled to the sea,
      there would still be you and me."

      Too bad our band sang a Rod Stewart song instead. At that moment, we are laughing in our photos. Nothing against Rod, but it wasn't OUR song. So much for romance...

      For some couples, choosing the song to dance their first dance to isn't so easy. For many reasons, a couple may not have their song. Instead, they have many or perhaps haven't chosen one. But after you share the special moment of your first dance, you will certainly be able to add the song you choose to the list.

      Here are a few ideas:

      All I Want Is You-U2
      Better Together-Jack Johnson
      By Your Side-Sade
      Can't Take My Eyes Off of You-Lauryn Hill
      Come Away With Me-Norah Jones
      Make You Feel My Love-Adele (my new fav!)
      If I Ain't Got You-Alicia Keys
      Stay With You-John Legend
      The Way I Am-Ingrid Michaelson
      Such Great Heights-Iron and Wine
      I'm Yours-Jason Mraz
      Sea of Love-Cat Power

      Baby, I Love Your Way-Peter Frampton
      The Best of My Love-Eagles
      Just the Way You Are-Billy Joel
      Let's Stay Together-Al Green
      Maybe I'm Amazed-Paul McCartney
      Crazy Love-Van Morrison
      One Love-Bob Marley

      At Last-Etta James
      Dream a Little Dream of Me-Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong
      It Had to Be You-Harry Connick, Jr.
      The Way You Look Tonight-Frank Sinatra
      These Arms of MIne-Otis Redding
      Unchained Melody-The Rightous Brothers
      Our Love is Here To Stay-Billie Holiday
      Unforgettable-Nat King Cole

      Forever and Ever, Amen-Randy Travis
      It's Your Love-Tim McGraw and Faith Hill
      Making Memories of Us-Keith Urban
      She's Everything-Brad Paisley
      When You Love Me-Martina McBride
      You're Still the One-Shania Twain
      Cross My Heart-George Strait

      What was the song you first danced to as a married couple?


      Happy birthday, love.

      {us in Lima, Peru last summer}

      I knew you when you turned 14.
      Remember the hours we'd spend together talking on the phone?
      You were the first boy I ever kissed.
      I was with you when you celebrated the big 1-6 and got your first car.
      We went to prom together and watched each other graduate from high school.
      We share a world of memories.
      We know each other's pasts.
      We finally went our separate ways to grow up, only to come together again.
      I love the man you are today and the father I know you'll be some day.
      I feel blessed to celebrate each year with you as we grow older together.

      Happy Birthday, love.
      I hope you enjoy this year as you have the last.


      Appreciation #9: Spring.

      There's nothing like the first glimpses of Spring. The sun feels warmer, flowers start to bloom, there seem to be more people on the streets and we can break out the wardrobe that has been pushed to the back of our closets or stored in our basements.

      In Colorado, our weather seems to be playing tricks on us. One day it's 70 degrees, the next, snowing. Go figure. But on those days that it's in the 70s, I feel the hope of the summer and outdoor activities, dining al fresco and Havaianas. Ahhh...I am Queen of Spring Fever.

      Did I miss anything?

      I love to post inspired ideas and photos from other blogs and the web. I try my best to give credit where it's due, but if I miss something, please let me know. And, if you want something taken down, I can do that. No problemo.