Tips to recently engaged couples looking for guidance to help start planning their wedding day.

Recently engaged? Congratulations to you and your fiancé and welcome to the wonderful world of Wedding Planning.

National statistics show that wedding couples will spend between $2,000.00 and $50,000 (per couple) on their wedding this year. Here are some tips on "where to start". Your budget will ultimately determine how extravagant your wedding day will be.
Oh, and one other thing: No matter how large or small your wedding, always, always remember this is your day. Don't settle for someone else's ideas or suggestions if they do not fit in with your wedding day dreams!

Here is a list of "To Do's" to help you get started.

1) Set a wedding date!

This is the most important step because just about everything else you do will be affected by your wedding date. Most couples choose their wedding date based upon local seasons with spring and summer being the most popular. Spring symbolizes new beginnings while summer offers the most favorable weather in most parts of the country.
Couples may also set their wedding date based upon the location of their honeymoon. Weather, seasonally priced packages, vacation and work schedules all may affect the date you choose for your wedding day.

You may want to contact family and close friends when setting your wedding date to get an idea of their upcoming schedules, especially when it comes to wedding attendants including the maid of honor and best man.

2) Determine How Many Guests You Intend to Invite to Your Wedding and Wedding Reception.

This second "To Do" will also affect many decisions you will make in the months preceding your wedding day including a church or wedding hall, reception hall, catering, favors, wedding attendants, etc.

Not only do you need to determine how many guests you plan to invite, you also need to decide how many wedding attendants (family and friends) will be included in your wedding and wedding reception. The average wedding attendant party consists of one to 10 attendants. This list should include the maid of honor, bridesmaids, flower girl, best man, groomsmen and ring bearer.
Couples may choose to have close family and friends attend their wedding and invite a broader list of guests to their wedding reception.

3) Let Everyone Know About Your Engagement!

Once you have a tentative list of guests, you will want to let them know about your upcoming wedding date as soon as possible so they can keep their calendar open. A very popular and creative way of letting everyone on your guest list know about your engagement and upcoming wedding is Save the Date magnets. Save the Date wedding magnets are also called refrigerator magnets because of their popularity on the refrigerator where they are used as decoration or handy holders for important dates, reminders, phone number and favorite pictures. Every time family and friends go to the fridge they will be reminded of the most important day this year...your wedding. Please visit our Save the Date magnets category creative ideas and products.

4) Reserve Your Church or Wedding Hall and Wedding Reception Hall.

It is very important that you and your fiancé reserve the church or wedding hall and reception center of your choice early! It is not uncommon for couples to reserve their favorite site one to two years in advance. Too often, couples find themselves scrambling the find a wedding reception hall even six months before their wedding because all the the area halls have already been reserved. This can be stressful for several reasons.

First, many couples end up settling for a wedding or reception hall that is not exactly what they wanted or is too large or too small.

Second, it's about supply and demand. The closer your wedding day, the more you are likely to pay for your wedding hall rental. I cannot stress enough how important it is to reserve you wedding hall early!

When choosing a wedding or wedding reception hall, talk to friends and family who have recently been married. Also ask any wedding hall you are considering to supply you with references of couples who have contracted their services. Family, friends and referrals will be happy to share their experience with the wedding and reception hall owners. Ask them about deposits, cleanup, services provided, privacy, cleanliness and how cooperative the hall owners were before, during and after the wedding and wedding reception.

5) Consider Contracting a Professional Wedding Planner

If your budget allows, considering contracting a professional wedding planner. Most brides and grooms are getting married for the first time and "don't have a clue" where to start. Professional wedding planners plan and coordinate weddings for a living. They have been through this hundreds of times (if they are veteran planners) and will help you plan every single detail of your wedding from pre-wedding details to sending Thank You cards once you return from your honeymoon.

When choosing a professional wedding planner, ask them to provide references. Ask couples who have used a particular planner's services questions like "Were you happy with the planners overall performance in helping you plan your wedding?", "Was the planner courteous and accommodating in help you plan your wedding?", "Did you encounter any problems with your wedding planning?", "how were any difficulties or issues resolved?".

Intend on planning and coordinating your own wedding? Then I strongly recommend that you purchase a good Wedding Planner/Scrapbook to walk you step-by-step through the wedding planning process. Many excellent wedding planner books can be found at your local wedding boutique or online.

6) Choose a Wedding Theme

Let's be honest, the wedding day is the Bride's Day! From the time they are pre-teenagers, girls dream of their perfect man and their perfect wedding day. While men are becoming more involved in the wedding planning process, the majority of the decisions and details will be considered and implemented by the bride and maid of honor.

Your wedding theme will include wedding colors, favors, attire, catering, music wedding accessories and even locations. Again, family and close friends will be a valuable resource in helping you decide on your wedding theme. Through this entire process remember one thing, this is your wedding! Don't make a final decision unless it is absolutely what you want.
Many books, boutiques and online wedding resources offer hundreds of ideas for your wedding theme. Set down with your fiancé, family and best friends and talk about your wedding day ideas desires.

I truly hope this gives you some direction in where to start in planning your special day!
I also invite your to visit My Wedding Reception Ideas for all of your personalized wedding favors, wedding attendant gifts and wedding accessory needs, no matter how large or small your wedding. We are committed to helping you make your wedding day perfect.

Please don't hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or need assistance planning your wedding day.

Again, congratulations and best wishes!

Save the Date with Magnets!

Looking for a memorable idea to announce your wedding engagement or special event? Save the Date magnets are a unique and affordable way to announce weddings and many other special events to your family and friends.

From weddings to family reunions and Christmas parties, everyone wants to announce their special occasion or celebration in a special way. They also want their family and friends to remember this special day or occasion so they will be able to attend.

Ever consider using
save the date magnets? Save the Date magnets are usually the size of a business card but with one notable difference. These cards are magnetic!

What happens to most business cards, invitations or bookmarks? They are placed in a wallet or purse, desk drawer or novel, soon to be forgotten. What do people do with a magnet? They immediately stick it on their refrigerator or filing cabinet for all to see. Every time they go to the frig for a snack or to the office filing cabinet, your save the date magnet is there, reminding them of your special occasion.

Just get engaged and want to share it with everyone you know. Send them an
"Engagement" refrigerator magnet announcing your joyous occasion. Available in many themes, you are sure to find a design that shares the moment you and your fiancé were engaged.

Decided on your wedding date and want everyone to keep this day open on their calendars? Send them
wedding save the date magnets announcing the happy couples' names, wedding date and maybe a reminder "invitations to follow".

Like to give practical favors and gifts to friends and family? Refrigerator magnets will be used long after that special day has passed; holding reminders and small pictures of loved ones on the refrigerator door or filing cabinet drawer. You can't you wrong with magnets! Everybody loves and uses them.

Other popular occasions you may want to announce with a save the date magnet include, but are not limited to, birthday parties, Christmas parties, family reunions, Bar Mitzvahs, Bat Mitzvahs and retirement parties.

Want to add a more personal touch to your announcement? Have your picture printed on
photo save the date magnets with custom print on your photo or at the top or bottom of your photo. Be creative when announcing your wedding or special occasion! Send a custom printed save the date magnet your family and friends will adore and use as a reminder of your special day.

Fall Wedding Ideas For Wedding Favors


Fall weddings are popular for several reasons. First, nothing compares to the beauty of fall, when nature paints her landscape with a vivid palette of color. Second, with summer heat and rains coming to a close, fall temperatures are perfect for dressing up and celebrating a wedding.

Many couples want to incorporate the colors of fall into their wedding day. Looking for fall wedding ideas for your wedding favors? Popular favors available in fall colors include gift and favor bags, favor boxes, napkins, matchbooks and ribbon.

Wedding Gift Bags are an excellent way to say thank you to out-of-town guests or wedding parties. Image a Cabernet gift bag custom printed in Antique Satin or Metallic Gold with a personal thank you from the bride and groom or a Harvest Gold gift bag personalized with a special thank you in Platinum Satin or Ebony Matte. These are just a couple possible fall color combinations you can use for you wedding guest favors.

Favor Boxes are used for sweet treats like pillow mints, truffles or Jordan almonds or small favor gifts including votive candles and soaps. Favor boxes are traditionally placed at each table setting for guest to enjoy at the wedding or take home when they leave. Cake slice boxes are also popular at the wedding cake table.

Elegant, convenient and neat,
cake slice boxes are perfect for sending a slice of cake home with your guests. Favor boxes are available in many colors to compliment your fall wedding cake. For example, you may want to use a Burgundy cake box, imprinted with the bride and groom's name, wedding date and a leaf-shaped design in Metallic Gold or Metallic Silver.

Personalized Wedding Napkins are available in an assortment of vivid fall colors including Cranberry, Raspberry, Red, Orange, Harvest Gold, Primrose Yellow, Gold, Evergreen and Sage. Wedding Napkins are also available in a variety of sizes and shapes for every aspect of your wedding reception, from the cocktail bar to the guest rooms.

What if you cannot find favors in a color that matches your fall wedding? You've looked high and low, spending hours on the internet and in boutiques but cannot find a favor that matches your fall wedding colors. Consider using a white base with a fall
imprint color. For example, you are looking for a Burnt Orange paper napkin for your guest tables but you find that no one makes a Burnt Orange napkin. Consider ordering a white napkin personalized with a Pumpkin Matte imprint color.

Another example would be
custom printed matchbooks. Matchbooks are available in a limited assortment of colors but with a white matchbook, many fall colors including reds, yellows and browns can be used when imprinting the bride and groom's name and wedding date.

Fall Wedding Designs can also be hard to find. Consider using a Maple leaf or Oak leaf design printed above the bride and groom's name and wedding date.

Whatever your reason for having a fall wedding may be, we hope these fall wedding ideas for favors help to make your wedding day perfect!
Best wishes on your wedding day and to your new journey together!
Ray

Wedding Napkins Tips and Ideas


Wedding Napkins are often overlooked until the last minute. Here are some tips and ideas to help insure this important detail is not overlooked for your wedding.

Your wedding is just a few months away and you are in the final stages of planning your wedding and wedding reception. Some of the items still on your list may be wedding favors.

Wedding favors include everything from small treats and gifts for your guests to
wedding napkins.

Personalized wedding napkins are an excellent keepsake to remember your wedding. Available in several sizes including dinner napkins, luncheon napkins and cocktail napkins, custom printed napkins add a personal touch and character to your special day.

Cocktail napkins, also called beverage napkins, average 5" x 5" and are ideal for the cocktail or juice bar and wedding cake table. Printed with a design or monogram, the bride and groom's names and wedding date, custom printed paper beverage napkins will delight your guests.

Plan on ordering 2 to 3 cocktail napkins per guest at the cocktail bar as guests will return several times to have their beverage refilled.

One cocktail napkin per guest is sufficient at the cake table as most guests will have only one slice of cake after the main course.

Luncheon Napkins are usually 6 1/2" x 6 1/2" and are used at the buffet table or on the guest table.

Plan on ordering 1 to 2 luncheon napkins per guest is supplied at the buffet table or 1 napkin per guest if presented on the guest tables.

Dinner Napkins are usually 8 1/2" x 8 1/2" and are typically folded and placed on the guest tables.
Plan on ordering 1 dinner napkin per guest.

Guest Towels have a unique shape. Measuring 8 1/2" x 4 1/2", rectangular shaped guest towels are typically used in the restrooms and wash areas. Their unique shape also makes guest towels a perfect fit for the guest tables.

Plan on ordering 2 to 3 guest towels per guest for the restrooms or 1 guest towel per guest for the dinner tables.

Another advantage to printed paper napkins is the many color options that are available to match your wedding colors or theme along with a large selection of imprint colors, designs, monograms and letter styles to choose from.

If you have contracted a catering service to provide all of your wedding reception food and beverage services, they may have already included napkins as part of their services and fee.
It is important to ask your caterer or wedding coordinator whether or not napkins are included and what type of napkins will be used.

An important question that is often overlooked is "Where will the wedding napkins be used during the reception?" Too often, napkins are placed at the guest table with little thought given to the wedding cake table. As guests line up to receive a slice of the wedding cake, they often receive their cake on a small plate with a fork but no napkin.

Another question to ask your caterer is "Will cocktail napkins be provided at the cocktail or juice bar?"

Whether you have yet to consider the type of wedding napkins you will use at your wedding reception or your caterer is already supplying your napkins, take a moment out of your busy schedule to determine what type of napkins you will need and where they will be used.

"An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure."

Best wishes on your wedding day and to your new journey together!

Ray

My Wedding Reception Ideas

Destination Wedding Favor Ideas


Approximately 10% of the couples getting married will have a destination wedding. A destination wedding is a wedding ceremony or celebration typically outside of the couples state of residence.

The most popular destination wedding locations are:
  1. Las Vegas
  2. Hawaii
  3. U.S. Virgin Islands
  4. Jamaica
  5. Bahamas

Many couples travel to areas within the united states that offer beautiful scenery for the purpose of ambiance or to a destination where they may have first met.

With destination weddings becoming more popular, another item added to a brides agenda my be ensuring their out-of-town guests are provided with all the comfort items necessary to make their overnight stay a pleasant one.

One way to make your guests' stay enjoyable and memorable is to have a wedding guest thank you gift or care package in a personalized 8" x 5" x 10" gift bag, displayed on the vanity or night stand of each hotel room, welcoming them to your city and your wedding weekend.

Fill each custom printed gift bag with bottled water and snacks or homemade treats. Maybe you want to add a little romance to your guests' wedding weekend. Try a scented candle, a small bottle of champagne with a couple of glasses and some fresh strawberries or other non-perishable fruit or snack. Use your imagination and be creative.

Assemble you guest welcome bags and box them up before you leave for you destination. This will make it easy to transport and deliver to your hotel. In some cases, you may want to wait until you have arrived at your wedding location to assemble your gift bags. Your may want to add items found locally or, in the case of fresh food favors, it is always best to add to your welcome gifts no more than 24 hours before your guests arrival.

Once you have created your guest welcome bags, your hotel management will be happy to place a bag in each of your guests' hotel rooms prior to their arrival.

Your wedding guests will be delighted to find such a treasure when they check in to their hotel rooms and nothing will make them feel more at home and appreciated than a personal message from the bride and groom.

Best Wishes Always,

Ray

My Wedding Reception Ideas

Pinching Pennies on Wedding Favors Can Cost You A Lot!

In 2005, it is estimated that couples will spend between $2,000.00 and $250,000.00 on their wedding with the average being $25,000.00.
Major wedding expenses include, the honeymoon, wedding dress, invitations and wedding reception. After the major expenses have been appropriated, many couples find themselves "pinching pennies" for wedding details including bridal accessories, wedding favors and wedding party gifts to accomodate their remaining wedding budget.
Brides and Grooms sift through the internet, looking for the "best deal" to finalize their wedding accessory and favor details. Too often, they realized the hard way "you get what you pay for".
Here are a few tips to ensure your get exactly what you pay for, regardless of cost.

Make A List

Before you go looking for accessories, favors or gifts for your wedding, set down and make a list. Write it down! If you don't write it down, you will be a target for indecisiveness and sales pressure.

Your list should include the following outline:

  1. Your Wedding Theme
  2. Wedding Colors
  3. Weddnig Location
  4. Number of Expected Guests
  5. Members of Your Wedding Party (Maid of Honor, Bridesmaids, Flower Girl, Best Man, Groomsmen, Ring Bearer, Mother and Father of the Bride/Groom
  6. Accessory and Favor items needed

With this list, you now an have a deliberate path to pursue.

Compare Products

Your are now ready to go shopping. Before you start comparing prices, compare products! Too often, couples purchase items based on price, not what they really want. Quality

Compare Service

Also paramount to pricing is service quality. Finding a great price but receiving poor customer service can be stressful and disappointing! Availability of shipping is also a factor.

Compare Prices

You've compared products for quality, styles, options and colors to suite your needs. You have also compared companies for service quality and availability. It is now time to compare prices.

If two or more companies offer the same quality products and services, pricing is a no-brainer. Go with the best price.

But, let's say Company A offers a lower price than Company B but company A does not provide a contact number or has no customer reviews. Company B's prices are a bit higher but you can speak to a live person and their website offers satisfied customer reviews. Save yourself potential stress or disaster and pay a little more.

Make Your Purchase

The steps and preparation listed above will make you an "informed consumer" with a deliberate agenda to purchase the items you need for your wedding with the best quality, service and prices.

Remember, "If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is" and "You get what you pay for"

Health, Happiness and Prosperity to you in your new journey together.

Ray,

My Wedding Reception Ideas

What Are Wedding Favors?

Wedding favors are the fifth most popular item searched for on the internet by brides and grooms looking for information, ideas and supplies for their wedding day. (I'll tell you the most popular wedding item searched for at the end of this article)

What are wedding favors? Webster's Dictionary defines wedding as” a marriage ceremony usually with its accompanying festivities" and favor as "a small gift or decorative item given out at a party". From these two definitions we can conclude that wedding favors are small gifts or decorative items given to guests during a wedding celebration.

Small Gifts as Wedding Favors

Let's look at "small gifts" as wedding favors. Small gifts in the traditional sense could include chocolates, candies, cookies or other sweet treats. Just about everyone enjoys a sweet treat to tie them over to the main course or as an after-dinner dessert. Pillow mints and Jordan almonds are very popular at wedding receptions. Consider giving your guests a candy bar wrapped with a personalized wrapper or grandma's special cookies packaged in a personalized favor box or candy bag.

An instant lottery ticket neatly concealed in an envelope or custom printed favor box makes a unique wedding favor with a surprise twist. Wouldn't it be exciting if on of the wedding guests scratched their lotto ticket and won $100.00 or even $10,000.00!

What about a long term gift wedding guests can enjoy long after your wedding is over? Wedding placecard picture frames and personalized votive candle holders are inexpensive and can be used over and over. Personalized glassware including champagne flutes and wine glasses are more expensive but will be cherished for years to come as a collectible keepsake of the joyous occasion.

Inviting over-night guests from out-of-town? Scented soaps, lotions and candles neatly presented in a gift bag with a personal thank you message make great gifts for overnight guests to use in their hotel rooms. One of our favorite gift ideas for overnight guests is a personalized gift bag containing a small bottle of champagne, two toasting glasses and a romantic treat like chocolate-covered strawberries. After all, this is a very romantic event!
Let's not forget the children. With an attention span as long as a New York minute, it is always a good idea to provide a wedding favor just for the kids. How about a miniature puzzle or some crayons and a small coloring book to occupy their time? Wedding bubbles are a traditional favor and great fun for the kids!

These are just a few ideas when considering favors for your wedding reception. The possibilities for unique wedding favor ideas are limited only to your imagination.

Decorative Items as Wedding Favors

Next, let's explore "decorative items" as wedding favors. A decorative item could be anything from personalized napkins on the reception tables to the cake topper on the wedding cake or a wedding collection including a guest book and pen set for guests to sign as they enter the reception hall. How about the cake server set or place cards and holders? Many couples like to add personalized swizzles and coasters or plastic tumblers to the cocktail or juice bar.

The question running through every bride and groom's mind is "what kind of favor do we want to give to our wedding guests to show our appreciation for their attendance?" Again, the possibilities are limited only to the imagination. Many wedding couples already have some wedding favor ideas based on weddings they have attended previously for a friend or family member. Based on conversations I have with brides on a daily basis, the most common theme is presenting their guests with unique wedding favors.

Personalized Wedding Favors

Looking for a unique idea for your wedding favors? Let me suggest personalized printing. Yes, I'm sure you may have been to other weddings that used personalized wedding gifts or decorative items; but I'll bet they didn't have your names, wedding date or special thank you message printed on them, did they?
Your wedding is unique! Not other wedding will be quite like yours. Celebrate your uniqueness with personalized wedding favors including gifts and decorative items. Print your names and wedding date on decorative items including wedding napkins for the cocktail bar, buffet, dinner tables or cake table. Your guests will admire them and they will be a nice addition to your scrapbook.

Personalized votive candles with matchbooks make a wonderful decoration and a nice thank you gift for your guests to take home. Place card picture frames will be used for favorite pictures of the wedding couple, children or grandchildren for years to follow.

Choose a wedding favor theme that reflects you and your spouse's interests or hobbies. Your family and friends know your likes and dislikes better than you think and will admire favors reflecting those unique qualities that make you a perfect couple.

Hopefully you are preparing for your wedding day months in advance and have time to set back and discuss every detail of your wedding day. Don't Rush! Take your time and know that you are making the right choices. Above all, remember this is your day. It belongs to you and no one else.

Oh yeah.. at the beginning of this article I said I would tell you the number one most popular wedding item searched for on the internet. Drumroll please... The number on wedding item searched for on the internet today is "wedding dresses".

Best wishes on your new and exciting journey together! May you be blessed with health, happiness and prosperity always.

Ray
My Wedding Reception Ideas

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