ADVICE: PERSONALIZING YOUR WEDDING

Wrap them in luxury.
A really plush gift idea for your bridal party – have monogrammed robes made.

Quote your parents.
Your parents will most likely invest some of their life-savings in your big day.  Acknowledge their generosity with a personalized gift in return.  Find an eloquent quote about parenting or the relationships between fathers/mothers, sons/daughters,and have it engraved on a special plague.

Rock on!
Polished stones carry special meaning.  Find a local boutique that sells “love rocks,” and give one to each of your guests.

Photo opportunity.
Consider making photo books with old photos of you and your friends.  Spend some time thinking of all the things you’ve been through and give these cherished, personalized gifts to your maid of honor and best man.

Picture your friends.
When making a video that will be shown at the wedding, include photos of family and friends – not just of the bride and groom.  Your guests will be pleased that you thought of them.

The write stuff.
The thank-you cards are more meaningful than your invitation!  Yes – by acknowledging guests with hand-written, personalized notes, you are saying that it mattered that they came to your wedding and/or sent a gift.  Spend more time on this end of things and the time invested will return with gracious measure.

Refresh your guests.
If you have out-of-town guests who are staying at nearby hotels, acknowledge them by arranging to have a refreshment package, along with a personalized note from you, in their room!

Welcome wagon.
Wedding sheets are an extravagant keepsake.  When approached by family or a close friend, ask them to consider this as a meaningful gift, and ask them to have a set of luxurious sheets monogrammed or embroidered with your initials.

Dance the night away.
If your mother, father, aunt, uncle, grandma, grandfather, friend, et al, said something insightful, write it down.  As an extra special and meaningful touch, pull together a small book of personalized quotes and give this to them on your big day.

Bubble heads.
Use the buddy system for out-of-town guests. Try to assign a friendly, outgoing family member or close friend to any out-of-town guests, to act as their ‘ambassador’ for the wedding weekend. The ambassadors can greet guests at the airport, take them to the hotel, and suggest things to do. This makes out-of-towners feel welcome.

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GIFTS & REGISTRY TIPS

GIFTS & REGISTRY TIPS
1. Before you begin the registry process have a heart to heart with your fiancé. Discuss your tastes, style, priorities, and your vision of your future home. Also be sure to take into account what items you already have as a couple.  Your selections will be easier and more focused when you have a game plan and you are working towards common goals!

2. The key is timing. Make sure to register BEFORE the first bridal celebration but not early enough that some of your items may become discontinued. Also take into consideration the fact that some items are seasonal and may not be available when your guests are making their purchases.

3. You know not to go to the grocery store hungry, so don’t rush the registry process and try to accomplish this in one day.
Allow yourselves plenty of time to make good decisions. You can always add to the list later.  Instead take your time and consider all your options before completing.

4. If you already have most of the everyday ware, think of registering at specialty stores – art galleries, hardware or luggage stores, sporting good stores, or even travel agencies!

5. Although it is usually considered impolite to ask guests to buy gifts at certain locations, putting your registry information on your wedding website is perfectly acceptable and in this day and age, probably one of the most effective and polite
ways to aim people in the right direction.

6. The individual throwing your shower can certainly make it “themed” based. If you and your hubby to be love to do outdoor entertaining, the shower and gifts can be based around this theme. Or perhaps you really enjoy cooking and need kitchen items, why not a Recipe/Kitchen based shower. Theme showers can be fun and practical!

8. Word of mouth. No matter what, people are going to ask for your closest friends and family’s input into what would be best to get you, so just make sure they are well informed.

9. Mix it up! Make sure you register for gifts in all different price points so that your guests can choose gifts within their budget.

10. Keep your registry up to date. Many stores offer a computerized system that will allow you to look at your registry and make sure purchased items have been removed. It will also allow you to add items as you choose.

11. Make sure you register as a couple. You will want gifts that you both enjoy! You may want to assign categories in advance. You can make the china choices and he can choose when it comes to the kitchen gadgets.

12. Don’t worry about matching your tableware exactly. It’s actually stylish to mix several patterns in the same place setting to personalize your table.  Think about choosing 6 settings from one style and 6 from another style. It will be fun to have options and have the ability to mix and match!

13. In this case more is better. Make sure you “over-register.” This will insure that your guest have many options.
They will appreciate this!

14. Choose your stores wisely! Make sure that your registry offers you and your guests what you need. Online abilities?
Shipping abilities? Hassle-free?  Figure out what is important to you and your guests and make sure that the stores
you choose meets these needs.

15. Do NOT underestimate the power of a thank you. Make them personal and make them timely.