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JUNE 24, 2011
Customize your wedding with color
hite will probably never lose its place in a wedding, but a Customize and brighten up your wedding at the same time with color, such as the bright springtime colors in these bouquets.
growing number of brides are turning to color to help personalize their special day. From a pop of color on a white or ivory wedding gown to entire themes that carry throughout the ﬂowers, décor, favors and accessories, color sets the mood and makes a statement about your personal style.
“Brides are embracing color as another way to customize their weddings,” said Ray Miller of My Wedding Reception Ideas.com, a leading online resource for brides seeking unique wedding favors, wedding decorations and wedding supplies. “Customizing with color offers brides such a range of creativity. They can choose colors that honor their heritage, evoke the atmosphere of a speciﬁc place, or celebrate a memory or experience that is special to the wedding couple.” If you’ll be saying “I do” in 2011, Miller offers some advice for using color to help create the wedding of your dreams:
Photo by Colorstock
Tips for choosing a color “When it comes to choosing colors for your wedding – whether it’s for accessories, table linens, bridesmaid gowns or even a wedding gown accent – the only unbreakable rule should be that you must love the colors you choose,” Miller said. Keep in mind, however, that different colors will create different moods and not all colors will feel like a good ﬁt for your
wedding depending upon where and when you hold it. For example, if your goal is to create a wedding that captures the fresh, innocent aura of spring, vibrant red table linens and ice-blue bridesmaids’ gowns will be in conﬂict with that atmosphere. “Certain colors are traditionally associated with each season,” Miller notes. “If you’re emphasizing a seasonal effect, keep in mind the colors that the natural world wears during that season.” Popular colors this spring and summer
include hot pink, apple green, celadon, pine green, clementine orange and yellow. Heading into fall, look for amber, chestnut, dark tangerine and brick red. Winter weddings sport colors ranging from Santasuit red and Christmas-tree green to oyster gray, ice blue and pale purple.
Carrying it through Once you’ve chosen your wedding colors, you’ll need to think about how see Color page 8B
JUNE 24, 2011
Do the wedding-reception math
ouples striving for a manageable wedding budget sometimes steer clear of Knowing how much you’ll need to serve your guests can prevent embarrassing shortages and expensive surpluses.
a professional wedding planner and make the arrangements themselves. But planning the wedding reception can be a tall order. How do you know how much to buy? Buy too little of any important item and you could run out, leaving guests hungry, thirsty and
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disappointed. Buy too much and you’ll waste money and be faced with the challenge of getting rid of leftovers. The reception experts at My Wedding Reception Ideas.com, a leading online resource for brides seeking unique wedding favors, decorations and supplies, offer these tips for calculating how much you’ll need of key reception items: Beverages All that dancing and celebrating means your guests will be working up a thirst. A good rule of thumb is to plan for one drink per person per hour. The makeup of your crowd will determine the bottom line. Lots of kids? You’ll need less alcohol and more
soft drinks. Plenty of adults who love a good party? Adjust the amount of alcohol accordingly. Here are some averages to give you a starting point: ♦ Beer: three to four beers per person. ♦ Champagne: two glasses per person (mostly for the toasts). ♦ Wine: three-quarters of a bottle per person. One bottle of wine or champagne yields about six to seven glasses. ♦ Soft drinks: three to four servings per person. A 2-liter bottle holds seven to nine servings. Err on the side of caution and order more than you think you’ll need – about a third more is standard. Check with your distributor before you order; some will allow you to return unopened bottles.
Food Limit the cocktail and hors d’oeuvre time to an hour or 90 minutes. You don’t want guests ﬁlling up before the main event. Estimate three hors d’oeuvres per person per hour – roughly ﬁve per person for the entire time. If your reception will be a cocktail/hors d’oeuvres event without a sit-down dinner, increase your calculations to 12 pieces per guest. If you’re serving a sit-down dinner, one plate per person per course should be your starting point. Ask the kitchen/caterer to keep extras on hand in case a guest requests seconds or last-minute guests arrive. Your baker will recommend the size of wedding cake you’ll need based on how many guests will attend. As some guests
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might want seconds or bring friends to the party, estimate more servings than invited guests. If you serve desserts other than cake, estimate one to two servings per guest. Napkins Personalized or plain, linen or three-ply, wedding napkins are a wedding reception must. It’s hard to imagine going overboard and providing too many napkins, but it could happen – and if it does, you’ll be using those napkins at your ﬁrst anniversary celebration. To ensure your napkin buying is on target with your needs, follow these guidelines: ♦ Two to three cocktail napkins per guest for the bar area. ♦ One cocktail-sized napkin per guest for the cake table. ♦ One and a half dinner or luncheon napkins per guest at the meal table if you won’t be using linen napkins. For example, for 100 guests, plan for 150 dinner napkins. Favors This one seems obvious – one favor per guest. In reality, however, you need to allow for breakage (what if someone drops a box of favors on the way into the reception hall and several shatter?) and guests who ask to take a favor home for a relative or friend who wasn’t able to attend. Increasing your favor purchase by just 10 percent won’t cost much more, but allows you to send guests home with an extra favor or two. – Courtesy of ARA Content
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JUNE 24, 2011
‘Something old, something new’
omething old, something new, something borrowed, something … unique. To make
a wedding both fun and sophisticated, modern brides are giving the old wedding adage a playful twist. If you’re planning your wedding, or helping someone special plan her own, here are some modern variations on the traditional theme: Something old Something old represents the bride’s past. Personalize this tradition by incorporating a small memento from you and your ﬁancé’s past together. Did you keep something from one of your favorite dates? Maybe you still have the ticket stub from the ﬁrst concert you attended together, or the wine cork from your ﬁrst date. Brides are tucking these small items into their bouquets to bring them good luck. At a special moment during the evening, you can reveal the keepsake to your husband and remember how far you’ve come as a couple. Something new Scent creates powerful memories, and today’s brides are taking notice. Find a new fragrance that perfectly ﬁts your special moment. For years to come, the fragrance
will remind you and your husband of your wedding day. A wedding calls for a memorable scent such as twirl by kate spade new york, perfect for this joyous and festive occasion. A fresh ﬂoral bouquet mingles with pink watermelon and red currant, while luminous musks and a touch of French macaroon add that wink of surprise that will keep your husband-to-be enamored and your guests intrigued. Something borrowed According to tradition, something should be borrowed from a person who has a happy marriage. But your something borrowed needn’t be an object. Think outside the box. Perhaps you want to honor your grandparents and borrow some of the vows they recited those many years ago. Or maybe your best friend has an insight about marriage – a nugget you can print on the dessert napkins for all guests to enjoy. Feeling musical? Ask your parents what song was played during their ﬁrst wedding dance and surprise them by borrowing it for your own. Something blue Looking for something unique for your guests to take home as a thank-you token? Wrap up blue candies (blue lollipops are a fun choice) in gift bags accompanied by a note thanking them for being part of your special day.
Ask your parents what song was played for their wedding dance and borrow it for your own. The modern bride is always ﬁnding unique ways to incorporate tradition into her wedding. Those old, new, borrowed and blue somethings – if they’re personal and meaningful – will make your wedding even more memorable. – Courtesy of ARA Content PHOTOGRAPHY WITH PASSION AND FLAIR
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JUNE 24, 2011
Planning the perfect honeymoon
e proposed, you said “Yes!” and now you’re in the throes of planning
your dream wedding ceremony – and let’s not forget the romantic honeymoon. Honeymoon planning can be easy or complicated, depending on the trip you want to take. Since stays at all-inclusive resort hotel on a beach or cruises with limited ports of call don’t require multiple lodging or transportation arrangements, they make for easier honeymoons. If you’re on a tight wedding budget, you and your sweetheart might want to take a honeymoon closer to home. If you’re both baseball fans, for example, a whirlwind tour of several cities with major league ﬁelds would make for a memorable honeymoon. Here are some tips to help you plan your honeymoon: ♦ Pick a destination together. Discuss with your soon-to-be spouse what activities or sights you want to see together. You might want to pick a location where neither of you has traveled previously. Or plan your honeymoon around an event that brought the two of you together.
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Careful planning for your honeymoon can help keep it footloose and fancy free, no matter where in the world you go. ♦ If the bride plans to change her name, she should book her tickets in her maiden name, since she won’t have
time between the ceremony and the honeymoon to change ofﬁcial ID materials and her passport. Airport security can be
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JUNE 24, 2011 unforgiving when a traveler’s ticket name doesn’t match her ID. ♦ Research and plan for what you’ll need to pack. If you’re leaving the country, get your passport and visa (if needed) ready. The U.S. Department of State provides plenty of information about travel warnings and alerts abroad based on political uprisings and natural disasters, plus information on required immunizations. You can register your travel plans with the U.S. Department of State to help ensure you’re easy to reach should your family need to contact you or should an emergency arise abroad. Visit www. travel.state.gov. And don’t forget to research typical temperatures for the time of year you’ll be honeymooning so you can pack the proper clothes.
♦ Whether you’re ﬂying overseas or driving to a nearby locale, invest in medical evacuation and travel assistance memberships. On Call International’s programs provide help for mishaps ranging from lost passports to lost baggage to canceled or postponed ﬂights. And if you get sick or injured while on your honeymoon, On Call can help you ﬁnd medical care – and get back home. Visit www. oncallinternational. com to learn more. Time will ﬂy as you plan your wedding and honeymoon. Before you know it, you’ll be packing your bags for a romantic trip with your honey. Follow these tips for a safe and fun honeymoon, and enjoy the beginning of your life together. – Courtesy of ARA Content
Brides should book tickets in their maiden names, since there won’t be time between the ceremony and the honeymoon to change IDs and passports.
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JUNE 24, 2011
Color from page 2B you’ll use them in the ceremony and reception. Your creativity will serve you well here. Your wedding colors can be used in virtually every aspect of your big day, from the bridal bouquet and decor in the ceremony location to table linens and accessories for the reception. Accessory collections are an easy way to carry your chosen color throughout the wedding. For example, at My Wedding Reception Ideas.com, you’ll ﬁnd accessory collections cataloged by color. These collections allow you to continue your color theme – whether it’s a traditional shell pink, a rich royal purple or even camouﬂage – with color-speciﬁc accessories such as ﬂower-girl baskets, ring-bearer pillows, guestbooks and garters. What’s more, you can customize table linens and even guest favors using your chosen colors.
Wedding gowns and color For decades in America, white and ivory have reigned when it comes to wedding gowns. However, the color trend that began last year with pops of color appearing on bridal fashion runways has continued in 2011. This year, brides have more options than ever if they’re looking to use color to make a personal statement with their wedding gown. From gowns that feature beading and crystals in sparkling hues to ﬂoral accents
Photo by Colorstock
Tie all your wedding decorations together by adding a splash of color from the bride’s bouquet. that capture a season’s signature colors – and even bodices or skirts in contrasting colors – bridal gowns in 2011 are going colorful. If you’ve already chosen a traditional white or ivory gown, you can still dress it up with your wedding color. A simple sash or ﬂoral accent that matches your color theme will look great against the pure, fresh background of white. And if you haven’t yet chosen a gown, you might discover one with a touch of color that can become the color theme for your entire wedding. – Courtesy of ARA Content
JUNE 24, 2011
Cool wedding beans
ourmet jelly beans in bridal colors and exotic ﬂ avors are making
appearances at the most posh weddings. Mindy Weiss, wedding planner for Hollywood’s biggest stars, used 10 ﬂavors of Jelly Belly beans to create a Candy Shoppe at the wedding of Trista and Ryan of “The Bachelorette.” Their reception featured every ﬂavor of pink Jelly Belly beans. Guests were invited to scoop their own selection of ﬂavors from a gorgeous reception table ﬁlled with huge bowls of pink grapefruit, cotton candy, raspberry and strawberry daiquiri jellybeans. The hot citrus colors of the tropics are the fashion colors of the bridal world this season. And the jelly beans from the California company that sent the candy to President Ronald Reagan come in a full palette of each color. The versatile sweets add a new twist to the traditional wedding bonbonnieres. Savvy brides are ﬁlling satin bags with bright jewel-like jelly beans. Bridal showers offer another place to make a sweet, yet personal statement. According to jelly bean maker Jelly Belly Candy Company, many brides and moms are
Jelly beans can be a colorful way to add fun to wedding favors. scooping up the company’s new mint trio ﬂavors. The company has received so many enquiries from brides that a new area of its website, www.jellybelly.com, offers ideas for wedding planning. A clever Candy Calculator even helps brides ﬁgure out how much they’ll need based on the number of guests, the type of candy and the size of the wedding favors. – Courtesy of Jelly Belly Jelly Beans
JUNE 24, 2011
Wedding couples should set a minimum age for participants in the wedding party to help keep things under control on the big day.
Children in a wedding means no kidding around
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wedding ceremony is a joyous event for which couples recruit as many fami-
The Brentwood Senior Activity Center is the perfect choice for your event and is ideal for weddings, bridal showers, rehearsal dinners, baby showers, and birthday celebrations. For more information contact the City of Brentwood Parks and Recreation Department at (925) 516-5444.
ly and friends as possible – as ushers, bridesmaids, groomsmen and readers. Before enlisting the help of a child to ﬁll such roles, carefully consider whether a youngster is capable of participating in the wedding ceremony.
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Couples sweating the details of their weddings might not anticipate kiddie meltdowns or bloopers. Children’s maturity level should be considered before enlisting their help. Here are some other strategies: ♦ Young children serving as ﬂower girls or ring bearers should be able to walk down the aisle without coaxing. ♦ Should children prove competent to walk down the aisle unattended, they can also take their seats next to their parents
after they reach the front. ♦ A reasonable minimum age for a wedding participant is 5 or older, when children can appreciate the signiﬁcance of the event. ♦ Consult with the ofﬁciant of the ceremony. The venue might have rules governing children in the ceremony. ♦ All those participating in the ceremony should be invited to the reception. If you decide to throw a kids-free party, reconsider including children in the ceremony. ♦ Think about another role for young children that won’t disrupt the proceedings. Perhaps they can help hand out birdseed or small bottles of bubbles to use when the couple has ﬁnished their vows. Or give children disposable cameras and allow them to capture a kids’-eye view of the wedding. Couples who desire to include children in the ceremony must accept the possibility of slip-ups. Keeping an open mind and exercising patience can make for memorable moments – and make for a refreshing mood lightener at a solemn occasion. – Courtesy of Metro Creative
JUNE 24, 2011
Cost-cutting tips for newlyweds the aisle and returned from your honeymoon,
one of the next steps you look forward to is buying a home. Though there are deals to be had in any real estate market, the cost of home ownership is something many newly married couples can’t afford right away. A few cost-cutting practices, however, can help you get there: Learn to cook Doing your own cooking is not only a rewarding activity; it saves you a signiﬁcant amount of money. Contrary to popular belief, cooking isn’t terribly difﬁcult. Gourmet meals might require some natural culinary inclination, but more standard fare can be as simple as following a recipe. For those who’ve never stepped up to the stove, it might be a good idea to take cooking lessons. Couples who learn to cook together might also ﬁnd it strengthens their relationship.
Furnish the home piecemeal One advantage today’s newlyweds have over those of yesteryear is that many live together before walking down the aisle. This means they’re not really starting from scratch once they get married. A typical modern couple already owns enough furniture and other household items to get by once they’ve moved into their new home. For those concerned about how they’re going to furnish a home once they’ve signed on the dotted line, one way to cut those costs is to hang on to what you currently have, and steadily buy new items one by one after you’ve moved in. Rather than face the hefty bill you can expect if you buy everything at once, go the piecemeal route. It’s much less stressful to furnish a home piece by piece. Find ways to make home ownership work First-time homebuyers are typically shocked at the cost of home ownership. Some communities offer classes that explain the homebuying process. Some lenders even offer a lower interest rate to prospective buyers who’ve completed such a class. The discount can save you a signiﬁcant amount of money over the course of the mortgage, and the classes can give you a better understanding of what you’re getting into by buying a home.
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nce you’ve walked down
The Press special section for planning your big day in far East Contra Costa