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Your Guide to

All Things

Bridal

honeymoon getaways bridal dresses limousine services tuxedo rentals wedding gowns catering bridesmaids dresses photography hairstyling/nails cake decorating tanning hall rentals rings/jewelry DJ music floral arrangements wedding party gifts invitations decorations rehearsal dinner locations

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

A Publication of


Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Section 2

Your Guide to

All Things

Bridal

A Publication of

IT’S ALL ABOUT THE

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Page 2 Wednesday, January 29, 2014

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Page 2B Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Wedding themes can add up to extra fun

Every couple wants their wedding to be memorable. The goal of planning a w edding is to create an experience that everyone will r emember for years to come. F or some couples, a theme wedding is the best way to accomplish just that. When it comes time to select a theme, the day the wedding takes place may dictate the theme. F or example, if the w edding takes place on Halloween, the ideas for the theme are easy. Many other couples choose a theme that highlights a specific interest or hobby or something that is dear to them. H ere are some popular w edding themes. * Holiday: The Christmas season lends itself well to wedding planning.

The colors (r ed, green, gold) are already established, and most chur ches and buildings ar e already decked out in holiday finery, cutting do wn on the amount of flowers and embellishments couples need. Because the holiday season is so busy and a popular time for socializing, couples who want to tie the knot during this time of y ear should send save-the-date cards well in advance. Another option is to have a â&#x20AC;&#x153;Christmas in Julyâ&#x20AC;? wedding, featuring the same holiday themes but without the hectic nature of the holiday season. * Vegas: Couples who want to tie the knot in Las Vegas but want to ensur e all their lo ved ones can attend can r ecreate the magic of Vegas wherever

they may be. Casino-inspired games and big buffet meals can make guests feel like they have stepped into a casino on the famed Vegas strip. In addition, an Elvis impersonator is essential to a Vegas wedding. * TV show: Some couples elevate certain television shows to cult status. Whether itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;Friendsâ&#x20AC;? or â&#x20AC;&#x153;Star Trek,â&#x20AC;? popular television shows have been transformed into festiv e wedding themes. Whether the idea is to go daring and exchange vows in costume or simply name reception tables according to characters or show locations, couples can include a little television fun into the event. * Fairytale: Many men and women envision a fai-

rytale wedding complete with horse-drawn carriage and the â&#x20AC;&#x153;happily ev er after.â&#x20AC;? This is what makes Disney properties as w ell as the v arious castles around the world popular backdrops for wedding events. Those planning a fairytale wedding need only look to fav orite stories or movies for their inspiration. * Interest or passion: Love to climb mountains? Avid about scuba diving? Couples who share a particular interest can include elements of this spor t or hobby into their wedding. Invitations and decor can hint at the theme, and then special activities can further enhance it. F ish bowls as centerpieces may call to mind under water adventures, while sur fboard-shaped invites may set the scene for a beachside party.

Theme weddings can add an extra spice to the festivities and incorporate

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Wednesday, January 29, 2014 Page 3

Wedding processional alternatives

Not every bride-to-be has visions of walking down the aisle to Wagnerâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s â&#x20AC;&#x153;Bridal Chorus.â&#x20AC;? Some prefer other songs that are romantic or dramatic. There may be a par ticular song dear to a brideâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s heart or one she just fell in lo ve with. For those looking for something that mor e accurately reflects the tone of individual w eddings, here are some selections, courtesy of The Knot, that can make the w edding even more special.

Traditional 1. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Airâ&#x20AC;? (Handel) 2. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Canon in Dâ&#x20AC;? (P achel-

bel) 3. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Procession of J oyâ&#x20AC;? (Hopson) 4. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Te Deumâ&#x20AC;? (Charpentier) 5. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Wedding Marchâ&#x20AC;? (Mozart) 6. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Canzon Vâ&#x20AC;? (Gabrieli) 7. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Romeo & Juliet Love Themeâ&#x20AC;? (Tchaikovsky) 8. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Winterâ&#x20AC;? (Vivaldi) Contemporary 1. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Sunrise, Sunsetâ&#x20AC;? (Hamick & Bock) 2. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Look of Lo veâ&#x20AC;? (Burt Bacharach) 3. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Vowâ&#x20AC;? (Lubbock) 4. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Wedding Processionalâ&#x20AC;? (Rodgers & Hammerstein) Here are some other con-

temporary songs that can be used with lyrics or in instrumental versions as wedding processionals or first dances. 1. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Take Me As I Am â&#x20AC;? (Love Theme from â&#x20AC;&#x153;Jekyll & Hydeâ&#x20AC;?) 2. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Marry Meâ&#x20AC;? (Train) 3. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Just the Way You Are (Bruno Mars) 4. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s All I Ask of Youâ&#x20AC;? (Love Theme from â&#x20AC;&#x153;Phantom of the Operaâ&#x20AC;?) 5. â&#x20AC;&#x153;The Wind Beneath My Wingsâ&#x20AC;? (Bette Midler) 6. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Con Te Partiroâ&#x20AC;? (Andrea Bocelli) 7. â&#x20AC;&#x153;My Heart Will Go Onâ&#x20AC;? (Love Theme from â&#x20AC;&#x153;Titanicâ&#x20AC;?) 8. â&#x20AC;&#x153;You Raise M e Upâ&#x20AC;? (Josh Groban)

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Tradition behind tossing rice

Once a couple has been married, tradition states that they be co vered with tossed rice upon exiting the ceremony. The idea of throwing rice began during the Middle Ages, when rice symbolized fertility. Rice was tossed at the married couple in the hopes they would have many children and be blessed with prosperity as a family. A false rumor spread that rice was harmful to birds who would eat the discarded rice and explode, so many people no w use birdseed or rose petals as alternatives. However, rest assured that the rice myth has been debunked by The Cornell Lab of Ornithology.

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Wardrobe Options for Second-Time Brides Remarriage rates continue to incr ease, and many vendors are now catering specifically to couples entering second marriages. A bride getting married for the second or third time has just as many attire options as she did for her first wedding. Research indicates that more than half of all marriages end in divorce. The silver lining to that cloud is that 54 percent of div orced women

remarry within 5 y ears, according to the N ational Center for H ealth Statistics. Furthermore, 75 per cent of divorced women r emarry within 10 y ears. These statistics show that the need for bridal gowns for women entering a ne w marriage r emains strong. When choosing a go wn for a second wedding, brides-tobe can use their discr etion. Gone is the stigma of w ear-

Tuxes

ing white. H owever, brides still may want to choose an alternative color to bright white to be mor e complementary to their skin tones. Off-white, pale y ellow and pale pink can be flattering shades. If second brides do choose to w ear white, they may want to av oid a flat white color. Instead, they can opt to w ear a shimmer y shade of white and a go wn with a little more pizzazz. The gown -- just as with first-

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time weddings -- should be as formal or as casual as the wedding itself. At afternoon weddings it may be acceptable to w ear a tea-length gown or ev en a cocktail dress. Enhance beachside or casual affairs with less elaborate gowns. Formal second weddings should still featur e a gown that is formal in nature. A more mature bride may feel more comfortable wearing a w ell-tailored pantsuit rather than a go wn. Again, the choice is up to the bride regarding what she wants to wear.

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Honeymoon how-to

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After the thrill of wedding festivities dies down, couples often jet off to a honeymoon retreat and begin an entirely different adventure. The honeymoon may create mixed feelings, some concerning the chance to spend time alone after months of planning and a fe w feelings of anxiety o ver spending the first night together as a married couple. For many couples, the honeymoon w edding night is the first time they ar e intimate together or it holds a special meaning of being intimate for the first time after being married. Such significance can put pr essure on a happy and natural experience. Wedding jitters ar e normal, as ar e honeymoon and w edding night jitters. B ut just as wedding trends have changed through the years, so, too, hav e beliefs about the w edding night. Knowing about shifting trends can alleviate some of the nervousness. According to a r ecent survey from Brides

magazine, one in thr ee brides plan to get into bed on the w edding night and ... sleep . After all of the hoopla of planning and enjo ying the wedding, most people are exhausted. Others say they plan to stay up and r elive moments of the day. Only about half of all couples think they will consummate the marriage on their wedding night. Taking the pressure off of the w edding night means that the r est of the honeymoon may be filled with oppor tunities to be amor ous. But couples may still be filled with expectations for the perfect romantic retreat. Here are some things to think about. * Accept the fact that some wedding nights and honeymoons ar enâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t exactly whatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s pictured in the mo vies. Donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t try to liv e up to a Hollywood-inspired ideal or you may be let down when things donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t go your way. In other words, it may rain on your beachside liaison.

ple find themselves to be physically exhausted afterward. Others find they are so wound up that they cannot r elax. When the mind or body is on adr enaline overload or completel y wiped out, it â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s not the ideal situation for r omantic endeavors.

* Try to make the honeymoon stand apar t from other nights b y packing nice lingerie or nighttime attire so that the memories will be special. There will be plenty of other times down the r oad when youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re an old, married couple to hop betw een the sheets in a ratty college T-shirt. * Pack some candles and mood music, or ask the resort to handle these details for y ou. These items can help set the scene.

* Make sure your packing list includes special toiletries and birth control methods if y ouâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re not ready to start a family so soon after bein g married. The brands * A wedding requires a you prefer may be har d lot of work. Many peo- to acquire while at some honeymoon locations.

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Wednesday, January 29, 2014 Page 5

Tipping point: Gratuities for wedding vendors a nice touch

Thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s no better way to say â&#x20AC;&#x153;job well doneâ&#x20AC;? to a w edding vendor than by offering a tip. Although tips ar e not mandatory, they can sho w a DJ, caterer or another hir ed helper just how much his or her exemplary service was appreciated. Some vendors include tips in their regular schedule of charges, primarily catering facilities that will be hiring wait and bar staff for the event. Others do not include a gratuity into their charges, so it is up to the customer to provide a tip if desir ed. Fifteen to 20 per cent is usually customary according to wed-

ding etiquette exper ts and may be adjusted depending on the siz e of the w edding and the quality of the job done. Businesses owned and operated by a single person, such as a florist or photographer, often pocket all of the proceeds charged for w edding services. Therefore, a gratuity for such v endors is typically unnecessary. Businesses that hir e out staff, such as a large music and entertainment company or a limousine ser vice, will pay employees a salar y. Couples can show those emplo yees they appreciate the job done

for the wedding with an additional tip. A catering hall typically has a staff working behind the scenes to keep guests happy. These staff members include coat-check personnel, a catering manager , kitchen staff, and parking attendants. It can be customary to tip these individuals. O ne dollar per guest is typically sufficient. Or you can choose to individually tip those who went above and beyond. Even though w eddings can cost several thousands dollars, and the idea of par ting with another dollar can seem

monumental, it is important for couples to factor tipping into their o verall wedding budgets. Otherwise, they may be asking family members or the best man to loan cash for tipping or dipping into the honeymoon fund. It may be necessar y to keep about $1,000 to $1,500 available for gratuities alone. It is consider ed poor etiquette to tip a ceremony officiant. Instead, a donation to the church or a charity can be made. Tipping is entir ely up to the couple getting married, but it can be a nice sho w of

Tips for trying on wedding gowns

Many brides-to-be look forward to the day when they visit a bridal salon and ar e able to try on gowns for the first time. There are certain tips that can make the day go much mor e smoothly and potentially r educe the amount of time it may take to find the perfect gown.

* Wear a suppor tive, well constructed strapless bra or corset in y our correct size. If you will be wearing a petticoat, also have the right size available. * Go without face makeup when tr ying on gowns so they remain clean.

* Try to w ear your hair similar to the style y ou have in mind for your wedding. * Note that the siz e of the wedding gown you will wear is typically one to two sizes larger than y our day-to-day clothes. P roper measurements can be matched to designers â&#x20AC;&#x2122; size charts.

* Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s best to limit the number of people with whom you shop to 1 or 2 trusted friends or family members. An entourage can be confusing. * Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s always better to order a slightly larger go wn and leave room for alterations if you are between sizes

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Wednesday, January 29, 2014 Page 5B

Safe and smart ways to slim down before your wedding

Many brides-to-be, and even some gr ooms-to-be, express concern about their weight in the w eeks and months leading up to their wedding. Losing w eight is a goal for many engaged couples, but it ’s important that couples who want to shed a few extra pounds don ’t sacrifice safety for the sake of slimming down. According to a Cornell University study of 273 women with a w edding day approaching, 70 percent wanted to lose mor e than 20 pounds before their w eddings. However, reality indicates that a weight loss of 5 to 10 pounds is more attainable -- mor e so if the w eight loss r egimen is spread out over several weeks. The term “brideor exia” has entered the v ernacular, and it is associated with brides who are taking extr eme measures to lose w eight. Taking laxatives, engaging in fluid-only diets and ev en using tobacco or drugs to ser ve as appetite suppressants are just some of the measures some brides have taken to shed w eight before their wedding days. There is no magic formula to shed pounds, but ther e are

certain ways to jump-star t and maintain the pr ocess of healthy weight loss so brides can look slimmer and healthy for their big day. * Eat. Although initial calorie curbing can help shed weight, eventually your body may adapt to y our new eating habits or go into “ survival mode,” which means conser ving fat reserves. Researchers at Penn State University found that fasting signals to y our body that it is being star ved, triggering a lo wer metabolic rate. Brides-to-be should never cut out food entir ely. Eating anything less than 1,200 calories a day will encourage the body to try to conserve energy by lowering its metabolism. Severe calorie restriction is not an effective way to lose weight. * Step up y our exercise regimen. Reducing food intake alone will not help y ou lose weight quickly. The goal is to burn mor e calories than you consume. Therefore, adding more cardiovascular activity to y our routine can help burn calories mor e efficiently. According to a clinical study from researchers at Italy’s University of P adua published in the 2011 International Journal

of Sports Nutrition and Exercise Metabolism, eating a light meal before exercising helps you burn mor e fat and keeps your body burning fat even 24 hours after the exercise. * Reduce sodium intake. Sodium doesn’t necessarily lead to weight gain, but it can make it appear so . Sodium contributes to water r etention in the body, which may make you appear heavier or bloated. Cut back on foods that ar e high in sodium, especially as the wedding draws close, to reduce water retention. * Identify sources of empty calories. Fruit juices, soda and other beverages are often the culprits with regards to unnecessary calorie consumption. Therefore, choose y our beverages wisely and limit them to water, teas and unsw eetened drinks. If you want to drink fruit juice, consider diluting it. In addition, most alcoholic beverages have 100 calories or more. While it may be tempting to celebrate with wine, champagne and mix ed drinks during your engagement period, your waistline may ultimately pay the price for such indulgences. * Hire a good photogra-

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pher. A camera allegedly adds 10 pounds, a r eason many couples panic about their wedding day. A photo is a 2D image of a 3D object. Therefore, the photo r educes depth perception and flattens an image, which may make some items look like they have more bulk. A professional photographer will know how to manipulate lighting and angles of the camera to ensure a more flattering shot. * Eat smaller portions. Oftentimes, its not a matter of what you are eating but ho w much. Most portion sizes served in r estaurants or ev en at home ar e double or triple the amount that y ou should be eating. When in doubt, cut everything in half. * Fill up on fiber or protein. Instead of resorting to pills to suppress an appetite, simply eat foods that will fill you up naturally. High-fiber foods will bulk up in the stomach and keep y ou feeling satiated longer. The same can be said for lean pr oteins, which take longer to digest, thus fending off hunger pangs. While losing w eight for a wedding is many couples ’ ul-

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Page 6 Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Unique reception touches

Use the bouquets of the bridal party as the centerpieces of some of the reception tables as one way to bring something different to your wedding.

Over the course of their lifetimes, many people will be wedding guests on several occasions. During the height of wedding season, weddings can run into one another, as the format and the festivities are similar at various ceremonies. Couples inter ested in setting their nuptials apar t may want to enhance the wedding reception with a few unique ideas. Who hasnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t attended a wedding that seems formulaic? The couple enters, they do their spotlight dance, thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s food, a bouquet toss and then the cake cutting. Guests may actually be able to predict whatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s coming next. While it is often customary and easy to follo w tradition, that doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t mean you cannot buck with tradition and offer a few creative ideas to make y our event stand out. Here are several ideas you can introduce into your wedding to add something special to the reception. * Skip the big entrance. Those who were kind enough to attend the ceremony have already been intr oduced to the newly minted happy couple. Instead of spending the cocktail hour in the isolation of the w edding suite, mingle with y our guests from start to finish. So much time is spent posing for pictures or being out of touch

with guests, the cocktail hour can be a great time to sit and chat. Being with guests during the cocktail hour means you donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have to make that big entrance fr om behind closed doors. G uests will have all ey es on y ou when you step on the dance floor for your first dance together. * Dance to an upbeat number. Guests are expecting a slow, sappy tune. What they may not expect is an upbeat song that shows you are willing to hav e a little fun. If you havenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t mastered the waltz but enjoy a little quick step now and again, feel fr ee to choose a tune that sho ws your excitement and love for each other. * Encourage couples to dance together. Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s often customary for the bridal par ty to join the bride and gr oom on the dance floor midway through the first dance. However, that leaves spouses or significant others waiting in the wings while their dates tango with gr oomsmen or bridesmaids. Instead, donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have assigned partners. Rather, encourage y our bridal party members to dance with whomever they choose. * Swap the gar ter/bouquet toss for something more meaningful. If youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re part of a couple who feels the gar ter and bouquet toss has become trite, there are other ways to create special moments in

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your celebration -- ones that donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t single out the singletons who hav enâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t yet found their special someones. U se this time to pr esent a small gift or token of y our affection to someone on the guest list who has served as a mentor or source of inspiration. * Choose one special component as an extra goodie for guests. S ome couples feel the mor e they offer the better guests will vie w their wedding. Spending more money doesnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t necessarily mean guests will hav e a better time. I f you want to go above and bey ond the or dinary, find one thing that you absolutely love and offer that at the par ty. It could be a flambe presentation, a chocolate or candy bar, a carving station with y our all-time favorite food (ev en if that â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s PB&J), or a carnival-inspired automatic photo booth. * Hire a liv e performer. Although itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s hard to beat the performance quality o f your wedding song bein g performed by the original artist, unless y ouâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re cousins with Celine D ion, chances are she wonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t be available to sing â&#x20AC;&#x153;My Heart Will Go Onâ&#x20AC;? at your reception. However, a live band adds a certain level of ex citement that a dis k jockey may not be able to provide. Those who are adding a cultural or ethnic component to their wedding may want to hire a dance tr oupe or another type of performer, like a bagpiper, as an added measure of entertainment for guests. * Let them eat ... cookies? Some people just don â&#x20AC;&#x2122;t like cake. Therefore, why should a couple hav e to cut a seven-tiered white confection? Towers of different types of treats can be created from just about anything and serve as the perfect backdrop for that classic cake-cuttin g photo. A pyramid of cr eam puffs, stacks of br ownies, a cookie castle, or cer ealcake concoctions can wor k. Some bakeries will decorate a â&#x20AC;&#x153;dummyâ&#x20AC;? styrofoam cake, and then you can serve apple pie a la mode, if you desire. * Stage a costume switch. Letâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s face it, dancing all night in a long go wn takes some stamina. As the bride, hav e a more comfortable cocktail dress available to switch into for the latter par t of the r eception. It will also add some variety to your wedding photos.


Page 6B Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Roles of the best man and maid of honor

Being chosen as a best man or a maid of honor is a significant and meaning ful honor. Those roles have evolved over the y ears, but these special par ticipants must still per form some of the traditional duties of the past, including ser ving as the official witnesses to the ceremony. The following is a rundown of the v arious duties maids of honor and best men ar e now expected to handle once theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re chosen for these distinguished honors.

The best man will coordinate the bachelor party and may be asked to assist the groom with selecting a honeymoon site or to come along to book the trip. Wedding day On the day of the wedding, the maid of honor and the best man will act as a suppor t system for the

bride and gr oom. The maid of honor will help the bride get dressed and help iron out any mini-emergencies that should crop up. The best man will help ensur e all of the ushers are dressed and get the groom to the wedding on time. During the cer emony, the maid of honor will hold the brideâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s bouquet while she

At the r eception, the best man is expected to

give a toast and the maid of honor may shar e some words as w ell. She also may accompany the bride to the restroom and assist her with managing the gown. After the wedding The best man will be in charge of r eturning the tuxedoes to the rental shop, if necessary. He also may driv e

the newly married couple to the airport so they can depart on their honeymoon.

The maid of honor will assist the bride in changin g out of her gown and into her travel clothes. O ftentimes the maid of honor takes the gown to the cleaners in the days following the ceremony so the dress can be preserved.

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Before the wedding takes place, the maid of honor will closely assist the bride-to-be with many of the impor tant decisions related to the look and the feel of the w edding. She typically accompanies the bride to dr ess shops to select gowns for the bride and bridesmaids. M uch in the same manner , the best man will assist the groom-tobe with choosing tux edoes or suits and also with coordinating with the ushers to ensure they know when to go for fittings.

Although the best man will serve as a sounding board for the gr oom, traditionally the bride and her bridesmaids have taken on the majority of the wedding planning, so the maid of honor can expect to play a larger r ole than the best man. The maid of honor may be asked to delegate certain assignments, such as helping to find wedding vendors or addr essing invitations. She may go with the bride for makeup and hairstyle trials. Together with the bridesmaids, she will plan a bridal sho wer party and a bachelorette excursion. She may select a wedding gift for the couple and pr esent it on behalf of all the w edding attendants.

participates in the w edding. The best man will keep the rings safe until they ar e needed. The maid of honor also will help adjust the brideâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s train and v eil as she sits and stands during the ceremony. Both will sign the marriage cer tificate as witnesses.

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Wednesday, January 29, 2014 Page 7

Test out wedding music vendors

Music is an integral element of many of life’s special events. The score of a mo vie can carry a film, and a tender song can bring tears to a person’s eyes during a stage production. Many couples spend lots of time choosing a song for their first dance at their wedding. While that song is significant, couples should devote lots of time to choosing a band or deejay for the reception as well. Statistics compiled from a variety of sour ces, including USA Today, TheKnot.com and Brides magazine, point out that r oughly 80 per cent of guests say the thing they remember most about a wedding is the enter tainment. When asked, many couples admit they wish they spent more time and money choosing their wedding entertainment. Music helps make memories and gets guests on their feet. Those who enjoy themselves most at the w edding

are often the people who are on the dance floor. It is important to note that price shouldn’t be the deciding factor for wedding day entertainment. It is cr ucial to see the entertainment provider in action to judge for oneself just how good he or she is. One of the best ways to witness a deejay or band in action is to attend a w edding where they will be wor king. Find out if y ou can spend a little while peeking into a wedding and gauge guests ’ responses to the music and find out ho w the enter tainment engages the cr owd. The entertainer may be able to arrange this with a couple from an upcoming w edding so that you don’t necessarily have to crash the w edding. If a musical enter tainment company is war y of letting you see play ers in action, it may be an indication to look elsewhere. Another good way to see for yourself if the enter tainment factor is high is to pay atten-

tion to the bands and deejays used at weddings you attend. If you are planning nuptials in a y ear or the months to come, take the car ds or information of the entertainers you come across at weddings and any special ev ent parties. If there is someone who is doing an impeccable job , there should be no hesitation to hire that person for y our own wedding. Don’t be embarrassed to ask a friend or family member for the name and number of their deejay. If you have specific music requirements, such as cultural music or cer tain versions of songs y ou prefer to be played, it is key to discuss this with the deejay or band ahead of time and confirm they can meet y our needs. Certain wedding vendors may promise you the world but fail to deliv er. Ask the deejay for a playlist to see his or her selections for the wedding. Find out if the band has a compilation they can

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be performing at y our wedding. Many times performers are part of larger companies that have many people working under one name. If you’re not careful, you may not get the same performer you had hoped for. Request specific individuals if y ou want to

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Wednesday, January 29, 2014 Page 7B

Pack an emergency wedding day kit

Brides- and grooms-to-be hope and pray their wedding day will go off without a hitch. After a y ear or mor e of planning and writing checks for so many things, couples hope that it all comes together in the end. For most it does. O thers may need a little help keeping things on track. Although the idea is to hope for the best, being pr epared for a fe w obstacles along the way can ensur e the day goes smoothly. Many couples find it wise to pack an emergency kit, stocked with items to make r epairs or handle tie ups with ease. Brides and grooms can use this checklist to compile a wedding day kit that meets their needs and customize with any speciality items. â&#x20AC;˘ needle and thread in white, black and the color of bridesmaid gowns â&#x20AC;˘ extra pairs of pantyhose â&#x20AC;˘ pain reliever pills â&#x20AC;˘ antacid â&#x20AC;˘ quick-clean detergent stick

â&#x20AC;˘ deodorant â&#x20AC;˘ double-sided tape â&#x20AC;˘ black buttons â&#x20AC;˘ sanitary pads â&#x20AC;˘ mints/gum â&#x20AC;˘ makeup for touchups â&#x20AC;˘ extra cash â&#x20AC;˘ slippers or a change of shoes â&#x20AC;˘ umbrellas â&#x20AC;˘ hairspray â&#x20AC;˘ hair pins â&#x20AC;˘ names and phone numbers of all w edding vendors â&#x20AC;˘ static cling spray â&#x20AC;˘ hair dryer â&#x20AC;˘ contact lens solution/eye drops â&#x20AC;˘ nail file â&#x20AC;˘ nail clipper â&#x20AC;˘ straws (to sip drinks without r uining lipstick) â&#x20AC;˘ safety pins

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Origins of the term â&#x20AC;&#x153;honeymoonâ&#x20AC;?

It has become tradition for married couples to jet off on a post-w edding vacation. This honeymoon is a way for the bride and groom to enjo y quiet time together and star t off their married life together on an intimate level. Although the word â&#x20AC;&#x153;honeymoonâ&#x20AC;? has happy connotations today , the original meanings of the word may not be so blissful. There are varying accounts of the ev olution of the word â&#x20AC;&#x153;honeymoon,â&#x20AC;? but many believe it to be a Norse tradition deriving fr om the word â&#x20AC;&#x153;hjunottsmanathr.â&#x20AC;? Northern European history describes women being abducted fr om their families and for ced into marriage with a man fr om a neighboring village. This husband would take his new bride into hiding and stay there for a while until it was cer tain the bride â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s family had given up the hunt and retreated. It was also tradition for Scandinavian couples to drink a sw eet, honey-infused wine kno wn as mead for a month after getting married. This may be

where the â&#x20AC;&#x153;honey ,â&#x20AC;? for the sweet drink, and the â&#x20AC;&#x153;moon,â&#x20AC;? for the one-month period of time, originated. O thers say â&#x20AC;&#x153;honeymoonâ&#x20AC;? refers to a

sarcastic quip that a marriage starts out sw eet as honey , but then wanes much as the moon will each cycle.

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Page 8 Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Things to consider when a bridesmaid is pregnant

Brides-to-be thinking of asking a pr egnant friend or family member to be in the bridal party should kno w such a r equest is common. Recent findings indicate that around half of all w eddings now have at least one member of the bridal par ty showing off a baby bump -sometimes it’s even the bride herself. Barring a medical condition, there is no r eason a pregnant woman can’t be in the wedding and fulfill her obligations, so feel free to invite that special someone to be in the wedding. There are just a few things to consider to help make it easier on everyone involved. Think over these things. * Gowns: One of the things brides and bridesmaids often fret about is the gown they will be w earing. While nonpregnant members of the bridal party won’t fluctuate much in w eight from the day of their first fittings to the w edding day, a pregnant woman is gr owing with new life within her

from the moment of conception. This will hav e to be taken into consideration. Some maternity designers create bridesmaid dresses for pregnant women, but they may not exactly match the other gowns in mind. Ask the bridal store if alterations can be made to a standar d gown, including or dering a much larger size, adding elastic panels or another way to ensure the gown will stretch over a gr owing belly. Also, be considerate and choose a gown in an empire waist style so that it is flattering for the pregnant bridesmaid. * Shoes: While pregnant, some women’s feet sw ell. Having strict r estrictions on footwear can make a pr egnant woman uncomfortable. Low heels or ballerina slippers can be comfor table and fashionable. The other members of the bridal par ty may also thank you for choosing a sensible shoe. * Breaks: Many activities during the w edding are bound to be tiring. B ut someone who is pr egnant

may feel it more than others. Ensure your mama-to-be has ample time to sit and r est. Also, try to hav e planning meetings near a r estroom where she will be comfor table. * Nonalcoholic drinks: From bachelorette parties to the wedding itself, be sur e there are plenty of nonalcoholic and decaffeinated drinks she can enjo y. Pregnant women need to hav e a lot of water to meet the physical demand of pr egnancy as well. * Travel: In the latter months of the pr egnancy, many doctors advise against air travel. Spending long hours in a car may be uncomfortable as w ell. If you were thinking about having the wedding far away, these are things that must be taken into consideration. You may want to r evise your plans if your heart is set on having this woman in the bridal party. * Ceremony: It can be tiring for a pr egnant woman, especially one in the last tri-

Having a pregnant friend or family member as a bridesmaid just takes a little extra planning. mester, to stand for a long period of time. I f you are having a long, r eligious ceremony, see if a seat can be arranged so your bridesmaid can sit down when she needs a rest. * Declined invitation: Some pregnant women will jump at the chance to be in the wedding, while others

may realize their limitations and prefer to attend only as a guest. Have a another person in mind in case y our bridesmaid invitation is declined, and do not hold it against the person if she feels she won’t be able to commit during her pregnancy. * Patience: Although all eyes are generally on the

bride on her special day, having a pr egnant bridesmaid may garner a shar e of “oohs and aahs” and attention for her as w ell. It’s a humble bride who can shar e her spotlight for a while. And remember, the “ something new”at your wedding may be that new baby who is on the way!

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Page 8B Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Origins of bridal customs

Chances are those who have attended a w edding have witnessed some popular traditions take place. The bride wears a veil, a court of wedding attendants accompanies the bride and gr oom, and birdseed, rice or flower petals are tossed. B ut have you ever wondered why? The wedding customs ar e ripe with tradition and har ken back to days when superstition and myth often r uled the day. * Throwing rice: Today it has become de rigueur to blow bubbles, toss bir dseed or r elease doves when the bride and gr oom leave the house of worship ne wly betrothed. Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s because savvy individuals found that raw rice can pose a hazar d to birds pecking in the ar ea. However, rice throwing is an old custom that dates back to the M iddle Ages, when wheat or rice wher e thrown to symbolize fertility for the couple. * Bouquet: N owadays, the bride carries a beautiful bouquet of flowers. But the

purpose of the bouquet held different meanings in the past. Saracen brides carried orange blossoms for fer tility. Others carried a combination of herbs and flowers to ward off evil spirits with their aroma. Bouquets of dill were often carried, again for fertility reasons, and after the ceremony, the dill was eaten to encourage lust. * Bridesmaids: There may be arguments o ver dresses and how many bridesmaids to have in a w edding party now, but in ancient times it was â&#x20AC;&#x153;the more the merrier.â&#x20AC;? Thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s because bridesmaids were another measur e to keep the bride safe against evil spirits. Essentially the bridesmaids were decoys for the spirits -- dressing like the bride to confuse the spirits or maybe help deter them to leave the bride be. * Wedding rings: Wearing of wedding rings dates back to ancient Egypt. The round shape of a ring symboliz es eternal love. The ring is worn on the four th finger of the left hand because it is be-

lieved this finger has a blood vessel that goes dir ectly to the heart. * Wedding cake: The traditional wedding cake evolved from Roman times when the cake was originally made fr om wheat. I t was broken over the brideâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s head to ensure fertility. All of the guests eat a piece for good luck. Single women used to place a piece of wedding cake under their pillo ws in the hopes of finding their o wn husbands. * Father accompanying the bride: This tradition symbolizes that the bride â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s father endorses the choice in husbands and is pr esenting his daughter as a pur e bride to that man. * Kissing the bride: I n older times, a kiss symbolized a legal bond. Therefore, the bride and gr oom kissed to seal the deal on their betrothal. There are many traditions surrounding a wedding that people simply accept. But understanding their origins can make the cer emony more meaningful.

A wedding cake once symbolized fertility for the happy couple.

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Wednesday, January 29, 2014 Page 9

Floral terms to know

Before discussing table settings for their weddings, many couples find it helpful to br ush up on some floral terminology before visiting florists. It can make you appear more knowledgeable and prepared if y ou understand what will be discussed and are able to choose what you want. It also helps to ensur e your money is being spent in the best way possible. Here are some common and some lesser known florist terms that can be adv antageous to know. * Biedermeier: A nosegay arranged tightly with concentric cir cles of differently colored

flowers. The flowers are wired into a holder with only one type of flower in each ring. * Bouquet: A dense bunch of blooms that are kept together in a bouquet holder, wired or tied with ribbon. * Crescent: One full flower and a flowering stem wired together to form a slender handle that is held in one hand. * Garden: A centerpiece featuring wildflowers. * Nosegay: Small, round bouquets composed of densely packed round flowers and fill. * Oasis: Specialized

foam that is used in bouquet holders and centerpieces to r etain water and keep blooms fresh. * Pomander: A flowercovered ball that is suspended from a ribbon.

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It is often carried by child attendants. * Posies: Smaller than nosegays but similar in design. * Presentation: A bunch of long-stemmed

flowers cradled in the brideâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s arms. I tâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s sometimes known as a pageant bouquet.

* Tossing: A smaller copy of the bride â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s bouquet to use in the bouquet toss.

* Topiary: Flowers trimmed into geometric shapes.

* Tussy mussy: A small, metallic holder to carry a posy.


Page 10 Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Use cuisine to create a wedding to remember

Despite the months of planning and poring over every minute detail of a w edding, it has often been said that what people remember most about wedding receptions is the food and if they had fun. Therefore, instead of worrying about choosing Jordan almonds o ver chocolate truffles, or whether the cake should have an extra tier, couples may want to pay more attention to selecting their reception menus.

Although certain foods are wedding staples, it could pay for couples to think with their stomachs instead of their heads when selecting wedding day far e. Having a selection of foods that taste as good as they look is a wise idea over having certain foods simply because they are trendy.

Whether you are cooking yourself, having a family member serve as chef or relying on the menu of the reception hall, think about foods that will please guests

and select those items, regardless of them being fancy. Here are some other tips.

* You want foods to be filling but not so much so that guests hav e to waddle to the dance floor. If youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re planning on sev eral courses, keep portion sizes small to offer a taste of the different items offered.

items people hav e heard of. Instead of tornadoes of beef, select a hear ty prime rib. Just because a dish sounds fancy doesn â&#x20AC;&#x2122;t make it taste better . If a guest doesn â&#x20AC;&#x2122;t know what he or she is eating, it can be uncomfor table. Now is not the time to experiment with exotic

* Classic foods can work well as wedding fare. Roasts, barbecued meats and favorite pasta dishes can make guests feel like t h e yâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;r e dining a t

foods,

either. Otherwise, some picky eaters may be left hungry.

* Think about the foods y ou love and see if they can be

incorporated at the wedding.

crackers.

Although a br eakfast bar at an ev ening event may seem funny , waffles and omelets may appeal to a greater number of guests than a gourmet fish creation.

* If you have a fav orite restaurant that ser ves delicious food, find out i f they will cater your wedding.

* Donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t make vegetarians an afterthought. Too often, vegetarians must eat whatever the kitchen can pull together , which is usually a compilation of the vegetable garnishes from the meat dishes. M ake an effort to have a true vegetarian dish that is intricate and delicious. * Mashed potatoes ar e a crowd pleaser. Serve little portions of mashed potatoes in cocktail glasses and enable guests to top as they see fit with bacon bits, cheese or chives. * No idea is silly , and serving any type of food in a hors d â&#x20AC;&#x2122;oeuvre style can make it acceptable at a formal affair, whether that food is pizza or caviar-topped

someoneâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s home and not at a wedding. * Choose

* Just because it isn â&#x20AC;&#x2122;t on the menu doesn â&#x20AC;&#x2122;t mean it cannot be pr epared. Talk to the catering manager and let him or her kno w your preferences. Provided youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re willing to pay a little mor e, thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a good chance you can have items that ar enâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t on the standard catering menu.

* Think outside the bo x for your cocktail hour â&#x20AC;&#x153;bars.â&#x20AC;? A bread bar, a dippin g station, milk and cookies service, or v egetable bar ar e options that go against the standard cheese and past a stations. Although itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s your wedding, ultimately the goal is to please the guests. By choosing foods they will love and rav e about, y ouâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re guaranteed positive remarks on your wedding.

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Wednesday, January 29, 2014 Page 11

Packing pointers for destination weddings

In a 2012 study of destination weddings conducted by The Knot M arket Intelligence, a r esearch wing of TheKnot.com, researchers found that 350,000 destination weddings occur each year. That figure means nearly one in four couples who tied the knot in 2011 had a destination wedding, a roughly five percent increase from 2009. Destination weddings have grown in popularity for a variety of r easons, not the least of which is the appeal of getting married in an exotic or unique locale. I n addition, 65 per cent of sur vey respondents said they chose a destination wedding because they wanted a more intimate affair with fewer guests. Whatever the r eason behind a couple â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s decision to have a destination w edding, there are things such couples must consider that others who chose a local cer emony can afford to o verlook or place a smaller emphasis upon. Packing is one aspect of a wedding thatâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s more important to couples having a destination w edding than those getting married closer to home. O nce a couple boards a plane to head off to their destination w edding, any items left behind will

stay behind. So itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s important for couples getting married far away from their homes to develop a plan with r espect to packing so they donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t forget or damage any important elements of the wedding. * Start with a checklist. Couples should dev elop of checklist of items they will need to bring with them. Make this list as extensiv e as possible, including everything that will hav e to be packed, such as clothing, toiletries, jewelry, reservation information, and anything else you expect to need on your trip. Check off items on this list as you pack them away, and check the list the night before you embark to make sure you have everything. * Carry on especially important items. S ome items are simply to impor tant to pack. A brideâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s wedding gown and the gr oomâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s tuxedo fall into this categor y. Unfortunately, checked bags can get lost, and no bride or gr oom wants to arrive at their destination without their gown or tux. An airline may pr ovide brides with a garment bag to store the wedding gown, and the gown and tux can likely be hung in the plane â&#x20AC;&#x2122;s closet without fear of other passengers putting items on top of

them. In addition to the w edding day attir e, donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t store items like the w edding rings or family heirlooms in a checked bag. Carr y these items in a purse or secur ely store them in a carry-on bag. * Consider mailing w elcome packages after y ou return home. Welcome packages are nice gestures that show your guests just ho w much y ou appreciate their being ther e for your big day . However, when having a destination wedding, couples may discover that their premade welcome packages are too bulky or just too numer ous to easily fit into luggage. I nstead of taking these to y our destination, mail them to y our guests after you return home. The packages might not be there to welcome guests, but the sentiment is still the same and guests will appreciate the gesture just the same. I f you plan to go this r oute, talk to the hotel in adv ance to see if they can help y ou put together a smaller package so guests are still w elcomed to the destination. * Be wary of shipping items ahead of y ou. Some couples ship some important items to their hotel ahead of time. While this might seem like an easy solution to pack-

ing welcome packages or other special items such as decorations, these items can easily get lost in the mail or

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Bridal tab 2014