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C L E V E LA N D 2017

Publisher: Jadlyn Incorporated

BRID E TODAY'S PLAN NER WED DING

, s, Planners Portfolio my! erest, oh and Pint

p. 129

wave of t fades, a ng s of picki nt excitemen engageme in the stres being caught up ent the postto enjoy easy to get The mom finding time ask ty hits. It’s and still tions to ng anxie r details, best ques pre-planni ing déco be! ded up the brainstorm th as it can We’ve roun vendors, ss as smoo no fear! proce have to booking ing but it comes the plann engaged, vital when ent ors to make tions are the mom your vend ques out d overlooke should find ): 's what you These often ce (and why! ors. Here any’s servi your vend ider a comp you cons

Redesigned with YOU in Mind

®

Congratulations! You said “yes,” and now it’s time to start planning your “I Do.” From short engagements to long ones, this Wedding Planner is your guide to making this journey simple and stress-free! Ask questions like a seasoned pro, take advantage of our helpful tips, and refer to our monthby-month checklist to make your planning process a breeze. Join Today's Bride for additional pages, discounts, and inspiration galore!

40 pages of everything from checklists to contact sheets, and more!

1930 N. Cleveland-Massillon Road Akron, Ohio 44333 330-670-9545 • 216-393-5677 FAX: 330-670-9546 admin@TodaysBride.com www.TodaysBride.com

Chief Marketing Office James J. Frericks

Be sure to make copies of each page so you can compare different vendors. We suggest talking to at least three.

ulars and ing partic on plann of time so borating details ahead you do. Colla ions and rable as your quest al and memo Address day as speci agenda. specifics! make your organized unknown rs want to ing over ensure an ut stress Your vendo mind and day witho peace of give you M enjoy your you can ideas will YSBRIDE.CO Y'S BRIDE JOIN TODA

TO GET

ADDITIONAL

PAGES AT

TODA

NER

Y'S BRIDE 2 | TODA

PLAN WEDDING

Chief Operating Office Denise L. Frericks Vice President of Shows & Internet Operations: Jennifer Judy Fyffe

inspiration Find the Dress . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 United in Love . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34 Decor we Adore . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 65 Rules of Engagement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 73 15 Real Weddings . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 81 Perfect Petals . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 98 Custom Confections . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 114 Local Loves . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 126

MOD E R N Love the cover? There’s more where that came from! See the entire shoot on

page 77

planning Big Day Beautiful . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28 Invitation Etiquette . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 It Starts with a Plan . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30

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Bridal Marketing Account Manager: Whitney Miller Office Manage Colleen Ahern Creative Director: Kate Wolfram Content Editor: Madison Frericks Social Media Stylist: Jordan Roberts Content & Marketing Stylist: Taylor Jarvis Contributing Writers: Liz Pruitt, Meg Kraft

You Said Yes (The Pre-Parties) . . . . . . . . . . . . 38 What is a Wedding Show . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 41 Catering by the Numbers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 62 Let’s Dance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 104 Well Traveled . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 123

Front Cover & Table of Contents Photos by: Genevieve Nisly Photography Featuring: Forest Woods Events, Tuxedo Junction, Carol Martin salonSpa, Paper Trails of Rocky River, Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, Expressions Bridal & Formal, All Occasions Party Rental / Marbella Event Furniture and Decor Rental, Kathy’s Cakery, Ltd., Elite Entertainment

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Director of Sales & Bridal Marketing: Rachel Yagl

Today’s Bride magazine is published annually in both the Greater Akron/Canton area (November) covering Summit, Stark, Portage, Wayne and Medina counties and in the Greater Cleveland area (July) covering Cuyahoga, Geauga, Lake and Lorain counties. All articles and advertisements are property of Jadlyn Incorporated and may not be reproduced without the publisher’s written permission. Jadlyn Incorporated is not responsible or liable for any errors, misprints, misquotes or omissions. Copyright © 2016-17. All rights reserved. Today’s Bride is not responsible for unsolicited editorial material unless a self-addressed stamped return envelope is included. Advertisement in this publication does not imply the endorsement of Today’s Bride Magazine, Jadlyn Inc. or any of its representatives. For further information call our offices at 330.670.9545 or 216.393.5677. Printed in the USA.

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contents table of

CL E VE LAND 2 0 1 7

Beauty & Health

28

Hudec Dental . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 126 Kelly Beauty . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 122 Perfectly Posh . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 127

Wedding Consultants

Consider it Done Events . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .105 Covesa Kelly Events . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 61 Dream Weddings & Events . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 117 Elegant Events by Maria . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 45

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Bridal Attire & Accessories

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Alterations Express . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 American Commodore Dress Shoppe . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 Brides by Demetrios . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 Chloe + Isabel . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 119 David’s Bridal . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 116 Doreen Leaf Designs . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56 Expressions Bridal & Formal . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 105 Galleria Gowns . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 126 Lavender Bridal . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55 Vera’s Ladies Apparel . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . PLANNER

Men’s Attire

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American Commodore Tuxedo . . . . . INSIDE FRONT COVER Men’s Wearhouse . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31 Tuxedo Junction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 63

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Invitations

32

Inspired Paper Co. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 127 Paper Trails of Rocky River . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 106

Ceremony

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All About Your Weddings Officiant Servic . . . . . . . 126

Receptions Ahern Catering & Banquet . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 111 Bertram Inn & Conference Center, The . . . . . . . . . . . . . 48 Brennan’s Catering & Banquet Centers . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 Century Farms . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21 Chagrin Valley Athletic Club . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56 Cleveland Marriott East . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 101 Cleveland Metroparks Zoo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 Club at Key Center, The . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 119 Country Lakes Party Center . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 116 Crowne Plaza Cleveland Airport . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 64 DoubleTree Cleveland . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 99 DoubleTree Westlake . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 80 Elegant Assets Events Center . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 127 Embassy Suites-Beachwood . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58 Embassy Suites-Rockside . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29 Fox Meadow . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . BACK COVER Gervasi Vineyard . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 60 Glenmoor Country Club . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51 Great Lakes Science Center . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 105 Hilton Garden Inn Cleveland Downtown . . . . . . . . . . . 46 Hilton Garden Inn Mayfield/700 Bet . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40 Holiday Inn Strongsville . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42 House of Blues . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 109

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43 LaCentre . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . BACK COVER LaVera Party Center . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23 Lodge at Geneva-on-the-Lake, The . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33 Nautica Queen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 102 New Orleans Party Center . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 121 Nuevo Modern Mexican & Tequila Bar . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37 Quail Hollow Resort . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 113 Residence Inn by Marriott at The Emerald Center . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55 Rock & Roll Hall of Fame & Museum . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . INSIDE BACK COVER Rustic Hills Country Club . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35 Sawmill Creek Resort . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 75 Signature of Solon . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . BACK COVER St. Paul Hellenic Banquet Center . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 The New Center at NEOMED . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39 Tinkham Veale University Center . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 67 Wagner’s of Westlake . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 63 Weymouth Country Club . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . BACK COVER Wildwood Cultural Center-Mentor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 69 Woodside Event Center at St. Michael’s . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 1. Essence of Australia 2. Three and Eight Photography 3. New Image Photography

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Flowers

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Creations by Lynn . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 36 Crystal Bloom . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 118 Forest Woods . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 107 Hirt’s Flowers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47 Silver Fox Florist . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 122 Timeless Moments Floral Preservation . . . . . . . . . . . . . 49

DJs, Bands & Muscians

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Catering

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104

Billy J Full Spectrum Entertainment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 127 Cleveland Music Group . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 74 LO-KEY Entertainment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 107 Marino Brothers . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 121 Music and More . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 122 Rock The House Entertainment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 Selective Sound Entertainment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 113 Sound Precision Entertainment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 103 Special Productions, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 117

Photography A Crystal Clear Sound, Video . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 118 American Commodore Wedding Photography . . . . . 15 Artistic Photography . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 111 B. Frohman Imaging + Design . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54 BCR Studios by Brad . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 66 Black Dog Photo Co. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 113 Cirino Photography . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59 Cleveland Photo Group . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 106 Genevieve Nisly Photography . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 76 Hai Bales Photography . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 61 Human Artist Photography . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 69 JazzyMae Photography . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 127 John Paul Studios . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47 6

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Videography

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Elite Entertaiment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 113 Graham River Productions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 103 SB Productions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 44

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Colozza’s Bakery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 111 Kathy’s Cakery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 106 Rito’s Italian Bakery & Catering . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 102

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Aable Rents . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 75 All Occasions Party Rental . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 76 Amour Events . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 121 Cover Girlz, The . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59 Designs of Distinction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Elegant Ice Creations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 64 L’Nique Specialty Linen Rental . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50 Rock The House Entertaiment . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 67 Solus Lighting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 109

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Great Grins Photo Booth . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 122 inFocus Photo Booths . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 109 Selfie Scen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 127 Tap Snap Photo Booth . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 106

Cakes

Old Carolina Barbecue Company . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 117

Decor

Photo Booth

Limousine Service

120

Cutting Edge Limousine . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 126 Limobusters . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 127 Shima Limousine Service, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42 Western Reserve Transportation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 53

Honeymoon

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70 Justin Ketchem Photography . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31 Karen Menyhart Photography . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 117 Kay Photo & Design . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 126 Ken Love Photography . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 105 LMAC Photography . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37 Love is All You Need Photography . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 49 Malick Photo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 72 New Image Photography . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8 Orchard Photography . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 53 Riverfront Photography . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 109 Spencer Photography, Inc. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50 Three and Eight Photography . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 80

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J Sullivan Travel . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 122 LoveShack Vacations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 124 Traveling with Phyllis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 126 Travel Specialist Group . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 127 UnlimitedTrips.com . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 125

Unique Services Dani Altieri Marinucci . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 121 Wine & Design . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 127 Women’s Journal . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 122

1. Malick Photo 2. Artistic Photography

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The

Today’s brides are incredibly committed to finding the perfect gown — as is made evident by the range of choices available in bridal shops! There are so many options available to brides because each bride has a very unique vision of what her wedding will be like and is looking for that one dress that will set the tone for the entire day. So what do you need to know? When should you start? Where should you go, and what can you expect once you get there? Read on for the answers to your most pressing questions!

Stella York - Style 6247 available at Expressions Bridal and Lavender Bridal Salon

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When should I start my gown shopping? Nine to 12 months before your wedding is an ideal time for shopping as it’s best to have about six months to spare for fittings and (sometimes multiple) alterations. If you have less than six months to work with, start shopping right away!

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How can I prepare for my rst gown shopping experience? You’ll want to start by looking at magazines, bridal websites, and yes, Pinterest to get an idea of what you’re drawn to in terms of style, shape, and attitude. Be sure to bring those photos to your first appointment; the overall feel — romantic, modern, beachy — is the key piece your consultant needs to pull a range of dresses that might work. Less excitedly – but more importantly – you’ll need to have a budget in mind. Most brides spend about 10 percent of their overall wedding budget on their dress, but consider this a starting point. You may need to stick to a hard-and-fast number, but you may also be able to increase your gown spending and scale back in other places.

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1. Demetrios - Style 617 available at Brides by Demetrios 2. Moonlight Bridal - Style H1311 available at Lavender Bridal Salon 3. David's Bridal - Style SWG725 available at David's Bridal 4. Mori Lee - Style 2791 available at Doreen Leaf Designs and Expressions Bridal 5. Stella York - Style 5840 available at Expressions Bridal and Lavender Bridal Salon

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Visit Brides by Demetrios to experience expert service and see our newest collections for the bride-to-be and bridal party. Legacy Village 25373 Cedar Rd. Lyndhurst, OH 44124 Appointments are highly recommended. To schedule your personal consultation please call 216-297-0001. Walk-ins are welcome based on availability.

DemetriosBride.com


Where should I go? Chances are you have a ton of fabulous bridal gown shops right in your own backyard! If you have specific designers in mind, find out which local stores carry them. Before you shop, you might like to check out reviews for your potential shops, as well as take notes on whether they advertise in any major bridal magazines, wedding shows, or local publications. Advertising displays a commitment to their business, and usually means they’ll be here tomorrow to deliver on the promises they made today. Try to limit your gown shopping to three or four different salons, as it’s easy to forget which gowns you tried on where. Most places don’t operate on a walk-in basis, so be sure to call ahead for an appointment at least two weeks in advance.

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Who should I bring with me? On reality shows, brides tend to bring a whole crew of friends and family members to join in on the shopping fun. And every time, you can count on there being tons of drama.

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The takeaway? Less is more when it comes to companions. Otherwise, you’ll spend too much time trying on gowns your party picked out and steering the conversation back to what you want. We’d suggest bringing no more than two or three people with you. It could be those whose input means the most to you, or you might even use this as a pre-wedding bonding event and invite your mom, best friend, and mother-in-law. If you can’t imagine not including all of your friends, try inviting them to your final fitting — and then make a dramatic entrance for the big reveal! 1. Sincerity Bridal - Style 3889 available at Lavender Bridal Salon 2. David's Bridal - Style SWG723 available at David's Bridal 3. Casablanca Bridal - Heather available at Lavender Bridal Salon 4. Demetrios - Style 639 available at Brides by Demetrios 5. Maggie Sottero - Shelby available at Doreen Leaf Designs and Expressions Bridal

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Any tips for helping me nd “the one”? Keep an open mind. Many times, brides choose dresses that look nothing like the pictures they bring in, so try on everything — even if it doesn’t look like “you.” Remember that it’s the consultant’s job to match you with styles you’ll like — so give her the benefit of the doubt and prepare to be pleasantly surprised. With that said, you also shouldn’t let a pushy salesperson (or your mom) sweet-talk you into a gown you don’t love. Be sure to jot down style numbers and even snap a few photos as you try on – it will help you remember the dresses you loved as well as where you found them.

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Do you have any other shopping tips for me? As a matter of fact, we do! When it comes to payment, keep in mind that most shops require a 50 percent deposit with the balance due either at your first fitting or when you pick up the dress. Be wary of any shop that asks for more than 50 percent before the dress comes in. ❤ 1. Demetrios - Style 631 available at Brides by Demetrios 2. Stella York - Style 6245 available at Expressions Bridal and Lavender Bridal Salon 3. Belle by Badgley Mischka - Mae available at Doreen Leaf Designs 4. Maggie Sottero - Aracella available at Doreen Leaf Designs and Expressions Bridal 5. Justin Alexander - Style 8873 available at Lavender Bridal Salon

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Outfitting

As a mom, you have been the main support system for your daughter or son throughout their life. You erased their tears on the first day of kindergarten, you kissed away the pain when they fell off their bike, and you shared in their joy whenever they succeeded. As their wedding day approaches, you will, once again, focus your world around supporting them emotionally, mentally, and financially. Try to remember, though, that this wedding day is about you, too! Every guest's eyes will be on you as you enter the ceremony and as you make your announcement at the reception. It's important to find a gown that flatters your sense of style and complements the essence of the wedding day. Wow the wedding guests by using these tips when shopping for your gown!

Montage by Mon Cheri - Style 116936 available at Vera’s Ladies Apparel

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Consider the Celebration As you’re shopping, it’s especially important to keep in mind the location, the time of day, and the type of wedding — all of which will dictate the formality required. An evening wedding requires long, formal gowns in subdued shades. An afternoon wedding, on the other hand, allows for shorter, more playful gowns in brighter colors.

Start Early Aim to make a decision at least one month before the wedding — definitely more if you’re trying to coordinate with the mother-of-the-groom or others in the wedding party. Be sure to allow even more time for a gown that requires special ordering. Every manufacturer is different, but a good rule of thumb is to allot 12-16 weeks for a special order.

Color Cohesive The key thing to remember is that you’ll want to complement (and not clash with) the day’s color scheme. You shouldn’t match the bridal party so much that someone mistakes you for the Maid-of-Honor, but you shouldn’t look like a wedding crasher, either. Consider choosing a gown in the same palette as the bridal party (such as, wearing a plumcolored gown if the bridesmaids are in lilac or lavender).

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Traditionally, you’d want to avoid anything in white, ivory, champagne, black, and red. These are becoming more acceptable as traditions shift, but awareness as you shop is always key. Metallics, navy, and jewel tones are all beautiful and safe bets for mother’s attire, but if you have concerns, be sure to ask the soon-to-be-weds for their input.

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Well-Coordinated Typically, the mother-of-the-bride picks out her dress first, setting the tone for what the mother-of-the-groom will wear. You and your future in-law don’t have to match, but you should make sure your looks don’t conflict. Be sure to discuss sleeve and hem lengths, necklines, colors, and styles with each other before shopping. If you already get along well, you may even want to go shopping together. Alternatively, the bride could go shopping with each of you and relay any guidelines. ❤

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All available at Vera’s Ladies Apparel: 1. Montage by Mon Cheri - Style 116942 2. Montage by Mon Cheri - Style 215911 3. Madelina Gardner New York - Style 71307 4. Madelina Gardner New York - Style 71314 5. Daymor Couture - Style 354 6. Daymor Couture Style 371

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Content provided by Alterations Express


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Beautiful Choosing who will stand beside you as you say “I Do” can be difficult, but even more challenging is finding a dress that fits all of their figures, styles, and budgets. While going bridesmaid dress shopping may seem like a great way for your girls to bond, it can often get overwhelming. Some girls may feel like their opinion is being ignored, they may agree on a dress that doesn’t fit your vision, or one may not be able to afford the cost of the dress you end up choosing. Managing your bride tribe means dealing with some drama, but if you keep in mind your bridesmaids’ feelings, a budget, and your timeline, you’ll be shopping like a pro.

1. 2- Styles (left to right) 22739, 22737, 22736 available at Lavender Bridal Salon, American Commodore Dress Shoppe & Doreen Leaf Designs 2. David's Bridal - Style 16007 available at David's Bridal

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The Bridesmaid Budget Though it’s not the most glamorous of topics, determining your bridal party members’ budget is certainly one of the most important. Don’t put off having this conversation as it will enable you to search for bridesmaid gowns that fall in the right price range. We recommend doing so individually at least a few weeks — if not a few months — before bridesmaid gown shopping takes place. If one or more of your girls isn’t able to afford the dress you decide on, try to be flexible. Luckily, bridesmaids today have a variety of gorgeous options available at any price point. Is there any way you could open up your options to include dresses in a similar color palette and style? If you really have your heart set on a particular dress, ask yourself if there are other costs you could pick up — such as hair, make-up, or shoes — that will help alleviate some of the spending for your bridesmaids.

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Shop Early and Often You should start shopping for your bridal party at least seven to eight months before the big day. Not only will this timeline reduce stress for you and your girls, but it will also make it more likely for you to score a deal through a sale or trunk show. For your first appointment, we’d recommend that you don’t take your entire bridal party into the shop. Instead, go in with your mother and/ or Maid-of-Honor, and have them help you narrow down your choices based on the research you’ve done. Once you’ve decided on a few favorites, bring the rest of your ‘maids in (during a timeslot you schedule with your shop beforehand) to try on your selections and weigh-in on their favorites. After making your final bridesmaid dress selection (or selections!), be sure to have your girls put their order in at least four months before the big day — which allows three months for it to come in and another month for fittings and any alterations needed.

1 1. Christina Wu Occasions- Style 22749 available at Lavender Bridal Salon, American Commodore Dress Shoppe & Doreen Leaf Designs 2. Allure Bridal - Styles 1450-1491 available at American Commodore Dress Shoppe & Doreen Leaf Designs 3. Mori Lee - Angelina Faccenda Styles 20475 available at American Commodore Dress Shoppe (Summit Mall locations only), Doreen Leaf Designs & Expressions Bridal 4. Sorella Vita - Styles 8562 available at Doreen Leaf Designs & Lavender Bridal Salon

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Shopping Online vs. In-Store We want to stress the importance of going to a local bridal shop as opposed to shopping online. Full-service shops are typically authorized dealers of the designers they select to sell — unlike many online retailers. We’ve heard one too many horror stories about brides and ‘maids who bought their dress online and ended up needing them heavily altered by a local shop when they discovered the dress wasn’t quite as pictured. Ultimately, shopping online will only cost you more time, money, and stress. 2

Plus, who really wants to miss out on the gown shopping experience anyway? ❤

1. Allure Bridal - Styles 1450 & 1438 available at American Commodore Dress Shoppe & Doreen Leaf Designs 2. David's Bridal - Style f17063 available David's Bridal 3. Mori Lee - Style 121 available at American Commodore Dress Shoppe (Summit Mall locations only), Doreen Leaf Designs & Expressions Bridal 4. Allure Bridal - Styles 1452 available at American Commodore Dress Shoppe & Doreen Leaf Designs 5. David's Bridal - Style f15555 available David's Bridal

Please note: Some styles (even those pictured) may not be readily available to try on at store locations. Please call ahead if you have your heart set on a particular gown style.

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Suiting his 1

Let's face it — when the couple stands up at the altar to say their “I Do’s”, everyone is looking at the bride and drooling over her stunning gown. You may not be the center of attention, but the only eyes that matter — your soon-to-bewife's — will be locked on you. Make sure to greet her in style! Whether you opt for the classic three-piece tuxedo, or choose a more casual suit, sport a timeless windsor knot or rock a bow-tie, grooms have a lot of options avail2

able to them! Choosing the right shop and getting the best fit can be just as difficult for the groom as it is for the bride. If you use these handy tips when shopping for your style, you can be sure the bride will want to sprint down the aisle to stand next to someone looking so good!

1. Orchard Photography 2. Allure Men


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The Perfect Fit No matter how nice the tuxedo looks on the hanger, guys should also choose their formalwear based on these standards for size and comfort: The jacket should feel comfortable at the neck and shoulders, and fasten easily. Also, try standing and sitting with it buttoned. The shirt should fit snugly around the neck, shoulders, and waist. About ¼ inch to ½ inch of your shirt’s cuff should show below the jacket sleeve. Your trousers should button with ease and feel good when you sit. Many styles have adjustable waistbands, or you can opt for suspenders. The hem should break just over your shoe tops. 1

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Vest buttons should line up with the front of your jacket, and the vest should button comfortably across your chest. The bottom should slightly overlap the trouser waistband. The vest’s waist usually adjusts with a slide strip for a good fit. If you haven’t checked your shoe size in some time, have them measured by an expert. Remember that the best time to try on shoes is at the end of the day, because if your feet swell at all, they’ll do it then. It's better for shoes to be too roomy than too tight. Always try on a tie before buying or renting one. It should fit snugly around your collar. And remember: no clip-ons! ❤

1. Orchard Photography 2. New Image Photography 3. Love is All You Need Photography 4. Malick Photo

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Looking Big Day Feeling gorgeous on your wedding day is just as important as fi ding the perfect dress or booking your reception venue. Below, we’re answering your most pressing questions on perfecting your big day beauty routine! What kind of timeline should I be looking at to get the wedding day look I want? The early bride gets the worm! Planning up to a year in advance ensures enough time for you and your stylist to choose your wedding day look and test it out. If you only have a few months to prepare, book deep conditioning treatments, facials, manicures, and trial hair sessions to feel comfortable and fabulous for your wedding day.

How can I prepare for my beauty appointments? Go into your appointment with a vision of yourself that you can share with your beauty professionals. With your ideas and their expertise, you’ll merge your inspiration into the perfect wedding day look. You can model your look after Pinterest, a photo from a magazine, or your favorite celeb, but focus primarily on what you love about yourself. First, choose your favorite photo of yourself and decide what you love about your own look. Is it the way your hair is sitting or the dewey glow of your skin? Use that knowledge to figure out your musthave style staples. Enhance your unique characteristics before looking to others for inspiration. Your wedding day is all about you! Take advantage of any opportunity to show off your favorite features.

What else should I keep in mind when choosing a beauty style for my big day?

Riverfront Photography

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Let’s start with the overall style of your wedding. Are you planning nautical nuptials? If so, consider a bronze palette and

loose waves. If a hip downtown hotspot is your venue, a bold look with a sophisticated up-do will set the scene. Keeping the style you’re going for in mind will tie all of your big day details together.

Why should I hire a professional make-up artist? We know it’s tempting to save money by planning to do your own make-up, but a professional is trained to deliver a natural, flawless finish. It’s important for your make-up to stand out in photographs but still allow you to look natural; a qualified make-up artist can do just that. Sit back, relax, and enjoy a professional pampering session!

Any tips for toning up before the wedding day? If you want to look and feel your absolute best on your big day, start by planning weekly and monthly goals. Steam-room yoga classes, walking the dog, or a jog through the Metroparks all benefit brides with exercise and stress relief. Choosing healthier meal options — as well as focusing on portion control — will ensure a gown that fits perfectly, and a more energized bride-to-be! Skip any “quick-fix” diets or exercise programs as they can lead to longterm health problems!

Set aside some “me-time” to plan and prep for your desired wedding-day look. By hiring a professional, consulting with your stylist, and highlighting your favorite features, you will look and feel fabulous on your big day! ❤ READ MORE AT TODAYSBRIDE.COM


3-P’s The

for Perfecting Your Wedding Day ‘Do

PICK

— First, fi d your inspiration! Choose a color, length, and style a year in advance. When considering colors, though, don’t stray too far from your natural look. You don’t want to look back at your pictures 10 years from now and wonder why you decided to try blonde for the fi st time on your wedding day. Consult with your regular stylist on how to achieve your desired look. 1

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— Deep condition and trim your tresses a couple of weeks in advance to give your locks a healthy shine! Schedule appointments to treat your hair and test out trial updos for your big day. Shampoo and condition the night before the wedding to allow your natural oils to work their magic!

PLAN — Be prepared for the

outdoor elements and how they may affect your locks. Consider how your style will hold up if it happens to be humid or windy. Have hair spray, bobby pins, and a comb on hand! ❤

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1. Jeff Brummet Photography 2-3. Lindsey Gage Photography 4. Allure Accessories

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It starts with a plan... Imagine this — you’re just moments away from exchanging vows and becoming a wife; your make-up is perfect, your fragrant bouquet is in hand, and you’re ready to meet your soon-to-be spouse at the altar. One last deep breath and — wait, whose phone is ringing? It’s yours, and the caterer has a few questions about the venue! Fifteen minutes and twenty questions later and you’re wearing stress down the aisle. We don’t mean to induce anxiety, but we’re very passionate about the fact that on your wedding day you can either be the bride or the wedding planner, but it’s very difficult to be both. If you want to avoid a scenario like this on your wedding day, look into hiring a professional to carry out the details!

The Advantages of Hiring a Professional Wedding Planner: Saves Time & Money It takes a lot of time to perfect a wedding. If you and your fiancé are handling all of the details, wedding planning can pile up and take over all the once-in-alifetime moments you have left before you’re married. A wedding planner will free up more of your time so you can enjoy the months leading up to your wedding. Plus, he or she will manage your budget and negotiate prices with vendors.

Advises & Organizes A wedding planner knows exactly what works and what doesn’t, so he or she will be able to accurately advise you. Plus, the planner will keep you organized with a schedule. All you will have to worry about is which beachside resort to choose for your honeymoon.

Executes Vision A wedding planner works to make sure the vision in your head becomes a reality. No matter what, a planner will be dedicated to executing your wishes, needs, budget, scope of imagination and more. Discussing and determining these factors will ensure a successful and beautiful wedding. ❤

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PLANNING PACKAGES Wedding planning comes in many different shapes and sizes – and one size does not t all. Read over the most popular packages below to see which one is the best t for your big day. Full-Service Planning

Partial Planning

Day-of Coordination

Initial consultation

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Idea generation

3

Budget creation

3

Wedding vendor suggestions

3

Site tours

3

Vendor selection

3

Contracting

3

 ccess to consultant A for questions

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Answers for etiquette questions

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Develop a timeline

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Confi mation of vendors

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Direction of the rehearsal

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3

D  istribution of timeline

3

3

3

Coordination of wedding day

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3

3

Power Hour

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3

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Note: Packages vary by company.

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Styling with Invitations have become so much more than the standard “who,” “what,” “when,” and “where.” As the first indication of your wedding’s style, they set the tone for your guests’ expectations! Whether traditional, funky, or colorful, remember: it’s never too early to make a great first impression — and gorgeous invites are one of the best ways to do so! ❤

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Invitation Etiquette We get it: times change and wedding etiquette evolves. In the age of limitless e-mail and social media access, it can be more difficult than ever to decipher what is appropriate. Your invitations serve as the official announcement of your plans, so of course you want to make a great first impression! We’re here to help with a list of some of the dos and don’ts of wedding invitations.

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DON’T use labels: Sure, it’s easier to stick a pre-printed label right on the envelope, but it’s impersonal compared to a handwritten address. If you prefer a professional’s script, hire a calligrapher.

DO write out numbers for the year or time of the wedding: Though you shouldn’t write out the full number for a street address, when writing the 4-digit year and time of events, make sure to expand it to a scripted numeral.

DO write out names in full: When addressing an envelope, write Mr. and Mrs. Robert Smith, rather than Mr. and Mrs. Smith or Miss Rachel Jacobson instead of Miss Jacobson.

DON’T state that you’re having a childfree wedding: Leave the “adults only” off the invitation, and rely on word of mouth instead. The way the invitation is addressed, whether on the outside or inner envelope, indicates who is invited (and by omission, who is not invited.)

DON’T dictate dress code: Some couples want to include “Black Tie” on the invite, but the ceremony invitation is not the place to do it. If it seems essential to include this information, it can be added to the reception invitation card and placed in the lower-right hand corner.

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DO put numbers in the corner of RSVP cards: If you are including a return RSVP card, write a number in pen or invisible ink that corresponds to a numbered list so you know who’s responded and who hasn’t. ❤

1. Chard Photographer 2. Genevieve Nisly Photography 3. Firm Anchor Photography 4. Jeff Brummet Photography 5. LMAC Photography, Brittney Nichole Designs

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In the Mail: An Invitation Timeline

When it comes to mailing wedding invitations, etiquette requires invites to be sent out at least eight weeks prior to the wedding for out-of-town guests; for local guests, mail six weeks in advance. Here are some other time frames to consider:

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Naturally, the vows are the most memorable, touching, and tear-inducing part of a wedding ceremony. In this sentimental moment, the couple promises each other a life of love and happiness. Ceremonies can differ in detail, but the following customs are some of our favorite ways to enhance the heartwarming emotion of the wedding ceremony: Unity Candle Lighting: A popular choice for religious and non-religious ceremonies, lighting a unity candle combines the flames from two slender candles (called tapers) to create a single flame on a larger, central candle. The two tapers represent your individual lives before your wedding day, and the larger candle represents your new life together as a single unit. The Unity Sand: With similar symbolism as the unity candle, unity sand compliments a couple’s individuality. Pouring two containers simultaneously into one represents the couple’s new union and a life devoted to each other. Just like you and your significant other will never be parted, once combined, the 2

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sand is impossible to separate. Planning beachside nuptials? Make this particular ritual a must!

to gather the stones if your ceremony is indoors. Overall, this is a great way to include everybody in attendance.

Tying the Knot: Any nautical themed

The Jumping of the Broom: “Jump-

wedding should include this sentimental ritual. Literally “tying the knot,” the couple works together to bind a rope signifying strength and support. The knot, like marriage, grows stronger under pressure. This ritual is super sweet and makes for a romantic keepsake that reminds couples to stay strong when times get hard.

ing the broom” is an American tradition that stems from the days of slavery. Slaves were often not permitted to marry, so they had to create their own customs and traditions to mark this special occasion among themselves. Others would lay a broom on the floor, and the new couple would jump over it together, symbolizing the start of their life together.

The Blessing Stone: This ritual is designed to take place at the end of the ceremony. When guests arrive, they are each given a stone, and as guests hold them during the ceremony, they are infused with love and good wishes. At the end of the ceremony, your guests are invited to move to the water’s edge for the casting of the stones. The ripples represent the love and good wishes for both the couple and the attendees. While this is perfect for an outdoor ceremony site, there are variations that use a vase 3

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Potting a Plant: In this custom, the seeds you plant as a married couple represent the beginning of your new life. The more care and attention you give to your plant, the more it will strengthen and blossom — just like your relationship. Taking soil from meaningful places such as your home's yard, the place where you met, your first vacation spot, etc., will make the moment you see a bud sprout even more special. ❤

1. LMAC Photography, Carol Martin salonSpa, The Dress Bridal Boutique, reInspired Bride, FiftyFlowers, Nikki’s Perfect Petal Designs, American Commodore Tuxedo, Stan Hywet Hall & Gardens. 2. John Paul Studios 3. JazzyMae Photography

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Orchard Photography

Whether you’re having an informal garden ceremony or a traditional church wedding, use these tips to choose the perfect music to set the tone for your day. Prelude Music – As doors open and guests filter into the ceremony space, this light, ambient melody will accompany them to their seats. Soft and subtle, this music allows guests to mingle as they wait for the bride’s entrance. Your professional musicians should be able to suggest prelude pieces to fit the mood you want. If you’re less focused on tradition, choose a contemporary song that is special to you and your fiancé – perhaps the first song you danced to or lyrics that embody your relationship.

Processional Music – Here comes the bride! The processional music plays as the wedding party walks down the aisle. Typically, the song will transition into Wagner’s “Bridal Chorus” when the bride makes her entrance, or she can choose to spice up the nuptials with a more upbeat selection to create an atmosphere that screams modern and contemporary. Interludes – During quieter moments — such as during a candle lighting ceremony, after the exchanging of vows, or between readings — interludes provide an understated elegance and are the perfect accompaniment to romantic reflections.

Recessional Music – This upbeat music is reflective of celebrating! Played as you recede back up the aisle, choose a meaningful song that embraces the joy of unity! ❤

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Congrats! You’ve just said yes and an- Engagement Party nounced your upcoming nuptials! Friends and family often want to help start the planning process by hosting a pre-wedding event. Whether the celebrations commence with an engagement party, bridal shower, rehearsal dinner, or bachelor/bachelorette party, find comfort in the fact that you won’t be putting much work into planning these early events! If you want to steer your loved ones in the right direction of party planning, let this pre-wedding event cheat sheet assist you.

vs. Bridal Shower

Should I throw an engagement party or a bridal shower? An engagement party is a fabulous way to share the excitement of your pending marriage with friends and family! While this party offers time to introduce family members to your fiancé, the bridal shower is traditionally exclusive to the bride and her female family members and friends. The engagement party is typically thrown a few weeks after the proposal, while the bridal shower is planned for two to three months before the wedding date. Therefore, if you have a short engagement — a year or less — consider only throwing one party or the other.

Who plans the parties? The planning guidelines are lenient when it comes to location and hosting responsibilities. Traditionally, the bride’s parents organize the engagement party; these days, however, anyone close to the family — like a relative or friend — can assume the role. For the

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bridal shower, generally the bridal party — led by the Maid-of-Honor — plan and execute the day’s events. After you’ve attended these parties and finalized your wedding day details, the next formal event is the Rehearsal Dinner!

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The Rehearsal Dinner When does the ceremony rehearsal and dinner take place? The ceremony rehearsal traditionally takes place the day before the wedding. You can host the meal prior to or after the ceremony rehearsal, or you can hold both on an entirely different day.

Who should we invite? Everyone involved in the ceremony should attend the rehearsal including: bridesmaids, groomsmen, parents, flower girl & ring bearer, Officiant, readers, and musicians. It’s considerate to invite the spouse or significant other of each attendant. Regarding the dinner, the guest list can be as simple as including your immediate family, the wedding party, and their significant others, though it’s also becoming more popular to make it a larger event for out-of-town guests. If you prefer an intimate gathering but don’t want to exclude other guests, consider hosting the rehearsal dinner two nights before the wedding day and having a welcome party for out-of-town guests the night before.

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Where should we hold the dinner? The rehearsal dinner should be held near, or at, the ceremony site. It’s considerate and fun to vary the dinner options from the wedding meal — such as offering steak or seafood if you’re having an Italian menu at your reception — so guests can have different experiences! Where you decide to have the rehearsal dinner depends on the budget of whoever is throwing it, who is in attendance, and what kind of party the host envisions.

What takes place at the rehearsal dinner? Traditionally, the Best Man offers a toast to the soon-to-be spouses. The groom then follows with a toast to his bride and her parents. The bride may follow with a toast to her groom and his family, but it is not required. You should make sure that all guests are introduced to one another, either by formal introductions or mingling. A special touch would be to introduce your wedding party and say something personal about each one, how you met, or why you asked them to be in your wedding. ❤

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Top 5 Tips for Planning a Bachelorette Party to Remember Keep the Bride’s Interests in Mind Bar crawls, jet setting to Vegas, a weekend glamping trip, or a spa getaway – the possibilities are endless! The Maid/ Matron-of-Honor and bridal party should ask themselves one important question when planning the festivities: What would the bride really want?

Get the Guest List from the Bride The bride doesn’t have many responsibilities when it comes to planning the bachelorette party. Just be sure to get a guest list from her of people she’ll feel comfortable “letting loose” with — sorority sisters? Yes! Her boss? Probably not. If there are concerns about inviting someone, it’s best to leave them off the list and enjoy their presence on the wedding day.

Timing is Everything The bachelorette party should be on an evening close to the big day, but it definitely should not fall on the night

before the wedding. The bride probably doesn’t envision hungover bridesmaids or walking down the aisle nauseous on her wedding day. Consider scheduling it for the weekend before the big day.

Take Budget into Account While it’s important to take the bride’s vision into account, the host(s) should also consider the budget of the girls who are attending. If you’ll be staying overnight somewhere, going to dinner, and/or renting transportation, be sure to include the price when extending an invite.

Don’t Underestimate the Element of Surprise Given all the planning the bride and groom have put into the details of their wedding, it’s safe to say it’d be a welcomed surprise to not have to make decisions for another event! Ask the bride to trust you to know her expectations, and then take the reins! ❤

Creating your Wish List Besides sampling cake

avors and

fi ding the perfect dress, creating a gift registry is one of the funnest tasks when planning your wedding. This is where you really start imagining your future together! Though it is not appropriate to include registry information on your wedding invites, be sure to include it in the bridal shower invitations, as it is a gift-giving occasion! ❤ 40

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RECEPTIONS

You may be hosting a garden barbecue of less than 100 guests or a grand gala for 300. In either case, the key to a great party comes down to one important factor: the venue! Choosing a wedding venue may seem like an intimidating decision right now. You need a place that fits your budget, accommodates your guests, and most of all, suits your wedding style. But rest assured: whether you’re a nature lover, a modernist, or a hopeless romantic, we’ll help you find the perfect wedding site for you.

Where do I begin? One of the best ways to begin is by figuring out your style and asking yourself what kind of mood you want to create for your big day. Do you want something totally casual or incredibly elegant? Come up with two to three theme words that sum up what you’re both envisioning. Additionally, you and your fiancé can better determine your style by paying attention to your daily life. What’s the style of your home decor? What do you like to do in your spare time? There is no reason to give up what you love on your big day; in fact, you should be celebrating it!

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The small touches that make the wedding all about the two of you will also make the wedding memorable for your guests. Take some time to discuss your vision with your fiancé, and write out your wants and needs. Once you have an idea of what style works for you both, you’ll be able to find a venue to match. TODAY’S BRIDE

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What else can I do to prepare before setting up venue tours? Ultimately, knowing how many people you want to invite is crucial when picking a location. It’s also helpful to have some idea of the events your reception will include; a spot that normally works for 150, for example, might only fit 100 if you have a large dance floor or a band. You’ll also need to determine your budget. Think about the number of guests you plan on inviting, and then factor in how much money you reasonably want to spend on each guest. Remember that you’ll spend around 50 percent of your wedding budget on your reception. Once you have an idea of your budget and number of guests, you’ll be able to focus on venues that fit your parameters. Finally, please do yourself a favor and take the time to compare the sites in person. Simply calling a possible reception site for a price quote does not show you what you’re getting for your money. Walking through the venue with your fiancé will help you visualize all the details of your dream wedding coming together in the perfect setting.

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How many venues should we look at?

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Your reception venue needs to do so much: represent your style, be available when you need it, and fit your budget. But even with those restrictions, you’ll probably still have a sizeable list of

places to consider. Your best bet is to check out at least three (but no more than six) venues in person so you’re able to easily compare sites. Keep track of each venue and try to make your visits close together (for instance, one whole weekend) so you can have a fresh memory of your visits.

While it’s tempting to just drop by a venue, it’s never a good idea. The catering staff might not be available to show you around and answer all your questions on the spot. Make an appointment and plan to spend at least an hour at each space. Keep in mind that it’s best to visit each venue around the actual hours of

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your event – it will allow you to see how the space looks naturally lit.

What should we look for as we’re considering venues? First impressions are everything! When you begin checking out potential sites, note how each location makes you feel the second you walk in. Take along a list of what to look for – in your head or on paper – when you’re ready to go scouting. One of the first things you’ll want to make note of is whether the site is large enough to accommodate the number of people on your list. The space may look large enough when it’s empty, but wedding essentials — tables, chairs, a buffet, a bar, the band or DJ setup, the dance floor — can take up a lot of space. Not to mention your guests, who will need some elbow room. The best way to assess the size of a site? Ask to check out the place when another wedding is being set up. Of course, if you decide you must have your wedding at your sentimental — yet smaller — favorite spot, you can always work backwards and tailor your guest list to match.

What about the decor? Any tips there? What will your guests look at when they’re not gazing at you or smiling for the videographer? Whether it’s the city skyline or a beautiful body of water behind you, exceptional landmarks always make for definite READ MORE AT TODAYSBRIDE.COM

eye candy. If there’s no view per se, look to the venue’s decor or architectural details: modern art on the walls, period furniture in the corners, or an amazing crystal chandelier as the room’s centerpiece will add that extra touch to your reception. If you’re considering a certain theme and color palette for your party, take that into consideration as well. The site doesn’t have to be done in the exact colors as your planned decorations, but the walls, carpets, chairs, and curtains shouldn’t clash with your party’s theme, either. Quick tip: you can always incorporate your theme with uplighting, linens, and special decor.

Anything else we should keep in mind? You should ask if other events are scheduled for your wedding day and how much time is allotted between bookings; there should be, at the very least, one hour between bookings. If the room is partitioned, find out what sort of group will be next door. If you’re having a daytime celebration in a public spot — such as a park or garden — be prepared for strangers to trek past. They may even smile, wave, or come by to offer their good wishes. If you’re not okay with that, ask about privacy options, or opt for a lovely lawn on a private estate. When touring a facility, be sure to look around thoroughly and meet the staff. You may even want to see how your waiters and waitresses will TODAY’S BRIDE

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be dressed. Also, make sure you know who the contact person will be for your event (i.e. the wedding coordinator, the catering manager, etc.). Get their name in writing, as well as the name of an acceptable substitute.

How do I get an idea of what is included with our package? Select venues have their own tables, caterers, and pre-approved staff, and many provide chairs and linens. With other spaces, you’ll need to rent all of these amenities. Not all venue packages are created equal, so be sure to ask your site coordinator what is considered “extra.” If you plan on bringing in outside services, you’ll want to find out what limitations there may be, as well as what time you or your supplier can come in to set up.

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Alright, we found the one! Now, how do we book? Usually a verbal confirmation is enough to hold the space for a day or two. Then you’ll be expected to pay a deposit and sign a formal contract outlining all the details of the reception package. Deposits aren’t always refundable, so find out before you sign the contract. Don’t be afraid to ask questions — that’s the reason you went to visit the hall! If the staff isn’t interested in helping with your concerns, chances are they won’t be interested in helping you have the wedding reception you want. The better informed you are, the more comfortable you’ll feel with your choice. ❤ 1. Malick Photo (p. 43) 2. Orchard Photography (p. 44) 3. Spencer Photography, Inc. (p. 45) 4. LMAC Photography (p. 46)

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DOLLAR$

& SENSE

THE TOP WAYS TO SAVE MONEY ON YOUR RECEPTION

Despite what you may have heard, it is possible to have a beautiful wedding and stay within your budget! It all starts with the basics:

TRY A FRIDAY OR A DIFFERENT SEASON You fina ly found the site you’ve always imagined, but the pricetag for your dream June wedding is a bit high. Choosing the site of your dreams can still be within your budget if you are willing to be a bit exible with your date. The most popular wedding months traditionally fall between April and October. If you plan to marry during these peak times, you’ll need to keep an open mind, as your fi st choice may already be taken. Selecting a wedding date that’s “off-season” can bring about substantial savings and less competition for your preferred dates. Keep in mind that many venues and vendors will provide discounts for Friday and Sunday wedding receptions simply because these days aren’t always in high demand. Hosting a reception on a Friday evening or Sunday afternoon could allow you to have your party at your desired site with a considerable reduction in costs – and that’s money you can use for the honeymoon, your new home, or elsewhere!

Keep in mind that many venues and vendors will provide discounts for Friday and Sunday wedding receptions simply because these days aren’t always in high demand.

LOOK FOR FREE DECOR Choose a place that has natural beauty — whether it’s wooded views, rivers and lakes, or a deck that overlooks the sunset. You can also take advantage of decorations that are already on site. Many venues decorate for Christmas and leave it up through New Year’s, displaying cheap, yet fashionable decor for your wedding!

DO AN AFTERNOON BRUNCH Instead of an elaborate evening event with a lavish sit-down dinner, consider a sophisticated morning brunch reception or an elegant afternoon tea. These more intimate receptions mean a scaled-back guest list, but allow for more time to actually interact with your guests. By being creative with a mid-day affair, you will be able to offer your guests a truly stylish and charming event. ❤ 48

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Once you’ve made your decision on a reception site and an appropriate package, put everything in a written contract. Make sure you list the total price, including any deposits and payment schedules, as well as everything that will be included. Here are the critical points to review:

D Total cost & a line-item breakdown of what’s included. D Amount of deposit & when it was paid. D Outstanding balance & when it’s due (a payment schedule). D Exact date & time of your wedding, as well as exact location. D Detailed list of everything the facility will provide (tables, chairs, linens, ampli ers, etc.).

D The name of the site representative who will be on hand on your wedding day and the name of an acceptable substitute.

D Proof of liability insurance & liquor license. D Cancellation/refund policy. D Anything else you agree to orally that you want to set in stone (special requests or accommodations, extra services, etc.). Not sure what to ask your event facility? Check out our list of must-ask questions in our Wedding Planner in the back of this issue! ❤

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Beating THE Elements HOW TO WEATHER-PROOF YOUR OUTDOOR WEDDING Remembering to grab your own umbrella is one thing, but it’s a much bigger task to worry about keeping your guests dry and entertained at an outdoor wedding. Sure, it’s impossible to know exactly what kind of weather your wedding day will bring. But with some planning, you can prevent bad weather from ruining your big day.

In case of heat D Y ou’ll need to weather-proof your make-up for a summer celebration – no bride wants to look back on her photos and see streaky foundation and sweaty brows. Talk to your stylist to come up with a look that works.

DU  se fan-style programs – they’re creative and functional. DH  and out mini battery-operated fans as favors. Guests will defi itely appreciate the gesture on a muggy day! 1

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D S erve beverages before and after the ceremony. Most guests won’t

Informing your guests and vendors that you are having an outdoor wedding will allow them to appropriately prepare.

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have time to stop and get a drink somewhere, but they might love to grab a lemonade on the way to their seats.

D S trategically place a few electric fans to blow over the crowd. DC  onsider getting air conditioning for an outdoor tent — especially if your guests will be dancing there.

D If your reception takes place during evening hours, the heat and lights in the tent could become a magnet for mosquitoes and other annoying insects. Your tent vendor may have suggestions on how to prevent this.

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In case of wind DH  ave hair spray and bobby pins on hand for your hair.

DD  esignate someone to smooth down your dress and veil, or consider purchasing veil and hem weights.

DA  nchor

oral arrangements with landscaping stakes to keep them from toppling over.

In case of cold DH  ave a shawl on hand for down time between shots. 3

DR  ent propane patio heaters to keep your guests warm.

DK  eep warm beverages on stand-by — think coffee, tea, cocoa, and hot apple cider.

In case of rain DW  ear waterproof make-up. DC  hoose shoes that won’t sink into the ground, or stick rubber/plastic protectors on your heels.

DO  n your wedding website, encourage guests to bring umbrellas, just in case.

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DB  uy inexpensive umbrellas in your wedding colors for guests who forget to bring their own, or distribute among bridal party for a fun photo-op!

DA  sk the coordinator at your ceremony/reception venue if they have an indoor back-up plan.

For any of the elements DA  party tent will keep your guests from getting rained on or sunburned. For a potentially windy or rainy day, choose a tent with walls. You always have the option to air condition or heat such tents, too.

DC  hoose a venue where you can easily move an outdoor wedding indoors if conditions are too extreme.

D S ome attendees may be more sensitive to heat or cold. Your invites should clearly indicate that the reception is outdoors, so guests can dress accordingly.

D Y ou should inform all of your vendors that you’re having an outdoor wedding. Some vendors will want to take extra precautions, or use different equipment. ❤

1. LMAC Photography (p. 52) 2. Spencer Photography, Inc. (p. 52) 3. Black Dog Photo Co. (p. 54) 4. Love is All You Need Photography (p. 54)

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to you No matter what kind of wedding you choose to have, the food and drink are prime contenders to make or break the day. Here’s what you need to know to ensure you’re bringing the best caterer to the table – literally! When should we begin the search for a caterer? Begin the search for a caterer early in your engagement – around, eight or nine months prior to the wedding. This will give you plenty of time to research your options before making the final selection, which should be done four to five months before the reception date.

How can we prepare for our catering appointment(s)? Unless your wedding budget is wide open, figuring out your guest count will certainly play a big part in deciding who to hire and what to serve. You’ll also want to determine the level of formality you want for your reception; from READ MORE AT TODAYSBRIDE.COM

there, you can consider which serving style best fits. Would a plated dinner be the most appropriate? What about a buffet, or even family style? The company you choose may have catered events at your venue before and, therefore, be able to inform you which serving styles have been successful in the past. Above all, be open to new catering ideas you might not have considered before.

What’s the deal with the taste test? Many caterers offer couples the opportunity to sit down and explore their culinary options with a taste test. Be sure to schedule your tasting far enough in advance that there is still plenty of time to make adjustments. There may be a charge, but consider it worthwhile.

Though you shouldn’t expect a complete reversal of a dish’s recipe, don’t hesitate to make suggestions or ask if the chef can modify subtle elements. If your guests have special dietary requests — like vegetarian or gluten-free options — be sure to mention it to your caterer early on. Some seasonal items you plan to serve may not be available at the time of the tasting, so you’ll have to trust your caterer with those dishes.

What about our bar package? What do we need to know? Decide in advance how much you want to spend on alcohol, and have an idea of what’s most important to you. Will you provide champagne for the entire reception or only during the toast? If you opt to include liquor, will you use well or premium brands? When discussing the bar with your venue or caterer, find out what their standard bar package includes. If a full bar is outside of your budget, consider TODAY’S BRIDE

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If a full bar is outside of your budget, consider having a soft bar that consists of beer, wine, and possibly a signature drink or two. having a soft bar that consists of beer, wine, and a signature drink or two. Keep in mind, however, that a cash bar is considered a faux pas – it’s typically bad form to ask your guests to pay for anything at an event you’re hosting. If you choose to have a full bar, ask if you are charged by the drink (or consumption), or by the bottle. If you are charged by the bottle, ask if you will receive credit for partial bottles, or if you’ll be able to take the open bottles with you after the reception.

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Also, find out how many bartenders will be on duty, whether there are any corkage fees, and whether the facility has liquor liability insurance.

How long should bar service be available at the reception? Be sure to arrange for bar service that lasts as long as the reception itself (the average wedding reception lasts between four to six hours). You can save some money by requesting that the bar stop serving alcohol at a particular time, but you should make provisions for non-alcoholic beverages to be served until the reception is over. ❤ 8

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1. Black Dog Photo Co. (p.57) 2-4. Genevieve Nisly Photography (p. 57) 5. Three & Eight Photography (p. 58) 6. Malick Photo (p. 58) 7. New Image Photography (p. 58) 8. Genevieve Nisly Photography (p. 58)

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Most people are under the impression that food stations are meant for larger, more extravagant weddings – but they’re perfect for smaller weddings, too! A smaller guest list will allow you to splurge on foods that might otherwise be outside of your budget. Here are our tips for making the most of the food station experience: • Aim for up to five or six stations around the room, each featuring a different cuisine or dishes from different cultures.

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The unconventional catering option for the not-so-traditional bride

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Are you and your groom total foodies? Want your guests to mix and mingle? Consider forgoing the traditional buffet or plated dinner, and instead, go with interactive and chic food stations! These stations are particularly fun for your wedding guests because they’ll allow them to sample foods they might not have tried otherwise.

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• Consider theming the food – for example, it could reference your first date, honeymoon location, or hometown. • Be conscious of family traditions and favorites as well as dietary restrictions when making your final choices. Also, keep in mind what your catering company offers. • Interact with chef-attended stations. • Make sure there’s plenty of space to mingle, and then set up a variety of lounge areas – couches, café tables, bars with stools, as well as taller cocktail tables – for your guests. ❤

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Creating Memories

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Wagner’s of Westlake

Event Center Wagner’s has hosted more wedding receptions than any other venue in Western Cuyahoga County. Join us for

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A Bridal Event, showcasing our banquet center plus professionals on hand to help with all of your wedding day needs. One lucky person will win a catered wedding reception!

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Decor we Before they see the dress, witness the first kiss, or taste the cake, your guests will assess your wedding by what their eyes first behold — which makes decor one of the most important elements of your wedding planning.

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From ambient lighting to organza overlays, there’s a lot that goes into wedding decor. Chances are, you’ll have countless questions along the way. With that in mind, we’ve compiled this list of some of the most common decor questions and the answers you need to know!

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How do I go about choosing the decor for my wedding? The first step in planning decor is to envision your wedding day. Start with picking out a color scheme and possibly a theme. Which colors do you gravitate toward?

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While a theme isn’t required (a fabulous color palette can speak for itself!), it could end up inspiring all of your decor details! When considering a theme, try not to overthink it; instead, choose something that you and your partner both love in everyday life. Do you travel often? Think about using a map for your seating plan. If you both love to read, you could incorporate books into your centerpieces.

To prevent this, give yourself a timeline for your research stage and then cut yourself off. As long as you choose elements that make you happy, you’ll end up with a beautiful wedding and you’ll keep yourself from drowning in decor possibilities! Similarly, you should have some criteria for all your decor selections. Before committing to something, ask yourself these two questions: Will this item bring me and my guests joy on the day of my wedding? Does it match the overall theme of my wedding? If either of those questions produces a “no,” then back away and keep looking. You can always come back to an idea and revise your decision.

Once you have those two elements in mind, you can start searching for photo inspiration. Keep track of all of your ideas with a wedding binder, Pinterest board, or both!

With a clear mental picture of what you want, paired with the assistance of a reputable decorator, you’ll be able to confidently select items that will help pull everything together and provide the look you desire for your reception.

How much is too much when it comes to decor?

Should I rent or buy items for my wedding?

Picking out your decor is an exciting part of wedding planning, but it’s easy to gather too much inspiration and become overwhelmed by all of your ideas.

Renting all the way! Not only is renting often a more economical solution, it also helps eliminate hours of searching, stress, and potential storage issues. And let’s be

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real – are all 50 of those rustic votive candle holders going to do anything besides collect dust? You can also use rental companies as a source for ideas. Renting materials gives you access to the latest styles in decor, table settings, linens, chair covers, and more!

How can I pinch pennies while still making a big impact? First, pick a venue that already has a chic ambiance of its own. When visiting, be sure to take in the details: Picasso prints

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on the walls, fine Persian rugs on the floors, or an amazing crystal chandelier as the room’s focal point will add that something extra to your reception. Finally, you’ll want to focus on elements that will have the biggest impact. Many industry experts would instantly point you toward uplighting, a seemingly simple element that can create a gorgeous atmosphere. ❤ 1. Black Dog Photo Co. (p. 65) 2. New Image Photography (p. 65) 3. Malick Photo (p. 66) 4. Genevieve Nisly Photography (p. 66) 5. New Image Photography (p. 66) 6. Genevieve Nisly Photography (p. 67)

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Linens They say the first impression is a lasting impression, so wow your guests with stunning reception tables! It’s important to put some thought into your linens, as they’re a major part of the reception decor. Many couples choose solid linens for their reception tables — a decision that is completely appropriate given the formality of the day. If your reception is more on the casual side, however, you might want to consider patterned linens. Prints — particularly stripes, plaids, feminine floral, and geometric patterns — are popular in weddings right now. Today’s brides are also seeking out more textured linens, such as chiffon, rosettes, ruching, and ruffles. Lace remains a popular choice for vintage brides, while metallic and sequins are a new trend. If you want to decorate outside of the box, consider mixing patterns and textures! Short on budget? Patterned runners can add a lot of impact for a fraction of the cost of a full linen. Or, you might try alternating tables — some with bold, bright linens and others with textured runners — to create visual interest.

Tents Tents are the perfect solution for Northeast Ohio brides who prefer a little weather insurance for their big day, as well as a beautiful blank canvas for decor. Tents can be decorated however you imagine — a nice alternative to adapting your vision to a pre-existing space. Bonus: you can even add heat or air conditioning, depending on the season.

an ice sculpture can add that special touch of glamour to your reception.

Uplighting Uplighting is the art of using light to create a gorgeous background. Through a lighting designer, you’ll be able to use pin spots to illuminate centerpieces, as well as the head table, and cake table. You can amp up the ambience and completely transform the venue with beams of rich color and exciting patterns.

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Dance Floor Decor Ditch the idea of line dancing across whatever general floor comes with your venue. You can opt to go as simple as a little bit of illumination spotlighting the center of the room, to an extravagant customized motif.

Signage While wedding signage may not be a “new” idea, it has certainly increased in popularity. Whether they’re directing guests to the ceremony site or saving seats for the newlyweds, wedding signs are a fabulous source of functional decor. ❤

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Ice Sculptures Whether you choose to go with something elegant like a hand carved monogram, or something functional like a martini luge, 68

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1. Black Dog Photo Co. 2. Genevieve Nisly Photography 3. Orchard Photography 4. Kay Photo & Design 5. Skyline Tent Company & Beehive Events

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The Prep Work There are a lot of steps to follow to land the photographer of your dreams. We’re here to help with these simple steps! 1. Before you set out to find that perfect photographer, you’ll want to have key information booked & ready to discuss – including your wedding date and locations for the ceremony and reception. 2. Take a moment to learn about photography styles, then think about which one best suits the style of your wedding. Most photographers will have portfolios or online galleries, so browse their images for a style you like. Or, meet photographers and view their portfolios on-the-spot when you attend a wedding show! 3. Once you’ve taken the time to browse galleries and meet photographers in person, make a list of your favorites. 4. Now that you’ve compiled a list of photographers, it’s time to interview the most promising candidates. This is the best way to assess their past work, their personalities, and what they have to offer you. To truly make an informed choice, meet with at least three candidates and plan on visiting their studios. Photographers have styles they may favor, but ideally your photographer should want to work with your vision to get the best results.

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Points to Ponder These are the things you’ll want to keep in mind as you’re deciding on your wedding photographer: Consider the value of your photographer — not just the price, but the quality of the images that the professional will capture on your wedding day. After all, these images will be passed down from generation to generation as a reminder of those who came before them. You want them to 70

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be memorable and timeless. Photography is such an important aspect of the day; if you splurge on anything, this is the service to do so. Hire a photographer who specializes in weddings — they’ll be more experienced in timing and procedures, plus they may even be familiar with your ceremony and reception sites. They’ll know how to pose the bridal party and make the bride feel comfortable and beautiful. Because a photographer’s samples represent his or her best work, it’s never a bad idea to ask to see actual wedding albums and get references. Given the extent to which your photographer will be present and involved in your wedding, it’s a good idea to find someone who’s both enthusiastic about shooting weddings and a pleasure to be around. Which of your choices do you feel has the ability to draw smiles and poses out of people for hours? Who do you and your fiancé feel the most comfortable around?

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Never assume by the quality of work that a particular photographer’s services are out of your price range. Tell the photographer your budget up front, and see if they can accommodate it. Ask who will actually be documenting your day — you don’t want the unwelcome surprise of ending up with someone you don’t know. Remember that most studios have at least two photographers for each event to capture more images and more angles. With a multitude of photographers, thousands of images are being

holds the copyright, so it’s always a good idea to ask about their policy during your initial consultation. Gather details about packages and price points. Packages could include the hours that the photographer will work at your wedding, and providing prints and/or wedding albums for you and your fiancé, and possibly your

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understand how each photographer comes up with his or her numbers.

Make a Wedding Day Plan Discuss your ceremony and reception sites and, if possible, visit them with the photographer ahead of time to scout prime settings. Try to go at the time of day that you will hold your ceremony/ reception so you can see how the light falls. Go over which shots you want and which shots you don’t care to have. When you plan the schedule for your wedding, don’t forget about your photography. Allow plenty of time for a variety of shots, especially if you will be going to a different location.

Wedding photography encompasses more than just showing up on the day of the wedding; it’s a rather involved task that requires a great deal of planning and skill. Hire someone who will prepare, coordinate, and communicate every aspect along the way. If you’ve ever considered going the friend/family member route, there are a hundred reasons why you shouldn’t. First, your loved ones should be able to truly enjoy your day, not work it. Beyond that, a true wedding photographer will have the experience, the professional equipment, and the right training to handle any situation. Plus, they’ll have a written contract to protect your investment and ensure you’re getting exactly what you want.

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collected, creating an album that is diverse. You might be surprised to know that most couples don’t actually own their wedding photos, meaning that they aren’t able to freely share or print their images without permission. As the creator of the images, your photographer

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parents. Once you’ve drawn up plans with your photographer, make sure that you confirm all of the details of the service within a contract. Keep in mind that, depending on what type of package you get, costs will range. Photographers price their work in different ways. Just make sure you

Above all, be open to new ideas. The more willing a couple and their bridal party are to try new things, the more interesting the pictures will be. ❤ 1. JazzyMae Photography (p.70) 2. BCR Studios by Brad (p. 70) 3. Cirino Photography (p. 71) 4. Artistic Photography (p. 71) 5. Human Artist Photography (p. 71) 6. Karen Menyhart Photography (p. 71) 7. BCR Studios by Brad (p. 71)

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Signing a Photography Contract Once you’ve made your decision on a photographer and an appropriate package, you’ll need to put everything into a written contract. The contract should entail the date, time, location, name of the photographer, and how long he or she will work. Add the complete price — including any deposits and payment schedules — as well as what will be included. Here are the critical points to review and get in writing: ✔N  ame and contact information for you and your photographer ✔C  orrect date(s), exact hours, starting time(s), and locations (rehearsal dinner, home, ceremony, reception) where the photographer will be expected to shoot with exact addresses ✔N  ame of the photographer who will shoot your wedding and the number of assistants ✔N  umber and type(s) of cameras to be used ✔ Speci c shots requested ✔N  umber of proofs you’ll receive and complete package details ✔D  ate your proofs will be ready and how long you can keep them ✔ Photographer’s signature

 hen and how you’ll receive your ✔W order (album, prints) once you place it and any other delivery details ✔ L ength of time the photographer will keep your digital les ✔ Total cost (itemized if possible) ✔ Overtime fee, if applicable ✔R  eorder price if you decide to order additional prints later ✔ Deposit amount and date due ✔ Balance and date due ✔ Cancellation and refund policy ✔N  ame of an acceptable substitute photographer in case of an emergency ✔ I n the event of equipment failure, a guarantee that a back-up camera will be on-hand

Once you’ve made sure that all the bases are covered and the information is correct, go ahead and sign the contract. Make a copy of the document for your les so that you can consult the contract as your wedding day approaches. ❤

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If you’re considering excluding engagement photos from your photography package, we have a lot of reasons to convince you otherwise (besides documenting what a good-looking couple you are!). First, it’s a great way for you and your fiancé to get more comfortable in front of the camera. You’ll eliminate any camera-shy jitters, and learn more about how your photographer operates. Second, your photographer can get a better idea of your comfort level and your best angles which will result in better pictures on your wedding day!

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Third, these photos can come in very handy when you’re creating your wedding website, sending your save-the-dates, or creating unique guestbooks or table numbers. This is a great opportunity to express your love for each other and share it with the people you love most. Get creative with your shots by showcasing things you both love — like Cleveland sports or your alma mater — or shoot at multiple locations — like the place you met or the lake behind your house — to make your photos even more special. ❤

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1.Artistic Photography (p. 73) 2. Human Artist Photography (p. 73) 3. Love is All You Need Photography (p.73) 4. JazzyMae Photography (p. 73) 5. BCR Studios by Brad (p. 73) 6. Three and Eight Photography (p. 73) 7. LMAC Photography (p. 74) 8. Love is All You Need Photography (p. 74) 9. Karen Menyhart Photography (p. 74) 10. Orchard Photography (p. 74)

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The AAble Rents team is exceptional

in their standards of service and quality of product. I trust them to make our clients’ tented weddings nothing short of extraordinary. —Gina Jokilehto-Schigel

Owner + Creative Director

Shi Shi Events

Specify AAble Rents for your elegant outdoor events.

Photograph by David Corey Photography www.davidcoreyphotography.com

216-692-9800 | aablerents.com

Tents Reimagined Since 1970

Copyright © AAble Rents 2015. All rights reserved.

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COVER FEATURE

M OD ER N When the beautiful good girl falls for the edgy bad boy, what better location to marry than the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame? Our creative team aspired to create a setting that balanced the soft hues that are popular today—blush and lilac — with the edgy, sleek trends of the future—industrial materials like marble or concrete with metallic accents — to showcase a Modern Mix of hard and soft.


With so many stunning views, it was hard to choose just one photo-worthy Rock Hall backdrop! Our creative team partnered up with some of the best wedding vendors Northeast Ohio has to offer to design both a cocktail hour and reception set to capture as much personality as possible. While the cocktail hour featured incredible funtional pieces that rivaled the artwork — like the mirrored bar, marble columns, and green hedges — the reception incorporated a balance of fragility and hardness with a whimsical centerpiece and copper details. Feeling inspired by the unique decor, trending dress styles, and eclectic venue? Your wedding can be just as breathtaking when you team up with the innovative creations of Today’s Bride’s vendors! ❤ To see more visit TodaysBride.com Production Creative Directions & Styling: Today’s Bride Creative Team Bridal Attire: Expressions Bridal Cake: Kathy’s Cakery, Ltd. Decor: All Occasions Party Rental / Marbella Event Furniture and Décor Rental Flowers: Forest Woods Events Hair & Make-up: Carol Martin salonSpa Invitation Suite & Stationery: Paper Trails of Rocky River Men’s Attire: Tuxedo Junction Photographer: Genevieve Nisly Photography Venue: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Videography: Elite Entertainment

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Before you dive into 15 of the dreamiest Real Weddings, we’d like to remind you that all of these photos started with a couple, their love, and a vision. We’re hoping with a little bit of inspiration and – most importantly – love, the wedding of your dreams can be every bit as real as the ones you see here.

Orchard Photography


OCTOBER 3 • PEPPER PIKE NEW IMAGE PHOTOGRAPHY Today’s Bride partners who made it happen: Bakery: White Flower Cake Shoppe, LLC Decor, Lighting, & Rentals: Rock The House Entertainment  Registry: Bed Bath & Beyond, Macy’s Tuxedos: Jos. A Bank 82

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MAY 7 • YOUNGSTOWN HAI BALES PHOTOGRAPHY Today’s Bride partners who made it happen: Registry: Macy’s 84

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SEPTEMBER 26 • CLEVELAND JUSTIN KETCHEM PHOTOGRAPHY Today’s Bride partners who made it happen: Bridal Gown: Brides By Demetrios Lighting: Sound Precision Entertainment  Photo Booth: Clear Choice Photo Booth Tuxedos: Men’s Wearhouse READ MORE AT TODAYSBRIDE.COM

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AUGUST 1 • MOGADORE THREE & EIGHT PHOTOGRAPHY Today’s Bride partners who made it happen: Accessories & Jewelry: Dillard’s Beauty: Carol Martin salonSpa  Bridesmaids’ Gowns: David’s Bridal Tuxedos: Men’s Wearhouse

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AUGUST 2 • ORRVILLE MALICK PHOTO Today’s Bride partners who made it happen: Bridal & Bridesmaids’ Gowns: David’s Bridal Catering: Village Catering Company  Entertainment: Beach Boyz Entertainment Gown Preservation: David’s Bridal Jewelry: David’s Bridal Registry: Bed Bath & Beyond Tuxedos: American Commodore Tuxedo READ MORE AT TODAYSBRIDE.COM

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OCTOBER 17 • WILLOUGHBY GENEVIEVE NISLY PHOTOGRAPHY Today’s Bride partners who made it happen: Decor: Aable Rents Ceremony & Reception Music: Cleveland Music Group Linens: L’Nique Specialty Linens Tuxedos: Jos. A Bank 88

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JUNE 20 • CLEVELAND ORCHARD PHOTOGRAPHY Today’s Bride partners who made it happen: Alterations, Bridal, & Bridesmaids’ Gowns: Galleria Gowns Linens: L’Nique Specialty Linens  Invitations: The Paper Vow Reception Venue: The Club at Key Center Registry: Bed Bath & Beyond, Macy’s Tuxedos: American Commodore Tuxedo READ MORE AT TODAYSBRIDE.COM

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OCTOBER 10 • CHESTERLAND B. FROHMAN IMAGING + DESIGN Today’s Bride partners who made it happen: Bridal Gown: David’s Bridal Bridesmaids’ Gowns: Alfred Angelo  Transportation: Shima Limousine Tuxedos: American Commodore Tuxedo 90

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APRIL 2 • WICKLIFFE CIRINO PHOTOGRAPHY Today’s Bride partners who made it happen: Alterations, Bridal, & Bridesmaids’ Gowns: Galleria Gowns  Entertainment & Lighting: Marino Brothers Invitations: Brittney Nichole Designs  Photo Booth & Videography: Cirino Photography Registry: Bed, Bath & Beyond READ MORE AT TODAYSBRIDE.COM

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NOVEMBER 21 • CLEVELAND BCR STUDIOS BY BRAD Today’s Bride partners who made it happen: Alterations: Expressions Bridal & Formal Bridal & Bridesmaids’ Gowns: David’s Bridal Entertainment & Lighting: Selective Sound Entertainment Registry: Bed Bath & Beyond Tuxedos: American Commodore Tuxedo Videography: BCR Studios by Brad 92

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JULY 11 • CLEVELAND LOVE IS ALL YOU NEED PHOTOGRAPHY Today’s Bride partners who made it happen: Entertainment: Raise the Roof Entertainment READ MORE AT TODAYSBRIDE.COM

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AUGUST 1 • INDEPENDENCE LMAC PHOTOGRAPHY Today’s Bride partners who made it happen: Alterations: Vera’s Ladies Apparel Bridal Gown & Preservation: David’s Bridal  Entertainment & Lighting: Rock the House Entertainment Reception Venue & Caterer: Embassy Suites Rockside Registry: Bed Bath & Beyond, Macy’s Travel Agent: LoveShack Vacations Tuxedos: Men’s Wearhouse 94

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SEPTEMBER 5 • CLEVELAND HUMAN ARTIST PHOTOGRAPHY Today’s Bride partners who made it happen: Caterer, Ceremony, & Reception Venue: House of Blues Cleveland  Entertainment: Rock the House Entertainment Registry: Bed Bath & Beyond  Tuxedos: American Commodore Tuxedo READ MORE AT TODAYSBRIDE.COM

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APRIL 25 • STRONGSVILLE JOHN PAUL STUDIOS, LLC Today’s Bride partners who made it happen: Alterations, Bridal, & Bridesmaids’ Gowns: David’s Bridal Registry: Bed Bath & Beyond  Transportation: BVIP Limousine Service, LTD Tuxedos: Men’s Wearhouse 96

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MAY 14 • SILVER LAKE SPENCER PHOTOGRAPHY, INC. Today’s Bride partners who made it happen: Florist: Graceful Wedding Company Reception Venue: Silver Lake Country Club  Registry: Bed Bath & Beyond Tuxedos: Tuxedo Junction READ MORE AT TODAYSBRIDE.COM

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PERFECT PETALS From the bouquet to the boutonniere, centerpieces to aisle decor, flowers play a significant role in creating a beautiful event. They help set a casual or elegant atmosphere with the vibrancy, fragrance, and overall design, all while reflecting your and your fiancé’s personality and style! Selecting your florist and getting your arrangements just right may seem like a daunting task, but we’ve made it easy by answering all of your burning questions! 98

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You should begin researching potential orists up to a year in advance. What should I look for in a orist? Weddings are labor-intensive projects, so find a florist who specifically works in weddings. While researching potential florists, pay attention to their portfolios — after all, you’ll want to work with some-

one whose talents match the style you have in mind for your wedding.

When should I start my search? You should begin researching potential florists up to a year in advance and reserve your florist at least three to six months before the wedding. Allow even more time if you’re marrying during the busy season (April through October).

What kind of prep-work should I do when it comes to owers? Before you meet with potential florists, have some ideas in mind regarding types of arrangements, and

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more specifically, which flowers you would like to see on your wedding day. Attending a bridal show is an excellent way to see (and smell) a variety of arrangements up close!

How should I go about interviewing orists I’m interested in? After you find some great ideas, set up an introductory meeting with a few different florists to see samples of their work and photographs of weddings they’ve done in the past. It’s helpful to bring along pictures from books, magazines, or Pinterest boards that illustrate your ideas. Additionally, give your florist photos of your gown and your bridesmaids’ gowns, swatches of your color scheme, and pictures of your decor.

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How does budget factor into my nal oral decision? With any part of your wedding planning, it’s important to have an idea of how much you want to spend. Honesty is the best policy, and you will save yourself a lot of grief if you know your budget. A versatile florist should be able to provide options within your financial limits that won’t compromise on style! ❤

1. Rachel Solomon Photography (p.98) 2. Adam Barnes Photography + Amanda Gray for Ashley Baber Weddings (p. 99) 3. Genevieve Nisly Photography (p. 99) 4. LMAC Photography, Nikki’s Perfect Petals FiftyFlowers.com, reInspired Bride (p. 99) 5. Genevieve Nisly Photography, Forest Woods Events (p. 99)

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Our Top Five Tips for Scoring One

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Generally, the bouquet is selected based on the overall style and formality of the wedding ceremony. It could be as extravagant as a large array of cascading orchids or as simple as a single rose.

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By incorporating other materials — such as lace and crystal — in the bouquet, you can add a touch of whimsical sophistication to not only accompany, but enhance your overall atmosphere.

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A bouquet should complement your wedding gown and your personality, and it should be proportionate to your body. Provide your florist with a photo of your dress, along with some color swatches and details about your wedding, and you’ll be sure to walk down the aisle with a bouquet that’s designed specifically for you.

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If you choose to have bridesmaids’ bouquets, they are typically smaller replicas of the bridal bouquet. Keep in mind, however, that flowers have the tendency to blend easily with the color of the gowns, so choose something that will stand out when pictures are taken.

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Don’t be afraid to experiment. You may fall in love with an accidental arrangement you created as you picked up stems of your favorite flowers at a local flower stand or florist shop. Make your bouquet as unique and personal as you are! ❤ 1. Kurt Boomer Photography 2. Lindsey Gage Photography 3. Orchard Photography 4. Malick Photo 5. Lindsey Gage Photography

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Thinking outside the box

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ou don’t have to be “alternative” or pinching pennies to want a non-floral bouquet for your wedding. Maybe the usual bunch of flowers is just not what you had pictured. And that’s okay – because you have lots of options! Here are a few unique and inspiring ideas to get your wheels turning:

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Paper Flowers Feathers Broach Bouquets Buttons Sea shells Pinwheels Whether you decide to add a stem or two to these options or create a bouquet completely one-of-a-kind, there are plenty of choices when it comes to being unique! ❤ 1. Malick Photo 2. B. Frohman Imaging + Design 3. Boho Bridal

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maidenhair fern succulents

Which are in? Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s all about the greenery! From seeded eucalyptus leaves to luscious succulents, brides are opting for a more natural, organic feel when creating their floral arrangements. Adorning tables, hanging from arches, floating in water-based centerpieces, or carried down the aisle, this trend is taking weddings by storm. Additionally, long-time favorites like roses, ranunculuses, peonies, and poppies, are sparsely distributed to add a pop of color and create drama. â?¤ peonies

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poppies

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After all is said and done, you’ll have a collection of wedding day keepsakes, and your bouquet will be among the most precious. With that said, you might want to think about drying and preserving your bouquet. Begin by scheduling a consultation with a local freeze-drying company to get everything set up beforehand. Pre-planning this service ensures a faster delivery and better quality for the finished product. The morning after the wedding, have your Maid-of-Honor drop the bouquet off at your florist or specialist. They’ll freeze-dry the bouquet and frame it according to your vision! ❤ Orchard Photography

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You can never underestimate the power of music to get the party started. The right music can add drama, heighten emotion, and most importantly, keep your reception (and guests!) moving. Our Q&A below is designed to help you inch closer to nding that perfect performer who will create a dynamic playlist for your wedding day. Should we hire a DJ or live band?

Having a band, on the other hand, gives you the variety and energy of a live performance. The band you choose can do wonders to set the tone for your reception.

In our opinion, you can’t go wrong either way. However, there are specific benefits to each, so here’s our breakdown on the issue:

With a live band, guests interact with and respond to the musicians. Bands can tailor their performances to suit the crowd; for example, if the guests enjoy a certain song, the band can play it longer. In the end, there’s just a little more life to it, and it tells your guests they’re witnessing something special.

If versatility is a priority, disc jockeys can’t be beat. Their repertoire can include practically every song ever recorded – and if they don’t currently have a copy of your favorite tune, a wellconnected DJ will be able to get it. It’s important to note that disc jockeys do more than just shuffle songs – they also emcee the event and make sure that everything runs smoothly. Because they can walk away from the music while it’s playing, they’re also free to interact with the crowd and make sure your guests are having a good time.

When should we start our search?

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We’d advise booking this service as soon as possible – popular performers get booked far in advance, so give yourself at least six months to hunt. As with every other aspect of your wedding, planning ahead will help secure your first choice. READ MORE AT TODAYSBRIDE.COM


Weddings We Have Them Down to a Science!

Weddings, Receptions, Rehearsal Dinners • Unique Indoor and Outdoor Event Space • Dramatic Views of Lake Erie and Downtown Cleveland

GreatScience.com READ MORE AT TODAYSBRIDE.COM

216-696-4941 SpecialEvents@glsc.org

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CONTACT US TO LEARN MORE: 216.586.4627 clevelandphotogroup@gmail.com clevelandphotogroup.com

EVERY WEDDING IS UNIQUE... WE WONâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;T FIT YOU INTO A PACKAGE. Cleveland Photo Group is committed to working with you as a team to ensure that all the most beautiful, touching and joyful moments of your wedding day are captured.

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Never make a decision without a face-to-face meeting with the DJ or musician(s) who will be working your wedding. Keep in mind that researching should only be a small step along the way; you should never make a decision without a face-to-face meeting with the DJ or musician(s) who will be working your wedding.

What else should we consider when choosing our reception musicians? First and foremost, you’ll want to consider the size of your reception site and number of guests attending. An intimate space won’t fit a 22-piece orchestra, just as a three-piece combo probably won’t cut it for 400 people. Additionally, you’ll want to make sure you keep the entertainment set up in a central area near the edge of the dance floor. It can be difficult for your musi-

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cian(s) to keep the party going if you have tables set up between the dance floor and the stage/DJ booth.

How can I help my musician prepare for the big day? Whatever your choice, both bandleaders and disc jockeys can help you select the perfect songs to personalize your reception. Both DJs and live bands can read the crowd to adjust their music selection and cater it to the wedding style. After all, part of his or her professional expertise is being able to read the crowd and respond to its mood. Of course, you’ll need to provide them with a list of the staples, such as your first dance and parent songs. If you have particular favorites you definitely want to hear throughout the reception — or songs you absolutely don’t (think, Chicken Dance) — give your musician a do-not-play list and a must-play list of specific songs, music genres, and artists you like and don’t like. A week or two before your wedding, you should reach out to your entertainer(s) to confirm the reception’s timeline, playlist (especially for required songs), and style. Getting everything in order beforehand will make things a lot easier when the day arrives. ❤ 1. Genevieve Nisly Photography (p. 104) 2. Spencer Photography, Inc. (p. 104) 3. Orchard Photography (p. 107)

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the Details It’s All in

Once you know you’ve found the right band or DJ, it’s time to work out the specifics and get it in writing.

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Timing • Firm up your musician’s arrival times and set-up requirements. You should expect them to arrive at least an hour in advance. Plan on contracting for at least three hours, and add a provision for playing longer.

some bands will play pre-recorded music during breaks so that there is continuous music.

Equipment

• Ask how many minutes per hour will be spent on breaks and if the musicians require dinner. (It is courteous to offer dinner to your vendors.)

• Figure out what the equipment requirements are such as power outlets, staging, dance floor, speakers, and any equipment that you may be expected to supply. If the musicians are bringing all of their own equipment, record any extra charges.

• Discuss “continuous flow.” During the off-time, individual musicians may take breaks while the remainder of the band plays on;

• Verify with your reception site manager whether the facility has any restrictions on the number of musicians and/or pieces of equipment you

may bring in. You should also ask about electrical power supply and noise limitations.

• A do-not play list is perfectly acceptable to include, too, if you have certain artists or genres you’d like to avoid.

• Be sure to ask your DJ/musician about their insurance coverage. Most professionals carry liability in case of equipment-based injuries or other incidents, but it never hurts to ask.

• You can also offer up B-list songs or artists to play should they need to fill time throughout the reception.

Introductions • A rm your DJ or bandleader with proper pronunciations of your bridal party’s names for announcements, their relation to the bride or groom (Maid-of-Honor, parents of the bride, etc.), and a timeline of the reception’s events. If someone else will be handling introductions, make sure the entertainer knows their sole duty is turning out tunes.

Contact Info • Make sure you have the names of the exact musicians who will play at your wedding, plus the names of acceptable substitutes, should there be an emergency.

Song Selections • You don’t need to have a playlist for the entire reception, but as far as the entrance, first dance, and bouquet toss goes, it’s important to have an outline of what your entertainer will play.

Attire guidelines • In order to coordinate with your wedding theme, you should have some say in what the performers wear.

Contract Points • Ask about deposit requirements and payment schedules. Like other services, a 50 percent deposit is usually required to book a date with the balance due before or on the wedding day. • Make sure the cancellation/refund policy is included. If something unforeseen happens to a musician who’s not under contract, you could end up without wedding music. • Discuss and include fees and overtime rates. Find out how much they charge for overtime in the event the reception runs longer than originally planned. Above all, don’t be afraid to ask all the questions you want answered. If you feel uncomfortable with an answer, don’t just accept it. Ask more questions or have them clarify their answers. ❤ 1. Genevieve Nisly Photography 2. Orchard Photography

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Can you think of anything more fun than grabbing your guests with a few props in hand and striking hilarious poses for a mini photoshoot? Serving up hours of fun while recording memorable moments, photo booths are the ultimate party starter! Plus, guests will leave with a souvenir photo strip that they can display at home! Use these helpful tips to take this customizable wedding favor up a notch! • Personalized paper or printer settings to fit your wedding, or monogrammed green screens will remind your guests of where the photos came from and the good time they had taking them. • Provide custom sleeves or frames for guests to use with their keepsake portraits. You may also want to ask your guests to take two sets of photos in the booth – one set for themselves and one to put in your memory book.

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• Envision what kind of props you’d like to use. If you’re going for a fun, laid back theme, bring on the oversized glasses & boas! Want 2 a more refined selection? Choose “team groom” and “team bride” signs along with mini-chalkboards for sweet sentiments. • Discuss social-media sharing options with your photo booth expert. P hoto booths will charm your guests and capture quality memories — book yours and let the fun begin! ❤

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ReelLOVE They say a picture is worth a thousand words. A video, on the other hand? That’s priceless. On what can be considered one of the most important days of your life, preserving the details is vital! Once the garter has been tossed, the cake has been served, and the guests send you off on your honeymoon, the day you’ve been planning for months — maybe years! — is over. With the help of an expertly edited wedding video, you can relive the absolute best moments from your big day whenever you’d like! Given the heightened emotion of the big day, it’s nearly impossible to take it all in. Nothing will be able to bring you back to the sights and sounds of your wedding more than a professional video.

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If you’re trying to decide if you need a videographer in addition to your photographer, you should consider this: Although you’ll cherish the images from your special day forever, still photography can only capture particular moments in time. Videography, on the other hand, will show you walking down the aisle and the smiles exchanged by you and your new spouse as you share your first dance.

Finding Videographers Begin researching videographers as early as you can – even a year ahead of time – then set up appointments to see the work of promising candidates.

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be afraid to ask for it. Although many vendors only work within their set packages, some only use them as a tool to create what you really want.

Hiring a Videographer After you’ve experienced the different styles of videography, it’s time to pick your videographer! It’s standard for a videographer to cover the ceremony, the first dance, and the cake-cutting, but there are many moments that might go unrecorded unless he or she is otherwise instructed.

Because videography is a creative process, you’ll want to find a professional whose style you admire. Ultimately, a great wedding video is created when your videographer applies strong technical skills, artistic shot composition, sensitivity in editing, and most importantly, an understanding of your wishes and ideas for your video.

The video company you choose should draft a contract that will be signed by you, your fiancé, and the videographer stipulating the specifics, including: name and contact information for you and the videographer, correct date, exact number of hours, starting time, locations where the videographer will work with exact addresses, the number of assistants, how long the finished product will be, and when you’ll receive it.

A qualified videographer should get to know your style as a couple and be able to offer suggestions to complement your ideas. You should feel comfortable with your videographer and be assured that he or she will meet with you in advance to go over all the details and, if requested, attend your rehearsal.

When all is said and done, choosing a videographer whose style and tastes complement your own will ensure that your wedding video becomes a priceless memento. Just because your wedding day has passed doesn’t mean you and future generations can’t relive the happiness and love shared. ❤

Inquire about various package deals the videographer may offer. If you want something special, don’t

1. Genieve Nisly Photography, Elite Entertainment, Expressions Bridal, Tuxedo Junction, Carol Martin salonSpa 2. Orchard Photography

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Chances are, you’ve been visualizing every wedding day detail – from the length of your veil, to the reception playlist, and of course — the most delicious part of your nuptials — your cake! The cake is undoubtedly the center of attention mid-reception! The ideas of a bride and groom combined with expert experience from a baker and decorator can produce an artistic masterpiece. Designing a cake as unique as the couple that envisions it has grown increasingly popular and important in the wedding planning process. Your cake will be a focal point of your reception, so put as much thought and planning into it as you do with every aspect of your wedding day! Follow our creative cake brainstorming guidelines to get the most out of your experience.

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Remember, your baker has been doing this a long time, so discuss some of your options to incorporate more flavors.

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the cake looks like, how it tastes, and whether or not it fits your wedding best!

Visit the TodaysBride.com vendor list to see which wedding bakers are in your area.  ake a list of the bakers in your area and review their M website or Facebook page. Check out any pictures they have of their previous work, read bride reviews, and decide on your favorites.

Get in contact with your favorite bakeries to set up a time to meet and discuss your options. You can begin to interview and compare licensed wedding cake companies up to a year in advance. (Don’t forget to bring this copy of Today’s Bride – there are plenty of questions you can ask in our Wedding Planner!)

Ask to see a portfolio of their cakes. 5

When looking at a baker’s portfolio, pay attention to the execution of a design. Remember, each decorator has his or her own style and strong suits – be sure to take note of the decorator that suits your personal style, and request that they work on your cake.

Of course, you’ll be comparing prices between cake companies, too!

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Charging per serving is the standard in the cake industry, but some companies will charge based on the cake itself or the flavors you select, so be sure to ask how they’re coming up with their numbers. You’ll also want to find out if the bakery will provide someone to cut and distribute the cake, as well as the price of the service. Your instinct might be to choose the cheapest baker, but your decision should depend greatly on what

After you’ve narrowed down your search, get ready for the best part! Arrange a tasting. Sometimes couples choose a beautiful cake but neglect to taste it (yes – seriously!) Call the best bakeries in your area and let them know you’re considering them for your wedding. Some bakeries will have open house tastings where brides are able to sample a variety of different cakes! You may have an addiction to chocolate, but find out that a bakery you love makes the most divine carrot cake. While your guests will ooh and ahh over its appearance, it’s the taste of the cake itself that will leave them satisfied, so make sure not to neglect this important step.

So you’ve fallen in love with the red velvet, tiramisu, AND key lime coconut? No worries! You just might be able to have them all. Most wedding cakes have more than one tier, and sometimes each tier can be a different flavor with a different filling. You might even consider serving cupcakes, in which case, you could have each individual serving be a tasty new adventure. Remember, your baker has been doing this a long time and has seen almost everything, so discuss some of your options and ideas with them for different ways to incorporate more flavors.

Time to reserve that cake. Book your bakery at least six months before the wedding. Design, flavor, and decorations don’t have to be decided upon until three to five months before your wedding day, but ensuring that the bakery you want TODAY’S BRIDE

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has time to devote to creating your perfect cake is important. Talk over their design deadlines with them.

be drawn to a particular look or design

Consider how you want your cake to reflect other elements of your celebration.

Make sure to bring swatches from your gown and your bridesmaids’ dresses, samples of the flowers, or colors used at the reception, as well as photos of the cake designs you love!

Is your wedding more traditional or is it laid-back? Do you want it all white, or to complement your color scheme? With the myriad of possibilities these days, bakers can match the cake to anything from the invites to the bouquet.

Feast your eyes on as many cake photos in bridal magazines and on TodaysBride.com as you can! Explore thousands of ideas on Pinterest too – we recommend creating a secret board to keep your guests from seeing your ideas before the big day!

Once you’ve gathered a couple ideas, start comparing your favorites. Does a pattern emerge? You may notice that most of your cakes are covered in a simple buttercream frosting rather than fondant, or that they each have a bold, geometric design. Chances are, you’ll 116

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element.

Schedule a design consultation after you’ve made your final decision.

Take your decorator’s advice. Though bakers are constantly finding new ways to make cakes more elaborate, they’re also the experts and know whether or not your dream cake is realistic. If they say that a decadent, seven tiered cake will collapse, consider altering your design. Keep in mind that they have years of experience behind them and know what works and what doesn’t. Ultimately, you will have the final decision – but thoughtful planning in the beginning will ensure a beautiful and delicious cake in the end! ❤ 1. Intricate Icings Cake Design - Ali N Garrett Photography (p.114) 2. Intricate Icings Cake Design - Brumley and Wells Photography (p.115) 3. Rachel Solomon Photography (p.115) 4. Hey there, cupcake! (p.115) 5. Nadia & Co (p.115) 6. Jar Cakery (p.115) 7. Hey there, cupcake! (p.116) 8. Frost It Cupcakery (p.116) 8. Frost It Cupcakery (p.116) 9. JenHuang Photography - Sweet and Saucy Shop (p.116)

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We believe EVERY wedding should be a signature wedding; unique, personal, special, but most importantly MEMORABLE.

i do BBQ

Casual elegance. Comfortable indulgence. Great barbecue is the perfect match for your memorable day.

Whether you need full service planning, someone to provide day-of services, or something in between, we offer just the right touch for you.

Dream Weddings & Events, LLC 216-881-8047 • dreamcatchers114@gmail.com www.dreamwellc.com Pinterest: Dream Weddings & Events

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WOW! The staff was so amazing! The food was great, the guests raved, and it was very affordable. I can’t say enough about how wonderful they were to work with!

– Sarah, Bride

Visit oldcarolina.com to contact a wedding catering specialist. Or, sample the menu at one of our 10 restaurant locations in Northeast Ohio. TODAY’S BRIDE

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WHICH IS FOR YOU? BUTTERCREAM is the traditional type of icing used to frost birthday cakes and other conventional desserts. A classic buttercream recipe calls for powdered sugar, butter, milk, and vanilla extract. Many cake enthusiasts would agree that they’re team buttercream because of its avor and texture, making the cake easier to cut compared to fondant. However, if you’re planning on having an outdoor summer wedding, this soft selection might not be the best for you, as it tends to melt in warm temperatures.

FONDANT has a thick, modeling claylike consistency with an ever-so-smooth nish that envelops wedding cakes perfectly. Made from sugar, hot water, and corn syrup, fondant is typically rolled thin and draped over the cake. It can be sculpted into other decorative elements—like owers or gurines—as well! Fondant tends to be used to create a awless nish with sharp, dramatic lines, or soft, rounded edges. This frosting’s strength is also its weakness, though: the texture isn’t agreeable to every couples’ tastes.

MARZIPAN icing can be rolled and draped over cakes just like fondant can, the difference is that marzipan is made from almond paste, which has a more exible structure. The almonds also give the marzipan a delicate, nutty taste. Bakers sometimes mix fondant and marzipan together to create the perfect substance of elasticity and subtle avor. After placing marzipan onto a wedding cake, it’s important to cover it until you’re ready to serve so it doesn’t dry out. ❤

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Thi k Differently. Since many couples are choosing to have non-traditional wedding celebrations, it only makes sense that they would opt for sweet treats that also stray from “the norm.” Although you might choose to serve these confectionary favorites in addition to a more traditional wedding cake, these desserts can also hold their own at any wedding:

Cupcakes – The ease of serving cupcakes is almost as wonderful as the option of serving an array of flavors! It’s as simple as setting them out and allowing guests to grab one at their leisure.

Donuts – Who doesn’t love a fluffy, glazed donut? The universally loved treat is a perfect party favor, and can be stacked in a tier to resemble a cake.

Cake Pops – Adorable, personable and so much more fun to eat, you won’t feel guilty eating these small servings!

Candy or Mini-Dessert Table – Whether you choose to display the newlyweds’ favorite candy in mason jars, offer up mini caramel cheesecake bites or serve a combination of the two, these dessert spreads are sure to be a hit with your guests. Assortment of Pies – Pies could very well be the comfort food of the dessert realm! In fact, it’s quite possible your guests won’t remember cake was even an option once they get their hands on that delicious apple crumb pie! Offered by the slice or in miniatures, pies are sure to please. Malick Photo

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These five alternatives to cake are deliciously distinct and they’re sure to satisfy the cravings of hungry wedding-goers everywhere! ❤

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A GRAND GETAWAY Malick Photo

A

fter making hundreds of decisions, the last thing on your already overwhelmed mind is actually one of the most important details: transportation! Your

chosen mode of transportation can help set the mood, make you feel at ease, and most importantly, get you to where you need to be. Follow these steps to get the most out of your wedding day transportation: Plan Ahead

Consider the Cost

If you’re planning a wedding during a popular month, such as June or October, you may have to get reservations further in advance. If your wedding is during prom season, you’ll need at least six months to reserve.

The cost of your rental will depend on the type of ride you choose, the length of time you’ll need the rental, and the time of year you want it. Weekend prices are usually firm, but a weekday rental can sometimes be negotiated. If you need more than one vehicle, ask if a discount applies.

Narrow Down Your Ideas Do you want a chic Hummer, an elegant vintage car, the ever-popular party bus, or something completely different? To make the best choice, you’ll need to consider your sense of style as a couple, as well as the size of your wedding party and how many will fit comfortably. Remember that a 14-passenger stretch limo may not always fit 14 people as easily once they’re in formal wedding attire. Avoid a potential wedding day blunder by considering the space you’ll need for your gown. 120

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Some operators have straightforward charges; others may have secondary costs such as gratuities or fuel surcharges. Many companies expect a deposit; find out if it is refundable, and if so, under what conditions. Almost all companies have a minimum number of hours to rent. During prom season, some may demand a higher minimum. You should never feel pressured to give your credit card number to “hold” a limousine if you’re not sure about the transportation company. Only leave a deposit

once a concise contract has been created and signed by both you and the company.

Compare companies, but don’t just book by price alone. Shop around — check how long the company has been in business, ask about extra perks that might come with your limo, and most importantly, see the vehicles. A company might have the best price, but they need the equipment to back it up, too.

Almost all companies have a minimum number of hours to rent. During prom season, some may demand a higher minimum. Be Attentive & Ask the Important Questions First and foremost, make sure the company doesn’t outsource work to a third party. Although this may be an acceptable practice, having a middleman leaves the door open for lateness or, even worse, a

no-show. If you have your heart set on a particular car, you’ll be better off finding a vendor who actually owns the one you have in mind.

Carefully inspect the vehicle you’ll be using beyond just its features. Make sure the company is registered with the Department of Transportation and has all the required insurance. Look for the livery sticker issued by the State of Ohio — this proves that the company’s insurance has been approved. If you’re interested in renting a party bus, check for an up-to-date PUCO (Public Utilities Commission of Ohio) sticker — it ensures the vehicle has its required inspection from the highway patrol.

Hammering Out the Details Next, you’ll want to get a signed contract. This spells out what the carrier will provide, its cost, cancellation options, and what happens if the company fails to deliver as promised. If the professional transportation service you select is reputable, you will find that the driver is experienced at delivering the bridal party on time and with minimal nerves — and in some cases, with a little champagne! That’s all you need to be riding in style! ❤ READ MORE AT TODAYSBRIDE.COM


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Are you and your spouse-to-be planning a celebratory beachside vacation, a rustic camping endeavor, or a week exploring the hidden gems in an unknown city? Before you plan your itinerary, check out the following Q&A to help you prepare for one of the most memorable and enjoyable vacations of your life!

Why should I hire a travel agent? The same exact reason you hire a professional photographer or hairstylist – to get the best benefits and up-to-date information straight from the expert! When you begin your search for vacation packages online, beware of the initial attraction of “low-cost” honeymoons that flood the web. What sounds like an incredible bargain might end up being a far more expensive trip due to hidden fees, taxes, and other charges that the websites don’t mention upfront. A full-service travel agency, on the other hand, will not charge extra fees for their time and knowledge!

How should I prepare ? It’s best to go into the meeting with a clear idea of what type of trip you and your fiancé are interested in and an approximate budget. If you haven’t picked an exact location, an agent can help pinpoint a place that will enchant you and pacify READ MORE AT TODAYSBRIDE.COM

your wallet. Plus, agents can offer deals you might not find on your own. The more specific your destination and activity wish list, the less time you’ll waste on imagining fantasies that are beyond your budget.

What should I ask my agent? Meeting with your travel agent is the perfect time to take advantage of the Wedding Planner in the back of this magazine! Important details to consider include airport connections, bus and taxi services, tipping, foreign currency conversion, and safety concerns such as government-issued travel advisories. Ask for a phone number to use after-hours for emergencies whilst still in the country and a toll-free number while you’re abroad!

What should I look for in a reputable agent? Unlike the ceremony, there are no rehearsals for the honeymoon! View your travel agent as you would any other wedding professional. Look for an agent who seems knowledgeable, read reviews and testimonials, and choose someone who responds to your questions, emails, and phone calls quickly. ❤

PASSPORTS A passport is valid for 10 years and is your proof of citizenship. If you aready have a passport, some countries require that it be valid for at least six months or longer beyond the dates of your trip. Passports normally take about ve weeks to process. During the busy travel months — May through August — it can take up to eight weeks to get your passport by mail. If you’re taking your husband’s name, your airline tickets and passport must match, so book your ticket and apply for your passport under your maiden name. Once you’ve returned and received your marriage certi cate, you can le a Passport-Amendment Application. If your original passport was issued less than 12 months ago, there are no fees to have your name changed. Passport forms can be downloaded or picked up at major post of ces, county clerk of ces, or passport agencies. You should be able to get the required 2” x 2” passport photo shot at your local drugstore. Keep in mind that passports are required for the Caribbean, Canada, and Mexico. ❤ TODAY’S BRIDE

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Can’t decide where to honeymoon?

The waterfalls of Jamaica, the pink sands of Antigua, the mountains of St. Lucia… it’s impossible to decide which setting will offer the most relaxing honeymoon! Luckily, Sandals® has created the perGRANDE ANTIGUA fect compromise — Island Hopping! Choose from established itineraries or create your own. Now all you have to worry about is buying another bikini… BARBADOS

Wedding to Honeymoon Hop Invite your friends and family to celebrate your nuptials in Antigua. Tie the Knot on the sandy shores before heading off on your honeymoon to the new Sandals® Barbados for some private time with your new spouse.

LASOURCE GRENADA You don’t have to choose with the Island to Island option!

After your wedding, hop to Grenada for a honeymoon of exploration and adventurous excursions (think monkeys and waterfalls) or enjoy the comfortable, oceanside lounge chairs.

Sandals

Grande Antigua

Sandals

Barbados Sandals

Finally, you can have it all! Live the life of luxury as you jet set around the Caribbean.

LaSource Grenada Editorial is courtesy of UnlimitedTrips.com Photos Courtesy of Sandals® & Beaches® Resorts READ MORE AT TODAYSBRIDE.COM

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Ohio is for lovers! Wedding experts in Northeast Ohio can offer you the best service, attention, and quality â&#x20AC;&#x201D; all right here in your backyard! Check out the fl wless services provided by local professionals below:

Allure Couture

Hudec Dental

Galleria Gowns

Kay Photo & Design

www.Hudecdental.com 216-661-8888 Look your best with a whiter, brighter smile! Let us give a Smile Makeover at any of our 18 Cleveland area dental offices. Multiple locations near ou.

www.galleriagowns.net 440-943-6065 As Clevelandâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Premier Bridal Gown Shop for over 25 years, Galleria Gowns offers a diverse selection for everyone! Book your appointment today!

www.kayphotoandesign.com 440-477-4382 With unlimited locations and photos, Kay Photo and Design is sure to capture the perfect shot. Copyrights are included in every coverage!

Cutting Edge Limousine

All About Your Wedding Officiant Servic

Traveling with Phyllis

www.cuttingedgelimousine.com 440-946-7400 From classy sedans, to roomy stretch limos, to exciting party buses, with Cutting Edge Limo, you are guaranteed to arrive in style.

www.allaboutyourwedding.com 440-537-4106 As a licensed, non-denominational officiant, Gin y will personalize a heartfelt ceremony tailored to your dreams. Available on short notice, she is willing to travel to any location.

www.TravelingwithPhyllis.com 440-845-7572 From adventurous excursions, to astounding sights, to romantic evenings, Traveling with Phyllis will help create a honeymoon that is as unique as the two of you.

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Travel Specialist Group

Billy J Full Spectrum Entertainment

Limobusters

www.TravelSpecialistGroup.com 440-286-6819 • bruce@travelspecialistgroup.com You planned the perfect wedding, let us book the honeymoon of your dreams! Contact Bruce Collier, your Vacation Travel Consultant, today!

www.billyjdjs.com 440-585-3004 With over 20 years of success, Billy J Full Spectrum Entertainment will ensure your guests never forget your wedding reception.

www.limobusters.com 440-235-0799 Our limo services offer you the opportunity to choose from several types of vehicles. We’ll help you find sophisticated t ansportation for any event.

Inspired Paper Co.

Perfectly Posh

JazzyMae Photography

www.InspiredPaperCo.com 440-320-5563 • inspiredpaperakron@gmail.com We are your resource for invitations, save-thedates, place cards, and paper goods.

www.perfectlyposh.com 330-573-0094 • BarbiWilkerson.po.sh 330-573-4066 • MeghanWilkinson.po.sh You deserve some love! Look your best and pamper yourself for your wedding day with Perfectly Posh-naturally based products. Made in the USA!

www.jazzymaephotography.com 216-280-5851 You won’t want to forget a moment of your wedding day! Capture every smile shared between your family, friends, and loved ones forever.

Elegant Assets Event Center

Wine & Design

Selfie Scen

www.elegantassetseventcenter.com 440-458-1563 • info@elegantassetseventcenter.com Eclectic decor and landscaped gardens await your wedding celebration at Lorain County’s newest event center. Fresh & creative catering by I DO Cuisine.

www.wineanddesign.com/clevelandwest 19328 Detroit Rd., Cleveland • Or On Wheels Bachelorette pARTy? Girls Night Out? Get cheeky and paint a male model or any of our 5,000 fun painting options in a private or public class!

www.selfiescenephotos.co 234-244-8024 • info@selfiescenephotos.com We’ll set the scene at your wedding! With ornate backgrounds and silly props, your guests will create souvenirs to last a lifetime!

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For an unforgettable experience, host your next event surrounded by the world’s largest single collection of rock and roll artifacts that celebrate the spirit of rock and roll.

©Making the Moment Photography www.MakingTheMoment.com

216 .515.8420 | rockhall.com Collection Auto Group Plaza | 1100 Rock and Roll Blvd., Cleveland, Ohio 44114

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Four Locations One Dream Wedding Lush Greens, Dazzling Ballrooms, and Extraordinary Experiences await you at each of these Breathtaking Properties!

Medina 130 | TODAY'S BRIDE 330.723.4653

Westlake 440.250.2000

Solon 440.498.3419

Medina READ MORE AT TODAYSBRIDE.COM 330.725.6297

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Todays Bride 2017 - Cleveland  

Todays Bride 2017 - Cleveland