Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Wedding Wire Rocks

Like you I am always on the hunt for great planning tools and wedding websites. In all honesty, I have to say that I don’t check out every new wedding-centric site that pops up. Most of them are just lame excuses for sucking advertising dollars off wedding vendors. They have a list of vendors, a few out of date articles on planning and little else.

Today I ran across one that is worth its pixels and is about to get even better. Wedding Wire is a relative newcomer to the game; launched in June of 2007 it has just been scarfed up by Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia.

Wedding Wire was created by a team of entrepreneurs including 2 founding members of Blackboard. This is not some lame site put together by a former bride to be or a former magazine ad sales person. These creators have some serious internet chops. As proof, take a look at how functional the tools they have created for brides are. In addition to wedding websites, budget tools and timeline planners they also have the coolest drag and drop seating chart tool.

The galleries look to be fairly large and are searchable by color as well as item. So if you search “purple” you will get everything, bouquets, décor, invitation, favors or anything else in purple. The events page is searchable by zipcode and event type. If you are looking for all the upcoming bridal or trunk shows in your area this is the place to look. The communities look a little thin still but I’m sure that will come with time.

With the additional resources available to them now that MSLO owns 40% of the company you can bet that the content will be just as top notch. If you love Martha Stewart Weddings, then this is definitely the wedding planning website for you.

This one really has me excited.

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Friday, April 25, 2008

More DIY Flower Ideas

It’s Flower Friday.

The most often used search term that finds Wedding Dish is either ‘Centerpiece’ or 'DIY Centerpiece’

I just happened to run across a video today on video jug on flower arranging so I thought I would see what else I could find.

First up- how about the 411 on how to grow those cool wheat grass centerpieces. You can get flower tubes at a floral supply store. Fill them with water, pop in a flower and stick the tube into your pretty little miniature lawn. It is also a great way to display escort cards; just stick them into the grass.Fun!

Then here is an unbelievably easy centerpiece that goes way beyond rose petals and a floating candle. If you look at it is exactly how we made the centerpieces for the Gala at The Special Event in January.

Last but not least, here is the how to on the boutonnieres for the men in the party. The technique is valid for nearly any combination of flowers, berries and greenery. Remember to choose flowers on the smallish side; no guy wants a full blown peony on his lapel!

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Jenna Bush’s Wedding

I don’t know if it’s all the politics I have been watching lately or the fact that the wedding is less than two weeks away, but I decided to pull together as many of the details of the up coming event in Crawford.

Yes, that’s right Crawford, TX is the site chosen by the couple. The First couple will be hosting an outdoor tented wedding at their home in Crawford. "I was raised in Texas and it just felt right," Bush, 26, said of holding the festivities in the Lone Star State rather than the White House, according to The Washington Post, citing the upcoming issue of Vogue.

The 200 guests will attend an outdoor ceremony at 7:30 to avoid the Texas heat, then will retire to a seated dinner and dancing under the tent.

"It means a lot to Henry and me to be outdoors," she's quoted as saying. "We wanted something organic and low key."

In keeping with the outdoor, Texas, organic theme, hotter than hot designer Lela Rose is creating knee length crinkle silk chiffon dresses. The 14 “house party” dresses are dotted with a hand done rosette and an antique silver sash. Each of the dresses will be a different color inspired by Texas wild flowers ranging from bluebonnet blue to a shade of Indian Paint Brush red. For Jenna’s twin, maid of honor Barbara, Rose has designed a moonstone blue silk shimmer soft long gown with a fluted open back. It will have the same sash as the “house party” to tie it all together.

The bride will wear a custom gown by Oscar de la Renta, long a favorite of not just Jenna but a slew of White House residents before her. Miss Bush describes the gown as a very structured organza gown with embroidery and a bit of matte beading and a bit of a train.

No news of what Mrs. Bush will wear. It is said that she and Jenna have done all the planning on the wedding themselves rather than hire a wedding planner.

The engagement ring features a round diamond, an heirloom of her fiancé Henry Hager’s family, and two sapphires.

source source

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Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Puzzle Guest Book

I saw the cutest idea for an out of the ordinary guest book last weekend. It was a large wooden jigsaw puzzle.

What they had done was create a collage of pictures of the couple as they grew up and of their life together. The collage was decoupaged onto a ¼ inch thick board which was then cut into a jigsaw puzzle. Are you with me so far? Good.

At the wedding guests were asked to take a puzzle piece and sign the back with a Sharpie. Cool, no?

The tag next to it read in part, “You are all an important “piece” of our lives and together you have helped shape the people we are today.”

The couple plan to put it in a floating frame after the wedding so they can view both sides. What a lovely, personal keepsake from such an important day.

Sorry about the pictures. Silly me worked a wedding and forgot my camera. Duh. I have sent a note to the photographer to get a better image and as soon as I get it I will update this post.

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On a Personal Note

For those of you that have wondered where the heck I have gotten off to over the last week or so, here is the dish.

It was a convergence of unusual events both happy and frustrating.

First off, the Significant Other’s Mom was in town and I opted to flake off for a few to spend some time getting to know the woman that raised such a wonderful man.

Second, apparently my computer felt a bit miffed that I wasn’t paying it enough attention and crashed my hard drive. Lovely, now I have jealous hardware. Who knew?

Third, it was CMT week and I do live in beautiful NashVegas so all the event pros were busy. Myself included.

I'm back and ready to go.Thanks for understanding.

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Friday, April 11, 2008

My Favorite Bouquet. Ever.

I have always thought that flowers in and off themselves are works of art. Sometimes arrangements and bouquets can get a bit too contrived and you miss the independent beauty of individual blooms. Just to give you an idea, this is the image I have on my desk top.

Over the last few days I have been working with images for a website I am building and ran across this bouquet. Oh my. I am pretty sure that this composite bouquet has to be my favorite bouquet ever. In this creation, Vicki Sanders of Branching Out Event Florists has captured the intrinsic beauty of a Stargazer Lily and pushed it to the limit.

A word of warning: each one of those petals is individually wired and taped. Then the ‘bloom” is composed out of the petals. The petals of lilies aren’t the hardiest little buggers, so you always have to make extra in case a petal becomes damaged in construction. Having said that; don’t expect a bouquet like that to be a low cost option. It certainly makes a statement though. Can you just imagine how fabulous it smells. Ahhhhhhh.

Top photo by Christine. Bouquet photo copyright David Wright Photography.

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Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Live Journal

Is anyone else out there a fan of the wedding planning group on Live Journal? Well I am. This has to be the nicest most helpful bunch of brides on the net, none of the snarky juvenile garbage that you find in some of the other wedding communities. If you have ventured into the communities at the Knot.com then you know what I mean.

You can follow them as they plan their weddings right along with you. The comments are almost always both amazingly helpful and supportive. You may only post or add comments if you are a member of the community. It’s open to all and you can join here.

The tag cloud for this group is huge; I mean there must be over a thousand* tags in it. It runs nearly the entire length of the first page of the archive. So if you can’t find something close to what you are wanting to know you must be looking for something really off the wall. I didn’t find a search feature though. If you know where there is one, let me know. *Ok so I’m a geek. I just ran a word count on the tag cloud and it’s only 996.

There are even links to other more specific communities like Bridal Weight Loss Support and Wedding Makeup.

Whether you are a bride or a wedding professional this is a must read. Just keep it nice.

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Monday, April 07, 2008

Note to Brides

I had a wonderful time last week connecting with a group of fellow wedding professionals. As always, the conversation turned to work and you my dear brides were high on the agenda.

My friend Peter, denizen of all things rental, got off on a riff about phone messages.

“Please Christine” he said “remind them to leave me more then their first name and a convoluted message about their event”

Peter is right. It used to happen to me all the time. I used to get messages like this.

“Hi Christine. This is Sarah and I wanted to let you know that we wanted the first tier to have the raspberry filling on the lower and uppers spaces and the orange/apricot in the middle space and please make the top tier in chocolate only but if you could put a bit of amaretto in the soak the would be perfect.”

Great. No problem. Be happy to oblige. But which freakin’ Sarah are you and when are you getting married???? Yes I know, just use caller ID to call her back. Great plan if I knew what time she called. I can get a bunch of calls in one day and isolating the right one can be a trick.

As much as we like you to feel that you are the only bride we have, it simply isn’t true. If you are calling your wedding planner you can probably get away with the above message, but any other vendor is likely to have multiple wedding on any given weekend. Add to that the reality that we will be working with a bride for sometimes up to a year and you can see that we are often juggling 50 or more brides at one time.

Any time you must leave a message on voice mail for one of your vendors, please help them out by leaving a last name and a WEDDING DATE. Most of us file things by wedding date so that will help a lot. Also leave your last name. I clearly remember one weekend that I had three Ashleys. Unbelievably two of their cakes were almost the same. It tended to get a bit confusing.

We want to do the best job possible for every one of our brides, sometimes a bit of clarity helps.

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Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Habitat for Humanity

Last Sunday just before the crack of dawn, they assembled. Groggy from weddings and parties the night before, the members of The Tennessee Wedding and Events Specialists Association traded their pearls and heels and other wedding day finery to don jeans and muddy work boots. Did I say muddy? Make that extremely muddy. They turned out in mass to pitch in on the build of a Habitat for Humanity house.

Each year TWESA picks a philanthropic cause to champion as a way to give back to our community. This year we chose Habitat and are we ever glad we did. It turned out to be one of the most rewarding experiences we have ever participated in.

We were involved in one of the biggest build days in Nashville history. There were sixteen houses going up simultaneously. TWESA managed to break a few records for build teams. We had the most participants show up for a build ever and we hung the cabinets in the kitchen in 90 minutes; usually a four hour task. Woo Hoo! What can you expect; we are after all a bunch of over-achievers.

Add to that the amazing job our caterers did. Now think about it, when you put the finger on some of the top caterers in the city to feed a hungry work crew they tend to go a bit over the top. So much so that we started inviting the work crews from the surrounding houses to join our feast. They thankfully accepted.

To really get the full picture, check out the images a couple of our photographers took for us. (Now you just knew these guys wouldn’t be able to leave their gear at home) Dave Pavol was our official photographer; you can view his images here. David Wright joined the mix. That is his image above and there are more on his blog.

If you are a member of a wedding related organization let me know about your philanthropic works. I’ll spread the word.

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