Monday, June 22, 2009

Bachelorette Party Idea: Make the Bride a Pin-Up Girl!

When the umpteenth bachelorette party rolls around, most of us are looking for something a little different. Yes, pounding down 10 beers at the local dive joint can get old. So for the more adventorous brides and bridesmaids, there's a new option to think about.

What about making pin-up photos?

Yes, pin-up photos-the ones seen in retro magazines, vintage ads, the ones that made men in the 40s and 50s drool...and still do.

Celeste Giuliano in Philadelphia offers a Pin-up Party Package. The package includes professional hair and makeup done at the studio; vintage wardrobe, costumes, and props for the shoot; and airbrushing done on the photos, as well as much, much more.

How awesome would this be for the bashful bride? Make some tasteful photos to give to the groom as a wedding gift. (Btw, there's even special prices for those who have loved ones in the military.) Give her a chance to pose as Veronica Lake, Marilyn Monroe, or Bettie Page and be the sexy bride that we all know she is.

And since everyone will be feeling incredibly good afterwards, with their hair and makeup will be done, hit the town afterwards.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

DIY Wine Cork Coasters & Place Card Holders

Chances are that if you're having a wine tasting as part of the bridal shower or bachelorette party, then you end up with dozens of wine corks and seemingly nothing to do with them. Along comes some great DIY crafts that use the wine corks.

Wine Cork Coasters & Place Card Holders from Plentymag
Wine Cork Place Card Holder from Casasugar
Wine Cork Wreaths from DIY Network

Obviously these make great favors or decorations, especially for Stock the Bar showers or wine tastings.

Friday, June 19, 2009

Spa Bridal Shower & Bachelorette Parties Etiquette

Inspired by SpaFinder's new Everything Bridal section, we put together a list of FAQ about who pays for what when it comes to spa bridal showers and bachelorette parties.

On SpaFinder they asked, Who pays what when you go to the spa with your bridal party? Well the answer is it all depends.

Brides-If you want to treat your bridesmaids to some thoughtful pampering, then it could definately be your treat. Many brides use this as the equivalent of a bridal luncheon and do it the day before the wedding or day of the wedding. In this case, the bride would invite who she wants to be there and pays for it.

Bridal Shower-Instead of sitting around eating and opening presents, more and more people are having spa bridal showers. In this case, the host (typically the maid of honor and bridesmaids) pay for ALL the guests. Keep the cost in mind when choosing spa services and when inviting the guest list.

Bachelorette Parties-For bachelorette parties, its fine to have the guests pay their own way. Just make sure that the guests know this ahead of time.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

DIY Cupcake Stands

Cupcakes are popular items for bridal showers-Look for our upcoming posts about what to do, what recipes to bake, etc. For right now head over to All Things Cupcake, an incredible dedicated to all things cupcake blog, for a great post on DIY Cupcake Stands. Sweet!

We love that cupcakes are not just food but can double as centerpieces and decorations too!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Bridal Shower Etiquette: Groom's Mom & Family Invited?

Q: The bride doesn't like the groom's family. Is it necessary to invite the groom's sisters and mother?

A: Etiquette says that mothers and sisters of the bride and groom are to be invited to all showers. However, they do not have to buy presents for each and of course can decline the invitation(s.)

It is difficult to invite someone to the bridal shower if you know the bride can't stand them. However, consider that not inviting them to the shower could (and probably would) make life very difficult for the bride. Inviting the groom's family to the shower is a great way to help bridge the gaps.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Bridal Shower Theme: Stock the Bar Shower

Image courtesy of

Stock the Bar

What it is: Who wouldn't like this type of party? You're asking guests to bring over the essentials for a great bar-the liquor, the glasses, the mixes! As a result, the couple now have one less expense in setting up their house.

Best For: Every bride loves this type of shower, but it's an especially good choice for the bride who has already set up her house-she may have all the dishes she'll need but she could always use more bottles of wine. Since the atmosphere is not necessarily girly, this shower makes a great choice for a couples shower. It's usually best for the younger crowd-Aunt Edna might not appreciate buying a bottle of Jack Daniel's for her favorite niece.

Planning Tip:
- Instead of asking guests to write their favorite recipes down, ask guests to write their favorite alcoholic drinks like their favorite recipe for sangria or martinis.
-Combine it with the bachelorette party. The "stock the bar shower" can be earlier in the afternoon with the bachelorette bash at night.
-If the couple really loves wine, then you could make wine the focus. (Likewise for beer, martinis, margaritas, etc.)

-Be creative with where to have it. This doesn't have to be a stuffy shower in a hall. Wine schools, like the the Wine School of Philadelphia offer private classes with expert sommeliers who explain different types of wine. Rather have the bridal shower at home, then look for companies like the Traveling Vineyard which offers in-home wine tastings. Google local wine sommeliers in your area to find one whose willing to come out for the party.

-Obvious choice-a wine tasting! Of course, wine tastings are not the only thing you could do at a "stock the bar" shower; beer, margarita, martini, and even sake tastings could all be done.

-Make vodka infusions. Look at Infused Vodka for supplies and ideas-also check out the vodka infusion recipes and Vodka Infusion Party for tips on vodka infusions. (You could make some ahead of time to serve at the shower too or to give out as favors.)

-Decorate wine, margarita, or martini glasses. Cheap ones can usually be found at Walmart, Target, or yard sales. Use rub-on transfers, found at normal arts & crafts stores, to decorate glasses.

The Menu
Many choose to stick with the alcohol theme. You can build the entire shower around the bar!
Some ideas:
-Wine and cheese tasting
-Mexican-Serve Coronas, margaritas, along with Mexican food.
-Pub food like fish and chips, burgers, fries, along with beer.
-Beer and chocolate tasting.
Be sure to provide plenty of food if guests are going to be drinking. Also provide non-alcoholic drinks.

A stock the bar shower is a good choice for a shower when the bride hasn't registered-guests can simply go to their local liquor store and pick up some bottles. If the bride has registered, she probably added registry classics like wine glasses to her registry anyway. However, it never hurts to register just to be sure that the bride gets exactly what her and her groom drink. Try Vino Classics, Bottle Notes, or the local wine shop where the couple can create a wine registry.

If you're going to give out favors keep the theme in mind. Make infused vodkas like this one, cranberry infused vodka, ahead of time to give out as favors.

Invitations Wording
Soon (bride's name) & (groom's name)will no longer be single

So let's get together to mix & mingle

Join us for a Stock the Bar Shower...

He loves beer and she loves wine,
but the bride also loves barware so fine!
So bring some bar tools, or even beer
As we wish them a lifetime of happiness & cheer

Bride and Groom have finally set a date

Now it’s time to celebrate!

Help us stock their bar

Bring your favorite wine or cigar

Bride’s wedding is not far

Let’s gather to stock her bar

Fill her shelves with liquor and wine

So glasses won’t be empty when guests come to dine!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Seersucker Bridesmaid Dresses?!

Being obsessed with bridesmaid dresses, it's not often that we find dresses that are so different, so unique, so absolutely perfect on so many levels...Ta-da! Seersucker bridesmaid dresses!

Seersucker always reminds me of summers in Nantucket, spending time on a boat, lounging on the beach, hitting up the Jersey Shore. And now seersucker can be part of a casual garden or a beach wedding.

Think about it-its the perfect summer fabric. Lightweight, breathable, much more comfortable in the hot sweltering sun.

Take a look at the finds over at Thread for their fresh bridesmaid designs.

Just look at the above design, the Selma Knee-Length. This dress is available in pink, green, turquoise, blue, beige, or white seersucker pattern. You can choose straps as well as length-mini, tea, or full-length.

The top design is the Stella Mini-Length which is just cute enough to wear to a picnic. Also available in pink, green, turquoise, blue, beige, or white seersucker pattern with different lengths available.

The only downside for us bridesmaids-the price. The prices begin at $290 but go up to $375 for full-length. Well, at least you could wear them again.
(Photos from

Stationery: Sweet Berry Lane

Looking for bridal shower invitations that reflect an African-American bride rather than just the standard, one-skin-type-fits-all ones you find in normal stationery stores?

Along comes Sweet Berry Lane. We immediately fell in love with the African-American brides and bridesmaids on every single one of their designs. Featuring several designs that can easily be used for bridal showers and bachelorette parties, the designs all feature lovely African-American women. We especially love the Spa Shower invite which is perfect for a party of manincures and massages as well as this all-purpose bridal shower invite that would work for pretty much every bridal shower theme.

Besides having great wedding-related invites, Sweet Berry Lane also features invitations for baby showers, graduations, Sweet 16s, and a wide selection of other cards, notes, and invites.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Bridal Shower Etiquette: Guests pay their own way?

Q: We're planning on having the bridal shower at a local restaurant. Is it okay if the guests pay for their own meals?

A: No. The host of the bridal shower pays for the shower, not the guest. This means that if the shower is being held at a restaurant, a tea-room, or even a spa that the host must pay for the guests.

Don't despair though-have a luncheon, tea, or dessert at a restaurant to lessen the financial blow. Or host it at someone's house. Just don't ask guests to pay for the shower or pay for themselves a the shower.

Brides vs. Bridesmaids-New Poll just released this poll about how brides and bridesmaids think differently about the wedding. One surprising tidbit-most brides-to-be (88 percent) believe the bride should consider cost when choosing bridesmaid dresses. But only 55% of bridesmaids thought it should be a factor in choosing the dresses. Interesting!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

100 Wedding DIY Crafts

Stylish Events, an event blog, has compiled a list of 100 DIY projects. Many of them are meant for the wedding ceremony but many of them can be adapted for bridal showers and other parties.

Everyone of the favors would be great for bridal showers. I love the idea of mini bundt cakes, almond honey favors, or making soaps to giveaway. Honestly with inspirations like these, you might end up giving away goodie bags to every guest.

Ideas for Bridesmaid Hair has a how-to of how to get great bridesmaid hair. Meant for the bride, it's useful for us bridesmaids who need up-dos and such for the wedding day.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Bachelorette Party Etiquette: Who Pays for the Entire Party?

Q: Should the MOH have to foot the bill for the entire bachelorette party? Should the bridal party pay for the bachelorette party?

A: With the exception of everyone paying for the bride, there are no set rules as to who pays for the rest of the bachelorette party. Usually, unless the bridesmaids are Paris Hilton, each guest pays for themselves and chips in evenly for the bride. This means each guest would be responsible for their own drinks, food, hotel room, etc, regardless if the guests are related to the bride or in the bridal party.

Make sure to let guests know in advance if the bachelorette party will be more expensive or if there are other charges. Ex. If the cover charge for the club is $30, let guests know that. If you're going to a spa and getting a package done for $250, let the guests know so they can make a financial decision about whether to go or not.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Bridal Shower Game: How old was the bride here?

The Idea: Can the bride's closest friends and family guess her age in photos?

What you Need:
Board (something to hang the photos on)

Photos (8 to 10)-number the photos

How to Play: For this game, take pictures of the bride at various ages (ex. two years old, dance recitals, dances, last week) and pin them to a board. The guests have to guess her age in each picture and write it down. Place or hang the board where guests will see it when they walk in. This one will definitely inspire ohh and ahhs as the guests see photos of the six year old bride to be.

Of course most bridesmaids will be sure to put some embarassing photos of the bride in there-maybe a Halloween in college or her bachelorette party.

Variation: Place the photos on a piece of paper and have the paper copied. Pass around the papers.

Custom Bridesmaid Dresses-Coco Myles

So the bride doesn't think that any of the countless soft taffeta strapless side-ruched ball gowns in bridal stores are perfect for her closest friends? Or the bride swears that four years ago in a bridal magazine she saw the perfect bridesmaid dress but alas can't find it in any stores now?

The solution-custom bridesmaid dresses from Coco Myles! Best of all these dresses are bargain-priced.

Brides can choose from basically every dress option known to man-over 23 fabric colors in charmeuse alone, to have beading or not, and the type of top and bottom each dress will have. For tops choose from sweetheart neckline, strapless, criss-cross, scoopneck, empire, sweetheart strapless, or one of 4 sleeved choices. We love that some of the tops are modest-perfect for temple and church ceremonies! For the bottoms, you can go just as crazy-A-line, straight, tea-length, ball gown, asymmetrical, pick-up, or even bubble skirts. You can also add shawls, sashes, and bows to make the dress even more unique. Honestly, I think every option for a dress has been thought of on this site.

Worried about the sizes? Not a problem with your custom made couture-the dresses come in sizes 0 to 32. And they have maternity and junior bridesmaid dresses too.

The best part though-the price! When you normally think of custom-made, you think expensive and breaking the budget. Dresses are around $125. Some options will run you a few dollars more. Getting a dress made with additional length, or less length, can be done for $10.00. A shawl is about $12 while a sash runs about $10.

Needless to say, we think this site will be making lots of brides and bridesmaids happy.

Bridal Shower Etiquette: Invite the Junior Bridesmaid?

Q: Does the junior bridesmaid get invited to the bridal shower?

A: The junior bridesmaid definitely could be invited to the bridal shower, depending on her age, maturity, and the theme. Use common sense here-if you're having a lingerie shower than a 13 yr old junior bridesmaid should not be invited. If the junior bridesmaid gets bored easily, then a shower might be pretty boring for her.

If the junior bridesmaid is old enough to, then she could help out with set-up, favormaking, and decorations as well.