September 2013 archive

Wedding Planning Etiquette: The Invitations

Planning your wedding is full of etiquette questions. This week I’m taking a look at the questions that come up in regards to invitations.

After you’ve created your guest list, you’ll need to let them know you want them at your wedding. While you might be excited to let everyone know about your big day, you should wait until six to eight weeks before your wedding to send out the actual invitations. If you want to send something out earlier, consider save the date cards.


Your invitation choice should reflect the style of your wedding, as they will give guests a hint about what they can expect on the big day. The invitations should also provide them with all the information they need to attend your wedding. This includes the basics, like date and location, but also details such as places to stay and dress code.

If you are planning a wedding website, use it to provide additional or non-essential information. Remember that many older family members won’t be comfortable finding everything out online. This is why it’s so important to have the vital details in the paper invitation.

Your invitations are a special piece of stationery, and your guests will be honored to receive them. To find out more about how to handle the etiquette of your invitations, or for help planning your San Antonio wedding, give me a call (210-595-9263) or contact me online.

Wedding Planning Etiquette: The Guest List

As you plan your wedding, you’ll come up against all sorts of etiquette questions. From who to invite to how to invite them, I’ll be tackling the most common dilemmas over the coming weeks. This week, I’m taking a look at guest lists.

Creating your guest list is something you’ll need to do early, and can be a huge struggle. First off, find out how many guests you can invite. This can be determined by the budget and your venue’s capacity.


It can be helpful to write down a big list of possible invitees, then put them into A, B, and C lists. The A list should be close family and best friends who are must-invites. The B list is your close friends and more distant family. The C list should include co-workers and others who you could cut from the guest list more easily.

At the end of the day, your guest list should be the people you most want to spend your wedding day with. If you and your fiance disagree about the guest list, talk about why you want to invite (or don’t want to invite) a particular person. In general, you shouldn’t invite any exes, or anyone who will make either of you uncomfortable.

If you’re planning an intimate wedding, be ready to explain this to friends who might feel slighted, but don’t give out invitations to anyone you don’t want to be there! If you do want more people than you can really afford, consider offering invitations to the evening celebration, where guests can pay for their own drinks.

For more advice about creating your guest list, give me a call today (212-595-9263) or contact me through my website.

Check back next week for my advice about invitations, including how to handle plus ones and kids!

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Wedding Bouquet Trends

Your bridal bouquet is such an important part of your wedding day, and there are so many great trends to use for your big day! Choosing the right wedding flowers can also help make your wedding theme really come together.


  • Rustic Elegance: For a rustic wedding, think beyond loose bouquets of wildflowers. A bouquet of sunflowers and baby’s breath can give a delicate yet bold look that is perfect for a rustic themed wedding. You could wrap the bottom  in burlap and add a brooch or pearls for that elegant touch.royalty-cascade
  • Statement Cascade: Forget the tight nosegay or round bouquet and make a statement with a cascade bouquet. This year’s big trend will take the cascade to the next level, adding long trailing vines of flowers. This adds flow and makes a big style impact, too.royalty-basket
  • Baskets: A bouquet truly becomes an accessory with this trend. Have your bridal party carry flowers in a basket rather than tied into a traditional bouquet. This gives a beautiful twist on things, and can be used for unusual flowers, too.royalty-succulents
  • Succulents: Choosing succulents in lieu of flowers has been a big trend in 2013, and will continue to be big for 2014. This is an eco-friendly choice, and you can replant them after your wedding.

If you want more help choosing the right floral style for your San Antonio wedding, give me a call at 210-595-WAND (9263)! As part of my wedding planning services, I can help you create the style of your dreams. Please Pin this if you found this blog informative. Thank you!

Wedding Dress Budgeting and Saving

Unless you’re lucky enough to have a parent or relative pay for it, the cost the wedding gown is your responsibility. You know what you can afford and you need to stay true to that. You are so tempted with bridal magazines and beautiful gowns on the mannequins, I know!royalty-dress

Buying your gown online might seem like a way to save money, but it is just too risky! Your wedding day is too important to chance purchasing a dress that looks beautiful in the picture but looks completely different on you. Think about how difficult it would be to alter a dress that is too small. What if the stitching was really bad. Don’t buy online!

There are ways to stick to your budget, and even save money on your wedding dress. First, always make sure you set an appointment up with the bridal shop. They will give you better service, believe me! When you arrive for your appointment, make sure you are clear and firm with the sales staff about your budget so they stick with that price. They will, of course, try to get you in the dress that is $1000 more — they want the sale, right? Start by trying on the cheapest dress first. You just might fall in love with a cheaper dress that you never imaged would be your dream dress and save lots of money!

After you’ve found the dress it isn’t over yet. You still have to get all the accessories that go with it. That can be hundreds of dollars more! There are shoes, jewelry, slip, undergarments, veil, headpieces, lavish sashes and alterations. They can really add up!


Before you buy the dress, be sure to ask for an estimate for alterations so you aren’t astonished later on. If they have to do a lot of intricate alterations it can easily add up to $300-500!


More Ways to Save:

  • Ask the bridal shop if they have any specials that are going on. Sometimes they want to get rid of their floor samples and will discount them.
  • Look for imperfections (a broken zipper, loose threading, beads missing, makeup on the dress). You can ask the salon to fix it for free or offer you a discount on the dress.
  • If you buy your dress and all the accessories at the same store they will be more willing to offer discounts.royalty-dress4
  • Look into trunk shows or special bridal parties – they might be offering a special discount there.
  • Always ask what’s included (a garment bag, pressing or steaming, delivery, etc.) so you don’t spend more money on items that you could have gotten free through th bridal shop.
  • Always be super courteous and friendly. They might be more willing to work with you on delivery dates, free items, and discounts if you are a “Kind Bride” instead of “Bridezilla.”

As you plan your big day, it can be a big help to have a professional planner on your side. As an experienced San Antonio wedding planner, I can help you stay on budget and get the wedding of your dreams! Please email or call me, 210-595-9263 or


5 Things Your Guests Won’t Tell You

This week, we’re featuring a fantastic guest post by Alan Berg about what your wedding guests won’t tell you. Alan Berg has over 20 years of experience in the wedding industry and has authored three books, “If your website was an employee, would you fire it?,” “Don’t Paint The House” and “Your Attitude for Success.” Learn more at

My own tip to add to this is that your guests don’t know that you HATE line dances and told the DJ to stay away from them. They think your DJ is lame and doesn’t know the good songs to play at a wedding! Brides, think about your guests, too! Don’t you want them on the dance floor having fun?

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I remember hearing Colin Cowie speak to a group of Wedding Planners in NYC. He said that he tells his couples (who are spending millions on their weddings) that it’s not really their wedding. It’s their first chance, as a married couple, to host a party for their friends and family. That surprised me as we always think of weddings as being for and about the couple. The ceremony is definitely for and about the couple. The party that follows is a celebration of that marriage, with your closest family and friends.

If you accept that perspective, what would you do differently? If you’ve been a guest at one, or more weddings, what would you have liked to have told the newly married couple, but you couldn’t (or you and other guests just told each other, quietly at the table or afterwards)? Here are 5 things that your guests won’t tell you (unless they’re brutally honest or blunt).

  1. Your guests won’t thank you for making your Mom, sister, best friend or maid of honor work on your wedding day. They’re not wedding planners, they’re your closest family and friends. Let them mingle, dance and enjoy the day.
  2. Your guests won’t thank you for making them wait while you take pictures. Sure, they’ll eat, they’ll drink, but if it takes too long they’ll start wondering where you are. They were invited to celebrate with you.
  3. Your guests won’t tell you that you put way too many things on your wedding registry. Make it easy for them to buy you the things that you really want. It’s hard for guests to know which things you really want (like a beautiful honeymoon, fire pit or down payment on a house), when there are 250 items on there. Give them the option to contribute dollars towards your registry so you can choose how to use it. Also, understand that a gift should not be required. You invited them to share your wedding day, not to necessarily have to pay for the privilege. If they want to give a gift, make it easy.
  4. Your guests want to see, and hear your ceremony. Ask them to stay in their seats so everyone else can see. If you’ve hired professional photographer and videographer (real, experienced pros), and you share the photos with them (easy enough to do with online proofing these days), they’ll all be able to see and hear you taking your vows. Have someone ask everyone to turn off their ringers as well. You don’t want to hear a phone ringing on your wedding video. Everyone has a camera phone, but that doesn’t make them professionals. Don’t let them get in the way of the pros You’re investing good money in professional photos, let them do their job and they share it with your guests.
  5. Your guests won’t thank you for hiring the cheapest wedding vendors. They don’t care how much you paid, they only care about the end result that they see. An iPod is not a DJ. Your uncle is not a professional videographer and won’t know where to stand to not be in everyone’s way. That Craig’s List vendor you hired is cheap for a reason. Don’t hire cheap. Hire the best value, and that often means spending more. Just follow your priorities and invest in them. You won’t be happy when the photos aren’t what you wanted or the dance floor is empty.

What I’m trying to say here is that you know what it’s like to be a guest at a wedding, just try to remember that when making your choices. If it’s summer time, make sure there’s shade for your outdoor ceremony. Make sure there’s air conditioning. Don’t just pray that it won’t rain, or won’t be 110 degrees… have a real plan for it. Put yourself in the shoes of your 100, 200 or more guests and have them raving to you about how great everything was. You don’t always get kudos for doing it right, but you almost always lose points for doing it wrong. I wish you, and your guests, a very happy wedding.

This copyrighted article was written by Alan Berg, professional speaker, author and business consultant – North America’s Leading Expert on the Business of Weddings & Events, and published in Beautiful Bride Magazine. To find out more about Alan Berg visit © 2013 Alan Berg