Archives for the month of: June, 2009

The Moroccan culture is yet another one of its kind that fascinates me. The heavy Arabic influence on its food, music, clothing, and customs along with the ever-present Berber population that makes its living from the desert aids in the colorful, flavorful, and hospitable appeal, making it an exotic but friendly destination. With that in mind, I give you an inspiration board that takes the Moroccan culture and adds a touch of elegance that would be perfect for a more festive wedding. Enjoy!

All photos taken from Brides.com

All photos taken from Brides.com

I just want to acknowledge the passing of two fantastic icons in American culture.  My heart goes out to the families, friends, and fans of both Farrah Fawcett and Michael Jackson. Both of them will be sorely missed.

This one is exclusively for my South Florida brides on the hunt for something sweet-namely, a wedding cake.

The cakes featured in my Bridal Show post were created by Divine Delicacies, located across the street from FIU’s south campus. Not only are they master cake decorators, they are master bakers as well. I sampled their cake flavors at the bridal show: vanilla rum (their signature flavor), lemon, coconut, and guava cream cheese cake. Trust me, these cakes will taste just as good-if not better-than they look. When it comes to cake decor, there is nothing they won’t do from traditional to colorful to an homage to the work of Miami’s  local artistic icon Romero Britto.

Click here to go to the Divine Delicacies homepage to view an extended gallery and for contact information.

Candles have sealed their place in must-have wedding decor. With that in mind, you may want to consider allowing PartyLite to provide your lighting needs. The company (which was present at last night’s Bridal Show) sells its products via consultants in your area (much like Avon), but the search for a consultant is well worth it. Party Lite offers a wide range of products such as scented tea lights, decorative jars and candle holders, LED candles, lanterns, diffusers, and bath and body products that can be used to give as gifts to your ‘maids.

Also: remember those Infinite Reflections (A.K.A. mirror boxes) that were used in the show Wedded to Perfection on TLC?

Well, PartyLite carries this item!

To get a hold of this item (finally!) and many other fabulous products, click here to visit the PartyLite homepage and search for a consultant in your area. Who knows, you may want to become a consultant yourself!

The event I gushed about in a previous post has come and gone-and, I had a blast! The event space Signature Gardens in Miami, FL hosts an annual bridal show. With having a friend who is about to tie the knot, she decided to make a night out of the event, inviting all of her close friends to share in exploring the vendors in the South Florida area.

Signature Gardens is counted among the elite of banquet halls in Miami, and for good reason. The staff members are friendly and efficient, the event spaces are gorgeous and the food is exquisite. Couple this with the list of preferred vendors (all who were present to show off their wares) and you’ve got an elegant wedding that will become a pleasant memory in your mind and the minds of your guests. With that, I close with some photos of the event. But, sit tight! I have a long list of vendors to highlight-and, one of them will soon have an online shop in which you may purchase a long coveted item…

For those brides in the South Florida area searching for a venue, here is the link to the Signature Gardens website.

When wedding receptions are in order, most couples opt to have the traditional sit-down dinner. Then, there are some couples who would rather schmooze with their ambling guests rather than sit at a sweetheart table for the majority of the night and would like to enjoy a wider variety of nibbles rather than a heavy, one-note meal with a slice of cake. If you fit this description, then a cocktail reception is right up your alley.

The cocktail party reception has gained popularity lately as opposed to the cocktail hour before the main meal where the bride and groom are traditionally absent. Although this style reception has quite a few advantages, there are some hidden snags that must be taken into account. With that, let’s begin:

Face Time with the Guests: The cocktail party reception will cut out the need for the long and sometimes tedious receiving line after the ceremony or speeding from table to table for a rushed hello at the reception. Instead, you and your brand-new spouse can strike up spontaneous, genuine conversations with your guests while sipping some bubbly or take a one-two bite out of an appetizer. Just make sure you don’t get stuck spending too much time with one set group. The point of this party is to mingle.

More Variety, Cut Costs: Oftentimes, a traditional sit-down dinner limits your options to a meat, starch, and vegetable. Multiple course meals can get expensive, and the need for triple servings at a buffet can really eat at your wallet. With a cocktail reception, you can have a wide selection of hors d’oeuvres with a wide variety of cuisines represented and still come out on top when it comes to your meal budget. Also, inexpensive ingredients can be turned into posh incarnations, such as vegetable spring rolls or macaroni and cheese on soup ladle spoons. Timing is of the essence: meal time cocktail parties means more servings per guest, so be mindful. Also, having a large guest count (say, 300 guests versus 75-100) could cancel out the money-saving factor. In terms of dessert, the traditional wedding cake can be included with a dessert bar-or, the dessert bar can replace the wedding cake. It’s your call!

Time and Circumstance: To continue on the subject of time, cocktail parties are usually shorter in length (two to three hours), so quite a few of the traditional customs (introduction of the wedding party, father-daughter dance, bouquet toss, etc.) are out of the window, so skip this format if these customs are important to you. Toasts, however, are still in order. Furthermore, the time in which you have your cocktail party determines the food selection and how much must be available. A lunchtime reception or one held between meals (3:00 or 4:00 p.m., for example) may consist of  six to eight choices with two to three servings each while a dinner time reception could contain  ten choices with three to four (even five) servings each. In any case, make sure that you note that your reception is a cocktail party on the invitations, as some guests with larger appetites may want to grab a bite beforehand to avoid hunger pains.

Drinks on me: The cocktail party has gained such popularity due to it’s central focus: the cocktail. There are a few ways to go about stocking the bar. A full bar offers the option of having the widest variety of drinks, but doing this could drive up your liquor costs because much more drinking will be done. If you can afford this, more power to you. Your best bet to keep costs down is to go for either a themed bar or a signature drink bar. A themed bar is when a certain liquor generates the pantheon of cocktails being served (say, rum is the focus so mojitos, rum punch, rum runners, etc. are available along with sodas and wine) while a signature drink bar may have three focal drinks from different liquors, along with sodas and wine for non-cocktail drinkers.

Rental Reminders: Cocktail receptions are made for mingling, so renting 10 tables and 100 chairs won’t be necessary. Naturally, do have a some tables and chairs available so guests can take a load-off for a few minutes. Another possibility: the money that would have been used to rent traditional reception seating could be used to rent lounge furniture to give the reception a very modern, plush feel.

For more in-depth dissertations on how to throw a successful cocktail reception, take a look at the following articles:

Epicurious.com presents: How to Throw a Cocktail Party.

Brides.com’s guide to throwing a cocktail reception.

The Cocktail Wedding Reception according to HamptonsWeddings.com.

Great news! A close friend of the family is slated to get married this year and has asked me to join her at a bridal expo in Miami this Wednesday and naturally, I accepted. I will be writing a review of the even complete with photographs, so sit tight. I can barely contain my excitement!

David’s Bridal has debuted its newest additions to their long line of chic but affordable bridal gowns and bridesmaid’s dresses. Although purchasing them online is not an option, you can at least view them and possibly find “the one” before you set foot into one of their show rooms. A personal favorite of mine is under the Galina name: a ruched, cocktail length sheath complete with a bolero, which is simply adorable!

Takne from DavidsBridal.com Taken from DavidsBridal.com

Click here to visit DavidsBridal.com and view all of the new looks.

I don’t know whether it was the flappers, the art deco movement, or the sudden popularity of jazz that made the 1920s in America such a defined era. Perhaps it was the combination of the three, with a bit of glamour and spunk thrown in for good measure. This same combination is also seen in the following inspiration board. A trip into yesteryear has been all the rage lately in wedding decor, so I figure why not put my two cents in. Here’s to dancing the Charleston on your big day!
All photos taken from Brides.com 

All photos taken from Brides.com

 

The color combination of pink and green has been popular among the preppy set. As of late, it has also made its way into wedding color palette notoriety. With that, I give you the following inspiration board. Enjoy!

Photos taken from Brides.com and TheKnot.com

Photos taken from Brides.com and TheKnot.com

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