My Life As A Bride

When I began planning my wedding I went to a Bridal Extravaganza.  It showcases many vendors in the Austin/Hill Country area.  The main reason I decided to go was because I wanted to get an idea of several different vendors that I could choose from.  As a bride you can get ideas for your wedding on practically anything, plus, you can try out any of the caterers or cake vendors and get a better idea of which you would like for your wedding.  I found the Bridal Extravaganza helpful because you can get a feel of what the vendors are like instead of just reading about them on websites or in bridal magazines.

I ended up choosing a caterer that was not at the extravaganza, but was recommended to me by my wedding planner.  Listen to your wedding planner people, they really know the best out there.  Suzanne Court is our caterer.  She does high-end food for Austin events and surrounding areas.  Suzanne is fantastic!  Her food is exquisite and her attention to detail and to your needs are above and beyond what I could have asked for in a caterer.  You will be working with you caterer quite a bit throughout the wedding process so pick someone that not only does great food but that you can communicate well with.  Do you pick plated dinner or buffet style dinner?  Plated dinners are very proper, but the price per plate adds up quickly.  Buffet style has become very popular and if it is done well it can look very classy.  Besides the venue, food is probably going to use up a good chunk of your budget, especially if you have many guests attending your wedding.  Food is important at any wedding.  It isn’t just about feeding people, it also represents the couple’s style and taste and ultimately ties in to the theme of the wedding.

 

Suzanne Court Catering
Suzanne Court Catering

 

Suzanne Court Catering
Suzanne Court Catering
Suzanne Court Catering

If you choose to have cocktail hour, hors d’oeuvres are typically passed out during this time.  This gives guests a preview of what to expect during the reception.

Suzanne Court Catering
Suzanne Court Catering

You can also add a bit more personality to cocktail hour by including a signature drink.  For my wedding we will be doing wine, beer, and a signature cocktail during cocktail hour.

Signature Cocktail
Signature Cocktail

If you are looking for an amazing caterer or event planner look in to Suzanne Court Catering and Events.

 

 

*Betsy Villanueva

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Rehearsal Dinner

rehearsal invite

Before the big day comes the wedding rehearsal and dinner. This is the perfect time for you wedding party to get to know each other better, if they don’t already. It is also your chance to see how the procession will go and to see if you need to make any minor changes. To keep your changes to a minimum and save stress, try to make sure you have these important things taken care of ahead of time.

 rehearsal invite

Send out your rehearsal dinner invitations a few days after you send the wedding invitations. The invitations do not have to be extravagant, they can be simple or an understated version of your wedding invitations. If you have a small bridal party it’s alright to let them know by word of mouth.

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The wedding rehearsal dress is usually a white cocktail dress. This is a beautiful rehearsal dress from Nordstrom’s for a fancy cocktail dinner.

champagne bar

You don’t need to go all out with food and a bar for the rehearsal dinner like you will be for your wedding. A simple champagne bar with fruit will go nicely with a cocktail dinner.

rehearsal dress

If your rehearsal is a more laid-back theme then you might consider wearing something similar to this dress from Beauxx with flats for a classy and casual look.

barbecue

For a more casual rehearsal dinner, try a barbecue or a picnic outside instead of an indoor fancy dinner. Your bridal party might find it easier to get to know each other at a casual event rather than sitting in designated spots at one big table.

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If you want to have a barbecue or picnic, you might also want to consider wearing a non-traditional dress. A white dress is going to show any and all stains, so if you’re clumsy or prone to spilling things, choose a colored dress like this one from Nordstrom’s.

cookie

 For cute snacks, serve your wedding party cookies that match the theme of your wedding cake. Most bakeries will give you a special discount if you order all of your treats from the same place, so consider that when you go looking for a cake.

To make sure the wedding rehearsal runs smoothly and quickly, ask anyone not required to be at the rehearsal to please meet you at the dinner. You only need the wedding party, officiate, and any singers or readers to be at the wedding rehearsal. Doing this will ensure that you can make sure the ceremony the next day will go as planned, and you can get on to your rehearsal dinner and mingle with your guests there.

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Last Fling Before The Ring

You are planning your bachelor/bachelorette trip but you don’t know where to begin your search.  I am going to fill you in on the top locations to visit for your final hoorah.  Let’s start with the top location for both men and women…VEGAS!

 Las Vegas can be as toned down or wild as you like with it’s ample selection of activities, such as shopping, golf, spas, night clubs, shows, and casinos.

Next on the list is New York City.  Known for its nightlife, shopping, and dining, it’s a great place to visit for a fun filled weekend.

Miami, Florida made the list, but how could it not.  Who doesn’t enjoy a little fun in the sun?

Next up we have New Orleans, Louisiana.  It is no longer a male party city, women are getting a piece of the action too.

Last, but not least, Cabo San Lucas, Mexico.  Cabo offers pristine beaches, nightlife, and beautiful sunsets.  The perfect combination for your bachelor/bachelorette experience.

It’s your last fling before the ring.  Enjoy a location that best fits your expectations for your weekend getaway as the groom/bride to be.

*Betsy Villanueva

 

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Austin’s Bridal Extravaganza

bridalex_091513

 

The Bridal Extravaganza will be held on Sunday, September 15, 2013 from noon to 6 p.m..  This is a great way to meet wedding professionals from Austin and the surrounding areas.  Not only can you meet vendors (venues, caterers, florists, etc), but you can also see what they have to offer and enjoy samples of their work.

If you already have your vendors picked out you can always stop by the Bridal Extravaganza to get ideas for your wedding.  Bring your family and friends and see how the Bridal Extravaganza can help you.  Tickets can be purchased at austinweddings.com.

 

*Betsy Villanueva

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Save the Date!

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The save the date announcement is the first official notification to anyone and everyone you would like to be at your wedding. It can help you set the theme, but it doesn’t have to. It could also feature your favorite engagement photo or an activity that you and your fiance enjoy doing together.

Save the Date postcard

Send customized postcards to let everyone know quickly so they can mark that day off their calendars. More custom designs like this can be found at invitationconsultants.com.

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Be creative and have fun with these photos! This would be cute if you are planning a destination wedding or just having a destination theme.

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This picture is better for making your announcement in the spring when most fields are green or full of blooming flowers. If there are none close by, try seeing if there are any protected wildflower areas around you. You cannot pick the flowers but they will make a beautiful backdrop!

Save the Date jerseys

Sports fans? Custom order jerseys with the new last name and the date of your wedding.

Save the Date notepad

Send a cute and catchy notepad with custom pencils that have the wedding date on them. Every time they’re being used, your guests will think of your upcoming ceremony!

Save the Date card

Add your color scheme to a classic save the date card for an elegant touch.

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How to Handle the Bachelor Party

Your fiance is going to have a bachelor party, but don’t freak out! Not all bachelor parties involve strippers, drugs, and running from the police. Besides, you’re going to have a bachelorette party, why shouldn’t he have fun with his buddies? Helping him plan the party can let him know you’re comfortable or uncomfortable with what he is doing and you will feel less stressed because you won’t be coming up with different scenarios in your head while he’s gone.

Liquor Bouqet

Arrange this surprise liquor bouqet for him the day of his bachelor party and you’ll be who he thinks of when he’s drinking it later. These can be custom ordered or my favorite, DIY. Mini bottles are sometimes sold at liquor outlets for 99 cents each. Attach them to sticks and put them in a bucket or basket with some filling for a nice finishing touch.

Custom Flasks

Custom Bachelor Koozie

Custom flasks for the groom and his groomsmen are nice gifts for the bachelor party. Depending on how much you have in your budget you could also opt for the custom koozies instead.

Hangover Cure Basket

Hangover Basket

Arrange a basket full of hangover cures for the morning after and the entire bachelor party will thank you! It also helps ensure that nobody is sick on your big day.

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Lastly, remember the most important advice, keep calm and pay no mind to his bachelor party. Here are a few tips to help you get through it. 1) Let him have the bachelor party; not allowing him to will cause arguments you don’t need right before your wedding. 2) Expect the unexpected; he might go to Vegas and hire a stripper, or he might have a weekend fishing, hunting, or just hanging out with his friends. 3) Let him know your limits; calmly tell him what will make you uncomfortable because 4) You will have your own party; if you’re going out with your girlfriends, let him go out with his guy friends. 5) Do not dwell on it when the night comes. Do something that will help distract you from thinking about what he’s doing. 6) Don’t pressure him to tell you every little detail the next day; trust that he respected your limits and that he will tell you how his party went if you tell him about yours.

~Nikki

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Hill Country Bridal Spectacular

show

The Hill Country Bridal Spectacular is a bridal show unlike any other! A portion of the ticket sales will be donated to The Breast Cancer Research Foundation and each exhibitor also has the choice to donate 10% of their day’s proceeds.

The bridal show is the only one of its kind between Austin and San Antonio that brings exhibitors who can provide anything from entertainment, venues, catering and florists to ministers, transportation, photographers and lighting. Brides are welcome to review their options, meet and consult with prospective vendors and sign contract agreements.

There will also be chances for all attendees to win door prizes and receive special discounts. Each bride will get 5 free door prize tickets upon entrance. Wear something pink to score 5 extra tickets for the bride and 1 ticket for each of their guests!

Brides and their guests can purchase tickets at the door for $10 or advance tickets for $7.

The Hill Country Bridal Spectacular is located at 390 South Seguin Avenue New Braunfels, TX 78130. Come plan your wedding and support breast cancer research Sunday Oct. 21, 2012 from noon- 5 p.m.


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For more information or event updates, check them out on their Facebook page or website.

 

By: Sabrina Read

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All About Lace!

lace dress 1

A VERY current trend among weddings is incorporating lace into a variety of ways. Adding touches of lace can instantly add feminity and a timeless, romantic feel to any wedding. Here are some fantastic ideas for incorporating lace into your wedding!

First and formost is the lace wedding dress! This Vera Wang lace wedding dress is a perfect example of an exquisite, timeless dress. The detail of the lace will make any bride an instant showstopper. The fitted nature of the dress elegantly accentuates  the bride’s curves without compromising the pristine nature of the lace dress.

Backless lace dresses are very in right now as well. Adding a ribbon bow or a sparkled rhinestone belt instantly takes the dress to the next level!

Not wanting to rewear an heirloom wedding dress? Use bits of lace from inherited dresses into your bouquet! Not only will this suffice a wedding must (something borrowed!), but can also add beautiful dimension to a simple bouquet. Add dripping strands of pearls for an ultra girly, classy look!

For invitations lace is a very simple, easy way to dress up any color, such as brown pictured here. Again, adding ribbon bows and pearl details bring the entire look together!

 

Wedding cakes have evolved from things of practicality to intricate works of art. Cake designers have innovatively created lace techniques to add an air of elegance to wedding cakes. Again, adding pearls and ribbon edible details rounds out the classic, wedding look. Using the bride’s new intials or real flowers are also great ideas to add to these lace cakes!

 

Last but not least is the use of lace in centerpieces on reception tables. Use vintage lace dollies under vased floral arrangements, pictured belowed. Add lights or candles to light up and display the intricate details of the lace. Add strips of lace to mason jars for an ultra rustic chic look!

Lea Cabezas

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Bridal Show Preparation

show

Bridal shows are a fabulous opportunity for you to discover hundreds of vendors in your area and beyond. In order to take full advantage of your day there are some things you should do and keep in mind when you attend the show. I have listed several tips below:

 

Register ahead of time- Buying your ticket and registering before the bridal show will help ease some stress that you may experience if you were to wait in the crowded lines. Some bridal shows even offer special freebies for those who have signed up early!

View vendors ahead of time- If the show lists their vendors online you should look at them to plan which ones you’re really interested in. Some shows have an overwhelming amount of vendors and doing research before the show will make the most of your day.

Create an e-mail- I suggest creating an e-mail specifically for everything wedding related. I guarantee you will receive countless e-mails from vendors and having a separate e-mail address will avoid the overflow into your personal e-mail.

Create contact labels- Make contact labels on your computer that contain your name, address, e-mail, phone number, and wedding date. Most vendors ask for your contact information so it’ll be much easier to not have to write everything down.

Bring people- Your fiancé, bridesmaids, and parents are people who can help provide input, save seats for the fashion shows, carry vendor information, and give support. Although, you should only bring a select few people so you don’t spend your time keeping everyone together.

Budget- You and everyone you bring to the show should know the wedding budget. This is really beneficial because you won’t waste time stopping at vendors that aren’t in your price range.

Come prepared- Bring a pen, paper, datebook, and checkbook or credit card.

Take pictures- Having pictures after the show will help you remember exactly what the vendors offer.

Shoes- Wear shoes that you will be comfortable in walking around all day.

Fill up- I suggest eating a good meal before because some shows don’t offer food to purchase. Also, it’s a good idea to bring a water bottle.

Have fun- Planning your wedding should be exciting!

 

By: Sabrina Read

 

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