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October 2014 - New Orleans Weddings - Reception, Venue & Planning

When Is It Appropriate to Send a Wedding Gift?

 Etiquette, Favors & Gifts, Wedding Etiquette, Wedding Registries  Comments Off on When Is It Appropriate to Send a Wedding Gift?
Oct 312014
Charleston Wedding Welcome Box Gift

Photo: Austin Gros

Picking out wedding gifts is never easy. Between finding something on the registry within your budget and taste, picking out what's appropriate for the couple, and sending them the actual present, it's a process. And since many gifts are often sizable housewares, it's hard for many guests to physically bring their gift to the wedding (after all, more and more brides are throwing destination weddings). So, how long do you have to send a wedding gift to the bride and groom? Here, an etiquette-approved timeline for gift giving.

Well, you actually have a lot more time than you think you do to offer up a wedding gift to the newlywed Mr. and Mrs. Bringing a present to the actual wedding can prove to be more frustrating than it's worth. Forget actually lugging the thing to the venue, presenting a present the day of leaves it at risk for getting lost (especially if it comes in an envelope). Plus, if you actually bring your blender, grill, or fine china, you've placed a burden to have the couple keep it somewhere and transport them all home. Not to mention, the notion of displaying the presents during the party — and even opening them — is more archaic than traditional.

See more: The Big Thing Every Couple Wonders About: Wedding Gifts!

As a wedding guest you have from the time of the engagement announcement until one year after the wedding to send the couple their wedding gift. Yes, one full year. So not only do you have time to pick out the present, you can send it at your leisure!

5 Things Guys Must Do Before They Buy an Engagement Ring

 Engagement, Engagement Rings, Grooms, The Plunge  Comments Off on 5 Things Guys Must Do Before They Buy an Engagement Ring
Oct 312014
Engagement Ring Buying Tips

Photo: Getty Images

Every week, we give our readers a glimpse inside the mindset of a guy's brain on weddings with the help of the hilarious and smart editors at The Plunge. For their latest installment, they're outlining the 5 things guys have to do before the purchase an engagement ring.

So you've dropped every hint imaginable and your guy still doesn't seem any closer to proposing? Don't sweat it. Buying the ring is one of the most expensive, intimidating, psychologically daunting challenges a man will face in his life. Before he makes the purchase and pops the question (the easy parts by comparison) he's got to clear a major checklist. So if your man seems to be putting it off, take comfort knowing he might just be making his way through the items below. And if that doesn't give you peace of mind, you can share this list with Mr. Procrastinator as yet another not-so-subtle reminder that it's time to put a ring on it.

Learn the Language
Nobody expects him to become a diamond expert (at least that's what we've been telling him — that's okay, right?) but your man does have some new vocabulary to learn. He'll have to at least understand the four C's — cut, clarity, color, and carat — before he has a clue what he's looking at, and look how long it took him to understand modern baseball statistics for his fantasy league.

Determine the Budget
Your man has to figure out roughly how much he should be spending, figure out how to slash the final cost without sacrificing integrity, and then save all that money before he can spend it.

See More: Here's Why Your Boyfriend Isn't Proposing... Yet!

Find Your Size & Style
Oh, right, and even if he has the money saved, he's got to learn your ring size and make an educated guess about what kind of style you want. Guys have been known to steal another ring, use their own finger, or even press her ring into a bar of soap and bring that to the jeweler. None of these are 100 percent idiot-proof, and all are guaranteed to get the nerves up. Choosing a style also requires a lot of advanced planning.

Shop Around
It's all starting to come together at this phase, but yes, it still takes time. He's got to check out different merchants' offerings, call on various shopping partners (his mother, your best friend), double- and triple-check insurance and return policies (sorry, practical isn't always romantic!), or even go window shopping with you.

Get Permission
There are differing schools of thought on whether a man should ask for a father's permission to marry his daughter, but some old traditions just don't die. Working up the courage to ask and working out a plan to do so without you knowing takes time and effort. And it all has to happen before he buys the ring.

Brides Boston: Why You Should Say “I Do” at the City’s Public Library

 Boston, Local, Planning Tips, Wedding Planning, Wedding Receptions  Comments Off on Brides Boston: Why You Should Say “I Do” at the City’s Public Library
Oct 312014
Brides Boston, Boston Public Library Wedding Venue

Photo: Courtesy of the Boston Public Library

Hey Boston brides! Are you searching for a quintessential New England venue to host your dream wedding? If so, look no further than the Boston Public Library, an iconic site that makes for some seriously incredible nuptials.

While there are several gorgeous rooms to choose from for your wedding day we love Bates Hall, seen above. Like the rest of the venue, this space features unique architecture, incredible pained windows, and unique details, like antique table lighting and, of course, rows of beautifully bound books. Plus, there's plenty of outdoor space to utilize if you love the idea of an event that can move seamlessly between inside and out.

See More: One Couple's Relaxed Wedding Weekend in Buzzard's Bay, MA

To make your planning a breeze, the Boston Public Library features an in-house caterer, The Catered Affair, that helps create your dream dinner menu. Their extensive menu features everything from butternut squash soup and champagne risotto to steak Frites and s'mores on a stick. Their offerings aren't just limited to hors d'oeuvres, main courses, and desserts either. They offer late-night snacks like mini pizzas and burgers, plus specialty cocktails, too.

Although the food and gorgeous space alone are enough to make any bride swoon, those are just the very beginning of the perks you get when you decide to tie the knot here. With each wedding package you have the opportunity to extend your party beyond the reception. An additional rental is available from 10 p.m. until midnight so you can keep the merriment lasting well into the evening.

See the complete list of the best wedding venues in the U.S. here!

10 Minutes with Bridal Designer Peter Langner

 10 Minutes With, Wedding Dresses  Comments Off on 10 Minutes with Bridal Designer Peter Langner
Oct 312014
10 Minutes Peter Langner

Photo: John Aquino

Bridal designer Peter Langner is a highly-trained star of the haute couture tradition; he studied at L'Ecole de la Chambre Syndicale de Paris, and after graduation went on to work for Christian Dior, Emmanuel Ungaro, Guy Laroche, and Christian Lacroix. Known for beautiful fabrics and artful architectural silhouettes, the designer sat down with us to share his method of inspiration, his favorite bridal trends, and his unique perspective on his clients.

Langner gets inspired when he's focused and relaxed.
When asked about how he finds inspiration for his collections, the designer replied, "There is no specific moment or trigger to get started. I usually try to have a clear head, a focused mind, free from distractions when I begin designing a collection. First, I do a lot of research in materials, colors and fabrications. I debate between drapings, rather than plissé, embroideries rather than cut-outs ..."

He loves the traditional trend that's reemerging.
"This season, we are turning to a more 'ceremonial' bride, a bit more covered up. Shoulder details are very in, and I am very happy to see that! Amal Alamuddin's classic off-the-shoulder Oscar de la Renta gown was a perfect example of the fact that overly-sexy is out; it can look dated. I never want a bride to look at her wedding pictures years later and be shocked by what she wore!"

10 Minutes Peter Langner

John Aquino

The designer finds his clients much more inspiring than celebrities.
"I don't want to sound crazy, but there are so many movie stars in films and advertisements, and they look fabulous (and so desirable to dress!) in that cinematic moment, but in real life if you meet one of those women, it can be hard to have a connection." The designer continued, "I much prefer dressing women who are interested in our work, who appreciate our ideas and have dreamed of wearing one of our gowns. We don't make gowns for stars, we make them for real people who believe in tradition and a long lasting marriage."

His top style tips for brides are simple, but important.
"Take all the little mishaps as they come, and don't let them become a big drama. You have prepared for this day for so long and as best as you could, so brides need to let it be a celebration. Your mood is so much more important than a missing flower!" he noted. "And make sure to take five minutes for yourself. Send everyone out of the room, and enjoy the moment."

How to Take an Engagement Ring Selfie That Will Get a Ton of Likes

 Engagement Rings, Wedding Photography  Comments Off on How to Take an Engagement Ring Selfie That Will Get a Ton of Likes
Oct 312014

A photo posted by BRIDES Magazine (@brides) on

You're engaged and sporting your new favorite piece of jewelry. Congrats! Now that you've shared the happy news with your family and friends, it's time to make the important social media announcement. But before you get overly snap happy (remember, posting just one photo will make the most impact), read these tips from professional wedding photographer Paige Jones on how to best capture that bling. Then, hashtag #engagementringselfie and watch the likes roll in!

1. Hands up!
"If you raise your hand up above your head for 30 seconds, the blood will drain and your hands will be less veiny," Jones says. "So have your camera at the ready when you bring your hand down for 'the shot'!"

2. Keep in mind the depth of field.
"Create some space between your hand and the background," advises Jones. "The more space you have, the more the background will blur, keeping the focus where it should be — on your rock!"

See More: What Your Engagement Ring Says About You

3. Catch the light.
"There's a reason so many people take selfies in their cars — filtered window light is very flattering." To get the most sparkle in your photo, Jones recommends heading to the nearest window with some sun shinning through and moving your bauble around until you catch just the right light.

4. Perfect the angle and style your shoot.
The best angle to shoot your rock is the one that showcases all of it. "People love a good 'over the top' shot, says Jones. "From your morning coffee in bed to the '#fromwhereistand' shots that flood your Instagram feed, a shot from above is visually appealing and an easy way to create an eye catching image. Throw in some flowers, flip through a wedding magazine, stand over a vintage rug, the possibilities are endless!"

Should Brides-to-Be Try Kim Kardashian’s Latest Fitness Obsession?

 Celebrity, Fitness and Health, Kim Kardashian, Wellness  Comments Off on Should Brides-to-Be Try Kim Kardashian’s Latest Fitness Obsession?
Oct 312014

I'm really obsessed with waist training! Thank you @premadonna87 for my new waist shapers! #whatsawaist

Una foto publicada por Kim Kardashian West (@kimkardashian) el

Kim Kardashian's latest fitness obsession? "Waist training," she revealed to her followers on Instagram while wearing a What's a Waist workout band. Constricting corsets like these claim to help you lose inches by encouraging perspiration to get rid of fat and toxins. But can they really give everyone Kardashian-like hourglass figures?

We asked dermatologist Bruce Katz, director of Juva Skin and Laser Center in New York City, to see if they're worth incorporating into your pre-wedding regimen. "They don't make you slim because of perspiration accumulating under the band," he says. "If you lose weight, it's because you're holding in your stomach so that you can't eat well! Women wore these all the time decades ago. They might make you look slimmer when you're wearing them, but they won't cause you to lose pounds."

See more: The Top 10 Juice Cleanses To Try Before Your Wedding

Still want to try one out for yourself? Supplement it with a healthy diet (try one of our favorite's—Perricon's Anti-Inflammatory Diet) and top it off with an exercise regimen, because of course, that's the best way to be glowing and fit for your big day.

And while you don't have to worry about serious, long-term problems like the bands hurting your organs, Katz says they can rub against your skin, causing irritation or rashes. (Not something we'd want to have to deal with pre-wedding!) Kim K., consider yourself warned.

What do you think? Would ever wear a waist trainer to get in shape before your big day? Sound off on Twitter by tweeting us @BRIDES.

Chic Space-Savers for Your First Home

 Home & Registry, Married Life, Wedding Registries  Comments Off on Chic Space-Savers for Your First Home
Oct 312014
Chic Space Savers New Home

Photo: Courtesy of vendors; Illustration by Christina Park

For our urban, apartment-dwelling or smaller starter-home couples it's important to remember that you can save space and not sacrifice style. There are so many fun home goods that can easily be tucked away when they aren't needed, or better yet work double-duty. Plus, all of our finds are beautiful so you can feel good about adding them to your wedding registry !

We know the struggle of finding a sleek pullout sofa is real, which is why we're obsessed with this ottoman (item 4) that turns into a bed from Castro Convertibles. There are tons of slipcover options and it's super comfy. Also consider this ultra-modern armchair (item 6) from Abbyson Living that cleverly transforms into extra sleeping space for houseguests. Ikea (item 5) has designed a modern sectional that doesn't only serve as a pullout, but also has hidden storage under one of its cushions. Bonus: It's less than $700.

For more double-duty furniture, we love these lucite nesting tables (item 2) that you can pull out for parties as extra places to set cocktails down. Also lucite tables are translucent, so they make smaller spaces seem less cluttered. This brass-and-lucite side table (item 3) is also a space saver, as it can easily be folded up and stored. Want chic shelving to stash away dishes and stemware if you're short on cabinet space? Check out this unit from West Elm (item 1) —the antique brass hardware and beautifully stained Acacia wood veneer makes for a design that is both modern and classic. Lastly, for extra seating for guests, ditch the folding chairs you've had since college and register for these beautiful folding stools (item 7).

The best part? These space-savers are all chic enough to be left out in your living room permanently if and when you decide to move to a bigger space.

Above: 1. Mid-Century Shelving, starting at $29, West Elm; 2. Lucite Nesting Tables, $199, CB2; 3. Acrylic Folding Table, $149, CB2; 4. Ottoman Bed, starting at $699, Castro Convertibles; 5. FRIHETEN Corner Sofa-Bed, $699, Ikea; 6. Convertible Sleeper Chair/Bed, $388.99, Overstock; 7. Folding Brass Stool, $289, Douglas and Bec

Ellen DeGeneres Dresses Up as Amal Alamuddin (Complete with a George Clooney Replica) for Halloween! See the Video

 Celebrity, Celebrity Weddings, News  Comments Off on Ellen DeGeneres Dresses Up as Amal Alamuddin (Complete with a George Clooney Replica) for Halloween! See the Video
Oct 312014

There's no shortage of celebrity-inspired Halloween costumes for couples to choose from this year. There's Kate Middleton and Prince William for royal watchers, Kimye for those who want to be the "world's most talked about couple" for a night, and Ashton Kutcher and Mila Kunis for pairs with their own little ones. But you don't need to be in a relationship to dress up as couple, just ask Ellen DeGeneres!

That's right, the comedian went all out for her latest Halloween costume. Sure, her past looks as Nicki Minaj and Sofia Vergara were good, but this is her "sexiest costume yet" — at least according to the host herself. For her talk show's Halloween episode, Ellen dressed up as Amal Alamuddin, complete with a George Clooney replica! (Watch the hilarious video above!)

Ellen DeGeneres Halloween Costume, Amal and George Clooney

Photo: Michael Rozman/Warner Bros

"Happy Halloween!" You can probably tell who I am," Ellen said as she came out in her costume. "I'm Amal, the luckiest woman in the world, Mrs. George Clooney. Say hi, George."

To pull off her spot-on look, Ellen wore a gown similar to Amal's off-the-shoulder Oscar de la Renta wedding dress, a black wig, and toted around a life-size version of George Clooney in a dapper tuxedo.

"I like Halloween because it's the one time of year you can dress up however you want, and pretend you're someone you'd never be in real life. For me, that's married to a man," Ellen said, before adding, "You know, I went all out for you people. I didn't even wear a wedding dress to my own wedding."

And while the costume is absolutely hilarious, it wasn't immediately clear why Ellen was calling the look her "sexiest" costume. Her rational? "What's sexier than a woman with a brain?"

Happy Halloween, brides! We hope this clever look helps to inspire your own costumes!

8 Awesome Halloween Costumes for Every Type of Couple

 Digital Weddings, News, Relationships  Comments Off on 8 Awesome Halloween Costumes for Every Type of Couple
Oct 312014
Couples Halloween costume Moonrise Kingdom

Photo: Courtesy of Alyssa Wells

It's Halloween — do you know what costume you and your husband or fiancé are going to wear? If you're not the type to DIY an awesome outfit weeks in advance, just can't get to the costume store, or are simply out of ideas, don't fear! We took to Facebook to ask our followers to show up their awesome costumes. From a quick shirt and pants you can throw on as you're heading out the door to a party to an all-out, elaborate his-and-hers costume, there's something for every type of couple. Read on and enjoy!

The Hipster Couple: The Moonrise Kingdom kids were absolutely adorable, but they were just that — kids. Still, their distinctive outfits, as seen in the photo submitted by Alyssa Wells (above) are an adorable idea for all those Wes Anderson fans out there.

Couples Halloween costume Mario and Luigi

Photo: Courtesy of Jessica Ralph

The Gamers: Who doesn't love old-school Nintendo games?! These Mario and Luigi outfits are so fun and playful (it probably garnered a ton of compliments for Jessica Ralph, who submitted the photo), but the coins are sadly not included.

Couples Halloween costume Kermit Miss Piggy

Photo: Courtesy of Cristin Schlauch

The Role Reversers: Kermit the Frog and Miss Piggy are a classic couple — which is why it's hilarious that Cristin Schlauch and her guy reversed the genders and made it a totally unique Halloween costume.

Couples Halloween costume laundry

Photo: Courtesy of Allison Mead

The Halloween-Aholics: These homemade costumes, created and submitted by Allison Mead, are very involved, but the effort was well worth it! If you're an arts-and-crafts queen, something like this fun idea is something to consider.

Couples Halloween costume Addams Family

Photo: Courtesy of Amanda Barreto

The '90s Film Fans: Morticia and Gomez Addams are classy and morbid, all at once. All those couples who grew up on the classic films will flip out for this cute idea, as worn by Amanda Barreto and her guy in this photo.

Couples Halloween costume stick figures

Photo: Courtesy of Sara Filice

The Minimalists: Got a party in 20 minutes and need to put something on? Grab your t-shirts, sweatpants, paper plates, and black tape, à la Sara Filice and her man, to turn yourselves into stick figures!

Couples Halloween costume Statue of Liberty Uncle Sam

Photo: Courtesy of Megan Brady

The All-Americans: The Statue of Liberty and Uncle Sam are wildly popular costumes every year. Put them together, the way Megan Brady and her date did? You get a star-spangled couples costume idea.

Couples Halloween costume Big Bang Theory

Photo: Courtesy of Terra Donelson

The Nerds: The Big Bang Theory-inspired "Shamy" costume, as submitted by Terra Donelson and her husband, is sure to be a hit with couples everywhere this year. Why not tap into your dorky side and make like Sheldon Cooper and Amy Farrah Fowler and fully embrace it?

9 Things Every Wedding Guest Should Know

 Etiquette, Wedding Etiquette, Wedding Guests  Comments Off on 9 Things Every Wedding Guest Should Know
Oct 312014
9 Things Wedding Guests Should Know

Photo: Getty Images

There are a lot of etiquette rules in play when it comes to weddings, and just because you're not in the wedding doesn't mean you're exempt from following them. As a guest, what might feel like "not a big deal" to you could easily throw off a couple's big day. Sure, mishaps may still happen, but follow these nine basic etiquette tips to make sure that you're not the source of any of them.

1. Respect the RSVP guidelines
Planning a wedding is already a feat — give the couple a break by not making them chase down your RSVP. Send in your acceptance or regrets by the date requested and do not ask the couple if you can bring other guests/friends/plus ones/children if they were not explicitly invited.

2. Don't change your mind at the last minute
Barring any serious emergencies, you should not change your RSVP at the last minute. The couple's already paid for your attendance and it's just really awkward to have three courses served to an empty seat.

3. Be on time
The couple's wedding day is one structured timeline and what seems like a minor delay of 15 or 20 minutes could seriously cut into their photography session. Show up to the venue before the invitation time but if you are cutting it close, keep a low profile in the back. Never run or try to sneak down the aisle to find a seat right before or after the bride's processional.

4. Follow the couple's social media guidelines
Whether the couple wants no trace of their wedding on the Internet or wants you to Instagram all the moments, respect their wishes. Just under no circumstance should you post a less-than-flattering photo of the bride even if you happen to look really cute.

See More: How to Enforce a No Video or Pictures Rule During the Ceremony

5. Don't wear white or anything else that draws attention to yourself
Also don't wear anything that is primarily white or a dress in a hue that is really close to white. Other fashion styles on the "no" list: ball gowns bigger than the bridal gown, plunging necklines, and thigh high slits.

6. Stay out of the professional photographer's way
This means phones down during the ceremony and leave your tablets at home. Also if a photographer asks you to step out of a shot, just do it.

7. Don't try to change tables
Creating the seating chart wasn't easy for anyone, and don't take it upon yourself to make last minute changes — even if you suddenly spotted your childhood best friend that you did not know was also coming to the wedding.

8. Smile, have fun, and avoid drama
A wedding is a festive occasion and you're there to celebrate. No sulking in the corner, no rolling your eyes even if Uncle Josh's speech was the worst thing you've ever heard, no badmouthing other guests (or anything really), and never incite drama.

9. Send a gift
Plain and simple, if you were invited to the wedding, you should send a gift. Give whatever is within your means, but never not give anything at all. And always send (key word: send. Bringing box gifts to the wedding is cumbersome for all parties involved) your gift as early as possible — the longer you wait after the wedding, the more likely you are to forget.

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