Jun 092016

If the thought of dancing with your new husband in the center of a crowded room makes your heart race and palms sweat — you're not alone. But, fear not! New Jersey has great options when it comes to wedding day dance lessons that will not only help you nail the first dance, but also have fun through the process. Check out our list of the best NJ dance studios for wedding dance lessons.

Continental Dance Club (Bloomfield)
Located in Bloomfield, the Continental Dance Club will provide you with custom wedding choreography for your first dance on your big day. In business for over 55 years this dance studio has helped thousands of couples create, rehearse, and polish their wedding day routines before their big day — and is a preferred studio of many celebrities, event planners and TV producers. While their work can be seen on TLC, News 12, Univision and the Style Network, they are open 7 days a week and are even willing to accommodate couple's schedules as they to turn couples into dancing stars, one "step" at a time (pun intended). Read real brides' reviews!

Starry Night Dance Studio (Garwood)
Understanding the special, magic moments that surround the traditional first wedding dance, Starry Night Dance Studio strives to provide couples with a solid foundation in technique and fundamentals to instill confidence AND fun in your big-day dances. Offering a special bridal package that includes 5 one-hour private lessons with an instructor, and custom choreography you can also opt to add elements of modern, freestyle, or hip-hop instruction to your package for some added flair and fun.

Anchor Dance Studio (Oradell)
Whether it be for your first dance, parent dances, or both, Anchor Dance studio in Oradell is dedicated to helping you create a memorable performance and experience. Dancing their way into couples hearts since 1978, this studio features two ballrooms for dance practice and instruction and employs professional dancers with extensive teaching experiences. Procrastinate much? No worries — Anchor Dance Studio also provides wedding dance "crash courses" that last minute couples can attend 2-3 times a week to prepare quickly and efficiently. Read real brides' reviews!

See More: Don't Forget About Your Engagement Photos! Check Out the Best Photographers in New Jersey.

Grand Ballroom Dance Studio (Midland Park)
Whether you dream of an over the top choreographed performance while the spotlight shines on you as newlyweds, or are just looking for some simple tips to have a better, more polished first dance Grand Ballroom Dance Studio has got you covered. (Maybe your soon-to-be spouse has two left feet?) Offering 45 minute lessons and wedding dance packages, this studio will have you feeling more confident in your dancing abilities quicker than you can say 5-6-7-8. (Bonus: for the stressed out brides — they also offer emergency wedding services close to your wedding day to give you a bit of reassurance and poise.)

Dance A Lot Ballroom Studio (Fair Lawn)
Founded by Two-time National Dance Champions Adriana Bezmenova & Georgi Kanev, Dance A Lot Ballroom Studio offers a wide variety of dance lessons and experiences including unique wedding dance instruction as they personalize your experience to your level of dance experience, budget, and personal style as a couple. Working closely with you both, this studio will carefully plan and create each dance related detail from the initial consultation process (choosing a song, designing a plan) through your wedding day performance. Read real brides' reviews!

For more ways to get prepared for the big day, be sure to check out all the local wedding experts on our New Jersey Wedding Vendors page

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Jun 062016

While you may still be basking in that newlywed glow, be warned — your job is not over. From thank-you cards and wedding announcements to photo album creations and photo printing, there's even more left to do for those new brides looking to change their last name. To make it a bit easier, we've created a guide to changing your last name for New Jersey brides wanting to officially change their names, and become a legal Mrs.

Social Security
Changing your last name is, we admit it, a bit of a pain-in-the-you-know-what process. First things first, you must head over to your local Social Security office. Assuming you already have a social security card, you will be applying for a "corrected" card. For this, you will need proof of your identity (U.S. driver's license, state-issued non-driver identification card or U.S. passport), an original copy of your marriage license, and an application for a social security card (available at www.SSA.gov) Bring these documents to the office, and they'll take care of the rest. But, you're not done!

After you receive your new Social Security Card in the mail (TIP: If you live in an apartment, be sure your mailbox is clearly labeled with your new last name to ensure delivery) you can now change your name at the Motor Vehicle Commission (previously known as the DMV). Make sure you have your documents for the 6 Point ID Verification (at least one primary ID, at least one secondary ID, social security number and proof of address) your current license with your maiden name, and your marriage certificate. Say cheese, flash that newlywed smile, and you'll have your new driver's license in no time.

Everyone Else
Once your name change is official on your new Social Security card and NJ Driver's License, it's legal and official! Now, you have to let everyone else know about your new name. We recommend making a list of everyone that needs to know (banks, your job, health insurance, credit cards, post office, car insurance, passport, doctor, etc.) and tackle these one at a time. While it may seem overwhelming, staying organized throughout this process is key. Before you know it, you'll be a Mrs. everywhere you go.

See More: Thank-You Notes From These New Jersey Wedding Stationers are the Sweetest Way to Thank Your Guests

If this all sounds like too much for you, there are new startups that have recently begun offering name-change services for busy new brides. Check out Miss Now Mrs., I'm A Mrs., HitchSwitch, or Name Change Express, just to name a few.

Find dozens of local wedding experts to take you from Miss to Mrs. on our New Jersey Wedding Vendors page!

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Jun 042016
wedding atelier alternative bridal shops new york city

Photo: Courtesy of Wedding Atelier

When it comes to saying "Yes to the Dress," there is no limit to the creative options found within these alternative NYC bridal shops. Vintage boutiques and upscale thrift shops satisfy this list of NYC's most exclusive bridal shops to find your wedding dress.

Wedding Atelier
Luxury is no stranger to this dazzling Flatiron Atelier adorned with mirrored walls hand-selected gowns and couture bridal accents. In-house seamstresses and a full-service staff guarantee a seamless transition between a bride's initial appointment and the fulfilled celebration of her wedding-day vision.

Shareen Vintage
This extensive collection of preserved vintage bridal gowns is inspired by the glamorous bi-coastal women of Los Angeles and New York City. The salon exudes individuality and exclusivity — hosting a wide range of styles and designs. Covering decade styles of the 50s through the 70s, there is no limit to the vintage gems found in this Chelsea boutique. Read real brides' reviews here!

Allan & Suzi
Carrying a consignment-style mix of new and vintage designer clothing, this Manhattan legend in vintage apparel has been featured in exclusive publications such as Women's Wear Daily and Vogue as a top bridal pick. Since its opening 25 years ago, Allan and Suzi frequently obtain designer wedding gowns, so it's no secret that this Soho staple is one of New York's finest.

VeKa Bridal
Carrying no more than four designers at a time, this Brooklyn boutique ensures an intimate selection of avant-garde designs with an emphasis in romanticism and innovation. Fitting rooms that open into an adjacent garden are a definite perk — yet only one of the features that ensure any dress found here is as unique as the experience. Read real brides' reviews here!

See More: Find Your Perfect Glam Squad With These New York City Bridal Experts

Lovely Bride
Romantic gowns paired with the individual flair of indie designers are housed in this West Village brownstone which doubles as a highly-coveted bridal shop. Designer labels range from Nicole Miller to Badgley Mischka are just a few of the noteworthy designers. Other more up-and-coming pieces include Project Runway contestant Carol Hannah Witfield's dresses and famed Etsy innovator Elizabeth Dye's bridal collection. Read real brides' reviews here!

The Bridal Garden
Donated designer bridal gowns certify this Flatiron boutique as the only not-for-profit shop in NYC, with all proceeds benefitting education programs for disadvantaged children. With a frequent selection turnover ensuring a constant change in styles and designers, this philanthropic and budget-friendly shop guarantees as much give as you get. Read real brides' reviews here!

Want to see more New York City bridal salons? Check out our New York City Dresses page to find your gorgeous gown!

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May 312016
Vintage Wedding Ring Shopping Tips

Photo: Janae Shields

Searching for an engagement ring can be daunting, to say the least... But if you're working with an in-the-know jeweler who understands what you and your fiancé are all about, well, then it's just as much fun as dishing with a close girlfriend.

Doyle & Doyle, the sister-owned boutique on West 13th Street, has become a mainstay for chic brides who are looking for a truly one-of-a-kind ring to suit their creative, but sophisticated style.

We sat down with Elizabeth and Irene Pamela at their meatpacking district boutique to chat about all things vintage engagement ring shopping — and how to find the ring that melts your heart as much as your groom-to-be.

Trust Your Source
The most important thing couples can do, is buy from someone they trust. "There are so many different factors to consider when buying vintage. It takes years of serious study to learn what makes one ring worth 10 times the one next to it," says Doyle. "A future bride and her fiance need to remember they do not need to learn every detail of buying an engagement ring (nor can they). They should find a professional with the right training and a great reputation and let them educate you on the specific rings you are interested in."

Education is Key
Every bride is not born a gemologist. In fact, it's pretty hard to find the right language to explain what you love. Find someone who can educate you on details, and work through your tastes and preferences. "We have customers who come in and say things like they want an Art Deco ring with an original center stone and it must be an ideal cut with all 'excellents' on the report because they read somewhere online that is what they should ask for. In reality that combination does not exist." says Doyle. "Similarly, we have had customers who walk in saying they love opals, but they lead very active lifestyles. You just can't go on a hike with an opal ring. It's our job to direct them to a more sturdy stone to suit their day to day."

Make Your Jeweler Work for You
The goal here is to find a jeweler who has already used their expertise to make sure you are getting a fair price. "We advocate for our customers at every step of the process," says Doyle. "I cannot overpay for a ring no matter how pretty it is because I have to protect my customer from overpaying."

"We are very careful in our buying so that our rings are priced fairly. Each ring is inspected by at least two staff gemologists for a robust description including all gemstones and materials, as well as for any damage or potential weaknesses. If any restoration work is necessary it is performed before a ring is ever offered to a customer. After we have protected our customer through all of these steps, it is on to the fun part."

Make Sure They Love the "Art of Vintage"
Great jewelers have a great team. Doyle & Doyle is lucky to have an incredible network of people who help the sisters source pieces they know they will love from across the globe. "When I am searching for vintage rings the single most important factor I consider is the beauty of the ring. The ring has to be beautiful for me to even consider it, but beauty can be so many different things. It could be an exceptional stone or a something understated, such as a special detail on the underside of the setting."

See More: Now That You've Got the Ring, It's Time to Get Planning! Browse New York-Based Wedding Planners Here!

Don't Be Shy to Tell Your Story
The more you share about yourself, the more your jeweler will understand your taste. "The piece you choose must speak to you. We always ask customers about their lifestyle, what they do, how active they are, if they travel... I'll ask the fiance, 'What does she wear? Is she vintage with delicate, lacey clothes, or is she more preppy?'"

Be Honest — Not Bashful — About Your Budget
Never let your budget define the ring you choose. In fact, you might be pleasantly surprised to come in under budget! "We really pride ourselves on having something for everyone," says Doyle. "Sometimes people have a budget and they think they need to spend that exact amount. If their ring comes in under budget they shouldn't feel bad about it. They can put that money toward something else, like their honeymoon, wedding or even buying a house. We are really able to find amazing, stunning rings at every price."

Always Ask About Anything Unusual They Have in Stock
A great way to explore your tastes, is to ask about unique pieces. Even if something exotic isn't exactly for you, it's easy to talk through what you like and dislike so the jeweler can get a better understanding of your style. Plus, you may be surprised with some unique pieces! "We currently have an octagonal orange diamond ring in the boutique. The central diamond is such an incredibly intense color and a very bold and unique shape as well. It really pops. The sides of the ring have a geometric design which complements, but does not overpower the center diamond. It is the perfect ring for someone looking for a really unique, stand out ring, " says Doyle.

"It has to be a very confident, slightly non traditional woman, who is looking for something beautiful, but doesn't need that much affirmation from the outside world, because she is so comfortable in her own choice. It will surely get noticed."

Finding "The One" Should be Magical
The best ring is one that fits most aesthetically and practically. "We work together with our customers to identify the perfect ring for them. It needs to be a combination of beautiful, special and practical for the way they want to incorporate it into their lifestyle. It is fun to try on rings together to figure out which ring fits all of these criteria for them. And there is absolutely nothing better than when we find the right one and the customer's face lights up. Both the person and the ring light up. It is truly magical."

Find even more New York City gems where you can find the ring of your dreams, on our New York Jewelry page!

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May 272016
New Jersey Eyebrow Waxing

Photo: Getty Images

If we've learned anything from Instagram beauty videos, it's that your eyebrows can make or break your whole look — and they take on even more importance in the time leading up to your big day. You don't want to deal with a brow disaster right before your rehearsal dinner, and unless your name is Mona Lisa, you can't get away with shaving them off. Here's a roundup of some of the best salons in northern New Jersey that will make sure your arches are looking to-die-for before you walk down the aisle.

European Wax Center
The hair removal giant, which has 750 locations throughout the U.S., has a number of storefronts in New Jersey. European Wax Center, which uses a hard, stripless wax during their sessions, has an almost scientific approach to eyebrow shaping. Using an exacting process each time, their employees, which are all licensed estheticians, take their time to ensure that your eyebrows line up exactly where they're supposed to while focusing on just you in a private room. All the company's centers, which have a mainly white palate with red accents, are spa-like enough that you feel like you're having a luxurious experience, even if you're just running in for a quick clean-up.

The Pretty Kitty
As the name suggests, The Pretty Kitty is best known for waxing some, ahem, more sensitive areas but the company also provides eyebrow shaping services. The wax used is specially formulated for sensitive skin, so no need to wear major sunglasses to hide redness when you leave the salon. Best of all, the uber-girly vibe and a welcoming staff that has seen it all make their customers feel comfortable to ask any questions you may have about waxing. (Or make any confessions — they can't fix your uneven brows if you don't tell them about how you used Nair to get rid of your unibrow in middle school!)

Super Brows Beauty Salon
Unsurprisingly, eyebrows — specifically eyebrow threading — is the forte of this no-frills salon. For those ladies whose skin is too sensitive for wax, or prefer their technician to have more control, eyebrow threading is a great alternative. The salon accepts walk-ins, which is great in a pinch, but be warned that you may experience long waits during popular times such as weekends or holidays. You won't receive much pampering while you're at Super Brows, but the ladies who work there excel in rehabbing ultra-thin eyebrows, which is a godsend for anyone who has been overzealous with a tweezer.

See More: Don't Forget the Reception Noms! Find New Jersey's Top Wedding Caterers Here

Mirror Mirror
The "beautique," owned and operated by makeup artist Melissa Debiak, gives clients some extra special one-on-one attention when it comes to eyebrow shaping. Debiak shapes brows using hand tweezing to ensure that each session is tailored to the customer, and can help correct any mistakes or asymmetry. Mirror Mirror, best known for its makeup artistry services, also provides eyebrow tinting for those ladies that feel that their brows need a bit more TLC. Read real brides' reviews here!

Get wedding day ready with the expert makeup artists and local hairstylists found on our New Jersey Beauty page!

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May 242016
NYC Engagement Photo Locations

Photo: Sarma Ozols of Sarma & Co. Photography

Not to add anything to your ever-growing wedding to-do list, but chances are you're going to have some out-of-town guests attend your wedding weekend. An important thing that couples can do to keep their guests entertained is provide their visitors with a guide of "must sees." In a city like Manhattan, it's pretty difficult to narrow it down to just a few options. To make it a bit easier for you, we've compiled our favorite spots that out-of-town wedding guests should definitely enjoy.

Central Park
Regardless of the weather, all NYC visitors should take in all that Central Park has to offer. One of the United States' most popular parks, this 843-acre park is home to two indoor restaurants, a zoo, carousel, theatre, 21 playgrounds, and more. Read real brides' reviews here!

City Sights NYC Tour
We know there is a ton to see in New York City, so a hop-on hop-off bus is a perfect way to tour the city and stop wherever your heart desires. With a plethora of options for different neighborhood tours and all-access passes to the whole city, this narrated bus tour will educate you as you relax and learn all about the great city of New York.

Times Square
While it may be considered the tourist hotspot of the East Coast, it's for a good reason. Located at the crossing of Broadway and 7th Avenue, spanning 42nd through 47th Street, you can't miss this iconic NYC locale filled with bright neon lights, interactive billboards, and towering buildings that have become staples of Times Square. Also home to major television studios and world-renowned retailers, there's a lot to do and see here.

If the timing of his or her visit allows, every NYC visitor should experience a Broadway show. TKTS discount ticket booths are the best way for guests to experience same-day Broadway performances for 20 to 50 percent off full ticket prices. With booths located in Times Square, South Street Seaport, and Brooklyn, encourage your guests to stop by a booth for an experience they'll never forget.

See More: Your Guests Will Love These Fantastic Favors, Courtesy of Local NYC Vendors

For those wanting to experience art, culture, history, or science, New York City has an abundance of museums and attractions. With enough options to meet everyone's interests, "Museum Mile" on 5th Avenue from 82nd to 105th Street is home to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of the City of New York, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, and many more. Read real brides' reviews here!

Click here for even more travel ideas and local vendors located in New York City

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May 212016
The Best Waterproof Mascaras

Photo: Getty Images

A number of thoughts come to mind when you make a wish on a fallen eyelash, but if you're reading this you're likely wishing those darn lashes wouldn't fall out in the first place. When it comes to your eye lashes, there's no such thing as too much. And as you consider the ways in which you can amp up your eye makeup look for the big day, you're probably thinking about your options. DIY falsies are tricky, waterproof mascara is fine, but for truly melt-proof, smudge-proof, don't-even-need-liner lashes, eyelash extensions are worth serious consideration.

Extensions usually last up to two or three weeks, they'll stay put throughout the entire weekend of wedding festivities and they're perfect for a beach honeymoon where you'll spend most of the time without makeup. "The best part is that the textures are so natural, that you simply look like yourself, but better," says Soul Lee, founder of Beautiful Soul Makeup Studio. So go ahead and bat a thousand (lashes, that is) at any one of these New York City studios that do the job right.

Beautiful Soul Makeup Studio
With a resume that includes seven years on Bobbi Brown's beauty team, a managing role at Barney's atelier beauty services and doing makeup for Shu Uemura, it's no wonder that Soul Lee opened up Beautiful Soul Makeup Studio to have an official place where you can experience her talent. For the most natural look, Lee uses a mix of synthetic and silk extensions that mimic your existing lash thickness.You don't have to celeb to make an appointment (though plenty of A-listers like Alicia Keys, Julia Roberts and Chrissy Teigen do), but be prepared to pay for perfectionism. Soul (who's the owner and sole employee) charges $460 for a full set.

JJ Eyelashes
JJ Eyelashes' multiple locations throughout Midtown, UES and Soho make it convenient to get your mile-long lash fix. The standard in their salons are silk eyelashes, but they also offer mink for those who prefer a lighter, more feathery look. To take the customization up a notch, the salon offers brown extensions for those who have light-colored hair and more dramatic hues like blue or green if you want to go for a truly memorable color moment. Prices across their four locations range from $90 for a Ruby Set (80 lashes per eye) to $300 for the Black Diamond Set (120 lashes per eye). Plus, a handy loyalty rewards program — where you earn points for spending at the salon and referring other clients — gets you major discounts for future services.

You used to have to hightail it to the UK for one of Vanita Parti's walk-in brow and lash bars to receive her traditional Indian threading techniques and eyelash extensions done with pin-point precision. She now has a post within Saks New York, which offers her services as well as her award-winning lineup of beauty products like the cult-fave Blinkbrowbar Luscious Lash Oil. Good news for serious lash aficionados: Her special, semi-permanent technique and glue can last up to six weeks.

In the beauty world, there's no such thing as a magical beauty wand, but the geniuses at Ebenezer have us seriously reconsidering with their sorcery-level skills. At this hidden gem in Korea Town, technicians use a special glue and technique that's known to make your extensions last up to two months. The trick is also in the maintenance, and their pros are happy to dole out advice: Comb through your lashes with a clean spooley to separate the hairs and keep them lubricated by rubbing a small drop of baby oil on your fingers and gently dabbing it on your lashes.

See More: Don't Forget the Veil! Browse These Bridal Boutiques in NYC for All Your Wedding Accessories

She Winks Lash Studio
Your look is entirely customizable at She Winks. After a free glass of champagne or wine, you'll have your consultation with an technician to discuss your desired lash type (mink or silk), style (like a pretty cat eye) and curl (C-Curl for extreme volume and J-Curl for a soft curve). Mink synthetic full lashes are their most popular style and start at a reasonable $140. And of course, all that unapologetic natural beauty won't fade away until three weeks of wear. Read real brides' reviews here!

Get all dolled up for the big day with the help of these other New York City based beauty experts!

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May 202016
Galloping Hill Golf Course Wedding

Photo: Courtesy of Galloping Hill Golf Course

Hoping to score a unique, manicured venue with plenty of adjacent outdoor space that is above par? Look no further than a golf course and country club in New Jersey. Even if your only experience on the fairway is mini golf during your first date, you'll benefit from the lush greenery throughout the premises for gorgeous photo ops and the expansive space for your guests to roam. As a bonus, all of these New Jersey venues only host one event at a time, so no need to worry about sharing the limelight with another bride. Sounds like a score to us!

Galloping Hill Golf Course (Kenilworth) Above
If you want the well-maintained greenery typical of a golf course and country club wedding without the uber-formal vibe associated with many of these establishments, then Galloping Hill is your place. Your guests will walk through the venue's welcome area to a fleet of golf carts waiting to transport them to the outdoor ceremony site — no heels stuck in the grass for your invitees! After you swap vows with your man, you can jet away in your own cart, and meet everyone later for a cocktail hour packed with tons of whimsical food options. Have an affinity for boardwalk food? Select the venue's "Jersey Shore" station so your guests can munch on sliders and sausage and peppers sandwiches. Read real brides' reviews here!

Ballyowen Golf Club Wedding Venue

Photo: Courtesy of Ballyowen Golf Club

Ballyowen Golf Club (Hamburg)
Designed in the Celtic style, Ballyowen's calling card is massive, perfectly groomed green rolling hills. Have your ceremony on site underneath a wooden archway overlooking the peaks of the course and then head indoors for a cocktail hour that includes numerous food stations, and freeflowing drinks. The site's decor nods to its European inspiration, with dark wood and green serving as a backdrop for its cocktail hour space and tartan accents in its bridal suite. The venue's rehearsal space provides breathtaking views of the fairway, so even though you're cutting a rug indoors, the all-over windows provide a panoramic snapshot of what is going on outside. (Couples who book weddings there can also enjoy a complimentary tee time, so even if you're no Michelle Wie, you can practice your swing.) Read real brides' reviews here!

Architects Golf Club Wedding

Photo: Courtesy of The Architects Golf Club

The Architects Golf Club (Lopatcong)
Touted for its attention to detail, Architects makes you feel like a member of the club during your big day. Brides who want to enjoy the numerous trees, views and nature vibe, will love the tented cocktail hour space which gives a hint of outdoors, sans the bug spray and sweat. With an elegant Old World vibe and fine dining service, couples who marry there can select from an expansive menu of hors d'ouvres, cold displays, and salad and dinner options that will have you feeling more posh than a Spice Girl. Read real brides' reviews here!

See More: Let These Expert New Jersey Wedding Planners Handle All the Big Day Details

Ramsey Golf and Country Club Wedding

Photo: Courtesy of Ramsey Golf and Country Club

Ramsey Golf and Country Club (Ramsey)
For the bride who wants to indulge her inner princess, Ramsey Golf and Country Club, with its stone castle like exterior, is a perfect fit. Couples who get hitched at the venue can choose from a number of private dining rooms at the locale. The Abbey, for more intimate gatherings, includes a fireplace and a piano, while the club's grand ballroom can house up to 200 guests for a night of drinking, dancing, and dining. Everywhere you look, the club includes stoned walls that evoke a Gothic style and a time when fairy tales were par for the course. Read real brides' reviews here!

Looking to say "I do" off the green? Read up on dozens of other New Jersey wedding venues here!

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May 172016

When it comes to wedding desserts, not all brides want to be traditional. Luckily enough for the New York City bride, there are an abundance of bakeries that cater to a variety of sweet tooth requests. These deliciously creative sweet alternatives to the traditional wedding cake will 'wow' your guests while providing a fun twist on classic desserts. Whimsical flavors, features, and delivery methods make choosing one of these bakeries a piece of cake. Here are the best NYC bakeries for serving unique desserts and treats on your wedding day.

Treat House
This sophisticated take on a classic rice treat features a wide range of whimsical flavors like bubble gum and birthday cake while excusing dairy, nut, and gluten allergies from each recipe. Custom wedding treat "towers" can be personally designed for each couple, creating a different take on traditional cake.

This Chelsea Market purveyor of all things delicious (and personally crafted!) comes equipped with charming cookie designs, catered to each individual event. Photographs, monograms, and everything in between have all been replicated on their cookies to personalize every sweet detail of your big day.

Momofuku Milk Bar
With a name as original as its cakes, this renowned product of the James Beard award-winning chef Christina Tosi quickly became famous for its fun twist to the traditional standard of wedding cake design. In addition to their legendary unfrosted sides and rich layered fillings, the option of their trademarked cereal milk ice cream, compost cookies, and crack pie can accompany your delectable dessert table — all dessert show-stoppers. Read real brides' reviews here!

See More: Say Yes to the Dress at One of These New York City Bridal Salons

Van Leeuwen
Want a classic revival of American ice cream turned artisanal? Look no further than this Brooklyn team of dedicated ice cream connoisseurs. For those wanting an option of having an actual ice cream food truck as the vehicle of distribution for your after-party desserts, you're in luck. Van Leeuwen travels to venues to serve its delicious milky ice cream goodness in the NYC area.

Melt Bakery
Local ingredients, seasonal flavors, and professional execution provide the foundation for New York's first ice cream sandwich store which opened in 2012. Playful flavor combinations like their peanut butter cookies and banana ice cream sandwich — rightfully named "Elvis" — join more traditional flavors like the "Classic" which involves a chocolate chip walnut cookie and vanilla ice cream concoction.

Batter & Cream
Mix natural ingredients with gourmet flavors and you get the memorable result of a former investment banker-turned-baker's goal to fill the void in the baked goods market. With a menu and offerings suited for events of all sizes, whoopie pies can be served to guests either packaged or on a platter, even providing the option of letting your guest choose their filling and cookie, boosting the interactive side of a uniquely crafted dessert table.

Want to see more New York City bakeries? Check out our New York City Bakeries page to find your dream dessert!

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May 142016
NYC University Wedding Venues

Photo: Ira Lippke for Ira Lippke Studios

Often overlooked amongst the endless list of gorgeous NYC wedding venues are some of the most beautiful and unique university spots, right in our backyard. Whether you're an alumnus, a sports fan, or are simply looking for a unique wedding venue, check out these New York City universities where you can get married.

Columbia University Wedding Venue

Photo: Courtesy of Columbia University via Facebook

Open to anyone regardless of educational and/or religious affiliation, St. Paul's Chapel at the Columbia campus on the Upper West Side is a beautiful locale for your wedding ceremony. After your vows have been exchanged and you've said "I do," consider hosting your reception at the Columbia University Faculty House. This upper Manhattan event space boasts versatility and historical charm within its unique layout, which includes the beautifully appointed Garden Rooms and the Ivy Lounge. Read real brides' reviews here!

NYU Wedding Venue

Photo: Courtesy of New York University

Offering a steep discount to NYU alumni (score!) you can be like Alec Baldwin and his bride Hilaria Baldwin and host your wedding reception celebration at New York University's 10th floor Kimmel Center. Aside from its breathtaking views of Washington Square Park and classic New York City architecture, this venue can accommodate up to 300 guests within its dynamic and versatile space. This is a perfect venue for the quintessential New York City couple.

Fordham University Wedding Venue

Photo: Cristina Petrizzo via Instagram

While it can be a bit tricky, Fordham University does permit students, graduates, and staff of the University and Fordham Prep to wed on their grounds at the University Church. Since this particular church is not a parish, couples must have a priest or deacon accompany for them to perform their services. For couples choosing to wed at this historic venue, consider pairing your Fordham ceremony with a reception at the breathtaking and nearby New York Botanical Gardens. Read real brides' reviews here!

See More: Still Searching for a Band? These Top New York City Musicians Definitely Deserve a Listen...

Hunter College Wedding Venue

Photo: Courtesy of Hunter College

Hunter College
The Sara Delano Roosevelt Memorial House of Hunter College is a gorgeous, historically renovated townhouse that was once home to president Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt. With a beautiful auditorium and charmingly elegant dining rooms/reception areas, this space is eligible for rent for your dream intimate wedding. With the ability to accommodate 75 guests for dinners, and 125 guests for cocktail style receptions, the crown moldings, oversized windows and charming fireplaces are sure to transport you and your guests back in time (in style, of course.)

Looking for something not quite so collegiate? Browse even more places to tie the knot on our New York City Wedding Venues page!

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