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Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Wedding Season!

Jeremy Grey: John? I need to see you right away. It's important.
John Beckwith: [Walking into Jeremy's office] What's going on?
Jeremy Grey: [sighs] We got three big weeks ahead of us. It's wedding season, kid!

The 2005 blockbuster hit “Wedding Crashers” helped draw attention to the most popular time of year to get married. As wedding season is coming to an end, we look back on all the bad dresses, rainy June wedding days and endless Ofoto pictures and wonder….who says there is a wedding season anyway? In the past week I received three more wedding invitations and three of my close friends got engaged. Looks like this year wedding season means Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter!

Time of year is just one of the many factors that go into planning a wedding. Yes, ideally everyone wants to have a beautifully sunny day when the light is perfect for outdoor pictures and guests don’t need to check rain coats. But, as we know, no one can predict the weather, not even Al Roker. So weather aside, people plan their weddings based on when the location is available (a tricky one with some venues), what works for the bride and groom in regard to work and families, price and many other factors.

So according to research, June is indeed the most popular month to get married. But I think it’s safe to argue that in any given year wedding season can change depending on when your friends decide to get married. Who says that the summer yields the best weddings? Paul McCartney and Heather Mills got married in June and look how well that turned out. I got married in December….not sure what that says about me….but I think my wedding was a lot of fun (and two years later I’m still married)

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Inside the Mind of an Almost Married Man

We all know brides can be as varied as a Crayola box, but many times, fiancé’s only come in two forms. Those that say “honey, whatever you want” and those that have an opinion on every aspect from the first dance song to the flower arrangements to the cake topper.

We ask our readers…which type of fiancé is “better?”

At first glance, it might seem like a fiancé who lets his bride-to-be take the reigns would be the better choice. He won’t notice when you spend 25% of your budget on hot pink lighting for the room or only request the band to play Britney Spears and Barbara Streisand. He will “yes” your every decision and the wedding will be how you envisioned it since before your Prince Charming even existed. No fights, no one questioning your decisions and no one forcing you to do anything you don't want to do (except maybe your mother or future mother-in-law, but that's another post).

Warning…this arrangement can become as ill-planned as the balloon boy hoax if at any time you do really want your fiancé’s opinion. When you ask and he keeps brushing you off because the Giants game is in overtime, your feelings may be hurt and you may become even more emotional than you already are (is that even possible?).

Fiance #2 wants to be in the know about everything and he is more than willing to be involved. This type of fiancé confuses most brides-to-be. Something’s fishy…he never wanted to be involved in planning your parents anniversary party or booking your weekend trips. He is choosing to skip golfing with the boys to go set up your registry?

What women sometimes forget, but he remembers is…this is his wedding too! Another thing we forget is…boys love excel sheets. They must have learned about Excel in 8th grade while we were learning about having babies or something. A wedding is a time where your fiancé can give his opinion, hopefully someone will listen, he can create excel sheets and pretend photographer options are another form of fantasy football.

Warning…what happens when you and your fiancé don’t have the same vision? Does his choice for a centerpiece look more like something in need of Extreme Home Makeover than the front page of Martha Stewart’s magazine?

The moral of the story is…neither is “better” and honestly, you can’t trade your fiancé in for the other model anyway. Learn to deal with him, after all, this is only the beginning of your highly opinionated or overly lax life together.

For some lucky brides-to-be, the fiancé cares about “just a few” things. If you ask him about flowers, he will certainly ignore you, but if you put “Jay Z” on your do not play list, he might be asking for an annulment. For the guy who just cares about a few things...let him be involved in those things and make him thinking he's getting his way (even though we all know who is ultimately in control.)

In a nutshell, a productive way to approach your fiancé about wedding decisions is to give him choices and specific directions Men react much better to 4 fleshed out options than to 10 email links with no explanations or 3 bridal magazines left on the bed with folded pages.

Although this is more work for you, this is the best way to include a fiancé who doesn't want to be included or to simmer down a fiancé who is exploding with ideas and opinions. Another idea (if you fiancé doesn't want to be involved in many decisions) is to give him one task – the honeymoon.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Walking on Broken Glass

When you sit down to plan your wedding, first you think about the date, then the venue, then maybe the ask for referrals from friends, because these are the essential components of the evening.

You loved your friend Emily's flowers, so you use her florist, you danced your butt off at your friend Jen's wedding, so you use her band. After the necessities are finalized and you have picked the best of your friends' vendors, you begin to wonder "what will make my wedding A) different from everyone else's and B) better! Maybe you will have speciality cocktails passed around at cocktail hour, maybe you will have everything from the hand towels in the bathroom to the valet tickets monogrammed, perhaps you will hire cirque du soliei entertainers to perform!

Be forewarned...all of these "extras" that in your head will make your wedding worth talking about for years to come will also add on major dollars.

Once upon a time there was an ice bar....aka for my own wedding! I decided (I was convinced by my con artist florist), that an ice bar as well as a coffee table made from ice were essential components of my New Years Eve wedding.

What could be cooler (pun intended) than my guests stepping up to a crystal clear ice sculpture to order their martinis and mixed drinks?

It seemed to fit with my concept of the evening, which also included boas for the ladies and New Years Eve fedoras for the men. The ice bar was definitely the talk of the evening....not because it was the best thing anyone has ever seen, or because it made my wedding significantly more fun....but because in addition to the breaking of the glass which commenced the night....there was glass broken throughout the entire evening.

Picture take a sip of your newly shaken cosmo, place it down for a second to pull up your strapless dress...and one second the cosmo is on your new Jimmy Choos with glass confetti strewn at your feet. Yes, at my wedding there was more broken glass than at most Jewish weddings...maybe it will bring me good luck in the long run, but totally unnecessary. I don't even have to mention the cost associated with having two self sustaining pieces of ice can figure that out on your own.

No matter what your 'ice bar' may be....think long and hard before you commit to spending more money on these 'extras' that no one will remember ...other then if they find glass in their feet the next morning.

Bridelines Featured as WeddingChannel's Blog of the Week!!

A few months ago Bridelines won Editor's Pick for Best Wedding Planning Blog by WeddingChannel! We are delighted to announce that Bridelines is featured this week as Blog of the Week!

Here's what they had to say about us...

"BLOG OF THE WEEK: BRIDELINES - This blog runs by the motto "It's Exactly What Your Friends Are Thinking," and offer honest and quirky wedding advice to brides daily, taking on wedding etiquette, trends, and hot topics, and more. We adore this blog. Click Here for more!"

Check out for all wedding ideas, wedding dresses, registries, venting sessions and much more!

Monday, October 19, 2009

The Tale of the No Gift-Givers

"You have a year to give a wedding gift".

We want to know who came up with that one. It has become common knowledge that a bride and groom can expect to wait up to a year to receive a gift from some guests. When you go to a wedding no one may have to wait a year to receive your meal (even though at some weddings by the time dinner is served it feels like a year has passed).

Honestly people...if you go to a wedding...give a gift, sooner rather than later.

If you are unable to attend you may have a little more wiggle room, but still does it really take a year to send a gift?!?! If you can't get it together to send a gift in a reasonable amount of time, you are lazier than the contestants on the first week of The Biggest Loser. Ok so we have established the fact that some people are lazy, but eventually do send a gift.

What about the people who attend the wedding and NEVER send a gift? Aren't these people technically wedding crashers that you happen to know?

We know you 'no gifters' are out there and we have a question for you feel guilty?
Do you think it's ok to not give a gift?

I honestly would love to have Maury do a show with some of you to hear your confessions (he really needs to move away from the who's my baby's daddy thing anyway). I know this sounds like a rant, but I bet that every bride out there can name at least one person who came to her wedding and failed to give a gift. Gifts do not have to be expensive or lavish, it could be as simple as sending the bride and groom a framed photo or invitation. When you do not give a gift, it is almost as if your friend is paying you to attend her wedding...actually, it's exactly that!! Someone is paying for you to have an enjoyable night of dinner and dancing, in celebration of their marriage....shouldn't you have the decency to at least thank them for the hospitality?

Give gifts. Enough said.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

To Be or Not To Be...Bridey

Did we miss the memo that the minute you get engaged, you are supposed to transform into Bride Barbie?

When I got engaged, I told myself I wasn't going to use Bridelines as a soapbox, but we think this is a necessary topic and hope it is well-received by other brides-to-be. Since I got engaged only 3 weeks ago, multiple people (not that I’m counting) have said to me “You are not being a good bride” or “You are not very enthusiastic” or “You are not bridey enough.”

Anyone whose ever planned a wedding, or any big event for that matter, knows it’s not all smiles and champagne toasts. Weddings require lots of planning, organization and usually come with a bit (or a ton) of stress.

While perusing through pictures of floral arrangements may be a delightful way to avoid concentrating on your job, it becomes less delightful when your fiancé who has never uttered an opinion since you’ve known him is now demanding peach roses.

Thinking about lying on a beach chair in your hut in Bora Bora while someone serves you pina coladas sounds wonderful, but creating an Excel sheet of your budget, while calling a travel agent six times a day as you simultaneously compare prices on Expedia doesn't sound quite as wonderful.

Think about those random run-ins you have with someone from high school - when they ask how you are and what you’ve been up to and you respond with overly fake, cheerful answers. We are all capable of acting cheery, enthusiastic and fake. After all, this is how we get jobs and have conversation on first dates, however, the difference is – those people don’t know anything about you and those conversations last 2-40 minutes.

Now try doing that for 365 days (give or take depending on the length of your engagement).

It is almost impossible for anyone to be excited all the time, so if we don’t put 15 exclamation points in our emails about our wedding planning, forgive us…

There are all kinds of brides and whichever type you choose to be, embrace it. We can’t all be Bride Barbie, and even if I had the choice, I wouldn't want to be. After all, Barbie and Ken divorced in 2004.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

My Vows

So, I’ve officially moved over from bridesmaid to bride (at least for the next year). We got engaged in Cinque Terre, Italy in our adorable villa which overlooked the town. "The fiance" proposed at 5am after a coughing fit - I guess he couldn't wait! What really happened was I ruined his master plan the night before because I got moody and was not feeling well.

At least it showed me that he knows this is for better OR FOR WORSE.

Then we went to the beach to see the sun rise and I skipped down the cobblestone streets and stared at my hand for an hour straight. Here are some pictures of the views. I will spare you the pictures of me doing the happy (ugly) cry and definitely not show the video he took of me 3 minutes after it happened where I was jumping on the bed.

Since I have ridiculed every bride and made fun of almost every aspect of the wedding process - I know, I'm under scrutiny. I really need to take a good look at what I ask of my friends and how I present myself.

Below are my vows. No…not those vows.

These are my vows to my friends…

I vow...
to not make you wear a ridiculous colored dress that will sit and gather dust in your closet. I tend to wear black almost everyday, so why make my wedding day any different.

I vow...
to not force you to purchase special shoes or jewelry. However, this means you must wear black shoes…don’t try and be cute and wear hot pink trendy shoes.

I vow...
to not ask you to spend what would have been your bonus on me for my bachelorette party, bridal shower or any other events. (too bad most of us didn't get bonuses this year).

I vow...
to make my registry user-friendly – meaning the gifts will cost reasonable amounts and the registry hopefully won’t run out of options. HINT-gift certificates and creative activities are great gifts. Also...”the fiancé” wants a waffle maker.

I vow...
that I will not become one of those brides where every conversation I have until the day of my wedding must refer to my wedding – except maybe to my cousin who is also recently engaged!

I vow...
that I will not be a hypocrite, ruin my friendships or hurt my Bridelines reputation! After all, those "Skinny Bitch" women are famous because they are still skinny (and bitchy?).

I am so excited to share this journey with all of you!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Where and When...and for Whom?

When choosing a location and date for your wedding there are many factors to consider.

Will it be too hot or too cold?
Will there be a hurricane or a thunderstorm?
Will your friends travel out of town for your wedding?
Will your guests be forced to pay for a hotel?
Are you parents demanding it be in your childhood town?
Or maybe worst of all…will too many people say “yes” if your venue is close by?

This is how the situation usually plays out...

You choose a date and location and you are all giddy and excited. Then you decide to tell people. You sit in silence for 5 minutes as your (friend, family members, coworker) tells you all the reasons why that date or location doesn't work for them. Some common complaints are…they have another wedding that day, or its their child’s birthday or they have plans the night before or the flights are really expensive that time of year. After their 5 minute rant has ended, this phrase ultimately comes out of their mouth -
“You should do what is best for you.”

Does that phrase have any meaning?
Is any decision in this wedding process really what is best for you?

Here at Bridelines, we encourage being considerate of your friends, but that doesn't mean checking with your friends which Saturday nights are open for them for the next year. It also doesn’t mean not having your wedding a flight away if that is what you want.

However, it does mean that understanding what is best for you may not be best for everyone else and thus, people might not be able to attend - because of prior obligations or financial reasons.

And you know what? That is ok.

This wedding is about you and Mr. Husband to be. The people that mean the most to you will find their way there, in the rain, on the plane, on their birthday. What is best for you is not worrying about what is best for everyone and ultimately being confident that the wedding will be everything you dreamed it would be.

***A helpful reminder to friends and family…vocalize your opinions/complaints on Bridelines or to your other friends (although group gossiping sessions should be kept to a minimum). Don't complain to the bride. It is never a good idea and somehow no one ever seems to remember that!***