Jenni & Michael spent a good amount of time prior to their wedding collecting and preparing corks as place card holders at their reception. They turned out very well, I think.
It scares you half to death just thinking about all of those eyes on you as you walk down the aisle. Luckily, you may have an arm to hold on to in case those silly heels give you problems. You make it through that and get to the reception where everyone will now watch you DANCE for a few miserable minutes. You know all of those baby boomers who actually KNOW how to dance will be snickering as you sway back and forth like an 8th grader with no real rhythm.
There is a way around this. A couple, actually. First of all, you don’t HAVE to have a first dance. It’s a tradition that’s like many other wedding traditions. We don’t know why or how long we have been doing them. You CAN buck tradition if you really don’t want to dance in front of everyone.
But, if tradition must stick, a few dance lessons can go a long, long way. Like getting your makeup done by a professional, it can give you confidence you never knew you had, and is a skill you can use for years after your wedding. Like at other peoples’ weddings, for example.
Also, if you keep it a secret, it’s a great way to really impress friends and family – whether you’re the bride OR the groom.
Go ahead – right now – do a google search for “ballroom dance” in your town. You won’t regret it and you might find a talent you never knew was there!
I’m a big advocate of knowing ones strengths and weaknesses. If all of your friends come to you to have their makeup done for formal events, it’s probably a safe bet that you can do your own makeup on your wedding day. If you barely wear mascara and lip gloss on a daily basis, you might want to consider a pro. There are a couple of ways to go about it.
#1 get your makeup done at the same time you get your hair done. OK, well, not exactly at the same time. There are often makeup artists at hair salons. Use them. The morning of my wedding, I got my makeup done for free because all of my bridesmaids paid to have their makeup done. (Actually, I think that was part of my bridesmaids gift). Of course, I went to the salon 2 weeks earlier and did a hair and makeup trial. That was part of the hair/makeup package – no extra charge. If makeup and hair professionals are coming to you – even better. That was the case for Megan. She had a preconsultation with the professional who came to her home the morning of her wedding. So did Lisa.
#2 go to a makeup counter the morning of your wedding and get a “makeover.” It’s probably a good idea to do some research in this case and not just show up the day of your wedding with no prior notice. If you go to a certain makeup counter at the local department store frequently, ask if they have such a service. In our town, we have a Merle Norman store that provides such a service.
#3 have a pro teach you how to put on makeup for your wedding day, buy the necessary products, get a diagram, and practice, practice, practice. Karen had this approach.
One of the most important reasons to have your makeup done well is that you photograph better with makeup that plays up your best features. It can also give you more confidence. And, if you take Karen’s approach and learn how to apply it on your own, it’s a skill you will continue to use long after your wedding day.
Favors are a great way for couples to show some personality – and they can also be very useful for guests!
Fans on the seats at Jessica & Tim’s outdoor ceremony (21 June 2008) were particularly useful on their bright, sunny day. Those with less hair seemed to be especially thankful for the thoughtful favors.
One of the most emotional parts of Jessica & Tim’s day (21 June 2008) was when Jessica’s sister, Carla, played her guitar and sang a song she had written just for her sister’s wedding day.
Kelly & Blake (14 June 2008) had a note for their guests at each seat – it speaks for itself.
Twice this summer, we have seen ring bearers brought down the aisle in a wagon.
At Stephanie and James’ wedding (7 June 2008), the littlest one slept through the whole thing, including when the other ring bearer stood near the wagon to check him out during the ceremony.
And, Jenna & John’s wedding (24 May 2008) also used a wagon for the little ring bearers. There are two kids in this wagon. The littlest one is all bundled up against the wind and dust. (**note:The color scheme of Jenna and John’s wedding was camouflage – and the little ones were well coordinated.)
Another situation that requires some real calm is, of course, the weather. The wedding day of Emily and Jk in St. Louis (6 June 2008) included scary-looking clouds, lots and lots of rain and even tornado sirens. But, Emily, Jk and their families took everything in stride. And while it rained during the ceremony and during the reception, there was a break in the weather while everyone traveled from one place to the other. During that break, Emily and I took, literally, 30 seconds to photograph near the gazebo that stands right outside the chapel. Of course, she wanted many more photos there, but the weather and time were not on our side.
Looking at the windows behind the maid of honor as she gave her speech, and you will see that the rain was not a drizzle.
Lisa and David (31 May 2008) had many special touches at their outdoor wedding in Pere Marquette State Park near St. Louis. Lisa did two things to personalize her dress to the day.
First, she had a small pocket sewn into her dress, near her heart, where a special ring (with a blue stone – something blue) was placed.
There is nothing I admire more than the bride keeping her calm when something (relatively minor) goes wrong.
Lisa and Jobby (17 May 2008) chose to laugh along with their bridal party when the reception hall’s marquee had the groom’s last name misspelled. It was a digital, scrolling marquee, so every time it scrolled to “congratulations …” there was another round of laughter – and photos.