Sweet Songs

Music shapes our lives.  I can still remember the songs I listened to when sad, songs from grade 8 dances, and the Guelph University ‘club’ songs.  Songs have made up our experiences, which is why songs for your wedding are so important- those songs will bring together your past, present and future memories.  I found choosing songs particularly difficult for our wedding- I talked to friends, searched online, listened to old cd’s, mixed tapes and even sought advice from parents.  Since my struggle was so daunting, I thought I’d share top wedding dancing songs, and top first dance song artists!

First Dance Artists:photo

1. Ray Lamontagne- He offers so many greats, but here are a few to start you off.

  • Shelter
  • The Best Thing
  • Hold you in my Arms

2. Coldplay

  • Green Eyes
  • Yellow
  • One I Love

3. John Mayer

  • Slow Dancing in a Burning Room
  • Heartbreak Warfare
  • Gravity

4. Louis Armstrong

  • All the Time in the World
  • They Can’t Take that Away from Me

5. Paolo Nutini

  • Candy
  • Last Request

Wedding Songs:

1.  Blurred Lines- Robin Thicke

2. Get Lucky- Daft Punk

3. Lets Get Married- Jagged Edge

4. Forever- Chris Brown

5. A Thousand Years- Christina Perri

6. All my Loving- The Beatles

7. Satisfaction- The Rolling Stones

8. I Gotta Feeling- BEP

9. Marry You- Bruno Mars

10. Shots- LMFAO

11. Good Feeling- Flo Rida

12. Littlest Things- Lily Allen

13. You got the Love- Florence and the Machine

14. Better Together- Jack Johnson

15. I’ll Be- Edwin

16. The Nearness of You- Nora Jones

17. Hello- Dragonette

18. Wake Me Up- Avici

19. Rough Riders Anthem- DMX

20. Hot in Here- Nelly

21. Yeah- Usher

22. What a Man- Salt ‘n Pepa

23. Turn Me On- Kevin Little

24. Engine #9- Fatman Scoop

25. Sweet Nothing- Calvin Harris

Please add suggestions of songs, I know there are so many more amazing ones.  Thanks to my gf’s for their amazing suggestions, and to my amazing newlywed beauty in the pic 😉

~ S

Final Days

The last few days leading up to your wedding will be filled with finalizing, and confirming, and in my case- working, but as these are your final days, they should also include relaxation and fun.

I, regrettably worked up until the day before my wedding, and do not recommend this.  Those few days really are your last chance to take in all of your hard work and enjoy some time with your closest friends and family- get your nails done, have some wine, go for a long walk and take it all in.  It’s so important to appreciate that time, and although the confirming has to happen, I’ve outlined 5 must do for brides the days before your wedding:

  • Hold your rehearsal and rehearsal dinner.   This is a must- you have to practice..  Its also a great time to get your closest together and celebrate what’s to come- you get some pre-wedding attention and some time to actually have time for conversations with everyone.
  • Nails.  Definitely get them done- feet and hands.  Your pics will show them, and trust me, with the rings on, you want them to look fab.
  • Teeth Whitening.  If you haven’t already started on the white strips, then you must go to your dentist for whitening.  Your pics will last forever, so you do want to look and feel your best.
  • Fun with friends.  Invite your closest over the day before and spend some time together.  Order sushi, go for a walk, pop champagne and watch Bridget Jones or another classic girlfriend movie.
  • Do the one thing you love.  Could be shopping, running, going to your fav class- whatever it is, do it, you will feel so happy and appreciate that time.

Try to take this advise and enjoy!

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I love gold….

Colour themes reign tres important for weddings; they set the mood, provide the ambiance, and give a sense of who the couple are.  Classic colour templates include pastels, or a bold colour statement, but we’re now we’re seeing a lot of white, and as of late, gold gold gold! 

Gold gives a classic wedding a touch of glamour- just the right amount to add a touch of something oh so special.  Don’t think of gold in the traditional sense…our parents gold rings…but think of the gold possibilities- sparkle, brushed, matte….I could go on. 

Gold is the wedding accent colour of 2013, use the delights below to entice your gold dreams..

 
 
 

Asking a Woman’s Father (Parents) For Her Hand In Marriage

https://i1.wp.com/cloudfront.bostinno.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/meet-the-parents-2000-film.jpgThis was obviously the first time I’ve ever gone through with something like this; and must confess one of the toughest conversations I’ve ever thought of having.  So in typical male fashion I googled it.

Google- “Steps to getting engaged” mmm to broad, didn’t help unless Vegas and strippers where acceptable.

First things first- the parents

Google- “How to ask parents for their hand in marriage”

Thousands of searches/opinions later some more practical advice popped up, that I thought would help steer me in the right direction.

So after officially conquering the first step (of many) in getting married, I thought I’d look back on this advice and see how it really helped.

I found this website and article through my hours of exploration and thought it was the most direct and easiest way of approaching the conversation. Here is their advice unedited and my comments post historic moment.

Source: http://artofmanliness.com/2008/05/15/asking-a-womans-father-for-her-hand-in-marriage/

“1. Talk to your girlfriend first. Before you go and sit down and talk man-to-man with your potential father-in-law, make sure you and your girlfriend are on the same page as far as the whole marriage thing goes. Is she ready to commit? Does she even want to get married? If so, how soon does she want to get hitched? You don’t want to get your girlfriend’s father’s blessing to marry his daughter, just to have his daughter turn you down when you propose.”*

Reality: Well no shit, I’m so glad they pointed this out. I might have been caught in a horrible situation. But really, this is a no brainer if you haven’t had “the conversation” with your girlfriend I say ignore the rest of this post. I recommend this article for you http://artofmanliness.com/2008/05/08/how-do-you-know-when-shes-the-one/

“2. Try to meet him before you ask. If it’s possible, try to meet your girlfriend’s parents a few times before you decide you want to marry her. While my wife and I were dating, I had the opportunity to visit her parents on several occasions. I got to know them rather well before we got engaged. It made sitting down with her dad and discussing my wish to marry his daughter a bit easier because we had already established a relationship. Again, not all situations will allow this, but if you can, do it.”*

Reality: Check mark James- I can move on to advice #3. But hold on, sure you’ve met them a few times but do they really know you? And more importantly has your girlfriend told her parents much about you? that she sees herself with you Forever, forever, ever, forever, ever? You can know and meet her parents for years but unless their daughter expressed how you are together they may never know for sure.

“3. Sit down with him man-to-man. There are several ways you can go about this, and I think it all depends on what kind of man your girlfriend’s father is. Consider taking him out to dinner or going to a bar or coffee shop. Breaking bread with him might make the situation a bit more comfortable. If that’s not a possibility, during a visit just ask if you can speak to him in private. If her dad lives far away, try to time the conversation for a trip home which has already been planned, perhaps during the holidays. If this is not possible, it’s okay to conduct the talk over the phone.”

Reality– Almost impossible to plan this perfectly, my advice is just ask to meet for a drink at their place. When your girlfriend thinks you are doing something different. This way the parents understand your possible intent prior to seeing you (they can stew it over) and can make the experience less stressful for you and them. Also, if all goes wrong you can escape and say you have a meeting to run off too. (That never happened but I can’t say I wasn’t prepared) *Over the phone is never an option, plane rides are worth the cost to limit lifelong issues between you and the parents.

“4. Start out expressing your feelings for his daughter. I think the best way to start off the conversation is to express to the father your love and admiration for his daughter. Tell him how much she means to you. Mention some specific qualities that you love about her. He raised her, so you are really complimenting him at the same time.”*

Reality– Easier said than done. This can be really difficult if you’ve never expressed those feeling to your friends let alone her parents. Go in with a game plan; know what you’re going to say and how you’ll say it. Make a speech. To be honest… in the moment you won’t say anything you planned and totally mess it up (like I did) but that will make it genuine and you’ll say how you feel it.

“5. Explain your wish to marry his daughter. Now it’s time to cut to the chase. Explain your wish to marry his daughter. Assure him that you understand the seriousness of the commitment and that being able to spend the rest of your life with his daughter would make you the happiest man in the world.”*

Reality– If you passed step 4 without passing out or getting hit in the face this will be a breeze. By then you’ll be calm and feel relieved they have listen to you so far. Just keep it going.

“6. Promise him that you’ll take care of his daughter for the rest of her life. Put yourself in this man’s shoes. He’s been the man in her life since she was baby. He’s taken care of her since she was in diapers and only wants the best for her. He wants to know that he’s handing off his little girl to someone that will take just as good care of her as he has. Make the commitment that you’ll always honor, respect, and cherish his daughter.”*

Reality- Just be yourself- if you haven’t shown honor, respect, love and cherished your future wife in your relationship so far you might be screwed. But make sure you reaffirm you are committed and you take this seriously (which you obviously do)

“7.  Respectfully ask for his blessing. Now, just request his blessing and support in you asking for his daughter’s hand in marriage.”*

Reality– Today is a new age, if you have the opportunity ask both parents; you must. Remember it wasn’t just her Dad that made her who she is today. It was a team effort much like the one you will be embarking on after this day.

Closing: Go for it. Don’t take the advice and comments too seriously, traditions are continually evolving, do what works for you/future fiancé and her parents. Just make sure you don’t F&$% it up, they will remember it… (kidding…. Sort of..)

Wedding Photo’s

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Finding a great photographer can be a daunting task as there are so many out there.  I’ve found this challenging and have enlisted friends to help make recommendations based on their experiences.  Take a look at my GTA photographer list and hope you get some inspiration!

$: -$2000

$$: $2000-3000

$$$: $3000+

 

Krista Fox Photography

 

Tara Lilly

 

Ciel Wedding

 

HRM Photography

 

Ben Benvie

 

Anice Wong

 

Elitsa Brown and Garry Porter

 

Tripp Creative Photography

5 Wedding Dress Trends

Although choosing your perfect wedding dress really comes down to personal taste and style, trends can really help you discover exactly what you’ve been looking for.

2013 brings many new, exciting dress trends from colour to waves to prints…confused? Intrigued? Then read on…

 

1. Prints

Prints are taking 2013 by storm!  Designers such as Zac Posen and Valentino showcased their print interpretations in their Spring 2013 collections.  These gowns show that prints can easily be worn and should be embraced (love the Zac Posen on the left!)

valentino-2012-couture-wedding-dress-inspiration-prints__full zac posen

 

2. Peplum

Most of you have probably seen the peplum make its trend debut in 2012, and it’s now being interpreted to wedding dress designs.  Monique L’huillier really knows how to interpret a great peplum and showed this in her Spring  2013 collection.    The peplum works on a tighter (A line) or flowy (ball) gown and therefore, suites almost all body types.

peplum tight peplum- flowy

 

3. Colour

I’ve always loved colour in a wedding dress- remember Gwen Stafani in her faded pink wedding gown?

gwen stefani

Well now it can be your turn because Vera Wang (dress guru) has brought colour to the forefront with her Spring 2013 collection.  Bold, dramatic and memorable define these dresses.

VeraWang colour

 

4. Backs

Backs are Back!  Not matter what style of dress you love, any body type can own an exposed back.  Birnbaum and Bullock interpreted the back perfectly, while Nicole Miller owns simple lines with flattering fits- helping you own your back.

Birmbaum-and-Bullock-wedding-dresses-spring-2013 nicole-miller-wedding-dresses-white-lace-romantic-bridal-style-v-neck-NM9978-open-back

5. Wave

This trend really excites me because the wave freshens up weddings!  This type of gown can be interpreted as a classic look or funkier style.   Maggie Sottero and Vera Wang both showcased the wave as a new, classic wedding dress style.

maggie-sottero-wedding-dresses-spring-2013 vera wang wave

 

 

 

Invitations

Although your location, dress, party details etc may be the must do items, you mustn’t forget to communicate the big day though Invitations!

I have found the best-kept secret in invitations and its called Paperless Post.

Paperless Post began as an invitation/stationary shop where you’d send/RSVP through their online service.  These e-cards are so amazing and you can completely personalize each one to exactly how you’d love it.  I used this for my engagement party, as it was easy to create and track.  Here, guests received their invite via email and responded via the link.   We loved our card, and so did guests.

Now on to the wedding…Paperless Post now does paper cards!  You can design your own, use one of their great templates and then have them printed simply.  The cost is so inexpensive (average of $2/card & envelop), and they look so amazing. 

I designed two online and ordered them just to see if they actually looked as great as I had hoped, and, they do! 

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Check out Paperless Post! http://www.paperlesspost.com/

Wedding Planning

Time to start Wedding Planning…ahh photo(1)

Getting started with wedding planning can be so overwhelming.  Thinking about venue, dates, invites, food, and guest lists can be so daunting so start by thinking vision! Below I’ve outlined the top 5 items to figure out first; remember to take breaks during the planning process…then dive back into the planning again…

Vision

I’ve learned that you and your partner may not always have the same vision of how you see your wedding- for example a large 200+ wedding varies hugely from an intimate 50.   These discussions should be fun, so start them early to avoid feeling overwhelmed.  Also, remember to compromise, a nice trick I try is to make one item a bigger deal then it actually is ;)…compromise…lol. When talking with your partner about vision it will really help define the next 4 items.

Money

This area can be stressful.  I decided right away that I was going into wedding planning with only my fiancé and my budget- this way you are planning for what you can afford (which may not be a lot).  The extra funds from mom/dad/family/whoever are lovely ‘bonus’ funds that can help redefine the plans.  Remember item #1 (vision) during this expense process to ensure that you keep on track for what you like, especially when family becomes involved.

Dates

Don’t stress in this area.  Weddings can be planned in a small amount of time, just try to plan a couple dates that work several months in advance for venues.

Guests

The best advice is to make this list early.  I made 4 lists from 1:

1) Overall list, 2) Engagement party list, 3) Wedding ceremony list, 4) Wedding & reception list.  It’s a lot but your overall list will guide the rest.

Location

If you have an idea of what style of celebration you’re looking for that will help guide location hunting.  Look at the city of Toronto website, and local magazines like Toronto Life and Wedding Bells, and WedLuxe.  Also, check out this blog for local location ideas.

*Please share any ideas you may have!