Create inspiration boards, share ideas with your friends and wedding vendors, get feedback from brides like you, and lots more!
Photo By: Michelle Lindsay Photography
With the excitement and privilege of being Maid of Honor comes plenty of responsibility. Not sure where to start? We have you covered! With this handy checklist as your guide, you'll have one happy bride on your hands.
Pre-Wedding Duties:Assist the bride-to-be throughout the planning process. Act as her right-hand woman, listening to her ideas, offering suggestions and input, and assisting her with pre-wedding tasks. Help her select bridesmaids’ dresses and shop for her wedding gown. Let her know you’re game to assist with anything she needs, from scouting wedding locations to attending cake tastings, but also take initiative by offering to help with specific duties like addressing invitations or working out seating chart details. Lead the pack. Give the other bridesmaids your contact info and encourage them to reach out to you with any questions or concerns. Coordinate bridal party duties, check in to make sure everyone is on task in terms of attire (purchasing their dresses on time, getting alterations, finding the right jewelry and shoes), and distribute information pertaining to wedding-related events. Take the lead on pre-wedding festivities. Organize the bachelorette party (enlist the help of the other bridesmaids in the planning), host or co-host the bridal shower, and attend all wedding-related parties. Keep a record of all gifts received at said events for the bride to refer to when she writes her thank-you notes. Spread the word about where the bride and groom are registered.
Day-Of Duties:Familiarize yourself with the day-of itinerary and have a copy on hand. Have a list of all the vendors and their contact information on hand. This way, if any last minute issues or hiccups arise, you can simply step out and give them a quick call to smooth things out without worrying the bride. Double check to make sure the bridesmaids know where they need to be before the ceremony and when they need to show up.
Pre-Ceremony:Keep the bride calm and happy! Act as the trusted friend that you are, ease any jitters she may have, keep the mood relaxed and upbeat. Help with the bride's hair, makeup, jewelry and gown. Act as a messenger between bride and groom. Make sure all the bridesmaids are on time, have their hair and makeup done, and that there are no major wardrobe malfunctions. Help the bride maneuver. Fluff and arrange her gown and veil. Help her in the restroom if necessary!
Ceremony:Arrange the bride's train and veil before the processional begins and just after she arrives at altar. Hold the groom's ring during the ceremony. Hold the bride's bouquet while the couple exchanges vows. Sign the marriage license as a witness. Help bustle the train after the ceremony for easy dancing at reception.
Reception:Stand next to the groom in the receiving line if there is one. Otherwise, act as a greeter. Dance with the best man during the wedding party sequence (typically following the first dance between the bride and groom). Act as a hostess (along with the other bridesmaids). Invite guests to sign the guestbook, direct them to the restrooms, collect any cards or gifts, help them find their seats, answer questions, and engage them in conversation throughout the reception. Refresh the bride's drink. Make sure the bride gets a chance to eat something - even if it's quick! Toast the couple following the best man's toast. Continue to keep the bride happy, relaxed and worry-free. Help the bride change into her send-off dress and make sure her wedding down is safely transported and stored following the reception. Help wrap up and take care of any loose ends following the end of the reception.6
Project and Photos By: Victoria HudginsThe latte bowl is having a wonderful design moment this year. Coming out at every store in the most beautiful hues, textures and styles. Grab a stack of coordinating bowls and bunches of your favorite flowers to finish off reception tables with a beautiful touch. Using latte bowls as centerpieces gives a gorgeous presentation to flowers, allows you to use fewer stems (which saves money!) and they are low enough to allow guests to see each other and chat across the table. 1. Collect anywhere from 1-3 bowls per table in coordinating colors and designs. Place a small floral ball in water to soak for hours before putting the centerpieces together. You will need to make these on the day of your event, so enlist the help of a good friend to do the final put together and placement. 2. Carefully poke 3-4 stems of your favorite fully-blooming flowers into the balls. 3. Mist to keep florals alert just before table placement. Project and Photos By: Victoria Hudgins3
Photos By: Chelsea FussWhat could be a more ideal fall wedding favor than flower bulbs? Your guests (local and out of town) can bring these sweet bulbs home with them to plant and then enjoy the following spring. We wrapped tulip bulbs individually with parchment paper from the grocery store, then trimmed the paper with pinking sheers. Cute Tag Templates: Download the adorable tag templates by clicking here.
Planting Instructions: The tag templates include easy planting instructions.
An Array of Colors: Match your wedding theme with the array of fun color combinations in the template download! (See link to templates in the comments below).
A Budget-Friendly Option: At just $0.45 per favor, this cute DIY is easy on the budget.
Cute, Easy, and Thrifty! The project is so simple, and the gift- something every guest can enjoy!
Paperwhite Kits: If you want to give a more substantial gift- try a Paperwhite kit! Click for the template here. Simple Pots: To make these sweet gifts, we spray painted terra cotta pots white, and filled them with gravel and bulbs (Paperwhites only need gravel and water to grow)!
Pretty Tag Templates: The favor can be adorned with a stylish DIY tag, complete with planting and care instructions! Find the template download here.
Ribbons and Bows: Secure the gift with ribbon and this simple project is complete. (See link to tag templates in the comments below).
Sow Seeds of Love: A unique and memorable gift, for sure! Happy Planting! Photos By: Chelsea Fuss5
1. A Pair of Mums
A cute pair of flowers is simply perfect for celebrating the pair of you! Oh, and mums the word on how cheap these invites are.
2. Pastel Patterns
A trend you can’t resist — mixed patterns! This distinctly patterned invite will also reflect your savvy style for a price that fits your budget. Find them here.
3. Flair for Style
Show your flair for style and your knack for scoring a good deal with these flourish wedding invitations featuring a bold element of design.
4. Flowers and Flourishes
A colorful floral sketch accented by faint flourishes creates a touch of whimsical charm on these inexpensive wedding invites.
5. Love Springs
You won’t have to spring much for these! An array of colorful flowers below two lovebirds becomes a trendy display of modern day romance. Find them here.
6. Sultry Blooms
Sultry blooms in rich colors bring an artistic quality of romance to these watercolor wedding invitations
7. Typography on White
Trendy typography looks amazing on this bright white wedding invitation- they’ll never know you paid so little for something so stylish!
8. Simply Modern
A unique look and vibrant colors all for an affordable price.
Shop for more invitations under $100 here1
By: Caroline Drake; Adapted from Baking Illustrated Fresh Fruit tarts are always a crown pleaser, as well as a show stopper. With bright, beautiful fresh fruits atop luscious pastry cream and crust, they are as sweet as they are pretty! What a beautiful addition to a summer dessert table!
Pie Shell Ingredients: 1 large egg yolk, 1 tbsp. heavy cream, 1/2 tsp. vanilla bean paste, 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting the work surface, 2/3 cup confectioners’ sugar, 1/4 tsp. salt, 8 tbsp. cold unsalted butter: cut into 1/2-inch cubes
Step One: To make the tart shell, whisk together the egg yolk, cream and vanilla in a small bowl; set aside. Place the flour, sugar, and salt in a food processor. Process briefly to combine.
Step Two: Scatter the butter pieces over the flour mixture; process to cut the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse meal, about fifteen 1-second pulses.
Step Three: With the machine running, add the egg mixture and process until the dough just comes together, about 12 seconds.
Step Four: Turn the dough onto a sheet of plastic wrap and press into a 6-inch dish. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 1 hour or up to 48 hours.
Step Five: Remove the dough from the refrigerator. (If refrigerated for more than an hour, let stand at room temperature until malleable.) Unwrap and roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface.
Step Six: Using a glass or another round object about the same size as your pie tin, carefully cut out circles of the dough, and place them into the individual tart tins.
Step Seven: Set the dough-lined tart tins on a large plate and freeze for 30 minutes.
Step Eight: Meanwhile, adjust an oven rack to the middle position. Preheat the oven to 375° F. Set the dough-lined tart pans on a baking sheet, press a square of foil into the frozen shell and over the edge, and fill with pie weights, if you don't have pie weights, beans will work well, or rice.
Step Nine: Bake for 20 minutes, rotating halfway through the baking time. Remove from the oven and carefully remove the foil and weights. Continue to bake until deep golden brown, 3-5 minutes longer. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
Pastry Cream Ingredients: 2 cups half-and-half milk, 1/2 cup sugar, Pinch salt, 6 large egg yolks, 4 tbsp. cornstarch, 4 tbsp. cold unsalted butter, cut into 4 pieces, 1 1/2 tsp. vanilla bean paste
Step One: To make the pastry cream, heat the half-and-half, 6 tablespoons of the sugar, and the salt in a saucepan over medium-high heat until simmering, stirring occasionally to dissolve the sugar. Meanwhile, combine the egg yolks and remaining 2 tablespoons sugar in a medium bowl and whisk until the sugar has begun to dissolve and the mixture is creamy, about 15 seconds. Whisk in the cornstarch until combined and the mixture is pale yellow and thick, about 30 seconds.
Step Two: When the half-and-half mixture has reached a simmer, slowly add it to the egg yolk mixture to temper, whisking constantly. Return the mixture to the saucepan, scraping the bowl with a rubber spatula. Return the mixture to a simmer over medium heat, whisking constantly, until a few bubbles burst on the surface and the mixture is thickened and glossy, about 30 seconds. Off the heat, whisk in the butter and vanilla. Strain the pastry cream through a fine mesh sieve set over a medium bowl.
Step Three: Press plastic wrap directly on the surface to prevent a skin from forming and refrigerate until cold and set, at least 3 hours and up to 2 days.
Step Four: To assemble the tart, spread the cold pastry cream evenly over the bottom of the tart shell.
Fruit Topping Ingredients: 1-2 Kiwis, peeled and sliced, 6-9 oz. raspberries, 1/2-1 cup blueberries , 1 mango: peeled and sliced, 1/2 cup Apple jelly for glazing
Step One: Arrange the fruit on top of the pastry cream as desired.
Step Two: Heat the jelly in the microwave for 20-30 seconds, just until slightly melted and easy to stir.
Step Three: Using a pastry brush, paint a light layer of jelly over the fresh fruit. Let set in the fridge for 30 minutes then serve.9
Check out our jewelry picks for every bridal style! Bohemian Go for leafy gold earrings or a necklace of loosely braided beads for a relaxed, boho-chic look. Photos by (from left): Natalie Neal Photography, Anjuli Paschall Glamorous Sparkle and drama are a must for a glam bride. Get the look with a glitzy bib necklace or diamond chandelier earrings. Photos by (from left): Sarah Seven, Jessica Lorren Organic Photography Classic Go with something understated and elegant, like a single strand of pearls or delicate diamond drops, for a timeless look. Photos by (from left): Jen + Ashley Photography, Abby Grace Photography Vintage An antique locket, a classic symbol of love and romance, is the perfect choice for a bride going for vintage style. Photos by (from left): Oh Darling! Photography, Luna Photo Preppy Go for pretty and polished with oversized rose-pink pearls or simple halo studs. Photos by (from left): Erin Hearts Court, Paper Antler Trendy We love a chunky, geometric neckalce or a stack of shiny silver bangles for a contemporary, experimental bride. Photos by (from left): Jagger Photography, Shoot in Love Whimsical Playful, daydreamy pieces like this light dew-drop cuff or trickling quartz earrings are lovely choices for a whimsical look. Photos by (from left): Mikan Designs, Jose Villa1
Photo by Woodland Fields Photography
We know, we know—you want to look gorgeous on your wedding day, but you still want to look like you. And a full set of false eyelashes can seem a little daunting if your regular makeup routine is on the low-maintenance side. The solution? Individual false lashes. When applied properly, they'll accentuate your eyes and maintain a natural look. Here's our top four tips for getting it right.1. Size Matters To appear as natural as possible, look for individual lashes that are just slightly longer than your natural lash. We like Ardell's Duralash Starter Kit ($9.99 at Amazon), as it offers three different lengths to choose from. 2. Focus on the Outer Corners Start on your outer corners of your eye and work your way in—this way you’ll have a clear view of where you can use the extra fringe. For a girly, wing-tipped look, apply the lashes to your outer corners only. 3. Dark Adhesive is Key Use a lash adhesive that dries dark (like Ardell's Duo eyelash adhesive in Dark, $4.79 at Amazon) to help mask unwanted traces of glue. Dark adhesive will also blend more easily with your eyeliner and mascara. 4. Minimize Mascara Once your false lashes are set, sweep with a volumizing mascara to complete your look. Avoid lengthening mascara and don’t go overboard with product—nobody wants spider lashes on their wedding day!
Related: Everything You Need to Know About Airbrush Makeup
Photo: Byron Loves Fawn
With the popularity of signature bride and groom drinks and "create your own" cocktail bars stocked with assorted accoutrements and garnishes, the beverage station concept has become just as decorative as it is functional. Styled drink displays are a big trend in weddings these days, and since it doesn't look like they're going away any time soon, we're here to shed a little light on the art of creating the perfect beverage station for your wedding reception. Check out some of these great ideas and choose a few of your favorites to implement for a gorgeous drink display!
Photos (from left): Matt Edge, Katelyn James
Photos (from left): White Loft Studio, onelove Photography
Photos (from left): onelove Photography, Magnolia Pair
Photos (from left): White Loft Studio, Leila Brewster
Fancy Ice Buckets
Photos (from left): Paper Antler, Jose Villa
Photos (from left): Bryce Covey, Abby Jiu
Infused Beverage Dispensers
Photos (from left): Melissa Oholendt, Love is Sweet Events
Photos (from left): Byron Loves Fawn, Caroline Joy
Fresh Fruit Embellishments
Photos (from left): Carlie Statsky, White Loft Studio
Photos (from left): Stephanie Yonce, Megan Clouse
Photos (from left): Heather Nan, Paper Antler
Photos (from left): KT Merry, Amy Arrington
Photos (from left): Paper Antler, JAC Photography
Photos (from left): Katie Stoops, Emily Blake
Photos (from left): Max Wanger, Meg PerottiCheers!!5