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Wedding Ideas

  • Photos By: Mary Swenson

    Chalkboards are all the rage in the design world lately, and they're also an easy way to add a bit of unexpected character to your wedding day! Whether you're going for a casual, country, or even chic look, check out our ideas on how you can incorporate this fun element into your event.   When we stumbled upon this amazing blackboard oilcloth, we knew we had to somehow use it in one of our do-it-yourself projects. It's a dream to write on, and the chalk easily washes off with a damp cloth, so the oilcloth can be used over and over again. We cut ours to fit a large white frame and wrote guests' seat assignments on it to create a modern-looking seating chart.   Sources: Oilcloth from Bell'Occhio; Ribba frame from Ikea     Cut the oilcloth to make a dramatic place mat for each table setting; write the guest's name across the top in lieu of a place card.   Sources: Oilcloth from Bell'Occhio     We cut tags from cardstock and sprayed them with chalkboard spray paint to create super-easy place cards.   Source: Chalkboard spray paint by Krylon     These adorable mini-chalkboards are a perfect size for place cards; wind them around napkins or favors for a charming look.   Source: Mini-chalkboards by Darice from Joann Fabrics     Votive holders or small cups can also get the spray-paint treatment; fill them with bright flowers for a glamorous favor, and write guests' names on the front for added personalization.    Source: Chalkboard spray paint by Krylon     When black is matte, it looks sophisticated and soft -- and is a fabulous compliment to a floral arrangement. We spray painted a vase with chalkboard paint, wrote the table number on the front, and filled with pretty pale tulips. Volia! An inexpensive centerpiece that still looks dramatic.   Source: Chalkboard spray paint by Krylon     We hung a page from this blackboard album around an old wooden box, wrote the table number on the front, and then filled it with floppy flowers. The result? A casual, rustic centerpiece that's truly unique.   Source: Blackboard chipboard album by Cosmo Cricket    

     

    6
  • Photos By: Chelsea Fuss

    Inspired by the sweet strawberry cakes that Swedes make during their Midsummer holiday each year, we came up with this festive wedding cake! It's perfect for an outdoor, rustic wedding. You can make the cake yourself, or simply embellish a store bought cake using our styling inspiration. It's easy and such a unique idea!

    First you'll need a white dome cake. We used a citrus flavor dome cake filled with whip cream, from a small family bakery, and it was delicious. We just took off the doily and cardboard it came on and slid it onto a rustic wooden board. You could also make your own. Here are instructions on how to make a dome cake.

    You will need around two pints of strawberries per cake.

    Cut the stems off and slice the strawberries in half.

    Lay the strawberries flat side down, all over the cake.

    Keep the cake in the fridge until just before the reception.

    Add edible wildflowers a few hours before your event. We used buckwheat, meadowsweet, and winter savory. The flavor of these flowers worked wonderfully with the citrus flavor of the cake!     We laid them all around the cake and sprinkled the petals and leaves on top of it. The more you add, the better it looks. Make sure the flowers you use are edible and have not been sprayed with pesticides!     More ideas for edible flowers: pansies violets nasturtium roses calendula     Display your cake on a rustic farm table and decorate with flowers around the bottom of the cake like in slide one. Your guests will love digging into this summery treat!    
    4
  • Project By: Victoria Hudgins

    Photography By: Pictilio   This 3-D heart bunting is pretty and a great project to incorporate some handmade charm into your wedding. Hang between rows of seats, behind a dessert table, vertically to stage the ceremony, or around the head table as accent décor.     For a bunting of good length, purchase a heart punch from your local craft store. The small investment (about $10) will save your wrists from cutting hundreds of hearts out! You will also need colored craft paper, glue, and string.     Stamp out hearts for the length of your bunting. Each section of the bunting will use two hearts.     Once the hearts are punched, cut a length of thin string and begin gluing on the hearts. Lay one heart down (backside up). Center a small line of glue, then quickly layer the string on top and another heart (backside down). Measure a few inches and continue the process.     Once all the hearts are laid and dried, fold the top and bottom hearts away from one another for a pretty 3D effect.     Run the lengths of garland around cardboard dividers and tape in place as you go. This will make it easier to transport without getting tangled.  
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  •  

    Photos By: Carly Taylor   Add a sweet, personalized touch to desserts or drinks! They are easy to make in mass and can be completely customized to match your wedding colors and theme.     A stack of them laid out with chalk will provide your guests with the chance to personalize their drinks at the bar, or written on prior they can easily label each of your options for drinks or sweets at the reception!     The materials: Unsanded tile grout (home depot carries it), paint in whatever color you choose, white card stock paper, paint brush, hand sand paper, double sided tape, measuring cups, stir sticks, scissors.     The process:   1) Mix your 1/2 cup of your paint with 1 tablespoon of the tile grout and stir until the grout is completely dissolved.     Mixing the grout...     Stir away!  

     

    2) Using your brush, paint an even coat of the mixture onto your card stock paper and let dry. Once dry, lightly sand your paper by hand to remove any lifted spots.     3) Cut your paper into long thin lines and then cut each line down to the label size of your choosing, cut a V notch at the end of each to create a flag.     4) Fold each flag in half and using double sided tape attach to your stir stick.     Your flags are almost ready!     Voila!     5) Pre-write your labels with chalk or leave a handful out during your wedding festivities for guests to write in themselves.     How cute are these?!  

     

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  •  

    A tour of Secrets The Vine, Cancun's premium spa resort (expert advice)
    photo by Secrets The Vine Cancun
    Sponsored by Secrets The Vine Cancun

    Does a luxury spa honeymoon sound right up your alley? It sounds like perfection to us, which is why we took a dreamy photo tour through Cancun's ultimate spa resort, Secrets The Vine- an incredible locale for romantic and relaxing honeymoons.

    This contemporary, adults-only resort is situated along a white sand beach with crystal clear views of the Caribbean Sea. Offering an adults-only Unlimited-Luxury® experience with gourmet dining, top-shelf spirits, 24-hour room service, daily activities, nightly performances, elite services and superior amenities, this elegant haven is the ideal escape for honeymooners.

    Honeymoons are about relaxing and being pampered – and Secrets The Vine accommodates. The exquisite, 12,580 square foot Secrets Spa by Pevonia is boldly inspired by cave-like structures and natural cenotes of the area and hosts fourteen treatment rooms with spa suites for couples. A full-service beauty salon provides haircuts, styling, manicures, pedicures and make-up application for a romantic night out.

     

    And, like the name implies, Secrets The Vine Cancun’s signature element is wine. Enjoy Sommelier-led wine tastings and infused spa treatments. The Spa carries a line of products made from the finest wine and grape seed essences, evoking the richness of a vineyard.

    Specialty treatments include The Vine’s Diva Ritual Spa Package: a Bordeaux manicure, a facial, a massage with a blend of antioxidants, and a mélange of pomegranate and grape wine.

    Talk about a toast-worthy honeymoon!

     

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  • DestinationWeddings.com gives us the inside scoop on five resorts off the beaten path (expert advice)
    photo by DestinationWeddings.com
    Sponsored by DestinationWeddings.com

    Searching for the perfect, out-of-the-way location for your destination wedding? We chatted with the experts at DestinationWeddings.com to discover five incredible resorts that you've likely never heard of. From boutique hotels to private islands to luxe villas, put these on your list to explore before you make your final decision.  

     

    Hidden Gem no. 1:  Petit St. Vincent

    When we say hidden, we mean really hidden. Why not say 'I do' on the private island of Petit St. Vincent?  This tiny Grenadine Island is home to lush rolling hills and white sand beaches. Think seclusion and serenity, a perfectly suited paradise for taking vows.  

     

    Hidden Gem no. 2: El Dorado Maroma

      

    Go for intimacy and relaxation by choosing El Dorado Maroma to host your big day. This boutique hotel in Riviera Maya, Mexico is surrounded by secluded beaches and awe-inspiring views.

     

    Hidden Gem no. 3: Curtain Bluff in Antigua

    Sit in the lap of luxury at Antigua's Curtain Bluff Resort.  The setting is pure magic with private pools overlooking the ocean and the finest of simple pleasures. Depending on the number of guests attending, you may even opt to rent out the entire resort! 

     

    Hidden Gem no. 4: Azul Villa Carolla

    The Azul Villa Carola is a well-kept secret just waiting to be discovered.  Located next to the Azul Beach Boutique Hotel on a stretch of pristine, white-sand beach, you'll enjoy the privacy of a luxe villa vacation, with the service of a five star resort and in-house butler. If you're jetsetting with just a few close friends to bear witness, up to twelve guests can spread out in this 10,700 square foot haven with an idyllic master bedroom and dozens of fabulous amenities. 

     

    Hidden Gem no. 5: Sugar Ridge in Antigua

    If breathtaking views paired with the charm of a boutique hotel sound right up your alley, Antigua's Sugar Ridge is a must-see!  This stylish and romantic setting features an Aveda Concept Spa and special perks for brides, grooms, and honeymooners.  

    Learn more about booking a destination wedding at one of these hand-picked venues over at DestinationWeddings.com.

     

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  • A few simple steps to do it up right (expert advice)
    photo by Purple Peony Couture
    By Lisa Butterworth for our sponsor, Etsy Weddings

    What do you do when one of your best friends gets engaged? If you’re like me, beyond the excited squeals and enthusiastic hugging — you have no idea.

    I met my friend Jeanette when we were five years old. Five! And when one of your best friends gets engaged — as Jeanette recently did — it's time to celebrate her. Here’s a helpful breakdown of the party-planning process — so when it comes time to throw your best girl a bridal shower, you can honor her in style.

    Photo & Invite Design by Erin Mowry

     

    1. Pick Invites

    We’re going the simple, eco-friendly route and sending email invites through PaperlessPost.com, but there are a ton of adorable, tangible shower invite designs on Etsy, as well as download-and-print options.

    Clockwise from top left: Light shower invitation by Youngwanderlust; Hydrangea invitation by Digibuddhapaperie; Whimsy invitation by Yellowbrickgraphics; Love is sweet invitation by Pinkcreativeinvites; Coed shower invitations by Cadencepaige; I Do couples shower invitations by Minkcards. See more shower invites... 

     

    2. Decorate

    This is where a theme comes in handy. If you have a specific vibe, you can decorate accordingly. If your party doesn’t have a theme, pick a color scheme to bring it all together. A few areas you’ll want to decorate: serving buffet, bar area, gift table, activities area, table for favors. Don't forget about centerpieces, string lights, hanging decorations, banners, and food markers for added flair.

    Clockwise from top left: Poppy hanging flowers by Whimsypie; Engagement ring cookies by Peapodsnyc; Bride-to-be banner by Fancyflamingo; Mossy pot place cards by Fairyfolk; Corset cookies by Pastrytartbakery; Mr. and Mrs. chair banner by Purplepeonycouture; Candy heart tree by Astylishdesign; Something blue wedding cake cookies by Lindasedibleart. Browse more décor...

     

    3. Plan a Menu

    Plan your menu according to the theme of your party or the time of day. If you’re intimidated by all that kitchen prep, make the shower a potluck and have everyone bring copies of their dish’s recipe (here are a couple of adorable, (1) free downloadable (2) recipe cards for such an occasion).

    Photo by Erin Mowry

     

    4. Snag Fun Favors

    It’s the hostess’s job to send all the party-goers home with a little favor. To go with our beachy, West Coast theme, we’re making friendship bracelets for all of the ladies. Make sure your favor is small but meaningful and tie it in with the theme of your party as best you can.

    Clockwise from top left: Personalized seed bomb favors by Visualingual; Pinwheels by Pickledparlor; Personalized honey jar labels by Elsiej; Succulent favors by Tobieanne; Personalized photo sleeve by Myonesweetdaydotcom; Unicorn farts lip balm by Longwintersoapco; Gin and tonic soap by Aromaholic. Shop for favors on etsy...

     

    5. Shower Her with Gifts

    The bride-to-be is almost certainly registered with at least one department store, but often it’s more fun to shop off-list, especially for a shower present. Kitchenware and home décor are excellent go-to gift genres, but a sassy piece of lingerie will always be welcome, too.

    Clockwise from top left: Bride panties from Bridalbooties; Chill pill soap by Kcsoapsnmore; Vintage clock from Ethanollie; A Guineafowl Gathering painting by Unitedthread; Ceramic salad bowls by Blueskypotteryco; Dry rub spice trio from Craigsmarket; Customized rubber stamp by Housethatlarsbuilt; Personalized wood initials ring by Braggingbags; Vintage ceramic teapot from Hindsvik; Wood ampersand by Hindsvik.  See more gift ideas for the bride-to-be...

    Whew! That’s a lot of steps. The most important thing to keep in mind is to create an environment that will allow your guests to have fun, even if the cupcake frosting isn’t perfect or the décor doesn’t totally come together. As long as it’s memorable, and the guest of honor feels loved, you’ve done an amazing job.

    Lisa Butterworth is a writer and editor soaking up the eternal sunshine in  Los Angeles. When she's not on the hunt for the latest and greatest in girl  culture as the West Coast editor of BUST magazine, she's flea marketing,  taco trucking, and generally raising a ruckus.

     

    3
  • By: Sarah Zlotnick 

    Glam South Beach wedding coming up? Nothing flatters quite like flirty, ruffly fuchsia on sun-kissed skin. Take a tip from local ladies and keep jewelry to a minimum—a few sparkly gold pieces (and sexy, strappy heels to match) are all you need to keep the focus on the dress. Well, that and a pop of bright pink lipstick. 

    Credits: Rachel Rachel Roy pave hoop earrings ($42) • Marchesa Notte Faille cocktail dress ($695) • YSL Lipstick ($34) • Gorjana Pristine bar necklace ($100) • BCBG Senna sandal ($225) • Matthew Williamson clutch ($1450) 

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  • If you're looking for timeless dinnerware that can become a part of your formal or every day dining, we've chosen a few options that stand out. 

    1. Vintage floral archetypal pattern, available at Bed Bath & Beyond.

     

    2. Embossed whiteware with shark's tooth gold banding. Available at Bloomingdales.

     

    3. Elegant lace pattern with platinum accent band. Available at Kohl's.

    4. Simplicity is key with this bright white, crisp porcelain set. Available at Crate and Barrel. 

    5. A classic set that is popular in Parisian bistros. A white porcelain with a red fillet border. Available at Williams Sonoma. 

     

     

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  • By Project Wedding staff for our sponsor, Blue Nile 
    One of the wonderful things about choosing your wedding bands: there are no set rules! (expert advice)

    One of the wonderful things about choosing your wedding bands: there are no set rules! You can be as creative as you like and it's all about what speaks (or shines) to you!

    Remember that this ring is forever -- so choose a style that you could envision wearing 20 years from now. That said, here are some stylish and popular options of bands that will look fantastic with your brand new engagement ring!

    When it comes to wedding bands, you can never go wrong with the traditional, smooth-lined band. This classic style looks amazing and fits snugly with nearly any style of engagement ring, including solitaire, three-stone or five stone engagement rings. You will love this band for years to come!

     

    This pave-set diamond band is another heartwarming option, which looks stunning when accompanying a pave diamond engagement band of the same size. There are all different shapes and sizes of pave diamond bands to match your unique engagement ring. There is always the option to add some sparkle to a plain engagement ring setting as well!

     

    It's the blingin' band that really makes a statement! Brides love this eye-catching diamond eternity ring, with its sculpted-edge band. It looks gorgeous when paired with a plain engagement band, and could clash a bit with certain pave-style engagement rings so make sure you try it on first to see the set together.

    Brides, including actress Zooey Deschanel, are opting to bring a burst of color to their ring fingers with this channel set, sapphire and diamond ring. It's a great compliment to either a channel-set or plain band engagement ring.

    Similar to the pave-setting, the diamonds are placed differently into thischannel-set diamond wedding band. It has a very polished appearance and looks best when paired with a channel-set engagement ring. It also works beautifully with a plain band as well.

    If you want to go "custom," this prong-set diamond curved wedding ring is made specifically to align with your engagement diamond. It looks amazing when paired with a plain banded engagement ring.

    Other favorites:

    The whimsical, starlight diamond eternity ring is creative, playful and adds personality to a traditional engagement ring.

     

    We are in love with these radiant rubies in this channel-setting ring!

    This trio micropave diamond band, with three rows of diamonds, is to die for! We love that you could wear this without the engagement ring and it is simply stunning.

    Images courtesy: Blue Nile

    1
  • Photos By: Mary Swenson

    Chalkboards are all the rage in the design world lately, and they're also an easy way to add a bit of unexpected character to your wedding day! Whether you're going for a casual, country, or even chic look, check out our ideas on how you can incorporate this fun element into your event.   When we stumbled upon this amazing blackboard oilcloth, we knew we had to somehow use it in one of our do-it-yourself projects. It's a dream to write on, and the chalk easily washes off with a damp cloth, so the oilcloth can be used over and over again. We cut ours to fit a large white frame and wrote guests' seat assignments on it to create a modern-looking seating chart.   Sources: Oilcloth from Bell'Occhio; Ribba frame from Ikea     Cut the oilcloth to make a dramatic place mat for each table setting; write the guest's name across the top in lieu of a place card.   Sources: Oilcloth from Bell'Occhio     We cut tags from cardstock and sprayed them with chalkboard spray paint to create super-easy place cards.   Source: Chalkboard spray paint by Krylon     These adorable mini-chalkboards are a perfect size for place cards; wind them around napkins or favors for a charming look.   Source: Mini-chalkboards by Darice from Joann Fabrics     Votive holders or small cups can also get the spray-paint treatment; fill them with bright flowers for a glamorous favor, and write guests' names on the front for added personalization.    Source: Chalkboard spray paint by Krylon     When black is matte, it looks sophisticated and soft -- and is a fabulous compliment to a floral arrangement. We spray painted a vase with chalkboard paint, wrote the table number on the front, and filled with pretty pale tulips. Volia! An inexpensive centerpiece that still looks dramatic.   Source: Chalkboard spray paint by Krylon     We hung a page from this blackboard album around an old wooden box, wrote the table number on the front, and then filled it with floppy flowers. The result? A casual, rustic centerpiece that's truly unique.   Source: Blackboard chipboard album by Cosmo Cricket    

     

    6
  • Photos By: Chelsea Fuss

    Inspired by the sweet strawberry cakes that Swedes make during their Midsummer holiday each year, we came up with this festive wedding cake! It's perfect for an outdoor, rustic wedding. You can make the cake yourself, or simply embellish a store bought cake using our styling inspiration. It's easy and such a unique idea!

    First you'll need a white dome cake. We used a citrus flavor dome cake filled with whip cream, from a small family bakery, and it was delicious. We just took off the doily and cardboard it came on and slid it onto a rustic wooden board. You could also make your own. Here are instructions on how to make a dome cake.

    You will need around two pints of strawberries per cake.

    Cut the stems off and slice the strawberries in half.

    Lay the strawberries flat side down, all over the cake.

    Keep the cake in the fridge until just before the reception.

    Add edible wildflowers a few hours before your event. We used buckwheat, meadowsweet, and winter savory. The flavor of these flowers worked wonderfully with the citrus flavor of the cake!     We laid them all around the cake and sprinkled the petals and leaves on top of it. The more you add, the better it looks. Make sure the flowers you use are edible and have not been sprayed with pesticides!     More ideas for edible flowers: pansies violets nasturtium roses calendula     Display your cake on a rustic farm table and decorate with flowers around the bottom of the cake like in slide one. Your guests will love digging into this summery treat!    
    4
  • Project By: Victoria Hudgins

    Photography By: Pictilio   This 3-D heart bunting is pretty and a great project to incorporate some handmade charm into your wedding. Hang between rows of seats, behind a dessert table, vertically to stage the ceremony, or around the head table as accent décor.     For a bunting of good length, purchase a heart punch from your local craft store. The small investment (about $10) will save your wrists from cutting hundreds of hearts out! You will also need colored craft paper, glue, and string.     Stamp out hearts for the length of your bunting. Each section of the bunting will use two hearts.     Once the hearts are punched, cut a length of thin string and begin gluing on the hearts. Lay one heart down (backside up). Center a small line of glue, then quickly layer the string on top and another heart (backside down). Measure a few inches and continue the process.     Once all the hearts are laid and dried, fold the top and bottom hearts away from one another for a pretty 3D effect.     Run the lengths of garland around cardboard dividers and tape in place as you go. This will make it easier to transport without getting tangled.  
    35
  •  

    Photos By: Carly Taylor   Add a sweet, personalized touch to desserts or drinks! They are easy to make in mass and can be completely customized to match your wedding colors and theme.     A stack of them laid out with chalk will provide your guests with the chance to personalize their drinks at the bar, or written on prior they can easily label each of your options for drinks or sweets at the reception!     The materials: Unsanded tile grout (home depot carries it), paint in whatever color you choose, white card stock paper, paint brush, hand sand paper, double sided tape, measuring cups, stir sticks, scissors.     The process:   1) Mix your 1/2 cup of your paint with 1 tablespoon of the tile grout and stir until the grout is completely dissolved.     Mixing the grout...     Stir away!  

     

    2) Using your brush, paint an even coat of the mixture onto your card stock paper and let dry. Once dry, lightly sand your paper by hand to remove any lifted spots.     3) Cut your paper into long thin lines and then cut each line down to the label size of your choosing, cut a V notch at the end of each to create a flag.     4) Fold each flag in half and using double sided tape attach to your stir stick.     Your flags are almost ready!     Voila!     5) Pre-write your labels with chalk or leave a handful out during your wedding festivities for guests to write in themselves.     How cute are these?!  

     

    3
  •  

    A tour of Secrets The Vine, Cancun's premium spa resort (expert advice)
    photo by Secrets The Vine Cancun
    Sponsored by Secrets The Vine Cancun

    Does a luxury spa honeymoon sound right up your alley? It sounds like perfection to us, which is why we took a dreamy photo tour through Cancun's ultimate spa resort, Secrets The Vine- an incredible locale for romantic and relaxing honeymoons.

    This contemporary, adults-only resort is situated along a white sand beach with crystal clear views of the Caribbean Sea. Offering an adults-only Unlimited-Luxury® experience with gourmet dining, top-shelf spirits, 24-hour room service, daily activities, nightly performances, elite services and superior amenities, this elegant haven is the ideal escape for honeymooners.

    Honeymoons are about relaxing and being pampered – and Secrets The Vine accommodates. The exquisite, 12,580 square foot Secrets Spa by Pevonia is boldly inspired by cave-like structures and natural cenotes of the area and hosts fourteen treatment rooms with spa suites for couples. A full-service beauty salon provides haircuts, styling, manicures, pedicures and make-up application for a romantic night out.

     

    And, like the name implies, Secrets The Vine Cancun’s signature element is wine. Enjoy Sommelier-led wine tastings and infused spa treatments. The Spa carries a line of products made from the finest wine and grape seed essences, evoking the richness of a vineyard.

    Specialty treatments include The Vine’s Diva Ritual Spa Package: a Bordeaux manicure, a facial, a massage with a blend of antioxidants, and a mélange of pomegranate and grape wine.

    Talk about a toast-worthy honeymoon!

     

    0
  • DestinationWeddings.com gives us the inside scoop on five resorts off the beaten path (expert advice)
    photo by DestinationWeddings.com
    Sponsored by DestinationWeddings.com

    Searching for the perfect, out-of-the-way location for your destination wedding? We chatted with the experts at DestinationWeddings.com to discover five incredible resorts that you've likely never heard of. From boutique hotels to private islands to luxe villas, put these on your list to explore before you make your final decision.  

     

    Hidden Gem no. 1:  Petit St. Vincent

    When we say hidden, we mean really hidden. Why not say 'I do' on the private island of Petit St. Vincent?  This tiny Grenadine Island is home to lush rolling hills and white sand beaches. Think seclusion and serenity, a perfectly suited paradise for taking vows.  

     

    Hidden Gem no. 2: El Dorado Maroma

      

    Go for intimacy and relaxation by choosing El Dorado Maroma to host your big day. This boutique hotel in Riviera Maya, Mexico is surrounded by secluded beaches and awe-inspiring views.

     

    Hidden Gem no. 3: Curtain Bluff in Antigua

    Sit in the lap of luxury at Antigua's Curtain Bluff Resort.  The setting is pure magic with private pools overlooking the ocean and the finest of simple pleasures. Depending on the number of guests attending, you may even opt to rent out the entire resort! 

     

    Hidden Gem no. 4: Azul Villa Carolla

    The Azul Villa Carola is a well-kept secret just waiting to be discovered.  Located next to the Azul Beach Boutique Hotel on a stretch of pristine, white-sand beach, you'll enjoy the privacy of a luxe villa vacation, with the service of a five star resort and in-house butler. If you're jetsetting with just a few close friends to bear witness, up to twelve guests can spread out in this 10,700 square foot haven with an idyllic master bedroom and dozens of fabulous amenities. 

     

    Hidden Gem no. 5: Sugar Ridge in Antigua

    If breathtaking views paired with the charm of a boutique hotel sound right up your alley, Antigua's Sugar Ridge is a must-see!  This stylish and romantic setting features an Aveda Concept Spa and special perks for brides, grooms, and honeymooners.  

    Learn more about booking a destination wedding at one of these hand-picked venues over at DestinationWeddings.com.

     

    0
  • A few simple steps to do it up right (expert advice)
    photo by Purple Peony Couture
    By Lisa Butterworth for our sponsor, Etsy Weddings

    What do you do when one of your best friends gets engaged? If you’re like me, beyond the excited squeals and enthusiastic hugging — you have no idea.

    I met my friend Jeanette when we were five years old. Five! And when one of your best friends gets engaged — as Jeanette recently did — it's time to celebrate her. Here’s a helpful breakdown of the party-planning process — so when it comes time to throw your best girl a bridal shower, you can honor her in style.

    Photo & Invite Design by Erin Mowry

     

    1. Pick Invites

    We’re going the simple, eco-friendly route and sending email invites through PaperlessPost.com, but there are a ton of adorable, tangible shower invite designs on Etsy, as well as download-and-print options.

    Clockwise from top left: Light shower invitation by Youngwanderlust; Hydrangea invitation by Digibuddhapaperie; Whimsy invitation by Yellowbrickgraphics; Love is sweet invitation by Pinkcreativeinvites; Coed shower invitations by Cadencepaige; I Do couples shower invitations by Minkcards. See more shower invites... 

     

    2. Decorate

    This is where a theme comes in handy. If you have a specific vibe, you can decorate accordingly. If your party doesn’t have a theme, pick a color scheme to bring it all together. A few areas you’ll want to decorate: serving buffet, bar area, gift table, activities area, table for favors. Don't forget about centerpieces, string lights, hanging decorations, banners, and food markers for added flair.

    Clockwise from top left: Poppy hanging flowers by Whimsypie; Engagement ring cookies by Peapodsnyc; Bride-to-be banner by Fancyflamingo; Mossy pot place cards by Fairyfolk; Corset cookies by Pastrytartbakery; Mr. and Mrs. chair banner by Purplepeonycouture; Candy heart tree by Astylishdesign; Something blue wedding cake cookies by Lindasedibleart. Browse more décor...

     

    3. Plan a Menu

    Plan your menu according to the theme of your party or the time of day. If you’re intimidated by all that kitchen prep, make the shower a potluck and have everyone bring copies of their dish’s recipe (here are a couple of adorable, (1) free downloadable (2) recipe cards for such an occasion).

    Photo by Erin Mowry

     

    4. Snag Fun Favors

    It’s the hostess’s job to send all the party-goers home with a little favor. To go with our beachy, West Coast theme, we’re making friendship bracelets for all of the ladies. Make sure your favor is small but meaningful and tie it in with the theme of your party as best you can.

    Clockwise from top left: Personalized seed bomb favors by Visualingual; Pinwheels by Pickledparlor; Personalized honey jar labels by Elsiej; Succulent favors by Tobieanne; Personalized photo sleeve by Myonesweetdaydotcom; Unicorn farts lip balm by Longwintersoapco; Gin and tonic soap by Aromaholic. Shop for favors on etsy...

     

    5. Shower Her with Gifts

    The bride-to-be is almost certainly registered with at least one department store, but often it’s more fun to shop off-list, especially for a shower present. Kitchenware and home décor are excellent go-to gift genres, but a sassy piece of lingerie will always be welcome, too.

    Clockwise from top left: Bride panties from Bridalbooties; Chill pill soap by Kcsoapsnmore; Vintage clock from Ethanollie; A Guineafowl Gathering painting by Unitedthread; Ceramic salad bowls by Blueskypotteryco; Dry rub spice trio from Craigsmarket; Customized rubber stamp by Housethatlarsbuilt; Personalized wood initials ring by Braggingbags; Vintage ceramic teapot from Hindsvik; Wood ampersand by Hindsvik.  See more gift ideas for the bride-to-be...

    Whew! That’s a lot of steps. The most important thing to keep in mind is to create an environment that will allow your guests to have fun, even if the cupcake frosting isn’t perfect or the décor doesn’t totally come together. As long as it’s memorable, and the guest of honor feels loved, you’ve done an amazing job.

    Lisa Butterworth is a writer and editor soaking up the eternal sunshine in  Los Angeles. When she's not on the hunt for the latest and greatest in girl  culture as the West Coast editor of BUST magazine, she's flea marketing,  taco trucking, and generally raising a ruckus.

     

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  • By: Sarah Zlotnick 

    Glam South Beach wedding coming up? Nothing flatters quite like flirty, ruffly fuchsia on sun-kissed skin. Take a tip from local ladies and keep jewelry to a minimum—a few sparkly gold pieces (and sexy, strappy heels to match) are all you need to keep the focus on the dress. Well, that and a pop of bright pink lipstick. 

    Credits: Rachel Rachel Roy pave hoop earrings ($42) • Marchesa Notte Faille cocktail dress ($695) • YSL Lipstick ($34) • Gorjana Pristine bar necklace ($100) • BCBG Senna sandal ($225) • Matthew Williamson clutch ($1450) 

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  • If you're looking for timeless dinnerware that can become a part of your formal or every day dining, we've chosen a few options that stand out. 

    1. Vintage floral archetypal pattern, available at Bed Bath & Beyond.

     

    2. Embossed whiteware with shark's tooth gold banding. Available at Bloomingdales.

     

    3. Elegant lace pattern with platinum accent band. Available at Kohl's.

    4. Simplicity is key with this bright white, crisp porcelain set. Available at Crate and Barrel. 

    5. A classic set that is popular in Parisian bistros. A white porcelain with a red fillet border. Available at Williams Sonoma. 

     

     

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  • By Project Wedding staff for our sponsor, Blue Nile 
    One of the wonderful things about choosing your wedding bands: there are no set rules! (expert advice)

    One of the wonderful things about choosing your wedding bands: there are no set rules! You can be as creative as you like and it's all about what speaks (or shines) to you!

    Remember that this ring is forever -- so choose a style that you could envision wearing 20 years from now. That said, here are some stylish and popular options of bands that will look fantastic with your brand new engagement ring!

    When it comes to wedding bands, you can never go wrong with the traditional, smooth-lined band. This classic style looks amazing and fits snugly with nearly any style of engagement ring, including solitaire, three-stone or five stone engagement rings. You will love this band for years to come!

     

    This pave-set diamond band is another heartwarming option, which looks stunning when accompanying a pave diamond engagement band of the same size. There are all different shapes and sizes of pave diamond bands to match your unique engagement ring. There is always the option to add some sparkle to a plain engagement ring setting as well!

     

    It's the blingin' band that really makes a statement! Brides love this eye-catching diamond eternity ring, with its sculpted-edge band. It looks gorgeous when paired with a plain engagement band, and could clash a bit with certain pave-style engagement rings so make sure you try it on first to see the set together.

    Brides, including actress Zooey Deschanel, are opting to bring a burst of color to their ring fingers with this channel set, sapphire and diamond ring. It's a great compliment to either a channel-set or plain band engagement ring.

    Similar to the pave-setting, the diamonds are placed differently into thischannel-set diamond wedding band. It has a very polished appearance and looks best when paired with a channel-set engagement ring. It also works beautifully with a plain band as well.

    If you want to go "custom," this prong-set diamond curved wedding ring is made specifically to align with your engagement diamond. It looks amazing when paired with a plain banded engagement ring.

    Other favorites:

    The whimsical, starlight diamond eternity ring is creative, playful and adds personality to a traditional engagement ring.

     

    We are in love with these radiant rubies in this channel-setting ring!

    This trio micropave diamond band, with three rows of diamonds, is to die for! We love that you could wear this without the engagement ring and it is simply stunning.

    Images courtesy: Blue Nile

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