Is It Moral to Have Cable

With so many different cable companies (http://www.cable-tv.com/cable-companies/) in the United States I would have expected that prices would be more competitive than they actually are. It’s unfortunate that we find ourselves in a market that has begun to stagnate thanks to the presence of three larger cable providers. Is this their fault or is the fault of a lack of regulation on the part of the federal government and the FCC? Clearly the steps are being taken now in order to hopefully solve this problem but is it going to be enough now that we are so far down the rabbit hole?

I’m not sure if it’s going to be enough now.

How to Create a Seating Chart for Your Wedding Reception

You’ve bought the dress, arranged your flowers and your RSVPs are flooding in. While it may seem tempting to just throw place cards in the air and let your guests sit at any table, it could cause friction and upset on your wedding day. You only get one chance to get it right, so it’s worth making the effort to arrange your guests properly. If done well, it will guarantee your wedding being a success with all who attend.

Instructions

  1. Familiarize yourself with the layout of the venue. Use a large piece of paper to sketch out each table, taking into account its size and how many seats it can handle. Draw in where the DJ or band will be performing, exits, disabled entrances and restrooms.
  2. Assign each table a title according to your wedding theme, or simply number each one.
  3. Gather your RSVP cards and start classifying your guests according to relationship, such as family, work colleagues, childhood friends, family friends, etc. Doing this will allow you to group people appropriately.
  4. Assign family members first, which will whittle down your seating dilemmas. Family should be seated as close to the head table as possible. Take into account any disputes among relatives and separate those people accordingly. Seat elderly family members away from loud speakers.
  5. Make sure there is an even number of men and women at each table.
  6. Seat children under 8 at the same table as their parents. If you have a group of tweens or teens, give them their own table; they may prefer that to sitting with adults.
  7. Seat singles at tables with other singles, couples and families. Avoid having a “singles table.”
  8. Assign two empty tables where vendors can eat during their breaks, or to accommodate last-minute guests who did not RSVP.
  9. Once your plan is complete, prepare a large seating diagram that shows the assignments. This should be on hand at the venue in case of any problems on the day.
  10. Write up your place cards once your plan is complete. For a personal touch, add a handwritten note inside each card, such as: “Thank you for coming such a long way to join us in our special day”. While it may take longer, your guests will appreciate your effort.
  11. Alphabetize your place cards. When you present them to your caterer, explain clearly that they are in order and should be set out this way. If any become disorganized, then the caterer can place them back in order.

Do You Need a License to Be a Wedding Planner?

If you want to become a wedding planner, you need nothing more than an engaged couple willing to hire you. That said, it can be helpful to have formal training and a certification to help market your skills and provide new clients with the assurance that you know what you’re doing. These certifications aren’t required, but registering your business is.

Lack of Regulation

  • Wedding consultants, planners and coordinators are not regulated by any agency. You can become a wedding planner by simply declaring yourself as one and setting up a business. You will need to register your business with your state’s Secretary of State office. It’s also a good idea to get business cards, a website and a company bank account.

Association Membership

  • Wedding planners may elect to join professional associations that give their business credibility. These associations will help you network with other wedding professionals, learn about wedding trends and build your reputation. Associations include June Wedding Inc., Coordinators Corner, Weddings Beautiful, the Association of Certified Professional Wedding Consultants and the Association for Wedding Professionals International.

Education

  • You may want to take classes to help boost your credentials and prepare you for the career. These courses can either be taken over a five-day period or from home with take-home study materials. These classes teach you the financial aspects of wedding planning, examine specific aspects of wedding management, give an overview of the various types of wedding planners, and give advice for etiquette, negotiations and client relations.

Certification

  • After completing a course, you may apply for a certification from the agency where you took the class. These certifications are the closet thing to a license that the industry offers. These certifications assure clients that you’re prepared for all aspects of planning their wedding. For example, after completing the Association of Certified Professional Wedding Consultants’ courses, you automatically receive certification.

Alternate Certification

  • You may want to seek certification in event planning as well as your certification in wedding planning. This can help expand your business beyond wedding planning into corporate events, holiday parties and other family celebrations. Like wedding planning, certification in event planning is offered through professional organizations after completing a course.

How to Try On Wedding Dresses

Shopping for your wedding dress can be the most exciting, and also the most challenging, part of planning your wedding. Every woman wants to have the perfect dress and look her best. An important step in achieving that is knowing how to try on wedding dresses to find the best style, fit, and overall look that you’re hoping for.

Go Where the Sizes Are

  1. Go where the sizes are. Some bridal shops only carry samples of each wedding gown. Make some calls and find out what sizes they carry. If the samples are only in a size 10, and you wear a 2 or a 16, there’s no way you’ll get a proper image of what that dress will look like on you. Find the stores that carry a full range of sample sizes or off-the-rack dresses for you to try on.
  2. Give yourself time. Trying on gowns can take hours, so be sure to set aside a whole day. The more time you have, the more dresses you can try on, and the better decisions you can make.
  3. Bring a friend, not an entourage. Having one friend who knows or shares your sense of style is far more valuable than a pack of relatives and friends who all have differing opinions on what dress to get. Ten conflicting views will just confuse you more than help you and will waste valuable time. Many brides like to have their mother or sister along, but if their style is very different from yours, be sure to bring a bridesmaid or other relative along who shares your taste.
  4. Dress the part. Wear the style of undergarments, stockings, and shoes that you expect to wear on your big day. If you don’t have a strapless bra for all those strapless gowns you want to try on, consider buying one, or ask the store ahead of time if they have foundation garments available in your size to try with the dresses. Wear heels that are the height you’ll feel comfortable in. Even though many dressing rooms have a raised platform to simulate heels, it’s not the same as actually wearing the shoes. The whole carriage of your frame changes depending on the height of your shoes and can completely alter the appearance and fit of a dress.
  5. Skip the lipstick. It’s good to look the part when you’re trying on a gown, including make-up, but keep it on the low key side. Try to stick with water-based make-up and leave off the lipstick so that you don’t inadvertently stain the dresses you’re trying on. If you’re wearing foundation and/or powder, be sure to always keep the fabric of the dress away from your face when you pull it on. When you can, step into the gown carefully and avoid going near your make-up.. If you need something for your lips, stick with a clear gloss or lip balm.
  6. Start by trying on several different styles. Search yourself or ask the saleswoman to bring you dresses with a variety of styles you’d consider wearing. Try a strapless gown, an off-the-shoulder, a full gown or a a slender shift. One or two gowns in each style will help you decide right away which direction you’d like to go in. Styles that look great in magazines may not be at all what you expect when you try it on. Eliminating styles that won’t work for you will help you narrow your search down right away, and save time and effort.
  7. After you try on each gown, put it into either a “no” or a “maybe” pile. If you find a dress or two that you think are your favorites, you might want to create a third pile, but don’t eliminate the other “maybe” candidates yet. Have the “no” dresses taken out right away so you don’t accidentally mix up the piles.
  8. Try on all the remaining dresses again. Now that you’ve seen your options, you’ll see your choices more clearly. You should be able to discard more of the “maybe” dresses into the “no” pile. Repeat the process until you have two or three strong candidates.
  9. Get the complete picture. Once you’ve narrowed down your choices, be sure to see the dress exactly as you would wear it. Do up all the buttons, laces, and fasteners. Try out the bustle if there is one. Get a veil to match, and try possible accessories if the store carries them. Knowing how the complete ensemble will look helps you make the right choice.
  10. Value the opinions of others. Ultimately the decision is yours, but remember that other people can often see us more clearly than we see ourselves. Our own imagination may make a dress we want into a better option than it is, and it’s important to listen to your friends and even other ladies in the dressing room if they tell you it’s not the best choice.
  11. Sleep on it. If you can’t make the final decision, give it another day. If the dresses are off-the-rack, ask the shop if they’ll hold them for 24 hours. For stores only showing samples, it’s no problem to come back the next day and try them on again. Walking away from the decision can help reduce the pressure and give you much-needed perspective when you return again. You might also visit another store to see other options. Often you’ll know right away if the dresses at the other shop were the right ones or if you should keep looking.

Tulle Wedding Decoration Ideas

The right wedding decorations for the ceremony and reception pull everything together. Combining the right materials, colors and designs give the overall wedding a polished look and set the tone. Using tulle for your wedding decorations adds a touch of class and lends to a romantic fairytale-like setting.

Ceremony

  • Tulle can be used in the ceremony in a few ways. If there is a unity candle being lit, or another meaningful tradition, tulle may be woven around the table with strings of light or silk ribbon.
    Pew decorations will have a simple elegance when you use tulle bows with tails of tulle and ribbon. Add a small bouquet of sample flowers from the bride’s bouquet, or just use the bows alone as decoration. You can also hang swags at the end of each row of guests.
    Wrap tulle around stairway banisters and entranceways. If an arch is used, tulle can be wrapped around the arch or draped from the arch to have a dream-like effect.
    If you are having an outdoor wedding, mark the walking paths by making a delicate fence out of tulle. Rent stands and rope the tulle across the hooks. Place a battery-lit candle or flowers on top of the stands.

Reception

  • Create a beautiful ceiling canopy by draping tulle from the ceiling to hang over the dance floor or the head table.
    Plain white chairs can be dressed up with colored tulle bows that match the wedding colors. You can also make a chair wrap by pulling 4-foot long pieces of tulle around the chair and tie with a square knot. You can decorate the back with a pull bow.
    Tulle can also be strategically placed around the cake table or draped from the head table.
    Use the tulle as a runner and sprinkle confetti or rose petals around it. For a beautiful shine, scatter clear flat marbles on top of the table, surrounding the cake, unity candle, gifts or centerpiece.
    Tulle can be incorporated into the centerpieces by adding bows or wrapping the tulle around the base of a candleholder or vase.
    Use tulle as a wrap for bird seeds, bubbles and favors.

Other Considerations

  • Use white tulle for a classic, timeless look or use colored tulle to coordinate your decorations with the rest of the wedding theme. Better yet, mix some white tulle with colored tulle for a completely different look by twisting them together.
    You can create unique decorations by adding greenery, colored ribbons, flowers and bows to your tulle. For an extra special touch that adds a touch of romance, place a string of lights behind the tulle.

Safety

  • If you are using tulle near hot items, candles or other open flames, make sure the tulle is placed so that it will not catch on fire. Safety trumps decorations any time.

Preservation

  • Put your finished tulle decorations in plastic bags or containers. Do not cram them in as they smash easily. You will want them in perfect shape for your wedding day.

Cheap Wedding Gifts for the Bride and Groom

If you don’t have a lot of money for a gift on the wedding day there is no cause for panic. There are still gift options that are meaningful and inexpensive. Inexpensive gifts for the bride and groom may seem like they are impossible to find, but there are many options available.

From the Bride

  • There are many cheap gifts that the bride can give the groom on the wedding day. A little organizer to place on his nightstand so he can have a place for his change and other pocket accessories is a inexpensive and practical gift. Cuff links that have his initials, the date of your wedding, your initials or even his favorite sports team are meaningful and inexpensive. Consider giving him an engraved money clip for all the money the two of you will earn together in the future. Engrave the clip with his name or the date of the wedding. A flask is an ideal gift for wedding day nerves. If money is extremely tight, consider the gift of a long love note detailing how much you love him and how excited you are about spending the rest of your lives together.

From the Groom

  • Consider the gift of a few flowers placed in the bride’s dressing room. This will show your love in an inexpensive manner. You could also purchase an inexpensive jewelry box as a bride’s gift. Place a note inside detailing how you will fill the box when the two of you have more money. Purchase a frame to place your wedding vows to each other inside. Hang the frame over your bed or somewhere else in your home. Create a playlist or CD of all of the songs you found meaningful throughout your relationship. A love letter is always a well-received gift. This is especially meaningful if you don’t express yourself in writing often.

For the Couple

  • There are also many cheap gifts to give a bride and groom as a guest. Consider purchasing an item and having it engraved with the new couple’s name, such as a sign to hang on their new door or a special plate to display in the kitchen. Most newlyweds do not have many decorations, so purchasing an inexpensive item will be well-received by the couple. You can also purchase inexpensive picture frames for the couple to display their wedding pictures.

Nepalese Weddings And Websites

Planning a wedding is considered one of the most important milestones in life. And anybody who has an upcoming wedding wants it to be the most perfect and memorable experience possible. There are many considerations when it comes to a wedding but arguably the most important aspect is planning the location. To find an exotic locale that will be both scenic and beautiful but will also have a lot of personal meaning is always the goal. When picking out a location many people would agree that Nepal is unrivaled for beauty and spectacular culture! But having a Nepalese style ceremony also comes with a great deal of planning. Everything from seating arrangement, to what kind of meals will be served all needs to be considered. After all you are opening a new chapter in your life!

Its not just the wedding that you need to consider when starting a new life for you and your loved one. Many times people will wish to renew other aspects of their life like buying a new home, or a car, or even planning for children and making a family. But one thing most couples don’t consider is opening and purchasing they own internet domains and pages. By using NameCheap Groupon Coupons  you can find the perfect domain that represents you and your new family, or in particular a new business. With NameCheap you  can find the right domain that represents you perfectly for the lowest prices possible. After all when you have just gotten done with your dream wedding the last thing you want is to be spending more money than you need to!

Even better news for new couples is that when they use GroupOn to shop NameCheap the deals they find will be even better! In one sale you can find domain names for as little as 88 cents a year, which is an unbeatable price. Another deal is 20% off all hosting packages so it pays to go big through Groupon. So when it comes to starting a new life with a loved one, it definitely pays to pick out a new domain using NameCheap. That way you will have even more money for the honeymoon!

Hog Roast Leftover Ideas

If you hire the Belfast Hog Roast Company, you will get great food. Spit roasted meats are always moist and tasty. People really enjoy eating this meat.

However, inevitably, there will still be leftovers. Most hosts want to be sure that there is enough food for everyone to enjoy, so, usually, they order a little more food than is actually needed.

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Rather than throw that leftover meat away we suggest that you save some of it, and use it instead.

Storing the meat safely

You need to make sure that the roasted pork is cut off the carcass quickly after it is cooked. This is because any leftover meat that is not put in the fridge within 90 minutes of cooking will not be safe to eat, so it should be put in the bin.

The cooked meat can be kept wrapped in the fridge for two days. If you know that you are not going to be able to eat it in all, in that time, freeze the rest, but do it on the day the pork is cooked.

OK that is the important stuff out of the way, now for a recipe.

Leftover pork shepherd’s pie

Finely chop the pork for this dish. Next, fry a finely chopped onion in a little oil. Add some crushed garlic and cook that quickly, than add the pork to the pan. Heat it through thoroughly. Add a teaspoon of ground cumin, a sprinkle of chilli powder, salt, pepper, and a carton of tomato frito or use a tin of crushed tomatoes.

Cook it until the sauce thickens. Put it into a shallow dish, and top it with mashed potatoes and slip the whole thing under the grill, to brown.

This recipe tastes great, and it is just one example of what you can do with leftover hog roast meat.

Useful Tips for Choosing Wedding Colors in 2016

Picking the wedding palette is not actually the same as deciding about your own favorite colors. You should of course keep in mind your preferences, but make sure to follow these steps to choose the right colors for your special day.

  1. Remember about the Priorities

One of the biggest influences that you will have with a color choice for your wedding is the setting. From the exterior of your wedding place will depend the decorations that you will be able to use, and so the color of the whole evening. Apart from the setting you should also keep in mind your personal preferences for the wedding. For example, if you have always wanted to have purple tones and soft violet peonies in the bouquets then you should consider this fact when choosing everything else. Pay attention to little details such as grandmother’s comb which should stand out in your look and draw attention rather than simply mismatch wil everything else.

  1. Think Seasonally

Season is one of the most important considerations in the issue of choosing the right color for your wedding. This year you can even make a separate list in the history of weddings as wedding gowns 2016 because this year designers are audacious as never! They claim that you can use pretty much every color for any season because the boundaries of standards are being erased. On the other hand, if you think in a more classic way then you definitely should remember about the seasonal trends.Consider the natural shades of the season and think about their implementation into the color pallet of your wedding ceremony. For example, rosy pink and any light green and blue colors are perfect for the spring wedding, whereas a brighter coral or a rich blue are the options for the summer. For fall designers advise a rich fuchsia that perfectly goes with other jewel tones; and for winter opt blush and silver combos.

  1. Set the Mood

Another thing about colors that people tend to forget about is that colors can actually set the vibe for the whole wedding day. For example, if you like dramatic tone then a dark or jewel tone palette, such as black and ruby red or even emerald and gold, is a perfect choice. If you are more about the romantics then pastel colors and light shades of natural hues can help you create the right atmosphere of the evening.

  1. Do Not Over-think

Of course the color of the special day is something that will create the mood and be in your memory forever. However, brides tend to over-think the meanings and symbolism of colors they use. Do not do that. Never. Choose what you like and fill it with your positive attitude to get the best result possible.

Mary Green is established as a blogger for a range of Internet publications (comprising wedding businesses such as Thebridalsuite.ca specializing in sweetheart wedding gown styles), who writes about a mix of wedding tips and areas alike. A restless vagabond of digital space and an influential blogger in anything noteworthy for the wedding issues.

Winter Wedding Decorations

Decorating for a winter wedding leaves couples with many choices. They can choose one common theme such as winter wonderland in order to narrow down their choices in decorations. Another option is to incorporate as many aspects of the winter season as possible.

One way to decorate for a winter wedding is to blossoms such as roses, orchards and lilies. These are all easy to obtain during the winter, making them an affordable decoration choice. White flowers are a classic choice for a winter wedding and adding cascading ivy to any flower arrangement enhances it. Many couples will also use white vases and white centerpieces as well.

Another idea for a winter wedding is to use snowflakes to decorate with. There are so many ways that snowflakes can be used. They make for beautiful confetti for the tables at a wedding reception and can even be tossed by the flower girl in lieu of petals. Releasing them from the ceiling during the reception can add a touch of winter to the day’s events.

Crystals can be used to enhance a winter wedding, especially when used in conjunction with snowflakes. Scattering the crystals throughout the venue will make the wedding feel like a winter wonderland. They can also be bunched together and used in reception table centerpieces or to decorate vases. It is also easy to incorporate crystals into a couple’s wedding favors.

Artificial snow can often be brought in to decorate the site of the wedding reception. One idea is to scatter the snow over the flowers on the tables and up and down the center. In addition to providing a magical ambience, it can also entertain young children in attendance. To go all out, some couples even choose to have an ice sculpture designed to be displayed at their reception.

White table cloths are elegant for a wintertime wedding and can be added to with colored accessories such as gold or silver ribbons or other similar items. The rings that hold the napkins together can be made of gold or silver beads. Baby’s Breath can be glued to the beads to make it even more decorative.

A nighttime winter wedding calls for slightly bolder decorations. One way to make a bold statement is to use decorations that are midnight blue. Some silver and white will balance out the dark shade of blue, adding more depth to the wedding decorations. Stars can be incorporated into not only any large flower arrangements but also the bouquets of the bridesmaids. Also, placing a few sparklers for weddings on each table will help your guests make your nighttime wedding a brighter and warmer experience for all.

A large wreath can be used at the entrance to a couple’s wedding venue. To give them a winter style they can be altered with white spray paint and colored glitter. Wreaths can also be used to decorate each table at the wedding reception. Stems and branches can also be incorporated into these wreaths.

Winter time weddings can be a magical experience for couples and their guests. They can make the entire event feel completely warm and fuzzy.

Wedding Traditions from Around the World

There are plenty of traditions that go into your basic Western wedding ceremony. From the bouquet to the layered cake, traditional Western weddings are a melting pot of traditions from throughout Europe. Though every culture has its own variant of the wedding ceremony, each has its own share of unique traditions. Here are a few that might be a fun way to spice up your wedding:

India

At the end of an Indian wedding ceremony, the bride and groom exchange garlands of flowers. Before the ceremony begins, though, they give each other rings. But that’s not the end of the gift-giving: the bride and groom’s families exchange gifts as well. It’s a lovely way to celebrate the fact that a new family is being created, hopefully setting the stage for many gift-giving situations to come.

Islamic

In a traditional Western wedding, the bride and groom don’t see each other on the wedding day until the ceremony begins. There’s a strong taboo against the groom even seeing the bride’s wedding dress, much less seeing the bride all dressed up. But in a traditional Islamic wedding, the bride and groom don’t see each other until nearly the end of the wedding ceremony. The officiant visits the bride and groom in private, in separate rooms, and asks them both if they agree to be married. Only after they sign the wedding contract do they come together.

Russia

In a traditional Russian ceremony, the bride and groom must apply for a wedding license a month before the ceremony. When it is granted, the bride and groom are treated as royalty for the day, complete with crowns.

There are also a few light-hearted contests to see whether the bride or the groom will be the “head of household.” The couple says their vows on a special wedding carpet, and there’s a race to be the first one to the carpet. At the reception, the couple is served a loaf of bread, and whoever takes the biggest bite wins.

China

China has been growing rapidly in the last couple of decades, and they are now the biggest economic powerhouse on the globe. However, most of their wedding traditions are seated deep in the past, and they are definitely one of the most traditional nations on Earth. As the country who invented fireworks, it’s no surprise that many couples in China track down the brightest wedding sparklers they can find and the loudest firecrackers that are sold to celebrate their wedding with sparks and loud bangs. This tradition has begun to bleed into other parts of the world, so most people are already familiar with this concept.

Peru

In Peru, they have a unique method of discerning who the next person to get married will be. There’s no bouquet or garter toss like in a Western ceremony. Instead, there are ribbons woven in between the layers of the wedding cake, each with an end sticking out. All the unmarried women take turns picking a ribbon and pulling it out. One ribbon has a plastic wedding ring tied to it; whoever pulls out the ring is the next one to be wed. It’s a fun alternative to the mad scramble at a Western bouquet toss.

By our mid-twenties, most of us have been to a dozen or more weddings. After watching twelve couples squish cake into each other’s’ faces and dancing the chicken dance a handful of times, you might want to go for something a little more exotic for your wedding ceremony. Consider looking to these global wedding traditions for something that will stand out for your guests and make your special day that much more memorable.

Wedding day outfits for mothers and bridesmaids

Whether you are the guest at a wedding or you are the one getting married, what you decide to wear is one of the most important decisions you will have to make. If you are a member of the bridal party, such as the mother of the bride or groom or one of the bridesmaids, you might want to take some inspiration from celebrity mothers of the bride or celebrity bridesmaids. However, it is important to remember that this is the bride’s big day and nothing should overshadow that.

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Image Credit

The mothers

It is common for the bride’s mother to take the bride along when she is choosing her outfit for the wedding. This way, the bride can have some control over the outfit and ensure it is suitable and appropriate for the wedding. The bride might want her mother’s outfit to co-ordinate with the colour scheme of the wedding, so accompanying her on the shopping trip is a good idea. Influencing the outfit choice of the groom’s mother might be more tricky, but some subtle hints or a word from the groom should help. Generally, the outfits of the bride and groom’s mothers should involve a hat or a fascinator and a skirt rather than trousers. Shoes should be comfortable enough to be worn all day and into the evening.

Maids of honour and attendants

The dresses of the maids of honour and attendants or bridesmaids are usually chosen by the bride. However, today it is more common for the bridesmaids to have some input. More brides are older when they get married these days and possibly living further away from those who will be acting as bridesmaids or the maid of honour. This means that an increasing number of brides are opting for high street dresses that can be purchased throughout the country or even just designating a colour so the bridesmaids themselves can choose the style of the dress.

The bride will still want to have some input, whether it pertains to the style or ensuring the colour co-ordinates with the wedding colour scheme. There are useful tips for choosing bridesmaids’ dresses on websites such as Style & the Bride.

These helpful pointers should help clear up some of the mystery surrounding what to wear if you are in the bridal party for a wedding.

How to Give a Wedding Reception Speech

Being asked to give a speech at a wedding reception is generally considered to be an honor. After all, the bride and groom wouldn’t have asked you to give a speech honoring them at their reception if they didn’t consider you a dear friend (and someone likely to say good things about them!). In order to live up to this flattering gesture of trust, you need to make sure your speech goes off without a hitch and is the best that it can be.

Instructions

  1. Write a rough outline ahead of time. Think of all of the wonderful things you could say about the bride and groom and put all of these points down on paper. Search your memory for the earliest recollections you have of the two of them, and include some more recent points, as well.
  2. Flesh out your outline into a full speech, then mercilessly edit it to keep it within 3 to 5 minutes in length. When editing, make sure you retain the most sentimental parts of the speech, as sentimentality is what a wedding reception speech is all about.
  3. Throw in a few humorous anecdotes. The speech will be more interesting to your audience if they have a few opportunities to laugh. Three to four points of humor are usually adequate in a wedding reception speech.
  4. Pause from time to time. This will give your audience time to absorb what you’re saying and reflect on pertinent points. It will also help to keep you from sounding like a robot that’s talking too fast.
  5. Rest your hands on a lectern or keep them at your sides while you speak. Waving your hands about during a speech is distracting for the audience.
  6. Look your audience members in the eye as you speak. A good rule of thumb is to move your eye contact from person to person in the audience, never retaining any one person’s gaze for longer than 3 seconds at a time.
  7. Keep a notecard of the bullet points of your speech in one hand and refer to it, if necessary. If you need to look at the card, only glance at it long enough to remember what you want to talk about, then go back to looking at your audience.

How to Decorate a Tent for a Wedding Reception

Wedding tents can provide an outdoor alternative to traditional church weddings. They also offer shelter for outdoor ceremonies facing inclement weather, from extreme heat to high winds to rain. Decorating a barebones wedding tent, though, can be a daunting task, even when flooring and basic lighting come with the rental cost. A little creativity and a vision for your special day can make a tent wedding every bit as pleasant as one staged in a modest church or a cathedral.

Decorate a Tent for a Wedding Reception

  1. Choose the flooring for your wedding tent. Many wedding tent rental companies offer checkered dance floors, faux wood flooring or plastic flooring as options. Select a flooring that matches your wedding motif and helps guests keep their shoes and dresses clean and dry.
  2. Decide on your guest tables and chairs. Most wedding supply rental companies offer white folding chairs and standard 71-inch round tables for seating guests. Decorate the tables with tablecloths in your wedding colors and tie tulle (soft, fine silk, cotton or nylon) ribbons on the backs of every other chair in the shape of a bow facing outward.
  3. Use a tree-inspired look to create height in the reception tent and on individual tables. Take branches and remove the leaves. Spray paint the branches to match your wedding colors, or create a metallic look with gold or silver spray paint. Bundle 14- to 20-inch high branches with ribbon. Use fishing line to attach and hang plastic jewels from each bundle and seat them in pots with spray-painted peat moss or colored marbles to create interesting centerpieces. Use longer, thicker branches and do the same to create magical trees three to four feet tall in a monochrome color, potted and placed at varying heights throughout the tent.
  4. Add lighting for pictures and ambience. Speak to the wedding tent rental company about the options for main and secondary sources of lighting for photographs. Consider using plastic colored filters on the primary light sources to create ambience. String spirals of small white lights around tent poles and corners to camoflauge the tent supports. Hang electric lanterns or place luminaria throughout the tent to create more color and romantic lighting effects.
  5. Create candle-inspired warmth. Fill shallow, round glass bowls with water and place tea light candles in each with stemless whole flowers such as African daisies, plumerias or gardenias. Light the candles before the ceremony. Place the decorative glass bowls on guest and buffet tables.
  6. Introduce varying heights. Take several stools or pillars of different heights and place them around the perimeter of the wedding tent. Drape each pedestal with a soft or shiny fabric, such as satin, silk or velvet. Cut pieces of fabric with decorative scissors, ensuring the fabric can hit the floor when draped over each pedestal. Place decorations such as plants, photographs of the bride and groom growing up, or floral arrangements on each pedestal to add visual interest.
  7. Create decorations at great heights with fabric flowers. Select fabric flowers that match your wedding colors and motifs. Run a ceiling liner across the tent’s ceiling and hang or adhere fabric flowers to it.
  8. Introduce a sense of whimsy with bubbles or balloons. Use balloons in wedding colors and fill them with air from a helium tank. Ask your wedding planner about creating a balloon arch behind the wedding party’s table or elsewhere for picture-taking. Release balloons to the tent ceiling to create a festive blanketed look overhead. Rent a bubble machine to gently blow bubbles throughout the tent.

How to Make Your Own Wedding Reception Table Centerpieces

If you want to add your own personal touch to the tables at your wedding reception, consider making your own centerpieces. Wedding reception centerpieces do not need to be expensive, and a trip to your local craft store should yield any materials you need to design custom pieces. Combine vases, stones and floating candles to create your own centerpiece tailored specifically toward your wedding’s theme. Afterward, reuse your wedding centerpieces in your home, or give them away to your guest as souvenirs.

Instructions

  1. Select a vase design for your centerpieces. The top of the vase needs to be large enough to accept a floating candle. Before you buy your centerpieces, know the number of reception tables you must decorate, and purchase two or three extra vases in case one breaks.
  2. Clean the vases to ensure that they are free of dirt and debris. You do not want a piece of dirt floating around in a vase while your guests eat.
  3. Fill each vase about a quarter full with glass stones. Choose colors that match your wedding theme, or stick with clear stones.
  4. Pour water into the vases, leaving 1 inch of space at the top.
  5. Place a floating candle in each vase. Match the candles to the color of your stones, or choose candles that accent the wedding decor, such as floating flower candles.
  6. Position each centerpiece on a mirror. The mirrors can be circular or square and need to be slightly larger than the base of the vases.
  7. Place the wedding centerpieces in the center of each reception table. Sprinkle flower petals, plastic wedding rings or extra glass stones around them to add visual interest.

How to Decorate a Dessert Buffet for Wedding Reception

A wedding dessert buffet should be beautifully decorated, just like the wedding venue. You can decorate the savory food buffet as well, but the dessert buffet really allows you to express yourself, while capturing the personality of the bride and groom. If it’s not your wedding, always have the happy couple in mind. Think about their favorite colors, the wedding theme and the number of guests. Discuss your ideas with them, so they will be just as happy with the finished result as you are.

Instructions

  1. Look at the wedding plans before you start decorating. Discuss colors, flowers and themes. Most people want a coordinated wedding and this should include the venue and buffet. Take notes of all the colors and ask for color samples if available. Make a plan once you have all the necessary information. Sketch how you envision the buffet, and make a list of what you will need to fulfill you plan.
  2. Decorate the tables. Always start with your base by laying out the tablecloths. Wedding buffets can be more formal and more lavish than standard buffets. Consider draping silk or other material to give a regal feel. If you have excess material, create a bow or a ruffle.
  3. Mark out where the dishes are going to go. Once the tablecloths are down, work out where the food is going to be positioned. Place dishes so they compliment each other. For example, alternate chocolate desserts with fruit desserts, or cluster similar looking things like cookies together.
  4. Link the platters with your chosen decorations. Once all the platters are in place, make them look like they are all part of the same display. Get your ribbons, flowers or foliage and start at one end of the buffet and work your way to the other end. Swirl the ribbons or foliage around one dish and onto the next so they look like they join. If necessary, secure the decorations with some double sided tape.
  5. Make edible decorations to help the food blend with the display. Get some Marzipan, color it according to the theme, and use a cutter to make hearts, flowers, animals or stars. Make the same thing but in different sizes and colors. Place the decorations on the display, so the buffet looks fluid and coordinated. If you’re not the chef, check and make sure it’s ok to add detail to the platters and dishes.
  6. Sprinkle leaves, petals or sparkles over the table once you have completed the display. If you plan add sparkle to the dishes make sure you have edible sparkles. If you are using flowers petals make sure they are not poisonous. Check with the bride and groom or wedding planner to make sure they are happy with the result.

How to Make Table Runners for a Wedding Reception

Wedding table runners can use up valuable wedding budget funds. Whenever possible, it’s beneficial to create items you can make yourself instead of purchasing them ready-made. Standard table runner size is 12 inches wide and 108 inches long. Choose linen, linen blend, lace, satin or tulle fabric. The number of runners you require depends on the number of tables you will have at your wedding reception.

Instructions

  1. Cut your fabric pieces 13 inches wide and 109 inches long, to allow for hemming. This is just a bit over 3 yards in length (purchase 3 1/8 yards). Since most fabric comes in widths of 45 inches or 60 inches, you can cut more than one wedding table runner from each length (three with 45-inch wide fabric and four with 60-inch wide fabric).
  2. Fold under and press 1/4 inch on the long ends of your table runners. Fold under and press another 1/4 inch and tack the fabric down with straight pins.
  3. Sew along the inside edge of all the hems you have pressed and pinned. Remove the straight pins.
  4. Hem the short ends of your table runners using the same process. Steam press all your table runners.

How to Plan a Small Wedding Reception On a Budget

Even if your budget is small and your wedding dreams are big, you can plan a reception that will provide a lifetime of cherished memories for the happy couple and their loved ones.

Instructions

  1. Determine how many people will be attending the reception; then you will know what size space you need to rent. It doesn’t have to be a fancy restaurant or country club. It can be a simple town hall, community meeting space or place of worship.
  2. Catering the reception can be expensive. Consider alternatives such as meat and cheese trays from your local grocer or fast-food restaurant. Fried chicken with mashed potatoes and rolls would work. Order your cake from the grocer as well. Cupcakes work well when small children are guests. Clear plastic plates and utensils work fine — don’t forget the wedding theme decorations at your local dollar or craft store.
  3. Decorating the hall depends on how much time and money you want to put into it. To make it a little fancier, put bows or balloons on the chairs, or cover with cloths. If using balloons, consider buying a helium balloon kit. You can purchase white paper tablecloths with plastic backing for the tables. If the hall you decide to rent does not provide tables and chairs, these can be rented. Order or create a small bouquet of silk or fresh flowers for each table in the bride’s colors. Buy or collect small plastic bowls to put nuts and mints in for each table.
  4. Putting up white or colored Christmas lights adds a nice touch. If allowed, you can staple, nail, or tape the lights to the walls. As for music, depending on the size of the room, place one or two CD players in the hall so the music isn’t overwhelming, but can be heard.
  5. Have large plastic garbage bags on hand so cleanup will be very easy. Ask the wedding party or guests if they would like to keep the flowers — then throw anything you can away.

How to Plan an Outdoor Wedding Reception

You’ve found the perfect man, you’ve set the perfect wedding date and you’ve even chosen your attendants, but now comes the hard part of planning the perfect wedding reception. An outdoor wedding reception is the perfect way to end your wedding celebration, but it can also be the ruin of a wedding if you don’t plan it properly.

Instructions

  1. Keep laughing and smiling, no matter what happens. An outdoor wedding reception isn’t for the faint-hearted or the worrier, but if you can remember that it isn’t how the day turns out but rather about the love that you and your future spouse share, there’s no way to ruin your day.
  2. Choose a place that means something to you as a couple, like your own backyard, a favorite park, beach or vineyard. It could even be the place where your fiancé proposed to you. If the venue means something to you, having the reception there is the perfect way to show that to your guests.
  3. Forget about the rules for a typical wedding reception. You can have a completely informal affair where you have a barbecue and a simple luncheon, or go for a formal affair with a sit down dinner. Let your reception reflect the two of you as a couple.
  4. Give the worries of the day to someone else. If you don’t have a wedding planner, have a close friend act as one for the day. Give her all the details of the wedding reception and let her be in charge. This eases your stress and allows you to have a completely worry-free, enjoyable day.
  5. Have a backup plan in case of weather issues. You don’t want to plan for your wedding reception to be rained out of for snow to fall, but you should have a plan B just in case. You can rent a backup site or simply rent a tent for everyone to sit or eat under in case of rain.
  6. Let guests know ahead of time that you’re having an outdoor reception. This allows them to plan their outfits according to the weather.
  7. Plan for parking. If your guests have to walk a great distance from the parking place to the reception site, consider hiring a horse-drawn carriage to give them a lift.

How to DJ a Wedding Reception

wedding reception timeline for djRegardless of whether you are a new or experienced DJ, a wedding reception is an event that requires a distinct and careful approach in order to satisfy the bride, groom and guests. This event is one of the most important days of the bride and groom’s lives, so there will be a lot of pressure on you as the DJ to make sure the music is special, appropriate and, most importantly, entertaining.

Instructions

  1. Meet with the bride and groom before the wedding as far in advance as possible. Ask them to list their favorite artists, as well as any singers or bands they specifically do not like. This will give you a good sense of the type of music they enjoy and are likely to be happy hearing at their wedding reception.
  2. Prepare a CD of both slow and upbeat songs you would recommend to be played during the wedding, and give it to the bride and groom. Include songs that the bride and groom are likely to be familiar with, but feel free to add less popular songs you think they might enjoy based on your previous discussion. This will showcase your flexibility, as well as your range.
  3. Create playlists of the songs that the bride and groom specially request and have them prepared well before the wedding. Make extra copies of the CDs that hold each playlist so that you will have a backup in the event of an emergency. Be sure to review each playlist with the bride and groom before the wedding to confirm that you have the right version of each song.
  4. Make sure you have all the necessary equipment to DJ the wedding reception. You will most likely need to provide your own CDs, turntables or mixers, laptop computer and other basic equipment. If the wedding reception is being held at a venue that regularly hosts this type of event, the venue will most likely provide the speaker system–but be sure to confirm this well in advance.
  5. Agree to an appropriate amount of payment for your DJ services. You should base this amount on the number of hours you will be asked to play music. Include any additional expenses for travel and overnight accommodations. Be sure to sign an agreement upfront that explains all of these fees, and allow for unexpected expenses, such as purchases of requested songs or last-minute rentals of equipment.

How to Decorate a Backyard for a Wedding Reception

Transform a backyard into a magical space with flowers, candles, twinkle lights and sparkling accessories, where family and friends gather for a wedding finale — the reception. Large or small, a backyard is a frugal choice for a reception, and a familiar and comfortable space for the happy couple and their guests.

Make It Magical

  • The reception may start in the afternoon and last into the night, requiring lighting to make it magical. Outdoor dusk/dawn sensors plug into outlets and turn on the lights when the sun goes down. String twinkle lights overhead in tree branches or under a patio cover to add stars to the darkening sky. Candle lanterns hanging from shepherd’s hooks or from the trees add a flickering, romantic ambiance to the landscape.

    Add rope lights for pathways, keeping guests safely out of the flowerbeds as they admire the landscape. Upward-pointing landscape lights highlight the trees and shrubs around the perimeter of the garden. Change the bulbs to green or blue to soften the lighting.

Add Scent and Color

  • Day or night, adding additional flowers and greenery to the garden brings out the beauty of a simple backyard. Tuck potted plants around the patio or under the trees. White gardenias add their sweet scent to the air, while fragrant salvias attract hummingbirds and butterflies during the day to charm your guests. A pair of potted trees placed on each side of the backyard’s entry gate and entwined with twinkle lights lead guests into the reception.

    If you are planning the reception several months in advance, plant a mixture of morning glories and moonflowers along a bare wall, on which the vines can climb to enchant guests during the day with the bright faces of the morning glories and the luminous white of moonflowers in the evening. Plant bright annual flowers in the garden’s borders to add color. If time is short, transplant annuals, such as cheerful pansies or petunias, into sparse corners of the garden.

Keep It Comfortable

  • Keep your guests comfortable with padded chairs, portable fans or propane heaters. Patio umbrellas or canopies shade guests from sun and unexpected drizzles, while a rental tent protects them from wind and rain. Colorful draperies hung around the perimeter of a patio cover provide shelter from the elements while evoking an exotic Moroccan influence. A large plush rug laid over a concrete patio softens the hard surface. Add additional lighting, such as Oriental lamps, over tables and the buffet to preserve the romantic atmosphere.

Decorate the Tables

  • Layer the reception and buffet tables with white linens overlaid with tablecloths in the wedding colors. Crisp white napkins folded into fans, laid flat on the table and anchored by wedding favors, such as jars of local honey or organic jams, keep the napkins from blowing away on a breezy day. Floral centerpieces of bright and cheerful flowers, such as gerberas or zinnias, or exotic flowers, such as gardenias, birds of paradise or orchids mixed with peacock feathers and gold-painted corkscrew willow branches, add color and height to the tables. Pillar candles or votive candles in glass candleholders add light to the tables.

Dance the Night Away

  • A portable dance floor on the grass allows your guests to dance the night away to your favorite tunes. A DJ or band can provide music ranging from classical to the latest hits. Shelter the artists with a portable canopy and add an extra heater if the night is cool. A rope light suspended from shepherd’s hooks or around the edge of the dance floor defines its edges, keeping guests from stumbling on the grass as they enter and leave the area.

How to Hang Lights at a Wedding Reception

The lighting at a wedding reception helps to set the tone for the event. The type of lighting fixtures you choose, the brightness of the light and the manner in which the lighting is presented will all impact the atmosphere and overall tone of the wedding. Use your wedding theme as inspiration for choosing the lighting for the wedding. For example, a vintage-theme wedding should have vintage-style lighting and fixtures. All elements of the wedding decor, including the lights, should tie into the overall theme or feel of the wedding.

Instructions

  1. Wind strands of white Christmas lights around the edge of the ceilings, around doorways and over any arches. Use tacks or electrical tape in a color that blends with the wall to help keep the lights in place. Sparkling Christmas lights create a whimsical feel especially appropriate for a winter wedding.
  2. Wrap white Christmas lights around trees at the entrance way to the wedding venue, or throughout the space if it is an outdoor wedding.
  3. Hang paper lanterns from the ceiling of the wedding reception. For an outdoor reception, the lanterns can also be hung from the trees. Choose white lanterns for a simple and elegant look or colors that coordinate with your wedding color palette for bright bursts of color.
  4. Place candles in hanging candle holders. Substitute battery operated candles instead of candles with actual flames if you are concerned about them being a fire hazard. Hang the candle holders from ceiling rafters or from the branches of trees.
  5. Mount LED lights on the ceiling or around the border of the room, following the instructions on the light packaging, to create a sleek, modern look.

How to Open a Wedding Planning Business

Wedding planning can be a very rewarding small business opportunity and can help you utilize your eye for detail and creativity. Couples with hectic schedules often turn to wedding planners to negotiate with vendors, choose floral arrangements and prepare the final details of their special day. Starting your own business as a wedding planner is moderately easy to do and will allow you to turn a profit on your passion for coordinating and event planning.

Instructions

  1. Take classes in event planning through a bridal association. While there are no state or federal requirements to become a wedding planner, these classes will provide you with essential skills you will need to be successful in the industry. Many of these classes are available online and will teach you how to organize, negotiate and coordinate every detail of a wedding.
  2. Create a name and logo for your business. The name can be something simple, such as your name, or can be something catchy involving weddings. Your logo should be elegant and simple, with an easy to read font.
  3. Register your business name and logo through your local Chamber of Commerce and apply for a business license. This will ensure that you conform to all legalities involving your business and will also establish your credibility and professionalism with potential clients.
  4. Set up an office where you can run your business. When first starting out, it is acceptable for this to be a well-organized home office. As your career advances however, it is best to lease an office. This will give you space to keep all of your contracts and files organized, as well as a place to meet with clients.
  5. Join at least one wedding planner association. This will give you an affiliation with some of the top planners in the industry and will make you look authoritative and professional to clients. Associations also offer lessons that can help you stay up-to-date on wedding trends and changes in the industry.
  6. Set up a website for your business. The website should look professional and should be easy to navigate, so you may consider investing money into hiring a professional web designer. Essential details to include on your site are your name, qualification or associations you are affiliated with and your contact information. As your career progresses, you should also include photographs of events you have planned, as well as testimonials from clients you have worked with.
  7. Post advertisements in local bridal magazines and set up booths at bridal fairs. It is important that you put yourself out there to draw in clients, as wedding planners rely heavily on word-of-mouth business for their clientele.
  8. Visit bridal retailers, florists, bakers and other professionals in your area and try to establish a professional and friendly relationship with them. This will make it easier for you to negotiate deals with these vendors for your clients. Clients will want to contract with a planner that can save them money, so this will also increase the number of clients that want to work with you. Leave your business cards with vendors, if possible, so that they can pass your information on to their customers.
  9. Hire more planners for your business if necessary. If your customer base becomes so large that you cannot keep up with the demand, having a staff of planners is very important. This will ensure that each customer gets the attention they need and that none of your clients are given poor service in their planning process.

How to Market a Wedding Planner Business

Are you a brand new wedding planner or an established professional with tons of clients? Either way, you’re probably scoping out new clients in order to increase your brand awareness and profits. Well, before you get all in a tizzy because you don’t have any formal marketing training, have no fear, we’re here to help. Marketing your wedding planner business isn’t really difficult. In fact, with this handy guide and a bit of creativity, you can successfully market your wedding planner business and get paying customer quickly. Are you ready? Let’s begin.

Instructions

  1. Develop a mini-marketing plan.

    Your first step is to develop a 3-5 page mini-marketing plan. In your plan, you’ll need to write down your business overview, what sets you apart from other wedding planners, target audience, marketing budget, current marketing methods (online-offline or a combination of both), etc.

  2. Scope out your competition.

    Figure out how your competitors are marketing their services. Do they use print advertisement, word of mouth or viral advertising, full color brochures, business cards, or something else? Whatever your competitors use, you need to write down their advertising methods and then plan to add those same methods to your arsenal of marketing methods.

  3. Set up a basic website.

    You’ll need to set up a basic wedding planner website. Your basic website doesn’t have to be anything fancy – a simple 1to 5 page site will do fine. Make sure that you include an About Me page, price list, contact information and FAQs. If you are not technically savvy, you can hire a designer off Elance or Get a Freelancer to create one for you.

  4. Market your wedding planner site and services.

    Now that you have your website, make sure that you market it on a regular basis. To do so, you should include your site URL on any business cards, brochures, etc. Draft up tee-shirts with your URL and pass them out to friends and family members. Write articles and blog posts and place them online. In essence, do what you have to do to get targeted traffic to your wedding planner site.

  5. Contact wedding halls.

    Visit local wedding halls and introduce yourself to the owners. Tell them that you are offering a referral fee to any banquet halls that make a valid referral. By doing this, you will attract a steady stream of clients.

  6. Partner up with photographers.

    Another great way to market your wedding planner business is to pair up with wedding photographers. Often times, they meet clients that also need a wedding consultant. Therefore, by pairing up with them, you can get more clients and can cross-promote their photography services as well. Two great sources to find local photographer partners is Wedding Photo USA or Wedding Photography Directory. See “Resources” for link.

  7. Advertise to other wedding planners.

    Many wedding planners get booked and need help. Therefore, by marketing yourself to them, you can ensure that you have a steady flow of business. You can meet them at conferences and other weddings. Always be willing to pass out your card and offer your services at a discount so that they can make a profit off your services.

Free Wedding Planner Courses

Planning a wedding can be stressful and overwhelming for even the most organized bride. That is where a wedding planner steps in. A wedding planner is a professional at coordinating these special events and can help brides achieve their dream wedding with less stress. Wedding planners do everything from full wedding planning and orchestrating to day-of coordination. If you are interested in becoming a wedding planner, take a free wedding planner course to see if it really is something you can see yourself doing.

Wedding Etiquette Tips

  • The website Wedding Etiquette Tips offers a free basic wedding planning course. This self-paced online course covers basic topics such as wedding budgets, time lines, wedding themes, finding wedding venues and interviewing vendors. The basic wedding planner course from Wedding Etiquette Tips is designed for do-it-yourself type brides but can be used for anyone who is interested in wedding planning.

E Learners

  • The E Learners website offers a mini-guide to becoming a wedding planner. This guide is a basic and straightforward starting point for those who are interested in becoming a wedding planner. Facts and questions covered by the mini-guide include how online bridal consultant certification programs work and what bridal consultants do on the job.

American Academy of Wedding Professionals

  • The American Academy of Wedding Professionals is one of the go-to websites for information, courses and freebies for those interested in becoming a wedding planner. Learn the AAWP’s 10 Commandments of Wedding Professionals and receive a free wedding planning book by becoming a member. The AAWP charges for its particular course, but you can register to win one of its monthly giveaways for a free course.

The Wedding Planning Institute

  • The Wedding Planning Institute provides a free wedding planning service. According to the website, “The program is designed to help aspiring and existing wedding planners start or grow their career while boosting local wedding businesses and reducing costs for brides and grooms.”

How to Make Your Own Wedding Planner and Organizer Binder

Why spend $20 or more on a wedding planner when you can make your own for the cost of supplies? Beside, those pre made planners are generic and you’ll end up changing things around to suit your specific needs anyway. Some binders do offer advice, but no better than what you’d get looking at all of those bridal magazines and online wedding sites.

Instructions

  1. Create labels for your section dividers. Labels may include budget, payment tracker, guest list, equipment rentals, floor plan, flowers, photographer, tux rentals, dress rentals, hair and make-up, cake, rings, stationary, honeymoon, gifts and thank you note list and favors. Make your own labels of things that apply to your wedding.
  2. Put at least one page protector behind each divider. Use the page protector to hold receipts for each category. This makes them easy to find and readily available if you need to return something or check the price.
  3. Print off some calendar pages and place them behind a divider marked “Calendar.” Use this area to keep track of vendor appointments.
  4. Place the notebook, pencil/pen, sticky notes and calculator in the front pocket of the binder for easy access.
  5. Punch holes in any vendor bids, contracts or correspondence and place them behind the appropriate tab.
  6. Punch holes in any pictures of dresses or hairstyles that you have collected and place them behind the appropriate dividers.
  7. As you create a guest list and begin to receive RSVPs, keep track of them in the appropriate section of your planner.
  8. Keep a list of gifts you received in your planner, so you’ll have easy access when you’re ready to write thank you notes.
  9. On your wedding day, hand your binder over to you “wedding planner” for the day. It will help her make sure all payments are made to vendors, tips given to the appropriate people and everything from flower and cake placement to the wedding ceremony go off according to plan.

How to Become a Disney Wedding Planner

Walt Disney World and other Disney properties are known as places where dreams come true. Disney weddings are growing in popularity, with weddings planned and conducted on Disney properties every day. Disney wedding planners customize each wedding so every couple experiences their fairy tale wedding. Disney cast members take care of everything. Disney started hosting weddings and providing planners in 1991.

Instructions

  1. Become a wedding planner. No training or formal education is required. Nevertheless, there are classes available for wedding planning. Gain experience by attending weddings, helping friends and family plan their weddings, attending bridal shows, studying wedding magazines, interviewing brides and talking with businesses that serve weddings. These businesses include caterers, florists, DJs and various faith ministers.
  2. Interpersonal and organization skills are important. These traits might be natural or learned. A wedding planner schedules cake tastings for the couple, helps plan the reception menu and finds DJs for the couple’s review. Create checklists and carry a binder to record details for each couple and to store paperwork.
  3. Listen to what the couple wants. Try to fulfill their wishes as well as steer them toward a decision that might work for them. Present the couple with a portfolio of wedding ideas or previous weddings. Take photos at each wedding you’ve planned and show these to the couple.
  4. Start a wedding-planning business or work for one, depending on your preference.
  5. Consider having a specialty. A wedding planner provides many services, but some specialize in consultation or ensuring wedding day preparations go according to the schedule.
  6. Join the Disney wedding planning team as a consultant by looking online at disney.go.com/DisneyCareers/ to look for openings. If there are no openings, contact wedding services and ask for any openings that might be coming available. Send in a resume even if no positions are presently available.

How to Become a Wedding Planner in Ontario

A wedding planner takes technical and creative input from the bride and groom and turns it into a beautiful and memorable event. Your career as a wedding planner in Ontario starts with observing all of the components that make up a successful wedding. Learn every possible job performed at a wedding so you can create an experience that runs smoothly and stays within budget.

Instructions

  1. Attend as many weddings as you can in Ontario. Do not “crash” weddings of strangers, but ask family and friends if you can observe their weddings. Some wedding planning companies in Ontario may have internship positions available in your local classifieds. Ask wedding planners if you can watch them work. Read wedding and bridal magazines to get an idea of current industry trends.
  2. Form a habit of organizing your life. As a wedding planner, you will need to create and adhere to strict dates to make sure your planned weddings go smoothly. Get used to keeping a planner and staying punctual.
  3. Search job listings for paid positions in wedding companies. As a wedding planner, you will need a basic understanding of every aspect of a wedding. You will acquire valuable tools that help you with the catering, design, decoration and other aspects of successful weddings. Look to Ontario country clubs, cruises, resorts and hotels for possible wedding planning positions.
  4. Ask your engaged family members and friends if you can be their wedding planner. If possible, do not perform the service for a fee. Use the opportunity to add material to your wedding planner portfolio. Take as many pictures as you can of the wedding to showcase your abilities to others.
  5. Create a wedding planning business. Contact the Canada-Ontario Business Service Centre for start-up information for small businesses. You will need to register your business name, apply for any necessary permits and file documents with the Workplace Safety and Insurance Board. You can find a link to the Business Service Centre in Resources below.
  6. Create business cards and promotional pamphlets with all of your business contact information. You will need material to pass out to potential clients. Design the materials yourself at a printing company, or hire a company that specializes in logos and business cards to make your documents.
  7. Network with vendors and advertise your services to print and online publications. For example, buy flowers from a particular vendor and talk to the owner. Give the owner your card and talk about a possible partnership where the owner suggests your services to clients. Advertise your services in local Ontario classifieds so the community knows you exist.
  8. Choose your wedding planner fee. You can charge either a flat rate or an hourly rate. The budget for the wedding, as well as the total planning time, will help you to decide your rate structure. You will need to talk to potential clients about the number of guests and the type of wedding they want to form a total cost estimate.

How to Be a Wedding Planner Assistant

Wedding planners are used by many brides in one way or another. A wedding planner can be very involved in a wedding, planning every personal detail down the song list, or a bride may hire a wedding planner as an adviser before she begins planning the wedding for herself. Most full-time wedding planners hire assistants to look after the day-to-day goings-on in her office.

Instructions

  1. Get your foot in the door. This may mean working in a wedding-related field at first (like a florist or a dress shop) to get to know the industry. Cosmo Girl Online suggests joining an organization like Association of Bridal Consultants to meet wedding planners and make them aware of your interest in the industry (see Reference 1).
  2. Get aualified. Wedding planners look to hire assistants who are detail-oriented, self-motivated, friendly, smart and always one step ahead. Other qualifications include having a great phone manner and being very organized. It is also necessary to dress professionally (pant or skirt suit) for the interview and the job itself and always be sure to take notes you can refer back to later on.
  3. Know what you are in for. Assistant wedding planners’ specific duties will depend on level of experience and the preference of the planner. Some planners prefer to be involved in every aspect of the planning process, including the small details; these planners may simply rely on an assistant to complete administrative work in her office such as answering phones, checking up on orders, filling out paperwork, billing, checking emails, etc.
  4. Go above and beyond: Other planners hire assistants to work very closely with them to ensure the brides’ needs are being met. They may ask assistants to scout out locations, pick out and put together ideas for colors, dresses, flowers and cake that the bride can sift through or even go meet with vendors or the bride herself in place of the planner when she cannot make it.
  5. Look for a mentor. The transition for an assistant to become a wedding planner herself comes after years of experience learning how to properly service brides individually, establishing contacts with vendors in the area you plan to work, and developing a system for doing business. The best way to gain this kind of experience is through an apprenticeship or working under a planner who is willing to serve as a sort of professional mentor.
  6. Take on more responsibility. Assistant wedding planners who aspire to a career in planning weddings usually benefit most from working under a planner who is willing to act as a mentor, giving her assistant as much responsibility as possible. The assistant may need to work to learn the planner’s style and taste for a certain amount of time before the planner will fully trust her assistant to accomplish important tasks on her own. A successful and busy wedding planner may eventually give a sharp assistant a wedding account of her own to plan.

How to Plan a Wedding

Now that you’ve recovered from the delightful shock of your engagement, take a deep breath, grab a notebook and your address book, and then let the countdown to the Big Day begin! Planning a wedding isn’t easy, but with organization, time, focus and vision, you can plan the wedding of your dreams.

Instructions

  1. Envision your wedding from beginning to end. Where and when have you dreamed the wedding would take place? How formal would you like the event to be? What will the wedding party wear? What kind of food would you like to serve?
  2. Pick a date.
  3. Set a budget–one that is functional and provides for some flexibility. Here is where you must combine fantasy with practicality.
  4. Ask friends and family to recommend a reputable jeweler. Order your engagement and/or wedding rings.
  5. Book the wedding and reception sites.
  6. Meet with the officiant of your wedding. Now is the time to be clear about rules and restrictions regarding the ceremony and ceremony site.
  7. Select your wedding attendants–your wedding party can be as big or small as you like.
  8. Choose a dress and wedding attire for the rest of the wedding party.
  9. Make a guest list. You may have to compromise on the number of guests if your budget is limited.
  10. Plan your pre-wedding parties, ceremony, reception and honeymoon–consider menus, decorations, favors and music.
  11. Interview and hire vendors: wedding coordinator, photographer, video professional, caterer, florist and entertainment.
  12. Check state requirements for obtaining a marriage license, and find out how long the license will remain valid.
  13. Take care of the rest of the paperwork, from ordering invitations to signing up with gift registries.

How to Become a Wedding Planner

Wedding planners take on a great deal of responsibility. Not only do they need to get everything organized for the “big day,” but they also need to deal with emotional brides and family members throughout the entire process. Becoming a wedding planner can be a rewarding career if you appreciate how things come together for weddings and other types of parties.

Instructions

  1. Possess a passion for detail. Wedding planners are detail-oriented people that take pride in doing the small things that most people never even notice. Treating each party or wedding like it’s your own is an essential part of becoming a wedding planner.
  2. Take some event-planning courses. You’ll probably be able to find event-planning courses at your local community college or as part of an adult education curriculum. Take some business classes to gain valuable insight into running a business.
  3. Register as a wedding planner. Create a name for your company and register it with the local courthouse. Choose a name that is clever and explains what you do, but make sure it’s a name that potential clients will take seriously.
  4. Get an umbrella insurance policy. This will protect your business against lawsuits and other things that can occur when emotions are running high.
  5. Advertise your wedding planning services. Look through your local newspaper for newly engaged couples and send them brochures about your business. Hang up flyers and always have business cards with you in case you run into somebody who needs a wedding planner.
  6. Create an attractive website, or hire a professional to design your website. Many times, this will be the first impression that potential customers get of your business. Make sure that the services you provide stand out, and include all of your contact information on the site.

How to Start a Wedding Planning Business With No Money

You’ve always loved weddings; you love the colors, the flowers, the themes, everything. Perhaps this love of weddings has inspired you to start a wedding planning business, but you don’t have a ton of cash to advertise or promote yourself. What do you do? Here are some tips for starting a wedding planning business.

Instructions

  1. Develop a website. If you have the skills to create your own site, there will be minimal start-up costs. If you don’t have those technical skills, work with a freelance web designer, who will be much cheaper than a web design firm. You should probably spend no more than $300. After your site is up, you will only pay for your domain name, a service provided by a number of hosts. Often, your web designer can take care of this for you, and you would pay them the fee.
  2. Educate yourself. Read bridal magazines, and study fashion and color trends. Make yourself comfortable with every area of wedding planning so that you are not only an expert planner but also an expert florist, decorator, photographer, videographer, caterer, cake designer and linen specialist. You need to know not only the names of every flower, but the colors they come in and how much they cost. You also need to identify vendors that you love in your area. Once you have chosen these vendors, try to create an affiliation with them. This will help bring business to both of you.
  3. Create documentation. Print business cards and brochures. The best way to do this without breaking the bank is to design these yourself, and then find an deal from a print shop or an online printer. Distribute your cards and brochures to your affiliated vendors, and ask them to hand them out to their clients. Offer to return the favor for them.
  4. Market yourself. Meet people, attend bridal shows and tell your friends and family about your business venture. Promote yourself by all means possible without exceeding your budget. Social media sites like Facebook, Twitter and even Craigslist can be very helpful for free promotion. Strive to get your website as many hits as possible. If you can afford it, advertise with large wedding websites as well. The more people hear of you, the more people will book with you.

How to Try On Wedding Dresses

Shopping for your wedding dress can be the most exciting, and also the most challenging, part of planning your wedding. Every woman wants to have the perfect dress and look her best. An important step in achieving that is knowing how to try on wedding dresses to find the best style, fit, and overall look that you’re hoping for.

Go Where the Sizes Are

  1. Go where the sizes are. Some bridal shops only carry samples of each wedding gown. Make some calls and find out what sizes they carry. If the samples are only in a size 10, and you wear a 2 or a 16, there’s no way you’ll get a proper image of what that dress will look like on you. Find the stores that carry a full range of sample sizes or off-the-rack dresses for you to try on.
  2. Give yourself time. Trying on gowns can take hours, so be sure to set aside a whole day. The more time you have, the more dresses you can try on, and the better decisions you can make.
  3. Bring a friend, not an entourage. Having one friend who knows or shares your sense of style is far more valuable than a pack of relatives and friends who all have differing opinions on what dress to get. Ten conflicting views will just confuse you more than help you and will waste valuable time. Many brides like to have their mother or sister along, but if their style is very different from yours, be sure to bring a bridesmaid or other relative along who shares your taste.
  4. Dress the part. Wear the style of undergarments, stockings, and shoes that you expect to wear on your big day. If you don’t have a strapless bra for all those strapless gowns you want to try on, consider buying one, or ask the store ahead of time if they have foundation garments available in your size to try with the dresses. Wear heels that are the height you’ll feel comfortable in. Even though many dressing rooms have a raised platform to simulate heels, it’s not the same as actually wearing the shoes. The whole carriage of your frame changes depending on the height of your shoes and can completely alter the appearance and fit of a dress.
  5. Skip the lipstick. It’s good to look the part when you’re trying on a gown, including make-up, but keep it on the low key side. Try to stick with water-based make-up and leave off the lipstick so that you don’t inadvertently stain the dresses you’re trying on. If you’re wearing foundation and/or powder, be sure to always keep the fabric of the dress away from your face when you pull it on. When you can, step into the gown carefully and avoid going near your make-up.. If you need something for your lips, stick with a clear gloss or lip balm.
  6. Start by trying on several different styles. Search yourself or ask the saleswoman to bring you dresses with a variety of styles you’d consider wearing. Try a strapless gown, an off-the-shoulder, a full gown or a a slender shift. One or two gowns in each style will help you decide right away which direction you’d like to go in. Styles that look great in magazines may not be at all what you expect when you try it on. Eliminating styles that won’t work for you will help you narrow your search down right away, and save time and effort.
  7. After you try on each gown, put it into either a “no” or a “maybe” pile. If you find a dress or two that you think are your favorites, you might want to create a third pile, but don’t eliminate the other “maybe” candidates yet. Have the “no” dresses taken out right away so you don’t accidentally mix up the piles.
  8. Try on all the remaining dresses again. Now that you’ve seen your options, you’ll see your choices more clearly. You should be able to discard more of the “maybe” dresses into the “no” pile. Repeat the process until you have two or three strong candidates.
  9. Get the complete picture. Once you’ve narrowed down your choices, be sure to see the dress exactly as you would wear it. Do up all the buttons, laces, and fasteners. Try out the bustle if there is one. Get a veil to match, and try possible accessories if the store carries them. Knowing how the complete ensemble will look helps you make the right choice.
  10. Value the opinions of others. Ultimately the decision is yours, but remember that other people can often see us more clearly than we see ourselves. Our own imagination may make a dress we want into a better option than it is, and it’s important to listen to your friends and even other ladies in the dressing room if they tell you it’s not the best choice.
  11. Sleep on it. If you can’t make the final decision, give it another day. If the dresses are off-the-rack, ask the shop if they’ll hold them for 24 hours. For stores only showing samples, it’s no problem to come back the next day and try them on again. Walking away from the decision can help reduce the pressure and give you much-needed perspective when you return again. You might also visit another store to see other options. Often you’ll know right away if the dresses at the other shop were the right ones or if you should keep looking.

How to Preserve Your Wedding Dress

If you take as much care in preserving your dress as you did in choosing it, it can be enjoyed as a family heirloom for generations to come.

Instructions

  1. Save the bag your dress came in, or bring along a plastic bag to protect the dress en route to the cleaner.
  2. Select a professional dry cleaner, preferably one that specializes in formal gowns. Ask for recommendations from friends and your bridal shop or seamstress.
  3. Get the dress to the cleaner as soon as possible after your wedding.
  4. Alert the cleaner to any stains – a drop of bubbly, a smudge of lipstick from that first kiss – as well as to any ornaments that were glued rather than sewn on (these pieces are prone to fall off during the cleaning process) and to loose stitches. This information will ensure that your cleaner can give your dress the best care possible.
  5. Ask your cleaner for a special acid-free box to store your dress in, and pack it in acid-free tissue paper. You can also hang the dress by the bodice by sewing straps that are a bit shorter than the bodice onto the waist, placing on a padded hanger and wrapping in a clean white cotton sheet.
  6. Store the dress in a temperate, dry place, out of direct sunlight.
  7. Inspect your dress on each anniversary to check for any discolored areas or missed stains and to allow your dress to “breathe.”

How to Put a Corset Back in a Wedding Dress

Adding a corset back helps you fit into your wedding dress perfectly and saves you valuable money. Perhaps you’ve decided to wear your mother’s dress or buy one off the rack, which you deem perfect for your wedding. The dress fits you well for the most part, but it just wouldn’t zip all the way up the back. Creating a corset back, therefore, is a good, inexpensive solution. A corset back also complements most wedding dress styles and body types.

Making the Loops

  1. Remove the zipper at the back of the wedding dress with a seam ripper, being careful not to damage the dress. Once the zipper is removed, trim the excess zipper tape with scissors, leaving just enough for attaching the loops later.
  2. Make spaghetti straps. Cut a strip of fabric that matches the original dress fabric (bridal satin, silk, duchess satin, etc.), 1 inch wide and at least 12 inches long. Sew the ends together vertically, at about 1/4-inch from the edge. Trim the excess seam and turn it inside-out, using a fast turn. You now have a very narrow spaghetti strap.
  3. Cut the spaghetti strap into about 1 1/4-inch long segments to serve as loops.
  4. Repeat steps 2 and 3, making as many loops as necessary for the entire length of the gap at the back of the dress. Remember to make an equal number of loops for both sides of the opening.
  5. Trace a ready-made corset’s loops on paper to make a pattern for sewing together your loops. On the pattern paper, sew in the loops one at a time in a straight line down the middle, making the segments that meet criss-cross with each other. Peel the sewn loops away from the pattern paper.
  6. Pin the loops to the underside of the dress opening, from top to bottom. Sew them close to the edge of the cloth, leaving tiny loop openings that are just enough for the ribbon/cord to fit through snugly later on. Remove the pins. Do the same on the other side of the gap, making sure there are an equal number of loops on either side and that they are at the same level with each other.

Modesty Panel

  1. Fold the fabric (the same one where you got the loops fabric from) and cut into a V-shape, slightly wider and longer than the dress gap. The fold line should be on top and narrow to the bottom.
  2. Sew together one side of the modesty panel and turn it inside-out. Sew the unstitched side to the left side of the dress opening, leaving the other side hanging loose.
  3. Sew the original dress lining on top of the loop and modesty panel, making a neat edge.

Ribbon/Cord

  1. Take a 1/2 to 1-inch wide ribbon (organza and satin are good choices) or cord and cut it to a length of about 3 yards. This will give you enough flexibility in tying and adjusting the ribbon/cord later on.
  2. Insert the ribbon/cord into the loops, from top to bottom of the dress opening, criss-crossing them at the center. Make the lacing loose enough at this point to allow you to put on the dress.
  3. Once you’ve put on the dress, adjust the lacing of the corset back, so the ribbon/cord ends are of equal length and the dress fits you perfectly. Tie a knot at the bottom to secure it in place and create a simple bow for a beautiful finish.

How to Clean a Satin Wedding Dress

Cleaning a wedding dress can be intimidating. These are some of the most elaborate and beautiful garments that can be worn–and when you factor in the emotional attachments that accompany a wedding dress as well as the delicate satin, the prospect of cleaning can be downright terrifying. Fortunately, you can clean almost anything out of a satin wedding dress in the comfort of your own home, saving you time and money.

Instructions

  1. Do a quick spot clean. Do not treat grease spots, as they need special treatment. However, any dark dirt spots can be treated with a little warm water and a dab of mild liquid soap. Rub the spot lightly with a clean, soft rag, and the dirt should lift right out onto the rag. Do not scrub too hard, though, since you are about to clean the entire dress anyway.
  2. Treat any grease stains. While you can usually get sweat and makeup stains out fairly easily by washing, grease will not come out with water in most cases. Instead, squirt a small dab of mild dishwashing liquid on a clean, soft rag. Apply it (without wetting the rag) to the grease stain. Begin by blotting, then gently scrub if necessary. The dish soap should lift the grease off the dress. It is important to do this before you wash the dress so that you do not accidentally set the grease stain.
  3. Remove all attachments so that you can put the body of the dress in the washer. Generally, it is best to hand-wash attachments just because they are smaller and more likely to tangle in the wash. You can use the same gentle detergent and cool water.
  4. Turn the satin wedding gown inside out. This will help protect sequins and beads from banging against the sides of the washing machine.
  5. Apply natural fabric whiteners. Assuming that your gown is all white, you can remove yellowing from age, storage or even sweat by adding half a cup of lemon juice to the wash water. It will naturally remove stains and not harm the satin.
  6. Wash the gown on cold in the gentlest cycle possible. It will be labeled “Gentle” or “Delicates.”
  7. Hang the gown out to dry in the sun. The lemon juice will interact with the sunlight to brighten up the whiteness of the satin even further. Be sure to spread the gown out as much as possible and use plenty of clothespins to distribute the weight of the gown evenly.

How to Choose Beach Wedding Dresses

A beach atmosphere is relaxed and casual, and a beach wedding is no exception. This can be quite freeing when you are choosing your wedding dress. That’s not to say your beach wedding has to be casual, but you can pretty much run the gamut on dress type for this occasion. You can go with anything from an off-the-rack sun dress to a formal custom-made wedding gown. But there are some things you need to keep in mind when choosing what to wear on your special day.

Instructions

  1. Do a little research. Most women have at least thought about what they would like for a wedding dress, and some have been dreaming about it since they were little girls. When you think of the perfect dress, what do you see? Get a few bridal magazines, a pen and some paper, and start taking notes. Write down some descriptive words about dresses that you like, such as slinky, romantic, flowing, lacy, simple, form-fitting, etc. Note the styles that you seem to gravitate toward, for example, A-line, ball gown, drop waisted, low-cut, etc. Tear out pictures of dresses that appeal to you and that you can envision being able to wear on a beach. Your final dress may not look anything like these dresses, but it’s a good place to start.
  2. Choose a formality level. You can base the formality of your wedding on your perfect wedding gown — if you find the perfect dress and have to have it. However, it’s probably easier to choose how formal the setting is going to be and buy a dress accordingly. A wedding featuring a sit-down lobster dinner has a completely different feel than a wedding featuring a clam bake picnic.
  3. Choose a flattering fit. You want to feel like your most beautiful self, and to do that, you need a dress that you feel comfortable and confident in. You probably already know what types of dresses flatter you body type, so try to choose wedding dresses that fit your type. For example, if you’re pear-shaped, A-line dresses tend to work well; fuller waisted ladies may prefer a drop-waisted dress; and those with fuller arms can use off-the-shoulder straps to hide their problem area.
  4. Choose an appropriate material. There is at least one restriction when it comes to choosing a dress for a beach wedding. You have to be particular about material. Choose materials that are light, flowing and don’t wrinkle. Stay away from thick, heavy materials such as velvet or brocade. Some materials to consider include crepe (thin, delicate and crinkly), charmeuse (soft and light with a slight sheen) and chiffon. Also consider fabric such as damaske, duchesse satin, batiste and illusion nets. These materials are light and will do well in the beach wind.
  5. Consider the practicality of the dress. The beach is not a controlled environment, and you will have to contend with wind, walking in sand and posing near the water. Dresses with a large train may get caught up in the sand, and a long veil may become out of control with the wind. Some women opt for a shorter gown for a beach wedding dress so they can pose near the water and walk freely. And keep in mind your footwear, as well. You can opt to go barefoot, but if you choose shoes, choose something that will allow you to walk comfortably in the sand.

How to Iron an Organza Wedding Dress

Organza is a popular fabric for wedding dresses, whether it is the primary material or makes up sections of the wedding gown. If your organza wedding dress has wrinkles or creases in the fabric, it is possible to iron the fabric and return it to its wrinkle-free state. Before you start to iron the exterior of the dress, however, it is advisable to test out a piece of organza on the inside of the gown.

Instructions

  1. Turn the iron on the rayon, delicate or warm setting. Allow the iron to warn up for a few minutes.
  2. Place the organza from the dress over the ironing board or on the flat surface so that it is completely flat and taught.
  3. Lightly spray the towel with water or place the damp white towel on the organza fabric
  4. Run the iron over the damp towel and press down to iron the wrinkles out of the dress.
  5. Repeat Steps 2 through 4 for each piece of the organza on the gown that you need to iron.

How to Attach a Loop & Button to Hold Up a Wedding Dress Train

A gorgeous addition to a wedding gown, the long train can, however, put a damper on spirited activity such as dancing at the wedding reception. A seamstress will lift the long train and attach it to the back of the gown with a cloth-covered button and loop to give the bride more freedom of movement. This is known as a bustle. There are several different types of bustles, but the easiest is one button and loop. With this method, you can still see the intricacies of the train.
The bustle is usually not included in the cost of the wedding dress; it is one of the alterations done after the gown is purchased. You can save money by doing it yourself.

Instructions

  1. Put the wedding dress on the bride-to-be or a dress form that is the same height she is.
  2. Find the middle back on the waist of the dress and mark the spot with a straight pin.
  3. Pinch a small spot of fabric about halfway down the train; lift it up to the straight pin, and adjust the train so the hem falls the way you want it to. It may take several tries to determine exactly the spot on the train to use to get the drape and length right. Once you find the spot on the train, mark the location with a straight pin.
  4. Sew a covered button where the straight pin is on the waist of the dress.
  5. Sew one loop of matching ribbon about 1 inch in length in the spot where the straight pin is on the train.
  6. Put the dress on the bride-to-be and, grasping the loop of ribbon, bring it up and attach it to the button on the dress. Check to be certain the train is falling where you want it.

How to Embellish a Wedding Dress with Beads

Beads are but one embellishment option brides have to decorate their wedding dresses. Beads, however, can add texture, dimension and design to an existing wedding dress. While you have the option to take your wedding dress to a professional seamstress to bead the dress for you, you can also bead a wedding dress on your own. Add beads to one area of the gown or the entire gown, but keep in mind that the more beading you add, the more time it will take for you to complete the wedding gown.

Instructions

  1. Place your wedding dress on a flat surface, with the front of the dress facing up. Determine which areas of the dress you want to bead. Popular areas include the bodice, the waistline and the sleeves of the dress. Follow the seams of the wedding dress to determine where adding beads will embellish the dress. You can sew beads along vertical and horizontal seams.
  2. Repeat Step 1 for the back of the dress. Popular areas to add beads to the back of the dress include the back, waistline and train of the dress.
  3. Thread the needle. Slide the needle and thread through the center of a bead and then through the fabric to attach the bead to the dress. Repeat with each bead you have chosen to sew onto your dress. Double-stitch each bead to the dress for added security.
  4. Tie off each bead with a knot on the underside of the fabric. This way, if the thread breaks, you will lose only one bead and the other beads will not fall off the dress.

How to Sew Your Own Beads on Your Wedding Dress

A wedding is an important day in any woman’s life. She is the star; everyone watches her and what she is wearing. If you are the bride, your wedding dress will be your most important purchase. Dresses adorned with beads, pearls and crystals may be out of your price range or too elaborate for your taste. But you can purchase these decorative items and enhance your own dress with the sparkle you want.

Instructions

  1. Plan your design. You can work free-hand, from a pattern or use the lace that covers the dress as your template. If using a pattern or working free-hand, use the seams and darts in the dress as a starting point. They will give you a straight line to work from. Sketch what you wish to do on a piece of paper first. Decide where you want the beads, pearls or crystals to be placed.
  2. Order your beads, crystals and pearls. Order more than you think you will need so you’ll be sure to have a sufficient supply. Keep in mind the strength of the dress fabric; the heavier it is, the more beads, pearls and crystals it can hold. Delicate fabrics, such as chiffon or silk, require a light touch with adornments.
  3. Sew your beads onto the dress starting at the hemline. Thread the beading needle with the beading thread and bring it up through the dress material from the back. Place a bead on the thread and gently push the bead down until it nestles against the material. Bring the needle down through the material just next to the original hole. Bring the needle back up through the dress in the same spot, pass it through the bead and back down. Tie a knot using the loose end of the thread. Bring the needle back up through the material right next to the bead and continue sewing the beads onto the dress according to the pattern. Be sure to tie a knot at every other bead to prevent them from falling off. The double stitching will also help to keep them from becoming loose.
  4. Sew crystals and pearls onto the dress per the pattern using the same technique explained in Step 3. Sew crystals onto edges of ruffles for added sparkle. Pieces of lace can be embellished in the same manner. Steam wrinkles out of the dress after the entire design has been completed.

How to Bead a Wedding Dress

Whether you have made the wedding dress yourself or purchased it, adding beads will give your dress a special touch that makes it unique and beautiful. A wedding dress can cost a lot, but doing the bead work yourself saves a lot of money, while increasing the value of the original. While beading your dress can be quite time-consuming, it is not difficult work, so let’s get started.

Instructions

  1. Choose beads that match or enhance the fabric and lines of the dress. You may want small, white pearls for elegance, cut faux glass or small, clear beads for shine, or small beads in a color that enhances the fabric. For example, if your dress is a pale pink taffeta, you might choose pale pink pearls to blend in or white pearls to draw attention to the lines.
  2. Decide where you want to sew beads. Obvious places would be along princess seams to call attention to the elegance of the bodice, around the neckline to create a delicate effect, along the length or width of the sleeve for graceful movement and along the hemline for shimmer.
  3. Sew beads onto the dress one at a time. This may sound tedious, but if a thread breaks or snags loose on the big day, you will lose only one bead, rather than a whole line or cluster. Thread your needle, knot the thread, and poke it through the fabric, starting from the wrong side. Place the bead on the needle and poke back through the fabric in the opposite direction, from right side to wrong side. Make sure you don’t pull the thread too tightly and pucker the fabric. Knot the thread again from the wrong side of the fabric. If the bead is heavy or the fabric is thin enough to rip, place a drop of glue on the knot.
  4. Create a line of beads by sewing the second bead next to the first, lining up the beads so that the tops and sides are consistent. Your line of beads will look much less impressive if they aren’t straight, so take the time to poke the needle carefully along the same line as the previous bead so that the beads are straight.
  5. Enhance a feature of your dress by sewing a drop of beads. If your dress comes to a “V” at the neck or waist, sew a drop of several beads to hang from the “V.” Begin as you would to sew on a single bead, but thread three to five beads on instead, knotting the thread after the last bead so that your drop can move freely. You may want to knot in between beads in case the final knot fails. Choosing a bell-shape for your final bead in the drop allows you a place for glue to make the drop more secure after you knot the thread.
  6. Sew beads onto lace for dramatic sparkle, or if you cannot bring yourself to stick a needle through your beautiful fabric. Choose very light beads for lace so you don’t cause the lace to sag.

How to Make Indian Wedding Flower Decorations

Indian flowers play an important role in Indian weddings. Different styles, colors and types of flowers are essential in the creation of beautiful Indian flower decorations. Roses, orchids, gerberas and marigolds are only a few of the more popular Indian flowers. Summer weddings look best in light shades of pinks, light blues and citrus colors. For fall weddings use bright and earthy tones.

Instructions

  1. Decorate the area for the traditional Indian style “asirbad,” or blessing ceremony, with lots of flowers–bright red and golden jasmine, roses and orchids. These flowers are used as anchor colors and are thrown all around the ground.
  2. Light the wedding area with Indian lanterns and candles to add ethnic character to the décor. Predominantly earthy colors are used for the Indian wedding decorations. Place white baby roses around the candles and lanterns.
  3. Stage the traditional Hindu wedding in the “mandap”–a four-pole canopy with a stage. The mandap is made of red, yellow and silver flowers and herbs. These flowers are attached to the poles and canopy using small straight pins.
  4. Place netted drapes over the wedding area, above the reception tables. Add silver colors and fresh flowers such as lilies, orchids, carnations and baby roses for decorating the nets.
  5. Decorate the garlands for the bride and groom with a variety of flower colors mixed with colorful ribbons and netted cloths. Use roses the color of the season blended with similar colors of ribbons to create beautiful neck ornaments.

Pearl Wedding Decoration Ideas

Pearls are timelessly elegant jewels. They add a touch of sophistication to any occasion. If you are considering using pearls as a theme for your wedding, there are a number of ways they can be added to your decor. Fake or real, from the ceremony to the reception, pearls will add that special something to your wedding that will help to make it a classy and stylish affair.

Pearl-Lined Aisle Runner

  • A runner is used to line the aisle the bride will walk down. Using an aisle runner is a regal way to make your entrance to your future husband. An aisle runner that is lined with pearls, either real or fake, is not only regal, but it also adds ambiance to the wedding site.

Pearl Touches to Bouquets

  • Pearls can be added as an accent to your floral arrangements, both the bouquets that will be carried and the blooms that may decorate your ceremony and reception. They complement any flower and give the bouquet a special look. The pearls that are used in floral arrangements are typically fake, but if you do not have to adhere to a budget, you can certainly use real pearls.

Escort and Seating Cards

  • Pearls can adorn your escort and seating cards, adding a special touch to your tables. You can either make these cards yourself or you can purchase the cards at a wedding wholesale or stationary shop and a supply of fake pearls from a craft store. You can attach the pearls around the edges of the cards, or you can make a design, such as a monogram, on the card.

Added to Your Cake

  • The cake is one of the focal points of the wedding. If you are using pearls as a decorative element, you can have them adorn your cake or your cake topper. Edible pearls are made of sugar and can look so real that your guests will assume that they are.

Ceiling Decor

  • Strings of real or fake pearls can be hung from the ceiling to add a stylish look to your reception site. They can be made to look like snow falling or like stars dancing on the ceiling. They will also help to add a unique glow to your reception as the light bounces off of them.

Chair Tiebacks

  • If you are having the chairs at either your ceremony or reception draped with linen, you can use a string of pearls as a tieback. This will add an eye-catching look to your decor.

How to Make Columns for Wedding Decorations from Carpet Tubes

Columns can add an elegant, dramatic touch to any wedding. They can be used as the focal point for the ceremony or strategically placed to create a regal setting. Columns can be wrapped in ivy and twinkling lights or used as stands for flower arrangements or other decorations. Rented columns can be costly and limited in color and style. Using cardboard carpet tubes, you can make affordable wedding columns designed to fit the theme of the ceremony.

Instructions

  1. Obtain cardboard carpet or linoleum tubes from a local carpet or hardware store. Depending on the policy of the store, they will either give them to you or charge you a small fee.
  2. Use a handsaw to cut away any damage from both ends of the tube, leaving both sides flat and even. Measure the tube from top to bottom and keep this measurement for the 2-inch by 4-inch (2×4) board.
  3. Measure two 9-inch by 9-inch pieces of plywood. Mark your lines with a pencil and use a table saw to cut them out.
  4. Lay the plywood on a flat surface. Place the ruler along the top of the plywood and mark the center. Repeat at the bottom. Use the ruler to draw a straight line down the center of the plywood connecting both marks. Do this for both pieces of plywood.
  5. Place the ruler on the side of the plywood and mark the center. Repeat on the other side. Use the ruler to draw a straight line through the middle of the plywood from mark to mark. Do this for both pieces of plywood. The point where the two lines meet is the center.
  6. Use an electric drill and pilot bit to drill a hole through the center of each piece of plywood.
  7. Use a table saw to cut a 2×4 to the length of the carpet tube.
  8. Place the cut 2×4 on a table with one end hanging off the edge of the table. Use a 1-inch wood screw and electric drill to attach one of the pieces of plywood to the bottom of the 2×4. Screw through the hole you drilled into the center of the 2×4.
  9. Slide the carpet tube over the top of the 2×4.
  10. Use a 1-inch wood screw and electric drill to attach the second piece of plywood to the top of the column. Screw through the hole you drilled into the center of the 2×4.
  11. Place the column on a flat surface with a drop cloth underneath. Apply a liberal coating of joint compound to the tube and all exposed areas of the plywood. Use your hands for more-even coverage. Allow the joint compound to dry.
  12. Roll the column over and coat the exposed plywood in joint compound. Inspect the tube for any uncoated areas and apply joint compound. Allow the joint compound to dry completely according to manufacturer’s recommendations.
  13. Use 220-grit sandpaper to sand the joint compound to a smooth finish.
  14. Wipe the column down with a clean, dry cloth to remove any dust.
  15. Place the column on a drop cloth in a well-ventilated area. Apply spray paint in the color of choice to all exposed areas of the column. Allow the spray paint to dry according to manufacturer’s recommendations.
  16. Roll the column over and apply spray paint to any uncoated areas.

How to Become a Professional Wedding Decorator

As a wedding decorator, you will be responsible for decorating entire wedding events. Creativity is essential to wedding decorating since you must turn a client’s vision into reality. You need to be capable of seeing the potential in a particular venue and helping your client see it, too. The venue is the canvas and you are responsible for designing and styling it to suit the client’s desires. Professional wedding decorators have some flexibility in deciding how to establish themselves. Since you are offering a service, you will need to promote yourself and your services.

Get Certified

  • There are no federal licensing or certification requirements necessary to become a wedding decorator. You could choose to complete a certification course, however, to learn more about wedding and event planning. Not only will a certification help set you apart from the crowd, but courses can teach you new and innovative techniques and approaches you can apply to your wedding decorating.

Join an Association

  • You do not have to be in an association to be a wedding decorator, but membership can help boost your reputation. New wedding decorators may also benefit from the support, resources, information and networking an association offers members. A variety of organizations cater to wedding decorators, such as the American Association of Certified Wedding Planners, National Association of Wedding Professionals and the Wedding Industry Professionals Association.

Follow the Licensing Requirements

  • Wedding decorators are often self-employed, but you could also choose to work for a wedding planning company as the decorator. Although you do not need a license to be a wedding decorator, you may need a license to operate as a business owner. Even if you run the business from your home office, your city or state may require business tax registration and licensing.

Market Your Services

  • You can create a portfolio to show your work to potential clients or employers. To reach a broad range of potential clients, you can create a website displaying your information and previous events you have decorated. If you are not tech savvy or want to keep costs down, blogs are often free and do not require any web design skills. If you do not have experience and want to gain exposure, you might want to volunteer your services to decorate an event thrown by a local charity or organization.

Spread the Word

  • Word of mouth is an effective and free form of advertising for new wedding decorators. Your reputation is essential to a successful wedding decorating career. If you have any experience decorating for weddings or any other events, such as birthday parties or baby showers, share the photos and encourage others to share them as well. You can visit local bridal shops and florists to inquire about displaying your business cards. Attending bridal shows or expos also gives you the opportunity to market your services directly to future brides and other vendors.

Homemade Wedding Decorations Tree

When you make something with your own hands, like a homemade wedding decorations tree, it turns an ordinary reception room into one that is extraordinary. A homemade wedding decorations tree is simple to make. Some brides like the small potted tree that fits easily on a table. You can also make your own tree with any craft material. A homemade wedding decorations tree comes alive at your reception by focusing on a specific theme.

Hope Tree

  • This tree will be filled with wishes of hope from family and friends. Gather all the messages and place them into decorative frames. Tie a ribbon or wire to the frame and attach each one to the individual tree branches. Keep the notes brief — one or two sentences. In addition to wishes, place pictures of family members or friends inside the frames and add messages to the back. To make this a surprise for the wedding couple, hide the hope tree until the wedding day.

Destiny Tree

  • This is a tree filled with favorite photos of the bride and groom from their childhood years to the present. Create a heart-shaped paper frame for each photo. You will need at least 10 photos. Place newborn pictures at the bottom with the other photos ascending the tree up to the present to represent change over the years. At the top, place a large photo of the bride and groom. To complete the look, write a story about how the wedding couple met and were destined to be together. Arrange this framed story at the front of the destiny tree.

Ribbons of Love Tree

  • For a larger tree that is indoors or outdoors, create a ribbon theme. Rainbow-colored ribbons cascade down this tree with loving messages from the bride and groom to each other. Tie the ribbons individually to a tree branch. At the end of the ribbons, place the special message inside a small bottle or attach it to a candle. Turn a love note into an origami animal to hang from the ribbon. These messages will reflect the many ways the bride and groom love each other.

Fortune Cookie Tree

  • Fortune cookies are a simple way to add a little fun to the reception. They transform your tree into an edible piece of art. Place personalized messages of good fortune and hope inside each one for your guests. Tie the fortune cookies individually to the tree limbs. For one last token of your wedding, place several bowls of fortune cookies around the tree so that guests can take some home.

How to Make Wedding Anniversary Table Decorations

An anniversary party with friends and family is a wonderful way to celebrate a couple’s marriage, from the first year to the 75th. Table centerpieces for the party highlight the theme, and are often the part of the decorations that stand out most for guests. Centerpieces don’t have to be expensive, and don’t have to all be the same. Use lots of color and creativity to make the table decorations fun and enjoyable for your guests.

Instructions

  1. Pick a theme for the anniversary party and incorporate the table decorations as part of the overall decor. Consider the time of the year in your theme, as inexpensive natural items make for creative centerpieces. Other theme ideas include the number of years of the anniversary, a hobby or interest of the couple, or a location that is special to the couple.
  2. Select the colors for the party. If the anniversary is a “big” one, such as the 25th or 50th, you may want to use traditional colors, such as silver for 25 or gold for 50. Other options are the couples’ favorite colors, or colors to match with the time of year.
  3. Use candles. Surround large pillar candles in the center of the table with ribbon or tree boughs. Fill small glass bowls with a center candle and fresh flowers or colored marbles. Large pillar candles look beautiful inside hurricane glass domes.
  4. Make a memory lane on the table. Place a wide strip of theme-colored ribbon across the table. Mount copies of photos of the couple and their children and family on colored card stock. Glue the photos on the ribbon. Each table can be different, perhaps highlighting children and grandchildren, vacations the couple have taken, or jobs and hobbies.
  5. Fill colorful balloons with helium. Tie pretty ribbons to the balloons and candies at the bottom to hold them down.
  6. Make tissue-wrapped jars that will stand out on the table. To wrap canning jars with tissue paper, lay out tissue paper in two or three shades of your theme color, with the darkest color on top and white on the bottom. Place a canning jar down in the middle and gather the four corners at the top of the jar. Tie matching ribbons around the neck of the jar.
  7. Create a natural setting by using seasonal fresh vegetables and fruits. For example, if the anniversary is in the fall, use carved out and cleaned pumpkins as pot holders for mums or other fall flowers, and lean the pumpkin lid against the arrangement. Fill glass vases or bowls with colorful seasonal fruit or nuts that add fresh color to the table.
  8. Scatter confetti all over the tables. Purchase confetti in a myriad of shapes and themes from party stores, or create your own with hole punchers. Confetti colors the table quickly and guests enjoy tossing it.

Do-It-Yourself Cheap Wedding Decoration Ideas

Wedding Decorations, Wedding Reception Ideas Do It Yourself: Wedding Reception Ideas – Meaningful Moment in Affordable BudgetWhen planning your wedding, you may envision guests marveling at all of the sparkling decorations as they enter your ceremony and reception venues. However, your budget is limited and you don’t want to break the bank to get the look you desire. Fortunately, you can complete many DIY projects that are both pretty and cheap.

Fabric

  • Invest in several bolts of tulle. Bolts of the fabric come at a very affordable price when bought in bulk. Use the tulle everywhere. Hang it from the ceiling, wrap it around pillars, create swags between the pews at your ceremony site and run it down the middle of your tables.

Lights

  • Stock up on white lights after Christmas, or ask friends and relatives if they can lend you lights from their own supply. Options vary from enclosing white lights in tulle and wrapping around the bridal table under the linens to lining your walkway with luminaries. Place candles around your reception venue for a romantic glow. Make miniature lanterns by cleaning out old baby food jars, filling with sand or decorative stones, placing a votive candle inside and stringing the jar to a hanging branch with sturdy wire.

Centerpieces

  • You can create a unique centerpiece for less than $10. Make a topiary out of a recycled pot, Styrofoam ball, moss, dowel rod, moss, ribbon and silk flowers. Make candy bouquets and place in a bright basket. Place a tiered cupcake stand in the middle of each table and fill with bright cupcakes. Place a row of pillar candles down the middle of the table and surround by moss or flower petals. Take decorative butterflies on a stem, wrap them together and place in a decorative container for a butterfly bouquet. Use several bud vases with a single flower stem in each one for a fresh look. Place several tulips in a vase and weight them down with fishing sinkers. Fill the vase with water for a submerged floral arrangement.

Favors

  • Favors add a decorative touch and help to fill up the table. You can also place the favors in a basket or hang them from a small tree in place of a centerpiece. Make edible treats and place them in a pretty satchel. Make your own body scrub from sugar, body oil, aloe vera and olive oil, and place in decorative containers. Wrap mints in tulle and tie with a colorful ribbon.

Seating Cards

  • An easy and cheap way to add a splash of color to your wedding decorations is to make your own seating cards in bold colors. Write each guest’s name and table number on a bright piece of paper. Cut out, fold and add ribbon to the side of the card. Press flowers in a book and glue them around your table numbers. Paint a cheap picture frame with a distressed look for a vintage feel. Place the table number inside the frame.

Pew Decorations

  • Quickly decorate your church by using pew bows. Cut tulle or satin fabric and tie in the shape of a bow. Tie the bows around the pew. Another option is to create a kissing ball. Stick flowers through Styrofoam so they make a round arrangement. Attach ribbon and hang from the pew.

Secondhand Items

  • Scour flea markets, thrift stores and your own supply of secondhand items for candlestick holders, stemware, china, vases, candles and other decorations. Use a decorative bird cage in place of a wedding card box. Set the tables with sparkling glasses and white dinner plates. Borrow a couple of pieces of furniture to make a comfortable lounge area. Place photographs in old picture frames around the reception venue and near the guest book.

Focal Point

  • You do not need to decorate every area of your venue to achieve an elegant look. Concentrate instead on a few focal points. For example, place the bridesmaids’ bouquets in vases on your bridal table for a lush look. Frame a cake table with a pretty canopy. Use a garden arch at your entrance, and cover it with tulle, flowers and ribbon. Use garden trellis against a wall and string flowers through the holes. Stack decorative hat boxes to give the illusion of a cake. Place coordinating flowers on the edges of the boxes.

Signs

  • An easy and cheap way to add decor to your venue is to make signs. Make a large sign pointing to the reception venue. Make it decorative by adding graphics or a stylish font. Make a reminder sign beside the guest book. Make a banner featuring with the couple’s name.

How to Start a Wedding Decorating Business

Starting a wedding decoration business can be easy. But, like any other business, it is important to do your research and work hard to help you save money in the beginning and make money once the business gets off the ground. Time management will be critical to your success, as will surrounding yourself with help you can afford and customers who are worthy of your efforts. It is helpful if you have experience working in the decorating industry before starting your own business, but experience is not necessary if you have the passion and skills needed to start and operate your own successful wedding decorating company.

Instructions

  1. Define the scope of your business: Wedding Cake Decorator, Wedding Florist, or a more general Wedding Decorator. This will help establish your services as well as target your customers and help you figure out what supplies and resources will be necessary.
  2. Register your business and obtain a tax ID number. This can be done using several online sites or legal services, such as http://www.business.gov/register/incorporation or www.legalzoom.com, or through your state’s government website.
  3. Create a website. This will be one of the most important tools for marketing for your business. The website should contain all your contact information (name, number, address, email, business hours). Spend extra time to make sure your website represents your work and your tastes; you want the site to be welcoming representative of your work and your business model. Show some samples of your past work on the site, if possible.
  4. Put together a portfolio to display your past work. If you do not have good photos of past work, volunteer to do some events for your family or friends, or offer to do a couple of free or reduced-fee gigs to build your portfolio. This is an important step to landing potential clients, so make sure you have the right pictures that show off your work, as well as testimonials from previous clients that promote your work. Your portfolio should be in digital format on your website as well as printed in hard copy in a portfolio notebook to show potential clients in person. Perhaps you can make arrangements with a wedding photographer to use some of her images on your website in return for promotional credits and a link to her site.
  5. Establish a location to host meetings with potential clients. This can be at a home office, a rented office, or an appropriate restaurant. Make sure the location is welcoming and it enables you to show your work effectively. Many clients like to preview the decor that will be displayed at their wedding, so choose your meeting space carefully and pick something that will give you the most flexibility in terms of demonstrating your work.
  6. Find efficient and affordable marketing tools. Get your service out by printing fliers or coupons, advertise on line on wedding sites and social media sites, and encourage your previous clients to spread the word to their friends, family, and coworkers. It is important to establish a reliable reputation.
  7. Research all the potential decoration supplies you will need. The decoration possibilities are endless, so plan ahead by drawing some designs out and making a list of all the supplies you will need for your vision, style, and versatility. Set your budget appropriately; supplies can be very costly and expenses can be wasteful if the research and planning is not done carefully. It helps to start small and expand your offerings only when you can afford to.