Bridal Bouquet Idea: Add Sparkle with Gemstones

Mother of the Bride, when it’s time for your daughter to select the flowers for her bridal bouquet, maybe she’d like to add some sparkle too—with jewelry! Never fear, though. I’m not referring to genuine gemstones. Imitations will work quite nicely.

Bouquet jewelry, like the rhinestones or clear crystals in the red rose bouquet above, provide not only sparkle but also contrasting color, much like baby’s breath or another white accent flower. And bouquet jewelry will do those things less expensively. That’s right, you’ll save money!

Possibilities abound where bouquet jewelry is concerned. Bouquet jewelry can also be added to the stem wrap as shown on the ribbon in the photo below. Bigger items like brooches can be used as well on the wraps or in the bouquets themselves. One dazzling rhinestone butterfly or brooch can transform a bouquet from pretty to gorgeous in seconds. And a variety of imitation gemstones and pearls lay at the disposal of your floral arranger.

How about it, MOB? Try suggesting bouquet jewelry to your daughter. After all, what girl doesn’t love jewelry?

*Check out Afloral.com for ideas and prices. And if you’re interested in another way to save on the bouquets, you might also like to read Savings Tip for Bridal and Bridesmaids Bouquets

*For info about my book Mother of the Bride check out my Books/My Work page.

*The next issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter with a giveaway in every regularly scheduled issue, will come out in early August. Sign-up is FREE and to the right! (If you’re on a mobile device, scroll to the bottom of the screen and click View Full Site to find it.)

*Photos by Elece Hollis.

Turn Ordinary Wedding Items Into Keepsakes

Mother of the Bride, why not turn a few of the ordinary every-wedding-and-bride-must-have items into something more? Why not transform them into keepsakes that will remind the newlyweds of precious wedding day memories for years to come?

For instance, instead of picking up a set of standard wedding garters (one to keep and one to toss) at your favorite craft and hobby store, ask a family member or dear friend who loves to sew if she would be willing to make garters for your precious girl.

My friend Teri made garters for both of my girls (see Kelli’s above), and her loving touch and personal effort instantly transformed the garters into precious keepsakes for both Kristin and Kelli. And since Teri and I had great fun selecting the lace and ribbon she would use to craft this traditional part of the bride’s attire, the whole experience made for a great memory for us as well.

Toasting flutes can also become a treasured keepsake. I found a special and elegant set for Kristin’s wedding, but for Kelli’s, we decided to ask a friend to dress up some standard flutes. This time we asked Teri’s daughter Stephanie for help. With her creative knack and a little input from Kelli on what she would like, Stephanie transformed the flutes into something far more beautiful than we could have found at any wedding supply or craft store (see below; click on the photo to see it better).

MOB, these are just a couple of ideas—I’m sure other possibilities will come to mind as you think of your own daughter and her desires and style. Have fun turning the ordinary into keepsakes for her. She’ll be forever grateful—and you may make some great memories along the way!

*You might also like to read Craft It: Bridal Keepsake Box, A Keepsake Photo of the Wedding Invitation, Deciding On a Wedding Guest Book: Ideas to Get You Started, and Wedding-Themed Shower Gifts.

*For info about my book Mother of the Bride and also my Wedding Inspiration cards, check out my Books/My Work page.

*The current issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter with a giveaway in every regularly scheduled issue, came out earlier this month. It’s not too late to receive it. Sign-up is FREE and to the right! (If you’re on a mobile device, scroll to the bottom of the screen and click View Full Site to find it.)

*Photos by Will Flowers

Deciding On a Wedding Guest Book: Ideas to Get You Started

Mother of the Bride, have your daughter and her beloved decided on what kind of guest book they’d like the wedding guests to sign yet? Years ago (when we got married!), there weren’t a lot of options where guest books were concerned, but today the guest book decision isn’t as straightforward as it once was.

Yes, MOB, the choices for wedding guest books have broadened considerably. Why not brainstorm some possible approaches with your bride-to-be?

Here are some ideas to get you started:

  1. The traditional guest-book-only sign-in. This is the small book (maybe 5×7) used exclusively on wedding day to sign guests in as they arrive for the ceremony or reception.
  2. The traditional wedding record/memory book. This book is larger (approx. 9×12) and includes pages for everything from the couple’s first date to where they honeymoon. Several sign-in pages for the wedding are included as well as pages for showers, gifts, etc. (My daughters both used this method. In fact, I gave them their special record books as Christmas gifts when they were planning their weddings.)
  3. A photo guest book designed by the couple through a site like Shutterfly. This type of guest book adds a real personal touch since it features the couple’s engagement photos.
  4. A large framed photo or piece of art with guests signing the mat that surrounds it. This option allows the couple to daily enjoy the memories of their big day and the people who joined them for it.
  5. A guest book quilt, hanging and ready for guests to sign. What a keepsake treasure this would be!
  6. A photo booth wedding guest book. It provides not only a super fun visual record of those attending the wedding, but also gives the guests a chance to include a personal message.
  7. A guest tree.  Each guest signs a leaf on the tree, and when the wedding is over, the bride and groom have a keepsake record ready to hang on the wall, a continual reminder of all who joined them for their special day.

Possibilities abound with a little creative thought. Some help from Pinterest can come in handy, too, right? If you’d like to see a few more options, check out my Weddings—This and That board on Pinterest. Have fun brainstorming with your girl, MOB!

*You might also like to read Photo Booth Idea for Wedding Guest Book and Guest Book Idea: A Guest Tree.

*For info about my book Mother of the Bride and also my Wedding Inspiration cards, check out my Books/My Work page.

*The next issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter, comes out in early May. One lucky subscriber (new or current) will receive a $15 gift card to Amazon and a signed copy of my book to use personally, give as a gift, or donate to a library. Sign-up is free and to the right! (If you’re on a mobile device, scroll to the bottom of the screen and click View Full Site to find it.)

*Photo by Flowers Photography

15 Dreamy U.S. Venues to Inspire Your Winter Wedding

*Thanks to Siege Media for their help writing and creating this post.

Mother of the Bride, destination weddings are always beautiful and exciting for both the couple and their guests. Destination weddings give everyone the opportunity to take a mini vacation and explore the area where your wedding is being held.

When we think of destination weddings, a summer wedding at the beach or a vineyard event is what usually comes to mind. For something a bit more out-of-the-box, let’s consider some beautiful wedding venues perfect for a winter destination wedding. 

Planning a winter wedding can not only help you stay within budget but can also give you opportunities to get creative and plan a truly unique wedding day. As we all know, wedding costs can accumulate quickly, especially when you book your wedding during peak wedding season. This is why the winter season is perhaps the best time of year to have a budget-friendly wedding. You’ll also have more flexibility when it comes to vendors and venues since it will be a slower season for everyone. 

Winter weddings can help you add creative and warm details your guests are sure to love. Things like blankets or scarves as party favors, a hot cider station, or a hot chocolate bar are just a few fun favorites that will make your wedding cozy and memorable.

Here are a few winter wedding venues highlighted plus a link to them and more below: 

Dunton Hot Springs – Dunton, CO

For a more outdoorsy couple, Dunton Hot Springs in Colorado is great! It’s rustic vibe and crystal white snow background will leave you with little else to add. 

Union Hill Inn – Sonora, CA

This fairytale-like inn is great for couples who want a winter wedding but are feeling a little unsure about heavy snow. The gardens and cottage rooms create an ideal space for any wedding. 

Treehouse Point – Issaquah, WA

One of the most unique venues on this list, Treehouse Point offers a breathtaking area in the middle of the forest full of adorable treehouses for your guests to stay in. Plan your wedding in one of their communal areas for an unforgettable event.

For photos of the above options as well as more venue ideas, check out the full list of winter wedding locations. The roundup includes essential details including peak winter wedding months of each location, capacity, wedding spaces offered, and best nearby lodging for you and your guests.

Have fun with your daughter, MOB, as you consider these winter wonderland destination venues for her big day!

*You might also like to read Favor Help for Winter Weddings, Winter Wedding Cake Idea: Snowflakes!, and Winter Wedding Cake: Pinecones and Baby’s Breath!

*For info about my book Mother of the Bride and also my Wedding Inspiration cards, check out my Books/My Work page.

*The new issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter with a giveaway in every regularly scheduled issue, will come out in early May. Sign-up is free and to the right! (If you’re on a mobile device, scroll to the bottom of the screen and click View Full Site to find it.)

*Thanks to CarRentals.com for the images.

Wedding Day: Arrange for Corsage and Boutonniere Pinner

Mother of the Bride, do you have someone lined up to pin the corsages and boutonnieres for everyone on wedding day? If this is one thing that hadn’t occurred to you yet, go ahead and add it to your list of things to do. And while you’re at it, you might want to arrange for a back-up.

Your florist may offer to pin the flowers for you, but if so, be sure to have a Plan B in place. When our daughter Kristin and our son-in-law-to-be Shawn got married, the florist told us he’d take care of it for us, but when we arrived at the church, he’d already been there, dropped all the flowers off, and left. Thank goodness, one of Shawn’s groomsmen had experience with event planning. Hamilton stepped up and saved the day.

If you have a wedding coordinator, he or she will, of course, take care of this task. When our daughter Kelli and her groom Jake got married, their church had a wedding coordinator that worked with each couple getting married in their church. She did the pinning as a part of her services. It was so nice to have someone else do this for us.

Make sure you have this wedding day need filled, MOB. This is one job you don’t want to have to do when your nerves may already be jangled!

*You might also like to read Attention to Detail.

*For info about my book Mother of the Bride and also my Wedding Inspiration cards, check out my Books/My Work page.

*The new issue of Life Notes, my quarterly inspirational newsletter with a giveaway in every regularly scheduled issue, came out in early February. It’s not too late to receive it. Sign-up is free and to the right! (If you’re on a mobile device, scroll to the bottom of the screen and click View Full Site to find it.)

*Photo by Chris Humphrey