Archive for the ‘Inspiration’ Category

When we think of destination weddings, the picture of white sandy beaches usually springs to mind, but you may decide to have your wedding at a grape vineyard, an exotic island or a even a historical site. You might even go the cultural route and marry in the birthplace of your ancestors. Destination weddings offer you and your guests the perfect excuse to visit another country or another continent altogether. They are very exciting, but can easily become overwhelming if you don’t plan in advance.

bora bora destination weddingNow, a destination wedding just isn’t a destination wedding unless you’re off to somewhere exotic and remote. You might pick a tropical island like Hawaii or the Polynesian Islands. Perhaps you’re more adventurous and therefore an outdoor themed destination wedding Safari or the deserts of Australia call to you. Destination wedding can easily be dubbed a ‘dream wedding’ so really let your imaginations flow when choosing your location.

However, realize that the farther that you go, the less people will be able to come with you (or can afford to). So keep that in mind when considering your destination. On the other hand, if you have the means to supplement your guests travel costs, here’s an opportunity to really have some fun with your wedding plans…the sky’s the limit!

In either case, you will still want to send out announcements of your wedding date to let all of your friends and family know. It’s a good idea to have your destination wedding and then a reception party at home to share the special day with those who couldn’t attend. This is also a way to extend the celebration!

Weddings require a lot of planning to manage all of the details. And this is no different, and 10x’s as important, with a destination wedding. Using a wedding planner or organizer will remind you of certain tasks that need to be accomplished by certain dates and help you keep track of your “To Do” list. Remember that you will be planning your event long distance, so it’s important to have a list of things that need to be done before you arrive, as well as, when you get there.

Tip #1: When inviting guests to your destination wedding, send out announcements as early as a year in advance with a “save-the-date” card, letting them know which hotel to call to reserve rooms, as well as, dates and times for plane tickets and how to purchase their tickets in advance.

Tip #2: Be sure to check on regulations and laws of the area you’ll be traveling to. If you are getting married outside of the United States, be sure to have passports, blood tests, a U.S. marriage license, if needed, and any other paperwork that you two will need to complete. Don’t wait until the last minute on this one, some documents could take weeks, even months to arrive.

Tip #3: Rather than trying to check everything in at the airport on the day you fly out, ship the big bulky items or large quantities like your wedding favors ahead of your flight one-two weeks in advance. If you have a wedding coordinator at the location, call him or her to arrange for storage. After the scheduled delivery call and confirm that everything arrived in good condition. This also give you extra time just in case something is damaged in travel.

Tip #4: With so many things on the”To Do” list, it’s easy to overlook the obvious. Don’t forget to hire a photographer, clergy, wedding planner and bakery to complete your wedding arrangements. Contact the destination’s Visitor Bureau (or your destination wedding coordinator) to get contacts and references.

Destination weddings take away a lot of the stress from traditional wedding planning. No crowds of people to meet and greet. No floral decoration meetings and cake tastings. In most cases, these resorts will do everything for you so you get to just relax and enjoy your special day. However, as we said before there are different considerations when planning a destination wedding to keep in mind. We hope these tips have been helpful in getting you started.

• Lost and completely stressed out planning your destination wedding?

• Do you want to know the #1 objection given by destination wedding invitees…and how to respond to it?

• Or learn a sneaky way to ask for “cash gifts“ without breaking all of the etiquette rules? (WARNING: Touchy subject ladies…you’ve gotta be careful on this one!)

• How big should your wedding party be…and who pays for what? Should you have anyone in your wedding party sign a contract?

If you are planning a destination wedding, there is one important thing you need to know…

You don’t have to do it alone:)

Don’t Stress Out Or Reinvent The Wheel. Learn The Secrets Only Wedding Veterans Know…

Get TONS OF TIPS for how to have the BEST DESTINATION WEDDING EVER you pick up a copy of “The Destination Wedding Survival Guide” Feel free to check it out.

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Don’t let the pouchette get the better of you! Watch this quick tutorial on closing your petalfold invitation the easy way…

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I was invited to and attended the induction luncheon of a friend of mine who recently became a member of the Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority. I wasn’t sure the protocol, but given her enthusiasm and excitement throughout the pledging process, I wanted to congratulate her with a small gift. But when I went to the local Greek shop looking for something nice, I was very disappointed because everything seemed so run-of-the-mill and typical. I mean, how many brightly colored tote bags and umbrellas does one need?

Anywho, while I did purchase some of the standard fare (a cute tea mug and keychain), I decided to make her something as well. I figured ‘why not’ since she has everything anyway. What unique gift could I give that all of her new sorors wouldn’t have as well? Here’s what I came up with…

custom stationary for alpha girl

A gift for the lady who has everything.

First, I decided to make custom stationary in the colors of her sorority. I put an ivy leaf on the top and bottom and added crystal embellishments for a bit of bling (my signature touch). I used pink cardstock paper and the print is in green. This will be great when she wants to send a personal note or thank you to one of her sorors.

I also made a sparkly pen figuring that women always love sparkly things (I know I do!). I couldn’t find an ivy leaf specifically but thought the green was a nice touch. Since we’re smack dab in the middle of Christmas season, everything’s green at the craft store, just not ivy:(

And in keeping with the holiday season, I made her a set of AKA Christmas ornaments. You can see from the pics that I had the letters cut in vinyl (at the local greek store: Unique Greek located in Chicago Heights, IL). I actually have the store owner to thank for this idea. I saw a set of Delta ornaments and thought, ‘how clever’ and decided to step it up a notch with my design. So I added the year in rhinestones on the clear glass balls I purchased from Jo-Ann crafts. As you can see from the pictures, once I added the metallic shred to the inside of the ball, the numbers didn’t show up as well so if I ever do this again perhaps I’ll use a white iridescent shred instead. What do you think?

alpha kappa alpha ornament gifts

Before Shimmer Shred

aka gifts holiday ornaments

After Shimmer Shred

Quick Update: I was later asked to make Delta Sigma Theta holiday ornaments for another custom gift, so I made a few tweaks and here’s a pic on how they turned out…

delta sigma theta sorority holiday gift ideas

Using the white shimmer shred turned out much better:)

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Snowflake Invitation Well ladies and germs, the festive season is here! Finally, we can just let go and release the childlike joy bubbling beneath the surface without fear of any disapproving eyes. After all, it’s the holidays and what better excuse than a gaudy Christmas sweater or re-gifted fruitcake to bring a smile to your loved ones faces.

When sending out your holiday greetings this season, here are a few quick down & dirty, invitation etiquette tips to keep us all on track:

  • Completely spell out all dates, times and places. For example: “Friday, December twenty – fifth, two thousand and nine at six o’ clock in the evening.
  • Don’t abbreviate anything – like street names or addresses. Spell them out completely also.

And I know that planning a wedding can be tight on the budget, BUT it’s very important to include the following courtesies in your invitation etiquette. It will go a long way in fostering good feelings about your upcoming nuptials. After all, you want your guests to look forward to your event with eager anticipation, not dreaded obligation:

  • Allow your guests to bring a date to the wedding. No one wants to feel forced to sit through your nuptials alone, leave the decision to them. To ensure everyone is on the same page, you can address the invitation as “Ms. Renee Foster and Guest.”
  • Even if it seems efficient or a good use of space, please don’t mention guest registries on the invitation, it’s considered poor form. Information about your gift preferences should be gained through word of mouth (i.e. your bridesmaids or family) or you can also note it on your wedding blog.

As my momma always said, ‘if you’re going to do it, do it right.’ Perhaps she carried more wisdom in her words that I gave her credit for

adorable snowflake invitation

Adorable Snowflake Invitation by Michelle Mospens of MyPersonalArtist.com

(Shh…don’t tell her:)

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I’ve long been a huge fan of silk box invitations. They always exude luxury and distinction without screaming. And if you want your guests to drool with anticipation over your upcoming soiree there’s no classier way to announce the event. Needless to say, dupioni silk boxed invitations aren’t for the budget-concious either. So although I love using this sophisticated invitation accessory, it’s not everyday that I get to incorporate it into my client’s projects.

President Obama's Inaugural Ball Invitation

President Obama's Inaugural Ball Invitation

So late last year I was in my studio looking for creative inspiration. It was still just a few weeks to go before the presidential elections and the tension was at its peak. I decided to  create my version of what (then future) President Obama’s inaugural ball invitation would look like. I reasoned that since it would be a historic event, we (I was now also a part of the official Presidential Ball Committee or whomever plans these things — have to get into character:) were going to make this a keepsake invitation, not something one would throw out soon after the event date had passed.

I began to research exactly what goes on the the invitation, the wording, how the names are adressed, which preseidential seal is used and so forth. I even went so far as to locate an official presedential lapel pin on ebay. It was fun ‘investigating’ via the internet and there’s so much information you can find with a little google searching. The internet is like a modern day Sherlock Holmes — you can find pretty much anything for sure.

Anyway, here’s the result, let me know what you think…


President Obama's Inaugural Ball Invitation Inspiration (Interior)

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