Some things to consider before you say “I Do”

 

Before you get married……

 

If you want to live together “happily ever after” there are a few things you should know about each other before you tie the knot.

First – Know Who You Are

Know who you are and what you want from life before getting married.  If you want to focus on a career, have kids, travel a lot….be sure to talk about these things prior to getting married.  You don’t have to agree on everything.  You just need to understand what each of you want and expect in a marriage.

Second – Know that you can’t change him (her)

The truth is what you see is what you get.  People will change, but only if THEY want to.

What’s his financial status?

Sharing space has its own challenges.  Sharing expenses can lead to hurt feelings and bad relationships.   Be sure to discuss together how you plan to handle finances together.   This is where total honesty is important.  Don’t hide your credit problems from each other.  Additionally you will want to have a clear picture of what each person desires – a nice home, a new car, etc.  Are you a saver?  Does he spend like crazy?  Be sure to acknowledge your partner’s goals and bad habits when it comes to making and spending money.

Knowing your partner’s priorities can help eliminate squabbles after you are married and lead to a long term, loving, and caring for each other relationship.  Having someone to cuddle up and knowing there’s someone who loves you no matter what is what marriage is all about.

Third –

A good marriage must be created.

In marriage the “little” things are the big things.

It is never being too old to hold hands.

It is remembering to say, ”I love you” at least once a day.

It is never going to sleep angry.

It is standing together and facing the world.

It is speaking words of appreciation, and demonstrating gratitude in thoughtful ways.

It is having the capacity to forgive and forget.

It is giving each other an atmosphere in which each can grow.

It is a common search for the good and the beautiful.

It is not only marrying the right person — it is being the right partner

 

Brides – Submit your Most Disliked Cheesy, Pinterest Type Posed Wedding Photos


Over the years I have talked to many wedding professional photographers who hate shooting those “cheesy” Pinterest type photos.  The new trend is more candid and storytelling images, but that doesn’t mean these “posed” shots have disappeared.   Perhaps it’s the bridal party running down a hill, or it’s the bridal party jumping in the air.   What’s your most disliked photo?  Submit your photos to bride@bridestlouis.com and we will share them with you in the next few weeks.  We will take the top ten and allow you to VOTE for your most disliked at our April 23, 2017 BRIDAL SHOW, My Dream Wedding – Illinois, at the Gateway Classic Car Expo Center in O’Fallon, ILLINOIS.

How to Choose A Venue

ChandlerHill - BrideStLouis.com

ChandlerHill – BrideStLouis.com

One of the biggest decisions you’ll make in planning your wedding is where to have it.  Because there are over 350+ Venues, your decision can be difficult.   Here are some basic concepts to consider when deciding on a location.

Budget:

This is the most important factor.  The reception cost is generally about 50% of your entire budget.  If you are on a tight budget and the venue you want is beyond your price range, think about having a brunch or cocktail reception at the venue instead of a plated dinner.

Size:

Consider the number of guests you anticipated inviting.  If you are having a small wedding you might feel dwarfed in a venue that is too large.  Conversely, if you are having a large number of guests, you want to make sure that you don’t feel cramped.

Feel:

Did you always dream of an outdoor wedding?  Do you like the ideal of a grand ballroom?  Be true to you feelings, and make it meaningful for you.  Bear in mind, with an outdoor wedding you might be at the mercy of the elements, so have a Plan B in place.

Finally, be flexible with the day of the week.  Fridays & Sundays are generally less expensive and more available.  Popular places can book up over a year in advance, so start your search for a venue early.

One of the easiest ways to find your venue is to read the Venue Profile Reviews on BrideSTLouis.com under the blog section. (www.BrideStLouis.com/blog)   Just search for “Venue Profile Reviews.”  (Soon we will be updating our web site with a venue review search feature that provides COMPLETE information on all venues by seachable fields.)  Currently, you can also use the Venue Section of the Vendor Guide where venues are listed in one of seven areas:  St. Louis City, St. Louis Midtown, South, North, St. Charles, Missouri Other, Illinois.

Randall Gallery - BrideStLouis.com

Randall Gallery – BrideStLouis.com

All About Save-The-Date Announcements

Image for PaperSource, BrideStLouis.com

 

If the question was popped and now the wedding day is finally locked, let everyone know with save the date cards or magnets.   What’s really great about save-the-dates is that they aren’t you formal wedding invitation, so you can choose to add some whimsy or humor.  There are many local companies that can create them for you like Paper Patch, Creve Coeur Camera Biz Services, or any of the many other invitation companies that can be found on our vendor section of our web site.

 

Save the Date Example, BrideStLouis.comYou can select from simple postcards, to magnets, to trifolds.  What you need to include is the date of the wedding (of course), your names, and if you are planning a destination location – where that will be, and finally let them know that a formal invitation will follow.  You can choose to go further by charting your love story with details as to when you met,  your  first date, and when he proposed.   Some couples choose to introduce their color scheme, and many times they use their engagement photos on their save-the-dates, and sometimes they create a personal monogram.   If you have planned a theme for your wedding, it’s great to include that same theme in your save-the-date announcements to give guests a heads up on what’s coming.

As a general rule, it’s best to send out your save-the-date announcements six months prior to your wedding.  Allow more time if you are doing a destination wedding so wedding guests have plenty of time to book their travel, get off work, and save some cash.  This gives them time as well to make travel arrangement.  Allow more time is your wedding is scheduled around a holiday weekend or other special events that are occurring at the same time.

Save the dates are sent to all guests you intend to invite to your wedding.  While some couples choose to send “digital” save the dates”, many older guests would still prefer to receive the printed version to save as a keepsake.  Save the dates are NOT mandatory, but they are recommended especially if you are planning a sizable wedding.

Image from Lovevsdesign, BrideStLouis.com

One other note, I love it when couples create a wedding website that can keep their guests up to date on any possible changes – such as venue or ceremony site change.  With the web site you can include many additional details such as where you are registered and for out-of-town guests information as to where to stay and what to do while they are in town.  Be sure to include that web site information on your save-the date announcements.

Image from Our Timeline, BrideStLouis.com

Children, Second Marriages & Amazing Families

Nelson-158Including your child in the wedding ceremony is extremely important in second marriages as it helps the child/children feel as if they are part of the new family. Children need to know that they will always be loved and cherish by their parents, and not feel abandoned. Taking some steps to include them in this new “family” helps create a stronger bond. In fact, many times when you are happy and your spouse treats your kids like his own, it’s amazing how well children thrive.

So – be sure to make them a part of your ceremony. A nice touch is to present the child with a gift just after your vows are completed, and when you present this gift, you each can make a vow to the child pledging your support and encouragement. Let the child know that you want to create a new family together where everyone loves honors and protects one another.Butterfly Release BSL

Addional ways to include children is through the sand ceremony where each member of the family has different color sand or perhaps a butterfly release if the weather permits.Gift Presentation BSL

Answers to Questions about Wedding Dilemmas

 Bride with Both Dads

Over the last few months we have received emails regarding various dilemmas and so we thought today we would answer a few of these concerns:

If a friend can’t attend, should I still invite them?

That’s a sticky one.   An invitation generally means the expectation of a gift, and you don’t want people to think they have to give a gift even though they can’t attend.  If you still want to send an invitation, add a small note that this invitation is sent just as a keepsake.

Can I have my mother walk me down the aisle?

You can have anyone who is significant to you walk you down the aisle.  You can even walk alone or with more than one person.

How do I deal with guests who ask to bring kids even after we’ve made it clear they’re not invited?

Call or email your guests and explain that the invitation was just for adults only.  It’s not fair to other guests if you make an exception.  The flower girl and ring bearer are the only allowable exceptions.

How can I back out of my agreement to be a bridesmaid?

First of all, you need to talk with the bride regarding the situation.  Other than illness, family emergency or work demand, it’s not acceptable to back out once you’ve committed.  Even when you have disagreements with the bride during the wedding planning, you are expected to live up to your commitment.

Does only the Maid of Honor host the bridal shower?

Bridesmaids, Mother of the Bride, Mother of the Groom, Close Friends, Co-Workers – just about anyone can host a bridal shower.

When I invited a single friend do I automatically invite a +1?

If you know that your single friend is in a committed relationship then it is the right move to extend the invitation to their partner.  Single friends who are in a more casual relationship (or no relationship) do not need the courtesy of an additional +1 invite.