Posts Tagged ‘Wedding Ideas’

The Etiquette of Thank You Notes in Our Uber Electronic Age

Friday, February 21st, 2014

In our world today, we communicate at lightning speed with as few words or even complete sentences as possible!  Who would have thought we would all be so attuned to staying in touch this way?

“Tweet, Pin and Post” to your heart’s desire to extend your gratitude but, when it comes to gifts, a hand-written note is still the most gracious and, frankly, expected way to express appreciation!   The Emily Post Institute remains firm on this social must as do all the prevailing bridal and wedding experts.

Why the Hand-Written Note?

The hand-written note is the most thoughtful way to recognize both gifts and special things that folks have done, exemplary service and niceties that clearly show someone went over and above just for you!

Your friends, family and anyone involved in making your “Big Day” one to remember will be touched and delighted to receive your personal, hand-written reflections.  Sending a thank you note in an era when folks rarely sit down to write will go a long way to make someone feel over-the-top special!   And trust us when we say that this gesture will be spoken of holding you in highest regard!

When and How to Send

Thank you notes  should be sent no later than 3 months after the receipt of a gift, and ideally they should be written as each gift is received.  Adopt the habit early on of sending thank-you notes in this manner and you will be at ease knowing that no gift will be left unacknowledged!

To Whom Should Thank You Notes Be Sent?

Notes recognizing those many kindnesses and extraordinary services you have no doubt received are equally important.  By no means all-encompassing, the list of those to whom notes should be sent may include your bridal attendants, parents and other relatives, vendors and service providers, caterer, baker, stylist, entertainer, officiant, and photographer.

How Best to Accomplish

Both the bride and groom should share in thank you note writing – it can be a daunting task and splitting the work load will not only make it easier, but help to keep your thoughts fresh and genuine.  If one of you does not have the gift of the written word, perhaps thank you note duties can divided based upon what each person does well.   If the bride is doing all the writing, perhaps the groom can take charge of assembly and mailing.  And yes, these notes really should be  addressed and either mailed or hand-delivered.

Stationery and Wording

Appropriate stationery is a must!    Form letters won’t do here!  Acknowledge the actual gift in your note, mentioning it by name and giving at least one example of how you plan to use it. If you receive a cash gift, you may thank the sender for their “gracious gift” and generally do not  mention the actual amount or form. Be utterly positive, never convey disappointment with a gift, nor tell the sender that you plan to return or exchange their item.

Stationery selection can be such fun!   Have notes that you love on hand as soon as your engagement is announced.  You will need them sooner than you think!

Be sure to order your wedding thank you notes well before the big day. Choose whimsical or heartfelt motifs or set the tone for future correspondence with an elegant, custom monogrammed card with your new initials.   If you plan to send wedding photos with or as part of a card, make arrangements to have those in your possession as quickly after the wedding as possible, as you should not delay your notes while waiting for photos.

Advantage Bridal features dozens of varieties of personalized and pre-printed thank you note cards and stationery. Be it a beach or tropical theme, a classic monogram or embossed name or just a fun motif reminiscent of your wedding, express your appreciation in a style that is uniquely yours and conveys in a thoughtful way, your gratitude for your generous guests.

 For the Beach or Tropical Bride and Groom!  

From the Bride

Share a Motif

Lovely Whimsical Vintage Appeal

Never Forgetting Kindnesses Great and Small…

 Your Signature Style that Can Be Your Stationery Calling Card Long After the Big Day!

Finding the Right Gown for Your Shape

Monday, January 16th, 2012

Photo: Alicia Shields

The ring has been bought, the question popped and now the fun begins….finding the perfect dress!  But before you try on dresses that don’t flatter your figure, take some time to review these do’s and don’ts of finding the right dress for your shape.

Remember: Your actual body type will remain the same even if you’re planning to drop 20 pounds before exchanging vows.  With that in mind, choose the gown that fits your body type today.

Got an Hourglass Figure?  Do you have a big chest, big hips, and a thin waist?  Yes? Then an A-line wedding dress with a dropped waist will show off your figure perfectly! For an even more flattering look pair your gown with a sweetheart neckline to show off your chest. Want something a little more daring if you are on the  curvaceous side?  Try a fit-and-flare gown like a mermaid or trumpet style and your curves will knock ‘em dead!  But don’t get too carried away.  Run from A ball gown or Empire-waist silhouette that may make you look disproportioned.

Are you Short Waisted?  Or is your body naturally proportioned, except for the small distance from your ribs to your hips? Your best bet is probably a Princess-line silhouette – a gown that is fitted at the bodice and opening up gradually to a full skirt.  This will elegantly elongate your figure.  Your neckline of choice would be a portrait or halter neckline to show off your shoulders.  If this doesn’t suit your taste, try a slightly dropped-waist gown.  This type of gown will also lengthen your torso. Stay away from a sheath gown that will accentuate your short waist.

Is your Waist Thick?  The rules of a short waisted gown apply but instead of a short waist, yours is not as clearly defined.  The line from your shoulders to your hips is straight.  Don’t lose heart!  An Empire-waist wedding dress will deemphasize your waistline and give you a long, lean look.  For you, your best bet is to steer clear of a Princess-line or basque waist.  Both of these styles will draw too much attention to your middle.

Are you a Full Figure?  You are probably more voluptuous than most.  You’ve got full breasts, a bit of a tummy, as well as round hips and butt.  The gown for you will probably be a ball gown wedding dress.  This style of gown will hide quite a bit.  Also, remember an A-line silhouette looks great on everyone.   Just try to avoid a sheath gown.  This will make you look heavier than you are.  Also, avoid spaghetti straps.

Is your Body Pear Shaped?  Are you small on top and heavy on the bottom?  A basque waist or strapless ball gown will cover your bottom half and draw the focus on your better half.  An Empire dress is also a safe bet for you.  It will hug the tiniest part of your body and disguise your lower half.   Run away from the sheath type of gown.  A sheath, frankly, will be unflattering. Also, a trumpet- or mermaid-style gown will draw attention to your bottom.

Are you Thin?  No matter if you’re short or tall, there’s not a whole lot of meat on your bones.   Your perfect style of dress is a ball gown.  A ball gown will make you look like a fairy-tale princess.  Another style of dress that will complement your figure perfectly is a sheath dress.  Almost all silhouettes will flatter your figure, but stay away from portrait, off-the-shoulder, or halter necklines if your collarbone is too bony.

And last but not least…Is your body type Petite?  You’re probably not the star of the basketball team.  You’re body has a tiny frame.  For you, your best bet is to keep it simple.  When you’re small, a big, elaborate gown can sometimes look as if it’s wearing you rather than the other way around. A sheath or A-line dress will work well.  Keep in mind, almost all silhouettes will flatter your figure, though a big ball gown may overwhelm.

Have fun as you prepare to find the perfect gown for your big day!  Advantage Bridal wants to help you in every way possible!

Save With A Budget Friendly Wedding

Friday, October 7th, 2011
Budget Wedding, Cheap Wedding, Inexpensive Wedding, Save on Wedding

Budget Wedding, Cheap Wedding, Inexpensive Wedding, Save on Wedding

These days, the new trend is not how much you spend on your wedding, but how much you save.  Couples nationwide have proved that it can be done for significantly less than the $27,000 average cost of wedding, without skimping on the details.  Think you can do it?

It’s possible to plan a budget wedding, but you need a plan and discipline to stick to your wedding budget.  Everything else should fall into place.  Remember, the most important aspect of your wedding day is the vows between you and your husband to be; the rest just makes it more special.  The key is to know your budget, stick to it and negotiate with vendors!  They want the business as much as you want what they’re offering.

Planning a budget wedding:

1.  Marry in the off-season on any day but Saturday.

2. Cut the guest list: don’t worry about pleasing distant relatives and acquaintances.

3. Hold the wedding ceremony and wedding reception at the same venue.

4. Larger reception tables means fewer centerpieces and tablecloths.

5. Shop for décor in the off-season or look for great deals with online vendors, such as Advantage Bridal.

6. Use more greenery and in-season flowers.  Skip costly flowers and stick to one or two varieties or go green with potted plants/flowers.

7. Evening weddings cost more and so do dinner menus, but a day wedding with lunch can cut costs in half.

8.  Serve appetizers and drinks rather than the main course.

9.  An open bar equals more money, but a cash bar gives guests the option to drink while footing the bill.  Or, place a bottle of red and white wine on each table and skip the champagne toast.

10.  Serve sheet cake with a smaller, decorated cake for pictures.

11.  DIY invitations (stationary), favors and other wedding accessories take more time, but the payoff is well worth it.

12. Shop bridal trunk shows, revamp a vintage wedding dress or buy a gently used gown for significantly less.

13.  Photographers cost a pretty penny, but there are definitely ways to save here and still get quality photos.  You don’t really need two photographers, which skyrockets costs.  Or ask about using a photographer’s assistant instead.

14.  Look for entertainment vendors willing to bargain.  Many universities have student musicians who can play at your wedding for less than traditional vendors (ask the music department for a list).

15.  Skip the extras!  You might feel like you must have it, but sometimes less is more.

You are only limited by your imagination when planning an unforgettable but budget friendly wedding.  Advantage Bridal is recognized as one of the top online vendors with great customer service and value.  We want you to enjoy the wedding of your dreams. Search our website for wedding ideas and great deals on wedding invitations, bridal accessories, bridal party gifts, flower girl baskets, bridal shoes, wedding flip flops, bridal garters, bridal head pieces and much, much more.  We sell almost everything but the dress!

South Orange County Bridal Fair Sunday, May 22

Saturday, May 21st, 2011

Come visit Advantage Bridal and more than 30 wedding vendors at Bridal Fair By The Sea from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, May 22. Hosted at the Dana Point Sailing & Events Center, the Romance on the Water event features an intimate setting to “relax, sip champagne and explore the latest wedding ideas.” Tickets are $10 in advance and $15 at the door.

Brides-to-be, come see Advantage Bridal in the courtyard to see how to plan your dream wedding. Bridal Fair By The Sea welcomes guest speaker Robert Evans, a celebrity photographer who recently shot Blake Shelton and Miranda Lambert for US Weekly. You don’t want to miss this event exclusively for today’s brides!

Wedding Idea: Candy Buffet & Dessert Bars

Saturday, March 5th, 2011

Here’s some sweet inspiration for your wedding reception, bridal shower or wedding rehearsal party. Custom Candy Buffet and Dessert Bars by the Hollywood Candy Girls, as they’re called in L.A., cater to the guests’ sweet tooth. Brides and grooms can still have their wedding cake and eat it, too. Candy buffet and dessert bars are an added indulgence that allow guests to bring home a sweet treat after the wedding. They can be coordinated to match your wedding theme, complete with signage, tables and all the sweets one could imagine! The candy buffet and dessert bar is a unique wedding idea that is becoming a popular staple at the wedding reception. We love wedding ideas that showcase creativity and out-of-the-box reception options. And who didn’t love going to the candy store when they were a kid?

TIPS FOR CREATING A CANDY BUFFET by Hollywood Candy Girl Jackie:

  • Pick a theme or color scheme that will serve as direction when picking out props, candy colors and treats.
  • Locate a space that is visible to your guests, which will allow your candy buffet to be a beautiful decorative addition to your event (i.e. a foyer, existing bar or on a patio).
  • Select interesting vessels and containers for your candy. They don’t have to be the same; mix them up but make sure they all flow together. Vintage shops & thrift stores are great for finding interesting pieces.
  • Select your candy by color, and you may want to include some custom treats that are made in your color scheme or theme from a local bakery.
  • Don’t forget scoops & tongs ~ always keep it clean.
  • Provide your guests with goody bags or boxes to grab some treats as a to-go favor!

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Wedding Trends for 2011

Tuesday, January 18th, 2011


Model 2022 from Benjamin Roberts with trumpet skirt

Everyone wants to be in the know when it comes to setting trends.  Advantage Bridal has been watching the newest collections for 2011 and has spotted some styles, features and embellishments that we think are going to be big for 2011.

In 2010 it was predicted that sleeves would make a showing but it didn’t happen as big as was anticipated.  However, romance continues to be the theme in collections of such designers as Reem Acra and Vera Wang.  These designers are trying to capture the inner royalty of us all and we trend followers think that the royalty reign will continue for some time!

The influence of vintage on the bridal world translates to lace continuing to be a major part of this year’s gowns.  But don’t think that everyone will go the way of the past.  Short, cocktail style wedding dresses will be adorning those city-style weddings!

For the curvier bride, trumpet skirts are coming to the rescue.  Much like the antiquated mermaid style of bridal gown, the trumpet skirt adds a modern flair by marking out the curves on the bride while adding a great touch of flair at the bottom of her gown.

Ruffles and off the shoulder dresses are sure to be huge this year!  Which can only mean one thing…look for interesting backs on gowns.  Details are important as is the use of color in this year’s gowns.  Veils are sure to get more dramatic and add interesting touches to otherwise simple gowns.

Keep checking and relying on Advantage Bridal for up to date insider tips to the wedding industry!

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