Thursday, March 27, 2014

Q&A Bachelorette Parties

Over the past few months, I have received a couple of different messages from friends with questions regarding bachelorette party etiquette. Let me just say first, that I love it when people ask me questions about anything wedding or bridal party related. I try to be as helpful and honest as possible when giving my opinion on the situation.

Here are the questions--

"I'm getting together my list of the bachelorette party. I wanted to invite school friends, but we can't fit even half into the wedding guest list. Is it okay to invite them to the bachelorette party, but not the wedding?

My response was something like this:
"In my opinion this would be a little taboo. Typically when you are inviting guests to showers or parties it is expected that they will be invited to the wedding also. I think that most guests assume this as well. However, some people feel that the bachelorette party guest list is a little different because it's more of a fun night out on the town and you should invite whoever you want! The ultimate decision is up to you of course and whatever you are comfortable with."

Meagan told me she was leaning towards the first option, but she was most concerned about hurt feelings. That is something I have heard from several brides, but it would be impossible to invite everyone you know or everyone you have ever met to your wedding without the expense becoming outrageous. Every bride has their own budget and I think that is something folks need to realize. Just because you were close to someone once upon a time, that doesn't mean you are going to be invited to their special day (too harsh?).

The other question was related to do asking party guests to chip in:
"I've called about 8 different limo services asking for quotes. When you did this for the other bachelorette party, did you ask all of the guests to pitch in or did you pay for it all? ...I didn't know how you would go about asking everyone to pitch in if that's even appropriate. Obviously, I wouldn't ask the bride to pitch in!"

My response?
"I asked everyone to pitch in. I think it's kind of expected that for bachelorette parties all the guests chip in for things like that. Weddings and all things wedding related cost a lot and I think people expect to pay a good bit of money for these activities. For this, I would send everyone a message and let them know the plan in advance and what they might be expected to pay for (and how much)."

Something I should have added was that the price should still be as reasonable as possible. For example, if you only have 5 guests, try to avoid a really costly hotel that would be expensive even when split between everyone. I always try to be conscious of things like this. When I'm thinking of costs I usually think, "Would I be okay with this if someone asked me to pay this much?" (I think Emily ended up going with a taxi service to save some $$ because it was a small group)

Now, really these are just my own opinions on the matter. In the end the bridesmaid or bride should do whatever they are most comfortable with planning or asking people to contribute to the event.

I hope this was a little helpful for anyone out there planning a bachelorette party or shower.

Are there etiquette questions coming to mind after reading this?? Let me know and I will do my best to help out!

Monday, March 24, 2014

Monograms & Mimosas

This weekend was filled with wedding festivities and some time fulfilling my bridesmaid duties!

Myself and the Matron of Honor, Jenny, put together a Monograms and Mimosas shower for Brittany and it turned out beautiful! This is a great shower to throw for your bride if she loves monogrammed apparel and mimosas (but then again, who doesn't love mimosas?!). 

Here is the invite with the monogram info we sent out and a photo of a delicious mimosa: 

Since Jenny and I were hosting together, we split up all of the duties- I was in charge of all the decorations and Jenny put together the menu. The hit food items were tortellini salad  and spinach and artichoke bites. They were so delicious and everyone loved them, along with all the other food!

As soon as Brittany requested this shower, I envisioned the exact decorations I wanted (thankfully Jenny is easy going and loved it all!) and they turned out pretty much exactly as I had pictured. 

I used scrap book paper to make the banners- to me it's the best deal and it always looks so good. You can cut it into any shape/size and there are different patterns and textures you can choose from. Plus, Hobby Lobby has a great selection that is inexpensive and occasionally on sale. 

I had these great drink dispensers that allow you to add decorations to the bottom-how awesome is that? You can change the decorations to match the decor of whatever event you might be hosting. 

We had plenty of champagne, but we also made sure to have some sparkling white grape juice for the junior bridesmaid or anyone else who didn't want alcohol (the junior bridesmaid-and her mom- really appreciated it!). 

The honorary bridesmaid, Kristina couldn't make it to the shower, but she did make these adorable chalkboards to add to the decor: 

We didn't play any of your typical bridal shower games because we had a small group who knew each other already, so the shower consisted mostly of girl talk over mimosas. 

However, we did have an ongoing game throughout the shower titled, "Bridezilla," that I found here on Pinterest. It consisted of having to wear the silly tiara if you were caught saying any of the 'taboo' wedding words like, "wedding," "bride," dress," etc etc. Let's just say, it got passed around a LOT! 

Here is the beautiful bride wearing the dreaded head piece (although, she totally pulled it off in my opinion!):

All in all it turned out amazing and the bride got some of the cutest monogram gifts! I ordered her an adorable monogram beach hat from Etsy-perfect for the upcoming honeymoon!

I was so pleased with how all the decorations turned out and the food was so delicious. I highly recommend the M&M shower to anyone looking for a fun shower plan.

We ended the day by fulfilling some of the classic bridesmaid duties, including putting together favors, goodie bags for the hotel, and labels for the 'dancing shoes.' It was actually really fun and basically a slumber party. We were paid in pizza and wine- which, I don't know about you, but that is good payment in my book! 

**Be on the lookout for a post about the upcoming bachelorette party and nuptials**

Friday, March 14, 2014

March Wedding Madness

The title of this blog post represents my life this month-there is so much wedding stuff going on for so many of my friends! You may have been preparing your brackets for March Madness, but that is nothing compared to preparing my calendar for the month of March.

I attended my friend Brittany's (insert link) bridal shower a couple weeks ago and it was lovely!! It was headed by her mom and a family friend and they did such a great job with food (it was delicious), decorations (adorable, especially the printed paper straws), and the yummy champagne punch (who doesn't love a boozy punch??). 

As the Maid of Honor in Brittany's wedding, I have been preparing for all my shower duties, but she also has a Matron of Honor. We split up the typical bridal shower duties- I was in charge of collecting bows for the rehearsal bouquet and handing the bride her gifts, while Jenny wrote the list of names and gifts for thank you cards. I have to say that having another MOH has been awesome!

I also attended Amber and Joe's engagement party (which you can read a little more about on Amber's blog). One of the other bridesmaids hosted and it turned out to be amazing!! She had the cutest decorations and a whole smorgasbord of food that was scrumptious and homemade! I was completely impressed.

My boyfriend and I brought the standard gift of a bottle of booze, but I also made Amber a ring dish (with her soon-to-be new initials) following the idea from this blog post. It turned out so adorable:
Needless to say, this month has really been testing my MOH credentials, but I have enjoyed every minute of it so far and I have felt like a success!

At the end of this month, I will be attending a friend's wedding and I am not in the bridal party. I can't wait to attend that wedding and help to celebrate my the big day as a guest! 

Next weekend, Jenny and I are throwing a Monograms and Mimosas shower for Brittany. We have been planning it for months and I can't wait to blog about it. 

Be on the look out for photos soon! 

Monday, March 10, 2014

Golden Birthday

I hate how absent I have been from the blogging world. I don't even want to admit how long it's been...

My only excuse is the start of my new job! I have been so busy learning all about my new job duties in crisis assessment and about the company I am working for. So exciting! 

Besides that, I have been involved in wedding stuff galore during this glorious month of March and it's only about half way over! I have been to an engagement party and a bridal shower and there is still more to come that I will be blogging about soon- I promise!!

I'm not sure if I mentioned this, but I also want to blog about other events that I plan or that I am involved in and any good DIY, recipes, decorations etc. that I come across. 

Hence the name of this blog post about my golden birthday party [for those who don't know what a golden birthday is, it's when your age is the same as your birthdate. For me, I turned 26 on the 26th of February]. 

I had a big party and a lot of friends came to town to celebrate with me. We had it at our favorite restaurant in downtown Milledgeville- Amici- and reserved the upstairs party space. 

The theme was all gold and black to fit with the golden birthday theme. Even my dress fit in with the theme! 
I made black and gold flag banners out of scrap book paper (from Hobby Lobby of course) and we set up an awesome photo booth complete with props:
I also made the glittering gold numbers from craft supplies at Hobby Lobby:
Not to mention these delicious chocolate cupcakes with gold sprinkles and gold wrappers... YUM!

All in all, it was a successful birthday and I recommend everyone take advantage of an opportunity to celebrate their golden birthday. If anything, it's an excuse to dress up and make fun treats! 

I can't wait to blog about the bridal shower and engagement party I attended recently. They were so beautiful and fun! I have also had a few friends ask me questions about etiquette, so be on the look out for a Q&A post! 

I have missed you blog!! I promise to never neglect you like this again!