A Few of My Favorite Things | Chanel Coco Mademoiselle

My sister-in-law recently introduced me to what is now my favorite perfume on the planet, Chanel Coco Mademoiselle!  Of any fragrance I've ever worn, from my Bath & Body Works Sheer Freesia days in high school to Philosophy's Amazing Grace on my wedding day, the soft and clean scent is my favorite thing about this perfume!  

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Choosing Your Bridal Party

"A friend is what the heart needs all the time."
-Henry Van Dyke

It's Wedding Wednesday!  Today's post is going to be short, sweet and to the point, with a few tips for my wedding couples out there.  While choosing your bridal party, there are a lot of things to consider when thinking about who will stand by your side as your say your vows and start this next chapter of your life with your new spouse.  

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When considering who you want these people to be, think about choosing people who you trust, who are organized, and also helpful!  Wedding days can be a bit hectic (especially before the events of the day truly begin!), so having people around who are willing to help keep you on track is something you will be thankful for when the day finally arrives.  Think about your relationships with family and friends.  Who do you have a strong bond with?  Who do you go to for opinions or advice?

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Many of us have a lot of people we're close with, which makes it that much harder to narrow down who we want in our bridal party.  I've photographed weddings with bridal parties that included 20+ people (not counting the bride and groom)!  I know we often don't want any friends or family feeling left out if they're not asked to join the bridal party, but let's be real here for a second... the bigger the bridal party, the more hectic things can get-- I'm not even talking about on the actual wedding day.  As much as Arturo and I would have loved to include more people in our bridal party, we decided to keep it smaller and more intimate, with three groomsmen, three bridesmaids, a junior bridesmaid and a flower girl.

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If nothing else, choose friends and family members whose presence makes you laugh and fills you with happiness.  A joyful wedding party will make all the difference in your wedding photographs!

If you enjoyed this post, be sure to see more wedding planning tips here!

Wedding Day Tips: Day of Reminders

It's Wedding Wednesday!

Your wedding day is finally here.  The planning is finished, and today you'll be embarking on a new chapter of your lives together, celebrating this wonderful day with your friends and family!  Somehow, during the time we're getting ready, we forget all of that.  While we're getting ready for the day's events, we somehow still manage to stress and panic about the tiniest of details.  As a past bride, I have some wedding day tips for you to keep your nerves in check! 

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1. Get good rest the night before your wedding.
Your wedding day is busy and hectic at times.  Trust me, you'll want to get a good night's sleep to keep you going throughout the day!  If you're the bride, you and your bridesmaids will start the wedding prep much earlier than the guys (on most occasions, they relax and watch football all morning, and only need an hour or so to get ready!).  

2. Pack snacks for wedding preparation.
To help keep your energy levels up, don't forget to pack snacks!  Often times as the bride, we have so much going through our heads that we forget to eat.  On my wedding day, I totally forgot all about food (luckily my sister (and maid of honor) had me covered!).  Without it I don't know how I would have made it through the day!  My husband and I were busy greeting each of our guests during most of the dinner hour, and only had a few bites of our meals.  Since this is quite often the case, don't forget to pack something healthy and easy to eat while you're getting ready!  Also, you won't want to get dehydrated, so remember to bring water, with straws so your lipstick looks flawless!

3. Have a bridal wedding day kit filled with the essentials.
Again, I'm lucky my sister, had my back on this one!  She packed a basket filled with all kinds of things, including items I never would have thought to bring with me: aspirin for headaches, a protein bar to keep me going, water, a travel sewing kit with scissors (at the very least, you'll want the scissors to cut tags off of dresses and such), band aids, lip balm, hand lotion, tissues and more!  Trust me, you'll want to have more than enough tissues around.  You WILL shed tears of joy, laughter and excitement on your wedding day, and you'll want to avoid your mascara from running down your face!

4. Get all of your details together before your photographer arrives.
To keep your wedding day timeline flowing nicely, be sure to gather your details together and have them ready for your photographer before they arrive.  Trust me, they will thank you for it!  Bridal details include the rings (engagement and both wedding bands), shoes, jewelry, dress, veil, hair pieces, bouquet, perfume, wedding invitation suite (including the save the date), as well as your something old, new, borrowed and blue.  Grooms, this means you too!  The groom's details usually include tie or bow tie, cufflinks, watch, shoes, cologne and boutineer.  Don't forget to gather any personalized items that you had made for the day, too!

5. Stick to your timeline!
As I mentioned above, you want your wedding day timeline to go as smoothly as possible.  When writing your timeline, always keep in mind that it's better to allow for extra time for each part of the day than to cut everything short.  Being short on time only causes stress for the bride and groom, which is the last thing you need on your wedding day!  If you have to travel from a wedding prep location to a ceremony location to a reception venue, you'll want to allow for extra travel time, just in case of traffic (knock on wood!).  Be sure that your bridal party and essential family members are aware of the timeline, so everyone knows where they have to be and when.  The more organized you are, the more efficiently your day will go!  This helps tremendously when it comes to allotted times for photos.  You want to be sure you have plenty of time for bridal party formals, family photos, as well as time alone for romantic wedding couple portraits.

6. Don't let stress get the best of you.
As brides, we've spent so much time planning the details, that we want everything to be perfect on our big day.  I hate to say it, but wedding days aren't perfect.  When you think about it, nothing in life is absolutely perfect!  And that's totally okay!  Trust me, I've been here.  I spent countless hours imagining how every minute of my wedding day would go.  When I realized that none of my wedding guests blew the bubbles I had left out for them when my husband and I shared our first kiss, yes, I was bummed (because I know they would have looked AMAZING for a ceremony exit photo), but I was more excited about the fact that I had just married the love of my life!  The important thing to remember is to not get hung up on the little details.  Wedding days have hiccups.  That doesn't mean you can't enjoy the day that will be one of the best in your life!

7. Breathe, smile and have fun!
IT'S YOUR WEDDING DAY!  You've planned for months, and now is the time to celebrate.  Bask in the love from your family and friends that will surround you and your partner on this beautiful day!

Past brides, what wedding day advice do you have to offer to brides-to-be?

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