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Mark Your Calendars! Northern California Bridal Fairs

11 May

Northern California Bridal Fairs

If you haven’t attended a Bridal Fair, you are missing out on a lot of fun! No matter where you are in your planning stages, it is can be  helpful to see all of the different vendors in your area.

Take the opportunity to meet local wedding professionals , and see first hand what they have to offer.  Local Photographers,  Venues,  Bakeries,  Event Coordinators,  Salons, Dress Boutiques, Caterers, DJ’s and many more will be there to answer your questions. Many catering companies, and bakeries offer samples and tastings, and there will most likely be champagne, wine, or other beverages available while you browse.

Take part in the raffles & drawings to win fun prizes, and look for some exclusive discounts. Many of the vendors will be offering promotions if you book with them at the Bridal Fair or within a certain amount of time after, so don’t be afraid to ask them what deals they are offering.

Okay Ladies & Gentlemen, Mark your calendars!

August 14, 2011
Silver Dollar Fairgrounds, Chico

September 18, 2011
Yuba-Sutter Fairgrounds, Yuba City

December 4, 2011
Red Bluff Community Center, Red Bluff

January 15, 2012
Silver Dollar Fairgrounds, Chico

For Ticket Information, Vendor & Exhibit Info, Maps and more details visit WeddingsNorthValley.com
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Contemporary Bridal Show by Brilliant Celebrations

Sunday, September 25, 2011
The Atrium, 1670 Market Street, Redding CA

For more information, visit  Brilliant Celebrations
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Dream Wedding Show

  • February 26, 2012
  • Cal Expo, 1600 Exposition Blvd., Sacramento CA 95815
  • Exhibits open 11 a – 4 p. Over 150 Wedding Vendors
  • Fashion shows at 10:15 – 12:30 – 2:30. All are different

For more information, check out Dream Wedding Show
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Check back for more wedding show details!

We would love to hear how you’re Bridal Fair experience was,  so come back and leave us a comment!

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2012 Spring Bridal Fashion Week

10 May

Ok ladies, those of you who dream of the perfect wedding gown should be excited because 2012 is going to bring you a lot of options!

We are willing to bet you will bring a tear to your mom’s eyes when she sees her little girl all grown up, looking like a princess in one of these ball gowns.

Ball Gowns and dramatic A-Lines have made quite the comeback, and have been featured in many of the most popular designer’s collections such as Vera Wang, Ines Di Santo, Lazaro, Marchesa and so many more.   Also, if you are not afraid to break the mold, you will love the idea of not wearing white on your big day.  Gowns have graced the runway in gray, purple, champagne, pink & even light blue!

Check out some of the top designers, and their beautiful gowns! Remember, that even if your local dress boutique doesn’t carry some of these names, it is helpful to find styles that you like so that you know what you are looking for when you go dress shopping.

It is a good idea to cut out some pictures of dresses and styles you like, and show them to the bridal consultant at the dress shop because it will help her find the perfect gown for you!

Marchesa

2012 Marchesa

Vera Wang
2011 Vera Wang

2011 Vera Wang

Ines Di Santo
2012 Ines Di Danto

Monique Lhuiller
Monique Lhuillier 2012

Lazaro
2012 Lazaro

Alvina Valenta

Kenneth Pool
2012 Kenneth Pool

Pronovias
2012 Pronovias

Alita Graham
2012 Alita Graham

Justin Alexander
2012 Justin Alexander

Don’t forget to check out our Vendor Directory for your local dress shops!

Style Trend: Manzanita Branches & Wishing Trees

9 May

Wishing trees have become a popular feature of event decor for baby showers and weddings.  Have you ever wondered where the tradition of wishing trees came from?  Some say that it is a Dutch tradition, but we have seen many styles of wishing trees from various cultures for many different reasons aside from weddings. For example, we found that as part of a Lam Tsuen tradition, Wish-makers write their wishes on red paper “josses,” which are offerings dedicated to Chinese deities.

No matter where the tradition comes from, it is a beautiful sight to see a tree filled with thoughts and well-wishes dedicated to your new life as husband and wife!  With so many fun ways to decorate and make it your own, a wishing tree can be a great focal point for your event.  A word of advice is to leave instructions for your guests, so that they know that you would like them to write on the cards and hang it on the tree. 

Whether you are using manzanita branches, or a living tree you should be able to find relatively inexpensive ways to decorate it.  Although if you plan to use crystals, you may want to opt to rent the strings of crystals rather than buying them yourself (they can get pricey!)

We found these photos inspiring!


Manzanita Branches can be painted to match your decor, and you can use them as centerpieces as well.

Many Decor & Event Staging vendors will have wishing trees available to rent, but if you would like to make one yourself here is what you will need.  Most of the materials can be found at your local craft store, or for large amounts of manzanita branches check out this website: Blooms and Branches.  They also have moss, curly willow, votive candles, vases, birch branches & centerpiece kits.

– Large manzanita branch or several small branches, which can be painted to match your decor.  If you are having a more      natural style theme, you won’t need to paint the branches because they are a nice deep red color on their own.
– Paint for the branches
– Glitter, if you would like the tree to really shine!
– Strands of Crystals, (or create your own with fishing wire & crystals or beads.)
– Add flowers or greenery depending on your theme.
– Vase, try to find a sturdy vase with a wide base so that it is less likely to tip over.

Okay now you have created your own wishing tree!

For some great aisle decor ideas, check out this great website Koyal Wholesale.  They have some couture designs for walking down the aisle!

Sources:

Lam Tsuen Tradition ( http://www.com.cuhk.edu.hk/varsity/0003/culture2.htm)
http://www.herecomesthebride.com
http://www.theoaks.com
http://www.cupidsarrow.com

Let’s talk about Mom’s…

8 May

It’s Mothers Day, so it is only fitting that today we talk about the Mother of the Bride and their role in the wedding planning process.

So what are the responsibilities of the mother of the bride?

First, she needs to be so excited and supportive of her daughter. She is taking one of the biggest steps in her life and will need her mother to be her guide, confidant and supporter.

This is a time for her to make her decisions with what she wants, not what Mom wants. Offering advice is one thing, taking over is another.

This can be a fun experience for Mother and Daughter if Mom can let go of the control and enjoy the process. It can be magical when she chooses her wedding dress, sees the perfect flower arrangement and finds the right venue. These will be moments to be  treasured forever.

There will be times when all engagement etiquette can go out the window. This is when the bride and groom have reached levels of stress that they never imagined they could find,  Mom should try to be the calming force in the engagement.

Other than being a great support for the bride, there are other mother of the bride etiquette items to follow. These will help move the planning and execution of the wedding along smoothly.

  • Budget~ if Mom is helping fund the wedding, she will need to sit down with the bride and groom to determine the wedding budget. This needs to be done right away and throughout the engagement.
  • Mother of the Groom~ if she does not contact Mom, Mom should contact her. It is a good idea for her to establish a good relationship with his mother.
  • Guest List~ compiling a guest list quickly is a good thing to do. There will be people that are important to Mom that she wants to include that the Bride may not know.
  • The Dress~ Once the bride has chosen her dress and colors, Mom will need to select her dress. Good mother of the bride etiquette will have her in a long, modest dress that fits in with the colors the bridehas selected. Once Mom has chosen your dress, let the mother of the groom know so she can select hers.
  • Accommodations~ It is one of Mom’s jobs to help the bride’s guests make travel and hotel arrangements for the wedding day. If there are a number of guests coming in from out of town, reserving a block of rooms at a nearby hotel will be the best bet.
  • Ceremony Instructions~ Make sure that the wedding party has instructions for the ceremony. This will include the seating arrangements, the order of the receiving line and any other requests the bride has. Making sure the wedding party shows good wedding etiquette is very important.
  • Enjoy!~ Last but not least enjoy the day! The Bride may be the princess for the day, but remember Mom is the queen. Take the time to cherish the occasion and the people who are sharing it.

Girls Just Want To Have Fun!

5 May

That’s right girls just want to have fun, and wear pretty dresses of course! So what is better than one beautiful dress on your big day? Two Dresses! Lady Gaga is not the only one allowed to make wardrobe changes, so we say go for it!

Wedding dresses are beautiful bottom line.  However, they are not very comfortable for the most part, so opting for a cocktail dress may save you some unnecessary agony.  Choosing a cocktail dress to change into, shows a little more personality, adds more photo op’s, and you will most likely be able to move a little more freely on the dance floor.

Cocktail dresses can be any style you want, and any color you want!  If cocktail dresses aren’t for you, consider looking at these next dresses as options for your bridesmaids.  It is great for bridesmaids when they get to wear a dress for your wedding that they can wear again!




Bridal Party Fashion

3 May

As a bride you get to choose a few of your closest friends or family members to join your bridal party, and share a special part of your day with you. Part of the fun for both the bride and the bridesmaids, is choosing the bridesmaid dresses.  How can you not have a blast while trying on dresses 3 sizes to small for you in some very unflattering colors! Traditionally all of the bridesmaids will wear the same dress in the same color, and wear matching accessories.  More and More, we are seeing brides choose an alternate route.  Brides are opting for the bridesmaids to either wear varying styles of dresses in the same color, or have them wear any style of dress in a range of similar hues.  These options not only allow each bridesmaid to choose a style that best suits her body style, but it also shows a lot of personality and spunk.  Throw some flashy and colorful heels into the mix for some extra flare.

It is never too early to start thinking details such as your bridal party’s attire. In most cases it takes up to 3 months if not longer, to get your dresses after they have been ordered.  If your wedding falls in the prime wedding months such as April through June, or September through November, there may even be a bit of a delay because the manufacturers may get backed up. Think of colors, and styles that will compliment you and your dress, as well as your overall theme.

Chic One Shoulder dresses are in style right now, as well as gray, metallic, and purple tones.

Brides, if you are racking your brain on what to get your bridesmaids consider picking out matching necklaces or accessories for them to wear.  If you do decide to buy jewelry for your bridesmaids, consider buying jewelry that will stand out from far away and in pictures.

Here are some of the popular designers for Bridesmaid dresses that you should be able to find in your local Wedding Dress Shops.

Alfred Angelo
Davids Bridal
The Dessy Group (After Six, Alfred Sung, Lela Rose, & Cynthia Rowley)
Jessica McClintock
Mori Lee

For help finding local dress shops, check out our Directory!

Diamonds 101

2 May

An exciting part of getting married, is sharing your proposal story and wedding plans with all of your closest friends and family.  As soon as the word is out that you are engaged, people are going to want to see that ring of yours!! Guys, if you have met your match and are planning on popping the question please take a few minutes to learn the basics about diamonds.  This is going to help you be a more educated customer when you are in a jewelry store, and it may help ensure that you do not make a bad investment.

Tons of couples plan their weddings together every step of the way, starting with the engagement ring!  Every couple is different, and you may choose leave everything as a surprise, discuss styles & brands but keep the ring itself a surprise, go ring shopping together but the groom makes the final decision, or you may purchase the ring together.  Whatever the case, it is still a good idea to understand what it is that you are paying for when it comes to color and clarity of the stone(s).

First of all, lets look over some of the various styles/cuts of diamonds because they are each very different. We will also show different ring settings, to show each cut of diamond with accents and enhancer bands.  Some people are drawn to certain diamond shapes more than others, and some would prefer a solitaire setting vs. a three stone setting.

If you see the shape that you like, lets move on to the color and clarity charts.  These charts serve as a  grading system for diamonds, which helps the consumer be more confident that they are buying quality merchandise.

The first chart is a Color Grading Chart which shows the range of colors of natural diamonds.  Diamonds that are in the D-F range are colorless stones, G-J are near colorless and so on.  You may not be able to see the difference of color until you start looking at stones from K – R, and stones in the range of S – Z will have a more noticeably yellow tint.
   The Clarity Chart grades a diamond by the amount of imperfections in the stone, both visible by an eye-glass or the naked eye.  Diamonds that are in the FL-IF range are going to be more expensive because they have little to no visible imperfections in the stone. On the opposite end of the spectrum are stones that fall into the I1-I3 range which will have imperfections visible to the naked eye.

There are a lot of online resources for diamonds, each claiming to have the best price on diamonds.  Beware, because many of the photos they use online are not actual pictures of the diamond that you are interested in purchasing.  So make sure no matter where you are planning on shopping for your diamond jewelry, that you ask for the certificate for the stone.  If you are buying it private party (online, classified ads, or a pawn shop) ask to have the diamond appraised.

If you have found the diamond that you know she will love, the next step is to choose which setting you like.  Solitaires are very popular engagement rings, but there are a lot of other beautiful settings to take your time.  Below are examples of round diamonds, in various settings.  First we have a round diamond solitaire, second is a round cut diamond with smaller pave-set diamonds on the side, third is a three-stone round cut diamond ring, and last is an enhancer band, that can be added to a solitaire to create a three-stone look.  Remember the options are endless!

These next rings are from some of the top bridal jewelers, 1. Tacori Emerald Cut Engagement Ring, 2. Ritani Asscher Cut Engagement ring with pave cut diamonds, 3. Verragio Venetian Collection brilliant round cut diamond ring with halo, and pave split-shank band.

Blue Nile has a great website with a design tool, which allows you to build your own ring!  Choose the cut, color & clarity of the diamond in your desired price range, and then choose from different settings to complete your ring.  This is a great tool, because it allows you to narrow down what you like, without having to walk into a jewelry store with the pressure to buy.  Check out Blue Nile’s website here.

We would like to also point out that you don’t have to stick with traditional diamond engagement rings, there are gorgeous canary diamonds, pink diamonds,  sapphires and other natural gems.  Celebrities like Heidi Klum, Paris Hilton and Jennifer Lopez have been spotted wearing canary diamond rings, Mariah Carey, Tara Reid and many other celebrities have flashed some of their pink diamond engagement rings. Kate Middleton’s engagement ring is an 18 carat blue sapphire and diamond ring, which was the same ring that Prince Williams Father gave to the late Princess Diana.

We hope this is a helpful tool for you to use when preparing to purchase an engagement ring, or any piece of jewelry in the future. For local jewelers, click here to be directed to our directory.  If you still have questions, just Ask The 530 Bride!

Creating Your Wedding Playlist

30 Apr

Have you hired a DJ, live band, string quartet, or orchestra for your wedding? Or maybe are you going to take charge of your own music for your event by using CD’s or your Ipod.  Either way, you should still try to get a play-list together to make sure you have songs picked out for some of the highlights of your wedding.  What kind of music have you always dreamed of hearing as you walk down the aisle?

Are you looking for a DJ who will also serve as an MC for your wedding? This person will essentially be the voice of your wedding, as he or she will be keeping the event flowing and announcing your entrance, first dance, cake cutting etc. A good DJ has finesse, and can get all of your guests onto the dance floor, and keep the party going.  Take the opportunity to meet potential DJ companies to ensure that you feel comfortable with their level of professionalism. Don’t be shy about what your expectations are, and determine what equipment is included such as a cordless microphone, lighting effects etc.  Last, make sure your wedding venue has accessible power outlets for the DJ to set up their equipment.

Next, take the opportunity to define your personalities, and set a tone for your event  by choosing great music.  First, make sure you know the basics of wedding ceremony music. TheKnot.com has a great article about wedding music, so we have provided an excerpt here for you. “The most basic wedding ceremony music setup involves a minimum of three types of songs: preludes, processionals, and recessionals. Prelude music is light, ambient music that sets the mood while guests are being seated and waiting for the ceremony to begin. It usually begins when the doors open, or as early as 45 minutes prior to but no later than 20 minutes before the beginning of the ceremony.

Next is the processional, which accompanies the entry of the extended wedding party– family, bridal party, and bride. The same song can be used for each, but we love the idea of changing to another song when the bride enters to add drama and highlight her entrance. At the conclusion of the ceremony, the recessional plays. As the name implies, this music accompanies you as you recess (that is, make your exit) and is traditionally bright and lively — a reflection of your joy. ” (TheKnot.com)

There are tons of resources for lists of traditional, contemporary and modern wedding music, and these are a few we found to be really helpful.
www.TheKnot.com
www.WeddingWire.com
www.Weddingvendors.com
www.Projectwedding.com
www.Ourweddingsongs.com

If you plan on using some of the more traditional wedding processional songs such as (Wedding Day at Troldhaugen by Edvard Grieg, or one of the many versions of “The Wedding March,”) a piece of advice is to listen to the song using YouTube, so that you can hear the song first.

A handful of great classical/traditional songs:

Romance ( Op. 44, No. 1) Anton Rubenstein
Vocalise – Sergei Rachmaninoff
The Maestro –  Composed by Hans Zimmer
Bridal Procession – Edvard Grieg
All I Ask Of You – Phantom of the Opera, (Piano)
Canon in D – J Pachelbel
Ave Maria – (There are several beautiful instrumental versions)

Here is a list of some recommended songs, from many different genres.

Marry Me – Train
This Year’s Love – David Gray
I Do – Colbie Caillat
Rhythm of Love – Plain White T’s
Your Guardian Angel – Red Jumpsuit Apparatus
Time of My Life – David Cook
Lucky – Jason Mraz & Colbie Caillat
I’m Yours – Jason Mraz
Better Together – Jack Johnson
She’s Everything – Brad Paisley
Why Wait – Rascal Flatts
Are you Gonna Kiss Me or Not – Thompson Square
Mama’s Song – Carrie Underwood
Only You Can Love Me This Way – Keith Urban
Wishn and Hopin – Dusty Springfield
Fly Me To The Moon – Frank Sinatra
I loved Her First – Heartland (Great Father Daughter Dance Song)
The Way You Look Tonight – Frank Sinatra
Spend My Life With You – Eric Benet
I Do – Boys II Men
L-O-V-E – Nat Cole King
I Cant Help Falling In Love – Elvis
That’s what makes it a love song – Miranda Lambert
Better Half – Keith Urban
Oh Love – Brad Paisley & Carrie Underwood
Our Love is Here To Stay – Frank Sinatra or Ella Fitzgerald Versions
I Could Not Ask For More – Edward McCain
Sail Away – David Gray
The Only Exception – Paramore
Forever – Chris Brown
Wedding Bells – Coldplay (This song is not yet released, but has an anticipated release date of late 2011)

Don’t forget to check out our Vendor Directory, to find great DJ’s and other Entertainment.

Style Trend: The Birdcage Veil

29 Apr

As the vintage theme gets more popular, we have started to see more ways to mix the old with the new.  One great vintage piece in particular has caught our eye; the birdcage veil.  Compatible with many different wedding gowns and hairstyles, the bird cage veil is a great accessory for your big day.  Brides, keep in mind that this look also works really well for bridesmaids as well and can be made in any color.

For all of the DIY Brides out there, check out a DIY tutorial for making your own Bird Cage Veil.  Complete with step-by-step directions and photos, you are sure to have no problems creating your perfect Bird Cage Veil.  Click here to read the article on www.weddingchicks.com.

DIY Wedding Favors

28 Apr

Cherry FavorsSure you can pick up just about any wedding catalog and choose from thousands of pre-made wedding favors, but we at The 530 Bride think that the best wedding favors are made by hand and with love! What better way to capture your personality, wedding theme, and the memory of your day than to create a wedding favor that tells a story.
These boxes of fresh cherries, fit perfectly into an outdoor event in the spring or summer time.  They not only have a simple charm, but they feel more personal and thoughtful than something you could order from a catalog.
(Photo: IntimateWeddings.com)

There are so many different interpretations of this idea, so checkout which fruits are in season during your wedding month! Create personal touches like adding your names and wedding date on each box, or a short message to thank your guests.

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