Wednesday, November 28, 2012

A Unity Ceremony for Families

I have attended several weddings this year that have included a sand unity ceremony as a featured part of the nuptials. The officiant each time presented it as something that "symbolizes the union of the bride and groom." To me, the wedding vows are the symbol, with the rings being a physical one. Needless to say, I have not been totally sold on the idea. One application that I rather like is using the concept when families are blending.

Children could directly participate in the ceremony if the sand was understood to represent the blending of two families, whether a single child is gaining a stepparent or both the bride and groom have children. It is not, of course, a necessary symbol, but the focus would be more on giving the children a way to participate. The family would have something the children made on that day when everyone became the Brady bunch..or the Miller bunch...or the Rodriquez bunch...or the Warszawski bunch...or...

Wedding Favor Bags a la Christmas

2012 was the year I must have attended one wedding every other month. Weddings come in spurts, it seems. Many of my aunts and uncles celebrate anniversaries in November or December, while the younger crowd tends to favor May through September.

Looking through the old albums and talking to relatives, most of the grandparents and aunts and uncles used Jordan Almonds and placed them in wedding favor bags of mesh tulle or in the unavoidable plastic swan.

 While perusing the albums, my cousin wondered why nobody used Christmas stockings or Santa sacks for their wedding favors. I asked, "Whoever gets the coal in their stocking gets the centerpiece, right?"  If you were married around Christmas time, was it closer to a Christmas with the Von Trapps or was it more like a Santa's mall castle gone haywire?

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Wedding Invitations: How NOT to RSVP

Emails have replaced wedding invitations for the most informal affairs, but by and large, paper invitations still rule.

I helped organize a wedding once where the wedding invitation had two boxes. One was to indicate if one or both of you were coming, while the other expressed regrets on the part of the invitee. There was one RSVP that did not have either box checked off, and one of them had both.

Was it an oversight? No. The two guests in questioned wanted to remain ambiguous. One was unsure, but then they could have written that they were waiting to hear about the thing that might prevent them from coming so that the bride and groom could make a judgement call when they submitted their count.

The other party was in for the drama. They wanted a fuss to be made over them. They wanted to be begged to please come, and otherwise create drama over "Will they or won't they?" In the end, they did not come, but kept everyone guessing to the very end. The family member who they were inseparable with RSVP's which led everyone to believe one outcome, but it really was quite the opposite.

If you are a fortunate invitee - RSVP - otherwise everyone will not set a plate for you.

Wedding Decorations: What Will Define the Decade?

Speaking of wedding decorations, I was just searching around looking at what the latest trends were, and no one seems to agree on any overwhelming direction. The natural theme with motifs of birds and bark seems to be promoted as the hottest trend on blogs and by Etsy sellers, while the virtues of metallics, pastels or Tangerine Tango are splashed across magazine pages.

There is no clear decorating motif that might seem to scream 2012/2013 as we look at wedding photos twenty years from now, but that joy is often reserved for the dresses and tuxedo color which far overshadow any decorating theme not supplied by the VFW hall or the standard theme of just merely setting flowers everywhere. Time will tell what this time period in weddingdom is personified by. At least backless wedding gowns are not imposed on everyone anymore.

What do you think what will scream the 20 teens in twenty years?

Friday, November 16, 2012

Wedding Decorations: Replace Those Streamers

Remember when wedding halls were decorated with streamers and those 3D crepe paper balls or lanterns? They looked like the same decorations you would buy for a birthday party or senior home soiree, but white. Don't forget the archway and white and silver balloons.

Wedding decorations for a fete with a very strict budget in mind have become more sophisticated by leaps and bounds. Of course, the cheapest decorations involve pilfering your neighbor's rose garden and emptying out some juice bottles. If Mr. and Mrs. Foster's roses are not quite in bloom, what about luminaries? Paper luminaries with dove, hearts or cake cut outs lining a moonlit walkway or even sitting in the middle of the table on a tile or plate can be purchased for a small amount of money. Also, you don't have to worry about collecting borrowed crystal candle holders. They can be kept by guests or they could be tossed in the recycle bin if wax did not spill in them.

Tea lights and votives around a room can look elegant on the cheap, but a luminary might move the decor from generic to personal. Have you ever given them a try?

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Thankful Favors... (Wedding Favors, That Is.)

The most popular months for weddings are June, August and May. October squeaks by in fourth place. The least popular month is January, with less than 5% of weddings occurring then. December is somewhere in the middle, edging out November by a slight margin.

 So, what does when select as wedding favors for a November wedding? If you are getting married this month, you have already selected or are seriously scrambling.

 Turkey feathers?
 How about chocolates in bags made of brown and orange satin or paper?

 A personal idea would be to set each place with a small picture frame or place card holder that doubles as a business card holder for each person, then write a little note about what makes you thankful for each one of them. It might take time, and your calligraphy hand or printer might run out of ink, but it would be a bit more special than Jordan Almonds. What do you think?