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Thursday, July 28, 2016

Breaking Tradition

            No matter how you slice it, a wedding is the most traditional act to solidify the love between two people. That being said, there are some ‘not so traditional’ ways to put a unique spin on your special day!

            One of the most drastic ways to stand out during your wedding is with your dress. If you’re hoping to stray from the most ‘traditional traditions’, opting for a dress color other than white is a bold and memorable option. The television show, Say Yes To The Dress has a plethora of episodes that exhibit unique and exciting dresses for the brides that are looking to push boundaries!

            Planning your ceremony in the morning will likely be less expensive, and it also allows for an earlier reception time. This earlier reception means one thing… Brunch! Hosting a brunch-themed reception is totally untraditional, unexpected, and will do wonders for the pocket book.

            Floral arrangements are another element of weddings that are fun and easy to put a unique spin on. Creating your arrangements out of plants, ferns, leaves and vines are an excellent way to surprise guests, while also providing a beautiful decoration. These arrangements are especially popular during off-season weddings such as fall and winter!

            Weddings will forever have endless options and interpretations, but deciding how far you want to go with the ‘traditional route’ is completely in your control!

Image Source: DepositPhotos

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Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Before you start your wedding dress shopping, it’s good to know what styles will suit your body best. In the below infographic you will find all the available bodices and necklines that majority of wedding dress designers make. You will also find body shapes that explain which dress work best.

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Sunday, July 24, 2016

Best Man Speech Format - Getting It Right!

Before you get asked to be a best man, the best man speech format might seem like an obvious one but once you are actually put in the role, it can be difficult to nail down the ingredients! 

Depending on your relationship with the groom, a best man speech can vary greatly. Whatever your relationship with the groom, be it he’s a friend or sibling, the most important thing is that you deliver on the fundamentals. It’s important not to put too much pressure on yourself because you’ll end up making yourself nervous and it could impact on your delivery. Try to be calm about it whilst also making preparations for it; “winging it” shouldn’t be one of your thoughts. As the famous saying goes: Fail to Prepare, Prepare to Fail. So that’s where we come in with this post which hopefully will help you in your speech prep’. In terms of the absolute essential ingredients to a best man speech and its format, below is a basic one: Introduce yourself because you shouldn’t assume that everyone knows who you are. Say who you are, and how you know the groom.
  1. Introduce yourself because you shouldn’t assume that everyone knows who you are. Say who you are, and how you know the groom.
  2. Thank the groom for inviting you to be the best man.
  3. Read out any cards and notes from friends/family who couldn’t be there on the day.
  4. Include some anecdotes or stories about the groom but keep it clean and try not to include details about ex-girlfriends.
  5. Offer some advice about marriage to the newlyweds, making it serious or humorous to fit in with the tone of your overall speech.
  6. Say something nice about the bride e.g. comment about how pleasant and positive a person she is.
  7. Compliment the bridesmaids, for example by saying how well they look.
  8. Propose a congratulatory toast to the newly married couple.
  9. Once you are finished, introduce anyone else that is due to give a speech such as the Father of the Bride.

History of Best Man Speeches – Where the Tradition Began 

The best man was traditionally a friend of the groom which is the same as today but today sometimes men are prone to choosing a sibling for the role. In terms of historically, the groom would ask this “best man” to be the chief guardian of the bride during the lead up to the wedding date. The appointed best man in turn would appoint mutual friends to help with the protection of the bride including ensuring that she got to the wedding on time and unharmed. The collected group of the best and groomsmen were previously known as “The bride’s knights”.
Best Man: The Bride’s Knights
In the Anglo-Saxon days of Britain it has been said that the best man with the help of his groomsmen would actually kidnap the bride. This would happen if for whatever reason the bride’s parents were against the formation of this specific marriage; they might have not approved of the suitor or groom in question. The best man and his groomsmen would be expected to protect the bride right up to and including the point of the marriage ceremony where the groom would stand to the right of the bride at the altar so his sword could be drawn quickly to defend. In turn, the best man would guard the bride by standing on the bride’s other side until the vows were done.

Good Best Man Speech Examples - follow link to view video example
This best man delivered a relaxed speech and it had humour and emotion. He didn’t have it learned off which shows that a successful speech can be delivered using paper prompts if it’s delivered naturally and with glee like this best man. - follow link to view video example
This best man delivered a relaxed speech and it had humour and emotion. He didn’t have it learned off which shows that a successful speech can be delivered using paper prompts if it’s delivered naturally and with glee like this best man. - follow link to view video example
Even though this best man reads out his speech directly from his notes, he delivers it with a natural and relaxed flair. He reads slowly, clearly and loudly and it is witty throughout. Note how his speech has all the main ingredients: introduction as to who he is, his relationship with the groom, welcoming visitors, and elements of humor

How to Write the Best Man Speech 

How to Write the Best Man Speech
So to get down to actually writing the piece there are a number of pointers that you can follow. Below is a list of little tit-bits of information about the couple that you should gather together. Remember that this day and speech should be all about them. Of course focus in on certain cute anecdotes about your friend, the groom and your own friendship but there needs to be some content about the couple’s relationship which will make it all the more emotive. Of course the content that includes the couple needs to be appropriate and suitable to be told to the masses and not some sordid secret about them or anything that has the possibility of embarrassing them in any way. If in doubt, leave it out! 
> Background Dates. How long have they been together, how long have they known each other?
> The Bride to Be. Although your speech is not about her exclusively, you must give her a paragraph of her own. This might be something about the first time you met her or some positive attribute about her.
> Why They’re a Good Match. It might sound a tad serious but their union is serious so it will hit the right tone.
The next segment will be the harder elements. You need to be careful about the content but not too restrictive in your delivery. Try to find a happy medium but again…if in doubt, leave it out!
> A Funny StoryThis could be your make or break for a successful speech. 
Some Do’s
Tell it slowly and clearly; you might be excited to tell it but try to keep it clear for those in the whole room to hear. Have a beginning, a middle and an end to the story but don’t let it drag on…brevity is key! 
And Don’ts
While ex-girlfriends are not out of bounds as a topic, it’s probably best if you can to avoid them. Aim for the story to be between 150 and 300 words otherwise it could drag on for people. Don’t make any stories up as you run the risk of insulting those that you include. 

The Best Man Speech: The Nervous Moments

Even the most prolific of speakers will have their nervous moments. Sometime nerves can be a good thing because they cause a person to focus the mind on the challenge at hand. Adrenaline starts pumping and this can help you to be energised and deliver a speech filled with emotion and energy which is what you want. So don’t look at nerves as a negative; turn them on their heads and use them to drive you forward! - Follow link to view a useful video to help you calm your nerves when preparing for your best man responsibilities.
Some Tips for Dealing with the Nerves:
  1. Don’t drink too much in advance of the speech or it will impact on your delivery in a bad way. One or two drinks are fine to settle the nerves but no more than that.
  2. If you feel your delivery is being affected by your nerves, explain that to the audience; they will understand that you are not a professional speaker, nor do they expect you to be, so go easy on yourself. By explaining to the audience that you are a little nervous, your admission out loud will also help to calm you.
  3. Start slowly and have your notes to hand but try not to read them without looking out to your audience. Take deep breaths before you stand to take the mic and focus on doing on your best.
  4. Have a glass of water close by that you can use to clear your throat. Taking a drink during the speech will also help to soothe you and allow you to time to relax between segments.
  5. If you find that your voice is trembling, take a drink of water, take a couple of really deep breaths and try again.
  6. Speak clearly and loudly. Speaking in a low voice shows your lack of confidence but no matter how nervous you are, be sure to sound like you are confident by raising your volume level.
  7. Keep your head up and stand up straight. Find a spot on the wall above your audience and focus on that. It will appear that you are looking at them but you won’t actually be distracted by anyone.
So that’s our advice for delivering a well presented best man speech! The main thing to remember is that you should be honoured to have been asked to be a best man so savour the moment and try not to put too much pressure on yourself. Enjoy the day, relax but don’t lose the diamond ring

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Friday, July 22, 2016

Up or Down

Bride, Hairstyle, Wedding, Hair

Many girls grew up dreaming about their wedding and what kind of dress they will have and all the beautiful flowers and people that will there on the big day. But have you thought about how your hair is going to look? Should it be up or down? What would look good with your dress now that you have actually picked it out? 

If you want a big princess style wedding with the Cinderella dress try leaving your hair down. If you have long hair, put a few curls in it. You can even add some jewels and gems into your hair to make it pop. Most Cinderella style dresses are strapless so if you leave your hair down its not going to cover up any part of the dress. 

Instagram, Cohesion, Wedding, Flowers

If you are into the whole boho style wedding try doing a big messy braid. You can even incorporate flowers in your hair  The boho style is very popular right now and flowers in your hair tops off that look. You could pull it into a messy bun and put some ribbon in it to make it pop. Another popular boho hairstyle would be to leave your hair down and as natural as it can be and add a flower headband!

Vintage, Woman, Art, Collage, Hair

If you are a vintage girl and have a beautiful lace filled wedding dress try putting your hair up. In the 1920's and 30's all brides wore their hair up. Their dresses were very detailed and hand designed and they wanted it to be shown off. By putting your hair up it allows the beauty of the dress to be shown. A lot of brides back then also wore a headband that sparkled drawing attention to their faces. This made the whole look amazing from the detailed dress to the sparkly head piece! 

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Wednesday, July 20, 2016

A look into a Bosnian wedding

Wedding Dresses, Castle, Bride

Weddings are different in every part of the world. Each and every family, culture, and religion have different views and traditions on how a wedding should go. Bosnia is a country located in Europe just East of Italy. They have all different religions there which make each wedding a little different. However they have very interesting cultural traditions that makes their Bosnian weddings unique. 

A Bosnian wedding doesn't last just one day, it is a two day long event! The first day usually consists of the actual ceremony part where they get married. This is the day where their religion comes in and they do their ceremonial traditions. If they are not religious they will do a one day wedding. After this they all do pictures with their whole family and wedding party. Everyone is invited to both the ceremony and reception; which is held the next day. During the ceremony the bride's father gives her away. They don't do any sort of unity candle or sand. They say vows, exchange rings, and of course kiss to make it official. 

The next day would be the reception day. Usually this day the groom and all the men in his family spend the morning at his house. They get ready and at around noon they all get in a limo and go to the brides family's house to get the bride. The bride is up stairs getting ready and the rest of the men and the bride's family sit down the eat. The bride's mother makes them all lunch and serves the groom first welcoming him to the family. Once they are done eating everyone but the bride and her closest male family member (usually a brother of very close cousin) will stand outside and wait for the closest male relative to bring her out. The best man will then pay the male relative to take her with them so the groom can have her. The best man will spin her three time under his arm, then the best man and usually an uncle with then escort the bride to the grooms house. The brides parents are left behind because at this point they have sent her away. 

Once they get to his house they are welcomed by his mom. She will then give her candy or honey symbolizing a sweet marriage. After this they will sit down they will put a child on her lap. It has to be a boy, this is because they want them to have a male child in hopes their name continues. Then the mom or his sister (closest female to him) will start to shower the bride with gifts, usually gold. They give her those things for her security. It is tradition to do this for in case something happens between the couple, she could sell her jewelry and be okay without him. After they give her the jewelry they all dance around the house. 

After the dancing at the grooms house they go to the ceremony/reception. Traditionally the bride's parents don't go. They keep her parents away because they don't want them to cry. They want to keep everyone's spirits high and happy. At the reception people will try to steal the bride's shoes. Once they steal their shoes the best man has to try to buy them back because the bride has to have her shoes to dance. This is a fun thing some of the kids do to get money. 

All these things make up a Bosnian wedding. Each and everyone of these traditions are very special to the Bosnian people and wedding would not be complete if these weren't done. 

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Tuesday, July 19, 2016

The Best Teeth Whitening Products

Think teeth whitening is simply an exercise in vanity? There may be more to it than that — at least in the United States. A wide selection of teeth whitening kits are being sold every day to help Americans improve their smile. According to a 2007 study, people were more likely to be hired and received higher salary offerings after their teeth had been whitened, and, according to Dr. Charles Gauthrie, a senior research analyst at Penn State University, whiter teeth are associated with a healthier mouth, something that plays a role in mate selection. “A less attractive smile would be an implied negative nonverbal communication,” he told us. “Is this person going to be a good mate? Or, is this person going to bring about harm in one way or another?”
Sure, that study was commissioned by the parent company behind Crest Whitestrips to prove its product’s point, and there are plenty of people with not-so-pearly teeth in happy relationships. But like manicuring facial hair or plucking eyebrows, teeth whitening has become a mainstay in the beauty routines of millions of Americans, and out of the dozens of products available, a few victors emerged in our research and usability tests. Two of our top picks for best teeth whitener are Go Smile Double Action 6-Day Whitening Kit and Crest 3D White Luxe Professional Effects Whitestrips, but all five we recommend garnered positive reviews from our testers, and also include the American Dental Association’s recommended percentage of peroxide to be both safe and effective.
To separate the products that will actually improve your smile from the duds that’ll only take a bite out of your wallet (and maybe even hurt your mouth in the process), we interviewed dentists, reviewed the research, and conducted at-home tests with over 30 participants.
We started with 86 products culled from beauty magazine “best of” lists, recommendations from dentists, and Amazon ratings of 4 stars or higher. What we didn’t include: whitening toothpastes, gums, or lipsticks that claimed to create the illusion of whiter teeth. And, all of our products had to be available without a visit to — or prescription from — a dentist, which eliminated popular whitening systems Opalescence and Philips Zoom right off the bat.
Once we narrowed our field down to 16 whiteners, we set out to see them in action on real human teeth. It wasn’t anything too fancy: We recruited 32 participants across a wide range of ages to try out our top products. The experiment began with each tester recording his or her pre-whitening teeth shade against a dentist-provided teeth shade guide and snapping a “before” pic. After using the teeth whitening product for the recommended length of time, our testers took an “after” photo, evaluated their new teeth shade, and completed an exit survey describing the experience. Using these findings, along with ratings from beauty sites such as TotalBeauty.comMen’s Health, and Consumer Reports, we were able to determine our top picks.
Best Overall: Go Smile Double Action 6-Day Whitening Kit — Go Smile is effective, works fast, and is even easier to apply than traditional strips.
Best Reputation: Crest 3D White Luxe Professional Effects Whitestrips — This 10 percent peroxide treatment gets results, but sensitivity may occur.
Best for Sensitive Teeth: Crest 3D Whitestrips Gentle Routine — Lower peroxide levels and a shorter wear time keep teeth and gums comfy.
Most Affordable: A+ Professional Strength Teeth Whitening Strips — These strips matched Crest in effectiveness and are less than half the price.
Most Convenient: Go Smile On the Go Teeth Whitening Pen — Start to finish, whitening with this pen takes about 30 seconds.
Here’s the bottom line: there are two things to look for when you’re picking a teeth whitening treatment: a full ingredients list and hydrogen peroxide levels no higher than 10 percent. Beyond that, it’s personal preference, although we were surprised by how much we preferred paint-on treatments to the more traditional strips — they’re easier, just as effective, and with less chance of gum sensitivity.

Find the full article at

Image Source: DepositPhotos
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Monday, July 18, 2016

Tricks Of The Trade

Let’s face it, any wedding day is going to be full of emotions – joy, love, stress, celebration, and of course, the unexpected. If you’re like most brides, saying that your day won’t have some element of stress or anxiety would be a lie. That being said, there are a few ways to ease that stress so that you can enjoy your well-deserved day!

First things first… relax. You can do as much planning as humanly possible for the days/months leading up to the big day, but once that day has arrived, try and leave the last minute details to the professionals. You can’t control everything; so take a moment to remember why you’re there in the first place. It isn’t to have symmetrical floral arrangements, or perfectly organized place-cards, it is to celebrate you and the love of your life!

Don’t forget to eat! We know, you’ve been dieting for months leading up to this day and you want to look perfect. Don’t let that pressure keep you from being healthy. With your nerves at an all time high, food is an extra important factor in your mood. Being even the slightest bit hungry may make you fatigued, or short-tempered. The best way to start your day is with a filling, yet healthy breakfast. Make sure you consume protein to sustain you through the day, as well as carbs to keep yourself full! Although food will be the last thing on your mind, snacking on some crackers and fruit while you’re getting ready will do wonders for your energy levels!

Many brides tend to visit the venue prior to it being fully set-up, which is a recipe for disaster. Your emotions will be heightened this day, and ‘checking in’ on the progress of your day-of set up may be your tipping point in having a bridal breakdown! Have faith in the staff that you hired, and trust that it will all turn out beautifully.

Remember, this is the day you’ve been planning for and dreaming of for years. Now that it has come, don’t let small details take large measures in your mood or energy. Trust your friends, family, and staff to take action if necessary. It may seem impossible, but do your best to relax so that you can enjoy your fairytale!
Image Source: DepositPhotos

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Thursday, July 14, 2016

The First, First Look!

The first look can be a very big deal! Traditionally the first look would be during the ceremony when the bride walks down the aisle. Lately, like a lot of other things, those old school traditions have changed a bit! People can have a photographer take a first look picture before the ceremony even starts. This started because it was easier to take wedding pictures before the wedding so that guests are not waiting around while pictures are being taken. Another reason why the first look pictures came around was because it was usually done right after hair and makeup were done. Right after you get all dolled up is the best time to take pictures! 

Originally it was said to be bad luck for the groom to see the bride the day of the wedding before the ceremony starts. This continued for many many years. This is one thing that is very special for the bride and groom. This is the first time they are seeing each other the day of their wedding. Often times they can get very emotional. Your nerves are going and you are nervous and excited and when you see each other sometimes tears of happiness can come out! This moment can be shared with your whole family by walking down the isle for the first look or by capturing it before the ceremony starts. Either way make it special for you and your spouse and do it how you want to do it! 

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Sunday, July 10, 2016

The Ultimate Wedding Budget Guide

This Infographic not only covers average cost of wedding on various products but also the hidden costs of wedding everyone should be aware of, interesting money saving tips for a wedding etc which can help in planning a budget wedding. 

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Saturday, July 9, 2016

What To Keep, What To Cut

           The 'must haves' of your wedding are the elements that you simply cannot live without having. Once you have decided on those must haves, you’ll then be faced with the struggles of choosing between 'this, or that'. Making those small, yet tough decisions can be challenging when everything feels necessary in making the day perfect. Although even the tiniest of details are noticeable in the brides’ eyes, most of them go unnoticed by the guests. So, choosing the most memorable elements can save a lot of worry, stress, and money!
            If planning an outdoor wedding (as many brides do), decorations aren’t as necessary as you might think, so don’t go overboard. The most valuable decoration is nature itself, so opting for an outdoor ceremony can save a lot of planning. During the ceremony, your guests will be paying attention to you and your groom, not any extra ribbon on the trees. Another aspect that often times goes unnoticed during ceremonies are extravagant flowers. While some nice floral arrangements are beautiful by the alter, placing arrangements all over the venue isn’t always necessary.

            When it comes to planning your reception, the ‘to do’ list will seem endless, especially when everything seems so important! Features such as a bar, DJ (and/or band), food, and some type of dessert, are all pretty much necessities. However, elements such as a candy bar, fog machine, photo booth, and party favors are not as vital as they seem in making your night special. Pleasing your guests is a top priority, but cutting out these small details would never go noticed by them. If you have extra money in the end, adding some sort of favor (such as a card and cookie) is a nice gesture to thank your guests. Although it would be appreciated if it were there, most people wouldn’t realize if it wasn’t.

            All in all, there’s no way to avoid the stress of planning a wedding. That being said, there are many elements that can be easily eliminated without being detrimental to your day. Cutting back on small, yet costly components is a great way to save money, time, and energy.

Photo Source: DepositPhotos

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