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Monthly Archives: April 2011

  • Royal Wedding Fever? Fun Facts About Kate’s Diamond Cluster Ring

    royal-diamond-cluster-ring

    The biggest wedding news of the year is the upcoming royal wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton, which will occur at 11 a.m. Greenwich Mean Time on Friday, April 29 in Westminster Abbey. After dating for some seven years and privately discussing marriage for about a year, William reportedly proposed to Kate on a holiday to Africa with friends in October 2010. According to interviews, William carried his mother’s diamond cluster ring in his pocket for a few weeks before the proposal, waiting for the right moment, but Kate was not expecting William’s romantic proposal since they were visiting Kenya with friends. Their engagement was announced by the royal family on November 16, 2010.

    The ring that William used to propose to Kate is his mother’s engagement ring, an 18 carat sapphire ring surrounded by small diamonds. This diamond cluster ring has sentimental value for William, and he told Britain’s Sky News that his use of the ring is his way to include his mother in the excitement of his upcoming marriage, even though she is not alive to celebrate William and Kate’s union.

    William and Kate met at St. Andrew’s University in Scotland. They began dating in 2003 after living together as flatmates with a group of friends. In the early days of their courtship, William tried to impress Kate with his cooking, but Kate frequently had to rescue his meals from burning on the stove. Kate was initially nervous about meeting William’s family, but she says that both Prince Charles and the Queen were very welcoming to her when they first met.

    Kate Middleton’s use of Princess Diana’s diamond cluster ring to symbolize her engagement to Prince William is certain to inspire wedding ring designers to create affordable wedding rings that imitate the style of that engagement ring as well as Kate and William’s wedding bands. As a result, couples who are looking for affordable wedding rings will be able to commemorate their love in royal style. It is likely that as soon as Kate’s top-secret wedding dress is revealed, designers will create more affordable copies of her style so that even couples who are planning a wedding on a budget can have a fairytale royal wedding at an affordable price.

    Are you planning to watch the royal wedding this Friday? Are you hoping to find ideas for your own nuptials?

  • Budget Wedding Dos and Don’ts

    budget-wedding-dosWedding planner Lindsay Averette knows both the smart ways to save money and the essential splurges for couples planning a wedding on a budget. Keep reading for the final installment of our wedding planner interview series. For more expert advice from Lindsay about sticking to budget wedding plans, check out the following previous posts: Budget Wedding Tips from a Wedding Planner, More Expert Budget Wedding Tips, and 3 Budget Wedding Tips from a Professional Planner.

    What DIY wedding projects do you recommend?

    While DIY is often a dangerous approach to such an important day, there are some things that might be fun projects for you and your hubby-to-be. If you’ve got crafty genes, creating table numbers and escort cards is an easy printable project. I’ve often had grooms who really want to be involved, so for outdoor ceremonies they have built their own wooden ceremony arbors or wedding signs. Keep in mind the value of your time when you take on DIY projects as part of planning a wedding on a budget. The money you save may not be worth the time you put into the project.

    What should couples not attempt to do themselves?

    Oh, where to begin? All of the major things that contribute to the success of a wedding—catering, photography, entertainment, flowers—shouldn’t be DIY’ed by you or your friends, even for a budget wedding. I’ve mentioned the reasons for some of these already in previous posts, but there are professionals in this industry for a purpose. There is so much risk if you don’t hire a wedding professional. The cake your friend made falls apart before you even get to cut it. Even though you’ve checked and rechecked your iPod sound system, it fails right in the middle of your first dance. Friends and relatives have pitched in to make the food to serve, but they seriously underestimated the amount of food, and half of your guests are starving. Quality does not have to equal expensive.

    Is a wedding planner an important investment for couples on a budget to make?

    Yes and yes. And I promise I’m not just saying this because I’m a wedding planner. I will say that I don’t think a full service planner—from start to finish—is always necessary. However, I do always recommend a day-of or month-of coordinator. There are certain things brides, grooms and family should not have to stress about or coordinate on the wedding day itself. If Aunt Sally sends you and your wedding party down the aisle, how is she supposed to see all the action herself? If you don’t have a coordinator and the DJ announces the cake cutting, where’s the bride? Oh, you’re in the bathroom. The coordinator would have delayed the announcement until you were ready. If there is not already a coordinator with your venue, the easiest decision you should make is to hire one. Even if you are planning a wedding on a budget, the success of your wedding and the smiles on everyone’s faces should far outweigh the money spent on hiring a wedding planner for a few hours.

    Lindsay owns and operates LK Events and Design, a wedding and event planning company in Richmond, Virginia.

    Photo Credit: lilszeto

  • How to Create a Budget Wedding Registry

    budget-wedding-registryPart of planning a wedding on a budget is searching for high quality services for the lowest possible costs while prioritizing your needs and desires. Similar skills are needed to create a smart budget wedding registry. You will need to consider that many of your guests may also be trying to cut costs. It is smart to list gifts in a variety of price ranges to that each guest can purchase a gift that is within their comfort zone.

    No matter what gifts you register for, be certain to select items for your registry that will last a lifetime. Don’t choose trendy items or things you may not use. Choose well-reviewed, long-lasting products that will last a long time so that you won’t need to spend money on replacements a few years into your marriage. Smart registry choices now, while you are in the process of planning a wedding on a budget, can save you money in the future.

    When you are selecting kitchen items to include on your budget wedding registry, you may wish to avoid nonstick pans which often get scraped up and need to be replaced within a few years. Possible alternatives include pre-seasoned cast iron pans, which can last forever if cared for properly. Stainless steel is another durable cooking surface that you may wish to consider. This is also a good opportunity to consider high quality glass bakeware such as Pyrex, or long-lasting stoneware casserole dishes from companies such as Le Creuset.

    When selecting glasses and dishes, choose durable, well-made pieces that won’t show age. For example, white dishes are a good choice because they don’t show chips or scrapes very easily. White is also an excellent choice because it will always match even if your dining room décor changes seasonally. Don’t make the mistake of choosing dishes that don’t go into the microwave or dishwasher if you know you will want to have that option.

    It is tempting to pick out exciting new appliances for your budget wedding registry, but it is best to avoid appliances with very specific uses that you may not use very often, such as a funnel cake maker. In general, it is better to choose items that will get a lot of use, such as blenders, crockpots, and toasters. Before you add anything to your registry, you will want to read reviews of that product to be certain that it will last you a long time. This is especially true in the case of appliances. It is better to ask Aunt Mary to buy you a microwave that is well reviewed for longevity than simply choosing the most inexpensive microwave you can find.

    What are your best wedding registry tips?

    Photo Credit: Jessica Spangler

3 Item(s)

Monthly Archives: April 2011

  • Royal Wedding Fever? Fun Facts About Kate’s Diamond Cluster Ring

    royal-diamond-cluster-ring

    The biggest wedding news of the year is the upcoming royal wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton, which will occur at 11 a.m. Greenwich Mean Time on Friday, April 29 in Westminster Abbey. After dating for some seven years and privately discussing marriage for about a year, William reportedly proposed to Kate on a holiday to Africa with friends in October 2010. According to interviews, William carried his mother’s diamond cluster ring in his pocket for a few weeks before the proposal, waiting for the right moment, but Kate was not expecting William’s romantic proposal since they were visiting Kenya with friends. Their engagement was announced by the royal family on November 16, 2010.

    The ring that William used to propose to Kate is his mother’s engagement ring, an 18 carat sapphire ring surrounded by small diamonds. This diamond cluster ring has sentimental value for William, and he told Britain’s Sky News that his use of the ring is his way to include his mother in the excitement of his upcoming marriage, even though she is not alive to celebrate William and Kate’s union.

    William and Kate met at St. Andrew’s University in Scotland. They began dating in 2003 after living together as flatmates with a group of friends. In the early days of their courtship, William tried to impress Kate with his cooking, but Kate frequently had to rescue his meals from burning on the stove. Kate was initially nervous about meeting William’s family, but she says that both Prince Charles and the Queen were very welcoming to her when they first met.

    Kate Middleton’s use of Princess Diana’s diamond cluster ring to symbolize her engagement to Prince William is certain to inspire wedding ring designers to create affordable wedding rings that imitate the style of that engagement ring as well as Kate and William’s wedding bands. As a result, couples who are looking for affordable wedding rings will be able to commemorate their love in royal style. It is likely that as soon as Kate’s top-secret wedding dress is revealed, designers will create more affordable copies of her style so that even couples who are planning a wedding on a budget can have a fairytale royal wedding at an affordable price.

    Are you planning to watch the royal wedding this Friday? Are you hoping to find ideas for your own nuptials?

  • Budget Wedding Dos and Don’ts

    budget-wedding-dosWedding planner Lindsay Averette knows both the smart ways to save money and the essential splurges for couples planning a wedding on a budget. Keep reading for the final installment of our wedding planner interview series. For more expert advice from Lindsay about sticking to budget wedding plans, check out the following previous posts: Budget Wedding Tips from a Wedding Planner, More Expert Budget Wedding Tips, and 3 Budget Wedding Tips from a Professional Planner.

    What DIY wedding projects do you recommend?

    While DIY is often a dangerous approach to such an important day, there are some things that might be fun projects for you and your hubby-to-be. If you’ve got crafty genes, creating table numbers and escort cards is an easy printable project. I’ve often had grooms who really want to be involved, so for outdoor ceremonies they have built their own wooden ceremony arbors or wedding signs. Keep in mind the value of your time when you take on DIY projects as part of planning a wedding on a budget. The money you save may not be worth the time you put into the project.

    What should couples not attempt to do themselves?

    Oh, where to begin? All of the major things that contribute to the success of a wedding—catering, photography, entertainment, flowers—shouldn’t be DIY’ed by you or your friends, even for a budget wedding. I’ve mentioned the reasons for some of these already in previous posts, but there are professionals in this industry for a purpose. There is so much risk if you don’t hire a wedding professional. The cake your friend made falls apart before you even get to cut it. Even though you’ve checked and rechecked your iPod sound system, it fails right in the middle of your first dance. Friends and relatives have pitched in to make the food to serve, but they seriously underestimated the amount of food, and half of your guests are starving. Quality does not have to equal expensive.

    Is a wedding planner an important investment for couples on a budget to make?

    Yes and yes. And I promise I’m not just saying this because I’m a wedding planner. I will say that I don’t think a full service planner—from start to finish—is always necessary. However, I do always recommend a day-of or month-of coordinator. There are certain things brides, grooms and family should not have to stress about or coordinate on the wedding day itself. If Aunt Sally sends you and your wedding party down the aisle, how is she supposed to see all the action herself? If you don’t have a coordinator and the DJ announces the cake cutting, where’s the bride? Oh, you’re in the bathroom. The coordinator would have delayed the announcement until you were ready. If there is not already a coordinator with your venue, the easiest decision you should make is to hire one. Even if you are planning a wedding on a budget, the success of your wedding and the smiles on everyone’s faces should far outweigh the money spent on hiring a wedding planner for a few hours.

    Lindsay owns and operates LK Events and Design, a wedding and event planning company in Richmond, Virginia.

    Photo Credit: lilszeto

  • How to Create a Budget Wedding Registry

    budget-wedding-registryPart of planning a wedding on a budget is searching for high quality services for the lowest possible costs while prioritizing your needs and desires. Similar skills are needed to create a smart budget wedding registry. You will need to consider that many of your guests may also be trying to cut costs. It is smart to list gifts in a variety of price ranges to that each guest can purchase a gift that is within their comfort zone.

    No matter what gifts you register for, be certain to select items for your registry that will last a lifetime. Don’t choose trendy items or things you may not use. Choose well-reviewed, long-lasting products that will last a long time so that you won’t need to spend money on replacements a few years into your marriage. Smart registry choices now, while you are in the process of planning a wedding on a budget, can save you money in the future.

    When you are selecting kitchen items to include on your budget wedding registry, you may wish to avoid nonstick pans which often get scraped up and need to be replaced within a few years. Possible alternatives include pre-seasoned cast iron pans, which can last forever if cared for properly. Stainless steel is another durable cooking surface that you may wish to consider. This is also a good opportunity to consider high quality glass bakeware such as Pyrex, or long-lasting stoneware casserole dishes from companies such as Le Creuset.

    When selecting glasses and dishes, choose durable, well-made pieces that won’t show age. For example, white dishes are a good choice because they don’t show chips or scrapes very easily. White is also an excellent choice because it will always match even if your dining room décor changes seasonally. Don’t make the mistake of choosing dishes that don’t go into the microwave or dishwasher if you know you will want to have that option.

    It is tempting to pick out exciting new appliances for your budget wedding registry, but it is best to avoid appliances with very specific uses that you may not use very often, such as a funnel cake maker. In general, it is better to choose items that will get a lot of use, such as blenders, crockpots, and toasters. Before you add anything to your registry, you will want to read reviews of that product to be certain that it will last you a long time. This is especially true in the case of appliances. It is better to ask Aunt Mary to buy you a microwave that is well reviewed for longevity than simply choosing the most inexpensive microwave you can find.

    What are your best wedding registry tips?

    Photo Credit: Jessica Spangler

3 Item(s)