Red and Pink – Not just for Valentine’s Day anymore

One of the most challenging parts of planning a wedding is picking a colour palette. There are a lot of criteria here – you want colours that will accurately represent yourself and your groom, and you want it to be memorable and unique, right? One chic and modern colour combination that not many people consider is red and pink.

I know what you’re thinking – um, what? Isn’t that one of the biggest no-no’s in the book? Well, technically yes, but hear me out. The thing with fashion is that anything that makes you do a double take will eventually become trendy, and this is most certainly true with red and pink as it has been making its presence known both on the runways (most recently featured in Jonathan Saunders’ spring 2014 collection) and on the streets.
This is a combination that’s somewhat abrasive – you don’t think they would go together and it initially throws you off, but that’s part of the appeal. It’s at the outset shocking to your sensibilities, but not in a bad way. Consider black and navy blue, another taboo combination – done wrong and looks like you got dressed in the dark, done right and it looks incredibly sophisticated. With red and pink it’s the same thing. The idea is to make it look deliberate – using one colour as your base with the other as an accent will give off the impression that you’re using clashing colours accidentally, whereas using them equally in conjunction with each other gives the impression of a calculated avant garde look. This palette is so fun and youthful – it’s definitely for a bride who doesn’t care for convention and has all the best qualities of red (passionate, romantic, fiery) and pink (glamorous, whimsical, feminine) – which describes you to a tee, no doubt!

While rules were made to be broken, keep in mind that red and pink together can look very right but it can easily look very, very wrong. To avoid a Valentine’s Day look, avoid soft pastel shades of pink and opt instead for more intense shades – think fuschia, magenta, hot pink, Barbie pink, with a similarly intense shade of red. And again, balance is key – try to represent each colour evenly throughout your décor. But more importantly, just play around with different shades and have fun with it.

If you’re not crazy about an entire palette of pink and red, then you can still try red and pink accents while still achieving the intentional look. For a more toned down look that will give a similar effect, try red and pink bouquets, bridesmaids dresses, or other stationary at your venue.

What do you think of this idea; would you use this colour combination in your wedding? Leave us a comment and let us know! And if you do decide to take a walk on the wild side and give the idea a try, we’d love to see pictures of the event – send us an e-mail at believe@absolutejoy.ca!

The Great Gatsby Wedding Theme


One of the most talked about movies this year was Baz Luhrman’s interpretation of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s classic novel, The Great Gatsby. Whether you loved or hated Luhrman’s dizzying cocktail of a film, you can be sure that The Great Gatsby has been and will continue to be a major point of stylistic inspiration, weddings included.

Ralph Lauren himself has said, “Few eras in modern history have had such a lasting impact on fashion as the Roaring Twenties.” Part of what makes The Great Gatsby such an enduring cultural icon (there have been five movies made of the novel, as well as theatre, opera and ballet adaptations) is that it epitomizes such an influential period in history – the story is, for many people, the essence of the twenties themselves and all that they represent. This was a decade of economic prosperity that led to opulence and excess, which the whole tone of the story reference, and it’s no wonder that it’s exactly the kind of nostalgia that our own post-recession population would want to revive. Who wouldn’t want their wedding to be like one of Gatsby’s legendary parties?

With regards to visual cues from the film, there are a couple different directions you could take. The antique splendor of Gatsby’s grand estate is certainly a jumping point to go from, but on the other side of the spectrum is the art deco style which exemplifies the aesthetics of the 1920’s and is characterized by angular, geometric shapes and rich or colours. The Art Deco movement was a rejection of the softer neoclassical aesthetic and is very much an homage to technology. Those clean lines, black and gold colour combinations and symmetrical designs you’ve been seeing on runways, music videos and pretty much everywhere else? All a nod to Art Deco, and it’s no coincidence that it’s a big deal right now.

The great thing about twenties themed décor is that it’s so distinct and recognizable but right now it’s also very current, so you can make it look either as modern or as period authentic as you want.

An Art Deco style wedding cake that looks almost too good to eat!

Another major draw to The Great Gatsby is the spectacular costumes, and the fact that fashions from the twenties – both men’s and women’s – are so easily wearable even today. Ladies’ fashion in the twenties marked a dramatic shift from the restrictive norms – women ditched corsets, chopped off their hair and scandalously showed some skin (yes, even their ankles). For a twenties-friendly wedding dress, steer clear of gowns that flare out or accentuate your waist, because in the twenties it was fashionable to obscure the female form (in this regard the twenties style could be very restrained and show an uncharacteristic less-is-more quality). Dropped waists, all-over beaded detail and bias-cut silk gowns were de rigeur and Claire Pettibone has a great variety of twenties inspired gowns that would make Daisy Buchanan jealous and Jay Gatsby smile. Instead of a veil, consider a bejeweled fascinator or a feathered headpiece, and suggest top hats for the groom and groomsmen.

A still from the movie

If you want a twenties wedding, you’re gonna need bling – and lots of it. Luckily for you (and your wallet) you can easily make this happen on a budget that’s not quite as grand as Gatsby’s. Metallic shades of gold and silver will be key accents, so spray cans and acrylic paint will become your best friends. Try buying wax or plastic fruit and painting them gold or silver to use with your centerpieces. Don’t worry about mixing gold and silver either – it will look bold and luxurious, and it was done in the twenties without care (it’s even on the movie poster, for crying out loud!). Strings of faux-pearls can be used to adorn almost anything, try draping a few rounds over an ornate candelabra to give it a laissez-faire look. And use lots of glitter, glitter, glitter – in the twenties, too much was never enough.

For your grand entrance and exit, pass up a limo and instead rent a vintage car. Gatsby drove a yellow car so if you want to be really faithful to the movie try that, but those familiar with the story know that it didn’t do him any favours.

If you’re planning a twenties themed wedding, we’d love to see pictures of your unique event! You can e-mail us at believe@absolutejoy.ca. Is a Gatsby wedding something you’d be interested in? Leave us a comment and let us know your thoughts!

 

How to Choose Your Bridesmaids

Deciding on who you want to include in your bridal party can seem like an ordeal. Between with who you’re expected, requested, or even told to include can be a difficult and stressful decision. With family and friends anticipating or expecting they’ll be asked, choosing your bridesmaids can be a difficult decision to say the least. Before you get caught up in it all, relax, and take a deep breath. Breathe. Choosing your bridesmaids doesn’t need to be a nightmare. If you follow the list of tips below, you’ll ensure that you’ll come up with a list that pleases everyone-but most importantly, yourself.


Deciding on who you want to include in your bridal party can seem like an ordeal. Between with who you’re expected, requested, or even told to include can be a difficult and stressful decision. With family and friends anticipating or expecting they’ll be asked, choosing your bridesmaids can be a difficult decision to say the least. Before you get caught up in it all, relax, and take a deep breath. Breathe. Choosing your bridesmaids doesn’t need to be a nightmare. If you follow the list of tips below, you’ll ensure that you’ll come up with a list that pleases everyone-but most importantly, yourself.

How Many Maids?
One of the first things to consider when choosing your bridal party is how many guests you’re planning to invite to your wedding. Most wedding experts say that a good rule of thumb is to have one groomsman and one corresponding bridesmaid for every 50 guests. Also, a large wedding party traditionally signifies a formal wedding. So if you’re planning a small, intimate gathering, twelve bridesmaids might be a bit too much.

No Backsies
You don’t need to ask someone to be in your bridal party just because she asked you to be in her wedding. Don’t ask your university roommate you haven’t spoken to in five years just to return the favor. Remember it’s your wedding, you’re in charge.

Don’t Assume
Try not to make hasty assumptions. Don’t assume one of your friends can’t be a part of your bridal party simply because you think they don’t have enough money to afford that designer bridesmaid dress you have your eye on. If you want to ask a friend whom you know is having financial difficulties, you can always say something like, “I’d love for you to be a bridesmaid, but I understand the tough time you’re going through now. If you can’t do it, I’d love to find something else for you to do in the wedding.” (Or, you can offer to pay her way if you can’t stand the idea of her not being in the wedding.)

Spread the News
Once you have made up your mind about your bridesmaids, you’ll want to spread the news. Nothing’s worse than a coworker who thinks she’s invited to your wedding is a friend who assumes she’s going to be a bridesmaid. Remember, as corny as it sounds, any true friend will understand whatever decision you ultimately make, even if your decision is to not have them be one of your bridesmaids.

Now that you have some key tips to guide you in choosing your bridesmaids, the rest is up to you. Create a list, narrow it down, and just as they always say in business, make a decision!

 

Wedding Invitations – When to Order?

After you have your wedding venue book, it’s time to turn your attention to invitations. Invitations will be your guests’ first glimpse at the style and theme of your wedding. It’s key to ensure that your invitations reflect your vision of your big day. Traditional wording can be used, or you can use inspirational wording or write your own. Remember, wedding invitations are used to communicate a message; thus they don’t need to have extra fancy wording or over-the-top designs. Whatever you do, remember that your invitation reflects your happiness in having your guests share this special and momentous day with you.

Here are a few tips to guide you along your invitation search:

1) Start looking: Go to stores and look at invitations. Pictures from the internet will help you get an idea, but you need to do more research. Most online invitation vendors will send you samples so you can get a better idea of their product.

2) Make a list of friends and family to send invitations to: Remember to count each couple or family as one invitation so that you don’t over order. Also remember not to cut invitations short due to money, each $1.00 invitation you send will bring back $50 in gifts.

3) Printing time: Remember that it takes time to print the invitations (sometimes as little as two to three weeks, although it sometimes it takes as much as six) and it will take you an additional week or two to address the envelopes. The return address should be printed as well. I suggest planning invitations well in advance as they are a key part of ensuring your day is a grand success.

4) Spelling Matters: Know how to spell your fiance’s and parent’s names. That may sound funny, but many brides have to make multiple trips to see their stationer because of spelling or grammatical errors. It’s extremely impolite to spell someone’s name wrong, so proofreading is key here.

5)  Buy your thank you at the same time as your invitations: The reasons for this are simple—first, your parents will pay for them now. Second, most brides who don’t order them before the wedding never get around to it later. You always want to thank your guests for attending your wedding, and to avoid the risk of forgetting after your wedding day, it is best to buy your thank you cards at the same time as your invitations.

Now that you have some invitation tips you’re ready to go on your own invitation hunt. Remember, your invitations will be the first thing your guests receive. Make sure they send a clear message and appropriately set the tone for your wedding day.

Save the Date: A New Approach

Sending out a Save the Date card is an awesome way to give your guests a heads up about your upcoming wedding, and giving them a bit of extra time to prepare. Most Save the Date cards are very traditional and bland. Why not try something different that is truly memorable and will put a big smile on your guests’ faces? Here are some not so conventional Save the Date Cards. Believe me; the date of your big day will only stick with them that much better.

Las Vegas
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Whether you’re getting married in Las Vegas or just looking to add a little more sass or glamour, a Las Vegas Save the Gate Card is the way to go. This will definitely add some spice to your big day, and the date won’t soon be forgotten by your guests either.

Going Retro
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Looking for an instant sense of fun and lightheartedness? Look no further than a retro Save the Date card. With playful graphics and a unique color palette, this is something that will definitely stick in the minds of your guests. If you are looking to express your individuality and unique personalities, a retro card is the way to go.

Handkerchief Style
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Looking to truly ‘Wow” your guests? This romantic Parisian inspired handkerchief will do just that, and then some. Made with cotton fabric and a personalized message printed on top, this is one date that your guests truly won’t forget. This novel idea will instantly add some classiness and prestige to your big day.

If you are looking for new and unique Save the Date ideas, the above suggestions are a great starting point. If you want to inject some creativity into your wedding and impress your guests, try something novel!

Honeymoon Gifts: Sweet and Cute

Honeymoon gifts are the perfect accessory to compliment the excitement of wedding day. After the vows have been exchanged and the party has finished, it’s time for the newlywed bride and groom to head off for their honeymoon.  An ideal gift would be something that’s cute, adorable, yet useful, all in one. Giving something truly from the heart can create a long and lasting impression in the minds of the newlyweds. Here are some creative and thoughtful gift ideas that will send them off to their honeymoon in style.

Mr. + Mrs. Towels
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These luxurious terry velour towels are made completely of cotton with elegant embroidered details. This is the perfect gift to send the bride and groom off to their sunny and warm honeymoon destination. If you’re looking to for the ultimate pampering gift…look no further. This gift does it all.

Just Married Sandals
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These sandals are the ultimate gift in terms of combining cuteness and usefulness. Made with a high quality durable design, the bride and groom will love it if they are going to a sunny honeymoon destination. Leave impressions while walking in the sand; and let the whole world know of your love for one another.

Matching Love Mugs
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These matching travellers’ mugs are the perfect gift to for sending the bride and groom onto their honeymoon, especially if they are coffee or tea lovers. Made out of stainless steel, they come in a silver and pink colour and are engraveable. Ideal for hot beverages or that cool cocktail at the beach. Give the ultimate gift of thoughtfulness and practicability.

Now that you’ve seen some sample honeymoon gifts, they should provide a solid starting point for your search. You can never go wrong with a gift that has a combination of cuteness, charm and usefulness.  Remember, think laterally.

A Black and White Wedding: Who Needs Color?

When planning your wedding day, many couples think of are the colorful decor that will fill their venue and the exuberant feeling of colorful celebration. But what happens if you’re more of a traditionalist, and are looking for a classic look? Then may I suggest that a black and white wedding may be just the thing for you. The classic, yet glamorous look of black coming together with white is exceptionally pretty. Whether it is his tuxedo or your gown, the mix of black and white always gives off a classy feel. In combination with a well decorated venue and well-dressed guests, you have a making of a truly classic wedding. Black and white is always a classic choice and will always be trendy, so you can’t go wrong with this theme. If you’re looking to add some prestige and class to your big day, then choosing black and white will ensure that memories of your wedding day will last a lifetime.

Below are some ideas to help you plan your black and white wedding that will surely help make your day a grand success:

A Black and White Invitation
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First communicate to your guests a black and white theme through this type of invitation. Remember, it is never good to forcefully state a strict dress code. Rather, let them know of the theme beforehand and more of your guests will tend to come dressed appropriately.

Black and White Venue
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Decorating your venue with black and white decor will set the ambience with a classy and prestigious feel. Having black or white chairs, tablecloths, napkins and cutlery will surely set the tone for a fine day.

Black and White Party
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Most importantly, it’s the people that make any wedding day that much more special. Having your bridesmaids and groomsmen dressed in black will definitely deliver the message of your black and white wedding theme. Don’t be afraid to go black.

Now that you’ve seen ideas to help you plan your black and white wedding, the rest is in your hands. Remember, there’s nothing wrong with staying classy on your wedding day. Don’t hold back; go with a black and white theme!