Thursday, September 25, 2014
Every bride wants to have a memorable exit to mark the end of her wedding day and the beginning of her life with her groom. And while unique exits can make wonderful memories and photos, they can also wreak havoc on your bridal gown.
Rhonda, a true bridal gown-cleaning expert with Oakwood Cleaners, discusses the type of receptions and exits that can damage your gown and what can be done to reverse this damage. Of course we want you to enjoy your wedding day. Just keep these things in mind as you plan your exit.
Photo: Shannon Fulton Photography
What are some reception exits that can stain/ruin your wedding dress?
1) Rain: You decide to keep your dress on as you leave the reception while it’s raining. Mud or even oils from cars that spread can gather at the bottom of your dress and can cause permanent damage.
2) Pool: Many venues now have pools that guests and even brides and grooms jump in to celebrate at the end of the night. The water mixed with chlorine can cause silk to shrink and discolor. This goes for lake and ocean water as well.
3) Beach: Sand is quite abrasive and can cause delicate fabrics to snag and can even cause holes in your gown.
4) Candy: Let’s say instead of rice, you decide that you’d rather have your guests throw candy. Whether it is colored or not, sugar can cause stains on your dress especially if you have perspired or if it is raining outside. Also, if sugar is not removed from the dress brown spots can occur in coming years.
5) Silly string - Silly string could stick and stain your gown.
6) Bubbles - If you opt for bubbles, be sure to tell your dry cleaner as they do contain soap and might react with the cleaning agent, mostly if it is a silk dress and has to be dry cleaned.
Photo: Matt Andrews Photography
Photo: Bledsoe Photography
Already married? Here's what you can do to fix/reverse damage to your wedding dress.
First of all, do not do anything to try to remedy any stains yourself. If your dress is wet, leave it to hang dry – do NOT put it in a plastic bag wet! Soaking the gown, using a “Tide Stick” or trying any home remedies found online could set the spots permanently.
As soon as you can, bring your gown to a dry cleaner that is certified to spot clean and preserve your wedding dress – this is truly the only way to remove damage. But do keep in mind, some damage unfortunately cannot be reversed, but a trained professional should be the only one to try!
If you’re concerned about any damage that your dress may have or if you would like to have your dress preserved by experts (we can’t recommend this enough!) be sure to visit Oakwood Cleaners at one of their three convenient Nashville locations!
Rhonda says, "if you are keeping your gown, then you are keeping your memories. And, if there are stains or holes, those are memories from the most important day of their life!"
We couldnt agree more!
Photo: Shuffield Photography
Monday, September 22, 2014
When it comes to weddings, change is constant. This year blush is in; next year fondant is out. But when it comes to advice, tips from veteran wedding planners are always timely.
Earlier this year, Nashville event planners Sarah and Damon of Regalo Design shared advice entitled, "Four Ways to Ensure Your Wedding Day is Horrible." The planners describe, in great detail, the many ways that brides and grooms approach wedding planning, and the overall wedding day itself, that can lead to disappointment.
As you plan your Nashville wedding, take a few minutes to read their advice, which is based on years of experience and working with hundreds of brides and grooms. What do you have to lose... other than thousands of dollars and your sanity!?!
Click here to read their advice.
Co-owners Damon and Sarah Goude
Wednesday, September 17, 2014
Guest Contributor: Marie McKinney Oates, MMFT, is the owner of Nashville Marriage Studio. She and her husband are marriage coaches that help couples get ready for marriage by teaching them communication skills that are key to keeping the love alive.
A few months ago, research was released that said a couple's movie date night could double as therapy. The study found that watching a movie and then talking about the issues it raised was just as good as intensive therapy sessions in helping couples talk about their own problems.
As a marriage coach I loved this. I loved that there was a way to have honest and important conversations from the privacy of your own home and the comfort of your own couch.
I used this research as I created Marriage Prep School, a six-course program that gives couples guidance on the important conversations to have before getting married, and skills for listening and communicating better. Each course has assignments, essays, science experiments, and movie date nights for the couple to work through. It's an affordable, efficient and fun way to get ready for marriage.
Use Your Next Netflix Binge To Get You Ready for Married Life
Marriage Prep School includes six movie date nights that will help you discuss topics such as communication, conflict resolution, family issues, personality differences and finances. The movies aren't even necessarily "chick flicks," so your groom does not have to worry about being bored to death by a Steel Magnolias marathon. Also, all of the movies you'll watch for Marriage Prep School are available via streaming on Netflix, so you don't even have to leave the house. And, honestly, what stressed out bride couldn't use a movie date cuddled up with her sweetheart?
Get a sneak peek of Marriage Prep School or go ahead and get your copy today! Click here and enter "ABG" at checkout to save15%.
Thursday, September 11, 2014
If you've ever tried to plan your own tropical vacation, you probably know that there are a LOT of choices out there. Unless you have a personal connection to a certain location or resort, it can be challenging to figure out whether a particular island or hotel will provide what you’re really looking for, or if you’ll really get your money’s worth.
Nashville travel agency 2Travel Anywhere is the trusted guide for Nashville's engaged couples. Owner, Carlie, has planned dozens of destination weddings and honeymoons in the tropics! She has visited and worked with Sandals/Beaches Resorts for more than seven years and shares her inside information on what makes Sandals so special.
Having personally visited every Sandals Resort, Carlie knows what she’s talking about, and is able to deliver a travel plan that will best suit your vacation needs. Check out my interview with Carlie below to see what options Sandals Resorts can offer.
What makes Sandals/Beaches so special?
Sandals Resorts have an incomparable showcase of quality, choice and welcoming hospitality. At the Sandals Resorts designed for two people in love, indulge in a variety of offering of quality inclusions and discover the standard by which every other all-inclusive resort is measured, anywhere in the world.
Sandals includes more options than any other all-inclusive on the planet. From endless water sports, including waterskiing (at certain locations) and the Caribbean's most comprehensive scuba diving program, to unlimited rounds of golf with complimentary greens fees, Sandals has a wide range of activities to choose from. Enjoy more dining choices with up to 15 restaurants included per resort, featuring culinary concepts and chefs from around the globe. Each resort includes a wide variety of entertainment options, with a variety of pool and beach parties, and upscale bars serving an endless supply of premium brand liquors and four exclusive varietals of Beringer Wines.
Luxurious accommodations provide up to 25 categories per resort, ensuring that you receive exactly what you’re looking for on your vacation. Each location also has signature "Love Nest Dreams Suites”, ranging from an exotic circular Rondoval, a beachfront bungalow, or a Millionaire Suite high atop an Oceanside bluff. Treat yourself to any top-tier suite and enjoy the discreetly attentive services of their personal butlers, all trained by the Guild of Professional English Butlers.
How does Sandals differentiate its resorts from other options?
More quality inclusions and extensive choices so that the couple can relax and devote more time to enjoying time with each other. The resorts are made for love, have a profound respect for nature, and provide you with beautiful places to stay and play.
Why should a couple choose Sandals over another resort/chain/hotel?
Sandals has won every notable award in every category including World's Best. Sandals has excellent luxury, quality and exceptional service to every person who comes to their resorts.
Another reason I like Sandals is the dining. There's nothing more satisfying than discovering a new culture through a region's cuisine. Savory morsels infused with tantalizing spices. Internationally trained chefs authentic dishes that take you on a gastronomic expedition around the world without ever having to leave your resort. Nobody knows how to make delectable pastries better than a French chef classically trained in Paris, or risotto like an Italian Chef schooled in Tuscany. And no matter how hard you try, no one does prime rib and Yorkshire pudding quite like the Brits. Sandals searches the globe to find the finest of chefs from 32 countries.
What is included in a Sandals stay? If there are multiple levels of what's included, please provide a few examples from each price point - low/mid/high
While other resorts boast a variety of suites, what they really offer are a few standard suites with minor changes. Sandals Resorts offer the most extravagant and creatively designed suites in the islands, with 40 percent of the accommodation selection offering suite options. Millionaire bluff-top suites with 180 degree ocean views private pool and three- story sundeck, or an exotic Rondoval suite in-the-round, complete with private pool and outdoor shower- very similar to a bungalow. You could even stay in a Swim Up suite that allows you to float up to your private patio, or in any of the beachfront suites that are available. Regardless of which suite appeals to your sense of style, the interiors inside are as enticing as the views outside, offering something for everyone.
What can a couple expect from a stay at Sandals?
Anything and everything you ever dreamed. If you want to do everything on your bucket list or nothing but relax, they offer it all. At Sandals there are no schedules to follow or appointments to keep, just unscripted days and sultry nights for you to spend as you wish. Savor breakfast in bed. Evenings have beachfront fire pits to enjoy. Play in the ocean, stroll in the sand or laze in a secluded hammock.
How many Sandals resorts are there to choose from?
There are 15 different Sandals Resorts. I have personally been to each Sandals Resort, and each location provides different options and specialties.
Does Sandals offer different options based on what each couple wants? (i.e. romantic private getaway, family fun, lots of people around, secluded beaches)
Definitely! Sandals offers a variety of options, and truly has something for everyone. Family fun can be enjoyed at their special family-friendly Beaches resorts, and Sandals is adults only. Each resort specializes in making the most of your experience, and there are options to fit any taste.
As the leader in destination weddings and honeymoons, Sandals specializes in knowing exactly what honeymooners want. Since newlyweds spend nearly a third of their vacation in their honeymoon suite, Sandals designed sensuous suites that offer the utmost in privacy, and special added touches like specious bedrooms and plush beds, oversize spa tubs and separate showers built for two.
Are you able to take care of all booking for a couple's trip to a Sandals location?
Yes. 2 Travel Anywhere, LLC is a certified Sandals Specialist. We personally travel to Sandals a few times a year to share our experience with our clients to make sure they have the best trip that meets their expectation. Our prices are guaranteed to be the best rate for all Sandals Resorts.
How long have you been working with/visiting Sandals?
My husband and I have been traveling to all-inclusive resorts for the past 9 years, and experienced our first Sandals resort 7 years ago. We could immediately tell the difference between Sandals and other all-inclusive resorts we had visited. Once we feel in love with our first Sandals Resort in Antigua, we knew we had to go to every resort option! I have personally stayed at all the Sandals resorts and can provide any information a couple needs regarding their vacation desires.
To get one step closer to those clear blue beaches, be sure to contact Carlie to see how she can help you to plan your trip to paradise! She can be reached at 615-512-7764, by email at Carlie.Travel at gmail dot com. To see more fantastic photos, visit her website at 2travelanywhere.com.
We'd like to say Happy Birthday to Carlie!! Carlie is currently celebrating her 30th birthday while vacationing and exploring new places for honeymoons. What a dream life!
Thursday, September 4, 2014
I have yet to find many people who are as enthusiastic about Pinterest as I am. Whenever I meet a person who hasn’t heard of the popular visual discovery website — say, what? — I quickly describe it as, “The place of dreams!”
Even though Pinterest is a wonderland for those do-it-yourself, dreamin’ types like me, I’m very happy the Pinterest hype had not yet reached maximum levels at the time I was planning my wedding in 2011. While the website is helpful on so many levels, the ideas can be pretty darn daunting when planning an important day such as your wedding.
Sarah Willard, owner of Music City Events, has seen an increased amount of clients with preconceived wedding planning ideas straight from Pinterest. In fact, Sarah also uses the site to search for and visualize color palettes and other ideas. She says it’s a great way for brides to get inspired.
Sarah, owner and lead planner, Music City Events; Photo: Wedlock Images
“I think Pinterest can be a really great way to expand your horizon,” Sarah says. “A lot of people haven’t had a wedding before. There are so many ideas you can do with lighting, printed goods, and hairstyles and a lot of brides don’t have time to come up with all of the ideas on their own. Being able to see what others have done really can help.”
This experienced, Nashville-based event planner advises brides to share their Pinterest boards with vendors and let the vendors offer their professional expertise on how to tailor the idea into something unique to the bride and groom. She also warns brides to limit themselves to three to five projects — brides will have enough on their plates with all the planning as it is.
Above all, brides should be realistic with themselves when using Pinterest and incorporating DIY projects found on the site. Pinterest has a tricky way of convincing you that any DIY project is a great one to take on, but that’s not always true.
“Pinterest could very easily overwhelm a bride and set up unrealistic expectations,” Sarah says. “Not everyone is super crafty, nor do they have the time or money to do all these projects. Besides, projects can get expensive very quickly. It’s easy for people to think these Pinterest ideas are easy to accomplish, but not realize how much money goes into them.”
How do you use Pinterest during your wedding planning process? Do you find it more helpful or overwhelming? Tell us in the comments section below.