Cake Toppers – What Will Top My Wedding Cake?

Wedding Inspiration

So last week we took a look at the wedding cake itself, this week lets look at what to put on top! Cake toppers can be a really lovely way to individualise your wedding cake, a friend of mine recently had a rugby ball and pair of designer shoes on her cake. It looked fantastic and it really represented who they are. And for those on a budget a cake topper can make a store bought cake look designer!

As with many aspects of your wedding the Internet will prove to be a great friend in helping you find ideas and new options for your cake topper. It is definitely worth checking out website like pinterest.com, etsy.com or even eBay for inspiration and places to buy. Here are a few of my favourites. I love this simply & elegant wooden name cake topper. This would be beautiful for an outdoor or eco-friendly wedding.

For the Sci-Fi or Dr Who fan, check out these fun Bride & Groom robots..

If you are a fan of figurines then you can go with a romantic, graceful version or the crazy, comedy version:

For the love birds out there, this is a very cute cake topper that would also work well for a rustic themed or autumn wedding….

Going for a vintage theme, then a Silhouette topper is a gorgeous addition.

Keep it Simple! The wooden Scrabble letters definitely work better than the plastic ones. You could bring this theme further into your wedding and give your guests travel Scrabble as favours.

If you are a couple looking for a fun aspect to you wedding cake then check out Cake Toppers Ireland or Global Cake Toppers. They offer a bespoke topper service. They will create a unique topper of you and your fiancé in your favourite sports jersey or sitting playing the drums, if you are a musical maestro. Bespoke Cake Toppers can make a lovely keepsake & memento of your wedding day.

And for the dog lovers out there why not include them on your cake!

If you are having cupcakes for your wedding then check out these edible images for the tops of your cupcakes.

You can also design your own topper by uploading your own image & they will print them up for you.www.edibleimages.ie/order-online/make-your-own-topper

If you are not a fan of the cake topper then look at using real flowers that complement the wedding flowers or are having a very detailed cake then leave the cake shine on its own. Check out my Pinterest for more cake topper ideas!

Images from:

Wedding Cuts

Etsy

Wedding Collectibles

Fun For Funs

Etsy

Pinterest

Elizabeth Anne Designs

Custom Bobble

Wedding Cake Toppers

Edible Images

**Read the article here: http://blog.weddingdates.ie/cake-toppers-what-will-top-my-wedding-cake/

Choosing Your Bridal Party

Wedding Tips

Choosing your Bridal Party is one of the most important decisions you will make at the beginning off your wedding planning. The people you choose will be your support network in the lead up to and on your wedding day. Pick them as soon as possible and start putting them to work!

The traditional bridal party consists of the Maid of Honour, the Best Man, bridesmaids, groomsmen, flower girl and ring bearer. Before deciding on the number in your bridal party you should take into consideration the budget, style and size of your wedding.

Have you a limited budget? The more attendants you have the more you will spend! Remember that for each additional member you will be providing dresses, suits, shoes, jewellery, floral arrangements and gifts.

What is the style of your wedding? If you are going for a small informal wedding, then just having a maid of honour and a best man may be more in keeping with that style. Having 5 bridesmaids and 5 groomsmen might be more suited to a larger wedding than a civil ceremony for 25 in a Registry Office.

The size of your bridal party used to be dictated by the number of guests attending the wedding, one pair per 50 guests. Most people today however will look at the number of siblings, or close friends they have before they decide how many and who to include. It is also no longer essential to have the same number of bridesmaids as groomsmen.

Whomever you choose consider that persons future. Do they have a child on the way? Are they getting married themselves? Do they live thousands of miles away? If so, they may not be able to give their full attention and efforts to your wedding. Talk to them to see how they feel. They may prefer to be a groomsmen instead of your best man.

For the Maid of Honour sisters are generally chosen before friends. If you don’t have sisters then go with your oldest and most loyal friend. The one who knows how to calm you down, the one you can trust to be honest with you when needed – “Yes Mary you do look like Little Bow Peep, lets try a different dress!”

Again for the Best Man job your brother or best friend is usually chosen. Pick someone that is a big part of your life, and that really knows you. Make sure it’s someone you can rely on and trust and not someone that will tie you to a lamp post drunk the night before the wedding!! Picking someone that gets on with the bride is a plus.

So we’ve all seen the movie, and this shows how important your choice of Bridesmaids can be! Choose close friends, family or your fiancé’s sister but make sure they are accommodating, helpful and reliable. Pick a group of people that will get on well and whose personalities won’t clash. Don’t feel obliged to ask someone to be your bridesmaid, just because you were her bridesmaid.

The brother(s) of the bride and groom, good friends or close cousins make for good groomsmen. The same rules for choosing bridesmaids apply to choosing groomsmen.

Children can add a lovely innocent touch to your wedding ceremony. The Flower Girl and Page Boy can be a son, daughter, cousin, niece, nephew, godchild or stepchild usually between the ages of 3 and 8. Children are often more at ease with people they know, so make sure that the child has met your bridal party several times before the big day.

It is not always possible to have everyone you want in your bridal party but people who are close to you can still be involved in your wedding by doing a reading or prayer of the faithful during the ceremony.  Talk it over between you both before making any decisions and pick people that will help eliminate stress in your life not add to it.

Images from:

W Mag

Wedding Party App

The Bridal Guide

**Read the article here: http://blog.weddingdates.ie/choosing-your-bridal-party/

Bringing A Rainbow Of Colours To Your Wedding

Wedding Inspiration

The past few weeks we’ve had the sun shining outside and we are all brightening up our days with pops of colour. And with our fingers crossed for the rain to stay away it’s now time to bring the rainbow of colours into your wedding day! Whether you are choosing to include the entire rainbow or just one colour here is some inspiration for you:

Wedding Style For The Boys

Here the boys get to have some fun with colour. I do love the different coloured braces!

Wedding Style For The Girls

There are so many different places for you to bring colour into the girl’s style. Here are some ideas for subtle hidden ideas like the rainbow garter to gorgeous block coloured bouquets to full on multi coloured wedding dresses. Would you be brave enough for rainbow makeup!

Wedding Décor

For those that are a little scared of the more powerful rainbow colours try going for pastel shades like those used in the picture of the chiavari chairs.

The Wedding Cake

A feast of colours for your wedding cake! I love the different ways these images bring colour into the wedding cake, from giving your guests a big surprise with rainbow coloured filling to the full-on multi coloured mini cakes to the quirky & unique Lego cake topper. The choices are endless!

Food For Thought

Just one word – Yummy!!!

**Read the article here: http://blog.weddingdates.ie/bringing-a-rainbow-of-colours-to-your-wedding/

Wedding Dress Trends Spring 2014

Wedding Dresses

For those getting married in 2014 it is time to start looking at the wonderful new wedding dress trends. While the beautiful traditional shapes & silhouettes have reappeared again for Spring 2014, designer like Vera Wang & Oscar de la Renta brought exciting new elements with dramatic black opera-length gloves and blue dresses to the runways.

Colour Inspiration

Over the last few years we have seen many celebrities opting to move away from the traditional white wedding dress to a touch of pink for Ann Hathaway’s dress and an eye popping purple for Dita Von Tesse and this season the designers have given us a range of options from the delicate to the bold.
Oscar de la Renta’s blue silk organza and sequin floral embroidered tulle strapless gown with blue tulle wrap.

A very elegant soft pink tulle gown with ivory silk organza flower appliqué and lace embroidery and pink tulle wrap from Oscar de la Renta.

Hamda al Fahim combines several of this seaons trends with this gorgeous ice blue grey gown with cascading delicate ruffles and detailed long sleeves.

Vera Wang brings the classic colours of black and white today into her Spring 2014 collection. Here she shows us a light ivory and black strapless gown with silk ottoman bodice; hand draped silk faille skirt and contour band accent at neckline.

Fishtail Hem

The fishtail hem is the go-to silhouette for a dramatic and flattering fit. The fitted bodice and nipped-in waist of the gown is flattering to women with a wide variety of different figures and body types.
The ‘Aria’ wedding dress from the 2014 Carolina Herrera Spring Collection with ivory rose motif embroidery on tulle and satin faced silk organza gown shows us a softer & slightly higher fishtail hem. This allows the bride a little more freedom of movement on the day.

Gloves

A variety of glove options appeared on the catwalk for designers like Oscar de la Renta & Vera Wang from opera length gloves to elegant sheer versions. Whatever you choose can add a little theatre to you wedding ensemble. Do bear in mind if you are wearing gloves that you may need to remove them when you get to the altar so that your fiancé can place the wedding ring on your finger!
Vera Wang brings drama with black opera length gloves.

Long Sleeves

Inspired by Grace Kelly & Kate Middleton this is proving a very popular trend again this year. Long sleeves can be seen in just about every collection using lace and tulle, and is definitely here to stay. Delicate lace detail & sheer embroidery make this a trend that can be worn for any season. Long sleeves are also great for brides that don’t want to show too much flesh and by choosing the right material and style can help slim down the arms and shoulder area.

Classy Cover-ups

Monique Lhuillier’s new collection showcases a classic & elegant array of cover-ups that will leave you wanting to keep your wedding dress under wraps! By adding a bolero, coat, cape or shawl you can create two looks on your wedding day.
Tatianna – Silk white 4 ply silk crepe cape

**Read the blog post here: http://blog.weddingdates.ie/wedding-dress-trends-spring-2014/

 

How To Find The Right Engagement Ring

Engagement Tips
proposal

Producing the engagement ring is one of the key moments of any wedding proposal. When you ask your partner to marry you, you hope that the choice of ring is everything they dreamed of. This can be a very daunting task! Don’t fear Sharon is here to help!

Find Out What They Like

  • If you have decided to pick the ring yourself, you may have to play detective for a while to get an idea of what your partner’s style is.
  • Look at the rest of their jewellery carefully to help determine their style. Do they prefer larger (don’t panic) or more delicate pieces, contemporary or more classic?
  • Ask their friends and family if they ever mentioned what shape stone or setting they prefer.
  • Has they ever mentioned if they’d prefer a solitaire (one stone) or a three-stone ring?
  • On your next shopping trip wander through a jewellery store. Tell them you’re looking for a new watch but be sure to stop at the engagement ring counters. See what kind of rings and jewellery catches their eye.
  • Take note if they comments on their friends engagement rings?
  • When flicking through fashion magazines, do they express an interest in a particular style of jewellery?

DECIDE YOUR BUDGET

Traditionally the guideline budget was one to two months’ salary. This figure does not work for everyone so work within your means and spend what you can reasonably afford. Do no put yourself into debt before you’ve even gotten engaged!

Find A Reputable Jewellers

It is very important to find and deal with a trustworthy and well-respected jeweller. Take a look at where they source their diamonds or other stones, how knowledgeable are the staff, are they competitively priced, what after-sales service is provided.

Know Their Ring Size

This is easier than it seems. You can find out their ring size in several different ways. Try borrowing a ring, chose a ring that they wear closest to their wedding ring finger. Make sure to tell the jewelers which finger your partner wears the ring on so they can size it appropriately. Ask their friends and family if they know their size, make an impression of their ring in a bar of soap or trace the inside of one of their ring on a piece of paper.

You don’t have to get the size exactly right. Remember it is easier to size down a ring that is too big than it is to increase the size of a ring that’s too small.

A Placeholder Ring

A “placeholder” or dress ring is a temporary engagement ring that you can use to propose. This allows you to have the element of surprise but still get your partners input on the permanent ring. A placeholder ring can be anything from a family heirloom to a piece of costume jewellery.

Finally when you are going shopping it is a good idea to bring a buddy with you like their best friend or sister (just make sure they have good taste!!). Always remember you are buying what you think they will like and what will look good on their hand, your partner is the one wearing it so it has to be their style. Happy Shopping!

 **Read the blog post here: http://blog.weddingdates.ie/how-to-find-the-right-engagement-ring/

Wedding Speeches

Wedding Tips

The mention of wedding speeches can send some people running for the hills but with a few helpful tips it can be a really lovely experience. Someone very close to you has asked you to speak about them and their partner on their wedding day and that is a very special honour that not everyone gets the change to do.

Before you stand up to deliver wedding speech, think of a something that makes you smile.

It’s better to have a big smile on your face instead of a look of dread. Before you start to speak try to forget about what lies ahead and just focus on the moment at hand.Keep the in-jokes to a minimum and keep them short. Remember you are being asked to say a few words on your friend or child’s wedding day, you are not doing a spot at the Cat laughs festival!
Don’t drink too many for Dutch courage. You may need a small one to steady the nerves but avoid getting drunk before you give your speech; slurred speech is not a good thing for the wedding video. It is also a good idea to eat before you give the speech this will stop your tummy from rumbling and calm the butterflies!

As our mother’s say, “speak slowly and clearly”, make eye contact with people in different areas of the room. Keep in mind you are speaking to all the guests not just those in the table in front of you. You will be surprised how this helps to relax you when you see the friendly smiling faces looking up at you.

The wedding guests are rooting for you. They want to see you succeed and are only waiting to hear kind words for the happy couple from you. You are talking to family and friends not standing up in a lecture hall talking to a bunch of strangers!

Prepare and practice.

You will find it much less daunting if you prepare your speech in advance. I don’t mean that you have to have every single word written out but have some bullet points of things you want to say, people you want to thank and stories you want to tell. Have some notes written out for the day. Once you start and get into your stride you will start ad-libbing a little bit anyway. Once you have your notes done practice in front of the mirror or your partner and get some honest feedback. It’s also a good idea to visualise everyone clapping and laughing (at the right times!)

Be sincere and remember a wedding speech should be about both families.

Breath! Sounds simple but when we get nervous we tend to hold our breath, so a simple solution to make yourself relax is take deep breaths into your belly just before you stand up to give your speech. Practice this at home too, visualise yourself at the wedding, sitting down and being calm as you take deep breaths and relax.
Think about how you will feel after your speech. Don’t worry about feeling nervous or anxious beforehand just about how good you will feel once you’ve sat down knowing you have contributed a memorable part to the wedding day.

Allow yourself to be soppy. People think that speeches have to be funny, but some of the most memorable speeches are those that contain true, sincere words that come from the heart. Wedding speeches are the perfect time to get soppy and really express your feelings whether you are the father of the bride or the best man.

**Read the blog post here: http://blog.weddingdates.ie/wedding-speeches/

Q & A With Ring Designer Donal Carey

Wedding Tips
ring designer q & a sharon mc meel

Donal Carey is the founder of a new service which aims to help people design their own bespoke wedding or engagement rings using state of the art technology. I sat down with Donal recently to get some tips for all those couples getting engaged in the next few months.

What Services Do You Provide To Your Clients?

Firstly we provide help, education and guidance to all our clients about diamonds and how to get the best one for their budget. We then help them to design their own wedding or engagement rings using sophisticated computer aided design software so that they get the perfect one of a kind ring that they are looking for. We also then manufacture the ring(s) for them and once their ready we hand deliver them to each and every client.

How Can People Make Sure That The Diamonds They Purchase Are Real?

This is something that we get asked quite a lot about and it is an area where people need to be very cautious. All of the diamonds that we sell are independently verified by one of three diamond laboratories around the world. Alwaysmake sure that the diamond you are buying comes with a certificate from one of the following three labs:

All of the diamonds we sell are checked and tested in one of these three laboratories and will come with a certificate stating that the diamond is natural and not man-made together with its carat weight, colour grade, clarity grade and a description of its cut.

I cannot overstate the importance of having one of these certs accompany a diamond when you purchase it as without one you will be relying solely on the sellers word for what you are buying.

How Do You Make Sure All Your Diamonds Are Conflict Free?

In order to eradicate diamonds that are sold to finance armed groups the industry set up a system called the “Kimberley Process”  in the early years of the 21st century to track all diamonds circulating between countries to ensure no illegally mined diamonds get into the system. We make sure that all diamonds we purchase are accompanied by a Kimberley certificate and it is something which we take very seriously.

Can You Give Our Couples Some Tips For Buying Diamonds?

Some good general rules to follow would be:

  • Look for diamonds that are just under some of the more popular carat weights as these will be visually indistinguishable from the larger size but can be cheaper. E.g. a 0.90 point diamond will cost less than a 1 carat diamond but visually will appear the same size as a 1 carat diamond.
  • The visible difference between diamonds of one colour grade and the next, e.g. G to H or I to J is so minor it is difficult to detect with the naked eye. The difference in price however can be large.
  • A good compromise in terms of clarity and value is the VS1/VS2 range which appear flawless to the naked eye and is still affordable.
  • Diamonds with a cut grade of ‘Good’ or ‘Very Good’ are an excellent combination of beauty and value.

Should You Be Thinking About The Wedding Ring When Buying The Engagement Ring?

Yes, definitely, many of the couples we help opt for designing the two bands together or if you are thinking about the engagement and wedding ring together then you can design them so that they complement each other.

What’s The Best Way For Our Couples To Get In Touch With You?

At the moment I can be reached by my direct number of 085-7225600. Early in the New Year we will be launching our brand new website so stay tuned for that!

**See the blog post I did here: http://blog.weddingdates.ie/q-ring-designer-donal-carey/