Wedding Wednesday {Our Honeymoon}

Before I jump into it I have two things to mention.

1. I am SO excited to announce that I am now a Bride Blogger on Budget Savvy Bride! You can read my introductory post here, and check back every Tuesday to read my latest post! Those that have followed along for a while know how exciting this is for me as I begin my Wedding Planner adventure, and can tell how obsessed I am with all things wedding!

2. We mailed our Save The Dates yesterday! They are all sealed and delivered and I can’t wait to start hearing that people have received them. I got butterflies putting them into the mailbox!

Now onto the real post! I just realized I never mentioned that we officially have our honeymoon planned. About 2 months ago we put the down payment on our honeymoon and finalized the dates. It was pretty easy for us to decide exactly what we wanted to do, but deciding which itinerary was the hard part. I have mentioned before that we are going to Europe, we were in love when we went to Paris, Amsterdam and Brussels last summer which made it really easy for us to decide we wanted to go back.

But where should we go? I wanted Greece and Croatia, Dave wanted Italy. How were we going to be able to afford to make the both of us happy? I hoped a cruise would solve this problem. I started searching for any itinerary starting after July 4th so we would be able to celebrate my favorite holiday in the states, and have at least a week after the wedding to prepare for it. But then I decided it would be easier for someone else to step in and handle this portion.

I called my travel agent and told her the places we both wanted to go just to see if we could both get what we were looking for in one trip, I had a feeling it wouldn’t happen. She was able to find us about 10 options and it was up to us to decide what we wanted. We sat down with all of the itineraries, prices, and time frames and picked a top 3. Then we looked on Trip Advisor for each of the areas and made our final decision.

We will be leaving on July 8th for Rome and coming home from Paris on July 26th. I could not be more excited! We have one amazing itinerary, and I can’t even imagine the sights we will see. We decided to arrive in Rome 2 days before our cruise which gives us the chance to explore the city and relax before our days are filled with soaking in a new country everyday.

On July 11th we will board our cruise to start our sail around the Strait of Messina. During our cruise we will visit other ports in Italy, Malta, Greece, Croatia and Montenegro. After 11 amazing days, our cruise will end in Venice where we will spend another two nights touring the city. After all of this we left off on a Thursday, we had the option to go ahead and fly home (which would have still been amazing!) or travel more of Europe for the weekend.

We decided to fly from Venice to Paris and visit my BFF and her husband for the weekend! We are also going to try and go to Disneyland Paris since we didn’t make it last time we were there. We will be flying home early Sunday morning and I am so happy about having all direct flights!

Only 209 more days until this amazing trip, but I am even more excited for what is in 192 days!

Today is bittersweet because I am linking-up with Kristyn for the very last time. This is also very exciting because I will be co-hosting the link-up with Meg from Borrowed Heaven starting next week. Thank you, Kristyn for passing the link-up on to us, we will treat it well!

Be sure to come back next week and join your new hosts, there may even be a giveaway in store!

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Grab the new button for next week!

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Wedding Wednesday {How To Choose A Color Scheme}

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One of the first questions I am asked when people ask me about my wedding is “what are your colors?”. At first this surprised me, but the more I was asked, the more I understood why people were curious. I have known for years what my color scheme would be because they are my favorite colors, but then I realized I needed to be careful with everything else if I went with my original color choices. So things had to change.

Once I started setting up weddings I got a much better idea of how colors work together, and which type of wedding people were having. There are all kinds from casual to classy, beachy to ballroom, and everything in between. Besides from talking with your Fiancé about budget and possible venues, deciding you color scheme should be one of the very first things a newly engaged couple should discuss. The colors are a deciding factor in most things like, theme and location, and can majorly help plan big details along the way. You wouldn’t exactly want a classy black-tie gala styled wedding in a very rustic barn, and you wouldn’t want a bright colored very laid-back wedding in a ball room.

Here are my top tips to choosing your wedding colors:

1. Location is a big part of choosing your color scheme. The area surrounding your wedding will add to the colors you chose, for example, if you are getting married in a vineyard, deep and natural colors will be brought out from the things around you. If you find a location that doesn’t match up with the colors you have chosen, try and stay within the same family but maybe change the hue a bit. You don’t want your decor to be a distraction.

2. Go with the seasons. You will want to stick within a certain hue for each season, if you think about the normal decor that comes out around each time of year you will see the basics for each season. You can also use this trick to add texture to your wedding, think sandy tones for a beach wedding or gold accents for a classical wedding. This was the problem I ran into, I wanted darker shades of purple (Go Ravens!) and green, but I wanted an early summer wedding. In the end I went with lavender and mint because it matched the weather and didn’t seem dreary being outdoors.

3. Look at the color wheel. If you plan on sticking to a single color in different shades you won’t need this step as much, but if you are using two or more colors look at the color wheel when deciding. If your colors are opposites you are in a safe range, these colors typically compliment each other, if they are not touching at all, you may want to tweak something. You could also go the route of monochromatic and choose one color in multiple shades, or analogous and look for colors directly next to each other.

4. Pull in neutrals. A nice way to stick with a single color and still add some definition is to pick a shade that stands out and then pair it with a more neutral color. A great example of this is the currently the most popular wedding color scheme of blush and gold.

5. Go with the vibe. Different moods will allude to certain shades of colors. Think dramatic or relaxed, casual or classy, and then go with what tones you think will match the mood of the wedding you want.

6. Go for a walk. Being surrounded by nature or strolling through an art museum will help you get creative and look at colors you wouldn’t normally picture together. A big bonus would be walking around the areas on your list of venues.

7. Be flexible. You will always want to give a straight answer when people ask what your color scheme is, but don’t let this nail you down to an exact choice. It is nice to have some things a few hues off throughout your wedding, and in the end the linens probably won’t be the exact shade of the bridesmaid dresses anyway but everyone will be having such a fun time at your wedding, it won’t even matter. As long as you are happy, everyone else will be too.

8. Attire. What colors will look good in a Bridesmaid Dress or on the Groomsmen Ties? If you plan on going abstract with your color scheme, find some dresses online and see if you like how they look before you finalize what you want.

As always I am linking up with the lovely Kristyn from Chits and Giggles, and we would love if you joined us!

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Wedding Wednesday {Getting My First Bouquet}

Ever since I started working for a wedding flower company 3 years ago, my favorite part of the job has been delivering the bouquets. I love walking into a room full of excitement, happy tears, and best friends to deliver such a special part of the big day. Most of the time I leave with tear filled eyes and a sense of excitement. It is such a cool experience for me and I start to get butterflies just thinking about that moment during my wedding.

When we had our engagement photos taken, I had asked if I could have a small bouquet made for the pictures. The designers were more than happy to put something together for me, and that Friday seemed to take forever because I was so excited to receive my flowers! When I walked in the front door of the shop and my bouquet was handed to me I practically melted. The bouquet had MY name on it. I was overjoyed. Dave said I was going crazy because I talked about how much I loved the flowers for half of our 2 hours drive to the beach.

bouquet 3 bouquet 2 bouquet 1

I don’t know how I will handle it when my bouquet is delivered on my wedding day, all I have to say is I should probably wait for make-up after they arrive. Now if I could just decide what type of bouquet I want!

Did you have any unexpected big moments throughout your wedding day?

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Linking up with Chits and Giggles (as always!)

Wedding Wednesday

Wedding Wednesday {Tips To Pick a Venue}

choosing a venue

I am so very happy that it is already Wednesday, lucky for me the end of today is the end of my official workweek since I am at a conference. I only have a few updates from this past week, but I am looking forward to lots more for next week!

Since last Wedding Wednesday we have changed our minds twice about the Save-The-Date images. We are finally settled and will be ordering them as soon as we are reunited on Thursday. Along with choosing the images and layout, we decided to address them by hand. As much as I love calligraphy, we just can’t afford to spend $400 on it for the Save-The-Dates. I am also hoping to be better at it myself by the time our invitations go out. It’s a shame that even having them printed in so expensive!

Another big thing we have finished is the rental company for tables, linens, etc. I have looked at so many options and to say we finally found a great company is such a relief. I am still deciding on buying or renting drapery for the tent, but I still have some time. I have a perfect vision for everything but not the extra time to sit down with everyone and go over everything.

Since I didn’t have too much to share today, I am hoping this list will help any future brides. When a couple is trying to find their dream venue, it is easy for several things to be overlooked. I put this list together of 15 things any couple should look for, ask or check on the contract. The list could be longer, but to me these are the most important to stick to.

1- If your event is being held outdoors, what is the back-up plan in place at this venue if the weather doesn’t cooperate. Most venues won’t allow you to change areas if it’s raining the day of without an extra added fee, and some won’t have a backup space available. A way to avoid this is to already plan on having a tent either through the venue or an outside source.

2- Are you able to host ceremony and reception at the venue. This may not be a big deal for all brides because of the ceremony being held at a church, garden, etc. but it is nice to know this information moving forward.

3- Is there a noise restriction past a certain hour? If your wedding is in a hotel or outside, there will most likely a 10 or 11pm noise restriction. If you plan on partying all night long (woohoo!) make sure you don’t have a certain time to cut off the jams, or just move the party to a nearby bar.

4- Are there other events (weddings or otherwise) being held the day before, day of, and day after my event. This will give you a chance to think about rehearsal dinner scheduling, set-up day of (for your vendors, not you!), where you will be getting ready, timing of your wedding, and brunch the following day. Even if you don’t plan on having any of these at the venue, it is nice to know what you are working with.

5- Is there a space for the bridal party and groomsmen to get ready on site? Are they far enough away from each other that there is no chance for the Groom to see the Bride before she is ready?

6- What is included with the cost of venue? Catering, tenting, chairs, fireworks, etc! When working on your budget it’s easy to know what is going to be a part of each aspect. Having a caterer included in venue has its positives, but also it’s negatives if you plan on hiring someone else or want a certain meal.

7- Are outside vendors allowed? Is there an extra charge for using vendors outside of a venues preferred list?

8- What is the payment schedule? Some venues don’t need final payment until a week before the event, but others want it 3 months before.

9- When will the venue need the final headcount? If the final headcount is lower than the original estimate, will you be charged for the estimate or final number? Some venues will charge you based on the original headcount and it will not change if the final number is lower.

10- Will there be a provided point of contact day of the wedding? Even with a wedding planner this is important. They will be an aid to the planner in many aspects and have experience with the site.

11- Are there alcohol limitations? For example, many parks won’t let you serve alcohol or you need to get a special license for the day of your wedding.

12- Are there set-up fees? If tables, chairs, linens, place settings, etc are provided, is there an extra charge for the venue to set these up?

13- Who is in charge of clean up? Depending on the venue it could be their staff, rental staff or each individual vendor.

14- Is guest parking available? Is it included in the price? Most couples wouldn’t want their guests paying $50 for parking while they attend your wedding, so add this into the contract if you can. If there is no parking, see if there is a recommended shuttle service.

15- Are taxes, fees and gratuities included in the final quote? Don’t let the vendor slip in extra charges once you have signed the contract.

Hopefully this will be able to help some Brides-To-Be’s out there!

I am not hosting my link-up this week because I am co-hosting with Kristyn and some other lovely Wedding Wednesday Bloggers. I have loved following along with Kristyn’s Wedding posts and really enjoy her blog, Chits and Giggles. If you don’t already follow her blog I suggest you check it out!

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Wedding Wednesday {Guest List}

The time has come where we needed to finally get our absolute final guest list together. Dave and I both have large families, which means right off the bat our guest list is pretty large. It also doesn’t help that we work for a small(ish) company, so it is easy for us to be friends with everyone we see everyday. We had just started the list and were at 100, so we started going a little bit slower.

I have always been very close with my grandparents group of friends, and they have been there for every big moment in my life, so of course I want them there. Dave is also close with all of the adults from his childhood neighborhood, so he wants them there. These cases just seemed to be never ending. In the end we had to sit down and really decide who we would be upset to not have attend the wedding, and made our list based on that.

Luckily, we know our caterer and the venue doesn’t limit the number of guests so we could invite as many people as we wanted, but still keeping rentals in mind. Our guest list is now finalized around 200 people, but we are happy that most of our friends and family will have the opportunity to share in our big day.

The reason we needed to finalize our guest list is because we plan on sending out Save-The-Dates this weekend! Yay! I can’t wait to show you all what we are sending out. For now, here are some more of our amazing Engagement photos by Bulldogs and Cupcakes Photography. Spending the wee hours of the morning on a beautiful beach with my best friend was amazing. It was even better that Leah was a dream to work with, I can’t wait to have her around for more of our big moments.

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Have some planning tips to share? Photos from the big day? Link-up and lets see it!

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Wedding Wednesday {Updates}

This week has flown by! I am excited to have some updates from the planning world, and a few tips that I have learned along the way. I can’t believe how quickly things are happening and how close we are to having most of the big things checked off! Since I am away for work this week, I won’t be able to get too much more done before next week, but I am hoping to share some DIY’s for Wedding Wednesday soon!

This past week we were able to:

Get our videographer! Yay! We went with George Street Photo, their prices were great and we are very happy with what they will be providing us. The biggest thing for me was having the entire ceremony on film, and Dave wanted to have a trailer length film. We get both, plus some!

We chose a Photo Booth! We haven’t signed the contract yet, but we will be doing that soon. I am so excited to be working with this company and I hope to work with them more during the upcoming weddings I plan.

Some more Engagement photos came in! An old friend of mine is now a photographer and does amazing work, it was such a nice way to catch up and get some great photos. I am dying to see the rest of them, they look great so far! If you would like to see more of her work, check out Bulldogs and Cupcakes Photography.

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Some things that I have learned along the way:

Order anything custom as early as possible. I ordered one of the Bridesmaids gifts in the middle of August, and still have not received them. Luckily, I have plenty of time for them to arrive, but there are several people leaving bad reviews that it has taken so long and their wedding has already passed.

Remember that you can not make everyone happy. No matter what you decide some people will still have something to say about it. I think I have mentioned before that every wedding should come with a massage for every month of planning, it’s so very true in the case of everyone and their opinions.

Delegate. As I just stated, there are so many people with opinions, so make them work for getting a little something. If you need help with anything gather your girls, mom, grandmother, etc and ask them to help. Don’t stress over the small things, they will want to help.

Look for pages for Brides to sell their wedding items. I am on several Facebook pages full of Brides selling their decorations or wedding attire. I have purchased several items for different purposes. I am collecting a lot of decorations and small details, but the more I get now the less I will have to think about as it gets closer to the big day.

Unfortunately I am still not able to get the link-up code to stay on my page without turning into another image, but I am working on figuring it out- any tips out there? It also looks like I need to upgrade to be a self-hosted WordPress blog to have the link-up on my page, I’ll be doing this within the next few weeks. I will continue to host the link-up without these things, and they will arrive in the near future 🙂 So grab the button and lets start talking wedding!

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Wedding Wednesday {Bridesmaid Dress Shopping}

Big things have been happening on the road to becoming Mrs. Volpe! I love weeks when I am able to get a lot accomplished, especially right before I am about to be away for 12 days. I have been knocking out some smaller things like escort table decorations, cocktail ideas, and continuing to practice calligraphy. Also some larger things like plan our menu with the caterer, meet with videographers, and get a floor plan together. We should be receiving the rest of out Engagement Photos this week which means Save-The-Dates will be going out soon! I can’t wait to see what Dave comes up with for the design.

On Saturday most of my Bridesmaids gathered together and we headed out to shop for their dresses! Allison couldn’t make it since she lives across the pond, but she was able to have a few options to choose from. I had such a fun day with these girls and the next several months are going to be amazing with all of them by my side and helping me out so much!

To thank them for being my Bridesmaids and taking time out of their weekend to go dress shopping, I had scarves made with their initials. I also made the “Say Yes To The Dress” bags, I have to admit I am pretty proud of those, I’m getting somewhere with this calligraphy thing (I won’t tell you how long it took me to make them).

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The first store we went to didn’t have a ton of options, and since I want every girl to be comfortable in their dress I wasn’t dead set on anything. Luckily, we already had an appointment at another store afterwards. We also had enough time in between for lunch, which was very needed before trying dresses on at the next appointment for almost two hours.

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I am pretty sure almost every one of them tried on at least 75% of the dresses available. In the end, everyone has a different style dress in a different color and I can’t wait to see them all together on the big day! I was also able to try on the sample of my dress for all of them to see of course we had to take a picture of them hiding my dress 😉

photo 3We had a wonderful day, and even start talking about the plans for my bachelorette party, yay!!

photo 4In addition to the Wedding Wednesday link-up’s on other blogs, I have decided to host one myself! Even before I was engaged Wedding Wednesday has been one of my favorite days of the week, and becoming a planner myself, I would love to keep this going even after my wedding updates are done. This is such a wonderful way to get inspired from other bloggers, encourage brides when they are having a tough week planning, or just to swoon over all of the enchanting details everyone incorporates in their big day! So grab the image, and join me, I can’t wait to know all about your big day (I will have a direct link posted on next week’s link-up, still figuring out how to get it perfect)!

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