Christina Child

4 tips for planning a retro themed wedding
by Christina Child

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A retro wedding theme is one of the most romantic and popular themes lately. The bygone era of the 1920s, 40s, and 60s has a whole lot of inspiration for couples wanting to make their wedding day even more special. From intricately designed tea cups to vintage, soft-lace bridal wear, each element of the timeless retro theme can add color, class, and appeal to your wedding day.  Here are 4 classic, retro wedding ideas that are apt for this wedding season!

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1. Retro-Inspired Wedding Stationery The wedding stationery you use will be the first element that will inform your guests about your theme. Make sure your invitation card is retro-styled with old-fashioned fonts, design, and paper. Use vintage stamps on the envelopes to add an extra retro appeal.  In addition, ensure that your wedding escort cards, the guest book, and the thank you cards use matching fonts to further your theme.

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2. Picking the Perfect Gown, Accessories, and Jewelry A variety of retro bridal dresses can be found at specialist vintage boutiques and online wedding sites. To get that romantic retro feel, a bride can try using accessories like a crown/tiara, retro-style shoes, and a softly hued bunch of fresh flowers for the bridal bouquet. For jewelry, look for artistic pieces of ornaments or intricately designed filigree rings, art deco bracelets and earrings, or mod styles. One can also try a retro hairdo (think fingerwave curls or hippie-chic braids) for the brides and the bridesmaids.

The groom has several retro options too! Long gone are the days when a morning suit or a tuxedo accessorized with cuff links were the only options to style a man the retro way. Besides a tuxedo, a groom can opt for a waistcoat or suspenders and use accessories like bow ties, cravats, hats, brogues, and a pocket watch. Using old-world fabrics like tweeds, houndstooth, and plaid can also give the groom a retro swagger. The above coupled with a partly gelled hairstyle is sure to raise countless eyebrows on this important day.

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3. Your Wedding Transportation Move around in style by choosing a wedding car that comes with a retro appeal like a vintage Rolls Royce, Cabriolet, or Mustang. You can also use an old car or a scooter, or even a bicycle to pull out the romanticism of this dramatic era.

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4. Hire a Retro Photo Booth There are lots of options for renting tintype photo booths, photo booths in VW buses, or old-timey photo strip photo booths for a fun, added bit of flair to your wedding!

Swara Segal is a freelance writer and blogger based in Mumbai, India. She is immersed in the fashion industry and is the go-to-person for trend tips. She has an excellent know-how of various fashion jewelry designs & patterns and the perfect gemstones to go with them. In her free time, she loves to cook for family & friends, and enjoys photographing nature.

10 Types of Wedding Photos That Make Great Canvas Prints
by Christina Child

There’s no denying the lasting power of a good photo, especially on your monumental wedding day. Your wedding photographer will capture all the classic moments but candid photos capture all the emotions a staged photo might not and help you remember all the small details and memories from your big day long after it’s over. (Plus, you'll need awesome images to place in your wedding photo book). The best part is that your wedding guests can snap some of the most memorable photos of your wedding that you’ll want to enjoy as canvas prints at home or just scroll back through after the big day because the best photos aren’t always the ones taken by a photographer (even though those photos are pretty great). Whether you’re going to a wedding as a guest or getting married yourself, be sure to check out these 10 types of photos that make great canvas prints!

 Photo Credit:   Micah Bowerbank Photography

 1.  The silly wedding party Is there anything better than a funny picture with the people you love most? Absolutely not.

 Photo Credit:  Jason Hudson Photography

 2. The wild cousins Because you have to admit—they’re definitely the life of the party. And they’ll give you lots of chances to take a hilarious and candid photo as they show off all their moves on the dance floor.

 3. The happy grandparents letting loose Grandparents add a little flair everywhere they go. Make sure someone snaps a good pic of the most adorable guests while the night is young! 

 Photo Credit:  Stacey Lee Photography

 4. The one with your pet Let’s be honest--pets make everything better, even wedding photos. 

 Photo Credit:  Rylee Hitchner

Photo Credit: Rylee Hitchner

5. A photo of the beautiful flowersDon’t forget to get a photo of the bride’s beautiful bouquet. They’re works of art worth remembering! 

 Photo Credit:  Erin Trimble

Photo Credit: Erin Trimble

6. One with the playful backdropYour ceremony backdrop is the place where you became a spouse! The moment you got married is the perfect one to turn into a canvas print to hang up at home. 

 Photo Credit:  Dark Roux Photography

Photo Credit: Dark Roux Photography

7. A cute pic of the tiniest wedding guests File this photo in the “things that make you go ‘awwww’” category. 

 Photo Credit:   Brandy Angel Photography

8. A sentimental photo with family Do you really need an explanation for this? It’s one of those photos you’ll love to look at over and over again. And hint hint--it also makes an amazing canvas prints gift idea for family members! 

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9. One with a chalkboard sign Photos of you and your new spouse holding a chalkboard sign are trendy for a reason. They’re a great opportunity to get a jump start on your thank you notes or holiday cards, too!

 Photo Credit:  Onelove Photography

Photo Credit: Onelove Photography

10. The amazing getaway Let’s not forget the moment they happy couple drives off into the sunset. It marks the end of the night but the beginning of a many more adventures together! 

The Guest’s Guide to Modern Wedding Registry Gift Giving
by Christina Child

Blenders and china and towels, oh my! When it comes to wedding registries, couples don’t hold back. They’re ready to stock their house and and start showcasing their inner Chip & Joanna Gaines. We know building a registry is one of the best parts about getting married for a couple, but what about how easy it makes it for the guests to find great gifts? From contributing to the honeymoon to group-gifting, online wedding registries have taken gift giving to the next level! We’ve mapped out our go-to gifting hacks to make sure you can relax and enjoy celebrating with the newlyweds.

Live by the Registry We know you love the couple and want to get them something unique, but if they didn’t register for it, DON’T BUY IT. That’s it. Hard and fast rule. If you just can’t control yourself and see something you know would be perfect, be sure to pair it with an item you purchased off the registry. This way, the couple can appreciate your thoughtfulness, while also knowing that you paid attention to their wishes. Hate everything on their registry? Don’t worry, it’s 2017, now you can register to contribute to someone’s honeymoon, new house, or even a romantic dinner!

Don’t be Scared of a Good Deal See something on a couple’s registry for cheaper elsewhere? Awesome! Snag it up. The couple doesn’t mind where you purchase the item from, as long as it’s what they asked for. Don’t worry if the item is less than on the registry; your friends don’t care about how much you spend, just that you were thoughtful enough to give a gift in the first place. Be sure to head back to their online registry and mark the item as “purchased,” because nobody needs two KitchenAid mixers (unless you’re a pro baker, in which case, please invite us to your wedding).

Go Big with a Group Gift Want to make a big impression without breaking the bank? Grab your friends and take out your credit cards! It’s the new-age of wedding registries, and that means that those super expensive gifts can now be covered by a group of friends. What better way to make a big impression than by giving a big group gift? The couple will love you and your friends will think you’re a rockstar for coming up with such a great gift idea!

Let your Postal Worker do the Work So now that you’ve decided on what exactly to get the new couple, how is your gift going to get there? Between destination weddings and multi-location celebrations, the logistics of getting your gift to the couple can be a nightmare. Luckily, that’s where the glory of the registry steps in. Purchase the item from their online registry and have it shipped directly to their home! You don’t have to lug it around, they don’t have to worry about transporting it home, and best of all, no one has to lose a finger trying to wrap an awkwardly shaped box. While we’re all about the ease of this new-age gift giving, be sure to sprinkle a bit of tradition on the day and pick up a card for the big day!

There you have it, a great gift purchased and delivered without ever leaving your couch. Feeling relieved from the gift giving pressure? Great, now that you’re done stressing over the gift, you can worry about the fun stuff, like what you’re going to wear (and no, you still can't wear white)!

Wooden Groomsmen Gifts for a Good Cause!
by Christina Child

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If you're anything like me, you've been struggling to find a groom or groomsmen gift that the guys will actually want AND that you can feel good about purchasing.  We recently discovered a company that provides a wide assortment of awesome wooden groomsmen gifts for a good cause!  For each watch, bow tie, or pair of sunglasses that Rusticlub sells, a tree is planted through the National Forest Foundation.  We love this idea and we are excited to share their products with you!

Rustic Club features artisans, manufacturers, and brands from all over the world. Their catalog includes wooden, rustic accessories that can be custom engraved... which is so perfect for special wedding messages!  Here are a few of our favorites from their shop.  And if you see something you love, use code WEDPICS10 at checkout for $10 off!

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The Ridge watch features laser-etched a portrait of the Grand Teton Ridge.  Great for outdoorsy loved ones.

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We love the light-on-dark zebra wood of the Havern watch.

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Here's a sandlewood Havern with custom Best Man engraving.  How cool!

This one features a leather band that we love.

Rustic Club also carries sunglasses and wooden bow ties!

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Available here.

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Available here.

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Available here.

What do you think of these unique gifts?!  We love knowing that every purchase is providing a service to nature, and that these options are something different than the standard groom/groomsmen gift... because we all own enough flasks by now!  Be sure to check out all of their other product options; there are some seriously cool ones!

Use code WEDPICS10 at checkout for $10 off!

2017 Wedding Color Trends - Blue and Blush
by Christina Child

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Ask any wedding planner and they'll tell you that one of the BIG color trends of 2017 is a palette of blue and blush tones!  Love these colors but not sure about how to incorporate them into your big day?  We've got you covered!

SUITS & TUXES Blue tuxes and suits are a timeless classic with a hint of color. We love these chic rentable options from Black Tux (they're also SUPER affordable!).

BRIDALBlush wedding dresses are having their day in the sun.  We love these looks from 2017 Bridal Fashion Week.

First up, Naeem Kahn...

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Pretty in Pink vibes with this Romona Keveza gown.

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Any bride would stun in this Monique L'huillier gown.

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BRIDESMAID DRESSESWe love this David's Bridal halter gown with a tasteful split.

And this pretty floral pattern by Plum Pretty Sugar.

 Photo by Jennifer Wilson.

Photo by Jennifer Wilson.

We love how well different shades mix and match together.

 Photo via M2 Photography.

Photo via M2 Photography.

DECOR Simple navy candles stand out against a more neutral palette.

 Photo by Erin L Taylor Photography.

Photo by Erin L Taylor Photography.

This backdrop was made from coffee filters!

 Photo by Kate Headley Photography.

Photo by Kate Headley Photography.

Can't go wrong with a chinoiserie vase!

Are you planning to have a blush and blue color palette for your wedding?  Let us know in the comments and be sure to check out our Pinterest page for more wedding inspiration!

7 Common Wedding Flower Mistakes to Avoid
by Christina Child

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Picking out the perfect, dreamy wedding flowers for your special day is usually a much anticipated checklist item for many brides and grooms. However, there is a right and wrong way to go about it!  Scrolling Pinterest to find floral inspiration can be fun, but at some point you'll have to get down to business and make a selection with a florist or wedding vendor. If you want to make sure you choose gorgeous AND affordable flowers, here are seven wedding flower mistakes wedding planners and florists say you can easily avoid.

1. The Inspiration Obsession For many brides who get inspired by a certain type of flower, they often become obsessed with trying to replicate the image they've seen on Pinterest or in a magazine. However, most florists and wedding planners agree that instead of trying to duplicate an image, it's best to use that image as a starting point for a new interpretation of that image.

2. Saying No Too Soon For some couples who decide early on that wedding flowers aren't a top priority for their ceremony, they may say no far too soon. Rather than decide to fill your venue with non-floral objects such as candles because you think you'll save lots of money, check into online wedding flowers that are far less expensive than traditional florists. In many cases, DIY wedding flowers or simple (but beautiful!) can cost as much as 50 percent less than the standard floral arrangement.

3. A Strict Color Palette When it comes to color palettes and flower types, be sure to always keep an open mind. If you're able to stay loose and flexible during the floral selection process, chances are you'll be able to purchase online wedding flowers that will make your wedding day even more beautiful. And along with this, you'll be able to take advantage of some rare flowers that may be in bloom when you're ready to walk down the aisle.

4. Arrangement Overload While some couples feel as if they need few if any flowers in their venue, other couples do the opposite and decide they've got to have flowers in every nook and cranny. As a result, every table may find itself filled with flowers. However, once the venue fills up with guests, the tables and other parts of the room may start to look cluttered. Look to have a few floral arrangements that will be incredible statement pieces, like your alter or photo backdrop, and tone down the rest.

5. All Your Eggs in One Basket Since flowers are very seasonal, you may find yourself preparing to use one flower and then have to change plans at the last minute if poor weather results in you not being able to get the flowers you had your heart set on from day one. To avoid being disappointed and having to make a last-minute change, find out what's in season at the time of your wedding and choose accordingly.

6. Unreal Inspiration While it's nice to be inspired, don't let your inspiration cloud your thinking when it comes to reality. If you do, chances are you'll pay more for your flowers and you'll also be disappointed if you have to make an alternate selection.

7. Not Considering Your Venue Whether you've selected a grand ballroom or a simple country church for your wedding, choosing the right type of flowers to fit your theme can make a big difference. By taking into consideration the venue's size, lighting, colors, linens, and other aspects, you will have little difficulty choosing the perfect flowers to fit your venue's style.

Since your wedding day is supposed to be perfect in every way, you'll naturally want to avoid these common wedding flower mistakes. Whether it's taking your venue's style into consideration, not putting all your eggs in one basket, or letting your inspiration get the best of you, taking the time to think clearly and follow the advice of seasoned floral professionals will ensure your wedding day will go off without a hitch.

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Carol Combs has been in the fashion industry for over 10 years. A mother of one, latest vogue and fashion trends keep her living hale and hearty. She aims to impart herself knowledge and experience to refine the look of womenfolk to look better than ever. You can also connect with her on Twitter.

DIY Centerpieces on a Budget
by Christina Child

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Calling all DIY queens and brides on a budget!  We're excited to bring you this step-by-step tutorial on creating DIY centerpieces!  Nikelle Orellana-Reyes is the talented artist behind Wylde.  We've been admiring her work for months; it would be difficult not to because her flower shop is literally around the corner from the WedPics office in downtown Raleigh!  She's a fan of finding floral supplies from her own neighborhood, supporting local farmers, and opting for in-season supplies... so she was an obvious choice to share her advice and tips for keeping costs down while achieving florist-worthy DIY centerpieces on a budget.

FINDING LOW BUDGET SUPPLIES:

  • Forage! - use what's around you!  Look to see what you have around your house or around your friends' houses, especially bushes or trees that need to be trimmed, and use that as your base greenery.  Aim for a mix of textures, colors, and lengths.
  • In season & easily accessible - opt for flowers that are in season and locally available.
  • Farmer's markets - a great place to find local, in-season flowers on a budget.
  • Local nurseries & home improvement stores - an unexpected source, especially for greenery.
  • Online wholesalers Flower Muse, Fabulous Florals, and Fifty Florals are good online options.  Keep in mind if you use these online sources, the minimums are pretty high so it may be more cost effective to buy the quantity you need from a local florist.
  • Vases don't need to be fancy - Check dollar/thrift stores for simple glass containers; you can always spruce them up with paint!

Tip! If you're looking for hard to find flowers (like garden roses or some tropicals), we suggest finding a local florist who can supply you flowers, or purchasing plants from your local nursery or Home Depot. 

YOU'LL NEED:

  1. Vases - ours were sourced from our local dollar store
  2. Flowers & greenery
  3. Floral tape
  4. Floral shears
  5. Lazy susan
  6. Finishing spray

Step 1 - Gather flowers & greenery We used an array of plants and flowers that were found in our backyards and gardens.

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Step 2 - Tape grid Create a structural base for your stems by taping out a grid onto the top of your vessel.  This step is especially important for arrangements that are wider than they are tall to keep your stems upright and in place.  Space the pieces of tape about 1 inch apart.

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Step 3 - Create a base with greenery Shoot for no more than 3 different types to keep your arrangement from becoming cluttered.  Go for an asymmetrical shape, with one side being higher than the other.

Tip! Create a test vase of your foraged items (leave it out for several days) to assess for wilting and lifespan before using in your final arrangements.

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Step 4 - Add heartier stems & taller flowers This helps create the shape for your arrangement.

Tip! Don't discount "cheap" flowers; even the standard carnation looks ultra-chic when properly arranged!

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Step 5 - "Carpeting" Create a "carpet" of smaller flowers in the space around the top of the vessel.  This helps to add filler flowers and hide any "holes" that may exist.

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Step 6 - More height & "focal" flowers Finish your arrangement with your star-of-the-show flowers and add more height in places that you see needs it.

Tip! Cluster like-elements together, and cut stems long... you can always trim more away but you can't make them longer once you've snipped!

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Step 7 - Finishing Spray Spray your arrangement with finishing spray to help prevent wilting and drying out.

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CARING FOR YOUR FLOWERS

  • Store flowers in a cool, shady spot - wilting is much more likely to occur in heat and direct sunlight.
  • For summer weddings, create arrangements as close to the big day as possible (the day before or day of, ideally!).  Wait as long as possible before buying or cutting your flowers.
  • Make sure your arrangements have fresh water and plenty of it - the water line should be about an inch below the rim of your vase!
  • You can also mist your flowers with a spray bottle to prevent them from drying out.

SEASONAL CHOICES

Spring - Flowering trees like dogwood, cherry, plum and apple blossoms can be found in your yard, along with Azaleas in lots of berry colors. Tulips, daffodils and other spring bulb flowers are easy to find at your local farmers market. Peonies are available in late spring and are cheapest this time of year.

Summer - Hydrangeas and Roses in early summer can be found in your yard (if you're an avid gardener or you know someone who is). Stock, Snapdragons, and foxglove start to appear in early Summer and are very affordable during this time. Cosmos, Coneflower, Zinnea and Amaranth are easy to find locally when it starts to get warm.

Fall -Dahlias are the Fall show stopper and can be found at your local farmers market August through November (depending on the temperatures). Chrysanthemums are also available in Fall. Don't forget to forage in your yard for fall foliage, which can exhibit lots of color changes from subtle to more dramatic.

Winter - is tough if you want local flowers, but there are lots of evergreens that can be used along with bare branches and berries (like Privet).

 Image by  Trek and Bloom

Nikelle Orellana-Reyes, an art director and graphic designer by day, created Wylde in 2014 to take her love of flowers and gardening into a new direction. Her years of expertise working with form, color, and composition inform her nuanced aesthetic and spontaneous approach to floral design.  Hannah Ross Clarke tends Wylde’s cut flower garden just a few miles from downtown Raleigh and recently joined the Wylde team full-time. Together, they are committed to crafting elegant and organic arrangements for all occasions.

Dos and Donts of Booking a Reception Venue
by Christina Child

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It's no secret that the overall tone of your wedding is largely decided by your own personal preferences and taste...  no two people are alike and no two weddings are just the same.  But knowing exactly where to have your wedding and reception - in a place that reflects your personal preferences - can be a daunting task when there are thousands of different venues to choose from!

Our friends at WeddingWire have put together a quiz that helps you choose which wedding reception venue is best for you!  Answering “Which Wedding Reception Venue is Right for You?” will help you get a jump start on the decision making process by ruling out options that might not be the right fit for you.  And after taking the quiz you'll be given a list of REAL wedding venues local to you!

Don't book a venue without checking out our advice!  Here are 5 Dos and Don'ts of choosing a wedding reception venue...

1. DO make your guest list before you book a venue - you'll need to know a general estimate of how many people will be in attendance to make sure there is enough space for everyone.

2. DON'T sign any contracts without reading through them first - make sure you read the fine print to avoid unseen costs and issues.

3. DO make sure you're in the loop about catering and alcohol - food and alcohol minimums can come with a hefty price tag.  Make sure you know the venue's policies on outside food and alcohol, and any preferred vendors.

4. Don't wait until the last minute! - engagement season is from Thanksgiving until Valentine's Day.  That's a lot of brides looking to be married within the same window of time and places book up quickly!

5. DO follow your gut - did you get great vibes from the coordinator at one venue and bad feels from another?  Good communication and a ready staff is an important aspect of the venue.  Trust your gut (and definitely peek at reviews!).

Want to skip straight to perusing local venues?  Check out Wedding Wire's wedding venue locations!

Happy venue hunting! :)