In-laws and your wedding. As it turns out, you aren’t just marrying one person, you’re marrying their entire family. That means their overbearing mother is now your overbearing mother-in-law, their over dramatic sister is now your over dramatic sister-in-law and their no-social-skills, creepy uncle is now your no-social-skills creepy uncle-in-law. So naturally, you’d like to be on everyone’s good side. Here are a few lessons to take with you after your wedding to keep things smoothed over with your new side of the family:
1.) Lay some ground rules. Take it from me, I have lived directly next door to in-laws at one time. When we first moved in she was stopping by all the time, and since I worked from home at that time, that meant my day was full of distractions. She’s stop by to drop something off, to say hello to the puppies, to ask my boyfriend a question. All innocent, of course, but still fairly intrusive. So before we both had a mental breakdown we laid a few ground rules; text us first before you come over, try not to come over before noon (I work mostly nights), and remember, we can’t miss you if you’re always here. Problem solved and we get along better than ever.
2.) Make sure family knows that decisions are made together. This way, one family can’t look at you or your spouse as the bad guy. Explain any large decisions from the perspective of both of you, and use the word ‘we’ as often as possible. “We both feel we’d rather stay in tonight” or “We’re waiting to have kids” make it clear that both of you are in agreement about the decision you have reached.
3.) No choosing sides. When you agreed to spend the rest of your lives together, you agreed to stand up for each other through thick and thin. That means if you have a problem with your husband’s mother, he should take care of it and vice versa. You are responsible for each other’s happiness, and if that means an unpleasant conversation with a family member or two, so be it.
4.) “What happens in this house…” Before you ever get into a fight (yes, at some point in the next 30 years you will fight about something), discuss what will and won’t be shared with family. That way, the first time you run off to vent to your sister you won’t end up overstepping any boundaries. You know you both will need to talk to someone else for certain issues, but you both deserve an unwavering and agreed upon level of privacy.
5.) Pick your battles. Sometimes, it’s just not worth the trouble, and it’s better to just agree to disagree. There are going to be situations where compromise is just not an option. These situations are often politically or religiously affiliated, so know when you’re walking on shaky ground and watch yourself accordingly. If your grandma has a problem with the two of you living together, unmarried, you don’t have to hide it from her, just avoid bringing it up and rubbing her face in it every time you see her.
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First impressions are a tricky thing; even after you’ve known someone for years, you never forget what you initially thought of them. Even places, movies or experiences are all subject to the first impression phenomena; I still think of Seattle, WA as a warm, sunny city even though common knowledge tells me otherwise. The first time I ever visited it was sunny for the entire two week trip (something my friend still swears has never, ever happened) and now, to me, Seattle is a beautiful, clear-skied and sunny hotspot. First impressions matter.
So when it comes to first impressions at your wedding, there are actually a few different ones you need to be aware of. Don’t worry, a list has been made:
1.) Your Save-The-Dates. Many people believe the invitations are where the first impression is made but I beg to differ. Save-the-dates are what people put on their refrigerator for the next eight months leading up to your wedding. The invitations bring the necessary information, but that’s about it. Plus, if you are sending out magnet save-the-dates, those things are likely to stay on the refrigerator for many years to come. Think about it; you probably have a few old save-the-dates on your refrigerator right now even when the wedding has already come and gone. People keep these things and they look at them a lot. Guests that come over to their house look at them. Put some time and effort into them.
2.) The walk down the aisle. There are two essential parts to making a great impression during your walk down the aisle: great music and a gorgeous dress. For the music, make sure to choose something that’s actually personal to you, not something that has been played for countless other weddings. And as for the dress, all you need to make sure of is that it makes you feel like a million bucks. So even if everyone in your family says otherwise, if you want to go with the orange feathered concoction, do it, but just one word of advice; make sure it fits like a glove. Even the most beautiful girl in the world can look like a sad sack if she’s wearing an ill-fitting dress.
3.) Your first dance. While the walk down the aisle sets the stage for the ceremony, your first dance with your new spouse sets the stage for the entire reception. To make the impression you’re looking for, do the same as with your walk down the aisle; choose music that’s deeply personal to you. Plus, you don’t have to do the generic slow dance that many couples feel locked into. Surprise everyone by performing a lively swing dance or turn up the hip hop and get down wit’ yo bad self. Does your fiancé break dance? Have you studied ballet for years and years? Show it off! No one is going to forget a performance like that anytime soon.
Lily’s Bridal – Maryland’s best Bridal Boutique. Offering Wedding Gowns and Prom Dresses. Sizes up to 30. Book your appointment today!
So you’ve found yourself a good man, congratulations! Now you’ve set a date, and your wedding is inching closer and closer and you’ve been stressing yourself out over invitations, cake tastings and DJ’s, but there’s probably one other thing in the back of your mind that’s also stressing you out: the bachelor party.
Now of course you probably trust your fiancé (otherwise why would you be marrying him?) but it’s perfectly natural to be a little wary of the bachelor party. Maybe you don’t trust his friends or maybe you’ve just always heard crazy stories of what the night turns out to be. Surely movies like The Hangover aren’t helping things any.
But before you go all bridezilla on the poor guy, here are a few bachelor party truths you need to know:
1.) It’s not like the movies. Sure, there may be some heavy drinking and an embarrassing story or two about one of his buddies (it’s often the groomsmen that get crazy, not the groom), but it’s not near the debauchery that Hollywood makes it out to be. It’s usually nothing more than an amazing guy’s night. My boyfriend was recently the best man, and he planned a day where they played a few rounds of golf in the morning, went to a baseball game, had a steak dinner and then ended the whole thing with a later night poker night. The groom still brags about how it was one of the best days ever.
2.) It’s all about bonding. The reason bachelor parties are often so secretive isn’t because awful things happen during them, it’s because the act of keeping a secret bonds everyone together. It’s not uncommon for a bachelor party to be incredibly low key with a pact that no one ever spills the beans about how low key it really was.
3.) He won’t be spending any money. A bachelor party is just like the bachelorette party; the guest of honor goes for free. So if it’s drinks, dinner, or a strip club (we’ll get to that later), he’s most likely not going to be the one shelling out the dough.
4.) It’s not really his choice. Bachelorette parties often take the bride-to-be’s opinion into consideration. She doesn’t want a stripper? Fine, no stripper. She would rather have a day of relaxing instead of a crazy night out? Spa package it is.
The groom, on the other hand, doesn’t really get much of a say. Usually it’s his buddies that plan out the night and it’s just his job to get through it. So if you say no strippers, and he says no strippers, but his buddies want strippers…there are going to be some strippers.
5.) He won’t do anything he won’t regret. He’s still your fiancé. A lot of liquor and some half-naked girls isn’t going to change anything. Plus, his friends are his friends for a reason; they aren’t going to push him to misbehave just for a good story. They know that he’s getting married and no one wants to start off their relationship on a bad note. So don’t badger him about every little detail when he comes home in the morning; he’s probably tired, dehydrated and really, really wants to see you. So let him know you missed him.
Lily’s Bridal – Maryland Bridal Boutique offering wedding dresses and prom dresses. Sizes 0 to 30. Schedule a visit with us today.
Ah, Pinterest and Your Wedding!
If you don’t know what Pinterest is I’m afraid we can no longer be friends. Wait, I’m sorry that probably seemed a little harsh and unnecessary (even though legions of Pinterest fans would think otherwise). Pinterest (currently the fastest growing social media site) lets you “pin” interesting or inspirational images to a virtual theme board. So instead of tearing out pages of magazines or writing down inspirational quotes on napkins, you can pin it to your online board instead. It’s pure genius, and incredibly addicting. However, when it comes to planning your wedding, it’s a godsend.
If you use it effectively, that is.
Define ‘effectively,’ you say? But of course!
1.) Start early. You don’t have to be engaged, or even have a significant other, to start planning your dream wedding. Just think of all the work you’ll have out of the way when the day to start planning finally comes! And just in case you’re worried that this might come off a little sad, Pinterest now has the option to create three private boards. That means you can pin away to your heart’s content without anyone knowing. Plus, there’s even a Wedding category specifically for those looking to plan their upcoming nuptials.
2.) Use separate boards for separate categories. Pinterest allows you to create plenty of boards, so use them for different aspects of your wedding: one for dresses, one for floral arrangements and maybe one for food. This also works great for your gift registry; if you’re registered at a store that has their items listed online, you can pin these items straight from your registry to your Pinterest board. Then by sharing your board with your guests, they can click the item and it will lead them directly to where they can purchase it online. So convenient!
This will also come in handy when it comes time to meet with a vendor. Think of having a board full of photo ideas for your photographer or a board full for floral arrangement ideas for your florist. Instead of trying to explain the mood and feel of your wedding, you can show them your Pinterest board, and a clearly defined concept will work wonders in getting your point across. This will keep everything from getting too jumbled up in the beginning. And speaking of ‘the beginning’…
3.) Start broad, and then narrow it down. In the beginning, you’ll want to pin anything that strikes a chord with you. Can’t decide between a beautiful arrangement of lilies or a delicate and whimsical collection of daisies? Pin them both! Pin it all, as a matter of fact. But as the big day gets closer and closer (and you start to gain input from your significant other), start whittling down the boards.
4.) Welcome the help. Allow a few trusted friends or family access to pin to your board. That way, if they see something that would perfectly fit into your wedding scheme, they can pin it to your board for you. And if you aren’t a fan of their pin? No worries, just delete it. Or, you can even create a board specifically for your bridesmaids and friends and family to post on. Either way, the options are endless!
Find us on Pinterest – Lily’s Bridal
Lily’s Bridal – Maryland Bridal Boutique offering exclusive designer Wedding Gowns and Prom Dresses. We offer sizes 6 to 30 in Wedding Gowns. With an amazing selection of gowns sizes 24 and up. Call to book your appointment today or book your appointment online.
In general, whenever you think of something that has been labeled as “cliché,” you’d probably do well to avoid it. And wedding clichés, as we all know, are some of the worst. I’m sure we can all think of a few times we’ve been sitting at a wedding thinking to ourselves, “I am definitely leaving (fill in the blank) out of my wedding.) However, as much as you may despise a few of these, you might want to leave them in, and we’ll tell you why.
1.) The Conga Line. Ugh. Take it from me, I can’t stand the Conga Line. I hate the feeling of putting my hands on a stranger’s shoulders or hips and having another stranger put their hands on mine. I hate how long it lasts. I hate everything about it. But I do it every time. I don’t know why, but I get up, I join the line and like everyone else I end up on the dance floor just as the DJ fades into a song I really do like and I end up dancing for at least 40 minutes. Sure the Conga Line is lame and embarrassing, but the whole point is to get people out of their chairs and on the dance floor, and (unfortunately for me) it works.
2.) The slideshow. Yes, it’s been done a million times, but as long as you do it right you should have nothing to worry about. So many times there are just pictures of the bride and groom, and who wants to stare at a bunch of pictures of the two of you for 15 minutes? Not fun. However, since you’re surrounded by all of your friends and family, choose to include pictures that include them as well. Choose the picture of your dad helping you learn to walk, of your fiancé and his college buddies at their senior football game and of you and your sister at prom. By choosing the right pictures you’ve now included everyone at your wedding into the slideshow, and now it actually means something to everyone.
3.) The overplayed first dance song. Countless wedding sites will tell you not to play At Last by Etta James, Unforgettable by Nat King Cole or You Are So Beautiful by Joe Cocker, but who cares. If you have a special meaning to that song, dance to that song at your wedding! Not only will your song never go out of style (those songs are classics for a reason), but you’ll also be guaranteed a dance to it at many other weddings, and what’s wrong with being constantly reminded of your love for one another?
4.) Thumbprint trees. Thumbprint trees are those little things by the guestbook you often see. The guest presses their thumb into a specific color of ink and then presses it on the “tree” somewhere creating their own “leaf.” Then they sign their name next to their thumbprint. The couple usually frames it later. So why do it: because it makes a beautiful piece of art of all the people that came to your wedding. Does it really matter if it’s cliché?
Lily’s Bridal – Maryland’s premiere Bridal Boutique. Offering Wedding Gowns, Prom Dresses, Bridesmaids Dresses, and Mother Dresses. Book your appointment today!
Summer is just around the corner and for those of us in the wedding business that means the busy season. And why not; the weather is amazing, it’s the easiest time to travel, it’s one of the best times for people to take off work (they aren’t completely strapped for cash like they usually are during the holiday season) and hey, who doesn’t love an excuse to take a summer road-trip?
However, summer weddings can also prove to be a bit tricky if you don’t know what you’re doing. After all, you want your guests to remember your wedding for all the fun they had, not for how long they made it before passing out from the heat. So as your planning your perfect summer wedding and reception, keep these tips in mind:
1.) Shield guests from the weather. You might plan on only having a 10 minute ceremony, so you figure your guests can sit in the heat for that long and be perfectly fine. Fair enough, but 10 minutes often turns into 20 and 30, and Grandma Edna might start feeling it. Take it from me, as an extremely fair-skinned young lass, I appreciate a fair amount of warning if I’m going to be sitting in the sun for any extended period of time.
Besides that though, heat makes people sweaty, and no one likes getting dressed up, doing their hair and makeup and then sweating it all away. So try to keep your guest’s involuntary sun exposure to a minimum.
2.) Wear the right dress. That breathtaking, heavy satin dress you have your eye on? Probably not your best option. You’ll want to wear something that can breath and preferably has some movement to it. Light, gauzy fabrics are usually the best way to go for a summer wedding. Not to say you can’t wear that dress you’ve had your eye on, you just better prepare accordingly. Having your ceremony in a well air-conditioned setting should be close to the top of your list of priorities.
3.) Be wary of bugs. When you’ve got a sugary cake sitting around outside, it’s going to attract some uninvited guests. You might want to consider having mosquito netting around your venue tent (don’t worry, many options look like light, intricate lace) to keep the flying bugs out. And speak to your caterer or baker; surely they’ve dealt with this issue many times before so they probably have some valuable input of their own.
4.) Keep your guests refreshed. If there are two things that don’t go together, it’s heat and hunger/thirst. A hot bridesmaid is one thing, but a hot, starving and dangerously parched bridesmaid is a whole different animal altogether. Make sure there are snacks and drinks available at all times. Just having some nuts in a bowl and a pitcher of water on each table will help tide over sluggish or irritable guests before dinner time.
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