Guest Author

Do You Need a Wedding Planner? Would You Remodel Your Home Without a General Contractor?

Today we have a guest post, which I hope you will enjoy! Be sure to check out Christine’s websites, listed at the end of the article.

I don’t get it. Why would you take on a project that can cost you anywhere from $10,000 to, well, as high as you want to go without having a professional by your side?

Here is the thing, would you take on a major home remodeling project without hiring a general contractor? Of course not. I know, you are asking how are those even remotely the same. Let me ask you,

“How are they different?”

  • Both have budgets in at least the 5 figure range. That is a LOT of money.
  • In both instances you want a high degree of personalization. In short, you want YOUR dream to be executed.
  • Both will require a long list of sub-contractors that you have most likely never dealt with before.
  • Both require tight scheduling to make sure everything comes together on time and on budget.
  • Both are going to have glitches and unexpected issues pop up that someone is going to have to deal with.
  • The results of both are going to be with you for a long, long time.

Am I beginning to make some sense here?

All those things listed above are what a wedding planner does.

  • They know which vendors are reliable and match your style.
  • They help you translate your dreams to the people who are going to make them come true.
  • They know all about how your venue works in terms of timing and convenience for load in.
  • It is their job to keep that timeline on track so, for example, the flowers show up after the tables are set up, dinner is served hot and the MC know when to do the first dance.
  • It is their job to keep all those sub-contractors working together on the right plan.
  • They are there to look you right in the eye and say “Yes you can have that, but you are going to have to give up XYZ”
  • They are there to handle those last-minute glitches and issues in a way that you don’t even know they happened.

There is a wealth of information online today on how to plan a wedding, but until you actually do it, you have no idea of everything involved. Seriously, when you look at it in this light, why would you even think of not hiring a wedding planner for one of the days you are going to remember for the rest of your life.

Sure, I could watch HGTV, DIY Network, House Crashers and This Old House until my eyes bleed but one episode of Holmes on Homes or DIY Disaster will cure my ass of thinking I can remodel my kitchen on my own!

By: Christine Boulton
Wedding Dish | Think Like A Bride

Thanks, Christine, for the informative (and oh-so-true) insight!

Guest Post: Bridal Party Jewels

This post was written by one of our fabulous former clients, Ashley McCormick Travers.  Now Ashley works for Stella and Dot, and she was excited to share some of the latest looks with our readers.

Brides are longing for that fun, creative statement to differentiate their wedding… Stella and Dot makes that happen.  As a First Coast Weddings client I was married to the cookie-cutter look and making sure my girls matched everything head to toe.   Fast forward three years and today I am in love with the mis-matched accessory look – changing up the jewelry and shoes amongst the bridal party.

As a Stella and Dot stylist I have TONS of fun styling brides, bridesmaids, flower girls, mothers of the bride and guests! And not only on the wedding day but showers, rehearsals and honeymoons too!  Our new vintage chic, on-trend looks for spring can quickly style the bridal party in affordable couture pieces they will surely work  with jeans, at the office or with a simple LBD.  Although so many brides’ wedding rings are white gold or platinum, everyone is wardrobing with gold baubles.  It’s the hottest look for 2011!

The Charlotte Charm necklace is under $50.  What I love most is the charms are removable, so I’ve seen each bridesmaid pick her favorite charm and each has a different look.  This also looks great layered with pearls and gold chains.

The Sofia Pearl Bib is my all time fave and biggest selling statement necklace hands down!  Stunning on the big day and perfect with jeans and a tank.

Great gift ideas are the initial charms and birthstone briolette charms.  A friend of mine just did the Glint flower necklace (stud set above) and stud earrings for all her bridesmaids.  A pulled together look in sterling silver for under $80 per girl.

The mini-soiree necklace with matching bracelet is ideal for the Flower girl.

Contact Ashley, your personal stylist, and let her work with you to create the look you want for any occasion.  Want to style your life? Become a stylist. Shop at her eboutique: :: A Resource for Planning the Modern Union

This post was written by guest blogger Cicely Rocha-Miller – Enjoy!

Event Planner, Cicely Rocha.Miller and Sarah Hubbell of Life Design Event Planning recently launched a new website and resource called Mrster :: A Resource for Planning the Modern Union.


Mrster (pronounced: mist + er) is an online magazine and ultimate planning tool for same sex and hetero couples who are planning for their wedding days. Our goal is to provide a modern day resource chock full of smart ideas, allied vendors, real life experiences and true stories for couples of all backgrounds.


With all of the wedding blogs floating around the blogosphere, you’re probably wondering what sets Mrster apart. Allow me to give you a little background on Mrster in the making…


Erica, one of our advisory board members, recently described her frustration when looking for a cake topper that resembled her and her bride-to-be, Shannon. Scrolling through images of topper after topper of three inch figurines clad in tux and gown, Erika eventually gave up on trying to find a pair that reflected her own relationship. Perhaps her dilemma felt trivial at the time – a small battle in a larger war … but even the small battles are worth fighting. It is with couples like Erika and Shannon in mind, that Mrster was created. Add in loads of passion and personality, and we’re sure you’ll be adding Mrster onto your daily reading.

Another fantastic resource that is tangled in the depths of Mrster is it’s FabUlist. This is a list of vendors that believes in legalizing gay marriage, pursues in the unity of all couples so there is no separation, acknowledges that we are all equal and does not judge nor discriminate against anyone else that believes the same. They offer services to gay and hetero couples without any questioning or second guessing. They are excited for your commitment to each other and are with you during the fight for equality. How can you pass that up!?

What are you waiting for? Head on over to, and don’t forget to subscribe!

If you are wedding vendor that is interested in being a part of the FabUlist and advertising opportunities, please email for more information. Currently, we are catering to Arizona couples but are looking to go nationally in the next few months.

Trendy Bridesmaid Jewelry Your Maids Will Love

There is such a variety of bridesmaid jewelry out there, that finding a trendy piece that matches your wedding colors and theme is easy to do.  Giving the gift of bridesmaid jewelry to your maids is a gift that continues after the wedding.  Finding trendy pieces that both compliment your bridesmaids gown, but also compliment the color scheme is a task in itself.

With vintage with a modern twist being a fashion forward style, this also translates to many styles of bridesmaids jewelry as well.  There are many beautiful filigreed designed bridesmaid jewelry designs, they provide a vintage flair with modern crystals and pearls that add the final touches.

Finding jewelry pieces for your bridesmaids is one of the nice ways to say thank you for being a part of the special day.  Selecting quality made products that offer a timeless design actually gives your bridesmaids a piece that they can add to their own accessory collection and wear for many occasions to come.  Most style necklaces can be worn with a pair of jeans and a great blouse to up the fashion notch a bit.  Trendy bridesmaid jewelry selections also allow for your bridesmaids to wear their jewelry with great skirts and dresses that they may wear to other weddings, celebrations and memorable events.

When you select your bridesmaid jewelry, try to search for pieces that will first compliment their bridesmaids gowns, your wedding style and color scheme.  Finding a great piece that matches their gowns and fits their style as well is a gift to your bridesmaids that will keep on giving.  They will love and appreciate the thought you placed into their bridesmaid jewelry selections.

by Bonnie of Bonita J

Getting The Most Out Of Your Initial Consultation

By Lisa Burnett, Professional Bridal Consultant and owner of Elegant Weddings By Lisa

The initial consultation is a get to know each other meeting for both the Bride as well as the Bridal Consultant. In order to get the most out of this meeting, it is best to come prepared. Although most Bridal Consultants are very knowledgeable and creative, your input puts a personal touch on the wedding. Whether you are starting from scratch or you have finalized some details of your wedding, these are some things you can do to enhance your first experience with the bridal consultant:

  • If you have selected your dress bring a picture, or the style number and designer and be prepared to describe it. If you have not selected your dress give the consultant feed back on the color you plan to wear, as well as the style and formality. Your dress sets the tone for the entire event. If the groom is going to be present at the meeting your consultant will work around this situation without giving the groom an advance vision of the dress.
  • Bring pictures of flowers, linen, table settings or any other decor or ideas that you have seen and want incorporated in your wedding.
  • Have an idea of the color scheme you want to use in your wedding.
  • If you have booked any vendors or your ceremony and reception venues, bring those contracts with you as well as any contact information.
  • Set a realistic budget and be prepared to discuss it with your consultant honestly. The more your consultant knows about your budget, the better he or she can maximize your dollars.
  • Have in mind an estimate of the number of guests you plan to have at your wedding.
  • Decide on how many members you want in your bridal party.
  • Most importantly set a wedding date, and have an idea of the time of day you want your ceremony to begin.
  • If you have any family or cultural traditions that you want to incorporate into your wedding make your consultant aware of those as well.
  • Make sure your consultant is aware of any special family situations.
  • Prepare a list of questions that you want to ask the consultant.

When selecting your consultant make sure you are comfortable with their personality, as the two of you will be spending a great deal of time together in the months to come planning your wedding. Always make sure the consultant you hire is licensed. A coordinator that is a member of a Bridal Association is a plus, because this means he or she is dedicated to their profession. Never make a decision based on price. The cheapest is not always the best. Remember as with everything in life you get what you pay for. An experienced consultant is priceless.