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Manolo for the Brides | Manolo Loves the Brides! - Part 28

Twistie’s Sunday Caption Madness: The Alternative Transportation Edition: The Result

How do, all?

Last week I stunned you all into silence with this deathless image:

… and precisely one of you managed to come up with an equally deathless response. Then again, it does make picking a winner easier, and considering how good it was, there’s a good chance it would have been a winner even with a deeper field to choose from.

And so the winner is Jo for this inimitable statement:

The bride was not amused when her new husband took the comment “hope you’ll fill out your trunks well” rather literally.

Congratulations, Jo!

The Truth About Working With Wedding Vendors

While planning your wedding, chances are you’ll hire several vendors to help your dreams come true. If you look around, you’ll find a lot of opinions about this. Some people think that wedding vendors are evil stooges of an international conspiracy. Others that wedding vendors are angels sent from Heaven above to aid brides in making their dreams come true.

But here’s the thing: wedding vendors are just people in business for themselves.

That means that some of them are wonderful, warm, highly competent people and others are greedy, unscrupulous people. Some mean well but aren’t really all that good at what they do. Others are excellent at their jobs but unpleasant to work with. Most, I believe, choose their profession because they truly enjoy helping make wedding dreams come true… but they aren’t doing it purely out of the kindness of their hearts. They’re doing it to make money.

What does that mean for you? It means that you need to be diligent about finding competent vendors who can do what you want done, and who can give helpful input. It means that you need to keep in mind that most vendors think their piece of the wedding is the most important one, so you need to really consider how important it is to you as an individual couple getting married. It means you need to dot your i’s and cross your t’s in business and legal terms. It means that you get to make the final decisions about what services you do and do not want from this vendor.

But there’s another side of the coin to remembering that your vendors are just people: you need to treat them with the same consideration as you treat any other person. If the vendor is going to be onsite during the wedding (musicians, DJs, photographers, cater waiters, etc.) you’ll need to discuss things like breaks, whether and how they will be fed, where they will park, and what time they will be done with the job.

Whether or not they will be on site, remember the feelings of your vendors. Treat them with respect and courtesy in a professional manner.

After all, behaving in an entitled, bossy way only makes people want to cross you more. Listen carefully and with an open mind to suggestions. Ask questions about anything you don’t understand. Don’t assume that the florist, caterer, or DJ you’ve hired is out to get you… unless you get firm proof of the fact. Communicate as clearly and as promptly as you can. Remember that this person is just doing his or her job – the one you hired him or her to do for you – and probably wants it to go well so that you’ll spread the word about their business.

Ultimately, vendors are people, and people come in all kinds of ways. Just try to be the best person you can be while dealing with them, and it will go a long way toward making things work out well.

Run For Your Wife

Meet Sandra Parker, Andrew Keith, and Sandra’s two daughters, Miriam and Lauren.

Yes, this is Sandra and Andrew’s wedding. Yes, everyone is covered in mud.

Sandra and Andrew’s first date was a morning run, and they’ve shared a love of running ever since. Last year, a friend of Sandra’s ran the Gladiator Rock’n Run in a wedding gown as a runaway bride. So when Andrew and Sandra decided to tie the knot, they thought it would be fun to have the wedding party run the same race.

Sandra bought her $8 wedding gown and the $8 bridesmaid’s dresses at a local thrift store, and the couple sent out tongue-in-cheek invitations that read:

“Some say it’s fast, we say it’s slow/Our love has grown — they just don’t know/And so we continue at our own pace/Off to get married in a Mud Run Race.”

No word on how they finished in the race, but I think it’s safe to say that everyone is well satisfied with their performance.

Hearty congratulations to the new family! I think it’s great when couples have weddings that are good, clean fun… even if they wind up a little muddy.

Inspiration: Copper

Right now one of the big decorating trends for weddings is copper. I love this. Copper is a warm, inviting metallic that goes well with a wide variety of other colors. Whether you’re going for a blast of color or a restrained, neutral palette, copper will round your look out nicely. It can even bridge the gap between gold and silver handsomely if you want an all metallic look.

I’ve found a few examples of the versatility of copper, just in case you’re undecided on the matter.

(Image via Delightfully Engaged)
Here copper combines with red for a sumptuous, elegant look. It’s rich and warm.
Continue Reading…

It’s More Expensive to Get Married Some Places Than Others

We all know that getting to the altar can be an expensive proposition. There are clothes and flowers and food and decorations and photography and music and a thousand other things to spend money on. But it’s useful to know that there are two things that affect your budget hugely: geography and culture.

The average wedding in the US has hovered roughly around the $20,000 mark for quite a while, give or take. One year it’s more like $22,000, another it’s more like $19,800. The fact remains, however, that in some areas of the country, that average is an insane amount of money to play with, while in others it’s a painfully tight squeeze to get a wedding on that little money.

According to Cost of Wedding.com, the average wedding in California’s most infamous zip code (90210) runs closer to $40,000. Not far away in El Centro, Ca, the average price of a wedding drops to roughly $26,000 and change. Still well above the national average, but a heck of a lot less than Beverly Hills! Up in Marysville, though, the average cost of a wedding drops very slightly below the national average.

If you look at statistics in parts of Alabama, Arkansas, and Idaho, you’ll find the average wedding runs well under the national average.

Then again, when your wedding starts feeling ridiculously expensive, you might want to thank your lucky stars you’re not trying to have a wedding in South Korea. According to this article from Reuters, the average wedding there runs in the neighborhood of $200,000 in US dollars. Many of these couples go into huge debt to hold their weddings.

Where does all that money go? Mostly to the huge guest lists and lavish gifts to one another’s families.

But the most important thing to remember about averages is that they’re just that: averages. Your wedding may or may not fit into the averages comfortably in either direction. And you know what? Whether your wedding is average in cost or not isn’t the most important thing about it. What matters is that you hold the wedding as close to your dreams as you can within the budget you have.

Twistie’s Sunday Caption Madness: The Alternative Transportation Edition

Hello Cleveland!… er… readers!

It’s time once again to play Twistie’s Sunday Caption Madness. You all know how this works. I find an image that’s baying at the moon for a funny caption or two. You provide said captions via the comments function. Next saturday I declare a winner and we all have a good laugh or three.

This week’s image comes from the ‘was this the best way to cut the budget?’ file and it looks a little like this:

Ready… set… snark!

Gypsies Getting Married

On sunday night, TLC will bring us the latest in their string of bridal reality programming, My Big Fat American Gypsy Wedding.

Based on the UK hit version of the story, MBFAGW will feature real brides and real families among the American Gypsy and Traveller communities. It’s a window into a world most of us would never see, otherwise.

In some ways, it’s a throwback to a world that a lot more people lived in not too long ago where a woman’s wedding really was the One Special Day she had to shine for the world. It’s a world where girls are left ignorant about the facts of life, kept from dating, taught mostly to cook, clean, and take care of children, and then married very, very young. And then she will mostly cook, clean, have and tend children, and plan huge weddings for her daughters. The gender roles are strict and unforgiving for both men and women.

But the weddings are certainly colorful, if nothing else. Oh, and if you go over to Huffpo right now, you can read an interview with Sondra Celli, bridal designer to American Gypsies, whose work is featured on the show.

Will I watch the show? At least an episode or two. But I don’t think I’ll take to the road. I’m a Gorger, and happy that way.