A man’s life and the lives of those he calls his best friends come in distinct stages. There’s the late elementary school stage when a boy and his friends all realize that girls aren’t really cootie-ridden after all. This is immediately followed by the middle school stage when they all lose their boyish voices simultaneously and start speaking like real men and not little girls. The high school stage is marked by the beginnings and endings of young blossoming romance, hand holding, and of course…kissing. In the college stage, there are more serious relationships, some fantastic, others troubling. Then it’s on into the 20s (and sometimes even the 30s) when it seems all of the guy friends start getting engaged and married. Invitations start popping out right and left, there’s a new bachelor party every other weekend, best men are chosen, tuxedos are fitted, and some of history’s best toasts are crafted. As a chosen man about to embark on the journey of marriage, you are luckily exempt from many of the stresses of wedding planning; sure you may have to go with your bride to test various wedding cake options (easy enough) and pick out the china (just go with the flow on this one), but you might be one of the lucky guys whose bride leaves a lot of the details and planning up to herself and her bridesmaids and mother. One tradition you might get roped into, however, is the selection of the wedding party gifts. Now, you might be thinking, wait, what? Aren’t I the one who is meant to receive gifts? It is, after all, MY wedding. True, but you and your bride have likely asked a few select close friends to be part of your wedding party; they’ll shell out a couple hundred bucks for dresses/suits/tuxes they will never wear again; transportation costs and hotel stays (for the duration of your wedding events) they will likely get to enjoy. The least you could do is acknowledge their participation and friendship with a small token of appreciation. Traditionally, the bride will select the gifts for her bridesmaids leaving you flying solo to choose the gifts for your best guy friends. If you happen to have large sums of money burning a hole in your pocket you could spring for the latest High Def plasma screen television or round trip tickets to anywhere in the world, but, really, what groom has any type of money after shelling out a small fortune for an upscale wedding? A great groomsmen gift that not only speaks “class” but is equally useful for the wedding is a great set of cufflinks (just a note: gifts for the wedding party are often handed out at the rehearsal dinner the night before). Depending on the theme or tone of your wedding, there are cufflinks to meet your specific occasion. Here are just a few cufflinks ideas for different wedding themes: • If you and your groomsmen all happen to work in the same industry (for example, accounting or high tech) a set of business or career-related cufflinks could definitely be a possibility. Maybe you and your best buds work volunteer for the local firehouse or are all policemen. There are several cufflink options available for those lines of work as well. • Should the wedding be a bit more upscale and formal (maybe you’re one of the lucky dogs getting married at the Plaza in New York City…we all hate and envy you by the way), the more traditional solid colored cufflinks might be the best route to go. Colored cufflinks can be matched to the color of the bridesmaid’s dresses which will make your bride swoon in your attempts to participate and coordinate. • So you and your buddies are those diehard football fans who look forward to the fantasy football drafts in August? That’s easy. Pick each of your buddy’s favorite NFL teams and get them the corresponding cufflinks to individually represent themselves at the wedding. Sure, you might hate the Patriots, but your buddy doesn’t; remember, he’s doing you a huge honor by standing by your side on one of the biggest days of your life. • You could take the personalization of your groomsmen a step further and give them initial letter cufflinks. Your best man, Doug Henderson for example, could have a set of cufflinks with the letter ‘D’ or ‘H’, or one of each.. There are also engravable cufflinks that you could have scribed with the date of the wedding or the nicknames of your groomsmen. A set of cufflinks are a great gift for the groomsmen in your wedding party. Not only are they tasteful and classy, they can also be used for many future upscale occasions. They are also a versatile gift as there are cufflinks to fit just about any occasion. If your buddies are Star Wars fanatics who plan to hold light sabers up for you and your bride to walk under down the aisle (with the Star Wars theme gently playing in the background), there are even Star-Wars-inspired cufflinks. In fact, I just Googled “Darth Vader cufflinks” and got almost 200 hits, so that should tell you a little something right there. Simply have your bride or another competent wrapper gift wrap these presents for your groomsmen, write a personalized note to each (please put something a bit more personalized than “Thanks!” with a stamped signature) and watch the man-tears flow at the rehearsal dinner.
Your wedding should be one of the most joyous occasions of your lifetime. With all the stress of booking a venue, hiring a caterer, finding the perfect attire, and ensuring Aunt Mable doesn’t get into a tussle at the reception with Cousin Ruth, you shouldn’t have to worry about wedding party security. While most venues these days require you to hire wedding party security—and many of these places even provide wedding party security staff as part of the rental package—here are a few extra tips to help ensure the safety of your belongings and your loved ones on your special day. ‘Tis better to give AND receive 1. If at all possible, have your wedding gifts sent to your home rather than brought to the reception. 2. For guests that do arrive with gifts, have the coat-check personnel allocate a separate, secure area for gifts. 3. No coat check? Designate a friend, relative, or security person to watch over the gift table. 4. Once the reception is underway, move all of the gifts to a closet or room that can be securely locked during the celebration. 5. Determine ahead of time who will be transporting the gifts from the reception site to your home. 6. Assign a separate person to collect any monetary gifts. Keep these gifts together in one place so that you don’t lose track of them during all of the hustle and bustle. 7. If you will not have time to visit the bank before departing for your honeymoon, leave a deposit slip with your parents or a trusted friend so that they can place the money safely in your account. Wedding Crashers isn’t just a movie 1. Have a friend or family member act as a greeter throughout the reception; this way you can make a mental note of who’s coming and going. Have the greeters take shifts so that no one person is stuck by the door all evening. 2. If you’re unsure as to whether an individual belongs at your event, have a friend introduce himself and ask a few polite questions about the individual’s association to the wedding party. 3. If an uninvited guest does show up, have security immediately escort that person off the premises. 4. In order to ensure that things don’t get too rowdy, be sure that the bartender knows to stop serving drinks to intoxicated guests. 5. Let the security guards—not your brother or the groomsmen—handle any disturbances. What’s mine is yours Mine 1. Keep personal belongings in a visible place during the reception, so that you can check their security with a quick glance. 2. Allow your guests to place purses and other personal items in the coat check during the event. 3. If you leave possessions in the dressing room, make sure it is locked during the reception and/or ceremony. 4. Don’t leave valuables in your car in plain sight. 5. Make a list of all the items—everything from jewelry and shoes to champagne flutes and vases—that you are bringing to the site so that you can be sure you’ve recovered everything at end of evening. Mi casa, NO es su casa 1. Arrange to have someone stay at your house during the event and while you’re away on your honeymoon. 2. If you can’t get someone to house-sit, have a neighbor park a car in your driveway. 3. Place a hold on your mail and newspaper delivery. 4. Put your house lights on a timer to give the appearance that someone is home. By taking the proper wedding party security precautions ahead of time, you can ensure a magical, worry-free day for everyone.
Choosing a maid of honor is a cinch. You need only ask yourself who you called first after he popped the question. But selecting additional bridesmaids can be a chore. There is no set number. Some brides have five friends by their side and others have only one. In this article, we will review a few simple rules for choosing wedding party members. Agree on a Numbe The size of the wedding often determines the size of the wedding party. Smaller, more intimate affairs rarely have much of a wedding party. The happy couple will typically stand beside a best man and a maid of honor. But at larger ceremonies, a full wedding party is customary. Choosing friends and family members to sit at the head table is never easy. There are bound to be some hurt feelings. But one way to limit them is to agree on the size of the wedding party beforehand. That way, if a friend or relative misses the cut, you can explain to them that you were only allowed to pick three bridesmaids and that they were number four. Consider Personalities Unlike their male counterparts, the bridesmaids actually have responsibilities. They have to help the bride find her dress, find their own dresses, plan a bridal shower, a bachelorette party, and help the bride with her makeup and her dress on the big day. In short, they have to be responsible and agreeable. Now, we’re not saying they have to be choirgirls. But if you have a fun friend who’s a bit selfish and doesn’t play well with others, she might not be bridesmaid material. You need a group of girls who can pull together and put your needs before their own. Yes, you have the right to be selfish on your big day! A bridesmaid should understand and accept that fact and nod her head, even if she isn’t hot on the dress you want her to wear. Ask an In-Law Most bridal parties include family members, but when it comes to future in-laws most brides-to-be are on the fence. If their future husband has a sister they don’t really know very well, should they ask them to be a bridesmaid? Will the future sister-in-law feel slighted if she is not included in the wedding party? These aren’t easy questions to answer. Our advice to you is to err on the side of caution. Yes, it may mean excluding a close friend, but your friends will understand. This simple gesture will go a long way to winning the approval and affection, if you don’t already have it, of your future in-laws. And who knows, you might make a new friend in the process. Always Have a B Team The average wedding takes about a year to plan. One common mistake many couples make is that they select a wedding party as soon as possible. Well, call us cynical, but a lot can happen in a year. Best friends can become enemies, people can move away, or they may simply fall out of touch. That is why it is always a good idea to select a final wedding party about halfway through the planning process. It is also a good idea to have a few backup bridesmaids on call. Yes, this is unabashedly Machiavellian, but we recommend an aunt or a cousin who is already attending the ceremony. There are two reasons for this. One, they are family, so they will feel obligated to step in and fill the role. Two, they will likely feel grateful that you thought of them first, which of course you didn’t…but who’s keeping score? Don’t be Afraid to Bend the Rules Modern women are far more likely to have male friends than their mothers were. Whether they meet at work, at college, or they grew up together, a bride-to-be should not be embarrassed about having a man in her bridal party. Sure, he might look a little strange in the dress…just kidding! The truth is that many contemporary couples invite members of the opposite sex to stand beside them on their big day. Yes, there are groomswomen and bridesmen! Keep Bending There is nothing that says you have to have only one maid of honor. Yes, it’s your day. But if you have two best friends and you know both of them would be upset if you passed them over, it is perfectly permissible to have two maids of honor. Returning to Machiavelli, it’s actually a very shrewd move. First, it will make both of them feel special, which is always a good thing when it comes to close friends. And second, the maid of honor actually has to work for her title. Not only does she plan the bridal shower and the bachelorette party, but she also helps the bride with wedding planning. Having two maids of honor can make wedding season a heck of a lot easier. Picking your wedding party gives you a chance to surround yourself with your favorite family members and friends. Those who don’t make the cut will get over it once they remember who’s special day it is anyway—yours!
Your wedding day is approaching and included to your wedding checklist are different task and responsibilities to be properly done. Wedding is perhaps one of the most memorable moment for couple’s lives, thus proper planning and preparation matters most. Literally, planning and preparing for a wedding isn’t easy as one-two-three. One of perhaps minor items included in any wedding checklist are wedding party favors. Although they can be very minor, but the fact that giving favors during weddings is one of marriage tradition and until now is widely recognized. Party favors come in wide variety of selection to choose from, you can find these items usually at local bridal gift shops and even at online stores. Manufacturers of these items made variety of option according to different wedding themes. Weddings like beach themed, travel themed, formal and non-formal themed weddings have their own appropriate favors. Example, for beach themed weddings, party favor choices could be something that are related to beach-like atmosphere. You may consider favors that include beach sand, stone, seashells and the like. Or perhaps, if your wedding fall in other season, a winter wedding for instance, you can find winter themed favors also like Snowflake Bottle Stopper, Snowflake Gel Candle, Snowflake Place Card Holder, “Snow Fall” Exquisite Glass Photo Coaster and more. For fall weddings, consider a Fall Leaf Tea Light Place Card Holder or Fall Leaf Cookie Cutter Wedding Favor. Wedding party favors are accessories that can make a big difference to your wedding. They were given to simply show deep appreciation to all the attendees and participants during the said celebration. Though they aren’t mandatory, but the fact that they can make a thoughtful remembrance for your guests is enough reason to definitely include them in your checklist. These favors however can be presented also during pre-wedding parties such as bridal shower party and bachelor’s party. Also, the idea of choosing appropriate favor is important to not just accentuate the party but also to commemorate the celebration. Popular kind of wedding favors today are those that were custom-made. These options are ideal in today’s fashionable weddings for they can be very stylish to jazz up any wedding themes. The choices for custom-made favors are plenty, from simple to exquisite. You can find custom-made choices like personalized favors, a sure hit not only during wedding but also for other occasions and gatherings. Personalized items are from simple things that were enhanced by means of decorations and personalizing. Personalizing can be through embroidering, engraving and even monogramming. The advantage of personalized option is, something that was made with personal touch can be very meaningful to any receiver. Whether it is a expensive or inexpensive, a personalized gift are likely to be more appreciated that any other gifts. Also, you may opt to choose personalized items not only to serve as your personalized wedding favors but to serve as special gifts for your participants. Personalized items can make a one of a kind parents wedding gifts, maid of honor and bridesmaids wedding gifts, or best man and groomsmen wedding gifts.