Let’s Eat Cake!

Ahhh, the wedding cake: arguably one of the best parts of the wedding reception. We’ve all (hopefully) enjoyed a wonderful meal, and we’re gearing up for some lively dancing; so bring on the sugar rush!

Ever wonder about the history of the wedding cake? In ancient Rome, the groom broke a barley cake over his bride’s head to signify the marriage. In medieval England, a pile of buns was assembled, and the happy couple kissed over the pile to bring prosperity. Their unmarried guests often took a piece home to tuck under their pillow. By the mid-sixteenth century, sugar was abundant in England, and white icing became a staple on wedding cakes. The more refined the sugar, the whiter the icing was. Pure white wedding cakes signified both the bride’s virginity, as well as the affluence of the family. Tiered cakes also became a popular show of status in the Victorian age; the massive confection served at the wedding of Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Phillip weighed over 500 pounds!

Today’s wedding cakes are the perfect way for the bride and groom to express their wedding style; from sophisticated and timeless, to fun and out-of-the-box. I truly admire the artistry used in creating all of the amazing cakes I’ve seen. I’d like to take a moment and highlight some of my favorite area cake makers. Be inspired (and hungry)!

Cakes by Chloe

www.cakesbychloe.com

919.599.1150 or 336.662.7576

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Dewey’s Bakery

Katy Hites: Katy@deweys.com

336.397.5587

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Delicious Bakery

www.delicious-cakes.com

336.282.1377

deliciousbakeryake   deliciousbakery2   deliciousbakery3   deliciousbakery4

Maxie B’s

www.maxieb.com

336.288.9811

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Navigating Family/Friend Drama

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I’ve experienced the following situation way too often: I’m meeting with a bride and her mom; her mom is going on and on about the things she wants for “their” wedding. The bride timidly tries to assert an opinion, only to be quickly shot down. Eventually, the bride gives up and spends the rest of the meeting looking shell-shocked. Sound familiar?

This is not a post to rag on the MOB. This is simply a chance to humbly give a little advice to the bride that is wondering where she fits into the whole planning adventure. Even as an outspoken, type-A personality, I experienced some difficult times when I was planning my wedding. I’m sure many brides can relate to dealing with the dad that wants to invite all of his golf buddies, most of whom you’ve never met; or the mother that throws a tantrum because she’s not getting her way; or the best friend that secretly tries to inject her personal taste into the décor because she’d rather be planning her own wedding.  As a bride, you should not have to defend the fact that the opinions of you and your fiancé are really the only ones that matter; especially if you are the ones footing the bill. So how do we go about keeping this theme prevalent during the planning? Here are four quick survival tips:

  1. Don’t be afraid to assert yourself. This is your wedding day: one of the most important days in your life thus far. You and your fiancé will spend a lot of time and money into creating a beautiful ceremony and a celebratory reception; you deserve to have it be everything that the two of you want. While friends and family can offer wonderful ideas and advice, it should come from a place of support, with regard to your taste and your vision. If you want the small wedding on an island resort – leaving the extended family behind – then that’s your decision. If you want to serve pizza instead of duck confit, then that’s your decision. If you want that “unique” shade of orange on all of the tables, then that’s your decision. These are your memories that will be created. Respectfully tell everyone that the wedding will be everything that the two of you want. I don’t mean to be a Debbie-downer, but some friends or family might not be on board, and that’s okay. Most of the time, they come around. If by chance they don’t, that’s their decision and their consequences to bear, not yours.
  2. Let the planner be the “bad guy”. Not to turn this into a shameless plug, but it does help sometimes to have a non-biased, third party to go to bat for you. As a planner, it is my job – and my privilege – to execute the bride’s vision. While I welcome all suggestions from family and friends, it is quite easy to decipher between those that truly have the bride’s best interest at heart, and those who have their own agenda. Allow your planner to be the one to politely thank them for the suggestions, but let them know that final decisions always fall with the bride and groom.
  3. Find creative ways to involve the family. Don’t feel that you have to have a twenty-person wedding party and 500 guests to appease everyone. There are special ways to include family and honored guests. If your bridal party has reached its limit, ask a special friend to be a hostess or usher. Include an extended family member in the ceremony by asking them to do a reading or light a unity candle. Ask an honored guest to give the blessing before dinner or a toast when you cut the cake. Your friends and family will feel honored that you thought to include them, and you will still feel at ease knowing that your desires were met.
  4. Try not to turn into Bridezilla. I know this can be difficult; sometimes the ones closest to you can be the most frustrating. But it won’t do you any good to spend the entire planning process stressed and angry. Try to find the joy in all of this. Relieve your stress with activities like exercise, extra date nights, and spending time with fun, positive people. The one unfortunate thing about a wedding day is that it flies by. At the end of it, you don’t want to look back on the journey and only remember the stress and frustration. Let go and choose to be happy!

 

Fall Wedding Trends, 2013

Fall is my favorite time of year! I’ve always been a cold-weather girl, so there is nothing more exciting than experiencing the change from sweltering humidity to autumn breezes, as well as the brilliant colors. Fall weddings are growing in popularity in North Carolina; and I especially love discovering the new trends, both to enhance my own work, and to share with brides.

Fashion

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Shorter dresses aren’t just for summer destination weddings anymore! Hemlines have lifted on many of the bridal runways for fall and winter. As a bride, the combo of nerves and adrenaline will make a woman hot regardless of what time of year her wedding takes place; why not be comfortable? This year I’m seeing tea-length gowns that tastefully show off the toned legs and arms that you worked hard all summer for. As you dance the night away, a flirty A-line in romantic fabrics like tulle and organza can enhance those amazing shoes that might have otherwise been hidden underneath a floor-length gown.

Food

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Forget about saving the bountiful, family dinners for Thanksgiving. Wedding receptions this season are seeing true celebrations of love, family, and togetherness. What better way than to celebrate with food? Buffets are taken to the next level with “farm tables”: rich, colorful displays of everything from dishes made from fresh, locally-grown ingredients; to chic, modern versions of comfort foods. If you’re not into a buffet, try serving dinner family-style at each table. For my “foodie” brides, try going Tapas – a Spanish style of dining, serving a variety of small tasting dishes. Go beyond the typical salad-entrée-dessert dinner, and wow your guests with a modern, dinner party-inspired tasting menu.

The New Neutral

neutral wedding

A fall wedding doesn’t necessarily mean you have to use a color palette of orange, red, and brown. Don’t get me wrong, I love paying homage to the gorgeous changes of color that nature displays during the autumn months. But don’t feel like you have to be pigeon-holed into pumpkin centerpieces. Here’s an idea: go neutral! Monochromatic color palettes are a great way of adding a modern and sophisticated twist to a fall wedding. Experiment with tones of ivory, taupe, and gray (my personal favorite this season); then break up the tones with pops of black or navy, which look especially good for an evening reception. If you still want some color, try shades that are not typically fall, like fresh green and acai.

Marrying Glamour & Rustic

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A glamorous wedding doesn’t have to overdose on fake crystals everywhere.  A rustic wedding doesn’t have to involve a single bale of hay. Marrying the two concepts together can create a truly unique and memorable event. There are several venues across the Triad that combine the rustic elements of wood, exposed brick, and nature, with glamorous elements of chandeliers and chiavari chairs. Try places like Revolution Mill Studios, Adaumont Farm, and WinMock at Kinderton. When it comes to décor, skip the tall, identical centerpieces, and opt for an eclectic grouping of vintage-inspired vases with different varieties of flowers, for a textured, gathered look. And, because every glamorous wedding needs some sparkle, create the ultimate atmosphere with an abundance of candles in hurricane vases, or vintage chandeliers used in unique places like tents, barns, or even hung in trees.

Upcoming Bridal Show!

Visit me at an upcoming Perfect Wedding Guide Bridal Show! I will be exhibiting on Sunday, November 17, 2013. The show will be held from 1:00-4:00PM at The Elm Street Center in Downtown Greensboro. Area brides: please contact me for free tickets! Visit www.bridalshownc.com for more information.