Your Wedding Ceremony Duties

Ahh, the wedding ceremony, the culmination of everything the bride has hoped for and planned for so long. As maid of honor, you have the honor of standing next to her as she vows to love and to cherish her new husband so long as they both shall live. The wedding day is an emotional rollercoaster, and any bride can go from frantic to giddy to nervous to weepy in the span of a few minutes. She’ll want you there with her for every minute of it, whether it’s to hold her hand, check her makeup, reassure her, make her laugh, or help her into her ensemble. Your job is to be there for her for whatever she needs on the wedding day, and that includes a few things that are a given, such as signing the marriage license after the ceremony, holding the groom’s wedding band during the ceremony (your thumb is a good place for it), and holding the bride’s bouquet during the couple’s vows. Also, if the couple has decided to do a traditional receiving line after the ceremony, you’ll need to arrange the bridal party and get them ready for that. You can enlist the help of your fellow bridesmaids for this task.

A very important job that the maid of honor must know how to do is securing the bustle on the bride’s wedding gown. A bustle is simply a way to beautifully bundle up the gown’s train so that the bride can walk and dance with ease once the ceremony is over. Bustles can be secured in many ways, including buttons, snaps, or ribbons. You may want to go with her to her final fitting and have the seamstress show you how it’s done.

If there isn’t a wedding coordinator to corral everyone for pictures after the ceremony, you may be charged with this task. Ideally, everyone has been instructed to meet at a central location after the ceremony, usually at the altar of the church or wherever the ceremony took place, but if there are stragglers, make it your mission to track them down unless you are told otherwise.

TIP: The Emergency Kit

Every Good Maid of Honor’s Secret Weapon: Any maid of honor or bridesmaid worth her salt will tell you that it is your job to anticipate what will be needed on the wedding day and be ready for it. That’s why you should put together a wedding day emergency kit, and stock it with items that could save the day in a pinch that no one else will think of. Putting together all these supplies will probably run you about $50, so see what you have around the house first, before you go shopping.

Here’s a list of ideas for the kit:

  • White chalk to covers stains (God forbid) on a wedding gown
  • Straws so the ladies in the wedding party can hydrate without ruining their lipstick
  • Safety pins
  • Double stick tape
  • Nail glue/nail file
  • Deodorant
  • Breath mints or gum
  • Clear fingernail polish
  • Mini sewing kit
  • Over-the-counter pain reliever and/or antacid
  • Granola bars or something to munch on (By the way, make sure the bride eats something!)

Choosing Bridal Shower Locations

The possibilities for the shower location are really boundless, but it does depend on your budget and your guest list. Most traditional showers are held at someone’s home, which is great (and free!), but it’s not the only option.

You could also see if a favorite restaurant has a private room or section-this is a good option if you want the atmosphere to be fun and informal. They’ll most likely either let you use the room for free with the purchase of a certain amount of food. Or, apartment communities often have a common room that they will rent out for a small fee, usually between $50-$100.

This is a good alternative because there’s usually plenty of space and it is often decorated beautifully. If you’ve got a larger budget, you can look into renting out a small event venue; this can go anywhere from $300 to $5,000. If you are renting at a nonpeak time, you will often receive a discount.

To find out what venues are in your area, try Googling “event venues Memphis TN,” for example, if Memphis is your city.

Choosing Bridal Shower Invitations

The bridal invitations are very important, but often overlooked or underestimated, step in planning your bride’s shower. The invitation is the first thing your guests see, and it sets the tone for the event. Please, ladies: don’t buy the package from the store that has blanks for you to handwrite the when, where, who, etc. The fact of the matter is that we are living in the 21st century and there is no excuse for this. Almost everyone has access to a personal computer, which almost certainly has a word processing or even a basic graphics layout program, which is easily used to design a simple invitation.

Now, put the hand-written invitation package down, and walk a few steps down the aisle, and you will see the blankinvitation package. This product often has a cute and colorful border around it or some kind of design, and it is just too easy to lay out the wording on your computer and print them at home, or take them to a print center and get them printed while you wait. Usually, they can help you design the wording, too, if you are truly computer challenged.

Printing your invitations this way is really very inexpensive about $20 for a pack of 50 invitations, 10 cents per copy at your local copy shop, or free if you print from home. Of course, you can also just go to an invitation specialty shop and buy the blank invites (they’re quite a bit more expensive here usually-$1-2 a piece) and even have them design and print them for you (another $1-2 a piece).

Another reason to choose the printed invitation is that this is your opportunity to let your guests know what your theme is. Open the invitation with some cute or funny verses about the shower. This is where they figure out what is expected of them. Check out some invitation design websites for ideas for the wording on your invitation. They should be mailed 3-4 weeks prior to the shower.

Choose The Best Bridal Shower Favors

Favors aren’t absolutely necessary, but they’re a nice touch. After all, many of your guests may have traveled some distance to be at the shower and give the bride gift, a small token of appreciation is nice. One thing to keep in mind when choosing Bridal Shower Favors is that, although a party planner never wants to think about their guests throwing out their favors, the reality is, a favor that wasn’t well thought out is likely to be never used or simply tossed. One way to avoid this is to make your favor edible! The old Jordan-almonds-in-a-bundle-of-tulle may seem like kind of a tired tradition, but the thought behind it makes sense. You could take this idea and simply make it a little more “now.” You can purchase small boxes called gable boxes in nearly any size from a craft supply store or on the internet, and these are great to fill up with candy or cookies or any kind of small food. This type of favor can be done for about $1-2 each.

Another idea-you’ve probably seen candy buffets at weddings-a smaller scale works great for showers as well! Choose candy in colors similar to your decorations and buy different types and display them in clear glass container with a small scoop, and a small bag to carry it. If your colors were red and white, for example, you could do red licorice, hot cinnamon candy, white chocolate covered pretzels, and sno-caps. For a small candy buffet, expect to spend between $30-75, depending on the candy and containers you choose.

If you would rather not have an edible favor, try giving one that makes sense within your theme, but keep in mind they can get pricey: about $4-8 each. Give a small tabletop clock for an Around the Clock shower, or a package of recipe cards or a recipe book for a Recipe Shower. Cookie cutters would also be thoughtful for a recipe shower. A photo frame will hardly ever go un-used, so it’s a great universal favor idea as well.

Wedding Ideas: Food Stations and Dessert Bars

Food-Stations-and-Dessert-Bars-for-Wedding-Vintage-Candy-Station

The trend of having food stations and dessert bars at wedding receptions seem to be taking the wedding industry by storm. Although some couples still prefer the formality brought by a sit-down course meal, buffet food stations have been quite popular in different countries over all the different seasons.

These food stations allow for flexibility and convenience, as it is easily dressed in accordance with the seasons and it also offers more for the guests. They can pick whatever they may fancy and enjoy the meal at their pace while doing so. Dessert bars are also a great wedding favors idea, as they double desserts-to-go once the party winds down.

 Food Stations and Dessert Bars - Dessert Station

Whether you are building your very own food station or getting a styled dessert buffet table, here are a couple of creative ideas to take these scrumptious tables up another notch.

Pizza Station. Of course, why not? Perfect for an afternoon wedding out in the garden or as a party grub during the late night dancing at the reception, a pizza station is an absolute crowd-favorite. Guests will never expect seen these scrumptious creations being served in a wedding but then everyone will surely get more than a single slice.

Take it up a notch: Made-to-order Pizza Station, complete with a brick oven and a wide selection of fresh ingredients for the guests to choose from.

Fresh Juice Bar.  Ideal for couples who are more on the healthy side and for a more diverse mix of wedding guests in terms of age groups. Allow the guests to pick their own fruit or vegetable as they create their very own concoctions. Prep the slices and peel off the skins beforehand for a quicker line and also try to position the bar far from the stage or dancefloor to minimize the unwanted buzzing noise.

Take it up a notch: Mimosa Bar, adding bottles of champagne will transform this refreshing bar from day to night in no time.

Pie Bar. Move over cupcakes because there’s a new king in town. Pies are getting a comeback and this time they come in all shapes, sizes, and flavors. Serve all kinds of pies possible and your guests will surely be back for more. From tart lemon pies, to sweet berry-filled ones, and even to the savory meat pies, everyone gets to have a piece of pie that’s perfect for their cravings.

Food Stations and Dessert Bars - wooden boxes to display pies and other treats made from your family’s heirloom recipes

Take it up a notch: Mini Pie Bar, serving an assortment of individual mini pies that guests can carry around and even bring home.

Ice Cream Bar. Who could ever resist ice cream? Feature different toppings and sauces for the guests to build their own sundaes and parfaits. Make sure to stock up on the vanilla ice cream as this food station will surely be packed even after all of the dancing.

Ice-Cream-Bar-Food-Stations Ideas for Wedding

Take it up a notch: Milkshake Bar, with a few handy blenders and additional flavors for the kids and the kids at heart.