Weddings

5 ways a bride can dress her best on her big day

Written by: Rabbi Melinda Bracha Bernstein

www.melindabernstein.com

Every so often my mother and I go through her memory albums and books. Whenever I take out her wedding album, she gets very upset.  My parents were happily married for 64 ½ years until my father passed in 2015. According to her, the wedding album didn’t capture their first moments as husband and wife very well and she adamantly refuses to allow me to share her wedding album.  She does like one photo and allowed me to share it with you. It’s sad for me because when I look at her wedding album, I see her beauty.  Of course she’s my mother and I am immediately biased, however I truly honor her emotions and disappointment.

South Florida Wedding Officiant



I don’t want this to happen to you and that is why I am writing to share a few things that will help you be sure you won’t. First of all, it’s important to share a bit of my childhood experiences so you can appreciate these tips.  When I was growing up the place my mom took me to the most was the 163rdstreet mall in North Miami Beach.  Not only were there several big stores for her to fill her desire to shop, there was an outdoor playground with a train ride for her to take my brothers and I on before the travel home.  All of my life my mother has taught me the art of thrift and the value of coordination so I guess I have her to thank for this advice.  Thanks Mom!

Before I give you the 5 tips, what does dress big mean to you?  For myself, dressing big is an art form that reveals a natural essence and intrinsic beauty of the bride.  With the wedding “paparazzi” ready to snap away and share their excitement, dressing big will enable even the amateur to capture and accentuate the you inside your dress and under your makeup and hairdo.  Ok, now that I’ve gotten that out there, here are the 5 ways a bride can dress her best on her big day!

  1. Choose colors that will aesthetically enhance your wedding theme. If you are going for a seasonal theme, then make sure those colors blend with you and your beloveds skin tones. If you don’t know your skin tones, google has lots of charts to help you.

  2. Make sure your venue has color or existing décor that compliments your ideal colors. If you’re already in contract with a venue and didn’t consider the colors, you may have to modify your vision and use their colors to determine your wedding theme. There are plenty of ways to not let this be an obstacle though.

  3. Beauty is not just skin deep, it is soul deep and you deserve to indulge your soul at every turn before your wedding. Plan early so your wedding flows with greater ease. Even if you love to organize and/or have budget constraints, find a friend who is knowledgeable about wedding planning and has the time to help out. Or better yet, HIRE a wedding planner. (more blogging on this later)

  4. Make sure your wedding officiant is able to follow your vision or share with you their talents and skills so your ceremony is well remembered with exuberance and joy. This stands true for all your other vendors too. I suggest you make a list of your desires and if you’re unclear, ask each vendor what makes them stand out and choose according to what your heart feels.

  5. Speaking of standing out and what your heart feels, get your wedding officiant and guests to dress in a complimentary style as you. Think about your future pictures and what you want to see. When I work with couples I always give them a questionnaire to fill out so that our consultations are efficient. I’m looking to see your colors, your theme and your level of religiosity (if any). Most of the time people don’t even think about coordinating with their officiant, but I can assure you, I do. Thanks mom!

 

Whether I am flown out of the South Florida area for a wedding or stand with a couple in the areas of Miami, Ft. Lauderdale or Palm Beach, South Florida, for a wedding; I want to help my brides dress their best!



South Florida Wedding Photographer

An artisan bride and all around colorful couple, Brandon & Lindsay. Their wedding was outdoors at Benvenuto Restaurant.  Lindsay and Brandon have a special flair and it stood out the moment we met in person.  When I arrived at the wedding, I noticed the creativity of their colors on many of their guests.  I chose to wear my handmade Tibetan prayer shawl over a sleek and unique white dress.  This shawl has been with me since my days in California but never had I worn it for a wedding.  I had also never seen so many guests with hair dyed in lilac to match the wedding colors either.

Top 4 engagement session locations

Engagement session are truly amazing and one of my favorite kinds of sessions to photograph. Take a break from your average selfie and let a professional do the work. This is a time where you get to let your hair down, get dressed up, and have fun with your best friend. No need to worry about what to wear or how to pose, we’ll help with that along the way.

These sessions are the best way for you to get comfortable in front of the camera and have fun while doing so. You’ll laugh, dance, twirl, and get some amazing photographs of you and your soon to be husband/wife.

Leu Gardens - This location is one of the places in the world where I don’t mind getting lost. This venue is filled with the most beautiful flowers and greenery you can enjoy in Central Florida. From events, to weddings, to engagement sessions, I always love photographing here!

Leu Gardens Engagement Photo

Leu Gardens Engagement Photo

Downtown Orlando - How cool do they look!? There are so many ways you can light your subjects in the downtown area. So many different varying mini locations in this one large location! I love it! I was stoked when this couple opted for a downtown location because the the options for creativity are endless. For this image, I wanted to use a garage to have a dark background and be able to light my couple well. I told him to put on the glasses and she looked at him in the most amazing way.

Downtown Orlando Engagement Photo

Downtown Orlando Engagement Photo

Kraft Azalea Park - This venue is one of the most unique in Central Florida. A magnificent place for a proposal as you can see. The doric pillars give the image an epic kind of feel to it and I think they’re more Roman than Greek, but who am I to know that. I love how the soft light hits our couple here and plays with the motion of the trees in the background. It all comes together to make a beautiful image.

Kraft Azalea Proposal

Kraft Azalea Proposal

Dickson Azalea / Langford Park - One reason I really love this location is because I can walk to it from my house :P Aside from that, the park always has great lighting so whether you’re having an engagement session or a family session, the photos will be beautiful! In Langford, there is a really cool boardwalk area that is the perfect spot for portraits!

Dixon Azalea Family Session

Dixon Azalea Family Session

7 TIPS FOR GETTING INTO WEDDING SHAPE | Part 2

Hey everyone! He is the continuation of "7 TIPS FOR GETTING INTO WEDDING SHAPE" for you to enjoy! If you missed Part 1, it's in an earlier blog post. Enjoy the read!

4: Hold yourself accountable:

Make sure when you start any new diet and exercise program that you keep track of your progress and keep up with writing in your fitness journal if you start one. Keep track as to what you eat every day. They even have apps for these things now, but I like the idea of writing notes in my phone or on paper. There’s no need to download another app that’ll take up space on my phone and it gets the job done. Remember, holding yourself accountable means acknowledging when you have an “off day.” If you ate an extra slice of pizza or drank a soda when you knew you shouldn’t keep track of that. If your goal is to look and feel your best know that the power is in your hands. Whether you lose 5 pounds or 50 lbs. before your wedding mental clarity is important. Know that you hold the key to a healthier life, and your success depends on yourself at the end of the day.

 

5: Don’t be afraid to ask for support:  

You are responsible for your own weight loss journey, but when you join a group or work out with a friend it does help the process for many people. Your friends and family may have the same reservations as you do when it comes to starting a new routine. Find someone you trust to workout with you and help each other achieve goals. Sometimes having someone in your corner helps the process. Better yet, see if your significant other wants to join a program with you. It could be a way to get even closer before the big day!

 

6: Don’t be afraid of failure:

Stick to your diet as much as possible. Eat vegetables daily and eat lean meats or go vegetarian temporarily if you can. Never beat yourself up about the occasional cheat day. We all have our moments. You might be surprised to learn that the body does well when put into shock every occasionally. If you’re eating a strict diet of nothing but vegetables and lean meat and you have a night where you eat a cup of low fat ice cream it’s not the end of the world. In fact, it may give you a small boost in your metabolism. Just do not let that one night a week be an everyday habit.

 

7: Get a trainer if you can:

Sometimes having a workout buddy is good for motivation but when you get closer to the big day you may need a little extra help to get down those extra pounds. When working out on your home or with a friend isn’t enough you may need the assistance of a professional. Finding a trainer may seem like a difficult task, but I find that word of mouth is the best thing. Make posts on Facebook, check websites, or go to your local gym for the perfect trainer. Many will offer your first session for free or half off so deciding on who will work best with you is mostly affordable and easy!

Remember, trainer or not muscle is denser than fat, so you've most likely turned some fat into lean muscle (no matter what the scale says)b by your wedding day, if you’ve stuck with some workout regime. Visualize yourself coming down the aisle in the best shape ever and don't give up! Even if you haven't lost weight, you should be seeing some results in your muscle tone by the time you get to your big day.  

Thank you, Katrina, for the amazing information! For those interested in contacting Katrina, her information is listed below :)


8 Tips To Keep Within your Floral Budget For Your Wedding

Wedding Floral | Not Just The Bouquet Anymore

Happy Monday everyone! We know Monday's have the potential to be a drag so here's a blog post, written by the amazing Kelly Dixon of Union Blooms Floral to brighten up your day :)

This will be Part 1, so be sure to check back to see more tips from Kelly!


Wedding floral is one of the items for any wedding that sets the tone, theme, colors, and what can be one of the most budget killing expenditures for any budget.  As a floral designer, who specializes in weddings and events, here are tips for how to keep within budget while getting the look you want as well as what to ask your florist and my tips for making sure your day goes as seamlessly as possible.

1.     Use Pinterest to find the overall look you want.  But only use Pinterest as a guideline.  That huge hydrangea and rose covered arch you’re looking at may be out of your budget, but it’s the general look you want. That cascading bouquet with Phalaenopsis orchids may be stunning but is it the flower or the overall look you like?

Wedding Floral

I tell all my clients to bring photos of ideas they like to a consultation.  Why? It allows me to see what their overall vision is and how to tailor it for their particular budget.

2.     Once you find the look you want and decide on colors, STEP AWAY from Pinterest.  After you have made your final decision it can cloud the overall look with multiple new photos being sent to your floral designer, leaving he/she questioning the notes they took at your consults and culled from your emails and phone calls.

There will always be a new trend, a new color palette, but feeling confident in your final choice is important for the outcome to be as close to what you envisioned.   

Bridal Bouquet

3.     The MOST important part of your wedding floral is the bridal bouquet.  Why? It will be in nearly every photo of the bride.  A breakdown of your proposal per cost should show the bridal bouquet being a pretty hefty part of your proposal costs.  A good designer will know that this is the “showstopper” piece and the most attention needs to be put on the bridal bouquet.

Many times, I have had clients who said they wanted a small bouquet. Happily, I will accommodate that request with varied responses on the day of the wedding as the bride wishes her bouquet was bigger and more elaborate.  It is frustrating for a designer to spend hours if not days working on a wedding to find a client who is not as pleased with their decision.

4.     Listen to your designer.  It’s 100 degrees in August and you want tulips and hydrangea.  You’re insisting on those two flowers, your designer is begging you to reconsider.  There is a reason for this.  Designers spend a lot of time designing your pieces, whether they be the personal floral, ceremony floral or reception floral.  They know in August, tulips will be dead by the time the wedding starts and the hydrangea will look like something left over from the week before.  Designers know what flowers will do well in what situations. Listen to their advice to help alleviate wedding day disappointment.

Wedding Floral Crown

Case in point.  One of my first weddings, yes, in August, and yes she insisted on red tulips.  Not only was the cost higher as they are out of season, I knew her venue, which had no air conditioning, would not be a good fit for her desired tulips.  I showed her red garden roses, dark red standard roses, and still, she held fast to the red tulips.  While the assembly looked good, the outcome was a huge disappointment.  Sitting in a church for 2 hours before the ceremony with no air conditioning the tulips were fully open and petals falling by the time the ceremony started.  Her bouquet? It was nearly dead by the end of the ceremony.  She was upset, she was angry.  While I fully understood her disappointment, I only redirected her to the countless emails with the flower options and me as the designer begging her not to use the tulips and the reasons why.


Kelly Dixon | Union Blooms Floral

Info@unionbloomsfloralweddings.com | www.unionbloomsfloralweddings.com