All posts by Jolana Kaves

Dress to Impress: How to Get the Right Look for a Destination Wedding

A destination wedding is a popular and affordable choice for most couples who want to enjoy an exotic locale and the company of a smaller group of family and friends for the most special day of their lives. More people are exploring it as an affordable alternative to a large banquet type wedding at home, where family and friends can also enjoy a relaxing vacation celebrating with the married couple.

Beach Wedding-min-minImage Credit: Shutterstock.com

While dressing for a beach wedding is relatively easy for women, it can present some questions for men who, if left to their own devices might appear in Bermuda shorts and a t-shirt rather than formal attire. Since no one wants to be the person who is undressed at a wedding, we’ve provided some tips and guidelines to help men and bridal parties can make the right apparel choices for a beach wedding.

The Classic Black Tie Option

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Browse through wedding pictures from destination weddings and one thing you will quickly notice is that the typical ‘black tie’ suit requirement is more of a guideline when it comes to a beach wedding. The reason is simple; black suits are hot and with most exotic destinations hovering near the 100° temperature mark or higher on a sunny day, relatives and groomsmen could quickly become overheated and uncomfortable.

That being said, some wedding parties prefer the black tie theme and formal structured suits. If your theme requires black tie suits, consider scheduling your nuptials for early morning or a dusk, sunset service to keep guests and the bridal party feeling comfortable and out of the hottest peak temperatures of the day. Pair a black suit with a breathable and lightweight tailored shirt underneath for additional comfort.

Tip: Unless your wedding is scheduled for dusk or dawn, avoid dark suits that have a canvas liner and explore one of the many more temperature appropriate fabrics for formal apparel. Not only does a classic lined suit have the ability to cause heat stroke on a hot summer day, dark colored fabrics conduct heat making the temperature feel even hotter.

The Linen Suit

Did you know that up until World War II upper-class Americans wore light to neutral shades of tailored suits? In fact, wearing a lighter colored suit was a sign of affluence as light colored fabrics were more expensive. Think about the glamour of the “Great Gatsby” era and some of the iconic styles of fitted men’s suits from that period. It was a timeless and classy look.

Linen fabrics are comfortable to wear and dry quickly, which makes them an ideal material for suits and formal wear in hot climates. Whether choosing a white linen classic or a tan or neutral suit, linen apparel is a perfect fit (and a stylish one) for men attending destination weddings. Also given the lightweight of linen materials, it is easy to roll up the gentleman’s pants to create a rolled cuff for more informal and fun group pictures.

Tip: To get a truly classic linen look, mix and match bright colors to create a Caribbean effect. Pair the white linen suit with an orange standard or madras tie for a debonair effect. Avoid pairing a linen undershirt with a linen jacket as the matching textures are not flattering. A linen suit looks best with a stiffened collar and a shirt that has been tailor fitted.

The Navy Double Breasted Suit

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If temperatures permit and the wedding party prefers a more formal and structured suit style, the nautical theme is appropriate for an ocean side destination wedding. Consider the combination of a high quality navy blue double-breasted suit with a white dress shirt and khaki or tan colored pants. Bridal parties can further the nautical theme with boutonnieres that incorporate the beach theme, including small shells, sea grass, small driftwood pieces and local tropical flowers. Bright white flowers against a crisp navy blue jacket helps to create an instant classic look.

Tip: Men’s made to measure suits create a structured, formal look even when paired with more casual neutral or khaki pants. Opt for a tailored and fitted jacket for the groom and each groomsman for a timeless formal look.

Button Vest and Shirt Options

If the weather is going to be hot but the attire for the wedding party needs to be formal, another option is to dispense with the suit jacket and have the groom and his friends wear a buttoned up vest that coordinates (or contrasts in a complimenting color) with tailored suit pants. This look is perfect for any man and any build and is a fun alternative to a full suit.

The button vest and shirt option works best with a long sleeved white shirt and a coordinating tie, offering the best of both worlds; a formal look with appropriate comfort. If it is going to be hot on the day of the wedding, the bridal party can also roll up the shirt sleeves after formal pictures for more personal and casual event photography castaway style!

Tip: One of the trending looks for men’s suits at destination weddings is the coordinated single breasted vest and pants, with a white shirt and white tie. Accent with a boutonniere that is also white for a classy and traditional look.

Shoes Optional

One of the best parts of a beach themed destination wedding is the shoe options available. Since walking on the sand with any kind of shoe except a flat sandal is precarious, most bridal parties opt to skip the footwear all together. Not only is this the most comfortable option for the party (as well as guests) but it also adds a whimsical touch to the wedding and makes for great casual photo opportunities.

Tip: Offer 1-2 large wicker baskets before entering the seating area. Guests can be instructed to “take off their shoes” and enjoy a barefoot beach wedding experience. Remember to schedule your wedding for early morning or dawn to avoid excessive temperatures and hot sand on bare feet. Your bridal party and guests will thank you. 

Five Must-Know Wedding Planning Tips to Save Money

A person’s wedding can be one of the most memorable celebrations of their life, but unfortunately, it can also be one of the most stressful and expensive to plan and pull off. From the cost of sending out invitations to the wedding attire, decorations, and catering service used, there are a number of factors that need to be considered, and all of them require the expenditure of money to some extent. Below we provide five tips to help you reduce wedding costs:

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1. Build a Budget and Prioritise

First, before anything else, you should devise a suitable budget that will ensure all of your expenses are kept within an affordable framework that won’t leave you taking items back or revising your plans at the last moment. Establish a total amount you’re willing to spend, and start prioritising to figure out what you absolutely must have at the wedding. From there you can begin calculating how much each aspect of the wedding will cost.

2. Shop Around for the Best Catering Service, or Cater the Reception Independently

By far one of the most expensive parts of a wedding is the cost of preparing and serving food to all the guests. Fortunately, there are many ways to save money on the cost of wedding catering. Try using a drop-off catering service to save money, or maybe even cater to all or part of the reception yourself. The best route to take is to utilise a combination of independent catering efforts and a drop-off service that will bring pre-prepared food, set up the tables and other components, and then leave without having to stick around for the duration of the wedding reception.

3. Cut Corners on Wedding Attire Wherever Possible

Everybody knows wedding dresses and suits can be exuberantly expensive, spanning in the range of thousands of pounds per clothing item. Consider shopping around at local department stores and outlets rather than only looking at wedding dress boutiques and other specialty stores. Other economic alternatives include once-worn or vintage gowns and traditional gowns sold by discount gown retailers.

4. Booking Discounted Venues Through Deal Providers

Another huge expense associated with holding a wedding is the cost of booking a wedding venue. While you always have the option of holding the wedding at your home, in cases where this is not possible, booking a discounted venue is the next cheapest course of action. By using a wedding booking service like UK Wedding Savings you can quickly save up to 50% or more on the cost of booking wedding venues with exclusive deals that cannot be arranged directly with the venue.

5. Do the Invitations Yourself, and Put a Limit on the Number of Guests

Finally, make sure you put a limit on the number of guests you’ll be inviting, and if the number is small enough for you to print and send out the invitations yourself, then by all means do so. Paying a service to take care of the invitations for you can be quite expensive when you consider the fact that you can do it yourself in a single afternoon with the right organisational effort.

The Cake Topper

In conclusion, while there must be at least 100+ ways to save money on the cost of a wedding, the above five should help spark some inspiration for new ideas in your own brainstorming efforts, while also giving you a great starting point on your way to a more affordable and economically conscious wedding reception.

Unique wedding inspiration ideas

When it comes to wedding planning, many brides-to-be scan the pages of glossy magazines or search online for inspiration, checking out what the bride is wearing, how her hair is dressed, what the venue is like and which color schemes have been chosen. In particular, celebrities like to have weddings that are memorable, and many of them seek out unique ways to wed, celebrating their marital union in true celebrity style. Here are a few ideas to excite your inner adventurer and make your day extra special.

Royal wedding weekend

When His Royal Highness Prince William married Kate Middleton in London, it seemed like the whole world was watching. That same weekend the casino king Steve Wynn married his British bride Andrea Hissom in Las Vegas, and some reporters dubbed it “America’s royal wedding.” Both brides sported beautiful lace sleeves and flattering, plunging necklines on their bridal gowns, and while William and Kate were married in Westminster Abbey, Steve and Andrea opted for the exclusive Encore resort in Las Vegas – which just goes to show that you can choose almost anywhere you like for your wedding venue these days.

wedding planningAmong the locations celebrity couples have selected are Venice, Italy (Amal Alamuddin and George Clooney) Correns, France (Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt) and San Francisco’s City Hall (Marilyn Monroe and Joe DiMaggio). There’s something about a Vegas wedding, however, that stands out from the rest. The home of gambling, glitz and glamour creates a fabulous backdrop for Hollywood-style marriages.

Stretch the party

A three-day celebration may sound a little extravagant, but it does allow couples to invite a variety of friends to a number of different events – none of which need cost the earth. How about a picnic in the park if a poolside party doesn’t suit, for example? The actual ceremony is at the core of the celebrations, of course, but why not do something adventurous – tie the knot during a hot air balloon ride and have it filmed and then screened to your guests?

In addition to the plethora of beautiful hotels and chapels up and down the strip, you might like to consider an outdoor wedding ceremony. In the areas immediately surrounding Las Vegas are venues such as Valley of Fire State Park, Lake Mead and Red Rock at Spring Mountain. These locations provide stunning backdrops for your celebrations and will allow you to create memories that will last forever.

Hotelier and casino magnate Steve Wynn, sometimes known as Mr. Las Vegas, has been credited with spearheading the regeneration of the Las Vegas Strip in the 1990s, and by choosing an unusual wedding venue you can be part of the regeneration of underused and quirky properties. He is renowned for bringing the Golden Nugget back to life and for opening The Bellagio and The Mirage; both stunning wedding venues. For something more unusual you might want to select an empty but attractive swimming pool or a local art gallery or museum, for instance.

Wedding hair and flowers

Hair up or down is one of those questions brides ask, but there is no straight answer, except whatever you think suits you best. Some brides opt for long and loose flowing locks – including Amal Alamuddin and Kim Kardashian, while others go for a stately dressed-up look – for example, Angelina Jolie and Jessica Biel.

If you already have a color scheme then this should be carried through to your wedding décor and your flowers. A lovely option is to carry a giant paper flower or a crocheted wedding bouquet if you’re the creative type and want to make your own, as well as stand out from the crowd.

Being inspired is really all about thinking of the features that will make your wedding day as perfect as possible. If you prefer to keep things simple, then do exactly that – if you want to push out the boat, then work towards an awesome celebration. Whatever makes you both happy is likely to work just fine.

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