We received this guest post and thought you might find it helpful! If you are looking for flowers, be sure to check out our blog post on what flowers are in season when!
photo by loeraphotography
It’s a well known fact that flowers are very particular about what kind of weather and climates they will grow in. With a bit of planning, you can have a season approprate flower selection, delighting you and your family during any season’s climate.
After putting in countless hours during the spring, summer, and fall to make your property beautiful and lush with floral life, there is no reason to let it all die during the winter! There are many hardy plants that produce colorful blooms when most others are either dormant or dead:
Camellia Sasanqua – Bears apple blossom-like flowers from late autumn to early winter.
Chinese Juniper – Small yellow flowers bloom to a lush covering over the blue/green leaves of this plant in the late winter and early spring.
Oleaster – Not only blooms throughout the winter months with tiny white flowers, the Oleaster also bears edible berries that will attract wildlife to your yard.
Winter Heaths – Among the hardiest winter-blooming plants, Winter Heaths bear tiny bell shaped flowers in a variety of reds and pinks.
Many spring flowers originate from bulbs that must be planted in the autumn. These include:
Daffodils – Daffodils is the common English name for flowers of the Narcissus genus. They have a central bowl shaped bloom surrounded by six petals, commonly seen in different shades of whites and yellows.
Tulips – While having the ability to bloom in a variety of climates, Tulips tend to bloom in mid spring. Tulips come in a wide range of colors and sizes, and have a cup shaped head made up of six petals.
Lilies – Lilies are large flowers containing six tepals, and come in a wide range of all colors.
Many spring flowers, however, need not be planted as bulbs in the autumn:
Crocus – Crocus petals can be first seen popping out of the snow in late February, fully blooming in early April. It’s purple and white flowers are a reminder to many that warmer weather is on the way.
Cherry Blossom – The standard symbol of spring, Cherry Blossoms are the delicate pink flowers that
grow on cherry trees.
Anemone – Tiny flowers that come in a variety of colors, anemone are another flower that signals the onset of spring.
Many flowers hit full bloom in the warm, sunny weather of summer:
Hydrangea – The Hydrangea flower is composed of hundreds of small flowers clustering together; commonly found in blue, pink, and white varieties.
Daisy – Arguably the most popular flower in the US, Daisies have central heads populated with pollen and surrounded by white petals. Gerbera daisies can come in a variety of colors as well.
Chrysanthemum – Or “Mums” come in all the colors of the rainbow, and are shaped as pompoms or buttons.
Many people associate autumn with the death or stagnation of plants, as the trees lose their leaves in preparation for winter. However, autumn can be a time of abundant flowers if you choose the right ones:
Autumn Crocus – Producing it’s leaves in the spring and waiting to flower until autumn, the Autumn Crocus has pretty pink blooms that can grow up to 18 inches high.
Azure Monkshood – These flowers feature beautiful deep blue blooms that appear in early autumn and last into the winter.
Neopolitan Cyclamen – Neopolitan Cyclamen feature delicate petals in shades of white, pink, and red, perched atop a slender stem.
A season appropriate flower selection gives your buget the upper hand, and will show insight to your wedding planning. Use this as a guide along with a little research to decide which will work best for your wedding day and climate.
- Trisha Hardings, of FlowerDelivery.net, an online resource for arrangements, bouquets, flower delivery, and all things flowers!
Remember, once you have your flowers, be sure to share photos of them with all your friends and family with your online photo album from The Wedding Lens!
Although you can collect all your guests’ wedding photos and upload them into one online photo album, you may decide that you would like to hire a professional wedding photographer as well. When searching for a wedding photographer, there are a few things to consider. (Of course, the first thing is always budget!)
For the budget
1. Number of hours. Are you looking for someone to take pictures from the time you’re getting ready til the end of the evening? Do you want someone just to start taking photos at the ceremony? How many hours do you think you’ll want someone there?
2. Number of photographers. Do you want one person taking photos? Or do you want multiple perspectives of the same moment? If you want more than one perspective, you might need two photographers on site. (But this doesn’t mean that you have to hire two separate photographers. Most photographers have assistants or partners who they work with and who can be included in a package price). If you want multiple perspectives but can only afford the one photographer, remember to ask your friends and family to take photos & they can upload them into your photo album afterwards.
3. Albums. Most photographers offer packages that include a photo album. Other photographers offer photo albums that you can add on later, on top of the other services. Often looking at a photographers albums are a good way to see if you like their albums. Remember – you can always order an album later, which might help you spread out the costs.
For considering WHO to hire
4. Style of photography. Do you want a photojournalistic style? Artsy? What are you looking for? What kind of photos do you like? Detailed photos? Getting ready?
5. Experience. How many years experience doing wedding photographer does the person have? Wedding photography is different from other types of photography! Does the person have experience at your venue? Does your venue require the photographer to know the venue?
6. Personality of the photographer. Do you like the person? Can you communicate with them easily?
7. Other issues. Does the photographer charge a travel fee? Will he/she check out the venue with you (or without you) prior to the day of the wedding? Do they accept shot lists? (Do you want them to?) Who keeps the negatives? Do you get copies of the high resolution files? (If you do, you can add them to your Wedding Lens photo album to share with friends!)
Remember to keep in mind the general tips on how to select vendors! For example, get references from people who have used the photographer. Also bear in mind that your photographer, like all other vendors, will require a downpayment to hold your wedding date!
How did you select your wedding photographer?
We thought you would enjoy reading this great guest post from Amy about cool gifts for the groom. Remember to share photos with your groom — and the rest of your guests — by using one online photo album.
It can be slightly tough to go gift shopping for the groom. It’s much easier to do for the bride in most cases. Which is why you’ll want to take careful consideration by understanding his interests, likes/dislikes, & any specific activities he’ll involved in. The more you know the easier it will be to make a decision. We’ve put together a list of ten awesome gifts that are sure to please any groom!
1) Customized Mugs or Glasses
Instead of picking something up off the shelf, being a little creative goes a long way. With so many local options for customizing products mugs & glasses are a great choice. And while still a bit cheezy, these mugs have a wonderful look to them but more then that they can be put on display & use them for special occasions.
2) Long lasting bar sets
Bar sets by themselves won’t be a big hit as a present but they make for a nice accessory along with the gift you had in mind. They show thought & effort to add a final touch to your box. As an example, if the groom loves golf you can find themed bar sets to match his personal taste. Many of them will have extra reserved space for engraving purposes.
3) Fine black leather wallet
The key to picking out a really awesome leather wallet that will go over well boils down to just one word: quality! That doesn’t mean the pricing can’ be affordable. If you’re willing to spend hundred bucks or so you can walk away with something you’ll be proud of giving. Although black is really in right now, a cool beige color looks just as nice. Just be sure to top things off by putting a note inside the wallet to express your happiness for the groom.
4) Handy desk accessories
The groom would love to receive a collection of useful desk accessories that will aid in daily work. There are so many options to select from you can mix things up to provide an array of items in one box. Some good examples include staplers, penholders, hole punchers, and countless more sleek looking desk items.
5) Cool Designer Cuff Links
When it comes to cufflinks you have two main options to go from. Either you can go with the look. Which means a set from an upscale brand or a really hot modern look, which look really nice with fitted suits. On the flip side you can go a bit nuts and colorful with something like cartoon characters. This decision should depend on the style of the groom.
6) Stylish Groomsmen Gift Basket
The neat aspect about gift baskets when it comes to weddings is that many are designed with both people involved. Many gifts are limited to brides and there’s a select few that are limited to grooms. Gift baskets can be shared because they include stuff like delicious candies, bath accessories, fine beverages, and other similar items.
7) Stunning Lighters & Cigar Lights
Not all men enjoy smoking so be sure to know in advance before purchasing a really expensive lighter. Chances are it won’t be used much and will put into a drawer to be never used again. What’s worse is that the groom will instantly know you put very little effort into your selection. This lighter has however more functions than just lighting a ciggarette. It also works as a USB stick.
8 ) Personalized and Engraved Card Cases
These designer business card cases come in both a silver tone and gold tone for a really elegant presentation. You can personalize them by engraving & personalizing with the name of the groom & bride or even the date of wedding for a memorable item they can display in their new home. We prefer the metal finish but the leather looks just as nice.
9) Magnificent Pocket Knives Gift Set
Every man enjoys playing around with neat gadgets. Here’s the perfect chance to give him a bunch of cool gadgets in one gift set. The pocket knives are accompanied with other accessories such as bottle openers, screwdrivers, scissors, and a number of other options. The groom probably won’t be expecting to receive something so fun, which makes them a guaranteed winner!
10) The Classic Pocket Watch
The most common and well known present was saved for number ten on our list. Although choosing a watch is very typical it’s also very well received. Watches come to good use in many ways for both accessories and time telling. They can be passed down to kids and grandkids as symbols and deeper meanings. The best part is the back can be engraved with a unique message to be looked at for years to come.
This list was contributed by Amy at TotallyTop10.com. For more great top ten lists check out their list blog.
- If you have a guest post you would like to share, email us at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
photo from bombadier
A friend is getting married next year and she already knows she has a TON of out of town guests. So it got me thinking about how many things there are to do when you’re traveling for a wedding. So – When you have a lot of out of town guests, it’s nice if you can make their lives a little easier. There are two main aspects of traveling for a wedding: transportation and accomodation.
If you are having people travel to your wedding, let people know what airport they should fly into. Many times there are several “nearby” airports and many people might not realize what a difference that can make.
Suggest a cab company to your guests so that they can get to and from the airport with ease.
If necessary, let guests know that they should rent a car — especially if there’s lots of driving involved.
Finally, make sure people can get from their hotel to your wedding – either by cab (providing a phone number) or by renting a shuttle for ease of travel.
Regardless of how many people are coming from out of town, set up a room block for your guests. What’s a room block? Basically, talk to a nearby hotel and they will block off a certain number of rooms so that your guests can book them. Usually they give a discount so that your guests are encouraged to book with them. To set up a room block, just contact a hotel that’s convenient to your wedding, to the airport, or is otherwise a hotel of choice (e.g. if you’re having a breakfast there the next day!)
Keep in mind that not all guests are able to spend the same amount, so even if you set up a room block at a hotel, be sure to let guests know some less expensive or more expensive alternatives.
While none of this is mandatory, it definitely makes life a little easier for those out of town guests.
And, dont forget that your out of town guests want to see pictures! Make sure all your guests upload their photos into one online photo album after the wedding!
Think about all the things you want in a website where your guests upload their photos after your wedding….
1) You dont want them to have to register for an account somewhere, right? The Wedding Lens doesn’t require your guests to register in order to use the site.
2) You want to be able to download the photos that your friends upload to the site. While many sites automatically compress your photos – The Wedding Lens does not! With the Premium and Ultimate album, you can upload your photos in whatever size and shape and download them in full-resolution.
3) You want your guests to share photos – meaning that everyone can see what everyone else uploaded. Maybe one friend took a fab photo of another… both will be able to view an download the pictures. Most photo sites claim they offer sharing, when in fact the flow of images is unidirectional – it’s not really “sharing” at all! With the Wedding Lens, multiple people can upload photos to your site and everyone will be able to see who took which photo. And since many of your guests may not know one another, they will be able to connect with one another by commenting on each other’s photos!
4) You dont want your guests to have to put in a lot of time, effort, and work when they upload photos. The Wedding Lens Team sends out gentle email reminders to your guests so that your friends and family don’t forget to upload their photos. It takes the burden off of you because you have enough to worry about. You never have to think about bugging your friends; The Wedding Lens Team does it for you!
5) You want a site that’s for weddings, not just a random website. Welcome your guests appropriately with a warm and elegant wedding-specific design. Your guests will appreciate the personal welcome page and hassle-free site.
Still confused? Compare all the online photo sites here! And then check out The Wedding Lens FREE Trial!
photo by chijs
One of my friends who is getting married soon went dress shopping with one thing on her mind: she needed two gowns. Yes, it’s true. She needed to get one gown for her wedding wedding, but she needed a second gown for her Chinese wedding. When she started dress shopping this is all she knew. And it took her awhile, but eventually she realized there are other parameters for dress shopping.
As with everything wedding-related, first assess your budget. How much can you TRULY afford to spend on your wedding dress? It’s only one day of your life, but at the same time, it’s the only day you’re going to be getting married. Consider what you really can afford to buy.
If you are trying to save money, think about using a pre-worn gown from The Green Hanger Shop (or any other place that sells quality beautiful gowns.
In terms of the actual gown, think about what it is that you like when you are wearing any kind of a dress. Do you look better in strapless? Halter top? A-line? Think about the design of the dress and what shape is important to you.
Do you want a long dress or short dress? A train? Beading? Lace? Low cut? Arm length?
I suggest browsing some dress shops online before going to the store so you can get an idea of what you like and what you dont like.
Then select a few stores that meet your cost + style criteria. Try on dresses and see what else you like. That will give you more guidance as to which direction to go. That might lead you to other stores or other styles… or an updated budget!
How did you find your dress? Remember, be sure you collect all the photos of your wedding dress with an online photo album — where all your guests can upload their pics of your wedding day!
photo by maarjaara
So I decided that “The Wedding Lens AND Disposable Cameras” might catch your attention since The Wedding Lens is, well, better than disposable cameras for about a billion reasons. But hey, dont just take my word for it. Here are the reasons why The Wedding Lens is BETTER than spending money to put disposable cameras on every table at your wedding.
1. See photos from the whole wedding! This sounds obvious, but with disposable cameras on the tables, people only get them at the reception! You miss out on all kinds of candid photos at the ceremony.
2. Get better photos! Remember when you had to print a whole roll of film to find out which ones were good and which ones were so blurry that you wish you hadn’t printed them? Well, if all the photos are digital and you upload them to The Wedding Lens, then you get to check all of ‘em out before you print! It saves you time, money, AND it saves the world a little extra photo paper.
3. Save MONEY! With the Wedding Lens, you’re getting the benefit of everyone’s digital photos. In other words, you dont have to buy disposable cameras AND you dont have to print all the blurry photos on the digital camera. Once your guests upload their photos, you only print the best ones.
4. Be eco-friendly! Disposable cameras aren’t biodegradable and printing photos from disposable cameras uses lots of paper – especially for those blurry photos or the photos that don’t turn out. Instead, The Wedding Lens lets you see the photos your guests are already taking and view them before choosing to print. You only use paper to print the photos you want and there’s no camera to dispose!
Interested? Get started with your FREE trial today! Be sure to check out all of our plans and select the one that works the best for you.
We received the following question from a reader and thought you might benefit from her question. Remember, if you have questions, feel free to ask! email@example.com
phoyo from ashleypalmero
I’m getting married a year from November and we already have picked out our venue. We have a lot of people who we want to invite and we want to make sure they can come. But we’re also reallllllllllly worried about the guest list getting too big. So I guess that’s what I’m kinda wondering about – like people reserving their time for our wedding. When should we send Save the Dates? Do we have to send them to everyone at one time?
That is a great question! Technically, you should send out Save the Dates as soon as you can so that your guests can make whatever preparations they need to make to come to your wedding. But that only applies if you WANT them at your wedding!
Your wedding is far enough away that you have some time to play with this, but I would suggest that you do your Save the Dates in shifts — especially if you haven’t solidified your guest list yet.
First, send the STDs to your close family and friends who you KNOW you are going to invite and who you really, really want to come.
Second, once you solidify your guest list a bit more, send the STDs to the more distant people who you would like to come, but who you wont be devistated about if they dont come.
Finally, you can feel free to NOT send STDs if there are people who you are just waiting on to see if you have space. I’m sure you have read our tips on handling the guest list where we recommend that you do separate A, B, and C lists for guests. Some of the C list people wont be able to be invited until some of the As and Bs say no to the invite. This means that the C list people wont be receiving a Save the Date at all.
I hope that helps resolve some of the STD anguish! Good luck!
So you read this blog and get some wedding tips and ideas here and there, but what is The Wedding Lens?
What is it?
The Wedding Lens is an online photo site designed specifically for weddings so that you and your guests can share all your photos and videoes in ONE online album!
How does it work?
It’s really simple: Ask guests to take photos and then ask them to upload them to your customized wedding album on The Wedding Lens!
They don’t even need to register to do so! Here’s the breakdown of tidbits:
1. Ask your guests to take photos at your wedding. I’m guessing they’re doing that anyway, right?
2. Set up a customized site on The Wedding Lens, complete with a yournames.theweddinglens.com website name.
3. Invite your guests to upload their photos to your customized site. How? Well, when you sign up, you can give The Wedding Lens all your guests’ email addresses, so that we can invite your guests to upload their photos. Don’t have your Uncle John’s email address? Just direct them to your personalized URL with your unique access code.
4. (Remember, your guests do NOT need to register to upload photos!)
5. When people upload their full-resolution photos, they can organize them based on the categories (i.e. rehearsal dinner, ceremony, reception). Everyone can see and comment on other photos taken by other guests!
6. The Wedding Lens allows you to print your favorite photos through our printing partner, Digibug. Some of our album memberships allow you to download the photos onto your computer so that you can collect all photos on your home computer. If you dont want to have to download it individually, we can also download the entire library onto a DVD for you.
The Wedding Lens is here for YOU and your special wedding day. We make it easier for you to get all the photos you could possibly want from everyone who takes digital photos. You get to see candids of your partner looking at you as you walk down the aisle, as well as that amazing moment when you are officially called a married couple by the officiant. Make sure you get to see all the photos with your own personalized online wedding photo album!
So now: get started with your FREE TRIAL!
So you’re probably thinking, as I did, that the only songs you need to come up with for your wedding are: 1) your first dance; 2) the father-daughter dance; and 3) the mother-son dance. It turns out, that’s just the beginning!
photo by ashleypalmero
First, you’ll need a song for your wedding ceremony. That means a song for the wedding party, the groom, and/or the bride. Some people use one song, some use two (one for the wedding party & groom, and “here comes the bride” for the bride); others use three.
After the ceremony is where most of the decisions happen.
1. Cocktail hour: What kind of music do you want? Think about using songs that you like but that maybe aren’t “dancing” songs. Maybe you and your fiance(e) have a song that is meaningful and fun, but isn’t really something that you want to play during the reception portion. Or maybe it’s more mellow. Maybe you just want the DJ to pick out some nice jazz selections. Regardless, you’ll need to think about what you want to happen during cocktail hour.
2. Grand entrance: Yes! You need a song to come into the room! And, if you do an entrance for your wedding party, you’ll need a song for them too.
3. Bride and groom first dance: You’ve already been thinking about this, so I wont focus on that too much. But do check out our list of first dance songs!
4. Wedding party dance: Not every wedding has a dance for the wedding party, but it’s a good way to get people involved and get people dancing! Other suggestions might be to have people come out to dance who have been married the longest, then the second longest, then the third longest…. until you get to the couple who JUST got married. Again, it’s a way to get people involved and dancing. But you need a song to dance to!
5. Father/daughter and Mother/son: Again, this is something you’ve probably thought of, but try to use a meaningful song. One of my friends used to dance with her dad to a song when she was a little girl — what a perfect selection! (Yes, even if it’s not “traditional.”) We also have some ideas for the father-daughter dance!
6. Cake cutting: For the cake-cutting, you should pick something that’s either funny (“Build Me Up Buttercup”) or special between you and your fiance(e). This is a moment you share and something fun, but also a sweet moment between you two (no pun intended).
photo by sweetone
7. Bouquet Toss: Unsurprisingly, the most selected song for this in the past two years has been “Single Ladies” by Beyonce.
8. Garter Toss: This can be two songs or just one. The groom can have a song to retrieve the garter, and another song for the actual garter toss.
9. Last dance: What song do you want to go out on?
10. Dancing in general: Think of writing a “do not play” list or come up with a list of 20 songs that you really like. This will give your DJ a good guide of songs to play for the rest of the evening. Of course, if you know all the songs you want to have played, by all means!
So you see? There’s a lot of songs that need to be selected! Most DJ companies have a list of the “most requested” songs to help guide you through the process. But if you’re just starting out in the planning process, start thinking now!
What songs will you select?
Are you taking photos at your wedding? Are your friends? Of course they are! Make sure you collect all of their photos into ONE online photo album on The Wedding Lens! Check out our free trial!
July 5, 2010 – 9:40 am
The Wedding Lens blog is on vacation today! We’ll be back later this week with more wedding planning tips and ideas on how to capture your wedding… Read more
June 2, 2010 – 5:00 am
Do you look hideous in yellow? Jenny does! I’m not just saying that, she said it herself the other day when she was talking about finding her wedding colors. How will you find your wedding colors? Here are the top ways that people find their wedding… Read more
June 1, 2010 – 9:00 am
I’ve now entered the tedious phase of wedding planning. With our venue selected, I am now going through the process of calling and interviewing caterers. It’s a tiresome and humbling experience where some caterers will just come out and say,… Read more
May 5, 2010 – 5:00 am
The following is a guest post from David Doran , an expert on best man speeches and is the co-founder of BestManApp.com the web app for best men. Enjoy! Everyone expects a best man to be funny, the humor in his speech may be the yardstick with… Read more