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Celebrating & Preparing For Your Big Day with OurWeddingDay.com Today is Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Pre-Wedding Toast Jitters


Public speaking takes a lot of skill, and guts. More often then not you’ll find the maid of honor or best man at weddings with sweat on their brow, or a case of the hand shakes. When prepping for maid of honor toasts, maid of honor poems, or a best man speech, keep the following wedding toast tips for de-stressing in mind.

1. Positive Thinking: This has a bigger impact on your performance than you may be aware of. Many self-help guru’s and public speaking coaches emphasize the importance of giving yourself positive pep talks leading up to your speech. If you tell yourself that you’re going to do a great job, then chances are you actually will.

2. Talk Therapy: This is an exercise that is great for the moments leading up to your speech. This exercise entails that you ask yourself simple questions and answer them. Some of the questions you could ask are, “How am I feeling?” or “What kind of mood am I in?”. Asking and answering these questions will alleviate tension and allow you to relax before you take the microphone.

3. Connect with Your Environment: Throughout the reception, prior to your speech, make eye contact and smile with the other guests. Get to know some of the guests you haven’t met and say hi to the guests you do know. This will allow you to feel as though you know those around you, and will make you feel safe and calm.

4. Deep Breathing: This is an age-old technique that works. If you can, find a quiet space to sit and breath. If you have a difficult time breathing slowly then count to five as you inhale and then exhale. If you aren’t able to find a quiet space, then feel free to practice deep breathing in your chair as you wait to be called to the microphone.

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2 Wedding Cake Designs with Chocolate Frosting


When you think of wedding cake designs, you probably think of white or ivory frosting on the outside. This is the most classic and elegant approach. However, this means that you are limited to frostings that are white, such as butter cream, vanilla, or cream cheese frosting (which can give a bit of a yellow hue). However, if you are a chocolate lover, here are two ideas for whimsical and modern wedding cakes that demand chocolate frosting on the outside:

Chocolate Leaves & Petals: The chocolate leaves and petals wedding cake is covered in dark chocolate curls that resemble petals and leaves, with a moist hazelnut mocha cake beneath. This cake is especially great for autumn weddings, or for spring weddings, cover it with lavender, for a chocolate brown and lavender color combination.

Coffee Wedding Cake: For those who love coffee and chocolate, this cake is done in three layers (each with a different shade of mocha, progressively getting lighter from bottom to top). Underneath is a delicious coffee cake with dark chocolate frosting inside.

Remember, if your caterer or bakery does not offer these designs, it is always possible to bring them a photo of a particular cake. They may not offer to do it, but if they do (and it’s a hit), it could become one of their signature wedding cake designs.

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Traditional Jewish Wedding Music


If you’re planning a traditional Jewish wedding, then you might want to explore your music options. When choosing the ceremony and reception music, make sure that you pick songs that highlight this joyous occasion, and that the music honors and respects the Jewish religion.

Before the bride makes her way toward the Chuppah wedding canopy, it is customary that two processional music selections are played for family members and the wedding party. The first song should be played for the family members, and the second as when the groom waits for his bride.

Music has always been a strong and lasting part of the Jewish religion, that it is imperative to integrate traditional wedding music into Jewish wedding ceremonies. Jewish brides typically choose ceremonial music like “Erev Shel Shoshanim,” or “Dodi Li." Another option is a modern Hebrew song called “Lechi Lach,” or even “The Wedding Song."

Jewish wedding reception music includes the music played while guests dance the Hora, which is a basic grapevine step. This is the most joyous and exciting part of the Jewish wedding because all wedding guests are invited to dance in a circle and celebrate the occasion.

Make sure you buy comfortable shoes for your traditional Jewish wedding, because you’ll be doing a lot of dancing!

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Cakes Toppers Unique for You


Every aspect of your wedding should reflect your unique personality and style, including your wedding cake toppers. With an abundance of unique wedding cakes to choose from, chances are you’ll already be inspired to pick a topper that’s as amazing as your cake. If you need more inspiration, feel free to explore the following ideas.

Religious: If you’re having a religious ceremony then you might want to consider choosing a topper that reflects that. For example, a cross or a bible topper might be the perfect accessory to your wedding cake.

Animals: If you and your partner are animal lovers then you’re in luck because there are many fantastic animal cake toppers to choose from. Don’t shy away from being specific with your cake topper—if you have a black Labrador, then explore black Lab cake toppers.

Butterflies: Butterfly cake toppers are beautiful and inspiring. They come in all colors and sizes, so you won’t have any trouble finding the butterfly that matches your wedding cake.

Flowers: With a countless number of varietals to choose from, picking the perfect flower or group of flowers to top your cake with will be fun and easy.

Holiday: If you’re getting married on or near a holiday, such as Christmas, Easter, or Halloween, explore cake toppers that were created for that specific holiday. For example, cake toppers ideal for an Easter wedding include bunnies, carrots, and Easter eggs.

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Gothic Wedding Cake Designs


Once you’ve chosen your Gothic wedding theme, you’ll find many ways to sprinkle it throughout your big day—your wedding dress, wedding color scheme, décor, and last, but not least, your wedding cake. Deciding between one or more wedding cake designs is easy when you have a specific theme guiding you.

A dress shaped wedding cake is a trend that’s growing, and could work perfectly with your Gothic theme. Gothic gowns, specifically wedding gowns, are typically large ball gowns with a number of embellishments. Imagine your wedding cake as a replica of a Gothic gown, adorned with lace frosting, multi-tiers, and a chocolate corset.

Another cake shape that adheres to the Gothic style is a castle cake. Do some research (or pass this task on to your cake designer) on Gothic architecture and have your wedding cake replicate that style. Make sure your castle cake is adorned with stained glass windows to give it a nice burst of color.

Express your Gothic wedding style by the color palette you choose for your wedding cake. Black, white, and red are popular Gothic colors that would look fantastic on your wedding cake. Another option is to have cupcake wedding cakes instead of a traditional cake, and alternate the three Gothic colors with cupcakes. For example, if you have 100 wedding guests, then one third of the cupcakes could be black, one third red, and the rest white.

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Unique Wedding Supplies: How to Find Vintage Decor


Knowing where to find wedding supplies that are specific to your wedding theme can be a tricky feat, but with the combination of online shops, E-bay, local antique shops, as well as estate sales, you should be good to go!

Where to Find Antiques

Local: If you’re wedding theme is Gothic, Victorian, or related to any vintage theme, then the first place you should look is in your very own neighborhood. Keep an eye out for garage and estate sales, you might be surprised at what you find. Also tap into your local wedding vendors, who may not have antique supplies, but could very well point you in the right direction.

E-bay: This online auction site is ideal for anyone looking for something specific that’s difficult to find at your local boutique or supply store. The site changes constantly, so even if you don’t find what you’re looking for at first, go online and check the next day.

Antique Shops: This might seem obvious, and even a bit expensive, but you might get lucky and stumble upon a sale. Also keep in mind that a lot of antique shops are locally owned and run, which means that the owner might be open to negotiating a lower price.

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Wedding Cake Transportion and Storing


Picking out the perfect wedding cake is an important component to your special day. Which is why it’s just as important to ensure the cake is stored properly and safely transported to your wedding reception. Just as your wedding gown must be properly stowed, cleaned, and altered, there are steps you must take in making sure your wedding cake is well taken care of.

First and foremost, be aware of how to transport your wedding cake. Whether you have one or multiple custom wedding cakes, make sure you follow these steps:

  • If your wedding cake has multiple tiers, with pillars in between, make sure the cake is not assembled until it reaches the final destination. Also remove any cake accessories, such as loose flowers or toppers before transporting it to the reception. Place the accessories and fully assemble the cake once it is at your reception venue.
  • Most cakes—especially big wedding cakes—are heavy, which is why each base should be extremely sturdy. A ½ inch thick fiberboard or plywood base is sufficient.
  • Some cakes might require additional icing after transport, so make sure you have what you need on hand at the reception.
  • Have one box or pan per cake tier. This will make transporting it a lot easier than placing the tiers together in one large box. Wedding cake bakeries should be able to provide you with the boxes you need.
  • Have a thorough route mapped out to the reception, and make sure to include stairways and ramps so that you and who ever else is transporting the cake is prepared. You may need to bring a dolly, or cart.

As far as what you choose to transport your cake in, you have three options: a pan, a box, or on foam. One isn’t better than the other, but you might want to test out all three before the actual wedding day.

Once you reach the reception location, keep the following tips in mind:

  • Bring a leveler to make sure the cake table is level.
  • Instead of pulling the cake tiers out of the boxes from the top, have scissors handy to cut the box, and slide the cake. This will minimize your chances of grazing the cake with your fingers.
  • Have a cake making kit for safety. If the cake somehow gets smudged along its journey, you might need to perform repairs with extra icing or cake decorations.

If you plan on following the one year anniversary top cake tier tradition, make sure you know how to properly store the cake, to ensure it is as moist and delicious as ever—even one year later! Before storing it, remove all decorations and ornaments, and replace the cardboard base with foil. Freeze the cake for approximately 20 minutes, take it out and cover it with airtight plastic wrap, followed by two or more layers of aluminum foil. Then, one day prior to your anniversary, remove the cake from the freezer, defrost, and enjoy!

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3 Unique Spring Wedding Flowers


The secret to picking the perfect spring wedding flowers is to choose a varietal that’s unique to you and your personality. You are welcome to take the road most traveled, and allow wedding flower vendors to create wedding flower bouquets and centerpieces that fit well with your overall theme and color scheme, but you also might want to do some research on your own, and choose spring wedding flowers that are not only unique in general, but also unique to you.

Peonies: This varietal is uncommon at weddings, but still absolutely gorgeous. You can choose peonies that are still in the bud, or fully open blooms, depending on what look you feel best represents your tastes.

Lily of the Valley: Since this varietal only blooms during April and May, they are an uncommon pick amongst brides. This varietal has a distinctive and pleasing aroma. Due to its size, this is one of the more expensive varietals, which could affect how many you choose for your bouquet, your fiancé’s boutonniere or table centerpieces. These gorgeous small white flowers are elegant, and epitomize spring.

Gerberas (Gerber Daisies): This spring flower is beautiful by itself, or paired with other varietals like tulips or roses when creating your bridal bouquet. You could also mix different colored gerberas in one bouquet or centerpiece. Gerberas colors include cream, white, pink, red, yellow, and combination two-toned orange and yellow.

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Wedding Trends: Organic Wedding Reception Linens


One of the biggest trends of today is incorporating eco-friendly elements into your wedding. Not only does this force you to be creative with your choices, but your guests will also appreciate your efforts to help the environment. For example, you can choose organic and sustainable fabrics for your wedding reception linens, which is an easy and hassle-free way to go green. Here are a few current wedding trends—eco-friendly, when possible—to keep in mind when planning your wedding:

Choose other organic elements, such as organic flowers, organic food, organic paper and envelopes for your invitations, and of course, organic wedding reception linens. You can also detail the organic items you chose in a small paragraph on a place card, so that your guests know where you purchased or rented them. An added benefit of eco-friendly modern reception ideas is that you will likely be supporting local business, as these are typically the first places to embrace green and organic products. You are also nurturing community and promoting health and longevity. It’s a win-win situation. For those concerned about the prices of organic products, you can often get a deal if you are purchasing in bulk. For example, some local businesses may be thrilled that you are promoting them by mentioning them at your wedding, and give you a discount in return. You can approach the situation by saying something like "I am on a specific budget for wedding reception linens or invitations, yet I really want to do my best to use organic materials to support the environment. Is there any way you could help me?"

Popular wedding reception decorations include interesting vase fillers, such as seashells, glass beads or marbles, and fresh fruit such as lemons or limes (yet another easy way to go natural and organic!) Other popular table decorations include rose petals, vines, cut flowers (that are placed directly on the table), diamond confetti, and seashells. Most of these materials can be eco-friendly.

Reception chairs are often decorated with floral swags, ribbons, tulle, or other types of fabric. Chinese lanterns and candles are also very popular. You can have a floating candle centerpiece with lilies or other petals; choose soy candles or other types made of organic, all-natural essential oils.

Another trend that is gaining momentum is the candy buffet. A special table is filled with all sorts of different treats, and scoops allow guests to take home a bag full of treats. You could serve organic dark chocolate or candies made of organic cane syrup.

You can also discuss with your caterer the possibility of serving organic wine or champagne. Caterers may or may not allow you to bring in your own alcohol (or they may charge you a fee per bottle to serve it), but it may be worth it to check. Also, if the wine is more expensive, choose one organic wine to feature and the rest of your drinks can be non-organic.

Remember: progress, not perfection, is the motto here. You don’t have to make everything at your wedding eco-conscious, but where it makes sense (and is affordable), enjoy doing it!

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Your Maid of Honor's Speech: 3 Things to Remember


Giving a speech at the wedding reception is one of the many maid of honor traditions that is still in full effect at modern day weddings. Writing a speech of any kind can be nerve wracking, but also a lot of fun. Use the following ideas and guidelines as your road map when fulfilling one of the most important maid of honor duties of all.

Brainstorm Early: Don’t wait until the last minute to write your speech, but rather jot down ideas early on. Start a journal and label it “Maid of honor toasts” and write down as many ideas as you can for the months leading up to the wedding day. Then as the date approaches, read through your ideas, toasts, stories etc. and decide which will make the final speech.

What to include: Make sure you express how honored you are to be a part of such a joyous and significant occasion. Also include a story about the happy couple, or about the bride. Famous quotes are always a nice touch either at the very beginning or at the end of the speech. Wrap up your speech by raising your glass high in the air with a salute to the bride and groom.

Common mistakes: Whatever you do, do not spend 15 minutes telling stories about you and the bride. Remember that this event is honoring the bride and groom, so if you include any stories make sure they relate to the couple, and if they don’t then keep them very short and very sweet.

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