Five Factors for a Fabulous Wedding

From bridal showers to flowers! Today we look at all of the pre-wedding parties and showers.

A wedding is a celebration, it is an event and it doesn’t happen over night. Well, not unless you elope like my cousin and her boyfriend. 😉 Let’s assume for a moment though, that is not you. So what makes a wedding fabulous? And why do we have so many chance to celebrate.

Celebrate? Of course. There are many different opportunities to celebrate. And they start pretty early into the entire celebration. But even after you say “I do,” then dance the night away you aren’t done celebrating. When you get home from your honeymoon you will still have a chance to celebrate with your immediate family during the gift opening ceremony. This isn’t so much my idea of fun but you get the idea. There are plenty of ways for you and your future significant other to celebrate. And having a fabulous wedding doesn’t mean having the most expensive, biggest, and most elaborate. It is about celebrating the union of two families and showing your love for one another.

5. Engagement Party

Who traditionally hosts the engagement party: The bride’s family

This is the first chance to celebrate and it has its reasons. For one the engagement party is these for the two families to get to know one another.

If you already have introduced families you can easily skip this part. But if you like to celebrate and you think this would be a good way for the two families to get to know one another then you may want to celebrate your engagement party.

There is however another reason that one may want to host an engagement party. And it is all about you. Engagement parties also act as a way for parents to show their approval and celebrate your impending union.

You would be surprised how much variation you can find in these celebrations. It can range from a few close family members from both sides or it can be an all out party with invitations, catering and dancing. Some might even refer to it as a test run for the wedding.

4. Bridal Showers

Who traditionally hosts the bridal shower: The maid of honor

If the engagement party has the potential to become a wedding reception lite the bridal shower is equally so. You see there is a long and illustrious tradition to the bridal shower that is equally patriarchal and uncool. So let’s skip all of that and stick to what makes it fabulous.

First there is no better chance for you to relax for your wedding than at your bridal shower. Most of us don’t require the small household items that were once an important aspect of a bridal shower. But they are what make the shower a unique experience so when you get a bundt cake form from a great aunt just smile and thank her, because it is the thought that counts.

There are a couple of things that you should take into account when you celebrate a bridal shower.

Couples Showers

Who traditionally hosts the bridal shower: The bride and groom

There is an emerging trend that really should be more in focus for the modern wedding. It takes the whole idea of a shower and turns it on its head. And if you read the subtitle I think you will know what I’m talking about. The couples shower really isn’t that new but plenty of people are still surprised when they learn about it. The reason is because of the whole tradition of a bridal shower and the reason they came into being. It is fascinating to see how many unique options there are for couples and bridal shower invitations when you look for fun options.

Unlike the bridal will be expected to cover the cost of the shower. Though if you choose this option the price can greatly be reduced so it isn’t necessarily that much of a hindrance. Still your great aunt might be too embarrassed giving you the bundt cake form in the company of men.

3. Bachelorette Party

Who traditionally hosts the bachelorette party: The maid of honor

Fifty years ago this would have been a grave taboo. While the boys were out playing the girls had to sit diligently at home and wait for them. Today young women are equally able to go out and have one last fling before the ring without being looked down upon. And while it is now an option for both the bride and groom less and less couples are coming to the idea to celebrate them.

Still the bachelorette party doesn’t need to be a decadent night of drinking and debauchery like many people imagine. It can be a fun and relaxed night out for you to let off some steam and have fun with your close girlfriends before you tie the knot. And if this sounds like it might suck, it doesn’t have to. While there are a couple of things to keep in mind the etiquette is pretty lenient here. Though I would suggest against inviting the mother of the bride. That may be in bad taste.

2. Rehearsal Dinner

Who traditionally hosts the rehearsal dinner: The groom’s family

What is a rehearsal dinner? Well just like the name suggests it is a dinner where you rehears the details of the wedding. Which by the way comes the day after so don’t even think of having a blitzer or you’ll be tired and possibly hungover when you say: “Sure. Can we go now?” And that won’t make the best wedding photo. But it just might be an interesting one.

Rehearsal dinners are celebrated by the bridal party and the parent’s of the bride. The groom’s family takes care of the bill here, and if you’ve read the the parties leading up to this one you’ll see it is the first one.

So what can you expect. Depending on the atmosphere for your wedding you will want to match that to some degree.

1. Wedding Reception

Who traditionally hosts the rehearsal dinner: The bride’s family (today the bride and groom with help from their families)

SO, you have walked down the aisle, you’ve said your lines and now it is time for the after party. The wedding reception is the point in your wedding where all of the stress has a chance to be worked off on the dance floor or simple mingling with your guests. This is it, the last big chance to celebrate and one that will be the crown jewel in your wedding parties. That means enjoy yourself.

And when it is time to say ado let your friends and family send you off with an incredible show of affection. There are a couple that I might suggest:

  • The sparkler send off. This is a cute and fun way for your friends and family to see you off. And just as long as you make sure they are far enough away, a safe on as well.
  • The “rice” send off. This is the traditional one that everybody knows and I quoted rice for a reason. When you choose to do a rice send off, please and I mean please use a water soluble and none rice substitute. The reason for this is because the will be eaten by birds and can cause their untimely death. The reason for this is becuase the rice will swell in their stomach and in some cases cause it to rupture.
  • The lantern send off. Its just like Disney’s Tangled scene.

Bohemian Weddings

Update: So here I am sitting here working on my first article about rustic/boho weddings and my browser crashes. Everything is gone! Gone! I did get a version out of the revision thingy but it was pretty much all gone. Now I don’t think that I can get it back the way it was, honestly I don’t really remember everything that I had typed but I’ll do my best.

burlap and lace love banner
Source: Maria Panayiotou (cc)

There are a lot of wedding styles to choose from, and just because we live in the Big Apple that doesn’t mean we can’t have a more natural wedding or even a rustic wedding. After all we have nature, and if you want to get married in Central Park you can.

So what makes a bohemian wedding special? What makes it different and what types of rustic settings can you incorporate into your celebration? First, their isn’t a “right way” or a “wrong way” when it comes to weddings. If you don’t want to have the traditional, “here comes the bride” wedding you don’t have to. Many couples are choosing to celebrate a freer more alternative wedding that gives everybody the freedom to express themselves and there is no better way to do that than with a bohemian wedding.

When you look at a bohemian wedding there aren’t a lot of options at first. The reason for this is because there isn’t any strict conformity that you submit to. In fact you are free to plan, dream and organize it to your heart’s content. If you don’t want to be “walked” down the aisle, or you would rather walk each other down the aisle you can. There are a lot of sites that I found that try to sell the rustic ideals for a bohemian wedding, and while certain aspects can be interchangeable, some decorations, invitations etc. there are more differences than similarities.

Here are a couple of gorgeous head bands that I found while looking for some amazing boho styles. The woman that makes them does a wonderful job capturing the look and feel of a bohemian veil without focusing on the fact that it is a veil. If anything you could consider them more crowns than anything. I adore the one with the butterfly.

You can also visit Maria’s Etsy shop here for more amazing designs.

What differences can you expect to between these common themes?

Rustic Weddings

  • Traditional wedding ideals are a core aspect of rustic weddings
  • Rustic weddings embrace the country lifestyle, including hunting and farming
  • Celebrations are often held in the open or in a barn style reception hall
  • Etiquette is an important factor in a rustic wedding, and the guests will be watching
  • Fun is the name of the game when it comes to a rustic wedding reception

Bohemian Weddings

  • Bohemian weddings tend to follow their own rules and break with tradition
  • The bohemian lifestyle is on that embraces alternatives, anyone, anywhere can lead a Bohemian life
  • There are no expectation for the venue, ad you are free to celebrate where and who you want
  • A Bohemian guest shouldn’t care about the old etiquette, nor do they expect you to follow it
  • And fun is the name of the game when it comes to a Bohemian wedding reception (See, there are some similarities.)

This is an excellent example of a venue ideal for a bohemian wedding. Note the relaxed natural atmosphere that this venue offers along with the fitting decorations making it an amazing and fun place to celebrate. The strings of lights used on the natural wood beams put the finishing touch on reception hall.

Source: Flickr
Source: Flickr via Albert Leung (cc)

I had a couple of other photos of venues but I lost them when the problem occurred. See above of a little description.

The “Right” Wedding Invitation

As you have already learned there aren’t any right or wrong ways to celebrate your Bohemian wedding. You don’t need to pick a big white dress, something simple and lacy will do wonder, nor do you need to pick the traditional wedding invitations you see around.

I grabbed a few invitations that are actually rustic themed but will work well for a the whole boho look. Notice that I picked cards that had the string of light look that you will see in the amazing venue above?


There are many ways for you to style your Bohemian wedding. And you can opt for the traditional black tie event or you can go all out. Nothing is a tabo, including that great pair of elf hear you picked up last week.

Source: Ryan Polei
Source: Ryan Polei (cc)

Style your wedding how you want and you can’t go wrong. By succumbing to social pressure and making it like everyone elses wedding you only limit your options. Bohemian weddings do everything to avoid this failure.

New Look

I wasn’t sure if I was going to be happy with the look of the site at first, and you guessed it I wasn’t. I ended up changing the theme so don’t be surprised if you aren’t familiar with the navigation and stuff. I thought that it would be better to do it now than at a later date when it might be more difficult to get it to work properly. You know, chase the clutter around.

So here it is.

I would love to hear what you think and if you have any problems or feedback just leave a comment. I can safely say that I have read all of your comments thus far. 😉