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Gifts For Your Wedding Party & Guest Favors

I’m back with my last Wedding Wednesday post friends! This post is kind of a hodgepodge of everything I haven’t already touched on. What to buy for your wedding party, how to choose your favors, and little tips on how to buy for those you love. I’ve loved getting to share this series with you all and hope you’ve loved it, or found it helpful in some way! I’ll be sharing our wedding video at the end of this post so be sure to check it out after you read this post!

Let’s start out with how to buy gifts for your wedding party. Some brides and grooms choose to not buy gifts, and some do! It’s all about preference and what works for you. For us, we really wanted to find a way to think all our friends and family with something special. We definitely did not go overboard but we wanted to make sure they all felt appreciated on our big day.

For the bridesmaids and our flower girl we kept it traditional and simple. I was in charge of finding the gifts for my bridesmaids and the rest of the women in our wedding party. I found a shop on Etsy that custom made robes in different flower patterns to accomadate our wedding colors. I added a few small gifts such as coffee cups, nail polishes, personalized cards, and a small gift card for each girl. The robe was the main part of the gift and I added small things to go with it! I would say if you’re ordering from the place I ordere to size down in the robes. They do come with ties, however I would say they run about a size bigger than the label size. For our flower girl I did similar things, however I obviously wanted her gifts to be age appropriate and things she could use after the wedding. I got her an adorable silk robe with lace trim, a flower crown she could wear and play in after the wedding, some fun head bands, and a few games! She loved her gifts because she’s a total girly girl. So having a fake flower crown to play dress up in after our wedding was so fun for her! I’ll link all the exact gifts at the bottom of this post in case you need some specific ideas! Below are a few photos.

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Moving on to the men! For the groomsmen we kept it simple and easy. We knew we wanted a fun photo with everyone wearing fun and goofy socks, so I bought all the guys a different pair of dress socks all in the same color hue. We added that, small bottles of Fire Ball, their bow ties, suspenders, and a gift card to Starbucks to their gifts. Like I said, we kept it easy. We didn’t want to over do it but we definitely wanted to get them something. They all loved the socks as well as the mini Fire Ball’s. We only served beer and wine at our wedding so it was something fun for them to all have together while getting ready in the Groom’s suite through out the day. For our ring bearers I went a little overboard and bought them each 5 gifts. I just kept finding things I knew they would love. One of them is 3 and the other is 6, so I just picked things that they both enjoyed. From personalized soccer signs and water bottles to Mr. Potato Head super heroes, they had it all. I would say when buying gifts for people in your wedding party to make it something they enjoy or will use. Don’t just buy something to buy it, put a little thought into it and it will go a long way.

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Okay let’s talk about buying a wedding day gift for your significant other. This one was really tough for us, and we both spent a lot of time trying to figure out what to get each other. We went back and forth with how much we wanted to spend, what type of gift it should be, etc. I have to say that after a lot of time trying to figure out what to get each other, we both really ended up loving our gifts. Again, I’ll go back to saying this, pick something that your significant other will use, or something that they will want. Picking gifts really isn’t all that hard when we stop to think about things that people enjoy. Sometimes the guys need a little extra nudge and we have to give them exact ideas to work with, and that’s okay. But gift buying for your special day can be so fun! Cameron ended up surprising me with a Tory Burch Tote and I was so surprised and love it to this day! It’s one of my favorite bags, and is the best color. It’s a light pale pink and was such a perfect gift for our wedding day. I got him an Arctic Portable cooler because I was so tired of seeing him carry a broken UT one to the pool every weekend, and I knew he would love having a new one. It was a huge hit and he loves it. I also surprised him with a couple of small things like cologne, some fun pampering items for men, and of course a hand written note! We both wrote each other notes for the day of and I highly suggest doing that. It’s such a special thing to do on your wedding day. Side note- don’t read it after you’ve put your makeup on. Cameron and I both love buying gifts for each other and the people we love, so it was definitely fun for us to do this on the biggest day of our lives. I’ll share some photos below! Tips for buying that special gift for your significant other- 1. don’t over think it. You know what each other likes and dislikes, just make it something special. 2. Start looking and brainstorming with plenty of time in advance. A lot of the time things have to be ordered and you don’t want to be stuck waiting for the gift to come on your wedding day. I ordered Cameron’s cooler 3 months prior to our wedding and I’m so glad I did because it took 2 months to arrive due to backorder, which I wasn’t told when I purchased. So always plan ahead! 3. Don’t stress! Chances are your significant other is going to love whatever you choose because it will be special to them. Put your heart into it and they will see that, and at the end of the day that’s all that matters.

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Time to talk about gifts (or favors) for all your wedding guests. This can be a bit overwhelming and can really start to add up. I struggled to find something unique and affordable for a long time. I went back and forth a ton of times before I decided to stop worrying so much about it. I wanted to do something that was fun, easy, and personalized to our wedding day. So we decided two favors and it was really affordable and SO fun for our guests. Our first favor was a popcorn bar. Cameron and I went and tried about 20 different flavors, narrowed it down to three, and then placed a huge order for our wedding day. We chose a sweet, a salty, and a savory flavor and our guests loved it. There are so many ways you can personalize a popcorn bar. From the way you display it, toppings, signage, etc. We decided to keep it pretty classic and just use copper baskets and gorgeous marbled signs displaying the flavors. The kids at our wedding loved this station, and everyone raved about how fun it was! I bought popcorn bags and had them sitting on the table as well. I was so glad we did this because it allowed our guests to choose what they wanted! Some people don’t eat cake, so for us the popcorn was like an extra dessert table in a way! It was also a great snack after all the dancing everyone did! We added personalized coozies at the bar with our wedding date, our names, and a personalized color. I displayed them at the bar for everyone to see, and had them in a wooden crate for guests to take at the bar. This was so low key, easy to display, yet still personalized to our day. Find what works for you and run with it. Favors don’t always have to be a gift or something extravagant. Have fun with whatever you choose! Here are some photos of how we set up our favors for our guests!

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Alright friends, we made it to the end. If you’ve read all my Wedding Wednesday posts, I just want to thank you for following along. Like I mentioned above, it’s so fun to share our wedding with you all and I hope you’ve enjoyed this mini series. I’m excited to figure out what my next series will be about, and share that with you as well! I’ve linked everything that is still available for purchase at the bottom of my post, as well as the link for our wedding video! Excuse my no makeup face in some of the shots, but hey that’s real life right? I hope you all have a fantastic Wednesday!

All photography by Leah Golter Photography
Our Wedding Video can be found Here

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It’s Wedding Planning Wednesday

Okay friends, so last week I shared about a new mini series I’m starting on the blog! For the next couple of weeks, on Wednesday, I will be sharing different aspects of our wedding. From how I planned it, to staying on budget, how I coordinated the style, and much more. Planning a wedding is a lot of work, but I can honestly say that as I’ve been planning these posts and looking back at photos, it really was worth it. I love having all of these memories to look back on, because it really does take you back to that day! At the end of my mini series I’ll be sharing our wedding video on the blog as well, so make sure to follow along so you can see that at the end. I’m going to start the first week off with talking about our decor and how I kept it simple yet extravagant.

Even before Cameron and I got engaged I knew I wanted a ton of flowers. To me, flowers are what make your space stand out. You can have the most beautiful vases and candle holders in the world but if you don’t have a good florist you may as well forget about the rest. Your flowers are what set the tone and the mood for your whole ceremony and reception. For us, deep and moody Fall colors were what we wanted. In our minds we pictured a beautiful clear day, with deep red flowers and a ton of greenery. So, when I began planning everything I based all of my decor choices around this. I would say my biggest tip when starting to plan a wedding would be this- figure out your colors and the feel you want your wedding to have. Once you get those down it will make it much easier to find decor that goes with that theme. I have to say, we were so blessed on our wedding day! Not only did we have a beautiful blue sky, but it was also a bit chilly, and that is literally exactly what we had hoped for.

Okay moving on to the decor. I really kept things somewhat simple. Wedding’s can really start to add up once you start to add all the little details. So with that being said, we did a lot of the decor on our own. We bought old furniture and redid it for a lounge, we used a lot of stuff we had at home. Picture frames, vases, etc. If it wasn’t from home I bought it in bulk from places like the Dollar Tree. I really wanted our reception to be full of candlelight. However, candles add up! I ended up buying all of my glass taper candlesticks from the Dollar Tree online and it was amazing. They were beautiful and so classy. When it came to vases I was a master at finding those. I had to get creative! I joined all of the local wedding Facebook groups in our area, was always searching on Craigslist, and honestly found them all for a 1/4 of the price. Now let me say, if you’re renting everything then this probably isn’t applicable to you. For us though, we wanted to be able to sell everything back when we were done, and we did! All of the decor we purchased was put up for sale after the wedding and it is FINALLY all gone. For us that was a great way to do things, but it varies for everyone!

Our ceremony decor was very simple and based off of two things. From the time we got engaged I had my mind set on a mantel as our altar. I know, weird! I literally searched and searched until I found a man who did custom woodwork. He made the most beautiful mantel for us, and it was literally exactly what I had envisioned. We got married under big, beautiful, oak trees with hanging lanterns. So the mantel went perfectly with that feel. I kept it simple and did beautiful flowers and garlands on the mantel, with some wooden stumps and beautiful plants. Like I said, I was all about the flowers for my wedding. You have to find what your main focus is, and plan around that. Maybe it’s the flowers, maybe it’s the color of the venue, whatever it is make sure you know what you’re going for. We did simple wooden chairs and lined the aisle with wooden signs with a Bible verse written on each sign. It was very simple yet still romantic and beautiful. One thing I will say is this- for us, Pinterest and wedding websites were overwhelming. Instead of scrolling and scrolling for hours, I would get a few ideas, and then plan around those. Using my own creativity to build on or altar what I had seen on Pinterest. If you get to deep into looking at other peoples weddings, you will begin to try and copy it exactly, even if it’s unknowingly. So, use it as a resource to get your creativity going, and then switch it up by making it more like you and your partner. That tip really helped me throughout the process.

dallas blogger bridals wedding hashtag decor staircase garlands for wedding When planning our reception I knew I wanted to highlight the enormous white Chandeliers and the big and beautiful white barn. Our reception was an indoor/outdoor reception, and I really wanted people to feel as if they could still be outside and enjoy the party. I added lawn games from a rental company, and a beautiful lounge outside with some cocktail tables! Our venue had gorgeous white lights hanging from the trees in the courtyard so it helped keep the romantic feeling outside as well. I did mostly round tables and then a long wooden table for the wedding party. I’m so glad we did this, I loved how we could see all of our guests and our backs were not turned on anyone. For centerpieces I knew I wanted each table to be unique and different. Let me preface this by saying, my florist was amazing. I went to school with her and had known her for a few years, and she seriously is the best. I would hire her again in a heart beat. She stuck with my theme of flowing greenery and deep reds and pinks. Our guests complemented our flowers profusely. I have to say, some of the flowers she used were so different and beautiful they looked like they came from an island! I loved how they were not flowers you see all the time, they were special and definitely unique to our big day, which is exactly what we wanted. I gave her free reign on our center pieces and just told her I wanted some flowing on the tables, some in tall vases, etc. I loved how each table was different but they all still went together. One tip for picking a florist- find someone who you know will understand your vision. Maybe you’re like me and don’t necessarily want everything the same, find someone who’s work looks like what you want. Or maybe you want everything uniformed and exact, find someone who does that. I honestly spent the most time finding a florist, and a dress. I really wanted to get it right! Also, don’t be afraid to ask questions. If your florist doesn’t have a website with his or her work, ask to see photos. Seeing past wedding’s or events from your florist will really give you an idea of what types of design they are comfortable with. ┬áThis goes back to choosing your overall feel and colors, everything revolves around that. Decide your theme! Romantic, shabby chic, classic, elegant- whatever it is, stick with it throughout all your planning, and your decor will all flow together seamlessly. We did not have a wedding planner, so this was all up to me, but I’m a planner by nature so I loved this (most of the time.)

white sparrow wedding venue dallas rustic wedding decor head table wedding decor I added small personalized details that were customized for us. Such as cocktail napkins and coozies at the bar. I also placed many personal photos from our Engagement session around the venue, I loved this because it gave the decor a bit of a sentimental feeling. We used large glass mirrors from home to write our dinner menu on, as well as a thank you note to all of our guests, and I loved how it turned out. A lot of people use chalk boards now or wood, however we really loved how classy the glass mirrors looked with our all white venue! Another tip for anyone planning a wedding or party, sign up for coupon emails from all the places you’re planning on purchasing from. Hobby Lobby, Michael’s, Home Goods! These are all great places to find the small things you need for your big day, and having coupons sent to you is just an added bonus. This helped me plan when I was going to purchase certain things based on when different items were on sale!

wedding coozie favors candle decor for rustic wedding guest book and cards sign large white lanterns for weddings grooms cake hunting themed rustic fall wedding cake I do marquis letters aisle runner signs for wedding watters wedding dresses As far as the rest of our decor goes, it was all stuff that we found at thrift stores or online garage sales. I’m all about finding a good deal, so our wedding was no exception. I added an adorable home made photo booth that was perfect for our venue. I wanted people to have other things to do, and this was a big hit! The giant chess and connect four were also so fun! If you’re planning on having kids at your wedding, I highly recommend getting lawn games. Don’t settle on the first company you find either, spend time researching different companies. Some companies will work out deals with you and are much easier to work with than others! We also had custom corn hole boards made from Etsy and used monogrammed bean bags. Our guests really enjoyed this, as well as our wedding party throughout the day. I will share some more of our photos below so you can see how our decor turned out. If you are getting married and live in the Dallas area and want any of our vendor info, please let me know! If not, have fun looking at the beautiful photos! All of our photos were done by Leah Golter Photography.

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6 Things I’ve Learned In 6 Months of Marriage

I’m so excited to share this post with you guys! You may or may not know that I recently got married to a wonderful, handsome, and caring guy! He’s so supportive and really is amazing, I couldn’t have asked for a better partner in crime. Now, with that being said, in my first blog post a month or so ago, I said I wanted to keep things real and transparent. Life isn’t always cute outfits, stylish shoes, and perfect days. Don’t get me wrong, I have SO many days like that, but there are definitely days when things are tough, tough, tough. So, because we’re all human, and I know I’m not the only one who has these days, I wanted to share a little bit about what I’ve learned and how we’ve grown in the past six months. I’m also going to be starting a short series of posts about our wedding and how I planned it. It was such a special day and I wish I could relive it again, so I thought I would share all my tips and tricks. Even if you’re not planning a wedding, still check it out, because I’ll be sharing all our photos- from decor, bridesmaids style, gifts, and much more! Now on to the good stuff, six things I’ve learned that I hope will benefit you in some small way. This isn’t just a post for newly-weds or married couples. These are things I think all relationships go through or things all relationships need to do in order to succeed and prosper. Here we go!

1. Compromise is KEY. I recently learned this, or relearned this I should say. I have to brag on my parents a moment and say how great they were in raising us and teaching us basic things like compromise. For the most part, as kids we’re taught to see other’s perspectives, take turns, and understand other’s feelings. This is literally marriage. If I would have known this as a kid, I might have paid more attention. So, at the moment I’m currently working on all of the above. Compromise is hard, it means sacrificing what you want, and sometimes not getting what you want. As newlyweds we have really had to work hard on this. Sometimes it’s as small as I want Mexican food and Cameron wants a burger, and sometimes it’s a lot bigger than that, and can turn into a huge argument. I have to say, Cameron is really way better at compromising than I am. We both have our strengths and weaknesses, like every one does. We’ve learned that we have to work as a team, compromising takes team work. We’ve come to realize that putting each other’s needs before our own makes us want to compromise for the other. When Cameron puts my needs first, it creates a feeling that makes me want to do the same for him. Which is a win-win for both of us. Marriage is all about giving and taking, just like any relationship. It could be with your boss, your sibling, parent, or friend. If we can’t be selfless and give to others, we won’t receive the same respect.

2. Take time to just be with each other. Life gets SO busy. We are no strangers to this. Seriously, by the time you workout, get to work, have dinner, take care of the dogs or kids, it’s time for bed! The day’s fly by, so I get it. It can be extremely difficult to make time for each other. This is something we’re really trying to get better at. It’s easy to get take out and come home and watch TV on the weekends, but make a point to get dressed up and do something you may not have done together. I’m all about sticking to a routine and having a schedule, but mix it up and do something spontaneous. It’s hard sometimes to get out of your comfort zone and go do something you might not like, but try doing something your spouse or significant other enjoys. Seeing someone happy and enjoying what they are doing creates a sense of euphoria, and when someone you love is happy it will make you want to be happy as well. Switch it up and do something romantic, do something silly, do something adventurous. There are so many fun opportunities, so take advantage of them!

3. PUT THE ELECTRONICS DOWN. I am so guilty of this one, and I feel like we all are now a days. This one can definitely be applied to any relationship. Literally everywhere we go, people are sitting down to have meals and their kids are on iPads or they are on the phone, technology is everywhere. Don’t get me wrong! I love my technology as much as the next, but there comes a time when we have to be present. Our Instagram notifications can wait, that voicemail is not going anywhere, and your texts will be fine for a couple of hours. Cameron and I have found ourselves having conversations and both staring at our phones, and we just have to stop and say, “Okay, no more!” This is a hard one for both of us because with blogging and Instagram, and Cameron’s Kicking Business plus his full time office job, we both could spend hours on hours on our phones or computers, but at the end of the day a conversation with someone you love is so much better for you than how many likes we’re getting, or texting someone back. I think our society has lost it’s way when it comes to communicating face to face, and it’s really sad. Like I said, I’m guilty of this at times too. But make it a point to put the phone away at a certain time, and spend time TALKING. I promise, once you get in the habit of setting technology aside, you’ll realize how much more enriching life is!

4. Learn to surprise each other! This one is SO fun and obviously us girls love a good surprise. But ladies, guys like this too! Bring home his favorite coffee or sonic drink, leave him an encouraging note! Whatever it is that makes your significant other smile a little, DO IT. I swear these little things go such a long way. When Cameron leaves me notes in my lunch box, or sends me an encouraging text in the middle of the day, it can change the whole direction of my mood/day. I’m a firm believer in little thoughtful actions going a long way. With that being said, it doesn’t have to be small. If you’re an awesome planner and want to plan an amazing outing, go for it. Again, I really have to say, Cameron is amazing at this. He’s constantly doing things to surprise me, and I’m about to brag for just one second so bare with me. At Christmas time last year he surprised me with a carriage ride with Clydesdale Horses and I about died! I mean how amazing is that? It was SO fun and the best date. It’s a memory we have forever now and I’m so grateful for that. Whatever it is you choose to do, put your heart into it and make it something that is about your significant other. Show them you care about what they like, and you will get the same in return.

5. Learn how to agree to disagree. In my opinion this one is slightly different then being able to compromise. Learning how to agree to disagree is a bit more difficult. This means that you are accepting of your partners’ differences and aren’t asking them to change how they feel. We are all so uniquely different, and we shouldn’t have to change who we are as an individual just because we get married or are in committed relationships. Sometimes it is really not worth the argument, if you’ve both stated your point and are still having conflicting opinions, that’s okay sometimes! Pick and choose what is important and what is not, let the little things go and put effort into working on the substantial ones.

6. Last, but certainly not least, listen! This might be the biggest bit of advice I could give to any type of relationship. Let me preface that by saying, I am by no means a relationship guru. I am constantly messing up, and learning as I go. Marriage is hard, it is not easy, and it is work. But at the end of the day it is worth it. I think if you can genuinely listen to your partner, and his or her needs, you can get through anything. Listening is the base of any meaningful conversation, and if we can’t listen we will not be able to solve the issue. Don’t just brush it under the rug, work it out, and get to the bottom of it. Sometimes that is so much work and we just don’t feel like it, I get it, but you have to do the work! Listen to the small things, the good things, all the things. If you’re significant other is happy LISTEN, if they are mad LISTEN, if they are struggling LISTEN. When we as humans feel listened to we feel as if we are important to someone, and what better feeling is there than knowing you matter to someone!? I know it’s hard to always be attentive, and sometimes listening wholeheartedly isn’t always doable. However, make the conscious choice to try, if you can’t listen at that moment, set aside a time to sit down and discuss whatever it is your partner wants you to listen to. If you can do this, you can do anything!

Okay friends, I really hope you could relate to at least a small portion of this post. I know not everyone has the same issues, and no one relationship is the same. At the end of the day though we are all going to struggle, and there is something great about knowing you’re not the only one. I really enjoyed writing this and hope you enjoyed reading it. I’ll be sharing some of our wedding photos at the bottom of this post, so be sure to take a look. Also, don’t forget my Wedding Wednesday posts will start next week, so be sure to check the blog next Wednesday. I appreciate every single one of you who have visited my blog, sent an email of encouragement, or liked my posts. You don’t know how much it means to me, so thank you all from the bottom of my heart.

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