Thursday, February 25, 2010

Vendors last chance to register!

Vendors, don't miss the chance to register! Vendor registration ends Wednesday by close of business. For booth information contact Pam DuVal at 252.671.6939 or e-mail

Help your flower girl be her best on your big day

ARA) - Children can add so much to a wedding day - from the ring bearer toddling down the aisle carrying a pillow with precious cargo, to the flower girl who sweetly perfumes your path to the altar by dropping tender petals in her wake. As special as you feel on your wedding day, you'll want even your littlest helpers to share in the feeling and know that you appreciate them.

To ensure that your young attendants are happy campers on the big day, you'll want to help them look their best and make them feel that they have an important role. Here are some helpful hints that you can put in practice, whether the child is your own or the child of a loved one. Follow these tips, and you'll help ensure the youngest members of your wedding party have a positive experience that they - and you - will remember for a lifetime.
Make her feel special
Chances are you're not the only female in your wedding party who's doing something special, exciting - and intimidating - for the first time. Your flower girl or young bridesmaid is also experiencing a once-in-a-lifetime, princess-like moment, and may feel understandably nervous at the prospect of having all eyes on her as she precedes you down the aisle. Making her feel special, as if she is a little princess, will help boost her self-confidence.
Brides spend lots of time and energy picking out dresses for their flower girls and junior bridesmaids, taking into account not only how the dress will fit in with the look of the wedding, but how it will complement the wearer. Accessories are just as important, and the youngest members of the wedding party should have some small items to highlight their attire, just as every bride should.
Not only will jewelry enhance the look, it will be a keepsake of the day - look for pieces that are high quality (so that they will last a lifetime), but reflective of the wearer's age. Disney Precious Collections offers fine children's jewelry for girls that will be perfect for any wedding. The pieces are understated and elegant, but also feature the youthful spirit of beloved Disney characters - they make ideal flower girl gifts.
Keep her involved
Children love being involved in life's big moments and decisions as much as possible. Keep your flower girl or young bridesmaid part of the decision-making process as much as possible leading up to your wedding day.
In addition to involving them in fun things like wedding showers, putting stamps on invitations and hair and make-up trials, give your young attendants some options that they can choose from. Will she wear her hair up or down? With flowers, ribbons or feathers?
You can also give her options about what kind of flower girl jewelry she might wear. For a special surprise, you could show her examples of earrings, necklaces and bracelets from Disney Precious Collections well ahead of time, and then surprise her on the day of the wedding with the one she liked best. To look through the jewelry options that can become treasured wedding memories for your junior bridesmaids and flower girls, visit
Make your day child-friendly
Though you'll feel like your wedding day is flying by, it can be a long day for the littlest members of your wedding party. Even the best-mannered kids get tired and out of sorts after hours of activity, so it's good to take that into consideration. You'll be in a whirlwind of excitement, so make sure that you have a trusted attendant who can help accommodate children's needs.
Think about scheduling your photos so that pictures with children will be taken first and quickly. They'll be energetic and happy, and if you can have the photos taken soon after hair and make-up are done, everyone will look picture-perfect.
Plan to have something special for youngsters - both wedding party members and young guests - at the reception. Consider offering kid-friendly menu items, or have separate entertainment like balloon animals, a toy box or a coloring station with crayons and a paper easel to keep kids happy and occupied while adults enjoy the grown-up activities at the reception.
Keeping the youngest members of your wedding party happy on your wedding day will help ensure the day is special, memorable and enjoyable for everyone.
Courtesy of ARAcontent

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Engaged? How to experience all the excitement of this special time

(ARA) - Congratulations - you're engaged! This is a special time, leading up to the big day that will change your lives forever. Don't wait for the nuptials to arrive, however, before you bask in the bliss. Savor every minute of your engagement experience.

"Brides may find that making wedding plans can distract them from the simple joy of being engaged," says Raymond Miller, a wedding planning expert with the Web site My Wedding Reception "But some advanced planning and creative ideas can help them fully enjoy their engagement while still preparing for the wedding day of their dreams."
Miller offers brides-to-be some simple advice for getting the most enjoyment out of being engaged:
Announcing your big news
News of your engagement is one of the most exciting pieces of information you'll ever share with family and friends. Get creative and fun with your engagement announcement, but don't overlook practicality. You want to announce your engagement and wedding date in a way that will be quick and easy for you - and memorable to those receiving the message. Save the date magnets can be a great way to get the word out and put your wedding date front-of-mind for those who are invited.
Traditional engagement announcements in local newspapers limit your creativity and the reach of your news. Save the date wedding magnets can relay information about your wedding plans across the country to distant loved ones. And because we all have a tendency to hold on to magnets (How many pizza delivery magnets do you have on your refrigerator?) in conspicuous places in our homes, your guests-to-be will see a constant reminder of your special day.
My Wedding Reception can help you create customized wedding save the date magnets that reflect your individuality, convey the theme of your wedding and keep your date on the minds of friends and family.
Sharing the celebration
Sure, your maid of honor and other girlfriends will probably throw you a bridal shower. But you don't have to wait to begin celebrating the good news. You and your fiancé can involve loved ones in the celebrating - and do it at a time you choose - by hosting your own engagement party.
Staging your own party allows you to share the excitement sooner. Plus, you can use the occasion as an opportunity to "test drive" wedding day seating arrangements or check out a restaurant you're considering for the rehearsal dinner. You can also experiment with linens and décor; using colors you're considering for your wedding will give you an idea of what these decorator items will look like in an elegant setting. Or, use the engagement party as way to preview your wedding theme - for example, host the party at a seaside location for a beach-themed wedding.
And don't forget to celebrate as a couple, as well. If planning starts to feel too stressful, consider taking a pre-honeymoon trip that will help you decompress and reconnect as a couple. Time away together will help remind you what all your wedding planning is really about - your love for each other. The break could be as simple as a weekly date night or as elaborate as a weekend getaway.
Be resourceful
The Internet has made wedding planning easier than ever. Use online resources, like sites that allow you to experiment with seating charts for receptions, compare color schemes and create sample menus. My Wedding Reception can help you pick and plan personalized wedding favors, accessories and gifts for your wedding party. The site also provides tips on different kinds of napkins and how to choose them, and other useful planning hints. Visit to learn more.
"Planning a wedding should be part of the enjoyable experience of being engaged," Miller says. "With creativity and some expert help, it's possible to make the months of your engagement as memorable and special as the wedding day itself."
Courtesy of ARAcontent

Monday, February 22, 2010

More brides choosing heirloom china

(ARA) - Ever since she was a little girl, Amanda Davis dreamed of one day having her grandmother's cherished wedding china as her very own.

"As a child, I always loved listening to stories about past family gatherings as Mamo took each piece of her china out of the hutch so carefully," says Davis. "I can remember thinking about how this same china had been used for numerous family gatherings and feeling a sense of connection to my grandfather, who died before I was born, through the china that I knew he had used with my grandmother on similar family occasions."

Davis had no idea her grandmother, Bettie Guillion, shared a similar dream. Guillion knew her granddaughter loved her china, and planned to pass along her precious heirlooms when Davis grew up and set her own big date. But there was one problem -- missing pieces. Guillion received the set for her own wedding in the early 1940s and while she had managed to keep most of her beloved collection through the decades, somewhere along the way, the cups and saucers disappeared. Guillion's daughter, Linda Bohannon, thought it would be impossible to replace them.

"My mother picked her china out of the Sears and Roebuck catalog more than 60 years ago, so we knew there was just no way we'd ever find it," says Bohannon. "The only thing she could remember about her china was that it was made by Homer Laughlin. That didn't seem like much to go on, so at that point I just hoped we could find some nice cream colored pieces Amanda could use with the set."

Bohannon heard about Replacements, Ltd., known as the world's largest supplier of old and new china, crystal, silver and collectibles. When she visited the company's Web site, Bohannon found a list of china made by Homer Laughlin and noticed photographs of most patterns. She started clicking away and was almost speechless when she came across an image that looked very familiar.

"I called my mother up and asked her, does your china have little pink and yellow roses on it, and could the pattern name be 'Countess'?" Bohannon remembers. "That was it; that was her china! I was completely flabbergasted. It never entered my mind that we would be able to find the exact pattern. My mother was absolutely thrilled!"

Davis isn't alone in creating wedding registries for family treasures. Many brides are choosing to complete china, crystal and flatware sets lovingly handed down from mother to daughter to granddaughter. Unfortunately, if the patterns are especially old there is a good chance that the manufacturer no longer produces the pieces, making it nearly impossible to track down at most department stores.

"We're one of the few places brides inheriting heirloom patterns can turn to for help because of our huge, diverse inventory of discontinued patterns, some more than 100 years old," says Traci Hart, Replacements' director of customer service. "Nearly 80 percent of our bridal registry sales are generated from discontinued and heirloom patterns. What's more, we've put together a group of associates to specifically handle all registry requests. Because these folks are really familiar with our bridal customers, we can offer more personalized attention. It's almost like having your own personal shopper."

Brides like Davis, who don't know their pattern name, are in luck. The company also offers a free pattern identification service. Replacements' research team receives nearly 3,000 requests weekly from people who don't know the name or manufacturer of their patterns.

"I cannot tell you how much it meant to me to receive this piece of family history," Davis says. "I can already picture myself as a mother and grandmother pulling this same china out of my own hutch as I tell stories of my grandmother. I hope that in the future they will feel the same sense of family history and pride and that I will one day be able to pass it on to my own granddaughter. To know that it will be used in future generations of my family in the same way it was used in past generations is an amazing gift." You can learn more about Replacements' bridal registry and free pattern identification service at Courtesy of ARAcontent

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


Be sure to pre-register! All pre-registered brides get a free gift!!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Expert tips to ensure your beauty efforts outlast the busiest days

(ARA) - What woman doesn't dream of looking as fresh at the end of the day as she did when she looked in the mirror that morning, with perfect hair and makeup? Invariably, however, by the end of the day, hair goes flat, mascara smudges and manicures chip.

As a result, women hunt for tips to maintain a beautiful look that will outlast a full day and still look great into the evening. Ying Chu, beauty and health director for "Marie Claire" magazine, sees this dilemma first-hand. "Women are busier than ever these days juggling multiple commitments," she says, "and as a result it has become a priority to seek out beauty buys from trusted brands that are not only long-lasting, but budget friendly."

Follow her beauty tips to achieve a fresh look that will outlast even the busiest schedule:

* Before applying your makeup, use a mattifying primer first. Because it absorbs oil throughout the day, it prevents oil from breaking down your makeup, making it last longer.

* To help face and eye makeup last throughout the day, apply a cream formula first, then layer on a powder over top to set it, like CoverGirl TruBlend MicroMinerals Finishing Veil.

* Fresh breath and a sparkling smile are always a must to top off your look. New Scope Outlast mouthwash and Crest Extra White Plus Scope Outlast toothpaste feature Outlast technology that delivers a cool, minty sensation for a fresh breath feeling that lasts up to five times longer than brushing alone with ordinary toothpaste.

* Long, full eyelashes can enhance any look. To ensure your lashes remain lengthy and curled, start by layering a waterproof sealant, like Clarins Double Fix mascara, or any waterproof mascara over your regular mascara. It will make your mascara last without being impossible to remove.

* Keep your nails in tip-top shape and extend the life of a manicure or pedicure by adding a clear topcoat to your nails every other day like Essie Good To Go! Topcoat. This will help avoid chipping as you go about your busy schedule.

* Fragrance is a way for a woman to express herself. To make sure your signature scent lasts, choose fragrances that have high concentrations, such as a parfum, over an eau de toilette. Fragrance will last longer on well-moisturized skin, so layer a complementary body cream or oil on your skin before spraying.

With these long-lasting insider beauty tips, you will be sure to outlast any whirlwind of events and still look fresh. Courtesy of ARAcontent