Wedding Supplies and Bridal Accessories
We often think of wedding supplies and bridal accessories as necessary expenditures. In fact, anything that is a "supply" sounds obligatory. But when it comes to weddings, even the supplies you purchase for the ceremony and reception should be beautiful, well thought out and even fun to shop for. With some creativity, some supplies can even serve two or three purposes and save you some money.
Planning a wedding should be a fun and memorable experience. Most of us think of dress shopping and menu tasting as being the highlights but if you plan ahead of time, even the sourcing of wedding supplies can be meaningful. The key is to spend time thinking about what is important to you and finding ways to infuse those things with your wedding details.
The Finer Details
Match your wedding supplies and accessories with the theme of the event. Wedding guest books and wedding napkins, even disposable cameras for the reception tables are minor details that need not be plain and boring. Let them stand out and add to the look of the event.
Guestbooks, like any stationery products are so abundant in styles that there is no reason to ever go with an uninteresting, run-of-the-mill design. Many guest books are hand bound and can be customized for your event. A guestbook is your record of the wonderful people who attended your wedding. It is meant to be kept forever and should be something beautiful to look at years down the line. For a formal, lavish reception, you can order custom guest books with matching pen stands and ring pillows all hand made and covered in fine fabrics and jewels. For those who are more playful and modern and don't like to do things the traditional way, the instant photo guest book is a fun addition to the day. Guests take Polaroid pictures of themselves, which fit right into the book, and write personal messages next to their photos.
One time use wedding cameras are another wedding supply that is often a last minute purchase. A terrific wedding idea, these cameras will be able to capture all of the moments you may miss on the big day. Instead of buying them from a drug store where they will inevitably carry a variety of cameras in bright, clashing colors, look around for disposable cameras designed for weddings. They can be personalized, or just have a pretty print or color that matches your reception.
You never see cocktail napkins and coasters on a wedding planning checklist. They are minor details that need little or no attention. But they too can be an important element, a conversation piece and even a treasured memento. Personalized napkins and wedding coasters are perfect if you are having a cocktail hour. They are fun details that allow you to display your personality or gratitude. Print a simple message of thanks, or an anecdote to entertain your guests while they sip on drinks and enjoy hors d'oeuvres.
Tell a story with a theme
Themes are great for telling a story about the bride and groom. Where they met, what their shared interests are and where they're headed can all be alluded to through the details of your wedding day. Themed wedding favors, place cards, personalized wedding labels and other wedding day accessories can each serve a second purpose of story telling.
Wedding favors can be the most personal wedding supplies of them all. They give the bride and groom an opportunity to be creative and to share a piece of their story with their guests. Themed wedding favors cover hobbies, like wine, golf and travel. A silver plated luggage tag may be the perfect favor for a couple who met on an airplane. And personalized golf balls are a favorite among avid golfers. Or for a winter wedding, send guests home with beautiful snowflake ornaments for them to hang on their Christmas trees year after year.
Place card holders can also tell stories and even symbolize culture. They come in all kinds of shapes, from an elephant, which is an animal that carries significance in the Indian culture to the traditional Chinese fortune cookie. A palm tree place card holder can hint at the couple's honeymoon to Hawaii and a mini cowboy hat their roots in Texas.
The day of the wedding often calls for additional accessories for your guests. On a sweltering day, you can count on guests fanning themselves with their programs trying to stay cool. Why not take that into consideration and order white paper fans or even personalized hand fans for guests to take as they please? They are inexpensive and will look much nicer in pictures and video.
Wedding supplies that double as favors or gifts
Many wedding accessories and wedding supplies may be given to guests as take home gifts after the reception. Wedding reception decorations such as floral arrangements, candles, vases and even the place card holders may be gifted or handed out as prizes.
Centerpieces can be expensive. And what a shame to use it one night and discard it. A great idea is for guests to take them home after the reception. But which lucky guests? Some friends of mine who were recently married decided to hand their floral centerpieces out to the guests who had proven that they deserved some special treatment. One was awarded to a couple who had been married 54 years, the longest at that reception. Another to a guest who had flown in from Japan just to attend the wedding. This was the couple's way of recognizing these outstanding guests with a small token.
Wedding supplies and bridal accessories such as candle holders and place card holders can also be taken home as keepsakes. When shopping for these supplies, keep in mind that they will be gifts, so you do not have to feel guilty about spending a little bit more to find the perfect ones.
Pieces that carry sentimental value
Cake knives are often passed down from family or borrowed from close friends. If you do not have a set of cake knives, consider investing in a nice set that you can then pass on to your family or friends who marry after you. Some couples have their names and wedding date engraved and then engrave the names and wedding dates of those who use it afterwards. The tradition can be a meaningful one that is carried on for generations.
Ring pillows are another bridal accessory that is often overlooked. Even though its time in the spotlight is a short walk down the aisle, the ring pillow is almost always featured in the wedding album. The significance of the pillow carrying the wedding bands is valued. And that is why some families have ring bearer pillows handed down from one generation to the next. A monogram may be embroidered on the pillow for the couple to keep as a keepsake.
When planning your wedding, nothing should be overlooked or thought of as unimportant. Your wedding day is as special as you make it. So whether it is wedding supplies or your gown, let your choices reflect your personality and always remember that great planning is in the details.