August 2012

August 26, 2012

We can all agree that there are some very strange wedding traditions. Why do Brides wear veils down the aisle? Why are rings placed on the “ring” finger? Why do we call it “Tying the Knot” when we refer to marriage?

Today we’re going to take a look at where these customs originated!

Wedding Bouquet with Couple Photography

Bouquet - Wedding bouquets were originally arranged with thyme and garlic, which were used to frighten evil spirits. The aroma was also used to conceal the stink of people who had not bathed.

Bouquet Toss - In ye old days, a Bride was considered extremely lucky on her wedding day. So lucky that her wedding guests would sometimes try to take pieces of her dress to bring home. Thankfully the dress-ripping customs evolved into a bride tossing her bouquet as a souvenir for her guests at the reception.

Bridal Shower - When weddings were once arranged by family members, it was said that a poor Dutchman was in love with a girl whose father refused her a dowry. His friends decided to help out and shower her with plentiful gifts to start a household! Another story occurs around the end of the 19th century; the Bride's friends placed small gifts inside a parasol and opened it over the Bride's head. Literally showered with gifts! Imagine doing that with todays modern gifts? Ouch.

Lace Veil on a Bride

Bridal Veil - Back then, newlyweds were rarely allowed to see the other. It was so rare that the families were afraid that the Groom might be appalled by his Bride's face and refuse the marriage. This began the custom of the Father of the Bride "giving the Bride away" to the Groom at a wedding ceremony and lifting her veil for the Groom to see the Bride for the first time.

Carrying The Bride Over The Threshold - Grooms used to steal Brides and were often forced to carry her kicking and screaming back home to the Groom's tribe. Not exactly a romantic, but this wedding kidnapping grew into a very romantic gesture to welcome the Bride to her new home.

Garter - Before Brides realized bouquets could save their dressed, Brides originally tossed their garters to their guests. Around the 14th century this particular custom changed when Brides grew tired of warding off drunken men who wished to remove her garter themselves. In England, the story evolved from a tradition called "flinging the stocking," where guests would follow the wedding couple to their bedroom (talk about privacy back then!) to steal their discarded stockings and proceed to fling them at the couple. Mega points to the lucky person who could hit the Bride or Groom on the head, marking them the next person to marry.

Wedding Engagement Rings

Ring Finger - Before the 5th century, the ring finger was actually the index finger. It was only later that the third finger was believed to contain a "vein of love" that leds directly to the heart.

Wedding Ring - The original ring was actually tied around the Bride's wrists and ankles to "keep her spirit from running away." Egyptians originated the phrase "without beginning, without end" to describe the wedding ring, but their bands made of hemp and constantly wore out. Romans first used iron, which began the use of gold. Italians were the first to set diamonds on their rings, who believed the stones were forged from the flames of love.

Tossing Rice – For good luck, guests showered newlyweds with nuts and grains to ensure a “bountiful harvest” and many children to work the land. When the harvests were poor, rice was used to be thrown instead. (Oh, and that saying that birds eat the rice and explode? Apparently it’s a myth that came from churches who were tired from cleaning up after weddings!)

Wedding Cake Close Up

Wedding Cake - Wedding cakes were once baked of wheat or barley, which were traditionally broken over the new Bride's head by her Groom as a symbol of fertility. Another tradition was that the newlyweds were made to kiss over the top of their cake; this then became a game where many small cakes were stacked to be as high as possible, the Bride and Groom had to kiss without knocking i over!

Tying The Knot - This saying supposedly originates in Roman empire when the Bride wore a girdle that was tied in knots; the Groom untied the knots prior to the consummation of their marriage. This custom grew to actually tying the couple's hands together as part of the ceremony. They were not allowed to remove it until they had consummated the marriage. Another origin speculation was that illiterate sailors and soldiers of would send a piece of rope to their sweethearts when they wanted to get married. If the rope returned with a knot, it meant yes. Other speculation is from Hindu weddings where a the bride and groom would each tie a necklace of flowers to consummate the marriage.

posted by Laura at 1:56PM
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August 20, 2012

Our good friends Beth and Eleanor were recently wed in Baltimore, Maryland and graciously allowed us to share some photos!

Their venue was at Chase Court. The Gothic former-Episcopal parish house was built in 1879 and is now privately owned. The place is known for its lovely leaded-glass windows, private Shade Garden, and Gothic ballroom.

Eleanor found her dress at a local venue in the DC area called Curvy Girls Bridal. However, Beth’s gown was custom made by her mother.

Beth and Eleanor had a small ceremony with approximately 60 guests. Their families gave them off to symbolize the merging of both themselves and the two families. The officiant was Beth’s best friend, Theresa.

They had a sand ceremony (the couple pours various colors of unity sand from separate containers into one special container, the unity vase, symbolizing their coming together as one), and traded wedding bands which were engraved with two lines cut out around the band to represent two separate lives running side by side forever.

Beth and Eleanor’s reception was not typical: choosing a casual cocktail hour allowed guests enjoy a table with family photos, RSVPs were mad libs that were filled out from the invitations, and a small bar. There were heavy appetizers and an abundance of delicious Italian food.

Instead of the usual stuffy seated service, guests were welcome to casual seat picking and grabbed custom name place cards made from scrabble tiles. Centerpieces were old books and lit lanterns to match the cozy reception hall. Beth and Eleanor’s colors were turquoise, magenta, and grey.

Wedding Headline Invitation
Creative Headpiece for BrideSmiling Bride
Applying Makeup to a BrideBride Smiles into a Mirror
Brides at their Ceremony
Brides conducting a Sand CeremonyBrides kissing for their ceremony
Close Up of a Bridal Ring
Creative Custom Name Place Card
Colorful RSVP Invites for Ceremony
Creative Scrabble Name Places
White Shoes and Teal Shoes for BridesAntique Table Decorations for Wedding
Beautiful Dinner Table for Wedding
Two Brides Eat CakeTwo Brides in Gothic Candlelight

Their wonderful photographer was Sergey Gogolev.

Congratulations and much happiness to the new married couple!

 

Want to have your beautiful wedding featured on our blog? Contact Laura today!

posted by Laura at 11:01PM
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August 7, 2012

Our super amazing graphic designer, Courtney, painted her nails last night. She was inspired by Birchbox’s crazy take on nail design, and decided to test out her own techniques. And they came out lovely!

This design is super simple and very elegant looking. If you’re searching for an alternative to the traditional French manicure for brides or bridesmaids, here’s something to try! In five easy steps.

First and foremost: supplies!

Courtney is using Sally Hansen's Glazed Sand, French Shimmer, and Clear Coat:

Nail Polish, Scotch Tape, Sally Hansen, Hard as Nails

Step One – Apply 3 coats of the Sally Hansen's glazed sand.


Sally Hansen Hard As Nails, Painted Nails, Nail Polish

Step Two – Let them dry for a really long time. Wait overnight if you can to ensure that the nail polish has completely dried. (If you’re too impatient like me, fill a bowl with ice and water before you begin to paint and then dunk your nails in when you finish; soak for a minute or two – however long you can stand! Then air dry, only pat them down if you’re sure they’re dry!)

Step Three – Take your piece of scotch tape and apply it to your nail at an angle. Paint over in 2-3 strokes in the French Shimmer.


Scotch Tape, Nails, Nail Polish, French Manicure, Sally Hansen

Step Four – Peel off the scotch tape before it dries.

 Diagonal manicure, french manicure, white, nail polish

 Step Five – Once you're done, add the top coat after the French Shimmer had dried.

Courtney's Nail Tutorial

Simple! And very pretty! A great way to put a literal twist on the French manicure.

Have fun, and be sure to watch out for more of our simple tutorials!

 

 

Before we go ... We have Nail Polishes to share!

Browsing around for some color? Or maybe looking for that perfect winter-white? If you're searching for the big day, here are some great nail polishes for brides who want to find a more modern and fun white polish:

China Glaze, White Nail Polish, French Manicures, OPI, Essie

1: China Glaze - White Kwik Silver

2: China Glaze - White Out

3: Essie - Marshmellow

4: L'Oreal Paris Pro Manicure - French Tip White

5: OPI Nail Lacquer - White Shatter

 

Or for your bridesmaids who need to match their dresses:

China Glaze, Pink, Essie, Crackle Nails, OPI polish

1: China Glaze - For Audrey

2: China Glaze - Dance Baby

3: Essie - Crewed Interest

4: L'Oreal Paris Pro Manicure - Sweet Nothings

5: OPI Nail Lacquer - Turquoise Shatter

There are plenty of colors to choose from! Make a date out of it and have a nail-polishing party. Pop in a movie, spread out some paper towels, and get your painting on.

posted by Laura at 11:52PM
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August 5, 2012

Time to take a look at exotic vacation locations. They may sound crazy and far-fetched at times, but who knows? Maybe you’ll find someplace new and exciting for your honeymoon (or if you’re like me, just a cool vacation getaway)!

So, are you an explorer? Adventurer? Perhaps a crazy rock lover? A best friend (she’s that last one, the crazy rock lover) of mine, Mollie, recently vacationed to Iceland; a strange place to go, considering that not many can picture more than…well…ice when the place comes to mind. But those who have gone to seek Iceland’s rocky beaches, dramatic cliffs, and gorgeous countryside know better.

Iceland is an island one-third larger than Ireland or Scotland. Eleven percent of its land is covered by glaciers, one of them called Vatnajökull (say that ten times fast), which is the largest in Europe! There is plenty of volcanic and geothermal activity.

Mollie had one fantastic trip, and took plenty of photos to prove it!

Here are a few:

Honeymoon Rocky Beaches in Iceland

Honeymoon Icelandic Beach Rock Formations

These incredible rocks appear at first to be man-made, but these pillar-like formations are actually created by molten basalt that cools and cracks in a particular way. Pretty awesome!

Honeymoon Destinations Icelandic Blue River

Honeymoon Huge Waterfall in Iceland

Honeymoon Gorge and Waterfalls in Iceland

It’s definitely a place of beauty. There are plenty of epic waterfalls and national parks to visit. You don’t need to be an expert hiker to appreciate the sights! The natural hot springs and pools are something to look into if you're searching for an epic spa getaway.

Wondering what else there is to do there? Head over here to take a peek.

Happy travels!

posted by Laura at 4:29PM
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featured vendors of the month

handmade wedding items

Etsy has a great selection of wedding related products. They have a whole category dedicated to it. If you’re looking for something unique, chances are you can find it there.Even Courtney sells her wedding invitations in Etsy.

amazing vendor directory

We really appreciate well thought out design at Tying the Knot. WeddingLovely is an amazing curation of top of the line wedding vendors all in one place. You will never be disappointed with their recommendations. Check it out ot find all your vendors!

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