friday favorites – best events of the week

Welcome to week four of Friday Favorites! Believe it or not, there’s no alternative wedding cake this week….

#5 – Custom Yankee Candles

customized Yankee Candle wedding and event favors

Candles are a pretty popular wedding and event favor, but you can step it up a notch by personalizing it, either by a custom label or a custom photo label! You can put your face on a candle! If that appeals to you, there is more information here. For most products there is a three piece minimum to order. This could be fun for baby showers, bridal showers, bridesmaid gifts, or anything really. What a fun idea!

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friday favorites – best event ideas of the week

Last week I debuted the new Friday feature, basically as a way to show off some of my favorite ideas that don’t warrant their own individual blog posts. It’s essentially a grab bag of event planning fun!

#5 – Canoe as beer cooler

canoe as beer cooler

I think this is such a fun idea! This was from a backyard wedding, but you can really do it for any event. The canoe is ironic, right (ice melting becomes water, which you usually don’t want inside your boat), but you can really use any type of item. The canoe is waterproof, so that’s a bonus, but you can also use other outdoorsy items as well.  Photo by Lauren Fair Photography via Bridal Musings.

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mike & bethany’s cape cod beach wedding

mike & bethany's cape cod beach wedding | amanda jayne events blog

Mike and Bethany were married over Memorial Day weekend in Cape Cod, Massachusetts, where the bride grew up. While the wedding itself wasn’t on the beach, the venue was a short drive from the sun and sand, and the couple took advantage of the location for photos and also incorporated lots of beach details into the décor – which proves that you can have a beach wedding without subjecting your guests to sand in their shoes! Growing up next to the ocean, Bethany wanted to include as many reminders of the sea in their wedding as possible. They chose the perfect location – both the ceremony and the reception were held at the Captain Linnell House, a mansion dating back to 1840, which was built by Captain Ebeneezer Linnell for his bride, and is full of small details that hint at its nautical past.

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james & noel’s summer countryside wedding

summer countryside wedding by camera box photography | amanda jayne events blog

James & Noel were married on June 8, 2013 in Mechanicsburg, PA, where the bride grew up. The ceremony was held in Noel’s family’s backyard, while the reception was held at Stock’s Manor, an historic inn.  The intimate wedding was full of personal details – the bride’s family dog was the flower girl, family and friends baked sweets for the dessert table, and the groom designed the printed materials. The couple wanted the wedding to feel like an elegant summer dinner party. While they had gorgeous flower arrangements, they didn’t have to provide much in the way of décor since dinner was on the covered patio, with sweeping views of the Pennsylvania countryside.

summer countryside wedding by camera box photography | amanda jayne events blog

summer countryside wedding by camera box photography | amanda jayne events blog

summer countryside wedding by camera box photography | amanda jayne events blog

summer countryside wedding by camera box photography | amanda jayne events blog

summer countryside wedding by camera box photography | amanda jayne events blog

summer countryside wedding by camera box photography | amanda jayne events blog

summer countryside wedding by camera box photography | amanda jayne events blog

summer countryside wedding by camera box photography | amanda jayne events blog

summer countryside wedding by camera box photography | amanda jayne events blog

summer countryside wedding by camera box photography | amanda jayne events blog

summer countryside wedding by camera box photography | amanda jayne events blog

summer countryside wedding by camera box photography | amanda jayne events blog

summer countryside wedding by camera box photography | amanda jayne events blog

summer countryside wedding by camera box photography | amanda jayne events blog

summer countryside wedding by camera box photography | amanda jayne events blog

summer countryside wedding by camera box photography | amanda jayne events blog

summer countryside wedding by camera box photography | amanda jayne events blog

summer countryside wedding by camera box photography | amanda jayne events blog

summer countryside wedding by camera box photography | amanda jayne events blog

Unique ideas: The couple hired a historic trolley to transport guests from the ceremony to the reception venue

Steal this idea: The escort cards were displayed on empty frames – it was a simple but beautiful detail that was an elegant step above just having the cards on the table.

My favorite detail: At the cake table, the couple featured photographs of their parents and grandparents cutting their wedding cakes.

Bride’s favorite moment: “I loved that we wrote our own vows and my favorite moment was when I said my vows to James in front of all of our friends and family. It was right after our friends, families and our parents had given their blessing to our marriage, and I could feel the palpable love and support around us.”

Groom’s favorite moment:  “Our first dance was a rumba; neither of us knew anything about dance when we started and dance lessons slipped through the cracks of our busyness until about two weeks before the wedding. So we crammed, working on the moves together multiple times a day. We built the confidence we needed together and learned just how much fun dancing with the person you love can be.”

Best wishes, James & Noel!

Vendors: Photography by Camera Box | Wedding Coordination by The Wedding Lounge | Venue: Stock’s Manor

 

are seating charts the next big thing for weddings?

wedding seating chart inspiration | amanda jayne events blog

My last wedding related posts was on escort cards (and if you don’t the difference between escort cards and place cards you should definitely read it!), but what if you want to forgo escort cards entirely? Before you accuse me of advocating open seating (otherwise known as wedding anarchy), have you considered a seating chart in lieu of escort cards?

Posted seating charts have been around for a while but they seem to be gaining popularity, which I attribute to Pinterest brides-to-be for having such great examples floating around the interweb.

There are a few benefits of a seating chart rather than individual escort cards. The seating chart can be completely organized (written out, printed, etc.) prior to the wedding day, meaning less set up on the big day. Guests don’t have to carry anything to their seat. Depending on how your organize it, it may be easier for guests to find out the others at their table.

The drawbacks are that you don’t physically give something to your guests to remind them of their table and you need to rely on their memory. And depending on how you organize it, it may be more difficult for guests to find their name (if you have it organized by table rather than alphabetically).

Honestly though, I think the two options are pretty comparable and you should use whichever you prefer. I think seating charts are having a moment right now because they are perceived to be more creative, but the options for both escort cards and seating charts are limitless. The window panes and chalk board versions of seating charts are particularly popular, but so are rustic weddings in general, and both of these complement that style well.

Here are some examples of well-executed seating charts:

The Pinterest darling – the windowpane seating chart. This one is consistently popular (although random windowpanes aren’t just lying around where I’m from), both rustic and a bit whimsical. Requires good handwriting (as do most DIY escort card solutions).  Photo via Style Me Pretty:

wedding seating chart inspiration | amanda jayne events blog

The chalkboard seating chart – the quirky cousin of the windowpane seating chart. Is chalkboard paint still a thing? I definitely thought this trend would have died down a bit. In fact, I once rolled my eyes at something chalkboard-painted and told my husband that I thought the whole chalkboard paint thing was overdone. Then I did my first chalkboard paint craft and I’ve never heard the end of it – lesson learned, don’t make offhand comments when you have a husband who actually listens to you. But anyway – I think these can be very cute – again, watch the handwriting and be careful – you don’t want a guest to accidentally wipe out half of your tables by brushing up against it.  Photo via Something Blue Bridal Boutique:

wedding seating chart inspiration | amanda jayne events blog

For the more simple, elegant yet understated look, I love this gold framed chart. The numbers are unique and the font is fun but still legible (make sure the font coordinates with other fonts you’re using such as for your menu, etc.). Photo by Edyta Photography via 100 Layer Cake:

wedding seating chart inspiration | amanda jayne events blog

There are lots of printable seating charts if you want a bit more design to your chart. I definitely recommend Etsy (expect a blog post in the next few weeks on why Etsy is so great for weddings). There are lots of graphic designers who have beautiful designed materials for very affordable prices – often you can just download the file and print on your own. This particular design is by Etsy seller He Saw Sparks:

wedding seating chart inspiration | amanda jayne events blog

Finally – to mix it up a bit, I love these two very different takes on the same idea: individually framed table lists. The first one is a more sophisticated, elegant look for a more formal wedding. The second takes the look and gives it a rustic, country twist.  You can drastically change how this looks by choosing different kinds of frames and background. This is a great way to incorporate wedding colors as well.

Photo by Sweet Little Photographs:

wedding seating chart inspiration | amanda jayne events blog

Photo by Anna Page Photography via Style Me Pretty:

http://www.stylemepretty.com/gallery/picture/456308/

What are your thoughts? Are seating charts here to stay or just a passing trend?

Top photo by Lavender & Twine via Heart Love Weddings