Wedding Q & A – When Are Aisle Runners Used in a Wedding?

bride's processional with her father, entering wedding ceremony walking on a traditional white aisle runner Photo credit: Childers Photography

Q. – When is an aisle runner used?

A. – The use of aisle runners at wedding ceremonies originated centuries ago.

The three main reasons for their use were:

1) Out of superstition – it provides a barrier between the bride and any evil spirits that may come up from below the ground

2) The bride was considered “royalty” and an aisle runner prevents her from having to walk directly on the ground

3) Cleanliness – since roads were unpaved and guests would track in dirt and mud an aisle runner kept the bride from dragging the hem of her gown and her train through the dirt

These days it is done out of tradition. When asked to imagine a bride walking down the aisle, most people imagine her walking on a white aisle runner.

bride and groom's wedding ceremony recessional walking on a traditional white aisle runner Photo credit: Faye Sommer Photography

When is the aisle runner put in place?

A wedding aisle runner is most commonly put in place after the mothers of the bride and the groom have entered, and before the ceremony processional (when the bridal party enters).

groomemen putting wedding ceremony aisle runner in place Photo credit: Shiloh Photography

It is secured at the front of the aisle with pins and tape so it can be easily unrolled, then, once completely unrolled, is secured at the back so it won’t roll back up which helps prevent anyone from tripping.

Sometimes couples prefer to have the aisle runner already in place before the start of the ceremony.

In this case, the center aisle is blocked with ribbon preventing guests from walking on the runner, and guests are seated from the outside aisles (not the center aisle). The ribbon is removed right before the moms are escorted in.

There are many options for aisle runner styles. The most common and economical are made from a durable heavy-weight plastic or rayon. You can find these in the wedding section of some craft stores or in a floral supply store. You can also get them from your florist.

You may also want to read: Alternatives to the White Aisle Runner

Aisle runners can also be personalized, with your names, monogram, or a romantic saying. They can even coordinate with your wedding colors or season.

wedding ceremony aisle runner with fall leaf pattern Photo credit: Faye Sommer Photography

Be extra careful when using an aisle runner for an outdoor wedding ceremony. Since ground is rarely smooth and level (even the best manicured lawns will have some minor bumps and soft spots. May not be easily seen, but easy to find with your foot and potentially wobble, trip, or sprain an ankle).

For an outdoor ceremony, either omit the use of an aisle runner for safety’s sake, or choose one that is more durable such as a carpet runner (can be found in different colors and patterns), or heavy fabric such as burlap.

Make sure to get the length of the aisle before purchasing an aisle runner. They come in 25′ increments, starting at 25′ long and going up to 150′ or more.

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

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Want fun ideas for your wedding? Weddings From The Heart can help. Contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net, 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

Real Wedding – Heidi and Luke (Dennenhof – Genk, Belgium)

Heidi & Luke wedding

(This “Real Wedding” was submitted by Adorn Wedding Invitations, located in London. Hope you enjoy it, and find inspiration for your wedding).

The Details

How did you and your partner meet?
I came travelling in Australia for 6 months, staying in hostels. I started my Australian adventure in Perth.

Luke was working in the mines in Western Australian on a FIFO basis and on his time off he stayed in hostels around Perth.

2 days after I arrived in Perth, Luke showed up in the same hostel as where I was staying.

The rest is history.

Heidi & Luke Wedding ceremony

How did he propose?
Our favourite weekend getaway was Gilgare Retreat in Margaret River.

A few weeks before we would be moving to Melbourne, he treated me to a few nights away here.

We went on a beautiful nature walk which we would do every time we were there.

On a little bridge, he stopped me and proposed.

What’s your most important piece of advice for creating and maintaining a strong relationship?

Being patient with each other.

Tell us about your wedding gown and how you chose it:

Heidi & Luke - bride in wedding dress

My wedding gown was actually a Christmas gift from Luke 3 years before we got married.

Around Christmas time 2014 we were doing our Christmas shopping. I tried on my wedding dress, but decided not to buy it because it was pricey and I wouldn’t have many occasions wearing it.

We went on buying another dress, but Luke went back and bought me the Carla Zampatti dress as a Christmas present.

At the time of his proposal I hadn’t had a chance to wear the dress yet, so I decided that this dress would become my wedding dress.

What sort of style did you envision for your wedding day?
Indi style wedding.

What was your favorite moment from the day?

Heidi & Luke - baptism during wedding ceremony

We included our daughter Stella’s baptism in the wedding ceremony. My favourite moment was seeing her in de cape that my grandmother made for my mum when she was baptised.

Any DIY décor elements?

    • Instead of a traditional guest book, we enlarged a photo of our family (Luke, our daughter and me) on canvas and had people write a little message on this. The idea being that a traditional guestbook would rarely be looked at again, but the canvas photo is hanging in our living room and we can enjoy it every day.
    • Little thank you presents for the guest. I bought little jam jars and filled them with corn for people to make pop-corn of. I attached a note to the jar saying “Thank you for popping by.”
    • The seating chart for the evening dinner.

Heidi & Luke - wedding reception seating chart

    • Bird cage for envelopes (we included a wishing well with our invitation).
    • At the entry of the evening venue, I put a frame with 2 half hearts. Each half of the heart was a map of the town where Luke and I grew up in.

Heidi & Luke - wedding reception decor

    • Flower arrangements and wedding bouquet were made by an aunt of mine.

Heidi & Luke - bridal bouquet gerber daisies

    • Table numbers: I used large jam jars filled with lollies. On the jam jar, I put the table numbers.

Heidi & Luke - wedding table numbers

  • I also wrote the entire Ceremony myself and made the booklet. Seeing the wedding was attended by both my family (Flemish) and my husband’s family (English) I included the both languages in the booklet. (Hats off to the priest who fluently switched between Flemish and English sections).

If you could do it all over again, what would you change?
Honestly, nothing!

Heidi & Luke - confetti toss after wedding ceremony

Any tips that you can give to future brides?
Delegate everything on the wedding day itself; ask bridesmaids, groomsmen or parents to look after a certain part of the day. Try to divide the day up between different people to keep it manageable for them.

Invest in a good photographer, it is the only memento of your wedding.

Ask advice to time the different parts of the day. Get a clear idea of how long the make-up/hair, ceremony, photos, etc will take so you can make a flowing day planning.

Sitting down during the ceremony (you’ll be on your feet (bride in heels!!) most of the day)

Anything else you’d like to add?
I have to add the amazing surprise we had when arriving at our photo location/wedding night location.

I booked to have our wedding night in a castle (Ter dolen, Helchteren, Belgium) where I used to work during my University days (The castle has a bed & breakfast, brewery and pub attached to it.

I booked it early 2015 because our original wedding date was 24 September 2016. Due to medical reason, we had to postpone our wedding to 2017, so I notified the B&B owner.

Arriving at the castle in the afternoon of 08/04/2017, the owner told me they actually stopped running the B&B from the castle and she moved into the castle with her family. But because we made reservations so long ago and because she still knew me from working there, she was staying elsewhere for the night and Luke and I had the entire caste to ourselves (including the family dog).

Heidi and Luke’s Vendor Team
Dress: Carla Zampatti
Makeup & Hair: Café Beauté (Hasselt, Belgium)
Shoes: Manolo Blahnik
Accessories: Miracles by Annelien Coorevits
Jewellery: Love On Jewellery
Grooms Suit: Peter Jackson
Invitations: Adorn Invitations
Photographer: Dieter Decuypere – Speaking through Silence
On the day stationery: BWedding Invitations
Food: Dennenhof (Genk, Belgium)
Flowers: Provided by family member
Ceremony Venue: Chapel Ten Eikenen (Zonhoven Belgium)
Reception Venue: Dennenhof (Genk, Belgium)
Car: Dreamday Cars (Koersel, Belgium)
DJ: Kurt’s DJ team (Hoeselt, Belgium)
Wedding rings: B & S Lyncris Jewellers

Heidi & Luke Wedding

Thank you Alyssa/Adorn Wedding Invitations for sharing this lovely wedding with us!

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

Bad Brides – or How Not To Treat Your Bridesmaids

Bride and Bridesmaids
You’re just starting with your wedding planning and it’s time to choose your wedding party. “Hmmm. Who will be my bridesmaids?”

Choosing a bridesmaid is a very important task of wedding planning. These ladies (or men, who are called bridesmen, or wedding attendants) have been by your side through the years. They’ve supported you through thick and thin. They are your besties – the people you couldn’t imagine not having by your side during this exciting time of your life.

So why in recent years are we hearing of more and more brides behaving like bridesmaids aren’t cherished friends and family members at all, but, well . . . are going ‘zilla on them, with unreasonable demands and lofty expectations?

Changing Their Appearance

Sad Bridesmaid

One bride asked her bridesmaids to gain weight so she would look better by comparison.

Another she expected her ‘maids to wear heel varying heights so they would all appear to be the same height. The bridesmaids’ heights ranged from 5’2″ to 5’9″, meaning that one lady was to wear 7 inch heels.

One asked her ladies to all dye their hair blonde so that she (the bride) would be the only brunette.

Another bridesmaid was asked to have a breast reduction so she would fit into the same dress as the rest of the bridesmaids.

Your bridesmaids are your best gal (or guy) pals. They are the people in your life who you love and cherish. You’ve chosen them for who they are. Why change them?

Exchanging Them

Angry Bridesmaids

You’ve chosen your bridesmaids based on your relationship with them, not on how they look. Most women don’t look like models. So don’t base your bridesmaid choices on appearance.

Check out this episode of Absolutely Fabulous. Fast forward to 36:52 and watch mother-of-the-bride Edina (“Sweetie, Darling!”) swap her daughter’s bridesmaid for a Gucci model.

Hopefully no one will do that for real, but believe it or not, you can hire a professional bridesmaid. I get hiring someone for assistance behind the scenes, but yes you can actually hire someone who will walk down the aisle and stand up at the altar with you.

Bridesmaid Banishment
Getting Rid of a Bridesmaid

Some brides have even gone so far as to threaten to fire their bridesmaids if they didn’t follow her “ground rules.”

These ground rules included:

  • Enforced bed times leading up to the wedding (can’t have saggy, baggy eyes)
  • Bathing suits must be strapless (can’t have terrible tan lines)
  • Changes in haircuts/coloring must be pre-approved

A follow-up note ended with, “Failure to adhere to my commandments, can result in Bridalparty banishment!”

Pay For The Honor
Facepalm Statue

Ok, this one will make you face palm and ask “why, oh why?”

The most recent bit of bad bride behavior with bridesmaids is fairly recent. Apparently this bride “sent out dozens of…invitations, to various girls. . . to attend and participate in a ‘bidding auction’ on the six spots in her bridal party.” Apparently the bride and groom plan to use the money to pay for the wedding and honeymoon.

It’s unclear why this bride sent out invitations to a bidding auction. It doesn’t appear that she just couldn’t choose from so many people (as many were acquaintances, and not close buds). Was it a grab for money? Some other reason entirely?

Regardless as to her “why,” you just don’t do that to people!

Other things brides have asked of their ladies were:

  • cover tattoos
  • not getting tattoos
  • not getting a haircut
  • grow out their bangs
  • get a fake tan (the bridesmaid had a pale complexion)
  • get botox
  • Wedding dress contribution – one bride ended up buying a wedding gown that was way out of her budget. She then wanted her bridesmaids to contribute $150 each to help pay for it.

Want to read the entire details of these bad bride behaviors? You can find the original articles here:

Bid to be a bridesmaid
Professional bridesmaids
Demands made on bridesmaids
And more demands
Help pay for wedding gown

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

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Need help with your wedding plans? Contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

Eco-Friendly Wedding Invitations & Other “Green” Tips

Incorporating eco-friendly, green ideas into your wedding is easy, and affordable. Check out these eco-friendly wedding planning tips. | Weddings From The Heart

This post was published in cooperation with Paperless Post.

Looking for wedding ideas that aren’t only earth-friendly but wallet friendly too?

INVITATIONS AND OTHER PAPER PRODUCTS
• Like the idea of menu cards? Do only 2 or 3 per table instead of one for each person (your guests won’t miss having their own).

• Reduce the amount of paper used in your invitations by omitting the inner envelopes and using RSVP postcards instead of the traditional card and envelope.

• Or you can completely reduce the amount of paper for your invitations by going paperless.

Beautiful wedding invitation from Paperless Post

Our friends at PAPERLESS POST help you create online and paper stationery that reflects your individual style. You can choose, and customize, from hundreds of styles/designs for your wedding invitations, including gorgeous styles by world famous designers such as Kate Spade New York, Oscar de la Renta, Jonathan Adler, Kelly Wearstler, and Vera Wang.

Beautiful wedding invitation from Paperless Post

Beautiful wedding invitation from Paperless Post

Benefits of Using Online Invitations

• It’s totally eco-friendly. No paper or inks at all.

• Easy for guests to RSVP. With a click of a button they can respond with their accepts or regrets. There’s even a button to remind them to RSVP later.

• It’s a breeze to include additional information for your guests’ convenience (ex. parking info, hotel info).

• Directions from their doorstep to your venue are at your guest’s fingertips with the click of a button.

• You can add a comment wall for guests to leave a personalized message.

• Are you giving your guests menu options (Beef or Chicken)? Add additional RSVP question for your guests to answer. Also great for song requests.

• Need to make a change to the time or place? Updating is easy.

• Easily track who has responded. Need to check in with those who haven’t RSVP’d? There’s a button for that too.

• There’s more than just Wedding invitations. Holiday cards, Birthday, Thinking of You, Graduation announcements, and personalized stationery are just some of what they offer.

• It’s affordable.

Choose a card design. Add your text. Change the font style and color. Add a motif or logo. Want to add your own motif, logo, or photo? It’s easily done, and just takes a few seconds.

Your invitation/card is saved and put into a draft folder until you’re ready to send. Then when you’re ready to send, you can either send it immediately or schedule it for a future date.

It really is that simple.

Disadvantages

Ok, gotta be real. There are a few disadvantages to using online wedding invitations.

• Lost E-Mail
Occasionally an online invitation will get lost in cyberspace, and not reach it’s recipient. (But hey, things can get lost with the regular mail too). If someone says they haven’t received your paperless invitation, make sure you’ve got the right email address, or that your guest hasn’t changed their email address.

• Not All Guests Have Email
These days, most people have email, (and if they’re like me, they check it several times throughout the day). However, some of your guests, usually older folks, like grandparents or great aunts/uncles may not.

• No Keepsake
Some couples, and their parents like to save the invitation for a lovely keepsake. You can print out the online invitation, but doing a ‘print screen’ is not the same as an invitation that’s actually been printed.

The good thing here is that Paperless Post offers all of their designs in paper form as well.

Other Ways to Go Green for Your Wedding

DECOR
We can all agree that candles provide a romantic ambience.

Candles are an economical way to provide a romantic ambience to your wedding reception/celebration. For an eco-friendly, green touch, use soy or honeycomb candles.
Photo credit: ekkarat / 123RF Stock Photo

But did you ever notice soot on the edges of the glass of the candleholder, or going into the air when a candle is blown out? For your wedding why not use soy or honeycomb candles? They’re much cleaner than regular wax candles, and like other candles, come in any size or color you’d want.

After a wedding reception when the room is being cleaned up, it is kind of sad watching those beautiful floral centerpieces being thrown away.
Group potted flowers on tables as centerpieces. Then at the end of your wedding reception, your guests can take them home.

Photo credit: annete / 123RF Stock Photo

Instead of using cut flowers, group potted flowers on tables as centerpieces. Then at the end of the evening, your guests can take them home. The potted flowers enjoy a new life (either appreciated in your guests’ homes, or replanted in their yard). Plus, this serves double-duty so you don’t have to get separate favors.

FAVORS

If you prefer offering favors for your guests, go with an edible treat.

Your wedding guests will love a yummy edible wedding favor to take home at the end (or enjoy during) your wedding reception.

In reality, your guests often can’t use or don’t want the cute favors that are non-edible, and will either end up throwing the favor away, or leaving it at the reception. But if it’s something for them to nibble on – they’ll be snacking on them during your reception, and maybe even looking for more!

FOOD & BEVERAGES
More and more caterers are thinking green

More and more caterers are creating wedding reception menus that are green - using ingredients that are organic, and locally grown.

– using ingredients that are organic, and locally grown.

Why not include some green, eco-friendly choices for your wedding? They’re just as easy, and often either cost the same or less than non-green options.

Let us know what you think. Are/would you consider including some eco-friendly elements to your wedding?

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

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Looking for unique ideas for your wedding? Weddings From The Heart can help. Contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or 937-581-3647!

Sologamy (or Self Marriage): Positive Life Choice or Utter Nonsense?

Sologamy (or Self Marriage): Positive Life Choice or Utter Nonsense? |  With this new trend, one person, usually a woman, marries herself in a wedding ceremony, with the white dress bridal bouquet and reception. What do you think of this trend?

Ok. There’s a new trend making its way around that I just don’t get.

This trend is people, usually women, are marrying themselves. Yes, you read that right. They are getting married… to themselves. Wearing a white dress, carrying a bouquet and having a reception.

There is even a word for this – sologomy.

Depending on which article you happen to read on the subject, this is either an empowering act – celebrating their independent status, while dispelling the stigma of being unmarried when you reach “a certain age”, or just a sad and bitter feminist who’s tired of always being asked why she isn’t married.

Yes – believing that your life is enough even if you aren’t part of a couple is a positive emotional way to be. Being single isn’t bad, and no one should ever be made to feel any less because they are single.

But does there really need to be a ceremony to proclaim that they are “enough” even though they aren’t in a romantic relationship with another person? Isn’t their belief that they don’t have to be part of a couple sufficient?

Why can’t people just live their lives without having to prove something to others that probably doesn’t need proving at all?

Maybe I’m wrong on this, so a little enlightening is welcome.

Do you know someone who has married themselves, or considered it? What do you think?

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

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Need help with your wedding plans? Weddings From The Heart can help. Contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

Expressing the 2017 Color Trends in Your Spring Wedding Style

Blue Color Palette

Spring is finally here and it’s time to celebrate the upcoming wedding season, and the fabulous color palettes that express the freshness of the season.

Of the top color schemes of 2017, several incorporate shades of blue. Blue is such a versatile color, evoking feelings of such as sophistication, playfulness, and sweetness.

blue color palette

From deep midnight blue and sapphire to pale shades such as aqua or French blue, there is the perfect blue hue for every taste and wedding style – whether it’s rustic and more causal to an event that is elegant, which is further expressed in the choice of accent colors.

Blush, French Blue, and Gold

Fuchsia, Grape, and Dark Turquoise

Navy, Gold, Coral Navy, Gold, and Coral

What’s one of the first things couples think of?

What they’re going to wear, of course!

Attire

For Her

How about a white wedding gown with blue accents?

wedding gown with blue sash

Or for something more daring, walk down the aisle in a wedding gown that is entirely blue.

blue wedding gown

Accessories

blue swarovski crystal earrings

blue nail polish

blue bridal shoes

For Him

Grooms and men in the wedding party will need a tuxedo or suit fitting with the formality of your wedding.

The Black Tux offers several stylish attire for the men, as well as ties, vests and shoes.

Here are some fashionably elegant and sophisticated choices that will coordinate with your blue color scheme.

royal navy blue suit Royal Navy Blue Suit

midnight blue tuxedo Midnight Blue Tuxedo

midnight pin dot tuxedo Midnight Blue Pin Dot Tuxedo

navy suit Navy Blue Suit

Flowers

Let’s start with the bridal bouquet. This gorgeous blue bouquet is a show-stopper with orchids accented with a few white roses.

blue bridal bouquet
Photo Credit ktay21 / 123RF Stock Photo

If your taste leans more toward a traditional bouquet, accent a white bouquet with a few blue blooms.

White and Blue Bridal Bouquet

If your wedding party will be in blue, bouquets with lighter colored blooms will look fabulous and really pop against the blue fabric.

blue bridesmaids dresses

For your centerpieces and decor, you have many options –

Floral arrangements that are pink . . .

Pink roses

Photo Credit: yeko / 123RF Stock Photo https://www.123rf.com/profile_yeko

shades of blue . . .

white and blue floral centerpiece

Photo credit: darkkong / 123RF Stock Photo

or a mix of colors.

pink roses, ranunculus, and grape hyacinth

Photo credit: funlovingvolvo / 123RF Stock Photo

Color Tip: When talking with your wedding pros, don’t rely on color name only. One person’s idea of Indigo for example will be way different than the next person’s. Bring color swatches, photos, paint chips, whatever it takes to show them the color you are actually thinking of.

Other Decor

Seating Chart
blue wedding seating chart Seating chart by Yellow Belly Project

Lighting
blue lighting wedding reception

Linens
blue wedding reception table linens

Napkins
blue napkin folds

Cake

Just a touch color . . .

wedding cake with blue fondant swirls

or in full color.

tiffany blue wedding cake

Of course there are a gazillion more ways to incorporate your color scheme into your wedding. How have you chosen to express your color palette for your wedding day?

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

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For unique ideas for your wedding day contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

5 Quotes about Love and Marriage

Love Marriage Romance Hearts
Romantic Red Hearts

Although much has been said on the topics of love and marriage, sometimes nothing sums it up so succinctly than a good quote.

Short, sweet, and to the point, here are five lovely quotes that you can use on your wedding invitations or ceremony programs, include in readings, signage at your reception, or just as inspiration.

Love with Red Heart
Love with Red Heart

1. “Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.” ~ Lao Tze

2. “Happy is the man who finds a true friend, and far happier is he who finds that true friend in his wife.” ~ Franz Schubert

3. “A good marriage is one which allows for change and growth in individuals and in the way they express their love.” ~ Pearl S. Buck

4. “Men always want to be a woman’s first love and women want to be a man’s last romance.” ~ Oscar Wilde

5. “A successful marriage is an edifice that must be built every day.” ~ Andre Maurois

Heart with Arrow
Hearts with Arrow

Be sure to share with us in the comments below other quotes on love and marriage that you particularly love.

Hearts, Joy, Love!
Jean

Need inspiration or ideas for your wedding? Contact me today at jean@weddingsfromtheheart.net or at 937-235-2586 or 937-581-3647!

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