Alternative Wedding Meal Options

The wedding meal can be one of the most frustrating parts of a wedding to plan. Some people have food allergies; while others can’t eat a particular food due to their religious beliefs. Still others won’t ever be happy, no matter what your serve. It’s important to remember that the meal should be something that you and your fiancé like – don’t concern yourself so much with trying to please everyone else. People’s tastes very too much and it simply won’t happen. The following are several alternative wedding meal options that can help you save money, while ensuring that your guests are happy with the food choices.

The Wedding Brunch

This option is becoming more and more popular, in part because they tend to be much less expensive than full dinners. The types of food served usually include a variety of breakfast and lunch dishes, such as scrambled eggs, club sandwiches, and fresh fruit. Served buffet style, this allows your guests to pick and choose the food they’re comfortable with. Be sure your food choices are labeled if they contain peanuts, seafood, or pork, as many people are allergic to these items, or can’t eat them due to their religious beliefs.

The Wedding Breakfast

A wedding breakfast is also a terrific idea for people who plan to marry later in the day. You can always plan the wedding breakfast for the morning of the wedding, or if you’re delaying your honeymoon, for the day after. Once again, offer the breakfast as a buffet. You may want to include such breakfast favorites as pancakes, waffles, bacon, ham, eggs, and fruit. This type of wedding meal is perfect for a less formal event, and you’ll find that many of your guests love this unique idea.

The Wedding Lunch

Less formal than a traditional wedding affair, a wedding lunch can be a great idea if you have several friends and family members who have a long return trip home after the wedding. For this type of meal, consider finger sandwiches, vegetables, fruits, and simple desserts. It’s not as complicated to plan as a traditional wedding dinner – as well as much less expensive – and you may find that people are simply more at ease with this type of meal.

The Wedding Dessert Reception

The wedding dessert reception is a rather new concept, but it’s quickly gaining in popularity, since most everyone loves a good dessert. In addition to the wedding cake, you can serve a multitude of sweets and fruits. Try to keep the desserts limited to those that aren’t difficult to serve, like brownies, cookies or small candies. Also, avoid anything really “drippy” to help protect your guests from making a mess of their clothes. Choosing to go with a wedding dessert reception can save a lot of money, since a plate of brownies is much less expensive than steak dinners for every one of your guests.

While your wedding meal is an important part of your event, make sure you don’t drive yourself completely crazy planning it. Keeping it simple doesn’t mean that it will look cheap – it just means you’ll have more time to plan the ceremony and the honeymoon!

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Filed under: Receptions — vicky at 8:55 pm on Tuesday, February 10, 2009

DIY Weddings – How to Make Corsages and Boutonnieres

Making your own wedding boutonnieres and corsages can save you a lot of money, but it can also be a fun task to complete with your bridesmaids. Even if you aren’t artistically inclined, it’s actually very simple to make these small flower arrangements. The first step is to decide if you want to use real flowers or silk flowers. If you use live flowers, you’ll need to make the corsages and boutonnieres the day before the wedding to make sure they stay fresh. However, if you decide to use silk flowers, you can complete the project weeks in advance.

You’ll need the following items to complete the task:

Flowers – Fresh or silk, they should be the same flowers and colors as those in your bouquets. Plan to purchase at least three or four flowers for each person you plan to give a corsage or boutonniere, including the groom, groomsmen and the parents of the bride and groom.
Greenery – Purchase several leaves and stems to use as filler materials.
Baby’s breath – Buy this in large bunches. You can then cut it down to fit each setting.
Floral wire – Buy this in a spool to provide support and structure for your creations.
Floral tape – It’s possible to buy floral tape with the wire inside, but it is much easier to use them separately. Floral tape comes in many different colors and is stretchy enough to help you position and support the elements of your corsages and boutonnieres.
Pearls – These can be purchased in a string by the foot in the floral department.

Start by cutting the flowers to fit the setting. Each flower should be left with a three inch stem. You also need to cut the baby’s breath and the greenery to be the same length. Line them all up side by side to make sure they are around the same size. Next, cut the pearl string into two inch sections; you’ll need two or three strings per setting.

Now that you have everything cut, it’s time to start making the arrangements. Start by laying the greenery down first. Next, add a thin layer of baby’s breath. You can then arrange your flowers on top of the greenery and filler and mix in the strands of pearls. Grab the arrangement by the stems and pick it up.

You will want to hold the arrangement with one hand and fluff it with the other. Once you have the desired appearance, you can use your free hand to wrap the arrangement with floral wire. Some people prefer to arrange each piece, wrap them in small groups, and then finally wrap the whole arrangement together. However, you have more flexibility by wrapping the whole bunch all at the end. Once you have the boutonniere or corsage arranged and wrapped with wire, you can begin wrapping it with the floral tape. Start just below the base of the flowers and wrap it to the bottom, making sure you leave no gaps. Wrap the top part thicker than the bottom, letting it taper as you move down the stems.

Once you have your finished product, you’ll need to store it correctly until the big day. If you used fresh flowers, store the arrangements in the refrigerator being sure to protect them from other items. If you used silk flowers, place the arrangements in Ziploc bags so they don’t gather dust before your big day.

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Filed under: Accessories — vicky at 8:54 pm on Tuesday, February 10, 2009