AYW Exclusive: How to Throw a Winning Bridal Shower

‘Tis the season…of romantic, wintry proposals! And with proposals, come months spent planning- weddings, of course, but also, wedding showers. If you’re the lucky friend or family member taking on the potentially daunting task of throwing a bridal shower for the special bride-to-be in your life, read on for a simple how-to…

 

The guest list: first things first! Answer the following questions: will this be a ladies only event? a couple’s shower? a lingerie shower? This information helps determine who will receive an invitation. In some cases, the guest list may be limited to bridesmaids, close friends + close-in-age female family members. In others, invitations are extended to elder family members of the bride and groom, family friends, etc. The “theme” usually plays a role in dictating who appropriate guests are. Bringing us to our next topic of conversation..

The theme: Upon choosing the general type of shower you’ll be throwing, consider choosing a theme based on the bride’s personality + preferences. Does she have a favorite vacation spot? A love for travel? Does she prefer a certain type of cuisine? Have a favorite, festive cocktail? It’s what makes any event unique: the details, large and small, that are designed with the belle of the ball in mind. Once you’ve decided on a theme, get your creative wheels turning! Hop on Pinterest or a wedding + lifestyle blog and keep your eyes open for adaptable ideas for decor, cuisine, signature drinks, and fun event-specific group activities. We love how this tropical styled shoot we created could be easily translated in to a fun, summery shower theme idea! And finally…

 

The execution: We always recommend working with trustworthy vendors, no matter how small or large the event you’re coordinating may be. Trust your florist, caterer, stationer (etc.) to help in making creative decisions. Be sure to thoroughly explain your vision for a specified theme, and allow for their professional input as often as necessary. If you’re DIY-ing any portion of the event, don’t be afraid to delegate! It’s likely that there are other close family members and friends that would be honored to help in pulling the shower together.

Most importantly- have fun!  And we don’t just mean during the shower- we firmly believe that the planning process of any event should be enjoyable and memorable. Savor these celebratory moments leading up to the big day, you’ll wish you could relive them later on!

And, of course, should the task of planning a shower seem too daunting, the doors to our AYW office are always open! :)

 Photos:

Allen Tsai Photography, Simply Mox Paper, Culinary Art Catering, The Wildflower Floral Design

As You Wish Exclusive: Keeping Up With The Kids

It’s a trivial question to consider when building your wedding guest list… kids or no kids? In the varying cases of As You Wish receptions passed, our clients have accommodated for their youngest guests in creative ways. If your final guest count should include a large handful of kiddos, we’re suggesting some out-of-the-box opportunities to keep up with their little personalities + ensure that your event is “kid friendly.”

1. Kid-specific Menu Items

Perhaps the most simple way to cater to kids during a reception is to work with your chef to assemble meal and dessert options that will please their palates. For instance, chicken tenders, fancy french fries, mashed potatoes, and the like are more apt to suit a child’s fancy than say… a filet mignon. Often times, this will help to save dollars on your catering order. Win, win!

2. A “Kid’s Room” or “Kid’s Table”

Depending on your venue and floorpan, it could be possible to congregate kiddos into their own exclusive space. We’ve even coordinated a separate room- complete with babysitters and kid-specific activities- to create a sort of “mini-party” for the kids to enjoy while their parents are mingling (worry-free) at the reception. A smaller-scale option is to assign specific dinner tables for the kids, and including goodie bags or tabletop games at their place settings.

3. Provide “Kid-approved” Entertainment

We’ve brought in stilt-walkers, caricature artists, college mascots, balloon twisters, face painters… you name it! All provide an additional element of fun for your younger crowd of guests. (We’ve found that adults get excited about these entertainers, too!)

4. Invite them onto the dance floor! 

Albeit some kids are more timid than others, a simple invitation onto the dance floor can bring about a whole lot of fun for all involved. Some of the most memorable wedding reception moments include the bride or groom breaking it down with their kid-family members and friends! (This always makes for adorable pictures!)

 

Photos by: Sarah Kate Photography, Jonathan Ivy Photography, Havi Frost, F8 Studio & Edmonson Weddings

Real Wedding: Pantuso-Schaible Reception

Last week, we shared images of our sweet As You Wish bride, Ashley’s, rooftop ceremony at The Wyly Theatre. After the ceremony, guests rode elevators down to an awe-inducing reception space. Bright, pink Bella Flora blooms brought bold color to each table top; trendy lounge furniture complemented cross back dining chairs; and an out-of-this-world head table lighting installation of Edison bulbs and geometric vases boasted modern sophistication. To continue with the incorporation of flight-themed details, airport codes took the place of table numbers (home base, DFW, identified the head table) and each guest’s menu card was displayed in a sleek, black luggage tag. The sunken, lit dance floor- and Andy Austin’s top-notch DJ’ing- ushered guests into an evening of dancing and good fun. We hope you enjoy the details from this celebration as much as we have! A big thanks to Carter Rose of f8 Studio for capturing all this gorgeous- check our Facebook page for the full photo album from this epic event!

Real Wedding: Spring Hindu-Catholic Wedding

Last week, we shared the first round of photos from one of our all-time favorite wedding weekends to date, kicked off by a fabulous Sangeet party. The multicultural + multiple-day long celebration that took place last Spring, beautifully designed and planned by As You Wish lead planner, Rachel Burt, was memorable in more ways than one.  Unforgettable moments include: a Lamborghini driven INTO the Fairmont hotel by the Groom; the Bride and Groom’s first dance complete with a fireworks display; and the crowd of guests viewing a same-day edit film (created by none other than Hakim Sons Films) of the festivities at the conclusion of the reception. An expert team of vendors brought their A-game to pull off a soiree that was jaw-droppingly gorgeous in terms of design, meticulously executed, and… so. fun.

We’re endlessly thankful to: Bella Flora for bringing our design vision to life with whimsical, elegant, and garden-esque florals that transformed The Fairmont ballroom into a thing of ethereal beauty; Southern Fried Paper and Nicole Black calligraphy for stunning paper products and hand lettering; the JenXFaces team for enhancing the beauty of an already-gorgeous Bride and her bridal party; Jordan Kahn Band and DJ Riz for top-notch entertainment throughout the entirety of the weekend; Pyrotecnico for wow-worthy fireworks displays; Fancy Cakes by Lauren for her handcrafted and beautiful cakes; Hakim Sons Films for their cinematography magic; and finally, Edmonson Weddings for capturing these moments on camera so beautifully! Enjoy this sneak preview of stunning images and stay tuned for the full photo album to go live on our Facebook page later this week!

Real Wedding: A Spring Sangeet

One of the most exciting thrills the As You Wish team experiences in being involved in our couples’ wedding celebrations is the opportunity to bring unique and diversified family backgrounds, religious traditions, and personality-specific details to life. This As You Wish exclusive real event features an extravagant wedding weekend that lead planner, Rachel Burt, craftily designed; the weekend’s festivities paid homage to the bride’s Hindu heritage and the groom’s Catholic background. The Sangeet, a party specific to Indian tradition, took place prior to the couple’s wedding ceremonies and reception. The evening was full of singing, dancing, laughing and mingling among wedding guests! Today, we’re sharing photos from this festive evening, beautifully captured by Edmonson Photography. Be sure to check back next week, too, as we’ll be sharing the details and images from the rest of this As You Wish couple’s fabulous wedding weekend. (Trust us, you won’t want to miss it!)

As You Wish Exclusive: Our Fave Favors

We’ve mentioned before how much thrill we get from each teeny-tiny detail that makes up the total grandeur of a flawlessly planned and executed wedding. Last week, we shared a bit on past  awe-inspiring paper products and wedding invitation suites that set the tone for guests’ experiences at each of our As You Wish couple’s celebrations. Today, we’re pausing to appreciate one of our most-loved wedding details that bids a sweet and thoughtful  farewell to guests: favors. They’re the above-and-beyond sentiments that thank your guests for traveling near and far to play a part in your most-special day. Favors are an extra-fun way to compliment the wedding’s design scheme, whilst purposefully packaging up a little token of your love to send home with each friend and family member. We conjured up photos of some of our “fave favors” from As You Wish weddings passed. Take a look at these creative, and in some cases- tasty, ways our brides and grooms said goodbye to their loved ones.

Sending your guests home with a late night, sweet tooth-satisfying snack, is a can’t-go-wrong move in our book..

This duo loved baseball, thus, these candy apple, ballpark-inspired favors perfectly complimented their personalities.

Color-coordinated with the wedding design, these gold-dusted macarons were a hit.

Customized hershey kisses at each place setting! They’re as cute as they are savory.

A sensible bride! She sent guests home with cookies AND water bottles. How’s that for post-dance floor replenishment?!

We loved this couple’s plan to have all the remaining pieces of their dessert pies packed up in precious to-go baskets (complete with napkins and utensils) for their guests to enjoy later.

Sweet treats packaged up in pretty boxes and planted at each place setting are an easy way to keep with a polished  and flawlessly designed table scape:

These couples sent guests on their way with mini servings of their favorite adult beverages…

Monogrammed koozies are a win during and after the party.

For the guys.. cigars paired with a customized pack of matches. These were a great addition to this Gatsby-themed wedding.

This coffee shop-cool couple gifted each guest with a bag of their favorite roast of coffee beans.

It only made sense that guests got to take these individualized snow globe “escort cards” home with them from this winter wonderland wedding.

It’s impossible for us to pick just one favorite! Which favor would you send your loved ones home with? Our token of advice: the more unique and personal, the better!

Photo credits (from top): Christographer, f8 Studio, Jonathan Ivy Photography, Geoff Duncan Photography, Joshua Aull Photography, Fairy Tale Photography, Sarah Kate Photography, Mary Beth Tyson Photography, Michelle Standerfer Photography, Lindsey Shea Photography, A Guy and A Girl Weddings, Bradford Martens Photography.

Real Wedding: McIntire – Cunningham

This As You Wish exclusive real wedding was one of uniquely epic proportions. A fun-loving bride and groom, a local radio star’s generous offer to host a wedding in his infamous tavern, and… Coolio (yes, rapper and record producer, Coolio)- made for one awesome party that the AYW team LOVED being apart of! Today we’re sharing how in the world all this fun came to be; including photos of bride, Jennifer, and her groom, Shannon’s atypical, unforgettable big day.

 Jennifer seized an opportunity to be married at the notorious Big Al’s Bar (McKinney Avenue Tavern), after hearing the infamous radio personality on the radio one morning. Big Al, on air, spoke of his interest in hosting such an affair, and Jennifer jumped at the thought. She called in to KISS FM, and told Big Al that her friends, family, and fiancé would be thrilled to celebrate the couple’s marriage in such an exclusive, exciting way. Without hesitation, the entire KISS FM team jumped on board and began proposing ideas for Jennifer and Shannon’s big night. Special guest, Coolio, played an essential role in the evening- thanks to an on-air miscommunication between Kelly Rasberry and Big Al. Kelly suggested they ask Coolio to ‘perform’ at the celebration- as the reception entertainment… Big Al, however, took her words for another meaning entirely and made a wild suggestion: what couple has ever had a wedding ceremony performed by a famous rapper? One thing led to the next, and by the wedding day, Coolio was ordained to perform the pair’s wedding ceremony in addition to his providing musical entertainment for their reception. For kicks and giggles, members of the KISS FM cast even participated in the festivities as members of the couple’s bridal party (accompanying the bride and groom’s friends and family, of course).

Bride, Jennifer, still wanted to the event to have the looks and feels of a wedding, despite it’s uncommon venue. So, As You Wish lead planner, Rachel Burt, helped to deck the McKinney Avenue Tavern with Gatsby-inspired, Speak-easy-themed elements. Take a look at these images, captured by Harry Photo, and check back on our Facebook page later this week for more details from this epic, celebrity-stamped event!

Thanks to Big Al (left) and Rapper, Coolio (right), and the rest of the KISS FM team, for helping us throw this once-in-a-lifetime celebration!

Spotify Your Wedding

Music is one of the most important aspects of any wedding because it not only sets the atmosphere for each event, but also brings out the fun side in all of the guests. From beautiful, classical prelude music to upbeat hits that will get your grandpa on the dance floor, we have got you covered! Click on one the categories listed below to see the Spotify playlists we have created to help you in your song selection. Select the right music and you, too, could be showing off your best moves at your reception like our bride, Noreen Mehdi, shown above!

Traditional Ceremony

Contemporary Ceremony

First Dance

Father/Daughter and Mother/Son

Reception Dancing

The blog, Sound Track To I Do, is also an excellent resource for selecting music for any aspect of your wedding. They cover basically every genre, decade, and style that you could possibly want, so check them out here.

We have worked with the best of the best bands and DJs in the DFW area and can help you find the right match for your big day. Contact us today to set up an appointment! 

The Knot Party Dallas 2011

Here are the highlights from The Knot Party Dallas 2011 planned by As you wish…

A Special Thanks to Soulbox Productions for capturing the fun of the evening and to all the amazing vendors that made it possible!

2011 The Knot Party from Soulbox Productions on Vimeo.