Favorite wedding gown picks for 2013

Badgley-mischka-bridalmarket-2013-weddingstyle-ig
Designer: Badgley Mischka

I've really been loving the instantaneous, up-to-the-minute info about my favorite topics that I can get through Instagram. I combed through over 5,000 Instagram photos tagged "#bridalmarket" that covered the recent New York City Bridal Market fashion shows, so you wouldn't have to. Here are my favorite wedding gown designs and trends for the upcoming season, linked to the user who took them.

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Designer: Claire Pettibone . Soft drapey ribbons, gorgeous!

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Designer: Jenny Packham (I'm seeing a little Downton Abbey here, yes?)

Ines-di-santo-bridalmarket-2013-weddingstyle-ig
Designer: Ines di Santo. Definitely not a boring ballgown.

Elizabeth-fillmore-2-bridalmarket-2013-marthaweddings-ig
Designer: Elizabeth Fillmore. Everyone was talking about the Art Deco-esque butterfly.

Elizabeth-fillmore-bridalmarket-2013-marthaweddings-ig
Designer: Elizabeth Fillmore

Claire-pettibone-bridalmarket-2013-mercinewyork-ig
Designer: Claire Pettibone. Both this style and the last showed off the drapey, flowing embellishment trend.

Elizabeth-fillmore-2-nyc-bridalmarket-2013-ig
Designer: Elizabeth Fillmore (Sorry, couldn't find the Instagrammer! If this is yours, please email me and I'll add your credit.)

What do you think? You love? Or is there a gown you are just dying over and want to share? Leave us links and info in the comments.

Want to look at all the #bridalmarket goodness? Hit this link on Statigram (a web viewer for Instagram photos). And here's my Statigram feed: http://statigr.am/ejpevents

Honeymoon Primer for 2013 { Guest Post by MoonRings Honeymoons }

Today's guest post was generously contributed by Miriam Geiser at MoonRings Honeymoons. On top of everything else you have to plan, can you believe that many of you brides and grooms are having to plan a honeymoon trip as well? Miriam provides a great primer to get you started thinking about it.

Rosewood-mayakoba-destination-wedding-mexico
Image courtesy Rosewood Mayakoba

{ Read related articles from The Portland Wedding Coordinator on honeymoons
and destination weddings: In the US, in Mexico. }

Honeymoon Primer – by Miriam Geiser and the MoonRings Team
 
With 2013 well underway, no doubt you are diving headfirst into your wedding plans!  It’s also time to get your honeymoon plans in place.  To help, here is a simple “Honeymoon Primer” so you can begin thinking about the essential elements of planning your honeymoon.
 
Where:  Great honeymoon destinations during peak wedding season (May – Oct) include Europe, Hawaii, French Polynesia, Africa, SE Asia (May – July) and Australia (Aug – Oct).  Remember, the Caribbean and Mexico are in hurricane season from July – October, so you need to have proper expectations about weather risks.
 
When:  Start now!  Popular summer honeymoon destinations such as Europe, French Polynesia and Hawaii book up far in advance, and air fares aren’t likely to drop, so it’s best to book soon.  The Caribbean and Mexico will be busy through April, but then availability will be more open.  While some couples may wait for last-minute deals, this strategy can be risky.
 
Fit:  When it comes to your wedding, you know how important it is that your arrangements reflect who you are.  Same with a honeymoon – the destination, accommodations and available activities need to fit your interests, preferences and budget.  Think carefully about fit before making plans – more than anything this makes a significant difference in your overall happiness on your honeymoon.   
 
How:   For budget-oriented couples, Internet travel agencies offer a range of lower-cost options, as long as you are willing to do your own research.  If you are a “Do-It-Yourselfer”, you will likely feel comfortable contacting hotels directly, booking flights and researching activities.  For those who are too busy or value guidance and creativity, a travel professional is the way to go.  Such tailored recommendations and the possibility to find better value can definitely improve the quality of your honeymoon experience.
 
No matter what, the best advice is to start working on your honeymoon as far in advance as possible.  This ensures best availability, best rates, and a stress-free planning process!

Summer weddings and bugs!

A version of this article ran on Portland Wedding Coordinator in August 2011.

 Can you believe, it's the end of May and the outdoor summer weddings in Portland and Lake Oswego are here. If you are getting married at one of the outdoor gardens, waterfront or riverfront parks or venues you are probably wondering what to do about the possibility of bugs.

Bug-off spray is a must at outdoor weddings, but here are a few  tips to make you the perfect wedding host:

– Avoid DEET-based sprays that can irritate skin. Lemongrass and geranium oil-based repellents are available and they smell much nicer.

– Transfer the insect repellent spray into nicer glass bottles before setting them out at your event. Empty glass spray bottles can usually be found in the bulk beauty aisle (lotions and soaps) of natural grocery stores such as Whole Foods and New Seasons. Wrap the bottle in a ribbon to match your scheme, and then it will be guest-book-table worthy.

(Vintage atomizers could be fun too!)

image from Polyvore

– Burning lemongrass torches or candles can keep bugs down in the immediate vicinity. Having gently-blowing oscillating fans can also help.

– If the area seems to be uncontrollably buggy, consider applying non-toxic lawn or yard insect treatments (some examples here and here) several hours or days prior to the wedding (get the permission of the venue owner first).