canada wedding planning

Cake Traditions to Sweeten Your Wedding
There are a wealth of strange traditions surrounding the cake that you might be interested in including at your wedding reception.

There are a wealth of strange traditions surrounding the cake that you might be interested in including at your wedding reception.

The world has seen its fair share of bizarre wedding customs over the centuries. While some practices are going to appear odd to those who are not part of a specific culture, there are certain rituals even long-standing members of a group find weird. Interestingly, many of these acts have to do with the cake. While you might already be familiar with one or two of these customs, there are a wealth of strange traditions surrounding the cake that might take you by surprise.

Learning about some of these fascinating rituals can help you to determine whether or not you want to include any of them in your reception. Take a look at these cake-related customs, and discover the lengths people will go in the name of tradition.

Smash It Up

To kick things off, it can be fun to start with a more well-known custom: the smashing of the cake. At modern weddings, guests can often get a kick out of watching a couple cut the cake and then waiting in anticipation to see if the cake will get smashed in someone’s face. Some couples love this tradition and happily grab handfuls of cake to rub on their partner’s cheeks. Still, other couples are happier keeping their clothes free of sugar and frosting. Interestingly, the custom itself seems to have developed from another weird one.

According to certain European wedding traditions, it was common for a groom to take a few bites off of a loaf of bread baked specifically for the event. Upon biting off a tiny edge of the bread, the groom would then hold the loaf above the head of the bride and shower her with crumbs. After all the bread was crumbled above her, the guests of the wedding would be invited to come and collect crumbs from the ground. The crumbs collected symbolized good luck, and when cakes replaced bread as the preferred nuptial treat, smashing the cake became lucky.

Two-Cake Town

One cake at your reception might be a delicious idea, so why not make it two? Recent years have seen a shift in the number of cakes at weddings. The main reason behind this seems to be to allow both partners the chance to have a bit of creative freedom. Compromise is often the key to a happy relationship, but there are certain happy mediums that might be difficult to find. For example, you’re never going to win when you’re fighting against a partner who wants a chocolate cake. It just won’t happen.

Instead of fighting a losing battle, you can find a lot more joy in having two cakes. The beauty of this option is that you do not need to get two lavish options. You can get two wonderful cakes that are smaller in size and allow guests the option of trying whatever option appeals to them. This is a more modern practice, so there really aren’t any fascinating facts surrounding it. Still, you may find the choice of bringing a second cake into the picture to be too sweet to pass up.

Purity or Price?

The tradition of having a white cake at a wedding is also one with interesting roots. Though white is usually used at ceremonies to symbolize purity, the real reason cakes are white is because of cost. The purer the sugar used in the frosting, the whiter the results. White became the norm as people over the decades raced to see who could boast the whitest confection of the season.

Though there are many interesting traditions surrounding the cake, it is hard to imagine a wedding without one. Discover what customs are the most appealing for your own event by exploring the other fascinating stories out there.

Beyond Pinterest: Getting Hitched With High-Tech Tools
Couples have moved beyond basic wedding websites and into high-tech tools to help mind the details, hire help, and pay for their special day.

Couples have moved beyond basic wedding websites and into high-tech tools to help mind the details, hire help, and pay for their special day.

Technology is an inseparable part of our lives. We often think of ways we can use it to simplify work, home life and leisure, so it’s no surprise that engaged couples harness technology for all aspects of wedding planning. Couples have moved beyond basic wedding websites and using Yelp! to scope out potential vendors, and Pinterest is already a top planning resource. Meanwhile, other high-tech tools are taking center stage to help mind the details, hire help, and pay for that special day.

Mobilize With Organization Tools 

Let’s face it: Planning your wedding is a project. That’s why some couples purposely turn to management, collaboration and information-collecting high-tech applications to organize their nuptials. For example, Evernote allows users to create individual “notebooks,” write notes, create task lists, clip photos and articles from the web, archive information and even set reminders. Meanwhile, others turn to nuptial-specific tools such as Wedding Wire Canada, described by CBC writer Katrina Clarke as a free service that helps couples locate vendors, discover décor and style ideas, plan a budget, and create to-do lists. You’ll want to make sure that your desired planning app supports Canadian users, but you should also evaluate several other factors:

  • Functionality and ease of use
  • Support for multiple media types such as text, photos and video
  • Available storage space for saves and uploads
  • Ability to share access with other users
  • Cost for usage and pricing plans

Wedding Websites That Help You Plan 

Couple-created wedding websites originated in the late 1990s. Some designed their own homegrown versions and published them on free hosting providers and independent ISP accounts. Meanwhile, TheKnot and other purveyors of nuptial planning advice debuted their own free website services alongside gift registries, budgeting utilities and online planners.

Personal wedding websites have come a long way in the last two decades. Besides supplying information about your event and allowing you to show off cutesy engagement photos, modern high-tech versions offer standard planning tools and advanced features such as online invitations, RSVP tracking, guest management and social media integration. Many, such as Zola and Joy, also provide visual matching between your website and your invitations so that the two share the same look and feel. Writing for Woman Getting Married, Lindsey Goldberg Jones lists and describes key features of the most popular services available.

Money Matters: Budgeting With Apps

If your favorite high-tech app doesn’t involve budget capabilities and expense tracking, it might be wise to add one to your arsenal. In a 2017 Brides article, contributor Molly E. McHugh revealed that money-management utilities such as Mint can be used to budget your event. Although it’s not wedding-specific, Mint permits Canadian users to detail spending plans, log expenses and submit payments to vendors.

High-tech Apps for Hiring Helping Hands

You and your partner can only do so much, so you might benefit from outsourcing services for all those extra wedding-related tasks. In a 2016 write-up, Medium contributor Sarah Schacht discloses her go-to tools. For instance, FancyHands is a United States subscription service that provides English-speaking assistants to perform tasks such as reservations, quotes, appointment scheduling or basic information gathering. AskforTask is a Canadian service that allows you to delegate small jobs such as decoration and setup for your event.

If you’re getting married, you might feel swamped by all the details involved. Couples used pen and paper in the past to keep track of essentials and minutiae, but both newbies and the tech-savvy can take advantage of new and emerging wedding planning apps. At the same time, popular productivity favorites can also be repurposed in new ways. Either way, you’ve got many high-tech possibilities right at your fingertips to help you pull your wedding together.

 

Signature Drinks: A Simplified Guide
Signature drinks are a popular way of capturing the essence of your wedding while simultaneously providing guests with ample libations.

Signature drinks are a popular way of capturing the essence of your wedding while simultaneously providing guests with ample libations.

The requirements for throwing a wedding have changed significantly over recent years. While the goal of a reception is to ensure guests have a wonderful time celebrating the union of a happy couple, new trends have shifted the manner in which this occurs. Now, it is quite common for couples to have to go above and beyond in regard to specific features of their special day. Signature drinks, for example, are a popular way of capturing the essence of the event while simultaneously providing guests with ample libations.

In most cases, a signature drink at a wedding is featured during the cocktail hour of the event. This is typically when the newlyweds are off taking care of business like photographs before the actual reception takes place. To select an ideal signature drink, be sure to think about a handful of these suggestions.

One or Two?

Though the tradition is somewhat new, there are already a number of different ways you and your partner can go about making your selection. The first decision to think about is whether you would like one or two signature drinks. One drink is meant to symbolize your union. Two drinks allow both members of the happy couple to craft their own signature beverages for guests to sample. Providing two options can be fun for competitive couples who want to see how many guests select which drinks.

Still, you might find having a single signature drink is more than enough. The drink is meant to help guests get through the cocktail hour without feeling bored waiting around for the reception to begin. This means you want to think about drink combinations that will keep people energized and excited. Stick with light, possibly fruity, alcoholic drinks to keep people engaged and ready for everything else. Keeping the alcohol content of these drinks low can also be helpful, as the actual event has not yet begun and you don’t want to deal with too many sloppy guests.

Favorite Choices

There are a number of ways you can go about the process of selecting your signature drink. Many couples find that it is easiest to go with drinks they already enjoy. When you and your partner go out every now and again and enjoy the same beverages, it might be a great place to mine for wedding inspiration. If you tend to drink “tequila sunrises” together when you go out, then you should definitely consider this drink or something similar as your signature cocktail.

You might also want to go in a completely different direction. When you want something new and refreshing for your guests, consider speaking with a certified mixologist. Though a new profession in many ways, mixologists spend countless hours trying to figure out the right drinks for any occasion. Those looking to keep their spending in check might also benefit from talking with friends or family members who have a background in bartending for some help.

What Drinks Are Hot?

Finally, you can never go wrong with selecting a drink based on recent trends. You and your partner might not be big drinkers, or you may not have specific beverages you gravitate toward on your nights out. If this is the case, there is no shame in taking a look at trendy blogs and restaurants for a bit of inspiration for your wedding drink.

Choosing the right signature cocktail for your special day can be a fun and interesting way to add an extra-personal touch to your event. Find the perfect fit for your needs by giving yourself ample time to make your choice and doing lots of research to find a solid option.

Keep a Bridal Shower Fun for Everyone
Planning your first bridal shower is going to seem like a lot to take on, but there are simple ways to make the event enjoyable for everyone.

Planning your first bridal shower is going to seem like a lot to take on, but there are simple ways to make the event enjoyable for everyone.

A bridal shower is a chance for the friends and family of the bride to come together and celebrate. If you’ve been tasked with putting together this event for a friend who has recently become engaged, you might not know what to do. Planning your first shower is going to seem like a lot to take on, but there are simple ways to make it through. While it is important to remember the bride is the person of honor at this event, the entire ordeal should be enjoyable for everyone in attendance.

Making the bridal shower fun for everyone involved is a simple way to produce positive results. You don’t even need to go to extreme lengths to achieve this goal. Take a look at these simple tips and discover ideas to help with your own plans.

Not a Solo Mission 

You might be the person who has been elected to throw the bridal shower, but you should not be doing it on your own. Planning this event often requires a lot of people. You need to set a date, gather invitations, plan food, come up with games, figure out who is bringing what present, and ensure everyone arrives in a timely fashion. Allowing this gathering to stress you out is a simple way to make it an unpleasant experience. Instead of trying to go it alone, ask for help.

Whether you are the sister of the bride, the groom’s mother, or a best friend from childhood, it is crucial to reach out to others for assistance. Not only will this gesture allow you a chance to share the weight of responsibility, it also adds to how effective the shower is overall. If you do it all by yourself, some areas of the event will suffer. Sharing the responsibilities can allow each person to go above and beyond to bring the best results to the table.

Activity Madness

Games and party activities are also a common feature of most bridal showers. Here’s the thing: Do not plan the entire event around the games. Some people absolutely hate games. If the bride is not a person who likes to sit and play silly games, do not force her to. The occasion is meant for everyone to have a good time, but you need the bride to enjoy herself to make the entire event worthwhile. Conversely, a bride who has a competitive edge should have a shower packed with fun activities.

While you know the bride and what she enjoys doing, it can be easy to let the thrill of planning this celebration cloud your ability to make the best decision. Reading over article after article on fun games to play at a shower might inspire you to come up with a ton of games when you know the woman of honor won’t be interested. Use your best judgment and remember the tastes of the bride before you commit to a day crammed with different wedding-related games.

Keep Things Simple

It is also important to remember that you aren’t planning the actual wedding. The bridal shower might be a big deal in some respects, but there is no need to go overboard with what you are attempting. For example, sending out invitations is considered a smart step to take. Spending a lot of money on nice cardstock and fancy envelopes, on the other hand, is a bad call. Keep costs sensible by opting for the simplest solution when it comes to mailing invites.

Planning a bridal shower can be a great honor. To ensure the bride has an absolutely lovely time, keep in mind what activities would be most appealing to her while also keeping the event fun for all. Make the experience simple and light to maintain a celebratory mood and a great time.

Alberta Wedding Photographer Organizes Free Ceremony

Wedding Photographer

When three of the weddings she had been hired to shoot this summer were cancelled by the couples due to financial reasons, Innisfail photographer Fawna Sidoryk decided to do something about it. She organized a contest with a free wedding as the prize. Several local businesses agreed to donate other services needed for the nuptials including a wedding planner, venue, hair and make-up, music and someone to perform the service. Sidoryk plans to take the pictures.

The Innisfail Contest

The three couples still in contention submitted a write-up describing why they should win and also sent in a photo. Two of the couples cancelled their nuptials for financial reasons, and the third did so because their son died.

Voting for the winner started on June 15 on the photographer’s Facebook page and continues until June 29. After it is complete, the couple with the fewest votes gets eliminated. The two that remain will be interviewed by representatives from the businesses providing the free services, and they will choose the winning pair.

Apparel for the groom, food and alcohol are not included. The date of the wedding has been predetermined; it will take place on Saturday, August 29.

Nisha and Amit

A couple from New Delhi, India, Nisha and Amit, had to postpone their wedding for a different reason. They planned to wed later this year but were informed there is an inauspicious planetary alignment occurring during the second half of 2015. As a result, Hindus are advised against marrying any time from July until the third week in December. This astrological phenomenon is rare and occurs only once every 13 years.

October and November are the most popular months in India to be married, and as many as 20,000 weddings per day can take place in New Delhi alone. There will be a huge backlog of people who want to tie the knot. Any couple who attempts January, February, or even March nuptials should expect stiff competition for venues and other wedding-related services. They should also plan to spend more money as prices are going through the roof due to high demand.

Destiny and Nicholas

Health problems are another reason weddings get postponed. Sometimes family members become ill, or it may be one of the betrothed. Destiny and Nicholas Brzuska from Garden Grove, Illinois, planned to be married on January 4, 2015. However, Nicholas was diagnosed with a brain tumor. His doctor told the couple he would be too weak to get married then. The couple decided to marry as soon as possible rather than wait. In an unfortunate display of greed, the management of the venue they booked for the January 4 wedding, The Garden Room in Garden Grove, refused to give them their $3,600 deposit back, despite Nicholas’s illness.

The Numbers Behind the Story

More and more Canadian and American couples are postponing their weddings. A recently released survey by the BMO Bank of Montreal concluded 67 percent of Canadian couples are delaying their nuptials for financial reasons. This is a new trend; economic issues were the cause of 31 percent of postponements in the last five years, and only 15 percent of people married longer than five years put off tying the knot because of monetary concerns. The primary reasons cited were:

  • Price of housing
  • Employment instability
  • Amount of debt

According to the BMO survey, many couples plan to take some of the following steps in order trim the costs of their nuptials:

  • Reduce the overall size of their wedding
  • Make their invitations or decorations
  • Enlist a friend to take pictures or DJ
  • Have their wedding during an off-season or a day other than Saturday

Weddings are milestone events, but sometimes life and finances interfere with even the most auspicious of occasions.