Proper Wedding Reception Etiquette…What Not To Do

Proper-Wedding-Reception-EtiquetteCouples spend a lot of time planning their big day!

The last thing they want is for the event to come off as tacky at the last minute…during the reception. While you know there are proper etiquette rules to follow when it comes to invitations, gift registries and seating, you may not know all of the rules when it comes to the reception. Here are a few things to avoid doing at your reception so you don’t allow guests to leave with a sour taste in their mouths regarding your big day.


Don’t…Make tacky announcements

New couples need money to start their new life, but that doesn’t mean you should pressure your guests into opening their wallets until they bleed dry. Avoid announcements like: “Last call for the money envelope,” or “We fed you dinner, now you need to participate in the dollar dance.” Don’t guilt guests into giving more than they intended. They probably already brought a present, after all.


Don’t…Sit at the head table and ignore guests

Your wedding guests came because they wanted to see the bride and the groom get married.  Yes, It is your special day and you can do as you please, but  your guests have taken time out of their lives to spend your special day with you. They need to feel welcome and appreciated. After the toasts and after you eat, work the room moving from table to table and try to see everyone in attendance.

Your wedding day can be an event to remember for everyone involved, including the guests. Avoid these reception don’ts and make sure guests walk away with a smile and no complaints.


Honeymoon on a budget

The secret to getting the best bang for your buck when it comes to your honeymoon is planning ahead. Wedding planning can really become a stressful event if it is not done with time and the proper preparation. Even then you won’t be able to predict what will happen next or how expensive things will turn out to be. They say your wedding and honeymoon plan the tone for the rest of your wedding for this reason it is important to plan ahead to ensure your honeymoon is everything you and your partner have always wanted it to be. Here are 5 ways you can save on your honeymoon without depriving yourself from an amazing adventure.

Do Your Research

When it comes to wedding planning many times your honeymoon will take a back end with so many things happening all at the same time. You want to ensure your honeymoon is a top priority on your list as well. As the better the research and planning you do the better the price of your honeymoon will be. Remember to always double check your options and never settle for the one that sounds the best the first time you hear about it. It is very common for couples to choose the very first honeymoon idea that comes to mind. This will only lead to an expensive trip that may not stay on budget.

Create a Honeymoon Budget

Just as you would create a wedding budget you want to make a honeymoon budget to give you an idea as to what you are willing to spend and what places will accommodate your budget best. Once you have created a budget you want to start looking online for the best offers that fit your budget. Websites such as travelzoo.com and jetsetter.com can show you what are the best offers that will suit you for your honeymoon. And they always have deals going all year round to help you plan your honeymoon ahead of schedule.

Stay Local

When we hear the word honeymoon out initial thoughts may be tropical island, warm weather and lots of sightseeing . However, if you are worried about splurging a little more than you should on your honeymoon going local can be just thing you need. When checking local hotels that contain amenities such as couple massage, spa areas, or a jacuzzi for two groupon.com can be a great website to check out. You are sure to find exactly what you are looking for at a very discounted price.

Consider An All inclusive hotel or cruise

Considering package deals that have everything inclusive is another excellent way to save on your honeymoon. All inclusive package deals are usually just that deals that include everything in the hotel or cruise. However, it is important to do your research and really find out what is included in your package. One way to make your research a little bit more simple is by visiting TripAdvisor.com. TripAdvisor can help cut your research time in half as it will list all the things the hotel or cruise you are interested in has to offer. If you are looking for great deals consider traveling during the week instead of the weekend, hotels tend to have better sales if you stay during the week.

Don’t forget to Brag

Once you have chosen your honeymoon destination and are planning to call and book your stay be sure to brag about being honeymooners. Hotels tend have to have a sweet spot for weddings and honeymooners for this reason they may upgrade your room or give you another swanky benefit while you stay with them. They also know that you are shopping around for the best deals which will make them give you even better discounts and sales on what they are expected to offer.

When it comes to your honeymoon it is important to plan ahead of time so when they day comes you are able to enjoy as much of your partner as possible. Make sure you follow these saving tips to get the best deal on your honeymoon trip. If you know of any other tips make sure to leave us a comment below and tell us about your money saving tips and tricks as well.


Seasonal Wedding Cocktails

There can be a lot to think about when it comes to your wedding, but don’t overlook the bar. A signature cocktail is one detail that will add class and charm to your nuptials. Get inspired with these recipe ideas for every season:

The Summer Spritzer


lemon, seltzer, vodka wedding drink

For the perfect accompaniment to a summer ceremony, why not try a classic white wine spritzer? Simply mix half a cup of club soda with half a cup of wine, and garnish with a lemon twist or seasonal fruit, for a refreshing sipper that won’t mar your dress, should any spillage occur. Bonus tip: Add fresh rose petals for a unique, delicate flavor.



The Fall Cider

apple cidar fall wedding

The autumn season and apple cider go hand in hand, so try adding a traditional apple cinnamon cider to your bar. Pair 4 oz of apple cider with 1 oz of whiskey and blend with a splash of cinnamon simple syrup over crushed ice, for a sweet and spicy fall beverage. Bonus tip: Chilly outside? Try serving this warm.




The Winter Martini

wedding martini

For an effortlessly chic winter cocktail, the chocolate martini can be hard to beat. Mix 5 oz of vodka with 2 oz of clear Creme de Cacao. Serve in a long stem martini glass with a dark chocolate chunk. Bonus tip: To satisfy your sweet tooth, add dark chocolate shavings as an additional garnish.




The Spring Scarlet O’Hara

cranberry, vodka drink

This bright sipper is a signature drink with all the luxury of a Southern belle. To make it, add 2 oz of Southern Comfort to 5 oz of cranberry juice. Top with a dash of lime and garnish with a lime wedge for a pop of color. Bonus tip: For a slightly tropical feel, add a seasonal fruit skewer.





No matter when your wedding is, there is a memorable signature cocktail for every season, so don’t be afraid to experiment and find yours!


Naked, Dressed, or Creamed… The Top Trends in Cakes!

Fresh flowers on Long Island Wedding Cake

Whether birthday, anniversary, or wedding, a cake of some sort will likely be at your event. Cakes have been around celebrations forever. Ovid, the Roman poet born in 43BC, writes of his birthday celebrated with cake in his collection, Tristia. Cakes have changed since Ovid’s time, but the tradition of cakes is timeless.

These swoon-worthy cakes are a delicious addition to any occasion:

wedding cake with fondant at Astoria weddingFondant cakes emerged on the scene in the 1950s, with roots tracing back to marzipan in the 17th century. With their streamlined look and elasticity, it’s easy to see why they became a quick favorite. The customization options are nearly endless. With countless baking shows and competitions on television, bakers are showing off their sculpting and wowing audiences with cakes that resemble works of art more than food! Are fondant cakes overdone? Yes. Are they absolutely stunning? YES! The new look for these cakes: airy, water-colored, and marbled. Put a new twist on the classic white with a cake that subtly matches all the colors of the day.



Naked cakes broke out in 2014, and with their beautiful deconstructed look, show no signs of stopping. An un-iced, tiered cake looks best covered in fresh, big, colorful flowers and is perfect for any event you’re hosting. Of the cakes featured here, the naked cake is the easiest to replicate at home.


Our tip, have a skilled family member try their hand at naked; just be sure to have extra flowers available for inevitable mess ups!

NYC Wedding with 2 tier cakeBUTTERCREAM! This something old is something new again! Buttercream icing has been the standard in cake decorated for, well… ever, and is now coming back with a vengeance. The new trend? Single tiered and structured. Bakers are once again showing off their piping skills with these little masterpieces. Who doesn’t love a pink rosette made of sugary goodness?? Bakers are now stamping in geometric shapes and patterns into their creations. A delicious dessert to top off any meal!





3 tier cake with buttercream at Brooklyn wedding wedding cake with fresh flowersold school 4 tier cake at soho wedding



Whichever cake your day merits, be sure to enjoy, savor, and indulge. Remember, party cakes have zero calories! (Not really…)

Written By Kimber Benedict


Vintage Wedding Playlists – 1950s

a vintage automobile with a just married sign on the back

For vintage-themed weddings, the 1950s are a popular choice. With jazz ballads, doo wop dance numbers and classic rock n’ roll hits, this decade has the perfect musical mix to set a fun and nostalgic tone. Here are song suggestions for the ultimate retro-inspired reception:

Dinner Music:

Billie Holiday – “It Had To Be You”

Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong – “Dream a Little Dream of Me”

Santo & Johnny – “Sleepwalk”

Andy Williams – “Love is a Many Splendored Thing”

The Fleetwoods – “Come Softly to Me”

The Five Satins – “To the Aisle”

The Mello Kings – “Tonight, Tonight”

The Duprees – “You Belong to Me”

Cutting the Cake:

Ray Charles – “What’d I Say”

Johnny Otis – “Willie & the Hand Jive”

Bouquet Toss:

Marilyn Monroe – “Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend”

Dale Hawkins – “Susie Q”

Barrett Strong – “Money (That’s What I Want)”

Garter Toss:

The Solitaires – “This Girl of Mine”

Little Willie John – “Fever”

First Dance:

Frank Sinatra – “Taking a Chance on Love”

The Moonglows – “Sincerely”

The El Dorados – “My Loving Baby”

Johnny Mathis – “Chances Are”

The Drifters – “Dance With Me”

The Flamingos – “I Only Have Eyes for You”


Dance Party Starters:

Frankie Lymon & the Teenagers – “Why Do Fools Fall in Love”

The Del Vikings – “I Hear Bells (Wedding Bells)”

Chuck Berry – “School Days”

El Musiquero – “At the Hop”

Gene Vincent – “Be Bop A Lula”

Bobby Freeman – “Do You Want to Dance”

Paul Anka – “Diana”

Chuck Berry – “Rock and Roll Music”

Lloy Price – “Stagger Lee”

Dion & the Belmonts – “Teenager in Love”



Music sets the tone for your wedding, and with so many hits, this playlist is sure to get your guests on

their feet!


5 Steps to being an un-biased Maid of Honor

Brides Maid dress with bride at NYC wedding

Being “Made” of Honor

Maids of Honor are an integral part of any nuptials. She is the bride’s backbone, and the heart of the bridal party. The MOH is so deeply involved in all of the planning that it can be hard to constantly put the bride’s taste above her own. I should know; I’m a first time MOH. I am absolutely excited to be serving my little cousin in her upcoming wedding and I know first hand, that seeing a party through her eyes has proven difficult! Here is a list of how to stay un-biased and un-jealous throughout the process… some of these I am still working on!

1. Truly understand your bride’s vision. You may be modern chic and you’re bride rustic quirky. You might not understand why she prefers petit fours, over individual brownie bites. Try to think like the bride. See the world through her veil. After all, this is the couple’s day and while you have been by her side for a very long time, today is about the style of the bride and groom.

2. Know the budget. This is important to know when making suggestions and putting in your two cents. Know where the money is coming from. Many parents have a fund set aside for their child’s wedding; especially when couples marry younger. But, many couples fund their own day. It’s so important to know where the couple stands on the budget, is there any wiggle room or would they like to save as much as possible. If you know the ins and outs of the money situation, you can make a more informed suggestion. Maybe the Cuban cigar roller isn’t a necessity.

3. Rein her in. Say your bride wants fairytale infusions, she may be so focused on the “theme” she’s about to buy fairy wings for the bridal party… this is your cue to step in. Suggest baby’s breath in the party’s hair or little butterflies in the bouquets.

4. Remember that it’s not your day. While you might prefer a strapless dress and a naked cake, it doesn’t matter. When you get married (or have a HUGE party just because), then you can get whatever you like. This is about making the bride’s dreams and wishes come true. She has been by your side forever; give her the big gift of support for her vision. And… never murmur the words, “Well, if it was MY day…”

5. Be there for all that she needs, because she is often there for whatever you need. Leading up to the wedding, chances are the bride is a bit stressed. She’s your bestie, you know what she needs; take her out for cocktails, to the beach, or a quiet dinner. Above all, remind the bride that this should be more happy than stressful and constantly be available to brighten her day and lighten her load.

Written By Kimber Benedict


Unique Outdoor Wedding Venues in Connecticut

 Handsome- Hollow-wedding-ceremony-sm

When it comes to outdoor weddings, Fairfield & New Haven Counties in Connecticut offers a wealth of unique possibilities. Whether you’re looking for a romantic landscape or a quirky location, we’ve rounded up five original ideas to help add a touch of personality to your ceremony.


1. Keeler Tavern Museum

Step back in time with the Keeler Tavern Museum, an historic landmark and chronicle of Ridgefield history and heritage. The museum’s Garden House is charming and intimate, with arched pathways, a fountain and seasonal garden area.

outdoor wedding reception at Keeler tavern museum


2. Beardsley Zoo

For a truly memorable location, Beardsley Zoo is tough to beat. Set across 52 acres of beautiful parkland, the zoo offers multiple spaces, including a Victorian greenhouse, carousel and other outdoor sites.

Wedding table set up outside for reception at berdsley zoo


3. Bill Miller’s Castle

Doesn’t everyone dream of getting married in a castle? Bill Miller’s Castle brings those fantasies to life, with four different ceremony sites, including an outdoor Gazebo and Trellis Under the Trees. The picturesque estate offers up stunning views, fit for royalty.

Wedding pictures at cill millers castle


4. The Carousel at Lighthouse Point Park

It’s impossible not to fall for the playful charm of the Carousel. Nestled in the heart of Lighthouse Point Park, this vintage venue has been in operation since the 1920s and is guaranteed to inject an air of whimsy into your ceremony.

carousel wedding reception at the lighthouse point park

Credit: Pennace Photography


5. Two Roads Brewing Co.

Ale aficionados will appreciate this home of quality craft beer. While the event room, featuring industrial brewing machinery, is technically indoors, the distinctive factory building and grounds provide a quaint backdrop for wedding photos.

outdoor wedding at brewing company in CT.

So, whether you’re looking for a traditional space, or a more modern atmosphere, Connecticut may be the perfect destination for your outdoor wedding.