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So as much as I love and find it necessary to be surrounded in flowers… sometimes they are the first to go in the great wedding budget cut. It’s true. Flowers can be one of the more expensive things in your plan, and people have different feelings about this. You know my feelings. I worked in a flower shop for two years when I was 16 and can’t seem to shake the petals from my hair. I love them. And for me, they’re up there with food, and music as VIP wedding “big bucks” items. BUT, it’s different for everyone, AND it’s absolutely possible to maintain a beautiful wedding sans enormous blooms with simple elegant elements. Here’s how…

CHEAP FLOWERS IN BULK

Photo Courtesy of Brides.com

Photo Courtesy of Brides.com

This is one of my favorite rules, and if you are a regular Wedding Belles reader, you know that I talk about this often. You can maintain a really beautiful look at your wedding by using uniform flowers… lots and lots of them. Daisy’s, mums, carnations and tulips look AMAZING in large bunches. Simple and sophisticated.

 

BRANCHING OUT

Photo Courtesy of Brides.com

Photo Courtesy of Brides.com

Especially if you’re planning a wedding that incorporates natural elements, using branches instead of flowers can be a very sleek and modern centerpiece substitute for mounds of fluffy petals. Incorporating other details like ribbon, hang tags, and even food can give your centerpieces a modern look for less. Just don’t go overboard.

 

MOOD LIGHTING

Photo Courtesy of Brides.com

Photo Courtesy of Brides.com

 

Candles are a great way to light your party, and your guests faces for photographs. Ambiance is very important, and creating different lighting schemes can changes the theme and style of your event. Substituting high candlesticks with lower votives along with small floral elements can add a unique style to your table. I have something similar to this on my dining room table now. Crate & Barrel, CB2, and Anthropologie have beautiful and really inexpensive faux glass candlesticks with beautiful embellishment. Add bright candlesticks, a dash of floral color and you’re done!

 

GIFT GIVER

Photo Courtesy of Brides.com

Photo Courtesy of Brides.com

Showcase  your favors in beautifully packaged boxes as table centerpieces. Fill them with assorted candies, handmade soaps and stacked elegantly on white cake stands. 

 

FOUND OBJECTS

Photo Courtesy of Brides.com

Photo Courtesy of Brides.com

 

Nix the typical centerpice vases and head to your local flea market in search of found objects to incorporate into your wedding style. Use mismatched shapes and style to create a whimsical look on each table with simple florals.


WRAP IT UP

Etsy Seller Two Inspire You $55

Etsy Seller Two Inspire You $55

 

Turning a wreath on it’s back and filling the inside with high candlesticks or hurricane lamps with lighting is another way to make a smaller affair seem more intimate. Choose the wreathe carefully, and make sure your elements go together. 

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When I was growing up there was a small shop in my small town that helped every bride in a 100-mile radius register for her wedding china.  It was downtown, and mostly I remember going in there and looking up at all the crystal, glass and ceramic “things” that I could not touch (but desperately  wanted to) in complete and total awe. Sparkly things are mesmerizing to an 8-year-old right?

Since I had double shower present buying needs this past weekend, I wanted to check out the little shop’s new location…

Turns out, that little shop… not so little anymore AND… ironically enough sparkly things… still super mesmerizing fifteen years later.

 I’m not gonna lie. There are stores I could wander around in for hours… dress shops, shoe stores and tabletop shops. It’s kind of like walking into the housewares department at Bloomingdales, or the downstairs of Michael C. Fina.  Magic.

Alright. Giggle if you must, but I love entertaining! And you should entertain with pretty things. It’s fun. A lot of people don’t register for China anymore. And truthfully, I understand why. The formal idea of entertaining with “good china” sort of sits somewhere around Thanskgiving and Christmas. Important for holidays and out of town family. But why should you waste your beautiful settings on obscure out of towners?

GET SOMETHING YOU’RE GOING TO USE.  I’m serious.

 I don’t think you’re good china should sit and collect dust on a shelf somewhere post-nuptials. Your dinnerware should be beautiful and PRACTICAL. 

There were so many beautiful and practical things in that not -so small little shop in my still kind of small, little town that I had to share a few with you!

Mariposa

One of my all-time favorite lines of table top is Mariposa. Affordable, durable, pretty and timeless. You really can’t go wrong. They have just about anything you can imagine- from serving platters, bowls and vases for weddings to baby items for showers! They also have these really great napkin holders with a whole line of different kinds of weights- holiday themed, sunflowers, sleds, fireflies, ladybugs… the list goes on…

Brillante Line

Brillante Line

Brillant Line

Brillant Line

* See the spoon, cup and bowl? That’s what we decided on for my friend K’s baby shower this weekend. Isn’t it super sweet? The spoon also doubles in a different set with an adorable appetizer dish that they have- which I received as a Christmas gift! Love it!
 

Juliska

This is one of my all-time favorites too. My sister bought me my first piece at Christmas and I’m kind of hooked now.

Juliska Collection

Juliska Collection

 

Kate Spade

She does more than the bags and the shoes girls. These adorably vintage looking plates are a happy addition to any kitchen. 

Kate Spade Larabee dot tidbit plates- $80/Set of 4

Kate Spade Larabee dot tidbit plates- $80/Set of 4

Now there are also cheaper versions that have the same kind of feel as the items above. Crate & Barrel has a great line of place settings that are really affordable and really classic and Williams-Sonoma has some nice everyday options as well. Crate & Barrel’s White Pearl Dinnerware set is very reminiscent of the Brillant line from Mariposa in a classic white.  There’s always the reliable stand-by’s at Anthropologie too and check out Home Goods –  They often have beautiful Waterford and Lenox items at a serious discount.

Happy Entertaining! 

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