Vera Wang Spring/Summer 2012 Wedding Gown Collection

Not too long ago I posted Fall 2011 White by Vera  Wang’s Collection which was an absolutely ethereal display of flowy fabrics by my favorite designer, Vera Wang (I’m sure you already knew that).  Well…my, my, my! I just got wind of the 2012 Signature Vera Wang Wedding Gown Collection and I. AM. SPEECHLESS.  Well, except to scream aloud…I WANT ONE!!!  Please.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Photo credits:

Place Cards vs. Escort Cards

Place cards and escort cards are probably two of the most important directional signs your wedding (or formal event) should have and while both feature the name of the guests and each have a logistical benefit their purpose is slightly different .

Escort Cards, when used alone, are a little more informal but still identify each guest, by name, and the table at which they can be seated.  Set them atop a beautifully decorated table located directly outside of your event entrance and once the card is retrieved and the guest finds his or her table, they may seat themselves wherever they like. If you’re considering a larger number of guests or are hosting a more formal event, such as a wedding, you may also want to strongly consider using a place card.

Remember to ALPHABETIZE YOUR ESCORT CARDS!  I cannot stress enough how important it is that your escort cards be pre-sorted by last name of the guest and NOT sorted by table.  And if your escort cards are something completely untraditional such as sea shells, picture frames, biodegradable seed packets,  (I think you get where I’m going with this), sort them (by LAST NAME) into small, manageable groupings and clearly label them as such, “A – F, G – M, N – T, U – Z”.  Your catering manager or event coordinator will love you for it!

Place Cards also identify each guest by name but are generally located at the table setting at the guests table. It’s looked upon as the more formal of the seating considerations – a personal Welcome to the event.  I like to think of it as carefully assigned seating.

Introducing the Fall 2011 White by Vera Wang Collection!

If you’ve been following Behind the Veil, Beyond the Vows, then I don’t have to tell you that I am a TOTAL FAN of all things Vera!!  After Vera Wang’s very beautiful debut of White by Vera Wang earlier this spring, she’s back with the Fall 2011 Bridal Collection which has expanded to include not only seven new wedding gown styles but also bridesmaids dresses, shoes and delicate accessories.  Prices remain (more than) budget-friendly, with gowns ranging between $600-$1200, bridesmaids dresses priced under $200 and shoes priced under $100.

The White by Vera Wang Collection is available starting today at select David’s Bridal locations nationwide.  Be the first to make an appointment to see these beauties up close and personally!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Photo credits:

Creative Wedding Bouquets and DIY Ribbon Bouquet

Who says your bridal bouquet must consist of flowers?  From seashells to lollipops to jewelry and fabrics, there are so many chic options that are not only beautifully unique but many will last much longer than the evanescent flower bouquet. Check out all of these stunning, out-of-the-box bouquet options, that we’ve found across the web and tell me which is your fave.

Don’t you love this ribbon bouquet?  It’s surprisingly easy to do yourself with these simple instructions found on BurdaStyle: DIY: Ribbon Bouquets

Destination Decadence: All Aboard the Princess Mariana

It’s quite arguable that the Princess Mariana is so outrageously decadent that the title of this blog should read Picture This: Princess Mariana or better yet, In My Wildest Dreams: Princess Mariana.  You see, this lovely work of nautical art is a 258 yard luxurious mega-yacht.   And if you’re anything like me you’re probably wondering how, exactly, does one super-size a yacht.  You add some impressive features like six staterooms, a beach club, helipad (which by the way, becomes a golf driving range when the helicopter is away), and fully equipped gym.

And then you add in some fun accessories like  the party deck which includes two bars, casual seating areas, a raised dance floor, a grand piano, three cinema screens, a barbeque, sun beds and a spa pool!  And of course, a cinema on the main deck with seating for 13 guests.

Of course this is Destination Decadence so if you want to rent the Princess Mariana for a week, you’ll need to incorporate approximately $606, 500 into your wedding or event budget. Talk about a platinum wedding.  However, as I have also subtitled this blog entry In Your Wildest Dreams: Princess Mariana I dare to dream that I just blogged the location of my future wedding.

Chocolate Covered Strawberries

I tried my hand at chocolate covered strawberries a few weeks ago after deciding to include them as one of many surprises awaiting my newly married couple upon their return to their bridal suite.   Now, if you know me then you know that I am not a gourmet chef but every once in a while I get the urge to whip up something new.  Sometimes, it works out perfectly…other times, notsomuch.  Luckily, this time my curiosity landed on something so easy that I’m actually a little frustrated that I’ve been paying bakery prices all of these years.  See for yourself…

Chocolate Covered Strawberries

The Ingredients:

  • 1 pound strawberries with stems (about 20), washed and dried very well
  • 6 ounces semisweet chocolate, chopped

Raw Materials:

  • 1 Heatproof medium sized bowl
  • Parchment or waxed paper

The Instructions:

  • Put the semisweet chocolate into a heatproof bowls
  • Fill a medium saucepan with about 5 inches of water and bring to a simmer over medium heat
  • Turn off the heat then carefully set the bowl of chocolate over the water to melt and stir until smooth
    • IN A HURRY? Melt the chocolates in a microwave at half power for 1 minute. Stir. Heat for another minute or until melted.
  • Remove the chocolate from the heat once it had fully melted
  • Line a sheet pan with parchment or waxed paper
  • Holding the strawberry by the stem, dip each on into the chocolate using a lift and twist motion.  This will allow any of the excess chocolate to drip back into the bowl
  • Place the strawberries on the parchment paper and when finished let sit for 30-45 minutes to allow the chocolate to set.
    • IN A HURRY? Place the strawberry lined sheet pan in the refrigerator for 15 minutes for a quick set.

Now, I didn’t try these enhancements this time around but I imagine you can follow up the first chocolate plunge with a dip into coconut, chopped nuts, or even white chocolate for a little something extra. You may even want to try other types of fruits. It’s quick, easy and simple enough to try for your next baby shower, engagement party or girls night in and since not many people are going to say no to chocolate covered strawberries, they’re certified PARTY-FRIENDLY! Bon apetit!

Hostess Hints: Fleur-de-lis Table Linen Fold

The Fleur-de-lis linen napkin fold is an elegant and easy napkin folding technique that works well with formal and casual table setting.  It’s simple to do.  Don’t believe us?  Check out the step-by-step instructions found on

Fleur Step 1

Begin by folding the edges of the linen napkin diagonally, so that the result is a triangle.

Fleur Step 2

Fold the right edge to the top.

Fleur Step 3

Same with the left edge, resulting in a square.

Fleur Step 4

Now fold about two thirds of the lower edge upwards.

Fleur Step 5

Fold the top edge back.

Fleur Step 6

Turn the napkin over and insert the edge into the other end.

Fleur Step 7

Open the table linen napkin forming an “O” at the bottom and stand it up. Pull each edge of the table napkin to form the petals on both sides.

Voilà! You have just folded your Fleur-de-lis fine table linen napkin!

Your Destination Guide: Top 25 Destinations in the United States

If you’ve been looking for a destination for your wedding or honeymoon, you may want to consider one of Trip Advisor’s top 25. Regardless of whether or not your wedding backdrop calls for calming seas in an intimate beach ceremony or the natural beauty of towering sequoia trees in a whimsical garden wedding, you’ll find their list offers something for everyone.

  1. New York City, New York
  2. Honolulu, Hawaii
  3. San Francisco, California
  4. Las Vegas, Nevada
  5. Lahaina, Hawaii
  6. Kailua-Kona, Hawaii
  7. New Orleans, Louisiana
  8. San Diego, California
  9. Sedona, Arizona
  10. Seattle, Washington
  11. Anchorage, Alaska
  12. Chicago, Illinois
  13. Boston, Massachusetts
  14. Estes Park, Colorado
  15. Washington DC, District of Columbia
  16. Poipu, Hawaii
  17. Orlando, Florida
  18. Big Sur, California
  19. Bar Harbor, Maine
  20. Carmel, California
  21. Destin, Florida
  22. Savannah, Georgia
  23. Gatlinburg, Tennessee
  24. Miami Beach, Florida
  25. Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
For highlights on each of these locations, including hotel specials and the most current airfare, visit Trip Advisor.  And don’t forget that SocialBFly can assist with all of your destination wedding and honeymoon planning needs.  Bon voyage!