Engagement Season: Tips for the Lads + the Ladies

With engagement season fast approaching, we know the planning and process can be daunting! From planning the big ta-dah, to picking the shiner you will place on her finger forever, there is so much to consider. Never fear, we are here with some helpful tips and tricks to make the big day a little easier along with all the fun to follow!



For the Boys

Do your Ring Research. Start with the basics. Look at the style of jewelry she wears or ask her best friend for advice. If you think it’s too obvious to ask her ring size, take one of her everyday pieces to measure! Need more insight? It may be time to whip out that magnifying glass to take a closer look. Don’t be afraid to investigate, every girl has pinned, liked, or even commented on her dream ring through some social media platform. Do some digging. 

Ask the Future Family: While this is not customary, it shows a great deal of respect and could go a long way with your future in-laws. Who knows, they may give you some great insight on how to achieve her dream proposal! She may have mentioned it once or twice. 

Dress to Impress: Planning your outfit may sound silly, but your bride-to-be will want you looking spiffy in those proposal photos. Most importantly, keep the ring box safe and concealed until the big question arises. Choose pants or a jacket with deep pockets to keep your secret safe until the moment of truth!


Grandeur or Private Affair:  Ask friends and family whose secrecy you can trust for their advice. Trust your gut too. You know your bride-to-be and their personality. If they are shy, have the proposal be an intimate moment to cherish forever. If you have a slightly more adventurous fiancé-to-be, plan that huge party and the reveal she’s most likely expecting.

Trend NOT:  Think back to those noteworthy moments in your relationship that led you to falling in love. You are about to make the woman of your dreams your future wife, so don’t skimp on the romance. Finding the perfect proposal location might seem complicated, but the answer may lie in the simplest of places. Think about where you had your first date or first kiss, even locations with inside jokes between the two of you!

Outsmart Your Smarter Half:  Think of activities or outings you know she can’t resist. Recruit a trustworthy accomplice to join you in your plan. Great starting points include planning around friends or family member visits into town. It is easy to disguise just meeting company for dinner, cocktails, or a work party, the list never ends.

Off the Script: Collect your thoughts. You should have some concept of what to say when you propose, and how to deliver it. Your tact should be heartfelt, and your demeanor direct. However, memorizing lines will make it seem forced and less genuine. Sticking to a script may contribute to unnecessary stress, and who needs more of that?

Seal the Deal: To go above and beyond, think about what comes after the bride to be says YES (other than jumping up and down!). Consider what or where you are you going to go after. Will it be a planned dinner or celebration with friends? A lovely walk, night on the town, or maybe a simple trip back home to “celebrate” hint hint wink wink. 


Post Proposal…What’s next? 

Don’t Show THEN Tell: While the moment is beyond exciting and you want notify everyone on the face of the planet, understand how important it is to tell your parents and close loved ones before posting on social media. It is better to protect their feelings by hearing it from you, before seeing it in a picture! Remember to be prepared to tell the story a million times with the same enthusiasm and gusto, no matter the number of repeats you must endure.

Bling Without the Brag:  It is only natural to want to show the amazing job your fiancé did picking out a ring that best suits your taste and your personality! If you aren’t patient enough to wait for engagement photos, a tasteful way to show off your rock on social media is by incorporating your fiancé into the shot. Tip: Treat yourself to a manicure!

Live in Your Moment: You may want to jump right into wedding planing, however, don’t feel pressured to rush. Enjoy your honeymoon phase of being engagement before stressing over details. Remember, your fiancé put in a lot of time, thought and effort, into planning the engagement. Give him a little breather room, he may need a break! Plus, let him bask in spotlight for planning such an awesome engagement, just a little bit longer.

It’s Party Time: Why not have a get together to celebrate this new step together in the journey called life. Test your planning skills and host one yourself, or pass it along to a group of friends. (even potential bridal party) Getting engaged is a big change for both you and your friends, and you can be easily swept up with your fiancé and all the excitement. Planning these parties & showers will give you a chance to spend time with your best gal pals.

Tip: Keep track of the recipients to your engagement party/bridal shower/ initial save-the-date invitations. Guests will expect an invite to your big day..keep this in mind when you’re planning wedding numbers!

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Photo Credits: King Street Photo Wedding

Wedding Who? Enjoy your engagement, however, it is okay to start thinking of “Big Picture” ideas for the big day! We all know People wills start to ask about potential dates, details, venue, and food before you have time to think about it. Don’t stress out, just start a conversation with your future hubby and both of your overall visions and wants! Think about the date/season, venues, budget, wedding size a little later in the process. Tip: It is never too soon to start your wedding planner research. A planner can assist you in making those “Big Picture” decisions, and setting you up for a successful and less stressful wedding experience.

A Mindful Bride: Yoga Retreat

As a Bride,

you go to great lengths planning your wedding day to ensure everything will be picture perfect, enjoyed by your guests, and seamlessly executed. Of course all of these elements are extremely important, however, it is crucial to take time to prepare yourself mentally and physically for your big day! Yoga is the perfect outlet to rejuvenate your mind and body during the stress of wedding planning, and the perfect opportunity to relax with your bridesmaids before the big weekend. Treat yourself and your crew to a yoga session and brunch party here at the Rutledge House. Breath, let go of stress, relieve tension, enjoy the moment, and stretch your body. Have the instructor read passages that invoke thoughts of love and happiness. It will be the calm before the storm, literally!

 


 

Ditch The Studio: To make your yoga session an intimate affair, researchvenuesthat have private popup event packages, equipped with vendors and specialized personnel that will take care of the logistics and legwork for you.


 

Home Grown: After taking time to replenish your spirit and your mind, you and the girls can refuel your bodies by partacting in a healthful brunch. Take advantage of local artisans and indulge brunch-y selections such as cold pressed juices, Kombucha, organic blends of hot tea, chia seed pudding, homemade granola with almond milk, acai and smoothie bowls, avocado toast, and fresh heirloom bruschetta.

A Not So Basic Bachelorette Weekend

Goodbye to nuptial traditions & hello to modern couples eager to travel!

 The uptrend in both domestic and international destination weddings means saying goodbye to nuptial traditions, hello to modern couples eager to travel, and welcoming the bridal party to do the same. We can part with the days when throwing a bachelorette party meant a one night affair filled with bar hopping, tacky matching attire, and far too many shots! The bachelorette party is all about the bride making special memories with her closest friends, and a one night rendezvous just isn’t going to cut it. Bachelorette Weekend it is – and even better – make it a destination…maybe even to Charleston, SC! Organizing activities and getting a group somewhere for a destination weekend can be a tough task! Here are some of our favorite tips + ideas to make your weekend away (or stay) as smooth as possible, and fun for the whole group!

 

 

 


Land Your Lodging: Try an Airbnb instead of a traditional hotel

There is no better way to bond with the entire group than sharing a common space such as a home in the destination you are visiting. Everyone is able to get ready together, encouraged to hangout and chat in lounge areas, and eliminate any left out feelings within the group. Not to mention, splitting the cost of an Airbnb property can be substantially less expensive than buying individual rooms in a hotel or resort. ProTip: Buy communal snacks and drinks to keep in the kitchen for your clan, to satisfy any munching or quick bite needs.

 

 


Value in a Venue: If your lodging can’t accommodate all your activities, rent a swanky venue to host the weekend’s festivities! Check out venues that offer special packages specifically for bachelorette weekends or popup events for small groups. Check out one of our favorites here! 

ProTip: Here are some unique private event ideas to host during your bachelorette weekend

  • Sweat It OutJumpstart your day and spend the morning breaking a sweat to getting those endorphins flowing and burn some wedding planning stress. A cardio, pilates and/or dance class at  The Rutledge House is the perfect start to the weekend for you and your girls. After, reward your hard work, by indulging in a yummy brunch. Get more info about their yoga & brunch special here!
  • Belt It Out – Let’s be honest…We all love karaoke, but hate doing it for the whole bar to see. Host your own karaoke night and let loose with your ladies. I promise, Insta-worthy stories and videos will commence, especially with a group of ladies who feel no shame in belting their favorite 90s pop melodies.
  • Paint & ProseccoGive your gals an opportunity to tap into their imaginative side and pour their creativity onto a canvas! Pop some bottles, sip on some bubbly, and paint away! Not only does this create lasting memories, it leaves you with a piece of artwork to cherish after the weekend is through.

 


Private Affair: 

It can be tough establishing reservations for meal times that accommodate larger groups, especially when seeking a dining experience. Host a private dinner with an entirely chef selected menu. Set up a wine or beer tasting with appropriate food pairings. Showcase a chef demo with interactive elements. These intimate experiences will cater to everyone’s needs, and make the most out of your use of a venue. The Rutledge House Wine Cellar is the perfect backdrop for wine tastings and private dinners, and we offer a variety of options for you and your group. Check more info here!

 

Caffeine Crawl:

Get that pep back in your step after the weekend and try an unconventional approach to Sunday Brunch. Go on a caffeine crawl! Research local Coffee Shops, Tea Artisans, and Bakeries to try a little bit from everywhere. The fresh air and cups of joe might just be your bridal party’s saving grace.

 

Hire a Photographer/Videographer:

Quick, add this to your list of bachelorette weekend must-haves! Gone are the days of alternating between which girls take what photos, and the stress of posting photos in the moment. Why not hire a killer photographer/videographer to capture you and all your best gals during the celebration? Any photographer & videographer would be happy to capture these moments for you! ProTip: Plus..it’s the perfect surprise gift for the bride!

 

 


 

20 Southern Fashion Bloggers You NEED to Follow

It’s hot. The beach is calling. Fall is coming. There are decisions to make.

If you’re trying to up your style game, these girls (and guys!) are sure to get you inspired to make the most out of your look this season and next. Some are household names on the ‘Gram in these parts, while others are fairly new to the scene. Whether you’re a local or visiting our region for an upcoming wedding or event, these 20 fashion bloggers are all must follows! Read more

Visiting Charleston? Unique Things to Do This Summer

Whether you are new to Charleston, lived here for many years, or came on vacation, you are probably looking for something to do this summer. We have done the research for you and have found several unique events for you to attend. All these all-ages events embrace what Charleston has to offer!

Weekend Wine-Down:

Every Saturday from 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Deep Water Vineyard, Charleston’s only vineyard, is the site for a fun night of food, wine, and live music.  Located on Wadmalaw Island, Deep Water Vineyards is proud to host their very own unique wine event every Saturday.  Whether you live in Charleston or are visiting for a vacation, Weekend Wine-Down is a perfect place for socializing and making new friends.  If you want to try something new this summer, Weekend Wine-Down is worth the drive!

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Charleston River Dog home game

If you want to join the locals for a night full of fun for all ages, a Charleston River Dogs is a great place to take the family. Located on the downtown peninsula, its a great place to head to before dinner or drinks! Check the schedule here to see upcoming home games. Weekday games start at 7:05, Saturday games start at 6:05, and Sunday games start at 5:05.

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Charleston Farmers Market:

Every Saturday from 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m head downtown to Marion Square Park to get some local produce, food vendors, and products from local artists.  Charleston Farmers Market  is a great place to take the family for a fun day activity.  Located between King Street and Meeting Street you will be in the middle of plenty of other shopping and restaurants!

Shagging on the Cooper:

If you are looking for an exciting event with live music, head over to the Mount Pleasant Pier for some fun dancing and live music.  This is a great family event, located under the Arthur Ravenel Bridge with incredible views of the Cooper River.  On a hot summer evening come join charleston locals dance the night away in the cool breeze over the water!

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Wannamaker Movie Night

Looking for a fun night in the park? Wannamaker County Park has you covered! Bring your own chairs and blankets, take a seat in the park, and enjoy a movie with the Charleston community.  When the sun goes down the movie comes on! Check here for the movie schedules.

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Charleston has so many things to offer to its visitors, from an exciting downtown area, a beautiful view of the Cooper River, to the stunning outdoors away from the city.  Come take a look and enjoy different things that Charleston puts on for its community.  Come bring your family and friends and enjoy your night with us!

How to Choose a Perfect First Dance Song

The beloved tradition of having a first dance is a wonderful moment that signifies the beginning of a newlywed’s exciting journey together. Whether you choose to choreograph a routine or simply sway back and forth, this once in a lifetime moment is by no means supposed to be stressful. That being said, your song selection is a key component in making this moment magical and memorable.

We have created some tips below on how to choose a perfect wedding song that will create an unforgettable experience with your new spouse, allow for friends and family to gather around and admire your love, and kick start celebrating the wonderful night ahead of you!

1. Pick a song that has meaningful/sentimental lyrics to you as a couple; maybe it reminds you of the time you first fell in love, your journey together so far, or a special moment you have shared.

2. Choose something you can dance to. You want to be comfortable with how slow/fast the beat is so you hit those right steps you practiced. And if you miss one, don’t worry! Enjoy the moment and laugh about it together.

3. Find a song that resembles who you are as one. Every couple is unique and so are the endless amounts of songs to choose from! Decide whether you want to go for that romantic, classic, modern, or sheer fun tune.

4. Take into consideration your wedding venue. If you’re hosting a southern wedding, maybe choose an acoustic/country song or if you’re tying the knot at a destination, choose a song that originated from that location!

5. Utilize all the music services offered today. From Apple Music to Spotify and everything in between, there are sure to be tons of pre-made wedding playlists. While browsing, if you fall in love with a song, go for it!

6. Select a song from an artist/band that you both love. When you both relate to the song on a personal level, it makes your dance so much more extraordinary.

Embracing Diversity with Every Design

Something that we take great pride in is our ability to meet any need in any situation. More than the ability to adapt, running a successful event requires the ability to anticipate. Event and hospitality pros are consistently required to respond to the needs of their guests, which far exceed a 7 a.m. wake-up call or a comped meal to apologize for cold chicken. We live in a world where diversity should be celebrated and where individuals are encouraged to express their views and defend their identities. As a result, a well-designed event requires a certain level of cultural competence—the ability to effectively identify and respond to various cultural factors that can have an effect on how a guest responds to an experience. Read more

Charleston Fashion Week: Try This on For Size

 

Lexus Charleston Fashion Week, held in Marion Square here in Charleston, South Carolina, is a five night fashion event aimed to showcase emerging designers, model talent, fashionable boutiques and trendsetter personnel. Organized by industry experts, Charleston Fashion Week is recognized as a premier event and serves as a pathway to New York. This truly multimedia event harvests Charleston’s talent along with nationally renowned designers, runway shows, activities, and of course shopping! Here are a few tips you can try on for size.

1. Do Your Research

Review the official program. There you will find all onsite and offsite events that take place throughout the week. Hint: Review the official map or download it to your phone for easy access. With so much going on, it is easy to get lost in the hustle – Save yourself the stress.

2. Don’t Over Commit

In theory, It may seem like a great idea to attend every single event during the week. Highlight what peaks your interest and start from there, it is easier to add to your schedule rather than take away.

3. Experiment

Don’t shy away from attending a show that seems far fetch or not your style..expand your horizon, you might surprise yourself.

4. What to Wear

Picking your ensemble might be the biggest question for anyone attending a fashion event. It is good to dress the part, but do not feel pressured to conform to the norm. This is your chance to show your own personal style. The fashion world is your oyster, time to display your pearls.

5. Have a Plan

Don’t linger at doorways, stand in aisles, sit in seats that aren’t yours, or do anything that stops the ease and flow of traffic at the show. The coordinators, staff, and volunteers work tirelessly to execute a seamless event – Don’t be a bump in the road.

6. Space

Manage your space – Manage your accessories, no matter how fabulous. Hold umbrellas downward, handbags and clutches to your side, and please – tuck your feet under your seat.

7. Be Inquisitive

Fashion Week is a such a great networking opportunity. Make it a point to seek out industry experts, local designers, social media buffers, and fashion bloggers.

8. Mingle

Let’s face it, people in fashion don’t always look the most approachable. However, under that fab exterior they share the same passion for fashion as you – Break the ice and introduce yourself to fellow attendees seated around you. You never know, you may bond over your love for accessorizing or hate for sneaker wedges.

9. Have a Good Time

You’re there – watching an amazing show, mingling with knowledgeable patrons, witnessing new looks, absorbing new ideas, your creative juices are flowing – there is only one thing left to do – Enjoy yourself! Soak in the atmosphere and observe the details of the garments. Be dazzled!

10. Say Thank You

Don’t forget to thank anyone and everyone working the Fashion Week Events. Many of the coordinators and models are volunteers – they do this for their love of fashion!

Most Romantic Proposal Sites in Charleston

With proposal season in full swing, choosing a meaningful location to propose is essential for making the moment unforgettable. Home to romantic plantations and waterfront landscapes, Charleston, SC, has infinite locations to pop the question. We have narrowed down some of the best spots for you to highlight the start of a lifetime of love and happiness.

 

 

Botany Bay, Edisto Island

With the beautiful hues of sunset skies reflecting in the ocean, this secluded waterfront location is unlike no other.

 

 

Angel Oak Tree

Proposing in front of this astonishing, 1,5000-year-old ancient tree would be a perfect symbol of the eternity for your marriage.

 

 

Pineapple Fountain

A quintessential symbol of Charleston, this charming spot paired with a proposal will be a dream. 

 

 

 

 

Magnolia Plantation Garden Bridge 

Surrounded by gorgeous blooming flowers and winsome Oaks, proposing here will feel like your in a movie.

 

 

 

White Point Garden Gazebo 

Enveloped in oak trees, this classic location combines both waterfront views and a plantation-like atmosphere.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Folly Beach Pier

An exemplary place for ocean lovers, this pier will undoubtedly be coupled with a stunning, panoramic ocean view.

 

 

Rooftop Bar at Vendue 

One of the best rooftops in Charleston, the 360 degree view of the historic skyline, along with craft cocktails, makes for the unparalleled proposal.

 

 

 

Wild Dunes Resort

Propose and celebrate your special day at this luxury resort and private soft, white sand beaches.

 

 

 

A Look at Wedding Cake with Delicious Desserts

We sat down with one of Charleston’s best bakers, Laney of Delicious Desserts, to talk all about sweets! She shared how she went from a chef on a Naval ship to making some of the lowcountry’s best desserts. We also chatted about design trends for 2018 and her tips for brides looking for their ideal wedding cake. Check out the full convo in the video below! Read more