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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!

https://www.kingstreetphotoweddings.com

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!

 

 


 

Wedding Season Fashion Inspiration from Maris Dehart + Boho & Bows

Somehow, it’s already August. That means footballs are about to fly, pumpkin spice is in the air, and wedding season is about to be in full swing.

With the best time of the year upon us, it begs one question: what to wear?! We teamed up with one of Charleston’s best bloggers and boutiques to find the answer.

We got together with Savannah Guss of Boho & Bows to get inspired for the season. B&B, the life & style blog providing a spark of creativity from the perspective of a young mother, gave us top picks for the upcoming wedding season’s looks for the lowcountry and beyond.

We stopped by local standout boutique Maris Dehart because, well…how could we not? While walking out of Maris Dehart’s doors and not looking fabulous is virtually impossible, owner Alden Haviland had some special items waiting at The Cabana that even exceeded expectations. The Cabana by Maris Dehart, the summer-only section of the boutique, is a must-see if you’re on a search to stand out.

 

 

 

Savannah got started with this elegant white dress.

This stunner is the ultimate look for all things bride. Rehearsal dinner? Elopement? Engagement pictures? Beach wedding? Reception dress?  You name it, and this beauty can be styled for any bridal occasion. I absolutely adore the high-low ruffle hem & mini train on this dress; it’s the perfect touch to give this look sass & class! I love the versatility to pair with a bright statement earring for a more casual vibe or with a simple veil and some bling, you’re ready to say “I DO!’

 

 

 

I never met a fringe I didn’t like! The detail of this light, delicate fringe hem combined with the ever-flattering fit of a wrap dress & soft color makes this dress a total show stopper. This is a style that would look gorgeous on anyone. As a wedding guest or attendee of a bridal shower/brunch/rehearsal dinner, this look is fool-proof & fabulous!

 

 

I love the unexpected sass of a classy pants and top situation instead of a dress. If you’re a bride looking to breakaway from tradition, or just not so much of a dress gal, then ladies look no further! The simplicity of the black and white is stunningly elegant, while the detail of the fringe gives it that extra WOW factor. Throw on a bright statement earring for a pop of color and totally rock this look at a rehearsal dinner or engagement party!

 

This set is so eye-catching & fabulous and it’s such a fun alternative to a dress. The stripes with the small detail of fringe and high waist, in combination with the subtle crop, give this look the ultimate vibe of elegance and style. Sets are one of my favorite styles because they take the work out of having to “piece” an outfit together. They’re a fashionable no-brainer, if you will. This set in particular is super easy to style for a more casual bridal brunch or glam it up for a dinner, by a quick change of accessories, shoe, or a bold lip. (P.S. It’s super comfortable too!)

 

Whatever you decide to do when attending the big day of your nearest & dearest this upcoming season, Savannah says to make sure to stay true to yourself and you can’t go wrong.

“No matter the trend, cost or brand, true style is about who you are,” she says. “Kindness & confidence will never go out of style and will always be everyones best looks.”

Top Bridal Trends for the Months to Come

As spring weddings approach, we are seeing confident and feminine looks that put a fresh spin on the classics. Trends that channel every bride’s inner personality and create a look that is less than traditional and out of the ordinary. The rise of temperatures in the spring and summer months brings inspiration for new bridal looks that are vibrant and enhance a seasonally appropriate feel. Consider design elements like ruffles, florals, color and cuts to add a playful vibe that suits this time of year!

Color Me Pretty: In bridal, ivory, white and alabaster reign supreme, but of all seasons this is the time to experiment! If you are unsure about wearing white, consider taking a risk with color. Choose soft pinks, pastel floral prints, butter yellow, something soft blue and pistachio greens for a look that feels fresh in the months where everything is in bloom – transforms the most traditional silhouette into something unexpected – or go bold with multicolor embroidery!

Back to Black: Black and white are a match made in heaven when it comes to everyday wear, and now the classic pairing is making a splash in the world of bridal fashion. A simple black belt can add a hint of edge to a sweet gown while black velvet ribbon accents provide visual interest without overwhelming a look. Even opt for a piece of dark jewelry or make a splash with a black shoe.

Short Story: From sassy minis to sophisticated tea-length dresses to romantic high-low hems, this trend is not afraid to play with length, and you neither should you. Raising your hemline does not require you to lower expectations for a dramatic dress moment. Shorter skirts feature embellishments and textures and allow for spunky layering. Bonus Perk: Showcasing your fabulous legs – or adding the perfect pop of color with an outrageous shoe.

Bang for Your Bow: Let’s be honest—putting a bow on a wedding dress isn’t exactly revolutionary. But bows are back and even bow-lder than before. This ultimate feminine detail softens up otherwise sultry looks but with ads a sophisticated spin. Asymmetrical bows stand out against clean lines and can introduce subtle volume to your sleeves. The trend has never felt fresher.

Hot for the Cold Shoulder: This trend may have already made its way into your closet—now the cold shoulder look is begging to be featured in your wedding. Strapless used to reign supreme, and then off-the-shoulder made its debut – now this neckline has proved it not going anywhere anytime soon. Add interest to a classic shoulder-bearer with ruffled, off-shoulder sleeves or a cut-out version that still feels fresh. This is the happy medium between a basic strapless gown and anything with sleeves. Bare shoulders and peek-a-boo cutouts highlight your enviable frame and infuse a soft and sexy appeal that feels right for the season.

 

Playsuits, Yes Please: In months where easygoing minis, blouson gowns and effortless A-lines are the best bets, try for something even more easygoing–a jumpsuit or palazzo panted set that feels as special as any bridal gown could. Contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to be the world’s sharpest dresser to pull off an all-in-one wedding-day look! Hint – the same rules for accessorizing apply! Don’t worry.

A Gluten-Free Guide to Charleston

It’s no secret that Charleston is a foodie’s paradise, as top-notch dining options in the city are in abundance. There is no need to sacrifice flavor and ambiance of the area with Celiac or Gluten Intolerance; you just have to know where to go! Here is a complete guide to getting the most of the holy city’s cuisine scene while staying gluten-free, with help from Taylynne Duvall from Gluten-Free Near MeRead more

Charleston Wedding Favor Ideas: Unique Sweet Treats

There is no better thank you than receiving a taste of Charleston’s local flare. Wedding favors are the perfect opportunity to share something about yourself and to highlight your wedding’s location. With these memorable Charleston treats you can leave your guests with a little way to savor your big day! Read more

A Romantic Night Out for Two

Whether its a first date or an on-going ritual, all perfect date nights in Charleston must be romantic. In a city so saccharine, there’s no excuse for a night that leaves a bland taste in your mouth. So, let’s meet at a quintessential Italian eatery WAY North of Broad. Read more

Wedding Favor Ideas: Personalized Cold Brew Coffee

What do we all need the day after an event? Coffee! Get to know Chatterbox, an all-organic Charleston coldbrew brand that offers delicious blends in fully customizable packaging for your big day. We sat down with Owen, owner and founder, to discuss how he got started, how he makes cold brew coffee, and what special benefits make Chatterbox perfect for wedding & event favors. Read more

Arrive in Style: Wedding Transportation Tips from Lowcountry Valet

There are seemingly endless details to think about when planning your perfect wedding. One of the most important, though often overlooked, aspects is your transportation. Regardless of whether you’re looking to get a little wild on a party bus or arrive in a stylish, intimate fashion with a classic car, it’s vital to take a few steps to make sure your wedding transportation is in place. Read more

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