To Toss or Not to Toss?

To toss or not to toss, that was the question. I had mixed feelings about the bouquet toss and whether or not to do it during our wedding reception. As a wedding guest, I thought of myself as "anti-toss."  That is, until last year when I caught the bouquet at my friend's wedding and sure enough, I was the next to get engaged! Of course I do not think it's because I caught the bouquet but I still think it's a cute story and decided that it will be fun to continue the tradition and maybe pass along a little luck ;)

I still have a couple of concerns about the toss though. 1) I really don't want to make the single ladies feel singled out (sorry, couldn't think of a better word). I will definitely not be asking the DJ to play Single Ladies for the bouquet song. 2) I have visions of an empty dance floor when it's time for the toss or the DJ having to coerce girls out on to the floor. Or even worse...what if I throw the bouquet and no one catches it? My soon to be sister-in-law told me about a wedding she attended where the girls just let the bouquet land on the ground because no one wanted to catch it. How anti-climactic!

I've come across various ideas for bouquet toss alternatives or ways of enticing people to participate. One idea that I kind of liked and toyed with was attaching a gift card (ie: Starbucks or MAC) to the bouquet so that the "prize" of catching the bouquet is not the pressure of supposedly being the next to marry but rather a fun little treat. I also liked the "Longest Married" idea of gifting the couple that's married the longest with the bouquet (in our case it would be my grandparents). At the moment, I haven't decided on if I'll try to spice up the toss a bit but if I do, I will surely let you know!

What do you ladies think of the bouquet toss? Yay or nay? I'd especially like to hear if you've been to a wedding where the bride either a) skipped the toss (and if it was missed) or b) the bride did an "alternative toss."

PS: You might have noticed that I did not include anything about the garter toss. Hubby-to-be and I easily agreed right away that neither of us want to include that tradition in our own wedding.

Credits: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6

Incorporating Culture: Austrian Style

You probably know by now that my fiancé is Austrian but I bet you didn't know that I am actually half Austrian! Because of this, it's very important to me to make references to our heritage and incorporate a bit of the culture in to our wedding...without conjuring up too many images of this infamous movie:


In one of my early discussions with our wedding coordinator, she excitedly suggested that our favors could be displayed on a table with a sign saying "These are a few of our favorite things" and that the packaging could be brown paper and strings. Get it? Well, I as the American did but the Austrian did not. In fact, he has never seen The Sound of Music and neither have any of his family or friends. We clearly had to scratch that idea but this is what I imagine our packaging could have looked like:

(credit: 1, 2, 3)

With that idea shelved, I thought about using Lebkuchenherzen (gingerbread hearts) as escort cards.  They're usually displayed in the below fashion and if we personalized them with guests' names and their assigned table numbers for a seating chart, it could create some very interesting visual impact.

They could also be used as place settings and/or double as favors for the guests to take home:


The problem with the hearts is that they are usually rock hard and don't taste that great so they could really only be used for the looks. Christian isn't a huge fan of the idea of using them because he said it reminds him too much of the countryside (he's from the city), so I've also put this idea aside.

Another idea we tossed around was asking all of our Austrian guests to wear their Dirndl and Lederhosen to the wedding. Don't know what drindl or lederhosen are? Check out this picture of Christian's family and me from a summer party last year. Cute, right?  The hills are alive....

(personal photo)

However, we once again decided not to execute this idea because a) we don't want the Austrian guests to feel like we're asking them to wear the clothes just to amuse the other guests (this was Christian's main concern as they would normally never wear dirndl and lederhosen to a wedding in Vienna) and b) dirndl and lederhosen can be very heavy and I didn't want to "force" anyone in to packing them with the risk of having to leave other things behind (or not be able to shop as much).

You might be asking yourself what we actually have decided on doing.  I will leave those details as a surprise but I can assure you that we have some very fun things planned.  I can't wait to share them with you in less than 3 months! :)  Are there any multi-culti brides out there?  How did you incorporate different cultures in to your celebration? 

The First Look

The first look was one of my favorite parts of Ryan and Liz's wedding. Of course none of the bridesmaids were at the scene, but instead, we were all crammed together on the end of the balcony trying to get as close of a look as possible. Even from that distance the moment was amazing, you really could just feel it. The body language really spoke for itself. I love this little sequence below because it takes no words to describe. The love and excitement is so present between the two of them that it is rather hard to try to put words to this incredibly romantic moment.

The First Look:

How do you feel about first looks? Are you going to do one??

I wasn't really that into them before, but after seeing this and thinking about it more, I really do think I am going to do one. The reasons I have been able to muster up would be first and foremost, the photography opportunity! It is really hard to get these kinds of shots while walking down the aisle, and could you imagine if they didn't have these gorgeous shots? Oh and a side note would be that you could get some of the photography shot list done before the wedding. Second reason would be the intimate moment of the whole thing. I would like the moment between him and I to be special, intimate and alone. Plus you can say a few words to each other possibly lighten the jitters a bit?? Plus I think the walking down the isle moment is in such a different element, that he will look just as he would've if he didn't see you in the first place.The last reason for me personally is that my eye sight is really bad, so chances are, I won't even be able to see him half the time I am walking down the isle!

So what are your pro's and con's on the first look? Are you adding it to your wedding, or are you sticking to tradition??

Photo Credit: Jason + Anna Photography