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Category: Brides Want to Know

Here Comes the Guide brings you expert articles and blog postings about things Brides Want to Know. We get lots of questions from California brides and we’re here to answer them for you, with plenty of help from our “Certified By The Guide” California wedding professionals.

The list below gives you the option to read longer, more detailed pieces from our Articles + Ideas section or shorter, topical and timely pieces from our blog. Either way, you’ll get great info from the experts on everything related to California weddings.


Brides Want To Know: Destination Wedding Etiquette—Who Pays?

Beach Resort MontereyDear Here Comes The Guide: My fiance and I are considering a destination wedding somewhere in California. We aren’t sure what the expectations are in terms of covering the costs of our guests. Also, what do you think is the best place for a California destination wedding? Thanks!—Janet O., Clackamas, Oregon


Brides Want To Know: Do We Have To Split The Guest List Fifty-Fifty?

Destination Wedding Invitation by Paper Stories, ChicagoDear Here Comes The Guide: We are planning a fairly upscale and costly wedding for our daughter. It is a destination wedding for our guests, but more local for the groom side. Therefore, our guests are not as likely to attend as the groom side. Do we have to split the guest list fifty-fifty? My thoughts are that we should have a thirty-seventy, or forty-sixty split. We are paying for the whole thing. What is the norm?
M.O.B.


It’s Trunk Show Time

Bliss by Monique Lhuillier at Pure English Couture Bridal in VirginiaMany of you received a very special gift this recent holiday season, and it’s sparkling on the ring finger of your left hand! If you’re like me, the first thing you wanted to do when he popped the question (after calling your BFF and Mom) was to go window shopping for your wedding dress. Just to look around and see what’s out there. We wholeheartedly encourage that pastime!


Brides Want To Know: Destination Wedding Thank-You Notes

Designs By YuDear Here Comes The Guide: I had a destination wedding. Should I send a thank-you note to those guests that came to the wedding, but did not buy us a gift?
Thanks for your help,—Pauline M., Chicago, IL


Brides Want To Know: Trunk Shows

Lili Bridals I just got engaged and I keep hearing about trunk shows for wedding dresses. What exactly is a “trunk show”? Is it worth going to one?
—Amanda, San Luis Obispo, CA


Brides Want to Know: Guessing the Guest Count

Entertainment Design EventsI’m inviting 178 guests to my wedding and I want to get a better idea of what the final count will be. Is there any way to estimate how many people won’t attend?—Kim, Apple Valley, California


Brides Want to Know: Southern California Custom Wedding Dresses

Marie Antoinette Couture When I’m gown shopping, I find that most of what I like, I don’t LOVE. For example, I like the bodice, but don’t like the fullness, or the skirt is “too trumpet,” etc. What would be really great is to find an affordable custom wedding dress from a reputable designer. Do you have any suggestions in LA or in Orange County? Please let me know!
—Allison G., Los Angeles


Brides Want to Know: Unique Bridal Bouquets

Nancy Liu Chin DesignsDo you have any tips on how to make my bouquet super-elegant and unique?
—Melissa B., Larkspur


Brides Want to Know: Bouquet Options for Bridesmaids

Waterlily PondIs there anything besides a typical bouquet my bridesmaids could carry?
—Gaylen H., Auburn


Brides Want to Know: Green Centerpieces

Nancy Liu Chin DesignsFor centerpieces, I was thinking of using potted plants because I like the idea of something that lives on after the wedding. My colors are Wedgwood blue and cream. Will all that green still work?
—Sandi S., Danville


Brides Want to Know: Bouquet Brainstorm

Patricia Gibbons, Floral designerI am overwhelmed with all the beautiful flower options for my bouquet! What criteria I should use to narrow down my choices?
—Rachel C., San Francisco


Brides Want to Know: A Question of Religion

photo of Bel Air WeddingsNeither my fiancé nor I are at all religious despite our upbringings, though we do share a broad-based spirituality. Our families are much more traditional, and might be offended if our wedding ceremony is entirely secular. Is there a way to honor the belief systems of our parents without being hypocritical?—Pamela G., Vacaville
Read our experts’ answer.


Brides Want to Know: Hors d’oeuvre Dilemma

photo of Glass Onion CateringCan you tell me how many hors d’oeuvres per person is the norm for a cocktail wedding reception? I’m not having dinner, just hors d’oeuvres and cocktails for about four hours. I need to figure out my menu and am at my wits end trying to find the answer!Lisa D., Eagle RockRead our experts’ answer.


Brides Want to Know: Live Entertainment or DJ?

de Bois EntertainmentMy fiancé and I have most of our wedding plans set, except the music for our reception. We can’t decide between live entertainment and a disc jockey. The reception will be indoors with about 150 guests. We have to keep an eye on cost, too. Are bands always more expensive? What do you recommend?
—Maria M., Fallbrook
Read our experts’ answers.


Brides Want to Know: Beachy Boutonnieres

Nancy Liu Chin DesignsI want to do something different for my groom and his attendants besides the typical carnation or rose boutonnière. We’re having a beach wedding—any suggestions?
—Delia P., San Jose

Brides Want to Know: Organizing the Guest List

Brides Want to Know: Organizing the Guest List posted by Jolene

Timing, choice of wedding stationery and, of course, guest list protocol are all critical steps in your wedding planning. The ever-savvy Vera Wang has some ideas for helping you get organized.


Bridesmaid Dresses: What Would Vera Do?

Bridesmaid Dresses: What Would Vera Do? posted by Jolene

When it comes to choosing dresses for your bridesmaids, one size definitely doesn’t fit all. Not only that, but not all styles are going to be universally approved. What to do? Vera Wang has a few suggestions… Read on!


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