Bridal Affairs

Angel of Hearts Wedding Planning- unique wedding planning services for the discerning bride. Let me guide you through the process in a fun and stress free way. I will be Watching Over Your Big Day!

Here is a place to share all things wedding! Please share your ideas with me.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

TLC WANTS YOU TO WIN A DREAM WEDDING






Shop Your Way and TLC “Say Yes to the Dress” SYW Sweeps
Shop Your Way and TLC will “Sweep” One Lucky Bride off their Feet with a Dream Wedding!

If you’re like most brides, weddings can be both emotionally and financially stressful. There is often a struggle to find the perfect dress and accessories, not to mention plan a honeymoon – all within a budget.  That’s why Shop Your Way Sweeps & TLC’s “Say Yes to the Dress” is offering you access to win a dream wedding prize worth over $30,000. Prize includes a dress credit, a fitting from one of the top bridal shops in Manhattan, a dream honeymoon, & jewelry and apparel from Sears and Kmart.

Enter now through April 14, 2013 at http://syw.co/1ikbIhI. While you’re there, check out all the other great benefits of Shop Your Way Sweeps. 1000’s of sweepstakes live now and lots more added daily .
Good luck!

Thursday, February 27, 2014

STILL WATCHING OVER YOUR BIG DAY


I am happy to announce that Wendy's Affairs of Heart has a new name and a new look!  But, nothing else has changed.  I still offer the best and most comprehensive personal service to the bride and my dedication and passion for what I do has NOT changed.  There is a new web site to come very soon.  In the meantime, feel free to contact me here with your wedding questions.   I look forward to working with you on your wedding and Watching Over Your Big Day!

Special Thanks to Lauren Wessier for her amazing work in creating my new graphic and to Kim at Heirloom Occasions for her incredible patience and talents in developing my stationery suite!   

    

Saturday, January 18, 2014

FROM THE PAST- WHY?

Within the pages of time and history are held many wedding traditions.    Some we still do and others we discard for our own traditions- or because they make no sense.  But, even as weddings have changed and brides put their own spin on things, wedding traditions are a part of every couples' special day.  So, at this time of year when there are so many newly engaged, I thought it would be fun to tell you about where these traditions began.

The RingsThe ancient Romans believed that a vein led directly from the third finger of the left hand to the heart.   So, that is why your wedding band goes on that finger.   Engagement rings- or diamonds specifically, are a 20th century phenomenon, capitalized on by DeBeers - A Diamond Is Forever.   Until the 1930's, a diamond ring was not typically the choice for a betrothal.  Though diamonds were popular among the very wealthy from the time of the Renaissance, it was not until DeBeers concocted this marketing plan and the availability of diamonds was far more widespread.   Until then, it was more typical for a bride to be to be given a gold ring as a promise to marry or, in the early Colonial times, a thimble, as jewelry was shunned by the Puritans.  

The Bouquet:  Though you will most likely be carrying a lush, aromatic cluster of your favorite flower on your wedding day, this is not what you would have carried in ancient times.  The bridal bouquet was carried for survival- literally!   A bride would carry a bunch of garlic and dill to protect her from getting the plague on her way to the altar.  Later, herbs would be carried as a symbol of renewal and to ward off evil spirits.   Flowers were introduced by Queen Victoria.   As for throwing the bouquet- this tradition grew out of the fact that during medieval times, it was customary for the guests to chase after the couple after the ceremony in order to assure that the marriage was consummated.   The wedding guests would tear at the bride's dress for a piece of it as good luck for their own marriage.  So, in an effort to escape the crowds, the bride would throw her garlic and herbs at the crowd, in hopes that they would chase after that instead of her.   In another related tidbit, the garter toss grew out of this same notion.   It was customary for the guests to invade the bed chamber of the couple and toss their tockings around.  It was said that whomever wound up with these things, was the next to be married. 

Photo Courtesy BG Productions

Of Maids and Men:  Bridesmaids originated as bait for the evil spirits that were said to be after the bride.  The brides friends were dressed identically to the bride and sent forth to fool the evil spirits as to who the REAL bride was.   The Victorians had all the girls dressed in white with short veils.   It was not until much later that the "bridesmaid dress" was born.   In ancient times, the Best Man was the lucky guy who got to accompany the groom when he went to "kidnap" his bride.  If any harm came to the groom, the best man would defend him- to the death, if necessary.   

 And The Bride Wore White:  Well, not always!  White wedding gowns did not become popular until Queen Victoria married her beloved Albert.  Until then, the bride wore her Sunday best- even if it was black.   There was no designated wedding gown.   The veil, was more like a shroud- to protect the bride from those evil spirits lurking at the wedding site.  It was also a means of keeping an unsuspecting groom from seeing his "arranged" betrothed before it was an accomplished fact that they were married.   The length of the veil denoted the wealth of the family.  The longer the veil, the bigger the dowry.   

Wedding Cake:  The wedding cake is another tradition that was born our of superstition.   In ancient times, it was bread and not cake that was used.  The bread was broken into tiny pieces and strewn over the bride's head to ensure that she understood that the groom was in charge and to bring good fortune to the couple.   Later, guests would bring small cakes or sweet rolls to the wedding banquet.  These cakes were stacked as high as possible to see if the couple could kiss over them without knocking them down.   A prosperous life was their good fortune if they succeeded.    In the early 1700's a clever baker took the idea of a stacked cake and is credited with producing the first real wedding cake.    Other fun facts about wedding cakes- Royal Icing was coined when Queen Victoria had her cake iced in white.   Eating the crumbs was considered good luck and if you didn't eat a piece of the wedding cake, it was considered rude.   Saving the cake top for a year- that came from the superstition that saving the wedding cake ( which at that time was made with candied fruits and laced with wine) would ensure that you would not have marital trouble later on.   And, cutting the cake as a couple- that was a practical thing,  When all those stacked cakes got to be too heavy for the bride to cut alone, the groom had to help with the process.   

Ladies On The Left:   This is one of my favorites and something I tell EVERY bridal party at rehearsal.   In medieval times, it was probable that the men would have to defend their ladies against marauders.  So, they needed their right arm and hand free to draw their swords.   Thus, when you are part of a wedding party or getting married- ladies take the left arm of the men.  

Something Old, Something New...:    This is something that most brides still enjoy doing.  Something old, a family treasure, worn to honor your past.   Something new, worn to welcome your future with your new husband.  Something borrowed, traditionally from someone who is happily married so that her luck will rub off on your new marriage.   And, something blue, the symbol of fidelity and true love.   And, that penny in your shoe-to bring prosperity to your union and good luck.  Often, it was made into a piece of jewelry after the wedding.  


So, now you know.   And, as you plan your happily ever after, think about the fun of knowing where some of these traditions came from.  Happy Planning!     

                 

Friday, January 17, 2014

A MATCH MADE IN HEAVEN

This love story is really heaven sent- with a little help from Match.com.    I had the pleasure of chatting to Eliza and Troy last night.   They have both been through some trying times, but when they found each other, they just knew they had found their soul mates.  

Eliza is a widow, having lost her husband suddenly and leaving her with 3 children to raise.  She is a special needs teacher and the mother of a special needs child.  Eliza is lucky to have some great friends and her eldest son, who took on the job of "man of  the house".  But, something was missing.  She joined Match.com  and went on some dates- no match.  Then, she decided to try one more time and SHE HAD A WINNER!   Eliza told me that she knew right away.   She said she kept thinking he was "too good to be true", but deep down she knew he was THE ONE!

Troy, a divorced dad of 3, ( yes, we have a Brady Bunch here), was blindsided after 19 years of marriage.   A former policeman and now football coach, he could have been gun shy.  But, he joined Match and also went on some not so great dates before meeting Eliza.    Troy told me, very enthusiastically, that had an immediate connection to Eliza, but couldn't tell if she liked him.  But, Eliza was not going to let this guy get away, so she found a way to let him know she felt the same and just touched his hand while they were waiting to enter the comedy club on their first date. 

Troy knew he wanted to marry Eliza and join their families forever.  He decided to do it the right way and ask for her children's blessing.  He even bought her daughter a ring when he asked her if she would like him to be her "dad".  Such a touching gesture!    Then, at Thanksgiving, he and Eliza's brother in law ( her husband's brother) went out for ice and he asked if it was ok with the family if he asked Eliza to marry him.   Of course, everyone was thrilled that Troy and Eliza have found each other and everyone is happy for this proposal to happen.      

 Troy entered a contest so that he could propose to Eliza in a very special way.   With the help of a team of amazing people, Troy gave Eliza the moment of a lifetime and a surprise that she will remember always.   Troy told Eliza that they had been chosen for a documentary on successful couples who met on line.     Eliza, who has been documenting their love story with a Polaroid camera and journals, was happy to participate, in yet another documentary, about how they became a couple.  She had no idea what was really going on.     

After spending the day talking about their time together, they separated and Troy went home to prepare for the surprise.   The house was donned with lights and all the kids, plus Eliza's family from Maine, were n the house awaiting the celebration.  

Troy told me that he was so nervous!  He said he didn't have a speech prepared and really didn't know what he was going to say.   He told me he could "feel his heart beating" and he just couldn't wait for her to come around to the backyard.
When Eliza arrived, she was so focused on Troy that she didn't see all the lights or the sign that said "Will You Marry Me?"    Her realization is priceless!!  And, after Troy got down on one knee and popped the question, the entire family came running from the house to offer hugs and congratulations.   I have to tell you- Eliza had her camera with her all day!!!!  So, she has the pictures of all of this for her "Polaroid Scrapbook"!!!!   And, she has this wonderful video documenting their romance and the beginning of their Happily Ever After!      


Troy and Eliza plan to marry in November on the beach in Treasure Island, at Sunset Beach House, with their children around them and their family and friends to share their love.   Eliza's eldest son will give her away and the focus of their ceremony will be the blending, forever, of their families.  Troy and Eliza are so excited to share this day with the people they hold dear.  And, as if you are not already convinced that this match was made in heaven, their mothers have the exact same birthday- yes, they were born on the same day, same year.  And, when they went to the web site for the venue they liked, the music played at Eliza's husband's funeral was part of a video on the site- an obscure song that no one would have known to use.  When Eliza heard this, she knew that her husband had given his blessing from heaven too!    I asked them if they were going to do anything symbolic at their wedding. They are going to do a sort of sand ceremony, taking sand from under their feet and having the children do the same, placing it in a jar to be placed in a prominent place in their home.   

Eliza and Troy have a very deep faith.  Their love and dedication to each other and to their kids just oozes out of them with every word and action.   Their love will get them through whatever life brings and I am blessed to have had the opportunity to share this little piece of their life with them.    Thank you, Troy and Eliza, for letting me into your lives and your hearts.  And, for giving me the chance to share your beautiful story with my readers.   God bless you and may you have many wonderful years together and share many more Polaroid moments for that book!!!    



Here is a link to an interview that Troy and Eliza did on local TV about this experience.  I know that when you listen to them, you will fall in love with them just like I did!  


Thank you, too, to Match.com, for contacting me with this story and to Karen and Eva for setting up the interview.  

I would love to be helping this bride with her wedding!!!   She is an inspiration and a darling!!    

Monday, December 09, 2013

DEN OF THIEVES?

Planning a wedding is one of the most exciting- and stressful things you will ever do!   And, to make it more daunting, you are bombarded with Pinterest boards, "reality" TV and too many web sites and too much "advice".    Recently, there was a 20/20 show about the wedding industry and how it overcharges just because you are planning a wedding and not a birthday party.  And, over the weekend, there was an article in the New York Times about the same thing.  This is just NOT true!    And, let me tell you why.

First of all, YOUR wedding is NOT a birthday party or a corporate event.  It is a once in a lifetime milestone in your life.   Professional people that work in this industry spend a great deal of time working with you on this one day.   Hours of prep time, interaction with you over a period of months, or even a year.   Editing photographs and video footage to bring just the right images to you.   Tastings and menus and choosing linens and chairs and cakes.   Helping you decide on just the right song to dance to with your new husband and choosing a playlist of YOUR favorite music.  Decorating your cake to look like your wedding vision.  All of these things and more go into making your wedding day a perfect memory for you to take with you on your life's journey.   

In addition, these people do this for a living.   This is their income- how they feed their families.   Just as other professions spend years in school or learning a trade, wedding professionals spend years honing their craft, staying on top of trends, learning new technology and investing in their business.   So that when you hire them for such a monumental event, they are prepared to do all they can to make it what YOU want it to be.   We are not all celebrities.    Most of us are just regular people, with regular lives.   But, we do this so that YOU can have that extraordinary moment in your life.   

Not every wedding professional is out of reach of a couple on a budget.   And, not every couple is suited for every professional- not financially, personality, style, etc.   So, when you go "shopping" for your wedding vendors, you need to do a little research, make calls, meet with people and then make an intelligent decision about who you will hire.   

Finally, you must decide what you can afford and then set about choosing professionals in your price range.   Know where to put the bulk of your money- what things are the most meaningful to you.   Your wedding doesn't have to be expensive to be beautiful and elegant.   It just has to be about you and your new life together.   

We are NOT your enemy and we are not out to send you to the poorhouse or scam you.   Oh yes, there are thieves among us.  And, you must be able to figure out who is who.   Or, you can do the SMART thing and hire a planner at the beginning.   Our job is to keep you on track, on budget and help you choose the right people for your wedding.   We are really your best insurance for having a perfect day on a budget.  
Here is a note from a bride who was on a very tight budget and she had, with my help, the best day of her life!!   Believe me, we in the wedding industry are not out to get you.   We are here to help you plan the biggest and most wonderful event of you life.   So, don't buy into the idea that we are all trying to make more money from you because you are getting married.  This day is about your new life together and not about us at all.  That is what we are here for- YOU!  

The bottom line is this- you can plan a wedding on a budget.  But, you have to know what your budget is, what is most important to you and how to choose the right vendors for your needs.   Real weddings are beautiful because of the two people joining their lives amongst family and friends.   The rest is just eye candy.  And that eye candy comes at a price.   And, I personally don't know anyone who scams brides or overcharges when they hear the word "wedding".   Count on it!      


      

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

JACQUELINE AND MIRKO: A BEAUTIFUL DAY

Saturday, September 28, 2013- a magical day for this incredible couple AND for me!  In almost 13 years of planning weddings, I have never been so captivated by a bride.   I LOVE every bride I have helped and I have grown attached to many of them.    But, this couple, and Jacqueline in particular, just had something that left me at a loss for words!  
 
The day began with a flurry of activity along with more love and giddiness than I can say.   The bridal suite at Le Meridian was jam packed with friends of the bride, the bridal party,  Beautiful Brides Philly, Gerard Tomko Photography, Lucky Productions,  several little ones and Jacqueline- making sure that her mom, her sister and her best friend were feeling included.   And, everyone was fussing over the bride!   


 These two families literally came from all over the map to join in the celebration of Jacqueline and Mirko's wedding.  Mirko's family came from Germany, Jacqueline's father came from Italy, mom came from California and I lost track of all the other places that guests arrived from.   But, they were all her to be a part of this special day.   

Jacqueline's best friend, since they met in daycare, went out for protein bars and yogurt.  Jacqueline's mom had her ipad out and was showing photos of the girls growing up and how Jacqueline always wanted to be "shrouded" in her veil.   I guess some little girls really do carry out their childhood dreams.   



The day could not have been more perfect.  The sun was shining, it was warm and we were on time!    Jerry took the couple off for formal shots and I set to work.   There were so many details that needed to be placed- from two big boxes of pillars to unwrap and place in the library for the ceremony, to the homemade jam jars that doubled as escort cards that needed to be arranged, to the family tree as a guest book and the family photos to be displayed.   I had dads to pin and family to gather in the lobby for photos and Jacqueline got dirty outside, so I had to get out my baby wipes and clean her up.   




The ceremony was just beautiful and officiated by a dear friend of the family.  The whole thing was so personal and tender.  There were tears of joy and plenty of love to go around.  And, it was translated into several languages.   As were the programs and the menu cards.    


 
 One of my favorite things on Saturday was Mirko helping me to bustle the dress!!  I was so glad that Jacqueline's sister was there to snap this photo!!  
 Jacqueline and Mirko took dance lessons for their first dance at Society Hill Dance Academy.  It was perfectly executed and very touching.   I keep saying that.  but, I am telling you, this couple was SO connected!!!  It was also elegant and almost regal.  Just look at her!


       
  The tables were all named after the places the couple have traveled.   Each table had a photo of the couple taken in the country or city and Jacqueline made all the frames.   Besides being beautiful, she is so talented and VERY smart!!   




EBE Talent provided the DJ and Amanda and Ryan were amazing!  There was not a time all night that the dance floor was empty.   Everyone had a wonderful time.   And, even though Jacqueline requested no conga line, her mom and her friends had other ideas.   It didn't seem to phase our bride.   She is so gracious and sweet that nothing could have dampened her day.  


  As Mirko is German, Jacqueline wanted to perform a German marriage tradition.  This is usually performed during the ceremony, but for obvious reasons, they decided to do it during the reception.   In Germany, the couple saws a log to ensure they will be able to work a team in their marriage to overcome the obstacles that befall them.   This is the first of those obstacles- to saw through a log.      And, even the way they cut their gluten free cake was special.   No doubt they will be a fabulous team!  
 



   I could keep posting pictures of these two, but this is getting long.  I really wish I had some of the professional shots to share.  Well, maybe later.  I will share with you a slice of the party that I videoed on my phone.  It is a perfect way to end this post!  I can't tell you how I loved this couple.  I was mesmerized by her all day and it was a truly magical wedding- like out of a story book.  Jacqueline was the quintessential princess.