A Parisian Dream Wedding that all Starts with a Couture Gown

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It’s a given that anything with Greg Finck behind the lens is destined to be pure magic. And when you add Paris and a couture Elie Saab dress into that equation…it’s heart-stopping territory. Feast your eyes on this château celebration made even prettier at the hands of event planner and designer extraordinaire Sarah Haywood along with on-site coordinating by Alejandra Poupel Events and florals by Kitten Grayson. Plus see another couture dress in action with the couple’s wildly pretty engagement right here!

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Sonny&Ann are both from Singapore, and had decided to organize their wedding day at stunning Château de Vaux le Vicomte. This is undoubtedly the most prestigious venue around Paris, and I had never had the chance to work in that amazing XVIIth century castle before. The couple trusted Sarah Haywood, a celebrity luxury wedding planner from London, to organize the weekend festivities. The day started at The Shangri-La Hotel in Paris, where Ann got ready and the couple led the tea ceremony. For the ceremony, Ann wore a stunning couture dress from Elie Saab, with a 30 feet long train. The ceremony was held outdoor despite the chilly Parisian weather that day. Reception was absolutely stunning with amazing florals by The Isle of You, and an amazing main table. Guests were then invited to the gardens of the Château, for a glorious firework, and an incredible video mapping on the facade of the Château.

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Photography: Greg Finck Photography | Floral Design: Kitten Grayson | Assistant Photographer: Marie Film Photographer | Assistant Photographer: Oliver Fly Photography | Chateau: Château De Vaux Le Vicomte | Fireworks: Grand Final Fireworks | Hair Styling: Phuc Le Trung | Live Music: Vogue Band | Live Painting: Maerta Wydler | Video Mapping: Rupert Newman | Wedding Planning&Production: Sarah Haywood | Wedding dress and shoes: Elie Saab | Wedding on-site coordination: Alejandra Poupel Events

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Don’t Send Another Text Message Without Reading This First

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Texting and wedding planning? They go hand in hand. Because when picking out those florals and selecting the right linens, you so obviously need to stay in touch with your besties on a 24/7 basis. And that’s where Hayley Paige and her awesome Holy Matrimoji app come in. It’s our new fave way to chat all things wedding with the cutest hand-illustrated emojis ever created by Hayley Paige herself. It even makes stressful situations charming. Guys, you need this.

We love a smiley face emoji just as much as the next person, but when it comes to texting about your upcoming nuptials, not all emojis are created equal. With Hayley Paige’s Holy Matrimoji app, your true wit and personality will show with every hit of the “send” button.  I mean, let’s be honest… that moment you realize that your dress is the wrong shade of champagne doesn’t just call for a teary face, you need a full-on fire-breathing bride. Plus, when things get a little out of control (cough, with you, cough), your besties can calm you down with some much-needed bridezilla spray. So cute… and so rich in artistry and character.

Whether you are tying the knot yourself, standing besides your best friend or just need a fun-filled (+ totally chic) app that will let you talk all things matrimony, the Holy Matrimoji app is for YOU. Download it today for $1.99 on the App Store as a custom keyboard or for iMessage. You can even upgrade to access even more emojis. Trust us, this app is an absolute must-have.

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A Wedding Combining Chinese + Jewish Traditions

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Planning a multicultural wedding is often easier said than done. Particularly when that wedding includes both a Chinese Tea ceremony and a Jewish Bedeken Signing Ceremony designed into one cohesive event. Luckily, Michelle and Zach had Shaw Events by their side who planned all of the above with elegance and style. Watch the day unfold straight from the lens of When He Found Her.

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From Danielle, the planner… When Michelle and Zach began to plan their wedding day, they knew they wanted to combine their families traditions and honor their individual backgrounds. Instead of compromising on which traditions they would include, they decided to host a full day event, including a traditional Chinese Tea ceremony and intimate Jewish Bedeken signing ceremony for their immediate family and friends; along with a more formal Jewish ceremony for all of their guests. Choosing the stunning grounds of Kurtz Orchards’ Gracewood Estate, Michelle and Zach worked with Shaw Events to create a timeline that worked seamlessly and set up that utilized different areas of the property for each ceremony. This kept the guests interested and allowed them to see the beauty the venue had to offer. That beauty was accented by the stunning floral design by Bloom & Co. and decor by Simply Beautiful Decor.

The Bride and Groom then chose to end the evening with dinner under the stars. It was served at a large family style dining table, among the cherry trees, and wrapped up with a twelve-foot dessert spread by sweet celebrations. Their guests then danced away the night under a marquee tent. Everything was beautifully captured by When He Found Her and Brightside Films.

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Photography: When He Found Her | Videography: Brightside films | Event Planning: Shaw Events | Floral Design: Bloom & Company | Makeup: The Look Beauty | Hair: Glow Hair & Beauty | DJ: Pop Com Media | Transportation: Community Transport Group | Venue: Kurtz Orchards | Confections: Sweet Celebrations Wedding Cakes | Decor: Simply Beautiful Decor | Musicians: Gracenotes

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A Wedding Shoot Inspired by Hit Movie, Legends of the Fall

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Did you ever watch the movie Legends of the Fall? (I can’t believe it came out 23 years ago!) The raw beauty of that film always stuck with me… so when Jeremiah and Rachel Photography and Greenwood Events sent over this inspiration shoot that SO perfectly captures that ranch life, I knew it was a sure win for those of you planning rustic fetes. It’s one you’ll want to spend some time pinning my friends, promise.

From Jeremiah and Rachel PhotographyThis past September, we had the privilege of collaborating with Greenwood Events and The Resort at Paw’s Up to work on a shoot that had been on our hearts for years. We had a vision of showing Montana in it’s best light, romantic, wild, passionate and untouched. We adore the story Legends of the Fall, and Tristan’s fight against himself. It might be a tragic story, but the happiest he is in that movie is when he’s with his true love, Isobel. And that’s where this shoot was born from. The Resort at Paw’s Up is one of the most beautiful places in Montana, and just being on the ranch was awe inspiring. Darci and Arden of Greenwood Events tapped right into our hearts and created this entire setting, even making a field of wildflowers for our lovely couple.

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Photography: Jeremiah and Rachel Photography | Event Design: Greenwood Events | Floral Design: Greenwood Events | Wedding Dress: Claire Pettibone | Ring: Trumpet & Horn | Makeup: Skin Chic | Hair: Christina Stevens | Grooms Attire: Jcrew.com | Dress Shop: Willow Bride | Invitation and Calligraphy: Cast Calligraphy | Location: The Resort at Paws Up | Rentals: The Party Store | Ribbon: Tono & Co | Tabletop Rentals: The Top Collection

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Bridesmaid Dress Shopping Made Simple in 3 Easy Steps

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We’re all for anything that makes your wedding planning life easier. So if you think we’re jumping on the Vow To Be Chic bandwagon, you are sooo correct. It’s everything you’ve ever wanted when it comes to finding those dresses for your besties (beautiful gown choices, amazing prices, fab customer service), all with the ease of online ordering. Scroll to change your life in three easy steps.

CONSULT YOUR STYLIST

Let’s be honest. You have a vision for your Big Day, but when faced with all of the beautiful gown choices for your bridal party, it’s really, really hard to choose. That’s where Vow To Be Chic and their team of amazing Stylists come in. Just schedule your complimentary consultation and get ready to talk all things bridesmaid dresses, from expert advice on fit and sizing to recommendations on those gowns that will match your wedding theme and look. They’ll even help you mix and match styles, colors and fabrics for a totally unique + oh-so-chic lineup.

CURATE YOUR BRIDAL SUITE

Now that you and your Stylist have narrowed down your bridal party look, it’s time to dive into Vow To Be Chic’s awesome options in gowns and curate that Bridal Suite for your lady loves. Think seriously stunning dresses from your fave designers (hello, Monique Lhuillier, Jenny You, Paper Crown and more!), size options from 0-18 and two lengths to choose from – long and regular. They’ll even send you free swatches. Your besties are going to love you… and you’re going to love how easy it is.

SEND INVITES TO YOUR BESTIES

So here comes the (even more) fun part. You’ve 1) brainstormed with your awesome Vow To Be Chic Stylist and 2) created the world’s most beautiful Bridal Suite, so inviting all of your ladies to take a look and order their very own masterpiece is the next step. You can communicate with each of them via your custom dashboard and track their ordering once they’ve been measured by a tailor and picked the perfect size with Vow To Be Chic’s size chart. They’ll receive their gorgeous numbers two whole weeks before the Big Day, complete with a backup size. And when the celebration is over, they can send back their lovely gown with Vow To Be Chic’s pre-paid packaging… the dry cleaning’s on Vow.

Ready to bring your Big Day vision to life with the only designer bridesmaid dress rental site? Visit Vow To Be Chic today for access to hundreds of top-quality designer dresses for under $99, Little White Dress rentals for all of those pre and post-wedding parties (think engagement party and honeymoon) and jewelry + lingerie you can purchase for you and your girls. They’re awesome… and you’re going to love them. We promise.

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This Couple Recreated Their Wedding Day 4 Years Later

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Kristina and Parta married back in 2012 but didn’t end up with the photos of their dreams. Instead of the typical anniversary, they decided to re-create their wedding day, including their two children and close friends in the celebration. Paper Diamonds planned the prettiest wedding re-do you’ve ever seen and Nadia Hung captured the photographs they’ll treasure forever.

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From Paper Diamonds… I’ve had the pleasure of knowing both Kristina and Parta for awhile now and they have the most beautiful children you will ever meet. They married atop the cliffs of Uluwatu in 2012 and sadly, didn’t get a chance to have a bridal shoot or receive images that they loved. I was thrilled when they allowed Nadia Hung and I re-create a special day, with her small family and her best friends.

The day started in the magical Ubud with Kristina and her bridesmaids. Kristina exudes a classy feminine energy and the gowns from Gwendolynne really matched with the statuesque beauties. We paired the gowns with local designer Ali Charisma and Tulola Jewellery as well and were thrilled to be able to incorporate some local and cultural aspects.

Jill from Jill Loves Lace, flew in from Taiwan to create the beautiful florals for all the bouquets and arrangements. We went from mountains to cliffs in one day and it really couldn’t reflect Bali and it’s beauty any better. There is nothing more Bali than the rich greens of Ubud and the golden sunsets when perched on a cliff.

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Photography: Nadia Hung Photography | Floral Design: Jill Loves Lace | Wedding Dress: Magali Pascal | Wedding Dress: Gwendolynne | Invitations: Plume Calligraphy | Reception Venue: Semara Uluwatu | Makeup & Hair: Yeanne Makeup | Calligraphy: Plume Calligraphy | Venue: Kayumanis Nusa Dua Resort & Spa | Bridesmaids’ Gowns: Ali Charisma | Event Planning + Styling: Paper Diamonds | Headpieces: Olivia The Wolf | Jewelery: Tulola | Reception Furniture: Bali Event Hire

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Intimate Amalfi Coast Wedding with a Fireworks Finish

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The simple beauty and intimacy of this day reminds me a bit of my own. Of course, I didn’t say I do on the stunning Amalfi Coast… but I fully embraced candlelight, loads of blooms, like these from Myrtle et Olive, and an unforgettable fireworks finish. Jemma Keech snapped it all up so perfectly with Marco Caputo Films, and you can find the rest in The Vault!

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From Joy Proctor DesignJem & Brodie were married at the historic Duomo di Amalfi in the sweet seaside town of Amalfi, Italy. Joined by 40 of their closes friends from Australia, they celebrated with a four course Italian meal and reception at the Hotel Caruso in Ravello. After the reception the guests made their way to the terrace to watch fireworks.

From the Bride… The dream for our wedding was a small, intimate affair, focused on family, friends and food! We met seven years before we got engaged working as a cashier girl and fruit and vegetable boy. We knew if we married in our home town it would need to be a large wedding so a destination wedding was perfect. Where else than the spectacular Amafli Coast with it’s picturesque villages, coastal mountains and turquoise sea. We spent a sun drenched week with our nearest and dearest, eating pizza, drinking lemoncello, visiting Capri and enjoying la dolce vita. For the wedding, the styling was really important to me. We knew we would need a stellar wedding planner to coordinate all the details for us. Enter Joy Proctor. I found her on Instagram, she had styled a shoot at the Belmond Hotel Ravello and it was just exactly want I had wanted. So very quickly we had the venue and the planner picked! Joy was a dream. Her impeccable taste, attention to detail and network of vendors made every detail perfect. The stationary by Written Word Calligraphy and the florals by Heather from Myrtle et Olive were better than we could have dreamed. It rained on the day but Joy didn’t miss a beat, she was calming, positive and swiftly moved our outside wedding inside. Without Joy I would have been a stressed-out mess, l trusted her so much I handed over all the decision making to her, so I could focus on my friends and family and husband to be. She turned a room in the hotel to a candle and flower filled dining room. Our jaws dropped when we walked in!! Our guests feasted on four courses featuring the best produce from the Amalfitana Costiera. Brodie is catholic and we really wanted to be legally married on the day by the priest. It is much easier to have a symbolic ceremony and a legal one in Australia but we were really glad we went to the effort. We met the local English speaking priest Father a year before and luckily he agreed to marry us in the Duomo di Amalfi, a spectacular 9th century cathedral in Amalfi. Our photographer Jemma Keech is Australian based too but I desperately wanted her to shoot the wedding over selecting a local Italian vendor. I was concerned about language barriers when it came to explaining the look we wanted to capture. Add in a husband who hates his photo being taken and it was worth every cent. We had our engagement shoot with her and Jemma somehow made him feel comfortable, even making him laugh. She did so again on the wedding day, and every image is one to be cherished. All the guests loved her! My dress was also found on Instagram, and I flew to Adelaide to met Paul from Paolo Sebastian. From the moment I stepped into his chandelier-lit studio I knew I had found the dress. He was so wonderful and caring as was his divine team. The whole process was so fun! He even included a hand written note wishing us well which I read on the day. I felt like Cinderella. The wedding was a fairy tale and we were trilled so many of our friends & family came from all over Australia and Scotland for the day. Brodie’s best man went the extra mile, flying over for only 48 hours in between commitments. We will never forget the incredible party we had, the people, the food, beautiful Ravello and (finally) becoming husband and wife.

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Photography: Jemma Keech | Videography: Marco Caputo Films | Floral Design: Myrtle et Olive | Stationery: Written Word Calligraphy | Ceremony: Duomo di Amalfi | Reception: Belmond Hotel Caruso | Custom Gown: Paolo Sebastian | Linens: La Tavola Fine Linen Rental | Planning & Design: Joy Proctor Design

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Elevate Your Wedding Bar Without Breaking the Bank

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Gone are the days of basic bars, and that includes your wedding day. Craft cocktails are here to stay and their creativity is both delightful and delicious… but the price tag? Not so much. But just because you’re on a budget doesn’t mean these bold bevvies need to be ignored. Main Course Catering knows all the tips and tricks to elevate your wedding day bar without spending a fortune – and still create some pretty tasty beverages along the way.

#1: Make It Personal

Everyone has different tastes when it comes to alcohol, but remember, at your wedding, it’s all about you. Forget what Uncle Johnny likes to drink in his den at home and focus on what you enjoy most.

Signature cocktails can be a great way to cut the costs of your bar by eliminating a full bar and focusing in on a couple’s favorite drinks – and bring attention back to your big day. Focus on seasonal fruits and high quality spirits and mixers for these drinks to ensure the highest quality and best outcome and top off your favorite cocktail with a beautiful but simple garnish to elevate the drinks even more.

#2: Keep It Close To Home

Local spirits are growing in popularity as artisans have perfected the craft of brewing, fermenting, and distilling all around the country. As they grow, so does the demand for a good value. Choosing your bar options based on where you are tying the knot can make a lasting impression and give your wedding bar a unique twist. Here are some of our best regional recommendations: hard cider in the Northeast, wine in the West, moonshine in the Southeast, and craft beer in the Midwest.

#3: Make It Float!

Cocktails have evolved over the decades into a modern work of art, from layered drinks to intricate designs dropped into egg white foam. Creating beautiful works of art at your wedding bar can be difficult due to the high levels of demand and the rush to try to get everyone a drink quickly, but including simple garnishes, liquid floats, or even drops of aromatic oils can bring a cocktail to life.

#4: Age It To Perfection

The ultimate DIY concoction for your big day could be a perfectly balanced, barrel aged cocktail. Choose a recipe that you love, find the right sized oak barrel, and let time do the rest. This is a great way to show off your incredible mixology skills for your wedding and impress your guests with a bar centerpiece they will not forget. Be sure to have your ingredients ready to go and don’t forget about the mixers!

#5: Chef It Up!

Culinary Cocktails are the next hot trend in the bar scene. When choosing a cocktail list for your big day, consider what products are in season and can be utilized in your cocktails. Fresh herbs can add a bright twist to most drinks and fresh made shrubs and syrups can liven up classic cocktails and make them unique. When fresh rosemary is abundant in the summer, we love to use it in cocktails on a hot day!

#6: Go Light On The Hard Stuff

Thoughtfully created “Mocktails” and low ABV cocktails are a great alternative to a traditional full bar, it’s a creative way to save money on alcohol and lower alcohol beverages are easier to pair with food. For those who don’t drink, non-alcoholic beverages such as fruit spritzers and infused juices can make a lasting impression and act as a great welcoming sipper.

Find Your Signature Cocktail

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Find Your Signature Cocktail

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Cocktail Advice: Main Course Catering

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A Black Tie Wedding with Latin Flair (Mariachi Band Included!)

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What do you get when you blend the outdoor beauty of a garden wedding with the black-tie romance of a classic Dallas restaurant and a mariachi band that plays homage to the Bride and Groom’s latin roots? Pure perfection, a.k.a. this celebration planned by Keestone Events, along with florals by The Backyard Bouquet and the prettiest sweet ending courtesy of Sugar Bee Sweets. Follow all the gorgeous imagery captured by Stephanie Brazzle Photography with even more in the vault.

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From the Bride… I was once told “the best love story is when you fall in love with the most unexpected person at the most unexpected time.” My love story began five years ago with a first date at Coal Vines in Downtown Dallas. We were set up through a mutual friend but due to bad relationship experiences in the past and being consumed with graduate school, I didn’t have very much interest or high expectations. Little did I know that that one date would change my life so much! Victor would propose three years later.

I had dreamed of purchasing my wedding dress with my mother at my side. Unfortunately, my mother had lost her battle to cancer. For months, I was holding off on buying the dress because I knew it would be an emotional day. When I did go, it was so discouraging since I had tried on several dresses and had not yet experienced that ‘aha moment”. I was down to one dress and when I put it on, tears instantly flowed. I had found my dress. I wanted to make my mother a part of my wedding day and wrapped her necklace around my bouquet. Holding it brought me a lot of peace, and made the day feel all the more meaningful. I felt her presence and I knew she was smiling and enjoying in the day with me.

We had a small wedding with our closest friends and family at Marie Gabrielle. To me, finding the venue is as important as finding the right wedding dress. I had envisioned a timeless and elegant, black tie garden wedding affair, and Marie Gabrielle was perfect with its beautiful grounds. My favorite moment of the wedding was reading our vows. In declaring our love to each other in front of all, I felt like a modern day princess marrying her prince charming.

As Victor and I are both Hispanic, we wanted to incorporate our Latin roots by having a mariachi band. Our DJ also made sure to play a blend of salsa, merengue, bachata and American dance music. We are blessed to have family and friends travel from around the world to be there for our wedding. It made an already wonderful day even more special. Thank you to all the amazing vendors for making our fairytale wedding come true!

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Photography: Stephanie Brazzle Photography | Planner: Keestone Events | Florals: The Backyard Bouquet | Cake: Sugar Bee Sweets | Stationery: Scribbles And Swirls | Hair and Makeup: Pixie Glam Studio | DJ: DJ Brandon | Ceremony + Reception: Marie Gabrielle | String Trio: European Ensemble Strings

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Real Brides Reveal “The Worst Wedding Planning Advice I Received”

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First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes…opinions pouring in from everyone and anyone you know. While most unsolicited advice comes from a good place, it can be tough for a couple to stay true to their own wedding vision with constant input. Take it from these real brides who kindly took every bad piece of advice with a grain of salt and planned their best day ever.

“The Details Don’t Matter”

Someone told me that “the details and the look of our wedding didn’t matter”. While I recognized that our marriage was THE most important part of the day, the details, flowers, favors and the overall feel of our wedding was important to me; both because I am a designer and desired a beautiful day for us to remember for years to come, and also because I wanted our guests to feel loved while they were there celebrating alongside us! While the details of your day are secondary to the promises you’re making to one another, they are still important.

-Michaela, married September 2016

“The Necessary Rituals”

The worst advice any bride gets is that something is “necessary”. Whether it be your MIL telling you the candle ritual is necessary, or your wedding planner insisting on ‘the DJ everyone uses’, your wedding day is just that: YOUR wedding day. There are so many details that I thought were absolutely necessary (programs, favors, 3 menu choices) that ended up going unnoticed. I wish I would have known that those things didn’t really matter, and instead focused more on the things that my fiancé and I truly cared about.

-Chloe, married October 2015

“Delay the Honeymoon”

The worst advice we ever received was to hold off on our honeymoon to save a bit of money for wedding costs. I am so glad we didn’t take that advice! Instead, we opted for a honeymoon cash fund for our registry and left a week after our wedding. It was the best vacation of our lives (so far) and I’m so glad we enjoyed it as newlyweds!

-Melissa, married July 2015

“You’ll Regret This”

My hubs and I eloped, so while I didn’t receive a ton of “traditional” advice, I did receive my fair share of “You’ll regret this one day” and “Are you sure?” along the way. It can be hard to stay on course with the constant chatter of those who have been there before, but what I learned is this: do what’s right for you. In the end, if you stay true to yourselves, you’ll be happy. No matter what.

-Dawn, married July 2014

“The Must + Need”

I came to learn that anytime someone started a sentence with “You must” or “You need to” it was most likely going to be some very unhelpful advice. We received plenty of odd looks and various comments when we told people we weren’t going to have bridesmaids or groomsmen but I’m so glad we didn’t let that affect us; it was personally a fantastic decision. Dismiss any of those “musts” and “haves” and focus on what feels right to you!

-Liz, married June 2015

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