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A Bit Of Fun From The Knot - How To Create Your Inner Bride!
Date: April 08, 2009 • Author: Emily • Filed Under: Attire & Funny & Hair & Beauty & Pets & Planning & Reviews & Site News & Site Reviews & Unique Ideas & Wedding Blogs

If you're in need of some light relief from wedding planning head over to The Knot and check out their "My Inner Bride" online wedding tool which allows you to create a wedding avatar of yourself.

Using their easy to use free wedding widget you can choose your own body, face shape, hairstyle, dress (you can mix and match necklines and skirts to create your perfect dress) and backdrop. They have some cute and cheeky accessories too for you to select from.

As you can see from my avatar I chose a pair of cute pooches as accessories over the more traditional bouquet! Once you've created your wedding icon you can save it as your "My Knot" profile image, send it to your friends, or embed it onto your own wedding website (so it's useful too!).

So come on, put down your wedding to-do list, let your imagination run wild and have a bit of fun!

Leave me a comment and a link to where I can find your avatar.

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78 Free Wedding Tips And Book

As you plan your wedding you will receive advice from just about everyone. Friends and family have a million and one tips to pass on, in fact here at Wedaholic I have been offering tips galore. For example tips on wedding djs, getting guests to mingle, giving a great speech and tipping wedding suppliers to name just a few!

To give you a flavour of what to expect I have copied the types of wedding tips you will receive below:

Sample Tip 1 :

At the reception hall, fill baskets in the bathroom with miniature hand lotions, breath mints, hair sprays, and hair gels for emergency touch-ups. You may also want to put out a basket with a few inexpensive pairs of pantyhose and
some clear nail polish.

"Thanks for all the tips..and for making them genuinely "free".... the tips I found most helpful of your's were about etiquette ... it helps to remind brides of other people's feelings when they are getting caught up in their own! And that idea about giving framed pictures to the parents is one I will definately do! Blessings!" - Suzanne, US

Sample Tip 2 :

Don’t forget grandparents and other relatives who may feel “left out” during the preparations before the wedding. Take a camera along when you are shopping for your dress or looking at flowers.

Send pictures with a quick note that says, “Here’s me rubbing my feet after trying on shoes that were murder!” Or “Aunt Joan, the flowers were beautiful, but I wish you could have been there.”

"Just wanted to thank you for all of the wonderful tips! I enjoy reading them every week!! I will use you're advice throughout the planning of my wedding and on the big day! Thanks again" - Dan

Sample Tip 3 :

For bridesmaids' dresses, consider separates, especially if you have attendants whose sizes and shapes vary widely. Skip the bridal stores and check out department stores for evening skirts and separate tops that are made of luxurious fabrics and trimmed with beading or embroidered details.

"Dear Emily your tips have been very helpful to me in planning for my wedding thank you for all of your help, looking forward to receiving other tips from you. Best Regards" - Cornelia, US

Tips and Guidance On Choosing The Perfect Wedding Hairstyle
Date: December 22, 2006 • Author: Emily • Filed Under: Hair & Beauty

Wedding hairstyles range from simply elegant to elaborate and spectacular. Taking a look at magazine pictures or the galleries on wedding websites can either help or add to the confusion, with literally thousands to choose from.

How Do You Decide What's Right For You?

First and foremost, despite the allure of so many beautiful styles to choose from, your wedding day hairstyle should flatter your face and your wedding gown and veil so that years from now when you look at your pictures it is a lovely part of the whole, not something that stands out garishly and makes you cringe.

Ten years ago, the trend was toward elaborate, piled high up-dos that were stacked on top of the bride's head with a simple tiara framing the masses of elaborate curls. For many brides it was a lovely look that accentuated their fairy-tale gowns and suited delicate features. For others, it was a mistake that didn't work with dresses that were the wrong cut and style or faces whose features just didn't work with such a top-heavy style. The look fell apart rather than coming together, but many brides wanted it because everyone else had it. Don't make this mistake - go your own way instead of following whatever the current trend is!

What Is Your Personal Style?

We don't mean when you go to the office - obviously your wedding is a special occasion! Think about when you go out for a special event, or even when you attend someone else's wedding. Do you put your hair up with some whispies around your face, or do you prefer lots of ringlets swirling down your back? Whatever makes you feel special when you go out to celebrate with others is a good indication of what will make you feel special on your wedding day as well - you want to both look wonderful and feel comfortable!

Taking It One Step Further

Now that you have an idea of what you really like, simply take it one step further. If you like upswept hairstyles that frame your face and give you the look of sculpted cheekbones, add some flair with a touch of soft sparkle. This can be achieved with either a bit of glittery hairspray or a few strategically placed hairpins or clips that are jeweled or trimmed with pearls or other embellishments. Just keep in mind that these will need to work with the style of veil or tiara that you are wearing.

If your hair is short, you can dress it up with hair clips, combs or a jeweled or embroidered headband or tiara. The options are surprisingly diverse. And except for the absolute shortest styles, you can go romantically feminine by curling short hair into small ringlets all over your head or sophisticated and sleek by smoothing your hair back with product for a chic wet look. The key is to take a look you love and go a bit more dramatic so that it is you, only "more so" on your wedding day.

Don't Over-Prepare!

It's a mistake that's all too common - brides who second-guess their choice a week or two before the wedding, and in a panic get a haircut or color a week before the wedding. Don't do it! Your hair should look naturally beautiful on your wedding day, and there is nothing natural about a raw, new haircut or color that is too stark and too different on your wedding day. If you are going to consider a color change, make sure it is months in advance so that you have the opportunity to change back if you don't like it without damaging your hair. And a cut should be about three weeks old so that it looks soft, not new and stark.

Finally, wash your hair the night before your wedding, not the day of the wedding, and don't condition! Hair that is too clean and too conditioned will be so soft it won't hold in place, and the style will simply slip out too soon, leaving you with a droopy veil and limp locks half-way through your big day!

Further Reading On Wedding Hairstyles:

World Of Wedding Hairstyles - Get inspiration, expert guidance, and helpful tools from to help you find and create the perfect wedding hairstyle for you.
Choosing a Wedding Hairstyle -The offers help on how to wear your hair on the big day. Hairstyles Gallery - Over 150 magazine images from many styles including beach casual, bohemian, classic, glamorous, modern and romantic.
Hairstyles for Brides - A selection of hairstyles that are up-to-date and trendy for this years bride.

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The Designer Wedding Show At Battersea Park on November 3rd - 5th, 2006
The Autumn National Wedding Show 2006 Review
The Autumn National Wedding Shows 2006 Preview
Wedding Book Review - "The Engaged Groom" by Doug Gordon

The Designer Wedding Show At Battersea Park on November 3rd - 5th, 2006
Date: October 12, 2006 • Author: Emily • Filed Under: Attire & Dresses & Hair & Beauty & Industry News & Invitations & Announcements & Shoes & Shopping & Shows & Unique Ideas

Following the National Wedding Show at Earls Court, nearly two weeks ago, comes another top class wedding show for all London brides. This time it is turn of The Designer Wedding Show at Battersea Park on November 3, 4 ad 5. There will be more than 130 quality creators of wedding gowns, accessories cakes, stationery, entertainment, cosmetics, shoes, tiaras, hats, cars, favours, gift lists, caterers, venues, - basically everything you need for the perfect wedding! I can thoroughly recommend it as I went in 2005.

The exhibitors include Ben De Lisi, Alice Temperley, Vera Wang, Susan Neville, Jenny Packham, Stewart Parvin, Christiana Couture, Pronovias Valentino Sposa, Elie Saab, Manuel Mota, Monique Lhuillier, Peter Langner, Oscar De La Renta, Reem Acra, Sharon Cunningham, Wedding Shop, Caroline Parkes, Christine Kendall, Simultane, Candy Anthony, Louise Selby, Sarah Owen, Sarah Treble, Sassi Holford, Hello!Lucky, Somerley, The General Trading Company, The Wren Press, Emmy Shoes, Goodwood House, Linda Fripp Cakes, Alastair Lockhart, Italian Secrets, Louise Richardson Stationary, Borrowed Blue Press, Abercrombie & Kent, Rachel Trevor Morgan, Jamie Aston Flowers And many more.

For more information, see

Key Facts About The Designer Wedding Show:

Location :
The Designer Wedding Show
British Genius Site
North Carriage Drive
Battersea Park
SW11 4NJ

Enter by Chelsea Bridge Gate on Queenstown Road

Click here for location map

Box Office : - 0870 190 9098 or book online here.

Tickets : cost £16.50 online (including £1.50 booking fee) and £17.00 on the door.

Door Times : 10am - 5pm daily.

Show Info : Catwalk Show - Included in ticket price & takes place 4 times each day - 10.30am, 12noon, 2pm & 3.30pm.

Food : Gourmet caterer Italian Secrets will be providing a choice of restaurants and bars. The restaurant will serve coffee and breakfast pastries until 11.30am, a two-course lunch from 12 noon and afternoon tea with a selection of Italian cakes will be served from 3pm. Click here to book a table and here to see the menu. The Pol Roger Champagne Bar will be in the centre of the exhibition.

Cars : Look out for AA yellow directional signs to the show.

Parking : Parking: Limited pay & display parking is available in & around the park and disabled parking is available adjacent to the exhibition hall.

Nearest Tube : Sloane Square (District & Circle Lines)

Nearest Station : Battersea Park - Overground from Victoria or Clapham Junction.

Complimentary Shuttle : Leaves from outside The Sloane Square Hotel every 10 minutes.

Bus : Numbers 44, 137, and 344

Email :

Organiser : Foxglove Events Ltd Po Box 28860 London SW13 8WT

Next Show : If you can't make this show one in November there is always the next on the 16 - 18 February 2007

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The Autumn National Wedding Show 2006 Review
Date: October 06, 2006 • Author: Emily • Filed Under: Attire & Dresses & Hair & Beauty & Industry News & Reviews & Shows & Themes & Unique Ideas

Hopefully many of you were able to visit the National Wedding Show at Earls Court last week. I thoroughly enjoyed my time on the Friday and if you did happen to miss it I thoroughly recommend the next one on 13th to 15th October at the Birmingham NEC. You can book your tickets here.

The bridal collections displayed on the catwalk were certainly mesmerising with a breathtaking choice of bridalwear, groomswear and outfits for the wedding party. The catwalk included a dazzling selection of wedding dresses, from top designers who create gowns for celebrity clientele to high street fashion brands, covering all budgets and tastes.

Dresses in the first catwalk scene, entitled Cinderella's Footprints, opened the show with plenty of glamour from designers Chandrika Thomas, Raishma Couture and Marion Thomas whose dresses showed off strong lines and structure to flatter the bride's curves.

It was true to say a plethora of colour dominated the catwalk with eye-catching lilac groomswear from Marc Wallace. There were plenty of dresses in different shades of blues as well as pastel pink and peach seen in the collections displayed by It Fits Bridal, Wizard of Gos, Fiorisimo Bridal & Couture and a stunning purple dress from Mamfi Brides.

Catwalk exhibitor, Sarah Arnett, designer for Simultane, who created dresses for leading British model Erin O'Connor, wowed visitors during scene three with her chic gowns, which evoked a feeling of couture style and Grecian swathing with empire lines.

Berketex Bride presented the OK! Exclusives collection designed by David Emanuel showcasing simple, traditional yet spectacular wedding dresses including a flirtatious shorter length dress. In complete contrast, brides wore black in scene four, with designers such as Marion Thomas, Rivilino Bride and Malcolm Hall showing off their most unique and unusual creations.

For bridesmaids dress ideas, everyone was inspired by the adorable and colourful frocks worn by the catwalk show's littlest models as Nicki Macfarlane Bridesmaids and Nene.D displayed their exquisite designs in a range of vibrant, sumptuous silks and fabrics.

It wasn't just all about brides, as there were plenty of ideas for grooms - Moss Bros Hire, Anthony Formalwear and Couture Pour Homme provided inspiration for groomswear and pageboy outfits.

Asian inspiration prevailed in the finale with a large variety of richly embroidered dresses from designers Merchants of India (Izzy Izaiah) and Seasons Asian Designer Wear. The Asian theme was completed with the ethnic groomswear available from Debenhams.

All in all it was a fantastic show and I look forward to the next one!

Future show dates for 2007: 16-18 Feb NEC Birmingham, 23-25 Feb Olympia London.

See you there!

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The Autumn National Wedding Shows 2006 Preview
Date: September 20, 2006 • Author: Emily • Filed Under: Attire & Cakes & Dresses & Favors & Flower & Decorations & Hair & Beauty & Honeymoon & Industry News & Jewelry & Shows & Themes & Unique Ideas

Next week sees the The National Wedding Show at London Earls Court from the 29th September to the 1st October and later on at the Birmingham NEC on the 13th to 15th October.

The Shows aim to provide everything a bride and groom could want to create their perfect wedding, all found under one roof. From designer dresses to fancy favours, wedding cakes, flowers and accessories, amazing honeymoon destinations to fireworks and photographers, there is inspiration everywhere!

The shows will include a dazzling selection of wedding dresses, from top designers to high street fashion brands, for all budgets and tastes. Visitors can admire exclusive wedding outfits by Simultane who have designed dresses for Erin O’Connor; a chic and elegant collection from top designer Marion Thomas; traditional be-spoke styles by Antonia Pugh-Thomas. Paul Simonson, a designer for ultra feminine fashion label Ghost, will be showing his own exclusive bridal range.*

Couples can sample gift lists from John Lewis, Argos, Wrap It and Debenhams. Floral arrangements will be displayed throughout the show, along with scrumptious wedding cakes from Linda Fripp Designs and Cake Couture to name a few. There will be accessories from hand made jewellery to stunning headpieces including tiaras from Isabel Kurtenbach, as well as sweet treats from Swizzle Matlow and The Original Chocolate Fountain.*

To help the bride and groom choose the honeymoon of their dreams there is an impressive selection of perfect destinations including exhibitors: Italian Retreats, Sunset Faraway Holidays, the Bahamas Tourist Office, Transpacific Holidays, Safari Consultants, and Seychelles Travel and many more.

Wedding planning can be stressful and lengthy, so the National Wedding Shows aim to make the decision processes as easy and as fun as possible. Each event features a choreographed Catwalk Show with designs to inspire the imagination, including the latest range of colours from designer dresses and suits to the high-street alternatives.

Style expert Caryn Franklin, best known for her appearances on GMTV and This Morning and as host of the BBC Clothes Show, hosts a live make over session at the ‘How To Look Good’ stage. The top tips and wedding day advice given throughout the session are tailored for a lucky bride to be, picked at random from the audience, who is transformed live on stage. A team of experts including celebrity makeup artist Ariane Poole and hairdresser Errol Douglas* will accompany Caryn for the session.

For fun and informative interaction, live Inspiration Sessions are hosted throughout the day. Celebrity florist Mathew Dickinson and patissier to the stars and royals, Eric Lanlard from Savoir Design, will be bringing their ideas to life on the stage, helping to supply top tips for the big day.

Visitors can begin the celebrations with a touch of sparkle, with the option to sit back and relax in the Champagne bar.

Tickets are available on the National Wedding Show website with ticket prices starting at £10 for the Birmingham Show and £12 for the London show. Alternatively, callers to the Box Office can purchase tickets by credit card on 0870 730 0064.

* please note that exhibitors and guest speakers differ for each show, please consult the Press Office team to check latest exhibitor information.

Future show dates for 2007: 16-18 Feb NEC Birmingham, 23-25 Feb Olympia London.

See you there!

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Wedding Book Review - "The Engaged Groom" by Doug Gordon

Wedding planning is not the exclusive domain of the bride - that is Doug Gordon's point in his new book "The Engaged Groom". He takes the stance that no groom need be left out in the cold when it comes to the decision making. In fact there is plenty of scope for the groom to take charge of certain tasks and responsibilities. Indeed this book is a revelation, grooms now have the chance to get active with their very own wedding planning guide. It can be bought from or

"The Engaged Groom" all started with Doug's blog called with the first entry on the 2nd September 2003 at 6:17pm.

It read:

A Decent Proposal

I got engaged on Wednesday. Actually, that statement is a little too passive. Makes it seem like I picked up something on the way home from work or dropped a subscription card in the mailbox or developed some sort of temporary condition for which medication or a topical ointment is available from my doctor.

Let's start over.

I proposed to my girlfriend on Wednesday night.

To continue reading this blog entry please take a look at this page and scroll to the bottom.

I divulge, having read all 279 pages I can confidently hold my hand up and say that "The Engaged Groom" is a must read for all grooms that want to get involved in their wedding. Doug's funny style of writing makes it a real joy to read. Grooms will quickly learn a whole array of tips and practical information. In fact if they take all of his advice on board they will be heading to their local beauty salon for a manicure - it makes sense really when you think of how many people will want to see the groom's ring on the big day!

Whether they have just a few questions or many this is definitely the book for all grooms. As a bride, if your groom is worried about how to minimize the risk of his best man forgetting the rings (page 237) or how he can ensure he won't say the wrong thing during the speeches (page 251) - this is the book for him.

I practicularly liked the following sections, for their excellent overviews and useful tips :

Paying for the Wedding - Doug gives a good review of the various costs associated with planning a wedding. Interestingly he picks up on the how often couples forget to budget for gratuities, something I have extensively written about here.

Picking a Date and Venue - I quickly learnt the pros and cons of having your wedding on a holiday three day weekend and in addition the advantages and disadvantages of choosing a destination wedding.

The Guest List - Planning a guest list is never easy, as Lesley Anne recently wrote about here, but Doug gives some great insights. This is your chance to learn who definitely does need to be invited. You can also get the lowdown on inviting the President of the United States or The Pope!

Food and Music - This is your chance to have your cake and eat it! Doug recounts the day he ate no fewer than ten pieces of cake at three different bakeries. If you have a sweet tooth you definitely want to be involved with choosing the wedding cake - especially when prices at soar to as high as $10 or $15 a slice.

Turn to page 65 for an entertaining list of inappropriate songs. It is highly advisable that you always listen to the lyrics first, especially for the all important first dance. The list doesn't just stop at slow dances, some well known disco classics should be placed on your DJ's "Do Not Play List".

Photography - Here I agree with Doug, disposable cameras definitely belong to the "Seemed Like a Good Idea at the Time" file. Today most guests have digital cameras and are more than happy to share their photographs with you.

On the subject of videographers, page 75 neatly sums up why this isn't an area to get too stressed about. Also check out the tips on how to make signifcant savings on this aspect of the wedding.

Best man Duties - Doug answers your questions on whether you can have two best men, or even have a female one! More importantly he gives his opinion on what groomsmens and bridesmaids should wear - it's a refreshingly honest approach that many more couples should adopt (Page 92).

What to Wear and How to Look Your Best - Expert advice on which tuxedo to wear, along with helpful hints on whether your build is best suited to a single-breasted jacket, double-breasted jacket, tailcoat or morning coat. You can also take advantage of the "How to Tie a Bow Tie" page which has been deliberately reversed so as you can tie your bow tie looking in the mirror!

Save-the-Date, Announcements, Invitations, and Getting the Word Out - "The Engaged Groom" is full of valuable tips, such as the one called "The Separation of Church and Crate (& Barrel) on page 122. Doug makes it clear that in no circumstances should you send the invitation and the registry information together. This is a massive faux pas, but unfortunately it has to be said many couples still do it. Reading other tips on getting the assembly of invitations right (page 126), the value of using wedding planning software (page 130) and why B-list wedding guest lists are more trouble than they are worth (page 133) is highly recommended.

Registries, Wedding Showers, and Thank You Notes - I really enjoyed reading the section on what things you want to register for, but shouldn't on page 150. It is both humorous and informative - a great reminder that you aren't bound to the traditional registry list of kitchen and dinnerware! Doug dicusses the whole art of getting your Thank You notes written with thought and appreciation, with particular reference to what you should and shouldn't say.

Planning the Honeymoon - Traditionally this is the groom's responsibility and though he is expected to pay for it, it really should be a joint decision as to where you go. Discover the benefits of delaying your honeymoon and why a "minimoon" might be just right for you!

The Bachelor Party - This is one of the most entertaining sections of the book. I love Doug's humour, neatly summed up in this quote:

You'll have plenty of chances to party with your friends in the future, and if you're worried that your marriage will mean a loss of your freedom. I suggest you talk to a therapist and not a stripper.

The book is full of practical advice and some common sense reminders, for example:

Never, never, never be hungover on your wedding day.

Doug leaves the debate on whether strip clubs on a bachelor party are a good idea to others, by including a random sampling of quotes from eight different women. Definitely worth reading.

A Groom's Checklist - Emergency Provisions - Turn to page 230 for a list of things that every groom should have packed in a small bag on their wedding list. Items range from personal care prodcuts, spare clothing to miscellanous essentials that are all to easy to forget.

You might not catch your groom browsing through all your wedding magazines, but I can guarantee he will find "The Engaged Groom" of real interest. Buy it today.

Doug has been interviewed and featured on TV and radio stations across the country, including this appearance on the "Today Show". You can check out the book's official website at and the MySpace site at

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To Tip Or Not To Tip - Gratuities For Your Wedding Suppliers

Recently I received the following question on tipping wedding suppliers:

"I would like to know if I need to tip the hired photographer and the piano player at the wedding ceremony? In fact, who do I have to tip according to etiquette?"

Here is my response:

Please note: Although I have referred to the tipping amounts within this article in US dollars for UK-based readers the figures remain the same.


Tipping etiquette at a wedding is a common area of confusion. Although we tip service providers in everyday life when it comes to your wedding day the etiquette of to whom and how much to tip can be bewildering. Tipping is supposed to be voluntary. However service providers do expect tips nowadays. Traditional wedding custom is to tip a wedding supplier if you think that they did a great job or provided you with outstanding service. Tipping should be based on the quality of service provided to you on your wedding day and in the run up to your wedding. By tipping them you are letting them know that you are happy with the service they provided you with prior to and/or on your wedding day. If you appreciate the work that they have done for you then you can show your appreciation by tipping them.

The Oxford dictionary defines a tip as a small sum of money given to someone for performing a service. Whilst most wedding suppliers are not contractually obligated to receive a tip they might expect one.


Tipping is an additional cost which you should include in to your wedding budget so that you ensure that you have money allocated for this purpose. Wherever possible calculate the tips you intend to give before your actual wedding day, using the guide set out below. Wedding tips are commonly overlooked when couples set up their wedding budget. It is important to calculate as much as possible prior to your wedding how much you can afford to tip your wedding suppliers. This cost and a contingency amount for extra tips which arise prior to and on your wedding day must be added to your overall wedding budget. Use the following information as a guideline but also use your personal judgment. Whilst tipping costs should be factored into your budget you must remember that they are discretionary and if you are on a tight wedding budget you should not feel obligated to tip.

It is not always necessary to provide a monetary tip to suppliers to whom you wish to show your appreciation. If you think your wedding supplier did a great job then an alternative idea is to send them a gift with a thank you note after the wedding. Remember that the most valuable gratuity you can give to any wedding supplier is your recommendation of them to others! You could show your appreciation to the service provider by sending them a personal letter of recommendation.

You should calculate your budget on the basis that, if you can afford to, you will tip most of your wedding service providers and then you can make the final decision on the wedding day as to whether the services provided exceed your expectations. Do bear in mind that your decision on whether or not to tip is entirely at your discretion. If a wedding supplier has gone above and beyond the call of duty for your wedding then tip them to show your appreciation of their extra effort they put into making your wedding day truly perfect. Sometimes in the run up to your wedding day some wedding suppliers work wonders to accommodate you and your hectic schedule. If this is the case for you then it would be nice gesture to give them a tip to show that you appreciate their extra efforts for you.

Contracts - read the small print

I recommend that you thoroughly read your contract with each supplier to see if a tip is included in their price. Some wedding package rates include tips (particularly if you are getting married abroad). You should note that some wedding suppliers, most notably caterers, add a gratuity to the foot of their bill and they usually call it a service fee or service charge. Most wedding suppliers will inform you of their tipping policy when you enter into an agreement with them for their services. If you are at all confused then ask the supplier directly for an explanation of their service charges and tipping policies. You must be clear about what each wedding supplier is being paid so that you can make judgment calls on whether or not additional tipping might or might not be necessary. Another good reason for being clear about the tipping policy for each supplier is to that you do not end up double tipping them!

Tipping Guidelines

There are some wedding suppliers who you will be expected to tip and there are suppliers who whilst not expecting a tip would greatly appreciate it. Below are some tipping guidelines which suggest amounts each service provider should be tipped according to wedding etiquette:

Hairstylist, Makeup Artist, Beautician - You should expect to tip these service providers just as you would on a normal visit to a salon. Tips should be 15% - 20% of your total bill.

Officiant (Clergy, Priest, Minister etc) - Although officiants do not usually ask for financial recompense for their services they do expect you to make a donation to the church or their organization. As to the amount of the donation, traditionally they will suggest an amount when you finalize arrangements with them. The amount varies from a flat fee to an honorarium and can range from $50 up to $500. If you are expecting the officiant to travel outside of their local area then you should also compensate them for their travel costs. Do not directly offer a tip to an officiant. The nominated tip giver should pass the agreed amount to the officiant after the ceremony. If you are using the services of a civil servant, such as a judge, Justice of the Peace or a City Clerk, then you are allowed to tip them (although it should be called a “donation” rather than “tip”) provided you do not exceed $75 and you must ensure that it is paid to them outside of court/office hours.

Transportation (chauffeurs, limousine drivers, horse-drawn carriages, etc) - Do check to see if a gratuity has been included in their bill as this is often the case with transportation fees for weddings. If not or if you want to reward them for their service on your wedding day then the norm is to tip them 15%-20% of the total cost of the bill.

Valets and Parking Attendants - Tips should range from $1 - $2 per car.

Coat Check and Restroom Attendants - Tips should range from $1 - $2 per guest.

Waiters and waitresses - It is not necessary to tip the servers if you have already paid a gratuity in your contracted price. Check to ensure whether a service charge is included in the caterer’s contract. If there is no such provision then you should expect to tip 15% - 20% of the total food bill. Although it is not expected for you to tip individual serving staff if you decide that a particular individual has provided you with first-class service then feel free to give that server an additional tip.

Catering/Venue Manager – Traditionally the caterers and venue management will calculate a tip into their cost estimate, in the form of a service charge. Check your paperwork and if in fact a service charge has not been included then you should allow 15% - 20% of the total bill or $1 - $2 per guest.

Bartenders - Usually you will find that the bar manager will add a service charge to the bar bill. If this is not the case then you might want to tip the bartenders 10% of the total amount of the liquor bill. This amount can be shared out between them equally if there is more than one bartender.

Seamstress/dress fitter - Although it is not customary to tip your seamstress or dress fitter if you feel that they have made an extra special effort on your behalf then tip them between $15 - $30.

Wedding Planner - Wedding planners work for a set fee and will not expect a tip. If you want to show them how grateful you are for their hard work in planning your wedding then 10% of their total fee is more than adequate.

Delivery Staff (including Florist, Bakers etc.) - Staff responsible for your flowers and wedding cake do not expect to receive a tip. You will have agreed to pay their set fee and that is sufficient. However if you feel that they have provided you with exceptional service and/or outstanding quality of products then a tip of $15 - $20 per person is adequate.

Church Organist or Church Musician - This fee is usually included in the rental fee for the church. You should check your paperwork and if this is not the case you should tip them between $25 - $40 per person.

Musicians - Live musicians do not expect to receive a tip but if you consider their performance at your reception to be exceptional and worthy of a tip then you should allow $20 - $25 per band member.

DJ - As with the musicians, if you consider the DJ’s performance to have made your wedding reception swing then a tip in the range of 15% - 20% of their fee is appropriate.

Photographers - Whilst most photographers do not expect a tip if you want to reward them for their good work on your wedding day then this should be between $20 - $30. Alternatively you can indicate your satisfaction with the photographer’s work by placing a large order for additional prints – they will always greatly appreciate that.

Additional Tipping Tips!

* Traditionally it is the Best Man's duty to take care of tips on your behalf on your actual wedding day. If they are unwilling or unable to accept this responsibility then nominate one person who you feel comfortable with and who is happy to handle this task. This person should be responsible for distributing the tips amongst your wedding suppliers. To make it easier for the nominated tip distributor you should label envelopes prior to the wedding day and pass them to the nominated person to keep safe and hand out at the relevant times throughout your wedding day. By labeling them you will ensure that the correct amount of tip goes to the correct supplier. Always provide the nominated tipper with a contingency fund envelope containing a bit of extra cash just in case you have forgotten someone important who you feel deserves a tip on your wedding day or you might decide to tip someone a bit extra on the actual day.

* A common question is who should the tip be presented to with regard to groups of wedding suppliers. The answer is to hand it to the head of the group. For example with a band the tip should be given to the band leader and with waiting staff it should be presented to the head waiter or maitre d' who will ensure that it is distributed evenly amongst the team.

* If any of the wedding service providers you are utilizing are friends or family then you should definitely ensure that you tip them generously!

* An important point to note is that if you are tipping the valets, coat check and restroom attendants and particularly the bartenders (who are notorious for putting out their own “tip jars”) agree with them and the venue manager that it is unacceptable for these members of staff to accept tips directly from your guests. A sign placed near each of these services that says “No Tipping Please” should be sufficient to deter your guests from offering tips and deter the staff from accepting them!

* You might want to consider tipping your wedding service providers prior to the wedding day in the hope that they will go the extra mile and ensure that everything is faultless on your wedding day.

* Inevitably during your wedding day your wedding suppliers will need to be fed and watered. You should expect to feed your photographers, videographers, DJ and musicians. They cannot provide you with a good service if they are running on empty! Caterers will usually ask you what provision you want to be made for these service providers during your wedding reception and will make some suggestions as to menus and seating arrangements. It is important prior to the wedding day to agree with the caterers and confirm to the individual service providers where they will eating on your wedding day. This will ensure that on the day there are no slip ups or confusion. You will also be expected to bear the costs of drinks for the abovementioned wedding suppliers on your wedding day.

* If after reading this information you are at still unsure about how much you should budget for tipping those wedding suppliers who will be expecting a tip for good service then it might be better to arrange a flat fee prior to the event.

I hope that this tipping guide helps you. Remember that the most important person on your wedding day is you so relax and enjoy your wedding planning. Whether you tip or not you are sure to have truly memorable day!

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The Designer Wedding Show
Date: October 29, 2005 • Author: Emily • Filed Under: Attire & Dresses & Hair & Beauty & Shopping & Shows & Themes & Unique Ideas

Planning a wedding is all about exposing yourself to as many ideas as possible in the beginning.

For those in the UK I highly recommend "The Designer Wedding Show", at Battersea Park, London on November 4, 5 and 6 where you will be able to see the latest designer bridal collections from more than 24 of the world's top bridal designers.

For more information, see

Key Facts:

Box Office - 0870 190 9098.

Tickets cost £15 in advance or £16.50 on the door.

The Designer Wedding Show
British Genius Site
North Carriage Drive
Battersea Park
SW11 4NJ

Enter by Chelsea Bridge Gate on Queenstown Road

2 for 1 Offer: Quote "The Daily Telegraph" when booking and you will receive two tickets for the price of one. Offer closes on November 2.

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Unique Wedding Tips And A Chance To Win A $100,000 Dream Wedding
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Confetti East - The New Site For Asian Weddings By

As you plan your wedding you will receive advice from just about everyone. Friends and family have a million and one tips to pass on, in fact here at Wedaholic I have been offering tips galore.