Weddings from the World: Buddhist Weddings

Photography: Alison Mayfield Photography Studio http://www.stylemepretty.com/vault/image/621797

Photography: Alison Mayfield Photography Studio
http://www.stylemepretty.com/vault/image/621797

We have been learning about weddings from the world, their different customs, traditions and much more. This time, we will talk about Buddhist weddings.  When we think on a Buddhist wedding, we might imagine the bride with a super colorful wedding dress and a priest that looks like Dalai Lama. However, our perception and believes of other culture weddings are usually based on what we have seen on movies or TV shows and the reality is nothing similar to that.

When discussing marriage in the Buddhist religion, it is important to take into account that they do not have a specific wedding ritual or ceremony because they do not consider marriage a religious event; therefore, when they celebrate a wedding, what they do is the called couple’s blessing. Even if they take different traditions and symbols from other religion weddings, the ceremony is not as stiff as a Muslim or catholic wedding.

Buddhists give a great deal of importance to astrology, that’s why everything related to commitment and weddings is dictated by the monks who, beforehand, prepare and interpret the couple’s astrological chart. Based on those, they determine different aspects such as the time and date of the wedding.

They marry in front of an altar that has the Buddha. It is usually decorated with flowers and other elements chosen by the couple. Friends and family will be behind the couple and the Buddhist monk will usually be standing higher than the rest of the people.

During the wedding ceremony, the couple must be together in a posture known as the Wai, which is gesture of respect, before receiving the Buddhist monk’s blessing. Then, the monks will start the ceremony with a sermon and once he finishes sharing his thoughts, he will lead the vow interchange which is a vital part of a Buddhist wedding.

Once done, to express their gratitude, the couple offers food to the monks and Buddha and the monks will chant the wedding prayer and then will eat. Only after they finish eating, the senior monk will bless the couple and all the guests with holy water.

The celebration after the wedding ceremony is a traditional wedding party with food, music and dancing. The type of food will depend on the country where the couple is from but it usually includes pork, beef, rice and other traditional dishes.

 

A Wedding into the Woods

 Lucy Munoz Photography http://www.100layercake.com/blog/2015/03/12/elopement-inspiration-redwoods-woodland-wedding/

Lucy Munoz Photography
http://www.100layercake.com/blog/2015/03/12/elopement-inspiration-redwoods-woodland-wedding/

We have been writing about fall-inspired weddings these last weeks and today is not the exception. Even if fall is almost done to give room to spring, there are still ideas we can implement if you are getting married in this beautiful and magic season. There is nothing that resembles more a fairy tale than weddings in the woods; therefore, if you have always dreamed with a fairy tale like wedding, this is the perfect opportunity for you to make your dreams come true.

The woods are full of magic, leafy trees and bucolic floral nature. You will be delighted by an explosion of intense colors thanks to the beautiful peonies and the most perfect moss rug that give color and softness to the environment and combined with a rustic decoration makes the whole thing look like taken out of a tale.

Autumn is so hard to resist because wedding ceremonies during this amazing time of the year are full of tastes and exquisite colors which makes it a perfect time to celebrate without the heat of summer and allowing you to take advantage of the natural landscapes that bloom during this season.

A perfect way to take advantage of all that nature gives us during autumn is to celebrate your wedding in the woods. These weddings are full of magic and are usually very intimate ceremonies with a reduced number of guests and a really simple decoration because, why would you need a super elaborate decoration when nature in its maximum majesty is the protagonist of the decoration? Just let nature express itself and your wedding will be stunning.

The details of weddings in the woods are usually obtained by using fruits, vegetables and flowers of the season such as grapes, mushrooms, pumpkin, squash, berries, lilies, sunflowers and much more. Combine them with decorative elements that match and you will have a dream wedding!

 

 

Ecological Weddings

Photo Credit: Best Photography http://greenweddingshoes.com/galleries/ceremony-decor/page/2/#next

Photo Credit: Best Photography
http://greenweddingshoes.com/galleries/ceremony-decor/page/2/#next

Today, more people are paying attention to the environmental damage humans cause with their lack of attention or interest. Therefore, many couples have chosen to celebrate their wedding with style but respecting our mother earth by paying attention to all details and making an effort to cause as little damage as possible.

Green weddings have become a phenomena lately and there are even special companies that help you prepare in case you have no idea how to start. The greatest part of it is that your wedding ceremony will still be fabulous and stylish but without compromising our house, which we must keep safe for future generations. It may seem expensive; however, a green wedding is actually more economic than a regular one. Here you have some options to have a great ecological wedding:

  • Choose a dress made of organic fabrics such as cotton, hemp and/or recycled textiles. You can even find sexy lingerie made of the same materials. There are actually foundations that resell these type of dresses and then help a charity of your choice.
  • You can choose to use ecological jewelry. There are a lot of options for jewels produced without being so harmful with nature such as diamonds that meet all worker protection laws or rings made with recycled gold or platinum. Even better, use heritage jewelry, it will look chic and vintage.
  • Get an ecological bouquet from an organic florist, some of which use plants that can then be transplanted. If you prefer, grow the flowers yourself. Then you can brag to have a grow-it-yourself bouquet!
  • Regarding the menu, you can use seasonal and organically produced food. Avoid buffet since there is usually a lot of waste. Try using that recyclable china made of paper or bamboo. Then you can take all the food and china leftovers and make compost with it.
  • For the invitations, you can go with recycled paper ones. There are so many beautiful and modern styles to choose from and you will not feel bad if you have too many guests
  • If you want to give out something for guests to remember your wedding, you can be original and give those bonsai plants and even seed packages.
  • For the honeymoon, you can search the web for eco-tourism which has increasing popularity lately so it won’t be hard to find. It offers greener options for you to enjoy and some even help local communities.

As you can see, there are so many options to reduce your ecological footprint while offering a remarkable, beautiful and unique wedding ceremony. Give it a try!

Weddings from the World: Gypsy Weddings

Wedding FamilyWe have been visiting different cultures for the last weeks so you know more about how wedding traditions are in other places of the world and in case you want to theme your wedding based on a culture. This week, it is the turn of gypsies. Gipsy weddings are unique, full of color, celebration and fun, let’s learn more about them.

First of all, you should know that if the bride is not a virgin, she cannot get married unless she finds a man who is not married and wants to marry her despite that. To determine if the bride is a virgin, she has to pass the “test of the handkerchief” which consists of getting the bride into a private room and extract blood from her hymen. The “ajuntaora” uses a handkerchief and it must show three roses to prove her virginity, otherwise, the girl cannot get married. Once they pass the test, the wedding celebration starts. All guests will break their shirts to show joy. The couple will be raised over shoulders and everyone will throw caramelized almonds while singing.

The wedding dress is actually two dresses. One is pink and goes under representing femininity and the other one, white, represents purity. The dress must always be new and purchased by the bride’s father. The groom wears a conventional suit.

Usually the religious ceremony is Christian; however, some gypsies are married at the Roma rite and by the Catholic or evangelistic church while others are just married by the Roma rite. The bridesmaid and best man are usually the same of baptism and some other times, uncles. The pastor usually invites the “church’s elderly man” who, out loud, recites a mix of prayers and petitions for the couple.

Gypsy weddings usually last for several days and they have a huge feast. This may also vary from the region where the gypsies are settled. The gypsy wedding ceremony is all full with hymns or spiritual songs played by guitars and other instruments. Everybody sings in unison so it is basically a chorus coordinated by a director. They are always sung in groups, preventing them individually. So they enjoy a chorus that will be coordinated by a director.

Looking for the Perfect Wedding Hairstyle

The wedding hairstyle is vital if you want to look the best on your wedding day. To find the perfect one, you must take into account your personality, your dress’ design, make up and of course, rely on a good hair stylist to make you look absolutely gorgeous.

Since your wedding day will be super busy for you, please avoid last minute decisions and make sure everything is carefully planned. The best you can do is to visit the chosen hairstylist several months in advance so you can both plan ahead and even choose the dates for the hairstyle tests.

There is a wide variety of styles trending right now in regards to wedding hairstyles. However, keep in mind that if what you want is to look simply beautiful, you do not have to strictly choose a hairstyle sticking to the latest trends, but choose one that suits your personality and the rest of your wedding look. Still let’s talk a little about tendencies.

PHOTOGRAPHY BY STYLE UNVEILED http://www.stylemepretty.com/collection/1302/picture/2774532/

PHOTOGRAPHY BY STYLE UNVEILED
http://www.stylemepretty.com/collection/1302/picture/2774532/

Braids are the trendiest of the season. No matter if it as a diadem, herringbone, sideways, or from the neck to the top of the head, they are always a simple and right choice. The best about them is that you could always include nice details such as flowers, spikes and other minimal decoration to match the rest of your wedding look. Twisted hair, which is very similar to a braid, is also a great idea. You can wear a half up or have loose hair while wearing a headband made with your own hair.

PHOTOGRAPHY BY WHEN HE FOUND HER http://www.stylemepretty.com/collection/539/picture/1893905/

PHOTOGRAPHY BY WHEN HE FOUND HER
http://www.stylemepretty.com/collection/539/picture/1893905/

If you want a classic style, tied up hair will always be the protagonist. Buns are super elegant in different versions and shapes and they work perfectly in case you want to lengthen your neck and increase the volume at the top of your head.

PHOTOGRAPHY BY BRIDAL MUSINGS / http://www.stylemepretty.com/collection/1302/picture/2774505/

PHOTOGRAPHY BY BRIDAL MUSINGS /
http://www.stylemepretty.com/collection/1302/picture/2774505/

If you have long hair, your best shot will be half ups and wearing your hair loose. Nobody says that a bride must as a rule wear her hair up on her wedding day. Actually, it is more common to see brides showing off their beautiful hair on their most special day. Besides, there are beautiful and chic headbands in vogue that you could use to complement your look.  More and more brides are also choosing to het balayage and ombré for their wedding day. Many celebrities are wearing this popular hairstyle because it looks natural, beautiful and romantic.

It may seem complicated to choose the right style, but just remember to take into account:

  • Your face and hair: If you have a round face, wear a simple style but if you have an oval face, you can play more with different styles. If you have short hair, you can always resort to hair extension!
  • The wedding’s time and place: If your wedding is at night or indoors, you can go with a more elegant style. Meanwhile, a day and outdoors wedding allows you wear a more relaxed look
  • The dress and veil: Make sure everything is in harmony and suits together.

Remember that the wedding day is not a time to start experimenting your styles. Choose a hairstyle that makes you feel comfortable and that highlights your natural beauty.

Floral Cake Toppers

We have been discussing fall theme weddings for the last couple weeks and part of fall are of course, flowers. In some of our articles we have given ideas to incorporate flowers to your wedding decoration such as the cake, the centerpieces and much more. So why not including flowers in your cake toppers? Or even better, having them as protagonists replacing the traditional groom and bride cake toppers with beautiful flowers. We have selected our favorite flower cake toppers for you to take a look and perhaps choose the one for your cake!

Crystal Romance DIY Cake Topper Base

This is a beautiful porcelain base which you may use with many of our cake toppers. It presents a gorgeous flower arrangement with fine crystal branches. You can browse our figurines to select the one you feel more attracted too and make your cake a nice flower decorated piece of art!

Pastel Rose DIY Cake Topper Base

This is also made of porcelain but it features small colorful roses in a cute arrangement. Chose this one if you have a pastel color wedding decoration so it matches perfectly. It matches a lot of cake topper figurines so you can make your own original decoration.

Calla Lily DIY Cake Topper Base

Last article we gave you the idea of using calla lilies on your autumn inspired cake, so wouldn’t it be nice to include a calla lily topper base to match the rest of the decoration. Just choose one of our cake topper figurines and you will be good to go!

 Vintage Elegant Rose Wedding Cake Topper

This is a unique cake topper with beautiful velvet roses and faux pearls and crystals. In addition, it includes the wedding couple made of porcelain and if you pay close attention the bride is carrying a handmade baby pink rose bouquet. This is a perfect cake topper if you have a vintage wedding theme.

Vintage Paper Gardenia Cake Topper with Pearl Heart

 

This romantic cake topper features white paper gardenias and a stunning faux pearl heart. It has a vintage style and it is perfect if what you are looking for is to replace the traditional bride and groom with something original and love inspiring.

A Fall Inspired Wedding Cake!

Photographer: Photography By Charise  http://ruffledblog.com/a-late-fall-inspiration-shoot-in-california/

Photographer: Photography By Charise
http://ruffledblog.com/a-late-fall-inspiration-shoot-in-california/

A wedding in fall is awesome! Trees and leaves gives such a magical landscape full of color and texture. Beside the weather is perfect for you to use the dress you wish without worrying if it is going to be hot or cold. Most importantly, the season is full of delicious flavors! Pumpkins, apples, nuts, cider and much more culinary pleasures. Therefore, if you are planning to get married in autumn, you will definitely be inspired by a lot of elements when designing your wedding cake. Here we share with you some ideas for you to get motivated!

  • Get inspiration from spiced apples and ask get some thin strips of stretched caramel as decoration. In addition, you can use a nice autumn arrangement with dry branches to resemble a fall background.
  • Offer a real tribute to fall by including colorful autumn dry leaves not only to the decoration of the cake but also of the table where it would be located. You may also add a beautiful fall tree instead of the classic cake toppers.
  • A great floral autumn theme would be recreated by including sunflowers, hypericum berries, min roses in different colors and a few maple leafs. This will definitely make your cake look amazing!!
  • Use calla lilies to really catch everyone’s attention and make your cake elegant and modern. White calla lilies can be used as part of the cake to make it a master architectural piece by inserting them inside the cake.
  • A creative and delicious way to decorate your cake with an autumnal wedding theme is using seasonal fruits. Since fall is a harvest season, you have a lot to choose from. You may use fresh fruit or you can opt to use caramelized or crystallized fruit. This is a great options since it will fill your cake with flavors and colors!
  • Are you a chocolate lover? Then why not including chocolate covered fruit to your wedding cake. Also add melted chocolate to the top of your cake so it then spills over the other layers. You may use chocolate covered strawberries and keep the leaves uncovered to make it look more colorful! You can also use white chocolate for a more elegant cake or if you prefer, use leaves, flowers and fruits made of chocolate. Yummy!

There are many more ways in which you may incorporate autumn into your wedding cake, just let your imagination and creativity fly!

Weddings from the World: Japanese Weddings

Photographer: Vivian Chen  http://www.100layercake.com/blog/2014/03/12/diy-california-chinese-cultural-wedding/

Photographer: Vivian Chen
http://www.100layercake.com/blog/2014/03/12/diy-california-chinese-cultural-wedding/

We have been talking and learning about weddings celebrated in other countries, with cultures very different from ours and that you can bring you so you can immerse into their traditions. Today we will learn about Japanese weddings, which ceremonies are full of tradition even if they have been very influenced by the Western lately.

In Japan, you may see Christian, Buddhist, Shinto and non-religious weddings. In addition, the couple may choose a style of ceremony without being part of their religion.

When you receive the invitation for a Japanese wedding, the recipient must return it with an answer. Also, you have to take cash with you so you can give it to them as a gift in a special envelope called “Shugi-bukuro” with your name written on the front. The amount for the gift will depend on the relationship you have with the couple. Just take into account that the amount must always start with an odd number because when the Japanese marry, they are looking forward union and not dividing anything between two.

The bride and groom’s gowns are very traditional. The bride wears the “shiramuko” which is a white silk kimono. The most appealing detail is that they cover they head with a circular hat called “tsuno-kakushi” which purpose is to cover the horns (jealousy) to her mother-in-law and future mother. Really traditional brides will also paint their faces white to symbolize virginity and purity. Once they are married, the bride usually changes her costume to celebrate. They usually use red because it is a good luck color. The groom carries a “montsuki” which is black kimono. They also change for the celebration by wearing a gray kimono or a black Western suit.

The wedding are held in a temple called “Shinto”. Guests and family are to enter first, followed by the bride who enters taking her mother’s hand and leaves by taking her mother-in-law’s hand. After that, the groom enters taking his father’s hand. Finally, the Shinto priest enters lastly.  The ceremony take approximately 20 minutes. It begins with a prayer in classical Japanese, then the couple exchanges the “Juzu” which is a type of old rosary and then exchange the rings.

The most important part of the ceremony is when they drink the “San San Kudu,” which means Three-Three-Nine and represents heaven, earth and man. This act symbolizes union of the couple and the gods. They use three cups called “sakazuki” and drink in three sips. Number nine is three times number three, which is a sacred number meant to bring happiness to the couple.

After the ceremony, all the guests and family members walk, in procession following the couple for the family photos. Now is when the bride takes off her hat. Japanese do not usually have physical contact or displays of affection in public, for you to take into consideration.

Ideas for your Autumn Wedding

Photography:Bellamint Photography  http://www.stylemepretty.com/vault/image/2000897

Photography:Bellamint Photography
http://www.stylemepretty.com/vault/image/2000897

Autumn is here, and with it comes the cool wind, dry leaves and awesome colors such as copper and gold. It is such a lovely season that many brides choose to celebrate their wedding during it. It offers a lot of possibilities and of course, beautiful landscapes for the pictures! If your wedding is going to be held in this season, take a look at these ideas to use autumn as part of your ceremony and have a magical fall wedding.

Decoration

A very original and nice idea is to use a lot of candles and lanterns everywhere to highlight the beauty of autumn’s colors. You can use little candles inside of mason jars previously decorated with ribbons or acorns. Talking about acorns, they look amazing in deco, take advantage of them and also use pumpkins in different sizes, you won’t regret it!

Wedding Dress

Autumn has the perfect weather to wear a long sleeve wedding dress. Lace, nice and warm fabrics, elegant and long cuts. You will look stunning!

Bouquet

Take advantage of the beautiful flowers that bloom during fall and use them for your bridal bouquet in combination with warm colors. Use roses, peonies, Choose flowers for your bridal bouquet in warm colors and contrasts with mint leaves in tone. You can create a bouquet with cream roses, peonies, chrysanthemums, dry leaves and even seasonal fruits and nuts such as artichokes and apples.

Bridesmaids Dresses

Use autumn colors in the bridesmaids’ dresses. The best color shades are wine, gold, purple or mustard shades. Also, you can use Marsala, the color of the year according to Pantone, as we learned last week.

Desserts

Autumn offers a wide variety of nuts and fruits you can implement to offer the greatest fall themed wedding dessert table. Use rustic wooden tables of tree trunks instead of regular tables. Serve desserts made with pumpkin, apple, nuts and berries. Your guests will not stop talking about it!

There are so many great ideas for autumn weddings that you will want to use them all. Make sure your wedding is unforgettable to all your invitees!

Weddings from the World: Orthodox Weddings

 

Photography:Whitney Rae Photography http://www.stylemepretty.com/vault/image/298404

Photography:Whitney Rae Photography
http://www.stylemepretty.com/vault/image/298404

Wedding ceremonies around the world are varied and really interesting. Through these weeks, we will be learning about the different rituals, customs and traditions of different weddings ceremonies such as the Muslim, Indian, Japanese, Chinese and others. Today, let’s talk about Orthodox wedding ceremonies.

The Orthodox ceremony is very meaningful rite that has been celebrated for centuries. It is full of symbolism which marriage. For instance, love, mutual respect, equality and sacrifice. Everything that happens on it has a special meaning, especially the repetition of most ritual three times to represent and invoke the presence of Father, Son and Holy Spirit, the Holy Trinity.

The rings used in the ceremony are blessed by the priest beforehand. Then, he will hold the rings while pressing three times the forehead of the groom and bride. Once done, the rings are exchanged and placed on the third finger of the right hand.

After the rings are exchanged, the priest gives the couple lit candles that represent the couple’s purification and their willingness to receive God in their lives. Then, comes the crowning which is the main ritual of Orthodox weddings. The crowns represent the couples as they are the kings of their new home. The crowns are swapped in their heads three times.

When the crowning has ended, the couple is guided by the priest in circles around the altar together with the godparents that will guide them through the marriage steps. The will walk three times around the altar with the Bible and the Cross.

Finally, the priest gives his blessing for the couple to have a long, happy and fruitful life together. The rest of the celebration such as the entrance to the church, the party and the dress code is very similar to a catholic wedding.