courtesy of oncewed.com
Alright, ladies and gents, let’s point the pinkies outward and get classy for a moment, shall we?
<sips champagne from her Waterford crystal… and go>
While weddings have always been and will continue to be an affair for every bride and groom to plan as they see fit, there has been a definite resurgence of refinery as of recent years… and the pip pip cheerio of it all has me pleasantly surprised :) Sure, this kind of a sophisticated splendor never really went away, but one way that it’s really made an impact of late is in plated dinners at reception hall feasts.
courtesy of laynecorban.wordpress.com
Talk about decadently delightful :)
During an interview with Bridal Guide, Elizabeth Creasey of an LA based catering company, WHOA, Nelly! stated one of their current, biggest requests from Hollywood A-Listers in reference to these plated feasts is for gold silverware, suggesting a “more sophisticated” affair. Check out below for some examples of this golden boy appeal :)
courtesy of mylittleapartment.com, unitedwithlove.com and bellethemagazine.com
And if adding entree choices to your buffet free meal is an option, might I suggest you consider adding a dish that showcases either yours, his or both your cultural culinary? This is an extremely popular take for brides and grooms cross all cultures, and it adds an additional touch of sentimentality to an already beautiful occasion.
But if you’re wondering what to offer that will have mouths watering for more, why not try 2013′s go to dish wish: pork! ‘Tis true, kiddos. Apparently pork has become the go-to meat for today’s modern wedding settings. While it is one of the oldest and most commonly consumed meats all over the world, it also has the ability to be transformed into sooo many delicious dishes… so, forks up, porks up! Ha, I couldn’t resist :)
But no matter what you decide – buffet styled, plated meals, pitch in or otherwise – just be sure you make it your own :)
March 19, 2013
So, after a slight hiatus (so sorry to have been gone so long, loves!!), I’m super PUMPED to announce Marilyn’s Keepsakes is back to blogging and embracing all kinds of business boosting changes!!
That’s right, my fellow blog-a-teers and bride-to-be’ers, MK is gearing up for the New Year in a completely New Way!!!!! And if the ultra ecstatic wording and excess use of exclamation points haven’t set your SQUEEE levels to the appropriate setting, please take into consideration the dancing doll-baby below!!!!! Haha!
^^Yep. That pretty much sums up my excitement level right now!^^
Firstly, the Blog is Back!! And will return to its former glory with dual weekly postings every Tuesday and Thursdays! So, mark your calenders, pretty ladies, and start your eCommerce loving engines.. because our journey back to awesome starts today!
“Why the sudden return to the bi-weekly awesomeness known as MK’s blog?” one might ask.
Well, that’s do entirely to the even bigger awesomeness that we are now under new management, ownership and overall ahhh(to the)mazing direction… <enter stage right> Amy Furrow!!
No stranger to shooting for the stars and making big things happen, Ms. Furrow – our fearless leader and your new favorite retailer specialist! – has now set her sights on her growing passion for growing business… and the best part? It’s all for you!
So, keep your eyes peeled, ears open and excitement levels engaged for all that’s in store! And in the mean time, feel free to take a gander at our new digs, ya dig?
February 5, 2013
I want to lead off by saying we here a Marilyn’s Keepsakes are super duper pumped for the Olympics!!! We couldn’t help but dish a little bit about some of the amazing people competing over in Foggy London-town! U-S-A! U-S-A!….but I digress. Let’s dive in! Swimming joke. Get it?…….*insert sound of crickets here*
OK, I want you to do something for me before I get started. Close your eyes and I want you to visualize all of the stress, all of the decision making, and all of the pressure that goes, is going, or is about to go into planning your wedding. Got it? Good. Now, take that pot of sweet, sweet madness and blow it up to about the size of a swimming pool(aaand swimming joke numero 2)! That is about the weight Olympic athletes Brittany Borman and Jennifer Nichols are carrying around on their shoulders as they compete in the London 2012 games….and plan their weddings!
Brittany Borman (top) and Jennifer Nichols (bottom). Images courtesy of Google Images.
Brittany Borman is having a whirlwind summer for the record books! Let’s do a quick rundown to bring us up to speed shall we? This summer, she has: graduated from the University of Oklahoma, landed a sponsorship deal with Nike, qualified for the Olympic Games in javelin, and has been planning a September 2012 wedding……wait….WHAT?! I’m going to let her speak on this one as I pick my jaw up from the floor. “My mom is planning the whole thing,” Borman told reporters with a laugh. Well, there is a little stress off I suppose, but fellow teammate and maid of honor, Tia Brooks, isn’t letting her off that easy! “Oh, we talk wedding all of the time,” Brooks said, “pretty much every day. She wants to get as far away from it as she can, but I won’t let her. I feel like it’s my wedding.”
Jennifer Nichols, an 3-time Olympic archer, has a way different “little helper” if you will. Fiance, Chris Hardy, is planning out the couples September wedding solo right now! Get it, dude! So, while Nichols has been hunting bullseye’s, Hardy has been hunting wedding cakes. I think we all know who wins there….yum. In a bittersweet turn of events for Nichols, she sadly lost Tuesday, losing out by two points that would have sent her to the medals round. Bummer!! It was a nail biter for sure, but she isn’t down about it! Nichols is joining her fiance once again back in the planning trenches to push to the end, September 1st.
Moral of the story here, it could be worse ladies. Instead of balancing caterers and DJ’s, you could be juggling, well, those things, plus the media, fierce competitors from around the globe, Olympic medals, and the pressure to not let your country down! So, before you lose your mind over the color of the linens you just ordered(mint is NOT the same as sea green…I know), take a deep breath, and remember….it could be worse. (I was going for a hat trick of swimming jokes, just couldn’t pull it off. One might say I “bellyflopped”? Haha!….OK, that was a reach, but, nailed it!)
August 2, 2012
courtesy of netsolhost.com
Like everything else in today’s modern weddings, the shoe selection has also taken on a less traditional approach. No longer are the days of white and ivory pumps and black tuxedo shoes – oh no, my friends!
Today’s modern brides and grooms are opting on the side of trendy and leaning towards shoes that showcase their personalities. Sure, sure, everyone knows that wedding shoes with color have been around for a minute, but I’m not just talking about color. I’m talking about e.v.e.r.y.t.h.i.n.g from color and comfort to crazy and charismatic.
Chuck Taylors are now the new fashion forward flats. Cowboy boots are the edgier Manolo Blahniks, and trojan sandles are the cutting edge of slip-on’s.
I’m telling you what, there just doesn’t seem to be a limit to what brides and grooms will wear… and I la-LOUVRE it!! While I was all over the idea of colored shoes years ago, I can’t help but smile when I see this trend put into action. Don’t believe me?? Just check below and see what I mean :)
photos courtesy of (from top to bottom, left to right) magnetstreet.com, weddingsandeventsbymuse.com, onewed.com, stephen.lovelifeimages.com, weddingallabout.com, topthiswedding.blogspot.com, hionfashion.blogspot.com, greenweddingshoes.com, bridalbuds.com (insert) and joshuagenephotography.com
April 12, 2012
Could wedding bells be ringing for Jennifer Lopez and current BF and back-up dancer, Casper Smart? (courtesy of hellomagazine.com)
According to recent reports from online celebrity sites, such as E!, there has been talk around the water cooler that Jennifer Lopez may be making her fourth trip down the aisle to say “I do.” Rumors sprung into action after a mysterious tweet from Roberto Cavalli – fashion legend and long time friend of J.Lo – buzzed through the blogosphere yesterday afternoon. The tweet went as follows:
“Today , Jenifer Lopez. Call me…… She ask me. To create a special dress. For her next weding. ! Wich color … Do you advise me. ?” (twitter.com)
While the spelling, broken English and horrendous grammar (dead sere, can’t even look at it without my former editor noggin twitching!) should’ve been a dead giveaway this was not THEE Roberto Cavalli, the press went haywire over the coulda-shoulda-woulda of it all!
J.Lo – famous the world over just as much for her unspeakably good looks as her incredible cross-media / cross-cultural talent and appeal – has been a long time supporter and friend to Roberto Cavalli. Her body is no stranger to his clothes (as shown below); so, it seemed a bit out of place to have such a long withstanding, respected friendship be blasted over a place as public as Twitter.
J.Lo dubbed three Cavalli (pictured with her) ensembles at the World Music Awards in 2010 alone! One for the red carpet; one for her perfomace, and one while accepting the Legend Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Arts. (photos courtesy of fashionwindows.net)
After further reading, however, my suspicions were – in fact – proven true, and no, Roberto was not behind the “nails on a chalkboard” tweet that caused all the commotion. Apparently, Mr. Cavalli’s twitter account was hacked… I mean really?! Getagrip, people.
After her separation from Marc Anthony in July 2011, she began dating back-up dancer, Casper Smart, and while they may be hot and heavy on the media radar, there have been no confirmed reports that marriage has even been part of the conversation.
I suppose it wouldn’t be totally off mark though… Just like J.Lo’s body is no stranger to Cavalli’s clothes, the girl herself is no stranger to marriage. At 42, she’s already had three failed marriages, one long term relationship with Sean “Puffy” Combs / Puff Daddy / P.Diddy / Diddy / whatever he goes by these days and one infamous nickname forever linking her to Ben Affleck. Oh, Bennifer, how I miss thee.
But no matter what the future holds for Ms. Lopez, one thing is for dang sure… the girl knows how to rock a wedding dress :) So, if the path should wind her back down the marriage brick road again, she’s sure to look devastatingly stunning. I mean, just look at the girl’s history…
The first marriage sprung from love with Cuban-born Ojani Noa. The two were hitched in 1997 but sadly ditched by 1998. (photos courtesy of latina.com and examiner.com)
The second marriage came after her split from P.Diddy back in 2001 to back-up dancer, Chris Judd. The two were divorced by January 2003. (courtesy of people.com)
The third and longest lasting marriage was to none other than Grammy award winning artist, Marc Anthony. It lasted from 2004-2011 and resulted in the birth of two beautiful twin babies, Emme and Max. (photos courtesy of popsugar.com and fanpop.com)
March 15, 2012
courtesy of brandonkidd.net
One of my favorite parts of a New Year is all the new bling that starts popping up amongst family and friends. With the gift giving season picking in December, it’s no wonder that so many young men choose this time to get down on one knee and ask the four words so many women long to hear, “Will you marry me?”
While I love love loved everything about my wedding day, and the marriage has been one increds journey… I must confess that there was something sooo special and exciting about the planning process. I like to tell brides it’s kind of like a 12-18 month long Christmas Eve. With all the anticipation swimming around the talk of the big day, one can’t help but feel butterflies of excitement on the daily! And according to theknot.com, here are the top ten things newly engaged brides-to-be should do:
- Start a Wedding Planner. Create a beautiful keepsake to house all your favorite engagement memories… from the down-on-one-knee story to favorite photos, inspiration ideas, to-do lists, favorite designers, venues, caterers and more! Trust and believe, by taking a little time here and there from the beginning to end, you’ll easily have one of the best memory books evs!
- Plan an Engagement Party. Whether you choose to throw one for yourself or let others take on the celebratory task, having an engagement party is a great way to officially announce your nuptials to family and friends, all while rejoicing in your love. Plus, it’s one more reason to get out some pre-wedding partying!
- Pick a Date. First things first. You can’t start reserving venues or hiring vendors without knowing the date you’ll need them; so, be sure this is one of the first things you check off your list.
- Set a Budget. Along with selecting a date, setting a budget is key in planning your big day. After you know what kind of finances you’re working with, you’ll know what kind of wedding day to plan for. From the most elaborate and over-the-top to the simply chic, DIY shindigs, all weddings must first start with a feasible price tag to work around.
- Find a Reception Site. Generally speaking, a couple uses over 50% of their overall budget on their reception; so, it’s important to find the one that works best for you and reserve it right away!
- Make a Wedding Website. This is a great way to keep track of all your to-do’s, as well as provide information to family and friends as plans come along. This is an especially useful tool for out-of-towners you hope to attend who will need to make transportation and hotel reservations.
- Consider a Consultant. Many brides-to-be like the thought of hiring a professional to help ensure their big day goes off without a hitch, but if this isn’t in your budget, consider taking advantage of your family friends – especially moms and already wed maids – to help cross your t’s dot your i’s. It’ll make them feel important and help take some of the stress off you!
- Start a Guest List. One of the biggest factors in planning your wedding (and maintaining a budget) will all come down to the number of people you invite. By merging two sets of family and friends, it’s important for everyone to have a voice and make sure all their A-listers are included!
- Find a Wedding Dress. YESSSS! One of the BEST parts of being a bride is of course the wedding dress. Try on lots of styles. Search lots of websites, and have fun with it. Most of us (hopefully) only want to do this once; so, make sure you make it count!
- Plan for Pro Engagement Pictures. While the wedding day and all the days leading up to it will come and go, the photography will live on forever. So, it’s oh so important for every couple to find their perfect photographer and get in a pre-wedding practice round with engagement pictures before the big day. These can also be the shots your use for everything from your newspaper announcement to invites and more!
January 5, 2012
courtesy of michellewellsphotography.ca
There is just something so magical about winter weddings. The crisp weather. The sparkly icicles. The slow falling snow. The dazzling night skies. It’s a perfect setting for romance, snuggling up and dancing the night away with the one you love the most.
And after looking through several of these Frosty the Snowman inspired designs – featuring intricate lighting, crystallized ice sculptures and baby’s breath centerpieces – it’s super hard for me to believe that Old Man Winter remains the least popular season to say ‘I do.’
Below are some of my favorite wintry wonders. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do.
A dash of twinkling baby’s breath can make all the difference.
courtesy of myweddecorations.blogspot.com
Sprinkle in snowflake lighting to really make ‘em ooh and ahh.
courtesy of eyedialogue.com
Drizzle your decor with draped crystals and create the look of poshly lit icicles.
courtesy of foreverphotographystudio.com
Sculpt an impeccable setting with ice, mini floras and fur (yes fur!!)
courtesy of bellzandwhistlezblog.blogspot
Cover up with a chic cardigan and take your gown to celebrity status.
courtesy of dressestutor.com
Or for the super sassy, try a frisky fur wrap!
courtesy of ungovernableungraceful0211.blogspot.com and Oscar de la Renta via weddinginspirasi.com
Make your cake top pop with Old Man Winter’s prettiest creations.
courtesy of thecakeblog.com
Surround your guest with chilling-inspired love from floor to ceiling — this is by FAR my fave!!!
courtesy of myweddecorations.blogspot.com (top and bottom) and brendasweddingblog.com (center)
December 13, 2011
courtesy of coutureclosetboutique.com
These days, a wedding isn’t just a brief moment in time… it’s a monumental event for the ages! In fact, I’m often reminded of a quote from Wedding Date - the 2005 film starring Debra Messing and Dermot Mulroney (dream!) - when I think of just how epic some weddings have become. Shortly after Kat Ellis (Messing) arrives in London for her sister’s wedding, her mom (played by Holland Taylor) informs Kat that:
“This is a marathon, not a sprint. We’ve got welcome cocktails today. Then, tomorrow’s Young People in the Park and Stags and Hens. Friday’s the picnic, then the rehearsal dinner, and since you left you no margin for jet lag, I need you to hydrate.”
Of course not everyone goes that over the top when planning their big day, but that doesn’t mean their day feels anything less than a marathon. From sun up to sun down, a bride, her groom and everyone else in between have a lot of ground to cover… and while some might say the key to duration is hydration… others are more lenient towards sustenance of the chewable variety.
And in big cities like New York, Los Angeles and Austin, Texas, grub is precisely what they get! These big time metro poles are famous for their food truck industries, which they are becoming all the rage in wedding day agendas! In LA, for instance, mobile grub doesn’t get much bigger than In-N-Out Burger, which has been providing years worth of service to brides and grooms looking to keep their guests full and focused well into the night.
It’s also a great way to talk to guests you may have missed! One bride (pictured below) used In-N-Out Burger at her reception and said, “We didn’t do a receiving line at the reception, but while everyone was lined up to order their food my husband and I went down the line and greeted everyone while they waited. It worked out really well and helped fill the time that people were just standing around.”
courtesy of weddingbee.com
Love love love. Of course, there are so many other ways to keep on truckin’ even if there are no trucks.
At my sister and brother-in-law’s wedding a couple years ago, there was a break between the ceremony and reception for the bridal party to get pictures; so, while everyone else was enjoying a wide assortment of hors d’oeuvres and cocktails, the bridal party was schlepping through a park trying to capture the perfect shot. Matt and Jess (the SIL and BIL) didn’t want their favorite people to suffer however and provided all of us with White Castle burgers and fries to go, as a tied-me-over ’til dinner.
You might also consider:
- Food Carts
- Hot Dog Stands
- Popcorn Machines
- Goody Bags
- Krispy Kreme Doughnuts
- Late Night Pizza Delivery
- Midnight Snacks
- Homemade Treats
December 6, 2011
The gorgeous bride and her handsome groom. (courtesy of photosbyjennifer.com)
Recently I had the distinct pleasure of not only attending but also rockin’ it out as a bridesmaid at my cousin Kimberly Lynn’s wedding. Marrying the man of her dreams, the former Ms. Kidwell wed Brian Mitchell during a b.e.a.uuuutiful fall fiesta ceremony in the heartland of the Midwest. Surrounded by their closest 450 - give or take – family and friends, the duo said “I do” at Kim’s childhood parish, St. Barnabus Catholic Church on October 15, 2011.
It was a celebration for the ages, sprinkled with all things fabulous, and to say it was a joy to be a part of it all would merely be the tip of the excitement iceberg! As many weddings as I’ve attended (Kim and Brian’s marking the 50th the Mister and I have attended together alone!), it never ceases to amaze me at how original each one is… how the individuality of the bride, her groom and their families seem to take the same occasion and mark it with something genuinely unique, something uniquely them… I’m telling you, it’s something nothing short of amazeballs.
And because it’s always such an honor to be included in a celebration, I like to glorify the creativity of each by sharing it with the masses (you’re welcome, haha!) and posting it for all to see! Below are some of my favorite parts… feel free to be inspired:
Post Rehearsal / Pre-Wedding Slumber Party. Kim had all the girls over for a final Girl’s Night In after the rehearsal, and in a word, it was fantastic. Giving one of the best attendant gifts ever, we celebrated the evening by watching one part of the gift, Bridesmaids and secretly “ooh’ing and aww’ing” the other… unique bridesmaids’ jewelry – picked out by the bride herself – for us to where on the occasion. Love love love!
How much do you la-Louvre those colors together? (courtesy of Google Images)
Killer Color Combo. As sampled above with the bracelets, the colors were purple, orange and green. The mother of the bride, my fabulous Aunt Gail, is a DIVA when it comes to decor; so, there was no doubt that the wedding would be nothing short of F.I.E.R.C.E. when it came to its overall layout… and I have to admit, just looking at the floral arrangements alone, you can see just how fierce it was… Tyra Banks, eat your heart out!
And yes, that would be my bouquet barely peaking in on the right and me totally cut out. Yep, haha! (courtesy of photosbyjennifer.com)
The Bride wore Purple Pumps. Keeping in theme with the wedding day and the trendy modern bride, Kimmi sported her best plum pumps for the occasion, and showed off her boogie shoes in style!
I wanna put on, my my my my my Boogie Shoes, and boogie with you! (courtesy of photosbyjennifer.com)
Crowd Pleasing Priest, personalized by friendship. Being graduates of the local Catholic high school (Roncalli, what?), Kim and I had the pleasure of seeing one of our former classmates (and prom kings!), Dustin Boehm, reach the high honor of joining the priesthood. Kimmi decided no other priest would do, and Dustin, errr, cough cough, Father Boehm was the one chosen to oversee the whole newlywed nuptials! He did such a Tony the Tiger GRRREEEAAAT job!
Father Boehm in person and in action! (courtesy of yours truly and photosbyjennifer.com)
Father of the Bride Speech, marked with Love. So, being a complete sentimental nut, one of my favorite parts of a wedding day is always the time honored father of the bride speech, and my Uncle Rich did not disappoint! One of the best parts was when he totaled to the years of marriage Kim and Brian had backing them between the families, and because the Kidwell side is such a force to be reckoned with… he had all of us stand up and officially welcome Brian to the fam… all 900 and couting. Haha!
Kim giving her Papa a hug after his speech, so sweet! (courtesy of yours truly!)
Ceremony Shoes + Reception Runners. Kim’s nephews, Jackson and Austin, rocked it out as ring bearers and were both equipped with wedding shoes for the ceremony and running shoes for the reception. Genius. I also like how they took it upon themselves to ditch their jackets, ties and tuxedo shirts as well. Ahhh, boys :)
Work it out, Jackson! (courtesy of yours truly)
Glorious Groom’s Cake. Vastly becoming one of my favorite parts of the reception, their Groom’s Cake was one of the best I’ve ever seen! Courtesy of Cheryl Blessing of thecakestandindy.com, K+B’s groom’s cake was representative of their hometown pride and their fanatical love for the NFL. Kim, being a born and raised Indy girl, loves the Colts, and go figure, she falls in love with a Illinois native / Chicago Bear extremist. Yep. I can hope their kids are smart enough to make the right choice ;)
Touchdown perfection! (courtesy of photosbyjennifer.com)
Epically assembled with dance circles, laughter and all kinds of greatness, I could go on and on (and ON!) about Kim and Brian’s wedding, but sadly, like all good things, this post has to have an ending. So, here’s to Mr. and Mrs. Mitchell…
As you sit side by side on the roller coaster of life, remember to scream at the peaks, hold hands through the dips, laugh through the loops and enjoy every twist and turn! We love love love you and cheers to many years of happiness!
October 27, 2011
courtesy of Gina Leigh Photography via pbfingers.com
While traditionally speaking, it’s always been said to be bad luck for brides and grooms to see each other before the ceremony, we explored the benefits of kicking this tradition to the curb in our post, Catching a Glimpse ,and choosing to have a moment prior to the ceremony for just the two of you to see and be with each other. Perks remain:
- an intimate moment for just the two of you to share without having to share yourselves with everyone else
- it not only creates beautifully candid shots of the two of you…
- but it also can create time to get some of your ”formal” wedding pictures out of the way (ie. bridal party, portraits, family shots, etc.) while everyone is at their freshest
- and finally, can make for some uniquely beautiful memories
However – and this is a HUGE however - a girlfriend of mine (wad up, Linds!) sent me a link today exploring a ‘Behind the Door’ technique, which proves brides who are both trendy AND traditional can have her cake and eat it too when it comes to this! (Sooo stinkin’ sad I didn’t think of it myself!)
The ‘Behind the Door’ technique puts you and your main squeeze right next to each other without revealing the way either one looks. How, you might ask? Well, by leaving a door – be it the one that enters into the bridal suite door or the church or wherever – and giving you a moment to hold hands, share in the moment and capture the memory… all without ever having to give up the tradition of the grand reveal!
I mean how can you not love this idea?!?! My hubs is my best friend. He’s the one I talk to when I’m extremely happy or super sad or overly worried or incredibly annoying (you get the idea); so, it was very difficult to not have him there on the biggest day of our lives to share in that time with me. Because we chose to stay on the side of tradition on our big day and didn’t see each other until my Papa walked me down the aisle — we felt it added to the anticipation and excitement of it all, we weren’t able to talk to each other :( But if we would’ve done this, we could’ve had the BEST of BOTH worlds! Check out Julie’s pics from her Peanut Butter Fingers Blog below:
courtesy of Gina Leigh Photography via pbfingers.com
July 14, 2011