April 25

Wedding Advice and Tips from Newlyweds

Once the big day comes to a close, there’s no one with better insight on what mattered, which details weren’t worth stressing over and how to keep perspective on the whole process than the newlyweds themselves. Here’s what some of our Facebook fans had to share:

“Enjoy every single second… it flies by so quickly… even the planning!” – Melissa

“Don’t get too drunk at the alter xx” – Samantha

“Elope….I wish I had! This is stressful!” – Courtney

“Relax. Don’t sweat the little things. Things will go wrong and there is no reason to stress over it. I had probably one of the worst things happen (my grandpa passed away 4 days before the wedding funeral was day before) everything else that went wrong was nothing compared to that.” – Emily

“Let family and friends help!! I know it’s “YOUR” big day. But you can’t do it all. I was sooo glad that I didn’t mind letting my mother in law, and my mom, and my husbands aunt help out. If I would have been a total control freak, it would have been miserable for me and them!” -Rheanna

“Pick three things you care about the most and let the rest go. I cared about location, the dress and photography. As I found myself crying over the font to use on the napkins that would be thrown away, I realized I was wasting my precious time and energy on things that didn’t matter and/or that I didn’t even care about.” -Brittney

“If your wedding planner has you just breeze through the ceremony rehearsal, and you want to practice it again, practice it again! It’s your day…don’t let someone else dictate what’s important.” -Whitney

“Take a few minutes at your reception to stand back and watch all the hard work you did come to life! It was one of my favorite moments when my husband and I sat at our sweetheart table and watched our guests enjoying themselves!!!” -Amy


January 23

The Perfect Proposal: Things to Know

We’ve heard that 80% of engaged or married women say their marriage proposal wasn’t exactly romantic, and we think that’s just plain sad! Sure, not everyone wants to plan out an elaborate scavenger hunt across the city or arrange for a flash mob to take over the street to help pop the question, but there are some simple things you can do to ensure that your proposal is as memorable and wonderful as it deserves to be.

Here are our top tips for the perfect marriage proposal:

1. Know What You Want.

Planning a wedding is one thing, but planning to spend the rest of your life with someone is an entirely different story. Make sure you really know what you want. Can your relationship survive the best of times and the worst of times? Will this person be your partner through thick and thin? Can you stand his or her mother at every family holiday? A happy proposal starts with true commitment.

2. Get Family and Friends Involved.

My personal favorite proposal stories are private, but then include friends and family for a celebration after. Have them make a surprise appearance or play a part in the big event and it’ll make it that much more special for your future spouse.

3. Find the Right Ring.

Don’t get cynical on me just yet! I don’t mean that the ring you choose has to be gigantic or pricey, but it does have to reflect the person you’re giving it to. From vintage styles to chic and modern ones, offbeat colored engagement rings to heirlooms handed down through the family, all you have to do is make sure it’s the right style. After all, this is one of the only accessories that will be worn every day for the rest of your lives together!

4. Pick the Perfect Place.

Get creative and make it personal. There are probably places in your city where everyone seems to propose (here in San Francisco, it’s Coit Tower), but if that spot isn’t personally relevant to you it won’t have the same impact. Trust me—you could propose at the diner you two love to go to for Sunday morning breakfast and it’ll mean more than a fancy restaurant you’ve never been to before.

5. Make a Speech.

I know you’re probably nervous and hoping to just blurt out, “Marry me!” to get it over with, but this is a special moment and the person you’re asking to spend the rest of his or her life with you is going to be hanging on every word. Now is the time to dig deep and come up with a few short things you want to say to lay a foundation of love, respect and trust to build a marriage upon. Just don’t get cliched—no one wants to hear that they had you at hello!

What’s your best advice for someone getting ready to pop the question? Leave us a comment and let us know!


January 10

The Divas Dish on Receiving Lines

Receiving lines are a time-honored wedding tradition, but does that mean it’s an absolute must? Here’s what one reader wrote in:

Dear Divas,

Do I have to have a receiving line at my wedding? My mother says it’s required but I’ve been to plenty of weddings without them. Please help!



Dear M.C.,

Your mother is right that proper etiquette requires a receiving line for a wedding of 50 guests or more, but beyond just the rules of proper wedding planning we think they are a good idea.

Almost any bride will tell you that your wedding day will fly by—and that it’s incredibly difficult to get face time with each of your guests, eat something and still manage to see your new spouse for more than just a dance or two. The receiving line takes a lot of the drama out of it, giving you a minute or two to see each and every person in attendance.

This is one wedding tradition that has stood the test of time. We recommend that you have one to make your life a whole lot easier on the big day!

Would you give the same advice? Leave a comment and let us know.

Do you have a question for our wedding experts? Send your etiquette, wedding planning or style dilemma to and we’ll post an answer for you!


November 20

Photography Advice from a Pro

Are you planning on sending a photo holiday card this year to your friends and family? If you need some advice on how to take a beautiful, professional-quality picture, here are some helpful tips from talented wedding photographer Manus Chau, of Manus Chau Photography.

photography tips

What’s the best way to light an indoor photo shoot? Shoot near a natural light source if at all possible. Windows and skylights work well. Don’t be afraid to draw the curtains and open the doors!

What’s the best lighting for an outdoor setting? Avoid harsh direct sunlight. Don’t shoot on a clear, bright, sunny day at noon. Instead, try shooting earlier in the morning or later in the afternoon when the light isn’t as bright. Watch out for shadows on the face, too.

What do people most commonly forget when they’re planning a photo shoot? I advise people not to forget about the background. Remove any clutter indoors and make sure you have a pretty backdrop for your photo. Then try to take lots of photos from a variety of angles. Shoot from the floor and get a shot from high above you. Take as many photos as possibleyou never know—a shot you think is a mistake may be THE shot you had in mind.

What’s your very best advice for couples taking their holiday photos? Have fun, laugh and capture real moments and emotions. Those always make the best photos.


November 14

Advice for Couples Planning Their Honeymoons

We asked, you answered! Here’s some of your best advice for couples planning their honeymoons from our Twitter stream and Facebook page:

“Don’t book it through an agency! We booked our trip online and we got seven days in Venice, Florence and Rome for only $3,100 total! It even includes three 4-star hotels with breakfast buffets and our flight. So save money and book it on your own!” —Lily

“Print out all reservation confirmations and keep them in a folder in your carry-on or purse. Reservations like plane tickets, hotel room, rental car, additional attraction tickets, dinner reservations, etc. It saves time and proves you have reservations in case their computer systems go down.” —Alison

“Let everyone you come in contact with know that you’re on your honeymoon. We went to Napa and received free desserts with dinners, free wine tastings, etc. People are very accommodating when they find out you’re on your honeymoon!” —Johanna

What’s your best advice for couples heading on their honeymoons? Leave us a comment and let us know!


November 12

Wrong Name on Personalized Gifts? Today’s Diva Dish

What would you do if your wedding gifts had the wrong name on them? Here’s our best advice:

Dear Divas,

My new husband and I were thrilled to receive a few personalized gifts for our wedding, but there’s one problem. Most of them are personalized with his last name, which I’m not taking. I know this is still a bit nontraditional, so we don’t know what to do. Help!


New Bride

Dear New Bride,

Over the years we’ve heard from plenty of brides who aren’t taking their husbands’ last names, husbands who take the brides’ last name and any other combination you could imagine. In these cases, we think it’s best to ask yourself two important questions.

1. Will you use it anyway? Some things like personalized stationery you most certainly won’t be using, but other household items might not be so bad. If you’re likely to use it anyway, why not keep it?

2. What would you prefer if you were the gift giver? If Great Aunt Ruth is going to be mortally offended by your not taking her precious grand nephew’s name, it might be best to just thank her for the gift and then tuck it away in a cabinet. But in most cases, the gift giver would rather know about the mistake than see a thoughtful gift end up in your next garage sale.

What advice would you give to New Bride? Leave us a comment and let us know!

Do you have a question for our wedding experts? Send your etiquette, wedding planning or style dilemma to and we’ll post an answer for you