Saturday, December 7, 2013

How To Navigate the Buffet Table

So you recently received a wedding invitation and you promptly returned the RSVP card as all guests should. You may have decided what to wear and made your weekend plans but are you familiar with the proper etiquette for a buffet reception?

wedding buffet etiquette and tips

Our friends from At The Heels Weddings & Events  recently shared a wonderful article by Heather Guthrie on buffet etiquette that I thought you would like to read.
Have you ever noticed how your otherwise well adjusted friends, family and colleagues go crazy at the sight of a buffet table? There is something about beautifully displayed food and a line full of hungry peers that makes people go a little nuts and brings out the worst in to continue reading

Happy Planning, Dana

Saturday, November 16, 2013

This Really Works!!

I'd be rich if I had a dollar for every time I heard "I'm going to lose weight before I order my dress" or "I'm going to order the next smaller size because I'm going to lose weight." We all mean well and have the best intentions, but without determination and a program we continue down the same path.

The half century mark was fast approaching and it was time to get my weight and health under control so I could enjoy the remaining years as I have the previous ones. Then my son got engaged and that really motivated me. I didn't want to look at those pictures the rest of my life like I was then. Plus, I've got new grand babies coming that I've got to keep up with.

I had heard the advertisements on satellite radio, then one day we got a brochure in the mail. A Koko Fit Club had opened near our house. It sounded very interesting to me; a programmed 30 minute workout on one machine! The reviews were great, so I stopped by to do a demo workout.

Amanda was wonderful, very thorough and patient! You first select the goal (program) you want then take a strength test. The computer leads you through the 30 minute workout with different exercise routines each time. Each demonstrated on the monitor (with a skip button:) It's like using Wii Fit.

Each session is saved by USB key and backed up before leaving. Your progress and next workout are viewable on

Cardio is recommended as well using an MP3 player with a 15 minute guided program while you walk on the tread mill or use the elliptical machine.

Koko also has a nutrition program to follow. I haven't followed it as I use a different program through a chiropractor. Primarily my diet consists of grilled meat, lots of green vegies, no processed food and no bread or sweets with LOTS of water. (1qt. for every 50 lbs.) 

My husband was a little leary that I wouldn't stick with it since I've never exercised so he suggested I try the 3 month option first before committing to a year. I was so thrilled with the results after 3 months (and so was he:) that needless to say I signed up for the year!

After 5 months my BMI is down to 27.8, my strength has increased 21%. I've lost 15 lbs. and 2 dress sizes!! I feel so much better!

If you are seriously considering shaping up or renewing you health I HIGHLY recommend Koko Fit Club. They even have a Bride Fit program.

Through 11/15/13 our local clubs (Charlotte & Matthews) are having a sign up special. Get a FREE month if you sign up for a year plus enrollment is half price, $79.

Anyone wanting a real change has to be mentally prepared. Most of our weight and health issues are years of habits that take some time to break. I've been working at this for 5 years and each year I've been able to "give up" some of those old habits and learn new ones. If you're ready to start one new habit, make it the water habit! 

Where are you at in your healthstyle change? Share your progress! We all need some motivation! Our families are counting on us!

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Tell Us Your Modest Story!

I enjoyed reading Michelle Duggar's blog post about "Why She Chose Modest". It brought back many memories for me as a young Christian believer and the MANY conversations I had (excuses I made) with the Lord about my clothing. It's similar to a salvation experience, trying to reason things in your mind and learning to discern the Holy Spirits voice in your head.

As a child my precious mother always dressed me and my sister in our best Sunday dresses for church services, so church and dresses were synonymous. As a teenage I stopped attending church and didn't attend again faithfully for 4 years. Because we were attending more regularly my Sunday best wasn't always appropriate for the church activities so I began having to buy more causal dresses. Of course, many of those weren't modest either, but when a baby starts walking he's not too good at it.

With a daily diet of God's Word the Holy Spirit began to speak to me about wearing pants and shorts; you know, like when you knew you weren't suppose to do something and did it anyway and your mother would mention it to you? I hated that guilty feeling! As my relationship with my Saviour grew the more I wanted to please Him which made it a pleasure to dress modestly. After all Christ did for me I wanted to live my life to please and honor him. That's when modesty becomes REAL not RULES.

Maybe the one of the reason's we are seeing more Christian ladies dressing immodestly is because we aren't telling our stories. Just as when you were saved, you have a story to tell of the God's kindness and patience, woooing you to Himself you also have a story of His working in your life conforming you to the image of Christ. Let's start telling our modest story.

You can tell your's right now in the comment box below! Then purpose to share it with some you know.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

The 5 Things You Will Need to Register Your Tuxedos

There's nothing more frustrating than getting somewhere and discovering you don't have everything you need to complete the task. By having these 5 things the tux rental registration process will go more smoothly; if only getting the guys in to get measured was this easy! 

1. The Ceremony Information

Now this is obviously needed; the date, the time pictures begin and the location. We use this information for more than just knowing what day to get the tuxedos in, but to be prepared for last minute pick ups and those occasional fitting mishaps. 

2. Color Swatches

Whether it's a piece of fabric from the bridesmaids dress or a pillow you found, make sure you have something that is the color you want to match vest and ties with.

We offer several shades in each color and when you see how similar they are to one another it can confuse the color you remembered in your head. Cell phone colors typically don't show up accurately enough to select from a picture on your phone.

3. The Names of all Party Members

You will need a complete list of all party members, this goes beyond the groom and groomsmen...include any father's that will be in the pictures. What about stepfather's? They may need something to compliment with the mother's dress. What about grandfather's? Are there any usher's that  may just need to rent a suit? And of course, the little guys.

We also like to know if the men are local or out of town so if we need to assist in finding a network location for them to get measurements we can do so.

4. Who's Wearing What

Have you thought about how you want each position distinguished? Your consultant can help advise you with this if you haven't already predetermined who's wear what.

Typically, the groom coordinates with the bride, the groomsmen coordinate with the bridesmaids, fathers, if not included with the groomsmen, wear something complimentary or classic. The usher's would be complimentary or classic and the ring bearer matches the groom. Of course, these are optional, but some form of differentia helps guests identify different positions and importance. 

5. An Open Mind
Have some ideas in mind when you go, but keep an open mind for new ideas may present themselves once you get there. A professional consultant may have some creative ideas that would work nicely and create a lasting impression!

You should plan about 45 minutes to an hour to get everything decided and recorded if you have all of this information handy.

Prior to Registering... 
Lately we have had customers come in to rent shoes, or vests and ties that the store they chose didn't offer. How crazy is that? Items ordered separately are very costly! Before going to register take time to research the store for the price ranges they offer, the requirements to qualify for a FREE groom's rental and any discounts or group rates offered. Don't forget to ask what they mean by FREE; free doesn't always mean FREE. As well as vest color options and available shoe styles.  

For more informed shopping we have prepared a Tuxedo Rental Guide that will answer important questions you should know to shop more knowledgeably. 

Happy Planning!!

Thursday, August 29, 2013

"I Truly Appreciated the Special Attention"

There's nothing more thrilling than opening my email inbox to find a message from one of our brides! If the email has pictures attached, well that just quadruples the thrill!!

Last week I was blessed with that delightful experience. I never get tired of reading our brides stories of how they found us and how God used us to make their wedding dreams come true.

Brenda, was no exception! Her story of her prayer filled search was a real encouragement to me. For me it's not about bride's budget, but about being used of God to help brides honor Him.

"We are fast approaching our first anniversary and I wanted to take a moment and once again thank you for your part in our special day!! I truly believe the Lord lead me to your shop. You are so sweet and I truly appreciate the special attention you gave to help me find exactly the right dress."
I don't know if I ever shared with you but before I started dress shopping I started praying that God would provide me with exactly the dress He wanted me to have. Something that would honor Him and would also fit my desires and budget needs. I specifically prayed that He would  give me the right dress for around $200-250. I know I was asking for a modern day miracle but I believe in praying specifically and that God is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all we can ask or think.
"I tried on several dresses when I came in; I was looking for something that just as your name says was, "simply elegant". When I found that perfect dress and then you told me it would actually be half of what it was marked making it right around $250, I knew my God had once again given me the desires of my heart. What a great God we serve!"
 "You have been a blessing to me and if there is any way I can be of help to you I would like to."
Sincerely, Brenda 
Isn't that a wonderful testimony of God's leading and answered prayer. Be sure to visit our Gallery to see more of her pictures.

Are you engaged? What are you waiting for? Schedule your appointment now!  Fun and answered prayers await you!

If you are a Simply Elegant bride and haven't shared your story, please do!

Happy Planning!


Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Ideas for a Memorable Bridal Shower

Is your maid of honor looking for some creative ideas for your bridal shower? Below are 12 ideas that should get your creative juices flowing.

Socializing and opening presents are at the center of showers, and when games and activities are planned with care and attention guests will have a genuinely enjoyable time. The best activities are the ones the guest of honor will appreciate: maybe a funny multiple-choice quiz about her childhood or a creative project made by all guests. Keep in mind an ice breaker works best as the guests are arriving.

Which Games and Activities to Choose 

Ideas were from

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Essential Wedding Invitiation Etiquette

When your guests receive an invitation to your wedding, they receive an impression of your preparation. The invitation conveys the style, tone, formality and details to your upcoming event. They also represent your personal sense of style. As always, it is important to remember when formatting them that consideration for your guests is a primary concern. By using proper etiquette you show respect for your guests and in turn can expect the same in prompt responses and gracious gifts. So what are the do's and don'ts?


  • Do allow plenty of time. Plan enough time in your schedule to carefully address, assemble and mail your invitations.
  • Do get organized. Develop a system for addressing and mailing your invitations. Prepare by gathering names and addresses of everyone on your guest list.
  • Arrange each piece that goes into the invitation in a stack, in the order it will be picked up, assembled and inserted into the envelope.
  • Do ask for help. Invite friends, family and bridal attendants to help assemble invitations.
  • Do use the name of all guests when possible. It is much warmer and more welcoming to use the correct names of those who will accompany your guests on invitations instead of "and guest."
  • Do use correct titles. It's flattering when invitations are addressed correctly. This means using appropriate titles and spelling names correctly.When in doubt ask before addressing.
  • Don't forget to include any appropriate inserts. This would include maps, directions or hotel information for out of town guests.
  • Don't include registry or gift information with your invitation. It is in poor taste to insert a list of places where the bride and groom are registered or a checklist of things they want and don't want.
  • Don't use a standby guestlist. When possible invite your entire guest list at the same time rather than waiting to see how many people accept before sending out the second round of invitations. When the guest list is carefully planned and when you consider the likelihood that 10-20 percent of invited guests typically send regrets this approach is much more straight forward than using a  stand by list.
  • Don't address invitations with labels. Always address wedding invitations by hand, even when inviting hundreds of guests.

Were these helpful tips? Do you have some suggestions to add? Post your comments below. 
Tips were taken from