Fourth Wedding Anniversary Gifts

The traditional fourth wedding anniversary of fruit and flowers is said to represent creativity, fertility, hope, and renewal. Now, fruit and flowers seems pretty self explanatory, but there are some fun options out there!

Of course having flowers delivered is always a welcomed gesture, but does your bride like something a bit more hands on? Check out Year of Seeds; this kit contains 12 small earthenware pots and a different flower to grow each month. How adorable! Still looking for something not so expected? You're in luck because flowers are all the rage in fashion these days. A beautiful statement necklace would be lovely!
necklace | year of seeds | fresh flowers
Who wouldn't want a fruit basket delivered to your doorstep every month? But let's try and think outside the box a bit. When I think of fruit, I automatically associate it with a great bottle of wine {or champagne!}. Or you can also buy all of the ingredients, plan a date night at home, and make your own fruit infused alcohol. Quality time together and doing something out of the ordinary are sure to please!
veuve | fruit infused alcohol | fresh fruit



Second Wedding Anniversary Gifts

The traditional second wedding anniversary gift of cotton signifies durability and the need for a marriage to remain strong. I've also read that it symbolizes that by the second year of marriage, the couple is comfortable with each other :) There are so many cotton options, but here are a few of my favorites.

Lee and I recently had a conversation about his favorite oxford button down and how buying a second one would be probably be a good idea. If your husband is anything like mine (or me!), having a few tried and true items will make dressing in the morning a bit easier and his wardrobe timeless. Fine his favorite fit and why not throw a manly monogram on it? This is the south after all.

Canvas is another great option and these Lands End totes are a classic favorite. My first grade teacher gifted one to me for my high school graduation and I still use it to this day! Or why not buy new luggage for the two of you and take a vacation!

dress shirt | tote bag | luggage
Still haven't printed any of your wedding photos? What a great opportunity to relive your wedding day and take the time to pick some of your favorite moments to cherish forever.  Gallery wrapped canvas prints make a statement no matter what the photo is of and with the internet at your fingers, they are so easy to print and have shipped right to your front door.

Crisp linens and fluffy bedding are always welcome in my house! Use your anniversary to make your bedroom a place you enjoy relaxing in. It's easy to put the master bedroom at the bottom of the redecorating list but it really does need to be a haven you find peace in at the end of the day.

canvas print | bedding
I'm sure your spouse would love any of these gifts regardless of the time of year. Use this list as a guide for Christmas shopping that's sure to please!

First Wedding Anniversary Gifts

Happy Tuesday, ladies! Let's hop right in and take a look at some of my favorite gift ideas for first wedding anniversaries.

Monogrammed stationery is at the top of my list for almost any occasion, but for a wedding anniversary it's particularly charming if the bride has taken her new husband's name. Such a sweet sentiment when coming from the proud groom. 

In this digital world, a beautiful pen might not get used as much as it would have in past generations, but I would jump at every chance! Men and women alike will both appreciate the gesture. {Have it engraved with your wedding date for bonus points!}

Tickets. The options are endless! Take your husband on a date to see his favorite band or football team and promise not to complain :). Lee and I are taking a trip to New York City for our anniversary and I plan on printing our boarding passes from the United app {digital world, remember :)} and framing them to keep. Do the same with your tickets to help hold on to that memory.
Where did you and your husband fall in love? Is there a city that is significant to your relationship? Find a drawing or print that helps tell your love story. With so many creative artists on Etsy, it will be hard to choose one!

The vows that you recited in front of your family and friends are so meaningful, but so easily forgotten in the day to day. This beautiful print from Southern Weddings is the perfect reminder to celebrate those very important words.
city print | vows
Lastly, if all else fails, a love letter can mean so much more than a gift ever can. Tell your spouse exactly how many days you've loved them with this personalized card and have it framed afterward. Fun fact: I wrote my vows on Emily's 'You're My Very Favorite' card <3
romantic card

The Who, Whats, and Whens of Tipping


Tipping can be such a tricking subject, but it's one we are asked about often. Who should you tip? How much should you tip them? And when? Some will tell you only those who don't own their business deserve gratuity. Others say there are certain people who should automatically get tipped. Some believe in tipping everyone. Others believe in tipping no one. There are many differing opinions on the subject.









I think the easiest way to answer the who portion is this: You should tip anyone you felt went above and beyond your expectations.

As for how much: Tip them an amount you feel is appropriate and with which you are comfortable. If asked, I typically suggest the below dollar amounts (again, only if they exceeded your expectations)...

Hair / Makeup person - 15 - 20%
Officiant - $200 - $300, if the officiant was not hired through an officiating company.


Photographer / Videographer - $50 - $200
Ceremony Musicians - $15 - $20 per member
Band - $20 per member
DJ - $50 - $100
Waitstaff - Check your contract. If it is not already included, 18 - 20% of the total food costs (Not the total bill - which could include rentals, labor, etc.). If it has been included, I would still give a little something extra to the server who personally waits on you that evening.
Transportation - Check your contract. If it is not already included, 10 - 15%.

And now for the when: You should always tip after the service is complete. (Or, you can give the tips to your coordinator, and she will gladly take care of distributing them for you.)

And probably the most important thing of all: Don't forget to give online praise and to write thank you notes. Most wedding industry vendors like to display their thank yous for other potential clients to see. Sending a little praise goes a long way. It is appreciated perhaps more than anything else.

Happy planning,

DIY Projects


Whether it's because you're on a budget, or simply because you are crafty, there are a ton of fun do-it-yourself projects that you could use for your wedding.

These candle-holders can be used to set your tables and are very quick and easy to make. You just need some old jars, yarn, masking tape, spray paint and fabric, as well as candles to put inside. Photo credit and tutorial found here.


These beautiful chiffon and tulle flowers can be used in your hair, on your bridesmaids' dresses, as a cake decoration, or as decor for your wedding venue. Photo credit and tutorial found here.

If you're into flowers, creating your own bouquet could be a great way to add a personal touch to your wedding. Photo credit and tutorial found here.

If you want to send your guests home with favors that you can make yourself, or even just favors for your bridal party and special guests, these bottles are a great way to show your appreciation by including personalized notes inside. Photo credit and tutorial found here.

For outdoor weddings, monogrammed luminaries are a creative way to light up the pathway with your initials or a nice message. Photo credit and tutorial found here.

If you like to sew, then you probably have most of the materials needed to make this garter for your wedding day. This could be a fun project and maybe even a stress-reliever. Photo credit and tutorial found here.

Finally, these do-it-yourself wedding fan programs are so pretty if you have the time to create them yourself. All you need besides a computer and printer are some scissors, cover stock, and some eyelets and eyelet-setter tools. Photo credit and tutorial found here.

These are just a few ways to add some personal touches to your wedding if you like to be hands-on. They are also great for keeping costs down and making space in your budget for something else. There are so many fun projects for your wedding that you could do yourself if you just get creative. If you have trouble coming up with fresh, new ideas, browsing the internet is always great for inspiration.

Zineera

What do I get my bridesmaids?

Finding the perfect gift for your bridesmaids is often at the bottom of your wedding to-do list, and there isn't usually a ton of your budget allocated to gifts for your attendants. But, the ladies you ask to be a part of your wedding are usually special friends or family members (or soon to be!) and deserve a little something special. The best gifts are things people actually use, and might not buy for themselves. Here's some cute, different ideas:



photo from: marthastewartweddings.com

Water bottles are so popular right now, everyone seems to have one. The company that made this adorable example (discountmugs.com) allows you to send custom artwork (a monogram, or a design used throughout your wedding like this silhouette) and they apply it to the bottle.


A more traditional gift idea, these make-up bags from http://www.beau-coup.com/ are silk shantung and come in really pretty colors. You could get them in a color that corresponds to your wedding palette or a color that reminds you of each bridesmaid. Get them monogrammed with initials or names.



LL Bean totes come in so many cute colors and different sizes, and again, can be monogrammed (love!). Fill them with water, snacks, info for the wedding weekend and a sweet note.





















I'm a huge fan of stationery, and, you guessed it, especially when it's personalized. I love the idea of getting notepads with patterned or personalized pencils or pens (the examples above are from iomoi.com and Oriental Trading Co.). Who doesn't love a cute notepad to jot down a grocery list? Or notecards with their initials (these are from minted.com)?


Another cute trend that also contributes to a good cause (bonus!): Toms! Each pair you buy also buys a child in need a pair. Get different styles to fit the personality of your maids, or all the same. Love the glitter styles!

For the bride with a classic sense of style, pearl stud earrings are a welcome addition to any woman's wardrobe.


Have fun with it, and let it be a way to show your gratitude to these special ladies!

--Katie