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The 2014 Bride’s Guide to Winter Planning

The holidays are nearly here, which means it’s the time of year that those of us in the wedding industry call planning season! Here’s my insider’s guide to help 2014 brides get a jump on their planning!

December is the ultimate month for bridal fashion! Bridal boutiques often have sales on the current year’s lines while the next year’s collections are flooding into their stores. Brides have the best range of selection to pick from in December, so if you haven’t found the dress, next month is your best chance!

Unless you’re buying your dress in store, make sure to allow enough time to order your gown from the designer. A bridal shop associate can let you know a realistic time to plan for ordering to ensure that you have enough time before your wedding. If alterations need to be made, allow another 2-3 months prior to your wedding date for fittings to ensure you look picture perfect!

What better time than the holidays to find a little sparkle? Keep an eye out for Black Friday sales, or for the post-Christmas price drops from retailers like Nordstrom, Kate Spade, and Coach. You may just find the perfect bridal accessories for a fraction of the price.

Savvy brides can also keep their eyes peeled for the perfect bridesmaids’ gifts at a great steal. The one thing you want to make sure you don’t do is to give your pals jewelry for your wedding as their Christmas presents.



If your venue allows you to supply your own alcohol, the best time to stock up on bubbly is right after New Year’s or Valentine’s Day. Stores bring in massive amounts of champagne and alcohol for winter holidays, which means prices plummet on January 1st. Buy your preferred drinks by the case and store it for the big day – you can trim your bar budget significantly while still offering your guests a glass of the good stuff.

Winter is also the time to taste your wedding food. Each caterer or venue has their own schedule, but the majority of tastings occur during their slow season. Keep in mind that seasonal items might change, but now is the time to set your menu!



Ornaments aren’t just for Christmas anymore! Post-holiday sales can afford some amazing deals on ornaments and decor that will still look gorgeous in summer and spring. Keep your eyes open for glittery finds – white, silver, and gold can work in any season – or patterned paper to use as accents.

Rental companies and craft stores debut their new items after the first of the year, so meet with your designer or visit vendor’s websites and showrooms to see the latest designs to get ideas for your wedding!



If you’re planning to DIY your wedding – now is the time! A lot of crafty couples can be surprised at the amount of time that easy Pinterest project really requires, so get a good head start when you can.

Setting a realistic schedule for crafting will help keep your various projects from becoming too overwhelming, so starting early is vital. Divide projects and wedding tasks up so you only have a few key things to do each month. Your wedding will be here before you know it, so make the most of your planning and your budget this winter!


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