From Groom to Groom, How to Get Involved

Friday, September 30, 2011

Hello Everybody!

Today I have a wonderful surprise for you!! My amazing fiancee offered to be a guest blogger for us!! He wanted to do his OWN version on how future grooms could get involved in the planning process. I was pleasantly surprised on what he came up with! He did a great job if I do say so myself & trust me he is speaking from experience, loll :-) Leave comments to let him know how he did!! 

Tips on Being an Involved Groom

I want the men to picture themselves in the wedding planning process. If you are like most guys (99.9%) the first thing that snaps into your head is seeing your fiancée (with her mother, sister, friend, etc.) picking out the wedding dress, floral arrangements, table cloth color, centerpieces, caterer, DJ, (I can go on for days) while you show up alive and ticking on the wedding day. In the past, grooms were typically uninvolved in the wedding planning process. Having the bride and the bride’s family do the planning was the norm. But times are a changing, as are the roles and responsibilities. The groom can do more than just help out here and there. Being involved can alleviate the stress that the bride may go through.

Guys, we must understand that most women dream about their weddings since they were in their mother’s womb. A vivid picture is set and they want to ensure every single detail is done to achieve that “perfect wedding.” But it must be understood that it is not a one person show. Planning this day would probably be the first major project as a couple, so why not accomplish it together?

Here are some tips for grooms on how to become more involved in their wedding process:

Talk about it/ Ask for help – I believe the first thing you must do is share the ideas you
have. Some guys may be hesitant to help with planning because they don’t have a clue
of what is expected of them. Do not brush aside or shoot down any ideas. That is bad for
business on both ends. Always encourage each other during the planning process to lessen
any outside stress that may come by. Develop a plan that can adhere to both your needs
and stick to it.
Every guy may not have the most aesthetic eye in the world and that’s OK. You can leave
such things as the flowers, décor, and invitations to her. There are other areas that the
groom can take on.

Honeymoon: You’ve wanted to travel to an island with the bluest water for a while now
for vacation. Why not plan the honeymoon? A great way to plan that special getaway
with your new partner.

Limo/Transportation: You love cars. You love everything about cars. You have all
the Fast and Furious DVDs and even the special edition of Disney’s Cars. This would
be the perfect opportunity to get involved in the search for the limo and the mode of
transportation for the bridal party.

Groom and groomsmen attire: Hey, why not have a say in what you and your
groomsmen are going to wear? This is a great way to show your own style (of course
that the both of you can agree on.)

Entertainment: Choosing the entertainment for the reception is a great way to get
involved in the wedding planning. You can have auditions of the bands or DJs that you
both have in mind. If the band/DJ play somewhere regularly, take a night out and go
listen to them with your bride to be. This would be a great way to spend time together
while ticking off the “Need DJ/Band” on the checklist.

Organizer: If you are a good in keeping things organized, you can help by taking
care of all the paper work that you may obtain such as contracts and receipts. This is
a great way to use your skills as a natural organizer and put your excel spreadsheet
awesomeness to work.

Include something special in the wedding for you: This can change your mindset of
a wedding being a boring formalized ritual to something personal, unique, and fun. If you
are a musician, you can play a song for your bride during the reception. Wouldn’t that be
nice… performing a song for your bride at your wedding.

Get involved! With these suggestions, I’m sure the planning process would be a lot easier and even more exciting for the both of you. It is not easy being the groom now-a-days. There's a lot expected of you, and a multitude of tasks to check off the list. But no matter how crazy things get, never forget that you love her and that the frenzied preparation period is just one hurdle on the road to a beautiful life together.

Be Easy,
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Have You Always Wondered?? Igbo Traditional Wedding

Friday, September 23, 2011

A few weeks ago I did a post on Yoruba traditional weddings and as I said I would explore marriage traditions from ALL over! Today I am presenting you with Igbo marriage traditions. I was blessed enough to have help from my most FAVORITE Igbo friend, Precious Obua! THANKS PRESHHH!! So here is what Precious had to share with me about the beautiful traditions of Igbo weddings.

Bedazzled Photography

In Igbo traditional wedding starts with the groom's family approaching the bride's family and they welcome them. They sit down and tell the bride's family what they have come there for. They ask the bride if she approves of the request, she then says yes. The groom's family will present everything they bring from the bride price list. Palm wine is served. If the bride's parents drink the palm wine, she is permitting of the wedding. They pour it in the cup for her to go find the man she wants to marry. She finds him, kneels down and gives him the wine to drink and he saves some for her to drink. He puts some money in the cup to "dash" her, once she is finished drinking. They are now husband and wife. She brings her new husband to the families. The oldest man in that family will bless the two. If not the oldest, the mother and father will bless the two of them. Now the ceremony can begin! After the ceremony is over the bride changes into married woman's traditional Igbo attire and follows her husband. It signifies she is now traditionally married.

Pictures borrowed from www.yeswewed,com. Photos taken by Ellie M. Photography
What does Kola nut and palm wine signify?
The kola nut means peace and unity. An acceptance and welcome. The palm wine is tradition, and any traditional marriage without palm wine is not complete.

Why does she look for the man?
When she looks for the man, it shows that not everybody sitting there witnessing the marriage knows the man. We assume that she is the only person that knows the man. If she finds him and brings him out that means she is making it known to everybody that he is the man that she wants to marry.
Same photo credit as above

What do you love about Igbo Traditions & how does it blend with American traditions?
I love the igbo attire and the traditional drink. I love my language because I was born with it and its easy and simple to me. Igbo people are very gentle and kind. I love the respect that young people have for the elders. In Igbo tradition we don’t typically kiss at weddings but now due to western influence the phrase “you may kiss your bride” is acceptable.  American music is more acceptable in ceremonies now and throwing the bouquet is also a favorite of mines.
Stay Beautiful My Loves,
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Wedding Planning Diary Introduction!!!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Hey Guys!!

So I promised everyone that I would journal my wedding planning process. Anyone that has planned a wedding or knows someone that has planned a wedding, can tell you it has it's really good times and it has not so good times. I've only been engaged for about 5 months now and I can testify to that, lol! Planning something that means soooo much to you with so many different opinions, suggestions, and thoughts can very well be one of the hardest things a person will ever plan. I have MAD respect for those who do it all without a wedding planner, but as for me...I am lucky enough to have BCG Events (yes we plan & coordinate TOO!!) with me EVERY step of the way!

My main purpose of doing this is not to brag or "show-off" but mainly for my entries to serve as a support system for myself and other planning brides out here. I want other African brides planning African weddings using African vendors to reach out to me and let me know that I am not alone with the frustrations that come along with planning. I also want planning and future brides to use me and this blog as a resource for inspiration, advice, or just a place to vent! I'm here to listen and I hope you guys will be there for me as well!

So on that note, I will just tell you a little bit about my personal wedding style.

If you remember a post I did some time ago on How to Select Your Wedding Style. If you refer back to that post I thought I was slick by posting some of MY inspiration photos in a blog post, loll! But those first four photos actually describe my wedding style almost perfectly. I plan on adding a little more of a wispy, light, airy feel to it by using really soft colors that will set an ETHEREAL ambiance...and that is my theme! Ethereal, heavenly, soft, billowy....I basically want my guests to feel like they are being enveloped in a cloud of lavishness! If you don't get it, don't worry my duty over the next couple of months is to tell you how I plan on executing that and take you with me through the highs and lows of wedding planning. Here are more pics that kind of inspire me and made me fall in love with my may have seen me post some of these pics before because I'm obsessed but whatever, here they are again, haha! Sorry about the lack of credits...I've totally lost track due to plenty of emailing, cut and pasting...but I found MOST of them on Google.

Sidenote: The color palette that we'll be working with are a range of peaches, blush pinks, soft oranges, ivory, and gold accents :-)

Stay Beautiful My Loves,
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Beautiful Proposal Stories

Friday, September 16, 2011

Hey Guys!

I have been collecting some videos I've found on the web of super cute and romantic proposal stories! Some people get very serious and intricate with marriage proposals and some keep it light hearted but sweet. I have posted a few youtube videos of some of my favorites!

This proposal is the definition of OVER the top!! Most people were wondering who paid for all of this? I figured maybe the TV producers did because this was very extravagant!!

Okay so I just thought this was so super sweet! He totally caught her off guard and he made it sooo special!

This one is actually a save the date video but it's so cute I had to add it, lol!

This one is cute and fun! I love how theatrical he made it!

Who wouldnt LOVE a proposal at Disneyland!!! "Where dreams come true"! Love this

This is hands down MY favorite proposal, so simple yet sooo sweet & romantic! This one made me sniffle a little, loll  :-)

I hope you all enjoyed them! Which one is your favorite? Have you ever dreamed of your proposal? If you are already engaged/married was your proposal everything you hoped for? Was it low-key and you still loved it? Talk to me!!

Stay Beautiful My Loves,
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Beauty Sightings: Photo Ops

Monday, September 12, 2011

Hey Guys!!

Have you ever seen a wedding photo and think like"OMG I would love to do something like that"?? Well that happens to me VERY often! So I began collecting pictures from engagement shoots AND weddings that I just think are soooo cute! I love pictures that just really make you FEEL the love that the couple have for one another. Or pictures that are just so creative that really show how important it is to have a skilled photographer that can capture AND actually create amazing moments. Some of these photos LITERALLY make me choke up JUST a little bit b/c they just evoke sooo much love and that is truly my FAVORITE emotion...such a beautiful thing :-) I hope you enjoy! Let us know what you think!


Really cool idea for an "urban" shoot (

One of the ones that bring a tear. You can FEEL their connection (Amelia Lyon Photography)

I just think this is too adorable! Would make a cute Save The Date (

DRAMA!! This is actually a fashion editorial but I still think its hot, lol! (

This is also adorable, shows how love grows! (

One of my FAVES (

So passionate! (

LOL! Really cute and playful! (

I love this one! It gives off that sense of how safe she feels when in his arms! (

Just thought this was fun and cute (

Another really cute Save The Date (

I like this one b/c it just screams BOSS! (utterlyengaged,com)

So loving :-) (

I am obsessed with veil blowing in the wind photos, lol! (Elizabeth Messina Photographs)

Perfect! (

Now THIS church is stunning! (

So beautiful (Jose Villa Photography)

Storybook Ending "Walk into the sunset" (

She looks SOO happy! I LOVE (

Walking on water, loll! (

Love the dress, bouquet, hair, everything (

Dance Like Nobody is Watching (

Her skin tone against the color of the dress...just LOVELY (

Caliente! (

This is ART to me! (

Itchingggg to know what you guys think of these photos!! Will you be stealing any of these and putting it on your photography list??? I have about 90% of them on mine, LOLL! Which ones are your favorite? Least favorites?

What do you think makes for amazing couple photographs?? The location, the couple themselves, the photographer?? Talk to us!!

Stay Beautiful My Loves,
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Beautiful BCG Wedding: Lola & Dolamu!!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Hey Everyone!!

Today I am showing off our beautiful couple Lola and Dolamu!! If I must say so myself, their wedding was absolutely BEAUTIFUL! I love the pink and blue and the lighting is my FAVORITE part! I hope you all enjoy the pictures along with a little bit of advice from our lovely bride!

Names & Ages: Dolamu, 31 and Lola Solanke, 31

How'd You Meet?
We met during the summer of 2001 while my two bff's from London came to NJ on vacation.  During that time we all use to hang out and I always use to think to myself that I hope Dolamu would come out too (smiling while remembering) just so I could see him again.  Towards the end of the summer he asked me for my number and from then we have been together for 8 years.

How'd he propose:
Funny Sept 3rd is our 2nd yr anniversary of when he proposed to me.  We were in London on our summer vacation and I still remember it was raining in the city that evening and we were on our way to meet up with our friends to go for a ride on the London eye.  We were so lucky we got our own private capsule that evening, and as we started moving I went and stood by the railing looking out over the river Thames, the Big Ben and the House of Parliment and Dolamu came up behind me talking about how pretty everything looked and that this was the prefect moment and him to ask that point he took my hand and turned me around and he got on one knee and he asked me "Will you marry me" the same time the capsule reached the very top of its rotation :-).  The next day we went to Paris for three days.

What was your favorite part of wedding planning?
The favorite of planning the wedding for me was picking out our invitations because the lady we were working with was so easy to work with it was the least stressful thing to do.


What was the most stressful part of wedding planning?
The most stressful part of the planning was doing the seating chart. We were trying to make sure that everyone sat with people they knew and making sure that our parent's friends had a good location in the ballroom.  At the end of the day, it worked out perfectly because all of our guests knew which table they were sitting on when the doors to the ballroom opened up.

Would you change anything if you could go back? If so, what?
We both agreed that if we could change anything at all it would be the weather.  It rained the entire day so we where unable to take pictures at the park we chose.  But our photographer made it happen with the pictures we took at the venue which came out perfect.

What is your most memorable moment from your wedding day?
The most memorable part of our wedding was the dance we both shared with our mothers

Is there any advice you would give planning brides?
I would say plan and get has much done and not leave anything to the last minute. We booked our venue the same year we got engaged and I found my dress the same year; so as the wedding day got closer we did not have anything left to do but relex.  Also, make sure you have a budget you can stick to and be realistic about what you want your wedding day to be like and remember that it is your day and you have the final say on what you want.

Photographer - Dotun of Dotun Photo's Lounge!
Personal Flowers and Decor - BCG Event Decor
Venue - Ariana's Grand Woodbridge, NJ
Cake - Design Cakes
Invitations - Nuage Mulberry


Stay Beautiful My Loves,
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