Tuesday Tips | Volume 14 | Your Vermont Wedding Planner

Daylight savings is finally here.  Last night it was still light out at 6:30 PM.  Now if Mother Nature would only turn off this snow.  We are at the start of our third Nor'easter in three weeks.  I do think my girls will be thrilled to get in a few more days of sledding though.  As we inch closer to wedding season we've had a lot of our couples asking for help on the grooms attire.  So today let's tackle one option, the suit.

Wearing A Suit on Your Wedding Day

Let's get right to it.  When deciding to wear a suit on your wedding day a few things should be considered; the location of the wedding and what the bride is wearing.  Once you have decided that a suit would work, you will need to decide on the best location to purchase or have it custom made. The biggest advantage to wearing a suit on your wedding day is that you will have many opportunities to reuse it after the day is over. Consider the suit a long term investment. Unless you often attend black tie affairs, a suit might the perfect answer for your day.  In Vermont we see a mix of 60% suits and 40% tuxes. Tradition says you should strongly consider a deep navy or charcoal suit with black shoes. You can see in the above picture, shot at Topnotch Resort in Stowe, Vermont, that, Atang, our dashing groom, nailed this rule.  All of the the guys in his wedding were on point with their attire.  Ideally, when thinking about a suit you should think timeless and classic over trendy.  Often it's best to add a white shirt and classic tie to the suit.  If you want to be a bit more formal you can consider a vest.  A few ways to express yourself and really make the look  'all yours' would be to consider cool socks, suspenders or a bowtie; but please, I beg of you to never wear flip flops on your wedding day.  My last piece of advice that I feel very strongly about... have your suit custom made or tailored by a professional.  It makes a huge difference! 

Atang's suit was custom made at Blank Label in Boston. Our couple mentioned that Blank Label was great to work with too.

Let's chat about the tuxedo next week.

Tuesday Tips | Volume 13 | Your Vermont Wedding Planner

Hello from Vermont! This week our hearts are with our friends in Scituate who were pummeled by the high surf from the Nor'easter over the weekend. I hope everyone has time to secure their homes before the next storm moves in tomorrow. OK, let's talk about something near and dear to my heart... flowers, more importantly, a bridal bouquet.  During my floral design years, making the bridal bouquet was always the highlight of my week.  It was the icing on the cake for sure. This week let's chat about how to hold your bouquet so it looks great on video or in pictures.  

How To Hold Your Bridal Bouquet

How to hold your bridal bouquet.  Seems like such an easy thing to do, doesn't it?  It is, but with a little guidance we can make sure you have it positioned in your pictures so it doesn't cut off your dress or draw attention to an area you would rather not.  I've always felt it was so much easier to explain this technique in person when handing off a bouquet to a bride.  You should loosely hold the bouquet with two hands close to the flowers, high up on the stems. You should relax your arms and let your elbows point out slightly while your arms were bent just a bit more than 90 degrees.  When we were in the bouquet making business we always placed a pearl pin in the back as a guide so that you would know you had the back facing you.  If your thumb was on that pin then the best side was always facing forward.  Like I said, it's so much easier to show you how to do this in person.  Thankfully for us one of Vermont's premiere floral designers Sarah Jo Willey of Creative Muse Floral Design has a video about this very topic.  Sarah Jo truly is an expert in this field and she has valuable insight.  Pay close attention as we hit the 2:30 mark.

Special thanks to SJ  for sharing her video with me.

Tuesday Tips | Volume 12 | Your Vermont Wedding Planner

Good Morning!  My name is Randi Nonni and I am addicted to talking about Vermont weather.  Just ask my husband.  If you think it's bad in the winter, well, you have no idea how obsessive I become during wedding season.  There is not a weather app or weather man who is safe from me.  I look at my phone easily every 10 minutes leading up to a ceremony just in case trouble is on the horizon...   But today has nothing to do with weather.  Although, since I know you're probably dying to hear... it's warmish, OK warm may be a stretch, it's not freezing, and the sun is out and the sky is a glorious shade of blue.  I saw a few robins in my front yard too!  We all know what the return of the robin means;  it's means wedding season is fast approaching!  Alright, so back to the topic at hand; who can marry you and what will we do with that license that we talked about last week in How to Make Your Marriage Legal in Vermont

How To Make Your Marriage Legal In Vermont, Continued

There are many people that can legally marry you in the state of Vermont.  You can be married by a justice of the peace or an ordained or licensed member of the clergy, a supreme court justice, a superior court judge, a district judge or an assistant judge.  The ordained clergy member must reside in Vermont or in an a adjoining state if the church, temple mosque or other religious organization lies wholly or partly in Vermont.  In addition to all that we have listed, any person who is at least 18 years of age may register with the Vermont Secretary of State to become a temporary officiant for the day.  There is a fee of $100 associated with becoming a temporary officiant in Vermont.  You will send your fee in along with the necessary application.  Vermont law does not require you have a 'witness' but some religions may so let's talk more about this later.

After the ceremony is over, what do you we do with the license?  Well, for starters, give the license to your officiant before the ceremony.  They must have the license before the ceremony can be performed.  After the ceremony your officiant will fill in all of the needed information and sign the license.  At this point your license becomes a marriage certificate. Your officiant will return the certificate to the town clerk's office where it was issued within 10 days after the wedding.  The town clerk will officially register the marriage.  If your officiant had to register with the Secretary of State as a temporary officiant, a copy of the certificate of authority issued by that office, should be attached to the signed license and returned to the clerk's office.  The certificate is not a legal document until it has been officially recorded by the town clerk's office where it was purchased.  

Does this sound like a lot of detail to keep straight?  Just reach out to me today and I will walk you through it.  Also, it helps to have an experienced, well versed and knowledgable officiant from the state of Vermont to help, such as Annie Alexander-Kramer. She's been performing ceremonies for over 18 years and is a wealth of information.  She's seen it all and I'm positive she would be an asset to your day. 

Let's talk more about your ceremony soon.  Click below to chat with me.

Tuesday Tips | Volume 11 | Your Vermont Wedding Planner

Greetings from a warm and rainy Vermont.  It's days like this that you know Spring, or really Mud Season, is right around the corner.  Mud Season, well,  pretty easy to figure out what that is, and it hits for a few weeks right before our true Spring.  We've been busy watching lots of the Olympic coverage with our girls this past week.  So many of the insanely talented athletes started right here in our little mighty state of Vermont.  It's amazing to watch them on the big stage.  In other news, there are several battles going on here in the state to make things legal...  so today, let's talk about how to make it legal in Vermont.

How To Make Your Marriage Legal in Vermont

In the state of Vermont you need to be at least 18 years of age to get married.  I believe you can be 16 with your parents consent but I don't even want go there today or ever.  Thankfully, you do not need to be a  resident to get married in the Green Mountain State. Marriage licenses are issued by our town clerks.  They all have unique days and hours of business so it's important to check ahead with the town office of your choice to make sure you don't miss them.  If you or your spouse are a VT residence you must go to the town office where you reside to buy your license.  If neither of you are residents, you can go to any town office in the state of Vermont. There are no blood tests or waiting times required to get your license but you may need a birth certificate, or divorce decree from any previous marriages.  It's really quite simple and the clerk will walk you right through it.   You can obtain your marriage up to 60 days before the big day. During those 60 days you must have an authorized person perform your wedding ceremony.  The cost of the license in Vermont is $60.  It's that easy to get your marriage license here in VT.  Next week.... who can marry you and what do you do with the license after your wedding day.

Don't worry about remembering all of this either.  I will remind you when we are working together.  Reach out today by clicking below!  I would love to start planning your day, with you.

Tuesday Tips | Volume 10 | Your Vermont Wedding Planner

Tomorrow is Valentine's Day!  It's like the holy grail of holidays in my world... well, other than Christmas because we all know how important that is to me but I digress.  I hope your Valentine's is full of love no matter where you are or who you spend it with.  I was thinking about that last sentence over the weekend... 'who you spend it with' and it brought me to our very simple but important tip for this week.

Take It All In 

                                                                                                             Image by  Birke Weddings

                                                                                                             Image by Birke Weddings

One of the best pieces of advice I can give you for your wedding day is something that seems so small.  Take a moment with your spouse during the reception, once everyone is seated, to look around and really take in everyone in the room.  Feel the love.  These are your people.  This may be the only time you ever have every single one of these people in a room, or tent, together again.  And once you're done taking it all in... well, it might be a nice time to grab the microphone and truly thank each and everyone of your guests for their love and support and most importantly, for being part of your day.  There's always time to share a little love even if it means we stray off track, for a few minutes, from the official timeline. :)

Click the button below to talk more about all the special people in your life and how we can honor them on your wedding day.  Happy Valentine's Day!  

Tuesday Tips | Volume 9 | Your Vermont Wedding Planner

Happy Tuesday!  It's officially February here in Vermont... well, I'm assuming it's February everywhere else too but for us this particular month is extra special!  February is a month of birthdays for the ladies in my life.  Both of our daughters, Madelyn and Mirabelle, are February babies and my Mom, Trish, is too.  It's a month of celebrations!  When I think about partying all night long, I think about wedding nights and that always brings me to one thought...  What am I going to wear on my feet?  So here we go with today's Tuesday Tip...

Wear Comfy Shoes On Your Wedding Day

                                                                                                             Image by  Grazier Photography

                                                                                                             Image by Grazier Photography

Wedding days are long.  There is no way around it.  You'll definitely be on your feet all day and well into the night.  If your feet are uncomfortable on your wedding day you will not be happy.  So what to do....  Well, let's start with heels.  If you have your heart set on heels for your wedding day make sure you break them in early.  I would suggest you start a few months ahead of the wedding. Also, consider ordering them slightly larger than needed as your feet may swell a bit on that night.  Another good tip for you heel loving brides is a bit of deodorant is a good buffer between the straps on your shoes and your feet.  I've had a lot of brides use that trick over the years.  You also might want to consider getting two or even three pairs of shoes for the day.  Strappy heels are great for photos and the ceremony but then maybe you switch into a cute flat or wedge to dance the night away.  If you say no way to heels in general, don't do it on wedding day.  This is definitely not the day to try something new.  If you prefer a little height or you have an outdoor wedding perhaps a pair of wedges would work perfectly just like they did for our bride Katelyn, whose adorable Lily Pulitzer's are featured above.  Perhaps you've already decided on flats, all day, but nothing too casual.  This Christian Louboutin Follies Strass Flat might be a perfect fit for you.  BHLDN also has a line of super cute reasonably priced bridal shoes, everything from flats to heels and oxfords to wedges. Kate Spade has these Just Married Ballet Flats in mint green or blush if you really want something for late night that is incredibly adorable and comfortable.

Another way to go that is super popular right now is a cute sneaker.  I know my girl, Lizzy, will be rocking some custom ones at her wedding this year.  If custom seems out of reach for you I would definitely recommend the new line of wedding days sneakers that's a collaboration between Kate Spade and Keds.  They're pretty darn cute, check them out here:  Keds X Kate Spade New York.  Lastly, I would recommend that if your wedding is outside, look around for the cutes pair of rain boots you've ever seen and make sure we can have them overnighted, just in case.  That last tip goes right along with our blog post 'Always have a Rain Plan for your Vermont Wedding'.   Have you noticed that we refer back to that one often? :)

At the end of the day it's all about your style and what shoes you are most comfortable in.  I really do think that changing your shoes throughout the night works well. I would be more than happy to hold on to that extra pair of shoes for you to change into late night.  If your feet are happy on wedding night, I'm happy!   Get in touch today so we can talk more about all of the details for your wedding day.

Tuesday Tips | Volume 8 | Your Vermont Wedding Planner

Greetings from Vermont!  The days are growing longer here, thankfully!  We are still right in the middle of Engagement Season.  I've been talking to so many newly engaged couples the last few weeks and the subject often turns to 'How can we clearly communicate the weekend agenda?' Well of course we can have one of our fab invitation designers help us with an adorable weekend booklet to be added to the invitation suite or a welcome bag but that doesn't come until closer to the wedding day.  So for now the best way to let them your guests know what is going on is to design a wedding website.  This is our Tuesday Tip for January 30th...  

Do you like the idea of a Wedding Website?

Please check: Yes [ ] or No [ ]

Woodstock Vermont Wedding Planner- Silver Toad.png

I strongly suggest that you design a wedding website.  It really is easy once you get started.  There are so many sweet templates too.  I'm sure you will find one that truly reflects who you are as a couple.  Nowadays, there are a lot of places to make your wedding website such as The Knot, Minted or Joy but I think my favorite is Riley & Grey.  I realize that some of you may not want your details public thankfully most sites can be password protected.  So if a private site is important you be sure to look for this feature.  OK, so why have a site at all?  Well, it's an easy way to get all the pertinent information out to your guests months before the wedding.  You can add information on lodging, travel, registries, the dress code plus all of the wedding weekend activities.  You even will find a spot to share photos and your story, if you choose.  Another sweet feature that most sites offer is a place to share your wedding party attendants.  You can also add information to make your guests weekend more comfortable such as your favorite places to shop and dine or get an amazing cup of coffee.  And if you really, really like your guests we could add links to cool activities like great hiking spots, the best kayaking places, museums and cool local "must see" sites in the area of the wedding.  A lot of websites now offer ways to rsvp too and/or collect all the personal contact information needed for invitations.  If the thought of putting all your information out there on the web makes you shudder that's OK too.  Just make sure the save the dates go out early and are full of information to help your guests navigate their planning of your wedding weekend.  

Reach out today to tell me more about your wedding plans here in Vermont.  I would love to be on your team!

Tuesday Tips | Volume 7 | Your Vermont Wedding Planner

Happy Tuesday!  I can feel the 2018 wedding season getting closer and closer.  It's very similar to that feeling I get post-wedding season as we inch closer and closer to Christmas.  It's pure joy!  Todays tip is something that can easily be overlooked and I don't ever want that to happen.  So, let's get right to it...

Document the Small Details 

Some of my favorite shots from a wedding are the very small details, your accessories.  I love images of your rings, your necklace, your shoes, your ties or cuff links or maybe it's your veil and sash.  There's just something about a gorgeously lit image of the smallest details from your day that takes my breath away each and every time.  Jennifer Mardus Photography has a unique and beautiful way of capturing these images.  All the images above were shot by Jen this past summer.  No matter who your photographer is let's make sure these images are not missed.  I will gather all your accessories and put them in a special place on wedding day so the photographer can swoop in while you're busy and capture amazing shots like these.  Vermont is blessed with some of the most amazing photographers, they all have unique and special qualities.  Let's talk about who would be a good fit for your wedding.  I can't wait to see all of the images from your wedding day and know that I'll be on the look out for those gorgeous small detail shots.   

A Summer Wedding in Barnard, Vermont | Vermont Wedding Planner

Working with these two beautiful families on this particular wedding was the best!  It's weddings like this that remind me how lucky I am to be a wedding planner here in Vermont.  This video will give you a little glimpse into the heart of the wedding of Laurel and Alexander.


Our weekend started off and ended at the Woodstock Inn and Resort where the families hosted a welcome party and a brunch but in between those events was the wedding day.  Laurel and Alexander were married at her parents home in Barnard, Vermont.  The weather was perfect; we had blue skies and warm temps during the day, with no chance of rain. That evening the temperature dropped into the 40's which is highly unusual for summertime in Vermont but we were prepared with heaters to keep the tent toasty.  Laurel and Zandy's day was spent with family and friends who came in from all over the world to celebrate them.  The guests started the day with drinks on the back lawn listening to music from our string quartet.  The ceremony followed with some of the most heartfelt words I have ever heard by the Honorable Judge Rigsby.  You could literally feel the love during the ceremony.  After enjoying cocktails and hor d'oeuvres the guests were escorted down past the pond to the tented reception where the band was in full swing.  Dinner soon followed with sweet toasts made to the couple and then it was back onto the dance floor for the night.  The band kept everyone on the dance floor for hours.  There were so many sweet personal touches at this wedding from the beautiful robes, lavender toss post ceremony, signature drinks, specialty appetizers, sweet signs designed by the brides mother, that huge lobster, the sweet candy bar and R2D2 cake that surprised our groom, to him surprising her right back by getting up on the stage and playing with the band.  Laurel and Zandy ran through a sea of sparklers at the end of the reception to their golf cart that whisked them away into the night... or back up to the main house for an after party where they enjoyed drinks, grilled cheese and cigars.  It truly was one of those days that will stay with you for a life time.


I loved being their planner and working along side this team of amazing vendors:

Cinematography: 822 Weddings || Floral Design: Ellen Snyder Floral Design

Catering: Heart Rock Kitchen || Lodging, Brunch and Welcome Party:  Woodstock Inn and Resort  

Photography: Jennifer Mardus Photography || Rentals: Rain or Shine Tents & Events

Dessert:  Irene's Cake by Design  ||  Bar Service:  Solo Service and Libations

Linens:  The Linen Shop ||  Beauty:  Simplicity Salon  || Entertainment: DC Project

Musicians: Sterling String Quartet  ||  Transportation:  Ethan Allen Coach Works

Restrooms: Luxury Event Rentals || Invitations:  KatBlu Studios || Lodging: The Shire

Day of Stationery: Christa Alexandra Designs  ||  Signage:  Michele Frye of Design Du Jour

And a very special shout out to my partner in planning, Judy LaMontagne!  You're the best!

Tuesday Tips | Volume 6 | Your Vermont Wedding Planner

It's Wednesday sssssh!  don't tell anyone I am a day late.  Winter is still in full swing here in Vermont, although the days do seem to be getting a bit longer... it's so nice to see the sun until 4:30 PM now.  As the days are getting longer I find myself dreaming about our upcoming summer weddings. I was chatting with one of my grooms just the other day who was a little bit, OK, a lot, nervous about writing his own vows for his upcoming wedding. That conversation was the inspiration behind this weeks tip.    

Writing Your Vows

                                                             Photo by  Birke Weddings  at  The Inn at Mountain View Farm

                                                             Photo by Birke Weddings at The Inn at Mountain View Farm

Will you be writing your own vows for your Vermont wedding?  Does writing and expressing your feelings come easy to you?   Or are you nervous and unsure where to start?  Let's walk through a few tips to get you started.  The most important part of this tip is to write your vows ahead of time.  Do not wait until the last minute. Let me rephrase that, do not wait until the last month, if at all possible. You do not need that added pressure the month of your wedding.  Two months prior or even earlier is a great place to add this task when looking at your wedding to-do list.

To start the process, have a conversation with your fiancé about the tone of the vows.  Will they be short and sweet; funny; or heartfelt and sentimental.  I think a mix of all of the above is a great way to go. Next, get some inspiration.  The internet, your favorite book, song or movie may help.  While you're gathering inspiration start to make a list of all the things you love about your significant other.  I bet this one is the easy part.  Think of how much they mean to you and what the future will hold.  Write down your hopes and dreams and maybe that funny story about how you don't want to talk to her in the morning before her coffee... oh wait that last part is about me.  After your list is complete, and it certainly can be a working list that you keep adding too, start to put it together in sentences, it's that easy.  Don't forget to use the internet for inspiration if you need it.  Once the vows are complete I suggest you put them away for a while then pull them back out and edit as needed and as you get closer to your wedding day.  Once you've decided on the final script I suggest you do your best to memorize it and the only way to do that is to practice, practice, practice.  I want you to read those vows out loud too.  Do it in the car on your way to work, in the bathroom in front of the mirror, when you're out for a jog, anywhere at all works, just make sure you practice out loud so the emotions and nerves don't completely overtake you on wedding day.  Lastly, have a two nice clean copies of your vows on wedding day.  One for your pocket and one for mine.  I will be sure to hold on to the vows just in case we need that extra copy.  

Get in touch today so we can start to plan your wedding day.  There is so much to do.   I will be right by your side to keep you on track as we move through the planning process.