Planner of the Month

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I am so fortunate to have been chosen as “Planner of the Month” by Special Event Rentals for August. As part of the title, I was asked to design a tablescape for display in their Edmonton showroom.

The inspiration for my tablescape came from Indian and Arabian influences as well as rich jewel tones. Since the photos don’t clearly showcase all the iridescence and details, please check it out in person!

Peacock Wedding ThemeGold Wedding TableIndian Wedding DecorElegant Wedding TableRich Wedding DecorArabian Theme WeddingPeacock TablescapeArabian Wedding TablePosh Wedding DecorEdmonton Wedding Planning and Design

{table design + concept: Christina Frizzell for Sweet Bliss Weddings}

{decor items + photos: Special Event Rentals}

{stationery design + photos: Christina Frizzell for Sweet Bliss Weddings}

Media Article – Wedding Gift Giving

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Edmonton Journal - Edmonton Event Planners

Gift-Giving Can Be Tricky, says Edmonton Wedding Planner

By Chris Zdeb, The Edmonton Journal

The average Canadian bride and groom live together before marriage so they usually have all the kitchen gadgets and other housewares they need. What many really want for a wedding gift is money, but it’s uncouth to say so on the invitation.

There are ways to tell if that’s what they want, but if it is, how much should you give? And if you do decide to give a gift, how much should you spend? Do you have to buy a gift if you’re already missing work and forking over big bucks to attend a destination wedding?

With the I-Do season in full swing, we asked Edmonton certified wedding planner Christina Frizzell of Sweet Bliss Weddings about some common gift etiquette quandaries.

How do you know a couple wants money?

If they’re not registered for gifts anywhere, you can assume they’re looking for money. If you want to be sure, ask one of their parents or anyone in the bridal party.

How much should money should I give?

“If your budget allows, and you’re a generous person by nature, or if you’re very close to the couple, I would say the absolute minimum would be to cover the cost of you attending their wedding, but it’s always good to put in a little extra so the couple actually comes out with something as opposed to coming out even at the end,” Frizzell says.

An afternoon wedding or brunch, for example, costs less than a wedding with a cocktail hour, dinner and dance. The style of wedding invitation and venue will also give you a clue as to how formal or expensive a wedding is.

Frizzell would spend $100 to $150 (closer to $200 if she was buying a gift with her husband) on a close friend or relative; $100 on a casual friend or relative; and $75 to $100 on a co-worker or distant relative.

“But again, you have to use your own personal discretion on does this meet my budget? Is this something I can afford?”

Do you have to give a gift?

Unless the invitation specifically says ‘No Gifts Please,’ yes you do.

What should you buy if you have no idea what to buy?

Let the couple’s gift registry be your guide. If only big ticket items are left, consider splitting the cost with another guest or another couple.

What if you have an idea for a gift that’s not on the registry?

If you’re close to the couple and have an idea that’s out-of-the-box that you think they’d like such as a cooking class if they love to cook or a gift certificate for horseback riding, if that’s a favourite activity, they would probably appreciate it. But run it past the couple’s parents or someone in the bridal party just to be on the safe side.

If you can’t attend the wedding do you still need to buy a gift?

If a close family member is getting married, yes. If it’s a friend or acquaintance, “I don’t think you’re obligated,” Frizzell says.

If you’re already missing work and paying to attend a destination wedding, do you have to buy a gift too?

Unless the invitation says no gifts, you should buy one. But present it to the couple either before the wedding or after they return, because some gifts — an expensive bottle of port or wine — may not get through customs, or they may have to prove they didn’t buy that jewelry where they got married.

What about making a donation to a charity in the couple’s name instead of buying a gift?

It’s been done, but it’s not a big trend, as of yet.

If you’re already spending quite a bit of money for a bridal shower gift do you have to spend a lot on a wedding gift?

The shower gift and wedding gift are two separate things. The bridal shower gift is a gift for the bride, or a household item. The wedding gift is for the couple. The cost of one should not influence the cost of the other.

If someone didn’t give you a wedding gift are you obligated to buy them one?

According to wedding etiquette, a guest has up to one year to give you a wedding gift, so don’t jump the gun. “Take the high road,” Frizzell advises, and buy them a gift even if they didn’t buy you one.

Photo courtesy of Ed Kaiser, The Edmonton Journal

Check out the online article here.

**Update** This article also ran in The Montreal Gazette and in the Vancouver Sun on June 29th and 30th, 2011.

Project: Share the Love!

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Who doesn’t love a good Love Story? No one!  Let’s face it, with all of the worry and stress that we face on a day-to-day basis, we need a feel-good story every now and again.

With that in mind, I would like to try out a new project that I’m calling “Project: Share the Love!” and I need your help (yes, I see you! Don’t hide on me!)

I personally think that the people around us probably have the most cute, amazing Love Stories, but that no one really gets to share them. Unfortunately, it doesn’t come up in conversation very often, does it?

So, here’s what I am asking you to do:

  • Write out your personal Love Story – it could be the story of how you and the love-of-your-life met, or a proposal story, something romantic that happened to you, or just a wonderful moment where you felt loved by someone (anyone!)
  • Send it to me at: christina@sweetblissweddings.ca (Don’t forget to include a photo, or you can request to remain anonymous)

See? Easy and painless!

Then I will post your story on the blog.

Now, here’s the best part: Share the Love! Send the link featuring your story out to your friends. Make it your Facebook status. Tweet about it. Anyway you want to do it, do it!

Sharing your personal Love Story not your thing? No problem. But you can still Share the Love! by sharing the link with others in the hopes that they will want to submit their Love Stories.

My personal goal with this is to set aside a moment in our busy, hectic lives to remember that Love is wonderful and that we all experience it. If you believe this as well, I would love for you to help spread the word and Share the Love!

My personal Love Story…coming soon! :)

Valentine Poster - Sweet Bliss Weddings

Welcome!

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Hello there! Welcome to Sweet Bliss Weddings. This is my blog, where you will find wedding and event planning and ideas and inspiration, as well as new and upcoming trends for products and weddings.

Allow me to introduce myself: My name is Christina Frizzell and I am a professional Wedding Planner, having been certified by the Wedding Planners Institute of Canada (WPIC) and the Gay Wedding Institute (GWI).

I offer a variety of wedding planning services from full wedding planner, to partial and wedding day coordination. And for those who are planning their wedding themselves, I also offer hourly consultations if you hit a road block or just need some professional advice on how to proceed.

Wedding Planners are wedding experts. Wedding Planners are etiquette experts. But most of all, we are your most valuable resource when it comes to planning your special day!

Please sit back, relax and enjoy the blog. Comments and topic suggestions are always welcome!

Love and laughter,

Christina Frizzell, B.A., WPIC, GWIC