I’m a destination bride, and I won’t be able to have a trial with a makeup artist before my wedding day. This really worries me! How do I make sure I’ll get the look I want? – Sandy

I know this may seem daunting, but it’s actually very common for destination brides to feel this way! First, find a makeup artist whose work matches your style. If you want a natural look, seek out an artist who specializes in natural looks. If you want a more dramatic look, again, seek out an artist who specializes in dramatic looks, and so on. You can also ask your makeup artist to work in steps; this is almost like a trial within your wedding day service. Inspiration pictures are wonderful, too, but don’t forget that not all looks work on all people and must be tailored to your bone structure and skin tone. If you’re unsure how a look will work on you, try it at home, first.

My future hubby and I want to have an open bar, but we can’t afford the price tag that comes along with that. What can we do? - Gina

There are several things you can do to save yourself some money when it comes to stocking the bar at your reception. Offer one or two signature cocktails – perhaps each of your favorite drinks or two entirely new drinks. This limits the amount of mixers and types of liquor that you’ll be responsible for bankrolling, and allows for the option to pre-mix the cocktails (time saver!). Another option is to have a beer & wine bar with three to four varieties of beer, and wines that will pair with your menu offerings. The last option, and one that can be used with the other ideas, is to host a ‘Stock the Bar’ party – either as your engagement party or wedding shower – Ask your guests to bring a bottle as their gift to you. You can assign the mixer or type of liquor, wine, or beer you’d like your guests to bring, or let them decide!

Whichever option you choose, I do highly recommend having a bartender - be it a professional mixologist or a friend who pours a mean Tom Collins - dedicated to keeping the drinks flowing and the bar tidy.

Signature Cocktail Image by Melissa Wilson Photography www.melissawilsonphoto.com

One of the groomsmen in our upcoming wedding has been a no-show to all of the events we’ve thrown since announcing our engagement – always with lame excuses. We’re afraid he won’t even show up to the wedding! Can we tell him we don’t want him to be in the wedding anymore? - Marianna

Yes. Tell him as soon as possible. Explain your fears to him and tell him that while he’s still welcome to attend the wedding, you need a bridal party you can rely on.

How do we explain to our family members that we are having a non-traditional wedding? It seems like they are criticizing every decision we make! – Lesleigh

Let me first say this, it is your wedding. The decisions about your wedding should ultimately be made by the people who know you both best – YOU! Your family members may come from a time when weddings were conscribed by a litany of rules. Today, there are very few rules, and even those rules are open for interpretation. Yes, you can have brunch for your rehearsal dinner! Yes, you can use faux flowers in your bouquets and tabletop décor! Yes, you can get married in your backyard by a salty dog boat captain!

I understand how frustrating it can be to be criticized, and sometimes those around you have valid points. For example, I really wanted breakfast served at my wedding – it’s my favorite meal of the day! My Mom made a valid point “What if the eggs get cold and the waffles are soggy and rubbery by the time the guests make it through the serving line?” Good point, Mom! So, we quickly put the kibosh on that idea and opted for an amazing spread of heavy hors d’oeuvres – all of which were delicious hot and cold! Alternatively, there may be people around you that enter their unsolicited opinion without validity.

It may be best to pick your battles. Sit down with your future hubby and decide what your non-negotiable points are, and make those the choices on which you won’t budge. Set those as boundaries. You can thank your family members for their input, and tell them that you’ve already chosen to go a different direction. Hopefully, there won’t be any animosity, but if there is, it’s best to defuse the situation with a simple “I’m sorry you feel that way.”

Flowers By: Supposey www.supposeyflorals.com

Images By:

Ryan Shephard Photography Studios www.ryanshephardphotography.com

Melissa Wilson Photography www.melissawilsonphoto.com

Jessi Field Photography www.iamjessifield.com