Ring Bearer Fashion

Last week, we shared some precious flower girls from weddings at The Barn and some of the most popular styles of flower girl dresses and accessories that we've seen over and over. Today let's talk about ring bearer fashion! As a boy mom, ring bearers totally melt my heart. Little boys may not be quite as into the whole wedding scene as little girls are, but my goodness, are they cute... and they're also often the life of the party -  you never know what those little stinkers may do while walking down the aisle, and they always have the best moves on the dance floor! There aren't many things more adorable than a little boy wearing a suit or a cute, vintage outfit complete with suspenders, carrying a sweet (or sometimes cheeky) sign down the aisle. SO precious, y'all. The three styles of ring bearer outfits we see the most are: traditional (a suit and tie or a tuxedo); vintage (slacks, a shirt, and suspenders are a popular vintage-inspired look); and country (jeans, boots and a dress shirt, for example). Just like flower girls, ring bearers also look super sweet when they're carrying some type of accessory during their walk down the aisle... a traditional ring pillow or ring box, a cute sign, or a pup on a leash! Here are some of the most heart-melting little ring bearers we've ever seen! Future ladies men right here, y'all. 

Classic

  Salt & Sky Studios , from Nikki + Scott's wedding

Salt & Sky Studios, from Nikki + Scott's wedding

Vintage

Country

  Southern Belle Snapshots , from  Erin + Scott 's wedding. This sweet boy just wanted to be close to his mama. And you can't see in this photo, but the badge on his shirt says "Ring Security." How cute!

Southern Belle Snapshots, from Erin + Scott's wedding. This sweet boy just wanted to be close to his mama. And you can't see in this photo, but the badge on his shirt says "Ring Security." How cute!

Ring Bearer Signs + Accessories

 J. Millwood Photography, from  Kaleena + Spencer 's wedding

J. Millwood Photography, from Kaleena + Spencer's wedding

10 Reasons to Elope at The Barn

Our spring season has been full of elopements, and I can’t wait to share them all with you! One of the most popular topics readers of The Barn Blog ask me about is our elopement collection. I think a lot of our couples and readers are torn on whether or not eloping is a good idea, and even if they truly want to elope, they have a "real" wedding and reception instead. Eloping is definitely not for everyone, but there are a few reasons you may want to consider eloping! Many people think elopements are only for pregnant brides or couples that have been in previous marriages. That is so not the case, y'all! Elopements are romantic, intimate, and at The Barn, they are just as stunning and amazing as other weddings! Here are 10 reasons why you might want to consider eloping. 

  Sterling Imageworks , from  Morgan + Wager 's completely ridiculously amazing elopement. They brought their pup, Mabel, along to watch them say I do... we loved it!

Sterling Imageworks, from Morgan + Wager's completely ridiculously amazing elopement. They brought their pup, Mabel, along to watch them say I do... we loved it!

1. You want a beautiful wedding, but without having to plan anything yourself. With elopements, we ask our couples to give us an overall color palette and theme that they love, and then we get creative and come up with a unique, beautiful masterpiece! Elopements are even less hands-on for our couples than our weddings... Which is pretty crazy, because even our most over-the-top weddings require very little effort from the bride and groom! If you want to do literally NO work in coming up with decor ideas, an elopement may be for you! You can literally show up in your dress, marry your love, take a bunch of photos, cut the cake and GO!

2. You want gorgeous wedding photos, but without everything that goes along with a big wedding. Some couples just aren't into everything that goes along with a big wedding, but it's also important to them to have stunning photos to look back on for their entire lives. This is where elopements come in! Your photos will be gorgeous, guaranteed (if you choose a professional photographer, that is!). 

  Sterling Imageworks , from  Pam + Scott 's purple & turquoise elopement

Sterling Imageworks, from Pam + Scott's purple & turquoise elopement

3. You're super romantic. There is nothing as romantic as running away to get married and then surprising all your family and friends with the big news! Morgan + Wager posted a "just eloped" photo to Facebook after their elopement to share their news... How fun is that!

4. Your family is crazy. Some of us just have totally cray-cray families who may or may not make a wedding a little (or a lot!) stressful, dramatic or awkward. Lord love 'em. Families can make weddings SUPER insane (we've seen it... eek!). If you're pretty sure your family is going to put a damper on your big day, an elopement miiiight be the way to go. 

5. You want to get married, like NOW. We can plan elopements super fast. As long as we've got time to get the flowers and cake in, we've got time to plan an unforgettable elopement! We planned one of our most gorgeous (in my opinion) elopements in FOUR days. If you just can't wait any longer to tie the knot, call us up! 

  Elmer Escobar , from  Amanda + Brad 's shabby chic elopement

Elmer Escobar, from Amanda + Brad's shabby chic elopement

6. You want a fairy tale wedding, but you're low on funds. Elopements are less expensive than weddings, obviously, because there are fewer guests and only a cake cutting instead of a full-on reception. It is not realistic for everyone to be able to spend tons of money on their wedding day. The Barn's elopements are proof that you can have an utterly stunning wedding on a budget! (I just want to add that ALL of our all-inclusive wedding collections are lower than national and state wedding cost averages. You can read more about that here.)

7. You don't like having all the attention on you. Elopements are simple and intimate, and that's perfect if one of you is super shy... It can be just the two of you (plus your officiant and photographer), or you can invite up to 25 guests. Way less overwhelming than the amount of guests at a traditional wedding! If the thought of saying your I do's and sharing your first dance in front of loads of people terrified you, consider eloping!

  Lela & Lyla , from  Jamie + Mitch 's sweet, intimate elopement

Lela & Lyla, from Jamie + Mitch's sweet, intimate elopement

8. Your honeymoon is equally (or more) important to you as your wedding. Weddings are expensive. Honeymoons are expensive. If you want to have an amazing wedding, but you also want to go on the trip of a lifetime, an elopement could be your answer. Our elopement packages are inexpensive, but gorgeous... You're not sacrificing style when you elope! And you're also not spending so much that you can't afford to go on a killer honeymoon. It's a win-win situation!

9. You want to be surrounded by your closest friends and family in an intimate, low key setting. If your mom is pressuring you into inviting 80 people you don't even know, tell her you've decided to elope and are keeping the guest list under 25. She'll be thrilled. ;) Sharing your best day ever with only those closest to you is SO intimate and romantic and meaningful. It's also totally chic and trendy!

10. You want a sweet, meaningful vow renewal with your spouse. You can have an "elopement" at The Barn even if you're already married! Our elopement collection is perfect for vow renewals. That's totally my plan for in a few years, if I can get my sweet husband on board!

There are sooooo many other wonderful, totally legit reasons to elope! Elopements at The Barn  = No stress. Gorgeous wedding. Beautiful florals and other details. Tons of romance. Delicious cake. What could be better?  You can read more about what our elopement collection includes here

Flower Girl Outfits & Accessories

The most talked about, most swooned over, and most photographed dress at any wedding is, of course, the bride's gown. But another dress that guests love to ooh and ahh over is the flower girl's! Being a flower girl feels like such a BIG deal to little girls, and we believe their outfits should be extra special! Barn Brides always choose the most precious dresses for their flower girls, and we've seen every style imaginable - from classic to bohemian and from vintage to fluffy tutus fit for a princess. We love them ALL, and we think they're even sweeter when paired with a really cute accessory... flower crowns, flower wands and baskets are all adorable accessories for flower girls! It's always interesting to see what brides pick for them to "do" as they walk down the aisle, whether its throwing flower petals, carrying a cute sign, walking a dog, or simply carrying a bouquet. The options for these little ladies are endless, and no matter what outfit or accessory you choose for your flower girls, we know they're gonna be the cutest people at your wedding! Here are some flower girl dresses and accessories that are still melting our hearts! 

Tutus

  The Jame , from  Rachel + Johnnie 's wedding

The Jame, from Rachel + Johnnie's wedding

The Sweetest Accessories

Ruffles & Lace

Classic

 Elizabeth Leighton Photography, from  Mae + Mike 's wedding

Elizabeth Leighton Photography, from Mae + Mike's wedding

 Vanda Crank Photography, from  Ashley + Trent 's wedding

Vanda Crank Photography, from Ashley + Trent's wedding

How To Deal With Guests Who Don't RSVP

One of our couples' most common questions is what to do if their guests don't RSVP. Since I know our upcoming brides will soon be looking for their RSVPs in the mail, it's time to address this topic again. There really is no perfect way to deal with this problem (and trust me - it can be a BIG problem), but here are my suggestions for how to deal with guests who don't RSVP!

*** 

Remember last month when I did a mini-series on invitations? (You can read all three posts here.) We talked about choosing a design, invitation etiquette and how to save big on your invitations. Today, I want to address a common question that many of our brides at The Barn have. How do I deal with guests who don't RSVP?

  Erika Dotson Photography , from  Anita + Wesley 's elegant turquoise and coral wedding

Erika Dotson Photography, from Anita + Wesley's elegant turquoise and coral wedding

My best advice is to give the guests you haven't heard from a phone call about a week before your final head count is due to ask whether or not they're coming. If they haven't decided, allow them a couple of days to decide. Make sure they understand why you need to know whether or not they're coming: because you need to know how much food to order, how many seats you will need, and how to arrange your seating chart. 

  The Barn's Instagram , from  Amanda + Tyler 's stunning wedding

The Barn's Instagram, from Amanda + Tyler's stunning wedding

Still, you may not hear back from everyone. In that case:

If your wedding is more on the formal side, with assigned seating at the reception, unexpected guests could cause a huge amount of stress. One idea to deal with unexpected guests is to have someone at the reception let them know that they're welcome to have a seat and eat dinner if some of your guests who did RSVP don't show up. They can hang out at the bar until after dinner and then join in for the rest of the festivities. Another option is to have an extra table with no assigned seating and order extra food. 

If your wedding is informal (with a buffet, or without assigned seating), it is always a good idea to overestimate by a little bit. Etiquette experts say to provide 25% more food than what you think you will need, in case any extra guests show up unexpectedly. Same goes with seating; you should have several more seats available than you expect to need.

  Shingleur Photography , from  Brittany + Jacob 's gorgeous blue and coral wedding

Shingleur Photography, from Brittany + Jacob's gorgeous blue and coral wedding

A note to those who have been invited to an upcoming wedding: Please, please, please RSVP. I know firsthand how stressful it is to deal with guests who don't send back RSVP cards (or return your phone calls). When you send your RSVP back, stay with your answer! If you say you're coming, show up. And if you say you're not coming, don't come (unless, of course, you speak with the bride and groom and they say it's fine for you to come). 

  Cottonwood Studios Worldwide , from  Ally + Tyler' s beautiful blue and pink wedding

Cottonwood Studios Worldwide, from Ally + Tyler's beautiful blue and pink wedding


xoxo,
Kelsi

Guest Post: Things to Remember on Your Wedding Day

The Barn's intern, Kori Bull, is taking over the blog today, and I'm so thrilled to have a guest blogger! I loved reading about this topic from the perspective of someone who's on site for every wedding, interacting with every single bride. Kori nailed it on this post about what brides should remember on their wedding day. 

***

As an intern at The Barn at Twin Oaks Ranch, I have seen nearly every type of bride. From the traditional perfectionist to the contemporary and casual brides, every lady in white has a million last minute thoughts. Interns here also carry the title of "bridal concierge," or semi-pro boutonnierre and bustle pinner, veil adjuster, train carrier, and bridal pep talker. As I met more and more brides, I realized how similar many of them are. Every love story was unique, each dress carried its own stunning beauty, and all of the brides had a glow all of their own. What was distracting the brides was what unified them. I hate to see brides being absolutely anything but completely caught up in their own fairytale... so, brides, please think of only the happiest thoughts before taking the walk down the aisle and remember these things!

"Big” things are only big pre-wedding day. Of course, if all you have wanted since the age of 5 is an egg-shell and pure gold wedding, girl get after it. Ask for exactly what you want, it’s your day. You’re probably paying us (the planners) to know our colors, I understand. If your roses are a smidge too egg-shell, pushing a light yellow, chill. Sometimes things like this are far out of your planner’s control. Your beau is still going to marry you, focus on the goal here.

Little things are everything. I pray each bride has the liberty to be able to really soak in her wedding day and each tiny exhilarating moment it entails. Seriously ladies, there are so many little things to watch, try not to micromanage them. The flower girl stops mid-aisle to greet guests? Super, she’s the life of the party. Love them for the memories they are making, even if they weren’t on your Pinterest boards.

You're not the only one. Whatever little thought is bouncing around in your head, be it "are the guests going to have fun?", "am I going to trip in these shoes?", or "okay, does he LIKE me like me or was he just being nice when he proposed to me?" you're not the only one that thinks it! Every bride gets a little scared before walking down the aisle. Please, don't let fear be the preeminent emotion in one of the happiest moments of your life. You're walking to the love of your life! You both have the best lookin' dates to this party. Everyone here either (a) loves you because they have to, it's your day or (b) truly loves and supports you. Even if you trip, we're all here to help you up. It also makes for a really great story a few years from now.

Love your guests of honor. Seriously, watching other girls hiss at their mommas, fathers, or grandpappies made me regret 90% of my high school attitude towards my parents. No one looks good being mean to the ones that are (generally) working really hard by providing financial or any other support so your day is how you want it. If you think its awkward seeing a kid get in trouble, try watching a parent get in trouble. Remember that everyone is trying. Another thing that hurt my heart was that a lot of families are really broken. A rather shocking amount of brides and grooms don’t know if their immediate family is coming to the wedding at all.  Having a guest there for you, wholeheartedly, can be considered a luxury. If you’re thinking about ever yelling at whoever is walking you down the aisle for wearing their favorite shoes, stop it. If their shoes are ruining your wedding, your wedding isn't too great to begin with.

Remember why you're here. It isn't to impress Cynthia from your office, or to please your parents, or the fact that all of your friends are married besides you. You're here because the most brilliant, made for you, once in a lifetime type of love came your way and you're not going to let it get away. You're here to celebrate the moments you saw your future with your love and every fight you gave up (or won) in between. You're here to start the celebration that is the rest of your life with the person at the end of the aisle.

From the start of the day to the champagne pop to hanging the dress up, consciously partake in each moment. It is one of the biggest, most extravagant days completely focused on you and your soon-to-be spouse! Your friends and little ones (maybe even their kids) are going to ask about this day, make sure your first newlywed stories are full of love and undistracted bliss.