Archive for Roseanne Dela Rosa

Wedding Budgets: Where To Splurge And Where To Save



Photo via iStockphoto.

We’re huge supporters of DIY endeavours, but some things are better left to the experts. Put your money into the things you need most to host a great party then cut costs by adding some charming handmade accents into your celebration. Consider this your guide to wedding budgeting:

Splurge On Food
Unless you’re a professional chef, this is one area you don’t want to tackle on your own, and it’s definitely not an area to scrimp on. Aside from the actual ceremony itself, your guests will judge the success of the event on how good the food is. The best way to keep a guest happy—especially during a long ceremony and reception—is definitely through his or her stomach.

Splurge On Photography
A friend or a family member with a digital camera is nice, but a professional photographer is usually your best bet to ensure that your day is captured flawlessly from beginning to end. Thoroughly review all potential photographers’ portfolios and spend some extra cash on a pro whose style and personality matches your own.

Splurge On Hair And Makeup
Chances are you’ll want to look as beautiful as you possibly can on your big day. This is when you don’t want to rely on a friend—unless you really trust them—to do your hair and makeup. The professionals know what they’re doing and can work their magic to ensure you look glowy and pretty throughout the whole day.

Save On Invitations
Sometimes it isn’t necessary to get the whole stationery package (i.e. thank-you cards, RSVP cards, etc.). You may want to consider ordering invites and getting your own thank you cards or using a website for save-the-dates. Companies such as Minted and Michaels also have some great, affordable templates for creating your own customized wedding stationery.

Save On Cake
It’s not necessary to have a grand seven-tiered wedding cake, even if you are feeding a crowd of 250. You can still get a beautiful cake, but keep the design sweet and simple to lower the cost. Or, opt for slab cakes and have a dummy cake for appearance sake.

Save On Favours
Not everyone at your wedding must receive a wedding favour—you can keep the budget down by allotting one favour per family/couple. Also, you can double up and serve mini-cakes as your confection and bonbonnière.

DIY Lollipop Wedding Favours You Can Make In Just A Few Simple Steps

diy wedding ideas » planning » Reception Ideas


Photography by Adrian Armstrong. First published in Weddingbells‘ Spring & Summer 2015 edition.

For a unique and sweet wedding favour, impress your guests by making these beautiful DIY lollipops from scratch. They don’t require need a ton of ingredients and, better yet, they’re really easy to create. To help us with this project, we turned to the pros Nadia & Co. for Bonnie Gordon College of Confectionary Arts who provided step-by-step instructions. Read on to discover how to make these lovely lollies at home. With flaked gold and floral adornments, your guests will think you spent a bundle on these beautiful treats.

Bonus: If you’re in Toronto, Bonnie Gordon offers weekend crash courses on creating a variety of impressive sweets.

A Natural, Coral and Green Wedding in Woodbridge, Ontario

real weddings

natural wedding - bride and groom

If you asked Karen Leung and Kevin Sizto how they met, they’ll tell you that they technically connected online. “One day in grad school a classmate of mine started chatting about her best friend and how amazing he was,” Karen recalls. “One thing led to another, MSN contacts were shared, and voila! The rest is history.”

For her wedding day colours, Karen chose shades of coral and green to match her bridesmaids’ dresses and to mimic the feel of a simple yet rustic ambiance. “We wanted our wedding to really embody the natural elements,” says Karen.

In keeping with their natural scheme, the pair picked The Country Club in Woodbridge, a lush golf course, for their ceremony and reception location. Gorgeous floral arrangements — from the aisle bouquets which clung to the end of each chair at the ceremony to mason jar centrepieces — enhanced the couple’s rustic atmosphere. “We were so overwhelmed by the arrangements our florists did,” Karen gushes. “The sheer amount of flowers was really quite shocking! We told her to just run with whatever idea she had and we loved what she did.”

Following dinner, Kevin and Karen surprised family and friends with a late night dessert treat: an ice cream truck. “We had the truck drive up to the door and serve our guests ice cream and popsicles,” the two share. “We even had a chance to hop into the truck and serve guests ourselves — it was so much fun!”

Karen Leung and Kevin Sizto, July 5, 2014, Woodbridge, Ontario.

Photography courtesy of Heidi Lau Photography.

Ceremony and reception location: 
The Country Club
Bridal gown: Casablanca from Felichia Bridal
Bridesmaid dresses: Henkaa
Groom’s tux: Tuxedo Royale
Cake: Dolled Up Cupcakes
Caterer: Grand Catering
Favours: Butter Avenue
Music: Ryan Ramcharran
Hair: Suzie Kim
Makeup: Fiona Man
Stationery: Vistaprint



A Backyard Garden Wedding in Nanaimo, British Columbia

real weddings

Garden Wedding

Matthew Vissers and Jennifer Porteous first met through friends that were brothers. “Matt worked with one brother while I was good friends from elementary school with the other,” Jenn explains. “We had seen each other briefly and talked at a series of parties, but we didn’t connect until we spent time with each other during a camping trip.”

When it came to their wedding theme, the couple both agreed on a handmade, garden wedding motif. “When we started planning, we both felt it was important that our personalities, style and workmanship be present through the day,” says Jenn. “We were very mindful to keep things simple and rustic to avoid being burnt out or too caught up in the details. Thanks to the help of our infinitely supportive family and friends, we were able to pull the day off in a way that we were very proud of.”

The couple decided to host their party in Jenn’s mother’s backyard. Pre-ceremony, Matt and Jenn opted to do a first look. “We wanted to have a private moment together before the events,” Jenn says. Awaiting the bride in a very beautiful garden beside their venue, was Matt, who was blown away when he first saw Jenn in her beautiful gown. “It may not have been the traditional way of doing things but we loved being able to have that moment to ourselves while being captured from afar by our photographers,” Matt says.

After their first look the two said their “I dos” in front of 70 of their nearest and dearest. The celebrations continued in Jenn’s mother’s backyard, where a tent full of balloons and rustic charm awaited guests. “Myself, my mom and my bridesmaids had spent hours working on the Mason jar centrepieces and other little touches to create a space that looked professional yet cozy,” Jenn says. “Matt’s hand-painted signs were functional — telling the guests where to go and what they were eating and drinking — but also added to the vintage, handmade theme.”

When it came to their wedding music, Matt and Jenn turned to their musical friends to give them a hand. “Our friends played our wedding song on guitar as we walked down the aisle,” says Jenn. “Then we had an array of special songs set up to play throughout the night, which were cued and managed by Matt’s brother and our best man Andrew.” After the cake-cutting, various friends of the newlyweds took turns ensuring the right type of music was playing for the mood. “It all went very smooth and led to a very personal and fun nighttime playlist,” Jenn reminisces.

Jennifer Porteous and Matthew Vissers, June 28, 2014, Nanaimo, British Columbia. 

Photography courtesy of Steve and Courtney Julien of Julien Photography.

Ceremony and reception location: Bride’s mother’s backyard
Bridal gown: Essense of Australia from Ladybelle Bridal
Bridesmaid dresses: Ladybelle Bridal
Groom’s tux: Tip Top Tailors
Cake: Coastal Cake Company
Caterer: Delicado’s Deli
Favours: DIY
Hair: Carissa Morrison (a friend of bride)
Makeup: Phoenix Face Art Makeup Artistry
Flowers: Blossom & Vine Floral Company
Stationery: DIY
Rentals: Triple T Party Rentals


6 Easy DIY Wedding Bunting Projects + Free Templates

diy wedding ideas » planning » Wedding Decor

Photography Carlo Mendoza. As first published in Weddingbells’ Spring/Summer 2014 edition.

Photography by Carlo Mendoza for Weddingbells. First published in Weddingbells’ Spring/Summer 2014 edition.

Love the idea of putting some personal flair into your wedding decorations? Consider making these crafty DIY wedding buntings to add to your venue. They’re easy to create and, depending on the project you pick, you’ll only require a handful of materials: ribbon, paper and burlap. Decoration-wise, these garlands are quite versatile and would make an excellent addition to your ceremony aisle, your sweet table or even your head table.

DIY guru, Corinna vanGerwen gave us the idea for the ribbon buntings (bottom row) and the rest were inspired by craft diva Lorrie Everitt from Creative Bag.

These gorgeous garlands are sure to suit a variety of styles and themes (and the fact that they’re homemade is sure to impress your guests). Read on to learn how to make these DIY wedding buntings in just a few simple steps.

Wedding DIY Guide

View more from our Wedding DIY Guide ›

How To Pick Symbolic Wedding Flowers

planning » Bouquets & Flowers

wedding flower meanings - chrysanthemum

Flowers courtesy Cool Green and Shady. Photo by Carlo Mendoza.

When it comes to your wedding flowers, there’s more than meets the eye. When choosing blooms for your celebration, take into account not only colour and seasonality but also the meaning behind the blossom. For example, did you know that roses, are symbolic of love, passion and devotion? What better floral sentiment for your big day!

Kate Middleton popularized the idea of opting for a symbolic bouquet when she walked down the aisle carrying an arrangement comprised of lily-of-the-valley (which signifies a return of happiness), hyacinth (which represents the constancy of love), ivy (which represents fidelity), Sweet William (an ode to her groom) and sprigs of myrtle planted by Queen Victoria in 1845.

While you may not have access to flowers planted by your ancestors, there are plenty of other ways to work meaningful blooms into your bouquet. Here we’ll show you six popular petals, what they mean, and when they’re readily available.

A Coveteur Wedding In Palm Springs, California

real weddings

Bride and Groom

As far as Erin Kleinberg can recall, Palm Springs, California was always her home away from home. “My family’s been going there ever since I was a little kid,” Erin shares. “I have a super soft spot for the place. So when Mickey and I began dating, I started to bring him, and he too fell in love with the location.”

For their wedding venue, the two also fell in love with the Parker Palm Springs. “We walked into the hotel one year and thought, ‘How cool is this place?’” Erin recalls. Palm-covered lawns coupled with retro patterns and contemporary furnishings were what sold Erin and Mickey on the location. “The Parker was the perfect site with its unique esthetic, which really set the tone for the night and connected to our goal of a fun wedding with an outdoor element,” Mickey explains.

With the venue booked, Erin segued straight into dress shopping. As the co-founder of The Coveteur, a website renowned for snapping and styling celebrity closets, finding a wedding gown was a no-brainer. “I am obsessed with my dress and will never forget how I felt that day—it was so comfortable and easy,” Erin says of her Prabal Gurung frock, which she found at The Room at Hudson’s Bay. “The best part, though, was seeing the wedding planner’s reaction when I asked for scissors [after the ceremony] to cut the bottom so I could switch into my Miu Miu flats for the evening.”

Breaking with tradition, Mickey and Erin met pre-ceremony to take photos. “It’s funny, because Erin was not traditional in the sense that she had shown me pictures of the dress and accessories,” Mickey confides. “However, seeing everything in a picture and seeing it on Erin were two different experiences. She looked incredible, or, as Erin would say, ‘totally glam.’”

On their wedding day, Erin and Mickey celebrated with 97 guests in a lush outdoor setting between two massive olive trees. “The ceremony was our favourite part of the evening,” Erin says. “There were many tears, lots of laughter, but most of all there was love.” Cocktail hour ensued on the property’s courtyard, which was decked out in romantic lights and gorgeous white laser-cut Moroccan lanterns that held candles.

For their reception, Erin and Mickey kept things elegant with a classic black-and-white tablescape. “The setting of the hotel is already so interesting, and Jonathan Adler had his signature coloured vases and crazy kookiness everywhere, so there was no need to go overboard with the decor.” Monochromatic ranunculus, peonies and anemones were strewn across the tables atop striped linens.

Ending the evening on a high note, the newlyweds led guests onto the dance floor to the beats of the TC & Traffic Jamm band. “They played ‘Happy’ by Pharrell as the first dancing song. Man, did they put on a show” Erin raves. Of course, happy hits aside, it was Erin and Mickey’s first dance choice that was the standout tune of the night. The two picked “Adorn” by Miguel, whom Erin had met and styled while working at The Coveteur. “The words are so simple, yet so strong. That is kind of our mantra in our life and in our relationship,” Erin divulges.

Erin Kleinberg and Mickey Lungu, February 16, 2014, Palm Springs, California.

Photography courtesy of Mi Belle Photographers.

Ceremony and reception location:
The Parker Palm Springs
Bridal gown: Prabal Gurung from The Room at Hudson’s Bay
Groom’s tux: Garrison Bespoke
Cake: Roman from Over The Rainbow Cupcakes
Wedding planner: Kathy Recchia from Save The Date Events
Music: TC and the Traffic Jamm from De Bois Entertainment
Hair: J. Russell Salon
Makeup: Kelley Cloney from Laura Mercier at Holt Renfrew
Flowers: Joey at Artisan Floral Design
Stationery: Niomi Herblum (

Unique Honeymoon Experiences You Can Only Have In Vienna, Austria

travel » Honeymoons

Stay At A Historical Site

Brimming with iconic museums, ritzy restaurants and decadent patisseries, Vienna is the perfect city escape if you are looking for a honeymoon filled with culture, food and wine.

Once home to Mozart, Beethoven and Gustav Klimt, Vienna offers a plethora of refined entertainment offerings, including the Vienna Boys’ Choir, heard every Sunday morning at the Hofburg Chapel and dance lessons at the Elmayer Dance School, where private dance instructors will teach you the traditional Viennese waltz.

When it comes to getting to this dream honeymoon destination, we recommend splurging on Austrian Airlines’ business class seats. The airline offers direct flights from Toronto and in business class you’ll be treated to horizontal full-flat beds and an extensive coffee menu selection (there are 10 specialty drinks to pick from!) that will leave you rested and ready to tour the area when you land.

Here, we’ll fill you in on everything you should add to your Vienna honeymoon checklist — from the best restaurants and spas to the top historical sites. Read on to explore all the unique honeymoon experiences that you (and your mister!) can only have in Vienna.


Wedding Photo Ideas: 10 Creative Ways To Pose

planning » Photo/Video

While a traditional wedding photo taken with the bridal party and family members makes a nice keepsake, we love when couples go above and beyond with their wedding shots. Striking a unique bridal pose with your posse (or your mister!) is one way to instill your fun personalities into any wedding photo. Not to mention, they would be great printouts for you to hang around the house–or would even make nice “thank-you” photo cards.

Think that taking a creative wedding photo just isn’t your style? There are all sorts of way to get inventive with your guests, while still keeping things classy and romantic. For example, having an intimate celebration with less than 50 people? Have your photographer gather everyone together to create a heart-shaped pose (as pictured above). Or, if you’re having wedding sparklers at the end of the evening, twirl them around to create words, your wedding date, or letters (your initials) for picture-perfect wedding photos. For couples that love the idea of including props, try including a frame (big enough to fit you and your groom).

To get you inspired for your own shots, here’s a round-up of 10 fun wedding photo ideas to try.

28 Outdoor Wedding Decoration Ideas

planning » Wedding Decor

wedding candles

From the Rockies all the way to the east coast, Canada is home to some of the most beautiful (and scenic) locations, which are ideal for brides who’ve dreamed of tying the knot outdoors.

Need some convincing that an outdoor ceremony and reception are for you? Check out this list of outdoor wedding decoration ideas that we’ve compiled, which are also perfect for bridal showers, bachelorettes or even summer barbecues.

From hanging chandeliers and lemonade stands to sparkly paper lanterns (you’ll want to steal this idea!)–these are just a sample of the items on our must-have list for summer weddings.

An Elegant Purple Wedding in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island

real weddings

bride and groom laughing

Jennifer and Edward have their jobs to thank for their introduction. “I was an intern at the Canadian High Commission in Barbados and Edward was a food importer,” Jennifer explains. “I was hosting a small food show introducing Canadian product and he was one of my guests. We later became acquaintances, then roommates, best friends and now, husband and wife.”

For their ceremony, the two chose a unique location: The Prince Edward Island Preserve Company, an outdoor space, which the couple decorated with white lawn chairs, purple organza ribbon and lots of flower petals strewn down the aisle. “The skies were clear blue and every detail was in place,” Jennifer smiles. Following a brief photo session, the couple whisked their 70 guests to Daniel Brenan Brickhouse where dinner and dancing ensued.

“Elegant was the word used to help make all the decisions,” Jennifer explains. “Our colours were lavender, cream and silver. My dress was ivory with silver beading and lavender felt like such a complementary colour.” The couples’ colour palette was carried throughout the entire reception room from the lilac napkins to the purple and cream floral centrepieces to their white and silver table numbers.

“Having dinner with our closest friends and family with the best P.E.I food and music was a highlight for us,” Jennifer shares. “Most of our guests traveled to be with us on our special day we just felt very blessed.”

Jennifer MacPherson and Edward Juman, August 3, 2013, Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island.

Photography courtesy of Heather Wilkinson.

Ceremony location: Prince Edward Island Preserve Company
Reception location: Daniel Brenan Brickhouse
Bridal gown: Reem Acra from Ever After
City View Bakehouse
Caterer: Chef Adam Loo from Murphy Group of Restaurants
Favours: Normal Love Confections from Swiss Chalet Fine Foods
Hearts and Flowers
Groom’s suit: Cesare Attolini
Music: Cynthia MacLeod
Stationery: Coral Pheasant and Kim Roach Design
Transportation: Prestige Limousine
Wedding planner: Kiss The Bride


A Romantic Rustic Wedding in Caledon, Ontario

real weddings

bride and groom back

It was a random game of basketball that brought Julian and Cathrina together in the first place. “I was shooting around alone when Julian walked in to do the same,” Cathrina explains. “I didn’t pay attention to him at all, but he paid attention to me. I really had no intention of speaking with him, but he approached me and asked if I was Filipino, and the rest is pretty much history.”

After nine years of dating, Julian decided to pop the question. “I was having an off day. So, I called Julian and asked him if he could pick me up from the gym, grab dinner and just hang out,” Cathrina shares. “We grabbed dinner at this Hakka restaurant we both love, then he took me to downtown Oakville by the boats to walk and talk.” It was during this late night stroll by the water that Julian got down on one knee and asked Cathrina to marry him. “When I asked him why here, he said it was where we had our first date,” Cathrina smiles. “He tried to recreate our first outing.”

For their wedding day, the two chose to exchange vows on a beautiful day in May. “We had so much family coming in from outside the country that it made the day hectic,” Cathrina reveals. “But, from the moment that I walked down the aisle, saw my handsome husband-to-be and said my ‘I dos’ nothing else mattered.”

The reception took place at the Royal Ambassador–where a tent was set up for all 260 guests in attendance. Beautiful DIY decor by the bride (burlap runners and personalized pillows) greeted family and friends upon entrance. “It was crazy humid in that tent and wet, but it was a great time,” Cathrina explains. “That’s what we remember our wedding day to be: messy, crazy and fun. We had such a blast and it made it even better seeing all our friends and family having a wonderful time.”

Cathrina Tupe and Julian Bernaldez, May 31, 2013, Caledon, Ontario.

Photography courtesy of Claudia Hung Weddings.

Ceremony: Mary Mother of God Parish
Reception: The Royal Ambassador Banquet & Event Centre
Bridal gown: Pronovias at Mona Richie Bride
Bridal party attire: BCBG and Macy’s
Groom’s suit: Zara
Cake: Yummy in the Tummy Cakes
Favours: Snapshot Photobooth
Day-of coordinator: Elizabeth Grace Events
Music: DJ Mike Rock of DJ Floh Back Productions
Hair and makeup: CharmArtistry
Flowers: The Original Posie
Stationery: Hip Ink
Videographer: Pink Donut Visuals
Sax player: Ashot Gregorian

A White, Vintage Wedding in MacGregor, Manitoba

real weddings

bride and groom

Valerie and Robert grew up going to the same church, however it wasn’t until years later that they became friends. “It all started when he added me on Facebook,” Valerie shares. “We had an agreement that we would be friends and that was all we would ever be. Three years into our friendship we went to Vancouver together and decided that we could be more than friends. And the rest is history.”

For their wedding day, the two opted for a short and sweet ceremony and dinner celebration, which took place at a church in MacGregor, Manitoba. “We decided to take photos prior to the ceremony so that we could seat our guests without a significant gap between our vows and the reception,” Valerie explains. The couple kept the decor minimal with white linens, single white roses as centrepieces and an all-white dessert table brimming with cake pops and a buttercream cake. “My mom made all the food and did a fabulous job,” Valeries says. “At the end of the day, we just really wanted to be able to spend the entire wedding with our friends and family,which we did, and we couldn’t have asked for more.”

Valerie Kehler and Robert Wieler, August 24, 2013, MacGregor, Manitoba.

Photography courtesy of Sugar & Soul Photography.

Bridal gown: Da Vince at C.K.LY Fashion
Bridal party attire: Hudson’s Bay and Mad About Style
Groom’s tux: Barney’s Menswear (204-857-7323)
Hair and makeup: Pure White (204-998-7873)
Stationery: Chapters and Michaels

25 Unconventional Ways To Use Flowers At Your Wedding

planning » Bouquets & Flowers

floral crown 1

If you think the trend of wearing a floral crown is on its way out, think again. Becky De Oliveria from Toronto-based floral shop Blush and Bloom is showing brides that floral crowns (and flowers in general) can be worn in a myriad of ways.

“I’ve been making floral crowns non-stop since last year,” De Oliveria explains. “This concept is what I have built Blush and Bloom on, and branded my company after.”

Recently, De Oliveria partnered with TwoBirds Bridesmaids, Scarlet O’Neill Photography, Ashley Readings Hair and Makeup and Posh Veils to showcase some of the creative ways floral accents can be worked into weddings beyond bouquets and boutonnieres. “We wanted to showcase bridal, bridesmaid and mother-of-the-bride looks that we feel are innovative and wearable, with fun and refreshing concepts,” De Oliveria shares.


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