Friday, May 18, 2018

We will be handing out our Wedding Guide books on Sunday, May 22, 2018 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. | $10 Admission at the Dana Point Yacht Club, 24399 Dana Dr, Dana Point, CA 92629 Don't miss this bouquet Bridal Show. Shop, compare and connect with local Orange County wedding vendors. Find new planning ideas, inspiration and great values at this season's gathering of florists, wedding venues, photo booths, photographers, disc jockeys, bridal gowns, tuxedos, entertainers, bridal beauty tips, custom invitations, vintage decor, and romantic honeymoons.

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Introducing Debbie's Cakes & Treats

We have added an amazing baker to our list of advertisers who wants to help you create the perfect wedding cake or sweet treats! 

Meet Debbie, the owner of Debbie’s Cakes & Treats.

I began my path to cake decorating and owning my own business when I was a little girl. I've always loved baking for my friends and family and did it every chance I got. When I grew up, I began my working career as a customer service manager. Unfortunately, my son was in a bad car accident that left him unable to live on his own, so I left the work force to stay at home and care for him. But in the last few years, I felt the tug of my creative roots, and have spent time honing my talents and skills with cake decorating (and baking!), coming back to my original passion in life.  

One day, I created a website, and it has quickly expanded into a thriving business. I create chocolates, cookies, and - of course! - bake cakes for all occasions, including weddings! I love listening to couples, helping them to create a vision for their cake, and being a part of their dream wedding. Everyone wants to be passionate about their work, and I'm lucky enough to love my work every single day.

 I'm an approved home-based cottage food operation. I offer custom cakes, cupcakes, cookies and truffles. For all your special occasions that need a custom cake or sweet treat, from birthdays to weddings and everything in between, look no further! Debbie's Cakes & Treats will be happy to make your occasion a hit. 

Debbie can be reached at 951-892-0950 or by email at  

Thank you, Debbie for join us at The Wedding Guide!

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

More Wedding Budget Tips

We have a guest writer for this weeks article!  Meet Dan Wesley who will talk about the hidden expenses of planning a wedding.  Please click on the link below to read the article!

Please leave a comment below an your thoughts of the article!

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

April 15th Bridal Show

Don't miss Brides Today Expo

"A Royal Bridal Show"

This Sunday, April 15th!

Please stop by and get your new edition of 
The Wedding Guide!

Please visit Brides Today Expo website for more information:

    Make sure to RSVP online for your FREE tickets!

Monday, April 9, 2018

Brides on a Budget - Part 3

Brides on a Budget - Part 3

In Part 3 of Brides on a Budget we continue with ideas on ways to trim the budget while planning your wedding!


Consider shortening the hours to whatever is necessary for you and your budget. Taking a moment to think about the types of pictures you want will give you a realistic time frame. Check out this list of common pictures (include link) to help you get an idea of what types of images you would want a photographer for. Not every moment needs a professional! Having the bridal party take pictures of everyone getting ready will not only keep this moment personal, but it will add to your memories. Having more shots of your guests acting natural, lets you really feel the emotion of the day! Let the photographer spend the time going after big moments, while you and your loved ones are enjoying them! During the reception, include your guests and ask them to take pictures with a note at their table that indicates where they can share their pictures. When purchasing photos, leave out the extras and buy just the retouched images on a flash drive that you can share and print yourself! Shutterfly and Canvas People typically have great prices and offer more specials after your first order. Follow these tips for a good shot at reducing those photography costs!


Choose flowers that are in season and grown locally instead of paying a higher price for exotic flowers to be flown in. For seating, instead of including flowers on every row, have them alternate. They are going to be seen for 30-45 minutes and can’t be reused! You can also decorate with bows in place of stems you may need. These can be made by using ribbon found on clearance (YouTube videos on how to make bows are available for assistance, add video). With your bridal party, about an hour of your time and a bottle of wine you’ll get these done in no time!

 Reuse arrangements to enhance the scenery for multiple uses! Instead of letting them go to waste after the ceremony, bring them to the reception site. Have the florist deliver them to the ceremony location and a friend can transport them to the reception site later on. This can be done during cocktail hour and your guests won’t even realize!

 If you’re not planning on preserving your bouquet, consider using yours for the bouquet toss! Save money on something that’ll either wind up in the trash or gathering dust.

Last Minute Décor Tips

Turn those centerpieces into a party favor! Make it a game, draw names or seat numbers to select the luck winner.

Consider the scenery of your chosen venue. If the view was part of the reason you selected it, including pipe and drape is unnecessary.

Back from the 90’s with a more decorative style, last but not least, balloons! You’ll find everything from confetti to flower petals in these translucent balloons. Depending on the theme of your wedding, you might want to decorate the ribbon with greenery, such as vines. Make sure you get enough helium and groomsmen to put to work!

I hope this week’s tips have been helpful and you chose to put some of them to good use. If you found it helpful send us a message of what you did, how much you saved and a picture if you’d like to be included in future blogs.

Monday, April 2, 2018

Brides on a Budget - Part 2

Brides on a Budget - Part 2

In Part 2 of Brides on a Budget we will beginning sharing ideas on ways to trim the budget while planning your wedding!


Let’s start off with one of the largest expenses, catering. Venues usually come with catering, facilities with a city venue tend to cost less or you can hire your own caterer. For the entrée, choose seasonal foods, chicken over beef and reduce the number of courses. Did you know plated meals are actually less expensive than buffets? This is because the caterer has control over the portion size. They have to prepare approximately 10% more food than if they prepare the plates themselves. Or do you know any good cooks? Ask family and friends to bring a side dish as your wedding gift!
When going with catering/venue combo many offer the cake as an option and not a requirement. But compare the prices to really see for yourself. If you bring an outside cake, you’ll be charged a cutting fee (around $1.50 per slice). Cut the cake cost and buy a smaller cake for presentation and a sheet cake for guests. If a smaller cake doesn’t make the right statement, consider using stands or risers for the height you’re looking for. Risers can be decorated with flowers or rent an inexpensive fountain to go underneath the cake. Foregoing the filling and hand-made sugar flowers, opt for butter cream instead of fondant. Skip the dessert table and the candy bin. Don’t forget to check prices at your local grocery store bakery and places like Costco. Keep these tips in mind and you can uses that extra dough your saving on a different aspect of your wedding day! Whether it’s a 5-star cuisine or premade meals from your local grocery store, your guests won’t mind if there is great company (and the bride & groom of course!).

Guest List

What’s the fastest way to cut expenses?  Downsize that guest list! If it’s someone you only interact with a couple times a year (“liking” Facebook posts doesn’t count!), you may want to think twice! Don’t feel obligated to invite coworkers or family you rarely see or talk to. It’s YOUR big day! A new trend you might keep in mind is a live stream of the ceremony for those that don’t make the guest list or if distance is a concern. Reducing by just 10 people can save you around $1000!
            If you don’t purchase pricy upgrades your guests won’t care about the linens and chairs. As long as they have a seat to sit in, it doesn’t matter if they’re suave or not! Look into city facilities, such as parks or club houses. If you want to have alcohol at your reception you can reduce the bar bill by serving beer and wine only. Champagne for your toast isn’t a requirement! Consider bringing a personal touch by adding a signature drink. Choose one of your favorites or you might choose something that you drank on your first date!

Next week get tips on how to cut photography, floral & décor expenses…

Friday, March 23, 2018

Brides on a Budget - Part 1

Brides on a Budget

Part 1 of a 4-part series

Congratulations, you have been promoted to Fiancé!!!

As you start to plan your wedding you could be shocked at the average cost of a wedding today. This year’s average wedding cost just over $33,000. Knowing most brides and grooms are paying for their own weddings, we wanted to give you some tips to help you plan.

Set your budget before you start planning for the wedding. There is a Wedding Budget Worksheet in your copy of The Wedding Guide and on the website. How much saving do currently have to use towards your wedding? Planners suggest that you save 20% of your monthly income during your engagement to use towards the wedding. Where is the 20% going to come from, you ask? Here are some suggestions.

Have you ever calculated what you spend on your morning coffee from Starbucks? On average one probably spends about $5 a day at the coffee shop. Multiply that by 5 days then by 4 weeks and you’ve spent $100 just on coffee; that you could have made at home for less than $10. And, if both of you have this routine you could save about $190 a month by making coffee at home. Invest in a coffee pot if you don’t have one and spend $15 on a travel coffee mug.

Pack your lunch! If you’re eating out during the work week you’re conservatively spending $10 a day, 5 days a week, times 4 weeks, times 2 people. You just saved $400 a month by eating leftovers for lunch.

Forgo the weekly movie night and save $40 week/ $160 month. If you sign up for Netflix for $10 a month you could save $150 a month.

The average engagement time is about one year. If you made these minor adjustments, you could save almost $9,000 for the year towards the wedding!

As you are planning your wedding be sure to keep a close eye your spending. It’s very easy to be in the store and see something and think it’s only $20 and buy it with money that was not allocated for wedding expenses. These spontaneous purchases will throw your budget off.

Here are a few suggestions to help with managing your budget.

Open a separate bank account specifically for the wedding. Use it only for wedding purchases.

Consider applying for a rewards credit card. Such as one that offers airline miles or cash back to go toward the wedding expense. But don’t let it back fire! Only spend what you can afford to pay-off in full each month. Otherwise, you could create a credit card balance that will have to be paid after the wedding and the rewards could easily end up being less than the interest charges.

Watch next week for Part 2 on Brides on a Budget to see how to reduce cost and save money while planning your wedding.