Our job at Ellanesque is to provide you with the best wedding planning in Houston!  We do our best to accomplish this, but our job ends after your wedding.  So while we will move on to wedding planning for other brides, you will be working on your new marriage with your spouse.  And as we all know, marriages have their ups and downs, trials and tribulations, and sometimes even questions about whether you made the right decision to get married.

This is where counseling comes in!  Specifically, counseling from Christway Counseling Center in Katy.  Lauren and I have been there, and we know firsthand about the challenges that newlyweds face.  Fortunately for us, we came across Karl and Terry Elkins, who are excellent counselors!  Being alumni of their three day marriage clinic ourselves, we could not pass up this opportunity to spread the word that the November clinic is being offered for FREE from November 6th-8th! 

This clinic is for anyone who would like to improve their marriage, or solve any current marital problems.  It's not just for newlyweds!  If you feel that your marriage could be helped by attending, check out their website and register now!  Space is limited and you must register by November 4th (or before the class fills up)! To take advantage of this free offer, select "Mastercard" as the type of credit card, and type "5555555555555555555" (with no spaces) as the card number.

"Without counsel plans fail, but with many advisors they succeed." - Proverbs 15:22

To your marriage!

-Erik

Have you found your perfect wedding colors yet? Trying to find those perfect colors for your wedding can be very hard and exhausting! Some brides may try to match their colors with the season of their wedding. Others may want to find colors that have been described as "bold", "soft and sweet", "regal" etc. to match their wedding theme. There are many different routes to finding those perfect colors and with Pinterest there are so many great ideas out there that it is hard to choose. So how are you supposed to find just those few colors that reflect who you and your groom are, your personality and the whole feel of your wedding? That is a lot of pressure for colors! 

Luckily I have found the perfect blog that can help you find the perfect colors for your wedding! The Perfect Palette is one of my personal favorites when trying to find wedding colors and other coordinating colors when planning our brides' weddings. Let's say you really like the color aqua but just not quite sure how you can pull that color off for a wedding. You can choose to search by the color aqua and a whole list of blogs come up that include the color aqua. Each blog includes an inspiration board including the color aqua but with an additional 2-4 others as well to make a palette! You can browse through these blogs to find your perfect color palette including the color aqua, and use throughout your wedding planning!

This blog is more than just colors and inspirational boards. You can go to the "Shop" tab and find items such as earrings, necklaces, bracelets, bridesmaid’s dresses, shoes, wedding rings etc. to buy! The site has all these organized by color so if you are having a hard time finding those perfect accessories in your color, you can find them at ThePerfectPalette.com! My favorite thing about this site is that Chrissy, the creator, will actually create an inspirational board for you! This is such an amazing feature and blessing if you do not have a wedding planner or only plan to use one for the last 2 months before your wedding. You can send Chrissy your colors and ideas and she will create a custom inspirational board for your wedding. You can then take this board with you to all your vendor meetings while planning your wedding. Having pictures on hand so everyone can visually see what you would like is the best gift a wedding vendor could ask for, especially when you are meeting with your florist and linen rental companies. This site has some very cool other features and you can get lost in there for days...trust me, I have! So if you need help finding your colors, go check out www.ThePerfectPalette.com and check out the endless possibilities with colors. I can guarantee you will leave that site with such a clear idea of your colors, theme, and feel of your wedding.

Do you remember those white disposable cameras that used to be placed on the guest tables at weddings?  Well, I certainly do and always thought it was a great idea to capture those candid moments that a photographer may have missed while the bride and groom were cutting the cake.  The downside is that they are so out of fashion and not up to date with the current technology trends.  Everyone wants to use their phones so they can post, send and tweet all about your wonderful wedding.  Problem solved my friends!  I just stumbled upon this app that puts the idea of capturing those candid moments without the use of those tacky disposable cameras.  Let me introduce you to the Wedding Party App.  As a bride or groom you can register you wedding online here https://www.weddingpartyapp.com/ Once you have registered your wedding with bride's name, groom's name, wedding date and time you are set to go!  At your wedding, the guest will download the app, register and then start taking photos and posting them in your wedding album!  You will be able to see everyone's pictures that they have shared on the Wedding Party app.  After the wedding you can log back in and download all the pictures from your guest that night.

 

Now, some of you may have your doubts but I have tried this app myself to see if it actually works and it is as amazing as it sounds.  I have to say that I am very impressed at the ease of navigating the app and the website online.  Here is a list of some of the best features this app has to offer:

 

- printable poster or escort cards with step by step instructions for guests' use

 

- tips to help make the app most successful for your wedding

 

- ability to create multiple albums for any and all wedding events (i.e wedding shower, bachelorette party, bachelor party, rehearsal dinner, wedding ceremony, wedding reception etc.)

 

- information about wedding event logistics

 

- all your wedding photos in one place so you can download them after the honeymoon

 

As a wedding planner, I am always on the hunt for new innovative things that keep with the current trends and fashions. The Wedding Party App has brought those tacky disposable cameras back to life in a new app form that can do so much more than just take a picture. This app helps you personalize your wedding and adds that little touch that will make the world of a difference!

Most girls grow up dreaming about their future wedding to their very own Prince Charming.  They dream about the romance, the dancing, and having a family of their own one day.  And most of the time, some version of that dream becomes a reality.  

But life doesn't always treat every girl fairly.  Some have to overcome harsh obstacles to get what they have always dreamed of, and some never make it that far.  Life doesn't always make sense, and sometimes you just have to make the most out of the hand you're dealt, or do your best to improve the situation of others who are going through tough times.

Meet Jen Bulik, a 35 year old from California who, after having dated her boyfriend for over 5 years, has been told that she has less than 6 months to live thanks to an aggressive form of cancer.  Though she is trying to be as optimistic as possible, it does not look good.  Her boyfriend, Jeff, recently proposed to her and they were going to do everything they could to have their wedding as soon as possible.

Fortunately for both of them, the right person heard their story and came to their assistance.  Erica Ota is a wedding planner in the San Francisco area who after hearing about their story, was determined to make the wedding of their dreams happen!  Using her network of wedding vendors, she was able to provide this couple with a wedding much more elaborate than they would have planned on their own, all at no cost to them!  You can read more about the details here and here

Their wedding is being held today, July 27th.  So, congratulations to you both, Jen and Jeff!  And God bless you, Erica Ota, for providing some light to this difficult situation!

Please keep this couple in your prayers, that they may enjoy more time together than the doctors say they will!

Earlier, we discussed how to find the best vendors using directories such as the Knot, Wedding Wire and mywedding.  Some of you may prefer to search for vendors using other methods such as search engines and bridal shows, so those will be covered here.  

First of all, a little insight for what to look for when using search engines (Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc).  You will not be able to tell too much about a vendor just from their appearance on a search engine.  What you can tell though, is why that vendor is appearing where they are.  When you search for something like "Houston Wedding Planner" in a search engine, you will notice that there are a few ads at the top of the results.  These will be (lightly) highlighted and are paid ads.  Companies will bid on these and whoever is willing to pay the most, gets the spot.  It's another form of advertising, but the downside is that you could have a venue appear at the top of the search for "Houston wedding planner".  

One mistake that many may make when using a search engine is only looking at the results on page one.  Directory sites, or other large national sites, are often the first ones to appear in search engine results.  It is always the dream of a business owner to appear on page one, but this takes a large amount of time and money to accomplish.  Appearing at the top of the search results does not mean that a certain vendor is better than any other, it simply means that that company has done an excellent job with their SEO (search engine optimization) strategy and has spend many resources to get there.  Take a look at the first 2-3 pages at a minimum when using search engines, and know that where a company is ranked has nothing to do with the quality of their work.   Keeping this in mind, searching for terms such as "Best Wedding Planner in Houston", or "Best Photographer in The Woodlands" is not a good way to approach your search for the best wedding vendors.

Bridal shows are an excellent way to find great wedding vendors.  Speaking with a wedding vendor at a bridal show will most likely be the best way for you to find out whether that vendor will be a good fit for you.  It is important to have a game plan before attending a bridal show so that you can make the most of your time there.  These shows can be intimidating, especially the Bridal Extravaganza in Houston, which is the largest bridal show in our area.  Determine what is important to you for each type of vendor that you will be looking for, and come up with some questions to ask each one before you attend!  We suggest asking to speak with someone who either owns the company or who participates in the weddings.

For all of the advantages to finding vendors at bridal shows, there are two disadvantages to using this strategy.  The first disadvantage is simply timing.  Good bridal shows in Houston are not held every weekend, and you will not always be able to wait until the next bridal show to make a decision on which vendor to use for your wedding.  I would encourage you to stay on track with your wedding planning process and not waste time waiting for a bridal show.  The second disadvantage is more important to consider, and it involves the vendors who attend, or do not attend, bridal shows.  

There are many reasons why a vendor would choose to attend a bridal show.  They are great to get your name out there when starting a business and so many new businesses will participate.  However, if a vendor has already booked many weddings for the upcoming year, that vendor may choose to skip out on a bridal show since there would not be much to gain from attending.  Attending a bridal show is very labor intensive, so many vendors who get enough business using other methods of advertising will choose not to participate in bridal shows because they require more effort and require that vendor to pass up on the opportunity to make money that weekend by doing a wedding.  That said, if you attend a bridal show and meet a vendor that you really like, don't hesitate to schedule a consultation with that vendor and book them for your wedding.  There are many excellent vendors of all types that participate in bridal shows!

Hopefully this has helped to shed some light on what to look for, and what to look out for, when selecting vendors for your wedding.  Having the expertise of a wedding planner at your disposal is definitely the easiest way to find great vendors, but if you don't end up hiring a wedding planner, using these other methods can be very beneficial to you.

Happy planning!