There is NO Off Season

by Myrna 16. November 2012 15:44

Wedding season is technically over for us at FAO, but in reality, wedding season never ends!  Several clients ask me what happens to the wedding planners come December after the peak of wedding season dies down. My answer always is" there are always people getting married who may need assistance from a planner, no matter what the season.

In the past few weeks I have received several inquiries for weddings for the winter months as well as for the peak seasonal months of May, June, September and October. Many couples look to the winter months because they can get the venue that they want more easily,  and many times they receive better prices. Wedding venues tend not to be busiest in the months of January, February and March.  Same is true with most vendors.

So, if you are one of the lucky couples who will be getting engaged this holiday season, and you do not want a long engagement, there will be opportunities for you to have a great wedding during the winter months if your first choice venue is already booked for the height of the wedding season.

Remember, it is always a good idea to seek the assistance of a planner right from the beginning of your planning to avoid costly mistakes. Call us for your complimentary consultation!

Happy Planning.....

Flower Meanings

by Myrna 12. September 2011 05:41

Flowers and their Meanings


As a planner I am often asked about different aspects of the necessary items needed for the wedding.  One of these is the flowers that might make up a bouquet or a centerpiece. The flowers add the beauty and set the mood for the room décor in many instances, and I always recommend using a professional floral designer to assist with this aspect of the wedding.


The following are some of the meanings of the different flowers that might be a part of the wedding day:


Rose -Red meaning love, simplicity, and happiness


Roses red and white meaning unity


Iris meaning good news and inspiration


Bells of Ireland meaning luck


Forget Me Not meaning true love


Pink Carnation meaning a mother’s love and gratitude


Hydrangea meaning perseverance


Violet meaning faithfulness


Lily meaning birth and hope


Ranunculus meaning radiant


Yellow Tulip meaning hopelessly in love


Poppy meaning pleasure


You now are on your way to being a bit more educated before meeting with your floral designer.  Have fun designing your bouquets and centerpieces!


Green Wedding Ideas - Part I

by Jackie 9. September 2011 08:03
Jewelry: Diamonds in gold are great…really, they are…but you can never really be sure where your diamonds are coming from unless you mine them yourself. Want something different? How about wearing a WOODEN ring?! Yes, you read that correctly…WOOD rings! A couple in Canada – Touch Wood Rings - makes custom wood rings. They don’t have rings in stock and each piece is done to meet the customers’ specifications. You can wear something like THIS black walnut piece with blue lapis…or THIS braided birch bark ring. They truly are works of art for your finger.

Flowers: A new trend we are seeing in the wedding world is bride’s choosing to plant their own bulbs, which will be ready to cut by the time their wedding comes around. It is so great to be able to utilize your own green thumb to plant your own flowers. If you aren’t great in the garden, then you should consider buying from a farmer’s market vendor. A lot of times, vendors can try to tailor their flowers for your needs.

Favors: Are you and your fiancé nature lovers? Then what better way to share your love of the outdoors – and each other – than to give your guests their own seedling to plant! The Arbor Day Foundation has a special section of their website dedicated to providing tree favors to any couple so inclined to give them out. The gift of a tree is a wonderful addition for the health of our environment and something that will last a lifetime.

The team at FAO Events has an arsenal of ideas to help with your eco-friendly wedding planning - call us at 703.222.5912 to discuss your ideas!

Engagement Customs - Part II

by Jackie 7. September 2011 16:57

One of the more interesting historical engagement customs was termed “flouncing”. It originated in England and was basically an early betrothal party. It was held for the couple to meet each other’s friends and the friends of both families.

At the “flouncing” a formal contract was established and after this contract was sealed, neither the bride nor the groom could be seen with or talking to other suitors. Once this formal declaration was made, if either the bride or the groom to be changed his or her mind about the marriage, the other could claim half of his or her property.

In China, a betrothal was a serious family obligation. If an engaged man died before the wedding, his intended bride was “treated like a widow”. (Source: The Bride’s Book of Etiquette)

Before there were department stores, jewelry and gift stores, and before the advent of bridal showers, brides went “collecting”. In fact, Finnish brides-to-be were considered “snobbish” if they didn’t go from door-to-door collecting their gifts in a large bag. The bride-to-be was accompanied by an older married man (the symbol of a long-lasting marriage). He wore a top hat and carried an umbrella, which symbolized shelter. The bride received her gift and her “escort” received a drink at each stop. Today’s version of this gift collecting is handled for Gift Registries at many stores and by bridal showers. However, the symbol of long lasting marriage – the old married man and his umbrella – hasn’t survived into the 21st century.

For the background on more wedding traditions, talk with one of the team members at FAO Events by calling 703.222.5912. Our experienced consultants can help you find a way to incorporate history into your contemporary ceremony and/or reception.

Happy Labor Day!

by Jackie 5. September 2011 08:41




Call the team at FAO Events - 703.222.5912 - for any assistance on planning your holiday wedding!

"Until Next Time" Party - We'll Miss You Carrie!!

by Jackie 31. August 2011 08:21

A few weeks ago (yes, this post is a little late) the team at FAO Events had to say "Until Next Time" to one of our fellow planners - Carrie. Her hubby got a new job so they are relocating. These are a few of our favorite shots for the get-together we had!


Cute welcome sign for the party!

Carrie is also a florist, so each person got a flower favor.
Mini Cheesecake - YES PLEASE!
Chocolate covered strawberry?! OF COURSE!
Until Next Time Carrie!!

Engagement Customs - Part I

by Jackie 29. August 2011 15:12

Engagements have always been about a time of preparation for the bride and the groom. There is much to be decided – where to live, meet the families and what to select to furnish a new home. While the needs are similar, there are many different cultural customs to help couples make those decisions.

The engagement ring, or betrothal ring, dates back to the dates of marriage by purchase. It served as both a down payment on the bride and a symbol of the honorable intentions of the groom-to-be. In some cultures, the ring came in three parts. The bride-to-be wore one, the groom-to-be wore one and a witness wore the third piece until the wedding day. At the ceremony all three pieces were reassembled on the bride’s finger as her wedding ring.

The bridal shower traces its history back to Holland where – legend has it – a young maiden fell in love with a poor miller. Her father forbade the marriage, thereby denying her the traditional bride’s dowry. So the miller’s friends “showered” her with gifts to help the young couple set up housekeeping.

In many cultures, a matchmaker arranged most weddings. For example, in China, the matchmaker determined if the astrological signs were compatible. In Uganda, the bride’s elder brother and paternal uncle usually spoke to prospective groom and negotiated for the family. While those customs seem strange in America, it might be fun to find a way to honor someone who introduced the couple, or someone who was a very supportive friend with a special place at the wedding, a small gift, corsage, or a thank you toast at the reception.

Need help coming up with a special touch on your wedding? The team at FAO Events - 703.222.5912 - is ready to give you ideas to honor those who have supported you and your fiance!

Invitation Etiquette - Cash or Gift?

by Jackie 24. August 2011 06:55

We at FAO Events specialize in invitations for all events! Our specialists help brides create the wedding invitation of their dreams. They know that the invitation sets the tone for the wedding it announces and as such is an early indicator for the guests as to the type of celebration to which they are invited. Out experts field all sorts of questions and are knowledgeable about the carious paper styles, font types and wording variations that brides are seeking. They are also asked about appropriate wording choices. We know that more and more brides are making selections that blend the historically formal with the contemporary feel of today’s preferences. However, the rule of good taste does still have punch and invitation specialists are being asked if it is ok to ask for gifts of money on the wedding invitations. The answer is a clear and consistent NO!

There is no socially acceptable or tactful way to include in invitation copy the fact that the couple would prefer cash in place of gifts.

This situation is more likely to occur with a couple in their late 20s or early 30s who have been living together for some time prior to the wedding. They tend to have all household necessities and are not inclined to establish a traditional gift registry. They may be planning to buy a house and would prefer cash gifts. This is a worthy preference but the invitation is not the place to spread the word. For that they need to rely on word of mouth. The couple needs to tell their parents, friends, and members of the wedding that when asked about gift preferences, cash is the couple’s preference. But as Emily Post reminds us, “There is no dictating to guests what they must give; it’s their prerogative to choose.”

Our consultants recommend that is you are asked directly what you want for a wedding gift, be polite and say, “We’re saving for a down payment on a house, so if you’d like to give a check, that’s how we would use it. But whatever you decide will be terrific. Thank you for thinking of us.”

Not everyone is comfortable giving cash. They don’t like giving money. They prefer a tangible gift, which is terrific. Since there are guests with this preference, we suggest that brides set up a traditional gift registry too in order to accommodate the guest(s) who might prefer to give something other than cash.

If you'd like to meet with the team at FAO Events to discuss the details of your wedding invitations - give us a call at 703.222.5912! We're looking forward to hearing from you!

New Wedding Traditions

by Myrna 8. August 2011 11:54

 Traditions should be incorporated into your wedding in some shape or fashion. However, it is always nice to create your version of "new traditions".

 A favorite idea for those brides who are marrying for a 2nd time : Families are now being blended and the total amount of children or grandchildren might be  too many for each person to have a role in the ceremony . Tryiing to figure out who should take part in the ceremony is difficult, so the solution is to have the bride walk down the aisle alone carrying an empty basket.  As she walks down the aisle each child or grandchild holds a flower which they place in the basket as she passes their seat.  When the bride reaches her groom at the altar, she now has a basket filled with not only flowers,  but with love from everyone in their new combined family.

At one recent wedding, the formal, traditional wedding photographs were taken before the ceremony, but the couple arranged for an artist to attend and sketch various scenes from the ceremony and reception.  Simple pen and ink versions of the wedding brought back wonderful memories, were given to the parents as gifts, and it  was also  a fun activity for guests at the wedding to witness.

 Whatever the "new tradition" is that you incorporate into your wedding, have fun with it and make it memorable.

Our team of experienced consultants can assist in helping you find or create the tradition or traditions that express what is important to you at your wedding.  Being creative and stepping out of the box, is what we at FAO Events like to do, so  call upon us at 703-222-5912 to collaborate on some good "traditional " ideas!

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