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WOW!!  What a nice gift from home to welcome us to Florence, thank you friends!!

A ballerina in Florence.. it is very rare to see The Duomo this vacant.. we must be on California time!!

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With a 4 hour layover in Munich, Germany, we decided to take the train from the airport to a popular pub Paulaner to get a German beer, cheers!!

FINALLY! With hardly any sleep from the earthquake and 13 hours of travel.. we made it to Florence, Italy @Firenze

The Duomo

The Italians love ham, cheese, pizza and pasta and SO DO WE!!!

My husband loves taking pictures of me when I’m not paying attention. @Osteria Dell Agnolo

Here’s another picture of him catching me off guard with our Tuscany painting.

“Straps or nipples?” I understand that this question is completely inappropriate.  I had no choice.  This is a question that one of my bridesmaids asked me right before the ceremony.

Now let’s go back to the beginning, when we ordered the dresses. Bridesmaid dresses should all be ordered from the same bridal shop for one reason… they need to all be from the same dye-lot.  Even if you can get the exact same WTOO dress in your hometown in the exact same Lagoon color, that color will not be the same dye-lot color as the other bridesmaids.

Sizing……………. now this is a fun one.  I had one pregnant bridesmaid who would be 7 months pregnant at the wedding, one bridesmaid who was due to give birth one month before the wedding, and several bridesmaids who don’t own fabric tape measures.  I had the ambitious task of planning a wedding in 7 months so when I decided the bridesmaid dress, they literally had to order their dress that week!  Sorry laddies!!!

Christine is incredibly successful and was working during this dire time of ordering all of the dresses at one time.  Although she is ‘busty’ the shop recommended a 4 or a 6.  They said a 4 would not require alterations and a 6 would require alterations.  With her blessing, I ordered her a 4 and said “stay skinny!!”  Most of my maids had alterations done and I did not envision straps as seen below.  So when Christine tried her dress on for the first time on the wedding day, she was shocked that the shop had recommended a size 4 with her bust.

Every girls body is beautiful and different and that might be a great reason why you should consider letting the bridesmaids choose their style of dress, while still ordering from the same dye-lot.  I did not anticipate the girls wearing the straps that came with the dress, however………. when I was left with the option of “straps or nipples?”  I happily opted for the straps.

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Image via Watters
DRESS WTOO 491 COLOR Lagoon

My wedded bliss started at 10:01 PM when my wedding was over and my bridesmaids waited no time jumping in the pool.  It was the first time that I felt like “I did it” and you girls.. go have fun!!!  I just could not ruin my Lazaro dress because I did want to resell it, see budget tips on how to save money.  My new husband and I went to our Send Off Party and then back to our bridal suite.  I thought that the “talk” of the wedding would be my bridesmaids jumping in the pool…

Our Wedded Bliss was awoken by a 6.1 earthquake in Napa, CA at 3:20AM.  It was the largest earthquake to hit the Bay Area in over 25 years.  Brad, my husband, was actually thrown out of bed by the earthquake, only with a minor scrape.  We had fallen lamps and glassware and no power.  Luckily our hotel was not hit as badly as others.

We realized that we were truly blessed to be married and although without power, none of our guests were injured and we were incredibly thankful the power outage happened after the wedding!!!  You never anticipate mother nature knocking on your door on your wedding weekend..  so we feel incredibly blessed for our special day.  Although you can’t anticipate mother nature sometimes, you just have to embrace her 🙂

bride in Lazaro wedding dress, bridesmaids in the pool

bride in Lazaro mermaid wedding dress and bridesmaids in the pool

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I’m not talking about a sign from the heavens, I’m referring to use of the signage at weddings.  I got a little ‘sign happy’ when I was planning my wedding and I literally had to cut myself off.  Do you need a sign at your reception next to your escort cards that says “Find your seat, but your place is on the dance floor”?  Well no… but I do want my guests dancing all night!!  Guests can usually figure out what to do without signs, but they do serve the purpose of making the day run much smoother, rather than having to remind your guests all night to sign the guest book.

Signs can really tie the wedding together visually, so it’s important to know your wedding colors and theme before you start ordering signs left and right.  Do you have a wedding logo that you can put on your signs?  Do you want to use the same font as your invitations on your signs?  Or do you want to mix it up a little so it’s not so matchy matchy?  There are many stores and websites that you can purchase your signs from, my personal favorite was Etsy because everything can be customized (refer to my blog Pinterest and Etsy – My two BFF’s).  Below are some examples of wedding signs, but really any sign that your little heart desires, you can create!

Ceremony Signs
– Directional sign
– Welcome sign for water table
– Sign at front of aisle “Today two families become one, so pick a seat not a side”
– Here comes your Bride (sign for ring barrier)

Cocktail Hour Signs
– Signature cocktail sign
– Please sign our guest book sign

Reception Signs
– Find your seat, but your place is on the dance floor sign
– I’m her Mr., I’m his Mrs. sign for back of bride and grooms chairs
– Please take one sign for favors
– Find the perfect pair and dance without a care
– Table names or numbers
– Escort cards
– Let love sparkle sign for sparklers
– Love is sweet sign for cake table
– Gift tags for wedding favors