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COVID-19 Creates Wedding Planning Chaos: The Industry Offers Advice

by Lisa Beth Miller Local bride Andrea Gillis, a former wedding professional herself, knew the importance of being super-organized about planning her wedding to her fiance, Marty. The worldwide health emergency known as COVID-19, however, offered an unprecedented challenge to her meticulous plans. “We wanted to get married in our neighborhood, at a beautiful manor home, which is actually managed by the local city government. Due to all of the virus-related closures, the facility has cancelled all weddings up to May 4th. Things kind of started to unravel on March 18th. After speaking to my location’s representatives, they offered us a refund. With everyone pushing back their wedding dates 3-6 months out, I just couldn’t reschedule for a later date. I was afraid all of my vendors would cancel on us,” Andrea explained. Venue and caterer were the two biggest …

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Cooking As a Couple: Make it Easy, Healthy and Fun With Pampered Chef

By Erin Pittman Sponsored by Pampered Chef by Anna Tjoumas Sharing a meal certainly brings people together but preparing it side by side can be an even more rewarding experience. Whether you’re new to cooking or your kitchen tools could use an upgrade, Anna Tjoumas with Pampered Chef can help you get started. Superior Products Cooking together at home can be more enjoyable with the right, quality products. Pampered Chef prides itself at staying on trend with products and providing customers with quality guarantees. “Our cookware is unsurpassed by anything out there,” said Tjoumas. “The company was smart in their recent redesign of the cookware. The handles are removable for easy storage, they are dishwasher safe, and you can safely use metal utensils on them without worrying about scratching them.” The cookware also carries a lifetime warranty. “If anything happens …

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Selecting The Right Music For Your Wedding Reception

by Lisa Beth Miller The wedding reception is a time to celebrate! The right music choices are very important if you want guests of all ages to relax and have a wonderful time. While it may be tempting to just create a playlist using your own iPod’s lists, don’t. You must consider your audience and welcome them into your fabulous fete by playing the music they recognize and love. One recent trend is to allow guests to request one favorite dance song on their reply cards. This is an easy way to figure out what might get your crowd moving (or at least keep them in a good mood). Another option is to select key songs for your reception and just trust your band or DJ to make the rest of the selections. If you hired an experienced, trained professional, …

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Selecting The Perfect Wedding Shoes

by Lisa Beth Miller Almost every fashionista loves a fabulous shoe. Selecting shoes for your wedding day should simply be one more opportunity to add an amazingly stylish touch to your look. Shoes for your wedding day should not be a last-minute decision. The shoe should be coordinated with your gown color (it could even be a unique contrast), your jewelry, your bouquet and your basic style. They must be selected carefully! Talk to the style consultants at your bridal boutique for ideas. Once you have found the correct pair of wedding-day shoes, here are some additional tips to keep in mind: In order to prevent blisters and discomfort, start wearing your shoes about a month before the wedding to break them in a bit. Even just walking around in your shoes for 15 minutes each evening will help your …

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Wedding Gowns: How To Know If You’ve Found “The One”

by Lisa Beth Miller If you are addicted to reality wedding TV shows like I am, you probably think that it is obvious when you put on the “right” wedding gown. Some think it is a special hunch, while others claim the bride will most definitely shed tears when she sees herself in the correct dress. Some brides just do not experience this moment of clarity and never really feel one-hundred percent confident. Why? Well, for starters, many brides simply over-shop. They feel they they cannot allow themselves to relax and feel confident in a dress (no matter how perfect it truly looks) until literally EVERY dress option has been seen. This attitude often leads to marathon shopping sessions to multiple boutiques. This accomplishes very little because each visit to a new boutique starts the entire process from the very …

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Charitable Gifts for your Wedding

By Lisa Beth Miller Couples who want to incorporate giving into their wedding celebrations have several options on how to do so. Here are a few ideas on how to be philanthropic for one of your first acts as a married couple. Incorporate specific charities into your registry: Allow guests to donate in your honor to a cause that is meaningful to you both. This is especially common for couples who have already established their home. Charities that have a local impact will resonate with guests. Here are a few of our favorites: Semper K9 Assistance Dogs – semperk9.org ACTS – actspwc.org Community Foundation of Northern Virginia – cfnova.org Give Back Prince William – givebackpw.org Habitat for Humanity Prince William County – habitatpwc.org Donate instead of giving favors: A charitable registry shows that a couple is philanthropically-minded, but a donation …

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Love Loudoun Wedding Showcase to Spotlight Loudoun County Venues, Wedding Professionals

Provided by FNP Events Visit Loudoun and FNP Events announce a new wedding event designed to connect couples to Loudoun County venues and wedding professionals. “Love Loudoun: A Wedding Showcase” will be hosted at West Belmont Place at The National Conference Center in Leesburg, Virginia, on March 15, from 12:00 noon to 5:00 p.m., with the first hour open to VIP ticket holders. “The wedding industry contributes more than $118 million to Loudoun’s economy annually and continues to grow,” Visit Loudoun President and CEO Beth Erickson said. “With everything from historic settings and vineyards to modern ballrooms, Loudoun has one of the most diverse offerings of wedding venues in the D.C. region. This Wedding Showcase will give couples a chance to meet with dozens of wedding vendors all under one roof.” The Love Loudoun Wedding Showcase will feature almost 100 …

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Get Married and Honeymoon in Style with Divine Destination Weddings and Honeymoons

Iceland, Divine Destinations

By Erin Pittman Sponsored by Divine Destination Weddings and Honeymoons So, you’ve found the person you want to marry, gotten the ring and have enough excitement bottled up inside for years to come. Now it’s time to make plans for your unforgettable wedding and honeymoon. But where do you start? No matter what you’re looking for, turn to Divine Destination Weddings and Honeymoons. Expert Travel Planners When you contact Divine Destinations, you’ll receive tailored service from the very beginning. Dana Franklin and her Virginia team of agents bring years of expert service to the table. Franklin has been a travel agent for 14 years and has been with the company since 2014. “People will find that human connection from start to finish,” said Franklin. “Our clients will receive multiple options, and we will walk them through the booking process, often …

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Weddings at the Hylton Performing Arts Center

By Ashley Simpson Sponsored by Hylton Performing Arts Center Many would say that you’re the star of your own show on your wedding day. And, the Hylton Performing Arts Center – an opera house and theater venue in Manassas – gives this idea a whole new meaning for local brides. The Hylton Center opened in 2010, and the first wedding took place the very next year. “We’ve been doing weddings almost since the beginning,” said Susan Landess, Sales and Community Relations Manager of the Hylton Performing Arts Center. “The Hylton Center began reaching out to the wedding market as a way to enhance our community outreach when not being used for performances.” Hylton Center performers include the Northern Virginia Ballet, Larry Gatlin & The Gatlin Brothers Band, the Manassas Ballet Theater, the Metropolitan Jazz Orchestra, and even the National Symphony …

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Pamper the Bride with Pampered Chef Showers and Registries

By Erin Pittman Sponsored by Pampered Chef One of the most popular rooms to stock from a bridal registry is the kitchen. Who doesn’t want new stoneware, appliances and gadgets for entertaining in a new home? What if you could do so in a more creative and fun way? Anna Tjoumas, local Pampered Chef consultant, offers creative twists on the traditional bridal registries and showers. With typical registries, couples go to the store and register. With Pampered Chef, they get more. “Couples create their registries, have a shower and receive all the host benefits including free and discounted items, plus monthly specials,” said Anna. Pampered Chef Bridal Showers At the shower, guests shop from a couple’s Pampered Chef registry and can purchase items for themselves, too. There’s no need for guests to shop ahead, as they can complete their shopping …

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Three Generations of a Blooming Business: Johnson’s Florist and Garden Centers

By Marianne Weaver Sponsored by Johnson’s Florist and Garden Centers Johnson’s Florist and Garden Centers, with locations in Kensington and Olney, Maryland, has established itself as the go-to for floral arrangements, plants and garden products. But that was not the vision when the business was founded 87 years ago. “In 1932, in the midst of the Depression, Raymond T. Johnson Sr. opened a small grocery store at Wisconsin and Van Ness Streets in Washington, D.C.,” said Thomas Johnson, Johnson’s Florist and Garden Centers Director of Store Operations. “In the spring of 1933, an individual who lived on Van Ness Street and raised geraniums as a hobby offered him a few geranium plants to sell on consignment. And the plant business was born.” After World War II, the grocery department suffered from the competition of the new, larger supermarkets. The floral …

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Wedding Salon Puts the Fun Back in Shopping for Your Wedding

Planning your wedding involves so many moving parts. You need a venue, a dress, a tuxedo, flowers, a cake and music. And that’s just scratching the surface of the vendors you will want to make your big day the best it can be. What if you could shop for all those vendors under one roof in one fun event? This promises to be the best bridal show in Washington D.C. you have ever attended! Wedding Salon will be at The Liaison Capitol Hill in Washington D.C. on September 16, 2019, from 4 to 8 p.m. This show combines top national wedding vendors with the best local industry pros. Who Will Be at The Wedding Salon? If you’re planning a destination wedding, you’re in luck. You will meet reps from Aruba Tourism Authority, Jamaica Tourist Board, O’ahu Visitors Bureau, Conrad Cartagena, …

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