Chalk to Me!

Thought this was a great article and wanted to share with everyone. Happy planning! Mary

Just Call Me Mrs.

Okay, so one of the new crazes out there is the chalkboard theme.  We’ve all seen it out done: you have the big black background with the fancy white chalk fonts.  If used correctly this décor can be both elegant and tasteful.  As far as when to use this idea, I have a few suggestions.  If you are going for a rustic, vintage look, this can be incorporated into your decor.  It can be used for place cards, table numbers, and even a guest book.   Don’t go overboard though, because too much white on black writing can be overpowering especially for the tipsy wedding guest at your cocktail hour.  Another cute way to incorporate the chalkboard theme into your wedding is if you and your husband are both teachers.  While this may seem a bit on the cheesy side, it can be really cute if that’s what brought the two…

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Step Moms Rock


I was recently interviewed by a reporter to discuss step  mothers and their involvement in their step daughter’s wedding. I thought this was  an interesting topic and I wanted to share my thoughts on it.

When you think about a step mother, you may typically think of the wicked step mother of Cinderella. However in reality I find most step mothers are not like that at all.  They typically want whats best for their step children.  Whether it’s ensuring a warm and safe roof over their heads or contributing financially to their step daughters wedding.  They have huge hearts full of love for their step children.

So where does the step mother fall in place regarding her step daughters wedding?  It depends.  If you have a loving relationship with your step daughter, she may want you to be fully involved in the planning, wedding ceremony and reception.  I’ve had clients who have step parents who were fully invested in the planning of the brides big day but at the same time not try to stand in the place of the brides mom.  In every blended family, there’s a place for step parents.  Every couple and their family dynamics are different.  So it’s all about communication between the bride and groom and their parents/step parents.  Miscommunication will always cause hard feelings between family members, so be clear on your wishes and how you see your step mother playing a role in your big day.

If there isn’t positive input from your step daughter, graciously and respectfully step back out of the lime light.  After all this is her big day.  This is her time to shine with family and friends. So kick back, enjoy this once in a life time day and have a cocktail.

Happy planning!

Mary Homer-Fairy Tale Weddings & Events

How To Find YOUR Wedding Planner


He asked you to marry him, you said yes and you now have this beautiful ring on your finger.  What to do next? Where do you start in planning your wedding? If you’re like most people, you haven’t ever planned a wedding.  You may have planned your family reunion or Aunt Martha’s surprise birthday or maybe even your grandparents anniversary party. But a wedding can certainly be daunting.

My first suggestion to any engaged couple is hire a wedding planner.  Now you would expect I’d say that, given I’m a wedding planner. But this is what I discovered… I first started planning weddings because I loved the beauty of my couples and their take on their special day.  It didn’t take me long to realize, EVERYONE should hire a Wedding Planner. You know all the reasons to hire one….she’ll take the stress of planning such an important day off your shoulders….she’ll look after all the details….she’ll deal with all the family drama so we don’t have to…the list goes on. But how do you find a planner that fits you as a couple?

A few suggestions would be to start with an internet search of local wedding planners and coordinators in your area. Don’t forget to check the Association of Bridal Consultants ( who provide recommendations of experienced members in your local are.  There’s also various wedding services available locally (in Syracuse, NY) at WomenTIES ( a base of women entrepreneurs regionally through out New York State.

So you’ve narrowed down your options, where do you go from here? Call your potential planners and talk to them on the phone, schedule an appointment to meet with them for an initial consultation.  You need to get a feel for the right planner for you.  Everyone has different personalities, so why wouldn’t wedding planners? Find the right fit for you.  If you’re free spirited and don’t care for the formality of a typical wedding, find a planner you feel comfortable with, who can give you the feel and look you’re going for.  Basically, you’re interviewing planners to find that right fit.  And lastly, don’t forget references. Talking with prior clients will give you an idea as to how well your potential planner works with her clients and what you can expect.

Remember your wedding planner is there to help you, talk you through those stressful moments, hold your hand and hug you once your married.  But there is so much more behind the scenes she does for you, even if you don’t see it.  So when thinking about or looking for a wedding planner or coordinator, find the right fit for you. Most planners become good friends with their clients and this is someone you’ll be spending a lot of time with.

Happy planning!

Mary Homer-Fairy Tale Weddings & Events


Saving A Stalled Business

Women TIES


As I glanced out the barren window view where grey sky meets grey snow, through the kaleidoscope from yesterday’s Women TIES event, the colorless view turned to swirling pink, yellow and red as the crystals within the kaleidoscope changed position. All of a sudden I remembered the wisdom from yesterday’s speaker say “Sometimes when our businesses aren’t working well, we have to step back and get another view to move onward.”

Just like winter’s beautiful pristine look fades to grey, so can the excitement in running a company. It’s natural for a mundane feeling to overcome an entrepreneur especially if they’ve been in business awhile or when the business seems to be stalling or failing. Yesterday’s speaker Bonnie Phelps from Baked Euphoria shared what she did to add color, light and zest back into her company and her own entrepreneurial life which included creating two signature products a rainbow cake…

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Tuesday’s Tip: The Shoes Have It!


Whether you’re attending a friends wedding, are a bride yourself or are just celebrating a special occasion, a beautiful pair of shoes can make your outfit!  With so many options and choices to choose from what do you buy?  For the typical bride a beautiful pair of white wedding shoes, with maybe a little sparkle is the perfect choice.  But what if you’re looking for something just a little bit different? Why not choose a punch of color?  Whether it’s a neutral pump, a bold red or your “something blue” you can find your style and taste.  And for the less traditional country brides out there, there’s the always popular cowboy boots.

So here’s my top three tips for choosing your soon to be “favorite” pair of shoes:

1)  If you’re choosing a pair of shoes for your wedding, be sure they’re comfortable and they fit.  You’re going to be in them all day and evening most likely. A good fit will always pay for themselves the first day you wear them.

2)  Pick a color to fit your personality. This is where you can have so much fun.  If you have a big personality and want a splash color in your wedding, why not in your shoes? If you’re going to a special occasion, throw a pop of color in there to stand out.  Embrace your personality, whether you’re conservative or the life of the party.  Shoes are an expression of your personality, so express away! And don’t forget, Metallics (gold, platinum and copper) are on trend this season.  So share your inner Goddess and maybe a pair of Grecian Sandals!

3) What type of shoe do you like?  You have so many choices here, whether it’s a wedge, a pair of flats or ballets, platforms or stilettos, high heels or kitten heels.  Choose a pair you just can’t live without. You’ll wear them again and again, getting plenty of use from them.

And for our shoe fashionettas, keep an eye open for “Made To Order” Jimmy Choos.  They aren’t out yet, but my sources tell me they will be soon.

Happy Planning – Mary Homer – Fairy Tale Weddings and Events

Choosing A Great Wedding Dress On A Budget

Consider your different options to find the right type of alcohol for your wedding. An open bar that is available all evening can quickly become a very costly endeavor.

Is the planning of the wedding getting a little too much for you? Has the thought of eloping crossed your mind? Wedding planning can cause a lot of stress; however, there are several strategies that you can utilize to make the process smoother and simpler. This article provides several useful pieces of advice that can reduce the amount of stress that your wedding planning is causing you.

Purchasing your wedding gown on the internet can be a budget saver, cutting down your costs by hundreds of dollars. Make sure to order early so you have time for alterations if any need to be made.

In your wedding plans, make sure you consider what types of alcohol you wish to serve, and…

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Hold the Cake!


As a bride and groom the best part of planning your big day is cake tasting, or at least that’s what you thought until you realized there’s so many options….What’s a couple to do? Why not consider other options?  The most popular option for the past several years has been cupcake towers, in every configuration and as extravagant as your imagination can think of.  Whether its a simple white tower or has all the glitz and glamour of your wedding, you can never go wrong with cupcakes.  And as for flavors, if you can think it, most bakeries can make them.  My favorite cupcake is an upside down pineapple cupcake from “Just-One-Bite” in Syracuse! There’s no fuss with forks or need to cut a large tier.  You can then have a traditional cake cutting ceremony with an over sized cupcake in your specific color scheme or theme, which still allows you to feed one another and have pictures.

If cupcakes aren’t your favorite, macaroon towers and donut towers are becoming ever so popular. As are smaller cakes with different flavor options for you and your guests.  If you’re looking for something a little nontraditional, you can try cake pops which are easy for children and adults to enjoy. If you’re having a country wedding, why not think about pies? Big ones and small ones, they all fix that sweet tooth we all get after a nice dinner.  And of course, we can’t over look dessert and candy bars.  Whether it’s your color scheme, old world desserts and candies or simply chocolates of every nature, kind and flavor, have fun with it.  Your guests will!

Happy planning!

Mary Homer-Fairy Tale Weddings and Events –


Tuesday Tips – How To Control Your Food Budget


You’re planning your big day and when you sit down with the venue or caterer, they tell you how much it will cost to feed each of your guests….$80 per plate; $100 per plate or even $200 per plate or more.  What do you do? How can you control your budget? It comes down to the more guests you invite, the more meals you will need to be provided for your guest.  Yes ladies, you should have a budget, even if your budget is big or small.  You need to know where your hard earned money is going. The majority of your budget will go towards the food and drink at your venue or with your caterer.

When you choose your food options, think about the price per plate and the number of guests who will actually attend your celebration. If money is not an issue, then you probably won’t be too concerned with the price per plate but if you’re on a budget, you’ll want to know what you’re getting for your money.  Whether it’s chicken marsala, beef tenderloin or even surf and turf, your choice matters.  So make the most informed choice you can.  And be sure to have a food tasting with your venue or caterer, after all you want to ensure the food is going to be to your satisfaction.  If you’re happy with it, you’re guests will be happy as well.

And don’t forget your vendors.  You will have vendors working all day and evening for you(your photographer/videographer/wedding planner or dj/band).  You need to take care of them, as they’re there to make your day a special event.  Now I’m not saying they  should have surf and turf like your guests, but most venues and caterers alway have an “on hand” selection for vendor meals, at a reduced cost.  This is typical a chicken or pasta dish.

Follow us every Tuesday for new tips and ideas for your wedding planning.

Happy Planning-Mary Homer

Fairy Tale Weddings & Events

Rustic Weddings Made Easy

Rustic Barn Reception

If you like the simple life and a rustic wedding is your style, not to fear.  It’s as easy as A, B, C. First, find your location.  It can be a barn, a family members field or just the back yard at your Grandma’s.  Next, remember to keep it simple.  Rustic style is easy.  Essentially you can use almost anything you have and is in nature.  From long communal wooden tables with colored canning jars and in season flowers like daisies as your centerpieces to as elaborate as hanging a chandelier in a barn.  Always use candles, whether it’s in your canning jars, in groups or on wagon wheel chandeliers.   Next, make sure you have plenty of seating.  Whether you mix and max your chairs for an eclectic look or you match them for a more traditional look, make it fun. You can use ribbon, hay bales(throw a blanket or family quilts over them), burlap in a number of different ways (as chair ties, favor bags or even table runners) and lighting.  Lighting becomes very important, especially once the sun goes down.  So be sure you plan ahead.  Be creative with signage, use old windows frames and glass and don’t forget draping.  Draping can transform any room, even a barn.  Use pieces of cut wood or even barrels in creative and fun ways.  Or bring in older pieces of furniture to give an area that “homey” feel.  The skies the limit with your creativity.

Whether you are simple rustic or elegant rustic, have fun and show your personality.  After all, this is your day and everyone wants to see your personality shine through.  Those little touches will leave lasting memories for years to come.

Happy Planning-Mary