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The First Steps to Take After Your Wedding Day

Tuesday, May 18th, 2021

The most perfect day of your life has come and gone, now what should you do to start off your married life? There are a few essential steps you’ll need to take once you’re back from honeymoonin’ with your new spouse to help the transition go as smoothly possible. From legally changing your name to returning items off of your registry to submitting your perfect day to Brides of Oklahoma, we’ve got all the deets on the steps to take after your wedding day!

First Steps to Take After the Wedding Day

1. Send out thank you cards

Completing your thank you cards may seem like a daunting task, but we can assure you it’s not as bad as it may seem! Writing thank you cards can be fun if you incorporate fun stationary, a pretty pen with colorful ink, or even add your own personal touch with playful stickers. Once you get these letters written and give yourself a check off the big to-do, we can guarantee you are going to feel less stressed, accomplished and most importantly, happy! The sooner you can sit down and crank out thank you cards after your wedding, the better. We recommend no later than three months after your wedding day as a deadline for getting them all sent out! Make sure to be as detailed or sentimental as possible, as this will show your guests how much you appreciated their gift and for attending your celebration. If you’re needing some stationery to get you going, you can find our top pics in our Amazon shop under Paperie!

Read our full guide on thank you cards here!

 

2. Preserve your dress and bouquet

The dress and bouquet are some of the most cherished items from your wedding day, so why part with them if you don’t necessarily need to? There are several ways to preserve your wedding dress and bouquet that will keep them looking brand new and also help preserve your memories of your special day!

Taking or sending your dress to a preservationist is the easiest way to preserve your dress, but is also a pretty pricy option. For a DIY route to preserve your dress yourself, first, take it to get professionally cleaned within six weeks of your wedding, and immediately if it is silk. Do your research on the best local cleaners – we recommend asking local bridal boutiques who they would recommend. Once it’s back from the cleaners, handle your dress with extreme care, as to not get any new stains on it! From here, you can either seal, box or bag your dress. Sealing your dress involves vacuum sealing it in a bag. While this might seem like the best option, sealing your dress could cause permanent creases, yellowing, molding and mildewing of your gown that you’re trying to avoid! Boxing your gown involves simply folding your gown, wrapping it in white acid-free tissue paper, and then placing your gown in an acid-free box. With this option, it is advised to re-fold your gown once every two to three years to prevent permanent creasing! Finally, if you decide to bag your dress, make sure it is hanging on a padded hanger by the loops inside the dress that are closest to the strongest seam. Bag it in a cotton or acid-free plastic bag, NOT regular plastic. This is a good option for the short-term, as hanging your dress for a long period of time is not ideal.

Once your wedding is over, you’ll need to act fast to preserve your flowers while they’re still as fresh as can be! Pressing your flowers is a trendy option we always love to see our brides do with their bouquets. For the best results, make sure you do research on your flowers before starting, as you’ll need to know how each flower will react to getting pressed! Once they’re pressed, the options are limitless for all you can do. Adding them to a photo album or surrounding a photo in a clear class frame are two unique and sentimental options! Another option to preserve your flowers is by drying them and placing them in a clear box to always have to look at. By drying out your flowers, they’ll retain their original shape, color and perfume.

Read our guide on preserving your bridal gown and bouquet here.

 

3. Legally change your name

Luckily, for Oklahoma brides, the state will accept a valid marriage certificate as proof for a name change. Once that piece of paper is signed on your wedding day, it’s time to use your new name – congratulations! Now, what comes next?

Are you simply going for a last name change, or do you want a hyphenation or middle name change? This decision determines the necessary steps needing to be taken after your wedding day. We always suggest to brides to make multiple copies of your marriage license to give to any vendors, like insurance companies and any others that may require it. If you’re moving, this is also the perfect time to update your address everywhere, too.

Top 20 places you should update your new name:

  1. Your social security card (click here to get more information!)
  2. Driver’s license
  3. Bank accounts
  4. IRS (click here to get more information!)
  5. Voter registration (click here to get your voter registration application)
  6. Passport (click here for detailed information)
  7. Post office (click here to get more information!)
  8. Credit cards
  9. Insurance companies
  10. Doctors’ offices
  11. Car title and/or mortgage/landlord
  12. School/university
  13. Professional or educational associations, clubs and organizations
  14. Attorney’s offices
  15. Airlines
  16. Electric and utility companies
  17. Phone, cable and internet companies
  18. Financial institutions
  19. Online shopping sites
  20. Social media accounts

Read our comprehensive guide to changing your name here.

 

4. Send friends & family your updated address

While your close friends and immediate family may know about you getting married, there’s a lot of people that won’t — and it’s important to get the word out there! Making a cute “it’s official” post and celebrating your new marriage is one of the sweetest ways to make the news known – it’ll get people’s attention and give you an excuse to post more wedding photos, which is always a bonus! Sharing your updated contact information through your phone is just the nudge people will need to change your name and update your address in their phone (here’s a quick tutorial on how to do just that). If you’re an old-school bride who loved getting snail mail, you could opt to send out an official announcement – it’s just like a wedding announcement, but for your new address and name!

 

5. Return duplicate registry items

As thankful as you are for all the registry items you received throughout your wedding journey, it’s easy to say that you only need one shiny new air fryer in your life, not two or three. Was there one registry item you really wanted but weren’t gifted? Here’s your opportunity to get that gift for you and your new spouse!

When returning items from places you registered with, make sure you are familiar with the return policy. Will the store accept your item without a receipt? Do they have a time-oriented return window? While Walmart and Target, along with Amazon and Bed Bath and Beyond, will all accept returns without a receipt, there are restrictions that apply at each. Researching every store is key before walking in and being turned away because you don’t have the proper means needed to make a return. Become very familiar with each store’s return policy, then confidently return your items with as little hassle as possible!

*Tips for buying gifts for future couples: stick to the registry, and always give a gift with the receipt attached! The more you can do to help the couple return your gift if needed, the better.*

 

6. Review your vendors

Did you have the dream team of vendors helping you with your wedding? Was there a vendor you wished you would have looked a little closer into? Let the world know! Most wedding vendors have websites where you can leave reviews about the services they provided for your big day. If not, hyping up your vendors on social media by liking and commenting on their posts is like a review in itself! Reviewing your vendor is one of the best ways you can thank them or critique them, and by doing so, you’ll also be helping out all of the future couples that could potentially use them. If you used a Brides of Oklahoma vendor, you can easily find their website and socials on their vendor profiles!

 

7. Order a wedding photo album & prints

There’s no better way to remember your wedding day than by printing out all of the beautiful photos! It’s no secret that good quality photos of your day was a big investment, and printing them out could actually give you the biggest bang for your buck. Printing your photos and placing them in an album tells your wedding day story in a unique way that you can personally lay out, from getting ready to the grand exit and everything between. There’s just something so emotional and intimate about flipping through hard copies of photos instead of scrolling through an online gallery. Also, the internet isn’t forever! In the event your computer crashes or websites get deleted, having print phots and albums is the best backup. Plus, albums make the sweetest family heirloom for generations to come!

 

8. Submit your wedding to us!

We’re on the search for the prettiest weddings in Oklahoma to grace the pages of our magazines, and we would love your special day to be one of them. After all the months of planning and preparing for your big day, you definitely deserve to show it off – bragging rights are definitely encouraged here! Head to our Vows that Wow link on our site to submit your wedding to us today!


For more detailed information on changing your name, preserving your gown & bouquet, and sending thank you cards, visit our blog!

Light & Airy Wedding at Festivities Event Center

Tuesday, May 4th, 2021

Amber and David’s light and airy wedding at Festivities Event Center in El Reno was oh-so stunning. From the start with the gold welcome mirror with calligraphy to the sweet yet simple white and gray invitations, we knew this wedding would be one to remember. The outdoor ceremony had an invigorating ivy arrangement, making their “I do” look like a fairytale scene. Amber wore a lace mermaid gown with a low-bun, sheer veil and glowing makeup look. Her bridesmaids wore tones of light pink and blush, while the groomsmen sported navy suits with burgundy ties. The color combination flowed and paired so well throughout the entire event, giving us all the spring vibes. The light and airy reception was held in a white room with flourishing florals at every turn. Marquee letters lit up the room, adding to all the romance. Each tabletop featured a light pink runner, a line of greenery, pink and green Estelle-colored glasses, gold utensils and wicker placemats. Thankfully, Mary Keen Photography got all the goods from this wedding at Festivities on camera so we can all get a glimpse. Check out the gorgeous gallery below and a quote from the bride on her favorite wedding day memory. Cheers to the newlyweds, Mr. and Mrs. David Adams!

From the bride on her favorite memory: “There were so many special moments throughout the day, but the constant was our community of people who gave David and me support and love all day. We have so many friends and family that have been with us since the beginning and we were so grateful that a pandemic didn’t prevent us from getting to share our love together with our people.”

Watch the Best Moments from this Black & White Wedding at The Mayo Hotel

Thursday, April 29th, 2021

See the full gallery from Allison and Christopher’s black & white wedding at The Mayo at this link

Spice-Toned Florals Elevate this Autumnal Wedding Inspiration

Thursday, April 29th, 2021

We’re already wishing fall would come back around when looking through the gallery of this spiced autumnal wedding inspiration captured by Emily Nicole Photo in lush, ethereal weddingscapes! It’s hard to take our eyes off all the incredible bouquets and centerpieces from Poppy Lane Design that decorate these styled scenes in a myriad of saturated shades. A corresponding altar installation is the star of the show, blending a range from bright white blooms to dark and moody fall foliage. Two beautiful brides model in various scenes – one seen next to her groom in a white floral-patterned off-the-shoulder gown from The Bridal Boutique while another poses next to her bridesmaids in a jaw-dropping sleek and simple gown with a boat neckline, open back and stunning sweeping train. These brides look absolutely breathtaking and we love how the bridal party was styled with different hairstyles, yet all with the same signature barely-there bridal makeup look by artist Carolyn F. Beauty that radiates natural beauty. Beautifully scripted stationery from The Letter Box Shop is so easy to fall in love with and we think its tasteful mustard accents are simply to-die-for. To finish out the affair on a sweet note, a slice of this elegant four-tiered creation by Amy Cakes featuring whimsical fall design is definitely in order. And we promise, it tastes just as good as it looks. Keep scrolling to see all the details from this autumnal wedding inspiration yourself. Cheers!

A Soft and Sweet Summer Wedding at Coles Garden

Tuesday, April 27th, 2021

Light, airy and made up of all things romance, Lacey and Gage’s summer wedding at Coles Garden Wedding and Event Center was so sweet we might have a cavity! Soft and delicate tones of mauve, pale pink and white create an air of romantic elegance that we simply adore. Runaway Belle Vintage Rentals provided perfect vintage velvet couches fit for royalty as well as the sweetest little lemonade stand we ever did see. Bride Lacey looked absolutely breathtaking in a Casablanca sheath gown from Bella Rose Bridal – Edmond topped off with a lace-edged sweetheart neckline and a stunning cathedral-length veil. After the ceremony, guests moved inside the venue for luxe reception dining among effortlessly chic tablescapes. We always hear that rain on the wedding day is lucky, and it was even luckier that Oklahoma waited until everyone had made it indoors! Since the newlyweds had planned to have their dance floor out on the patio at Coles Garden, the change of weather kept everything cool and shades came down to block the rain. Lacey and Gage’s summer wedding was filled with so many precious memories they can relive again and again thanks to the photography and videography skills of Danielle Villamarette & Co., so there isn’t a single memory lost in the chaos of their pretty pink day. See their gallery and wedding highlight below, and read on for a note from the bride about one of the most important things she learned throughout the wedding planning process. Cheers to the Billegs!

From the bride: “Enjoy every moment. As much as you want your day to be here, enjoy being engaged and the planning process. Your wedding day comes so fast and is over even faster!”


Plans to tie the knot soon yourself? Check out some of our favorite Oklahoma wedding vendors here to get the planning started! Cheers!

Put Your Health First | Wedding Fitness Before the Big Day

Tuesday, April 27th, 2021

Wedding fitness isn’t just about fitting into the dress. It’s about having a healthy body in it, and feeling your absolute best when you walk down the aisle! Getting fit before the big day can also help you relieve stress and feel more in control of the craziness that is planning a wedding. The past wedding seasons have really brought perspective to putting your health first, especially as we start to finally see the end of COVID-19, and it should remain at the top of your priority list. Even if your nuptials are still far off on the horizon, summer is right around the corner – So, what better time to start getting active? It doesn’t have to be high-intensity- anything, but if you’re searching for a few fun fitness options look no further than some of Oklahoma’s finest. Read on!

wedding fitness

Club Pilates

Wedding fitness has never been more fun. Offering a low-impact, yet challenging workout that enhances your mind-body connection, the focus of pilates is on lengthening and strengthening your muscles – from the core out. The classes are safe and effective for any age, and inclusive to every body. You can find a Club Pilates in Edmond as well as Nichols Hills.

 

Pure Barre

Targeting your seat, thighs, abs, and arms, Pure Barre is designed to not only deliver fast and effective results but also foster an uplifting, fun, and supportive workout environment. With a location in Edmond, it couldn’t be more convenient for Oklahoma brides far and wide.

Photo: Kelcy Leigh Photography


Connect with these fun Oklahoma health and fitness vendors or shop our workout must-haves. Cheers!

Why It’s Important to Book A Professional Photographer (Rather Than a Friend)

Monday, April 26th, 2021

There are a few things in life that one simply shouldn’t feel bad about splurging for in life, like good shoes or a skincare routine. One more often overlooked is a professional photographer which is at the top of the list for us, and when it comes to weddings there are so many reasons why! We could go on for hours about it, but Oklahoma-based pro wedding photographer Katie Cunningham of KGC Photography says it best in this piece where she talks the importance of booking a professional for your day-of photography, why wedding photography is truly a priceless investment, as well as a few other insider secrets we think you’ll want to hear about. Read on!

(guest post by Katie Cunningham of KGC Photography)

professional photographer

Photo // KGC Photography

Wedding planning: it can get overwhelming quickly! With so many things, people and moments to consider, sometimes it can seem like an easy decision to go with a close friend that has dabbled in photography a time or two. They seem confident, and you are relieved to have a decision that has saved you both time and money. However, don’t be deceived! A professional photographer is well worth the investment. Here’s why.

Experience is Priceless!

As I walk into my fifth year photographing weddings, the experience I’ve gained over the course of 100+ weddings allows me to walk into each day with confidence. Not only do you want someone who knows what they are doing, but you want someone who can take control of situations so you can sit back and enjoy your day! The photographer is the number one person who either keeps the day moving on time, or gets distracted and unaware and lets the timeline slip past the forefront of their mind. It is important to have someone that can both capture and document the day, while also keeping the bride’s best interest as far as timing and location in mind. Wedding days can get stressful, and it is a big day! Having someone who specializes in being there for their brides, in any situation during the day, is priceless. 

Vendor Relationships: Working Seamlessly Together for Your Day

One of my favorite parts of the wedding industry are the friendships I have created working with other professionals throughout the years. Florists, planners, DJs, videographers – the list goes on. Vendors that work together regularly allow for an even more seamless day for the bride. Imagine this: Your photographer has worked with the DJ ten times. They know them by name, and they know how they normally like to do the bouquet toss. The time comes, the photographer runs over to the DJ to get the go-ahead, the toss occurs and the photos are captured! Versus: your friend who has offered to shoot your wedding has decided they have to run to the bathroom super quick! The DJ is unaware they left the dance floor, and cues up the bouquet toss song. Before you know it, your best friend caught your bouquet and your photographer missed the whole thing! These are the small moments that you don’t want to have to worry about getting looked over with a professional photographer.

Pictures So Clear You Can Print them On A Giant Canvas!

A professional photographer has invested tens of thousands of dollars into their gear – it is the make or break for your images! The better the gear, the clearer the images, the higher the quality. In a day and age where it seems like the iPhone 12 can take the same photos as a Canon Mark IV – Let me caution you, it can’t! A photographer that knows what to do in a darker church, or how to set up your family photos. They know how to make you and your spouse feel comfortable in front of a camera. 

Worth the Investment

We’re all human. When it comes to weddings, it is easy to get overwhelmed and make compromises when we can. Sometimes it is necessary to make sure you don’t blow your budget! However, a photographer is not the place to skimp. Your photos are one of the few things that you can walk away with from your wedding. They are what you want to have visual memories of your invitations, your tablescapes, your bouquet, all of the details that you spent hours and hours picking out. You want the memories of your father-daughter dance when your dad teared up and squeezed you tight. The last hug you received from your grandparents as you walked out during your send-off. These are the in-between moments that you want to have to look back on every time. The moments that may even make you say, “I forgot that even happened! I’m so glad I have a photo!”

Each photo on your wedding day is a captured moment in time that will never be repeated, so hire someone that you know will do the job. Choose a professional photographer so that you can enjoy your day and know that they will take care of you. Let your friends enjoy the wedding as a guest! And let your wedding photographers enjoy the wedding as a documenter. You won’t regret it!


Connect with professional photographer and wedding pro Katie Cunningham of KGC Photography via her vendor profile here. Cheers!

A Vibrant Tradition: An Editorial Take on Choctaw Wedding Traditions

Friday, April 23rd, 2021

There are 39 recognized Indian tribes in Oklahoma, each with their own version of wedding ceremonies incorporating different traditions and garments involved. For this editorial, we wanted to showcase a modern take on the traditional Choctaw wedding aesthetic by incorporating traditional Choctaw dresses and jewelry, while also bringing in trendy decor pieces, lush florals and a tasteful invitation suite. Keep reading here to learn all about the Choctaw wedding aesthetic, as we walk you through the vibrant tradition of their ceremonies and garments, as well as all of the vendors that brought this modern take to life!

See the full gallery of images and learn about the Choctaw wedding traditions here!

A Colorful Winter Wedding with Romantic Florals Galore

Friday, April 23rd, 2021

There is so much romance and vivid floral goodness in this colorful winter wedding planned by Embellished Weddings! Faith and Creed’s story began when they first met in sixth grade at Christian Heritage Academy where they went to school together until their high school graduation in 2015. Though they never dated, the pair were good friends and even attended their junior and senior banquets together, which were held in The Skirvin Hilton‘s Grand Ballroom – little did they know, they would get married in that same room almost five years later! The two went their separate ways at first. Faith went to the University of Oklahoma and Creed headed off for college in Mississippi, but eventually during their senior year of college, they reconnected. They began dating long-distance, and then got engaged after their graduations in May.

To kick off their colorful winter wedding weekend, Faith and Creed celebrated with friends and family through a rehearsal dinner and luxe accommodations offered by The Skirvin Hilton so you can reduce the stress of traveling, party on-site all night and enjoy their delicious venue catering, making this celebration a nearly all-inclusive affair. Mood Party Rentals supplies elegant gold accents like the chiavari ceremony and reception seating as well as clean, stately linens for every tablescape. Romance is in the air throughout every decorated scene, but the real punch in this wedding comes from its flowers. A fun take on winter wedding florals, this bright and cheery floral design from XO by Haleigh Kenney includes so many incredible blooms in a range of sweet berry tones to light peach and pale yellow stems – not to mention a staircase installation that left so many attendees speechless. Keeping with the whimsical floral trend, Faith looks absolutely radiant in her long-sleeved Willowby by Watters gown from Bella Rose Bridal – Edmond as well as a dreamy veil that seems to go on for miles. A decadent six-tiered design from Mishelle Handy Cakes is the perfect sweet to end the night with, and its alternating ribbed and smooth layers pair perfectly with the vivid florals that accent the rest of their colorful winter wedding. Read on for a note from the bride about one of her most favorite wedding vendors and what made them so special. Cheers to the Hendricksons!

From the bride: “My favorite wedding vendor was XO by Haleigh Kenney. Haleigh brought my colorful winter floral vision to life and it was better than I ever could have imagined! I knew I wanted to incorporate colorful florals, but I had a difficult time finding inspiration pictures from winter weddings that captured my vision. I took my ideas to Haleigh and told her that I trusted her completely and to design what she thought was best. Haleigh’s design on the Grand Ballroom Staircase was a showstopper and was my favorite detail from the wedding.”


Plans to tie the knot soon yourself? Check out some of our favorite Oklahoma wedding vendors here to get the planning started! Cheers!

This Couple Had The Most Romantic Oklahoma City Zoo Wedding

Friday, April 23rd, 2021

Hallum and Triston are wild about each other, and their romantic zoo wedding was totally reflective of that! So many dreamy details filled their day, like the elegant gold-embossed invitation suite from Paper + More that invites guests in a stately manner. Hallum and Triston’s big day accented with romance-filled décor from 110 events and saturated color palette brings out a softer side to the Oklahoma City Zoo wedding space – plus, what other venue can provide both delicious hors d’oeuvres and a special up-close interaction with exotic animals for your cocktail hour? After that and a stunning ceremony under a draped altar, guests enjoyed a wonderful meal catered by the Oklahoma City Zoo as well, including a full mac and cheese bar – the wedding meal of our dreams! However, bride Hallum says her favorite part was the lively reception to follow. “My favorite memory was dancing through our reception, she said. “It was absolutely wonderful to see both of our families and all of our friends having so much fun together!” We think these heartwarming moments are what a wedding is truly all about. Read on for a note from the bride about another sweet moment that became one of her favorite wedding day memories. Cheers to the Ewbanks!

From the bride: “My father gave a sweet toast, and then we had the father/daughter and mother/son dance. I chose the song ‘You Are My Sunshine’ for the dance because my dad sang it to me every night before bed when I was little, which made the moment so tender.”


Plans to tie the knot soon yourself? Check out some of our favorite Oklahoma wedding vendors here to get the planning started! Cheers!

Trends We Love: Custom Wedding Gowns

Thursday, April 22nd, 2021

Go behind the scenes at Avari Bridal! Custom wedding gowns are such a fun and unique way to feel and look special on your big day! Avari Bridal works hand in hand with you to create and style your dream gown, because there’s nothing better than feeling like an absolute princess on your wedding day!

“Custom wedding dresses are the only way brides can truly make a dress 100% their own. Avari Bridal takes a unique approach, making designing a custom dress accessible for the everyday bride.” – Tiffany, Avari Bridal

See our other favorite 2021 trends here!

This Black and White Country Club Wedding is So Classically Chic

Thursday, April 22nd, 2021

Matching your wedding design to pair well with your wedding’s venue is so important, and we think this black and white country club wedding is the best example of a nuptial scene that knocks it out of the park! Amber and Alex tied the knot in a classically chic soiree where a dreamy outdoor ceremony and luxe indoor reception made for the best night possible, all captured by Kristen Edwards Photography. This pair’s love story goes way back! The two went to middle school, high school and college together. Amber and Alex had always been great friends, but it was never romantic until Amber’s junior year and Alex’s senior year of college. Amber now admits she always had a crush growing up, but would never have admitted it!

Now, in their classic country club wedding, romantic white blooms in a lush, full altar installation by Tony Foss Flowers set the tone for a stately late summer affair, while towering centerpieces add a modern touch to reception dining. Black table linens, elegant gold chiavari chairs and glistening flatware are among the timeless décor provided by Mood Party Rentals, truly serving as the cherry on top of these tastefully styled wedding scenes. Amber looks absolutely stunning in her strapless ballgown, as well as custom veil to complement from Avari Bridal. It’s easy to see the love these two share for each other in their breathtaking wedding gallery down below. Read on for a note from the bride about one of her favorite wedding day memories and what made it so special. Cheers to Mr. and Mrs. Clark!

From the bride: “(My favorite memory was) our grand entrance as Mr. and Mrs. Clark in the reception room! I’m not sure if it was the love in the air or the cocktail hour, but the whole room welcomed us with a standing ovation that was loud enough to hear on the 18th green.”


Plans to tie the knot soon yourself? Check out some of our favorite Oklahoma wedding vendors here to get the planning started! Cheers!