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Wedding Party Gift Ideas

March 21st, 2016

Planning a wedding is not an easy task. Thankfully, most couples have wonderful friends and family that will do anything to make sure their Special Day runs smoothly. Thus, it’s only fitting that newlyweds share a token of their appreciation with the people they’ve chosen to stand beside them at the altar. Check out a few gift ideas that your loved ones will cherish!

Bridesmaids
Nothing says “thank you” like a day of pampering! Give your girls a chance to put their feet up by treating them to a day at the spa. You could also bring the fun to your bridesmaids by handing out gift baskets filled with beauty and bath products. Miniature baskets for your junior bridesmaids are a fun idea as well! On the other hand, items that will hold a lifetime of sentimental value, such as custom friendship bracelets or picture frames, are also great!

Groomsmen
Men love getting dressed up too, so give your groomsmen a hand! Enhance your guys’ wedding looks with engraved pocket watches or cuff links. Keepsakes like vintage  flasks, personalized drinking glasses and beer cozies can be thrown into their goodie bags as well.

Parents
Scrapbooks and photo albums are excellent gifts that can help you reflect on the memories you’ve shared with your parents. Within those memories, also highlight the lessons that have helped you become the person you are today. Personalized handkerchiefs are another wonderful medium for expressing your gratitude.

Partner
There are many ways to express the love you have for your partner with a gift. Simple things like exchanging love notes to creating a painting, if you’re an artist, are very thoughtful ideas. However, you can never go wrong with diamond jewelry – hint, hint! Watches, bracelets, earrings, or necklaces are all great options for a bride or groom to wear down the aisle. Moreover, digital cameras and a new set of luggage are useful gifts that can get couples ready for their honeymoon.

You certainly can’t go wrong with these gift ideas. As long as you put a little thought and cleverness into your selections, your loved ones will appreciate the effort and gratitude!

See you soon,
Paula & Martin Ramirez

Martin and Paula Ramirez are the proprietors of Historic Mankin Mansion Wedding Resort. They enjoy opening their hearts & home to host countless happy couples on their most special day. They have lovingly created a private wedding estate like no other and are honored to share their dream with so many beautiful couples!

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Food & Beverage Tips and Tricks

March 14th, 2016

Wedding receptions are a time for celebrating and bonding over delicious food and drinks. Thus, couples should go the extra mile to get their dining options just right. From buffets to open bars, there are many ways to serve your guests. However it’s important to be kind to your budget and go with what best suits your unique wedding needs. Let’s run through a few tips and tricks that will help you craft a memorable catering experience for your guests!

The size of your guest list should always dictate the style of dinner you will be having at your reception. For instance, buffets are great for large parties, but can be wasteful if you don’t intend on having that many mouths to feed. However, the casualness of buffet style dinners is excellent for couples that aim to have a more relaxed atmosphere.

Another great option for the more casual couple is to have a cocktail reception. Unlike a traditional dinner setting, guests at cocktail receptions munch on heavy hors d’oeuvers throughout the night. This is cost-effective considering that you don’t have to pay for full meals and you can save money on tables and chairs. Just remember to leave a note in your wedding invitations letting your guests know that they won’t be receiving a full meal.

If you’re interested in more intimate dining options, plated and family style dinners are excellent choices. For plated dinners, caterers bring out plates of food to serve guests. On the other hand, family style dinners feature large dishes of food placed at each table for guests to serve themselves.

After you’ve squared away your dining options, it’s time to think about how you’ll be serving up the beverages. The most popular choice for couples is to have an open bar – a catering option that includes paying a flat fee for an unlimited round of drinks for guests. Having an open bar can be expensive, but there a several ways to put a limit on the menu that will better serve your budget. For instance, you could choose to only offer wine, beer and a signature cocktail. Having set hours for the open bar also helps.

For couples planning smaller receptions, you can often find packages that will allow you to pay per drink in lieu of a flat fee. Whichever beverage option you choose, stay away from cash bars! Your guests will not appreciate having to shell out money at your wedding.

As you can see, there are dining options that can suit each couple’s unique wedding experience! Keep these tips and budget tricks in mind while hunting for a caterer and you’re bound to have a delightful reception that everyone will love!

See you soon,
Paula & Martin Ramirez

Martin and Paula Ramirez are the proprietors of Historic Mankin Mansion Wedding Resort. They enjoy opening their hearts & home to host countless happy couples on their most special day. They have lovingly created a private wedding estate like no other and are honored to share their dream with so many beautiful couples!

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Flower Girl Fashionistas

March 7th, 2016

We always look forward to seeing flower girls strut their stuff down the aisle! The little ones never cease to steal our hearts with their gorgeous style and beautiful bouncing curls. Get ready for an overload of cuteness as we revisit our favorite swoon-worthy flower girl moments!

These princesses look heavenly in their all-white ensembles! Every detail, from the pearl bracelets to the flower baskets, is spot on!

Now, that’s what we call striking a pose! These cuties look adorable in their lace dresses and golden flats.

Every wedding needs something blue! The blue sashes and flower baskets are the perfect accents for these flower girls’ stunning dresses.

How cute are these girls’ floral crowns?! The woven baskets are just the right complement to their rustic hair accessories.

We can’t wait to see which flower girl fashion trends will be making waves during the upcoming spring season. Let us know how you plan to style your mini me!

See you soon,
Paula & Martin Ramirez

Martin and Paula Ramirez are the proprietors of Historic Mankin Mansion Wedding Resort. They enjoy opening their hearts & home to host countless happy couples on their most special day. They have lovingly created a private wedding estate like no other and are honored to share their dream with so many beautiful couples!

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Social Media Etiquette for Guests

February 22nd, 2016

Last week, we provided couples headed down the aisle with a valuable lesson on social media etiquette. This week, we’re schooling guests on how they should be handling social media at a wedding. Everyone will be excited to share photos on Instagram and post stories on Snapchat, however guests should exercise their best judgement before pulling out their devices. Continue on for a quick review of the dos and don’ts of social media etiquette for wedding guests!

Stay in your seat
The worst thing that you can do at a wedding is steal the newlyweds’ spotlight. Standing up to snap a picture for the “gram” will certainly take away from the bride and groom’s moment. Don’t get bent out of shape if you don’t have the best seat in the house. The couple’s professional photographer will capture the best angles and moments from the ceremony that everyone can enjoy.

Respect the couple’s wishes 
Stay in the good graces of the bride and groom by following their rules regarding social media sharing and cell phone usage. Some couples don’t mind if guests share their Special Day on social media, while others may want cellphones powered down completely. Whatever the case may be, it’s best to respect their wishes!

Be mindful of the professional photographer
Before you lift your camera to snap a picture, make sure that you’re not invading the wedding photographer’s shots. The couple won’t want a slew of images with your phone sticking out. Keep an eye on where the photographer is in the room and move about accordingly whenever you decide to capture special moments from the wedding.

Avoid oversharing
Use caution when hitting the share button. Avoid posting pictures of the bride’s gown before she walks down the aisle or flashing her new bling all over social media. Asking for permission before posting pictures of the bride and groom never hurts.

Guests

Photo: M&J Photography

That wraps up our complete guide to social media etiquette for couples and guests! Whether you’re saying “I do” or sitting in the audience, remember to use your social media powers for good. Always maintain a healthy balance between sharing special moments on social media and living in the moment!

See you soon,

Paula & Martin Ramirez

Martin and Paula Ramirez are the proprietors of Historic Mankin Mansion Wedding Resort. They enjoy opening their hearts & home to host countless happy couples on their most special day. They have lovingly created a private wedding estate like no other and are honored to share their dream with so many beautiful couples!

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Social Media Etiquette for Couples

February 15th, 2016

From Instagram to Snapchat and Twitter, there are many ways to capture and share the most exciting moments in your life on social media. Tying the knot will certainly rank high on the list of your top ten moments! Everyone will be excited to share your Big Day with their followers; however, every couple should consider how big or small a role social media will play in their wedding.

Implementing social media etiquette gives couples the opportunity to establish the type of wedding experience they want to have and who will get a peek at their most special moments. Fortunately, there are pros to having a phone-free zone at your wedding, as well as letting your guests stay connected to social media.

For instance, asking your guests to power down their devices will allow everyone to live in the moment. Accidental camera flashes and noisy shutters can be distracting, especially for the wedding photographer. While photographers can capture fun shots of your guests snapping moments of their own, unsightly cell phones do have the potential to obstruct your professional images.

On the other hand, letting your guests engage with social media has its perks. Wedding hashtags allow your guests to compile and share photos on platforms such as Instagram and Twitter. Wedding apps, like WedPics and Wedding Party, are excellent alternatives to using public hashtags. Apps such as these are private and allow couples to choose which photos they want to share. Even better, you can order prints directly from the app!

Lastly, a couple’s rules regarding social media etiquette don’t have to be an all-or-nothing deal. Perhaps, you can allow phone use during the reception but not the ceremony. Besides, a party isn’t complete without a few rounds of selfies!

Stay tuned as we explore the dos and don’ts of social media etiquette for wedding guests next week!

See you soon,
Paula & Martin Ramirez

Martin and Paula Ramirez are the proprietors of Historic Mankin Mansion Wedding Resort. They enjoy opening their hearts & home to host countless happy couples on their most special day. They have lovingly created a private wedding estate like no other and are honored to share their dream with so many beautiful couples!

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How to Conquer the Morning Before the Wedding

February 1st, 2016

Pre-wedding jitters can send the most level-headed bride on an emotional whirlwind. A serious case of the butterflies can make getting to the altar feel more like running a marathon. However, with a little preparation you’ll be able to stay on schedule and have a  peaceful morning before your wedding. Follow these simple steps to help make the morning of your Special Day enjoyable and stress-free!

Get your beauty rest 
Start your morning off right by taking it easy the night before your wedding. Implement a two drink maximum and err on the side of caution when it comes to trying new foods. Save yourself from having to deal with a nagging hangover or food poisoning. Treat yourself to a bubble bath at the end of the night and then hit the sack early. You have a big day ahead of you!

Create an action plan 
You won’t have a successful morning if you don’t plan for it! Set a schedule, get it on paper and make sure everyone has it on hand. Whether it be brunch or hair and makeup, clearly outline what needs to get done and when.

Practice meditation or yoga 
Rise early for a 30-minute yoga session. This will help you clear your mind and focus on the present moment. Your bridesmaids will probably feel antsy as well so invite them to join in. If you can’t imagine squeezing a yoga session into your jam packed schedule, try a quick round of meditation. Make an effort to sit quietly and simply breathe for 10 minutes. Your mind and body will thank you!

It isn’t everyday that you get to say “I do” to Mr. or Mrs. Right, so revel in the special moments leading up to your wedding. Remember, amidst all of the chaos your dream guy will be waiting at the end of the aisle!

See you soon,
Paula & Martin Ramirez

Martin and Paula Ramirez are the proprietors of Historic Mankin Mansion Wedding Resort. They enjoy opening their hearts & home to host countless happy couples on their most special day. They have lovingly created a private wedding estate like no other and are honored to share their dream with so many beautiful couples!

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Creating Your Wedding Dream Team

January 4th, 2016

Nabbing a superb dream team of wedding vendors is the ultimate way to get your big day off the ground without a hitch. For the newly engaged couples embarking on the path to matrimony for the first time, deciding who should be in your backcourt can be a bit challenging. Planning a wedding requires several moving parts and you’ll need help keeping the wheels turning! Take note of these wedding vendors that every couple needs to make their special day a monumental celebration!

Wedding Coordinator
The coordinator will help design, plan and manage your wedding from start to finish. Booked as part of a venue package or through a separate company, this person will be a much needed stress reliever throughout your journey to the aisle. Their services can include budget preparation, venue scouting and rounding out an awesome team of vendors.

Team

Photo credit: Amy Robinson

Photographer
You’ll need a professional snapping gorgeous pictures during your wedding! Take it a step further by seeking out a vendor that will provide video services with their photography package. The more moments  that can be captured from your wedding day, the better!

Team

Photo credit: 88 Love Stories

Caterer
Great food is an excellent facilitator of social bonding! The caterer can help craft a custom menu that will have your guests sharing memorable moments over delicious food and drinks. During your initial consultations with potential caterers, ask about add-ons like ice sculptures, chocolate fondue fountains and other specialty decor.

Team

Photo credit: C. Tyler Corvin

Venue
There are many options for wedding and reception venues from museums and churches to gorgeous estates. Your wedding coordinator will be well-versed on the who’s who of wedding venues in town so lean on their expertise!

With these vendors, you’re on your way to assembling a wonderful group of wedding experts. However, the buck doesn’t stop here – don’t forget the DJ or band, florist and baker! Each member of your crew will be excited to bring your dream ceremony to life so get out there and start crossing off your vendor checklist!

See you soon,
Paula & Martin Ramirez

Martin and Paula Ramirez are the proprietors of Historic Mankin Mansion Wedding Resort. They enjoy opening their hearts & home to host countless happy couples on their most special day. They have lovingly created a private wedding estate like no other and are honored to share their dream with so many beautiful couples!

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How to Find Wedding Inspiration

December 14th, 2015

Most brides have an idea of what their perfect wedding will look like long before their planner arrives. However, during the initial stages of trying to bring your ultimate wedding to life, you may find your mind scatterbrained or even drawing a complete blank. Trust us when we say there is no shortage of wedding inspiration – you just have to find it! We’ve compiled excellent resources for wedding loveliness that will help get your imagination running wild!

Architecture
Head downtown and take in all of the skyscrapers or raid your local bookstore for architectural magazines. Make a note of any shapes or designs that pique your interest. This can serve as great inspiration for designing structures such as your altar.

Inspiration

Photo credit: Norman Photography

Home Improvement Stores
Browse through your local home improvement store’s paint section for color inspiration. Store associates will be happy to help you look through color swatches in order to find your ideal color palette.

Botanical Gardens
There’s no better place to find floral inspiration than by taking a trip to your local botanical garden. Touring a botanical garden is a great way to receive a grade-A education on all things floral! Compile a list of any eye-catching florals that you find and your florist can help guide you the rest of the way.

Family Photo Albums
Go back in time for your fashion inspiration by looking through family photo albums. You’re sure to find an eclectic 80’s prom getup or a fringed suede jacket from the 70’s. Let all of these vintage looks guide your modern wedding designs.

As you can see, wedding inspiration can be tucked away in a photo album or towering over as you walk through the city. By learning to see everyday things in a totally new light, you’ll find endless inspiration for your wedding!

See you soon,
Paula & Martin Ramirez

Martin and Paula Ramirez are the proprietors of Historic Mankin Mansion Wedding Resort. They enjoy opening their hearts & home to host countless happy couples on their most special day. They have lovingly created a private wedding estate like no other and are honored to share their dream with so many beautiful couples!

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Wedding Goodie Bag Ideas

November 30th, 2015

We all can remember the excitement of receiving those fun goodie bags upon leaving childhood parties. Well, it’s safe to say that goodie bags will forever be a highlight of any major event, no matter how old we get. Wedding goodie bags are a sophisticated upgrade to the childhood classic. Swap the kazoos for a fancy bottle of wine or a mix of your favorite love songs – the options and themes are endless and can easily be customized!

Your Favorite Things
Have your own Oprah moment by gifting your guests with everything that you love. Some ideas include giving everyone a gift card to your favorite hometown restaurant or a handcrafted recipe book filled with your favorite dishes. These goodie bags are gifts that keep on giving because you won’t have to worry about getting anything less than your own favorite goodies when holidays and birthdays roll around!

Photo credit: dmfoto

Photo credit: dmfoto

Destination Survival Kit 
Welcome your guests to your destination wedding location with a tourist survival kit. Fill a fabulous tote with tools that will help everyone navigate the city or country. Include items such as maps, a compass, or a language dictionary. Keep everyone on track by equipping them with a wedding program and an itinerary of the week’s festivities.

Sports Rivalry 
There’s nothing better than a good ole’ sports rivalry. Create goodie bags that reflect the sports showdown in your home. Fill two opposing sets of goodie bags with water bottles, flags, blankets and other sports paraphernalia that are decorated with the logo and colors of the bride and grooms favorite sports team. Allow your guests to choose which team they’ll be repping throughout the night and let the friendly competition begin!

When it comes to creating your wedding gift bags, it’s time to get creative! Go big or keep it intimate, as long as you’re having fun. Give your guests a bag of goodies they’ll want to hold onto forever (except for the yummy ones)!

See you soon,
Paula & Martin Ramirez

Martin and Paula Ramirez are the proprietors of Historic Mankin Mansion Wedding Resort. They enjoy opening their hearts & home to host countless happy couples on their most special day. They have lovingly created a private wedding estate like no other and are honored to share their dream with so many beautiful couples!

 

 

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Mark Your Calendars… It’s Time for the Richmond Wedding Expo!

July 13th, 2015

1 expo

It’s that time of year again! The Richmond Wedding Expo, organized by the lovely Richmond Wedding Magazine, is this upcoming Sunday, July 19, at the Altria Theater and we are delighted that Historic Mankin Mansion will be a part of the day once again!

Doors open at 11:30 am and we’re looking forward to meeting this year’s couples and learning more about their wedding plans! You won’t want to miss out on the fun this year, so be sure to register for the exciting door prizes that are up for grabs. Click HERE for ticket information and to register.

We hope to see you there! Be sure to stop by, say hi, and find out all that Historic Mankin Mansion has to offer for your wedding!

See you soon,
~Paula & Martin Ramirez

Martin and Paula Ramirez are the proprietors of Historic Mankin Mansion Wedding Resort. They enjoy opening their hearts & home to host countless happy couples on their most special day. They have lovingly created a private wedding estate like no other and are honored to share their dream with so many beautiful couples!

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