GSS Tuesday Trousseau :: Eco Friendly & Conflict Free Engagement Rings

image courtesy of Amy Karp

When it comes to choosing your symbol of eternity, the choices are endless. We recently heard about Brilliant Earth. They produce beautiful jewelry and guarantee a conflict free gem. Conflict free diamonds are guaranteed to originate from ethical and environmentally responsible sources. Conflict free diamonds are free from violence and other human rights abuses, and are produced with minimal environmental impact. They also use recycled metals for their jewelry. As part of their comprehensive commitment to environmental responsibility, Brilliant Earth uses recycled precious metals in all of their fine jewelry, guaranteeing their customers an eco-friendly jewelry product of the highest quality. They also have a high standard for packaging with purpose. All Brilliant Earth rings arrive in hand-crafted, natural Rimu wood ring boxes. Rimu wood is sourced from a sustainably harvested New Zealand forest that preserves biodiversity, soil, water, and air quality. These keepsake ring boxes showcase the Rimu’s beautiful wood grain, as well as your ring!

They also give back to the community…

Brilliant Earth is proud to dedicate 5% of our profits to communities impacted by the jewelry trade. Historically, the jewelry trade has incurred great social and environmental cost. We feel strongly that luxury goods should not promote such injustice, and that the communities that produce the products should benefit from them. Through our partnerships with established, on-the-ground efforts, we try to rectify past injustices of the jewelry trade and help communities develop the skills needed to manage their natural resources effectively.

Our overall objective is to invest in long-term community development in regions that can support a self-sustaining jewelry-based economy. To achieve this, we combine our understanding of best practices in the jewelry trade with research-based funding efforts. Through our ongoing initiatives, we’re helping shape a rewarding and self-sufficient future for families who depend on the jewelry trade.

When it comes to choosing your forever symbol of eternity…your bling, your diamond ring, your engagement ring, consider a conflict free, recycled ring. You can even create your own unique design that is beautiful and ethical inside and out. Visit Brilliant Earth for more information.

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GSS Tuesday Trousseau :: Antique Monogrammed Plates

We may be a bit on a monogramming kick….why not? Its personal 😉 A few post back we featured these monogrammed home accents now we plated  another personal touch to add to your newlywed home. A perfect wedding registry item! We stumbled…well not really stumbled but found these awesome antique plates perfectly personal to you.  Kelly Wilson Antiques has brought us an incredible item and what’s best? It ships directly to your door! You could even use one of these platters as a guest sign-in at your wedding. The possibilities are endless, but one thing that remains the same…its for decoration only.

Can’t get enough Tuesday Trousseau? Be sure to catch up with all of the past ones here >Wedding Gift Ideas<

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GSS Wedding Cake Trends 2012 :: Uniquely Inspired Cake Ideas :: Maggie Austin Cakes

We love cake and we especially love these inspired designs that incorporate unique ideas. A Tiffany Stained Glass inspired cake, ruffles, pearls, and there’s  more!  Maggie Austin Cakes are truly jaw dropping….just see for yourself on her site.

Following her career as a classical ballet dancer, Maggie was accepted into the L’art de la Pâtisserie program at the French Pastry School. Under the instruction and guidance of world-renowned chefs and pastry champions, including directors Sébastien Canonne and Jacquy Pfeiffer, Maggie trained using the very best techniques and ingredients. Graduating from the program with honors, Maggie immediately began an internship at Charlie Trotter’s, a Mobil Five Star, AAA Five Diamond, and 10-time James Beard Foundation award winner that is recognized as one of the finest restaurants in the world.  Through the direct mentorship of executive pastry chef Della Gossett, Maggie’s commitment to excellence was solidified.

Girls dream in Tiffany Blue. This Tiffany Stained Glass inspired cake is a dream come true for many.

How about some ruffles? Yes, please and super-size them. This design is so delicate and feminine.

Clean and modern? No problem…she’s got this. Ribbon and a little ruffles on the side.

Bright and lady-like….styles that fit all brides styles. Maggie is a great artist.

Be sure to visit her site to get inspired for your cake or order a masterpiece from this artist!

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GSS Things we LOVE :: Wedding Flower Petal Aisle Runner Design

image courtesy of Kristen Weaver Photography

Not all wedding aisles are created equally. Who says you can jazz up your wedding aisle runner with something fun, something unique, something that screams YOU? We found a few great ideas and wanted to share them with you. The first are creating a masterpieces with flower petals. Make your mark with pretty designs by grouping the petals in a design. You can lay them directly on the ground or a plain aisle runner you already have.

image sources unknown

images courtesy of (left) Martha Stewart Weddings top right The Knot and bottom right The Knot

Adding large hurricanes with floating candles and more flower petals really transforms the aisle above to something romantic and whimsical. It looks like something right out of a romance novel! The top right image is truly magical as well. That aisle is weighted near the guests with what looks like terra cotta and is much wider. If you have room to do this, it will certainly be a GRAND entrance by the Bride! Most florists will have stock left over and some grocery stores will have to discard flowers that they were unable to sell before their time was up. You can try to gather petals near the day of the wedding this way, or you florist can find the perfect ones for your wedding. Rose petals will brighten the aisle and add a fragrant touch. If your colors are more muted, maybe try an even more fragrant flower like lavender. These blooms will help calm your guests and add a wonderful aroma to the ceremony. Remember, its your wedding and have fun with it.

For more wedding design ideas, be sure to visit our wedding inspiration boards…. we have them in tons of colors and you are sure to find some great inspiration there!


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GSS Tuesday Trousseau :: Wedding Music Information

We are in for a music treat today. A Dallas DJ shares a few of his music tips with us…The wedding music can definitely make or break any event. We know this. We’ve seen this. With a great musician or dj you can avoid any raised eyebrows by your wedding guests. If you are wanting an atmosphere where the wedding guests feel like dancing or a more relaxed environment where the guests can talk with each other and still have tasteful wedding music in the background, then make sure you have a few of these wedding planning tips to use for your own wedding. A question to ask a prospective wedding dj, band or musician would be their experience and expertise. Some djs and wedding bands are fantastic artisans and keep the dance floor packed all night by interacting with wedding guests and having the music selection lively. Others are extremely knowledgeable with songs and other music and reading the crowd.

image courtesy of Amy Karp

Things to keep in mind when planning music with your DJ are genre of music, specific songs for announcements and events, and the style of dance music to be played. Everyone has different tastes in music and your wedding should reflect your own taste and style. However, there are a few rules of etiquette to keep in mind at your wedding that will ensure your guests have just as much fun as you.

For starters, think about what songs you want played for your grand entrance and first dances. This is an opportunity to be unique show everyone your own personality. There certainly is nothing wrong with choosing classics such as Nat King Cole, Bob Carlisle, Frank Sinatra, and similar artists for your first dance. If there is an emotional connection to these songs or have sentimental reasons than certainly make the choice that fits you. In recent years songs by Mercy Me, Rascall Flatts, and others have also become increasingly popular. As mentioned there is nothing wrong with choosing any of these artists or artists with similar music, however you only get married once, and this is a golden opportunity to let your personality shine. I hate to use the term “think outside the box”, but it fits this situation. Think about what songs you enjoy that are more contemporary that can also reflect a message of love or optimism such as songs by artists like Coldplay and Adele. You could really mix it up and choose some obscure songs you love that many people may not have heard of that others would appreciate by artists like Badly Drawn Boy or Stereophonics. It’s your wedding not your grandmother’s. Show your guests who YOU are by sharing your most loved music with them.

image courtesy of Amy Karp

When it comes to dinner music it usually benefits everyone to stick with the classics. Artists like Elton John, Van Morrison, Billie Holliday, etc. Though we emphasized being unique earlier and we certainly stand by that, at dinner people don’t want to hear AC/DC or Far East Movement blaring in their ear while eating their meal and trying to chat with those at their tables. If your looking to mix it up a bit during dinner time, then choose contemporary songs that are PG rated and you wouldn’t mind playing for your grandmother.

image courtesy of Amy Karp

Dance music is where it usually can make or break the mood of your wedding. If your wedding primarily consists of young guests and is smaller in size than you pretty much can play whatever you want without worry. However, if your wedding reception will be like most with a wide range of age groups you should be much more careful in how you choose your music. Playing “un-edited” versions of music is typically frowned upon music etiquette. While you may like an un-edited version of a specific song, most guests will not. Remember, keep it PG rated. Many DJs have a formula for the songs they play for dancing. A common and successful formula is to play older dance hits from the 60’s and 70’s first and then gradually moving up into the 90’s and by the end of the night playing modern dance music. The reason for this is that older guests and guests with children will typically be the first to leave a reception. Older guests become tired and want to go home, while guests with children need to leave to put their kids to bed and/or relieve the babysitter. As the night goes on you’ll notice the dance floor become younger and younger. Make sure you have notified your DJ of a must play list and more importantly a MUST NOT play list. The DJ won’t know what to play or not to play unless you tell them. Otherwise your likely to hear that song that reminds you so much of a painful experience or brings back memories of that relationship that never worked out.

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GSS Tuesday Trousseau :: We Love Newlywed House Numbers!

When you think about your new home together, isn’t it exciting to think how you are going to personalize your nest??? We think so! We went digging and found some very cute ways to personalize your digs.

Martha Stewart, the mother of home trends, has a great DIY doormat project. How cute is this?

Welcome guests — and reassure them that they’re ringing the right bell — with a mat displaying your house number.

You can easily embellish an inexpensive doormat with hardware-store supplies to create an accent for your entrance that is both functional and decorative.

Coir doormat (18-by-30-inch coir mat, which is made from the stiff fibers of coconut husks)
Masking tape in 3-inch and 3/4-inch widths
Address numbers
Card stock
Utility knife
T pins
12-ounce can
Enamel spray paint

Read more at Custom Doormat – Martha Stewart Crafts
Next, for you couples with a green thumb…this is super- C-U-T-E!
We found this great way to display those cozy house numbers at Evangeline’s. Painting terracotta pots and embellishing them with your new digits!
We simply love this display – its so inviting to your guests.
You know this wouldn’t be a GSS post if we left off an Etsy find….don’t worry, we found a gem over there.
This hand-painted sign is personal, welcoming and a great housewarming gift…couples can even ask for this to be added to their wedding registry. LOVE!

You can find this personalized rustic aged family name established sign in Funki Folk Arts Etsy Shop…so hop on over there and see all these fun finds for yourself! Happy Homing Newlyweds!!!

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GSS Wedding Trend :: We’re Seeing a Pattern Here :: Pattern Ideas for Weddings

We are visual people and incorporating a pattern into our day is something that can truly show your style to your guests. If you are crazy about polka dots, mad about stripes, or in love with a classic damask pattern, you should do it! We love finding ideas in trends and wedding inspiration and patterns are fun. Yesterday we brought you a gorgeous wedding inspiration board with a chevron pattern scattered throughout. You can bring the pattern in from a the decor to the invitations. There are absolutely no rules! The only rule we say you follow for your wedding is to make it uniquely perfect and YOU!

Classic stripes can be brought into your design with your wedding stationary.

Dare to do damask? An experienced cake artist can cover your desires for that one.

Is whimsical and fun polka dotting your style? Add it to your attire or your wedding dress.

Patterns are everywhere. Plaids, argyles, damasks, stripes, and dots! The first thing we thing when are planning is “what are my colors going to be?” – now imagine thinking…” I know I want polka dots”. Have fun and happy wedding planning!

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GSS DIY Tutorial :: How to Create a Perfect Paper Bouquet

We always like to reuse, repurpose, and create extraordinary things from ordinary materials for fantastic weddings! Today we are bringing you a fun how-to we saw at Elizabeth Anne Designs. We found a great post at RocknRoll Bride with a real wedding using these paper flowers shot by Katherine O’Brien Photography too! You can find many sellers on Etsy if you are not feeling crafty enough to make your own for your wedding. We wanted to see just how “easy” it was to create these paper masterpieces and found a great tutorial posted online. You can see how to create your own wedding paper flower bouquet from part1 and part2.

We sat down with a good book and started ripping out the pages. Our book of choice was a Physics book from 1936. The pages were worn and have antiquing already, so the look we wanted is achieved without having to do anything to the paper. We used a simple paper cutter with measurement lines on it. This helped to create the exact square pieces you need to fold each flower. We used simple Elmer’s school glue to glue them together. Each flower took about 5 minutes to complete once we got the hang of it. This is a great craft if you wanted to do it while watching your favorite television show or having a girls night with your bridesmaids at home. You can even get the fiance to help in the paper transformation process. The older paper is very soft and delicate, so be careful if you are using an older book you found at a thrift store, antique store, or from your Grandparent’s bookshelf. Once we started to fold the paper it wanted to separate. Stay tuned as we try to create a beautiful bouquet with these flowers. We will do our best to create a fun bouquet that you too can recreate.

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GSS Wedding Day Tips :: Make Your Day Flawless and Beautiful

We hear it a lot….”what can I do to make my day go smooth and be carefree the day of my wedding?” We have a few tips to keep you focused on the most important thing and all the rest will fall into place.

1) Plan ahead. Have a wedding day timeline in place. Having a timeline for your big day is extremely crucial to keeping your events on course.  However, please note that issues WILL OCCUR at your wedding, no matter how much detail you have put into your timeline or how much planning you have done.  Groom Sold Separately HIGHLY recommends hiring an event planner or wedding planner to help you take care of such issues should they arise (and they will) on your wedding day so that you can relax and enjoy your wedding day. Its also a great idea to scout your location for the times you are wanting during that time of year for your wedding. The sun changes throughout the year and what you may think would be a great location for wedding portraits might change based on the location of the sun that time of day.

2) Have an wedding day emergency kit. Fill it with goodies that you may forget on your wedding day. Here is what they list is inside :: toothpaste, toothbrush, deodorant, tissues, hairspray, static remover, Band-Aids, mints, clear nail polish, bobby pins, double-sided hem tape, stain remover, pain relievers, sewing kit, super glue, brush, dental floss and lotion. Make your own list of items you normally use when getting all gussied up and then check off to make sure those things are in the your own survival kit. Give this task to one of your bridesmaids.

3) Make it pictures perfect…a few things to keep in mind with professional wedding pictures are they need light (good light), have lots of details, keep your dressing area clutter free, bring an extra hanger for your wedding dress, visit your wedding locations with your wedding photographer to make sure the light is great for your wedding day portraits and have a makeup trial to be sure your hair and makeup is exactly like you want it for your wedding.

image courtesy of Gabriel Ryan Photographers

4) Have snacks and water on hand – being hungry and dehydrated is the worst idea for an 8 hour event!

These are just a few tips for you to make your wedding day a dream come true. Some brides trust in wedding planners to help them make the day flawless. Review other events these planners have done and make sure they are the right fit for you. Talk to other brides and grooms that have used their services and get feedback from them about their wedding. We hope you have a smooth wedding and remember, the wedding is about marrying your best friend.


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