Pearls of Wisdom

Here Comes the Bride (and don't forget the groom) Here Comes the Bride (and don't forget the groom)

by Kristal Wick, Author, Designer, Instructor and Swarovski crystal Ambassador,
Exclusively for Fire Mountain Gems and Beads®

I love weddings, don't you? I love the gowns, the cake, the happy festive feeling--and don't forget the dancing! My large German Midwestern family had many weddings, each one including Uncle Jim's ever-present accordion, playing seemingly endless polkas (uh 1, and uh 2 and uh 3...). These are joyous fond memories I will cherish forever. My fave part is the jewelry of course, and I've had loads of fun making wedding jewelry for all types of brides and their bridal parties.

From contemporary to vintage, each creation I've made was a delight to design, even though pleasing a bride is not always a piece of cake (forgive the pun). Have a wedding coming up soon? To help, I'm happy to share this new design with you and would also like to highlight some great wedding jewelry ideas in the Gallery of Designs; a few of my favorites include: So let's dish weddings and chat about wedding jewelry ideas in case your BFF wants you to be her official jewelry designer!

I always start with the colors. Sounds simple enough but the bride's image of burgundy may not match up with yours and the two could end up totally clashing. When possible, get an actual fabric swatch of the dress and bridesmaid dresses (if you'll be making their jewelry as well). If you can't get actual swatches, have the bride print out a picture of the dresses and make sure they are true to the actual colors, then mail the picture to you. Often I've had a bride email me an image or catalog page of the dress and when I print it out on my printer, the colors are not even close to the actual dress colors. That's the "beauty" of computer monitors and printers. Believe it or not, they can be very different and this is not a good time to find that out!

Just the Facts Ma'am

Design Idea C64F Necklace Discuss what jewelry pieces and sizes the bride wants. Post or dangle earrings? Do any of the bridesmaids need clip-on earrings? All wrists are not created equal so if doing bracelets, double check wrist sizes BEFORE you make the bracelet! Does the bride want matching sets for her and her bridesmaids or does she want a more elaborate set such as triple-strand necklace for her and single-strand for the bridesmaids. Does the bride want a tiara, or a beaded bouquet? There are so many fun hair accessories and tiaras available now for embellishing; be sure to suggest one as, now is the time to be a princess for the day!

What about the Guys?

They seem to be left out when it comes to wedding jewelry so I came up with this keychain design for the groom, symbolizing the occasion. A keychain is versatile and can be turned into a rear-view mirror dangle if the groom doesn't want to use it as a keychain. You can also make the groomsmen a keychain styling theirs as a variation of the groom's so they aren't left out. You can also make the guys cuff links as shown in our Gallery of Designs by Laura BlackFeather: Design Idea C64G Keychain
Oh My Mama

Don't forget the mother of the bride and/or groom. It's nice to offer something special for them to wear that coordinates with their attire.

A lovely gift for the wedding guests could be a champagne glass charm on each glass stem for the toast. You can easily make these with memory wire and crystals, pearls and beads to match the color theme. Make black, white and crystal charms for a really elegant and contemporary look. Use antique rose and gold for a vintage romantic feel. The best part is your guests get to take it home!

If you're shipping the wedding jewelry and won't be attending the wedding in person, always include extra links or extender chains just in case. Sometimes the wedding party doesn't have the opportunity to try on the attire or jewelry until they arrive a day or two before the wedding and by then it's too late to remake anything (not to mention it gives the bride a heart attack if her maid of honor has been eating too many cupcakes and the necklace turns out to be a choker length). Try to plan ahead for these surprises!

Above all keep it fun! Weddings are celebrations to be thoroughly enjoyed, not only on that special day but forever more, which is why custom wedding jewelry is not only a great token but also a reminder of the happy day as the pieces are taken out and worn for years to come.

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