Monday, July 30, 2012

UrDreamPlanner's Monday Inspiration: Act On It!

Monday Inspiration

Image by photosteve101

"Inspiration without Action is Useless!" 

When you are inspired to make a change, do something BIG, take a risk; whatever it may be, YOU must actually do it! Inspiration is a great thing to have when you put it to action. 

Don't sit on your inspiration, act on it!

Be Inspired!

Talk To Me:
What do you do with the inspiration you encounter? Do you act on it or dream about it? Inspiration is wonderful, but it's even better when you put it to action! Share how your inspiring moments turn into action in the comment zone below! 

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Wednesday, July 25, 2012

UrDreamPlanner's Wednesday Knowledge: Inspiration Board Book!

As you may or may not know, the Owner of Beautiful Beyond Dreams, LLC, Brittany Allen {ME}, has written a book! The topic is, Inspiration Boards! I have created a five step method, a how-to guide for using four Inspiration Board methods. The book provides you with great insight, step by step instructions, a lot of tips, many laughs and will allow you to walk away inspired to create, create, create!!!

Since, "Five Step Method to Creating A Successful Inspiration Board! {Weddings & Events}" will soon be published and readily available to the world, I wanted to share with you a little of what to expect; starting with, who the book is for.

Who Is It For?
This Inspiration Board book was written for the Wedding Planner, Event Planner, and Designer just starting out that doesn't know how to create an Inspiration Board. This book can be applied to the veteran planner or designer that has never used an Inspiration Board before. This book can help the Planner's who create Inspiration Boards already, but would like to have a good read on a topic that is very present in today's Wedding & Event Planning Industry! 

Not only is this book for the Wedding Professionals, but Brides can benefit from reading it as well. A Bride that is more hands-on and would like to gather her thoughts and ideas to portray her vision clearly to her Wedding Planner, Designer, and/or other vendors; this book will give her the skills to do so! 

Stay tuned for more Inspiration Board book insight, sneak peaks & book signing save the dates! You can like us on Facebook- and follow us on twitter @InspBoardBook! If you have any questions, feel free to email us at

Thank you for your support!!

Be Inspired!

Talk To Me:
Do you use Inspiration Boards? Have you wanted to learn how to create one? Do you know how, but still want to learn more? Share your Inspiration Board experiences below in the comment zone!!

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Monday, July 23, 2012

UrDreamPlanner's Monday Inspiration: Take A Risk!

Be Inspired!

Talk To Me:
What risks have you taken in life lately? Do like to take risks or prefer to play it safe? Have you taken a risk; what was the end result? Share your experience below in the comment zone. 

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Friday, July 20, 2012

UrDreamPlanner's Friday Fun: Attending Bridal Shows!!

Happy Friday!! Bridal Shows are created to be a fun and exciting learning environment for the soon to be husband and wife! Below, you will find several reason why Bridal Shows are fun and why I do believe every couple should attend at least one (and this reason may surprise you, but it's the truth!!)

Attending Bridal Show Are (should be) Fun!

#1. There is amazing food! (One of my highlights of attending in the past was the butlered or stationed hors d'oeuvres! Possibly this is because I love to eat, but they are good!!)

Tragic, but funny story...I attended a Bridal Show roughly two years ago with my first Bride. They had yummy food being butlered and different stations. Well, one tray came around and had some kind of goat cheese cracker surprise and I wanted to try it. So I put the whole thing in my mouth and almost died, threw up, the works. OMGoodness it was so nasty!! My face must of been really twisted because my Bride was like, "oh my goodness, I am not trying that!!!" LOL, Whooo, we laughed at that one for a while!! LOL

#2: You get to see Wedding Gowns! (At most fun Bridal Shows, you get to see wedding gowns actually worn on the models, which I really think is a smart way to highlight the dress. Take advantage of this and ask the model questions about the material on their skin, the heaviness of the dress and take a picture too!!)

#3: The music is great! (Get up and dance a little, bob your head, laugh and smile!!)
Remember, you make this experience what you want it to be. If you walk in like, "Debbie Downer" then you will be depressed and annoyed the entire time. However, if you walk in excited and ready to enjoy yourself, you will!!

 Owner{Me} of Beautiful Beyond Dreams, LLC at the In Bliss Wedding Launch!

#4: You have professionals at your finger tips!! (Actually talk to the professionals. Yes, most are expensive, but that is because we are excellent at what we do! At the same time, we want you to talk to us! This is your time to ask those important or not so important questions. And even though it can be annoying to walk past 4 photographers, still smile and ask at least one question! Just try it!) 

Trust me, we did not get all dressed up, spend hundreds or thousands of dollars decorating a table, printing out marketing materials, assembling goody bags...for you to walk by with a half smile, like we are the hungry wolf that haven't eaten in a month.

As a professional myself, that has been on both sides of the table. Talk to us! We really do want you too, not simply because we want you to book us (which, we do by the way), but because we actually do care about what you have to say. And we want to talk to you too, but most of time, we are stuck behind our little 6 ft table. And although we extend our hand to say hi, you have to extend yours too!

#5: It's free (most of the time) education!! (Professionals bring a ton of wedding information, displayed nicely at their booth and the Bridal Shows tend to provide a lot of information as well. You get heavy goody bags with lots of great vendors and awesome magazines, that ignite your inspirational side! Why not have this information handed to you, rather then search endlessly for hours!? Think about it.)

These five reasons make attending Bridal Shows so much fun!! When I went, I would go with a small crowd and we would work the room and have a great time doing it!! You should do the same, grab your ladies and go!! 

Another thing, don't drag your Groom out the house unless he is really intrigued. Seriously, it will be more beneficial to take your girls, get tons of information, jot down notes (if needed), laugh and take crazy pictures; than come home and share it all with him. Be honest about if you really want him to attend and be a good listener if he really doesn't want to. Compromise and keep it moving, there will be many many more "bridal related" activities to do together! ;-)

***Why Every Couple Should Attend At least One Bridal Show!***
To win a FREE honeymoon of course!!! (Don't worry, I know that's why majority of Brides sign up; I would do it too!) If you don't go for anything else, then go for the free honeymoon. Hey, you never know, you might just win!! 

No matter where you go, Bridal Shows, Bridal Appointments, etc..have fun!!! Make it what you want it to be...enjoy yourself! Laugh...going there, Laugh...while you're there, Laugh...when you leave. No matter what happens, find time to laugh! It will make the experience much more enjoyable! 

Enjoy Your Experience & Laugh!

Talk To Me:
Have you attended a Bridal Show before? Share your experience! What's your favorite thing about attending a Bridal Show?? Do you have a tragic, but funny story too!? Share that in the comment zone too! Share away and leave a smiley face too!! :-)

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Wednesday, July 18, 2012

UrDreamPlanner's Wednesday Knowledge: Wedding Dress Stats!

Happy #WeddingWednesday to you all!

Today is all about Wedding Dresses and how you, the Bride thinks and shops. The following statistics were found via {The Wedding Report}. As you read, think about your shopping process and if any of these describe how you thought/think while you were/are wedding dress shopping.

Wedding Dress Shopping Statistics
  • 96% of couples that marry in the US purchase a wedding dress
  • Of the 96%; couples purchase 1.1 wedding dresses each
  • Of the 96%; 90% purchase at least one (1) dress
  •  In 2011, the average amount spent on wedding dresses including alterations was $1,166
  • In 2011, couples spent $2.3 billion on wedding dresses
  • In 2011, couples spent $3.3 billion on attire & accessories (including the wedding dress)
  • In 2011, spending by couples combine with bridesmaid and groomsmen reached $6.2 billion
  • The US wedding dress market is very fragmented with many designers and brands
  • David’s Bridal dominates the US wedding dress market with 33-35%
  • The top 10 Designers/Brands own 56.7% of the US wedding dress market
  • Custom or handmade makes up 3% of the US wedding dress market
  • Classic – Traditional and Elegant – Luxurious make up more than 50% of the wedding dress style demand
  • A-line makes up 26.9% of the silhouette & shape demand
  • Lace and Satin dominate the fabric demand
  • Sweetheart and Strapless make up 68.8% of the neck-line demand
  • Floor length makes up 88.5% of  the length demand
  • Natural waste-line makes up 43.3% of the waste-line demand
  • Chapel and Short/Sweep make up 57.7% of  the train demand
  • Zipper and Corset make up 75.1% of the back-line demand
  • Beading, lace, and embroidery make up the majority of the details demand
  • Ivory and White make up 80.1% of the dress color demand
  • “How I felt when I saw it” and “the fit” make up the majority of the reasons couples purchased their dress

Wedding Dress shopping is often one of the highlights of the wedding planning process. There are many factors that play a part in the decision making, from designer to dress style & material. Do your research prior to making a dress appointment at your favorite shop so you do not become overwhelmed with the many choices available to you!

Happy Wedding Dress Shopping!

Talk To Me:
How was your wedding dress shopping experience? Would you say you agree or disagree with most of these stats? Did you know what style of dress you wanted or was it hard to narrow it down? Share any wedding dress shopping advice below in the comment zone for our readers!! 

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Monday, July 16, 2012

UrDreamPlanner's Monday Inspiration: Take A Nap!

How are you doing today? It's Monday and time for some much needed Monday Inspiration! Today, I want to inspire you to "Take A Nap!". Think back to your college days, if you were like me (you took naps), and you loved them! 

Nap- a short sleep used to rejuvenate your mind, body and working spirit. ~UrDreamPlanner
When you know you need to nap:
*You've been up before the sun
*You are so tired from working, your eyes are burning.  
(If this is so, maybe you need a good 8 hr sleep! lol)
*You can no longer think straight.
*Your kiddies are taking a nap.  
(Yes, moms I know this is the time you would usually work since the house is now quiet, but try to nap as well...)
*You are not being productive

Why naps are needed:
*They rejuvenate you!
*Allow you to think straight!
*Make you less cranky!
*Allows you to be productive!
*They make you smile! :-D

Now, naps for many business owners and people in general are a thing of "luxury" since most feel they have no time. If you are working two jobs or a mom, etc., finding time to nap may be slim to none of a chance. When you think about your schedule, if after reading this you think, there is no way I have time for a nap! Then, find something, that you can use as a getaway to help release all the stress, work energy, etc that consumes you throughout the week.

This post was inspired by my mid-day nap today. I don't take them often because I often have no time for a nap. However, today I made a sacrifice of " not getting work done" to take a nap and it was worth it. I woke up feeling eager to jump back into work (which now I am playing catch up) and produce a great product for my clients. Luckily, I was able to say, "Brittany go take a nap, you need it!" and just be able to do it even though I know I have a pile of work on my desk. 

For all those that can take a nap every so often, I highly recommend it! Take it when you have a chance. Since I know for the remainder of the week, a nap will not be listed on my to-do list, maybe I'll make Monday's "mid-day nap day!" lol, or not, but it does sound good!

Be Inspired to Nap!!

Talk To Me:
Do you have time for naps? If you did would you take a nap? If you don't have time for a nap, what do you do to rejuvenate yourself? Any great stories of how you were inspired to nap, share below in the comment zone with the other readers!!

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Friday, July 13, 2012

UrDreamPlanner's Friday Fun: Cape May Zoo!

This week, I took a day off from business and was able to experience the Cape May Zoo. This was my first time going to a zoo (despite when I was little, which I don't remember so in my mind it doesn't, so this was my first time going to the zoo. It was actually a surprise! And I must say, that if you live close to the shore or don't and want to have an amazing experience, go to the Cape May Zoo!!!

Perks about the Cape May Zoo:
#1. Their animals are amazing!!! I was so excited seeing peacocks, zebras, the giraffes, the bears and so many other beautiful animals...I truly loved every moment of it!
#2. You can take the whole family and there is something for everyone. They have a playground, campground and eating areas.
#3. You can feed the goats and they want you to feed them and pet them. {I did not do this..because I am not a goat person, but others loved}
#4. It Is FREE!!
#5. It's great for a date day. You can take your spouse or significant other and take a walk through the zoo and learn about the animals, as well as, learn something new about each other!
#6. Did I say it was FREE?? Yes, free parking & free entrance! {You cannot go wrong with free!}

 Me at the Zoo!

Don't just take my word for it, but go experience it for yourself! If you live in Philly/De it is so worth the drive up 55 & 47! If you already live near the shore (Cape May, Wildwood area, etc.) pay it a visit, as you are only 20+ minutes away!! Take the family and enjoy the Cape May Zoo this weekend. You will be so happy you did, because the animals are amazing.

Make it a FUN weekend! 

Talk To Me:
Have you been to the Cape May Zoo before? Have you been to a Zoo before? If so, how was your experience? If not, would you go? Share your zoo experiences and desires below in the comment zone!! :-)

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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

UrDreamPlanner's Wednesday Knowledge: Selecting Wedding Colors!

Let's talk colors combinations! One of my favorite things about planning a wedding is learning the colors a couple has chosen. Is it going to be "Fuschia, Brown & White" or "Candy Apple Green, Teal & Red", etc? Whichever color combo they share, I always say, "That's great!" My "that's great", comes from the heart. I truly believe that every color combo can work, especially if you add a great accent color to the mix. As a Wedding Planner, I enjoy the challenge of showing just how great and unique the couple's color combo is!

Bride wanted two colors the Mothers could I suggested, light & dark grey. 
This board is displaying on the color choices not an attire suggestion. 

When selecting your wedding colors...
  1. Select at least 3 and no more than 4.
  2. Include an accent color (An accent color is a color that is used to break up or highlight the combination of the others you have chosen. It makes a HUGE subtle difference!!)
  3. Find colors that represent you & your Fiance.
  4. Do research on the different shades of the color you desire. (There are many shades of every color..including white and black!)
  5. Use online inspiration to find color combos displayed in art, food, clothing, jewelry, etc. 
  6. Don't be afraid of color!
  7.  When you find your exact colors, find a tangible swatch of each. (This allows you to get the exact colors you want for your wedding. Every company does not use the same color grid. Swatches are essential, when it comes to color & design!)
Having a great color combo makes a wedding that more exciting. Color, when used correctly, can make a drastic statement at the wedding. 

 This Bride wanted an "accent" color to the Cherry Red & Sage Green. I suggested she use Eggplant to highlight the colors she had already chosen. This was for a Destination Wedding, so I added this boarder too!

Color Suggestion:
When working with dark bold colors...choose a light, softer accent color.
When working with light soft colors...choose a dark, bold accent color.
"Blending is great for applying makeup, not choosing wedding colors. You want to make sure all the colors you select are seen!"

The key to making a great color combo is selecting colors that make sense to you. It's almost like you should have that "ah-ha" moment. Don't pick colors for everyone else...pick colors for you! Be true to yourself.

Talk To Me:
What made you pick the colors you did? Did you love the colors you picked or did you want to change them constantly? Was finding the perfect colors easy or hard? Share any "color selecting" tips you may have with our readers. Share your experiences below in the comment zone! :-)

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Monday, July 9, 2012

UrDreamPlanner's Monday Inspiration: Never Give Up!

It's Monday, that start of the work week for many!! Today's inspiration is just for YOU! Today and from this day forward I want YOU to never give up on your dreams and passion for life! 

(Hit play to listen while you read.)

I have always had the dream since I was little to be a mommy. When I was in kindergarten I said for career day, "When I grow up, I want to be a mommy!" It's interesting because at age 24 I have no kids, but since I was 7 I have been around kids. I grew up with a daycare in my home. I was always attracted to daycare/nanny jobs. And as much as kids "annoy me" so to speak, I always enjoy their presesence. I say all that to say that, I look forward to marriage and kids. I don't want an army or band of kids, but to have a family has always been a dream of mine!

When I was in college, and even before that, I gained an interest in weddings & events because I was attracted to the decor & details. But when I learned the industry through my internship, it opened my eyes to so much more and became a passion of mine. I loved the actual planning aspect, I loved the coordination and mechanics of making an air tight timeline so the day can flow beautifully. I loved the connection I made with the couples. I loved {ME} in the Wedding & Event Planning industry. 

I came into my internship with the mindset that, I wanted to learn! I wanted to learn everything so that I can start my own business. I was given an opportunity of a lifetime. I am so grateful to have been given this passion of planning weddings & events and actually being able to live it out!

I chose this Rocky song...but it just inspires me to never give up. The story behind it shows perseverance because he overcame so much! Although things will come up in life, like they have in mine, that will completely knock you off your game. Like it did to me (from March to May, things were off in my life and my business felt it.) Even with that, my passion was restored through the Lord and I am on a mission like no other. Just because things happen in life and may knock you off your game, it doesn't mean it's over. YOU are never to old to fulfill your dreams and passions in life.

I don't care what happens in your life, YOU have to keep pushing. Keep running up the stairs of success until you reach your destiny. Never give up on your dreams and passions in life! This is your race that YOU are running. YOU pick the path and how slow or fast you want it to go. Do it according to your plan, not those around you.

God's timing is perfect timing and he will place things and people in your life that will make those dreams come to life right before your eyes. But YOU have to live out the dream. YOU have to work hard for the dream. It's your dream, no one wants your dream to come true as much as YOU do! So when it's time to live it out...grab on with both hands and enjoy the ride!!! Never Give Up...

Be Inspired!

Talk To Me:
What is your dream and/or passion in life? What excites you so much that you can't imagine life without you doing that? Are you living out your dreams and passions? Are you running or hiding from your dreams or passions? What will it take in YOU to make those dreams a reality? Share below with the readers your "journey" to success. How are you getting there? Share below in the comment zone! 

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Friday, July 6, 2012

UrDreamPlanner's Friday Fun: 4th of July Recipes!

All week our posts have been related to the 4th of July holiday! Today, we are going to finish the week off with some fun 4th of July family oriented recipes, that you can try this weekend!! Let's start with a festive drink!!

When creating fun food items, presentation plays a big part. Your food display, although in this case will already be colorful, should be displayed nicely! Use pretty platters and use levels to make your food display appealing to the eye!

Patriotic Drink

 This kid friendly drink will be sure to capture the essence of your 4th of July Party! Click here to learn how to make this drink for yourself, family & friends!!

Guests love having a fun drink to try! If planning a dinner party this weekend or in the near future, consider serving this. Have your drinks already made and ready to be served. Find a swanky glass, add a festive straw, place a strawberry or watermelon on the side of the glass and cheers to a good time!!

American Flag Marshmallow Pops

(Found via

Click here for "how-to" picture instructions and all the tools needed to create this fun treat. 

Although 4th of July is over...if you are getting married on this holiday next year, consider a "fun food station" for your guests to enjoy. Having the items set up nicely during cocktail hour would be a great way to give your guests something to do...that would be a teaser of the fun to be expected at the Wedding Reception! You can create 1 or 2 fun food stations to compliment the other h' orderves being served!

This is also great for a kids party. Edible markers come in all colors. Make this treat color coordinate and use it as a "Thank You Favor" for kids to take home when they leave the party. Place 3 or 4 marshmallow pops in each package with a thank you note!

Patriotic Hot Dog Station

(Found via

Click here to see how you can create this look too!

My favorite thing about this spread are the details. From the stationery to the flags, the bows and colored plates. This hands-on food station captures your eye and more importantly does not overwhelm you. When doing a buffet presentation such as the one above you want to be sure your details flow together! The details are what elevates an event. Have fun assembling together your masterpiece and get creative, but don't go overboard!

 Enjoy these fun 4th of July recipes. Try these, add your own twist and most importantly..have fun!!

Check out this weeks 4th of July post:

Talk To Me:
Did you incorporate any fun food items into this 4th of July holiday? What fun family traditions did you share? Any fun recipes that you tried and loved? Will you try any of the ones above?! Leave your comments below in the comment zone!!

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Wednesday, July 4, 2012

UrDreamPlanner's Wednesday Knowledge: Happy 4th of July!!!

Happy 4th of July! 

Today, we celebrate our independence in the United States of America. On July 4, 1776 we became independent from Great Britain and our democracy began. Today we use the flag and the colors of the flag, red, white, and blue to represent the meaning of this holiday. Many Americans celebrate this holiday with family picnics, barbecues and watching fireworks. It's the USA's "birthday"! 

The Pledge Of Allegiance
 “I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands. One nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”

The Star Spangled Banner 
 Oh, say can you see, by the dawn’s early light,
What so proudly we hailed at the twilight’s last gleaming?
Whose broad stripes and bright stars, through the perilous fight,
O’er the ramparts we watched, were so gallantly streaming?
And the rockets’ red glare, the bombs bursting in air,
Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there.
O say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

We've been celebrating Independence Day all week; check out UrDreamPlanner's Monday Inspiration: Independence!

As you celebrate with your families on today, remember the meaning behind the red, white, and blue flag that is showcased everywhere! Click here --> Independence Day and The Declaration of Independence, to learn more about the history behind Independence Day. 

Have a safe and happy Holiday!

Talk To Me:
How are you celebrating Independence Day? What family traditions do you share on this day? What does 4th of July mean to you? Share below in the comment zone! :-)

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Monday, July 2, 2012

UrDreamPlanner's Monday Inspiration: Independence!

This week is all about "independence"! 

When I woke up this morning and decided this week will be about Independence Day and that I wanted to create an Inspiration Board about it..this is what came to mind! I was inspired by the history and the meaning behind July 4th.

Independence to me means, "I have a choice"! I love the country I live in and I am proud to be an African American living in the U.S.A!!

Be Inspired! 

Talk To Me:
What inspires you about Independence Day? What comes to mind? Do you think of the flag, bbq's, fireworks, the war...what do you think about? How are you inspired to share with others what it means to you? Share your thoughts below in the comment zone! :-)

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