Tips & Trends: Include your furry best friends in your wedding celebration and Host a pre-wedding cocktail party

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Tip: Include your furry best friends in your wedding celebration. Make your wedding extra special by including your favorite pet, literally or figuratively. “We’ve put dogs on wedding invitations and created envelope liners with custom illustrations of cats,” says Laura Lubanski of Gus & Ruby Letterpress in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. “We’ve even printed a pet’s face on hang tags for wedding invitations.” If your furry friend is actually part of the ceremony, “make sure you have a person who’s going to take care of them before and after the ceremony,” says Audrey Zahares of Azalea Events in Kennebunkport, Maine.

Trend: Host a pre-wedding cocktail party. Hosting a cocktail party prior to your wedding welcomes guests and makes them comfortable. “It allows guests to meet before the big day,” says Fausto Pifferrer, co-founder of Blue Elephant and Catering in Saco, Maine. Your festivities can be intimate or larger, including a custom cocktail or unique hors d’oeuvres. “We often have intimate dinners for the wedding party, then, afterwards, out-of-town guests come for cocktails and snacks,” says Rick Taranto, owner of Old Vines Wine Bar and Details Event Staging in Kennebunkport. “It’s a lot more enjoyable for couples and guests.” Pifferrer recommends not serving alcohol right before the wedding itself. “It’s an extra expense and you want people to be present,” he says. A hydration station with flavored and sparkling waters and soft drinks can be a fun alternative.

Written by Debbie Kane

Photography by Emily Wren Photography