Ask Tina and her team of local experts - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather

Ask Tina and her team of local experts

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Tina Bishop, owner of Elegant Touches since 1996, specializes in wedding and event designing.  Tina prides herself on not only being a wedding and event planner but a designer.  Born and raised in the Inland Northwest, Tina knows and works with some of the areas very best.

Ask your question by filling out the form at the bottom of this page, and an expert will get back to you as soon as possible with the answer.  We ask that you include your phone number in case Tina needs more informtion to effectively answer your question.

Starting to plan my wedding.. just got engaged 5/29/07!! Luckily my future mother inlaw has a beautiful yard on a 10 acre farm. Thinking this is the best place to have the ceremony and reception. Where can I find a tent to rent? Knowing the northwest weather can change at a moments notice I want to be prepared.

Thanks Tina!
Laura, from Spokane

Chaus at Lake City Rentals has a large selection of tents and they are kept in nice condition. Let me know if you have any further questions. Best Wishes and congratulations on your engagement.

(Editor's Note:
Lake City Rental
10416 N. Government Way
Hayden, ID

The soon to be bride and grom have just recently purchased a house and have been living together for a couple of years prior to this. My question is this - They need new appliances for this house as opposed to other things, like linens, china, etc. Is there a polite way to ask for money instead of bridal registry so that the money can be used toward the purchase of the appliances? Thanks for your help and thoughts.

Kerry, from Spokane

Under no circumstances is it okay to ask for money from your guests. I usually tell the wedding party and the families to spread the news that the newlyweds-to-be just purchased a home and that they have a wish list. People are going to ask where they are registered and what they let them know and suggest that a few families go in on some of the bigger items. The bride and groom can register at Lowes and Home Depot for most of their appliances. You can also, say that gift cards to either of these stores would be greatly appreciated.

Good luck!

Dear Tina:
My fiance and I have decided that we want to get married on an exclusive island resort (probably Fiji).  Where do I even begin to start trying to plan this?

Hi Tammy!  My name is Gina Hoyt from Travel Traditions.  Congratulations on your upcoming wedding! 

The islands of the South Pacific offer an incredible destination for an unforgettable wedding ceremony.  There are several islands in Fiji (330 in all) and they all offer something different. 

My first suggestion is to talk with a travel consultant familiar with the islands.  Share with them what you have in mind...What you are looking for and how you envision your wedding.  Be frank.  Depending on what you have in mind, pricing will vary greatly.  Please keep in mind... air alone can run anywhere from $1200 - $1500 per person from Spokane, Portland or Seattle.  After preliminary talks with your travel consultant, she should be able to give you some beginning costs.  Also, keep in mind, you will loose a day on the way and pick it back up on your return.  So, if you are planning on being gone only 7 will only get to enjoy 5 days in Fiji.  I would suggest a longer time frame.   

After discussion with your fiance, if you decide a Fijian wedding is within your budget and what you are really looking for, let you travel consultant know.  She will begin the process of reservations.   

If after much discussion your decide that Fiji is not the place, your travel consultant will know what you are looking for and may be able to make a suggestion for another exotic destiation that will work within your parameters. 

Lastly, familiarize yourself with the requirments for weddings in the destination of your choice.  I have listed the Fijian requirements below. 

If you have any questions or if we can begin the preliminary planning process, please call toll free 888-348-7234 or direct at 509-586-0271.  I look forward to talking with you soon. 

Warmest Regards,

Gina Hoyt, ACC

Dear Tina:
My sister, Hailey is getting married this September. I am helping her plan this event and have made up a templete for the programs. She is having two of her friends hand out programs and would like to include their names in the program. What is the best title to give these girls as program-hander-outer is not appropriate :>)

Emily from Twisp

Your right program-hander-outer is a funny name for these two wonderful friends. There really isn't a proper name for their position, but here are a few suggestions ... use their positions followed by Attendant.

Program Attendant - Karen McDonald and Susie Howard
Guest Book Attendant - Samantha Rogers
Cake Attendant - Regina Simpson

Best wishes on helping your sister with her wedding plans.

Dear Tina:
Where can I find very affordable dress and tux rentals for the wedding party?

Kristen from Spokane

When you say affordable what does that mean? Affordable to one client may be quite different for another. Remember that affordable doesn't always mean less expensive. Quality is the key. Most of my brides will go and check out all the bridal boutiques in our area. They look for salespeople who are knowledgeable, friendly, and helpful. They look for the dress that makes them feel beautiful and special.

I have noticed in my years of planning that my client will know her dress when she first puts it on. She will normally walk into the room, turn to the mirror, and the only word that comes to my mind is she WOWS! herself. She will usually cry and if you look around the room any woman watching her will have tears in their eyes, too. You really can't put a price on that.

BUT you don't have to blow the budget either finding that WOW dress that will make you feel like a million. Here are a few reminders:

  • Check your budget - and before you go looking know exactly how much are you willing to spend on your dress.
  • Don't try on any dresses that are out of your price range for any reason. If your salesperson is making you feel uncomfortable by pushing dresses that are out of your price range on you, then she isn't someone you want to help you. Get the manager or owner; they will be more than happy to help you out.

I suggest that you go see Judy from Bridal Collections or one of her wonderful assistants. No matter what my clients' budgets are; they are able to help each one find the dress that makes her feel like a princess. Hope this helped! Happy dress hunting!

Dear Tina:
How do I find out how to get married in Manito park? We want an outdoor wedding and are having a hard time finding somewhere.

Erin from Spokane

If you are looking to find out information on having an event at a local park call the parks and recreational department for that area.

Manito Park and Gardens Greenhouse, Japanese Gardens
4 West 21st Avenue
Spokane WA 99203

Hope this helps! And congratulations on your upcoming wedding!

Dear Tina:

How do we go about letting our guests know where we are registered?

Sandra from Spokane

Dear Sandra:
Proper etiquette says don't announce it yourself or include the information with your wedding invitation . . . that implies that a gift is expected.  Instead, ask your bridesmaids, close friends, and relatives to spread the word.  If someone asks, it's okay to mention where you're registered.  With everyone using the web these days, it's a great idea to have a web site that gives your guests information on your upcoming wedding such as: driving directions, hotel accommodations, and even gift registry.

As a matter of fact, that is exactly what we do at RSVP Link. Contact us and we can help you with that. 

Dear Tina:
We're having a heck of a time developing a travel budget?  How do we go about doing this?

Michelle from Colfax

Dear Michelle:
Talk to your fianc√© and find out exactly what you can afford to spend on your honeymoon and then stick to it!  Make a list of what you'll have to pay for such as: plane tickets, hotel accommodations, meals, car rental, cocktails, souvenirs, and don't forget tips.  Do your homework and RESEARCH all costs before you go, from the price of a taxi between the airports and hotels to the cost of extra activities such as sailboat rentals, helicopter rides, swimming with the dolphins, admission fees to clubs or museums.  If you're honeymooning at an all-inclusive resort or cruise ship, remember that spa treatments, tee times, and motorized water sports may be considered extra.  In many cases, I suggest to save you time and money work with a travel agent.  Contact Gina from Travel Traditions she has worked with many of my brides and they all said that she is fantastic!  Happy Honeymooning!

Dear Tina:
Everyone is telling me not to forget my wedding day emergency kit.  Where do I get one?  Can I make it myself?

Stephanie from Spokane

Great question Stephanie!  You can purchase a wedding day emergency kit from your local wedding planner, wedding shop, or any online store that works with weddings. If you would like to make your own here are some of the items I suggest you put in your kit:

  •  Pain reliever
  •  Antihistamines
  •  Threaded needles (with your wedding colors)
  •  Safety pins
  •  Bobbie pins
  •  Chalk
  •  White masking tape
  •  Tampons
  •  Tissues
  •  Makeup (only what you are wearing on that day)
  •  Comb and brush
  •  Cell phone
  •  Scissors
  •  Nail file
  •  Hair dryer
  •  Clear nail polish
  •  Extra hosiery
  •  Cotton swabs
  •  Antacid
  •  Hand lotion
  •  Breath freshener
  •  Perfume
  •  Snacks
  •  Water
  •  Baby powder
  •  Petroleum jelly 
  •  Vendor's cell phone numbers!!
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