Go Your Own Way
Tips for Distinctive Details
Make Your Own Invitations
So you've thumbed through countless catalogs but still can't find the perfect invitations for your wedding? Perhaps it's time to break out the vellum and make them yourself. Experiment with unusual paper types, like the delicately creased Japanese Kyoseishi variety or silvery Aka Rakusu lace paper (both sold at Kate's Paperie). Consider integrating photos-black-and-white ones come out clearest-or adding original touches like finishing the envelopes with wax seals. Just be sure to buy extras of everything: It will take some trial and error to figure out how your materials work together. —R.M.
Friends & Family OfficiatingMany couples would love to have a friend preside over their ceremony in lieu of a priest or rabbi. Unfortunately, in order for an NYC marriage to be official, couples must state that they take each other as man and wife in the presence of an officiant registered with the City Clerk. However, there are no legal restrictions over who conducts the rest of the ceremony, meaning couples can still take their vows in front of a friend, family member, or whomever they choose-whether they've been ordained or not. —J.N.
Photo Booths at the ReceptionIf you're looking for a truly unique way to capture the big day for posterity, consider letting your guests in on the fun by having an old-fashioned photo booth installed near the door of your wedding venue. See if your planner has any connections, or just rent one yourself: NYC Photobooth (212-812-2130; nycphotobooth.com) will deliver a retro-style booth at the start of the reception, set it up (unlimited photo cards are included), and pick it up at the end of the party. Prices start at $1,595. —S.C.
From the Summer 2006 New York Wedding Guide