Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Special Holiday Promotions!

I am so thrilled to share with you some promotion codes for a few of my favorite brands! Who doesn't love to save money this holiday season? I know I do!

Located in Napa Valley and doing business since 1991, has knowledgeable wine consultants to help you find wines you are going to love!

Also receive free standard shipping on your first purchase with until Saturday, January 1st, 2011! Just go to and enter promo code NEW2WTC during checkout! hand creates distinct, gourmet gift baskets for every occasion and every price. The offer unique Christmas gifts that are exclusive to and are not found anywhere else! So why not send a loved one a truly personal gift experience this holiday season? is offering a free ship upgrade to 2nd Day Air and all of your gifts will be sure to arrive by Christmas! Visit from Monday, December 20th - Wednesday, December 22nd to receive this upgrade!

I hope you are able to use some of these promotions to complete all of your holiday shopping without putting a too big hole in your wallet!

Happy Holidays to you all!


Monday, December 13, 2010

Shawn's Holiday Snack Mix!

This holiday season, what better than giving a little gift of Shawn's Holiday Snack Mix!? Just follow this easy-to-do recipe and in no time you will have a great gift to send to friends and family or a wonderful snack for your party goers to munch on!

1 Small Box Chex Wheat & Rice Cereal
1 Bag of Pecans (2 cups)
2 Sticks of Butter
1 Cup Packed Brown Sugar
1 TBSP Vanilla

Preheat oven 325 degrees
Coat an 11 x 15 pan with cooking spray to prevent sticking
Pour cereal into pan, top with pecans and set aside

In a deep sauce pan on the stove melt the butter
Add the brown sugar
Stir constantly to prevent burning and bring butter sugar mixture to a boil
Once boiling slowly add vanilla; mixture will foam (and may splatter) cook 1 to 2 more minutes

Pour butter sugar vanilla mixture evenly over cereal coating well.

Bake for 10 minutes, stir.  Bake another 10 minutes and remove from oven, stir again to coat evenly.
When just about cool remove from pan into an airtight container and enjoy!


Thursday, December 9, 2010

Wine Bottle Invitation!

Throwing a party this holiday season? Well do I have a great invitation for you! Check out my "Wine Bottle Invitation" featured on! Click here to view the "how-to" video! It is simple, and takes only a few minutes for something that will be sure to impress your guests even before the festivities begin!

Photo Courtesy of 


Wednesday, December 8, 2010

From the Kitchen of Shawn Rabideau

The recipe is finally here! Many of you have been asking me on twitter for my famous family Pineapple Upside Down Cake Recipe! Well wait no longer because here it is!

1/4 Cup Butter
1 Cup Brown Sugar
1 Can Sliced Pineapples
Small Jar of Stemless Maraschino Cherries
1 Egg
1 Cup Sugar
1/2 Cup Milk
1 Tsp Vanilla
Pinch of Salt
1 Tsp Baking Soda
1 Cup Flour

1. Heat Oven to 350 Degrees
2. In an 8inch x 2inch round pan on the stove top with very low heat, melt the butter and brown sugar until it is caramelized. This should be a slow process.
3. Once combined, put the drained, sliced pineapples into the pan
4. Take the Maraschino Cherries and put them in the center of the pineapple slices and decorate the rest of the pan.
5. In a bowl, mix together the egg, one cup sugar, milk, vanilla, salt, baking soda and flower until it forms into a thin pancake batter like consistency and pour into the pan over the pineapple
6. Bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes, or until the toothpick comes clean
7. Remove from oven, invert on to a plate, and enjoy!!!


Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Save Money on your Holiday Goodies!

Yesterday, I had the honor of meeting with bloggers at the amazing DesignPac facility in Chicago to share some of my "shop at home first, then get creative" ideas for holiday entertaining! In honor of the event, all of the products that were featured from 1-800 FlowersFannie May, The Popcorn Factory, 1-800 Baskets, Cheryl's, and are 15% off* when you use the promo codes below! ! You must check them out! So many great gifts for the holiday season! The promo codes are: (Promo code: 1225) (Promo code: SHAWN) (Promo code: SHAWN) (Promo code: SHAWN) (Promo code: SHAWN) (Promo code: SHAWN)
 *Offer good for a limited time only. Prices & Discounts are exclusive of applicable service and shipping charges and taxes. Items may vary and are subject to availability, delivery rules and times. Offer available online. Offers cannot be combined, are not available on all products and are subject to restrictions, limitations and blackout periods. Prices and charges are subject to change without notice. Void where prohibited.
I hope you are able to enjoy some of the fabulous products from these great brands! I know that I will be making LOTS of purchases from them this holiday season.

Stay tuned because I will be sure to be posting some photos later on from the event! Also, don't forget to check out for all of your holiday and entertaining needs. 


Transform Your Fall Wreath into a Holiday Wreath!

Check out first holiday webisode! I demonstrate how to save time and money by recycling decor for the holidays! It's simple, just click here and watch how you can transform your Fall Wreath into a Holiday Wreath!

Photo Courtesy of


Monday, November 22, 2010

Friday, November 19, 2010

How to ask a friend to be your bridesmaid...

Happy Friday Everyone! My name is Meagan and I am an Event Coordinator with Shawn Rabideau Events & Design! I just wanted to share with you a fun idea!

So you are engaged, and in the process of planning your wedding, and want to ask your friends to be bridesmaids! What is a fun and creative way to do this? Well, earlier this week I received a package from Eleni's with a note and these cookies inside!

I was so excited to receive these and just had to share them with you! I thought this was a really fun and creative idea and such a nice surprise since my friend Claire and I live in two different cities! I am so excited for the planning process to begin for her wedding in January 2012!

I hope this post has inspired you to be creative and hope you have a fabulous Thanksgiving with friends and family!


Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The Wedding Salon!

I am so excited to share with you some photos of last night's Wedding Salon here in NYC! I am thrilled that I was able to be a part of this year's event and had so much fun meeting all of the brides and vendors! The Manhattan Center Studios was the perfect location for this event with over 3,000 people in attendance! Unbelievable!

Here are some shots from the table I designed for this event! I love all of these warm fall colors! Special shout out to Cloth Connection for the beautiful table linens, napkins, chair cushions, and chair covers. They really helped make my vision come to life! I would also like to thank the extremely talented Ana Dolan, from Invitations by Ana, who I collaborated with to create the custom menus, place cards, and invitation!

Also, special thanks to Party Rental LTD for all of the fabulous china, flatware, and glassware!

And here is a photo of Team Rabideau! I cannot thank them enough for all of their help and support! Oh! and you should follow us on Twitter! Michael Lepson, Shawn Rabideau, and Meagan Taylor!

Hope you enjoyed these photos! Until next time....


Friday, October 29, 2010

Halloween Tips and Tricks!

Halloween is just around the corner and if you have not already planned out your spooky festivities don't fret! I have some easy, fun, and inexpensive tips and tricks on that will help you make your Halloween bash a hit! Check them out here!

photo courtesy of

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

The Knot Gala!

This past Monday night I was so fortunate to be able to attend The Knot Gala at the New York Public Library! The Library is such a stunning building here in New York City and the most exquisite location for a party! After walking up the beautiful steps into the library we were immediately in awe over the gorgeous 11 feet high and 4 feet in diameter wedding gown made from 5,500 flowers including white calla lilies, white hydrangea, white escimo roses, pink rosita vendela roses, gardenias, and phalaenopsis orchids. The extremely talented Preston Bailey  was inspired by a Monique Lhuillier sketch to create this masterpeice.  

Photo Courtesy of Christian Oth Studio 

Food was catered by Danny Meyer's Union Square Events (love them!) and the gorgeous ambiance was created by Bentley Meeker Lighting and Luxe Event Rentals.

Photo Courtesy of Christian Oth Studio 

Look at this fabulous aerial shot of the space! I spy with my little eyes so many talented wedding industry professionals!

Photo Courtesy of Christian Oth Studio 

The Knot really knocked this one out of the ballpark! Here I am with Carley Roney, The Knot's CEO and Founder, and the ultra fabulous and talented Amy Atlas with Lisa from her staff at Amy Atlas Events

Photo from Amy Atlas' Blog 

Here I am with Desiree Spinner from Desiree Spinner Events, Meagan McCullough from my team Shawn Rabideau Events & Design, Leila Khalil from Be Inspired PR, Charlotte Rankin from Bounkit Jewelry, and Michael Lepson from my team!

Photo Courtesy of The Knot

And finally, here I am with the super talented Craig Paulson of Craig Paulson Photography! So excited to be working with him on a wedding in November!

Photo Courtesy of Christian Oth Studio 

Hope you enjoyed these photos! Happy Bridal Market week!


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

"Bethenny Getting Married?" is Nominated!

SO EXCITED that "Bethenny Getting Married?" is up for nomination for a 
Peoples Choice Award! Please vote here so the show can win the 
nomination! The category is Favorite Guilty Pleasure
ions/vote.jsp?pollId=110027 I am so happy for Bethenny and for Bravo! Please vote!


Friday, October 15, 2010

Set Your DVR's!

Good Afternoon Everyone!

I am so excited to announce that I will be appearing with the cast of "Best Night In" on TVLand this Monday, October 18th at 9:00pm to share some of my Halloween entertaining ideas! The segment will air during a showing of the classic movie "Mrs. Doubtfire" and I will be talking about inexpensive and easy ideas to help you with your Halloween entertaining and decorating! I even share some of my favorite and festive drink recipes!

I had so much fun filming with the fabulous cast of "Bes Night In" and can't wait for you guys to see as well! Please let me know your thoughts and after the show be sure to head to where I am featured as the newest planning expert to see even more ideas! This website is an amazing resource for all of your party ideas, planning, supplies, and more!


Friday, October 8, 2010

Fall-tini Cocktail Recipe!

Fall is nipping at our heels and nothing says fall better than a fabulous cocktail!  One of my favorites that I invented by accident is what I like to call the Fall-tini!  Every sip you take reminds of a crisp fall day and there is no better way than to take a few nips of my newest cocktail.  Give it a try and let me know your thoughts.

1 Part of Absolut Pears Vodka
1 Parts Absolut Vanilla
2 Parts Apple Cider
½ Part Apple Pucker
¼ Cup Sanding Sugar
¼ Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
¼ Teaspoon Ground Cloves
¼ Teaspoon Ground Nutmeg
Cinnamon stick for garnish

On a plate mix together cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg & sanding sugar

On a separate plate pour about 3 table spoons of Pear Nectar – enough to create a small “puddle” on the plate

Carefully “dip” the martini glass into the pear nectar and shake off any excess juice, then carefully dip the glass into the spice/sugar mixture creating a “ring” of spice around the glass – set aside

Pour liquid contents into a cocktail shaker with ice cubes
Shake vigorously
Pour contents into rimmed glass with “Autumn Seasonings” mixture
Garnish with a cinnamon stick.

I hope you enjoy! Cheers!

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Arrive in Style!

While planning weddings, there are so many details that you have to think about, including transportation. Many people often think that transportation is something that you don’t have to arrange, especially here in New York City. Just because New York City has taxis almost everywhere you go, it does not mean that you will arrive on time, or in style. Think about this…how many times have you gotten into a smelly taxi that has leftover trash or gum stuck to the seat? The last thing that you want to do in your gorgeous wedding gown is sit in gum or have spilled soda  on the dirty taxi floor soak into your cathedral length veil. Although arranging your own transportation, such as a town car or limo, will be more expensive than taking a taxi, the benefits far outweigh the drawbacks. 
Photo Courtesy of Cialone Photography
But, you do need to be careful and lookout for things such as time minimums or fees for multiple stops. Whether your wedding is around the block or on the opposite side of town, do yourself a favor and arrange proper transportation. I promise, you won’t be sorry! Another thing to think about is transportation at the end of the night. I highly recommend using the town car or limo to take you from the wedding to your final destination, whether it is your home or hotel. Also, don’t forget about mom and dad! You don’t want to leave them standing on the street corner trying to hail a cab during the late hours of the night! Have transportation arranged for them as well. This kind gesture won’t go unnoticed!


Thursday, September 16, 2010

Classic Cocktail Party

I am finding traditional cocktail parties seem to be a thing of the past.  I think people associate them with being stuffy; however, you can put a casual spin to the classic cocktail party.  Now of course this style of entertaining isn’t exactly child friendly; however, the adults need some down time away from the kids every once in awhile.
The idea here is to have fun, experiment with new foods and beverages!

Cocktails can get expensive; however, when planning your beverage menu always look at using one or two types of liquor and always look at doing only one or two styles of specialty cocktails that use that liquor.   For example if you are serving a cocktail that calls for regular vodka and you are using several different types of mixers with it a) don’t spend money on expensive vodka – no one will know the difference and b) if your guests ask if they can bring something ask them to bring a bottle of inexpensive vodka or a mixer that you delegate.  You don’t want to end up with 3 bottles of Triple Sec!
 If you serve only two types of specialty cocktails guests won’t get drunk trying them all and you won’t spend money on a ton of liquor!  Also I always suggest that you as the host make the first batch of drinks and provide them in a pitcher.  You will save money because you as the host can regulate how much liquor goes into each batch AND it limits the mess. 
 You will need to provide the ice, cocktail shaker and the glasses. The guests help themselves to pitchers of pre-mixed specialty drinks, they can shake – rattle – and – roll and voila it allows you to mingle and be the perfect host(ess)!  Now don’t forget to put out water, soda – you want your guests to be responsible when it comes to driving!
As for the food – look at using seasonal food when choosing your hors d’ oeuvres – this will save you money.  I suggest providing at least 4 to 5 hearty hors d’ oeuvres that can easily be made using ingredients that you may have in your pantry.  This is also a way to save money – if your guests want to bring something tell them to bring an hors d’ oeuvre that serves at least three to four serving pieces per person.  They can be cold or warm – let them know what works best for you.  Also ask them to bring enough recipe cards that can be handed out to the guests in case they want the recipe themselves.
 A few suggestions are:

Mini Baked Chicken Fingers with a Peanut or Thai dipping sauce
I have my butcher take inexpensive chicken breasts and fillet them thinly for me.  I then take a mixture of Italian bread crumbs with a little bit of garlic powder – roll the chicken in the mixture (no egg needed here) the breading will coat the chicken lightly (this is the very healthy & hearty version) – bake on a tin-foil lined cookie sheet (easy clean up) until golden brown Serve this on a unique tray with a bit of the dipping sauce and you have a great hors d’ oeuvre!  These can be made ahead of time and popped into the oven at the last minute!

Mini Burgers
I know these seem to be over done; but the idea is to allow your guests to fill up on good hearty food!  Therefore I purchase frozen burger patties – thaw them.  I also purchase mini potato dinner rolls.  I then take a round cookie cutter and cut out three small patties from each of the larger patties…I save the extra meat and either create more mini- patties or I use the meat in tacos later in the week.  I like the idea of baking the burger meat – it is healthier…I put the patties on a greased broiler pan and allow the drippings to drain into the lower portion…You can make cheese burgers regular burgers…you can have the fixings with them.  OR create a station whereby your guests can create their own mini burgers…again, this doesn’t cost a whole lot and trust me – your guests will LOVE this! These too can be made ahead of time and popped into the oven at the last minute!

Rosemary Tomato Parmesan “tartlet”
This is a perfectly light hors d’ oeuvre and takes absolutely no time to create!  Purchase Carr’s Rosemary crackers – then take a Romano tomato (1/4 inch sliced, seeded) allow the slices to “drain” on paper towel until no more moisture is extracted from each slice. Once this is done place a slice of tomato on the cracker and sprinkle with shaved parmesan cheese – drizzle with a touch of olive oil and you have a perfect room temp hors d’ oeuvres!

Prosciutto Wrapped Asparagus –
This is so easy to create!  Simply grill or blanch fresh spears of asparagus until tender – wrap with slices of prosciutto and then grate parmesan cheese and serve!  Make these ahead of time and serve at room temp!

These are just a few ideas – and they are meant to save you time and money!
Other ideas are the classic mini meatballs in a spicy sauce, mini pigs in a blanket, fresh veggie trays, pita and hummus, think of ingredients that do not cost a lot, but that give a hearty variety for your guests.
When it comes to the décor, look at using inexpensive seasonal blooms that dot your home – don’t go crazy with arrangements – in this case less is more!  Or just use a ton of votive candles.  The idea is to create a fun lounge where guests can visit, eat and be merry without producing a full blow out dinner!

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

A Sneak Peak...

Hello Everyone!

Here's a sneak peak of Biana and I on set at Good Morning America! Stayed tuned for details on when exactly my segment will air this weekend!


Thursday, August 19, 2010

Budget Friendly Floral Decor

Hi Everyone!

Looking for tips on budget friendly floral decor for your wedding or event? Check out my tips on Smart Bride Boutique by clicking this link here!


Friday, August 13, 2010

Daily Candy - "Get Hitched Without a Hitch"

Check out Daily Candy Weddings for my top ten tips on how to avoid wedding stress. What are your top tips? I'd love to hear!

Oh! and Happy Friday the 13th!


Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Smart Bride Boutique!

Want to hear my advice on budget friendly wedding cake and dessert options? Or perhaps find out my take on how to plan a budget friendly rehearsal dinner? Check them out by clicking on the corresponding links above and make sure to explore while you are at it!


The Wedding of Michelle and Michael

This week, I am so happy to share with you a wedding I designed and planned for one of my favorite couples, Michelle and Michael, which took place at the fabulous W Hotel in Hoboken, New Jersey for around 175 guests! For all of you New Yorkers who haven’t ventured across the river, I highly suggest you do, if not just to visit this fun hotel! Just fifteen minutes by PATH train or water taxi, you can visit this jewel of a town that has stunning views of our beloved Manhattan Island

Any who, back to the wedding. The wedding was designed with many different elements and no detail was left untouched! Starting with the ceremony, which took place at Saint Peter and Paul Church in Hoboken. There wasn’t much that needed to be done in this beautiful church, so I designed beautiful sprays that adorned the alternating pews to add a personal touch to the ceremony. These sprays were designed with greenery and pink ribbon to coordinate with the décor for the rest of the evening. At the end of the aisle, the bride and groom were framed by two large arrangements to add height and drama. Designed with green and pink flowers, including hydrangea, bells of Ireland, tulips, roses and wax flower, these arrangements were the finishing touches to the already beautiful church ceremony.

For the wonderful bride Melissa, she received a stunning bouquet designed with crème de le crème white roses, fuchsia roses, tulips, green cymbidium orchids, and touches of Queen Anne’s Lace. These elements created a soft, yet beautiful bouquet, which accented the bride and her dress, which was purchased from Priscilla of Boston, one of my favorite bridal gown stores in the city! To finish bouquet, I tied it with some fabric from her dress. Funny story, at one of her dress fittings, we were deciding whether or not to keep a satin sash that tied around her waist, and all of a sudden the seamstress cut it off! Right then and there in front of our very eyes! At the time we were stunned, but it ended up being the right decision and I was able to use it to wrap her bouquet with. I always love adding personal touches to the bouquets to make them that much more special.

The groom received a hand tied boutonniere that was designed with white and fuchsia spray roses and accented with touches of looped bear grass. The best man and five groomsmen received coordinating boutonnières designed with Kermit mums, wax flower, and dendrobium orchids, all wrapped with a fuchsia ribbon to coordinate with the bridesmaids bouquets.

As for the bridal party, which consisted of one maid of honor, one matron of honor, and four bridesmaids, they all received coordinating bouquets designed with fuchsia and soft green flowers. Flowers such as Kermit mums, roses, wax flower, and dendrobium orchids were used to create these stunning bouquets. The handles were then tied with a ribbon which coordinated with the overall look of the bouquet.
            From the ceremony site, guests were then shuttled over to the W Hotel by trolley which not only did helped the guests easily get to the reception location without having to walk in the sweltering heat, but also provided a great photo opportunity for the bride and groom!

            As guests entered the reception at the W Hotel, they were in awe over the stunning tables arrangements that varied in height and were pin-spotted by Robert Stark Lighting. Half of the tables were created with high arrangements, while the others were created with low arrangements. For the high arrangements, I designed them with two vases of varying heights. The tall vase was designed with all white calla lilies bursting from the top and accented with white hydrangea and cymbidium orchids. The shorter vase was also filled with bursts of long all white dendrobium orchids, and then accented with larger white cymbidium orchids to balance out the overall look of the two vases. These arrangements were the surrounded by alternating heights of floating candles, to provide a romantic glow to the entire table top.

The low arrangements were created by using large bubble bowls, filling them with water, and spiraling white calla lilies, white cymbidium orchids, white dendrobium orchids, and accents of lily grass. An arrangement like this truly made a statement and allowed for guests to see across the table. Within the arrangement I placed floating candles and an orchid head to complete the overall look.

The night went absolutely beautifully and I want to give a special shout out to Hank Lane Music and Productions for keeping the guests dancing all night long! Towards the end of the evening guests were given a slice of Michelle and Michael’s beautiful cake made by the Cake Boss himself, Buddy Valastro, from Carlos Bakery in Hoboken.  The night even continued into an after party where late night foods were served such as trays of chicken fingers, mozzarella sticks, French fries, pigs in a blanket, and more! YUM!

Because many guests were from outside of New York City, we helped Michelle and Michael design an “Out of Town” program for her guests that included everything from New York attractions, transportation, restaurants, salons, necessities such as banks, atm’s, hospitals, drugstores and other accommodations! Also within the program was a brief history of Hoboken with fun facts and notable Hoboken residents! This program also gave Michelle and Michael the opportunity to write a personal note to thank all of the out of towners for making the trip to New York City for their special day! Love special details like this!

Until next time….Cheers!

All photos courtesy of Maring Visuals