Dear Abby
January 25, 2008

Another reader question for you guys to tackle!!

Q. I am wanting to have a 1940s wedding theme. I am having my reception at an unconventional place because of budget, and I plan on hiring a wedding planner to help with converting this place that will place people in that time.

First things first, I am planning a wedding for 2009, no rush. I like the 40s swing era, because I love dancing and it is so fun to swing dance, even if you are not a pro. I am very flexible on the color palate, although I love pink and my fiance's favorite color is black. I am not planning a detailed "everything must be 1940s" look. I just want the general feel. I am extending an invitation for my guests to dress in the 1940s era. Overall, I am looking for a classy style that is elegant, romantic, relaxed, and most of all... looks expensive, but isn't. I am a bargain girl at heart.

Can any of you offer this reader ideas as to how she can infuse a 40's vibe, without going over the top?

A. What a great idea! I love bringing a vintage chic feel into a just seems so appropriate. Glamor, fun, dancing. And, I LOVE the idea of using plumes and feathers to decorate rather than flowers. I also like the idea of scattering crystals around the tables, or stringing crystal beads and kind of "draping" them around the centerpieces. Another centerpiece idea would be to buy some inexpensive mirrors, then place 6 or 7 candles of varying height in the center.

There is a restaurant in San Francisco called Foreign Cinema, that plays old movies on a white washed wall, while diners eat oh-so-elegant food. It's a lovely concept and it might be a wonderful, unexpected touch to this an old projector, then play black and whites from the era like Casablanca (silently of course), while a swing band keeps everyone dancing.

Serve champagne in champagne saucers, rather than flutes (spend money on champagne, rather than an open specialty drink is a great way to cut costs). For my own wedding, my mother and I scoured ebay, flea markets and antique shops and ended up with 200 crystal champagne saucers. It was SUCH a lovely touch to the wedding and really brought that element of glamor to the night.

Seems like you have a great start! I can't wait to hear how everything turns out...please keep us posted!