what to actually pack on your honeymoon

The first weekend of 2014 marked our first wedding of the year -- Laura & Michael's! In the days leading up to the wedding, Laura approached me about feeling frazzled, comparing a zillion lists of what to pack for her honeymoon, and not knowing what on earth to actually take or leave behind. If there's one trip in a person's lifetime that important things ought not be left behind, it's a honeymoon!

Aerial view of Mexico from our honeymoon in 2012!

Aerial view of Mexico from our honeymoon in 2012!

So from a practical standpoint (and from someone who's taken two tropical vacations over the past year and a half), here's my no-nonsense honeymoon packing list (for a 5 - 6 day tropical honeymoon):

  • Lingerie/Underwear (sexy AND legitimately comfortable -- you will want both); strapless bra OPTIONAL depending on your outfit choices
  • A pair of Lightweight Pajamas (but only bring 1 -2 pairs of PJs, max)
  • Swimsuits (you only really need 2)
  • A few Coverups (this can be a jersey knit dress, just something easy to throw on and off -- no jean shorts; this can also be something you wear first to a meal and then to the beach)
  • Light Cardigan/Lightweight Jacket (that will match most things - sometimes the restaurants are chilly; bring 1 - 2)
  • Nice-ish Dress (knit jersey is great for this if it's a little fancier in style, otherwise a sundress or casual-nice dress is good -- it's fun to dress up a little for formal dinners but you don't have to go too fancy)
  • Sandals (at least two pairs, one that's nicer -- you'll wear these everywhere, exclusively)
  • Flip-Flops (super casual, easy to wear to the actual beach and back)
  • OPTIONAL: Lightweight slip-on close-toed shoes for your flight and back (if you're traveling in the cooler weather months)
  • Comfortable, cute shorts or lightweight capris/pants (2-3 pairs to mix and match)
  • Comfortable, lightweight tops (tanks are great! 4 - 5 of these - they can get sweaty or sandy, so make sure you have enough)
  • Hat (baseball cap or floppy sunhat to shade you)
  • Sunglasses, his and hers
  • Small Clutch (OPTIONAL - if you want something to carry around your room key/camera/lipstick when you go to dinner)
  • Mousse/Hair Product to best accentuate your natural hair texture (there's no time or desire to straighten your hair when you're on tropical vacation)/Bobby Pins/Ponytail Holders
  • Curling Iron (only if you want to get fancy a night or two)
  • A pair of Statement Earrings that will go with lots of outfits or a Statement Necklace (no need to accessorize too much on vacation!) -- a little goes a long way.
  • Camera/Memory Card (maybe an extra)/Charger/Batteries
  • iPhone/Charger
  • iPad (OPTIONAL - only bring if you'll actually use it on the plane or at the resort)
  • Passport
  • Marriage License copy, signed (don't bring the real thing)
  • Resort & Flight Confirmations 
  • Driver's License (extra ID)
  • Credit Card (for emergencies)
  • at least $100 in small bills, cash, to tip (even though the resort includes gratuities, they really really appreciate tips and you'll get better service. Worth it.)
  • Emergency Cash
  • Advil
  • Gas-X or Beano, if you want to avoid any unromantic moments onset by overindulging at the all-you-can-eat dinners
  • Deodorant
  • Nausea medicine, if you're prone to getting ill out of the country
  • Contacts & a spare pair/Solution/Glasses
  • Toothbrush (toothpaste is usually included there)
  • a LOT of sunscreen (it'll be $80 at the resort if you run out)/Sunblock chapstick
  • Aloe Vera (small container) if either of you burns easily or if you're not vigilant about applying SPF
  • Razor
  • Face Soap, travel size
  • Makeup (not your whole kit -- just some mascara and eyeliner, maybe a shade of eye shadow, and lipgloss. you don't need much, you'll be rocking the 'newlywed glow!')
  • Makeup Remover, travel size
  • Hairbrush
  • Contraceptives
  • Feminine products (even if you're not expecting your period, you never know! Better to be safe than have to buy them overpriced at the airport!)
  • Bug spray! If you are going somewhere tropical, there are bugs! It's inevitable!
  • Cortisone, in case you slacked on applying the bug spray
  • Ziploc bags in varying sizes, in case you want to protect your phone while you're at the beach, OPTIONAL
  • A trash bag to separate your dirty clothes from the clean, OPTIONAL
Is this love, is this love, is this love, is this love that I'm feeling?  Absolutely -- Excellence Riviera Cancun is absolutely swoon-worthy. View from our room.

Is this love, is this love, is this love, is this love that I'm feeling? Absolutely -- Excellence Riviera Cancun is absolutely swoon-worthy. View from our room.

Ultimately, I tend to subscribe to the less-is-more approach. Plan your outfits to be layerable, stay away from heavy fabrics or materials, bring more than enough clean (and comfortable) underwear. Feel free to get a little fancy a night or two but don't bother packing an 80lb sequined pageant gown and stilettos -- you're at the beach! Definitely pack more sunscreen than you think you'll need and aloe vera if you burn easily or tend get overconfident about your tanning abilities when sunbathing (hand raised). Take a ridiculous amount of pictures, eat and drink to your heart's content (maybe bring some Pepcid if you're really going to let loose), and have one helluva honeymoon!!! And don't forget to put all of your liquids in your checked bag!

Stay tuned for the follow-up post about what NOT to pack on your honeymoon! 

honeymoon:: destinations and tips

The wedding day has come and gone and now comes round two of this beautiful experience...the honeymoon! There are so many options whether it be somewhere tropical, mountains or somewhere in between. Some popular honeymoon destinations are:

1. Paris

2. Hawaii


4. Fiji

5. Italy

6. Cancun

7. Sydney, Australia

8. Virgin Island

9. Cape Town, South Africa

10. Napa Valley, CA

Pictures in order left to right in order of the list

Of course there are some many more amazing destinations and it does not really matter where you are as long as you are there with the one you love!


Here's some great tips from KJ and Co. for couples to make traveling a little easier. 

1. Always keep a file of your reservations whether it be flight, hotel or excursions you might be going on. It wouldn't hurt to include addresses and phone numbers for the places you are staying. It just makes your life a little easier if you need to make a quick call!! 

2. Tell your family your plans. Leave them a copy of your travel itenirary with numbers in case of any emergency.  

3. Passports. Keep your passports in the same place every time. It will help you to access them quickly and give you peace of mind about where they are! 

4, Bring some cash. Change some cash to the local currency of the place you are traveling. Sometimes it is hard to find currency exchanges in the place you might be. 

Be safe. Be happy. Enjoy each other and this time together. 


NEW service offered:: honeymoon suite decor

If you know my business very well, you'll know that I'm always open to out-of-the-box requests and custom packages that encompass services out of the bounds of my traditional wedding planning offerings. (No, that doesn't mean you pick and choose which line-items you don't want to pay for out of my packages and set your own pricing -- I'm talking creative projects that push the bounds of my imagination and satisfy your event needs!)

I had a groom send me one such request a little over a month ago: he wanted to surprise his bride-to-be with an elaborately decorated honeymoon hotel suite for their wedding night! I thought it was a sweet idea and something that would be really special for the two of them. We talked at length about how he loosely envisioned the whole affair, the couple's likes and dislikes, specific requests, and I wove all those little details together to create something absolutely lovely for them.

It was such a great experience I've decided to expand my traditional services to now include honeymoon suite design and decorating! Please shoot me an email if you're interested in kicking up your hotel suite a few notches in the romance department:) I'm happy to create a custom package for you! 

Check out pictures from D.W. & Hannah's honeymoon suite (at the Hutton Hotel in downtown Nashville), taken by the talented Micah G. Robinson!

honeymoon hotel suite decoration kelly dellinger events
honeymoon suite decoration kelly dellinger events
honeymoon suite decoration kelly dellinger events
honeymoon suite decoration kelly dellinger events
honeymoon suite decoration kelly dellinger events
honeymoon suite decoration kelly dellinger events
honeymoon suite decoration kelly dellinger events
honeymoon suite decoration kelly dellinger events
honeymoon suite decoration kelly dellinger events

Think of something you'd love to incorporate in your wedding or special event that hasn't been done before? Shoot me an email and I'll be happy to find a way to make it happen for you! :)