Archive for August, 2010

Etsy Find Friday: Piper Blue

Friday, August 27th, 2010

I have never been a big jewelry wearer – my wedding rings, an occasional necklace and a simple pair of diamond studs is about it but the necklaces and earrings from Piper Blue might just change my ways.

I love their nature inspired items including their Orchid Trio necklace and Falling Twig necklace!  So lovely and delicate!  Given that everything in the shop is $30 or under, these would make great bridesmaid’s gifts!

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I love this shop so much that I am including a gift certificate to it in the Bid Your Wish for Wedding Bliss Etsy Package I am working on – you’ll get awesome items for your wedding from some of my favorite Etsy Find Friday shops and Wish Upon a Wedding gets help to provide weddings for deserving couples!  More about that later but trust me, you are going to love it!

Photography: Down to the Money

Monday, August 23rd, 2010

I once had a bride ask for advice deciding between two photographers – the basics of the situation:

  • Photographer A is a phenomenal photographer who has a lot of experience.  The bride cried while looking at the sample books and absolutely LOVED the photographer personally – they hit it off immediately and the bride said she felt like she was chatting with an old friend.  She said she could absolutely see this person at her wedding.
  • Photographer B is a less experienced but still pretty decent photographer with a good eye.  The bride liked the pictures she was shown but didn’t have the same emotional reaction to them as she did with Photographer A’s work.  She liked the photographer but it wasn’t an “old friend” kind of moment.

Okay, at first glance it seems pretty obvious which photographer she should book, right?  I mean Photographer A was AMAZING while Photographer B was just good.  Amazing trumps just good any day, right?!  Usually, yes but when dealing with weddings very little is as clear cut as it may seem.

When the bride first came to me, she listed photography as one of her top priorities.  She also said she wanted all day coverage as well as an album, some prints, parent’s albums and an engagement session.  To get all these things with Photographer A would have been about 2 times her actual photography budget but Photographer B would include everything she wanted plus some extras for right around her budget.

So, a little more complicated as to which one she should book now, huh?

After a quick conversation, the choice became clear and she booked Photographer A.  Why?  Because as I reminded her, you can always save up the money and buy an album and prints after the wedding if you love your pictures but it is really, really, really hard to fill up an album with pictures that are just okay.  She booked Photographer A’s smaller package and got the coverage and a small print credit which she will apply to an album in the future and she LOVES her photos.

Just because you can’t afford the huge package with your favorite photographer right now doesn’t mean you can’t afford their time and talent now and their products in the future.  I consider photography extremely important – don’t settle for pictures that are just okay when you could have amazing pictures that make complete strangers cry.

Esty Find Friday: Cake Stands

Friday, August 20th, 2010

Now that I have two little girls, I find myself wanting to create traditions for them for holidays and birthdays and for them to see us celebrating anniversaries as well.  My parents did that for me as a child and I am forever grateful for that.

I love the idea that this cake stand from Vessels and Wares stamped with “You are special” could be used as a wedding cake stand and then throughout the years for birthdays or anniversaries or just for special dinners.  They also sell other styles – take a look at the cute ribbon cake stands. Love them!

Wedding OoO Wednesday: Colorado

Wednesday, August 18th, 2010

Please welcome Debbie Orwat from Save The Date Events in Denver, Colorado.

Website: Save The Date Events
Blog: Save The Date Blog
Twitter: DebbieOrwat

Why do you love doing weddings in Colorado?

We work throughout the entire state which is an absolute joy. We are incredibly fortunate to travel to all the mountain towns to plan fabulous events for our clients.

What are some of your favorite Colorado wedding locations?

Aspen Wedding Deck, Vail Wedding Deck and the Maroon Bells are amazing locations for wedding ceremonies. There are so many fabulous mountain towns with great venues for Colorado weddings.

Tell us what makes this wedding so quintessentially Colorado:

Carrie and Ben live in Florida and have always loved coming to Colorado for ski vacations. Carrie’s style was rustic mountain elegance with a modern flair.  SaddleRidge at Beaver Creek was the perfect wedding venue for their Colorado destination wedding.   All the wedding guests traveled to Colorado and enjoyed the mountains for a full weekend of activities.

Location: SaddleRidge in Beaver Creek, Colorado
Photographer: Karie Mclain – www.kmclain.com

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Thanks so much to Debbie for sharing!  Love that it is SO Colorado!

Etsy Find Friday: Compass Cufflinks

Friday, August 13th, 2010

I love vintage maps and compasses – love them.  No idea why seeing as I have a terrible sense of direction and my GPS is my constant companion.  Now don’t get me wrong, I can use both – my days as a camp counselor gave me that skill along with the ability to sing a multitude of camp songs and convince 6th graders to cooperate.  All things that I now employ in working with rowdy bridal parties (kidding).

Remind your groom that he is your True North with Themap’s beautiful compass cufflinks.

They also do beautiful vintage maps on cufflinks, necklaces and money clips.  Perfect if you got engaged someplace other than home as a sweet reminder of that special trip.

Weddings OoO Wednesday: Gainsville, FL

Wednesday, August 11th, 2010

Editor’s Note: Welcome to the first Weddings Outside of Ohio (OoO) Wednesday!  I feel the need to point out that yes, Melissa is from Gainesville, Florida and this wedding was at University of Florida but you Buckeyes still need to be nice to her!

Please welcome Melissa DiStefano from Masterpiece Weddings in Gainesville, Florida.
Website: Masterpiece Weddings
Blog: Masterpiece Weddings Blog
Twitter: WeddingPlanner1

Why do you love doing weddings in Gainesville?

I love weddings in Gainesville, Florida!  There are so many cultures that come to Gainesville to go to school, fall in love and want to involve the University into their wedding. Gainesville is still considered a small town (albeit with attitude), and I feel so honored to be a part of our clients once in a lifetime event! Lots of our clients live out of town and come back to get married. Gainesville sort of sucks you in like that (in a good way).

I love that The University of Florida brings together so many different nationalities and walks of life. We work with clients of all Religions and Cultures. A lot of our clients aren’t native to Gainesville, but have absorbed the “Southern Way of Life”, they care a little more, are so genuinely sweet, talk a little slower and know what real sweet tea is. I really think we work with the nicest, sweetest, most amazing, coolest, most genuine, clients ever! I’d even bet money on it! (Editor’s note – I’ll take that bet!)

I’ve done weddings in New York, Los Angeles, Texas, South Carolina, Wisconsin, back and forth across the world, but there is something about a Gainesville wedding that is different… I can’t quite put my finger on it, a little sweeter, a little more something. And I can’t get enough.

What is one of your very favorite Gainesville wedding location?

Gainesville Florida has some incredible locations for weddings, The Thomas Center is full of history.  Mr. Thomas had the most elegant hotel in all of Gainesville in the early 1900s and when he died suddenly, he didn’t have a will and the State took his building and turned it into an office building, and now they rent out the old dining room for weddings. It’s beautiful, and so full of history! There are also several gardens for a beautiful outdoor ceremony.

Tell us what makes this wedding so quintessentially Gainesville:

One of our favorite clients, Kristina and Darren, both grew up in Gainesville and moved away after graduating, but couldn’t imagine not getting married in Gainesville. That’s one thing about this town, it draws you back. It’s a part of you, you just can’t help it. Gina Leigh (www.ginaleighphotography.com) did an amazing job documenting the love, the beauty and the fun! We’ve taken pictures at University of Florida Football Field (The Swamp) a bajillion times, but this time, there were members of the band there, and I asked them if they would plllleeeeeasssse take pictures with the wedding party, they were as excited to say yes as I was asking them! Plus Darren and Kristina are so full of life and love, it’s contagious! You can just tell, you can feel it!

Darren and Kristina were married at The Baughman Center and their reception was at The Thomas
Center.  Their photographer was Gina Leigh Photography and their flowers were from Pranges Plantscapes.  Celebrations provided catering and their cake was from KB Kakes.  Now, onto the pictures!


Anything else to share?

But remember no matter where you are getting married, it’s about the love you feel for each other. And about what happens the day after your wedding and the day after that. Your wedding will be amazing, I promise! But don’t forget to make sure your marriage is amazing too!

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Thanks so much to Melissa for sharing!  Gorgeous wedding (even it is was a University of Florida wedding)

Mini-Moon Monday: Cincinnati

Monday, August 9th, 2010

Cincinnati is under 2 hours from Columbus and makes a fantastic weekend get away!

Where to Play:

If you are a sports fan, you’ll have plenty to choose from with Cincy being the home to both the Reds and the Bengals.  If college ball is more of your style, the University of Cincinnati Bearcats are the current Big East Conference champs and 2010 should prove to be another good year for them.

Animal and nature lovers will enjoy the Newport Aquarium with underwater tunnels where sharks swim over and around you and the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden with their beautiful white tigers.

History buffs will love the Queen City Underground Tour, a walking tour exploring the history of the Over the Rhine area of Cincinnati and The Newport Gangster Tour which explains why the Newport area was a favorite for gangsters and gamblers in the 40s and 50s.  Make sure to leave some time for the Cincinnati Museum Center which is home to Union Terminal, Omnimax Theater, Cincinnati History Museum, Duke Energy Children’s Museum and the Museum of Natural History and Science.

Do a little sightseeing from the river on BB Riverboats.  They offer sightseeing only cruises plus lunch and dinner cruises Tuesday through Sunday and a Dixieland Jazz Brunch on Sundays.

IKEA. Need I say more?

Where to Stay:

A couple downtown hotels that are just gorgeous: Hilton Cincinnati Netherland Plaza and The Westin Cincinnati.

If you are looking for something a little more intimate or with a little more character, there are a number of Inns and B&Bs in the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky area including Mariemont Inn, Weller Haus and Gaslight B&B.

Where to Eat:

Hofbrauhaus is always a fun night out – good German food and great German beer in either the Bier Hall or Bier Garden is a great way to start a night out in the Newport, KY area.

The Precinct was voted one of the best restaurants in the US and is housed in a former police precinct.

For bar hopping and restaurants, Mount Adams is a great area to visit – tons of places to eat and drink!

I love local, independent restaurants and Cincinnati has their share – visit Great Cincinnati Independent Restaurants (GCI) and pick one for your visit.

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A huge thank you to Cincinnati resident and fellow Spartan, Tiesha Frazier for her input!  If I missed anything, please feel free to leave some ideas for great places to play, stay or eat in the comments!

Etsy Find Friday: Gourmet Marshmallows

Friday, August 6th, 2010

Oh my goodness, oh my goodness, oh my goodness!  I have talked about candy bars, ice cream sundae bars, cookie displays, popcorn bars and donut stations but what about a flavored marshmallow station at your wedding?  Mia Mallows has 35 (THIRTY FIVE!) different flavors of handmade gourmet marshmallows that would be AH-mazing as a specialty bar for your guests to enjoy.  They are all tinted to reflect their colors so your marshmallow bar could be as colorful as you would like!

Those 35 flavors are (1)Banana, (2)Bavarian Cream, (3)Blueberry, (4)Caramel, (5)Cherry, (6)Chocolate, (7)Chocolate Chip, (8)Chocolate Mexican Style, (9)Chocolate Mint, (10)Red Hot Cinnamon, (11)Coconut, (12)Coffee, (13)Cotton Candy, (14)Dulce De Leche, (15)Eggnog, (16)Keylime Pie, (17)Lavender, (18)Lemon, (19)Lime, (20)Mango, (21)Maple, (22)Mixed Berries, (23)Orange, (24)Peach, (25)Peanut Butter, (26)Peppermint, (27)Pina Colada, (28) Pineapple, (29)Pomegranate, (30)Praline with Pecans, (31)Pumpkin Pie with Shortbread cookie crumbs, (32)Raspberry (33)Saltwater Taffy, (34)Strawberry, and (35)Vanilla.

At just $5 for 6 one and half inch cubes, these would make a great wedding favor too!

Great, now I am dreaming of a s’more made with a Peanut Butter marshmallow.  Oh, that would be heaven!  If you do a marshmallow bar at your wedding, send me pictures and I will post them!

2 New Blog Series Coming Next Week!

Monday, August 2nd, 2010

I am working on two new series starting next week that I am so excited for!  Make sure you check back every Monday and Wednesday at noon for these fun features:

Mini-Moon Mondays – fun things to do in nearby cities that would either be a nice weekend away during wedding planning (remember, it never hurts to walk away from the guest list once in a while!) or immediately after the wedding when a big honeymoon must be delayed (lots of my teacher clients do this). All the mini-moon locations will be an easy drive from Columbus – 3 hours or less.  We’ll be looking at Cincinnati, Pittsburgh and more!

Wedding OoO (Outside of Ohio) Wednesdays – I am lucky enough to count wedding planners from across the country and around the world as my friends and colleagues.  Some of these fantastic wedding pros are going to share some of their favorite weddings with us and what makes their cities so fantastic!  It will be a fun look at what makes a wedding so perfectly Philly or Seattle or Southern Florida – I can’t wait to share them with you!  I think you’ll love them!