All in the details

Weddings typically are a first occasion to combine your and your partners’ aesthetics, tastes, and preferences into one place. The trick is to combine these and still make your wedding look cohesive and tasteful. Best weddings we have helped to design were the ones where both partners’ tastes were taken into consideration and that “yin and yang” of aesthetics created an amazing visual outcome. So don’t worry about staying in a certain color hue or following a certain design path. Just have fun with it and think outside of the box.

An homage to groom’s military background.

Couple’s goose pet got a floral representation.

Bride’s students drew each guest portrait to serve as an escort card.

All in the details2020-08-25T14:47:49+00:00

Stop and smell the roses

After choosing your perfect wedding venue it’s time to discuss your style, colors, and what type of wedding decor would suit you and your partner. A good starting point is discussing your favorite flowers and colors and building from there. The second factor would be your floral budget. As a general rule using flowers that are local and in season will bring your cost down. Also opting for low centerpieces vs. tall centerpieces will be more budget-friendly. You can also alternate tall and low centerpieces to create a more dimensional look.
Another way to lower your overall floral cost is to have larger tables and sit your guests 12 per table instead of a typical 10, the lower the number of tables, the lower the number of centerpieces.
When it comes to a bridal bouquet, I suggest that my clients not skimp here and choose something personal and meaningful. If you want exotic flowers, this is the place to use them.
For bridesmaids bouquets, you can simply pick a few types of flowers that you used in your bouquet and create either a mini version of your bouquet (minus the extravagant flowers) or make a monochromatic version of your bridal bouquet.
Have fun and don’t forget to stop and smell the roses!

Stop and smell the roses2020-06-28T17:47:55+00:00

Wedding planner?

I have done wedding planning professionally for the past decade. From a quaint 40 person wedding to over 350 guests extravaganza. What do these two had in common? No matter how many guests attended, every wedding had the same amount of moving pieces that needed to be coordinated. From the venue and seating charts to the DJ or band, florals, and your photography timeline, no matter how big or small your wedding is, your wedding day logistics are still quite complicated. So I guess the question shouldn’t be “do I need to hire a wedding planner,” but rather, “how do I hire the right wedding planner?”

I have done wedding planning professionally for the past decade. From a quaint 40 person wedding to over 350 guests extravaganza. What do these two had in common? No matter how many guests attended, every wedding had the same amount of moving pieces that needed to be coordinated. From the venue and seating charts to the DJ or band, florals, and your photography timeline, no matter how big or small your wedding is, your wedding day logistics are still quite complicated. So I guess the question shouldn’t be “do I need to hire a wedding planner,” but rather, “how do I hire the right wedding planner?”

Day of or full service?

That depends on how involved you can or are willing to be in your wedding planning because it truly is a full-time job. If you have time and love planning, I suggest hiring a day of the wedding planner. Even though those services are called “day of” I highly suggest meeting with your planner a few weeks out and conveying your message of how you envision your wedding day.

Hiring your “best friend”

Think of it that way, your planner will be your eyes and ears when you are enjoying yourself, s(he) will be the person that every vendor will approach with problems, changes or issues that arise during the wedding. And with so many moving parts, you can bet on things popping up for sure.
So the more s(he) knows the better s(he) can do the job, so you have the most ideal wedding day.

I liked to ask my clients for the priority list: what is the most important thing to them on their wedding day, what is the second and so on. This way I knew how to prioritize things when problems came up.

When choosing your planner it is important to find someone that you get along with well. This person will be with you practically 24/7 during one of the most important moments, while you are emotional, sensitive, agitated. You want someone that calms you down and makes you smile. I know that you can’t hire your best friend, but if you can get as close to that as possible you will be golden.

Wedding planner?2020-06-14T19:02:53+00:00

Choosing your photographer

Choosing your photographer is one of the most important decisions in your wedding planning process. Months of work that you spent on planning and coming up with the vision for your wedding will be captured on “film” by this person, so you want to be sure that they understand your vision and document it the way that works for you.

The first step is to find local photographers that shoot in the style that appeals to you. The best places to start your search are local wedding magazines, websites, and blogs. Creative wedding magazines and websites like to publish beautiful wedding imagery and always credit the photographer. From there you can visit the photographer’s website and look at his/her other wedding images. The next step would be to reach out and see if they have your wedding date available and find out the cost of their services.

You might be tempted to hire an artsy, free-spirited photographer that has not ever shot weddings. Word of caution from the wedding planner’s perspective. Weddings are quite complicated events requiring heavy planning and timely execution on the day of, so hiring a photographer that understands that and has experience working under these conditions is pretty crucial.

The best wedding photographer is one that can be artsy and spontaneous but can also organize a large family shoot and get everyone smiling at the same time. Trust me, it’s not easy!

The next step is to meet with the photographer that you like in person.
This photographer will be with you on the day of your wedding, the day filled with emotions, occasional aggravation, some of your most intimate moments (seeing your parents when you just slipped into your wedding gown or a first look with your sweetheart) and you want to hire someone that you would feel comfortable with at any of these moments.

Choosing your photographer2020-05-30T21:16:52+00:00

DJ or Band?

When wedding guests talk about any wedding they attended they usually comment on three things: how lovely the bride looked, how good the food was and how great the music was.

The first decision you will have to make is to decide if you want a live band or a DJ. There are pros and cons to both.
Live Band:
A great band will bring any crowd up on their feet and to the dance floor and make your wedding unforgettable.

Look for bands with equally talented male and female lead vocals. You will want that variety because the music you will want at your wedding is meant to satisfy many varied tastes. The same goes for the number of musicians and instruments, more pieces in the band-the better the musical outcome.
However, you will need to budget significantly more money for a live band than a DJ, and not only for their services but also for tips and the cost of meals for the band.

Keep in mind, that each band has its own style and it will perform certain songs in that style. So if you want lots of Adele and want it sounding exactly like Adele, don’t expect the band to pull it off flawlessly (there is only one Adele).

If you are more of a music purist and want to hear music true to the original, then a great DJ is your best bet.
DJs charge less money (it’s typically 1-2 ppl team vs. 6-8 for the band).
Some DJs offer enhancements in the form of a live sax player or a drummer, to enliven the original tracks they are playing.

When it comes down to the choice between a band or a DJ it is truly a personal preference. Most of my clients knew right away which music entertainment they wanted. But whichever one you decide on make sure you get to see them performing live before booking. It is truly the best way to judge their performance and seeing if you and the performers have that chemistry.

DJ or Band?2020-05-24T19:24:49+00:00

A little cheat sheet to your wedding invitation decision

You just got engaged. You are on cloud nine. You called your parents, texted your friends, posted your engagement photos of you and your new ring on Instagram. The next step will be to tell everyone else and that will most likely happen by mailing save the date cards first and the actual wedding invitation later.

Many couples choose fun, whimsical, unorthodox save the dates, even if their wedding is very formal. Rules for savethe dates are more relaxed and allow more room for creative expression.

Wedding invitations typically are expected to represent your wedding, so the more formal the wedding, the more formal and traditional the invitation.

Below see listed from most affordable to least affordable techniques used for invitation printing.

Digitally printed

Probably the most popular type of invitations, are also the most eco-friendly when it comes to the amount of paper being used for printing. Since the process is pretty straightforward (you send the file to the printer and the file prints as intended) it has less trial and error printing that can result in unnecessary paper waste, that is so prevalent in the other printing techniques. New digital printers are also very accurate in producing rich vibrant colors and printing light colors on dark backgrounds. Nowadays, there’s also a much bigger selection of digital papers being offered and one can choose from many novelty and luxury papers that were previously only available for higher-end print techniques.

There is a limit however to how thick the invitation can be since the paper is being fed through the machine, but many paper manufacturers offer double thick stock that is compatible with digital printers.

If you are looking for even heavier stock, you can choose duplexing, meaning gluing two pieces of digital paper together after the top piece has been digitally printed. If you really want to splurge, you can ‘edge’ the sides of your duplexed invitation with metallic ink or duplex it with a textured, novelty backing.

Thermography vs. Engraving

If you like the feel of raised printing that digital printing simply can not offer, you have the option of thermography or a more expensive engraving. Thermography combines offset printing ink with a powdered resin which is baked so that the

resin rises to give the ink a raised, textured effect. The invitation is first offset printed with a slow drying ink. Next, the printed sheets get dusted with powdered resin, the areas with wet ink soak in the resin, while the excess is vacuumed off. Heat is then applied which melts the resin to form a raised print.

Engraving technique utilizes copper plates that get etched with the invitation’s design. Ink paste is applied to the plate and then the plate is pressed into the paper in effect transferring the ink from the plate to the invitation.

The telltale sign of the thermography printed invitation vs. engraved invitation is on the back of the invitation card. An engraved invitation will have indentations from the copper plates being pressed into the paper, while the thermography printed card will appear flat on the back since no plates were used to deposit the ink.


Letterpress printing was the primary technique of printing since its invention by Johannes Gutenberg in the mid-15th century and remained in wide use until offset printing was developed. This method is very labor-intensive, hence costly. Each color has to be pressed separately and requires a paper of a particular thickness and quality so the pressed design registers well.

Next time when you meet with your family to discuss your wedding invitations, you can charm them with your knowledge of printing techniques and be ready to explain why you are choosing a specific type of invitation.

A little cheat sheet to your wedding invitation decision2019-11-20T14:48:53+00:00