Saturday, June 30, 2012

The little things

This made me smile. Enjoy the little things, such as the fact that the Martha Stewart craft app is free for a few days. I suggest downloading it now before it's $4.99!

Friday, June 29, 2012

Silver and Gold Starfish Escort Cards

I was trying to find a way to "fancy up" escort cards for a chic beach wedding this fall and I came across a pin this morning about spray painting shells. It looked a little too good to be true. But I figured I'd swing by good old Home Depot for some paint and try it out. You never know until you try right?
Well, this is how it went:

They turned out perfect!  I especially love the gold.  Although that starfish is a little on the funky side with its extra arm.

I used Rust-oleum Speciality Metallic Spray paint.  I think they were about $3.50 a can. It took about 20 minutes in the sun to dry well.
Level of difficulty: I did it, and didn't get angry or throw anything. So that makes it a 1 out of 5 (Five is like call in a handy man hard).
Confession: Now I want to spray paint everything. There's alot of paint left in these cans. Could be trouble.

Old Navy $1 Flip Flop Day

Tomorrow! It's like black friday to destination wedding brides. Get up early, be there when they open with all your bridesmaids, moms, and anyone willing to brave the never ending bins of foot thongs. For your guests will party so hard on the dance floor that they will gladly trade their Louboutins for another hour of the best wedding reception ever.
Tip: There is a 5 per person limit. This is an official bridesmaid duty day. Go when the store opens, go have coffee (or mimosa) and then head back for 5 more each.

Monday, June 25, 2012

How to make a faux lucite tray for about $7

There are some very cool lucite trays on Etsy like this one:
I found this blush & gold chevron lucite tray on Etsy

Today while tidying up in the studio I came across an acrylic box frame we had used for a last minute signature drink menu several years back. Then I came across a piece of glittery blue scrapbook paper and BAM! I had an idea I just have to share with you.
Here my friends, is the photo how to for a 3 minute $7 instant ceremony program tray!
You'll need:

  • 8.5x11 acrylic box frame (about $5-$6 from any craft store)
  • A 12x12 sheet of scrapbook paper of your choosing.  The heavier cardstock-type papers are obviously going to look better (about $1 from any craft store)
  • Paper Trimmer
  • 3 minutes
Here is your paper.
Take your paper and trim it down to 8.5x11
Pull the inside of the frame out. You don't need to be strong, its paper.  But if you want to make your fiance feel like a macho man, you can ask him for help {insert giggle here}
Slide in the paper you trimmed {the 8.5x11 piece, not the scraps. Just in case you were confused or are well into your favorite bottle of DIY-time wine}
Put in your programs
Smile because you're fancy and you have money left over for another bottle of DIY-time wine after all your hard work.  Bring a coupon to the craft store and you can probably save 50% and get your maid of honor a bottle of DIY-time wine too.

Blush and Gold and Turtle Pond

Have you visited my blush & gold pinterest board {See it here}?  There's prettiness like this darling bridesmaid dress:
Source: via Kelly on Pinterest
After post edit: A great question was asked via comment by "Anonymous" about the above dress.  One of the things I love about Pinterest is that sometimes you do have some clicking to do to find the answers.  In the clicking through - you can come across some really great finds. The best thing I found about this one when I went to find the answer to where to find this dres...some of my favorite people in the world were behind this image and the inspiration shoot that it belongs with!

floral design: datura: a modern garden

beauty: dd nickel

And this stunning ceremony backdrop draped with white sheers and lush white, ivory and champagne flowers, and a trio of chandeliers.

I noticed that this image above was taken by Turtle Pond, who shot one of our destination weddings a few years ago (Here's a link to their wedding slideshow that Jamie shared with us).  They were such a  pleasure to work with! Here are a few shots from that wedding (Pink Shell Resort, Signature Florals, Kakes by Karen):

My Real Wedding from The Knot and The Nest.

My Real Wedding from The Knot and The Nest.

My Real Wedding from The Knot and The Nest.

Friday, June 22, 2012

The Perfect Tiffany Wedding Planning Tote

Now if I could just somehow make this perfect Tiffany tote magically appear at my doorstep.  With monogramming, and I could very well faint in pure joy.
Tiffany Jitney

What I love:
Perfectly placed and sized pockets.
Its Tiffany.
The canvas and leather. I've always loved that combo.  Durable and pretty at the same time.
Its Tiffany.
It has handles and a strap, because sometimes you want to be efficient and sometimes you want the swing.
Its Tiffany.

It is $495, so this goes into the "Splurge" column on your budget. For some this is also known as that little line item called "misc. requirements nobody needs to know about"

Monday, June 11, 2012

Drew Barrymore got married at her private estate, should you?

Trend alert.  I should say, smart move alert.  I've noticed that many many celebrities continue to hold their weddings at the most private places possible, their own estates or private estates in destination locations.  Movie Star Drew Barrymore got married last week at her private estate.

There are huge benefits to having your wedding at a private estate. The biggest benefit is without a doubt the privacy. You don't have to be worried about gawkers or running into another bride on your wedding day. Another great benefit - being able to bring in your own caterer and purchasing your own liquor (cost savings). On top of that there's the flexibility of time and placement. Time for your vendors to install every detail, time to celebrate the way you would like to, without so many restrictions.
For more on Drew's wedding, check out People Magazine

engaged and inspired, vol 4

I've been to many conferences in my time, all of which I have walked away with something that 
I could apply immediately to improve something that I was doing with my business.  However, what I have found with the Engage summits is that besides:
Learning how to motivate myself and those around me,
What is new & great in the industry, 
How to think and be unique,
What I've done wrong and I'm still doing wrong (Sean Low called me out on a 10 minute bus ride and darn it I know he's right);
is that you experience great celebration, done as exquisitely as possible, in the most luxurious environments possible.
It's what our clients deserve and are looking for us to provide for them. To pull that off, you need to have that knowledge of that level of a truly amazing celebration. Doesn't that kind of make sense? So yes, you'll see lots of great pictures of just over 200 people having a phenomenal time - thank goodness.  Otherwise, Engage! would be a bit of a fail. No, it would be a huge fail, and that it is not.

Inspired by my personal Vegas comfort zone (aka roommates and tourist buddy):  Heidi Bartlett, Rachel Troyan and Ashly Olivier.  I share memories with these ladies that I will never forget. Thanks girls.
Inspired by Jes Gordon: who called us all aliens and told us to commune.  She's right. Nobody has ever told it the way she has.  During her talk she explained how she makes a point to include all 5 senses in her events and how she visually listens to her clients - okay, that is freaking brilliant.  Jes would have used a different F word.  She used that word more times than I could count in 22 minutes.  I would give anything to hear her talk again (hint hint wink wink @weddex).
Inspired by the style of Elan Villamor: who pulled off his Mad Men attire like nobodys business all while they (I Do Films) put together same day edits that blew away 200 wedding pro's who have seen more than their fair share of same day edits.
I am inspired by Sean Low: to stop denying that change (big change) is going to come, and so I better get on top of it asap.  If you don't follow Sean and his blog, boy do you have some reading to catch up on.
I just like this picture.  We were actually just raising a glass.  It was that kind of night.
Inspired by Liz Banfield: who I could not be more glad to be working with after all these years.  I appreciate her art so much (did you know she shoots with film?).  You know how when you meet someone and you can feel the kindness?  She has that.  Okay, so behind her...the boy band.  Listen, I have never been so shocked by a reaction as I was to this group.  They did a set of the biggest hits from Nsync, Backstreet Boys, Boyz II Men, and NKOTB.  Brought the house down. I swear I know the 3rd guy from somewhere and its driving me nuts. Anybody?
Inspired by ideas I haven't implemented: but that now I can not wait to offer my clients. Above are a mocktail (which would be great for a pre-ceremony welcome) and French Macaroons displayed a little more sophisticated or sexy even.  Doesn't it seem that we only see them in wedding media when they're displayed "cute"? Below is a mirrored table, with a very pretty arrangement surrounded by champagne flutes, ready to be filled.  Next to our table was an open bottle of champagne on ice.  It was so lovely to have that available.

I'll be the first to admit that Engage is not for every wedding professional out there.  I think Liene Stevens of Splendid Communications actually put it best in her recap,
The room is full of people who do things the "wrong" way and who have business models that would make any Harvard MBAer cringe. It is a room full of people who are not waiting around for the next big thing, but who are busy being the next big thing. It is a room full of people willing to connect the dots. It is a room full of people who aren't necessarily fearless, but who move forward despite their fears.
For those who read these recaps, and are on the fence - JUMP.
I'm a bit sad that my recap series is done.  It was been the most wonderful week and I am truly motivated and excited to create better weddings.  One last thank you to the Engaging Concepts team for continuing to provide this experience.

All images in this series are by Elan Artists ReadyLuck and Scott Clark Photography 

Sunday, June 10, 2012

engaged and inspired, vol 3

I often post my real weddings in series rather than a single post because I feel like its important to show how collectively it fits all together, how a wedding is someone's story. Simply because its not just about the brides bouquet, the cake and a beautiful couple.
That said, here's more of my Engage12 story (Vol 1 & 2 here):
Inspired by great company: These are just a few of the most amazing people I spent time with at Engage this year. These women are rising stars in the wedding industry. In other words, they know their stuff and should be on your short lists. (L to R): Photographer Carla Ten Eyck, me, Stationery Designer Nichole Michel, Event Designer Candice Coppola, Couture boutique owner & Stylist Beth Chapman,  Stationery & Brand Designer Heidi Bartlett, Wedding & Event Planner Rachel Troyan, and Photographer Laura Grier.
Inspired by gorgeous shoes and backdrops: So they had this cool announcer guy every time a new speaker was coming to the stage or it was time for a break.  Yeah, they announced "This break is sponsored by Jimmy Choo" and I literally tossed my seat at my session neighbor Kathy Romero and took off running in my four inch not Jimmy Choo heels prepared to make an immediate exchange.  Alas, there was only one of every shoe. The backdrop on the speaker stage had my head spinning with ideas from the moment I saw it.  Another one of those unexpected takeaways that is going to make a difference at someone's wedding this year.
I am inspired by Sharon Sacks: Talk about someone with heart. Sharon's talk was so invigorating to me.  And then I was fortunate enough to have lunch with her just a couple hours later. Let me just say that lunch was not long enough.   I personally felt like I could only be 100% real and honest with her.  The best part, without warning, she made each of us speak an honest goal. Out loud.  OUT LOUD. I'm not sure I've ever done that before and boy did it feel great. She responded to everything that each of us at her table and instilled confidence. I left feeling really good about where I was headed. Thank you for that Sharon.
Inspired by Liene Stevens: Liene has figured out how to translate data into creative speak for those of us who don't always know how to interpret it or what to do with it.  In other words, she has found a way to explain what our clients are doing and looking for so that we as creatives can be more in tune behind the scenes.  What does that mean?  It means I'm going to produce better weddings because I am aware of more.  She deserves alot of credit.  I am going to be quite bold here and say that if you have not invested any time into her website you are making a mistake. Go now (well not now, because I'm still telling my story, but when you finish.)  Then go here to get the report that will clear a few things up for you.  Now if you ever have the opportunity to sit with her for a minute or two you will quickly find that you really want to have a cocktail with her.  Liene is nice, she's nice and authentic and quirky and herself.
I am inspired by Jacin Fitzgerald: I don't even know exactly when I connected with Jacin but I know that I could not wait to finally meet her an Engage!12.  Here's the thing about Jacin, she has an eye and I really like her view.  Jacin does pretty.  These days it seems like its a bit more difficult to find designers who are impeccable at creating "pretty".  I am inspired by even her instagrams. I'm an instagram addict by the way.  If you're lucky enough to be marrying in California or New England, perhaps give her website a look and give her a call.
I am inspired even when I am FREEZING cold: Note that I am forever wrapped up in a pashmina.  Apparently the Engage!12 team gets this and always includes wraps in the swag bags and always has fresh coffee & tea right outside the door.
Do you know when is another great time to include a pashmina?  In your guests welcome bags or in a basket at a gorgeous dinner party on the beach of the Gulf of Mexico. 

Inspired by Matthew Robbins:  I bought his book about a week before Engage! and didn't put it down until I was forced to.  What I loved about it (besides the gorgeous images) was that it opened my eyes to something I wasn't looking for.  Those are the best books aren't they?  Matthew's talk reinforced the ideas in his book - ask questions, make it personal.

One more volume to go!  Did you catch volumes one and two? Better yet, have you registered for Engage! 12 Breakers?  Oh, and have you noticed how great all the images are on these posts?  Thank you to Elan Artists ReadyLuck and Scott Clark Photography for capturing and sharing so many great moments. These guys were everywhere for 3 days straight documenting everything and everyone  so that it wouldn't be a blur of happiness (Which I also highly recommend doing for destination weddings).

Saturday, June 09, 2012

engaged and inspired, vol 2

In my opening post for this series, I tried to explain what the experience of Engage!12 was, for the rest of the series, I'd like to let the pictures speak and a few thoughts on what I was inspired by.
All of the images below are from Elan Artists ReadyLuck and Scott Clark Photography.
Inspired by sparkly gold things.  Unfortunately this Kate Spade bag on the left wasn't one of the bags that was a part of our swag, and I am still drooling over it. What a tease.  However, this gold bag on the right - that was our swag bag and I absolutely adored it.  I say adored (past tense) because I overloaded it with ALL the swag we received and I broke the handle. Yeah, there was that much stuff.

Inspired by a bag that doubles as a bottle cooler.  After the opening night welcome party we received these totes with dream water (which does work) and a double walled cup.  Printed on the side of the bag there are fill lines for ice and water to keep your bottle cold as you carry it to the pool.  These would make great parting gifts for a welcome party at a destination wedding too.
Inspired by Hand-painted letterpress.  This was our itinerary for the summit.  Having a destination wedding with a few days of events?  Something like this would be great inside welcome bags for your out of town guests. Kristy Rice at Momental Designs can design something exquisite for your itinerary as well.

Inspired by someone who followed their gut to a success.  There's this little place online called The Knot.  Have you heard of it? Just kidding.  Many of us wouldn't be here if it wasn't for what The Knot has offered to weddings.  Above is Carley Roney and she is the founder and editor in chief. The Knot was born from a feeling in her gut - she followed it and look at what she created.
Inspired by this guy who loves being a photographer.  This is Joe Cogliandro. I met him at Engage for the first time.  You know when you meet someone and they're talking about what they do and there's that little sparkle in their eyes and excitement in their voice when you ask what they do? Joe has that.  Check out his website.
Inspired by a long standing relationships: This is Ben & Sylvia Weinstock. They've been married for decades.  I can not wait to be able to say that.  I get giddy just saying I've been married nearly 15 years.  Sylvia created some of the most amazing wedding cakes I've ever laid eyes on.  I love looking at her cakes, but I am most inspired by her genuine zeal for what she does, even after 30 years in the business.  And you know what else?  She's nice.  Nice, like you really want to have lunch with her nice.
Inspired by mini everything: Tiny little cinnamon rolls on a stick.  With a touch of gold of course.  Because a little gold goes a very long way. Confession: I ate more than my share.
Inspired by this sequined chevron linen. It's screaming at me for a certain cocktail reception this fall. Best part about it?  It works in daylight and evening.  Y'all know that is one of my design rules that I don't break.  It has to work no matter the light.
Inspired by a walking bar: This may have been the coolest thing I never expected in our swag bag.  Imagine handing one of these to each of your guests at your poolside cabana party? GLEE. 

Guess what?  There's more.  In case you haven't yet read vol 1...please do.  Vol 3 on the way.

engaged and inspired, vol 1

Engage!12 Attendee Itinerary Kristy Rice I spent the last week in Las Vegas attending Engage!12 It's a business summit created by the impeccable Rebecca Grinnals and Kathryn Arce of Engaging Concepts for luxury wedding professionals. I learned a year ago that you have to experience luxury in order to create it.  It was one of my biggest take aways from Engage11.  This was my 2nd time attending, and I left inspired with more than I can fit into one post, so expect a series (all images courtesy of Elan Artists, ReadyLuck or  Scott Clark Photography unless otherwise noted).

Before I get into the nitty-gritty of this series, I would like to show gratitude & appreciation and to offer some advice. I want to thank Kathryn & Rebecca for creating this environment for this industry to grow and be inspired through an experience that changes you. It is not merely about dozens of great speeches and presentations. Its not just about the phenomenal parties. It's more than the gourmet food (and cocktails) and networking that you never expected you'd ever have. For me, and I imagine so many others, that it's about what you leave with.   You leave with a list of action items to become better.  You leave with an arsenal of new colleagues who want nothing but to support you and to see you succeed.  You leave knowing that you made an impact on someone that you reached out to (although you don't always know exactly how).  You leave knowing you will grow and that you're going to be a part of creating amazing wedding experiences. And that is an awesome feeling.  You leave with an emotion that pushes you forward.  I also want to say thank you to Wendy Timson from Wolfgang Puck Catering who so graciously shared her cab with me to the airport.  In the 10 minutes time that I spent with her, she managed to single-handedly solve a major issue I was having with one of my weddings this fall with her expertise.  So my advice, to anyone who  is a part of the luxury wedding industry - put away the excuses and attend. And for those who question if it's really worth the financial and time investment, let me answer for you; yes it is.

As they say, a picture speaks a thousand words, so I will keep my type short from here on out.  And if a picture speaks a thousand words, you'll be awestruck by what these videos by I do films speak:

This film was produced by I Do Films, LLC.
engage!12 Mandarin Oriental, Las Vegas | Day 2 & 3 from I Do Films on Vimeo.
This film was produced by I Do Films, LLC.

Next up, the photos!  I'm so excited to share these!

Friday, June 01, 2012

Boarding Pass App: Wedding party gift?

If you're planning on traveling to a destination wedding by plane anytime soon, and you want to have the most stylish flight tracking app on your iphone, boy have I found the app for you.  The next time you receive an itunes card, maybe treat yourself to this $4.99 app that I am in love with. It's called Flight Card and look how stylish it is:

Not only is it stylish - its quite functional.  The app tracks 90,000 flights, 16,000 airports and 1500 airlines.
To make it easier for you, here's a QR code (just hold your iphone over and scan):
I also tend to think it would make a great gift for your wedding party. Maybe give your bridesmaids and groomsmen and itunes card with a list of great travel related apps and travel tunes to download for your bachelorette weekend and the wedding of course.

101 Destination Wedding Planning Tips

From the editors of Destination Weddings & Honeymoons