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Archive for November, 2012

Engagement: Lindsay and Nathaniel
categories: Engagement

Lindsay and Nathaniel are a thoroughly modern couple who met on and I loved their engagement session for it’s scenic locations and comfort level with the camera. They love golf so naturally, they headed to one of Arizona’s many beautiful courses.

Favorite Things:

He [Nathaniel] is happy that I keep our lives organized… from birthday cards to meals to bills; I’m [Lindsay] happy that he is such a handy man! On my ‘never going to do that’ list is everything that comes so easily to him – fixing appliances, setting up new household gadgets and connecting all those wires behind the TV!

Something about you as a couple that we won’t see in the pictures:

…we argue! We have very strong and stubborn personalities. That said, what you see in the photos is real. We respect and love each other more because of our differences. We are committed to making each day better than the last.


I love this photo! It’s dramatic and really shows off the beauty of the Sonoran Desert.

(All photos courtesy of: Kimberly Jarman Photography)

Lindsay and Nathaniel’s wedding was featured on our blog too- click here to see the gorgeous day.

Congratulations Lindsay and Nathaniel!

Happy Planning from your Arizona Wedding Blog!


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Bridal Event: Sedona Wedding Studio Bootcamp 2013
categories: destination weddings and honeymoons, open houses, Sedona, Sedona Weddings, upcoming events, Wedding Inspiration, Wedding Resources

I hesitate to call the Sedona Wedding Boot Camp a bridal show because it’s really so much more than that. It’s intimate (but not so small that you feel like there are not enough vendors to talk with), it’s casual (but not sloppy- the best in wedding designers, caterers, florists, etc. participate) and it’s completely worth your time (Sedona is only a short 90 minutes from Phoenix and the participating vendors regularly work in Phoenix). Your wedding planning mission is simple: Click here to register!

The 2012 Sedona Wedding Boot Camp was nothing short of inspiring- the vendors brought their best ideas and creativity, the speakers shared invaluable knowledge in a friendly format, the attendees chatted with vendors alongside other couples planning their weddings, and overall it was just a really fun and beautiful day.

This is the video from last year’s Boot Camp:

Some of the gorgeous things attendees experienced:

 (All images courtesy of: Sedona Bride Photographers; individual image credits can be found here)

Happy Planning from your Arizona Wedding Blog!


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Real Arizona Wedding: Lindsay and Nathaniel
categories: destination weddings and honeymoons, fabulous reception sites, real weddings, Scottsdale Weddings, trends in catering

Lindsay and Nathaniel’s destination wedding at Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain Resort and Spa was filled with special moments, the most clever first look plan, cheery and colorful decor and of course, lots of fun. Because 100% of the guests were from out of town, they planned several fun events throughout the extended wedding weekend: On Wednesday evening, several of us went to a Diamondbacks baseball game. On Thursday night, we hosted a mixology class with all family and the bridal party at the Sanctuary (and consequently found Nate’s favorite drink – the fiery mandarin). On Friday, we hosted a rehearsal dinner (tacos and margaritas!) on the patio at Old Town Tortilla Factory.

Thoughtful touches made the day especially memorable:

The guys golfed at a nearby course the morning of the wedding and I hosted a yoga class for the women. I also had a private breakfast with my mom and dad where we exchanged little tokens of love and support. And they promised to carry me down the aisle if I tripped!

When the guys came back from golfing and lunch, Nate was impressed that I managed to stock his room with his favorite cider all the way from London. We discovered it on a favorite vacation together, so it made the day that much more special. I also had boxer shorts made for him with photos of our two dogs who were unable to be with us at the wedding. The boxers brought them there in spirit!

Why the blindfold? Lindsay explains: I knew I would be nervous walking the aisle (the idea of everyone staring at me having an emotional moment had my stomach in knots), so I wanted a chance to see Nate before the ceremony. He, however, wanted nothing to do with a first-look, so I worked with our photographer on a compromise – when Nate and I exchanged little gifts a few hours before the ceremony, my maid of honor presented him with a blindfold. If he would allow me to see him, talk to him, calm my nerves, he wouldn’t have to see me! It worked out perfectly. I basically danced down the aisle I was so excited. I was able to really take it all in and enjoy our ceremony.

Want something different for your ceremony music? Check this out: Nate and I share a love of hip-hop music, so we had our string quartet, Tetra Quartet, learn two Kanye West songs for the entrance and exit – Touch the Sky on the way in, and Good Life on the way out. Nate could see a bunch of heads bobbing in the audience as the songs played – we loved this surprise!

Wine has also been a beloved part of our relationship – from our first date at a wine bar to making plans to visit wineries on our honeymoon – so we had a customized wine box made for a very special ceremony that our Officiant told us about. Nate and I brought our favorite bottle of wine with us to Arizona, wrote notes to each other, and then had the guests write small notes of love and support as they were getting seated for the ceremony. The ushers collected everything, closed the box, and our Officiant gave a blessing over our wine box during the ceremony. We will open the box, read all of the love notes and drink the wine on our first anniversary – and then we will re-write letters to each other and select a new bottle of wine to go back in the box. We can enjoy this tradition year after year!

Having fallen in love with the mountains in Paradise Valley, there is no better place to get married – in my humble opinion – than at the Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain. We knew immediately that the intimate setting, friendly staff and excellent list of favored vendors, several of which we had already met with, was our top choice.

The bright pink and orange floral arrangements and rustic wooden elements created a casual chic vibe for the reception; Lindsay and Nathaniel wanted their guests to mix and mingle so they chose an open seating arrangement

The food was completely customized for the couple and their guests: The reception menu reflected our mixture of tastes – beef tenderloin and lobster macaroni & cheese for him, fancy hors d’oeuvres, truffle risotto and a miso glazed sea bass for me. Johnny Walker Blue for him and a gluten-free red velvet cake for me! The Sanctuary was able to accommodate all food restrictions ranging from gluten to tree nuts to unpasteurized items for my pregnant sister-in-law…the food was impeccable.

Lindsay + Nathaniel from Serendipity Cinematography on Vimeo.

Congratulations Lindsay and Nathaniel and thank you for sharing your day with us!

Lindsay and Nathaniel’s Real Arizona Wedding Team:

Ceremony and Reception Site: Sanctuary on Camelback Mountain

Photographer: Kimberly Jarman Photography

Videographer: Serendipity Cinematography

Bridal Gown Store: Demetrios

Florist: The Flower Studio

Invitations: Wedding Paper Divas

Cake: Julia Baker Confections

Entertainment: Desert House Productions

Ceremony Musicians: Tetra Quartet

Linens: The Sanctuary and Flower Studio

Make-up Artist: Amanda Tzavaras

Hair Stylist: Ashley Young

Officiant: From this Day Forward






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St Pucchi 2013 Gown Collection
categories: bridal fashions

Since New York Fashion Week, New York Bridal Market and New York Bridal Week are now concluded, there is a plethora of beautiful dresses floating through our wedding crazed minds. Of course lace was huge this year. So were texture and sweetheart necklines. But we also noticed quite a few short wedding gowns on the runways and  were delighted by their whimsy. Take a look at these from St. Pucchi‘s 2013 Collection: romance with a touch of flirt was designer Rani Totman’s inspiration.

 This is a sweet strapless eyelet number that just makes me smile!

 For those who want a “double dress”, this one has it all! Modern styling with an exaggerated asymmetrical hemline that converts to a party dress

You can find St Pucchi at Mariee Gallery at The Shops at Gainey Village

Happy Planning from your Arizona Wedding Blog!


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Real Arizona Wedding: Aubrie and Ben
categories: Giveaways and Contests, real weddings

Aubrie and Ben are among the lucky ones- they found each other, fell in love, and got married. But there is so much more to their story. They met as counselors at a camp for children with cancer (both have survived cancer and wanted to give back) and have been together for 8 years. Ben proposed in 2008 but since they both work at non-profits, they postponed their wedding due to finances. When they heard about the Palacio Wedding Giveaway at the scenic Pointe Hilton Squaw Peak, they made a video and crossed their fingers. This is their entry video:

Well…they won so their wedding at Palacio was completely paid for! Can you imagine how great that must feel? And the resort, which is nestled among dramatic granite bluffs overlooking the Valley, is just beautiful and was a perfect fit for this sweet couple.

I asked Ben and Aubrie to describe their wedding day in 3 words:

Aubrie: Organic (meaning real, beautifully raw feelings and emotions), Enchanting, Super Fun!

Ben: Us, real, perfect

Ben and Aubrie are so happy all the time. I get the feeling that they know what’s important in life and they cherish each other every day. Here’s a little bit more about them:

What is your favorite way to relax together?

Aubrie:I love watching Sunday football with Ben in our sweats. Especially now that the weather is cooling down. We make (or order) some good food and just hang out on the couch. I usually cheer for the underdog and Ben cheers for the individual players on his fantasy football team.

Ben: I would have to agree with Aubrie. Ordering a pizza and watching football on a Sunday afternoon with Aubrie is the best. How lucky am I that she loves watching football and having pizza?!

What is your favorite thing about each other?

Aubrie: I love Ben’s gentle nature and his honest approach to everything. He is so supportive and he always sees the good in me. When I’m feeling badly about myself, he has a way of gently reminding me that I am beautiful. Also, I love that Ben always has a game plan. It helps keep me on track because I’m defiantly a “fly by the seat of my pants” kinda girl. We make a good team.

Ben: What’s not to love about Aubrie? Quite simply, she is the greatest human being I’ve ever met. Obviously she is beautiful, but she is giving, kind and caring in such a genuine way. Her laugh and smile are infectious. There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t realize how lucky I am to be married to her.

The property has many niches and private spaces perfect for photos- I really like the lush greenery in the background

Looking back, what was the best moment of the day?

Aubrie: Definitely sharing our vows with each other. Being able to share our promises and how we feel about each other in front of our friends and families was priceless. I liked that they were different and personal.

Ben: The moment I first saw Aubrie walking down the isle with her parents – I lost it! Also, sharing our vows. I liked that we made it unique to us and genuine. I think our story of how we came to be is unique, and it was fitting that our wedding was the same way.

Aubrie recalls: Our wedding was full of surprises, excitement and happiness. The wedding itself was absolutely beautiful and we held it in the garden of the Pointe Hilton Squaw Peak. We had a short, but sweet ceremony where we exchanged our own vows (we both cried tears of joy) and it couldn’t have gone any better. We laughed, cried and hugged as we finally made our marriage official! The minister performed a unique ceremony that centered on love and how good things can come from not-so-good things – in our case, our love came as a direct result of cancer since we both are survivors.

I love this picture so much!

The couple’s fond memories of the reception: The reception was equally as moving and passionate. The toasts and dances were filled with immense love. Ben and Justin (Best Man) even did a rendition of NSYNC’s ‘Bye, Bye, Bye’ which made for lots of laughs and cheers. Our first dance song was “The Beauty of Who You Are” by Marc Broussard which sums up our relationship and how we feel about each other perfectly. We were fortunate enough to not have to worry about anything and we could enjoy the night completely. At one point, we looked around and saw almost every guest on the dance floor and it was one of those moments in life that seemed to stand still, in the best way possible.

The beautiful reception room at Palacio was decorated in white and gold; the color palette was warmed up with candles and accented with both rustic and glamorous touches

I have no idea what Aubrie’s friend said but I adore the laughter it evoked

If you could go back and do anything differently, what would it be?

Aubrie: I wouldn’t have waited so long to marry Ben. Married life with Ben is so much better than regular life! Honestly, everything was perfect and so beautiful it still brings tears to my eyes. Everyone had such a great time, we are still talking about it!

Ben: I don’t think there is anything I would’ve done differently. The whole day still seems surreal. Most importantly, I see how happy Aubrie is and that is my No. 1 priority in life. It is still humbling to look back on. It was a stress-less day and undoubtedly the best day of my life.

(All photos except invitation photo, courtesy of: Cameron + Kelly Studio)

Final thoughts: Looking back, the night couldn’t have gone any better. There were no unexpected glitches, and everything went according to plan. It was the greatest day of both of our lives and we will forever cherish it.

Congratulations Ben and Aubrie- we are so happy for you!

About the venue: With its impressive views, Spanish-Mediterranean architecture and versatile entertaining space, the recently transformed Palacio provides an ideal setting for your big day. Palacio’s Veranda Room, which can accommodate up to 150 guests, features high ceilings and a fireplace. Ceremonies or dinners with 60 guests or fewer can be held in the Palacio Lounge which provides views of the nearby Phoenix mountain preserves. Couples can also use the Palacio Loft, which overlooks the lounge and is adjacent to several balconies. For more information about having your wedding at the resort, click here.

Aubrie and Ben’s Real Arizona Wedding Team:

Ceremony and Reception Site: Pointe Hilton Squaw Peak

Photography: Cameron & Kelly Studio

Wedding Coordination:  Sterling Event Design

Décor: Simply Elegant Event & Wedding Design

Videography: Princess Bride

Entertainment: Ray the DJ

Wedding Invitations: The Event Essentials

Wedding Cake:  Honey Moon Sweets

Groom’s Tuxedo: Mr. Formal

Happy Planning from your Arizona Wedding Blog!





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Great Find: OKAb Shoes
categories: bridal fashions, favor and gift ideas

I recently took a trip to Taos, New Mexico and had a bit of time to spend at the spa. Now, I don’t “spa” very much but since I have friends who do, I know that you HAVE to immerse yourself in the spa culture to fully enjoy it. You need to get there early, change into the spa attire, drink the cucumber water, listen to the music and make yourself relax before you get your treatments. So I did that and it was all good but what I delighted in, and I know this is going to sound really funny, was the robe and OKAb shoes I was given to change into.

Why did I like that best? Because it forced me to become someone else- someone who spas, someone who gets pampered, someone who lounges. It also provided the perfect opportunity to tell you about OKAb shoes, on which I have a small crush.

OKAb is known as the very best in spa footwear (because they are waterproof, bacteria resistant, non-slip, durable, and washable) but I suggest you take a look at their extensive designs and consider them the perfect bridal party spa day gift, beach wedding footwear, or hip poolside flips.

The company offers a ton of styles and colors to choose from (notice the embellishments?) and best of all, OKAb is extremely eco-friendly. They recycle almost everything at their Georgia manufacturing plant and have a shoe recycling program that uses old shoes in various ways.

As I pranced my relaxed self around the spa, I was super comfy in my OKAb’s and can’t wait to have an excuse to use them again!

Happy Planning from your Arizona Wedding Blog!



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