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A Blog for the Discerning Bride

Archive for August, 2014

     
29
Aug
Wedding Trend: DIY Food and Beverages
categories: cakes and sweets, favor and gift ideas, reception ideas, Trends, trends in catering, Wedding Inspiration

Involving guests in the wedding by offering fun activities has been embraced by many brides and grooms so it’s only natural that this casual yet more hospitality- minded idea would influence wedding food and beverage menus as well.

The DIY mind set began with the famous “Pasta Station” where guests get to choose their preferred pasta type, sauce, and add-ins all for a chef to prepare on the spot. This idea seeped into DIY candy bars/buffets (make your own wedding favor? Genius!)  and mini dessert tables that allow guests to pick and choose their dessert (while taking the pressure off staff to cut and serve cake).

Phoenix Bride and Groom_wedding magazine, Arizona_wedding trends_reception ideas_catering_Sedona Bride_DIY Dessert

(Photo courtesy of: Sedona Bride Photographers)

These options allow the bride and groom to showcase their individuality which translates to a more personal experience for guests. So it’s only natural that couples have added backyard charm to their weddings by introducing serve yourself lemonade and signature cocktail stations along with DIY food stations such as Smore’s Bars and Salad Stations (no more picking onions out of your salad or ordering a special salad with the dressing on the side).

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(Photo courtesy of: Hagerty Photography)

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(Photo courtesy of: Elyse Hall Photography)

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(Photo courtesy of: Jill Lauren Photography)

A few things to consider when going the DIY food and beverage route:

-Remember that your personal food preferences are the star but you also need to appeal to a wide audience. If you love spicy food, don’t forget to include at least one mild option for guests to enjoy.

-Stick with a general theme. If you want a Glam BBQ, go for it. But don’t confuse the meal by offering your favorite lasagna dish and sushi just because you love them so much and can’t not have them. Your original idea will get lost in the shuffle and will be confusing for guests (kind of like going to a Mexican restaurant and ordering a hamburger).

-Consider, but don’t be a slave to, allergies and other restrictions. It’s really really nice if you want to have a gluten free food option but if your caterer can’t guarantee true gluten-free (the prep area and all things the food touches must never be in contact with foods that contain gluten), skip it and tell your gluten-free guests ahead of time so they can be prepared.

-Find a caterer that inspires you. If you are looking for artistic and unusual food, don’t hire a caterer that stays on the safe side. Ask to see some of their recent menus- what they show you is what they’re most proud of so if there’s nothing that piques your interest, you might want to look elsewhere.  Our Elite Circle caterers are true visionaries when it comes to catering and if you have a specific menu in mind, they can help. If you have no menu in mind, they can still help!

Phoenix Bride and Groom_wedding magazine, Arizona_wedding trends_reception ideas_catering_Hagerty Photography_DIY salad

(Photo courtesy of: Hagerty Photography)

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(Photo courtesy of: Elyse Hall Photography)

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(Photo courtesy of: Hollye Schumacher Photography)

With the idea that you can make your food and beverages at your wedding 1,000 times more personal than “Herb chicken with garlic mashed potatoes and asparagus” (a menu I happen to personally love but am tired of seeing at weddings), couples are having FUN with their food and choosing everything from cocktails and appetizers to small bites and dessert stations all with their personal preferences at the forefront. We’re loving this wedding trend and can’t wait to see what couples choose to serve their guests this wedding season.

Phoenix Bride & Groom, your source for all things wedding in Arizona!

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26
Aug
Great Find: Custom Glam Wedding Detail
categories: for your ceremony, reception ideas, Tips and Advice, Trends, Wedding Inspiration

We pride ourselves on being your source for all things wedding in Arizona. Actually, let’s re-phrase that: We pride ourselves on being your source for all things wedding in Arizona that are awesome, glamorous, pretty, cute, and inspiring. That’s better now isn’t it?

With that mission in mind, when we saw this beautiful custom mirror designed by Kimberly McDowell of The Event Essentials, we knew we had to share it with you. Here’s the awesome, glamorous, pretty, cute, and inspiring scoop:

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(Photo courtesy of: Jennifer Bowen Photography)

How was this custom design used at the couple’s wedding?

This beautiful frame welcomed Minah and Charles’ guests with style and glamour. Custom signs are such a nice, personalized touch to welcome your guests to your wedding ceremony or even cocktail hour. Hotel signs do a great job of directing them, but often times they are just simple and generic. 

How did you go about designing this mirror?

I designed gorgeous stationery pieces for their reception and this lettering complimented it exactly. Vinyl graphics are super easy to design. My background during college years was working for a sign company so I just need measurements of any sign, frame, or mirror and then design the graphics based on those specs. And you always get to see a proof before we go to production.

What does a couple needs to do to get one of these signs from you? 

Just call or email any time! I’m always happy to design a beautiful graphic out of vinyl. You can even have a custom monogram made and use it on a bar, dj booth, dance floor or even bathroom mirror telling your guests to “Primp pretty, but get back on the dance floor!”.

Love it Kim! Thanks for the info. Find Kimberly and The Event Essentials online and on Facebook or just email her: info@theeventessentials.com!

Here’s one more from the wedding- a signature cocktail sign to make all other cocktail signs jealous!

Phoenix Bride and Groom_Arizona magazine_weddings_custom designs_stationery_reception ideas_The Event Essentials_Jennifer Bowen Photography_custom graphic mirror_signature cocktails

(Photo courtesy of: Jennifer Bowen Photography)

Phoenix Bride & Groom, your source for all things wedding in Arizona!

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22
Aug
Wedding Trends: Top Bridal Gown Trends for 2014/2015
categories: bridal fashions, Trends

Sometimes we get in the mood to simply look at pretty things. Today is one of those days so we’re focusing on the prettiest of all things: the bride. More specifically, the bridal gown. Whether it’s sparkle, drama, or class you’re after, there’s something for every bride’s style.

To keep you in the loop when you go shopping for your bridal gown, check out the top trends in wedding gowns for the 2014/2015 wedding season from Elite Circle bridal shop Schaffer’s Bridal:

1. Exquisite beading. Eddy K, an Italian Designer, offers the most spectacular beading we’ve seen! 
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2. Simplicity is still chic though. For example, Paloma Blanca’s #4465 is stunning. 
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3. Lots of lace! Classic, sometimes old Hollywood styles are definitely staying in the forefront of the trends.
MAGGIE SOTTERO DESIGNS

4. Veils. Brides are really liking more bling on their veils and cathedral length at that!
MAGGIE SOTTERO DESIGNS
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5. Belts, belts and more belts! They add a special something to any style!
EK1040_close MAGGIE SOTTERO DESIGNS www.maggiesottero.com

Thanks Schaffer’s Bridal for your insight into the bridal gown trends of 2014/2015!

Find Schaffer’s online and follow them on Facebook.

Phoenix Bride & Groom, your Arizona wedding magazine

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19
Aug
Wedding Advice: 7 Tips For Including The Little Ones
categories: Tips and Advice

Let’s face it, kids are adorable at weddings. They dress up, are enchanted by a stunning bride, love attention, can provide comic relief, and sometimes school the adults on the dance floor. Since they aren’t professional wedding guests though, they might not be on A+ behavior. Here are some things you can do to prevent chaos from taking over when you include the little ones at your wedding:

1. Include them in the pre-wedding fun. Kids like to be included and it’s easy to capture their loyalty, which will come in handy during the ceremony and toasts, if you think ahead. Manis and pedis for the girls, golf or a baseball game for the boys. Little ones can do these things as long as there is adult supervision.

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(Photo courtesy of: Savidge Photography)

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(Photo courtesy of: Jennifer Bowen Photography)

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(Photo courtesy of: Marriott Photography, Location: JW Marriott Desert Ridge)

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(Photo courtesy of: Gina Meola Photography)

2. Practice. Some kids act crazy when they have anxiety. Heck, so do some adults! To alleviate stress and set everyone up for success, if you have kids participating in your wedding, talk with them about what to expect and then let them practice at the rehearsal. This will help them get used to the space and the aisle. Just like with you, this won’t alleviate all the wedding day jitters but it will help.

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(Photo courtesy of: Hagerty Photography)

Phoenix Bride and Groom_Wedding advice_kids at weddings_Jill Lauren Photography

(Photo courtesy of: Jill Lauren Photography)

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(Photo courtesy of: Sedona Bride Photography)

3. Give their hands something to do. Whether it’s at the rehearsal dinner, the walk down the aisle, the ceremony, cocktail hour, or the reception, kids need something to do and if they are not provided with an option, they WILL find something to play with (like the silverware, the flowers, the napkins, etc). Give them I Spy (for those who can read), quiet handheld games, coloring books, pinwheels, etc. If you have fun and age appropriate activities at the ready, your chances of having an impromptu game of tackle football will be greatly reduced.

4. Bribe them. You need these kids to WANT to please you so make the first move. It doesn’t matter if it’s with extravagant sparkly shoes, candy filled goodie bags, or cold hard cash (this works particularly well for the older kids), make those kids adore you by bribing them. Of course get permission from the parents first!

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(Photo courtesy of: Hagerty Photography)

5. Employ the buddy system. Aim for a 1:1 ratio when it comes to kids at weddings. You need 1 adult who can rescue and whisk for every child involved in your wedding. This can be dad, mom, grandma, anyone.  And have a back up in case that adult gets tired (and they will get tired!).

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(Photo courtesy of: Elyse Hall Photography, Location: Omni Scottsdale Resort and Spa at Montelucia)

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(Photo courtesy of: Katrina Wallace Photography)

6. Get pics quick. Kids have a low tolerance for standing in groups, squinting in the sun, and smiling for the many cameras pointed at them. Get those formal pictures taken care of as early in the day as possible and have lollipops close by. After about 5 minutes, they’ll be done. They want to play. They want to dance. Let them!

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(Photo courtesy of: Kimberly Jarman Photography, Location: Omni Scottsdale Resort and Spa at Montelucia)

7. Arrange for childcare at the reception. As the evening wears on, some kids will conk out, some will get hyper. If there’s a “safe zone”, i.e., kids activity game truck, hired babysitter room, etc. you can enjoy the night and so can everyone else!

Remember, just like any wedding, not everything will be perfect but if you embrace the (potentially cute) chaos of kids, all will be well and you may just have some fun photos to boot!

Phoenix Bride & Groom, your Arizona wedding magazine

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15
Aug
Real Arizona Wedding: Tiffany and Sean’s Destination Desert Wedding
categories: cakes and sweets, destination weddings and honeymoons, fabulous reception sites, floral inspiration, real weddings, reception ideas, Wedding Inspiration

Phoenix Bride and Groom_Real Wedding_Melissa Jill Photography_Desert Botanical Garden_Tiffany and Sean (1) Arizona Wedding Vendors_Phoenix Bride and Groom_Phoenix Wedding Magazine_2014

Wedding Professionals Who Help You Wed in Style

Ceremony and Reception Site: Desert Botanical Garden :: Wedding Planner: Victoria Canada Weddings and Events :: Floral: Butterfly Petals :: Cake: Kick Ass Kakes :: DJ: Ray the DJ

Explore our complete list of Elite Circle members

Blogthinline (1)Photographer: Melissa Jill Photography :: Caterer: Atlasta Catering :: Ceremony Musicians: Mike Hall Quartet :: Photobooth: Shutterbooth :: Bridal Gown: Uptown Bridal :: Transportation: Ollie the Trolley Blogthinline (1)

Tiffany and Sean’s wedding planning was no simple feat- they currently live in China, their families are from the East Coast, and they didn’t want a “regular wedding”. So what did they do? They went back to where they fell in love (Arizona), chose a location where the beauty of the Sonoran Desert would shine, picked a color palette of peach and gray to complement the desert landscape, and gathered a vendor team to help them make their wedding dreams come true!

One major bonus for the wedding guests and the couple themselves is that the Chihuly blown glass exhibit was on display at the time of the wedding- Desert Botanical Garden is one of the most spectacular places to see this stunning artwork and since Tiffany and Sean are admirers of the artist, it was all a bit serendipitous. They even had cupcakes with blown glass sugar flowers to mimic the art!

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Our friends and family are very important to us and many of them participated in the ceremony.  My brother and sister did a reading from a humorous children’s book called “Rosie and Michael” about two friends who will do anything for the other one.  Sean’s two nieces served as flower/ring girls.  Our friend, Mike Hall, officiated the ceremony.  Since Sean is a musician, four of his friends were able to play in a brass quartet during our ceremony.

I love the sweet glances and funny expressions Tiffany and Sean share

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Subtle nods to Arizona are found throughout- succulents in the floral designs, churros for dessert, and mariachis- but the couples’ love of travel was also featured in the escort cards and  table names.

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Phoenix Bride and Groom_Real Wedding_Melissa Jill Photography_Desert Botanical Garden_Tiffany and Sean (11)

These are the blown glass sugar flower cupcakes- I can only imagine how much work went into creating these beauties!

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Tiffany and Sean, thanks you for sharing your wedding day with us and congratulations!

Phoenix Bride & Groom, your Arizona wedding magazine

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12
Aug
Wedding Trend: Bow Ties Are Back!
categories: Grooms, Tips and Advice, Trends, Wedding Resources

Bow ties enjoyed a comeback just a few years ago but then seemed to fade away. Well, we are happy to declare that bow ties are back! Grooms_option 2_Katrina Wallace Photographers_bow tie_2

(Photo courtesy of: Katrina Wallace Photographers)

Here’s why you’ll want to consider embracing this charming alternative to a neck tie:

A bow tie makes an impression. Think of the iconic men who wore bow ties: Frank Sinatra, Winston Churchill, Fred Astaire. A slew of red carpet celebrities wear them: George Clooney and Leonardo DiCaprio to name a few. And Justin Timberlake wears one. You may not want to be just like these guys but people still remember them and that’s a good thing.

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(Photo courtesy of: Jennifer Bowen Photography, Floral: Flowers by Jodi)

Bow ties are for men who value style. No guy who is planning to wear his Dockers and a semi-wrinkled button down for his wedding will consider wearing a bow tie. You’re not a Dockers-at-a-wedding kind of groom, are you?

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(Photo courtesy of: Katrina Wallace Photographers)

They’re surprisingly easy to wear. Once tied (and no, it doesn’t have to be absolutely perfect), it won’t get caught in your bride’s wedding gown beading, it won’t whip in the wind, and it also won’t take a dip in your cocktail, or worse, your dinner. That’s kind of perfect, right?

Not sure how to tie a bow tie? Here’s a video from Brooks Brothers to help you:

Phoenix Bride & Groom, your Arizona wedding magazine

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