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Elegant Outdoor Provence Wedding

Whenever my newly engaged friends come seeking advice, I tell them all the same thing – consider a destination wedding. One, they’re beautiful. Two, we all get to travel to someplace utterly fabulous (South of France, anyone?) And three, because you’ve got amazing vendors like Lavender And Rose and Laetitia C on location and others like O’Malley Photographers willing to travel right with you. It’s sort of a win-win-win situation, and you can see more pretty evidence sitting here.

Colors
Seasons
Summer
Settings
Estate

From O’Malley PhotographersWe have a gorgeous and intimate destination wedding here to share with you! Taken by the gorgeous scenery and surroundings, this couple opted for a stylish, but rustic destination wedding in the south of France. Domaine des Grottes, the hundreds of years old estate, beautifully restored and turned into an idyllic wedding venue in Provence provided the picture perfect back-drop. Guests gathered together at a nearby catholic church to witness the bride and groom say their vows and afterward enjoyed cocktails, live jazz and dinner on the estate. The bride and groom chose to hire Lavender and Rose to plan and design their destination event without flaw. With beautiful furniture, old-world elegance and sweeping views across the rolling foot hills and olive groves, this truly was a dream destination wedding.

From The Bride…We wanted to get married in Provence. We visited a lot of venues, and we really fell in love with this place the first time we went there. It had everything we wanted, the house itself was beautiful, very well decorated, with enough rooms to allow our families to stay with us. The surroundings with the vineyards and olive fields are magical. They have a very beautiful pool with old stone arcades, where we imagined the reception taking place. It was the perfect mix between the Provence authenticity and modernity we were after. Also, the owner was lovely and really helpful. We rented the whole domaine for 3 days and it felt like home.

We wanted an elegant and ‘modern’ wedding, but as we were in Provence we wanted to incorporate some elements of it in the decor. For example, our stationery was not very traditional but yet very chic, and we used pictures of the domaine, region and images of flowers from the area in it. Our graphic designer thought we should use the idea of travel and designed a series of bespoke little stamps that incorporated some of our styling ideas. We also used names of flowers you can find in the area (lavender, rose, mimosa etc) as table names and Louise created stamps with the name of each flower that we used on our table holders. The RSVP was a postcard as well.

For the tablescapes we wanted something chic and modern, that’s why we chose crystal chairs with grey tablecloth and very neat and structured ceterpieces of peonies, roses and hydrangeas. Our wedding planners and the graphic designer who designed our stationery helped us to achieve what we wanted.

The color scheme was navy blue, dove grey, blush pink, and peach. We had blue envelopes, pink and grey invitations. The flowers were pink and peach and the tablecloth and napkins were pink and grey. The flower girls and page boys were also in navy blue and blush pink. Even the church was pink! The source of inspiration was the place itself which was an old postal station/ coaching inn from the 18th century.

Definitely hire a good wedding planner from the area. It is very difficult to find good service providers, caterers, flowers, etc when you are not from there and also you need someone on-site that coordonates everything, the deliveries, the settings etc. I would also send save-the-dates and invitations far in advance to make sure people can book their flights, hotels etc. Our wedding planners also created a website that was very useful for all the guests who travelled to the south of France.

Photography: O'Malley Photographers | Event Design: Lavender And Rose | Event Planning: Lavender And Rose | Floral Design: Laetitia C | Wedding Dress: Vera Wang | Cake: Pamela Brown | Invitations: Louise Richardson | Catering: Marrou | Make-up: Laury Guglielmetti | Hair: Gerard Coiffure | Venue: Domaine Des Grottes

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Setting the Table with Wedding Paper Divas

There’s no doubt we’re entering the season of pretty tablescapes, and around these parts? A gorgeous table topped with personalized paper goods is sure to induce a swoon. That’s where our friends at Wedding Paper Divas come in. From table numbers to escort cards to beautiful custom menus, they’ve got a whole section dedicated to day-of pieces to fancy up your tables.

When it comes to your guest tables, custom paper goods are a great way to personalize your overall design, while impressing your guests. From greeting them with a stunning table of escort cards to wowing them with a custom menu-topped place setting.

Preppy Elegance
Table Tip: Mimic your stationery design in your florals for a cohesive tablescape. The Dotted Beauty suite (shown above) pairs perfectly with anemone sprinkled arrangements for a preppy, yet elegant look.

Organic & Rustic
Table Tip: Consider your venue and surroundings when choosing a design for your day of pieces. From a farm style soiree to a gorgeous vineyard-set reception to a garden fete, the Penned Promises design (shown above) has that soft, organic feel that we love.

Looking for more ways to pretty up your reception? Check out a few of our favorite Wedding Paper Divas additions to cocktail hour and tips for decorating your bar!

(Preppy Elegance) Photography: Milton Photography | Floral Design: MADAME Artisan Fleuriste | Event Design: Perles D’émotions | (Organic & Rustic) Photography: Marissa Lambert | Design & Rentals: 12th Table | Floral Design: Intertwine Style

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Rustic Elegance at Cornerstone Sonoma

When you start to peel away all the layers of gorgeous in this ridiculously beautiful Sonoma soiree, you realize that because of all the personal and heartfelt touches dreamt up by this darling couple, you’ve started to love it like it was your very own wedding. Every sweet senitment tucked into this gallery beautifully captured by Josh Gruetzmacher Photography makes you fall in love with not only the wedding but the couple, leaving us with a wedding too special not to share.

Colors
Seasons
Summer
Settings
Farm
Styles
Rustic

From The Bride…We were inspired by one of our favorite Disney movies, Tangled. Tim and I are truly kids at heart and wanted our wedding to reflect the playfulness of the characters while capturing the ethereal fairytale feel that the animators portrayed in the movie with naturalist art and lush imagery.

Cornerstone provided the perfect modern storybook backdrop for our wedding with its beautiful gardens, lily pond, and rustic barn, with a fun twist of modern eclecticism in the form of unique outdoor sculptures, many of which were interactive. We simply added a dash of greenery, a mix of soft pastel florals, oodles of flowy tulle, and a bit of quirky stationary, and we had our own modern day fairytale wedding.

Tim and I knew that if we were going to have a full-blown wedding instead of eloping, that we wanted to use it as an opportunity to invite our guests into our life together as a couple. We had guests who had known us since the day Tim and I met in the dorms of UC Berkeley to friends of our parents who hadn’t seen us since we were children. Regardless of their roles in our lives, we were so grateful for every guest that could celebrate with us and in return, we want them to feel closer to us on our special day.

To that end, we made picture storyboards for each of the different stages of our 8 year relationship – starting from when we met in undergrad, to when Tim moved to Honolulu for medical school while I was in Los Angeles for pharmacy school, to all of our international adventures and then finally the proposal.

We also integrated some of our journey into the decorations that we set up in the gardens, such as the wooden directional sign that pointed to all of the cities we had lived and were going to live in (we moved cross-country to New York the week after we got married!). We also shared more intimate details, like the phrase “I love you. I love you more. I love you mostester. Rawr,” that was strung along the bushes leading guests to the ceremony site. It was our nightly ritual to say these words to each other before bed during our four years of long distance.

Then we sprinkled the day with details that just made Tim and me giddy. For me, I opted to serve pie instead of traditional wedding cake since that was a tradition in my family when we celebrated special events – birthday pies were the best! Tim elected to have the bar serve Abita beer since he went to high school in Louisiana where Abita beverages are a local favorite.
Most memorable moment of your wedding day?

The most memorable moment was definitely our vows. After being together for 8 years, you would think we knew everything about each other and there really wouldn’t be much else new to say, but when Tim opened up his little green book and started reading his vows to me that day, it was so raw, intense, and vulnerable that at that instant I could feel all 8 years of our love crystallized into that one moment. I could not have felt more love and in love at that moment.

Our advice for planning is 1. Make a wedding website together. Tim and I had a lot of fun working on our website together as a couple. Tim had given me free leeway to plan the wedding however I pleased (as long as I stuck to the budget), so I loved that this was a pre-wedding project that we were able to work on as a couple. Rummaging through old photos from our earlier years and spending the time to write out our story and proposal together gave us an opportunity to pause in the middle of all the wedding planning chaos and be nostalgic for a moment. We were also excited to showcase our engagement photos from Josh that we loved so much. Practically speaking, the website also provided useful information for guests, so it was a win all around.
We used Wix, which worked out great since it was free and gave us the flexibility to really customize the site to our liking (http://timandbrittany.wix.com/love).

2. Speaking of Josh, it’s so important to choose a photographer that puts you at ease. Tim and I must have interviewed at least a dozen photographers, all with great profiles, but Josh’s cheerful smile, sweet disposition, and dork-tastic personality ultimately won us over. These characteristics definitely made a huge difference on the final images he captured. For any Friends fans, Tim has the Chandelier Bing curse – where a handsome guy can turn into an incredibly awkward-smiling stranger in front of a professional photographer. I was worried that this would happen during our engagement session, but Josh had us laughing and enjoying ourselves the entire time, which came through in the pictures.

3. Hire a videographer. Tim was originally on the fence about hiring a videographer, but probably gave in because he knows I have horrible memory and would need video evidence that we got married. Hands down, one of the best decisions we made. It’s wonderful to be able to re-watch such a happy day.

Enjoy the ceremony. I feel like the ceremony is always the highlight of the day. It’s not about the location or decorations, but rather the people, the vows, and the moment. Everything else that follows during the day is just icing on the cake, or in my case, meringue on the pie!

Photography: Josh Gruetzmacher Photography | Videographer: Kessler Films | Wedding Planner: Signature Events By Christina Romero | Floral Design: Pretty In Pink Events | Cake: Sweetie Pie's | Invitations: Friend Of The Family | Bride's Shoes: Valentino | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Jasmine B2 Dress From Blossoms Bridal And Formal | Catering: Alex's Catering | DJ: Imagesource Entertainment | Groom's Attire: Express | Bride's Dress: Watters - Via Epiphany Boutique | Bride's Hair And Makeup: Moderne Beauty | Film Lab: Richard Photo Lab | Ring Bearer Dish: Paloma's Nest | Wedding Venue: Cornerstone Sonoma

Summer Vermont Wedding at Mountain Top Inn

As a future Vermont bride, I’m instantly drawn to any wedding in the Green State. But this one, captured by the talented Cambria Grace stands out all on its own. From blooms by Pollen Floral Design to the most fabulous bridesmaids’ dresses I’ve ever seen, the photos in the gallery are guaranteed to make any rustic wedding lover’s heart skip a beat.

Colors
Seasons
Summer
Settings
Inn
Styles
Rustic

From The Bride… Greg and I live in Boston so, when we got engaged, we immediately started shopping around Boston for venues and vendors. The first vendor that I decided on was the florist, Krissy Price from Boston Pollen, who connected me with Cambria Grace Photography. After deciding on these ladies we actually started looking for barn wedding venues in Vermont which is how we stumbled upon the Mountain Top Inn. We visited the Inn and fell in love with the landscape, the accommodations, and the idea of a “destination wedding”. Thankfully Krissy and Cambria were willing to travel and we were lucky enough to score a summer wedding date. With only 7 months to plan, I got to work on all of the DIY projects that I had cooked up in my mind. Among other things, I painted the backdrop for our photo booth; made signs out of the lathe from our house (Greg operated the pneumatic staple gun); folded, painted, and strung 300 origami stars to be hung from balloons in the rafters, and collected the various other decorative items that we wanted to be represented on our wedding day.

As it all came together, the theme I had my heart set on was “enchanted forest” and Greg reluctantly agreed. We tried to plan out every detail and, unbelievably, our wedding was everything and more than we had hoped for.

The wedding day started a little hectically for us, the wedding party, and friends who had the task of hanging stars in the barn and placing signs. Shortly after blowing up balloons, the boys were allowed to retreat to a pre-planned game of frisbee golf while the ladies finished the decorating and started getting ready. Erin McKenna and Vivan Infantino were onsite for hair and makeup transformations and made us look more beautiful than I thought possible.

We ended up running a little behind on the hair and makeup and were barely able to get the first look in – I’m so glad we did! On the car ride down into the woods I was nervous. Once I saw Greg that all melted and we were able to enjoy the moment together. Next we separated once again to take our places on top of the hill with our friends and family. At this point I grabbed my bouquet that had the hand-dyed silk ribbons, that my Grandma Pat and I made my Prom dress out of, tied around the stems and joined my dad and our horse (that I would be hiding behind). The ceremony was beautiful. I was a little worried about the handwritten vows but it ended up being one of the highlights of the entire wedding. My vows were good, but I had no idea that Greg was a poetic mastermind! Everyone was laughing and crying and talking about his vows for the rest of the night.

The cocktail hour felt like a blur. We got to try our signature cocktail, the McBrady Margarita, and the delicious passed appetizers, and we took pictures with our families. Next was the dress change and our grand entrance into the barn. Is it always that loud?! Our reception was so fun! The food was delicious, the bartenders were handing out shots, and there were multiple surprises (for Greg) throughout the night that made our wedding a truly memorable experience for us and for our guests. The first surprise came from Greg’s mom, Linda. She spent countless hours creating a slideshow of Greg growing up that matched the song that she chose for their dance. It was touching and hilarious at the same time.

The planning for Greg’s second surprise started years ago when I decided that I wanted to sing to him at our wedding. After dinner, and unfortunately right after Bel Biv Devoe’s “Poison” was played (how could I be expected to follow that?!), Greg and I got up to thank our guests for traveling great distances to share in our special day. Once I got the microphone, I invited my brother and friend up to the front at which point they dragged their guitars and amps out from under the DJ table. The look on Greg’s face was priceless when he realized what was going on (victory!). I sang “At Last”, by Etta James, for my surprised husband because he had mentioned that as being his favorite song that I had ever sang to him – also the lyrics are beautiful. Afterwards there was a lot of hugging, and dancing, and CAKE. We finished the night with a bonfire overlooking the moon’s reflection on the reservoir – a perfect ending to a perfect day.

Photography: Cambria Grace Photography | Floral Design: Pollen Floral Design | Wedding Dress: White By Vera Wang | Cake: Cakes By Irene | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Anthropologie | DJ/Band: Peak DJ | Inn: Mountain Top Inn | Makeup: Vivian Infantino | Reception Dress: Pronovias | Suit: Alabaster And Chess

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