WEDDING INSPIRATION, IN THE ROUND | ~ balloons and bubblegum ~ | Perfect Ways to Make Your Pictures POP!

We all want our weddings to be great, and this can mean many things to many people.  It all depends on who you ask.  It can mean keeping with tradition.  It can mean standing out from the rest.  It can mean showing our personalities, and our uniqueness, both as individuals and as a couple.  However, regardless of how it’s defined, one thing’s for sure – we all want that extra special thing, whatever it may be, so that everyone who has come to celebrate this momentous occasion in our lives will remember it always, as our wedding.

So, how about balloons? :) Hehe.

Mansion from Tim Walker, via Santa Barbara Wedding Chic

Overexposed via Oh Happy Day

Photos by Jill Thomas, via Once Wed

Photos by Jessica Johnston

Photos by Caroline Tran, via The Knot

Photo by Max Wanger

By the way, remember this post?  Truly one of the more awesome balloon shoots I’ve had the pleasure of seeing…


Totally worth a look-see.

Ok, so clearly those are engagement shots – and while brilliant shots, they aren’t weddings.  So here’s an actual wedding with the balloon idea implemented.  I LOVE how the crisp, white spheres line both sides of the aisle, adding such incredible structure to the photos.  There’s an intensity here, with the focus so clearly on the marrying couple… and it’s very much a result of the double row of balloons, which serve to guide your eyes towards the center.  It’s clean, it’s powerful, and it’s beautiful.

Sticking with the white wedding theme, howsabout this…

Via Style Me Pretty

Via B Magazine

Here are a few more of my favorite engagement shots.  Don’t you love the creativity of these couples?  A prop like this can really ease out the playfulness that is so essential with engagement shoots.  The Bubblicious is your call.  If you teach for a living, I imagine it’s not for you.  (In fact, if you’re anything like the teachers I had in grade school, you’re probably aching for these girls to trash the chewing gum posthaste.)

Though, I must say, these two young ladies pull it off quite nicely…

Photos by SimplyBloom Photography, via Green Wedding Shoes

Photos by Jill Thomas, via Green Wedding Shoes

***

One last thing: I caught wind of The Cherry Blossom Girl on a visit to decor8 one day, and found this precious little balloon brooch, by Stolen Thunder.  If you really love balloons – like, REALLY – but don’t know if they fit in all that smoothly with the rest of your decor, well then here’s a darling way to show your affection for the them.  If it’s not the right fit for your look that day, then it could be the perfect bridesmaids’ gift, no?  I admit, I think it’s just too cute not to make up an excuse to buy a few of ‘em.  So that’s kind of what I’m doing right now. :)

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DESSERT TABLE INSPIRATION | look what I sniffed out! | This is Not Your Mother’s Viennese Table…

On a visit to Chic Florals & Events, while scrolling down the page I suddenly caught sight of something I knew I had seen before, elsewhere.  I remember totally loving it but, of course, whenever that first time was, I had been distracted by some other bit of loveliness elsewhere, and left it behind.  Well, thankfully I stumbled upon it once again, and no way is it getting left in my dust this time.  It’s just too pretty, too chic, and too great an idea to risk forgetting about all over again.

How sharp does that look?  There’s something so incredibly exquisite about this idea… and while I can’t speak for all dessert cheese tables, I’ll risk it and say that if you set up a smartly chosen arrangement of low-stink factor milky delights, and label those suckers in such a way as has been done here by the amazing Maybelle Imasa-stukuls, I’d say you’ve got a guaranteed hit on your hands.  And why’s that?

… Because people LOVE CHEESE.  And the only thing people love more than cheese is cheese spread across a slice of baguette.

Karen Mordechai of Sunday Suppers styled and snapped this loveliness for a guest blog post on The Bride’s Guide with Darcy Miller, Martha Stewart’s wedding blog.

The objective, in Karen’s words: “we decided to create a dessert cheese table—very much in the French fashion—using a rustic chic look for décor, staying within the given color palette of cream and white.”

By the way, adding comb honey to the tablescape is a magnificent idea, if you ask me.  Not only is it easy on the eyes (who hasn’t stared at that captivating little jar of tightly packed honeycomb, just waiting for a good reason to buy it?), but spread on bread or paired with a strong cheese, it’s one heck of a treat for the palate.  Your guests will LOVE it!

Credits:

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FRIDAY’S FAB FINDS + VALENTINE’S DAY INSPIRED GOODNESS | ladies in red | Engagement Sessions with Love Tones…

Valentine’s Day is this Sunday (!!!) and if it’s chilly in your neck of the woods, you might find yourself challenged in the cute outfit department.  But it doesn’t have to be that way!  Just throw on a simple red scarf like Katie did in her engagement session with Marianne Taylor of Marianne Taylor Photography, and watch your entire look go from ho-hum to va va voom!

But then again, maybe the chill factor isn’t as much of an issue for you.  If that’s the case, then I envy you, but more importantly I have the most beautiful engagement session to share with you, which I discovered – where else – on the always inspiring Style Me Pretty.  The stunning photography is by lunaphoto, and while it may be a little too nippy out there, even in Cali, how could I NOT bring this loveliness to your eyes…

Photo credits:

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ENGAGEMENT + VINTAGE WEDDING INSPIRATION | simplybloom photography | Miniature Golf, Maximum Color {followed by} Details, Details, Details…

Meet Phillip and Rachel…

Now, say hello to Vania and Christine, of SimplyBloom Photography

Those two young ladies above are responsible for the photographic heaven that follows…

This engagement session features Rachel and Phillip, a lovely couple who quite possibly have two of the most photogenic faces I’ve ever seen.  What do you think?

But it isn’t their shared cuteness that inspires me when I look at these photos… it’s all about the radiant color.  His faded red trousers, her bright yellow sundress… and I absolutely ADORE the choice to gather up that rainbow of golf balls for the intimate close-up shot.  Magnifique!   Who knew there was so much photographic beauty to be captured, on a miniature golf course.  Leave it to pros like Vania and Christine to figure that one out.

Shot after shot, I’m struck by the simple beauty of these photos.  Rachel and Phillip look like they’re genuinely having fun.  And that’s how it should be!  I just love it when it’s obvious.  I can’t get over the idyllic green scenery and how it mixes with their bubblegum threads.

Check out my favorites – a dance on the course…

And a sweet little moment too lovely for words.

Check out the rest of this shoot here.

{ Photo credit: SimplyBloom Photography }

***

By the way, this is the perfect time to show you some of my favorite shots from an absolutely darling inspiration session styled and shot by Vania and Christine.  I saw this soft, sweet loveliness on a visit to 100 Layer Cake, and have been meaning to show these pics some daylight.  I seriously couldn’t wait to show them to you!  The vintage feel of this shoot gets me so excited about all the little details that can go into your tablescapes alone!  And take a close look at that bouquet… according to 100 Layer Cake, it’s made of door knobs and drawer pulls from Anthropologie!  No shocker there, just another fine reason to love that store (as if I needed more reasons).  Details like these are what make my heart sing.

{ Photos: SimplyBloom Photography, via 100 Layer Cake }

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*VALENTINE’S DAY INSPIRED GOODNESS* { D1, P1 } | DIY projects ♥ tutorials ♥ freebies ♥ treats for a blissful and beautiful ‘love day’

As announced on Twitter, we’re doing a Countdown to Valentine’s Day Tour, right here within the confines of this bloggity blog blog.  So, less a tour, per se, more a countdown to Valentine’s Day.  But all the same to you, right?  What?  Just get to the project?  Oh… oh okay.  Here you go…

So, I am madly in love with this little V-Day inspired project from Molly of The Purl Bee!

Valentine’s Day approaches, and I don’t have to tell you which flower is practically synonymous with that holiday.  So, what could be better than rose barrettes?  They’re pretty adorable, and I think they’d be quite a chic addition to any little kiddo’s otherwise drab V-Day ensemble.  You know, if you’re into that kind of thing.  (Even if you don’t think you are, you will be, trust me.  My sister’s little girl wears THE CUTEST OUTFITS ON EARTH, and my sister – hey, Jen! – is and has always been the polar opposite of what one would call a “girlie girl.”  Go figure.

When I have a little girl, she’ll be wearing felt barrettes that I made with my bare hands and she’ll LIKE IT.

So, here’s what you’ll need for this project, as advised by Molly:

-One Wool Felt Bundle in Spice
-Embroidery Thread to match the felt
-8 snap clip barrettes, available at most drug stores, or online here
-One Rose Barrette Pattern available for free download (on her site), printed and cut out

Molly gives you a step by step tutorial over at The Purl Bee ~ be sure to check it out so you can get crackin’ on these cuties!

I can totally see one of these barrettes atop the precious little noggin of a flower girl.  Or even an arrangement of four or five in a row, creating a kind of homemade head wreath!  Oooohh that would be too cute for words.  I would LOVE to see a picture of that in action!

I totally have those clips, you probably do, too.  Everybody had those growing up!

I’d love to see how these turn out, my darling readers.  If you decide to try your hand at this project, you MUST send a shot to theknottybride {@} gmail {dot} com!

Alright, more Valentine’s Day inspired goodness to come!

{ Project and photos by Molly, of The Purl Bee }

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JUST PEACHY | wedding photos ripe with color + inspiration ~ in the key of peach | This is Kind of My Perfect Wedding Palette!

My fiancé loves peaches.  Really, really loves them.  Not alone, oddly, but inside of things.  Like, inside of my peach and blueberry pie, for instance.  I don’t blame him… the pie is delicious.  I would go on about the pie and how much he loves it, but I risk getting mired in an unsavory realm of double entendre here, so I’ll just leave it at that.

When I came across these photos within the post Peach Wedding Ideas on Once Wed, I was struck by two pretty wonderful things.

The first was that my fiancé loves peaches (in his own weird way but still…) and the second, well the second was that I LOVE THESE COLORS.

A girl (like me) constantly dreams of developing or discovering the perfect theme or idea that meets two very important criteria: loveliness, and a reflection of our likes and personalities.

Jackpot?  Wedding theme chosen?  We’ll see.  I do ADORE the florals, and dig the idea of somehow bringing peaches into the mix, since I’m all about infusing natural elements into a wedding.  So I’m definitely a fan of what’s going on here.

Alas, I am fickle.  I’m really quite the indecisive young lady, with far too much inspiration at and oozing out of my fingertips.  (Eww.)  So I’ll just keep on looking, and keep on bringing it back here.  Because, you know what?  I love being overwhelmed.  Yeah, I THRIVE on the feeling.

Jeez Louise, look at this CAKE.  It. Is. PERFECT.  Kind of reminds me of this cake, from one of my favorite weddings EVA.

~ Details, courtesy of Once Wed ~

Photography Simply Bloom

Flowers Amy Osaba

Art Direction/Styling Joy Thigpen

Cake Topper Dolci Odille

Cake Chocolate Pink Cafe

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FRIDAY’S FAB FINDS { Part III } | California dreaming | Wedding Cakes, Wedding Kisses & the Chance to Win a Dream Photo Session!

I leave you, on a chilly Friday in New York, with this…

The cake, by My Sweet & Saucy is made of buttercream, and is topped off with luscious, fresh raspberries.

{ Photo Credit: Bonnie Tsang }

***

This next set of photos have a certain special thing in common, that is, aside from being taken in California.  Each of them… well, can you guess?

These amazing engagement shots, taken on the beach in Santa Monica, are by California photographer Caroline Tran, and they are treasures.

I’m not much of a fan of the “all kissing, all the time” engagement shoots.  They can easily turn into too much of a good thing; the beauty of such intimacy can be lost with repetition.  But that’s not what’s happened here.

It’s subtle.  It’s soft.  It’s not in your face.  It’s totally beautiful.

I must add, too, that I’m a big fan of a color – or in this case, shade – coordinated couple.  Because two really poorly matched outfits can seriously ruin an entire shoot.

Oh, and by the way… how about a chance to win your own dream shoot?

One lucky couple – engaged or married, either one – will win this amazing session.  It’s an unbelievable opportunity to be photographed by Caroline Tran and stylized by Green Wedding Shoes!

Hurry!  Submissions are due by this Sunday, January 31.

{ Photo Credit: Caroline Tran Photography }

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FRIDAY’S FAB FINDS { Part II } | California on my mind | Sarah Yates Photography: Engagement & Wedding Photos with That California Glow + More Edible Goodness…

I adore nearly all things California, I think it’s obvious by now.  (A failing economy, fires and one movie star governor are behind the “nearly.”)  With so many awe-inspiring bits of photographic beauty emerging from the oblong state on the western edge of our country, it’s hard not to fall deeply and hopelessly in love with its warm sunny glow.  And what Sarah Yates produces is no exception…

Like Monique is one of the Queens of Comedy, Sarah Yates is – in my humble opinion, one of the Queens of Engagement & Wedding Photography.  And  her attractive and endearing subjects don’t hurt, either.  This brings me to another thing I love about California.  (Resisting the urge to write “Cali” at every turn here, people.  It’s rough going.)

I cherish people who wear color.  They are the few, the fiery, the walking embodiment of joy.  Wearing color can brighten your day, and it can have that same effect on those around you.  I always feel a special something different when I wear color, and whatever that is, it feels good, every time.  So, if you’re up to it, I suggest adding a splash of color to your typical look if you don’t already… it’s fun, and that’s what life’s about, please don’t forget that!

***

By the way, remember Cannelle Et Vanille from earlier?  Here are a handful of other reasons I love her…

Pear, Raspberry and Ginger Pies:

Pumpkin and Hazelnut Doughnuts and a Clafoutis:

Sweet Potato, Yogurt and Hazelnut Cupcakes:

Churros with Spiced Chocolate Bisque:

***

Coming up next: even more Fabulous Friday Finds!

{ Photo credit: 1-6, Sarah Yates Photography; 7-14, Cannelle Et Vanille }

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WEDDING PHOTO LOVE | real wedding ~ CA { Part II } | Steve and Kelly, LA Backyard Wedding by Sarah Yates

The Backyard LA Wedding of Steve and Kelly, photographed by Sarah Yates, continued…

I know.  This wedding is the definition of dreamy.  If you were to look up “dreamy” in the dictionary… you know the rest.

Kelly’s whole bridal look… her hair, her makeup, her gown… all of it, perfection…

Absolutely breathtaking.  A contender for the cover of a high society romance novel.

Doesn’t she look like one of the happiest brides around?  Surrounded by her maids, she shines.  Though, that tends to happen with pea soup green bridesmaids dresses.  Still, Kelly’s beauty is unparalleled.

***

Click to view Steve + Kelly, LA Backyard Wedding { Part I }

***

Once again:

The vendors, courtesy of Once Wed:

Photography: Sarah Yates Photography

Coordinator and Florist: La Partie Events

Catering: The Food Matters

Rentals & Lighting: Signature Party Rentals

Cake and Desserts: Joslyn’s Bakery

DJ: B-Boy Productions, Inc.

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WEDDING PHOTO LOVE | real wedding ~ CA { Part I } | Steve and Kelly, LA Backyard Wedding by Sarah Yates

On a visit to A Cup of Joe, I discovered a path to one of the prettiest weddings currently floating around in the ether, and featured on Once Wed.  Sarah Yates, the amazing photographer tasked with capturing this wedding – whose out-of-this-world talent makes my jaw drop repeatedly with every additional wedding she posts – features these stunning shots on her blog, Sarah Yates Photography.  If you’d like to see more, you can go directly to Steve and Kelly’s wedding.  Now, for the little bit of loveliness I’ve plucked…

These photographs of a couple in love are among my favorite this month.  Their bond, the natural surroundings, everything is beaming the warm glow of happiness.

How darling is this one of the couple sitting close together in the lower left corner of the image.  That red boutonnière makes the shot, doesn’t it?  A pinch of color can go so far.

I am in lust with the colors of this wedding.  The decor is unbelievable.  And those CENTERPIECES!  I am floored by the lovely and loud floral arrangements contained in those vases.  The colors, the choices of flowers, the overall shape, the simplicity.  I adore the work done here.

***

Coming up: Steve + Kelly, LA Backyard Wedding { Part II }

***

Vendors, courtesy of Once Wed:

Photography: Sarah Yates Photography

Coordinator and Florist: La Partie Events

Catering: The Food Matters

Rentals & Lighting: Signature Party Rentals

Cake and Desserts: Joslyn’s Bakery

DJ: B-Boy Productions, Inc.

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THE SOUND OF LOVE | Pogo | “Go Out and Love Someone”

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SPEAKING OF WEDDING INSPIRATION { + DIY LOVE }… | gold, blue and creamy beige | Choose These Colors for Your Wedding, and You Won’t Be Sorry…

I left a teaser in my first post of the day… sorry about that, but it wasn’t to mess with you!  I just couldn’t keep adding more goodness to it, when the goodness I wanted to add deserved its OWN feature!  You understand, right?  Hopefully I’ll be able to make amends with all that follows…

Here’s some of the most lovely wedding inspiration I’ve ever seen.  In my life.  And I’m in my mid-20′s.

… Plus a year or two.

***

We begin with a rather exquisite invitation suite…

A few ribbons of seating cards, hung from gilded branches…

A cake into which I wouldn’t want to have to be the first to cut…

A lovely altar, above which hangs the couple’s monogram…

Another cake, same story as above…

And some gold and aqua jewelry.  Not too shabby.

Lovely stuff, am I right?  I found it over at Martha Stewart Weddings, of course.  Specifically, “The Golden Touch” gallery.

And this lil stinker, also from our beloved Martha

… Was the inspiration OrangeBeautiful needed to create this incredible bridal shower for her lovely sis, Kristen…

What a neat looking game, don’t you think?  OrangeBeautiful’s bridal shower fun was inspired by this cool creation:

If you’re interested in trying your hand at a personalized version of this adorable game & pencil set, she discovered it here, at Made Sweet.

***

If you’d like to see some more DIY projects that are heavy on the gold (tastefully, of course)…

Here’s a post that’ll answer your prayers.  (Man, I’m real heavy on the Martha today, huh.  But really, who can blame me?  Stop producing quality wedding product, Martha.  It’s too inspiring.)

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FLICKR SET LOVE | photography as inspiration for your wedding colors | Color Boards!

While combing flickr for some stellar inspiration, I lucked into finding this brilliant set of photographs by flag75*, each one more colorful and intriguing than the next.  They remind me of that game segment from one of those late night talk shows – the name of which I can’t recall at the moment – that featured super zoomed in shots of things, and we had to guess what those things were, based on the really close up, ridiculously obscure images we were given (shoot, I really can’t remember the show – this is killing me – was it on Jay?).

Well, if that game reference rang a bell for you, and you aren’t totally lost right now, then this flickr photo set reminds me of that game, except this game would be a way easier version.  Like, stupid easy.  That is, unless you don’t brush your teeth, you’ve never measured anything, and you think the term “LEGO” refers to a declaration made by some very possessive Eggo Waffle-eating children and adults.

***

You can get some truly inspiration color coordinated mosaics out of this amazing set, like these few I whipped up…

1. Color Pencils #4, 2. Color Pencils #1, 3. Color Pencils #2, 4. Color Pencils #3

1. toothbrush, 2. thermometer, 3. Grapefruit, 4. TeaCup : sakura 桜

1. blue, 2. color label, 3. Color button, 4. Color Pencils #5

***

And I just LOVE the gold, blue and creamy beige beaming out of this shot…

Hmm… gold, blue and creamy beige… what beautiful colors for a wedding.  With that color scheme in mind, we can find AMAZING inspiration… inspiration I have in abundance.

… And which is coming up in my next post today.  :)  Be sure to check back shortly… it’s kind of a big deal.  :)

{ Ring by artisanlook }

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WEDDING FAVORS LOVE | colorful, lovely, fabulous favor inspiration | All Hail Rebecca Thuss

I have admired Rebecca Thuss from afar for quite a long stretch now.  When it comes to swoon-worthy, she is, in my estimation, a genius.  Upon a visit to Rebecca’s site, one finds this menu:

Now, I can speak only for myself, but you might agree with me when I say that this short, sweet list of Portfolio items is kind of paralyzing in a way, with its array of tantalizing topics, each one more enticing than the last.  Where to start?!

This frozen moment can be compared to that brief moment when your beloved has just proposed, and you are, for a second, dumbfounded, with an acute case of shock, delight and this is the biggest decision of my life but I need to make it in the shortest period of time manifesting all at once on your face.  Or maybe that’s a bit extreme of a comparison.  But whatev.  No matter, as this period of reaction is short-lived, in both cases.  What takes over – back to Rebecca Thuss now – is an unparalleled excitement coupled with a furious exploration of every nook and cranny held within those carefully and cleanly titled categories.

Listed among her many enviable capabilities are Prop & Set Styling, Wedding Design, Event Design and Crafting…

Wow.  Every one of those skills is something I think most of us would be pleased as punch to do for a living ourselves.

Little boxes, on the hillside, little boxes, filled with ticky tacky…

These two, above and below, bring back thoughts of this oldie but goodie DIY project.

Want your wedding to be floral-focused?  Then these little pink favor boxes could be the perfect finishing touch on your big day.  And, speaking of flower power, these gowns will fit that theme, not to mention your shape, expertly.

I adore the favor boxes below; they offer a fun, rustic feel, and the images affixed to the box tops – each one different from the last – are filled with warm colors and tones.  Plus, I’m lovin’ the twine and tags, of course.  Attention to detail is always admired and appreciated… and if you have the time and desire to do it, I wholeheartedly champion the effort (and I’d love to attend your wedding, as well!).

Cherries!  Little scalloped edged bags of transparent vellum, filled with (what I consider to be delicious) deep red cherries.  So simple, so pretty… it’s perfect for the quick and easy favor, but still quite upscale and dignified.

{ Images: Rebecca Thuss }

Feeling inspired?  Stay tuned for more posts about other terrific ideas and sources for making your own, or at least semi-homemade, wedding favors.  There are so many out there, it’s kind of unreal, and definitely overwhelming.  But, as always, my goal is to track down the best of the best, or invent on my own when I feel like getting crafty.

For now, here are a couple of handpicked resources where you can find yourself some of your very own perfect favor packaging supplies…

~ The Packaging Source

~ Wedding Things (some samples: purple, orange and brown)

And always remember, have fun with it.  You’re throwing a huge party, and, besides getting married, the point of it is to have a grand ol’ time… so make sure you invite yourself!

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Part II: FRIDAY’S FAB FINDS | love print + wedding photography giveaway + flourish freebies + a colorful new spin on a couple of wedding trends | So, in Short, More Wedding Goodies!

OK, let’s get started…

Here we go with more of that sweet, sweet stuff I love today!  Beginning with this abso-fab print from bubbo on Etsy…

It’s pretty freakin’ nice, wouldn’t you say?  I’m including this today not just because it’s fantabulous – which it so is – but because of what happens if you buy it.  Take it bubbo…

Bubbo: “100% of sales from Valentine’s posters + prints goes to Haiti!”

That right there, folks, is what it’s all about.

And what do we have here?  Oh, just some free flourish ornaments/designs for your very own personal use, from none other than iDiY, via veils and vows.

If you’d like to get your hands on these, just click the links to the two sites I’ve listed above, or check them out via these links, below, courtesy of iDiY.

Aridi Calligraphia Flourish 2 via Fontica

Civilite Tails via FontGirl

Ornament Scrolls & Flourishes by T. Olsson via Moorstation

I’m gushing over this next one, which is – omigosh – a WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY GIVEAWAY!  My sister talks to her little boy like that to get him interested in activities when she isn’t confident the interest will come about naturally.  Funny, because I’m confident about this one…

Love it!  How great are wedding photography giveaways?!!  About as great as free flourishes, I’d say, yes I would.  The photographers offering this amazing package, which I discovered via Emmaline Bride, are Andy Stenz and Jamie M. Swanson.  Thank you, Andy and Jamie.  You are stupendous and on behalf of brides everywhere, I extend my deepest appreciation for doing something so wonderful.

Oh, speaking of wedding photography earlier… here’s today’s uber-cute collection, which I found here, within the my heaven on Earth, flickr.

How great is that?  The bride is seriously pulling off that stunner of a dress, and you know I’m a sucker for a good dessert table.  Oh, and by the way, it looks like that mustache trend is here to stay, brides and grooms.  Feel free to get on board!  So, while we’ve got a bunch of trends going on, that lime green, canary yellow and baby soft bluish-green is so crazy beautiful and unique, it makes the whole thing look quite fresh and new.  That color scheme is mega-inspiring!

Also found this photographic beauty there, which I’ve seen a million times in every magazine I own and have been meaning to scan, myself, for I don’t even know how long.  So glad I found it on flickr!  It’s just so intense!  Love it.

Let’s end with some wedding dessert options.  Yeah, that’s the stuff.

{Source of yummy dessert photos}

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Part I: FRIDAY’S FAB FINDS! | save the date freebies + smiles + scrabble | Happiness Lies Within

Alright everyone, here we go.  I’m practically hyperventilating over these finds, today.  Go get a brown paper bag in case you begin to experience some shallow breathing…

The Wedding Chicks have outdone themselves with this find right here.  They’ve brought us one of the most beautiful wedding paper templates I’ve eva seen.  Eva.  It’s beautiful, it’s got that oh-so-popular vintage look we’re all after these days… it’s EPIC… and, best of all, it’s a freebie.

Hello, Photo Save the Date Calendar Cards freebie.  So nice to meet you on this fine day.  I have been hoping you’d arrive one day.  You’re everything I’ve ever wanted, and I’d like to share you with all of my friends and family…

Not only are you beautiful… you’re customizable, too!  Seriously, you need to stop it – you’re spoiling us.  (Don’t stop – I didn’t mean it.)

I am absolutely, positively swooning over these Save the Date Templates.  THANK YOU, Wedding Chicks!!!

It was this last sample of the template in action that led me to that superfantabulous freebie (freeby?) discovery above…

The couple in that picture share a love for a certain board game…

… ditto for the FH and me.  I admit to thinking, on occasion, about how to infuse a little bit of the game we both enjoy so much into the wedding.  But everything I’ve brainstormed has been too Scrabble-y for my taste.  Enter: the engagement photo session of Julia and George, by Bend the light photography.  What did they do?  They broke out a game of Scrabble for the shoot!  So simple – I can’t believe I didn’t think of this!

Wedding Chicks

Next up, I’ve got something that really makes me happy.  Whenever I’m perusing the latest wedding photos put up by all of my favorite photographers, I search for one specific thing the most, above all.

The perfect beaming smile shot:

Can’t you just see the happiness pouring out of their mouths?

THIS IS ADORABLE.

Thank you for these day brighteners, Amelia Lyon.

Today is just overflowing with finds, people.  I LOVE what’s coming next, and, well, I can say with confidence that you will, too. Check in later for Part II of the Finds…

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WEDDING COLOR INSPIRATION | pretty palettes | Sunny with a Chance of Pastels…

Want to know what’s been really tough for me to do?  Pick just ONE color palette for my wedding.  That’s one of the most difficult decisions I’ve faced while planning my affair and it’s not getting any easier the more inspiration I find.  And guess what?  It’s a challenging thing to plan a wedding when you haven’t absolutely, positively decided on your color scheme.  It’s sort of the crux of the matter.

But just LOOK at what I find out there, on a daily basis!

… Starting with some of the most darling packaging I’ve found, over at oh, hello friend

And these magical shots found on ffffound :) of that most perfect time of day, sunset…

Get a load of this shot, from Luphia Loves

Not to mention this loveliness, found on Green Wedding Shoes

I love the yellow and beige-brown combo we’ve got going on here, found on The Dieline

Then there are the soft baby pinks and blues of this fabulous Ice Cream Parlour idea, found on Twig & Thistle

And I really dig this pastel project I found via [ simplesong ]

Not to mention these brilliant images I found via decor8… the first three are by Trisha Brink Design, and the fourth is by Wilkintie


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FRIDAY’S FAB FINDS | lovely + fun cake toppers | Wow, I Actually LIKE These…

Considering cake toppers?  Many of us go back and forth on the subject, and I’m no exception. I think I like the idea of a cake topper but, so far, I haven’t really liked my options.  For the most part, the ones I’ve seen are just so kitschy – and not even the good, hip kind of kitschy… the bad, crappy kind of kitschy that “kitsch” is actually meant to denote.

This all changed today.

Today, I drove out to Pasadena, CA, and met with my lovely and quite fabulously dressed wedding photographer for the first time in person.  For those of you who don’t know, I’m vacationing in southern CA for a family reunion of sorts and, since my photographer lives out here, we arranged to kick it for a few.  SO glad we got a chance to meet face to face at least once before go-time.  I feel much more confident about this whole crazy arrangement now.  I’m quite aware of the downsides to choosing a vendor from far, far way, but here’s the thing about me: when I get a feeling about someone/something, I go with it. 

Anywho, after spending some QT with the talented young lady and her soon-to-be sister-in-law, I headed straight to a nearby bookstore and beelined it to the wedding magazines.  (You know – because I’m planning a wedding and magazines are like pages of ice cream filled with idea sprinkles.  I’m this close to licking them right there in the store.)  So there I am, face to face with the usual suspects, but find myself looking for something different – something new, or at least something local.  

I end up passing on everything local, mostly due to the inverse ratio of ads to actual magazine content (it’s getting worse than MTV programming these days – what?  No, I don’t watch MTV programming).  About ready to leave, I decided to pick up an unknown.  At least I’d never seen a copy of it in NY.  It’s called Weddingstar, and as I flipped through this 400 page behemoth I fell instantly in love.  The ads seemed nonexistent, but in fact they’re just seamlessly rolled in.  Me likey.

In exchange for an Alexander Hamilton, the book – because it’s a book, not a magazine; nothing 400 pages long can be considered a magazine – was mine.  

Alright now… here’s one of the reasons it stood out from the rest and became today’s Fab Find:

An AH. MAZ. ING. cake toppers feature.  

Check it below, girlfriends and boyfriends.  In honor of the movie I just watched tonight – Away We Go…

Beginning with my big three; these are my top toppers.

This one somehow makes me feel happy about getting married…

And these next two represent what I’m absolutely sure are his top two dream wedding scenarios…

I know my nephew would love this one.  (My nephew’s 3 years old.)

These Love Birds are darling to the nth degree…

 

Man, the set design on these is brilliant, is it not?

This one is especially romantic, in my opinion…

And then there’s your grab-a-butt topper…

Watch out, it goes both ways:

 

So, as you’ve seen, there are some lovely options out there these days.  I have just one request.  Please, don’t go with this one.  Not a good start to the whole union thing.

Of course, to each his own.

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PICTURE PERFECT | obsessed with these ideas! | Want Your Smiling Faces on Everything? Martha’s Got You Covered

Dear Martha Stewart Weddings,

Your magazines are among the only ones I keep, for years past the date printed on the cover.  Why?  Because the ideas that line the glossy pages of each and every issue you make are the kind that will never go out of style.  And these ideas right here – which I rediscovered while flipping through the pages of an oldie-but-goodie during a recent cross-country flight – are precisely what I mean…

Picture Treats

 

Photo Stickers

 

Photo Kisses

 

Photo Confetti

 

Photo Cake

 

Playing Cards

 

Photo Bracelets and Pendants

 

Cufflinks and Watch

***

{ All images courtesy of Martha Stewart Weddings }

 

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ETSY SPOTLIGHT | sigmosaics, part deux: pastel perfection + valentine’s day picks | How Do I Love Thee, Let Me Count the Ways…

I love it when I randomly take a look at one of the many lovely shops I’ve “Favorited” on Etsy, and find – always to my surprise, for some reason – new and outstanding product ready for purchase.  Say it with me, folks – new product.  Ahh, just rolls off the tongue, doesn’t it.  In a hard consonant kind of way.

Well, this was my experience when I paid a visit to my “Favorite Sellers” page recently, clicked on my old friend Sigmosaics AND SAW THESE:

 

 

 

(I know what you’re saying – but no, those are not the same eggs from Friday’s Fab Finds… they are, in fact, smaller mini eggs, and in summer hues.  No I’m not joking, they’re different.  Scout’s honor.)

***

Does breakfast in bed sound like the perfect way to spend your Valentine’s Day?  Then ask him to buy you one of these – but make sure he knows that you’d like it filled with food before he presents it to you.  Remember, men don’t read minds!  (Thank God.)

 

 

***

How about some heart-shaped creations?  I’d feel pretty lucky to receive one of these little works of art mid-February…

 

 

 

 

 

 

Oh, and by the way, here are two additional reasons why I have mad love (do the kids still say that?) for Kerrin, the creative force behind Sigmosaics:

1. 10% of the listing price of nearly all the items I’ve displayed above (save for the mini mosaic eggs) will be donated to the American Cancer Society.

And, as if that wasn’t enough…

2. An excerpt from her bio: 

“Sigmosaics is how I became known amongst my customers in Portugal coupled with the fact it is also the name of my website … therefore I decided to also use this name for my Etsy shop. My children provided the inspiration for the ‘Sig’ part … it’s their initials!”

I’m a sucker for rolling in your kids’ initials when naming your business.  That’s just a certain kind of special, and it’s the kind that I love.

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TYPOGRAPHY LOVE | uniquely crafted caps by jessica hische | I Bet You’re Going to LOVE Your Initials After You Read This

I

.

LOVE TYPOGRAPHY.  Now, I know I say “I love” about a lot of things – but with Typography, I mean it.

***

If Typography had been a character on Saved by the Bell, it would have been Zack Morris (I realize it would make more sense as Jessie Spano, but… c’mon).  And, if asked to stay on the cast as the show inevitably transitioned into Saved by the Bell: The College Years, Typography would have respectfully bowed out, because that would have been a bad career move.  A real step down for Typography.

Especially since there are so many opportunities for Typography.  It doesn’t need Saved by the Bell: The College Years.

For example, check out its starring role in the brilliant – and may I add, quite funny – Jessica Hische‘s Daily Drop Cap.  She creates the most stunning designs with the letters in our alphabet.  Here are some of my favorites (but hardly all of them; I strongly suggest visiting her site for the full experience):

And her super creative “Q,” which is quite possibly my favorite of the bunch…

How AMAZING are these letters?  Here we have one of the illustrative letter sets she displays on her site – which, again, I highly recommend you visit…

I have so much fun with pretty letters; here I spelled out two of my favorite words:

and

Jessica Hische, you are fabulous.

***

Love it and want more of it?  Check out this post for another small dose of Typography Love…

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LOGO INSPIRATION | sip on a little design caffeine | Creating Your Wedding Logo? Get Inspired by These…

Oh and the mustache one I threw in because it’s awesome.  Not really wedding-logo awesome, just really awesome.

( Above: “PLAY” in red hearts!  Too cute, but it might be somewhat challenging for your guests… aaaand your initials would have to include and be limited to P, L, A and Y.  So, not easy.  But if that’s you, YOU MUST! )

( Above + Below: I am really digging animals and family crests these days.  The future hubs and I have some top secret plans for infusing a certain species into our invitation suite.  Avid readers – it’s possible that you might have picked up on this already.  If so, I’m slightly impressed. )

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