Category Archives: wedding!

wintery wedding visions

So many inspirations for today’s post…like my love for a pale & pretty wintery color palette, and our approaching first anniversary, begging me to reminisce on the unparalleled joie of wedding planning. I got caught in the exquisite delights found at BHLDN this season and have collected some of my favorites below. Couldn’t you just imagine a fancy January affair, all dressed up in champagne, rose and white?

All images via BHLDN online: Noble Lineage Bracelet ~ Paramount D’Orsays shoes in champagne ~ Simply Silk Sash in rose ~ Caviar & Crystal Drops ~ Peachy Keen Gloves



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nuptually inspired (part deux)

I confess! I simply have weddings on my mind this week! Wanted to share another wedding board today that feels a bit less season-specific. The idea here is gilded intricacy, in everything from the bride’s ornate dress to the details of the wedding cake to the flourish of the calligraphy. The elegance is not understated, but embraced and enhanced in every detail. Even the food would have a shimmer but nothing would compare to the loving twinkle in his eye..

Dress via Crush CuldeSac via This Is Glamorous ~ Fabric by Burberry ~ Sequined Leather Pumps by Givenchy via Net A Porter ~ Champagne via Martha Stewart Weddings ~ Cake via Crush CuldeSac via Patterson Maker ~ Gate by Steichen Interior Design via Lovely Clusters ~Flowers via Vogue ~ Cheree Berry invitation

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nuptually inspired

Energized by the new season, as well as a contest sponsored by one of my favorite wedding bloggers, I decided to dream up a couple of wedding boards. I shared my own winter wedding vision awhile back…but each season lends itself to a fresh look. Sharing one of them with you today, since it’s just so September perfect! The idea is around celebrating the golden-orange colors of early fall. Gilded accents accompany festive flavors. The bridesmaids’ dresses would deepen the palette, midnight blue being the perfect hue to offset sunny accessories. The bride glows in a full, creamy gown and guests would wander about with honey-toned champagne..

Flowers via Sabra Krock ~ Dress via Crush Cul de Sac via Patterson Maker ~ Champagne table via Reason to Breathe via Patterson Maker ~ Invitation found via Martha Stewart Weddings (artist unknown) ~ Cake by Jeffrey A Miller Catering, Photo by Kate Murphy via Snippet & Ink ~ Bridesmaid Dress by Fina Du ~ Gold Pumps by Badgley Mischka via Shop Bop

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wedding memories: the ceremony

Wedding memories return! Reminiscing today about our beautiful ceremony. When we finished getting ready in our beautiful hotel suites, we were picked up by the limo. The walk from the suite to the limo was so exciting…as a little girl I can remember watching in awe when a bride was nearby. Admiring her dress and all her little details and thinking how lucky she must feel to be going to marry the love of her life. I remember realizing with amazement that today, I was that bride! Guests and strangers alike stopped to see the procession. I had to pinch myself a couple times! The limousine retrieved us, first the ladies, then the gents to ensure a staggered arrival time.  Danny and I decided very early on that we wanted to be very traditional and wait to see each other until I walked down the aisle. Although I was dying to see him all day, I was so happy we made that decision; it made the big moment so incredibly special..

My sweet girls! They were wrapped up in the layers of my dress to protect it from the snowy ground. I added an ivory J.Crew coat and Ralph Lauren upper-length gloves to my gown for the drive down heart-lined Michigan Avenue.

Our church was breathtaking. So grand and elegant..

Once we arrived, the ladies and gentlemen once again had separate quarters before the ceremony began. I remember having a hard time not smiling as I sat with my family and bridesmaids surrounding me. One of my favorite memories was when our wonderful florist arrived and presented us with our gorgeous red bouquets. They were absolutely perfect, completed the moment and all of the sudden I was totally and incredibly ready.

When the time had come, we made the trip from our little prep room to the sanctuary. I had so many butterflies! And for the first time I felt teary, thinking about this incredible moment in my life. My Dad was by my side and my girls were singing me songs to help keep my feet on the ground. One by one they went, Canon in D echoing, as my Dad and I stayed hidden behind the antique screen. Then the moment finally arrived and as the doors opened and I heard the notes of the Bridal Chorus on the organ. I remember feeling an elated rush of goosebumps and grabbing my Dad’s hand so tight.

Danny’s face when we reached the alter was unforgettable. He was absolutely swept up; on the verge of tears but smiling so big. His emotion made me grab his hand and smile equally as big for the entire ceremony.

And my cheeks didn’t even hurt.

The ceremony itself was so special, including readings by our siblings and a beautiful and very personal sermon delivered by my uncle. Early on during ceremony planning, we became intent on sharing a reading or prayer of our own. When we stumbled upon Robert Louis Stevenson’s “Wedding Prayer” we knew it was right. It allowed us to express our gratitude for the love, generosity and many blessings that allowed us to be there that day, and for the wonderful people around us, loving and supporting our every step.

Lord, behold our family here assembled.
We thank you for this place in which we dwell,
for the love that unites us,
for the peace accorded us this day,
for the hope with which we expect the morrow,
for the health, the work, the food,
and the bright skies that make our lives delightful;
for our friends in all parts of the earth.

The ceremony could not have been more special to us. Although it was a bit of a blur, I remember so clearly the most important things: the sound of the organ, the feel of my Dad’s solid hand, the incredible people surrounding us, the way he looked and the ecstasy I felt.

Wedding photos by Tina Thomure of Artisan Events


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wedding memories: getting ready

With final photography in my hands, I thought it might be lovely to let my mind wander back to that wonderful weekend in February. Join me in a little collection of wedding memory posts 🙂

Getting ready to walk down the aisle is something I will never forget. Excitement was in the air, butterflies were fluttering in my stomach and everyone was feeling festive. True to my vision, the ladies and gents each had a beautiful dressing suite in the historic tower of our downtown Chicago hotel to prepare in. One of the things that makes getting ready for the moment of your life so amazing is that you are absolutely surrounded by your people. My best girlfriends, my sister, my momma, my new family…the people with whom I’d shared wedding dreams for years, so happy and supportive, eyes lit up like the Fourth of July with shared excitement and sentiment.

Our hair and makeup was done so it was all about finishing touches. I was so taken care of and so excited.. such a lucky bride.

Stay tuned for more wedding memories..!

All wedding photographs taken by Tina Thomure, Artisan Events.

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pure joie

Wedding photos are officially in our hands! So lovely to relive the day. Much MUCH more to come 🙂

Photo by Artisan Events

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royal wedding joie

The royal wedding is just days away and I’m getting so excited to take it all in! I anticipate nothing but serious fashion statements, from the guests to the attendants to (most importantly) the glowing bride. Kate already happens to have such beautiful style, known for her classic choices which are often described as fanciful, bold & preppy. Though I have a feeling we may see a more modern look, I am very much hoping to see a lovely traditional style on the royal bride this weekend, complete with lush lace, intricate beaded detail, abundant florals and, lest we forget, lots of sparkling jewels…

Jewelry, shoe, roses & clutch photographs via This Is Glamorous.

Alexandra Crystal Tiara by Louis Mariette via Net A Porter.

Oscar De La Renta dress & shoe photograph via Style Me Pretty.

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enchanted wedding, part five

Well. So far we’ve talked style, photography, stationary and fashion, but have neglected to muse about one of my most beloved wedding details…the magnificent flowers. Our floral decor (and beyond) was envisioned and created by the talented team of Kim and Jim Wilson (and crew!) I was so lucky to have a personal connection to floral genius. Kim happens to be a lovely friend of my mom’s in Cincinnati, and has a long distinguished career in the area. The process was wonderfully collaborative, and began with me sharing pieces of my vision related to color, pattern, structure and construction. Kim provided feedback, asked questions and generated ideas against my verbal and visual inspiration.

Kim knew all about my dreams of red (…crimson, scarlet, burgundy & cherry!) and despite the challenging timing (you want all shades of red flowers on Valentine’s weekend!?!) she made my dream a beautiful reality.

Imagine my delight when the gorgeous bunches from the warehouse transformed overnight into…

The lush shades of red combined with pops of bright green to create a festive and romantic palette. The black & white ribbon on the bouquets hearkened back to an element represented in our stationary suite, and felt reminiscent of the vintage Valentine feel we were creating. Later I can share other amazing touches like the potted trees (with twinkle lights!) and candles in hurricanes filled with red fruit. Speaking of later…

I am counting the days until our entire library of professional shots is ready so I can share how each element came together to create the enchanted evening of February 12, 2011. Until then, the inspiration posts have been fun to catalog. Thanks for following 🙂

Imagery from inspiration board sourced via Martha Stewart Weddings, Style Me Pretty & Vera Wang Weddings. Very bottom left bouquet photograph by Artisan Events.

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enchanted wedding, part four

I already gushed about the lovely Lisa Barlow, but I decided to do a post specifically about the magic she created for our wedding. I heard about Lisa through a friend at work and when we met for the first time I knew she would capture the vision perfectly. We started focused solely on the Save the Date and invitation suite, but I ended up using Lisa more like a wedding designer – she either created or inspired many of the little details.

Since we were getting married on Valentine’s weekend, I knew I wanted our day to be inspired by and simply exude L.O.V.E. Lisa was able to help me tease out just how much was the right amount. It was so fun to run this design project like I do every day at work, complete with feedback, rounds of revision and production.

In the Save the Date design phase, Lisa helped me see a range of vintage Valentine-inspired cards. She showed me different patterns, layouts and styles that helped me arrive on the perfect balance and still allowed my preppy, classic style to shine through.

Another bit of genius that you can see above in the winning Save the Date design (far left) is our custom monogram. Though I didn’t know at the time, establishing a design detail like this that would carry through as a constant, holding the many pieces together was so incredibly smart. The monogram detail, black & white stripes, vintage red rose paper liner, classic love stamps and elegant calligraphy all combined to create our gorgeous suite of stationary.

The vision Lisa helped me build began to inform other details, like a beautiful custom seating chart, ceremony programs and table cards. Even the black & white striped fondant bow that wrapped around our wedding cake.

We decided to bring the day back to St. Valentine and give each guest a vintage Valentine and flower at their place setting, with a hand-written note from Danny and I. Lisa worked with Zazzle to source ten unique Valentines so each guest at a table would get a unique card.

The day was, of course, filled with Valentine’s L.O.V.E just like we hoped thanks to our wonderful family and friends. Every moment was enhanced by the beauty of the details, thanks in large part to Lisa.

You can find Lisa Barlow Design here. All detail photographs above taken by the talented Artisan Events. Calligraphy created by Nicole Black of The Left Handed Calligrapher. Find Nicole here.

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enchanted wedding, part three

The vision was coming along beautifully. The flowers and décor, the location, even music and photography was falling into place. We were finding vendors that were experienced, helpful and immediately trusted. Greatest of all, our best friends had all agreed to stand beside us on the big day as bridesmaids, groomsmen and ushers. I started searching for the perfect fashion for my gorgeous ladies that would not only enhance the design of the day but also be a timeless addition to their closets. I had my eye on dark, romantic, feminine colors and fabrics. At first I thought I might want each of the four to wear a unique color, then use flowers to unify. I knew black & white would play a role, particularly in the vintage décor. I also knew through collaboration with my florist that we would be creating flower arrangements with various shades of red and burgundy. Ultimately, I decided upon romantic midnight blue chiffon dresses for the gals. They would wear black satin heels and a bit of black & white sparkle to top things off. Navy and black have always been a favorite combination. The classic black tuxes on the boys would combine with the flowing feminine chiffon and create a flawless, elegant look.

A little peek at some of my initial inspiration, from Amsale, Vera Wang and J.Crew.

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