Ask the Expert | Picking the Perfect Venue with Diana Romero!

We are so excited to announce our newest blog feature “Ask the Expert”!  Wedding coordinators are absolutely incredible and multi-talented, so we are asking them what it takes to make your Wedding Day go off without a hitch!  Every month we’ll be featuring a new wedding coordinator and a specific topic when it comes to planning a wedding.

This month we’re featuring Diana Romero of At Your Side PlanningDiana is not only an experienced coordinator, she is also an experienced bride who tied the knot in August!  We asked this recent bride & coordinator her secrets when picking a great venue that meets the couples style and budget. Here’s what she had to say:

1. Each wedding is so different, where do you look for inspiration in creating a unique style for your clients? 

- I look for inspiration everywhere. I find the most inspiration when traveling.

2. What was your inspiration for your wedding?

- My inspiration was traveling to Hawaii and seeing a perfect venue and a perfect sunset.

3. Once a bride and groom figure out their needs and style, how should they go about finding a venue?

- Finding the perfect venue takes time! The venue will really depend on the client’s taste and style. From that, I know how to refer to venues.

4. What type of questions should they ask when touring the space?

- There are many questions to ask while touring a site such as if the venue has multiple weddings per day, the amount of set up time, the service charge, extra fees such as cake cutting, if there is a room onsite for bride to get ready in, meal amount for kids and vendors, rules, noise ordinances, and many other questions that are vital to know for the wedding day.

5. How many spaces do you recommend your clients see before choosing the location?

- I recommend choosing to visit at least three. 

6. Do you have any pointers on narrowing down the right venue?

- Depending on what is important to a couple, that would be what to focus on. 

7. How did you pick yours?

- For me, the breath taking view and impeccable customer service of a high end venue were really important. I would rather spend more and feel assured and confident in the venue and staff than save money.

8. We know that for most brides and grooms the bulk of the budget goes to food, drink and reception. Do you have any tips on cutting costs at the venue?

- To cut the cost at the venue, I suggest limiting the amount of the bar hosted. I also suggest getting cake for less amount of guests…there is always cake left at the end of every reception!

9. Any suggestions on what the bride and groom should splurge on?

- I suggest if the couple is going to splurge, to splurge on the food itself!

Thank you Diana for your input on finding the perfect location!  We loved hearing from you!

 

Kerianne + Henry | San Diego Wedding Photographer

We love weddings, and we were so honored to be with a couple as amazing as Kerianne and Grant!

Around here, there is NOTHING we like more than choosing wedding images to blog, and this wedding made it hard, as we loved so many!  One of the images that made us gasp was taken by my amazing second photographer, Emily.  She caught Henry watching Kerianne walk down the aisle, and when we zoomed in really close - well, you may notice the tear in his eye.  So sweet!! He was choked up for good reason – Kerianne was so absolutely stunning!

We started out at the gorgeous US Grant Hotel, and then headed to the Admiral Kidd Club for the ceremony overlooking the water.  Just before we left, Henry asked if we could take a photo of them in front of the low moon overlooking the city skyline.  It was already really dark by then so we were limited with what we could do, but below is the image Marlo was able to capture.  Love!

These past few days, we all have to admit that we’ve been getting a little jealous of their Maui honeymoon photos that they’ve been posting. Hope you two had a wonderful time and enjoy your sneak peek!! Congratulations again and again!

Jamie + Graham {Carlsbad photographer – La Costa}

You know what’s better than a wedding so beautiful you can’t stop snapping pictures of it? Nothing!

One of my favorite families had a celebration that competes with the most heavenly weddings on earth.  I think I gasped at least a brazillion times that day – at the dress, THOSE shoes!!!, Jamie when she got in her gown and took her bouquet, her MOM’s dress!!! . .. the ultimate gasp was entering the reception hall – gorgeous loveliness to be seen EVERYWHERE you turned.  I swear this must have been one of the most fantastic weddings I’ve ever attended - all due to Jamie’s amazing style, Carol’s exquisite wedding planning, and truly artistic and wonderful vendors.  I am so in love with this wedding . . .

Congratulations to Jamie and Graham for many many years of wedded bliss!  I was so honored to be a part of your gorgeous day!

 

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Coordinator:  Elite Events

Officiant:  Father John Howard

Florist:  Artquest Florals

Cake:  Briar Mist Bakery

DJ: Spencer Bezy/ Mobile Music Plus

Gown:  The Bustle

Linens: Classic Party Rentals

Invitations:  Passion Paper

Find Your Dream Dress

Hi Loveys,

With wedding season speeding along right about now, it seems like the perfect time to talk about dresses! I LOVE looking through our weddings and seeing each of our bride’s in such gorgeous dresses that seem as if they were made just for them! They don’t get there easily. I’m sure seeing how amazing they look in their wedding photos makes the wedding dress search seem oh so worth it! Here are my top tips for finding your dream wedding gown…

Finding the one. That’s a bride’s mission throughout the entire wedding planning process. Of course you’ve found the man of your dreams, now you need to find the dress of your dreams. But how do you do that with so many options out there? Each bride has a different vision for her day and the dress is a huge part of that!

It seems like they keep coming up with new styles to add to the mix, making the already overwhelming search that much more difficult. And how hard is it to decide if the dress you think you love is actually THE dress with thousands and thousands more out there you have yet to lay your eyes upon? The answer? Keep it simple!

There are six basic silhouette styles of dress, Empire-Waist, Mermaid, A-Line (Princess), Ball Gown, Basque-Waist and Sheath. Each bride should try on a basic dress in each style and decide which you like your body in. Of course, certain styles are recommended for certain body types, for example, if you’re pear shaped, and Empire-Waisted dress might look best on you.

Some women are set on getting a certain dress…until they try it on and see that it just doesn’t look quite right on them. And some women would never event think to wear a certain style dress, until they’ve seen themselves in one. This is beyond common! Having a good idea of styles or silhouettes you like is a great way to help narrow down the search, but having too much of a closed mind will possibly cost you your dream dress.

Kristyn’s Find-Your-Dream-Dress Tips:

Have an idea of what you like: simple, loud, color, bling, veil, no veil…

Try different styles & silhouettes until you know what you want

Bring examples of what you like to your appointment, but don’t expect to get the exact dress from the picture

Never try a dress on that is out of your budget – you will fall in love with that dress and be extremely disappointed or break the bank.

Be Open – you might not know what you look best in or what you might like once its off the hanger and on you!

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Trending {Save The Dates!!!}

Trends seem to explode with more umph than ever before. With the speed at which information now travels via social sites like Facebook and Pinterest, the arrival of a trend can happen overnight – literally! People constantly pinning and re-pinning and then facebook-ing a cute idea they saw from someone across the country can turn into a trend frenzy!

One of the hottest wedding trends out there right now is funky fun save the dates. The announcement of your engagement and your finally decided upon wedding date is big deal and people go to great lengths to make sure their announcement is unlike any other.

Save the dates have taken a turn in the last decade; instead of a bland 3-liner card with names, dates and a location, we now have brightly colored, differently textured announcements with a twist! Couples can choose anything from vintage-inspired elegance to multi-fonted infographics listing their entire timeline from the moment they met up to the proposal (another hot trend running now).

With international companies like Minted and Wedding Paper Divas, anyone can find a save the date to fit any style or photo with an easy ordering process. And with great locals like LOL Letterpress and Rock Paper Scissors, you can get a wonderful hands-on experience with personalization & elegant touches.

The greatest thing about the newly renovated save the date wedding invite industry is the customization now available to the consumer. Sure, before you could go into a shop, look at a HUGE binder of cards with filigree type-face, linen papers, creamy envelopes with metallic inks and choose what you wanted…but in todays market, you can choose from a multitude of styles, designs and colors. People have come to show a sense of humor through their save the dates, and really show off their couple personality, and isn’t that what its all about? Announcing to your friends and family the two of you coming together as one? Why not do it with a little personality?

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