Tuesday, May 31, 2011

The Sweetest Affair {Vendor Love}

Want something absolutely unique for your wedding favors or a really breathtaking candy display for your bridal shower? If you are in the DC area, you must check out The Sweetest Affair! Yesterday we had the pleasure of meeting the creative inspiration behind The Sweetest Affair and seeing their gorgeous work. Talk about sweet surprises! I never thought lollipops could be so fabulous and luxe!

What I love most about the sweet creations is the detail. The paper used to make the flowers is custom-printed with the client's name or the company name (in the case of corporate events). For place cards, the paper can have each guest's name on it!

They also design and create sweets tables. I love the chic styling of this black, white and red candy display!

Or how about a pink cherry blossom theme (in this case it was for Macy's)?

There are so many ways to use these artistic confections and you are guaranteed to wow your guests! Enjoy!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Anna Maier/Ulla-Maija at Hitched {Trunk Show}

What: Anna Maier/Ulla~Maija Bridal Gown Trunk Show

When: Friday, June 3rd & Saturday, June 4th 

RSVP: 202.333.6162 or appointments@hitchedsalon.com
(Please remember, gown trials are by appointment only!)

The Little Details: At the trunk show, you'll have the chance to see the latest gowns from the Anna Maier/Ulla~Maija collection (many of which are straight off the runway!), as well as the chance to meet with the designer himself to help decide which gown is perfect for you. 

A special Treat: This couture design house will be offering complimentary muslin fittings to brides who purchase during the trunk show!

Monday, May 23, 2011

Marriage and Money!

Today I'm actually reposting part of a fabulous article from Mint.com on money management for newlyweds. These are great things to start thinking about even before the wedding!

1. Combining and Optimizing Insurances
Job One for any “financial marriage” is for both of you to change your insurance coverage. If both spouses have insurance coverage, it’s best to examine the different plans and costs to decide where the combination should occur. For instance, if the husband has insurance coverage that allows for free spousal coverage, you can set the wife up under that policy and start cutting your spending immediately.

If you can duplicate coverage, that’s good! Duplication ensures that should a medical emergency occur, your insurance policies should cover all of the important issues. If you are paying for insurance under one policy, but not the other, it may be a good idea to place the insurance coverage under the free policy and eliminate the charged one, if possible. Look for ways to lower your overall costs without losing coverage for both.
Mint’s Tip: A popular comparison site for health insurance is eHealthInsurance.com. They list many of the major insurers, and don’t require you to input your personal information before seeing the plan specifics such as monthly premium, deductible, and coinsurance percentage.
Aside from just medical insurance coverage, you’ll also need to combine homeowners insurance, renters insurance, auto insurance, and possibly life insurance. Make sure that you aren’t paying for the same coverage twice, and combine everything when and where possible. Your overall costs are cheaper when combined – for instance, auto insurance policies always offer multiple-driver and multiple-car discounts. Since most policies will require you to complete these changes within 30 days of your marriage, it’s a quick way to see financial savings immediately.

Keep in mind, as well, that your insurance coverage policies need verification of the marriage in order to proceed. Don’t just wait around and count on filing the marriage certificate paperwork to get that document in time! Most offices take 4-6 weeks to process your certificate. Make it a point to go down to your local county recorder’s office and get a copy, so that you can set up your policies quickly and efficiently.

While you’re changing your insurance coverage policies, you’ll also need to change your beneficiaries should something go wrong. Most people allow their spouse to be their beneficiary for all bank accounts, savings accounts, retirement plans, and insurance policies – so you’ll have to make those decision, as well. Also, some employers require that you identify the person who would receive your final check should something happen to you. Make sure to identify that person as your spouse, as well.

2. Juggling the Tiny Details and Plan for the Unexpected
There are also other issues that should be addressed before you race off to the honeymoon. If one spouse will be changing his or her name, for example, that change should be filed with the social security administration. That spouse will be issued a new social security card and, with that information, can change driver’s licenses or IDs to reflect the change. Anyone who sends you mail – such as credit card companies, magazine companies, and even, where applicable, your alumni association – should be alerted, too.

Now that that’s all taken care of, you’ll need to upgrade your wills next. This step is particularly important, as an old will can cause a terrible knot of problems should something happen to you or your spouse. Don’t stall from addressing these concerns quickly – although planning for situations like these can be difficult, ignoring them will only compound the problem. Make sure your desires are made clear.

3. Figure Out Where You Both Stand Financially
Your next obvious step is one that’s hard to overlook: reviewing all credit cards and other debt obligations between you and your spouse. Many people have credit cards, while others have student loans, child support, and alimony. It’s a good idea to sit down and plan out a way that you and your spouse can pay off these debts. While a perfect solution would be to eliminate your debt prior to getting married so as not to burden your spouse with your own debt, this isn’t always a possibility. Therefore, it’s important for both parties to work on making their family and their marriage debt-free.

4. Budget Management For Your Future – Together
Beyond just paying off debts, though, you’ll want to review your financial goals for life. When do you both plan to retire? Do you own a home yet? If so, do you want to plan on moving into a larger home? If you don’t own a home yet, you’ll often want to draw up a timeline goal for buying one. How long will it take you to save up money for a down payment, and what can the two of you afford when it comes to a home purchase? Set goals together, as a couple, so that you both have a clear understanding of your desires, your goals, your milestones, and the means by which to accomplish them.
This last step brings us to a key point: a newlywed couple absolutely must develop a budget. It is essential that the two of you work out your income, your monthly expenses, and debt obligations. Once that’s been determined, you can make key decisions on how to save money, create an emergency fund, or invest in options for the future. Without a budget, you are going to experience a difficult time together!

With this budget in hand and your plan for the future set, your debt repayment plans laid out, and your key financial information changed over, as a couple you’re ready for a successfully and financially responsible marriage together. Stress levels will be lower and your foundation will be set for a strong marriage based on financial responsibility. Hopefully, all of this planning will ensure that money will never be what comes between you both!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Enzoani Trunk Show {Love Couture Bridal}

We Have {Two} Bridesmaids' Winners!

Congratulations to Crown'd Vic and Stacey, our two winners of the Bridesmaids gift pack! Thanks to everyone for commenting about the movie, and we hope everyone gathers up your girls and goes to see this hilarious flick.  Happy Friday!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Lilipad Weddings {Custom Wedding Invitations}

Today I had the pleasure of meeting Kristin from Lilypad Weddings. Kristin is half of the sister duo that makes up DC's hottest new invitation design studio.  Her sister, Jen, handles the graphic design elements while Kristin handles the operations and marketing. Kristin is such fun and has a real passion for weddings and all the fun paper details that go along with them.

I love the creative, modern look of their designs. One of my favorite touches is a reply sticker that guests can affix to the reply card: one for accept, another for decline. How cute is that?

Each design is so unique and they do everything from digital printing to letterpress but I love their layered invitations the most.

The map cards, menus and table numbers that they design with the invitations create a cohesive paper suite for weddings. Don't you love the blues and green pattern in the paper suite above? Be sure to check out Lilypad Weddings if you're looking for fabulous custom design for your wedding!

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Wedding Dress Dilemma: Long or Short, Classic or Modern?

Even if you’re picky picky, or just lost in the wedding dress search, you can find your perfect wedding dress. Why? Because even if you like everything, these days you can pretty much have it all. Say, for example, you really love long wedding dresses – but want something that’s traditional and modern, form-fitting and fairy tale? No problem!

Just take a look at these wedding dresses by David’s Bridal and see how the perfect combination of chic and modern creates a beautiful bridal gown! And how about short wedding dresses becoming a staple in wedding fashion? If this is more your style, then there is so much to choose from.  Tea length or short and sassy--take your pick. These would be perfect for a rehearsal dinner gown or a dancing dress for the reception or a "going- away" look!

And if you like short AND long dresses, you can have that too. This gown actually becomes a shorter dress!

What is your wedding silhouette style?

Monday, May 16, 2011

A Sleek, Asian-Inspired Affair at the Park Hyatt {Carrie + Derek}

What a gorgeous day for a wedding we had a few weeks ago, and what an amazing wedding!
As I arrived to the sleek and sophisticated Park Hyatt, the bridesmaids were already in full swing getting their hair and makeup done by Becky Watson of Salon Capelli.  We tried to keep the vibe casual and relaxed in the bride’s suite so we brought in bagels and fruit so everyone could eat at their leisure while hanging out waiting to get their hair and makeup done.

Once we got everyone dressed, they were off to begin photos with the talented Elaine Studley of Hay McKenna Photography.  With sunny skies, we were able to get some really great shots outside.
The bridesmaids wore steel grey floor length dresses with beautiful red bouquets to compliment the red and grey color scheme of the overall wedding of the overall wedding (with an Asian undertone).  The bride decided to keep with the theme and wore red heels under her Marisa dress.  What a fun touch!

After the Ketubah signing, the bride and groom were ready to walk down the aisle.  For the ceremony, guests were seated in the round, which created a very intimate environment for such a special occasion.  The ceremony took place under a gorgeous chuppah, designed by the amazing Diana and her team at DaVinci’s Florist (DaVinci’s was responsible for all of the gorgeous flowers of the day as well).   For their processional songs, they chose to have a keyboard and saxophone player play "This Time" by John Legend and "Bittersweet Symphony" by The Verve.  Very modern!

Guests were escorted to their elegantly designed table by escort cards that were attached to chopsticks.  Upon entering the room, the guests sat at tables decorated with an array of grey linens and a variety of amazing red centerpieces.  Chef Brian McBride of the Blue Duck Tavern created a delicious menu including lobster, sundried tomato and artichoke salad. 

After the dinner, guests were ready to party!  The band Prime Time got everyone out of their seats and on the dancefloor all night long.  I can’t wait to see the video of the dancing that David Harris of Washington Talent took! 

Thank you to Michael Deltette and your entire team at the Park Hyatt!  You guys are a wedding planner's dream!

A special thank you to my assistants for the day, Laura and Maeve! Congratulations Carrie & Derek!


Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Priscilla of Boston {Wedding Dress Love}

I am really loving this wedding season. Not only is it bustling and beautiful out for so many authentic weddings, but even the styles I’ve been seeing are wonderful and unique. For wedding gowns, it seems like everything from traditional (hello, Kate Middleton!), modern, ball gown, and sexy chic is “in.” Brides are sticking true to who they are and choosing a dress that compliments their body and personality- who could ask for more?

If you’re looking for any of these wedding silhouettes, I’d definitely recommend checking out Priscilla of Boston. They have a gorgeous selection of designer wedding dresses and are actually affordable! So you don’t have to compromise getting the perfect bridal gown for your perfect day.  Here are a few pretty picks to get your wedding dress search started!

 All photos courtesy of Priscilla of Boston

Bridesmaids Movie Giveaway!

Exactly five minutes into watching “Bridesmaids”, I was crying laughing and could barely breathe.  My friend and I were invited to a private screening of “Bridesmaids” at the Lowes Georgetown theatre.  Our exact conversation walking in was “If this movie is cheesy or boring, we’re leaving to get drinks at Clyde’s.”  Not for one second were we bored or cheesed out.  

The plot- without giving anything away- is that Lillian (Maya Rudolph) and Annie (Kristin Wiig) are best friends. After Lillian asks Annie to be her MOH, insanity ensues.  Annie meets the rest of the bridal party for the first time, an assortment of Lillian’s family, her work friends, and her fiance’s addition to the bridal party.  The casting is excellent, and the dynamic among the women is superb.  Although the characters are definitely over-the-top, my friend and I could’t resist pointing out characters and doing the incredibly childish and embarrassing thing of “that’s so you”!  I admit it.  I felt the same going in to “Bridesmaids” as I did going to The New Kids on the Block reunion tour: I didn’t want to love it, but I couldn’t help it (don’t judge – I had free tickets)!  

This movie is definitely an amazing all-girl comedy that celebrates six smart, funny, talented women.  I hope that this will rival the heavily male Hangover that hits theatres around the same time.  Definitely a movie to see with your girlfriends – and don’t be shy about bringing a guy, the crude humor makes it a much easier sell than trying to convince your man to watch Robert Pattinson and Reese Witherspoon at the circus.  I would, however, avoid taking your future mother in law to avoid some cringe inducing awkwardness – the language is a little graphic!  Far from your average love story with a few laughs salted in, this movie will make those stomach muscles work!! 

Now we have a fabulous giveaway courtesy of Bridesmaids!  Two Bridal Bubbly readers will win a Bridesmaids Survival Kit just for commenting on this post. We'll pick two winners randomly from all the comments we receive and announce the lucky names on Monday. Just check out what you'll win:

Bridesmaids Survival Kit - Mesh bag filled with:
·         lip balm
·         mints
·         comb/mirror
·         nail files
·         shot glass engagement ring
·         Bridesmaids T-shirt
·         And a copy of the official soundtrack!

So let us know your thoughts on the new movie Bridesmaids.  Planning to see it with your gals? Saw it and loved it?


Monday, May 9, 2011

Amazing Deals at Love Couture {Sample Sale}

A Sexy Park Hyatt Wedding {Sneak Peek}

Just a sneak peek of Carrie and Derek's gorgeous, sultry wedding at The Park Hyatt DC. The bride and groom looked so amazing (she in a Marisa gown and he in a custom-designed charcoal gray suit) and thoroughly happy. Thanks to Elaine Studley with Hay KcKenna for capturing the day in amazing images. More to come on this beautiful wedding!

Friday, May 6, 2011

Greg Gibson Photography {Top 10 Wedding Photographer!}

Greg Gibson, one of our very favorite photographers (and, come to think of it, just one of our all-around favorite people), was just named one of the Top 10 Wedding Photographers by American Photo Magazine!  This is a pretty cool honor and Greg is the only photographer in D.C. named to this year's list. 

You might know Greg from the amazing weddings he's shot for us that have appeared here on our blog but Greg was a White House photographer for years, winning two Pulitzer Prizes, before turning his considerable talent to documenting weddings.

I love what Greg says on his blog about his experience shooting weddings: 

One thing I have learned in the past eight years is that as a wedding photographer, I can have a tremendous impact on the lives of my clients. While we may not bring about mass social change, stop wars, or put an end to starvation in Africa, wedding photography can have the same kind of impact on a smaller scale within a family just as those types of images impact society.

As a documentary photographer, I am trying to provide my clients with more than just pretty pictures. I am trying to provide them with a legacy and heirloom that will outlast their lives here and can be passed down through their family for generations. 

Congratulations to Greg for this well-deserved honor. And for couples looking for an amazing photographer with an eye for moments and an easy-going, fun personality, look no further. Greg Gibson will blow you away!

Here are some of our  favorite images from weddings he's shot for us over the years. Enjoy!

All photos by Greg Gibson (or his assistant if he is in the photo)!