The Meaning of Marriage

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What really is the meaning of marriage?

It is a question that is contemplated by so many and a question that breeds so many different answers. While finding the one whom your soul loves and getting engaged is so exciting, it is also so important to have a solid understanding of you and your partner’s views on marriage.

Future couples to wed, may have a solid idea but we thought it would be great to get input on the subject from our former sweet couples who have been living the married life. These couples come from all different backgrounds, each of their answers unique and definitely worth reading.

What were your views on marriage growing up?                                                    

:: The Guenther’s ::                                                                                            

Lynne - “My views were not on marriage as much as weddings and husbands and dresses and cakes and all the things young girls find dreamy. As I did well at school, I was conditioned that for a woman, marriage was a career killer and you meant less as a woman if married. I actually was a little anti-commitment in my late teens and early twenties… College is full of people telling you how to believe and I fell for it the way I think most young women do. Because, marriage is not weakness, it’s meekness, and there a difference.”

Shawn - “Growing up I didn’t have a lot of great examples of marriage. My parents fought rabidly, as did most of the neighborhood couples. I think ultimately my view of marriage was that it was a test of wills to see who could out-sacrifice the other person.”

Shawn and Lynne Guenther's Wedding Reception at Fairy Tale Manor

How did you decide you were ready for marriage? 

:: The Granda’s ::

Kelsey - “I don’t know if anyone’s every really ready for marriage.  Because there’s absolutely no way of knowing what you’re getting into until you’re in it!   However, I felt like Seth and I reached the point that we knew we were better together than apart.  We began to think about the other’s needs above our own.  We started picturing our life in 10, 20, 30 years and weren’t able to see it without each other.  We started asking God to shape our hearts for something only He could.  I think that’s when we knew we were “ready” because we started imagining the life God designed for each of us and just knew it had to include the other forever.”

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How has your view of marriage changed since saying ‘I Do’? 

:: The Siekierski’s ::

Hillary - “Scott is my best friend and that didn’t change when we said, ‘I do’. We also lived together before we got married so we already had the foundation set for a lot of things. If anything, I know that we will always have each-others backs. We were always a team before but we are more so now. I like hearing him call me his wife. That’s pretty cool.”

Scott - I think we were on the same page when we got married, and have remained on the same page since then.  The only thing that has changed is that we have had more life experiences together so our bond has grown deeper.”

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Advice for couples thinking about marriage from our sweet former brides & grooms

:: The Belknap’s :: “Get pre-marriage counseling! Haha! Having tools to navigate a new marriage is priceless, even if you’ve been together a long time. Learn to laugh about your differences, life is better with laughter.”

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:: The Granda’s :: “Pray about it. Pray alone about it. Pray together about it. Have the people that you love and trust the most pray about it. Marriage shouldn’t be something you go into and then leave because all of a sudden it’s harder than you thought.  It’s a covenant. Marriage is the best thing that ever happened to me. It’s also the hardest. To go to sleep everyday knowing you could’ve thought about yourself less and loved him more is hard. But it’s worth it because it’s grace incarnate and I think if someone’s thinking about marriage they should recognize that it’s a little bit of everything.”

:: The Guenther’s :: “To couples contemplating marriage I would say a few things. First: put away all that society, family, or friends have taught you about marriage. Your relationship is unique and requires that you both are able to soberly assess your heart from your body. Second: no prenuptial, no backup plan, and no side bets. If you walk down the aisle you are committing wholly and completely with no “plan B.” Lastly: Love is a proper noun. It is its own entity, the living Spirit of God, and He requires attention, loyalty, and respect. No fight, no distance, no pain can overshadow Love if you show proper reverence for it. Spend the remainder of your days trying to act solely from a place of Love. If you are at all squeamish about that commitment you likely have some growing left to do before considering such a permanent action.”

“My husband and I had been married a couple of years and together for 4 years when people started asking if there was some secret to why we rarely fought. I didn’t know what we were doing right until a little over a year ago when we started to break down the biblical doctrine of marriage. The bible states men desire respect and women love, even more important both find it hard to give the other what they need if they feel they aren’t getting the love and respect they want. Solution: as soon as you realize your hubby doesn’t feel respected, fix it with respect and you’ll get love. Likewise, if your wife feels unloved, love her first and you’ll get your respect.  Who goes first, it’s an honor, so rush to it. Choose happiness and let all the little stuff go. Just love and respect each other, it’s that simple.”

So whether you’re already married or just beginning to toss around the idea of getting married, we hope you find these words of advice useful in your relationship. Choosing the right person to marry can be the single most important thing you do in your life. And when you do decide to make the lifelong commitment to each other, we hope you’ll give us a call to help you create the first chapter in your happily ever after.

:: Photo Credits (from top to bottom) ::

Kelly Gesick Photography

June Bug Company

Apple Guy of Dallas

 Nicholas Leitzinger Photography

CTE Loves Jennefer Wilson Photography

View More: http://gabrielryan./6T1xZ108149

Jennefer and Michael. Where to begin with them and their photography…

Their photos are flooded with beautiful natural light and capture the most intentional of moments that serve as precious memoirs for their couples.

We met Jennefer & her sweet husband, Michael, when working with them on a wedding from this summer. Her work from that wedding was absolutely stunning, to say the least. Jennefer & Michael brought such an awesome energy when photographing Jourdin & Chris’s big day. They had the whole group laughing and really brought out the fun & precious moments of that day, and the photos really showed for it.  You’ll be seeing this wedding when it hits the news stands this coming spring.

Not only are their photos gorgeous, but their hearts are even more beautiful, because it is what inspires their vision.

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Jennefer & Michael currently reside in Dallas. Jennefer grew up in Midland, TX and Michael in the Houston area. Their journeys crossed four years ago, just as Jennefer landed her first wedding photography gig, Michael joining her.

Jennefer: “I received a call from our first ever bride on the Monday before her wedding when she called me in a hurry to ask if I would shoot my very first wedding. I was sitting next to my brand new boyfriend in his Ford Explorer, accepted the job and then proceeded to ask him if he would want to shoot it with me. Little did I know that that boyfriend would be my husband and that that last minute wedding inquiry would bloom into something we love and are so blessed by, that we both do it full time.”

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However, photography wasn’t always in her plans. In fact, when she went to college she had plans of pursuing a music business degree but soon realized that God had other plans for her. Jennefer would then switch majors to Graphic Design, take a photography class as an elective, start getting hired to take portraits for friends and the rest is a beautiful history.

According to Jennefer, their style of work could once be described as simply being editorial journalists of their clients wedding days, but when Michael & Jennefer married two years ago, their view changed completely once Jennefer was on the brides side of the wedding spectrum.

Jennefer: “We do our very best to capture our clients wedding days through the eyes of the bride. Nothing shines as much at a wedding more than it does through the brides eyes. Her hair has never been more perfect, her gown more romantic, or her place settings more classic. Ensuring that the day looks as close to the bride and grooms memory is how we do what we do. This mindset keeps us so honest and intentional; I wouldn’t change our approach for the world.”

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One thing that separates wedding photographers from others, are their inspirations, what inspires their work. If you know what inspires their work, you can understand their vision. If those match up with yours as a couple looking for a wedding photographer, then it can truly be a match-made in wedding heaven.

Jennefer: “I am inspired by kindness and joy. The sunlight on your skin, grass between your toes and a fall breeze are all reminders of God’s kindness. And to be completely honest, nothing inspires us or makes us love what we do more than a bride and groom who radiate that kindness and joy. The ones who love their family and friends so evidently, who take the time to care for and love on those people. They make our job the best in the world.”

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Michael & Jennefer love a good journey. They love working with clients who aren’t afraid to dream with them!

Jennefer: “The brides and grooms who run with an idea and invite us on the journey, those are projects are the ones we live for and pray for more of.”

As a couple, choosing a photographer for both engagement and wedding day photos is one of the biggest decisions & emotional investments they’ll make during the wedding planning process. So, what is the best advice for couples looking to hire a photographer?

Jennefer: “My best advice for couples looking to hire ANY portion of their wedding team is to make sure they love the person behind the work. Especially in the case of photographers & videographers. There is no one who a bride will spend more time with on the day of their wedding, so it is IMPORTANT to love the people you hire! There is no better freedom on your wedding day then to be able to sit back and enjoy your day because you know in your heart that the people you hired love you and are more than able to make your wedding vision come to life.”

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Aside from their photography life, Michael & Jennefer’s regular day is never complete without cuddles from their two golden retrievers, a homemade latte and snuggles on the couch while watching 30 Rock. It doesn’t get much better than that.

View More: http://gabrielryan./6T1xZ108149

If you’re a future bride reading this and you’ve fallen completely in love with Jennefer Wilson Photography like we have, you can find Jennefer & Michael here. Please go take a look at their gorgeous work, contact them & tell them we sent you! Oh, and don’t forget to stop by their blog. It is sure to fill that heart of yours.

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Jennefer Wilson Photography :: Website, Portfolio & Blog

Michael & Jennefer’s Photos Shown :: Gabriel Ryan

Kick Post-Wedding Blues to the Curb

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Post-wedding blues is something that is found to be common amongst newlywed women and their mothers. These post wedding blues are said to last anywhere from several days to many months.

As wedding planners, we make it a priority to make sure that our bride’s are the happiest of brides on their big day and after researching the effects that post-wedding blues has on brides, we wanted to make it another priority to make sure that our bride’s and their happiness are taken care of after their big day is over.

Symptoms of post-wedding blues consist of:

  • Boredom & Sadness
  • Loneliness
  • Feeling Uncertain About Close Relationships
  • Struggling with Self-Identity
  • Feeling Purposeless
  • Extreme Exhaustion

We asked some of our past brides and their mothers if they had experienced any of these post-wedding blues symptoms and while a couple of them said they didn’t experience sadness after their wedding, a few others said they did.

Natalie who experienced 3 weeks up to a month of sadness said, “My thoughts were… ‘Uhhh what now?’ We had been planning for 13 months and then all of a sudden there were no more meetings, emails, planning or tastings. It was a bittersweet moment. The stress level went down, but the fun and excitement leading up to the wedding was gone.”

Mindy, a mother of one of our brides, said, “After Jourdin’s summer wedding, I was on summer break, so I found myself alone and lonely. I had planned everything except for post-wedding. It was so much fun to be surrounded by our daughter’s wonderful friends that we missed them all after the wedding. I felt sad and for a moment in time, purposeless; for months I had been busy with work and with planning, so every day was filled with purpose. When it was over and everyone had gone home, it was just me. I missed everyone and so many relationships are strengthened during those weeks, and in a moment, it is just over. That was one of the loneliest and quietest days I’ve known.”

While their post-wedding blues lasted for a period of time, other previous brides like, Tamra, felt an overwhelming sadness for a short time.

“I cried Sunday after the wedding. For 6 months of my life revolved around planning our wedding. The majority of my extended family and friends that I hardly see came in town from all over the US. And Sunday, after everyone went home, I sat down and cried my face off. I was so sad to see everyone leave because I hardly ever see them and now that the wedding was over, I was a little lost. So much planning. So much build up. And it was over just like that. It took a couple of days, but I got over it quickly,” said Tamra.

While it is totally normal & common to experience levels of post-wedding blues, there are also great & fun solutions to overcome them!

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Natalie suggested continuing to stay busy. She coped with her post-wedding blues by crafting a lot with her mom and decorating her new home. ElizaBeth said she experienced these feelings and knew of multiple other women who felt the same way, but she dealt with it by looking forward to other weddings to attend.

“It’s all over so suddenly and then you go through a mournful period where you almost cannot believe it’s really over! After planning my own wedding and realizing how much work goes into it, I actually really enjoy admiring other people’s weddings because it reminds me of my own. So, now I just look forward to the nest wedding invitation!” ElizaBeth said.

View More: http://jenneferwilson.pass.us/jourdin--chris--wedding

In giving advice for mothers of brides coping, Mindy said, “I would say it’s important to have a definite plan for the days following the wedding. Make a plan with your girlfriends – a spa day or dinner and a movie; or best of all, go on a trip with your husband. It’s not a denial but rather a transition. Secondly, I would share an encouraging reminder that we have prayed for this day since that precious little girl/boy was born, so the days to follow are best spent remembering to be thankful. Acknowledge the bitter sweetness of the experience, but know that it is the beginning of a new and even deeper dimension of the relationship you have built over a lifetime.”

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Rachel, another recent bride of ours, said, “As it gets further from the wedding and life starts to get busy again with other things you think less and less about the wedding. To move on, I talked to my mom about the wedding (the one person who loved to talk about it as much as me) and now I tell my friends who are getting engaged that I want to help with their planning.”

Rachel’s sweet mother, Lisa, said it best when she said, “There is life after a wedding and it is a full one.”

If you are a past bride experiencing post-wedding blues or you’re a soon-to-be bride looking to avoid them, focus on activities such as these for after your big day! ::

  • Give you and your husband some time after your honeymoon to wind down before jumping straight back into work. Reflect on the great experience you just had together.
  • Plan an evening with a few close friends and family to look at your wedding photos and video together. Sip on some wine and reminisce about all that happened on your special weekend. 
  • Talk, talk, talk! Talk to your husband, close friends and family about what your feeling. Don’t keep it bottled up.
  • Plan a holiday party for your friends or co-workers!
  • Start a book club with girlfriends or just one day/night out of the week when you get together and catch up.
  • Plan some fun weekly date nights! They don’t have to be expensive. It could just be a night of your favorite show, pj’s, snuggles and pizza!
  • Journal your thoughts. Put it down on paper.
  • Encourage other newlywed women if they are experiencing post-wedding blues. Help a sister out and work through it together!
  • Get together with your wedding planner to talk about your wedding and all the behind the scenes things that took place that you didn’t even know about.  We don’t mind sharing after the big day and we want to see you again too. It’s a bittersweet day for us as well after spending so much time together and being apart of your lives. We want to see how good marriage looks on you. :)
  • Seek professional care :: If you are experiencing extreme depression and you feel these tips aren’t or haven’t worked, we encourage you to talk to a professional and get the help you need. It is nothing to be embarrassed about. You deserve to be happy!

We hoped this little blog post was helpful to all you sweet women. We wanted to bring awareness to the topic to let you know that you are not alone and that it is very common. If you have any questions, shoot us an email or comment below. We would love to talk and help you kick those post-wedding blues to the curb!

:: Photos Courtesy of (in order of their appearance) ::

Nossa Arte Photography

Jennefer Wilson Photography

Autumn Light Photography

French Lingerie Shower at The Rosewood Mansion Hotel

This French inspired lingerie shower was so much fun to create. The details will have you swooning over a custom perfume bar, indulgent treats and authentic French champagne that the girls celebrated with all day and evening long! The bride to be, Laura, who is also a recent SMU grad, gathered with her sweet bridesmaids at the Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek for the celebratory evening.

Maureen, one of Laura’s bridesmaids, hosted the shower. She really wanted to go with a French inspired theme because Laura really loves all things French! Once the girls settled into their Mansion suite, a limo by Premier Transportation picked them up and took them to LaBichette, a fabulous blowout salon in Dallas. After they got their hair and makeup done, the girls left for Posh Nail Salon to get mani’s and pedi’s.

Once the girls were all pampered and gorgeous, they went back to their suite to get ready for a French dinner at Bijoux. Waiting at the restaurant, was a gorgeous table with custom made place cards, stunning linens by M&M Special Events and floral arrangements by Branching Out Floral and Event Design.

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Branching Out did a fabulous job on all of the flowers! They used the bride’s favorite colors of pops of corals and yellows to give the aqua French inspired table the perfect touch.

After a delicious dinner at Bijoux, the limo took the girls to the hotel. Once they arrived, their suite was completely transformed into an “Ooh La La” French inspired lingerie shower, a complete surprise to Laura!

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Upon arrival, the girls were greeted with a delicious and refreshing little gin, champagne and mint infusion we named, Sexy lil’ Nittie.

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A custom perfume bar was created for the girls where they chose from a variety of scents and nodes, only to fashion a custom perfume that fit each of their personal tastes. Gorgeous pieces of lingerie on custom hangers were placed around the suite not only as part of the decor, but to also highlight the beauty of each piece gifted from the hostess, Maureen. It really added that sultry and elegant touch to this French inspired lingerie shower.

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Laura and her bridesmaids had their choice of an array of indulgent and delectable sweet treats presented on vintage silver and crystal serving pieces with fine French champagne and coffee to sip on throughout the night.

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Autumn Light Photography was there to capture all the beautiful elements of the Ooh La La lingerie shower. It’s always a pleasure to work with such a spectacular vendor team and we couldn’t be more appreciative of all their hard work.  Creating this French inspired lingerie shower for Laura and her girls was so much fun! We can’t wait to create another unique and elegant shower for our next bride-to-be.

Jewish Summer Wedding at Cityplace Events

After meeting through mutual friends, Grant and Rachel went on to date, and 2 1/2 years later of Rachel’s healthy cooking that Grant loved to eat, he popped the question!

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Let me tell you, the proposal was so sweet! When Grant took Rachel on a boat on Lake Travis in Austin, he led her to a banner overlooking the lake where their families were standing holding a banner that read, “Marry Me?”.

On August 2, 2014, Grant and Rachel married at Cityplace Events in Dallas, Texas. This Dallas summer wedding was stunning. Rachel wore a gorgeous gown by Maggie Sottero and her bridesmaids wore dresses by Dessy. How beautiful are they?

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Before the ceremony, Grant and Rachel did a private first look. AutumnLight Photography and Lynn Films captured this moment and every moment of the day beautifully.

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After some fun pictures were taken and guests were starting to arrive, the couple, their families and closest friends made their way to the ketubah signing where some laughs and tears were shed. It was the perfect start to a beautiful ceremony that followed.

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For the ceremony, a beautiful soft harp, played by Laurel McConkey, greeted guests and led the wedding party down the aisle. She was phenomenal.

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Mazel tov to the new Mr. and Mrs. Cohen!

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After the ceremony, the guests where greeted with a delicious cocktail hour. They sipped on red and white wine, and crisp sparkling water with lime. They also ate yummy hors d’ oeuvres consisting of mini chicken burgers, mushroom risotto and beef potato wheels.

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Once the cocktail hour ended, guests entered a gorgeous reception in the Cityplace Events Loft. Rachel really loved the look of a soft romantic color palette consisting of white, ivory, blush and gold. She really wanted something timeless and sophisticated. Magic Moments did a fabulous job with the floral and lighting to really capture her vision. What a stunning combination for a summer wedding!

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For their first dance, Grant and Rachel chose “How Long Will I Love You” by Ellie Goulding. Such a beautiful song for a first dance.

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After a delicious dinner, it was time to cut the cake! How gorgeous is that cake? Rachel wanted to surprise Grant with a special cake of his own.  A tried and true UT Longhorn fan and basketball lover, “Team Cohen” commenced. Panini Bakery truly did an amazing job on both of them.

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After the cake was cut it was time for the Hora!  Guests spun Rachel and Grant all around and then everyone danced the night away to music from LimeLight the Band!

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As the night came to an end, guests gathered outside to bid farewell to the sweet couple with fun ribbon wands. We love this unique alternative for a departure!

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When asking Rachel about her favorite moment of their wedding day, she said, “It’s hard to just pick one moment that was my favorite. I loved seeing Grant for the first time, seeing our vision come to life and dancing with all our family and friends.”

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Rachel, Grant and Family, it was an absolute pleasure working with you and getting to know over the past year.  You have such a special and close bond.  It was a privilege to be a small part of your big day. We couldn’t be happier for you and wish you a lifetime of happiness together!  Mazel tov!

To see even more of Rachel and Grant, check out this fantastic video by Lynn Films ::

Grant + Rachel from Lynn Films on Vimeo.

:: More Amazing Vendors in the Team ::

BBJ Linen & GBS Linens :: Linens

Specialty Imports by Jenne Becker :: Stationary/Paper Product Co.

Tisha at TC Makeup :: Makeup/Hair

Romantic Remembrances :: Departure Transportation

Landmark Limo :: Guest Transportation

 

 

 

 

 

Southern Spring Wedding at Gleneagles Golf Club

John and Caroline met through their best friends in college at the University of Georgia and immediately hit it off. They dated for five years leading up to John nervously getting down on one knee, bouquet of roses in hand, and asking Caroline to marry him. She was so excited that she almost forgot to say yes!

Caroline knew she wanted a spring wedding with a southern flair to incorporate the couple’s roots. The beautiful ceremony took place at Christ United Methodist Church on Saturday, April 26, 2014, the perfect time for a spring wedding.

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Caroline’s bridesmaids wore gorgeous dresses designed by LulaKate. Caroline wore a stunning Elizabeth Fillmore bridal gown. She was breathtaking.

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After the ceremony, guests arrived to Gleneagles Country Club and were greeted by the elegant Dallas Wedding Music string quartet playing. John and Caroline had a cocktail menu filled with fresh orange infused water, red and white wine, and two southern style signature drinks of Arnold Palmers and Mint Juleps. The hors d’oeuvres were to die for….tomato & mozzarella skewers, fried artichokes, crab cakes, bacon wrapped dates & apricots, and coconut shrimp. So yummy!

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For the reception, Caroline continued her southern, natural, airy feel. Tables were decorated with champagne shantung linens accentuated with classic gold chiavari chairs from M&M Special Events. The incredibly beautiful floral arrangements were done by the amazing Branching Out Floral Design and were accompanied by an array of candle collections to tie the whole look together. Beyond did an awesome job with the lighting to create a romantic atmosphere for the reception. Caroline’s vision for her wedding absolutely gorgeous to say the least.

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John and Caroline chose “Wonderful World” by Sam Cooke, one of their favorite songs, for their first dance as husband and wife.

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Sugar Bee Sweets did such a phenomenal job with the cakes. I mean look how gorgeous they are!  Caroline wanted to surprise John with a special UGA cake to represent their alma matter and favorite team. Go Bulldogs! A hobby of theirs is to brew beer. It was the perfect special touch to this tailgate style cake.

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As the evening went on, everyone danced the night away to the band Tenacity!

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To keep the energy going strong, John and Caroline came up with the fun idea to pass one of their favorite treats, Chicken Fried Honey Biscuits, as a late night snack. They were such a hit!

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A favorite Kaufman family treat of homemade toffee was given to guests as favors.  We’re a bit of toffee connoisseurs so we can tell you firsthand that this was some delicious toffee.  Thank you, Beth & Caroline!

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As guests gathered outside for the departure they were given handfuls of rose petals to toss over the happy couple. Blomberg Photography did an amazing job capturing every sweet and happy moment of this spring wedding.

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When asked what her favorite part of the evening was, Caroline said, “It was how in love I felt. John and I aren’t a very mushy-gushy couple, but the whole night, we couldn’t take our eyes off each other. We danced and mingled and ate and laughed…and hardly left each other’s sides. Looking back, I still get the feeling of bliss I had that night. It was really perfect!”

We couldn’t be more pleased to have been apart of your first steps in your new life together, Caroline & John!  Cheers to living “Hoppily Ever After”!

Winter Wedding NYLO Hotel Las Colinas

Irene and Calvin met when Irene was on an overseas assignment to work with a global team based in Bentonville, Arkansas.  Calvin happened to be on his annual leave for work and stayed with his parents in Bentonville as well.  One night when Irene was on her way to a friend’s party, she got lost and Calvin was sent out to help her find her way.

Three years later, on Valentines Day in 2012, Calvin proposed to Irene at sunset in Austin, Texas.  He gave her a cute coin purse as a Valentine’s Day gift to her, and inside was the ring!  Of course, she said yes.

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The sweet couple’s winter wedding took place at the modern boutique NYLO Hotel Las Colinas on November 2, 2013.  The look and feel of this hotel is perfect for any couple who are looking for a modern yet sophisticated venue on their special day.

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A beautiful, traditional tea ceremony with their immediate families, kicked off the big day.  The wedding ceremony was set up outside of the NYLO Hotel Las Colinas on their pool deck which was later transformed into a cocktail and dance floor area.

At the entrance of the ceremony, Irene and Calvin had a cute custom wedding canvas for guests’ to stamp their thumb print and sign, acting as a guestbook!

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I love this shot of the sweet couple.  Such a happy and exciting moment!

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After the ceremony, guests’ were treated to a fun cocktail hour before the reception began while the bridal party took some photos.  The guests were refreshed with fresh lemon water, wine, and champagne. They were also presented with an assortment of yummy hors d’oeuvres, which consisted of fire shrimp rolls, vegetable spring rolls, and crab cakes!

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When it was time for the reception to begin, guests’ were surprised by a video the couple and wedding party put together with their rendition of Gangnam Style by PSY.  It really got the crowd laughing & having a great time.  This bunch was so fun!  I mean look at these guys!

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Irene and Calvin’s winter wedding consisted of a soft clean pink, blue and white palette mixed in with fun elements that represented the couple perfectly.  The gorgeous floral along with the captivating lighting done by Magic Moments Parties & Events really tied everything together so beautifully.

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The ever-talented Delicious Cakes did an amazing job making the cupcakes.  That incredible cake topper you see?  Calvin’s cousin, Steve Lee, actually created it for their special day!  Having cupcakes as an alternative to a full cake makes the distribution of the wedding cake for guests, effortless; not to mention, look how gorgeous those cupcake liners are with the pretty cupcake designs!

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The couple, along with their friends and family, stayed warm by dancing the night away with music played by AVSD.  Everyone also had a blast in the photo booth provided by Imagine Film Co.  Imagine Film Co. also did an incredible job as they captured every moment through both video and still shots.

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Finally when it came time for the newlyweds to leave, they were sent off with a trail of sparklers held by all of their loved ones. What better way to end such a magical night!

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“I have to say every moment of the day was my favorite. From the preparation, to the ring exchange, to the departure, they are all unforgettable,” Irene said as she talked about her favorite moment of their wedding day.

 

The Ideal Wedding Stationery Timeline

With this sweet but stressful time in your life, it’s always good to have a little guidance. Now that almost half of U.S. engagements span 13-18 months1, it may seem like you have all the time in the world to get the ball rolling. But do you really? Here’s a look at the estimated timeline for all things wedding stationery, in the order that you’ll need them in.

item one | SAVE THE DATE CARDS

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—–> when to send? 4-8 months before your wedding

—–> when to order?  2 months before you plan to send them out

As a stationery expert, here is my general guide for the minimum time you should allow for sending out save the date cards:

  • Guests out of the country: seven or eight months in advanced. Shipping can take a while, and they’ll need longer to plan/save up, so the more time you can give them, the better
  • Out of state guests, or guests that will have significant traveling: six months in advanced. While the mail will only take a few days, more notice is needed for your guests who will have to take off of work.
  • In town guests: four or five months in advanced. If all they have to do is block off their weekend, then it’s ok to only give them this much notice

The bottom line: You can send them out all together, or by the guidelines above. If you give them too much time (over 9 months) then they might forget, so feel out your crowd, and plan accordingly. As far as ordering goes, some companies will take up to 6 weeks from initial order to when they’re at your door, and then you will have to plan on taking time to address, stuff, and ship these. To be on the safe side, order them at least 2 months before you’ll need them.

 

item two | INVITATIONS

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—–> when to send: 8-10 weeks before your wedding

—–> when to order: 3 months before you plan to send them out

Personally, I think it is ideal for your guests to have the invitations in their hands eight weeks before the wedding. This would mean that you’d need to send them about nine weeks out. This way, they have time to plan the details, such as hotels and flights, as well as (most importantly!) giving them plenty of time to RSVP.

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This brings us to the questions: When should the RSVPs be due? Most catering companies need the final numbers 7-14 days out2 (this is being conservative, ask your caterer for specifics), so if you have your RSVPs due five weeks out, they will be to you four weeks before the wedding, which gives you two weeks to hunt down all the non-RSVPers, and finally send your final numbers to the caterer two weeks before the big day.

Ordering your invitations: This is normally a bit of a longer process than save the dates, so I’d say to be on the safe side, give yourself 2-3 months, and you’ll want another two weeks to address and send them.

 

items three and four | programs and menu cards

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——> when you’ll need them: the day of your wedding!

——> when to order them: 6-8 weeks before your wedding

Order these as soon as you have the menu and ceremony details finalized. To be on the safe side, order for 80% of your guest list, to account for the people who RSVP that they can’t come. For programs, you can dip as low as 70-65%, because many people won’t grab them (I’m not sure why, but it always happens this way!) Also, you can just order one or two menu cards per table and display them, as this bride did with our ‘Eat, Drink, and Be Married’ menus in the picture below:

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item five| place cards

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—–> when to order: place card turnaround times vary so much between vendors, because we know that it’s a time crunch between when you have your seating chart finalized and your wedding day. I have clients pre-order so I don’t get booked up, and then I have a 3-4 business day turnaround time from when they send me their list.

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Some quick info about escort cards and place cards:

  • Escort cards are the cards you put on one big table outside of your reception that tells people where they will be sitting
  • Place cards go at the actual table to tell your guests which seat they’re assigned to
  • If you have place cards, you much also have escort cards, so guests have a way of finding their seats
  • However, If you have escort cards, you don’t have to have place cards, if you’re just assigning tables, and not specific seats
  • Arrange escort cards in alphabetical order, not by table number! This is so that your guests can find their names easier!

 

I hope this cleared up all of your wedding stationery timeline questions! My name is Tori, and I am the owner of Wed Designer, a wedding stationery online shop. You can find it at www.etsy.com/weddesigner, and always feel free to email me with questions or inquiries at wed.designer@yahoo.com.

References:

1 – http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/01/04/average-engagement-length_n_2411353.html

2 – http://www.weddingwire.com/wedding-advice/rsvp-time/53c73b5bab58eb4f.html

Dallas Fall Wedding at CityPlace

Jannie and John’s beautiful fall wedding day started with a traditional tea ceremony.

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After the tea ceremony came to a close, it was time to get ready for the ceremony! Jannie gave all of her bridesmaids personalized button downs to wear while they got ready. What a great combination of cute and practical.

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Of course, you can’t start getting ready for your wedding without first bringing out the bubbly!

After Jannie and her maids were all ready to go, complete with makeup from TC Makeup, she walked down the aisle at the beautiful CityPlace venue in Dallas. Their ceremony was officiated by none other than Marty Younkin from Love Notes.

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The reception, which also took place at City Place, was absolutely stunning. Just look at that ceiling!

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Jannie and John chose a navy and burnt orange color scheme, which are both of their university’s colors. All of the beautiful flowers and arrangements were provided by Haute Floral.

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It seems like they really enjoyed what they saw when they got to see their reception space for the first time! Looking back at her reception, Jannie noted that, “At one point in the night, while we were sitting at our sweetheart table we looked out at all of our guests and saw that everyone was talking to one another, smiling, laughing, having a good time, enjoying the food and music, décor.  That is all we ever really asked for – for everyone to have fun.” And fun they had!

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The Cake Guys created beautiful cakes for both Jannie and John.

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While Jannie chose a traditional white cake that fit in perfectly with her theme, John’s came was created based on his alma mater, the University of Texas at Austin. Hook ‘em horns!

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After the cake was cut, it didn’t take long for the party to get started! Music from LeForce Entertainment quickly got all of the guests on the dance floor.

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The beautiful pictures are courtesy of Amy Karp Photography. Isn’t she talented? While Jannie and John chose to opt out of having a videographer record their special day, Jannie later expressed that “we probably would have reconsidered hiring a videographer”

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Now that their wedding day is over and they’ve settled into married life, Jannie and John say it’s good to relax without worrying about wedding planning, and it’s so great to finally be married!

 

Traditional Summer Wedding at The Adolphus Hotel

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Raquel & Christopher’s traditional summer wedding, which took place in June 2013 on their one year wedding anniversary, was a perfect combination of tradition, elegance, and romance. Their wedding was beautifully photographed by The Mamones.

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Their ‘I do’s’ took place at Perkins Chapel at SMU, a personal favorite of ours at The Creative Touch Events.

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Their reception was a short distance away at The Adolphus Hotel in downtown Dallas, and it was breathtaking to say the least.

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The gorgeous hydrangea centerpieces from The Garden Gate were reminiscent of puffy white clouds on this beautiful summer day, towering high above the tables.

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Guests dined to delicious food catered from The Adolphus Hotel, and for dessert, a beautiful cake from Fancy Cakes by Lauren. It was almost too pretty to cut! But after guests had their first bite, they were sure glad they did.

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It was very evident how in love Raquel and Christopher are, and how much they enjoyed their special day. When asked about her number one piece of advice for other brides is, she said “I would [hire] a wedding coordinator – even if it’s just for the wedding day. We just recently went to a wedding where the bride did all of the work and just seeing how stressed she was on her wedding day really made me sad for her.”

So, with the stress of wedding planning off of their shoulders, Raquel and Christopher were free to dance to the music from It’s Your Night Entertainment with all of their guests.

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“The Newlywed Game” added some fun and good laughs for Raquel, Christopher and all of their guests. The DJ would ask them a series of questions like “Whose the best cook?” or “Who is more messy?” and they sat back to back and either raised a bow tie or a bouquet. It was funny to see the answers they chose when they knew the other person couldn’t see!

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The night came to a close with their last dance, surrounded by their closest friends and family members. What a magnificent way to end a night they’ll never forget!

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:: our wonderful vendor team ::

Ceremony entertainment: Stradivarious String Quartet

Linens: M&M Events Company

Officiant: Marty Younkin with Love Notes

Transportation: Premiere Transportation

Videographer: Tall Productions