Thursday, June 25, 2009

Puple, brown and gold invitations

Remember (a couple posts back) the wonderfully talented event planner, Candice Dowling, turned bride?? Well I had the fortunate opportunity of working one on one with her to design an exquisite wedding invitation suite for her big day (lucky me!). Well, she has finally revealed some sneak peak pictures into her suite and talks briefly about the inspiration behind it all, a beautifully, fun pair of purple shoes!

Check out her blog to see pictures and read how it turned out :)

Oh! and how great is this picture!! Robert & Kathleen Photographers are so incredibly talented!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Lilah Paper goes international!

I am very excited, to announce that Lilah Paper has just completed its first international order for a bride living in France and getting married in beautiful London, England! The world wide web is amazing! I will post pictures of their invitation soon. Stay tuned...

Saturday, June 20, 2009

The Skinny on Postage

Ok, so most you know by now that on May 11, 2009 the postage stamp increased in price. BUT... what you may not have known is that they also released a new wedding stamp! That's right, so anyone who is sick of the same old purple hearts wedding stamp is in for a treat. Recently released was this charming new stamp, featuring a beautiful, white, tiered wedding cake! Make sure to ask for it next time you are at the post office.

Additionally, while at the post office, I did some asking around of my own and got the skinny on the new postal regulations... here is what I found out:

- Anything less than 1 oz. can be mailed with a Forever Stamp, which is currently $0.42.

- Anything 1 oz. to 2 oz. (which includes most wedding invitations) can be mailed with a special wedding stamp.

Here’s the important part:

- USPS Postage Stamp Rates increased on May 11, 2009.

- The First Class rate increased to $0.44.

- The new wedding stamp was issued at a rate of $0.61.

However, all this being said, it is always best to take a completed/stuffed invitation to at lease 2 post offices for weighing and rate purposes. Two you ask? Yes two! It sounds crazy, but often times different post offices will provide different rates! A bride was recently quoted anywhere from $0.85 to $1.15 to mail her invitation! That is a big difference and the last thing you want is to find that your beautiful invitations have made their way back to your mailbox!

Happy Mailing!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Event Coordinator turned bride!

It isn't often that a wedding planner finds themselves sitting in the opposite seat, planning their own wedding! Well, event planner, Candice Dowling of Jubilee Events, is doing just that (Congratulations, Candice!). So what better person to chat with about being an event coordinator turned bride and to ask what advice she can offer from both ends of the stick!

And if you have a chance, check out her beautiful engagement photos, shot by Robert & Kathleen, on her blog. Simply stunning! And while you're there, don't forget to take a peek at her "trash the dress" photos (one of which is pictured above) taken by Raw Photo Design.

1. What is the number one piece of advice you can give your brides from a wedding coordinator’s perspective?

Enjoy it! I think often times we allow ourselves to get dragged down into the invariable instances that pop up, family dramas that play out, or the stress of planning a wedding. I tell my brides when they reach that point where planning has become stressful, to put things in perspective. Give in to whatever is stressing you out and be committed to enjoying the process. It is really once in a lifetime. Laugh at the mistakes (when you can't fix them!) and remember the reason that brought you here.

2. What is the number one piece of advice you can give your brides from a bride’s perspective?

Be prepared for other's opinions. It is so interesting to me how many people have an invested opinion on our wedding! It means so much to so many, and they all have an opinion on how things should be done. Planning your own wedding is really a crash course in diplomacy. I'm so fortunate because it has really been minimal, but there were a few times where I was amazed at what my grandmother had a very staunch opinion on and what I needed to do to please her.

I'd also say that it is completely natural to fall out of love with your wedding gown after purchasing it. I had a very similar experience and have come to realize it is only natural to have a tinge (or a tidal wave) of buyer's remorse. You wonder -- did I make the decision too quickly? Did I cheat myself out of trying on more dresses? And then you unfortunately find about 12 OTHER dresses that you absolutely LOVE and MUST have. It goes away -- I promise you. There was a reason why you chose the dress you did and you WILL fall in love with it all over again. Hang in there!

3. As a wedding coordinator you are surrounded by creative and talented vendors everyday! However, as a bride the confinement of a budget doesn’t always allow you to utilize all of the tremendous talents made available to you. That being said, Do-It-Yourself projects are a great alternative! What is your favorite DIY project?

My favorite DIY project so far has been our place card table display. I can't give too much away but it includes vintage frames and fabric. DIY projects are great -- I think every bride and groom should have a physical hand in items made for their wedding. It is personal and intimate. But KNOW when to pay a professional to do something and when you are in over your head!

4. What trends are you seeing a lot of these days and how are you incorporating them into your own wedding?

There is no denying that vintage weddings have really made a comeback. I'm incorporating some vintage details into our wedding as the location was built around vintage elements.

I think the most popular trend in weddings is the depth of personalization. The days of the traditional white wedding are really gone -- and now couples do everything and anything. They really are reflections of the couple, their love story, their families and heritage. I love to see couples delve into the details, not being afraid to show off who they are and what they like.

5. As a coordinator planning your own wedding, you must be your most challenging client! How many times have you changed the vision for your big day? And what helps you to focus in and stay organized?

Oh gosh! Good question! A dozen? Maybe two dozen? So awful, I know. I'm exposed to so much eye candy. That, coupled with my Libra tendencies makes being indecisive so easy. Any designer knows that a look develops over time. Rarely do people, out of the gate, have a design and stick with it rigorously throughout the process. The trick is to allow yourself to explore different options, ideas, designs, and themes. It is OKAY to change your mind so be sure to give yourself permission. For me it is especially challenging because the expectation is obviously there and I am not one who doesn’t rise to the occasion. I am SO excited for our wedding (now that I have just recently focused my design choices) and can't wait to share it with everyone!

6. Where do you find inspiration not only for your own wedding, but for those weddings that you plan?

Another fabulous question! I find inspiration EVERYWHERE. I am a very visual person. I find inspiration everywhere, whether it be from a blog, magazine, or a business's brand / marketing material. It could be a shirt, skirt, or dress. A photograph, my lunch, a song lyric. All of those elements inspire me. But, for practicality purpose, I recommend that brides read some of the popular blogs, visit fashion magazines and home décor magazines over bridal. Draw your inspiration from everyday life and take it from there. It is important, too, to define what look your after and then search out where it resides. If you're into a vintage, romantic look than look to Anthropologie catalogs for inspiration. If you are planning an Old Hollywood style wedding, than draw inspiration from vintage movies and Hollywood starlets. Once you define the style, it is easy to figure out where the inspiration will be!

7. And lastly, in your opinion, what is one “must-have” detail that should be a part of every wedding if the budget allows?

Besides a wedding planner? :) This is a tough question, as I can see the benefit and need for almost every beautiful detail! I'll speak from a practicality standpoint on this, and say that the one detail I DON’T recommend you skimp on, compromise on, and if you have extra money you spend on: your photographer. Your wedding will be fabulous with our careful planning, but when the day is over, what will you have to look back with? A professional and amazing photographer is SO NECESSARY in capturing who you are in that very moment. There are no do-overs. Connecticut just happens to have some of the best in the country (we are so fortunate!).