We have been featured on The Budget Savvy Bride Blog!!

We have been blessed to have one of our styled bridal photo shoots, and an article, featured on The Budget Savvy Bride Blog!! 

Wedding inspiration can be found in all different places, from different people, and different things. Something we make sure to share with our readers is budget savvy techniques for turning their inspiration into reality! Today we have an awesome, bright, and colorful styled shoot for you from Love, Laughter & Elegance: Wedding & Event Planning.  Enjoy this Lily Pulitzer Inspired Engagement Brunch!

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Lily Pulitzer Inspired Engagement Brunch

Styled Shoot submitted by  Love, Laughter & Elegance: Wedding & Event Planning

What was your design inspiration?

I love the bright colors of Lily Pulitzer’s designs. I wanted to infuse those colors and a fun, eclectic vibe into our celebration of Lauren and Brandon’s Engagement. Lauren shares my love of bright colors, so it was very easy.

 

Describe the flowers

The flowers are a bright mix of pinks, whites, and yellows, to reflect the vibrant tablescape. The small hand-tied bouquet that Lauren is holding in some of the photos is mostly soft peach peonies. The other flowers she is holding are wildflowers gathered in the park.

 

Describe the cake

The cake was a single layer cake, decorated with brightly colored icing to match our color scheme, and we added a custom topper that read “Future Mrs.”.

 

Tell us about the attire choices

Brandon donned a classic white button-down shirt and dark trousers. His preppy look was complete with a stylish pastel pink bow tie and pocket square. Lauren was stunning in a romantic, floor-length peach lace dress, with three-quarter sleeves, and jeweled sandals.

 

Describe any DIY, handmade, or personal items

Some of the dishes on the table belonged to my grandmother, as well as the cloth napkins, and the teapot that held flowers on the cake table. Also, the flamingo artwork was created by my daughter, Annika Lehman, specifically for this event.

 

Describe the tablescape elements

The dining table is a colorful mix of patterns and colors. I wanted to create a fun and fresh environment, with lots of visual interest. The cake table was covered in vintage linens and colorful treats. The gift bags in front of the table were for Lauren’s soon to be bridesmaids when they arrived at the brunch.

Tips for Hosting a Budget Friendly Engagement Brunch

By:  Kimberly Lehman Owner of Love, Laughter & Elegance: Wedding & Event Planning

“Congratulations on your Engagement!“ Chances are, you are hearing this a lot lately from family and friends.  Or, perhaps you have not yet formally announced your engagement and would like to find a way to surprise everyone with the great news.  An Engagement Brunch is a wonderful way to celebrate this exciting time in your life together, with your closest family and friends.

A brunch is usually less expensive than a multi-course dinner, and you can offer a wider variety of delicacies that will appeal to your guests.  Fresh fruits, bagels, pastries and muffins, assorted juices, coffee, and teas will be the staples of your buffet.  If you have a Keurig machine, you can have a variety of instant beverages, from cappuccino to hot apple cider, for your guests.  Be sure to have some flavored creamers, and a can of instant whipped cream for a sweet flourish of taste.

If you plan your brunch after the announcement of your engagement, you have several options for the style of meal you will present to your guests.   One option is the ever-popular potluck meal, where guests may bring an entrée, side dish, or a dessert to your gathering.  You may wish to offer a main dish, such as breakfast meats:  sausage, ham, bacon, or thinly sliced steak.  You could offer a made-to-order eggs or crepes station, or a waffle bar, with several toppings to choose from.  Guests might decide to bring a fresh fruit salad or fruit pizza, or a cheezy breakfast casserole with hash brown potatoes.  The latter is one of my favorites!  Other fun choices might include frittatas, scones, cinnamon rolls, or classic donuts.  Be sure to also offer options for those guests that have dietary restrictions, such as gluten-free, keto, or vegetarian and vegan.  You might consider having a personal chef to come and present a hands-on cooking class in your kitchen, and then enjoy the meal with everyone.  Also set food and beverages out in several locations, prompting your guests to mingle and chat.

Mimosas and bellinis are also a great way to add some fizz and color to your brunch spread.  You may use your favorite champagne, or sparkling cider or juice for a wonderful non-alcoholic option.  Dip the top of your champagne glass in colored sugar, and add your favorite fruit juice, such as orange, peach, mango, or guava.  Add a splash or two of the champagne and enjoy!

Décor should be simple, as this is not as extravagant as an evening dinner party.  Fresh, bright colors, or soft and sweet pastels are always appropriate.  If your grandmothers or other family members have vintage linens and tableware, see if you may borrow them.  This is a great opportunity to showcase their treasures.  Or perhaps you have a collection of funky handmade pottery that you have been itching to use.  This is definitely the occasion to do so!  Add some fresh flowers in one striking centerpiece, or small groupings, and you have instant color and depth to your table.   If you have had engagement pictures taken already, why not set out a few favorite shots in new frames, or as canvases on easels.  They will certainly be a conversation starter, and give you a chance to chat about your photographer, or the location where they were taken.   You could also have a book of your favorite photos made, for your guests to sign.  There are many companies that offer this service fairly inexpensively, such as Walgreens or Shutterfly

A few ice-breaker activities will help your guests to relax and get to know each other.  Often, a gathering such as this will be the first time that the families and friends of the engaged couple will meet each other.  You could print up a sheet of easy trivia questions about each guest, and have the guests go around and fill in the blanks.  Collect the sheets before the end of the party, and give a small prize for the person with the most correct answers.  Another game would be Famous Couples, where each guest must draw a name of one member of a famous couple, for example, Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz, or Michelle and Barack Obama.  Each guest must ask questions of other guests about their assigned celebrity, until they find their missing half.  Don’t be surprised if you hear a famous quote or two!

You could offer interactive activities such as a selfie station, or lawn games like cornhole, a ring toss, horseshoes, croquet or giant Jenga.  If you have access to a swimming pool, that’s even better.  Don’t forget the sunscreen! 

Gifts for the couple are not necessarily a requirement at engagement parties, and should not be expected.  If, however, a guest chooses to present you with a gift, be gracious, and always write a thank-you note after the party.  Favors for your guests are a lovely reminder of your celebration.  Small edible treats are perfect, such as cookies, or rice krispies bars.  Or if you and your future spouse have a shared interest, such as gardening, a packet of wildflower seeds, tied with a ribbon and a personal note, make a wonderful memento.   Use your imagination and creativity.  Have fun and enjoy this special moment!

 

VENDORS

Photography: Brittany Shelley Photography  • Venue: Sippo Lake Park • Event Planning:Love, Laughter & Elegance: Wedding & Event Planning  • Floral: Love, Laughter & Elegance: Wedding & Event Planning  • Stationery: A Pink Sunset  • Wedding Cake: Giant Eagle Bakery  • Linens:  Love, Laughter & Elegance: Wedding & Event Planning  • Tableware: Love, Laughter & Elegance: Wedding & Event Planning  • Decor Items: Love, Laughter & Elegance: Wedding & Event Planning  • Cake Topper: Ever Laser  •  Handmade Items: Annika Lehman • Model:  Lauren Simpson  • Model:  Brandon Klaehn  • Submitted via: Matchology

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We have been featured in an article on Zeel.com!!

We have been blessed to have been featured in an article on Zeel.com!!  Thank you, Jenn Sinrich!!

 

How to Organize a Wellness-Themed Bridal Shower

how to organize a wellness bridal shower

If there’s anyone who could use a little extra self-care, it’s undoubtedly a woman planning her wedding. While this is an incredibly exciting time in her life, it’s also one of the most stressful times. Planning your big day, whether or not you’re lucky enough to have the help of a wedding planner, involves a great deal of time, money and dedication, all of which can suck the energy out of you. This is just one reason why wellness-themed bridal showers are becoming increasingly popular. Another is because of the accessibility of massages and therapeutic treatments.

To help inspire you to plan the relaxing, self-care-centered bridal shower of your dreams, we talked to top wedding planners for their best tips on where to start.

Massage therapy

With Zeel, you can have several massage therapists arrive at your venue for hours of chair massage sessions for all your guests. Chair massage is a fully-clothed back and neck massage that lasts between 10-20 minutes — long enough to relax, short enough to not miss on any bridal fun. Don’t worry about equipment or logistics, all you have to do is request the number of massage therapists you need and put the location and time. The rest will be taken care of.

Get more info about Zeel chair massage

Once you’ve taken care of the guests’ massage, don’t forget to set aside downtime for the most important person, the bride! Get the full treatment by booking a full-body massage before or after the bridal shower. You can pick between a 60, 75 or 90-minute massage but our advice is to go all out — you’d be surprised how rejuvenating 90 minutes can be! Similarly to the chair massage, the therapist will come to your doorsteps and bring all the necessary equipment.

Read more: The Benefits of a Full Body Massage

Select your venue

Hosting your bridal shower at your home, or a friend or family member’s, has is a feasible option—especially if you’re planning a wellness-themed bridal shower. Who needs all the extra noise and chaos that comes along with hosting at a public destination?

Instead, invite all of your closest friends and relatives to a quiet spot and book massage therapists to arrive at your desired time. As Kimberly Lehman of Love, Laughter & Elegance in Massillon, Ohio, attests, “this is a great idea for budget-savvy brides who are looking to save as much as possible in preparation for the lifetime of marriage ahead of them.”

Decide on food and drink

No matter your bridal shower theme, food and drink options are always the heroes of the day. For a wellness-oriented shindig, Lindsey Sachs, a wedding planner and owner of COLLECTIVE/by Sachs in Boulder, Colorado, and Minneapolis, suggests planning a health-focused menu with good eats that not only look great but taste delicious.

“We’re not talking boring celery sticks or foods lacking flavor, but rather nutrient-rich options such as turkey meatball gyros with fresh dill and cucumber, greek yogurt tzatziki sauce, a make-your-own toast bar with avocado, sprouts and seeds or a chilled gazpacho soup with grilled shrimp,” she says. “Turn to your local health food market or local caterer to discuss catered options and, if possible, make all recipes available for guests to take home.”

Create activity stations

Of course, the main activity will be pampering but, since it’s a bridal shower, your guests will expect the mandatory bridal games. “This helps guests interact more intimately with one another in smaller groups,” says Sachs, and you can do it without straying away from the wellness focus.

In addition to massage stations, she recommends a salad jar creation station. “With most showers hosted on weekends, this is the perfect time to meal prep!” she says. “Guests can build their own salads in a convenient take-home mason jar and feel ready to take on the week with a healthy salad in tow.”

Another great idea in a gratefulness activity station. “This activity station gives guests time to pen a sweet message to their honey (or someone else in their life who inspires them) and let them know how much they’re grateful for their presence in their life,” she adds. “Supply guests with a variety of cute cards, pens, and postage stamps and watch the smiles grow as they think about their loved one receiving the letter.”

Pick your music

While creating a playlist for your wellness-themed bridal shower, might not be top-of-mind, Sachs urgest brides not to forget it. “It’s important that you choose the right music to accentuate the celebratory vibe of your wellness-themed bridal shower,” she says. “This doesn’t’ need to be slow, soothing spa music that’s going to put everyone to sleep, but it can be feel-good tunes that make you feel alive!”

Match your party favors to the theme

There are countless party favor options for a wellness-themed wedding shower. One great choice is aromatherapy, which is becoming more and more popular.

“Aromatherapy favors are perfect for a bridal shower, especially when you can combine different oils to make your own personal blends, for relaxation, for sleep aid, etc.,” says Lehman.

Another option is a goodie bag of wellness treats, like homemade muesli, granola or protein balls. “Everyone loves surprise gifts, so this gesture will go a long way and remind guests to keep their own self-care in check,” adds Sachs.

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We have been featured on Brides.com!!

We have been blessed to have been featured in an article on Brides.com!  Thank you, Jenn Sinrich!!

 

6 Pros and Cons of Not Having Bridesmaids at Your Wedding

Published on June 13, 2018
If you decide to take the non-traditional route, you’re not alone.

We have been featured in an article on Martha Stewart Weddings!!

We have been blessed, again, to have been featured in an article on Martha Stewart Weddings!!  Thank you, Jenn Sinrich!!

 

Everything You Need to Know About the Groom’s Cake

This wedding tradition is still alive and well.

Contributing Writer
buffalo check axe log cake

Photography by: Sugar Geek Show

If you’re like most people, you might only be familiar with one wedding cake—that is, the one the bride and groom cut into on their wedding night and feed to each other as a significance of their shared love. But wedding traditions from other cultures incorporate more than just one cake. The groom’s cake, which originated in Victorian England, is one such example. “As tradition has it, there were typically three cakes served during a Victorian wedding,” says Kimberly Lehman, wedding and event planner at Love, Laughter & Elegance. “There was the wedding cake that was served to the guests, the bride’s cake, which was served to the bridesmaids, and the groom’s cake, served to the groomsmen.” Eventually, Southern brides and grooms in the United States adopted this tradition, making it their own. (Who could forget the armadillo-shaped groom’s cake in Steel Magnolias?)

 

While the tradition has changed over time, the groom’s cake is still alive and well. In fact, it may be becoming more popular than ever. Couples across the United States and abroad—even Prince William had one at his wedding to Kate Middleton!—are serving a second confection tailored to the groom’s specific tastes. Thinking adding another cake to your party in honor of new husband? Here are some interesting facts to know about the groom’s cake.

 

RELATED: UNIQUE IDEAS FOR THE GROOM’S CAKE

 

The earliest groom’s cakes were actually fruitcakes.

Fruitcakes are a dark, rich cake filled with candied fruits and nuts that tend to keep well, especially with all of the liqueur used in their creation, explains Lehman. This is also why they are so popular to give as gifts during the holiday season! “Today, groom’s cakes are usually made with dark chocolate and may be filled with fruits and liqueurs, however, the groom’s favorite cake flavors and fillings should definitely take priority in this luscious dessert,” she says.

 

The groom’s cake is not always served at the wedding reception.

These days, especially for the less traditional couples, the groom’s cake is served at the rehearsal dinner the night before the wedding. “This is always a nice touch because it spreads the fun across your wedding weekend,” says Catherine George, owner of Catherine George Cakes in Washington, D.C. She suggests leaving the cake out on display for a while before it’s served.

 

Although designated for the groom, couples are designing the groom’s cake together.

Though the cake design you select for your wedding reception will likely be fairly traditional in terms of color and decoration, the groom’s cake can be a bit more lighthearted and fun. Choose the look together as a fun detail you can both have some say in. If you like a classic look, though, feel free to go for it. The groom’s cake doesn’t have to show off his hobbies or interests. “As couples are veering away from a traditional cake (in the last few months we have seen a cookie truck, donuts, cobbler or pie, and ice cream for dessert instead) the need for a groom cake as an expression of the groom’s personality is becoming unnecessary,” says Isadora Martin-Dye, a wedding planner and owner of owner of Rixey Manor.

 

In terms of flavor and design, there really are no limits.

“Although the Southern tradition is to make a red velvet cake, I don’t believe wedding cakes in general need to have limits on flavors,” says Liz Berman, Boston-based baker and owner of The Sleepy Baker in Natick, Massachusetts. The same goes for its overall look. “I had a groom joke around about how he wanted a wedding cake that was a pegasus with him riding on the back. The bride refused to allow that and ordered a traditional tiered cake, but then secretly hired me to make a groom’s cake. The wedding cake was displayed next to a sculpted pegasus cake with an image of the groom riding on the back!”

We have been mentioned on Martha Stewart Weddings!!

We have been blessed, again, to have been mentioned in an article on Martha Stewart Weddings!  Thank you, Jenn Sinrich!!

 

My Ring Bearer Is Too Young to Walk Down the Aisle Himself—What Are Our Options?

Don’t worry, he can still be a part of your big day.

Contributing Writer
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Photography by: Elizabeth Messina Photography

Congrats! You’ve selected a ring bearer for your big day. Now all you need to do is finalize the details of his big entrance. But what happens if your ring bearerof choice is too young to walk down the aisle himself? Most couples don’t have a long list of potential ring bearers to choose from—brides and grooms generally select the youngsters their closest to, like their nephews, young cousins, children of close friends, or even their own kiddos. If one of these important little guys isn’t walking yet, you’re not going to deny him the role, are you?

 

The choice is yours, but most couples decide that it doesn’t really matter if this attendant makes an entrance on his own or with a little help. If he needs a hand getting down the aisle, know that there are plenty of solutions wedding planners rely on when it comes to a too-young-to-walk-on-his-own ring bearer. We reached out to some of our go-to experts for their best solutions for incorporating a tiny ring bearer in the wedding processional.

 

RELATED: DAPPER RING BEARERS WHO COMPLETELY STOLE OUR HEARTS

 

Have the parent(s) carry the baby down.

If you’re having a very young child serve as the ring bearer at your wedding, chances are, his parents will be in attendance as well. Don’t hesitate to ask if they’d be willing to accompany (A.K.A. carry) their child down the aisle. If you prefer a more unified front, wedding and event planner Taylor Keenan suggests asking the parents to coordinate attire to show the significance.

 

Decorate a wagon or carriage for the baby to sit in.

Kimberly Lehman, wedding and event planner at Love, Laughter & Elegancerecommends pulling small children and toddlers down the aisle in a decorated wagon or stroller. “If the child has a favorite doll, or push or riding toy, consider allowing them to bring it along for the journey to make them feel more secure,” she says. “If the child likes balloons, (and, really, what kid doesn’t?) let them carry a small colorful bunch.”

 

Buy a personalized walker and have the baby push it down the aisle.

If your ring bearer needs a little help standing, but has enough leg power to keep his wheels in motion, a baby walker can be just the thing to help him walk down the aisle. “The walker can be painted in wedding colors and have the names of the bride and groom, the date, or even the name of the ring bearer,” suggests Keenan. “It also serves as a really nice gift for the baby!” If the aisle is a long one, have someone carry the baby half way down it and pull out the walker as they get closer.

 

Skip his role in the processional altogether.

There’s no rule that says a child can’t be ring bearer just because he didn’t walk down the aisle? “If the baby is simply too young to participate, in the programyou can have a picture of the ring bearer along with a cute biography,” suggests Keenan. “Ring Bearer: John Smith, nephew to the bride, is three months old. John loves to play with his toy giraffes, drink from his bottle and take naps. Currently, John is taking his nap!”

We have been featured in Southern Celebrations Magazine!!

We have been blessed to have an article featured in the Vol. 7 edition of Southern Celebrations Magazine!!  We were asked by the fabulous Virginia Conaway Buckner if we would write an article about planning the last soiree of a single gal’s life:  the bachelorette party!  Of course, we said we would be happy to!  Please enjoy the article below.  Cheers!

 

We have been mentioned on the WeddingDay Magazine Blog!

We have been blessed to have been mentioned in a feature on the WeddingDay Magazine website!!  In February of 2018, on Valentine’s Day, a group of very talented vendors, models and photographers came together for a styled bridal photo shoot, in New Albany, Ohio, as part of the Styled Shoots Across America 2018 Tour.  As the only Ohio stop on the tour, we were very excited to assist with the details for this photo shoot.  Our friends Lauren and Brandon were our models.  They are also a real life couple, who will be married later this year, and we have the honor of planning their wedding!  Please enjoy the gorgeous photos.  Cheers!

 

A ROMANTIC, SPRING-INSPIRED STYLE SHOOT

PHOTOS BY RAKOTEET PHOTOGRAPHY

Carri Fras's picture
WRITTEN BY

CARRI FRAS

DATE:  April 26, 2018

If you live in the Midwest, you are well aware that spring weather isn’t always necessarily cooperative. And although this shoot took place on Valentine’s Day, and therefore needed to take place indoors, it certainly proves that spring-inspired hues can really make for a light and airy wedding whether there’s rain, snow or shine! We are all heart eyes for this romantic, red and pink spring-inspired style shoot, beautifully captured by Michelle Rakotomalala of Rakoteet Photography.

Businesses Involved
PHOTOGRAPHY
COORDINATION ASSISTANT
STATIONERY
BRIDE’S SHOES
RIBBON

The brand new venue where the shoot took place offered many great elements for the team. Michelle says, “We loved all of the windows and skylights in the venue allowing for lots of natural light. They also have a beautiful ballroom.”

The bride’s gorgeous gown, soft curls and a neutral makeup were perfect for the romantic, spring vibes the team was trying to achieve. An ombre pink cake, bouquets and centerpieces filled will pink roses and picture-perfect rentals completed the overall look. The rentals included a vintage furniture set up, a vanity for the cake and desserts, tablescape rentals and a heart-shaped backdrop for the sweetheart table.

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