‘Bridal Boudoir – A Definite “I Do!”‘

(Disclaimer:  Mature content in post.  Please, no readers under 18 years old.)

Several months ago, I asked Virginia Buckner, the editor and owner of Southern Celebrations Magazine, what type of features she was looking to promote within the next volume of the magazine (Vol. 8).  This issue is currently available to order, by the way (insert shameless promotional plug here).  She mentioned that she was looking for a styled photo shoot featuring a bridal boudoir theme, and an accompanying article about this particular genre of photography, and why it would appeal to brides.  This got my wheels turning.  What my team of models and vendors worked with me to create is nothing short of absolutely and amazingly gorgeous!!  So please enjoy!!

https://www.southerncelebrationsmag.com/lagniappe/bridal-boudoir-a-definite-i-do?fbclid=IwAR1SHQqjvecxg7ZE5-abFRdpmgC4Y7STiMWOEjxtFlesZzAr_BpbphQR8g0

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

We have been blessed to have had our Winter Elegance styled bridal photo shoot featured on The Budget Savvy Bride blog today!!  Enjoy!

https://thebudgetsavvybride.com/winter-elegance-styled-shoot/

WINTER ELEGANCE STYLED SHOOT

Today’s Styled Shoot is unique because it was specifically created to showcase the venue. The barn at Century Farms was built in the 1930s and fully restored by the current owners. The natural wood tables and chairs in the venue are absolutely gorgeous and the decor fits the rustic elegant theme tied together by a color scheme of burgundy, copper, gold, sage green, and ivory. Enjoy this Winter Elegance Styled Shoot!

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WINTER ELEGANCE STYLED SHOOT

Submitted by: Love, Laughter & Elegance: Wedding & Event Planning

What was your design inspiration?

Kerri Lambert asked me to create a styled shoot for her venue, Century Farms, in Carrollton, Ohio. We wanted a winter look, without it being too “Christmassy”. I designed a look that could be used throughout the late fall and well into the winter season. I used a color palatte of burgundy, copper, gold, sage green and ivory. The restored 1930s barn has a lot of beautiful woodwork and handcrafted wooden tables and chairs that begged to be shown in their natural glory accented with candlelight and lush florals. I built my design around those elements.

Describe your flowers.

The florals were absolutely gorgeous! Dietz Falls Florist used deep red flowers, lots of greenery, and ivory and blush blooms to create our winter look. We had a huge centerpiece for our dining table, two large full arrangements placed on copper stands in front of the fireplace, a darling wreath that we hung above the dessert table, two massive bouquets for our models, a charming floral crown, and a hair comb with delicate blooms. There were several stems of loose blossoms that were tucked into the grapevine wreath above the dining table and used in small vases along the table runner. We also used several loose stems of ferns and greenery in various spots to complete our decor. Flowers and greenery included amaryllis, hypericum, cedar, cypress, red roses, burgundy mini carnations, pink lisianthus, and dahlias.

Susie Kay‘s Designs created a stunning gold and ivory brooch bouquet for this shoot. It was a perfect compliment to all of the lush red and green florals.

Describe your cake.

The cake was a brilliant confection of style! The four-tiered cake was created with alternating square and hexagonal layers. Each layer was decorated differently. The bottom layer was covered in burgundy icing and had gold painted fleur-de-lys designs. The second layer was painted with an ombre effect, going from burgundy to ivory. Between the second and third layers, the cake was encircled by large burgundy silk roses. The third layer was decorated in a quilted diamond pattern, accented with small gold balls. The top tier of the cake was covered in ivory icing and then had gold frosting drizzled over the top, and allowed to drip over the sides, to create an awesome effect. The cake topper was painted with the same gold frosting. Overall, simply stunning!

Tell us about your attire choices.

We had several looks for our models. For our bridal model, Sammy Kay, she wore an ivory sheath gown with allover lace and an empire waist as her ceremony look. We accented her natural waist with a beaded sash. Her cathedral length veil was made of soft ivory tulle. She wore sparkly gold heels to complement the look.  Sammy’s second outfit, perfect for mingling at the reception, was a knee-length ivory dress with a high neck and sheer illusion sleeves with a diamond pattern. We added a modern red suede belt with a gold buckle and a custom made overlay ivory tulle skirt, embroidered with burgundy and pink roses, and edged in a soft sage green thread. We finished her look with ivory lace boots by the House of Elliot. Sammy’s third look of the evening was definitely meant for the after-party. She wore a nude-colored cocktail dress that was completely covered in brilliant copper colored sequins. She sparkled! She added strappy burgundy suede heels to dance the night away in.

Monyca, one of our bridesmaid models, started the evening in a very sexy, form-fitting dark red velvet dress with a thigh-high slit, that set off her long silver hair and golden skin tone. For her accessories, she wore clear strappy sandals and a delicate floral crown. Monyca’s second look was a sexy, dark golden satin maxi dress, which had thin spaghetti straps that crisscrossed in the back. Both gowns showed off her petite figure brilliantly.

Kerri, our other bridesmaid model, wore two red gowns for our styled shoot. The first was a deep red, floor-length gown with a black lace bodice. The second dress was also a dark red satin, but more form fitting with subtle ruching. Both looked amazing on her! Kerri also wore a lush floral crown created by Dietz Falls Florist.

Please describe any handmade, DIY or personal details.

The gold and ivory brooch bouquet was handmade by Susan Wember Kurtz of Susie Kay‘s Design. The embroidered tulle overskirt used in Sammy’s second outfit was created by Laurie Wallick of Lorili Design.

Describe the tablescape elements.

We had two gorgeous tablescapes for this styled shoot. The first was the beautiful natural wood dining table, that was just too pretty to cover up. The tables are one of the best features of the Century Farms venue. We centered the dining table underneath the large natural grapevine wreath light fixture, which we adorned with loose flowers and greenery. The table, which seats eight guests, was draped with a simple burgundy cloth runner. We layered a long, multicolored scarf that featured our color scheme on top of the runner.

We then added the large centerpiece that featured gorgeous amaryllis and deep red roses. Tall sage green taper candles were added in copper candlesticks, along with gold mercury glass votives. Small clusters of loose blooms were placed along the runner in round crackle glass containers with gold footing. Pinecones and loose pieces of greenery were added to the runner to complete the look. The tableware, although a bit eclectic, created a stunning look on the natural wood table. We started with gold beaded glass charger plates, and then added vintage ivory china edged in gold. We used two types of napkins. The glassware included large gold-rimmed goblets etched with a winter scene.

The dessert table was also eclectic by design, but nonetheless gorgeous! On the wall behind the table, we hung a heart-shaped wreath of fresh greenery and blooms and finished with a burgundy chiffon bow. We placed the stunning wedding cake on the table along with a crystal handled cake knife set, tied in sheer burgundy ribbon. We added a single tall candle holder, that was decorated in a dark red and gold glazed design, and had dark gold scrollwork at the top and bottom. On this, we placed a tall red pillar candle. On the table below the pillar candle, we placed several cut crystal champagne flutes that were edged in gold, and a bottle of bubbly.

We added a vintage tin of coffee (fresh of course), a copper drink shaker, and a jar of homemade hot cocoa mix, to provide the guests with a variety of wintery beverage delights. To complete the overall look on the tabletop, we added the gold and ivory brooch bouquet, and several gold mercury votive candles. On the lower shelf of the table, we added a large lighted “bar” sign and several creamy pillar candles in large cylinder vases. Small touches of fresh greenery finished our wintery dessert table.

VENDORS

Photography: Photos by Mindy Lewis • Venue: Century Farms • Event Planning: Love, Laughter & Elegance: Wedding & Event Planning • Floral: Dietz Falls Florist • Stationery: violet and pearls • Jewelry: Susie Kays Design • Veil: Over the Moon Bridal • Makeup: monyca tamang • Model: Sammy Kay Smith • Model: monyca tamang • Model: kerri lambert • Bride’s Shoes: House of Elliot • Non-Floral Bouquet: Susie Kays Design • Linens: Love, Laughter & Elegance: Wedding & Event Planning • Decor Items: Love, Laughter & Elegance: Wedding & Event Planning • Wedding DressDavid’s Bridal • Alterations: Lorili Design • Bride’s Skirt: Lorili Design • Wedding Cake: Sarah’s Sugar Cookies • Submitted via: Matchology

 

 

We have been mentioned in Martha Stewart Weddings!!

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

https://www.marthastewartweddings.com/650598/reasons-to-not-stress-about-wedding-weather?fbclid=IwAR3pVPiN1eV0dNospDx-BFuMYL9jjlf8r924ZeDGdJlO-If1XKYxfRZPmRk

4 Reasons Why It’s Not Worth Stressing About the Weather Ahead of Your Wedding

Let those worries go.

Contributing Writer
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Photography by: Landon Jacob Photography

When it comes to the most special and important day of your life, it’s hard to not get at least a little worked up over the little details. However, it’s important to realize which factors are in—and out of—your control. One that you can’t predict or change, no matter how hard you try, is the weather. “While it can be a hassle if you are caught in a sudden downpour on the way to your ceremony, or if a freak snowstorm blows in the weekend of your wedding, it doesn’t have to ruin your wedding,” says Kimberly Lehman, wedding and event planner at Love, Laughter & Elegance.

 

She does recommend, however, that all couples have a backup plan in place for your wedding, especially if any part of your celebration will take place outdoors. To help you cope with the unpredictability that comes along with wedding weather, here are some key reasons why it’s not worth stressing over.

 

RELATED: WHAT HAPPENS IF YOU HAVE TO RESCHEDULE OR CANCEL YOUR WEDDING DUE TO THE WEATHER?

 

You can’t control it.

To really enjoy the wedding day to the fullest, Leah Weinberg, wedding planner, owner, and executive planner at Color Pop Events, urges brides and grooms to accept that certain things will happen that day that are outside of their control. “When those things happen, you’ve just gotta roll with it,” she says. “Embrace whatever happens and make the best of it—that advice goes for things other than weather, too.”

 

Stress might kill the mood.

Not only is stress bad for your own health, but it can impact the moods of those around you. “If you find yourself snapping at others due to the weather, it could potentially cause more permanent damage,” says Sabrina Zeile of Weddings By Sabrina. “Even though it’s your special day, it’s important to be considerate of others.” If the weather is poor, she suggests shifting your focus to another aspect of the wedding like dancing.

 

Inclement weather might enhance your photos.

Believe it or not, but rain can make for incredibly romantic photos with ideal lighting, so embrace it! “I’ve seen some stellar photos taken on rainy days, so if you’re bummed about the rain, just flip your mindset and think of all of the cool images that are going to come out of it,” says Weinberg.

 

Your wedding day will fly by.

What’s the use in spending the majority of it worried and stressed? It’s important to remember that this day will happen rain or shine, and it will fly by. Instead of spending this precious time stressed out, which can cause negative effects such as headaches, fatigue, upset stomach, and muscle pain, Zeile suggests relaxing and re-focusing so you can enjoy the moments you do have while they’re happening.

We have been featured on The Budget Savvy Bride!!

We have been blessed to have our Starry Starry Night styled bridal photo shoot featured on The Budget Savvy Bride blog!!

https://thebudgetsavvybride.com/starry-night-inspired-styled-shoot/

STARRY NIGHT INSPIRED STYLED SHOOT

This styled bridal shoot was inspired by “The Starry Night” painting by Vincent van Gogh. The shoot is set in a historical home in Massillon, Ohio, and features a gorgeous custom made bridal gown, and beautifully themed decor details. Enjoy this Starry Night Inspired Styled Shoot!

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STARRY NIGHT INSPIRED STYLED SHOOT

Submitted by  Love, Laughter & Elegance: Wedding & Event Planning

What was your design inspiration?

I have long wanted to do a starry night theme. Van Gogh’s Starry Night painting plays well along with this. The mood was to be ethereal, light, sparkling and romantic. A little bit of heaven on earth, if you will.

Describe your flowers.

I wanted to use a mostly white floral scheme, with a hint of blue and silver. My florist created lush, gorgeous bouquets and a centerpiece featuring white anemone, white hydrangea, scabiosa, waxflower, white veronica, dusty miller, and peonies. The flowers were a bright contrast against the navy and silver table linens and formal dresses. The flowers were also to be reminiscent of groups of stars.

Describe your cake.

The cake that Gearhart Custom Cakes created is absolutely gorgeous! It is a four-tier cake, with the bottom layer hand painted in silver.  The top 3 tiers are covered in sparkling navy blue edible glitter. Each tier is defined by a band of bling. The topper is a custom acrylic piece made especially for this project, to finish the cake beautifully.

Tell us about your attire choices.

The attire for this styled shoot was so glamorous! The bridal gown and starry overskirt were custom-made for this shoot by Nidel Dresses in Louisiana. It is a modified trumpet gown with a strapless, sweetheart neckline, and corset back. The removable overskirt features a jeweled belt, and layers of starry fabric. Light and flowy, and simply gorgeous! The cathedral length ombre blue bridal veil was from Over the Moon Bridal in Washington state. The dark blue bridesmaid gown was provided by Doreen Leaf Designs in Hartville, Ohio. The designer is Madeline Gardner for Mori Lee. It is a floor length gown with allover lace and sequins. Very sparkly!

The gentlemen wore stylish suits of their own. The groom’s dark blue tie, pocket square, and pocket watch were all provided by Groomsday. The groomsman’s silver bow tie was provided by Doreen Leaf Designs.

Describe any handmade, DIY or personal items.

The jewelry provided by LivyLynn Vintage is handmade and very unique. Their collection is eclectic and matched our bride’s fun-loving personality.

The dark blue gauze table runner on the outdoor tablescape was custom made and hand-dyed especially for this shoot by Thistle and Twill. There are little white flecks in the material of the runner, that are reminiscent of stars twinkling in the night sky.

Describe the tablescape elements.

We had three tablescapes for this shoot:

The indoor tablescape was created on the 200-year old dining table and chairs, which are part of the Spring Hill Historic Home estate. We used the navy blue satin tablecloth and napkins, and the navy diamond overlay, from L’nique Linens. The silver luxe charger plates are also from L’nique Linens. The china, silverware, and crystal are all part of the Spring Hill estate. The floral centerpiece was created by Alyssa Schlegel, and we used the gold cake topper from Ever Laser to complete the look. The favors are blue and silver wrapped Hershey’s Kisses, placed in small tulle gift bags printed with silver stars.

The cake table was located in the formal parlor of Spring Hill. The table was covered in the navy blue satin tablecloth and the silver medallion sheer overlay from L’nique Linens. The gorgeous four-tier navy blue and silver cake was provided by Gearhart Custom Cakes. The silver mirrored acrylic cake topper was made by Traditions Engraving. We also placed blue and silver star-shaped votive candles around the table for extra sparkle.

The third tablescape was placed outdoors on the terraced lawn of the Spring Hill home. Dining al fresco under the stars was the order of the evening for our couples. The table was draped in navy blue satin, with a silver sequin table runner and navy blue napkins. The china, silverware and crystal are all part of the Spring Hill estate. The centerpiece is the same one that was used on the indoor tablescape. We changed out the cake topper to a different silver one created by Traditions Engraving, The heavy pewter candlesticks were added to provide illumination into the evening hours.

VENDORS

Photography:  Imagine It Photography  • Venue:  spring hill historic home •  Event Planning: Love, Laughter & Elegance: Wedding & Event Planning   •  Floral: Alyssa Schlegel •  Bridesmaid Dresses: Doreen Leaf Designs •  Videography: Joseph Testa Productions • Wedding Cake:  Gearhart Custom Cakes • Jewelry: LivyLynn   •  Linens: L’Nique Specialty Linen Rentals •  Hair: Angelyse Trammell •  Makeup: Summer Knight • Table Runner: Thistle and Twill •  Model: Lauren Simpson •  Model:Brandon Klaehn  •  Model: Sammy Kay Smith •  Model: JOE MORALES •  Wedding Dressnidel dresses • Table Numbers: Traditions Engraving   •  Tableware: spring hill historic home •  Pocket Squares/Ties/Watch: Groomsday  •  Cufflinks: Over the Moon Bridal •  Decor Items:Love, Laughter & Elegance: Wedding & Event Planning •  Cake Topper: Ever Laser •   Cake Topper: traditions engraving •  Paintings: amber elfrink •  Stationery: Santina Amendola Design •   Wedding Dressnidel dresses •  Bridesmaid Dresses: Mori Lee •   Veil: Over the Moon Bridal • Submitted via: Matchology

You may also enjoy the accompanying video from our styled shoot, by Joseph Testa Productions!  Starry Starry Night styled photo shoot

We have been featured on the Chic Vintage Brides Blog!!

We have been blessed to have our 1960s Mod Daisies styled bridal photo shoot featured on the Chic Vintage Brides blog!!  Thank you so much to all of the vendors and models that worked so hard on this shoot!  Enjoy!!

 

Inspiration Shoots

‘Summer of Love’ – Fun 1960s Garden Wedding Inspiration

IMAGINE IT PHOTOGRAPHY

Today we’re going back to the swinging sixties – fitting really given the news today 🙁 – with a charming garden wedding inspiration shoot full of mod fashion, daisies (one of my favourite flowers) and super sweet details; all in a vibrant palette of white, yellow and green that screams Summer……

1960s Inspired Summer Daisy Wedding

“Welcome to the Summer of Love!  The 1960’s were such a cool era.  I love Mod looks, the glamorous hair and makeup, and the groovy fashions.  I also love bright colors and flowers.  Daisies were the perfect fit for this sweet little styled shoot, they are such cheerful and hearty flowers. I decided to use a bright yellow and white color scheme to bring it all together.  The overall look is fresh and light, perfect for summer!

We used two different bouquets.  One is a brooch bouquet of daisies, created especially for this shoot by Susie Kays Design.  The bridal bouquet was a mix of daisies, hydrangea, and small fillers.  The bridesmaid bouquet was a mix of daisies.  The table centerpiece was a mix of daisies, hydrangea, and fillers in a rustic teapot, set upon a vintage cake stand.

The cake by Cake Wasted was a beautiful three tier confection of perfection!  The bottom tier was hexagon shaped, covered in yellow fondant frosting and a delicate white geometric pattern.  The top two round tiers were covered in creamy white fondant frosting, and adorned with a cascade of handcrafted daisy blooms.  The golden cake topper, provided by Everlaser, read “I love your sunny funny face.”  It was a cute nod to one of my favorite actresses, Audrey Hepburn, and complemented the bright yellow color scheme of the shoot.

I wanted vintage attire for this shoot.  I chose an elegant, long sleeved cream gown, which featured a woven cream and gold top, and a wide gold belt, which looked amazing on Lauren.  On our bridesmaid model, Sammy, I chose a flirty sundress in light yellow with an overall polka dot design. We accessorised with a pale yellow birdcage veil, and short vintage gloves. On our groom Brandon, we kept a clean, classic look with a button down shirt, pastel bow tie and suspenders.  On Lauren’s adorable daughter Addie, we chose a light yellow shantung dress with a simple white organza overlay skirt that had a few floral appliques.

Our tablescape was an eclectic mix of items.  The lemon yellow satin tablecloth was topped by a daisy print runner, handmade by Laurie Wallick of Lorili Design.  We used beaded glass charger plates, white dinner plates with a basket weave detail, and smaller dessert plates with hand painted daisies on them.  Glassware was a combination of vintage green cut glass goblets, and small champagne flutes.  The matching napkins and napkin rings were also made by Laurie Wallick.  The centerpiece was placed on a vintage white cake stand.”

1960s Daisy Summer Wedding Inspiration1960s inspired yellow bridesmaid1960s Inspired BridesmaidVintage Summer Wedding Table Centerpiece1960s Wedding Escort Card1960s Wedding Place Setting1960s Summer Wedding Tablescape1960s Wedding Table Number1960s Daisy Summer Wedding Table1960s Wedding Bride & Groom GlassesVintage Summer Groom1960s Inspired Bride1960s Bride & Bouquet1960s Inspired Bride & GroomVintage Daisy Non Floral Bridal BouquetDaisy Wedding Vows1960s Inspired Wedding InvitationSummer Daisy Wedding Cake1960s Daisy Summer Wedding Desserts1960s Inspired Summer Wedding

VIEW THE GALLERY

Isn’t it fabulous?? I always picked my Nan daisies when I went to visit her so I love how much they feature in this shoot! Such a huge thankyou to all the wedding pros and creatives whose hard work created this mid-century charmer, but especially to Stephanie and John of Imagine It Photography who captured it all so perfectly. If you would like to see more of their work you should head to their website at imagineitphotography.com – and don’t forget to find and  follow her on InstagramFacebook and Twitter.

If you love the vibrant colours in this editorial, you might also want to take a look at this mid-century inspired garden wedding inspiration, or this mid-century elopement and this bright and quirky editorial was inspired by Penguin books!

Amy

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Contributors & Credits

Photography – Imagine It Photography // Venue – Private Residence // Event Planning – Love, Laughter & Elegance: Wedding & Event Planning // Floral Design – Love, Laughter & Elegance: Wedding & Event Planning // Stationery – Pink Tomato Creative // Wedding Cake – Cake Wasted // Accessories – Susie Kays Design // Non-Floral Bouquet – Susie Kays Design // Decor Items & Linens – Love, Laughter & Elegance: Wedding & Event Planning // Paintings – Michal Elaine Johnston // Cake Topper – Everlaser // Hair & Makeup – Ramona Dauksa Studio // Children’s Fashion – Love, Laughter & Elegance: Wedding & Event Planning // Napkins & Table Runner – Lorili Design // Desserts – Mad Celebrations Planning & PartyFunNalia // Bride’s Shoes – Susie Kays Design // Veil – Over the Moon Bridal // Wedding Dress – English Rose Vintage Oh // Bridesmaid Dresses – Encore Resale Fashions // Models – Lauren Simpson, Brandon Klaehn, Sammy Kay Smith | Submitted via Matchology

Happy 4th of July! We have been featured on the Artfully Wed blog!!

Happy 4th of July, Everyone!  We have been blessed to have our 1940s War Bride and Groom styled photo shoot featured on the Artfully Wed blog today!!  Thank you so much to all of our vendors and models!  We couldn’t have done it without you!  Enjoy!

PATRIOTIC 1940S STYLED BRIDAL SHOOT

As a wonderful tribute to Love, Laughter & Elegance’s Grandparents and friends who have served in the military, this styled bridal photo shoot captured the classic feel of the many whirlwind marriages of WWII and took place in the historical MAPS Air Museum in North, Canton Ohio. With photography by Imagine It Photography, it is easy to be transported back to 1940 where romantic stories and crisp fashion were ever present.

From Love, Laughter & Elegance: “I have always been fascinated with the fashions and hairstyles of the 1940s, as well as the wartime romances and whirlwind marriages. My father’s parents served during that time. I knew that my grandmother was a WAAC. I have a black and white picture of my grandmother in her uniform, working at one of the local military service clubs. I wanted to capture the feelings of that era, and pay homage to all that served. I wanted to use multiple models, with one more casual wedding look, and one more glamorous. Since many young men of the day had only their uniforms to wear for weddings, I kept the same look for our male model throughout the photo shoot. Our decor choices were styled in classic red, white and blue. Those worked really well with our venue, a military museum filled with vintage airplanes, and other historic items.

I did a lot of research into the clothing of the era. I wanted two distinct looks for our female models, one more casual, and one more glamorous. Our first model wore a pretty blue day dress with red Mary Janes,red-trimmed gloves, a fetching red hat and matching jewelry. Her wedding ring set was my grandmother’s. Our second model, Lauren, we turned into an Old Hollywood siren. The dress had lavishly embellished cuffs and a dramatic open back that was edged in thick sparkling braid trim. There was a detachable train, and we added a cathedral length veil for more drama. Lauren’s jewelry was all sparkle.  Our male model wore a vintage Army Air Force uniform, which fit well with our venue. The Air Force did not become its own distinct military division until 1947.”

As for the extras, decor, flowers, and accessories needed to reflect a simpler time. All flowers used in the styled shoot were very reminiscent of those from the 1940’s – large, lush arrangements, that often were full of garden flowers like anemones, carnations, and lots of greenery. The baker created a simple 3 tier cake, covered in fondant, and adorned with small white flowers and patriotic ribbon with a cutout cake toper themed with a very popular song of the era. The tablescape was topped in classic red, white and blue and personalized with some very symbolic items of the time like Classic Coca-Colas with vintage striped paper straws, Cracker Jacks, simple class jars, coconut macaroons and WWII propaganda posters.

Photography:

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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