Sunday, July 31, 2011

About that...

You know how you have lots of projects around the house that you start and then "real life" (aka, your job) gets in the way and you lose track of it all and before you know it all the berries in the fridge aren't good anymore? Well, I set up some automatic updates and apparently massively messed that up, so that's why you haven't seen any posts from me this week! I'm fixing that for the week to come and hopefully we won't end up with more bad berries-- I mean, unposted blog entries! So, amazingly cliche weddings, here we come!

Sunday, July 24, 2011


Internet drama aside, I'm baaaaack! And I'm so happy to come back to the blog on this note-- the first same sex couples were married in New York this week!!

All politics aside, I'm in this business because I love love and the sight of so many happy faces and so many wonderful people finally getting to celebrate their love just brings tears of joy to my eyes.


I'm not going to lie, I also am a huge fan of The Office and love the cheesy Niagra Falls wedding, so these lovely ladies definitely caught my eye and have inspired me to look at some classic wedding spots that we don't think about because we want something new and inventive, and this week will be dedicated to all the  newlyweds in NY-- best wishes and many happy years to you all!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Green-ish Centerpieces!

OK, so one of my favorite ideas for weddings is sending centerpieces home with people, and one of the biggest complaints that I hear from those trying to reduce waste (and, honestly, I tend to concur) is the amount of money people spend on flowers for centerpieces that just go to waste. I think you can not only save a lot of money but be a little bit more environmentally friendly by doing some other centerpiece options that would be more likely to be re-used by you OR your guests!

This is an example of my new obsession:

And this is what those nifty little things look like outside the vase:

AOII had our International Convention in Tucson at the J. W. Marriott Starr Pass in June and these were on the table for our Expanding Horizions dinner. I've just been dying over these-- there were blue and red and pink and green and OH the colors! But where to find these magical things? For a while, I thought they were maybe like the little beads you put in your plants to keep them hydrated and a colored LED in the center.

Oh, no, it's much cooler than that!

Water gems in EVERY color!! You can get them pre-hydrated or, much less expensively, un-hydrated. If you're traveling for a wedding, the un-hydrated would clearly be an optimal choice-- they're small enough you could fit an entire wedding's worth of water gems in your makeup bag!

Pop 'em in water, watch 'em fill up, and then set in a vase with a FloraLyte ($2/ea) and you've got yourself a centerpiece that costs less than $7/each! BRILLIANT! Best part? You could stick your bouquet in one and keep it hydrated, and the gems (purportedly) last so you can send an awesome centerpiece home with your favorite guests that they can whip out for parties. Plus, the kids will love playing with the gems! (No lie, I sat there and played with them for like half an hour during awards)

Sunday, July 10, 2011

"Music Midtown Ruined My Wedding"

OK, so now that the AJC has finally posted their article on the subject, I'm going to throw my two cents in on this subject that probably most Atlantans are pretty familiar with by now-- "Music Midtown Ruined My Wedding" and the good folks behind it.

The bride is a high school friend of mine, and I AM a wedding planner, so clearly I'm going to be biased BUT I feel like Emily and Aaron have a legitimate complaint here. For those of you who don't live in Atlanta, here are the players:

Music Midtown: A staple of high school social life when I was a teenager, Music Midtown is an Atlanta classic. Back in the day, it was three stages and more bands than you could count-- thanks to MM, I've seen Bonnie Raitt closer than I ever thought I would, Bob Dylan, The Offspring, and countless other fantastic musical acts. It was also raucous, filled with drunk people, and everything else a music festival should be. About six years ago, they shut down due to low ticket sales but we all always kinda hoped it would come back. We found out last week that MM WOULD be making a comeback this fall, but on a smaller scale-- only 55k people instead of a billion.

The Date: Saturday, September 24, 2011.

Piedmont Park: A popular wedding venue destination for Atlanta couples-- specifically The Greystone (pictured below, courtesy of and Park Tavern.

Gorgeous, right?

Emily and Aaron: The engaged couple-- totally excited about getting married, found their dream location, and were only warned that Coldplay "might" be playing in Piedmont that night, but no hints of a full fledged music festival on site.

Now, the common argument against E&A is that Piedmont is a public park (which it is) and they need to suck it up and not be snobby about it. MY opinion is that the venue, being a part of the Piedmont Park Conservancy and therefore having access to the calendar, had the onus on them to tell E&A and anyone else who asked that there was the potential for a major event that evening. A Coldplay concert? OK, all you have to worry about is some hipster kids wandering around, maybe a few drunk soccer moms getting lost on their way back to MARTA-- a full fledged music festival entails more than one stage, major vendors, port-a-potties, and lots and lots of drunk people.

How do I know this? I used to go to the old MM and we all know music festivals aren't the most family-friendly places.

The AJC didn't do a great job of covering the costs of the wedding, which I think is a key point here, and they failed to really emphasize the fact that they are having to advocate for themselves here. There's not an agency out there that will go to bat for couples getting married, which is interesting considering the amount of money people spend on weddings.

What remains to be seen is whether or not E&A will have to/be able to change venues on such short notice. They have caterers and music booked, save the dates and invitations sent and RSVPs coming in. With two months left, there would be an unexpected cost of mailing out (since not everyone's grandmother uses eVite!) venue change notifications and potentially of putting down new deposits, and even changing caterers. I think that Greystone needs to let them out of their contract penalty free, and negotiate with their preferred vendors to refund all, if not part, of the deposits put down on catering.

Obviously, E&A aren't holding MM the event responsible for this, but the fact that it was kept from them until a nearly prohibitive last minute is unacceptable and unprofessional. I think it's their right to vent however they need to and in whatever fashion gets them the wedding they have not only dreamed of, but paid for.

Friday, July 8, 2011

It IS easy being Green!

Kermit the frog's got nuthin' on us these days! Eco Friendly weddings are all the rage, and I'm jumping on the bandwagon. I think there are so many ways to do a Green wedding and they range from the smallest of gestures to the grandest-- same goes for the price!

I'm sure you're all tired of hearing about our wedding, but since it's the only one I've planned from start to finish it's getting center stage yet again!

Ours was small and on a tight budget, so we used recyclable plates, flatware and cups and served drinks in cans and glass bottles that could be recycled. Sure it isn't a lot, but it's enough to show an effort and enough to make your guests feel like they're involved in the process. Here are a few other ideas we used that were simple, easy, and effective!

The favors were in unwaxed paper boxes (which meant they could be recycled) and the extras were donated as stocking stuffers for a local women's shelter.

Nobody minded the prosecco in a plastic cup! I think most of my friends were happy to not have to worry about dropping their glass, and there wasn't a large load of dishes to be done at the end of one little toast!
Since our city lets us recycle EVERYTHING, even the foil wrappers on the cupcakes were recycled! (check with your local recycling plant to see what they'll take)
We didn't have a lot to spend on flowers, so we splurged on sustainably farmed roses and just had smaller arrangements and a few stems in bud vases on the tables for the reception. The smaller bouquets were easy to carry and handle (I've seen bridal bouquets that weighed 20lb!) and didn't leave us feeling like we'd wasted flowers at the end of the day. 

I gots some asplainin to do!

So the husband and I have just moved, and as a moving present AT&T decided not to let us have internet for two weeks! So on top of coming straight home from AZ (which gave me plenty of inspiration!) and starting to move, I didn't even have internet!

As you can imagine, between the time change and the move I've been exhausted to distraction and of course that's when I start coming across all sorts of inspiration. There's loads coming up including a blast from the past, DIY/low budget takes on high class events, and snippets of Convention and the amazing things from Arizona. WHEW!

Now that I've gotten that out of the way, back to work... hope you enjoy!