Many of you may be thinking about an outdoor wedding. But have you ever thought of an Enchanted Forest Wedding? The setting is a little more involved, but oh how beautiful the day can be. Think fairytales and mystical! There’s several aspects that make an enchanted forest wedding magical.
Let’s start with the “Arrival”. How do you want your entrance to your very special wedding to look? Your background setting is big, beautiful trees, but you can make the most of the scene by adding candle lanterns, LED lights, and twinkle lights around the area. Make it a relaxed and mysterious atmosphere with informal seating along the path to the ceremony. Whimsical signs will draw your guests down the path to your ceremony.
Let's now create your "Atmosphere". Once you’ve drawn your guests in, impress them with wonderful touches of a woodland wonderland. This can be done using greenery, moss and gorgeous dusty style flowers. Remember you’re in the woods, so you might consider a simple alter with flowers, lit with a lantern and items for the service. Your place cards for the reception would be simple but elegant, with greenery for a touch of wilderness.
Your guests will be take a breath when you come down the aisle in your special wedding dress. This could be highlighted with woodland fairies, or you might even consider a floral gown with a hint of color. Your bouquet could be made of ferns and other greenery to keep your theme, and highlighted with flowers with that touch of color that mimics the colors in your gorgeous wedding gown. Whatever you choose, lots of hanging ribbon always makes it more romantic.
Everyone will be hungry and so you need to feed their "Appetite". If you have access to a building for your reception, carry out your theme in a big way. Use greenery and beautiful flowers to accent your tables. Try to think of food that will create a satisfying meal. Always remember to include foods that satisfy all the taste buds including salty, sweet, sour, and sweet throughout the evening. And then there’s the cake! This is where you can really use your imagination. Have your baker create a one-of-a-kind cake that will have all your guests talking.
"Amusement" is the next item to consider. Make sure you have some form of entertainment for your guests. In an enchanted forest setting, you might consider a scavenger hunt. By this point in the day, you may be inside a building, but draw the people outside again and let them have some fun. Use your imagination when entertaining your guests. This can be the fun and exciting part of the day.
An enchanted forest wedding can be an impressive theme for your special day. I assure you, you and your guests will remember your wedding for the rest of your lives. No matter how you spend your day, make sure you have fun and take in every moment.
Photographs from Chloe, HappyWedd.com
Everyone thinks of Christmas when you say you’re having a winter wedding. But remember, there’s three more months of winter after Christmas. So, you don’t have to go with the traditional red and green. Think Valentine’s Day, the most romantic day of the year! And maybe build your vision around “the love of your life”
It's no secret that the spring and summer months are among the most coveted times of year to tie the knot, but what you likely haven't realized is that a cozy winter wedding can be just as magical as an outdoor ceremony and reception beneath the stars. While a winter wedding date does force your party indoors, cool-weather celebrations offer the opportunity to plan a party with under-utilized seasonal details. Think cozy lodges, warm fireplaces, and the ultimate rustic setting.
From snowy-white tablescapes to bold red and white flower arrangements I love how a winter wedding can look both romantic and unexpected. After months of soft blues, pinks and lavenders, a moody winter celebration is the perfect way to make your big day stand out. But let's make one thing clear: A stylish cold-weather wedding will look nothing like a holiday party.
If you're searching for winter inspiration, look no further than my Pinterest page under “Wonderful Winter Weddings”. I pulled together the most beautiful and unique ideas that are perfect for your big day. From big city bashes filled with winter greenery and glowing candlelight to snow-dusted mountain affairs, I pieced together the best ideas that you're bound to love.
Ready to see some favorite ideas from “Brides” Real Weddings? Then click through to see how real couples celebrated the winter season during their weddings and get planning quick — an early spring is in the forecast!
Let’s talk about some of the main aspects of your wedding.
Attire for Your Winter Wedding
If you want the elegant look of old Hollywood, put the groom in tails, and the bride in a white long silk dress with a white fur or faux fur wrap. Evoke the season with "ice" diamond or diamond-like jewelry. This year’s wedding gowns are moving towards sleeves or gowns with straps, but the bride still needs to look for wraps, shrugs, and capes, or dramatic coats. I've always loved the look of a bride in a white dress and a large red shawl, huddled against her groom who has a red boutonnière. But my personal favorite is the long white, hooded cape. It’s so romantic against fresh, fallen snow.
Where to Have a Winter Wedding
Look for an inn with a fireplace for an intimate winter wedding. Look for an area lodge or venue that has a warm feel and is suitable for fantastic winter pictures. For a larger affair, you may be able to use a historic mansion or private club that will still have intimate warmth. Unless you're getting married in a state that will have guaranteed snow during your wedding date, you may want to avoid a room that has a large picture window. Imagine drifts of beautiful snow, but sometimes you can end up with a grey rainy day. But the weather outside may not be much of a concern if you have gorgeous decorations inside. Be sure to ask what seasonal decorations they use. You'll save money as many sites are already heavily decorated. Also, check to make sure your site will be adequately heated during the winter months; old churches can be especially drafty.
Planning the Menu
You can have all your favorite food but add some winter touches like a squash dish, or warm pumpkin soup. Consider serving spiced wine, or hot chocolate (alcoholic or non-) as special treats. Look for an all-white cake, decorated with snowflake patterns, silver embellishments, or sugar sculptures. You could even add in your specific wedding themed colors to tie everything together. Ask your caterer about using a decorative snow globe as a cake topper
Winter Wedding Flowers
Decide whether you want to go for a silver and white elegant look, or celebrate the season with reds for Valentine’s Day. For those who like silver, look for dusty miller, silver-dollar eucalyptus, and baby blue eucalyptus, mixed with white flowers such as roses, football mums, crocus, lilies and stephanotis. If you're looking for a brighter bouquet, consider red roses with holly and pine-tree greenery. Flowers such as tulips, roses, and ornamental berries generally will be less expensive choices.
The Décor for Your Winter Wedding
Follow the theme of winter with branches painted in white and silver for your centerpieces. Using three different heights is very popular and adds variation to the reception room. Branches with lights and jewels can be used in the tall centerpieces, while medium centerpieces using lanterns, globes, or vases are special. Low centerpieces with mainly flowers only round out the mix.
An inexpensive homemade favor is a pretty tin of spiced hot chocolate mix or hot cocoa mix with marshmallows. Also, consider a snow globe, with a bride and groom inside, or a valentine cookie cutter with a cookie recipe attached that says your names, wedding date, and "truly cut out for each other".
For more information about winter weddings, contact me either phone or email below.
Starry Night Events, LLC
Some information gathered from Brides.com and Nina Callaway
This is a continuation from my last blog of what’s popular for weddings in the coming year. Some items are left over from last year, but look for the new and exciting ideas that will make your 2017 wedding a day your guests will always remember.
Invitations and Other Paper
Paper sometimes follows fashion. “Wedding invitation styles often mimic what’s happening in fashion and home decor,” says Jill Ryder of Shindig Bespoke, a custom design studio based in New York City and Philadelphia. You can create that special invitation to express the theme of your wedding using several different forms of paper. For 2017, the mixing two patterns, like stripes and florals, may be a popular way to get attention on the backs of cards or on envelope liners, as well as textured paper.
Decorating with Paper. You may want to incorporate paper into your big-day décor by using floral bridesmaid bouquets. or even gorgeous centerpieces. Paper is used to preserve special wedding "memory moments,". Incorporating paper into your wedding day is quickly growing in popularity — and for good reason. It’s economical, potentially eco-friendly and unique in any way you use it. Tutera says, "there's so many interesting things you can do," and adds, "People are sort of surprised, like oh my gosh, look what you can do with paper." Today’s brides are really into building beautiful floral walls to use in both their ceremony and reception venues.
The Intimate First Look
These are a keeper. Tutera gushes, "I love first looks. I think they're brilliant. It takes me forever to convince a bride and groom to do that," but he adds, "They're more personal — I love them." We here at BRIDES can't help but agree. (And they make for stunning and heartfelt photos, too.) As a wedding planner/coordinator, I feel this makes the day start off just right. And it makes great pictures!
The All-Important Reception
Elaborate Entrances. "We are seeing a rise in elaborate entrances and we expect to see this trend continue into the New Year. This includes over-the-top décor as guests make their way to the event, as well as incorporating unique entertainment (think fire starters!) that grabs guests' attention." —Fabrice Orlando, Cocoon Events Management Group I found that a simple, but elegant entrance sets the mood for the guests. A bride can display her color scheme and tone the minute her guests arrive.
Create a Mood. Lounge areas have been an important decor element at wedding cocktail hours for years, but as after-parties come into fashion wedding pros find themselves setting up more lounge-style seating vignettes closer to the dance floor. You should also consider changing the lighting so the room has more of a club and cozy feel.
Creative Ice Breakers. "Couples are looking for ways to engage their guests throughout the wedding day. Interactive food stations and lawn games are great for fostering engagement, as is unique entertainment (think fire eaters or contortionists!), which will give everyone something to talk about. We also love the idea of guests walking into a photo wall, either stationery or as a slideshow." —Fabrice Orlando, Cocoon Events Management Group Another way to bring your guests together are fireworks. After your ceremony or when people arrive at the reception, start the show. They will be talking about it the rest of the night.
Vertical Impact. "When it comes to wedding decor, couples are looking up for inspiration. They are taking advantage of the vertical visual space above guest tables and highlighting it with several options. Expect to see tall tapers paired with luxurious candelabras, low-hanging string lights or Edison bulbs and chandeliers in a variety of shapes and sizes in 2017." —Audrey Isaac, 100 Candles Greenery is again in style and is awesome to work with, especially with a vertical twist.
Entertaining Your Guests
Reaching New Heights. Couples can’t get enough of the unique perspectives offered by drone technology for both videos and aerial stills, and pros are following suit, offering packages that include drone footage as an add-on option. Poised for take-off: professional-quality, user-friendly drones for non-pros (and perhaps a wedding guest), such as EHang Ghostdrone 2.0, which is controlled by your smartphone via the EHang Play mobile app. I’ve had brides that added a drone to their photography package and were really pleased.
Snap and Chat. Sara Fried says her clients are loving the newest takes on the traditional photo booth. “There’s the slo-mo booth, the animated GIF booth, the flip-book booth and others,” she says. “All are amazing ways to keep guests fully entertained.” Most booths will text the content directly to smartphones, so your friends can share immediately on social media — and you get copies of everything at the end of the night.
Cut and Share. Instagram video edits are an increasingly popular package option from videographers, says Lisa Ashley, owner and curator of the Wedding Artists Collective, a specialty group of wedding photographers and videographers. These 60- to 90-second films “have the look and feel of a cinematic trailer and are wonderful representations of the day,” she says.
Mix it up. Few brides want their tables to look “too perfectly organized,” says Amy Marella, owner of the hidden garden Floral Design in Los Angeles. “they want a more eclectic feel,” she says. Create the look by using a mix of containers and featuring two or three different centerpiece designs.
Regardless of what trends, themes, or vibes you're going for, Tutera stresses the importance of remaining connected with your new spouse throughout the wedding day celebrations. "What's been happening is couples separate to their friends and don't hang out with their significant other on their celebration. That's not good. That's something I am trying to force people to understand is incredibly important." Noted!
Plan A Destination Wedding?
Faraway Destinations. "While tropical paradises like Mexico, Jamaica, the Bahamas and Costa Rica still top the list of hot spots to tie the knot, we've seen Iceland, Canada and Italy emerge as popular locales for couples looking to go off the beaten path." —Megan Velez, Destination Weddings There are always beautiful locations for a dream wedding in a far-away land. Keep in mind I am a SANDALS expert and can help make your destination wedding an experience you’ll never forget and probably save you some money.
Planning Virtually. "Couples have gone fully mobile with their wedding plans. Millennials are all about instant gratification, so they want their wedding planning right at their fingertips at any given moment. There's going to be a continued increasing in seeing the whole planning process online." —Li Zhou, LadyMarry But I am always there to help.
If you have any questions or need suggestions, give me a call or send an email. I can help plan your 2017 wedding and take the stress out of the planning press.
Starry Night Events, LLC
Some information gathered from the Bridal Guide and Brides.com
With the new Pantone colors of pink and blue for 2017, I’m finding less brides follow the well thought out color schemes, if you will. They are choosing to be more personalized with their guests and concentrating on the “wow” factor. Here’s a few suggestions that might help plan your special day.
Picking a Venue or Setting
Surprise settings. Today’s couples want a wedding that will blow their guests away, and one of the key elements to an unforgettable event is the choice of venue. “Any place with a large plot of land or a distinct building — or both — will allow couples to really personalize their wedding and help them tell their unique story,” says Amy Cagginello, founder of Amy Champagne Events in Connecticut.
Vintage glamour (with a twist). Picture an industrial warehouse decked out with ornate, over-the-top centerpieces and set aglow with strands of twinkling lights and candles. You get the picture: a whimsical mash-up of old and new.
Make it work! If it’s not practical to book a unique wedding venue, Bianca Hall of Chicago’s Estera Events says lofts and tents will give couples more room to get creative. “Or book a rooftop space with a jaw-droppingly fantastic view!”
Let’s talk color!
Pink is In. Blush rose, to be exact, remains the “it” wedding color. Rhiannon Bosse, owner of Hey Gorgeous Events in Michigan, has dubbed blush a “now and forever” shade, because it’s both trending and timeless. Many of the brides I work with have blush pink in the mix. It’s a great color to use for blending with more vivid hues.
Neutral territory. From charcoal to blue-greys, or grey-browns, “This color palette is perfect for the bride who wants to achieve a classic, sophisticated feel that won’t seem dated or look too trendy in years to come,” says Michelle Cousins, the planning guru behind Michelle Leo Events in Utah.
Metallics Add the Glitter. Brides continue to embrace copper, rose gold, and pewter because they’re so versatile, says Sara Fried, of Fete Nashville. Not only do they work with other colors for a look that’s at once relaxed and fun, they are ideal tones for a black-tie evening. Don’t go overboard with shine. Place metallic in specified spots that will sparkle and not overwhelm the room.
A Color Comeback
"Color is making a comeback, versus all-white weddings. We're seeing less floral and more props as well as hanging centerpieces and more lighting patterns in abundance." —Nahid Farhoud, Nahid's Global Events
Neutral Tones with Bright Accents
"We're seeing dreamy palettes of greys, creams and golds paired with glass and metallics." —Audrey Isaac, 100 Candles
The Beautiful Flowers
Flights of fancy. Tall glass trumpet vases are making a comeback. “they allow for large, lush arrangements,” says Cousins, “but they sit above guests' heads, so it’s easy for conversation.” similarly, Bosse is seeing a renaissance of linear, more tailored centerpieces, as opposed to the loose, “fresh-picked” style that’s been popular in recent years. “these structured arrangements fall in line with the trend toward a more classic wedding look overall,” she says
Gorgeous blooms. Peonies, garden roses, ranunculus, dahlias and other “soft-petal” blooms are the top-requested flowers from coast to coast — and for good reason. “They epitomize romance,” says Zoe Gallina, creative director of Botanica international Floral Design in Florida. Peonies, are in high demand, with one planner noting that some brides will time their weddings to take place when peonies are in peak season. Loose rose petals, used as a “garland” or runner atop tables or scattered among floating candles, are another trend that's coming on strong.
Sophisticated whimsy. At the other end of the trend spectrum, gallina says flowering plants like king- and pink-ice protea, along with assorted bold tropical blooms and small potted plants, lend a dose of stateliness for brides who want arrangements that feel natural and organic — yet elegant.
"With florals, we're going to keep seeing garlands, as well as organic bouquets and centerpieces, all of which have had tremendous staying power among brides." —Jamie Chang, Passport to Joy
I love seeing a variation of three different centerpieces on the guest tables. A low, middle and tall centerpiece always makes a spectacular looking reception.
The All-Important Food
As with last year, couples are infusing pride of location in their hometown celebrations, local flavors are taking the spotlight. For example, in Utah, buffalo is often featured as both a main course and as an appetizer, says Cousins. In Vermont, maple flavoring can make several appearances in the menu. Gulf shrimp is on display in various parts of the South, and so on. (The trend carries over to drinks.) “It’s an extension of the farm-to-table trend that popped up a few years ago,” says Chancey, “but even more fun for the guests.”
Wine-and-cheese pairings have become a familiar site at cocktail receptions, but the idea of matching different foods with different drinks is being carried over to other types of beverages and appetizers, says Hall. “It elevates the guest experience by keeping folks active and engaged,” she says. Some duets to consider: wine and pasta, cake and craft beer, margaritas and guacamole, or for a wedding brunch, try mimosas and pastries.
What’s old is new again
In 2017, bartenders and mixologists are moving away from the very sweet and/or colorful pours in favor of old-time classics, including the Moscow mule, a Pimm’s Cup, and the sidecar.
Now on to Cakes and Sweets
Tall cakes that look as if they leapt off the pages of your mother’s wedding album are suddenly in vogue. “After the last few years of pies, cake pops, doughnuts, and cupcakes, there’s been a strong shift back to tiered wedding cakes,” says Bosse. “There’s something nostalgic to people about wedding cake.” As for the height aspect of the trend, she says tall cakes lend visual interest to a dessert table and allow for some very creative artistry — anything from hand painting to jeweled accents.
Related: 101 Amazing Wedding Cakes
S’mores stations and candy bars have been around for a few years, but one new dessert trend is to forgo a formal dessert course and instead serve guests passed desserts and/or set up several grazing dessert stations so guests can mingle and sample, “just like cocktail hour,” says Cagginello. “It keeps the energy going.”
"There will always be a place for the traditional wedding cake but more couples are embracing alternatives such as doughnuts, cookies and even cheese." —Jamie Chang, Passport to Joy
Let’s Add Some Fun!
A Never-Ending Feast of Food
"Late night snacks are becoming more of a 'must do' as opposed to simply an add-on. We're also seeing additional courses added to the dinner beyond simply a salad and entrée." —Kevin Dennis, Fantasy Sound Event Services
I’ve given you a few pointers to start thinking about for 2017. More to come in the following weeks. If you ever have any questions, give me a call or send an email.
Starry Night Events, LLC
Some information gathered from Bridal Guide and Brides.com
Drink photo credit: JESSIE ALEXIS PHOTOGRAPHY
Hanging Floral Centerpiece Photo Credit: Wild Native Photography
I’m finishing up my review series on some of the best venues in the St. Charles County area. The last, but not least is Old Hickory Golf Club. I recently was the day-of planner for a wonderful couple at this venue. Veronica, one of the staff coordinators and her staff did not disappoint. Together with the bride and her mother, Old Hickory’s staff and myself, we created the perfect day.
This venue features spectacular views, creating a perfect setting for your special day with accommodations that will make your celebration a memory to last forever.
Old Hickory Golf Club is a scenic spot set in St. Peters, Missouri, offering luscious lawns and a picturesque landscape. The clubhouse’s contemporary décor brings casual elegance and refinement together, creating a tasteful space for a bridal luncheon, a wedding ceremony or a reception.
The beautifully groomed grounds provide an optimal location for couples who are looking for a cerebral outdoor ceremony. Surrounded by green grass and a romantic canopy of trees overhead, the bride and groom can wed before their family and friends in a beautifully natural setting. Guests witness the vows on folding white garden chairs, which are set up as theater-style seating.
You can also choose to hire a tent company for added weather protection for late fall weddings. The grounds also feature some beautiful spots for couples to have their photographs taken, such as the pristine gardens and a secluded pond. There’s also a gorgeous stone bridge with elegant black lanterns, giving pictures a look of old-world sophistication.
Able to accommodate up to 550 guests, couples can host a reception or ceremony in the venue’s spacious banquet hall. This versatile room features high, modern ceilings and tasteful chandeliers. Its many windows give it a lot of light during the day, as well as a spectacular view of the grounds and an evening sunset.
Rental of the banquet hall includes votive candles, white linens, china and glassware. The menus are completely customizable. There are experienced wedding coordinators on staff who work directly with the couple to create a memorable event. Included in the rental of the banquet hall is audiovisual equipment, so couples can dance with quality sound or throw on a memorable slideshow for guests to enjoy. Dining options include round tables able to seat up to 10 guests or long tables. In addition, the banquet hall’s wood-tiled flooring is a great space for dancing.
These are just a few of the items that come with the packages Old Hickory Golf Club offer. Another perk is that there are special incentives for couples who book their event during the winter months, Friday evenings, Sundays or Saturday afternoons.
Old Hickory Golf Club works well with all types of vendors. The mid-November wedding which I helped with was amazing. The ceremony was held on a beautiful, Saturday afternoon in a clear tent near the lake, holding over 200 guests. After the ceremony, fireworks lit the sky at sunset.
All guests then retreated inside to the front hall for cocktail hour, FishEyeFun, and visiting. An hour later the reception hall buzzed with anticipation. The couple and their wedding party was announced with grandeur. Every detail was perfect. Three different size centerpieces adorned the tables with menu cards and shades of lavender napkins to match. The ice sculpture was perfect and the head table glittered. Uplighting and the DJ made the night fantastic. The couple surprised the crowd when they performed their first dance without a hitch. You see, they had taken dance lessons beforehand, so they could wow their guests. There wasn’t one detail left undone. The evening was magical! And I think Old Hickory Golf Club and their staff helped make it possible.
Check it out at http://www.oldhickorygc.com.
If you want more information, give me a call or send an email.
Starry Night Events, LLC
Here’s some financial tips to talk over before the big day.
Think about it! You’ve planned the wedding and everything is ready for the big day. But do you really know the financial status of your new partner to be?
More than likely you have two separate bank accounts. Will you merge these accounts or not, this is the question? It’s really important to make this decision when planning your life together. This will help alleviate conflict and stress in a marriage after the wedding day.
Blueprint for Planning
Create a Budget
Evaluate Insurance Options
Name and Beneficiary Designation Changes
A few years down the road you may want to outline an estate plan. You can use an attorney. Your financial planner may have access to an estate planner who can give your great advice. You can choose between a will or trust. But be sure that you have durable powers of attorney ad health care directives. Estate planning will protect you and your spouse.
Hopefully this has given you a little information of how to begin your financial life together. If you have questions, either give me a call or email me at the information below.
Starry Night Events, LLC
Some information taken from Suburban Journals of Greater St. Louis
Thinking of a hotel for your wedding? It can be the perfect place for an amazing event! Especially if its located at the Ameristar Casino Resort Spa in St. Charles, MO. They have everything imaginable at your fingertips. And a great staff to boot!
The Ameristar states, “Just bring joy. We’ll supply the rest. From the initial planning of your wedding celebrations to its finishing touches – and touching finish – our team of experts at Ameristar Casino Resort and Spa St. Charles will make it the joyous, serene occasion that you deserve.
Our company’s culture is guided by our values – Integrity, Care, Excellence, Innovation and Ownership. It’s through these values that we fulfill our commitment to remain focused on doing the very best for our team members, guests and shareholders.”
I recently worked with Samantha Hoester, the Events Meeting Manager, at a wedding where the ceremony was on the rooftop, nestled on the event lawn, just to the side of the pool area. What a beautiful site overlooking the Missouri River. The area is made up of greenery, trees and beautiful plants, so no extra flowers are needed. The space has a large area for seating, with white folding chairs, brick and stone plant beds and columns. This area can be made into a lovely setting for an outdoor wedding. Samantha is wonderful to work with and is on queue with every detail.
After the ceremony, you can move to the ballroom area for cocktail hour and the reception. The Ameristar has spacious areas outside each ballroom hall for cocktails and appetizers. The bar is usually set up in this area, along with the gift table and photo booth or other entertainment. Light snacks are served, along with a full bar. This is a great time to catch up with friends and family members, while the wedding party is out taking pictures.
You can then move into the ballroom for the reception. The Ameristar has several different options handling 80 to 700 people. They can combine four different rooms together for a very large wedding. My couple’s wedding was in the Imagination Ballroom, which held all guests, the DJ, an elevated head table and a gorgeous buffet table. You could tell the wait staff loved their jobs because of the way they performed throughout the evening. And the food was outstanding, with prime rib cooked perfectly.
One of the best parts of booking with the Ameristar is the complimentary suite at the hotel. This gives the bride and her bridesmaids a place to get ready and relax before the wedding. It also is handy for storing items before and after the wedding. This exciting room has a king size bed, awesome bathroom, with a sunken tub and a living room area to just hang out. It also has a small kitchen area with a fridge, sink and counter. You couldn’t ask for more on your wedding day. Can you tell I’m in love?
And Starry Night Events can add to your day to take out all the stress and make your day perfect in every way. We can add the little touches that take care of all the unexpected things that might happen. We are your communication piece between you and the hotel. You should not have to worry about anything on your big day and Starry Night Events can make that happen.
If you have more questions about the Ameristar Casino Resort Spa in St. Charles give me a call or send me a note.
Starry Night Events, LLC
Looking for a great venue to have your once in a life time event? I’ve visited a few lately and want to give you the scoop on what to expect.
One of my favorites is Chandler Hill Vineyards, located at 596 Defiance Road, Defiance, MO 63341. Chandler Hill is set in the rolling hills of the Missouri wine country, with a picturesque view and enchanting charm. During the summer it boasts a large, covered deck with umbrellas and view of their vineyards. During the winter their huge fireplace draws you into the warmth of the tasting bar and event space.
I recently worked with Megan Lewis, Chandler Hill’s awesome Events Coordinator on a gorgeous wedding in July. The wedding was perfect in every way. It’s so important to have a wonderful venue to make your wedding outstanding.
A little history, …The man’s name was Joseph Chandler who died in 1952 at the age of 98. Chandler Hill Vineyards operates on the same property he once owned. The tasting room and winery stand on the site of Joseph Chandler’s modest cabin.
During excavation, many century-old artifacts were uncovered including a shotgun, rifle, tools, china and more. These relics of Joseph Chandler are on display at the winery. The stones from his original cabin foundation were also carefully removed and now surround the refreshing waterfall at the winery entrance.
Early in the 21st century, the current owners of Chandler Hill set a goal to create a Midwest winery like no other. Construction began in 2007 with the creation of a winery that idyllically is situated on a hilltop at the entrance to Missouri wine country. The essence of Chandler Hill is understated elegance. From the tasting room to the 5,000 square foot deck overlooking our vineyards, spring-fed lake, rolling hills and the inspiring Osage Valley teeming with wildlife, Chandler Hill is an enchanting year-round destination unlike any other.
Painstakingly crafted from authentic materials and boasting signature details like their celestial sky lights, candle lighting over their oversize tasting bar or magnificent fireplace in the tasting room, Chandler Hill has the power to whisk visitors away to a special place.
With approximately 6 acres of vineyards on the property and 4 acres of vineyards offsite, we’re proud of the quality of the grapes we grow and the wine it produces. Winemaker Tom Murphy oversees the task of pruning, cultivating, planting and harvesting our vineyards. We currently grow 3 varietals: Vignoles, Chambourcin and Norton. We also harvest Vidal Blanc and Traminette grapes offsite and produce the wine in-house. Our hands-on approach results in us using manpower to do the majority of the work. If participating in our grape harvest sounds interesting to you, check out our Harvest Boot Camp. Tour the vineyards to get an up close look at the vines and our vineyard practices.
So, if you’re looking for a venue that’s easy to work with, magical in the summer, and cozy in the winter, call Chandler Hill Vineyards. You can reach Megan at either 636.798.2675 or email@example.com. Tell her Jodell from Starry Night Events sent you!
Starry Night Events, LLC
Title Photo by White-Klump Photography
Bottom photos taken from Chandler Hill Vineyards website
Here’s a few tips on what Mom should wear on your big day.
Don’t fret! It’s really not that hard. Just use your head and go with whatever you feel most comfortable with. If you are one to follow rules, here’s a few basic etiquette tips to lead the way.
Q. What's the dress-buying protocol for moms?
A. It's customary for the mother of the bride to purchase her dress first. Her choice is usually meant to subtly dictate what the mother of the groom will wear. However, this approach can be a little old-fashioned, not to mention a little unrealistic. There's always some factor that make abiding by tradition a lost cause. My advice is to just play it by ear, and try to be flexible. It's not the competition of the Mom’s. It’s a wedding!
Q. When the mother of the bride buys her dress, is it her duty to then politely "inform" the groom's mother?
A. This is “old school”, but polite. She is expected to notify the mother of the groom (presumably to prevent overdressing, clashing colors, and other fashion faux pas.) And while it's certainly a good idea, it's not a requirement, especially if you're worried about seeming pushy or bossy. That said, the mother of the groom might really appreciate -- and even expect -- a heads up. You can either have your daughter subtly pass the details along, or give her a call yourself. Try to sound as friendly and helpful and non-territorial as possible. Chances are the mother of the groom will want to know more about your dress and how she will fit in the picture. Of course, she might be totally disinterested. If that happens, don't sweat it. You’ve done your duty.
Q. What length dress should the MOB wear, considering the time of the wedding?
A. The length of the gown or dress is a personal choice, even for formal weddings. Long dresses and skirts are fine for any wedding from noon on. The mothers do not have to wear dresses of equal length, although many do, feeling that it creates a more harmonious look, especially in wedding photos. Tea-length or shorter dresses are fine for morning weddings.
Q. What are the color and style restrictions surrounding the mother of the bride's dress?
A. Every wedding has a color scheme, whether it be pastel or primary, subdued or vibrant. Every wedding also has a tone, be it formal, semi-formal, or casual. It is generally considered to be within the standards of good taste to adhere to the chosen color scheme and to the level of formality. Traditionally, avoiding dresses in the white, ivory, and champagne color family (that match the bride's wedding gown), black gowns (that can suggest mourning) and red gowns (or similarly "flashy" shades) is the standard. Though I’ve seen moms in white who look tailored and elegant. I think black is classic, chic, and formal, and know that even red can be done with gorgeous good taste. Before you start shopping, talk to the bride. She may be very sensitive to the color issue or completely indifferent. If she expresses reservation, think about subdued-but-stately colors in the lavender, silver, burgundy, and blue families.
Q. Does the mother of the bride's dress color have to match the bridesmaids?
A. Some will swear by the "rule" that all the dresses must coordinate. Some brides really love that matched look. But there are countless alternatives. If possible, bring in a swatch of the bridesmaids’ gown fabric when you go shopping, or have a description of the gown’s color. But mixing and matching can be ultra-stylish, too. What's most important, is that everyone feels comfortable and beautiful.
Q. When it comes to choosing the Mother of the Bride's dress, how much say does the bride have?
A. Definitely consult her on color -- she may have issues with certain shades (white, black, red) or want your dress to complement the bridesmaids' dresses. She may also have ideas about style, length, and formality. Try to respect her wishes -- her opinion should count for a lot, and if she wants long sleeves or if she likes you best in pistachio, what's the harm in obliging? Keep her guidelines in mind while shopping, but the dress you settle on should make you happy, too.
Q. How far in advance should the Mother of the Bride purchase her dress?
A. It's never too early to start shopping. If you must put it off, aim to make a decision no later than one month before the wedding. We know you're going to get around to it eventually -- just be sure to let the groom's mom know she can forge ahead without you and keep the bride informed of your progress. My advice, order your outfit at least two to three months ahead of time, and allow at least two weeks for alterations.
Q. Does the Mother of the Bride have to get dressed up for the wedding, even if fancy isn't her style?
A. If it's an evening wedding, you're going to have to dress up more than usual. You don't want to stick out or appear disrespectful. But this doesn't mean you have to sport sequins and satin or velvet and rhinestones. There are many frill-free formal looks out there. Stick to your guns and you'll find an outfit (pants are okay!) that's unembellished, easy, and elegant -- perfect for your casual style.
Q. Can a young-looking MOB wear a strapless ball gown -- is there such a thing as looking too young or sexy?
A. On one level we think you deserve to wear a fabulously sexy dress, but always consider the bride first. If she's supportive, go for it -- you're both going to sizzle! If your daughter seems concerned about "Mommy" turning heads, not acting her age, and otherwise upstaging her, let her be selfish. But always remember you're not limited to "frumpy" or overly conservative attire at all. It's quite possible to be glamorous without ruffling any feathers. No matter what type of outfit Mom has, get specific advice on which undergarments, shoes, and hose will go best with your outfit
Want to learn more about the Mother of the Bride dress? Give me a call or send me an email.
This blog is direct from WeddingWire, by author, Kim Forrest. I felt it hit the nail on the head and was very well written. So I am sharing it with you in hopes you will read and learn.
Wedding planning can have its stressful moments, but the experience as a whole is supposed to be fun, not nerve-wracking. If you find yourself feeling overly stressed as your wedding date nears, check out our tips.
It’s very easy to think about your wedding “All. The. Time”. But it’s important to remember all of the other wonderful things in your life, besides this one day. So don’t let wedding planning consume your existence. Try to limit your wedding planning activities to select times during the week, and be sure to take breaks (meaning no talking or thinking about the wedding!) whenever possible. And when you take the Something Blue Pledge, you’ll be doing just that on May 30! Find out more here »
Talk About It
Sometimes venting to a family member or friend (or an online community of engaged couples!) can be really helpful when it comes to relieving stress. Keeping feelings of anxiety bottled up can make things even worse, so when things get stressful, don’t be afraid to talk to those who love you—they’re here to help.
Learn a New Skill
Taking a class and learning a new skill (cooking, yoga, painting, dancing, or something else entirely!) forces you to focus all of your attention on the project at hand rather than all of the wedding-related tasks you have yet to complete.
Working out is beneficial for a variety of reasons, but it can be helpful in relieving stress. Find a workout buddy—whether it’s your future spouse, a friend or relative—and try to be active regularly, whether that means a trip to the gym, a cycling or yoga class, running, hiking, or playing a sport.
Being disorganized can be a major source of stress. Using online tools like checklists, budget tools, and guest lists can help ensure that you’ll stay on track and that all of your important wedding details are in one place, and easily accessible and shareable.
Get Out of Town
A quick weekend getaway can do wonders for your stress levels. Whether you’re visiting family or friends, staying in a nearby hotel or inn, or taking a full on vacation, getting out of town can help you and your future spouse reconnect and take a break from the wedding planning madness.
If you have family members or friends who want to be involved with your wedding planning, let them! By assigning tasks (assembling welcome bags or stuffing envelopes, for example) to trusted loved ones, you’re relieving yourself of some responsibilities so you won’t feel completely overwhelmed.
Choose the Right Vendor Team
When it comes to selecting your wedding vendors, it’s important to choose pros that you genuinely like and trust—people who have a real interest in creating your dream day. That way, you’ll be able to relax and let the professionals do their jobs without feeling the need to micromanage or worry.
Hire a Wedding Planner
Even if you’re midway (or later) through your wedding planning process, you can still hire a wedding planner or day-of coordinator to help make your life easier. Planners will help you stay organized, create a wedding day plan and timeline, and take on many tasks that could ultimately become very stressful. And, a planner will be there on your wedding day to make sure everything runs smoothly and you can actually enjoy your big day.
Remember the “Why”
If things start to get really stressful, take a moment to think about the reason you’re planning your wedding to begin with—you’ve found the person that you love and want to spend the rest of your life with. Focusing on the bigger picture will help you navigate any bumps in the road with a smile and a relaxed attitude.
For more information, contact
Starry Night Events, LLC
Photo credit: Audrey Bayda, via Shutterstocks