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Brooklyn Winery Wedding

Melissa, who grew up in the wedding business, wanted to steer clear of the typical old school wedding catering halls and instead find something intimate, romantic and most importantly fun. So when she and Nicky found Brooklyn Winery in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, they knew the moment they stepped inside that is was the perfect venue for them.

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mr and mrs
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something blue
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pink

Melissa wanted the wedding to reflect them as a couple. Since they love hosting parties, creating an environment where friends and family could let loose and get down was their goal. Also unique to the day was the couple taking part in helping to make wine at the Winery for their special day. The couple spent a few weeks before the wedding with the staff creating a connection to the place and the employees. Melissa tells us: “The staff was SO excited for our wedding because we spent a lot of time there in the year leading up to our wedding - it felt like we were surrounded by friends all day, even with the wait staff and especially with our day-of coordinator.”

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here comes the bride
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wedding vows
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wedding cake

The most special part of their day was the vows they each wrote and spoke to one another during the ceremony, “They were funny, sarcastic, romantic and really captured our relationship beautifully.” Melissa also recalls a few more memorable moments, such as her Maid of Honor speech, which sent Melissa into tears, as her best friend pointed out the fact that the couple was getting married the same day they also met 16 years earlier. Then of course the Father/Daughter dance which was full of happy tears because “it was something my father and I looked forward to my whole life.”

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Reception
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wedding party

Our Real Wedding Bride offers the following advise to those currently planning a wedding, “RELAX and enjoy the planning process! I know it sounds cliché, but enjoy every moment of the day - no matter how cheesy it may feel at times, the memories are all you have left when it's over! And the day FLIES by. Take time to really take a deep breath and take it all in.”

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Place to Be wedding Invitation

Bride & Groom chose the Place to Be Wedding Invitation design Suite for their wedding stationery.

Wedding Venue - Brooklyn Winery, Williamsburg, Brooklyn, NY | Photography by - Bella Pictures

When to send out your thank you cards

You’ve exchanged your vows, said your I Do’s and finally tied the knot. Now all that’s left on your wedding checklist is to thank your guests for making your day so special. Sending out thank you cards may seem like a tedious task but this act will mean a great deal to your friends and family. Mailing out your thank you cards in a quick and timely matter will impress your guests by making them feel acknowledged and appreciated for their time.

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Blue Skies Photo Thank You Card

Design | Blue Skies (folded card)

We recommend sending out thank you cards within a 3-month time span, from the day of your wedding. However, if you have been given a gift before the wedding day, a thank you card should be sent within 2 - 3 weeks of receiving it. Think about including the task of sending out thank you cards as a part of your wedding planning process; this will help you stay organized and on top of it!

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Chalkboard Lettering Folded Thank You Card

Design | Chalkboard Lettering (folded card)

When ordering your wedding invitations a good idea would be to also include thank you cards as well so that you will be prepared. Once you have the cards, help organize yourselves, by addressing the thank you cards with the name of the guests who will be attending the wedding as soon as you begin receiving their response cards. If you have a large amount of ‘thank you’ cards to send, try to break up the list of writing them by doing one batch at a time each day. Also, be sure to include your partner in on the fun by dividing up the task and having the bride write to her friends and family and the groom to his.

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Le Jardinière Photo Thank You Postcard

Design | Le Jardiniere (Postcard)

By planning ahead and staying organized, mailing out thank you cards to your guests will be no trouble at all. Opt to match your cards to your invitations or go with something fun and festive using a photo from the wedding or perhaps even a photo postcard of the two of you on your honeymoon! Your Thank you cards can compliment your individual style as a couple. When looking at the list of 100 plus thank you cards, keeping these small steps in mind we hope will help rather than overwhelm you after your special day. If you're not quite sure what to say in a Thank You note, our guide on writing thank you cards will provide you with wonderful ideas.

Collecting Mailing Addresses made easy!

With today’s technology of emails and social media, address books are a thing of the past. Whether you’re having a wedding, birthday party or sending out baby announcements we can all agree that finding the most current mailing address of your friends and family can difficult.

Something my mom taught me to do, especially during the Holiday Season, was to save any cards sent to you in the mail. As you are likely to receive Holiday Cards from friends and family this season, be sure to take note of the address or even save the envelope with the return address on it. This way your friends and families current residence is always up to date in your contacts. For those who are more Tech Savvy, a quick and easy organizational tool we discovered here in the office is an online tool Inkinvite. We tested out the site to show you just what a lifesaver it is. Follow the steps below and make collecting addresses for that guest list of 200 a piece of cake!

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collecting guest address

To get started, visit inkinvite to create your own FREE account by clicking the “sign up” button. Once you’re account is set up, see how easy it is in just 4 steps. You’ll have a quick and easy way to collecting guest address for your big day to help keep you organized in no time.

Step 1:

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collecting guest address

Copy the provided link and paste it in an email adding a personal message to ensure a response:

“Hello Family & Friends,

As John and I prepare for our special day this June, please help us by update your contact information via our online address book: http://inkinvite.com/lovevsdesign2. We look forward to celebrating with you!

xoxo, Amanda"

Step 2:

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collecting guest address

When your contact receives your email and clicks on the personalized link, it will bring them to Inkinvite where they will fill out their contact information. They can include their name, mailing address, phone number, email and even their Partners name so you can address to both.

Step 3:

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collecting guest address

Once a contact submits their information, all of your contacts information will be stored neatly in the address book of your account.

Step 4:

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collecting guest address

After you have received all of your guests’ addresses, you can either export the information to Excel for you to organize with or as a Text file for you to print labels or send off to a calligrapher. As always, we recommend that you TRIPLE check the addresses and spellings of each guest prior to sending to your calligrapher.

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collecting guest address

Calligraphy by Molly Jacques

Save yourself some time (and stress) and get started today, using inkinvite is fabulous and if you need more inspiration, visit our blog for creative ways to address wedding invitations as well. Happy Addressing!

Rustic Barn Wedding

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bended knee bride and groom

Danielle and Tyler always knew that they wanted a rustic venue, such as a barn or industrial winery, for their wedding day. Luckily, they found the perfect setting within their own neighborhood that was fitting for their vision. Today’s Real Wedding takes us to a beautiful Rustic Theme wedding in Ontario, Canada. We really enjoyed how all of the details came together, from the Invitations to the wedding signage and reception décor. This was a perfect fit for this couples Barn Venue and every photo captures the beauty of each carefully planned detail.

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wedding ceremony details
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the groomsmen
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bridesmaids dresses
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wedding signage

After looking at a number of venues and most of them being unavailable, Danielle and Tyler began asking around their small community. They came across a young couple that owned a gorgeous property and as luck would have it had just re-done their old bank barn. Danielle remembers finding the location, “One look, and we were absolutely in love! Everything about this property fit my vision perfectly.”

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redone bank barn wedding
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Barn wedding Details

“We really wanted our guests to enjoy themselves and have fun, so we decided to have a Caesar bar”. The guests could create their Caesar (or Bloody Mary) exactly to their liking, an idea that came from the couple’s florist and was a huge hit at the wedding.

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the newlyweds
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wedding Reception details

Something unique to their wedding day the couple opted for was to sponsor a charity called PowerEd rather than have wedding favors for each guest. This gesture came from the huge mark that was made in the Brides heart, as she had previously taught in Africa while in Teachers College. Both Tyler and Danielle decided that they wanted to give back to Kenya in some way. Through this charity, which sends young girls in Kenya to high school, the couple helped sponsor a young girl named Sharon and made sure to share her amazing story with all of their guests.

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just hitched

For Danielle, although nearly impossible to pick a highlight, one that stands out was having the best man surprise the couple with a ride in an old ford convertible, “Tyler and I, along with our best man and maid of honor drove into town, popped a bottle of champagne and had our own little celebration!”. Overall the couple says that having all of their favorite people together to celebrate their marriage was exactly what they had wanted. “It was the most easy going, laid back day with tons of laughs” says Danielle.

The advice Danielle offers to those currently planning a wedding is to make sure you ask friends and family to help, as they are always eager. “I did a lot of the planning myself, which can be super overwhelming right near the wedding. Doing it all by yourself becomes super stressful and takes your attention away from being able to enjoy the moments leading up. In that last couple days, if you haven't done it or bought it, just forget about it! Instead spend time with your soon to be husband and family and friends enjoying the moments, rather than worrying about the details! It all goes by so fast!”

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Cheri Wedding Invitation

Danielle & Tyler chose the design, Cheri, for their wedding stationery. They included the Cheri Invitation, Cheri Response card and Cheri Enclosure card.

Wedding Venue Shennendoah Farms, Mount Forest, ON | Photography by Glass Jar Photography

Top 5 tips for celebrating an engagement

He popped the question and you said yes! Now it’s time to celebrate with your closest friends and family!
An Engagement Party will usually be hosted for the happy couple by the couple’s parents or close friends. If you’re wondering what else you should know about hosting an engagement party or what's expected of you as the guests of honor, we’ve narrowed down the top 5 tips you should know when it comes to celebrating an engagement.

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SavetheDate

ONE: Celebrate soon after to show off that ring!
An engagement party should be given within a few months of the engagement, when it’s still fresh and before the wedding planning begins. If you are the newly engaged couple, we would suggest gathering your parents together for dinner to make the announcement. This would be a fun and memorable way to let them know first! As a rule of thumb, it’s tradition to let the Parents of the Brides be the first to celebrate the announcement with family and friends. For the newly engaged, may choose to keep the engagement a secret from your guests so that you can reveal the news at the party or simply send out your invitations with the news. Once the core members of your family and friends know, there is no limit to how many engagement parties you may have as everyone will want to celebrate with the happy couple.

TWO: The Guest List
As times change, the traditional rule suggesting inviting only those who will also be asked to the wedding has been thrown out the window. Since many couples these days choose to have a very small and/or destination wedding, the engagement party is becoming an accepted way to include those who will not be able to attend the wedding. For the most part, both families should be invited, regardless if not all members will be able to attend the event. Then there will be the list of close friends of both your families as well as your own group of friends.

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New engagement party invitations

THREE: What type of party is most appropriate?
An engagement party is meant to be a casual celebration instead of a formal event, let's save this for the wedding day. When brainstorming locations for the party, think about the type of ambiance you are looking to create as well as the number of people you will be hosting. The event should be comfortable for the guests of honor to be able to mix and mingle with all in attendance and easy for the host to entertain the guests too. The Location can be anywhere from a private room at a restaurant to an intimate cocktail party hosted by the couple’s parents even a Sunday BBQ at the home of the couples close friends will do. There really is no right or wrong answer!

FOUR: It’s all about presence, not presents.
An engagement gift is not expected but some guests will still choose to bring something such as a bottle of wine or flowers for the happy couple. Make sure to let the hosts know that you request no gifts or your registry info for those who may want to give a little more. If you are the guests of honor, and have been lucky enough to be thrown such a wonderful celebration, it is a good idea to give a thank you gift to the host. From a pair of tickets to a show they’ve wanted to see or a nice dinner out, a gift that is meaningful to them and reflects your friendship and appreciation for their time and kindness is perfect.

FIVE: Mix, Mingle, Toasts!
At the party, be sure the Newly engaged couple has a space (sort of an informal receiving line) preferably near the entrance. As everyone enters the party, they will want to have a few minutes to offer their congratulations to the couple, so we don’t want to overwhelm the guests or the couple. Also, keep in mind that the engagement party will usually bring together the couples families for the first time. To make sure everyone is comfortable and having a great time, mingle around and introduce yourself and guests to one another at the party. Something like “Hi, I’m Katie, I’ve been friends with the bride since Kindergarten, how do you know the couple?” letting each person know how the other is affiliated with the bride or groom is a great icebreaker. Lastly, don’t forget to raise a glass and toast to the couple. If following proper etiquette, the order of toasts should begin with the, the father of the bride, next the future groom and lastly other guests who would like to toast the couple and the host.

If you are in need of some creative juices for an Engagement Party you are hosting, we have it covered with some our Engagement party wording examples. From traditional and simple to unique and festive, check out our Engagement Party sample wording for to use for your engagement party invitations. Let the planning begin!

Unique Bohemiam Wedding

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first look

The wedding of Sarita and Jesse truly embodied the style and spirit of the couple. From the Wedding Stationery to the venue and wedding décor, this Real Wedding couple made this day their very own. Sarita describes their vision for their wedding day: “We always have had an aesthetic affinity toward the Southwest in terms of jewelry and artisanal products. Jesse grew up with his family digging at numerous archeological native american sites, and his father found out he was part Chicasaw recently, so we thought the theme tied in nicely with a heritage connection. The teepee was one of many projects we did together, painting it and creating an enjoyable environment for the younger kids to play in. Jesse airbrushed every single napkin with our signature Southwest pattern and we started including that through out the wedding, on the papel picados and wedding favors (wooden usb’s and chevron rose gold studs for the females.)”

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the begining
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venue
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the groom
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brides bouquet
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wedding ceremony

What was your highlight of the day?
Sarita: There were too many: when we forgot our Game of Thrones vows that we were supposed to memorize and we broke out in laughter as we said the wrong words in union; when we were announced to our guests at reception, we gazed into each other's eyes as we danced to our song like no one was watching; when my Dad took over the dance floor and tried to do the splits to wow my lady friends.
Jesse: During the ceremony I dropped my wedding ring in golden colored grass, and was saved by the maid-of-honor mother's keen sight. I remember the look of joy in everyone's eyes, Sarita's outshining all others.

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bridesmaids
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venue
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Place Settings
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antler centerpiece
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reception table setting
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table centerpieces

What advice would you give to those currently planning their own wedding?
Presume that something always goes wrong and that everything will work itself out. Do delegate the work to your friends and family as you cannot do everything the day of by yourselves. With our handy and very talented friends, the wedding would not have turned out looking so amazing and running so smoothly.
Try to take in and enjoy every moment possible. The day goes by too fast. We only wished we had a time machine where we can freeze or even slow down the clock to relive what an amazing celebration it was for us to share with all our loved ones.

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Thank You giveaway
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reception decor
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married couple
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Moonlit Wedding Invitation

Bride & Groom chose our Moonlit Invitation, Moonlit Response cards, Moonlit Belly Bands and Moonlit Menus for their wedding stationery.

Venue: Figueroa Mountain Farmhouse Los Olivos, California| Photography by: Clayton Austin

A Backyard BBQ Wedding

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bride and groom

Scott Atwood and Regine Torres envisioned their wedding day to be a casual and fun, beachside BBQ celebration among family and friends. In todays Real Wedding, see what will inspire you from this couples special day. From DIY touches created by the bride and her family to our very own Love vs. Design printables their wedding day was everything they could hope for and more.

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wedding signage
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The Newland House

When Regine attended her cousin's barn-style wedding in Chesapeake Bay she knew she wanted a similar style. With her idea to have a backyard BBQ mixed with Scott’s preference for a beach wedding, they found the Newland Barn in Huntington Beach.

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wooden wedding signage
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Wedding Mad Libs
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Lovebird Table

Aside from the perfect location for their casual style, Regine added more of a personal touch to their special day with lots of DIY project by herself and family. She explains, “Our wedding exuded a homemade backyard BBQ bash. I personally sewed all the table runners, my mom planted and arranged all the succulent centerpieces and my cousin baked all the funfetti cupcakes just to name a few DIY elements.”

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DIY elements
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first dance
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guest activities” style=

The couple also wanted to make sure there was plenty for our guests to do at the reception. They built their own corn hole game which was inspired after their wedding invitation, Just My Type, had a caricature artist available, provided the Rustic Wedding Mad-Lib for guest to fill out and share with the couple as a keepsake and also opted for a Polaroid photo booth in lieu of a guestbook.

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the grooms men” style=
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bride and her bridesmaids” style=

Regine, tells us about the highlight of the wedding for her: “The whole day was the highlight of our lives! Buuuut, as everyone knows Scott's (the Groom) is the master of the dance floor, him ripping his pants while doing a body roll while pulling the garter off my leg was a funny and special moment…When I took his pants to the cleaners to be repaired the following week the owner said, "Wow, your husband is a violent dancer!"

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evening kiss” style=

What advice could you give to couples planning their upcoming wedding?
“If close friends and family offer to help, by all means take it! Whether it's to tend bar, make all 10 boutonnieres or hold your shoes.”

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Just My Type Wedding Invitation” style=

“Everyone LOVED all our paper products we found on your website!” – Regine Atwood
Regine and Scott chose the Just My Type Wedding Invitation, Rustic Mad Libs Printable and Baked Goods Gift Tag Printable for their wedding stationery.

Venue/location: The Newland Barn, Huntington Beach | Photography by: Cory Kendra Photography

5 Engagement photo tips for the perfect Save the Date

An engagement photo shoot is an exciting way to capture moments of your personality while you and your Fiancé spend time with one another. Not only will the photos make a great Save the Date to send to your family and friends but this time can be great to get to know your potential wedding photographer. So take this opportunity to let the photographer get to know you and find that comfort zone with one another for the big day. So, if you have just said "YES!" or are looking to create some special moments, we have come up with our TOP 5 photo tips to help you create the perfect Save the Date photo. And know that while not everyone can be as camera-friendly, the key thing to remember is: Be confident and be yourself. Everything else will fall into place after that.

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Engagement Photo Location

Destination Save the Date. Photo by Studio Castillero

Photo tip #1: LOCATION
When you choose a location that you are familiar with, the more comfortable you will be in front of the camera.
Think about a meaningful place for the both of you as there may be plenty of photo opportunities available. Perhaps a favorite restaurant you like to go together or maybe the city you both met in. Think of it as a taking a trip down memory lane from the location of where you first met or had your first date to a special place in the current city or town you will start your life together. Of course weather and the time of the year can also serve its purpose so be prepared for Mother Nature and use it to your advantage for the perfect setting. Timing of the day also plays an important part in the available natural light for the photographer to work. Often great lighting is available right after sunrise or before sunset.

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Engagement Photo Makeup

Simple Seal Save the Date. Photo by Studio Castillero

Photo tip #2: HAIR, MAKEUP & WARDROBE
Be Camera ready and look your best before the shoot. If you aren’t the best at doing your own hair and makeup, perhaps scheduling a wedding make up trial the same day as your engagement photos could be helpful. This way you have checked off another item from your wedding to do list.

When it comes to what to wear, be comfortable in the outfit you choose as it will show in the photos. We suggest planning your outfits together as well so that they compliment with one another. We don’t mean wear matching outfits, but rather, wearing colors that complement each other. The end result should be that you are both dressed on the same level of dressiness or casualness, like you’re headed to the same place. Try pieces that have common shades or even bright hues that will pop from the background. Can’t decide between two outfits? Why not bring both for a wardrobe change. You can even ask your photographer for their opinion as to what will look best with the location.

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Engagement Photo Action

Floating Ribbon Save the Date. Photo by Max Wanger

Photo tip #3: ACTION
Stop over thinking and don’t worry about what pose to create next, leave that to the photographer to direct.
The best photos taken are of the couple in their natural, comfortable element; what you see is what you get.
So remember to relax, laugh with one another, smile, and have fun together as you take in the moment.

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Engagement Photo Props

Gelato Save the Date. Photo by Max Wanger

Photo tip #4: USE PROPS
Now that you have your location in mind and scored the perfect outfit, think about bringing some props to liven up the shoot. If you chose a landscape scene, pack a picnic basket and a blanket to lie down on. Perhaps you and your Fiancé can take a bike ride down your favorite bike path. Even something as simple as eating your favorite ice cream can make a big impression in a photo. From Balloons to Flowers to vintage bottles, a prop can make a big difference when added to the photo.

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Engagement Photo Personality

Road Trip Save the Date. Photo by Studio Castillero

Photo tip #5: SHOW YOUR PERSONALITY
Incorporating a favorite hobby or pastime into your shoot can be a great way of showing your personality as a couple. You can bring one of your favorite games to the park or your favorite coffee shop. Take a stroll one Saturday morning while shopping at a flea market. Even hopping in the car or on your Vespa for a drive down the street can be fun! Each everyday activity can say so much. Another idea, bring your Pet with you and let him or her be a part of the shoot; after all they are a part of this relationship too.

Finally, don’t be afraid to brainstorm your ideas with your photographer before the shoot. Browse through our variety of PHOTO SAVE THE DATES prior to meeting with your photographer. If there is a a favorite design you like, share this with them so they can make sure they know what you have in mind. Ready with your photo but not sure which design works best? Contact us, we’re happy to help!

Wedding filled with California Love

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Janine and Rusty Wertz

Set in a venue that represents the couples love for the beach and the outdoors in Southern California we present the wedding of Rusty Werts to Janine Torres. The couple was married at St. Edward Church in Dana Point, CA where they choose to incorporate the Brides Filipino wedding traditions as well as recite their own vows to each other to provide a more meaningful ceremony. Janine tells us the highlight of the Wedding for her was when the priest surprised the couple by reading love letters the couple wrote to each other, She recalls “When Father Martin told us to write them, he told us he was not going to use them in the wedding but just to get to know us. We didn’t know he would read them word for word in front of all of our guests in the church. It was hilarious, special and a moment we will never forget in our entire lives.”

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reception entrance
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love bird table
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Jenga Guest Book

The celebration then continued afterward at Franciscan Gardens in San Juan Capistrano. Janine and Rusty were going for the fresh, fun and outdoor feel. Being in the heart of SJC, the reception had a natural rustic look with a Spanish influence, which the couple loves. A fun idea the couple chose to incorporate was to replace the traditional guest book with jumbo Jenga pieces for their guests to sign and the couple to enjoy as a favorite game of theirs. Also at the reception, a unique and special moment included a special surprise birthday cake presented to the Father of the Bride after his emotional father daughter dance and speech.

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long reception tables
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First Dance
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sisters of the bride
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Dessert table

Janine’s advice to couples currently planning: “Prioritize what is really important to you (whether that be the photography or food, etc.) and focus more of your attention and budget toward those items. Never regret the decisions you make for the wedding, because obviously being married to your best friend is your highest priority.”

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laughter with the bride and groom
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goofy groomsmen
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Beautiful Bridesmaids
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Mr. and Mrs. Wertz
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evening toasts
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Cheri Wedding Invitation

Janine and Rusty chose the Cheri Invitation for their wedding stationery.

Ceremony location: St. Edwards Church | Reception Venue: Franciscan Gardens | Photography by: Brett Hickman Photographers

Bride and Groom take center stage

Today’s Real Wedding truly represents the brides advice for couples planning a wedding “Do it your way!”.

Vanessa and Brandon celebrated their special day in a personal way, choosing a location that was special and unique to them. Being a Drama Teacher, Vanessa felt that a theater was the best venue to say their “I do’s”. The celebration then continued at a restaurant, La Zingara Trattoira, which was a perfect setting for the couples personal style and taste. Brandon and Vanessa wanted something smaller and intimate, Vanessa explains “The look I was going for was soft, simple, modern, and elegant, and I think we pulled it off well!”

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couple photo
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wedding location
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theater wedding
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long tables
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reception details
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florals and the newlyweds
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Place To Be Invitation Suite

Bride & Groom chose our Place to Be Wedding Invitations, Place to be Response card and Place to be Belly Band for their wedding stationery.

Wedding Venue: Capitol Theatre | Reception Venue: La Zingara Trattoria | Photography by: Brandon Scott Photography

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