Summer Floral Inspiration

Summer Floral | Greenery and White Floral

Just like clothing, flower arrangements tend to get a bit brighter in the summer. Whether you’re picking your color palette or summer floral first, it’s important to know which types of flowers are in season on your wedding day. Some of our go to flowers for summer arrangements are Peonies, Roses, Anemone, Larkspur, Queen Anne’s Lace, and Stock. Check with your florist (we know plenty!) for the best blooms in your wedding month and build from there! From the photos below, you can tell we love a pop of yellow!

Summer Floral with Citrus

The Recipe

This summer floral recipe features a eucalyptus garland, and whole and halved lemons extend the impact of this organic and citrus inspired arrangement.

Flowers: Gather and Grace Designs | Photography: Ledia Tashi Photography

Summer Floral | Bold Blooms
Summer Floral | Small Vases

Small Arrangements

Small arrangements can still make a big impact! Lining farm tables with small arrangements of large blooms can be just as gorgeous as having large centerpieces!

Flowers: Flowers by Lesley | Photography: Emma Anne Photo

Summer Floral

Mixed Vases

Pedestal vases are a client favorite and work well on round or rectangular tables. They’re also a great way to incorporate a metallic or wooden texture you’re featuring in other areas of your décor! And they make a big statement without taking up too much real estate on your tables!

Flowers: In Bloom Florist | Photography: Amalie Orrange Photography

Summer Floral | Bold Bridal Bouquet
Summer Floral | Tall Arrangements

Tall Arrangements

Create dramatic height without obstructing views! These wooden centerpiece stands allow for different focus points throughout the reception space without keeping guests from being able to see the person across from them.

Flowers: Fern and Curl Designs | Photography: Ledia Tashi Photography

Summer Floral | Greenery and White Floral

Don’t Forget the Classics

Classic white and green centerpieces are stunning in every single season. We love how different types of greenery, vases, and heights are incorporated into this overall design! The floral takes center stage in the room and plays off the natural light pouring in from the bay windows.

Flowers: Flowers by Lesley | Photography: Flora Bloom Photography

Drop us a line and let us know what your favorite summer floral recipe includes! 

Xoxo,
RW Gals 

Color Pop: Sunflower + Merlot

Are you tired of seeing the same wedding color palettes and itching to do something different? Have you thought about using bold and vibrant colors, but don’t know how to piece them together? We’ve got just the combo for you! Whether you are going with a vintage or modern vibe, these two colors make a statement! Sunflower and Merlot are the perfect color combination to create a bold statement.  

If you’re going for a Modern look, check out our Hans sofa and chairs would pair nicely with a mix of merlot blooms to compliment it.

Pictured above is the  Sunflower  and Garnet  make the perfect duo when paired with a neutral sofa like  Garrett . Or If you’re not sure about going THAT bold, try incorporating these statement colors with pillows on a neutral sofa set. If you’re going for a vintage vibe, pieces like the Sunflower sofa and Berry Jr. chairs are the perfect complement to each other. Tie the look together with neutral blooms and greenery to pull it all together. 

Basically, what we’re saying, is don’t be afraid to go bold and make a statement! If you’re unsure how to pull it all together, we’ve got you covered. Our design team would love to chat with you!

Xoxo,

RW Gals 

Mismatched Bridesmaid Dresses | The Perfect Combo

Mismatched Slate Bridesmaid Dresses

Shopping for bridesmaid dresses? It’s certainly no easy task narrowing down all the options and making sure each lovely lady is comfortable and looks her best! Especially if you’ve got a squad 😉 The biggest things to keep in mind when shopping: all your maids have different bodies and love to show off in their unique styles. Naturally, choosing mismatched bridesmaid dresses is our go-to option!

We love seeing mismatched bridesmaid dresses that differ in style but are part of the same color family. Have fun with it and make it a girl’s day! Choose a shop (or two), give your ladies a color palette, and let them choose fun styles, patterns, and textures. Do a little try on to see how all the dresses look together and go from there! Another great options for these quarantined days is to shop online. Get your ladies together for a Facetime of Zoom call, grab your favorite drink and shop together virtually!

We’ve gotta say, our team has seen some gorgeous combos at our venues over the years – take a look! 

Our favorites combine varying necklines, patterns, textures, and shades whether that’s floral designs, lace, sequins, and even velvet!

Photos: The Heims

Whatever combination of bridesmaid dresses you choose, we’re sure your bridal party will look flawless!

Design Boards

Hey there!

I’m not sure about you but we love throwing together style boards for our clients. It’s a quick way for us to explain our understanding of their vision, while showcasing the suggested inventory. Being in sync with our clients and planners is a priority for us.

Need help designing your event? Fill out the styling questionnaire for a free 30 minute virtual design consultation. During this consultation:

  • We’ll gather the needed details to create the design board
  • Suggest inventory
  • Create a comprehensive quote

Now, now before you go crazy thinking – let me reach out and pick their brain. We don’t “share” the design board until you’re booked as a client! However, you’re welcomed to purchase it for a small fee (if you decide to forego our services) 😉

Social Gatherings, Anyone.

Is anyone else excited at the thought of the stay at home guidelines being lifted! Dreams of spending time with friends this summer are becoming a reality. We’ve been dreaming of outdoor summer soirees, signature cocktails, and simple menus that taste delicious but leave us with plenty of time to entertain our crew. Here are our tips for hosting the very best summer dinner party!

Set the Scene

First, thing first! It’s the perfect time to dine al fresco; just make sure you are in a shaded space and keep the drinks flowing! We are forever inspired by this gorgeous RW Style bohemian set up at Luxmore Grande. We can’t wait to incorporate macramé, pampas grass, and modern rattan chairs into our summer party style. This style is perfect for summer parties. 

The Lemons Photography

Big City Inspired Dining

The perfect menu doesn’t always require you to (actually) cook! You can achieve something similar to this antipasto display by Big City Catering by selecting your favorite meats, cheeses, olives, jams, breads and more! Extra points if you have various platters and bowls on hand to enhance your spread. Keep the bar menu easy to prep with batch cocktails like white wine sangria and spiked peach punch.

Kristin Weaver Photography

Dress for the Sun

The style of your event begins with you! Once you pick a theme and color palette for your dinner party, find an outfit that compliments it. Encourage guests to wear similar colors, dress for a certain theme, or go with the ever-classic white party! The best hosts are the ones who look and feel their best! We’ve got you covered on the style front too: earrings, sunglasses, and other summer accessories can be found at our sister brand, Miscellaneous Market!

After months at home we know we’ll all be more grateful than ever for the opportunity to connect and celebrate with friends! Make this summer count by creating memory making experiences with the people you love!

Xoxo, 

RW Gals 

Groomsmen Attire | Dapper Gents

While everyone anticipates what the bride might be wearing for the big day, careful thought and preparation also go into ensuring your wedding party looks just as perfect! Let’s not forget that the bride tribe is paired with a group of dapper gents, who know just how suave they look in their groomsmen attire!

The wedding day may start with a Danish paired with a glass of whiskey but ultimately leads to a day of ensuring the groom, their best friend, has nothing to worry about. Assist with the tie? They’ve got it! Help with the cufflinks? They’re your guy! Another drink? We’re on it! Knowing the crew is there to support and surround you with love and laughter, only adds to just how handsome they look at a wedding. That smile reflects a day full of laughs, inside jokes and the eagerness to tear up the dance floor. 

Cultural groomsmen attire can add a fun pop of color!

Often the groom (or let’s be real, the bride) puts just as much thought into how the gentleman will look on wedding day. From tuxes to suits, traditional to cultural, navy to burgundy…these gents never disappoint! And who could forget the accessories! 

Navy suits will always be a classic when it comes to groomsmen attire.

Check out some of our favorite looks below! 

Try a classic like black/grey or shades of blue! Better yet, surprise your guests and go for a pop of color! We love seeing our couples embrace rich colors, playing with hunter green or burgundy for their gents! 

Emerald and other jewel tones make groomsmen attire even more dapper.
A classic color for groomsmen attire, navy looks great on all the guys!

Which groomsmen attire style are you planning for the big day? 

Xoxo,

Bridesmaid Boxes | All About Gifting

There’s nothing quite like receiving a thoughtful, well put together gift, and bridesmaid boxes are no exception. Your gal pals put a lot of work into being a bridesmaid – helping with wedding plans, hosting your bridal shower, and more! What better way to thank them than with a sweet, heartfelt gift!?

And we all know there’s only one place to get the perfect bridesmaid boxes – Miscellaneous Market ? With all sorts of goodies from home decor and beauty products to handbags and accessories, you’re sure to find something to suit each of your bridesmaids. With so many options, brides can browse the store for their favorite items or have our team create something special for you!

Bridesmaid boxes are the perfect way to thank your gal pals for all their wedding planning help. Customize boxes with items selected just for each lady.

One of the great aspects of bridal boxes is that you can customize them for each of your bridesmaids. I love the idea of all the ladies receiving a piece of jewelry to wear on wedding day, but mix things up and include one or two items chosen specifically for each lady. It’ll make them feel so loved and will add that much more personality to your gifts.

Xoxo,

P.S. Self-care is one of my favorite hobbies, and the blush eyemask and rose quartz roller are the best (pictured above)! The eye mask is silky smooth and the roller feels so wonderful on my skin in the mornings!

Preparing for Your Beauty Trial | Featuring Jazz It Up Artistry

Preparing for your wedding day usually consists of checklists of do’s and don’ts, to-do lists, and digging through blogs for the perfect vendors. After all, brides want to have the perfect wedding and a big part of that is the “look {aka – your dress, hair + make-up}”. You’ve chosen the perfect hair + make-up artist, and you’ve scheduled a trial to make sure your look can be executed to perfection. But what else can you do? Believe it or not, the success of your beauty trial depends on how you prepare. Check out some tips from our vendor pal, Jasmin Doublette, owner of Jazz It Up Artistry:

So, you’ve been searching for the perfect team to perform beauty services for the wedding day and you have found them! Yay!

What’s the next step? Usually 3-6 months out from the wedding most brides book their trial run which is another term for a practice round before the wedding. This is where you’ll be able to test out any wants you were thinking for hair and makeup, as well as give the artist a chance to perfect the look you are going for so there are no surprises on the wedding day. So how do you prepare for your trial?

Step 1

“Search the internet for inspiration.  Pinterest is a top favorite among most. Search for pictures of the look you want to accomplish. Think about the style of your wedding dress and what look you think would complement it the most {romantic, glam, boho, vintage, etc.}.”

Prep for your beauty trial by gathering inspiration images of your hair and make-up.

Step 2

“Purchase any accessories you are thinking of debuting on the big day for your hair and bring them to your beauty trial. This will give you a glimpse of how beautifully everything will come together and allow you to tweak accessories if they don’t look the way you hoped.”

Be sure to bring your wedding day accessories to your beauty trial.

Step 3

“Skin prep – drink water like a fish! Great water intake will ensure your skin is in tip-top shape for your beauty trial and more importantly, the big day.”

Bonus Tips

“Try not to bring too many friends with you to your appointment. Unlike a dress fitting, your beauty trial should be saved for 1-2 of your closest friends or family. Space is usually limited at a salon or makeup studio.”

“Use it, don’t lose it – Schedule your trial around a dress fitting or bridal shower if available. Why waste a full face of makeup and styled hair? No dress fitting or bridal shower to attend? No problem. Did someone say date night?!”

“Remember to stay true to yourself. Comfort level plays a big part in the look of your wedding day. So, try not to veer off too much from your normal. Example: if you are someone who normally wears your hair down, you probably won’t be super comfortable with the look of it being totally up, and vice versa, or if you don’t normally wear a full face of glam makeup, you probably won’t be totally comfortable with that for your wedding day.”

Xoxo,

Fun & Fruity Signature Drinks

Fun & Fruity Signature Cocktails | Because no good story ever started with a salad.

Signature drinks are a fun wedding trend that everyone can get behind (who doesn’t love a thoughtfully crafted cocktail or mocktail!?), but oftentimes couples can get stuck in the rut of picking the same old thing.  

Old Fashions and Vodka-Tonics are all well and good but this is your wedding day! So don’t be afraid to pick a signature cocktail that will make a statement and get all your guests talking. 

Here are a few ideas on some new and trendy signature drinks plus some fun names to give them a wedding twist! 

The Drinks

Gin + Jam | Aka "Just Berried"

Recipe 

  • Ice 
  • 1 oz gin 
  • 1/2 oz elderflower liquor, such as St. Germain 
  • 1/2 tbsp blackberry or raspberry jam 
  • Squeeze of lemon 
  • 5–6 Fresh rosemary leaves 
  • 4 oz club soda 
  • Sprig rosemary for garnish 

In a shaker, add ice, gin, elderflower liquor, jam, lemon, and rosemary leaves. Shake vigorously to combine. Strain into a chilled coupe glass and top with club soda. Add a sprig of rosemary for garnish. Enjoy! 

Tropical Tequila Sunrise | AKA "Sun Kissed"

Recipe 

  • 2 oz Tequila 
  • 4 oz Mango-Orange juice 
  • 1/2 oz Grenadine syrup 
  • Orange slice 
  • Maraschino cherries 

To a large glass, add the ice cubes, mango-orange juice, and tequila. Add the grenadine, which will sink to the bottom, so do not stir. Garnish and serve immediately. 

Painkiller | AKA "Devotion Potion"

Recipe 

  • 3 oz White Rum 
  • 3 oz Pineapple Juice 
  • 2 oz Orange Juice 
  • 1 oz Cream of Coconut 
  • Nutmeg & Pineapple Leaves (Garnish) 

Add all of the liquid ingredients to your cocktail shaker with a scoop of ice and shake for a few seconds. Pour everything from the shaker into a large glass. Top the glass with crushed ice, then grate fresh nutmeg over the top. Garnish with tall pineapple leaves. 

Peach Lemonade Fizz | AKA "Happy Tears"

Recipe 

  • Lemonade 
  • Champagne 
  • Peach Vodka 
  • Fresh Peach Slices (garnish) 

Add vodka and lemonade to shaker with of ice and shake. Pour into a cocktail glass. Top with champagne, and garnish with fresh peach slices.  

Mocktail Version – Omit the vodka & champagne, replace with Elderflower Tonic Water and Peach Juice. Stir the Lemonade and Tonic Water over ice in a cocktail glass, garnish with peach slices.  

  • Lemonade 
  • Peach Juice 
  • Elderflower Tonic Water 
  • Fresh Peach Slices (garnish) 

I hope you loved all these delicious drink ideas! Add them to your big day and remember, all you need is love…and a good cocktail! 

Xoxo,
Lacie

Ceremonies | Luxmore Grande Estate

Have you booked your dream venue, but you aren’t sure which ceremony space is best for you? Well, Luxmore Grande Estate offers four unique, and beautiful locations for ceremonies! With several indoor & outdoor options, there are plenty of opportunities to create a stunning backdrop to the tie the knot, and provide peace of mind with weather back-up plans. 

The Jessup Garden

The Jesup Garden is the venue’s most popular location for ceremonies. This gorgeous open lawn area is located in the back of the estate. It is beautifully accented by lush greenery and foliage. 

  • Ideal for floral arches and arbors 
  • A great option for brides who love the outdoors 
  • This ceremony space can host up to 200 guests 

The Grande Ballroom

The Grande Ballroom is the epitome of elegance, and is the highlight of the estate! Whether you prefer an indoor affair, or as a back-up plan for the unpredictable Florida weather, either way, this space is breathtaking. 

  • Ideal for dramatic draping, large floral arrangements 
  • Accented by enchanting chandeliers throughout the space 
  • A perfect option for brides who prefer the drama of a ballroom  
  • The ceremony layout facing the Bay Window is ideal for up to 150 guests 
  • For a larger event, the ceremony set-up facing the alcove can host up to 200 guests 

The Estate Patio

The Estate Patio would be a fabulous choice for the client who loves the outdoors but still wants the Estate House to be a focal point of the event.  

  • Ideal for dramatic arches to accent the patio fountain 
  • Beautiful backdrop views of Lake Jesup 
  • This ceremony space can host up to 150 guests 

The Estate Room

The Estate Room is the most intimate ceremony option at the Estate. This lovely room is located in the heart of the venue; and offers charming accents with large windows that provide natural lighting and the fireplace mantle as a focal point.  

  • The model choice for more intimate events 
  • The procession can enter the room from the dramatic double staircase 
  • This ceremony space can host up to 90 guests 

Let us know which ceremony space you love, so we can help make the vision for your big day come to life! 

Xoxo,
Lacie 

First Dance Songs | As Selected by The RW Team

A Curated List of First Dance Songs from the RW Events Team
 

There are so many decisions to make when planning for a wedding, but an often-overlooked decision is the music! Your first dance song can be a sweet reminder of your big day, so choosing the perfect song can be a daunting task. Luckily, I have compiled a list of some of the RW ladies favorite first dance songs to share with you to make your decision a little easier. 

Photo: The Hendricks

Looking for a timeless, classic song? Monique’s choices are perfect: 

  • “At Last” by Etta James 
  • “Don’t Change” by Music Soul Child
  • “Let’s Stay Together” by Al Green 

Soulful song lovers rejoice, Chelsea has you covered: 

  • “Best Part” by H.E.R. and Daniel Caesar 
  • “You & I” by John Legend 
  • “Die with You” by Beyoncé 
Photo: Lindsay Morgan Photography

For trendy and heartfelt couples, Check out Alecia’s favorites:  

  • “Perfect” by Ed Sheeran 
  • “Speechless” by Dan & Shay 
  • “Tuesdays” by Jake Scott 
     

And finally, for all my hopeless romantics out there, here are my picks: 

  • “Can’t Help Falling in Love” by Haley Reinhart 
  • “How Long Will I Love You” by Ellie Goulding 
  • “Tenerife Sea” by Ed Sheeran  

Xoxo,
Megan

Wedding Bouquets | The Floral Recipe

Let’s face it. Wedding bouquets may not be the star of the show (because you are of course!), but it sure can be a showstopper! I like to think of it as an extension, or better yet, a culmination of your entire vision. Your bouquet should reflect the colors, style, and uniqueness of your wedding. If your wedding were a book, your bouquet would be the short summary on the back cover that captures the reader’s attention!  

What’s your style?

Maybe you’re traditional and prefer a tight, constructed ball of flowers with minimal greenery. Maybe you’re a bit more romantic and you like the cascading or teardrop bouquet. Or if you’re like me, you’re trendy and can’t wait to carry a loose and organic deconstructed wedding bouquet with lots of greenery, filler, and large vibrant blooms.  

We are spotlighting the deconstructed style, one that you’ll often see in weddings with lots of greenery and natural character.  

One of my favorite “stunning wedding bouquets” comes from our “till death” photoshoot at the Sydonie Mansion. The mixture of tones, blooms, and textures make this bohemian bouquet a real showstopper!  

Photo: Sara Kae Photography

This bouquet features all of the elements that make for a stunning floral focus. Because this bouquet has so many varying tones, flowers, and textures, with anemones, dahlias, and roses, it creates a very dynamic look. The addition of the cascading floral adds a bit of romance, and the fluctuating heights gives it the deconstructed look perfect for the non-traditional, bohemian, and even a little edgy bride.  

What is your floral style? We would love to hear about it!  

Xoxo,
Chelsea

Getting Ready | The Estate House Bridal Suite

Getting Ready Moments at the Cypress Grove Estate House

Bridal portraits in the Cypress Grove Estate House bridal suite are classic!

The Cypress Grove Estate House Bridal Suite, aka the room of perfection! Where bridal portrait dreams come to life and every bride gets to dress in the delicate and romantic room of her dreams. Natural light floods the space, highlighting each unique piece of antique furniture curated to complete the room. The fainting couch has to be my personal favorite spot ? Between the mirror adorned walls, provincial fireplace, and delicate floral accents, you will find endless photo opportunities along with the ideal spot for getting ready on your big day!

The bridal suite at Cypress Grove Estate house offers lots of natural light, making it an ideal location for bridal portraits.

Let those closest to you share in the getting ready experience and assist with the final touches to make your bridal look complete! You won’t want to fasten those shoes yourself, ladies! If you ask Mom, Grandma, your sister, best friend or whoever may be sharing in the moment with you, this will be the most special to them! The suite becomes the backdrop as you transform into the bride you’ve always dreamed of being. Just wait until your fiancé sees you! Better yet…wait till Dad sees you! Cue the tears!

The bridal suite at Cypress Grove Estate House is private and is a great location for first looks with dad.

The first look with dad gets me every time! There is something so incredibly special about a father or a special man in your life seeing you as a bride for the first time. His little girl is all grown up and the tears are from a place of happiness and joy as well as a slight sadness knowing he now has to share you. The bridal suite may be the perfect backdrop for fun moments, but the room also holds so many incredible memories such as like the one shared above, the make the room the true treasure of the house.

Not to get too emotional on you but it’s so true! Then again, prior to seeing dad, you must show your girls just how incredible you look, after all, they have been your biggest support, oohing and awing from the time to first went shopping to seeing the dress arrive on wedding day.

Pop some bubbly, snap a pic for the gram and celebrate the love you share as a group of friends!

The bridal suite at Cypress Grove is large enough to accommodate all your maids!

And who could forget about the little details or private moments that you’ll be so thankful to have captured? Insert all the heart eye emojis!

The Cypress Grove Estate House bridal suite features stunning antique furniture, perfect for featuring in your bridal portraits.
Photos: Kristen Weaver Photography | The Hendricks | Miranda Grey Weddings | Ashley Jane Photography

Aside from the inevitable incredible images, our brides love that there is a private space all to their own on wedding day. Especially with the sunroom located adjacent for hair and makeup, the space remains cool and calm and makes for the perfect escape when you need a moment to retreat and just breathe. The day will absolutely fly by despite the getting ready part dragging on. Why not celebrate and surround yourself with the ladies (and gents) that support you in the ideal feminine and delicate space fit for any bride!?

Can you picture it? Slipping into the gown you’ve always imagined. Reading a note from the one you love just moments before heading down the aisle….yea, I’m the hopeless romantic on the team here, but if you’re gushing over the room as I do, come and see for yourself just how beautiful the suite is!

Xoxo,
Alecia

Bridal Portraits at Cypress Grove Estate House

Bridal portraits are some of the most important images of your wedding. The day will fly by, but your portraits will last a lifetime. Portraits capture the emotions and unseen moments and give couples a life long reminder of the bond they share.

Images: Kartsie Photography | The Heims | 28 North Photography

Every venue has those picture perfect locations for portraits, but there’s just something so magical about shots captured at Cypress Grove. Maybe it’s the southern charm and the lakeside sunsets ?

Images: Lora Rodgers Photography

“Golden Hour” at Cypress Grove is ? For those of you who aren’t up-to-date on their photography lingo, golden hour is that time just before the sun fully sets, when the light is soft, glowy, and oh so romantic! It’s the perfect time to capture images on the tree-lined drive or along the shores of Lake Jessamine.

Images: Shauna & Jordon Photography | The Hendricks | Miranda Grey

Oh, and not all of your bridal portraits have to be focused on you as a couple. Take some time to get shots on your own, like the image of our bride above from Miranda Grey!

Xoxo,
Kim

Fur Babies + Wedding, YES!

Fur Babies_Ring Bearers

Weddings are an opportunity for your closest friends and family to gather for a celebration of love, including your fur babies! Whether your pups are there to celebrate in person or are represented through heartwarming details, including them in your day can ensure sweet memories and add a personalized touch to your wedding.

Photo: Kelly Berringer Photography

Megan and Thomas were married at Cypress Grove Estate House last October and knew before they booked that their fur babies, Rupert and Colby, had to be involved in the event.

When we began looking for venues we made sure to ask if they were pet-friendly because we knew they would be a part of our special day. They’re like our children and we couldn’t imagine our wedding day without them there.” 

It was important to the couple that their dogs were not only in attendance but were included in the most significant aspects of their wedding day. 

They were there for our first look, greeted guests as they arrived, walked down the aisle in the ceremony, and took pictures afterward before they were taken home.”

Photos: Kelly Berringer Photography

 Ashley and AJ planned their December wedding at Cypress Grove Estate House with Ashley’s fur baby, Zoey, in mind, from finding the perfect venue to deciding how long she would be at the wedding.

“She’s been by my side for 7 years and she was going to be there for the wedding.  Any venue who didn’t allow dogs was automatically crossed off my list. She arrived with me and my bridesmaids in the morning and left at the end of the night with my parents. On the program, she was called the dog of honor, and during the wedding, she walked down the aisle with my parents.” 

Zoey even made an appearance on the koozies given to their guests as favors. Ashley noted that her guests loved having Zoey at the wedding, and she even contributed to some memorable moments.

When we were pronounced husband and wife she barked. It wasn’t planned, but everyone thought it was adorable.” 

Photos: Ashley Jane Photography

Honoring your pet at your wedding through touching details is a great way to include them if they aren’t able to attend. Nikki and George lost their dog, Bruce, shortly before their wedding.

We had plans to make him the ring bearer, so being able to include some small details of him at our wedding was very important to us. The beer glass pictured was one of the first gifts I ever gave to George very early in our relationship, and Bruce’s dog tags served as my ‘borrowed and blue’. As the loss was still very fresh and deeply personal we wanted to keep the details something that was close to us.”

Although Bruce wasn’t able to attend, he is still represented in the details, which allowed guests to share in the love the couple had for their baby.

Photo: Ashley Jane Photography

Including your fur babies in your wedding day festivities can help create an atmosphere of love and friendship that will leave you and your guests with fond memories of your big day. Including furry friends and the highlighting lasting impressions they have left on your hearts is a great way to ensure your wedding is one to remember! 
 
Xoxo, 
Megan 

Hidden Gems of Cypress Grove

Y’all know we love a good portrait, especially those that show off our gorgeous Estate House and stunning grounds! There are SO many hidden gems around Cypress Grove that create beautiful backdrops for those picture perfect, and let’s be real, cheesy romantic moments we all love! Have you had a chance to stroll thru the park recently? Take a scroll through some of our favorite hidden gems here at Cypress Grove !

The Rose Garden

Private moments and quick kisses can always be found in our Rose Garden. Nestled on the front lawn, the garden boasts vibrant blooms creating our very own secret garden. Special shout out to Orange County Parks & Recreation for keeping our roses blooming year round ? Need a great first look spot? Look no further than the Rose Garden!

The Sun Room

Our Sun Room is often bustling with bridesmaids getting dolled up. Once the time comes for the quiet before a ceremony, you’ll find our brides basking in the natural light, often taking a peek at her groom through the window. It’s actually my favorite room inside the Estate! Do you see the gorgeous lighting!? It also gives our brides the chance to overlook all the event spaces and watch the big day unfold. There is nothing quite like a room reveal to see your hard work in action, but imagine watching your guests react to the beauty of the water behind the gazebo or seeing your groom take a walk down the aisle.

Around the Grounds

Around the Estate you’ll find various settings for that perfect photo opp! The Garden Trellis, Archway, and Bridge are all private spots our couples venture to… can you blame them?

We all know the grounds are surrounded by cypress trees and moss dripped oaks, but if you are destined to capture all the dense greenery surrounding Lake Jessamine, the options are endless! The various flora and fauna are ever-changing and reflect the season of your big day! You should see the magnolias blooming right now!

Need the perfect backdrop for your wedding! Come visit us at Cypress Grove! Where the possibilities are endless and always beautiful!

Xoxo,
Alecia

Vendor Chats | Florist

organic bridal bouquet

So, you’ve booked your venue, you’ve picked out your bridesmaid’s dresses, and you’ve sent out your invitations. Now its time to book your florist to create the vision of your dreams!

There are SO many things to ask a vendor before you book them so here are a few key points to hit with your preferred florist:

Will you coordinate with my venue to see if there are any rules or restrictions regarding my floral elements?

We know you’ve dreamed of greenery cascading from the chandeliers at your reception, but do you know if the venue allows this? Ask if they’ve worked at your venue previously. If they have, they’ll most likely know what they can and cannot do. Maybe you want your farm tables to be lined with an eclectic mix of taper candles. Your florist will know if the venue allows open flames, and if not, is that something they’ll find out on your behalf?

How can I re-purpose my flowers on wedding day? Is there a fee associated with you staying to move them after the ceremony?

Want your sweetheart or head table to really stand out during your reception? Why not move your gorgeous floral arch or columns from your ceremony to your table!? Have 12 bridesmaids and double the number of tables? Have your florist set vases on the tables so your bridesmaids can drop their bouquets in to serve as centerpieces. Or reuse those candles that are lining the aisle around your cake table.  Your florist should be able to recommend some cost saving alternatives to having separate floral for your ceremony and reception. Keep in mind that if the florist is required to stay on sight to move the arrangements, there is likely a fee associated. Even better, ask your planner to see if they will be able to move them instead!

Is a toss bouquet included?

Bridal bouquets can be heavy so it’s best to get a smaller version of your bouquet to throw, often called a toss bouquet. Be sure to ask your florist if they’d be willing to toss that in {pun intended} or if there is an added fee.

Will I get a mock-up of my centerpiece or bouquet?

If wondering what your centerpieces will look like is keeping you awake a night, be sure to ask your florist if they provide a mock up.That way, you get the chance to see exactly what you’ll be getting and make any necessary changes. This is also a good time view linen colors, chargers, and other décor items to make sure they complement each other.

Pro Top :: Designing floral is a visual process. The more photos you have, the easier it is for the florist to understand and recreate your vision. Organize your Pinterest board prior to the meeting and delete old photos that no longer fit your style. Decide on the style, color, and amount of greenery you like and only show pictures that feature elements you really love.

What other services/rentals do you offer?

Think linen, votives, arches, candlesticks, signs, etc. Florists can often supply arches, chuppahs, candles and votives, lanterns, drapery and some even offer linens and chargers. Find out what they have available and if it’s better for you to rent everything through them. Some florists may not offer certain items, but are able to rent it for you as a third party or at least offer vendor recommendations!

Floral, Arch, + Draping: Flowers by Lesley

What happens to the flowers after the wedding?

Florists typically want to have their vases, structures, and decor returned, but the floral is yours to keep. You do have the option to inquire about purchasing the vases and giving them as favors to guests. Many local charities and organizations will gladly take the flowers off your hands (think hospitals, nursing homes, etc.). Hosting a post-wedding get-together? Consider storing your flowers overnight and reusing the next day! If you love keepsakes, your florist may be able to recommend a preservation company so you can keep your bouquet for years to come.

Xoxo,
Chelsea

Planning a Brunch Menu

In case you don’t know, our HR + Development Manager, Kimberly, loves brunch. Fried chicken + waffles, shrimp + grits, corn bread, biscuits {can you tell she’s a southern gal who loves her carbs ?} , fresh fruit, and everything in between just makes her mouth water. So we’re here to help you plan a stylish and scrumptious brunch with a fun, interactive ambiance for you and your guests!

Photo courtesy of Kristen Weaver Photography

Plan Ahead

Preparation is everything when creating a brunch menu. Food and beverage selections are a top priority for a successful meal, with a little something for everybody. Place cards are a great addition to give your tablescape that little something extra.

What’s on the menu?

Since guests will have breakfast and lunch options, it’s a great idea to feature a variety of flavors. Offer a range of items from savory quiches and sandwiches, sweet pastries, and some fun mocktails. Coffee is also the perfect beverage pairing for a brunch menu! There should be something for everybody to enjoy… and they will!

Stations and Little Bites

Allowing your guests to choose how they want their food prepared is a great way to entertain and interact. While one guest may want their omelette loaded with veggies, another may want one filled with cheese. Offering a station gives your guests the flexibility to choose what they’d like and how they want it prepared. Seasonal fruits are a delicious option with Belgian waffles or fluffy pancakes. Of course, brunch isn’t complete without that champagne POP! A bubbly bar will allow your guests to choose their champagne, juice and plenty of garnishes; it really gives brunch a flavorful feeling. Another big hit at brunches are Bloody Mary’s (for all the bacon lovers, I urge you to add it).

Something Sweet

Desserts play a vital role at brunch, and who doesn’t love sweets? I recently indulged in a maple coffee with cinnamon that was just the perfect amount of sweetness. Mini cheesecake bites can put the cap on a brunch gathering and are easy to display!

Xoxo,
Monique

Shopping for Your Wedding Dress

OMG! You are getting married, and now comes the moment every bride dreams of:

** Saying yes to the dress **

Wedding dress shopping may be the most important process in planning, and while you have dreamed of this moment your whole life, it can be a little overwhelming in knowing where to start. A few of the RW gals have been through the processes and we’ve got some tips for you!

It’s great to do some research on styles and trends before dress shopping. Bridal magazines, and Pinterest, can have the perfect dress inspo for your big day. However, it’s always important to keep an open mind, as the dress you least expect could be the one for you! Don’t be afraid to try on various styles and do not get discouraged if the type of dress you thought you’d love doesn’t work out. Most boutiques will pair you with a bridal stylist who will be a wealth of knowledge. Let them know your wants, but also listen to their suggestions. It’s their job to make sure you look fabulous!

This may be the most important point, and the one that is so often forgotten by brides!

Shopping for your dream dress should be exciting, memorable, and stress-free so make sure you are bringing a group that will be supportive to your vision for the big day. It may be tempting to bring a large crowd with you, but it can get overwhelming quickly! Plus, many boutiques are smaller and cannot accommodate larger groups so make sure to call ahead if you think you may have a big entourage.

A great suggestion is to bring an intimate group when initially shopping, and filter your favorites. That way you can include more people once you have selected the top few gowns to help you decide. You could also include people during the alterations process once your dress has been selected but they can still be apart of the final fitting.

Also if you have a specific style in mind that you know may clash with your group, be prepared to stand your ground! It is your big day and the biggest mistake a bride can make is buying a dress to appease someone else, and not what they want.

Every bridal shop can be very different in the style of inventory they carry, designers, sizes, order process, and price range. It’s not only important to let them know your needs, but to also probe them when wanting to schedule an appointment to make sure that boutique is a good fit for you.

Nothing can make a fun day of bridal shopping more stressful than going to a shop that may not meet your needs or wants. For example, if you’re adhering to a strict budget, but the entire inventory is way beyond that price. Another instance could be if you need a size inclusive line, but the shop does not carry your sizing in store.

It’s also important to note that many shops will only carry one sample of each dress in store, meaning they have to special order gowns. The order process can often take 6-12 months depending on designer, and some may charge hefty rush fees. If you are planning a short engagement, make sure to find a boutique that can assist with getting a special order quickly, or will sell stock pieces off the rack.

This might be a no brainer but wedding dress shopping is not like going to the mall to buy a pair of jeans. This is arguably the most important garment you will ever wear, and the dress search for most is a very new experience.

With most boutiques you will get a one on one experience with a trained stylist. They are there to help you dig into the crazy world of bridal fashion! Don’t be afraid to ask questions; they know this is a new experience for you.

The biggest difference you may notice between regular clothing and bridal is that wedding dresses can run notoriously small. Most designers use a European sizing chart, and the boutique can assist you in proper sizing. Many boutiques will use clips and other methods to help you visualize the dress fitting you perfectly.

Another point, which can be new to many, is that wedding gowns (yes, all wedding gowns) will need some kind of alterations, some more than others. Make sure to allot for alterations in your dress budget! The boutique will assist in helping your order the closest size and then a skilled tailor will help in making it your unique size.

This is a once in a lifetime experience so just remember to enjoy it! If the dress search starts to get stressful, take a step back and take a breath. If you adhere to the points listed above then you’ll lay the groundwork to have a truly enjoyable wedding gown experience. Go in with a positive attitude and remember at the end of the day it is all about the experience, and the big day!

Calvet Couture Bridal
Solutions Bridal

Xoxo,
Lacie

Wedding Venue Tours 101

| How to Make the most of Your Venue Tour |

Whether you a pre-planner who already has every detail in place or you have never thought about wedding planning until he popped the question, don’t worry because our venue management team has some easy tips for making the most of your wedding venue tour!

The venue is {typically} the first stop on your wedding planning journey. Once you secure the site, your location and venue are set in stone and everything else can start falling into place. It’s important to note that popular venues book quickly for prime dates; make sure not to procrastinate! 

1) Discuss Details & Budget! 
Since the venue is generally the first step in wedding planning, it is a good idea to try to sit down with your fiancé and family to discuss preliminary details and the wedding budget. This will help you decide what style and price-range of venues to inquire with, and also makes it easier to know what questions to ask when touring.  

The two essential details to decide on prior to your venue tour are wedding date and budget! A venue maybe stunning but if it is out of your price range, you need to be able to make a decisive decision on price. Also you need to decide if you are flexible on date, or if the venue is unavailable if that is grounds to keep looking? 

Other important details to note would be your guest count (as some venues have limited capacity), location to nearby hotels or transportation, and venue aesthetics.  

*Pro Tip – Be open to touring a variety of venue styles! Who knows, you might surprise yourself and fall in love with something different than your original idea or vision. 

2) Make sure to schedule an appointment for your site visit! 
Every venue will have different schedules and ways of handling tours. Making sure you schedule an appointment ensures the venue will be available when you would like to view it, and there will also be someone available from the venue staff to show you around, discuss packages, and details with you. If you opt to walk-in to a venue without an appointment you risk the venue being closed for an event, or not having anyone able to assist you on your tour.  

*Pro Tip – Reach out to the venue staff prior to your visit and probe them for information, or even ask for an estimate prior to touring that way you can discuss your day more in-depth during the tour. The more information you give the venue, the more they can help you during your site visit. 

3) Ask Important Questions & Take Notes! 
This does not mean you have to bring a full on wedding binder (even those these can be extremely helpful in the planning process!). When your tour appointment finally comes it is a great idea to bring a list of questions, or a checklist of important amenities you are looking for in a venue.  

Every venue is very different in their pricing and packaging so bringing a new checklist for each tour will help you to remember to ask consistent questions for all, and make sure you are getting the information that matters to you. Plus once all your tours are complete you can use the checklists and notes to compare each venue on paper before making your final decision.  

*Bring a wedding planner binder and/or notebook with you to the tour. This way you can have questions already listed on paper ready to ask and an easy way to document the answers. Plus many times you will receive pricing information during your tour and this way you can file it away to review later.  Haven’t found the right planning notebook yet? Check out our shop, Miscellaneous Market, for some cute options!

4) Remember to have fun! 
Often times wedding planning can get stressful, but it is important to remember the real reason you are planning this joyous occasion to begin with! Remember to have fun while planning and try not to stress the little things. Booking a reputable venue, and wedding vendors will help ensure your day is beautiful and stress free! 

Good luck venue hunting! 

Xoxo,
Lacie