Halloween Inspirational Palette

Continue reading if you dare, because we have gone to the dark side to share with you this glamorous but spooky Halloween wedding! Who said a cemetery isn’t the perfect setting for a wedding. These photos were taken by Camilla Photography, and from Calligraphy by Jen’s blog.

To see or not see?

Are you planning on seeing each other before your ceremony? We have to say this is 50/50 with our couples. A big factor in this decision is getting the photographs done before the ceremony so couples can go straight to their cocktail hour and reception.

We still have plenty of couples who want the surprise of seeing each other for the first time as they walk down the aisle. So I thought I would look into where this tradition came from.

It all started back when marriages were arranged. Fathers wanted to help their daughters marry wealthy land owners and they didn’t want the grooms to change their mind once they saw who they were marrying. Back then weddings were more of a business transaction than about two people choosing each other because they were in love.

This was also why a veil was worn, so that the groom had no way of backing out until the deal (I mean the wedding ceremony) was over.

So if you were hoping for some romantic story, it’s the total opposite!

A huge trend that we have seen the past few years is the first look, or reveal. This is a staged scene between the couple with the photographer and videographer there to capture that special moment between the two of you and it’s a nice time that you get to spend together before the day begins.

I don’t know which one I think is more romantic, I cry at both, but I feel like it is really up to each couple. I have some couples that wouldn’t even think of doing a first look because they want to have the dramatic entrance down the aisle. Some couples are nervous about a big reveal moment and love the idea of having a quiet intimate moment where they just see one another and it makes them less nervous the rest of the day.

Which ever option you choose, make sure you comfortable and do what you want to do. Don’t let anyone talk into to doing something that you don’t really want to do!

Written by Melanie King – TwoFoot Creative, Ann Arbor

 

 

5 Tips To Get Through The Initial Planning

Kristen Taylor Photography

Knowing where and how to start is sometimes the hardest part! Especially if you’ve never been around someone planning a wedding before. Here are some quick tips to get things started:

  • Narrow down the date – even if you’re pretty flexible, you might want to eliminate dates that fall on other major events (games, festivals etc.), holidays (4th of July weekend, Labor day, Memorial day), and conventions (plumber and pipefitters convention sells out Ann Arbor hotels every year).
  • Put your guest list together first! It will dictate so many decisions – from the per person budget to the venue to the amount of rooms you need to block.
  • Determine a realistic budget. The average wedding in Southeast Michigan is $28,000 for 150 guests. Look at your tastes, pocketbook and guest list to decide what is right for you, and stick to it!
  • Take your time when getting started. Enjoy being engaged, and think through all the millions of ideas you’ll have in the first days and weeks. This should be a fun process!
  • If you don’t have time to spare (about 400 hours) – hire a planner! We can get things done much more efficiently, cost effectively, and stress-free as professionals that do this dozens of times a year.

Unique Wedding Registries

Deciding on what to register for can be difficult, especially if you feel confined by traditional registries. Here are some ideas for unique registries that can be tailored specifically to any couple!

Sandals registries! We are Sandals Certified, and can also help put together a registry after booking your honeymoon so guests can contribute to spa treatments, excursions, golf, and even portion of your trip if you’d like them to.

Honeyfund is an awesome website that helps couples create a registry for their honeymoon! Honeyfund calculates about how much your honeymoon will cost based on the factors of travel, accommodations, dining, beverages, activities and the amount of guests attending your wedding. It’s a free website that is very easy to use!

Travelersjoy also works similarly to Honeyfund, and is recommended by The Knot and WeddingWire. Both websites break the sections of travel up into different prices, so guests can pick which part of the trip they want to give toward and how much that will be.

Home Savings

Lots of couples have recently or are soon to be moving into a new home together, so what better thing to register for than a home! On Hatch My House, couples pick their house style, color, setting, and select if they are saving for a down payment, renovation, or home décor, making it easy for any kind of home savings to be applicable. Once a page is made, a picture of the couple and potential future home are shown with a short paragraph from the couple. The house has different parts that can be clicked on by guests and show the price, allowing guests to choose which parts they want to give and for how much.

Gift cards are a great way to have guests give a gift to a certain place, but allow the couple to pick out what exactly they want from the store. At Card Avenue, couples can create a page with three steps for guests to easily follow. The first includes viewing the gift cards the couple is asking for and the requested total amount from each place they want, as well as how much they still need. The second step includes going to the website of the store and purchasing a gift card for the guest’s desired amount. Third, the guest returns to the registry and lets the couple know the price of the gift card they purchased as well as where it is from, as to update the first step of the registry. This lets other guests know, as well as the couple, what gift cards have been purchased already and for how much.

For wine lovers wanting to start, or add to, a collection, creating a wine registry is another unique option. At The Wine Cellarage, couples can fill out their basic information and then the wine bottles they have requested are listed with the number of bottles requested, fulfilled, remaining, and the price of each bottle, with a place for guests to pick how many bottles they wish to add to their cart.

Foodie Registry allows couples to pick restaurants where guests can give them gift cards for their chosen amount. Couples are able to explain why they picked each specific restaurant, or they can just list them. This is a great idea for couples that love food and to eat out at new restaurants, allowing them to have “Free Dinner Date Nights” for time to come after their wedding.

Donations:

For couples who do not wish to receive gifts, or want to also allow guests to make a donation alongside giving gifts, organizations such as the I Do Foundation and Crowdrise, which partners with The Knot are ideal. With websites such as these, guests are able to pick from whichever charities the couple puts on their registry page and donate their chosen amount. This can also be added with another registry, so that donation and gifts can be purchased, not simply one or the other.

Wishes:

Upon Our Star has the tagline “a wedding registry for wishes, not stuff.” This registry sorts the different wishes into categories such as honeymoon and travel, leisure activities, neat ideas, and even wedding items. This website allows couples to ask for gifts for their wishes, which can include items at the wedding, vacations, activities, and pretty much anything the couple can dream up!

Lingerie:

Cosabella is a website that allows brides to register for lingerie, placing different garments under the categories bridal shower, wedding night, honeymoon, and accessories. Although this is primarily tailored toward the bride, it can be added alongside another registry in order to allow a registry for the groom as well. This type of registry can also be done through Macy’s or a department store that has registries as well as sells lingerie.

Everything:

If one registry or type of registry is too hard to pick, websites such as Wishpot and Knack allow couples to compile a registry from all different websites into one place. This is great if a couple wants to register for all sorts of different things!

Written by Jillian Madden – TwoFoot Creative, Ann Arbor

Meet Serradella Vintage!

What/where is Serradella Vintage? Serradella Vintage is a rental company located in Howell, MI. We are a source of vintage goods to Michigan brides-to-be who want to bring a vintage vibe to their wedding or event. Our goal is to have everyone asking “Where did you find that?!”

How did you get started? I’ve had a love for all things vintage my entire life but as an adult developed both an eye for seeing potential in items and the skill set to repurpose and revive them. I began with a booth in an antique mall and after a while began selling on the flea market circuit. A bride-to-be called me one day and asked if I might have some of the items she was looking for. When I realized I had everything she wanted, a light bulb went on. I researched the vintage rental industry and found there was nothing like it here in Michigan.

Do you have a showroom? While my long term goal is to eventually inhabit a retail space, I’m currently working out of my home. I’ve taken over the garage and most of the basement but I must say, the space is easy on the eye and everything is accessible.

What kinds of items do you have? It’s important to note that I’m always adding items to my inventory. Lately I’m focusing on adding some larger furniture, but I already have chairs, tables, dressers, desks, a settee and an awesome bar. I also have whiskey barrels (can you say “Cigar Bar?), and many larger architectural pieces like doors and windows. My biggest weakness is probably china and I have over 600 eclectic pieces – everything from large plates and platters down to tea cups and saucers. Cake stands, old books, wooden crates, picture frames of all sizes, a huge bottle collection, 30+ pieces of luggage, chandeliers…

Do you have to be a creative, experienced DIYer to use your items? Definitely not! While I have no formal training as a “designer”, I’m very creative and particularly good at replicating looks from pictures. So even if a bride-to-be has never wielded a glue gun and doesn’t put power tools on her Christmas list, we can work together! I can be hired to construct or create just what the client wants, and to “stage” things as opposed to just delivering the pieces to the venue.

How does renting work? I encourage people to meet one-on-one and look through my inventory. I love to see pictures of what a client is trying to replicate and we’ll work together to figure out what pieces will work for a particular look and venue. If a client takes the time to come, I reserve their date and we operate on a first come first served basis for picking from inventory. After the initial visit and determining how much involvement the client wants from me, we usually develop an email correspondence and toss ideas back and forth until they’re ready to make final selections.

Pick up or delivery? Most clients save on cost by picking items up right from my house. I try to be as flexible as I can with dates for pickup and return and have even shipped smaller orders through the mail. Arrangements can be made for delivery and even tear down at a venue.

What about cost? Having spent time actually selling vintage things I have a really good idea of what stuff retails for. So I try to keep the cost of renting my items lower than what it would cost someone to find it and buy it themselves. Cost for “extra” services such as constructing and staging vary on the complexity of the project and cost for delivery depends on how far I have to travel. I also charge a reasonable “usage fee” as items suffer wear and tear even when they’re used carefully. A security deposit is collected and refunded when the items are returned in the condition they went out in. While I make every attempt to provide a quality product, most items are chipped, cracked, worn, stained and less than perfect. That’s what makes them vintage!

Any last comments? I am passionate about Serradella and thrilled that I’ve figured out a way to share my collection and embellish a bride’s day in such a unique way.

As a new business owner with not much to go on, feedback and suggestions are priceless. I want to grow my business in a way that best meets the needs of the client and I can only do that through open communication.

I have put together some discounts just for TwoFoot Creative clients. Contact me through my website: www.serradellavintage.com or visit my pinterest page ~ Serradella Vintage ~ or email me at kelly@serradellavintage.com

You can also reach my by calling 810.599.1899

 

Inspiration from Thomas Edison

Lighting is an essential part of weddings that tends to be easily forgotten.

Deciding on how to properly light a venue or outdoor space in a creative, beautiful way for your wedding can sometimes be tricky.

Using light bulbs as a part of your wedding décor can help solve both of these challenges.

Pacific Weddings Magazine highlights the use of Edison bulbs for indoor lighting and décor.

Edison light bulbs are especially versatile and fun to work with.

Stringing the light bulbs together outdoors creates a light that wouldn’t naturally be there and also provides a creative design rather than unoriginal lighting that isn’t aesthetically pleasing.

Restoration Hardware has a plethora of Edison style light bulbs that can be ordered and used as wedding décor.

Bulbs aren’t only useful for lighting purposes. Creating a light bulb vase is an easy DIY project. Rather than using vases, bulbs can hold flowers and hang from trees.

Another fun way to use light bulbs is to put them on the tables as place settings.

Kallima Photography captured these images at an outdoor wedding.

Whether using light bulbs for lighting indoors or outdoors, creating vases, or using them as place settings, light bulbs add a creative, fun vibe to any wedding or event.

Written by Jillian Madden, TwoFoot Creative – Ann Arbor

 

Components of a Wedding Invitation

Wedding invitations are one of the first things guests see regarding your wedding, which makes it especially important to create a invitation that represents you and your wedding. A great place to start is to think about the unique qualities of your wedding or relationship that you want to express to your guests.

This wedding invitation by Leesa Dykstra Designs portrays a unique birdcage design with beautiful colors specially designed for the couple. This invitation also includes the essential information necessary for guests. Important things to place on your wedding invitation include writing out the full names of the bride and groom, the date (including the year), the location of both the ceremony and reception, and sometimes parents’ names or the mention of the parents, as this invitation shows.

Tailoring the invitation to the season also provides a reminder to the guests as to when the wedding is, as well as provides a unique touch. This invitation incorporates the holiday season with its design, allowing the date of the wedding to be a part of the invitation design.

This board displays some of the essential parts of a wedding invitation. Important things to include with your invitations are a response card and envelope with your address on it for the guest to easily RSVP (don’t forget to stamp the envelopes before stuffing!) Providing a card with accommodations is also helpful for your guests.

When deciding on your wedding invitations, remember to include the essential details and items, but most importantly remember to make them uniquely you!

Written by Jillian Madden, TwoFoot Creative – Ann Arbor

 

Engagement Pictures 101

We have so many fabulous engagement sessions on our blog for this year’s couples – so I decided to put together a post with some tips for getting the most out of your engagement session. The first tip is to dress like yourself! You don’t want to look back at these pictures 20 years from now and not recognize the person looking back at you. These photos should be a reflection of who you are!

Our second tip is to find a location that speaks to you. Biz & Nick, pictured above, both have a connection to the film industry. They chose the Michigan Theater as their engagement session backdrop; what a perfect decision for them!

Third: don’t be afraid of color! Look how amazing Cory and Ian’s red umbrella looks in the picture above – it just pops! I’m not saying you should put on a rainbow of colors, but if you have a color that looks great on you, go for it. It is so much more interesting than your standard neutrals.

Get to know your photographer during the session – this might be the only time you see them before the wedding day! The more comfortable you are with them, the better your pictures will turn out in the end.

Wendy Martin Photography

Take care of yourself leading up to the session – wash your skin regularly, brush your teeth right before, and drink lots of water so you look your best. It will show! Follow this care routine up to the wedding day to ensure that you continue to look and feel your best. Also – make sure to eat so you don’t look and feel exhausted half way through the shoot!

Get your makeup done by a professional if possible. This is a great time for a makeup trial with the artist that will be putting together your wedding day look! It will also help you feel more confident going into the session, which might lead to a better selection to choose from in the end.

Finally – have fun! You will probably be using these pictures for save the dates, a guest book or signing mat, to hang in your home

Spotlight on a Vendor! Inspiration Video

Meet Anne from Inspiration Video located in Grandville of West Michigan. Anne is a leading videographer in the West Michigan wedding industry and so talented in her ability to capture your story.

Why is it important to hire a videographer? First, it is important to have video to fully capture your day. I believe it is important to have photos as well, but photos will not capture what was said in your vows, your toasts, etc. I believe video is the best way to truly feel like you can relive your wedding day over and over.

Next, it is important to have it professionally done, and not by a friend or relative. Your friend wants to be a guest as well, and is going to miss things that the professional should not. Finally, the quality of the video should be that much better taken from a person who does this for a living.

How long does it take to edit and finish a wedding video? I usually take under a week to edit a video, but since often times we have multiple weddings on a weekend, I let clients know that the turn around time is 3-6 weeks to receive their video after their wedding day.

What are your favorite things to shoot during weddings? I love shooting during the getting ready times prior to the ceremony, and the picture taking times between the ceremony and reception. Often people think that the ceremony and reception are the only important times to have captured. But there are so many great, unplanned moments that happen before and in between the two main events, and that adds so much more emotion to my work.

Do you only shoot weddings? I quickly realized during my first year of business, that weddings were going to be my favorite aspect of my business. I had purchased very high end equipment, thinking that I would be doing mostly corporate work, and it turned out that it was very handy to have that good of equipment at weddings as well. I was able to get shots that not every professional camera can get. I believe it gave me a good edge in the business nine years ago, and then things just started to take off.