As we’ve told you previously, attending a workshop with Joy Thigpen is the best thing you can do for your work, whether you are a photographer, stylist or floral or event designer.

A renowned teacher and leader in the field of creative direction and styling, in this workshop Joy pulls back the curtain on her process of designing weddings and shoots that are unparalleled in their beauty and cohesiveness.

The Creative Direction & Styling workshop offers an in-depth look at:

    • -How to develop and honour your artistic voice
    • -How to guide your client or creative team towards greater intentionality and meaning
    • -How to create a great image
    • -What publishers (including Once Wed) are looking for and what makes a submission successful
    • -The role of creative director vs designer vs stylist
    • -The fundamentals of styling paper, flowers, models and more
    • -How to make a living at your dream

Because this work is so valuable, we’re excited to announce Once Wed is sponsoring tuition for one person to attend Joy’s next workshop. The contest will take place on Instagram.

To enter follow @joythigpenworkshops, regram the #joythigpengiveaway image and include the following: “Hey @oncewed! I want to attend the next #joythigpenworkshop @joythigpenworkshops” along with a few words of why you want to attend. The contest ends at 12 pm on Saturday January 10th, the winner will be announced on Instagram later that day.

CLICK HERE to learn more about the workshop.

”Joy’s insight into the wedding market and business changed my whole perspective on how I should be running my own business. I loved the balance she made between philosophy and practical business knowledge. I gained so much more confidence in my mission and my work and I felt like the weight of self-doubt was removed when I stepped onto the plane to fly home.” Kae of Kae & Ales

“The best workshop I’ve been to in terms of depth of content.” Stefanie Miles


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01.07.15 / Featured, New Sponsor Blog

Intimate Coastal Big Sur Wedding

This intimate coastal Big Sur wedding instantly inspired us as the colors of the ocean and textures of the landscape combined perfectly with neutral and organic decor. Joy Thigpen designed the details along with Big Sur Weddings to create a stunning affair for Susan and Jesse. Keep reading for more details on their wedding!

From Coordinator, Diane:

I meet Susan and Jesse on a cool crisp fall morning, and the sun was glistening on the water. As we made our way across the expansive grass to the edge of the cliff Susan could not take her eyes off the view. I could tell right away she had found the perfect location for the wedding she had always dreamed of.

We started planning right way, getting all the thousands of logistics into place to throw a party, in the wilds of Big Sur for 80 of their closest friends and their families.

Family traveled from all over the world to take part in this very special celebration. The logistics were not difficult to handle because they both knew what they liked and what they wanted immediately. Susan never hesitated in her decisions or planning process.

The menu they served their guests was exquisite and bountiful. They put a lot of care and concern into making sure it was a true wedding feast. From the signature cocktail, each representing their beloved college Syracuse where they met and fell in love. To the mouth watering rack of lamb and all the way to the after hours party food of french fried sweet potatoes and parting gift of warm doughnut holes and vintage bottle of milk, they left no detail unattended.

The highlight of my night was watching them kiss and hug each guest good night and return to the dance floor, just the two of them, and have a private dance under a magnificent blanket of stars. The true love that shone from their eyes to each other simply and totally took my breath away.

Photography: Bryce Covey | Coordinator: Elegant Events & Big Sur Weddings | Venue: Big Sur | Shuttle: AITS | Bride Accommodations: Ventana Inn and Spa | Caterer: A Taste Of Elegance | Designer: Joy Thigpen | Music: Lucky Devils Band | Dessert: Just Cake | Royal Restrooms: Royal Restrooms | Rentals: Classic Party Rentals & Archive Rentals|  Florist: Studio Choo | Video: Cinematt | Carmel Plant Tenders: Carmel Plant Tenders | Sitters: Corporate Kids Events;

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01.07.15 / Featured, Real Weddings, Real Weddings Blog

Collecting Addresses Easily with Postable

One of the most annoying and frustrating parts about wedding planning is collecting and organizing addresses for all of the cards and notes you’ll be sending! You have to call, text, email and message hundreds of friends and family members to make sure you have the right information, and once you have it, keeping it organized is such a pain. Postable takes that frustration away with their free online address book!

With Postable’s easy and free online address book, you can easily collect the contact information and addresses of your friends and family in one place in just a few simple steps! Now you can send out save the dates, wedding invitations, thank you cards, and even holiday cards to all of the important people in your life with one simple website!

Here’s how it works!
1. You sign up (for free!)
2. Postable provides you with a customized link that you can change to whatever you’d like. You email, send via Facebook, or even text the link to your friends and family.2LinkEmail copy
3. They click the link and fill in their information, and it automatically updates in your address book.

4. You’re all done! You have a perfect, and up-to-date address book!
5. And when you need to mail cards, Postable can do that for you too!

So why should you use Postable’s online address book instead of another virtual address book or the old school way?
-It’s totally free!
-It’s completely private and secure. Postable won’t share your info with anybody and your contacts will never be bothered with unwatnted correspondence.
-You’ll be shocked at how much time you’ll save using Postable! You’ll save yourself from hours and hours of heartache and frustration. Much better than getting 150 emails back and having to copy and paste that info into that horrible Excel file.

Mailing has never been easier! So get started with your Postable address book to start 2015 off right!

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01.06.15 / Featured, New Sponsor Blog

Once Wed and Madison James Wedding Ideas at Coqui Coqui

When Madison James approached us to create a new campaign around their new 2015 Spring Collection, we instantly knew where we wanted to shoot these stunning and dramatic gowns- Coqui Coqui in Merida, Mexico. Merida is a beautiful place to honeymoon, and Coqui Coqui is a sophisticated and elegantly charming hotel full of history dating back to the Porfirian time. Full of intimate corners and vibrant details, we knew this would be the perfect canvas to display Madison James’ newest collection.

The Madison James spring line echoes silhouettes of the past and designs inspired by textiles from around the world. Madison James dresses are perfect for brides that are looking for a dress that gives them confidence and brides who are looking to make a statement. And no matter your wedding aesthetic or personal style, we’re sure you’ll find a Madison James dress to fit your dream wedding.

We were honored to work with Madison James on this stunning shoot, and we hope you find a little bit of inspiration from our time in Mexico! Stay tuned in the coming weeks as we unveil more images for the new Spring 2015 Madison James line of wedding dresses.


Dresses: Madison James | Photography: Meghan Kay Sadler | Creative Direction + Bookings: Emily Newman for Once Wed | Creative Direction + Styling + Hair and Makeup: Joy Thigpen for Once Wed |  Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Venue: Coqui Coqui Vallalodid

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01.05.15 / Featured, New Sponsor Blog, Wedding Ideas, Wedding Ideas Blog