Simple and Laid-Back Newlywed Photo Session

Minimizing and simplifying family photo sessions has been rising in popularity, and we cannot say enough how much we love it. There’s no need to all wear matching “white t-shits and jeans” or haul a car-load of props outdoors somewhere; all that’s really needed are a few people, in love, and comfortable in front of the camera (or at least, willing to try!). Julie and JP planned a very simple, laid-back newlywed photo session, in their own bedroom. And if you’re the type who needs a few tips on how to feel more comfortable in front of the camera, take a look at this post!

More from the photographer, India Earl:
“Julie and I have been wanting to do a newlywed shoot for ever, it seems! And after months of trying, we finally found the perfect day. I wanted to do something super simple, no fluff, no vendors or makeup artists, no big expensive floral arrangement, just them. The couple. At home. In bed. We dragged their bed over to the window light, blasted some bluesy music, and started shooting. It was super relaxed, loungy, and simple. You can totally tell how much they love each other just from the photos…the way he looks at her, the way she relaxes into his forehead and arms. We all vibed so well, the shoot was only about 20 minutes, but that’s all we needed!”

Photography: India Earl

03.15.16 / Featured, Wedding Ideas, Wedding Ideas Blog

Peaceful Garden Wedding in Nashville

Today’s real wedding feature is a little more special to us, because the bride is one of our own! Sarah is one of our Account Executives, and we were so excited when she got married last summer. With plans for a grand, enchanting garden party in the works, Sarah enlisted the help of a few wonderful Once Wed Premium Vendors and created a beautiful, peaceful garden wedding at Cheekwood Botanical Gardens in Nashville.

Read on for more from the bride!
“Patrick and I were engaged in winter under Christmas lights and wanted our wedding to be strikingly opposite, so as to have wonderful milestone to remember year round. That meant a summer wedding, and visions of a grand, enchanting garden party came to mind. 

Cheekwood Botanical Gardens was an easy pick for a venue, as lush greenery consumes the grounds, and the colossal mansion holds a delightful escape from summer heat. The mansion houses an art museum which fits perfectly with the my artistic tendencies and lineage (my mom is a longtime artist/art teacher, and there are many other creatives in my family). The beauty of the grounds, the architecture, and the sculptures of the Jaume Plensa exhibit became just some of the artistic elements important to making our wedding unique and memorable.

Our creative vendors really brought our theme to life. My mom set the tone with water-colored save the dates of the mansion. My enormously talented cousin, Mary Deaton Heldman, hand drew the invitations, programs, and monogrammed cocktail napkins in airy grey and regal gold. Sarah Joelle was an easy choice for photographer, not just because of her elegant, timeless style but also for her laid back, sweet personality.  The bouquets, boutonnieres, and arrangements from Rosemary & Finch were a standout element, yet looked effortlessly foraged from the gardens themselves. Rachel from B. Hughes was patient and integral in helping me find my dream dress: a light, ethereal Reem Acra with weightless Vera Wang veil. The bridesmaids wore feather grey Amsale gowns with tulle skirts that matched my dress but with varying lace tops for added interest. Amanda Dang and the team at Lunatic Fringe tied the looks together with their talented hair and makeup artistry.

Both Patrick and I have large families, with eight brothers and sisters in our wedding party alone. Our favorite part of our wedding was getting our families, who live in various locations, in one place and having fun with them. That made the food and entertainment equally as important as the artistic elements. The food from Clean Plate Club was impeccable, a mixture of light and savory southern fare. Our almond cake with chocolate and salted caramel filling from Dulce Desserts was the talk of the night. Bushwackers, or alcoholic milkshakes, were served…a staple for beating the heat and a favorite local drink of the bride and groom’s. Momentum Party Band left no room on the dance floor and played all night. No one wanted the evening to end, and it really never has to thanks to With this Ring Films and their detailed cinematography. 

We can’t thank our vendors and family enough for making this the best day! What a perfect tone it set for the rest of our lives together.”

Veune: Cheekwood Museum of Art | Photography: Sarah Joelle Photography | Film Developing: Photo Vision | Florals: Rosemary and Finch | Planning: Commerce Street Events | Wedding Gown: Reem Acra | Bride’s Earrings: Bhldn | Bride’s Shoes: Kate Spade | Hair & Makeup: Amanda Dang at Lunatic Fringe Salon – Nashville | Bridesmaid Dresses: Amsale | Cake: Dulce Desserts | Tent & Rentals: Music City Tents and Events | Lighting & Draping: QuestDrape | Catering: Clean Plate Club | Band: Momentum Party Band | Ceremony Music: Craig Duncan – Southern Strings Trio | Videography: With This Ring Wedding Films | Invitations: Mary Deaton Heldman

03.14.16 / Featured, Real Weddings, Real Weddings Blog, Wedding Ideas, Wedding Ideas Blog

Round Hill Hotel & Villas: Unforgettable Destination Weddings in Jamaica

Caribbean vacations are truly what dreams are made of, so when it comes time to selecting a location for a destination wedding, we’re not surprised that many couples choose Jamaica. Rich in history and famed for hospitality, the island is hailed for its turquoise waters and lush tropical views. Even better, we’ve located one of the most beautiful and elegant resorts in the Caribbean for you: Round Hill Hotel and Villas.

This 110 acre resort is much more than the standard: with luxury villas and boutique oceanfront rooms, award-winning dining (featuring locally-grown and organic cuisine), and an exquisite spa, Round Hill is perfectly situated to host both an unforgettable vacation and your dream destination wedding.

Set in a private bay, Round Hill is not just another hotel with a ballroom. Hosting only one wedding per weekend, their dedicated wedding staff promises you and your guests an amazing experience with personalized service. Your on-staff wedding planner is able to assist with all planning aspects of your celebration, including the booking of your guests’ rooms, arranging transportation from the airport, food and beverage requirements for your events, the booking of your vendors, organizing and scheduling your wedding events, floral and décor, photography, music, timelines, and day-of coordination.

Round Hill Hotel and Villas offers a selection of remarkable settings for you to choose from:

  • The sprawling spa lawn with breathtaking turquoise sea and sky backdrop
  • An intimate golden sand beach celebration – shoes optional!
  • A secluded, luxury hillside villa with spectacular sea views
  • A lush, private tropical garden setting

You’ll notice thoughtfully crafted touches from the beginning to the end of your planning experience – the use of fresh vegetables and herbs from their on-site organic garden in your dinner menu, custom décor options utilizing the beautiful tropical flora around property, and customized menus to highlight your personal tastes – Round Hill is proud of their ability to help define a couple’s vision and make it reality.

To find out more about the resort and look into date availability for your destination wedding, visit Round Hill’s wedding site or call 1-800-972-2159.

03.14.16 / Featured, New Sponsor Blog

Beautiful Ideas Without A Big Price Tag


Making your wedding a beautiful and memorable experience isn’t all about the “big ticket” items. If you’re working on a tight budget, here are a couple of ideas for wedding day details that can have a big impact without a large financial burden.


Stationery can go a long way in making a wedding feel personal and branded to the couple. There are a lot of downloadable prints on different wedding websites if you’re on a tight budget., for example, sends coupons via email on a very regular basis.  If it’s in your budget, a calligrapher or custom stationery designer is the best way to go to ensure the most customized and unique wedding stationery.

Linens and Chairs

If you’re on a really tight budget, at the bare minimum switch out the chairs at a venue to the nicest and cost efficient chair you can afford. Full-length tablecloths will help create a more formal atmosphere.  When you have a nice chair, a full-length tablecloth, and candles, you can ensure your wedding will look tasteful and timeless on the most minimal budget.

The Bar

One vignette that often gets overlooked is the bar. You can spruce it up by having your florist attach a simple and inexpensive greenery garland across the front and it instantly feels more fresh and luxurious.

Place Settings

You don’t have to get ornate china to make your guests’ place settings feel special and well thought out. Use a colored napkin and experiment with draping or folds. Place a menu or even a sprig of herbs or single flower on each setting to really polish off a look.


You can also display a signature cocktail menu on the bar and list the couple’s favorite drinks to make it feel personal. Get creative here and even make up your own cocktail menu. You can personalize it further by naming the cocktails, perhaps after sites you’ve visited, places you’ve lived, or even your pets!


Don’t forget accessories! Colored paper straws and customized cocktail napkins are inexpensive and add a big impact. Guests always “ooh and ahh” over how much thought is put into making their drinks pretty. You can get creative with the design of the napkins like putting your favorite quote or a saying that you love on them.

Ideas compiled by Created Lovely Events and Going Lovely.

Click through our slideshow for ideas on how to make a memorable experience for your guests while staying on-budget. 

03.11.16 / Featured, Wedding Ideas, Wedding Ideas Blog, Wedding Planning