Ideas for a Honeymoon in Switzerland

From Morgan Mingle, of

Switzerland is a country that begs to be explored. While it might not be an obvious destination for a honeymoon, it’s a great choice for a couple that is active, enjoys the kind of variety that a beach destination just can’t provide, but still doesn’t want to have to over-think trip logistics. Seriously, I cannot overstate how incredibly easy Switzerland is to travel in–it’s beyond safe, has a very clean and punctual transportation system, and is ultra compact, so your next stop is no more than a couple hours of scenic railway away.

Let’s be clear though: all of the above wouldn’t matter if Switzerland wasn’t also absolutely stunning. Most of the towns have very well-preserved medieval city centers, with winding, romantic cobblestone alleyways and charming river-side promenades. My favorite cities are Bern, the quirky and underrated capital with Albert Einstein’s famous clock-tower and locals throwing themselves into the chilly Aare river, and Basel, a melting pot at the intersection of Switzerland, Germany, and France with an impressive showing of art galleries and museums.

Outside of the cities, the landscape in Switzerland changes quickly and dramatically. In an hour or two you could go from the sampling your way through terraced Lavaux vineyards on the shores of Lake Geneva to hiking up the dramatic peaks of the Bernese Oberland mountain range, or from making your own cheese in the rolling pastures of Appenzell to sun-bathing beside the gelato-infused lakes of Ticino.

See other travels and noteworthy trips at Morgan’s travel blog,, and inquire about travel destinations at

Photography: Meghan Kay Sadler

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10.29.15 / Featured, Wedding Ideas, Wedding Ideas Blog

Elegant Fall Wedding in Australia

When we first saw these images from Rachel Kara Photography, we fell for the distinct elegant air about the entire wedding. AnnMarie and Andrew’s wedding was detailed, chic, and above all, elegant. From the bride’s stunning dress and simple ponytail, to the all-white florals and beautifully draped tent, this wedding exhibits an overarching sense of class. Of course, men in tuxes and bowties certainly doesn’t hurt. Read on for more from the bride:

From the bride:
“Our wedding was held in Orange over the Easter long weekend. Orange is very special to us, not only as the place where Andy grew up, but also the place we first met at Forage, part of the Orange Food & Wine Festival in 2013. In fact, the reception was held at Philip Shaw’s Koomooloo Estate, right where we first met! Having the wedding over 4 days meant our friends and family were able to see the best of Orange and sample the area’s excellent wine and food. We started with a welcome dinner at the Union Bank Hotel, followed by winery tours on the Saturday and the wedding on the Sunday. We spent a lot of time and energy on creating a fun event with an amazing menu created by Josie Chapman, Orange’s best caterer. We even had a cheese course! The dinner was matched with a selection of Philip Shaw’s award-winning wines. The mood was set from the beginning with the beautiful sweeping country views and music by the Casper Tromp jazz trio. A recovery brunch was held at the Cheney’s family home on Monday morning. We were so blessed that so many of our friends and family could join in our special day!”

Photography: Rachel Kara | Bride’s Dress: Dalaarna from Hope X Page | Shoes: Kate Spade | Jewelery: Paspaley pearl earrings | Ring: Affinity Diamonds, Sydney | Bridesmaid’s dresses: Needle & Thread from Net-A-Porter and Asos | Hair & Makeup: Liv Lundelius | Groom’s Tuxedo: Paul Smith, custom shirt and bowtie from PJ Johnson | Groom’s Ring: Cartier |Florals: Country Eclectic Flowers and Décor | Wedding ceremony: St Joseph’s | Reception: Philip Shaw Koomooloo Estate | Catering: Old Convent | Wine: Philip Shaw | Decor: Bride’s Family | Entertainment: Jazz band by Casper Tromp Trio | Cake: Belinda Griffiths, Orange

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10.28.15 / Featured, Real Weddings, Real Weddings Blog

Simple Engagement Session Ideas

There has been a desire in recent years to over-plan engagement sessions, when all a couple really needs is a beautiful location, a talented photographer, and to feel comfortable enough to be themselves in front of the camera. We love how simple Emily and Tyler’s engagement photos are; read on for more from the bride:

Tyler and I are both performers and directors. We spend our lives on stage and off crafting epic and emotional stories. When it came to our engagement shoot, however, we found ourselves gravitating toward inspiration that evoked a feeling of intimacy and simplicity, something much more reflective of who we are offstage. As we sat readying for our shoot we asked our creative director, Ginny Au, to break down the story for us: “What is our blocking? What is our intention?”, questions a performer would typically ask. Ginny responded with wisdom and love by articulating that Tyler and I spend so much of our lives on stage, playing other people, being “on,” and this was our time to turn inward and allow the cherished, truthful moments of our quiet life to be captured. Our photographer, Rylee Hitchner, guided us with such skill that we barely realized we were being photographed. We just got to be us, to be in honest love with each other. It is an enormous gift to see that love suspended in time through the lens of Rylee’s inspired artist’s eye.”

Photography: Rylee Hitchner | Creative Direction: Ginny Au | MUAH: Claudia Mejerle | Location: The Inn at Serenbe | Bride’s Attire, White Nightgown: Lacausa, Cream Dress: Kaarem | Groom’s Attire, White T-shirt, Grey Shirt, Navy Pants: Everlane, Linen Pants: H&M, Shoes: Allen Edmonds, Belt: J.Crew

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10.27.15 / Featured, Wedding Ideas, Wedding Ideas Blog

Elegant Garden Wedding in Wine Country

We’re always excited to see how couples style and plan their own weddings, and Laura and Jimmy’s garden wedding is absolutely brimming with beautiful ideas and elegant inspiration. Set at an estate in wine country, their vows took place in a garden under a romantic canopy of eucalyptus and hydrangea. We’ll never get quite enough of the lush bouquets, with soft touches of color and luxe ribbon.

Looking for more winery wedding inspiration? View this French-inspired Sonoma wedding, this elegant Santa Barbara fete, and this outdoor Napa wedding with touches of autumn color.

More from the bride, Laura:
“Jimmy and I met in high school during a production of My Fair Lady. We were high school sweethearts for 2 years, and then when Jimmy went to college, we grew apart and went our separate ways. Cut to 3 years later when Jimmy randomly decided to visit me at college, and sparked the romance again. We’ve been dating ever since, and almost 8 years later we finally tied the knot! From the start, we knew we wanted to do something in wine country. We moved from Washington DC to San Francisco together in 2010, and since moving to the Bay Area we have made it up to Healdsburg pretty often. We became wine club members at a winery down the street from Madrona Manor, and we just absolutely loved the area. I am a lover of all things vintage and old school European style, so that was a strong influence on our aesthetic choices for the wedding. We wanted a great meal for all of our guests in a great setting, and a truly elegant garden affair. Madrona’s delicious restaurant and beautiful interior perfectly fit the bill, and we knew it was the right venue as soon as we did our first walk through. We wanted to keep the colors classic, natural, and seasonal so we stuck with ivory, gold, and green. I knew from the start I wanted the bridal party in black and white, and I loved the way all of the bridesmaids looked in different ivory dresses. For my dress, I’ve always been drawn to pieces with beading and embellishment, so it wasn’t too surprising when I fell in love with a beaded Lazaro gown. I really did not want a strapless dress however, so Lazaro was kind enough to customize it for me and add straps. We did a lot of DIY work for the wedding as we did not have a wedding planner or day of coordinator. Making the crescent moon photo booth and the gold pumpkins for each seat was really fun, as was the wax stamps we used for table cards and place cards.”

Photography: Jessica Burke | Floral: Twigss Floral Studio | Dress: Custom Lazaro | Tux: Jcrew | Venue, food, and drinks: Madrona Manor | Croquembouche: Costeaux French Bakery | Harpist: Michelle Sell | Paper Goods: bride & groom, Cover art – friend Keith Stanley | Getting Ready Rttire – For Love and Lemons | Shoes – Manolo Blahnik | Rings: Brilliant Earth

10.26.15 / Featured, Real Weddings, Real Weddings Blog