A Romantic Charleston Elopement

Alexandra and Michael chose to elope in the beautiful city of Charleston, South Carolina. With just their pastor, photographer, and the desire to start their marriage with an adventure, they headed out to find the perfect place in the wilderness to say their vows. Read on for more from the bride!

From Alexandra, the bride:
“After Michael proposed last December, we began to unravel what we wanted our wedding day to be like. We decided early on that the day we would begin our marriage would be a romantic adventure. We peeled away expectations and traditions that didn’t really fit our personalities and desires and we came up with a styled elopement (termed by my good friend Joanna Ballentine).

We wanted to travel somewhere beautiful and capture the adventure with as many film photographs as possible. Since Michael and I both grew up in the south, we were naturally drawn to the historic beauty that expands over the Charleston area. We also wanted a destination that wouldn’t be too difficult to travel back to for anniversaries and spontaneous trips. Though most elopements are spontaneous, ours was the result of detailed planning and much flexibility. I had only a few expectations of my wedding day, to marry my best friend and have fun. Every other detail I just left in God’s hands and it turned out beautifully. That’s not to say we didn’t have problems arise because what would a wedding day be without a handful of trouble? After half a day of sideways rain, we were finally able to go outside to take pictures at the most beautiful boutique hotel, Zero George, in Charleston. Michael and I carefully chose Zero George as our first honeymoonlocation and were blessed with true southern hospitality.

For our ceremony, Michael and I did not know where exactly it would be until the moment of. We had heard about Edisto Island and Botany Bay so we had planned to travel and find our place amongst the natural beauty. After driving down oak-lined roads and walking half a mile through a glowing marsh, we found where we would say “I do.” It was captivating. The sand was covered with thousands of seashells and dried up trees created the most beautiful landscape. There was a storm off the coast, but not a drop of rain came. It was as if time stood still for us. I couldn’t have dreamed of anything more beautiful for our wedding day. Looking back I think about how our wedding day flowed with our beliefs on life. We made a commitment to go through the unexpected in life with joyfulness and love. We have decided to stay consistent through the rain and storms of life, to travel to unseen places together, and to expect the best. We did this together on our wedding day and we will do this together through our marriage. It’s a beautiful adventure.

We are also so thankful to our Pastor, John Larson, who is a spiritual hero to both of us. He traveled many miles to officiate our ceremony and it meant the world to us. Our photographer, Faith Teasley, was so good to us to capture this beautiful and spontaneous day. We are also so grateful to Jody Savage for all her help in the detailed planning and vision of this gorgeous day. Thank you, Thank you.”

Photographer: Faith Teasley | Getting Ready Location:  Zero George Hotel | Ceremony Location: Botany Bay, Edisto Island | Florist:  SYG Designs | Dress:  Gossamer Vintage | Men’s Suit:  Billy Reid | Calligrapher:  September Letters | Film Processing:  Indie Film Lab | Hair & Make Up:  Bride

09.10.15 / Featured, Real Weddings, Real Weddings Blog

Fashionable Wedding in Italy

Is there anything that needs to be said about this amazing Italian wedding? We’re sure that the amazing images from Erich McVey do all the storytelling, but we can’t help ooh-ing and ah-ing over a bit more. From the bride’s amazing Marchesa gown to the stunning floral designs (she let her floral designer do whatever she pleased!), to these breathtaking photos, every image is filled with beauty.

The bride and groom share a special love and connection to Rome and Castelli Romani. They took their wedding as an opportunity for loved ones from all over the world to get together to celebrate their love while enjoying the views, the food and the wine. They wanted the event to be romantic, timeless and elegant — did they ever! They also incorporated Russian, Norwegian and American traditions into the perfect set of the Roman hills.

We can’t help but share the couple’s sweet love story:
“Back in 2008, we met on the Couchsurfing forum! Denver used to have a very vibrant and friendly community of Couchsurfers. I logged onto the forum to ask questions about the city and its neighbourhoods while I was looking for a place to rent, and Christopher reached out to me with a welcome message.

At the time, my cousin and I were coming to the USA for the first time to spend a few summer months. Christopher was kind enough to pick us up from the airport on a hot summer day, and this is where our story started.

Rainy days are made for lovers and sweet gestures: in the day Christopher proposed, a train was taking us away from Oslo through the moss covered tunnels of Norwegian mountains, down to the boat across the fjords waters and into the valley of Voss. We finished our trip with a fabulous dinner in the heart of Bergen, and walked the empty cobblestone streets back to our hotel, hiding under a single umbrella while it was pouring cats and dogs. Back in our room, we played the Rolling Stones and Led Zeppelin, talked about life and listened to the sound of rain and waves. It was a moment of life where everything just seemed perfectly peaceful and happy. Christopher took my face in his hands, looked into my eyes and then went down on his knee and proposed!”

Photographer: Erich McVey | Venue: Park Hotel Villa Grazioli | Florist: Noosheen | Stationery: Antiquaria Design Studio | Bride’s gown: Marchesa ‘Resort 2013 | Shoes: Valentino Rockstud pumps | Hair & Makeup: Janita Helova | Grooms attire: Boss Hugo Boss apparel  ; Brioni accessories | Caterer: Park Hotel Villa Grazioli | Band/DJ: Sombras live music 

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09.08.15 / Featured, Real Weddings, Real Weddings Blog

12 Wedding Calligraphy Ideas

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While you may have considered using calligraphy as a part of your wedding invitation suite, there are many more ways you can incorporate this artful detail in your wedding.

We’ve put together a list of 12 unique and personalized ideas a calligrapher could help bring to life for your celebration.

– Have your favorite quote, or perhaps a part of your vows, written on silk ribbon and threaded through your hair.

– Personalize coffee sleeves for yourself and your bridesmaids for a caffeine hit the morning of your wedding.

– Write a meaningful quote, phrase or word on to your body for your wedding day.

– Have calligraphy written on interesting textures such as river rocks or leaves to act as placecards.

– Consider a sign for your getaway car that your calligrapher can write on for you.

– Use paper parasols or fans to keep your guests cool and add details with your couple’s monogram or a quote.

– Have your favorite phrase written on to linen or a banner.

– Double your centerpieces as table numbers with calligraphy on the vase.

– Let your guests know what’s for dinner with a large calligraphy menu at the entrance to your wedding.

– Entertain your guests with a personalized fortune teller.

– Customize your cocktails or spirit bottles.

– Create presents for your bridal party and guests, such as calligraphy on a flask for the groomsmen, personalized gift boxes for your bridesmaids, or labeled muslin bags with treats for your guests.

Want to know more about wedding calligraphy? We’ve got some great advice on this topic from Katie Hyatt of Signora e Mare, talking about How To Work With a Calligrapher and Kristara Schnippert, sharing 5 Things to Know About Wedding Calligraphy.

You can also find more wedding calligraphy ideas here and here.

09.04.15 / Featured, Wedding Ideas, Wedding Ideas Blog, Wedding Planning

Elegant Tent Wedding in Virginia

Verulam Farm, a 1936 estate nestled in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains was the perfect wedding venue for Rebecca and Josh, a true Charlottesville couple. The farm is an expansive property so taking full advantage of it was important to Rebecca and Josh. The wedding ceremony was held in the horse field with the Blue Ridge Mountains serving as an enchanting backdrop, and a classic tent reception was designed with long farm tables, natural linens, Tuscan cross-back chairs, and low candles which created a truly elegant summer evening.

The florals and décor captured the lush, romantic vibe with a palette of creams, subtle blush, and gold highlights. Chandeliers dripping with olive branches were hung in the reception barn and entrance to the ceremony, and floral arrangements of garden roses, gardenias, white lavender and olive vine adorned the space.

We love the personalized touches and ideas that the couple brought to the celebration. After dinner, guests were led by a violinist on a torch lit walk through the field and down to the barn to cap off the evening by indulging in a cigar/bourbon bar, and late night donut truck. As favors, they gave each guest custom mason shakers, courtesy of the groom’s company. All were delighted when Rebecca surprised Josh with a vintage Mercedes convertible for their getaway. It was the perfect amount of whimsy and formality to create an evening to remember!

Photographer: Eric Kelley | Event Production + Design: Easton Events | Floral Design: Beehive Events | Videographer: East West  | Tent: Skyline Tent Company | Farm Tables, Chairs, Vases, Linen, Torchieres, Bar: Beehive Events | Printed Materials & Details: Erika Jack | Venue: Verulam Farm | Catering: C&O | Bridesmaid Dresses: Monique Lhuillier via Bella bridesmaids  | Bridesmaids Robes: Plum Pretty Sugar | Brides Dress and Veil: Carolina Herrera via Bergdorf Goodman | Bride’s Shoes: Jimmy Choo   | Bride’s Getaway Dress: Monique Lhuillier | Groom’s Suiting: J Crew | Groomsmen Gift: Monogrammed pocket squares via Ralph Lauren | Hair & Makeup: Lora Kelley | Ceremony and Cocktail Music: Morweena Lasko and Jay Pun | Reception Music: Mo’ Soul | Cake: Favorite Cakes | Cigars: Cville Smoke Shop  | Donut Truck: Carpe Donut  | Favors: Mason Shaker

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09.03.15 / Featured, Real Weddings, Real Weddings Blog