Summer Engagement Session at the Lake

There’s something about the lazy feel of summer days at the lake that makes it the perfect scene to fall in love. In Holden and Ryan’s case, they chose this time to celebrate their love with a fun, carefree afternoon taking engagement photos. It’s so easy to imagine: the refreshing waves, the calm motion of floating away from the beach, and naturally gravitating towards each other as the water deepens.

Choosing a special location for your engagement or wedding photos makes those moments that much more memorable for you. We loved the way this NYC couple brought their landscape into their images, and this sweet farm-fresh portrait session at Serenbe. Where will you take your engagement photos?

Photos: Christina McNeill Photography

As originally published on Snippet & Ink.

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04.15.15 / Featured, Real Weddings, Real Weddings Blog

Sophisticated Wedding Ideas for Spring

When it comes to spring weddings, pastels are lovely. But are they required? Absolutely not. This contrast between light and dark creates a moody ambiance that is somehow elevated from the usual spring wedding. The depth and richness created lends a new sense of sophistication.

From the floral designer:
“There are darknesses in life and there are lights, and you are one of the lights, the light of all the lights.” As I was reading one day, this quote by Bram Stroker struck me and from there, alongside a team of exceptional talent, began to build a story and concept using that as our foundation. We wanted to convey a story of a beauty that encompassed innocence, purity and loveliness, but juxtaposing that with a dark setting; the light among the darkness, so to speak. Allowing our setting to remain simple in the house, we wanted to allow the natural radiance of our beauty to really tell the story, as well as using the floral to add a component of softness to the otherwise moody atmosphere. From there the concept unfolded and along with a talented team of individuals, we were able to execute the vision with an end result truly telling a story of a beauty shining in the darkness.

Photography: Heather Hawkins | Styling and Floral Design: Andi Jamison for Bows and Arrows | Hair and Makeup: Tracy Melton Artistry  | Gown: Gossamer | Model: Taylor Greene with Wallflower Management | Film Processing: Photovision

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

Honeymoon in the Beautiful US Virgin Islands

One of our sales executives, Sarah Heldman, was invited down to St Croix a few weeks ago and is sharing her experiences with us today!

The best experiences are the ones that are total surprises, especially when they involve leaving the cold, drab winter weather and jetting off to a tropical paradise. That is exactly what happened when I was invited to attend the Bridal Symposium in St Croix a few months ago.  With daytime highs around 88 and nighttime lows at 79, I could not wait to leave my normal November behind.

Only one concern flashed in my mind… is my passport up to date? I had not traveled abroad in years so I mentally calculated if I would be able to seize this once in a lifetime opportunity. Luckily, St. Croix is a part of the U.S. Virgin Islands so it was no problem at all! That fact is exactly what the department of tourism wants everyone to know: you can plan a quick trip for a spontaneous, romantic elopement or invite to your hearts content for a caribbean destination wedding.  It is so comforting to know that this is one part of the planning process you can skip and one less thing to remember to plan for and pack.

There are so many great accommodations to pick from as well, no matter what type of experience you want during your stay in St. Croix. I checked into The Renaissance Carambola, which is between the hills of the rainforest and white sandy beaches. This resort is perfectly secluded and almost secretive, which is great if you want to unplug and de-stress or find a new adventure scuba diving or blending in with the locals.  All of the employees are so nice and give you that extra attention you want when you are away from home.

If you want to brush up on your history, head to the Buccaneer, the longest running resort in the Caribbean. Still a family owned business, you will learn about the past of the residents (circa 17th century) to the island’s recent visitors (for example, Sean and his finalists on The Bachelor). The selection of rooms, dining areas, and venues are ideal for a wedding of any size and gives you options, which is great for customizing your special day.  If you are looking to be social and active during your trip, there is plenty to do here. Cocktail parties, golf, tennis, and watersports are just a few things to entertain yourself or your guests. However, I can’t promise you will be able to take your eyes off the panoramic view.

All in all, St Croix is one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen. It feels effortless to have this scenery as the backdrop for your wedding, but it can be almost as effortless to plan your trip here as well.

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04.14.15 / Featured, New Sponsor Blog

Charcuterie Wedding Appetizer Ideas with Zola

There are so many great ways to start out your wedding celebration, but we think having a charcuterie platter out for your guests during cocktail hour is our favorite idea! Have a great selection of meats, cheeses, fruits, and crackers on a beautiful platter for your guests to snack on as they wait for the reception to begin.

You can also style one of these beautiful platters from Zola for guests who visit your new home after the wedding. We love the idea of sharing a glass or two of wine over a few types of cheese and artisanal meats with your friends and new spouse. Visit Zola today to start your registry and secure your very own Vietri Platter and cheese knives to prepare for celebrations as a newly married couple! And Once Wed readers get $25 toward their registry if you sign up today!

Creative and Art Direction: Emily Newman for Once Wed | Photography: Meghan Kay Sadler | Styling: Ginny Branch and Ginny Au| Food Styling: Katelyn Hardwick | Products: Zola

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