An Indian Wedding: video feature

Saturday, November 28, 2009
We're happy to share with you a video sneak Peek of Shraddha & Hitesh's wedding we did this year at The Darlington House!!

The lovely folks over at Zelo Photography and Video also just let us know that the video has been featured on Maharani Weddings: A Haven for South Asian Brides.

It was our first traditional Indian wedding, and we learned so much about their amazingculture... and are grateful to be included on such a reputable Indian site! Thanks to Zelo for their awesome work! The quality of their camera is amazing and combined with their talent, the end result is a video that looks and feels just like a movie.

I think my favorite part of the video has to be the shots of all the beautiful guests during the ceremony. There is something so stunning about all of the bright, rich colors of the women's saris...completely striking. I also love the dancing in the street before the ceremony began :) It was extremely hot that day, but the guests didn't let that stop them! Can't wait to share the rest of the
details and more of their reception!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

This year has been crazy, and definitely full of its ups and downs. Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays (not just because of the delicious food we get to eat...and trust me, that plays a huge role), because it forces us all to take a deep breath. To stop with our busy lives and remember everything we do have, and to be grateful and appreciative of those things.

Last year, as a family we made a thankful tree. My husband had gone on an expedition with Finn and brought in a branch from outside and placing it in a big pot, we cut out paper leaves, wrote some of the things that we are thankful for and glued it to the branches. The kids had so much fun counting their blessings while filling the tree. Our little paper tree has continued to grow this year....and while the leaves are dropping from the trees outside, inside our thankful tree is full and abundant. As simple as it is, it is beautiful and it reminds me that life is beautiful. My heart is full with gratitude for all that we have and how the blessings continue to come with each passing year. This Thanksgiving, I am thankful for so many things, but I wanted to share with you a few leaves from our tree:

Family, healthy bodies, full bellies, freedom, friends near and far, spontaneous little "i wuv you's" from the kids, ice cream after every dinner , cuddles in the evening, books, warm blankets, a comfy home, clean clothes, our memory that can recall favorite times with those we love, sunshine, hands to hold, rain and fireplaces, the smell of waffles in the morning, swimming pools, weddings, sweet singing and music that fills our home

hugs and kisses,
for sand in our toes and the beauty of the beach
for the quiet moments

and for the noisy moments too

For a man I feel cherished by everyday
for the simple joys that come from being a mom

and the smiles that light up our world.

I hope you all have a warm and cozy Thanksgiving full of friends, family and love. We found this quote in the Happily Grateful journal from the paper source (pictured above) and thought it couldn't be more fitting for us this holiday season....

"We are most alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures." - Thornton Wilder

Happy Thanksgiving everyone and may your thankful trees be full!

All You Need Is Love, Part 2

Friday, November 20, 2009

Stepping into the reception...

In keeping with the stars and guitars feel, guests were asked to sign a classical guitar the couple could then take to showcase in their house! I always love unique ways to create a lasting memory in lieu of the standard guest book.

Did we mention that we loved Nick's Ted Baker suit jacket? These are the kind of groom's that we just can't get enough of...the ones that are hip enough to pull of this look and brave enough to go for something different! Love it!

We suggested Rancho Valencia to Missy and Nick as the perfect, intimate venue to compliment the great Spanish vibe that worked so well with the inspiration guitar pin. The tiles, as well as the incredibly colorful crawling bouganvilla that covered the walls, were also inspiration for their entire wedding.

From the beautiful custom bougainvillea invitations that April of True Impressions created (hand-beaded and all!) to the escort cards, table names and the Spanish tile menu...everything was given a special touch.

Nick and Missy chose their favorite artists, and songs from those artists, as their table names. It was really fun to see some of their favorites, which included Otis Redding, James Taylor, Carole King and Chaka Kahn just to name a few. During dinner, Nick had the DJ play "A Soul Tribute to the Beatles" as background music. It was very cool and set the mood. My assistant Stephanie couldn't resist and bought the cd afterwards :)

The couple loves coffee and had their favorite brew shipped in from their favorite coffee shop in Chicago. We placed the coffee in bright coral coffee mugs as favors for their guests. While assembling them, the whole room filled with the smell of coffee, and wow did they smell amazing! :) We even put some spare coffee beans in the base of our candle votives. We also had Courtney Scowby of Brightly Designed, custom make the labels which read "Blended with Love" on the coffee bags.

We brought in Spanish-style lounge furniture that guests enjoyed throughout the evening, but especially as the night went on into the late evening. It was such a nice night, guests could grab a drink and sit under the stars if they wanted a break from the dance floor.

April of True Impressions helped us paint the custom backdrop we built to sit behind the head table. "All you need is love," a simple, classic John Lennon lyric, was painted across the musical staff. A timeless phrase we all felt was so fitting for the couple on their wedding day.

The whimsy design on the cake was done by the lovely ladies at Sweet Cheeks and was a replica of the intricate detail on the guitar pin . We decided to take it outside for a photo on the stairs. It's always a little scary to move a cake...but with Twigg's added flowers, the sunlight and the tile background, it really made for a great shot! Thanks Natalie for always working so hard to capture it just right!!

We continued with the stars and guitars feel and hung the paper stars throughout the entire reception room. At night, when all of the stars were lit, the room completely transformed. We also had various guitars displayed throughout the room.

Missy and Nick, it was such a pleasure to work with you! Your LOVE and your style was so incredibly inspirational for us, and truly reminded us that all you need is love.
Again, many thanks to Natalie Norton Photography . I am loving these images!