Fabulous Friday: Cakes We Adore

What's better than digging into your favorite slice of cake after dancing off a few calories? Especially when the cake looks as good as it tastes! We love the unique designs that our brides + PLB have come up with! Whether it's a small cutting cake or 3 tiers, each cake brings a special design element to the reception. We absolutely love the gold foil trend that has taken off! However, we can't discriminate against cake... Naked cakes, or even traditional simple buttercream cakes adorned with fresh flowers are sometimes too pretty too eat. We are blessed with some amazingly talented bakers who make cakes that not only look good, but taste amazing too! Check out some of our favorites!

Island House Wedding: Jess + Nick

Jess and Nick had every intention on getting married in October, however, hurricane Matthew had different plans for this fun couple's Island House Wedding . They re-scheduled their wedding day for a cool, sunny Saturday afternoon in December. Without a cloud in the sky, Jess + Nick did their intimate first look on the dock, wonderfully captured by, Amanda Seifert. The ceremony took place on the front lawn under a floral covered driftwood arbor by Wildflowers surrounded by water and family and friends while their said "I Do". The weather paired perfectly with the couple’s jewel toned and bohemian design. The flowers were in shades of burgundy, purple, deep blues, greens, and peach with peasant feathers integrated throughout. With the couples love for the water and outdoors, their tables were adorned with gold gilded oyster shells and crab claws to accent the water-side venue. After dancing the evening away to Charleston Groove Factory, the couple left the reception to an amazing after party at Prohibition!

Fabulous vendors:

Ceremony & Reception Venue | The Island House

Catering & Bar Service |Mosaic

Mini Desserts | Swank

Florist | Wildflowers

Rentals | Eventworks

Lighting | The Island House

Ceremony/ Reception Music | Charleston Groove Factory

Photographers | Amanda Seifert

Videography | Dock House Digital

Hair & Make up | Paper Dolls

Transportation | ACW Limo

Bride’s Dress | Enzoani from Gown Boutique of Charleston

Live Painter | Briahna Wenke

Planning Tip Tuesday: Bouquet Review

For today's planning tip, we are breaking down the ingredients of 3 bouquets to give you the inside scoop on what creates these show-stoppers! 

Seeded eucalyptus, ranunculus, garden roses, wax flowers, peonies,  wrapped in a gold ribbon

Bouquet by Miele Events, Picture by Catherine Ann 

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Anenomes, garden roses, ruscus, queen ann's lace, magnolia leaves wrapped in ivory ribbon

Bouquet by Wild Flowers Inc., Photo by Dana Cubbage 

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Garden roses, pink ice protea, scabiosa, asitlbe, burgundy peonies, calla lillies, astrantia pepperberry, hanging amaranthus, and a variety of eucalyptus with burgundy and gold trailing ribbon 

Bouquet by Wild Flowers Inc, Photo by Whimsey Photography 

Fabulous Friday: rEvent

We love the sense of community that our beautiful Holy City of Charleston encompasses and we love it even more when we get to take part in giving back through our magnificent weddings! rEvent is a Charleston based nonprofit whose mission is to extend the beauty of events in the Charleston area.

Specifically working with the Event industry, rEvent is reducing waste and maximizing re-use through their free of charge service. Instead of throwing away your beautiful floral arrangements at the end of your special day, you, as a donor, can choose from a local list of charitable organizations to donate your gently used wedding day goods. Your wedding details can extend their use that benefits those in need in our community! Your floral arrangements can be picked up on site at the end of the day by rEvent, given a fresh cut and rearranged into bedside bouquets that are hand delivered to your choice of recipient. WOW! Floral arrangements that are not able to be reused are locally composted instead of sending them to landfill. It really doesn't get much better than that. 

rEvent is currently delivering repurposed flower bouquetsto MUSC Hospital, MUSC Children's Hospital, Ronald McDonald House of Charleston, and Our Lady Of Mercy. Even better news is, rEvent doesn't just accept floral donations - they are able to redistribute nonperishable event items such as table linens and votives for efficient reuse within the community to affordable housing initiatives and arts programs. Some of the recipients of nonperishable are Habitat for Humanity & Goodwill. 

Allow your floral after party to continue, don't let your beautiful florals go to waste! Donate to rEvent and bring a smile to someone else's face! We love this idea, and we cannot wait to use this service with our Brides.

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Magnolia Carriage House Wedding: Natalie + Tim

The Magnolia Carriage House was the perfect location for Natalie + Tim's  intimate celebration! The couple first met each other here in the Holy City while Natalie was studying at the College of Charleston and Tim was studying abroad here at The Citadel. They invited fifty of their closest friends and family to witness their "I Do's" under one of Magnolia's many oak trees with the sun peaking through for a beautiful ceremony setting.  Each bridesmaid was uniquely dressed in different colored dresses that coordinated with the color palette of the wedding, Natalie was not afraid of color! The tables were set with garland table runners and pops of flowers, fabulous gold chargers and raspberry napkins. The cake design was inspired by the bold pattern on the La Tavola linens in a soft yellow. Guests enjoyed delicious bites by Salthouse catering and danced the night away! We wish Natalie + Tim the best as they start their married life in Germany!

 

Thanks to our fabulous vendors!

Ceremony and Reception Venue: Magnolia Carriage House

Catering: Salthouse

Bar Sevice: Spike

Cake: Sablee

Florist: Miele

Event Rentals: Event Works

Specialty Rentals: La Tavola

Ceremony Music: Bob Williams Duo

Reception Music: Charleston Wedding Band

Photographer: Dana Cubbage Weddings

Weddings Officiant: Kevin Kuehmeier

Hair + Makeup: Canary Rock Salon

Guest Transportation: ACW Limo

Magnolia Plantation Carriage House Wedding: Stacey + David

David + Stacey's Magnolia Plantation Carriage House wedding was the perfect venue to say "I do".  After getting ready, the couple met downtown for their 'first look' outside the Dock Street Theatre, which was beautifully captured by Dana Cubbage. The Theatre was a special place for the bride who grew up preforming there as a little girl. This romantic, river-front location (along with the very compliant, and stunning weather) provided the perfect backdrop to a stunning Jewish ceremony and reception in front of their closest family and friends. David + Stacey were married under a beautiful hand-made Huppah that was accented with a fabulous florals by Wild Flowers, Inc.  Pink hued blooms filled the table tops with accents of navy and gold with specialty gold sequined runners.  A white birdcage with spilling flowers adorned David + Stacey's sweetheart table. Guests enjoyed signature cocktails by Squeeze named "The Sherfman" that was made up of vodka, grapefruit juice, simple syrup & bitters, and a "Southern Belle" made up of firefly vodka and lemonade. Their signature cocktail was named after their fun wedding social media hashtag, #Sherfman (a combination of both of their last names.) Delicious hors d'oeuvres were made and served by Salthouse catering, while guests mingled and enjoyed the DJ's selection of Sinatra-style music. David + Stacey danced the night away, including a very fun Horah (which was our favorite part of the evening!) The newly weds rode off in style in a Rolls Royce as the new Mr. & Mrs. Shiffman.

Thank you to all of the fabulous vendors:

Wedding Planning, Design, + Draping | Pure Luxe Bride

Ceremony + Reception Venue | Magnolia Plantation Carriage House

Catering | Salthouse Catering

Bar | Squeeze On-Site

Cake | Gala Desserts

Florist | WildFlowers Inc.

Rentals | EventWorks Rentals

Lounge | Snyder

Lighting | Innovative Event Services

Specialty Linens | Connie Duglin

Ceremony Music | Palmetto Strings

Reception Music | DJ Jon

Photographer | Dana Cubbage

Officiant | Rabbi Rausenbaum

Hair/Makeup | Paper Dolls

Transportation | ACW Limo

Fabulous Friday: Romantic Sweetheart Tables

Your wedding day is all about you, and your new husband - but with each guest to thank and friends to mingle with, it's hard to find a quiet moment to pause and bask in your beautiful day as a couple. One way to allow for a few moments to sit down together and enjoy each others company in the midst of your many guests, is a stunning sweetheart table! With the growing popularity of couple's choosing a sweetheart table over a traditional head table, there are so many ways to personalize your table as a short refuge to enjoy your first meal as a newly married couple! We also love how sweetheart tables serve as a focal point for your guests with just you and your groom at the table.

To distinguish your table from your guests', we love sequined table linens to add that extra touch of glam! The delicate draping of your chairs can be accented with florals and greenery to really set you both apart!

Photo credit: Evan Laettner

Having a sweetheart table allows for intimate, relaxed photographs to be captured throughout the night. The sweet candid moments that are captured during toasts and enjoying a few moments together at your own table are our favorites!

Gadsden House Wedding: Cate + James

This white & green Gadsden House  wedding was our very first look at this amazing new venue downtown. This remodeled historical home looked better than ever, what a transformation! Stunning gold and crystal chandeliers hung from the ceilings, neutral palette, and the gorgeous bridal suite with a gold gilded mirror. Cate was the definition of a blushing bride, she took everyones breath away in her perfect fitted gown with sweet low back and bow. The reception area was filled with whites, lush greens and accents of gold. We were in love with this classic romantic design, and of course this wonderful couple! We are wishing Cate + James nothing but the absolute best!

 

Thanks so much to all the fabulous vendors:

Wedding Planning & Design | Pure Luxe Bride

Ceremony + Reception Venue | Gadsden House

Catering | Salthouse Catering

Rentals | Snyder

Bar Service | King St. Beverage Co.

Cake | Wild Flour Pastry

Florist | Anna Bella Florals

Lighting IES Productions

Ceremony Music | Palmetto Strings

Reception Music | Charleston Groove Factory

Photographer | Monika Gauthier

Photo Booth | Oh Snap!

Videographer | Gibson

Officiant | Family Member

Hair + Makeup | Lashes and Lace

Bride + Groom Transportation | Charleston Style

Fabulous Friday: Looking Your Best in Your Dress!

Looking Your Best in Your Dress: Post-Workout Tips

You’ve got a million and a half things you’re juggling at once to get ready for your big day, and in the midst of it all you have to find time to get in a workout so you can look your best. Every day there’s something new that you didn’t consider the day before: the seating, the lighting, the music, the flowers, and so on – the list is endless. It’s a full time job squeezed into your already busy life, and with little time to waste, it’s more important than ever to make every rep count.

That’s why you should take your recovery seriously. After you work out, your body needs to rebuild.

Photo by Hyer Images

Getting up and exercising is only the beginning of the process, just as picking a venue and setting a date are the first steps leading up to “I do”. When you see the people at the gym who have the body that you want, there’s one thing you should know.

Their workout doesn’t end there, nor should yours. You should strive to maximize the potential benefits of the workout you’ve just put in. Don’t give into the junk food or the urge to over-indulge – as much as you’ve earned it, you owe your body a little more.

The only thing required is a little forethought and planning, which may seem like it just adds to the stress, but in the long-term you’ll be happy with the results. Here are a few post-workout steps you can take to make your workout work, so you can focus on what’s really important:

1. It only makes sense, use something up then put it back in. It’s a little more complex than that. You have to be aware of what you put in your body.

You are unique and so are your fitness goals, which should always be your primary consideration when refueling. A weightlifter needs to eat more to facilitate muscle recovery, in comparison to a casual runner trying to burn a few extra calories. Although, the one thing they share is the body’s need for proteins and carbohydrates during for recovery. Over the course of your workout your muscle tissue experiences micro trauma or small tears that your body depends on the essential amino acids in protein to repair, and carbs are your body’s preferred source of energy. You should find the right balance for you. A 1:1 ratio works well while you’re sweating for the wedding.

To recharge efficiently you should have a quick snack rich in macronutrients on hand after a workout. Prep time is negligible for a quick superfood-packed smoothie or a well-chosen trail mix. Here are a few high protein snacks that are great for recovery:

2. This one is a no-brainer. It’s practically a cliché, but with all over-used tropes comes an element of truth; it’s good advice. Hydrate! You should always be thinking about your liquid intake, however the period following a workout is critical because over the course of your workout your muscles become dehydrated, turning them into sponges for nutrients and water. You also use sweat to cool down, leading to the logical conclusion that you need to replenish the fluid you lost. Water works great for most workouts, but for more high-intensity workouts you’ll want to think about options with more electrolytes. Here are a few pointers from the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) on staying hydrated:

Before Exercise | 14-22 oz of fluid 2 hours before exercise 

During Exercise | 6-12 oz of water or sports drink every 15-20 minutes of exercises 

After Exercise | 16-24 oz of water or sports drink for every pound of body mass lost during exercise 

Fruits can also play a big role in hydration like grapefruit and watermelon.

3. You don’t need to stretch before a workout. Actually, you really shouldn’t. Despite what you’ve been undoubtedly told, passive static stretching (PSS) is best saved for after a workout to relax them and increase blood flow, stimulating muscle repair and helping to prevent future injury. Make sure you target the areas that feel the tightest to get the best results.

Before your workout, try an active dynamic warm up (AD) that mimics and preps your targeted muscle groups for your planned workout.

Photo by Aaron and Jillian

4. The gym shouldn’t become an every day event. You need to give your body time to rest and recover to maximize the benefits of your workout. It’s almost as important as the workout itself.

Resting doesn’t equate to inactivity; you should scale your activity. You need to rest in between each day of workouts to be ready for the next round – five days on moderate to high intensity and two days off at low intensity, for example.

Alternating muscle groups in your daily workouts is another important form of rest.

Finally, get a good night’s sleep. Getting REM sleep helps your body produce growth hormones that repair damaged muscle tissue. 6-8 hours of sleep a night is the magic number to kick start your recovery and leave you looking your best on your wedding day.

Fabulous Friday: Wedding Traditions

There are so many things we love about a new engagement and the planning process running up to your big day, and we love that so many brides bring with them their own unique traditions as well as abiding by the tried and true wedding traditions! Here are some of our favorites and a little history behind these well known wedding elements:

“Something old, something new…”

This good luck saying dates way back to Victorian times and today, it may be one of the most infamous wedding traditions that many brides partake in. Something old represents the link with the bride's family and the past. Many brides accessorise their wedding attire with a piece of antique family jewelry or a mother's or grandmother's wedding veil or pieces of their gown – we love this, especially seeing the mother or grandmothers pride in seeing their beautiful bride is something so dear to their hearts Something new represents good fortune and success in the bride's new married life. The stunning wedding gown is often chosen as the new item. Something borrowed is used to remind the bride that friends and family will be there for her and her new husband when help is needed. The ‘something borrowed’ might be something such as a piece of jewelry or a handkerchief. Something blue is used to symbolize faithfulness and loyalty, most often the blue item is the garter, but we have seen lots of pretty blue details incorporated into the dress, such as beautiful shoes. Last but not least, a silver sixpence in the bride’s shoe is to wish the bride and her new husband wealth.

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Photo credit: Dana Cubbage Weddings

Burying the Bourbon

With Charleston being located on the southeastern coast, we are no stranger to rain! Although we are always prepared to make your beautiful day run as smoothly as possible despite torrential downpours, some couples abide by this old southern folklore of burying a bottle of bourbon at the site of their wedding in order to ward off any rain that might put a damper on their big day! According to the tradition, it must be done exactly one month prior to the wedding (who doesn’t need another excuse to visit the Holy City?), the bottle must be completely full, and buried upside down to ensure maximum results! Whether or not the bourbon proves successful, be sure to dig it up post ceremony and enjoy while looking at your stunning new wedding photos!

Photo credit: Dana Cubbage Weddings

Cutting the Cake

The wedding cake has always been a beautiful center piece of any wedding, and the tradition of breaking the cake over the bride's head dates back to the Ancient Romans (we are sure you are very glad we have moved past that!). Today the cutting of the cake has become one of the most classic elements of the reception, that also happens to be one of our favorite photo opportunities! It is symbolic as the first task the newlyweds perform together and sharing a piece of cake symbolizes their union and the promise to provide for each other. Through out time as cakes went from simple to elaborate, multi-tiered pieces of yummy art, it became almost impossible for the bride to cut the cake on her own, she needed her new husband's muscles to help her cut through the layers of delicious frosting. Despite many cakes now being delicate and much easier to slice, the bride and groom still cut the cake together, and why not? Your guests and photographers love it!

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Photo credit: Dana Cubbage Weddings

Honeymoons

In ancient times the now cherished practice of the ‘honeymoon’ began. The Teutonic people only held weddings under the full moon. After the wedding celebration, the bride and groom would drink honey wine for a full moon cycle - thirty days. This became known as the "honey moon." While the name endured, the purpose of the honeymoon obviously changed, but we are still advocates of toasting a glass of bubbly every day for thirty days! After the wedding, newlyweds would say goodbye to their family and friends to go and start their life as the new Mr. + Mrs. ( Send-offs are such a great photo opportunity, whether or not you're leaving straight away for your honeymoon or waiting!) Today that purpose continues, only now a fun vacation is included, usually to a sunny beach resort or your favorite city! Check out our guide to your honeymoon essentials!

Photo credit: Hyer Images