Monthly Archives: June 2012

Hi friends!  I’m still out of town without much access to internet, but I just wanted to drop in and say hi. Next week will be a short week because of the Fourth of July holiday, but definitely check in for a few really fun posts that I’ve lined up for you while I’m gone.

via stephmodo


And in case you missed it:

Happy pickup truck bride.

Roaring twenties wedding with synchronized swimmers!

This bold and romantic photo shoot is a new favorite for me: Part One and Part Two.

Red-striped summer inspiration board.


Have a wonderful weekend, y’all!

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Today’s wedding touched a special place in my heart, as it was held at the Swedenborgian Church in San Francisco – where I got married just a year an a half ago! Lizette and Ernesto also opted to host their reception at the Swedenborgian, in the parish house just behind the church. And how about this: the groom planned the entire thing!

Says the couple, “In Mexico, a band walks behind the bride as she goes into the church, so we wanted to include that tradition. We also made sure to not see each other until the ceremony.”

Centerpieces were arranged in Mexican jarros, purchased at the San Jose Flea Market.

Why did you choose this location for your wedding?  We chose the church because it was small, intimate, rustic, simple, had a organic feel. The parish house had  the same look and was attached to the church, making it easy for our guests.

What inspired you when you were planning your wedding?  Our love for each other and the things we share in common: our culture and heritage, our love of rustic and antique things, and organic and simple things. We also wanted to maintain the feeling of a family get together, just dressed up a bit.

Do you have any budget tips for other brides?  We started by coming up with an estimate of how much we initially wanted to spend on the event, as well as what our maximum limit was; in our case we wanted to spend about $7,000, but definitely didn’t want to go over $10,000. Next we prioritized our must haves and assigned a portion of our initial total estimate to each item. Although we wanted to stay as close to our initial number, we also felt that quality was the ultimate priority. Therefore in order to hit budget, our next option after deciding to not sacrificing on quality was moving the wedding day to a weekday. Not only were we able to get weekday discounts from various vendors, but our guest list became a little bit more manageable. Additionally, we were lucky enough to have a professional florist in the family that provided the flowers as a wedding gift, so we only ended up spending on the Mexican jarro vases. Once our must-haves were covered, we layered in all the other items by shopping around for our wedding invitations, rentals, and supplies to make our wedding favors.

What advice do you have for other brides?  Always remember that the wedding day is for both of you. A lot of brides have a habit of saying “my wedding” when they should be saying “our wedding.” Make every decision together – what better way to start your marriage off right than working together and being in harmony on your decisions about your wedding. Also, if your family wants to be a part of the wedding and help, you should let them. Lastly, treat your vendors like family and guests because they play a huge role in making your day memorable.

Is there anything else that helps tell the story of the day?  The groom planned the whole wedding! From Lizette: I trust Ernesto and his decisions. He has great taste and he has a great eye for beautiful, unique and meaningful things. Brides always seem to overshadow the grooms, so in our case I wanted him to feel just as special and proud of his wedding day. From Ernesto: I can never turn down the opportunity to be creative, especially when it puts a smile Lizette’s face. And I did make sure to get her input on all my ideas.


Photographer: Christina McNeill / Venue: Swedenborgian Church and Parish House in San Francisco / Bride’s dress: Rin’s Bridal / Bride’s shoes: Menbur / Flower girl dresses: Mariel’s Bridal Boutique / Stationery: Wedding Paper Divas / Flowers: Bella Flor / Music: Mariachi Trio San Jose / Catering: Mexican Taco Party Catering, 510-538-7205 / Cake: Vanilla Moon Bakery / Rentals: A-1 Party Rental


Wedding Paper Divas is a sponsor of Snippet & Ink.

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Part Two of this bold and romantic photo shoot! I always love the juxtaposition of completely different styles, and I think the various elements in this shoot achieve a perfect balance between modern boldness and soft, timeless romance.

The letterpress place cards untied to reveal a clever accordion-style menu.

In case you missed it, see Part One right here. And again, a huge thank you to all of the talented people who brought this shoot to life!


Laurie Arons Special Events and PS Paper are sponsors of Snippet & Ink.

Photography: Lisa Lefkowitz / Planning, Design: Laurie Arons / Floral Design: Max Gill / Venue: The Fairmont San Francisco Penthouse Suite / Dress and Veil: Monique Lhuillier / Jewelry: private collection / Hair, makeup: Wallett Luberich / Cake: Emma Cakes / Macarons: Chantal Guillon / Menu placecards: PS Paper / Linens: La Tavola Fine Linen Rental / Dinnerware, glassware, and chairs: Hartmann Studios Rentals / Glass candlesticks: Sue Fisher King / Model: Sara with Scout Model & Talent Agency
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Last month I had the pleasure of working with some of my absolute favorite creative people (Laurie Arons, Max Gill, and Lisa Lefkowitz, to name a few!) to bring this gorgeous photo shoot to life. It was an amazing opportunity to see all of the work that goes on behind the scenes to make something so beautiful happen – and now I get to share it with you! I hope you love it as much as I do…

The dining room of The Fairmont San Francisco Penthouse Suite, with it’s dramatic black and white walls, really set the tone for the shoot. Boldly patterned linens accented with clear glass candlesticks and modern Louis Ghost chairs, were softened by romantic peach and orange centerpieces.

Arrangements included tulips, poppies, roses, ranunculus, clematis and kumquats.

The simply elegant dessert table included a variety of macarons (red velvet, orange blossom, Earl Grey, almond amaretto and Tahitian vanilla) and a two-tier cake with both sugar petals and a real rose. For our model, we chose a look that was classic and romantic, but that could also hold its own in such a dramatic venue: head-to-toe lace plus a full-length veil. The black and white bouquet included poppies, anemones, ranunculus, and lily-of-the-valley.

There were so many amazing photos that I couldn’t stop with one post, so check back in for Part Two in a couple hours!

Laurie Arons Special Events and PS Paper are sponsors of Snippet & Ink.

Photography: Lisa Lefkowitz / Planning, design: Laurie Arons / Floral design: Max Gill, / Venue: The Fairmont San Francisco Penthouse Suite / Dress and veil: Monique Lhuillier / Jewelry: private collection / Hair, makeup: Wallett Luberich / Cake: Emma Cakes / Macarons: Chantal Guillon / Menu placecards: PS Paper / Linens: La Tavola Fine Linen Rental / Dinnerware, glassware, and chairs: Hartmann Studios Rentals / Glass candlesticks: Sue Fisher King / Model: Sara with Scout Model & Talent Agency
  • Bold, Romantic Photo Shoot at The Fairmont

    26 June 2012
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    Palm Springs + Speakeasy + Synchronized Swimmers… This is a seriously fun wedding! Plus photos by Nancy Neil, and a ton of great details about the planning and the big day from the bride. What’s not to love!

    How much would you love to get this special delivery in the mail?! Says the bride, “We had a disaster with a printer which caused us to throw away all of our invitations less than a month before the wedding and start all over. Our second-round of invitations were the result of working with several great vendors and frantic DIY-ery. That said, the ones we came up with on our own were so much more interesting and fun and a much better reflection of us. It was probably one of the most personal and gratifying parts of the whole process, and it really set the tone for the wedding. Everyone was so excited after the invitations arrived…us most of all!”

    Says Rhonda, “I have a daughter from a previous marriage, so including her (as well as her friends) in the planning process and in the wedding itself was important to Huy and me. We really tried to make our ceremony and reception as much of a reflection of our family, and us as we possibly could, which meant creating our own traditions. My daughter was a part of the ceremony, and she preceded me down the aisle because she didn’t want to actually walk me down the aisle. We took her ideas into consideration, and as a result we had a very funny and touching ceremony that was unique to us as a family.”

    Flower girls wore dresses from Forever 21 (only $20 each) that were altered to fit – perfect for little flappers!

    Kazoos! “Using ‘cigarette girls’ from the 1920’s as inspiration,” says Rhonda, “we had the flower girls greet guests before the ceremony with cigar boxes filled with kazoos. As I walked down, in lieu of playing ‘Here Comes the Bride’, the flower girls marched down the aisle buzzing the tune, and the guests joined in. This also went tremendously the kids, and added an element of humor for the adults.”

    I don’t know about you, but I would love to attend any party with synchronized swimmers. From Rhonda, “We were super excited to have the Aqualillies as our surprise entertainment during dinner, and they were worth every single penny, plus their weight in gold. The girls are beautiful, professional and perfectly synchronized! And, our guests were literally speechless during the performance.”

    Why did you choose this location for your wedding?  Well, for one, it is breathtakingly gorgeous. We wanted to have a destination wedding that wouldn’t be cost or distance prohibitive for everyone (ourselves included…) and Palm Springs fit the bill. It is beautiful, relatively affordable, and easy to get to from Los Angeles. We also wanted a place that could host our wedding and our guests, exclusively, for the entire weekend. The Colony Palms was not only perfectly sized for the number of guests that we had invited, but we were able to book the whole hotel as well – which meant that everyone could stay in one place (which meant we had more time to see everyone over the course of the weekend). Beyond the size and spectacular surroundings of the hotel, Brett Doherty (one of the proprietors) is hands-down the nicest, most accommodating person one could ever ask to work with. The hotel staff was more than happy to accommodate all of our events with impeccable service. There is not an ounce of pretentiousness among the hotel staff – and that was very important to us too.

    What inspired you when you were planning your wedding?  The history of the hotel offered tremendous inspiration for the entire weekend. The hotel was a front for a speakeasy (which actually still remains under the hotel restaurant, but is closed to the public due to safety regulations). In reading up on the history and ownership, we took the whole Prohibition/speakeasy thing and ran with it. The theme really set the tone for every single decision we made, from the invitations to the entertainment, to the lighting. In the invitations, we asked our guests to dress up in Prohibition-era attire, and we were surprised at how into it everyone was – guys and dolls alike! In fact, I think that asking people to dress up actually made them feel more invested in the weekend, and brought an even greater sense of ‘community’ to the whole affair.

    What was your favorite moment or part of the day?  There were so many amazing parts of that day, but one favorite was when we all ended up in the pool during the reception – with our clothes on!

    What was the best advice you received as a bride?  A colleague told me a hysterical story about her mother-in-law breaking out in song and the chicken dance during her reception. Of course, she wanted to die the day-of, but it ended up making for a really great story afterward. She said this to me as an illustration to not sweat the stuff that doesn’t go perfectly, and just enjoy the day – and at some point, it will all be funny. I am glad that I took that to heart. Once we arrived at the hotel, I just told myself, “All those little things that I thought I needed to take care of… of it’s not done now, it’s not getting done, and that’s OK.”

    What advice do you have for other brides?  Splurge on a good photographer, invite only the people that are important to you, skip traditions that don’t speak to you, and make the day yours. And, of course, have fun!

    Do you have any budget tips for other brides?  If there are a lot of children attending the wedding and you feel comfortable, ask the guests with kids if they would mind chipping in for a sitter. We made the arrangements for two sitters, and the parents all chipped in on a ‘per child’ basis. It allowed the kids to hang out with their friends, while still having adult-supervision; and our grown-up guests were able to have a good time, without worrying about the whereabouts or safety of their children. It ends up being pretty cost-effective for everyone, and the kids felt like they had their own little party.

    Also, DIY, DIY, DIY. If you can enlist the talents or skills of friends, do it! We found that our friends were more than happy to help us, and our budget was more than happy to have them help. If you have a friend that is super organized, ask them (very nicely, and perhaps with a bottle of wine in hand) to coordinate your ceremony and be the point person for vendors on the day-of. There are such great resources on the web these days (ahem, like right here, on Snippet and Ink), that you might surprise yourself on what you can come up with and execute by just enlisting a little help from your friends and family. Little things here and there can save a bundle.

    Is there anything else that helps tell the story of the day?  We were engaged in May, and married in November of the same year. We had less than six months to plan everything, but I think that was better for us than having a year or more. Anything more than six months and I would have agonized over the details (and, likely would have driven poor Huy mad) more than I did already. That said, every detail that we did agonize over was mostly about whether or not it would make the weekend more fun for us, and more fun for our guests. It was of the utmost importance to us that everyone that attended have a good time. And, I think we succeeded!



    Photographer: Nancy Neil / Venue: Colony Palms Hotel in Palm Springs, California / Bride’s dress: Yoshino “Yoshi” Miyazato / Reception dress: All Saints / Bride’s shoes: Lanvin, Christian Louboutin / Fascinator veil: Ice Green Eyes / Vintage dress clips: Jemima Jay’s Emporium / Hair, makeup: Mina Kang / Groom’s attire: H&M / Groom’s shoes: Converse / Custom wedding rings: Metalicious / Flower girl dresses: Forever 21 / Wholesale flowers: FiftyFlowers / Synchronized swimmers: Aqualillies / Music: Eduardo Castillo / Catering: The Purple Palm / Dessert table: Over the Rainbow Cakes

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