Heather and Logan tied the knot under a flower covered-arch overlooking the beautiful Pacific Ocean while Garden Strings trio filled the air with romantic music. The Half Moon Bay Golf Links offers the best of both worlds – a spectacular ocean view outdoor ceremony option and a short walk away, an intimate Cocktail Hour and Reception space inside the Mullins Bar & Grill.
Half Moon Bay Golf Links provides golf carts to whisk the Wedding Party down to the beach and other picturesque spots around the property. I can’t wait to see the shots that photographer, Kimberly Chan, took. Romance can’t help but be in the air in the secluded cove below the Ritz Carlton. Heather created an adorable ‘Just Married’ sign to attach to the back of the golf cart which I’m sure made for great photos.
Since the fog had rolled in, the Wedding Party came in chilled and headed for the crackling fireplace – and of course, the liquid libations at the full bar! During the Cocktail Hour, guests signed the California poster ‘guest book’ and entertained themselves at the DIY photo booth stocked with great props. The Bride also created a Memorial Table with place cards to honor family members who had passed away but were important figures in the couple’s lives.
Willow Floral Designs created stunning centerpieces, bouquets and accent arrangements and Wiebe Events set the mood with uplighting and spot lighting. The Bride mixed in a sprinkling of seashell accents in the favors and cake.
After dinner, DJ, Sonny Garcia, from Fog City kept the party rocking with lots of great dance music until it was time to send off Heather and Logan as they walked through a line of ribbon wands in the Brides signature colors of purple, lavender and silver.
It was truly a magical evening that the couple and their guests will remember fondly in years to come.
Here’s to Love,
Heather & Logan’s Vendors
Half Moon Bay Golf Links
Kimberly Chan Photography
DJ Fog City Entertainment
Willow Floral Designs
Posted in Inspiration, Real Weddings | Tagged Half Moon Bay Golf Links, Heather and Logan, real weddings | Leave a Comment »
For all of the Brides happily setting their wedding dates in 2013, here are a few dates to keep in mind.
March 24 – Palm Sunday
March 31 – Easter Sunday
May 11 – Mother’s Day (Sunday)
May 27 – Memorial Day (Monday)
June 16 – Father’s Day (Sunday)
July 4 – Independence Day (Thursday)
September 2 - Labor Day (Monday)
October 14 – Columbus Day (Monday)
November 11 – Veterans Day (Monday)
November 28 – Thanksgiving (Thursday)
January 20, 2014 – Martin Luther King Day (Monday)
February 17, 2014 – President’s Day (Monday)
Posted in Wedding Planning | Tagged 2013 Holidays | Leave a Comment »
I misplaced the disc with these wonderful photos taken by Rob Skog last November at Casa Real in Livermore. I was so happy to have found them when I was recently doing a little fall cleaning and there they were tucked away in that ‘safe’ place I had put them in. Thank you Rob for sharing your work and these truly amazing photos! Here’s more about Giselle and Mike’s wedding.
Posted in Inspiration, Real Weddings, Wedding Professionals | Tagged Casa Real Wedding, Giselle and Mike Wedding, real weddings | Leave a Comment »
Before you sit down with your caterer, it’s helpful to know some of the options available to you and the pros and cons of each. Following is a brief primer on the terms you will hear.
Plated Meal (also called seated dinner, or sit-down dinner): Your caterer will bring your guest’s pre-ordered meal to them at the table on an individual plate. The plated meal is the most formal style.
- Options: Your guests 1) can all eat the same meal, 2) you can give them a choice on your response card or 3) you can provide a duo plate (two entrees on the same plate) and all guests get the same meal.
- Things to know: If you selected the single meal option, your caterer can serve everyone quickly. If you select the duo plate, your costs will increase since all guests are receiving both menu items on their plates. If you select the menu choice option, then it will take your caterer a little more time to serve your guests and you will need to indicate at each guest’s place setting what your guest has chosen (typically handled by a place card at the guest’s seat).
- Pros: You can control costs because you caterer only has to provide a limited number of extra meals. If you provide the single meal option for all guests, it’s easier for you since you don’t have to create place cards and only need to collect RSVPs. Service is fairly quick and guests spend less time waiting for their food and eating and more time partying. The plated meal is especially helpful to guests who have mobility issues.
- Cons: Number of food choices are limited generally due to cost. Guests do not have choice in portion size since food is pre-plated.
Family Style: Your caterer will deliver platters of each entrée and side dish to each table and then guests serve themselves as they pass the platters around the table.
- Options: All entrees and side dishes 1) can be served all at once or 2) spaced out so that each dish is served only after the guests have completed the previous dish.
- Things to know: If you select the ‘all dishes placed on the table at the same time’ option, then your guests will be served quickly. If you select the ‘each dish after the previous one has been finished’ option, then the dinner service will consume a major portion of your reception timeline. You also need to select a caterer who monitors the flow of food consumption at each table so there is not a long lag time between dishes. If your goal is a casual, relaxed meal and your guests are not dancing fans, then selected the option where each dish is brought out individually as your guests complete the previous one.
- Pros: You can offer your guests more choices in side dishes and entrees like a buffet brought to each table. Guests can control their own portion sizes. The plated meal is especially helpful to guests who have mobility issues. It encourages people at the table to talk to each other as they pass the food around.
- Cons: Depending upon the size of the platter being passed around the table, it can be awkward for guests to maneuver it and serve themselves without help from one of their neighbors. You will need plenty of room on your table for all of the platters so go easy on the centerpieces or order a larger size table for your guests.
Buffet: Multiple entrees and side dishes are arranged on a long table and guests are invited by tables to select the food choices they prefer.
- Things to know: Food service is slower than either plated or family style – especially if your caterer has not assigned servers to dish food out for your guests – so will require more of your reception time. Make sure you place several menus on each guest table so they will know in advance what food is available at the buffet.
- Pros: Guests can choose exactly what they prefer to eat and can return for more if they are still hungry. Generally buffets offer more food choices than the plated style service.
- Cons: They cost is typically higher for a buffet since caterers must allow for more servings per dish because they cannot gauge which dish most guests will eat. Your guests must either wait at their tables or in line to get their food. They must navigate from their table to the buffet line which can be treacherous in a crowded room.
Food Stations: Multiple tables set up with each offering a few menu items – often grouped by type (for example: pasta station, carving station, potato bar, salads, etc.)
- Things to know: Food service is slower than either plated or family style – especially if your caterer has not assigned servers to dish food out for your guests – so will require more of your reception time. Make sure you place several maps on each table listing what food is available and the location of each station.
- Pros: Since many people like to ‘graze,’ the Food Station gives them that opportunity. Guests can choose exactly what they prefer to eat and can return for more if they are still hungry. It’s fun for your guests to get up and explore and mingle at the food stations. Generally food stations offer more food choices than the plated style service. Guests can control their portion size. Lines tend to be minimal because the various food stations are spread out around the reception area.
- Cons: Guests do a lot more wandering to locate each food station and the particular dish that station is serving. Like buffets, the cost is typically higher for food station service since caterers must allow for more servings per dish because they cannot gauge which dish most guests will eat. They must navigate from their table to the food station and back again. There is no right or wrong style to choose. The only limiting factor is your preference and your guests comfort.
Here’s to Love
Posted in How To, Wedding Planning | Tagged Buffet, Catering terms, Family Style, Food Stations, Plated Meals, Wedding Meal Option Know How | Leave a Comment »
It’s been a busy summer for both me and my photographer friends. Linda Trudeau Studios took these fabulous shots at Concannon Vineyards in June. Linda, thanks for sharing! Here’s more about Kate & Shelby’s wedding.
Here’s to Love
Posted in Inspiration, Real Weddings, Venues, Wedding Professionals | Tagged Concannon Vineyard wedding, Kate & Shelby Wedding, real weddings | Leave a Comment »
I love it when the photographers share their wedding shots with me so I can share them with you. Pacific Oaks Vineyard Estates in Aptos was the perfect backdrop for Casey and Dan’s July wedding. Not a bit of fog in site to mar this picture-perfect day. Mirelle Carmichael took all of these amazing shots. Here’s more about Casey & Dan’s Wedding.
Here’s to Love,
Posted in Inspiration, Real Weddings, Venues, Wedding Professionals | Tagged Casey & Dan Wedding, Pacific Oaks Vineyard Estate Weddings, real weddings, wedding inspiration | Leave a Comment »
One of my June Brides, Katie Garrison, just started marketing for an amazing company – Hero On My Arm – and I’d like to pass along information on this fabulous product. The photo is Katie showing off her bag made with one of her husband’s old Coast Guard uniforms.
Here is what Katie has to say:
“Hi military spouses and fans! Have you heard about Hero On My Arm? It is a great business run by military wives based out of Oklahoma. They make your husband’s or loved one’s uniform into a keepsake of your own. What better way to support the military and the ones you love! Get purses, diaper bags, accessories, and more, all personalized just for you! Don’t have a uniform to send in? No problem! They have retired uniforms to use as well. E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org for questions and use free shipping code “kategarrison” on your order.”
I plan to order mine today! Now all I have to do is find out if we kept any of my husband’s old Air Force uniforms.
Here’s to Love and sharing great ideas!
Posted in Fashion, Inspiration | Tagged hero on my arm, military purses, purses | Leave a Comment »
Imagine your wedding without a caterer. Guests will probably leave fairly quickly if some sort of food and beverage is not offered. Whether your preferences run to a simple dessert reception or a multi-course sit down dinner – your caterers expertise and service keeps everyone in a party mood.
Which brings me to my pet peeve. Even with my smile firmly in place, few things are more annoying than caterers who start completely clearing tables – some even begin folding up and removing the tables – before the end of the reception. I’m fine with removing the dirty dishes – though I prefer it if the glassware or coffee service is left in place – but they should leave the centerpiece, chairs, favors and table cloth as they were when guests entered the reception area.
Personally, I think this practice is rude and is basically telling your guests the evening is over – go home. I always ask the catering manager for the event to hold off completely clearing off the tables until the end of the evening but if they don’t hear a complaint from the Bride & Groom, they ignore my request and the guests slowly start gathering their things and depart. It makes me sad to see this happen and I feel badly for the guests. While these caterers will never be on my recommended list, many seem to make the assumption that we won’t cross paths again.
My suggestion is that before you sign the catering contract, include a note on the contract that states, “Centerpieces, tablecloths and chairs will remain in place and tables will not be broken down until the end of the event.”
The very best caterers – and I have had the pleasure of working with many of them – will even drape the napkin left at the place setting over the chair so that if the guest does return to the table with that last bite of cake, they have what they need on hand.
Weddings are time of celebration and a bringing together of family and friends that may not have all been in one place at the same time in quite a while. I firmly believe that all vendors should do everything they can to make the guests feel welcome and special.
Tell me about your wedding pet peeve.
Here’s to Love,
Posted in How To, Wedding Professionals | Tagged catering issues, Catering service | Leave a Comment »
Surrounded by breathtaking views of the South Bay, a glimpse of the Pacific Ocean and lush vineyards Casey and Dan exchanged their vows in the hills above Aptos. Pacific Oaks Vineyard Estate was the perfect backdrop for their casual, yet ultra-romantic nuptials.
The venue is a photographers dream with so many photogenic spots to choose from. Vineyards with wandering chickens, decks with spectacular views, gardens filled with vegetables and flowers, magnificent old oak trees, an old-fashioned wrap-around porch and charming little corners decked out with rustic benches and swings. Mirelle Carmichael Photography whisked the couple and wedding party from spot to spot taking full advantage of this gorgeous location.
As guests disembarked from the shuttles they walked through the fabulous pool room and then gathered on the Valley View Deck for beverages before walking over to the large lawn area for the ceremony. After the ceremony, guests walked back over to the Valley View Deck for cocktails and passed appetizers while the ceremony area was transformed into the perfect space for dinner. Little lights ringed the lawn area in the shrubbery and on the roof tops to create a whimsical atmosphere for the guests.
Aqua Terra Culinary catered the affair. Dinner was served family style one course at a time giving guests ample opportunity to visit as they waited for the next mouth-watering dish to arrive.
DJ, Paul Jackson Jr., expertly set the mood for ceremony, cocktail hour and dinner and then after dinner moved the party into high gear as the music lured everyone on to the dance floor.
Friends of the Bride created the delicate centerpieces of blue hydrangeas, white roses and baby’s breath. The Bride and her bridesmaids also got together to create the pomanders that lined the aisle. The Bride arranged for each table to have a disposable camera for guests to capture those candid moments and a booklet for guests to write notes for the couple to read on their first aniversay.
While the hills above Aptos can be a bit chilly in the evening even during summer, Casey and Dan lucked out and the heaters were not called into action. It was truly a magical evening that the couple and their guests will remember fondly.
Here’s to Love
Pacific Oaks Vineyard
Mirelle Carmichael Photography
DJ – Paul Jackson Jr., email him at email@example.com or call (650) 575-1326 for information
Aqua Terra Culinary
Posted in Inspiration, Real Weddings | Tagged Casey and Dan Wedding, casual romantic wedding, Pacific Oaks Vineyard Estate, real weddings | Leave a Comment »