Thursday, April 23, 2015

Wedding Season

Hmmm..that's a hard one! 
Wedding season is here! I am so excited to start seeing some of these weddings we have been planning come to life! When January rolled around we had a team meeting and started assigning assistants to weddings and mapping out some of our busier weekends and it hit us. We had 17 weeks straight with 27 events. My initial thought was to panic. How are we going to do this? I found myself excited, yet fearful of this very busy season.

Planning works in waves. There are busy times and slow times, but what I found this year, that there really isn't much of a slow time. When we aren't inundated with weddings we are busting our tail to make sure the busy times are truly busy. Where as before we had a nice little break at the end of fall, beginning of winter, it all the sudden became advertising season. Who are we advertising with? What's our budget? What is our projection? What kind of a design do we want?

That season ended and we were greeted with booking season. Which is so.much.busier. with a venue than a planner. So many tours, and new clients were completely filling our calendar. Then there is networking. I love this part. I love meeting new people, making connections, and getting to know the people in our industry even better. I love it, but it takes time. I miss bedtime and the night time snuggles. So, when wedding season started, I was shocked that it was here! Where was the break?!?

Naturally, I felt nervous when I looked at the calendar. However, instead of being fearful - I took a moment to think of where we were this time last year.

We were knee-deep in construction. We had just spent the last weekend putting in the terrace, laying sod, and putting in hundreds of plants. We had been pulling late nights where we worked all day, had dinner, put the kids to bed, and then went back out and worked until 2 am. We still had wedding season with C and D - there was no break. It was hard and stressful. It is nothing like where we are now.

I look at all that we have accomplished and I can't help but be proud of where we are. I can't help but feel grateful for the first time in 5 years Court and I took a paycheck. I can't help but feel relieved when The Bradford starting making its own mortgage payments. I can't help but feel..excited.

Sometimes you just need some perspective. As much as the busyness seems daunting - it is such a blessing. The stress of construction is slowly going away as the last little pieces are put in place here at The Bradford. The stress of "where is this money going to come from" is almost gone. In it's place is the joy of working with my brides. When I think of them walking down the aisle and the anticipation of seeing their groom, or the excitement as the reception space is unveiled- I find myself smiling. It is such an honor to be chosen to work with these wonderful clients.

Here's to you Wedding Season! We are ready and so very excited!

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Anna and Justin : Chapel Hill Carriage House

This was one of my favorites last fall. I met Anna through a phone call with her mother that insisted that if they were ever going to get married they needed a planner. They had been engaged for awhile- but after I met the couple - I could see that the wedding wasn't nearly as important as the relationship. They were the most down to earth couple who just adored each other. They complemented each other so well and balanced the other out perfectly. I loved having meetings with them- they were always so happy and fun. I really was sad to see this one end! They were such a joy to work with.

They wanted to find the perfect place and the perfect vendors to celebrate with their closest friends and family. Off the bat Anna and Justin's number one concern was to make sure their guests felt comfortable. They wanted nothing too stuffy, or contrived. We came up with a fall picnic with a touch of Alice and Wonderland. We used bright colors, vintage pieces, and had just a touch of whimsy throughout the evening. 

They were married at Chapel of the Cross - Anna's childhood church and followed up with a reception at Chapel Hill Carriage House. The weather could not have been more perfect! It was a wonderful evening that was filled with smiles, laughter, and a gushing bride and groom. 

Congrats Justin and Anna - we are so lucky that you chose us to be a part of your day! 

The beautiful bride and her proud father. Such a gorgeous venue for a wedding!

Love this picture of them!

Driving up the Carriage House

One of the centerpieces

One of my favorites! I love the flowers bursting out of the lantern

A natural gift spot

Drink station. Y'all - you HAVE to try Fig and Honey's Rosemary Lemonade. Seriously ah-mazing. I drank that all night! It was so refreshing and light! 

Cake! They had cake AND Pecan Pies - I may have been in a sugar coma

Mmm...SOOO good!

Little vintage touches on the buffet. What you see before you is Fig and Honey's Tomato Pie. It is to DIE for. It is so so so so good! People raved all night about the yummy food! It was truly perfect! 

Guests had a popcorn bar for cocktail hour with ladder golf, games, and corn hole to occupy them. We were spread out all over the Carriage House and guests loved the ability to roam and relax.

Photo booth! 
The guests were encouraged to grab a quilt and make it a picnic! It was such a hit! 

Hay Bale couches were the hit of the night with the groom's mom's handmade quilts for them. I may just have to employ her to make me one - they were so awesome! 
Thank you so much to everyone that helped make this happen! 

Our Awesome Vendors!
Catering - Fig and Honey
Florals and Design - Bushel and Peck 
Photographer - Jared Lazarus

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Jeff + Jullie: All Saints Chapel & Stockroom Winter Wedding

Ah - this couple = model status!  I had the opportunity to work with Jeff and Jullie for about a year to plan their gorgeous, authentic wedding.  Their day was one I'd say was truly "them" - they were very involved in creating a lot of the details you'll see were captured.   The day started at All Saints Chapel as the sun streamed through the stained glass window...perfect!  Her blush-colored, lace bridal gown was gorgeous!  Their wedding was so special as friends and family shared in helping pull off such a sweet ceremony and reception - check out that Stockroom chalkboard wall created by their friends and tattoo artists - wow!  
Congrats, you two!

Rentals: CE Rentals
Lighting: Themeworks
DJ: Ross Merle of Just Music DJ

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Sneak Peak: Jeff + Jullie

It was such an honor to work with this fun-loving couple!  We absolutely loved Jullie's fun design style and color scheme!  Check out this sneak peak video from the fabulous Caroline Lima photography:

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Becca's favorites: Marriage Books!

I'm one of those sappy people who just loves Valentine's Day!  Even if we don't do anything special, I love every opportunity to be intentional about showing my husband how much I love him.   Life gets so busy, and it's easy to take each other for granted. Marriage is hard work, takes lots of discipline, and really isn't at all like Hollywood portrays it to be.  However, all of the hard work is worth it! There is nothing like being married to your best friend and having someone to share your dreams and disappointments with!  I'm such a fan of books and preparing (I'm a planner, duh!) and in honor of Valentine's Day, want to share a few books that have meant a lot to us and have given us really good practical marriage advice (that we've actually used!):

For Women Only and For Men Only by the Feldhahn's are awesome! If you want to "get in the head" of your significant other, and really learn how they uniquely think as a male or female - this is the book for you!

Love and Respect is all about learning how to really give each other what you need - based on the premise that women are created to desire love above all things and men desire respect more than anything.  Dr. Eggerich talks about the "crazy cycle" that many of us in relationships get in when we aren't really giving each other the love or respect we are hoping for.

This book is genius!  Each of us are created to lean towards certain "love languages" - similar to personality traits in the ways that we give or receive love.  It was super helpful to us to learn what each other's love languages were in efforts to know how to love each other in specific ways.

Dr. Laura is a radio show host who has written one of the most practical books I've ever read on being a wife.  She's very straight forward and shares stories from couples she has counseled.  You'll have to read it for yourself to find out the 3 things men most desire in life. :)

Hoping your Valentine's is full of lots of love (and chocolate too!)