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Southern Weddings

Author: Emily

Though your wedding might be your first chance to have professional photos taken of the two of you, we certainly hope it’s not your last! Candids and snapshots tell an important part of any relationship’s story, but a thoughtfully planned and executed portrait session can also be a meaningful and beautiful way to mark time. And because another year of marriage is the perfect opportunity to book a session, here are our six best tips for planning anniversary photos!

1. Choose a meaningful location. Maybe it’s your newlywed home, the park you take walks in every night after dinner, or the coffee shop you frequent on Saturday mornings. Whatever it is for you, choose a location that helps tell the story of this moment in your life.

2. Don’t go overboard on props. Cluttering the frame with piles of styling items takes the focus off the best part: your smiling faces! As these photos from Maggie Colleta so beautifully demonstrate, simple photos with a classic aesthetic will stand the test of time. Let your location and your outfits provide the context! (Whether you choose black tie attire or cut-off jean shorts, what you wear can add so much to the photos!)

3. Do, however, make a nod to your wedding. Since this is an anniversary session, we love the idea of including a detail that echos your wedding day. Ask your photographer to take a close-up shot of your rings, or wear the same shoes you sported when you said I do.

4. Do your hair and makeup. Are you a whiz at applying blush and curling your hair? Fantastic! You’re probably good to get yourself prettified. Are you anything like me, and can barely brush on mineral foundation? Do yourself a favor and hire a professional (or bring in a talented friend!). Nothing too fancy or “done,” of course, but even a little extra polish can help you feel confident and in love with the final images.

5. Take the opportunity to reminisce. During your session, you’ll likely be hugging, kissing, holding hands, and walking side by side — and your phone will be off to the side! In between clicks, use this free-from-distractions time to remind each other of your favorite memories from your wedding day, and from the year or years that followed. “Remember when…?”

6. Make a date of it. Don’t let those cute outfits and good hair days go to waste! Make a dinner reservation for that evening and toast to a beautiful year of growing in love!

Photography: Maggie Colletta Photography | Florals: Abany Bauer | Venue: Serenbe | Hair and Makeup: Joanna with Irrelephant Blog

emily Written with love by Emily
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Pineapple bowling on the beach, anyone?! While this oh-so-Southern twist on a cocktail hour staple has to be my favorite element from today’s wedding inspiration, there is so much more to love! The team at JLeslie Designs blended coastal and traditional Southern style together effortlessly, from the monogrammed details to the framed family photos to the oyster-topped cake. Take a peek below, and let me know your favorite part in the comments!

Big hugs to Marianne Lucille for these photos!

From Jenna Coleman of JLeslie Designs:

In planning for a summer styled shoot, we noticed that few seem to take advantage of the beach landscape that is so close to us here in Savannah. It makes for the perfect wedding backdrop, though it is often only chosen for the ceremony. We decided to plan our shoot for the dunes area just before the flat of the beach, but with the lighthouse in the background. We wanted to incorporate Savannah Vintage Rental’s unique pieces to really create a sense of a room in such a vast setting. We went with the Hayes gown by Sarah Seven because of its feminine feel and movement, perfect for the breeze of the beach. We incorporated oyster elements in the invitation design, and from there, we decided to do oyster place cards and use oysters as a cake topper to tie in the concept. I wanted any of my wood signage to have similar tones as driftwood to create a natural look. This shoot was a joy to design, a dream to work with these vendors, and a blast to model in!

Photographer: Marianne Lucille Photography | Design and Signage: JLeslie Designs | Bridal Salon: Ivory and Beau | Venue: Tybee Island | Calligraphy: Ashley Curry | Cake Baker: Baker’s Pride Bakery | Cookies: Byrd Cookie Company | Hair stylist: Foil Hair Salon | Florals: Joshua Grotheer Designs | China: Lillian’s China | Bride’s dress: Sarah Seven | Rentals: Savannah Vintage Rentals

emily Written with love by Emily
4 Comments
  1. avatar Hannah reply

    Love this shoot! The pineapple bowling is a brilliant idea – I’ve never seen anything like that before!

  2. avatar Joshua Grotheer reply

    Many thanks for featuring our shoot! It was a dream to work with such wonderful friendors here in Savannah.

  3. avatar Skylar Caitlin reply

    The coconut pineapple bowling is too cute!! Your wedding’s location lends itself to instant personalization opportunities. Thinking of ways to inject that personality into features you already know you’ll have – like lawn games – is a great way to engage guests.

  4. avatar Marianne Brown reply

    This shoot was so fun! I had an amazing time getting everything together and working with all the vendors involved. This shoot definitely has lots of that laid back southern charm personality to it. Thank you again for featuring the shoot on your beautiful blog!

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Planning a wedding can feel like fielding a continual series of questions you didn’t even know you needed to answer. For instance, what order does everyone walk down the aisle in a wedding ceremony? You’ve no doubt been to many weddings before, and witnessed many ceremony processionals, but when you actually sit down and think about it, even something as straightforward as walking down the aisle can get a little fuzzy. Of course, if you have a church lady at your side, she’ll be more than happy to set you straight (!), but in the meantime, here’s our guide to who goes where, when!

P.S. Have you signed up for our Fruitful Summer series yet? There’s so much goodness in store whether you’re dating, engaged, newly married, or have a few years under your belt! See it all here.

From Jessica and Michael’s wedding, by Blue Ribbon Vendor Tracy Enoch

THE FAMILY: Traditionally, the mother of the bride enters first, often escorted by a special gentleman in her life, such as her brother or son-in-law, and then takes her seat to the left of the aisle in the first row. However, we like the idea of honoring the groom’s parents, as well. If you choose to have them join the processional, ask the mother of the groom to enter first, then take her seat to the right of the aisle in the first row. She can either be escorted by her husband or by another special gentleman, with her husband entering just behind them.

THE GENTS: The groom, best man, and groomsmen generally process together. If you’d like them to walk down the aisle, the groomsmen are followed by the best man and then the groom. We’ve also seen grooms and groomsmen take a more subtle approach by entering the ceremony from the side of the chapel or venue to take their place at the front. Officiants generally process in a similar manner and at the same time as the gents.

THE LADIES: The music generally changes for the bridesmaids’ processional. The maid of honor is the last in line so she’ll be standing next to you at the altar.

THE KIDS: If children are included in your ceremony, they’ll process immediately before you.

THE BRIDE: Traditionally, a bride is accompanied by her father, who walks at her right side and lifts her veil at the end of the aisle. Some brides choose to walk with both their mothers and fathers (this is customary in the Jewish tradition), others choose to walk with just their mother, others with their brother, and others on their own. In unique family situations, we’ve also seen brides split the honor, by, say, linking arms with her stepfather for half of the walk and then switching to her biological father for the remainder. This is one of the most special ways to honor loved ones your wedding day affords, so feel free to do what feels best for your situation.

One helpful tip: on a pre-wedding visit to your ceremony space, make sure you time how long it will take you and your bridesmaids to walk down the aisle–this will help you plan your musical selections, especially if there’s a particular point of the song where you’d like the doors to open or to coincide with your arrival at the altar.

For more wedding ceremony planning tips, pick up your copy of the Southern Weddings Planner! And y’all, I have to brag for a minute. I just finished typing up the final edits before our reorder of the Planner, and friends, it is SO GOOD! It is the project I am most proud of from my seven years at this magazine, and that’s saying a lot. If you’re a bride, go get yourself one – it is one purchase you will NOT regret!!

emily Written with love by Emily
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Southern Weddings reserves the right to delete comments which contain profanity or personal attacks or seek to promote a business unrelated to the post.  And remember: a good attitude is like kudzu – it spreads.  We love hearing your kind thoughts!

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