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Tag: Heidi Elnora atelier

Fairly often, I get a quick message from a friend asking for help on behalf of a recently engaged sister, cousin, or best friend. They’re looking for recommendations for venues, photographers, wedding planners, or florists, and I’m quick to point them towards our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory because it’s full of the best and brightest wedding talent the South has to offer! Every single member has been personally vetted by the Southern Weddings team, so I feel like I’m sharing my very own “word of mouth” referrals. We’ve added some new faces, and I’m thrilled to introduce you to them:

Name: A Fox Event
Category: Event Planning and Design
Where you call home: Charleston, South Carolina
Best piece of advice you can give to brides and grooms? Planners are here to make your dreams come true and will do everything in their power to make sure your day is absolutely perfect!

Name: 2 Sisters Events and Design
Category: Event Planning & Design
Where you call home: Lakeland, Florida
Favorite thing about weddings in the South? Manners and etiquette are still going strong in the South, which pleases me to no end!

Name: Bellelina Studio
Category: Beauty
Where you call home: Charleston, South Carolina
Things you’d write home to your Momma about: Makeup artist for Charleston Fashion Week, 2009-2012; published in Unveiled Magazine, Charleston Weddings Magazine, Lowcountry Weddings Magazine, Charleston magazine, and House Calls Magazine

Name: Bow Tie Collaborative
Category: Photography
Where you call home: Holly Springs, North Carolina
Favorite Southern city? Savannah! All the Spanish moss…gimme, gimme!

Name: Cheryl Sullivan Events
Category: Event Planning and Design
Where you call home: West Virginia
How I got into weddings: For as long as I can remember, I have always loved hosting celebrations for my loved ones, from Sunday dinners to showers to holiday reunions. I fell deeply in love with weddings and the strong family traditions they honored. After a few years of planning weddings, I knew I was hooked. I took a chance and started a business doing what I love. I’ve never looked back!

Name: Forage + Film
Category: Photography
Where you call home: Raleigh, North Carolina
Favorite part of a wedding day? We love portrait time. We crave intimate images that capture our couple’s love, so that one-on-one time with them in the midst of all the wedding fun is just perfection.

Name: Heidi Elnora Atelier
Category: Fashion
Where you call home: Birmingham, Alabama
How I got into weddings: L.O.V.E. It’s as simple and complicated as that. Being hit by a drunk driver in 2005 brought me back home to Alabama where I met and fell in love with my husband, Jeff. Moving back home motivated me to turn my dream of designing wedding gowns into my reality, and in 2006, Heidi Elnora was created.

Name: Heirloom Collective
Category: Photography
Where you call home: Raleigh, North Carolina
Best piece of advice you can give to brides and grooms? Try to be present on your wedding day. Take a few breaks throughout the day to look around and feel gratitude for the love that surrounds you.

Name: Simply Jessica Marie
Category: Invitations and Paper Goods
Where you call home: Knoxville, Tennessee
Things you’d write home to your Momma about: Honestly, the thing I will always be the most excited about is that our own wedding (featuring some of my favorite custom designs to date!) was featured on the Southern Weddings blog! It was absolutely something I wrote home to my Momma about, and something I will share with my kids and grandbabies one day. More so than any of the other blog and magazine features, I am simply most proud of the fact that I get to work with the absolute sweetest and most creatively-trusting brides and grooms imaginable!

Name: sMm Photography
Category: Photography
Where you call home: Charlotte, North Carolina
Favorite part of a wedding day? I love when I arrive to the bridal suite and I hear the bride’s mama explaining where the garter came from and who wore it before she did, and that her veil is a treasure from her grandmother’s wedding…details matter when they build the story of your wedding day. I also really love the quiet moment that the bride and her father share right before the doors of the church open.

Check out all of our favorite vendors in the Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory! If you would like to recommend someone (or nominate yourself!), send us an email!

kristin Written with love by Kristin
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    It’s safe to say that when it comes to hospitality, Southerners have a knack for taking things up a notch! One of my very favorite memories from Bridal Market last year was when Alabama-based designer Heidi Elnora invited Kristin and I to see her new collection. Instead of seating us at a runway show, she had us over at the AirBNB she and her team were staying in for the week, offered us PB&J sandwiches and M&Ms, and let us spend as much time as we wanted admiring each and every gown. After days of running around the city in our highest heels, it was such a breath of fresh air to experience such gracious Southern hospitality! This is one of SO many reasons we were thrilled to learn about Heidi’s latest and greatest project: the heidi elnora Atelier, located right in the heart of Birmingham. She poured her heart into turning this downtown warehouse into the ultimate destination for brides, and I’m completely confident that any gal would feel comfortable and confident while dress shopping at the gorgeous space she created!

    Tell us about the beginnings of the heidi elnora Atelier—why did you want to open the atelier, and how did you get started?
    Heidi:
    Ever since I started heidi elnora 10 years ago, I have dreamed of owning my own building. It was one of the many items on my bucket list. Last summer, after my reality show aired on TLC, I decided to start looking for a permanent place to set up shop. Lo and behold, there she was, an empty brick box that was built in 1891 on the most perfect cobblestone street, Morris Avenue, in downtown Birmingham, Alabama. I immediately contacted my husband and my real estate agent, and within a few days, we were under contract!

    Tell us about the renovation process! How did you find the space and transform it to fit your vision?
    Heidi:
    I basically bought an 8,000 sq. ft. empty box (no plumbing, electrical or HVAC), but to me, it was the perfect canvas to begin creating my atelier. I basically became a general contractor for seven months, making sure that every wall, plug, paint color, and detail was perfection. I would literally be at the building every morning to discuss the daily plans with my builder, and every night, I was on Pinterest and Houzz, pulling ideas and additional details together. The majority of the goods used in the building were sourced locally from wood mills, iron workers, local artisans, and even a rock quarry from Alabama for a specific local marble for the mini bar in the bridal suites. (Yep, we have a mini bar in the bridal suites–you never know when you need to celebrate with rosé!)

    Just for fun, here are a few before pictures!

    Tell us about what y’all offer to brides and gals.
    Heidi:
    We offer everything, from our 70+ wedding gowns from our three collections (heidi elnora, Build-a-Bride, and Hello Darling), to creating a couture gown from scratch (brides fly in from all over the country for this), to buying your bridal lingerie (For Love and Lemons), wedding shoes (Harriet Wilde and Badgley Mischka), veils, accessories, garters, rehearsal dinner dresses, and bridesmaid and hostess gifts. The heidi elnora Atelier can dress you from head to toe and everywhere in between!

    What sets the heidi elnora Atelier experience apart from other bridal salons?
    Heidi:
    What sets the heidi elnora Atelier apart from other bridal salons is that I took the BEST pieces and practices from all the stores that I sell to or have visited and incorporated them into the atelier, creating the ULTIMATE bridal experience. I call the atelier the “Barbie dream bridal boutique” because it is just that–it’s EVERYTHING!

    What is your single best tip for a bride about to start shopping for her wedding gown?
    Heidi:
    Stay true to who you are. Do not allow friends, family, or a bridal stylist to persuade you into wearing something that doesn’t make your heart smile. You have to LOVE your dress…almost as much as you love your fiancé :)

    Do you have a favorite memory of the heidi elnora Atelier?
    Heidi:
    It’s probably people’s expressions when they see it for the first time. It’s truly lovely–all 8,000 sq. ft. of it.

    What is your current favorite wedding dress in the store? If you were to get married tomorrow, what dress would you wear?
    Heidi:
    I would probably have to go with one of the dresses from my Hello Darling line. They are more relaxed in terms of fitm and very lightweight. They are light-hearted and full of whimsy, and that is where I am now being a mother of two little boys.

    What is your favorite memory from your own wedding day?
    Heidi:
    Seeing my sweet fiancé/now-husband, Jeff, at the end of the aisle, and knowing that I was getting to spend the rest of my life with him.

    What is the single greatest lesson you’ve learned in business?
    Heidi:
    That God has got this. All of my worrying does nothing to move things faster, or make things happen more efficiently.

    Name three items every gal should have in her closet.
    Heidi:
    A great pair of comfy black jeans with the knees cut out, a chandelier, and an organized shoe closet with lots of year-round boots.

    Thank you so much, Heidi! Be sure to follow along with her and her gorgeous atelier here:

    Website | Atelier website | Facebook | Twitter | Heidi’s Instagram | heidi elnora Atelier Instagram

    This post is brought to you by heidi elnora Atelier–thanks for your support of the brands that make Southern Weddings possible!

    lisa Written with love by Lisa
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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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