Thursday, July 29, 2010

Great Find | Jacques Torres Chocolate Wedding Favors

This is the most delicious wedding favor I've ever had the pleasure of taking home with me. Remember when I mentioned Joey & Chris absolutely spoiled their guests? Well, I may not have mentioned they absolutely spoiled each of their vendors too, but they did! I was beyond excited to take one of these little brown & orange boxes home with me after their July 3rd wedding.

I've always been an advocate of edible wedding favors, but these New York City Jacques Torres chocolate wedding favors top my list of yummy treats. In flavors like Hearts of Passion, Love Potion #9, Espresso, Wicked, LoveBug, and Hazelnut, how could you go wrong? Give your guests a beautifully boxed favor like this, and I will guarantee no one will accidentally "forget it" at the table at the end of the night.

(photos left, Jacques Torres website; photo right, Jen Kroll Photography)

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Real Wedding 2010 | Joey & Chris

I have been looking forward to Joey & Chris' wedding since chatting with Joey last November. The couple chose to work with the pastor who had married Greg and I in 2007, and I knew it was one ceremony I wouldn't want to miss.

Working with Joey and her mom, Shari, on this wedding was a treat. No detail was overlooked, and Joey & Shari are one of the most organized mother/daughter teams I have ever had the pleasure of working with.

From the beautiful alençon lace linens to the lush peonies, and the amazing favors representing each of their childhoods and their present life together, including Sarasota water, Michigan cherries & wine, and Jacques Torres chocolate - guests were spoiled all night long. After dinner, wedding cake, accompanied by a delicious dessert buffet & coffee bar was put out for guests to enjoy.

The night's entertainment including both The Cangelosi Cards and music from Andrew at Music Host Productions kept the dance floor packed all evening. Since Joey & Chris met while swing dancing, many of their friends share this passion as well, and danced until the wee hours.

And when people were not on the dance floor, they were lined up to partake in the Fourth of July themed photo booth, provided by their photographer, Jen Kroll. Joey collected tons of fun props to keep their guests laughing all night long - the mustaches were a huge hit!

Congratulations to Joey & Chris!

The Details...
Pearls Events Coordinators
| Aletha, Stephanie & Megan
Ceremony | Ford Ballroom at Amway Grand Plaza
Reception | Pantlind Ballroom at Amway Grand Plaza
Officiant | Jennifer Browne
Makeup Artist | Julie Strating
Hair Stylist | TreAvanti
Flowers & Linens | Stems Event Design
Photographer | Jen Kroll Photography
Videographer | Coastline Studios
Band | The Cangelosi Cards
Disc Jockey | Music Host Productions
Pastry Chef | Amway Grand Plaza
Rentals | Events by I. Candy

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Get Married In Michigan | Ventura Pines Cottage

As a West Michigan wedding planner, the biggest request for summer wedding venues I hear is "anything overlooking Lake Michigan."

The thing about the Lake Michigan lake shore, is that, for the most part, it is privately owned by individuals or home associations. I have heard stories that in the early years, the state of Michigan encouraged business owners to build cottages to populate the area. Many Chicago-area residents would make the drive into Michigan to their cottages throughout the summer, and I believe that is still the case with many of those family-owned homes.

Besides the few and far between summer camps along the shores, and a handful of hotels, for the most part, the shores are lined with various cottages and full-time homes. Some original, and some new construction.

With it's beautiful sunsets and clean sand, the property overlooking Lake Michigan is some of the most sought-after property in the entire state. And when brides come to me looking for a wedding on the big lake, the first place I think of is Ventura Pines Cottage, just north of Holland.

If you're a bride looking to get married overlooking Lake Michigan, check out Ventura Pines Cottage for your big day! Gail, the owner, rents the property by the week and weekend, but call early, because weekends tend to book up quickly! The property is absolutely amazing, and the view is second-to-none. For a tented reception overlooking the lake, this should be on your list to check out.

[top photo, copyright Lotus Photographic; bottom photos copyright Amy Carroll Photography]

Monday, July 12, 2010

Real Wedding 2010 | Cory & Ryan

Cory & Ryan were married on one of those gorgeous days in June where the sun never stops shining! Christina & I began our day at Thousand Oaks Golf Club by setting up details created by Syd Design.

I headed to St. Robert's Parish in Ada to meet the wedding party. Since Cory & Ryan did not see one another prior to the ceremony, photos of the ladies and guys were done separately. St. Robert's sanctuary is stunning, and filled with friends & family it is my favorite part of every wedding I attend.

After the traditional receiving line, guests made their way to Thousand Oaks Golf Club for cocktail hour, while the wedding party hopped on the trolley for photos with their wedding photographer, Kristine Crawford. Ben & Tony from Deep End Films were also on hand to capture all the fun on video.

When the wedding party arrived at the reception, they were announced into the gorgeous room filled with beautiful white pintuck linens, four uniquely different floral centerpieces scattered throughout the room, perfectly coordinating day-of-stationery and the cake, which the bride designed herself. It was an absolutely lovely wedding which the bride and her mom planned together. I was thrilled to be a part of it!

After an absolutely scrumptious meal, the band, Trilogy, kept the guest floor packed the entire evening, and between the dancing, the photo booth, and the outdoor patio for cocktails all night, their guests have a wonderful time.

Best wishes to the happy couple!

The Details...
Couple | Cory & Ryan, 06.19.2010
Pearls Events Coordinators | Aletha & Christina
Bride's Hair | Panopoulos Salon
Ceremony | St. Robert of Newminster Parish
Reception & Wedding Cake | Thousand Oaks Golf Club
Photographer | Kristine Crawford Photography
Videographer | Deep End Films
Ceremony Soloist | Ginger Child Smith
Invitation Suite & Wedding Day Paper | Syd Design
Event Designer, Florist & Linens | Stems Event Design
Entertainment | Trilogy
Guest Experience | ShutterBooth
Transportation | Macatawa Area Express

Friday, July 9, 2010

Pearls Events Favorite | Doggie Attendants

I'm a dog lover; little Miss Olive will be five in August, and I cannot imagine my life without her around. Since I'm totally nuts for my dog, I love when clients want to include their dogs in their big day.

In 2008, I shared our two canine attendants - Pixel & Argon - owned by Daisy + Greg, and Christina + Eric, respectively. They were both great little pups on the wedding day, and stuck around for photos with their owners.

If you are thinking of including your dog in your big day, work out the logistics and make it happen! Your dog is part of your family, and these are the ultimate family photos - your children & grandchildren will get a kick out of seeing these in years to come.

[Pixel copyright Amy Carroll Photography | Argon copyright LVL Photography]

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Keeping Your Guests Cool

With the hot & humid weather West Michigan has been experiencing, I have been thinking of ways to keep your guests cool during outdoor ceremonies.

If you plan on saying your wedding vows under the sun, make sure you provide your guests with some way to keep cool. I think my favorite idea is to have your ceremony under a giant tree, like the top photo. And since I realize not everyone has access to a gorgeous tree, providing cold drinks and fans to keep cool is another option. Parasols also offer a bit of shade for guests sitting in the sunshine on a hot day.

Your guests will thank you for thinking of them, especially during a long ceremony!

[sources: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5]

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Get Married In Michigan | Mayer Glad Farms

This wedding screams MICHIGAN SUMMER to me, and upon seeing the photos from Dan Stewart Photography, I could hardly wait to share them. This is only a small portion of Traci & Austin's Michigan wedding; to see more, check out the photographer's blog post.

Inspiring details include: the bride's father's gladiola farm, organic floral arrangements, locally grown produce used throughout the day, custom benches at their ceremony site made by friends, and the groom, Austin, cooked & prepared all the delicious food for the meal. I also love the getaway vehicle used by the newlyweds!

Talk about a home-grown wedding!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Black Bridesmaid Shoes

I've only been a bridesmaid once in my life, and I didn't have to pick anything out - I ordered the dress on file, bought the matching shoes, and was given a necklace & earrings to don on my friend's big day.

In a week, I'll be a bridesmaid in a friend's wedding and the look she has envisioned is a lot less bridesmaid-y and a lot more modern. I was gifted the most amazing J. Crew dress, and the bride's wishes of "any black shoe" turned into me looking for perfect pair of heels that made my calves look great in my knee-length frock. But the shoes also needed to be comfortable so I could dance into the wee hours with Greg. The search began....

I searched online, major area department stores, Van Hoecks, DSW, Nordstrom Rack - you name it, I bee-lined it for their shoe departments. There were heels, flats, platforms. Some with bows, some with rhinestones, some with straps. So many options, but none that worked for me.

Imagine my excitement when I came across the perfect pair of Ellen Tracy's at TJ Maxx. The place I was least expecting to find The Ones, I did. They fit perfectly, have a great heel height, my polished toes peep out from them the ideal amount, and they are black. They were a bit plainer than I had hoped to find, but $40 later, I was wearing them out for dinner with Greg to break them in.

I was cruising the Pixel & Hank Etsy store and happened to come across shoe clips. Honestly, I've never even considered adding shoe clips to jazz up my kicks, however, once I realized I could get the fun effect I was looking for, I placed my custom order with Daisy. Yesterday they showed up in my mail, and they are absolutely lovely.

Happy July, friends!

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