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I don’t know about all of you, but I haven’t been able to think of much else since we announced the first-ever Cupcake® Love Deliciously Contest. Sponsored by the always-amazing Cupcake® Vineyards, this giveaway is simply beyond words. In case you’ve forgotten just what’s at stake here, let me take a second to refresh your memories! You could win: wedding coordination by amazing wedding planner Alison Hotchkiss, photography on your big day by celebrity wedding photographer Elizabeth Messina AND $5,000 towards your wedding! This knock-your-socks-off, incredibly amazing contest is open through April 30, 2013, so be sure to get your entries in, my dears! To celebrate and get our lovely readers into the wedding-winning spirit, Alison and Elizabeth have shared some fabulous tips + tricks of the trade with all of us! I’ll be taking notes, that’s for sure!

More tips from photographer extraordinaire Elizabeth Messina:

“I often get asked for my input about hair & makeup for engagement portraits and/or wedding day photographs. I think it is very important to be as natural as possible. Of course most girls love a little blush and lip gloss, but I suggest not doing something wildly different. Think going out to dinner makeup – fresh and natural. The more you feel like yourself, the more natural and flattering you images will be.”

Trust your photographer. You may have a certain spot in mind for photos, but if the light is not good, your photos will not be either. It is important to let your photographer suggest the best spot for group shots. A professional photographer will be taking many things into consideration when making such a decision. We want to please you, so please allow us the freedom to place you in the most flattering light.”

“One of my favorite parts of any wedding day is capturing affection between a couple in love. Be sure to make some time to be alone with your photographer on your wedding day. Hug and kiss your mate a lot. It is these tender and real moments that you will treasure for a lifetime. Love is beautiful, so show your love.”

Additional inspiration from the amazing Alison Hotchkiss:

“Spring is an amazing time of year no matter the location of your wedding or event. Use fresh, seasonal and local items, such as herbs, fruits and vegetables, as themes throughout your catering menus, as decor and as favors for guests to take home.”

“Keep the palette simple. Most outdoor venues will have whatever plants and flowers surround the area in bloom, so use the landscape around you to enhance the look and feel of your wedding while keeping the table top clean, crisp and simple. This also saves bit of money! You can even see if the venue will allow you to hand-pick blooms, fruits or veggies straight from the property.”

“Spring is the best time to have an outdoor, tented event. The weather in some areas can still get a little chilly in the evening, so having a tent adds a great sense of space, keeps things formal and acts as a “just in case” to keep your mind at ease.”

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Well there you have it! Some tips and tricks from two of the industry’s biggest and brightest. And who knows? They just may be two of the vendors at your wedding! For a chance to win, simply follow these instructions: 

1. Follow Cupcake® on Pinterest  2. Create a new board called “Cupcake Dream Wedding.” 3. Pin at least ONE wine and ONE image that inspires you from CupcakeWeddings.com. Also, include 8-10 additional pins showing details that you will have at your wedding, including a photo of you and your honey (don’t forget to include #CupcakeDreamWedding on the board’s pins!) 4. Once your board is set up and ready to show, head over here and enter by filling out the entry form and submitting the URL from your board!

Official rules can be found here. Good luck, lovelies! xo

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Photo Credits: Elizabeth Messina

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© 2013 Cupcake Vineyards, Livermore, CA