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Traditional Ballroom Wedding

A ballroom affair from Dishy Events, I am absolutely smitten with this gorgeous wedding. With just the right blend of elegance and whimsy, every detail has sent me into a perpetual daydream. I mean, just look at those stunning Sisters Flowers blooms. Complete with a meringue-esque cake and a garland wearing golden pup, every detail  from Jordan Brittley is darling and you can see it all here!

Colors
Seasons
Fall

From Jordan Brittley.. This St Louis ballroom wedding is dripping with stunning details for Nicole and Drew’s darling affair! You will fall in love with their yellow lab and just how much they love each other.

From the beautiful Bride… I have two memories that will forever be etched in my heart. The first is when the doors at church opened and I was about to walk down the aisle with my dad to see Drew for the first time. I was so overwhelmed with love between that moment with my dad, all of our friends and family present, supporting us and sharing our joy and finally arriving at the top of the alter and having Drew take my hand as we were about to begin the rest of our lives together. The other moment was when we got a sneak peek of the Ballroom at The Coronado before the reception began. It was just Drew and I. I remember feeling a burst of excitement and accomplishment that our dream of having a beautiful, intimate environment for the people that mean the very most to us, had finally come true! It was the best day of our lives!

Advice for future brides: Find 10 minutes! Take 5 minutes by yourself before the day begins to reflect on all the many wonderful things that have brought you to this day and take the other 5 minutes to be alone with your groom to soak up the day that was made for the two of you!

Bridesmaids' Dresses: Maiden Voyage | Ceremony Venue: St Raphael | Dress: Maiden Voyage | Event Planning: Dishy Events | Floral Design: Sisters Flowers | Hair: Pixies Hair Design | Invitation: Vellum | Jewelry: Genovese | Makeup: Artistry By A&C | Photography: Jordan Brittley | Reception Venue: Coronado Ballroom | Shoes: Kate Spade | Transportation: St Louis Carriage Company | Veil: Maiden Voyage | Videography: Brian Gaddt Productions

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Elegant Summer St. Louis Wedding

These two lovebirds’ story was too cute not to share and so they used it as a backdrop for their St. Louis celebrations. Cheree Berry weaved their tale throughout all of the stationery and with Cosmopolitan Events leading the way, we have one super creative, super personal soiree. Jon Koch captured their happily ever after and my Pinterest boards are getting a hefty update from all the goodies right here.

Colors
Seasons
Summer
Settings
ChurchPark
Styles
Elegance

From The Bride… Here’s the story I wrote for my 3rd grade class to tell my students I got engaged: Once there was a girl named Bridget who went to Indiana University. She was very fun and outgoing and could not wait to venture out on her own! While she was in college, she decided to study abroad in Ireland. While she was there, she met a boy named Brian who went to Butler University, and they quickly became great friends. While they were in Ireland together they traveled all over and made lots of great friends. When it was time to return to the United States, they decided to remain friends and stay in touch with each other.

After college, Bridget moved to the big city of Chicago to pursue her dream of working in advertising. She moved in with her best friend from high school named Whitney and Whitney’s best friend from DePauw University, Katie. The three girls loved living together and had so much fun together. Soon, Bridget’s friend Brian from studying abroad also moved to Chicago and became friends with Whitney and Katie too.

One weekend, all of Bridget and Brian’s friends from Ireland came in town for a “study abroad reunion” and Katie came along too. It became clear that weekend that Brian had a crush on Katie (even though Bridget warned him to stay away from her friend!), and they started getting closer sharing new music and their favorite bands. Katie and Brian became inseparable from that weekend on. They enjoyed going to concerts together, traveling to new places, playing tennis, getting together with friends and playing with her dog.

But then, something very bittersweet happened. Brian got an amazing promotion within John Hancock that would take him to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Sadly, Brian moved away from Chicago and Katie. Soon after, Katie got a dream teaching job offer in St. Louis that she couldn’t turn down and she left Chicago as well. So Brian and Katie lived in different cities for two years traveling back and forth to see each other.

After over two years of long distance, Brian decided that he wanted to ask Katie to marry him. Brian started conspiring with Katie’s best friend Cassie to find out what Katie wanted and designed a beautiful ring he thought would be perfect for her, and it was. He was originally planning on asking her parents’ permission on a weekend visit to see Katie, but soon found out her parents would not be there! Brian wanted to do things right so he drove ten hours to talk to her dad without Katie even knowing he was in St. Louis in order to get her dad’s permission to ask for her hand in marriage.

On Brian’s next visit, he had a plan to propose to Katie before they saw The Script (one of Katie’s favorite bands) in concert at Art Hill on Thursday night. Unfortunately the weather was uncooperative so Brian spent the entire concert carefully guarding the ring in his pocket. The next day, he asked Katie if she would like to take her 100 pound yellow lab Payton on a long walk in Forest Park. It was a beautiful fall day so Katie happily obliged. They walked all around the park and enjoyed each other’s company. When they got to the top of Art Hill, they stopped to look at the scenic view. Katie was lamenting that poor Payton was too short to see the beautiful fountains below over the wall, when all of the sudden, Katie looked down and saw Brian on one knee holding a sparkly ring. He asked her to marry him, and she said yes! Katie and Brian were ecstatic, and even her dog Payton was overjoyed to have Brian join their family. 

Ever since I was a little girl, I always wanted to get married in Santa Fe where my family visited each summer. Brian wanted to have a big party where all our friends and family would be able to attend. We decided to merge the two together by having a Santa Fe themed wedding in St. Louis (my hometown). Our goal was to recreate the feeling of being in Santa Fe through the flowers, food, décor (plank tables with low hanging chandeliers over them), and jewelry. The flowers and place cards included succulents to incorporate the southwest theme. Catering St. Louis custom designed a dinner menu with Southwestern flavors including cumin rubbed beef tenderloin, green chile crab cakes, and green chile grits. We also searched to find wood plank farm tables and hung eclectic chandeliers low over the tables to recreate the intimate feel of our favorite patio in Santa Fe. I wore my Navajo squash blossom necklace for the ceremony and my squash blossom bracelet for both the ceremony and reception. I also opted to wear cowboy booties under my dress. Our hotel welcome baskets were also from the Santa Fe Cooking School with a Southwestern snack sampler.

When Brian and I first got engaged, I wrote a story about it to tell my third grade class at the time. We decided to use this story throughout our save the dates, invitations, and day of paper products created by Cheree Berry. Our save the date was a mini-book telling the story of our relationship. Our invitations also included another mini-book as the reception card. Finally, each of the table numbers at our wedding was as chapter in our story. Cheree Berry custom created a pattern for many of the paper products using my squash blossom bracelet as inspiration as well.

My favorite moment was walking into the reception as husband and wife seeing all my family and friends. I was so overjoyed to be married to the man of dreams, and proud to be able to show him off as my husband! The room also felt so inviting and warm, and looked even more perfect than I imagined. We could truly feel the love and support from all of our loved ones in that moment.

Brian’s favorite moment was sitting together listening to the speeches from my dad, the best men, and matron of honor. This was our opportunity to finally sit back and relax with our loved ones. Brian highly anticipated my father’s speech after his speech at my sister’s wedding, and his speech did not disappoint. Brian’s best men also made us laugh and cry through their amazing storytelling and use of props.

Bridesmaids' Dresses: Coren Moore | Cake: Encore Bakery | Catering: Catering St. Louis | Ceremony Musicians: Rosewood Ensemble | Ceremony Venue: Webster Groves Presbyterian Church | Event Planning: Cosmopolitan Events | Floral Design: Wildflowers | Hair & Make-Up: Danielle Style | Paper: Cheree Berry Paper | Photography: Jon Koch Photography | Reception Musicians: Griffin & The Gargoyles | Reception Venue: Forest Park Visitor's Center | Rehearsal Dinner Venue: Algonquin Golf Club | Transportation: Best Transportation | Wedding Dress: Badgley Mischka | Wooden Table Rentals: Chicago Farm Tables

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Valentine-Inspired Winter Romance

I love this quote from Alphonse Karr that inspired this stunner of a shoot from Elizabeth Ngundue. “Some people grumble that roses have thorns; I am grateful that thorns have roses.”  It defines the birth of something beautiful, from something otherwise harsh and lacking vigor and life. And it’s exactly what this slice of pretty stands for, from the dress from White Traditions Bridal House to the vibrant petals from Accents Floral Design.

Colors
Seasons
Winter
Settings
Outdoor
Styles
Rustic

From Elizabeth Ngundue PhotographyI am so thrilled to share this inspiration shoot with you! My inspiration came from a quote by Alphonse Karr: “Some people grumble that roses have thorns; I am grateful that thorns have roses.” I was instantly drawn to the message portrayed in this beautiful quote, and I started planning this shoot, only to watch every idea fall perfectly into place. I decided that winter was the perfect time for this shoot; it’s dull, dry, and seemingly lifeless. Creating something incredibly stunning in the midst of something boring would portray this quote in exactly the way I intended. I wanted to incorporate a Valentine’s Day color palette to truly bring out the beauty of love. Roses were the perfect addition to the cascading florals, tying my concept all together swimmingly.

The details were truly a joy for me to work on for this shoot! I selected antique silver plate chargers and candle holders for the table setting. I incorporated blush into the linen napkins, and used ivory china lined in brushed metal and green to compliment the beautiful greenery in the florals. I chose deep red champagne flutes to pair with the antique pewter goblets on the table. I wanted an ombre cake with a naked middle tier to truly tie in my vision, and the gorgeous Valentine color palette. The florals brought everything to life, with stunning blush pinks, deep reds, and exquisite greenery. Everything was exactly as I had hoped it would be!

This Valentine Inspired Winter Romance Shoot was intended to make a statement. I love challenging brides and grooms to seek beauty in every aspect of life. Creating beauty that breaks the typical wedding stereotype is something that can make your wedding images look completely unique and your own. My wish for couples is to allow their minds to be inspired by who they truly are, and what they love. Don’t feel pressured to get married in the fall if you love February! Every couple is unique in their own beautiful way. I challenge you, my friends, to see the silver lining in every situation; to be grateful that thorns have roses. Don’t be afraid to be different; because different is beautiful, too.

Bridal Gown: White Traditions Bridal House | Cake: Bella Cakes | Floral Design: Accents Floral Design | Groom's Attire: Savvi Formalwear | Hair / Makeup: Flawless Makeup | Paper Goods: La Happy | Photography: Elizabeth Ngundue Photography | Styling: Elizabeth Ngundue Photography | Vintage Furniture: Finch Vintage Rentals

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
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SMP Midwest Welcomes Our Advertisers + A Discount!

How do you spend the perfect Sunday?  Getting to know the fabulous + oh-so-talented team of eco-friendly wedding vendors at the Chicago Green Wedding Alliance.  Because when it comes to hosting an amazing event that is also socially conscious, this is a group of vendors that will most definitely deliver. Learn so much more about their mission… and their crazy cool wedding show, Committed, below.

From Chicago Green Wedding Alliance… The Chicago Green Wedding Alliance is a group of eco-friendly wedding vendors that is committed to making less environmentally impactful events. We connect vendors with the conscious consumer for mindful weddings and social events. Our vendors create gorgeous events that transcend people’s expectations of “green” weddings.

Check out the Chicago Green Wedding Alliance on Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest.  

The GWA is hosting a wedding show on February 22nd at Greenhouse Loft!  Any couple that books with the code “SMP” will get $5 off!  The discount on tickets can be redeemed on the Eventbrite ticketing page.

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Brideside + A Discount!

I’ll admit it.  As much as I love being a bridesmaid (and, oh, do I love it), trekking to bridal shop after bridal shop to try on gowns is, well, seriously tiring.  Which is why I am all sorts of obsessed with Brideside, the online retailer that brings the bridal shop to YOU by letting you browse bridesmaid dresses online and then try them on in the comfort of your very own home. Say it with me, loves: awesome.

With Brideside, you can choose from a plethora of style choices and colors, all with the help of an amazing stylist who works with you every step of the way to guarantee a fabulous (+ chic) bridal party. Just chat with the stylist about your dream wedding and vision, then let them take over and guide your besties through an array of different designers on Brideside’s online store.  They’ll even provide instructional videos on measuring and selecting the best dress types for your body!  And when every last dress is chosen, they’ll ship the samples to your home, so you can have that girl’s day with mimosas and cozy yoga pants.  Soooo comfortable and soooo fun.

Ready to get started?  Visit the Brideside website ASAP or, if you live in Chicago, make an appointment with a stylist here. And don’t forget this exclusive discount for SMP readers: When you buy your bridesmaid dress in February, the first $20 is on Brideside!  Use discount code “SMP20″ at checkout. (Terms & Conditions: Cannot be combined with any past or future promotions. Readers must purchase bridesmaid dress at full price on or before 2/28/15. Offer does not apply to the following designers: Joanna August, Donna Morgan, Jenny Yoo.)

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Elegant St. Louis Garden Wedding

I don’t think there are enough adjectives to describe just how much I love this Sappington House wedding. For starters, the couple’s adorable pup acted as their ring bearer (obsessed), and those blush Jenny Yoo bridesmaids’ gowns are beyond pink perfection. Lisa Dolan snapped up a gallery filled with all the pretty, and lucky us because it’s all right here!

Colors
Seasons
Summer
Settings
Garden Venue
Styles
Elegant

From Lisa DolanBrittney and Josh are college sweethearts who are completely adorable and so in love. Their wedding day was the perfect mix of their styles. The ceremony and reception were both stylish but still intimate with close friends and family. Brittney chose a color scheme of pale pink and gold and brought in some vintage accents with hints of lace.

Everything about this day was so thoughtful and sweet. From the monogrammed hangers/cups the bride gave out as her bridesmaids gifts to the ring bearer (the couples dog, Brylee)!

The ceremony took place on the grounds of the Historic Sappington House in St. Louis, with a reception that followed at The Edge of Webster. The couple completely transformed the reception space by adding their own lighting and drapery. In lieu of a sit down dinner, Brittney and Josh chose to serve BBQ from a local St. Louis BBQ joint – Bogarts. The coupled also opted out of the traditional cake and served cupcakes made by Jilly’s Cupcake bar, as well as cookies and rice krispy treats! The cupcakes were decorated in accents of gold, and were almost to pretty to eat!

This wedding was all about family, which is what made it so special. Brittney and Josh went above and beyond to make sure their family and friends had a great time, and it showed. Brittney chose her sisters and cousins to join her in her wedding party, and the gorgeous bouquets and floral arrangements were made by the couple’s relatives.

Bridesmaids Bracelets: House Of Harlow | Bridesmaids Dresses: Jenny Yoo | Catering: Bogarts BBQ | Ceremony Venue: Sappington House | Cupcakes: Jilly Cupcake Bar | Earrings: Kate Spade | Floral Design: Relative | Monogrammed Hangers: Etsy | Photography: Lisa Dolan | Reception Venue: The Edge Of Webster | Shoes: Chinese Laundry

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
For membership information, click here
These Featured Designers are members of our Look Book.
For membership information, click here