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Eloping Never Looked So Pretty!

If you’ve ever, and I mean EVER toyed with the idea of an elopement, this inspiration shoot is about to convince you completely. Set in Venice, Italy with breathtaking architecture and a classic gondola ride, consider this your visual blueprint for a European “I do.” Go see the gallery by Eric Kelley for even more moments to love.

From the vendors… A timeless styled photo shoot that inspired an enchanting, Old World dream. We were inspired by the blossoming wisteria, the bustling waterways and intimate canals… the most beautiful city in the world. An outdoor ceremony in the garden of the Belmond Cipriani followed by an intimate dinner creation under the purple wisteria set the Venetian mood. We took advantage of the quintessential beauty of the city exploring bridges, hidden alleys and the famous stone paved St. Mark’s Square. A palette of white and green with pops of pink and orange enhanced the natural setting without distracting from this city’s natural beauty. The Venice canals were highlighted in the watercolor paper suite, and a gondola ride for the bride and groom were key elements of this quintessential Italian shoot.

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Photography: Eric Kelley Photography | Event Design: Atrendy Wedding | Floral Design: Philippa Tarrant Floral Designs | Wedding Dress: Ca'Rousel Bridal | Invitations: Emily Rose Ink | Shoes: Emmy London | Hair + Makeup: Letizia Cordella | Tuxedo: Blank Label | Featured Contributor: Venice First | Hair Pins: Melinda Rose Designs | Hand-Dyed Silk Fabric: Pompom Blossom | Linen: La Tavola Fine Linen Rental | Photography - Assistance: Élan Klein | Rentals: Select Event Group | Ribbon: Frou Frou Chic | Rings + Jewelry: Susie Saltzman | Robe: Girl With A Serious Dream

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10 Tips to Pulling Off Mismatched ‘Maids Without Looking Like a Hot Mess

Long gone are the days when every bridesmaid had to be in the same dress in the same color with the same accessories and the same beauty look — thank goodness!  Now, it’s all about that mismatched look. But how do you pull off mix ‘n match bridesmaids without your bridal party looking like a hot mess? Kelsey Doorey, founder and CEO of Vow to Be Chic, the online boutique of rentable bridesmaids’ dresses (including Lauren Conrad’s Paper Crown) is here to help.



Choose a general color, like blue, and let your ‘maids choose their favorite shades for a trendy mix and match look.


Choose a universally flattering color that goes with a variety of skin tones, such as grey, beige, champagne and blush. These neutral colors are a safe way to suit everyone and are perfectly on trend — they also go great together!


Floral dresses are in right now, but sometimes less is more. Consider dressing only your maid of honor in a floral print like the Jenny Yoo Nyla and the rest of your girls in a matching solid shade.


If you’re going to have your maids all wear a different color a good way to keep things cohesive is with the florals as well as their hair styles. This will give the girls a unified look while still being unique.


Sequin gowns are a great way to add a little sparkle to your wedding. Mixing a rose gold sequin gown, like this Theia, with a solid blush is a great way to achieve a fun mismatched look.


Mixed metallics is also a fun, modern look. Mix a rose gold option with a solid gold or choose a color and let your girls pick their favorite dress in that metallic hue.


If you choose one solid color for all the girls, a great way to add some diversity is by having each girl choose their favorite neckline — off-the-shoulder, halter, strapless or asymmetrical!


Another great option is the Jenny Yoo Aiden dress which is a convertible dress that allows your girls to wear it anyway they like! The long front and back panels can be styled into more than 15 unique looks!


I wouldn’t recommend mixing up the lengths of the dresses — if you are going to go short have all your girls wear a short dress to keep the photos cohesive.


Adding a mix of fabrics and textures is another way to achieve a great look. For example, mix lace, cotton, chiffon, brocade and sequins, but in the same color palette for a sophisticated look.

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Sunday Morning Waffle Making Engagement

Does life get any better than Sunday morning waffles with the one you love? Absolutely not. At least in my book. Photographed by Rebecca Yale, this at-home engagement captures that exact sentiment with everyday moments Aisha and Ben will treasure for a lifetime. Head to the full gallery this way, and if you’re newly engaged kick off the wedding planning adventure right here.

From Rebecca Yale… I often describe engagement photos as a little slice of life, capturing a little piece of who you are at this special time in your life- young and in love right before you say your vows. Years later these photos can become just as special as your wedding day portraits and become a little time capsule for future generations. Ben and Aisha absolutely embraced this idea and chose to have their engagement session be a typical Sunday morning, which for them means making waffles and enjoying them together in their beautiful sun-drenched backyard.

From the bride… On our very first date, we bonded over food. Aisha was worried Ben would judge her for ordering a veggie burger at a burger place and launched into a lengthy, nervous explanation. After a beat, Ben casually remarked that he had never had a burger in his life and was also ordering the veggie burger. We both let our a sigh of relief and have continued to weirdly and accidentally order the exact same thing as each other ever since. When it comes to food, we’re always in sync. We love cooking together.

We actually had our worst meal ever on the night Ben proposed. We were in a small city in England, and while the proposal was lovely, the meal afterward was … not. We started laughing as soon we took our first bites. It was actually great because it made the meal more memorable. We’ll definitely never forget that toasted beans ravioli. Yes, “toasted beans ravioli” is as upsetting as it sounds.

When we started planning our wedding, we liked the idea of using cooking as a metaphor for building a life together. We’re blending lives, families, and cultures — creating our own recipe for love and happiness. Our photographer Rebecca suggested our kitchen as a setting and it immediately made sense. Every Sunday, we make waffles (Aisha has always been a fan and Ben is a recent (and enthusiastic) convert), so we just did what we normally do — except way better dressed than usual and with a camera documenting our every move. You know: normal, casual Sunday! Despite the fact that it was an engagement session, Rebecca has a very natural, documentary style, so there were many moments when we were able to forget about the camera and just be ourselves. Those are our favorite shots. They show what makes us light up: each other & really good waffles!

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Photography: Rebecca Yale Photography | Event Planning: All You Need Is Love Events

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Do You Really *Have* to Invite Them to Your Wedding?

One of the first steps in planning a wedding is making your guest list. After all, the number of guests you invite will determine multiple big-day decisions, including your venue. Your parents, siblings, grandparents and BFFs are obviously the first to make the list, but what about your freshman year roommate? Or your work wife? Finalizing your guest list is no easy task, but we’re here to help with a list of questions that will take the headache out of wedding planning — for now, at least.

The Considerations

Are they family?

Are they living with or seriously dating a member of your family?

Are they married or engaged to a member of your family?

Are they dating one of your bridesmaids or groomsmen?

Have you been friends more than 10 years?

Have you spoken to them in the past year?

Do you see them on a regular basis?

Have you seen them within the last six months?

Do you like them?

Does your future spouse like them?

Will it be awkward if you don’t invite them?

Will you care if they get mad they’re not invited?

Were you (or will you) be in their wedding?

Were you (or will you be) invited to their wedding?

Did they help you plan your wedding?

Were they there for you during your bridezilla moments?

Are they a coworker you hang out with outside of work?

Have they always supported your relationship?

Are they always one of the first on the dance floor?

Have you told them at any point they’re invited?

Are they a fun drunk?

Would you be OK if they end up in the background of your pictures?

Are they fun?

If You Can Check Off 1-5

Unless you’re having a 500-person wedding, save your $150 per head plate for someone else. If it’s not going to cause major drama or a huge family rift, you can skip them.

If You Can Check Off 6-10

Consider these your “B List” guests. You don’t have to invite them, but if, a few weeks after sending out your gorgeous invitations, you receive more regrets than expected, consider sending your B List guests an invitation.

If You Can Check Off 11-15

The short answer? Yes, you should probably invite them. Obviously, we can’t force you to invite anyone, but if you want to avoid to avoid uncomfortable situations and drama on your big day (and trust us, you do), you should send them an invite.

If You Can Check Off More than 16

To state the obvious, yes, you need to invite them. But, chances are if you can answer yes to more than 16 of the questions above, you already knew that.

Now That You’ve Got the List, Find the Perfect Invites

Minted’s Elegance Illustrated | Minted’s Classic Floral | Minted’s Whimsy Stripe

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