Real Wedding: Jeffrey + Amber Griffith

We don’t believe we have ever seen a wedding more surrounded by natural beauty than Amber & Jeffrey’s nuptials submitted by m. newsom photography. Jim Scott’s Garden at Lake Martin provided a stunning backdrop for this absolutely radiant couple. You couldn’t ask for a more scenic setting with lake views, lush botanicals, a waterfall and more. The bridesmaid dresses are all the same color, but have different styles for each girl’s own style. Of course, what AWM post would be complete without darn cute kids and pets? We also adore the succulent favors and the line from an e.e. cummings poem used as an art installation. This wedding is a fab reminder to let nature be your inspiration. Congrats Amber & Jeffrey!!!



Photography: m. newsom photography / Floral Design: Elizabeth Fritz / Cake: Mandi Buckalew – Cakeapotamus / Bridal Gown: Prattville Bridal Boutique / Catering: Martha Hicks / Ceremony & Reception Venue: Jim Scott’s Gardens.
If you have a wedding you would like to share on the AWM Blog, please see our Open Submissions guidelines for more information. Thank you!

 

Real Wedding: Stringer + Spiegel

Today’s Open Submission is a dream of yellow and blue in the Magic City. Kelli Stringer was wed to Robert Spiegel on April 6 this year at Dawson Memorial Baptist Church in Homewood. Gorgeous details are not lacking from the ornate invitations to the swoon-worthy charm bracelet and, of course, flower girls in tutus. The couple then takes the party to The Club overlooking downtown Birmingham for a night of fabulous fun. What party couldn’t be a blast once you’ve had a proper sugar rush from a bite of Diane Olexa’s five-tier cake?! You’ve also got to love that Kelli may be the first bride in wedding exit history to be able to give a perfect pose in the midst of flower petals being thrown at her from all sides! Congratulations Mr. and Mrs. Spiegel!


Ceremony: Dawson Memorial Baptist Church / Reception Venue & Catering: The Club / Floral Design: Susan Ballard / Wedding Planner: Anita Kanellis, AK Brides / Lighting Design: Design Productions, LLC / Bridal Gown: Heidi Elnora / Bridesmaid Gowns: Bella Bridesmaid / Cake: Olexa’s Cafe, Cakes & Catering / Groom’s & Groomsmen’s Attire: Men’s WH / Hair Stylist: Christopher Pugh / Makeup Artist: Laura Eason / Music & Entertainment: 4 Barrel Funk / Photographer: Unplugged Photography / Registry: Brombergs, Belk, Amazon / Stationery: Allison Banks / Videographer: Main Street Productions

If you have a wedding you would like to share on the AWM Blog, please see our Open Submissions guidelines for more information. Thank you!

 

Heidi Elnora Fall 2014 Collection: “Opera”

We are so proud to share Heidi Elnora’s Fall 2014 Collection! inspired by Heidi’s recent trip to Paris and her visit to the Paris Opera House, this collection is appropriately entitled, “Opera.” We absolutely love the versatility of this collection. It has a gown for every style. We are especially drawn to the low backs of the Elle Hemingway and Nora Georgette as well as the gorgeous back detail on the Clara Louise!

If you love Heidi’s designs, then make sure to schedule your appointment at Heidi Elnora Atelier! Although you can find her gowns at Nordstrom and bridal shops across the country, as an Alabama bride you have the luxury of going straight to the source at her bridal shop in Cahaba Heights of Birmingham. There you can peruse all her gowns and even sample sale items. The best part of the Atelier is her accessory options available. You can mix and match different skirts, overlays, belts and more to truly customize your own Heidi Elnora gown with the help of her fabulous team. We know you are going to love this collection and can’t wait to see the lucky brides that will wear these gowns down the aisle!


Photography: Michael J. Moore Photography / Hair & Makeup: Brittany Benton Massey / Model: Mary Margaret McCord, Miss Alabama USA 2013

 

Bridal Market Trend Report

At the beginning of October, experts in the wedding industry from across the nation descend on the Big Apple for New York Bridal Market. It’s the toast du jour of all bridal fashions where the designers send their latest looks down the runway, which will eventually find their way to the bridal shops for you to purchase them. To give you just a taste of what’s to come, some of our bridal shops have shared their favorite trends from this year’s market. Let us know what your favorites are!

 

The White Room – “We had such a fantastic time this season at bridal market. There were so many wonderful dresses and we are so inspired! The new trends that we saw on the runways this year were the new fabrics and laces! A lot of designers showed a type of Jacquard fabric, and American laces were used quite a bit. A matelassé technique was even used in several looks. So it’s not just satin and taffeta these days!  There was also more beading than we’ve seen in 10 years.”

 

Ivory & White Bridal Boutique – “We have been noticing more beading and embroidery over the past few seasons but this year pearls were prominent!  Several of our designers used mainly pearls with their rhinestones and others used only pearls on their gowns.  Trend setters like Monique Lhuillier, Oscar de la Renta, and Vera Wang were using pearls on their gowns.”

 

White Dresses: “We are loving the new trend of low open backs. While sheer and illusion lace back gowns have been popular over the last couple of seasons, we are seeing a lot of our designers design low open backs. One of our designers who is really great about creating a low open back is Francesca Miranda. We love how her designs are both sweet and sexy at the same time — creating a gown that is appropriate at pretty much any venue.

 

Bella Couture: “One of the new trends that we saw a lot of was textured fabrics.  Alyne by Rita Vinieris showed a delicate crinkled organza.  Lazaro showed ruffed silk satin in a beautiful floral pattern in his Tara Keely collection and painted silk satin in his Lazaro collection. Both were incorporated into the gowns with peplums, which is another popular trend that we loved.”                To the left see an example of Lazaro’s crinkled organza with an exaggerated peplum that is stunning.

 

Photo:Thomas Iannacone/WWD                                   Photo:Rodin Banica/WWD

Our favorite trend from the runway was the strong and daring use of color! Vera Wang dedicated her entire show to the color pink. Claire Pettibone brought a bit of luxury to her gowns with dashing metallic gold. It certainly draws your eye to closer examine the fine design in each gown! We also look forward to sharing Heidi Elnora’s latest collection on the next post. If you haven’t seen it yet, you will be swooning for her gorgeous work!

 

 

Real Wedding: Drew + Danielle Kerley

For all our “non-traditional” brides, this Open Submission from Photos by Heart is for you! Danielle and Drew’s wedding day at Avondale Brewing Company was a deliciously colorful, Boho-chic soiree that shows what a bride can accomplish with some time spent “studying” on Pinterest and help from family and friends. The bouquets and centerpieces were created by Danielle and her bridesmaids with some selection advice at Whole Foods. As a native of Texas, Danielle wanted to bring a little taste of home to their celebration and found just what she was looking for with the Cantina on Wheels food truck. Personally, we suggest everyone has a food truck available at the reception – even if it’s just for a late night snack before guests head home! In lieu of wedding cake, the couple had a selection of oh-so-yummy Steel City Pops available. “We decided in order to go along with our theme of ‘non-traditional’ wedding ideas, we couldn’t just have cake,” said Danielle. “We both discovered Steel City Pops on a date one night, but the idea to have them at our wedding actually came from one of my bridesmaids. She’s brilliant. We rented their cart and were able to choose a large variety of their creamy and fruity, delicious flavors. They were a hit!”

No wedding this cool could be complete without the groom jumping on the drums with the band, just as Drew did. Danielle said he was also helping her along the way with everything from putting together the music to creating a photobooth backdrop complete with props. Now we think that’s a keeper! This couple’s enthusiasm for putting together a fun, relaxed shindig is apparent and we love every detail. Thanks to Photos by Heart for submitting this one! “They are so down to earth and the photos really speak for themselves,” said Danielle of the photographers. “They offered a photobooth and we had a blast with that! The talent and heart that goes behind their work was exactly what I was looking for. Drew and I were so lucky to find them.”




Photography: Photos By Heart / Catering: Cantina On Wheels / Venue: Avondale Brewing Company / Flowers: Whole Foods Floral + Help from Friends and Family / Desserts: Steel City Pops / Invitations: Wedding Paper Divas / Wedding Dress: Shopbop.com Online Wedding Boutique / Hair and Makeup: Friends

 

Real Wedding: Kristen and Patrick

Our Real Wedding submission this week from Amanda House Photography is all about color! More specifically, it’s about the bright and bold hues of a peacock feather. You can see it in the lush florals, the fashion, the cake, the reception lighting design and even the grand firework finale. Kristen and Patrick couldn’t have asked for more gorgeous weather for their big day at Stone Bridge Farms. With a ceremony at the gazebo by the pond and a rocking reception at the lodge, the Warren wedding was all about good times with a sweetly Southern details. We especially have a soft spot for the memorial to all their loved ones that couldn’t be with them on this special occasion. Framed photographs with a candle lit in their memory is a great way to include those friends and family that have passed. For more information about how Stone Bridge Farms can help you plan you big day, see their Resource Listing.


If you have a Real Wedding you want featured on the AWM Blog, please see our Open Submissions page!

Venue, Catering, Rentals and Wedding Coordination: Stone Bridge Farms / Florist: Ava Grace Designs at Stone Bridge Farms / Hair & Makeup: Lynsey Richardson – Joyce’s Salon / Bridal Dress: Bridal Bliss / Bridesmaid Dresses: David’s Bridal / Groom & Groomsmen Tuxes: Men’s WH / Photographer: Amanda House Photography / Videographer: North Alabama Video Production / DJ: Feel the Beat Entertainment / Photo Booth: Cool Shots Photo Lounge – Feel The Beat Entertainment / Cakes: Creative Cakes / Limo Service: Apollo

 

Real Wedding: Jeremy + Meagan

This week’s Real Wedding submission is a little treasure we discovered on Twitter via @GrandonFoster. We were delighted to follow their link to Jennifer Blair Photography’s absolutely stunning images of Jeremy and Meagan’s winter wedding in Dothan. The fashion is everything. We love the bridesmaids’ varying looks in the pale pink and pewter as well as the exquisite jewelry. The venue makes for a spectacular backdrop for this fashionable affair. To top it all, Meagan has the most adorable flower girls, even if they did seem to lose a bit of interest once their petal baskets were empty. Take a gander at the lovely images and let us know how much you love it! If you have a wedding that would be great on the AWM Blog, please check our Open Submissions.

Reception Venue: The Grand on Foster + Photography: Jennifer Blair Photography + Dress: Vera Wang + Bridesmaid Dresses: Vera Wang + Groom’s Attire: Black by Vera Wang + Groomsmen Attire: Men’s Wearhouse + Cake: Deborah West + Floral Design: Handmade by a friend

 

Real Wedding: J + Ally Bruhn

This week’s Real Wedding submission from Jennifer McAteer Photography is a Southern dream of teal and coral. J and Ally tied the knot in Tuscaloosa at First Methodist Church with a a reception nestled just on the edge of the Black Warrior River at the gorgeous Cypress Inn Pavilion. We love the attention to the small details such as monogrammed bridesmaid shirts, buttoned bouquet wrap and a dash of special nail art. We surely wouldn’t mind a bite of that banana pudding as well! The couple sped away on a private boat at the close of the evening, but allowed the photographer to capture a special moment as they washed each other’s feet for the first time as Mr. and Mrs. Bruhn. If you would have a Real Wedding you would like featured on the AWM Blog, see all the details on our Open Submissions page!

Wedding Dress: The White Room Bridal Salon – Birmingham, AL  + Cake: Olexa’s Cafe, Cakes & Catering + Chairs at Reception: Special Events – A GameDay Tents Co. + Band: 2nd Coming – Music Garden + Photography: Jennifer McAteer Photography + Wedding Venue: First United Methodist, Tuscaloosa, AL + Reception Venue: The Cypress Inn Pavilion + Tuxes: Burch and Hatfield Tuxedo and Bridal + Floral and Design: Matt Clinton Designs + Catering: Cypress Inn Restaurant + Hair: Mandie Powell at Joelle Salon + Make-Up: Lynsey Richardson with Hair and Make Up by Lynsey + Bride’s Rings: Isbell Jewelers + Groom’s Ring: Hudson Poole Jewelers + Bridesmaids Dresses: Sash + Embroidery for Pre-Wedding Attire: Enhanced Embroidery + Linens: Norton’s Florist + Video: Mark Five Productions

 

Inspiration Board: July

Another month, another inspiration board! July’s board is a salute to our Fall 2013 cover featuring the little boy blue, Watson Kidd, wearing his ring bearer’s finest from La Shea. The image captured by Wynter Photo was from one of the sweetest shoots in AWM history. Featuring the wee ones in their element, we certainly had our hands full, but we were thrilled with the outcome. You’ll see baby blues complemented by tans on our board inspired by Design Seed’s Boating Blues palette. After all, the saying does go, “Something Old, Something New. Something Borrowed, Something BLUE!”

1. AWM 2013 Fall Cover | Model: Watson Kidd + Ring Bearer’s Attire: La Shea + Venue & Pony: Faye Whittemore Farms + Floral Designs: KG Designs + Photography: Wynter Photo
2. Bridal Gown: The White Room + Photography: Rebekah Westover Photography
3. Bridal Gown: Ivory & White Bridal Boutique + Bridesmaid Gowns: BCBG + Floral Design: Bloom + Photography: R I Weddings
4. Floral Design: Lillie’s + Venue: American Village + Photography: Arden Photography
5. Bridemaid Gown: La Shea + Bridesmaid Model: Tanika Harrell + Groomsman Attire: Mr. Burch Formal Wear + Groomsman Model: Calvin McKee + Venue: The Oaks + Photography: R I Weddings
6. Stationery: Amberly Shelton Print Design and Couture Paperie + Photography: Arden Photography
7. Floral Design: Lillie’s + Photography: Arden Photography
8. Cake: Olexa’s Cafe, Cakes and Catering + Photography: Frank Carnaggio Photography

 

Real Wedding: Chad + Aleisha Gilchrist

Welcome to our first Open Submission on the AWM Blog! So often we hear from brides that want to share their beautiful weddings with us. All the weddings we feature in the magazine are submitted by our talented advertisers, but we have plenty of room to spare here on the blog. We will start publishing 2-4 weddings per month that feature gorgeous details, unique ideas and plenty of inspiration to all Southern brides. Our first submission highlights the seaside nuptials of Chad and Aleisha Gilchrist, photographed by Kristi Chappell Photography. We adore the bride’s personally-made jewelry accessories almost as much as her contagious smile. The groom’s starfish boutonniere is a clever alternative to flowers and you can’t resist their pup’s bow tie. The night is complete as the couple and their loved ones light heart-shaped lanterns that float into the sky as an announcement of their union. We’re so pleased to share this sweet, sunny celebration and can’t wait to see more. If you want to share your wedding with us, see our Open Submissions page! Also, check out our friends at Kaiser Realty if you would love to tie the knot on the white beaches of Gulf Shores or Orange Beach, Alabama. Congratulations Chad and Aleisha!

Photography: Kristi Chappell Photography + Venue: Sea Star Cottage in Gulf Shores, Alabama + Chair, table and food service: Pelican Pete Party Rentals + Wedding Cake: A local market bakery + All decorations, flowers, favors, and ceremony arbor were made by bride, her mother and father + Head piece and foot jewelry made by bride + Dress: David’s Bridal + Belt and bracelet: JV Gems – an Etsy store

 

‘True Alabama Couple’ Photo Contest Winners

Congratulations to the winners of our ‘True Alabama Couple’ Photo Contest! Last month, we asked our Facebook fans to submit a photo that shows their love for each other as a couple as well as our great state of Alabama. We saw some beautiful entries and enjoyed the absolutely adorable proposal stories, but only the Top 3  with the most votes were presented to our editorial team to make the final decision. Now we are proud to announce our winners, whose weddings will all be featured on the AWM website with the release of our new issue in 2014! Drumroll please . . .

Our Grand Prize winners, Mandy and John, have won a one-page Real Wedding feature in our 2014 issue! There image evoked undeniable emotion that captured our eye immediately. The landscape and barn in the background complete the look that totally captures the idea of a true Alabama couple. We are thrilled to share the details of their wedding in the magazine and hope you are inspired by their Southern soiree. Congratulations Mandy and John!

First Place winners, Sarah and Brett, are very fortunate to work with the talented Main Street Productions on a Love Story video that will share their story of meeting, falling in love and starting their life together. We think this is especially perfect because Sarah and Brett have an interesting story that seems nothing short of fate. Sometimes, two people really are just meant to be together! Once it is complete, we can’t wait to share this Love Story video, which is a unique piece that can be shown at a rehearsal dinner, shared on social media and kept for years to relive the reason why you first fell in love over and over again.

Thank you again to all our contestants as well as everyone that voted. We love getting to interact with our readers and sharing your stories. In fact, we want to share more of your stories! We only have so much space in the magazine for Real Weddings, but the AWM Blog has plenty of room to spare. That’s right, we are now opening the blog for submitting your weddings to be featured on our website. We will be posting 2-4 weddings each month that we think would be great inspiration for all Southern brides. For more information about how to submit a wedding, see all the details here.


Image: R I Weddings

 

Inspiration Board: June 2013

 

 June is here! With warm summer days, poolside lounging and outdoor frivolity, one may forget that we’ve entered the peak of wedding season – except, of course, for our dedicated vendors that are making dreams of wedded bliss come true across the South. For this month’s inspiration board, we look to the jovial color board, Honey Bee, by Design-Seeds.com. The bright pinks and oranges with a tinge of deep indigo are great to flood a wedding with color that makes guests feel giddy. See our board with content from our 2013 issue to start drumming up beautiful ideas for a summer soiree!

1. Stationery: Alan’s Invitations + Photography: Jerrod Brown Studios
2. Bridesmaid Dresses: Bella Bridesmaid + Bridal Gown: The Something Blue Shoppe + Venue: The Sonnet Houses + Photography: Gretchen B. Photography
3. Event/Floral Design: Christopher Joseph Designs + Lighting/Draping: A.G. Lighting + Photography: R I Weddings
4. Bridal Gown: The White Room + Floral Design: Dana’s Floral Design: Photography: Jerrod Brown Studios
5. Event Design: KG Designs + Catering: Kathy G. & Co. + Flower Girl Attire: La Shea + Photography: Wynter Photography
6. Groomsman’s Ties: Mr. Burch Formal Wear + Styling: Christopher Confero Design + Photography: R I Weddings
7. Floral Design & Wedding Planner: Catherine Wayman at The Carraway-Davie House + Catering: Corretti Catering at The Carraway-Davie House + Venue: The Carraway-Davie House + Photography: Jessica Wright
8. Catering: Kathy G. & Co. + Wedding Planner: M. Elizabeth Events + Photography: Daniel Taylor Photography
9. Cake: Olexa’s Cafe, Cakes and Catering + Photography: R I Weddings
10. Event Design: Dana’s Floral Design + Lighting/Draping: A.G. Lighting + Photography: Nick Fronteiro Productions

 

‘True Alabama Couple’ Photo Contest


Want to see your wedding featured in the pages of Alabama Weddings Magazine 2014? Well our ‘True Alabama Couple’ Photo Contest is your opportunity to do just that and it’s super simple. If your wedding occurs between Nov. 2012 – September 2013, just make sure you already ‘Like’ AWM on Facebook and head over to our contest app. Enter your necessary contact information and prepare to upload a photo that represents the bride and groom’s true Alabama style along with a short story about your proposal. Make sure you have your photographer’s permission to use an image. Once you’ve submitted your entry, make sure all of your family and friends vote for you here! Voting closes on June 7, 2013. The three images with the most votes with make it our finalists’ round to be judged by our editorial board. Best of all, you have three chance to win:

  • Grand Prize: A one-page Real Wedding Feature in AWM 2014 AND a feature on the AWM website.
  • First Prize: A Love Story video by Main Street Productions AND a feature on the AWM website.
  • Second Prize: A feature on the AWM website.

 

 

See our contest 2011 winners, Chad & Kayla Bates, featured in AWM 2012!

Bridal Gown: Bella Couture.  Groom & Groomsmen Attire: Mr. Burch Formalwear. Catering & Cake: Cakes by Audrey. Ceremony & Reception Venue: The Alabama Theatre. Photography: Studio G. Photography. Floral Design: Gloria’s Arrangements. Stationery: Fine Paperwork. Entertainment: Mark Shadix. Transportation: Vintage Auto Chauffeur. Registry: Belk & Bed, Bath and Beyond.

 

Hoot Hoot Night Owl Paper Goods!

We recently had the joy to check our mailbox at the AWM office and discover a bag of unusual stationery goodness from Night Owl Paper Goods! These positively Southern pieces not only have the right look, but also the perfect feel for a wedding inspired by rustic barns, garden flowers and fried green tomatoes. Best of all, they are printed on eco-friendly, sustainably-harvested birch wood for the couple in a “green” frame of mind. With a huge variety of options of artwork and colors, you can achieve any look you want. Even if not, you have the option to have Night Owl print your own design on wood for a truly customized look. For more information, take a peek at their Wood Wedding Collection and see even more stationery options here.

 

AWM Extra: Cakes

Whenever we do photo shoots for our upcoming issue, we inevitably shoot more than we could possibly fit in the pages of AWM. Some things get left on the editing floor and we just can’t stand to leave them there to gather dust. Throughout the year, we will be bringing you AWM Extras to highlight some of the bits and pieces you didn’t see in this year’s publication. Today, we will let you eat cake – or just see it at least. Our fabulous cake designers brought the goods for our tone-on-tone cake shoot last year that included a few ready-to-serve slices of yummy goodness. Take a peek for a bit of confect-spiration!


Gia’s Cakes | Chocolate cake with toasted marshmallow filling and chocolate buttercream.


Gia’s Cakes | Neapolitan cake with vanilla buttercream.


Barb’s Cakes | Strawberry and vanilla layered cake iced with cream cheese buttercream. Adorned with strawberry cakepops dipped in white chocolate, drizzled in light pink white chocolate and painted with edible pearl dust. Topped with bride and groom cake pop.


Barb’s Cakes | Apricot cake with textured buttercream icing accented with fondant ribbon dusted in luster dust.


Sweet Spot Confections | Almond cake with traditional buttercream. Every other tier of this 7-tier cake is covered with sugar crystals and the others with a damask piping print. Adorned with fondant flowers with silver button centers and handmade fondant ruffles.


Sweet Spot Confections | 1. Yellow cream cake with coral French buttercream with textured turquoise buttercream and fresh flowers. | 2. An Auburn-inspired cake, perfect for the War Eagle groom.

Olexa’s Cafe, Cakes & Catering | Tangerine buttercream-covered with coconut cake and toasted coconut cream filling, with handmade fondant botanicals and handmade edible pearls.

Photography: Frank Carnaggio Photography with Nicole Muro
China & Flatware: Bromberg’s
Styling: Christopher Confero Design

 

Inspiration Board: April

Have you seen it yet? Our summer 2013 cover has hit newsstands, featuring a gorgeous bouquet by Lillie’s for Christopher Confero Design‘s Signature Style shoot at Birmingham Botanical Gardens. Of course, the lavender and green tones were our focus for our April inspiration board, which matched very well with Design-Seeds.com’s Spring Brights palette. If you see anything you just love, be sure to Pin it!

1. AWM 2013 Summer Cover | Bouquet Design: Lillie’s + Event Design: Christopher Confero Design    + Bridal Gown: Heidi Elnora + Photography: Wynter Photography
2. Floral Design: Barbara’s Wedding Shoppe + Photography: Eternal Reflections Photography
3. Floral Design: K.G. Designs by Kathy G. & Co. + Wedding Planner: AK Brides + Photography: Frank Carnaggio Photography
4. Floral Design: Christopher Confero Design + Men’s Fashion: Mr. Burch Formal Wear + Photography: R I Weddings
5. Floral Design: Barbara’s Wedding Shoppe + Bridesmaid Gown: The Something Blue Shoppe +  Photography: Eternal Reflections Photography
6. Floral Design: Stemz Florist + Photography: Photography by Shea
7. Stationery: Amberly Shelton Print Design & Paperie + Event Design: Christopher Confero Design + Rentals: Event Rentals Unlimited + Photography: Wynter Photography
8. Catering: Kathy G. & Co. + Photography: Wynter Photography
9. Cake: Olexa’s Cafe, Cakes & Catering + Photography: Breanna Fogg Photography

 

Heidi Elnora presents ‘Heavenly Days’

On Monday night of Birmingham Fashion Week, Heidi Elnora (co-founder of BFW) previewed her 2013 collection ‘Heavenly Days’ at Avondale Villa. The setting was intimate and we were thrilled to be part of the night to see this collection come to fruition. Terry Bruno of Fotowerks Custom Photography was with us again to capture the moment. Heidi shared that the inspiration for the styling of the show came from ‘Snow White and the Huntsman.’ We knew then we would be in for a treat and she certainly delivered! The hair and makeup was completed by a team led by Jeremy Stephens, founder of the Association of Independent Artists.

Heidi’s designs are completely unique and for the girl looking for a gown that stands apart from the crowd. As a local Alabama designer, all the pieces are made by hand and give a bride the attention to detail that should be expected for such a special garment.

The first looks began with sweet, serene styling that became increasingly dark and avant-garde. The final model in the exquisite Opal Byrd gown walked the runway complete with antlers sporting strands of pearls.

For the final look, all the models lined the runway, making one path for the Opal Byrd to come to the head of the line in regal fashion. Of course, the crowd gave a standing ovation as Heidi took to the runway for high fives and hugs from her husband and children. Have we mentioned Heidi’s spirit is contagious?

Heidi Elnora’s ‘Heavenly Days’ has us excited to see what she whips together for 2014! Thanks again to Terry Bruno of Fotowerks Custom Photography for being with us. Congratulations to those who got to see this show take the main tent of BFW later in the week. For more information about Heidi Elnora and even wearing one of her gowns on your wedding day, visit heidielnora.com. See the full show captured by Holloway Productions:

 

BFW Bridal Atelier 2013

In February, Bromberg’s in downtown Birmingham opened its doors to host Birmingham Fashion Week‘s Bridal Atelier 2013. With plenty of natural light pouring into the second floor runway show, some of Alabama’s finest bridal and bridesmaid fashion boutiques presented designs to grab the attention of brides-to-be and their guests. Terry Bruno of Fotowerks Custom Photography came with us to snag photos of the models as they came down the runway and we’ve selected some of our favorite looks for those of you who couldn’t attend. We also were sure to keep an eye on looks to appear in our 2014 issue as well of course!

BFW Bella Bridesmaid

Bella Bridesmaid started the show with fun, bold colors and a few floral patterns. Their looks had an easiness to them that we highly encourage for your bridal party. Your bridesmaids should look elegant without having to be miserable all day. In the cobalt gown is Vi Vo, voted as the Face of Bridal Day for Birmingham Fashion Week!

BFW Ivory & White

Ivory & White Bridal Boutique’s dramatic gowns brought full, layered skirts with bodices that sported a touch a sparkle. When it comes to bridal bling, a little can go a long way. Too much beading and stoning quickly adds weight to a gown and can really be a drag during a long wedding day. When you try on a gown, remember it has to be worn for a long time unless you opt for a quick costume change before the party gets started.

Bella Couture continued the show with plenty of very Southern lace treatments, especially with shoulder details. This style gown is a much more fitting option for daytime weddings. If the term “a Pinterest-y wedding” is all that’s all your mind, this may be the way to go for your bridal gown.

BFW - Ivy & Aster

Special guest, Ivy & Aster, brought the unexpected styling of the day in both their bridesmaid and bridal looks. Their bridesmaids sported extremely fun “confetti” tights and the occasional shrug (which we loved!)

BFW - Ivy & Aster

Ivy & Aster’s bridal collection had edge. Pairing soft, femme gowns with leather jackets and metal collar chokers had our eyes wide open. For the full line-up, all the girls donned heart-shaped glasses that had us scrambling to find our own pairs the next day. The looks certainly reminded us that there with every bride there is always a girl with a multi-faceted personality. There’s nothing wrong with still being yourself on your wedding day. If you need to rock the leather jacket because that’s just you, then do it. Your wedding day should be yours and no one else’s.

We were so glad to be part of this year’s BFW Bridal Atelier and look forward to seeing a great crowd again next year. They’ll bring the gowns and we’ll bring the mags. All you have to do is save the date! Next year, Birmingham Fashion Week will be in April. Like BFW on Facebook to get the full schedule once it’s released. Thanks again to Terry Bruno of Fotowerks Custom Photography for photographing these amazing fashions! Look for our next post on Heidi Elnora’s avant-garde preview show of Heavenly Days at Avondale Villa!

 

Inspiration Board: March 2013

March is here and we are absolutely stoked for spring. The winter chill is finally starting to give way to sweet, sunny day. For the AWM family, that means we are officially beginning work for our 2014 issue. This is the time when we begin bringing our ideas to the table and building editorial shoot teams for the rest of the year. For our inspiration board this month, we look to design-seeds.com’s Macaron Memory palette. Shades of green, a nice tone of oatmeal and peach are the perfect pick.

1. Stationery: Weddings Etc. + Photography: Arden Photography

2. Floral Design: KG Designs by Kathy G. & Co. + Wedding Planner: M. Elizabeth Events + Photography:  j. messer photography

3. Bridal Gown: The White Room + Bridesmaid Gowns: Bella Bridesmaid + Floral Design: Flowerbuds + Photography: j. messer photography

4. Men’s Fashion: Mr. Burch Formal Wear + Boutonniere: Christopher Confero Design + Photography: R I Weddings

5. Floral Design: Lillie’s + Photography: Arden Photography

6. Catering: Kathy G. & Co. + Floral Design: KG Designs by Kathy G. & Co. + Photography: j. messer photography

7. Floral Design: Dana’s Floral Design + Rentals: Special Events: A Game Day Tent Co. + Venue: Alley Station + Photography: R I Weddings

8. Cake: Barb’s Cakes + Floral Design: KG Designs by Kathy G. & Co. + Wedding Planner: M. Elizabeth Events + Photography: Daniel Taylor Photography

 

Take your wedding to the Web

Think of any big event you’ve attended – a benefit for a cause, a university sporting event, or a corporate party. Availability of information is key to make these events successful. Your wedding is not much different than any of those same events. It may be on a smaller scale, but your guests will be much more comfortable if they have a central point of reference for all details of your wedding day. Sometimes it just doesn’t all fit on the invitation, and we all know things can change as the date gets closer. A wedding website is a tool that connects guests with all information, can be updated quickly and has never been easier to create with the help of Gretchen B. Photography!

Traces of Love by Gretchen B.Photography is offering the opportunity to have a beautiful, professional website for your wedding without any hassle. In fact, all you need to do is complete a questionnaire and attach a few images and she does the rest! You can have a website live and functional with 7-10 business days without any worry. Besides just sharing directions to all locations, hotel booking details, registry locations and the option to RSVP online, you can also share images of your wedding afterwards for two years. Renew your annual hosting contract to keep sharing the memories after the initial two years. Even better, you won’t have any pesky ads begging for your guests attention. From now through March 31, 2013, you can have a website created for only $325 (regular price is $450) with Traces of Love. Since seeing is believing, peruse this site created by Gretchen!

To get more information about creating a website with Traces of Love, call 205.999.3531 or email gretchen@gretchenbphotography.com.

 

Confero University

So who doesn’t want to have all the know-how to plan their own gorgeous and perfect wedding? When you look at all the details that have to come together for an event, brides may start to realize they just don’t know it all quite yet and that feeling can be quite overwhelming. Fortunately, our friends at Christopher Confero Design have partnered with some amazing vendors to put together an educational experience for brides-to-be called Confero University.

According to Christopher Confero, Confero U. students can expect more than just a bridal show at this event. “Confero University is an exclusive collaboration designed to offer brides-to-be insight into highly coveted industry secrets and over-the-top inspiration for their big day,” said Confero. It all starts with a meet-and-greet mixer night hosted by Engaged, A Wedding Library on Friday, March 8 and continues with a full day of hearing from top professionals in roundtable discussions, small group seminars and even sampling sweets on Saturday, March 9 at The Summit Club. The best part for us is the day concluding with a commencement address from our very own Michelle V. Tubbs, AWM’s publisher and editor-in chief! There’s sure to be glass of champagne or two as well.

Some of the professors and partners are also AWM advertisers that contribute to our fantastic photo shoots, including: A.G. Lighting, Arden Photography, Bella Bridesmaid, Bromberg’s, Engaged A Wedding Library, Event Rentals Unlimited, Gia’s Cakes, Holloway ProductionsIvory & White Bridal Boutique, Kathy G. & Co., Lillie’s, Melissa Moore Bogardus & Team, The Summit Club and more!

You can see all the information about tuition and accommodation options as well as the full syllabus on the Confero U. website. We are very excited for this amazing event and can’t wait to see you there!

 

White Dresses to host Rosa Clará trunk show

Brides on the hunt for their perfect bridal gown should take note of trunk show dates on the AWM Events calendar. At a trunk show, designers bring all their newest and best pieces to local boutiques to give brides an opportunity to try gowns that may not have been at the store otherwise. According to Kara Leonard of White Dresses, there can also be other terrific advantages of attending a local boutique’s trunk show. “We always suggest that brides visit trunk shows if they have the opportunity,” said Kara Leonard. “Trunk shows always offer additional options that are not normally available in the store and oftentimes provide brides with purchase perks, such as a discount.”

This weekend, Feb. 15-16, White Dresses will be hosting a Rosa Clará Trunk Show. White Dresses is a bridal boutique in Hunstville, Ala. that recently opened its doors and proudly carries Rosa Clará as one of its lines. “When we embarked on opening our bridal salon, Rosa Clará was one line we knew we wanted to offer brides,” said Kara Leonard. “Rosa Clará offers brides sophisticated and timeless silhouettes that are the epitome of feminine.”

Not only will White Dresses have Rosa Clara in its store this weekend, but it will also have Two by Rosa Clara, which is a more affordable option with similar styles that make brides look gorgeous.  Teresa Leonard, also of White Dresses, said that the wide variety of gowns is sure to provide something for every bride in search of their perfect bridal gown. “This trunk show will be a unique opportunity for Alabama brides,” said Teresa Leonard. “While White Dresses always offers the line in stores, we will have about 40 additional gowns in store during the trunk show for brides to try on. No other salon in the state offers these two lines and so this will provide a ton of different bridal gown options for girls across the state.”

If you need more information or would like to make an appointment with White Dresses, call 256.962.8020 or visit their website. Other upcoming trunks shows for White Dresses – March 8-9: Blush by JLM Couture | March 22-23: Intuzuri | March 29-30: Enchanted Atelier | May 17-18: Plazzo by Jane White

*All images provided by White Dresses. 

 

Inspiration Board: February

It’s our first Inspiration Board of 2013 for our new issue! Once again, we’ve taken lead from our spring cover featuring the lovely Miss Katherine Webb. It doesn’t hurt we’re working with some lovely Valentine’s Day hues from DesignSeed.com‘s decadent tones color swatch. A pop of red never fails to evoke romance and passion. Pair it with neutrals to let it shine. We’ll have all the images ready to be pinned as always. We hope all you lovebirds are having a blast planning your nuptials, especially during this “month of love.” XOXO!

1. Spring 2013 Cover | Bridal Model: Katherine Webb + Bridal Gown & Accessories: The White Room + Hair & Makeup: Melissa Moore Bogardus & Team at Joyce’s Salon + Photography: Arden Photography
2. Stationery: Amberly Shelton Print Design & Couture Paperie + Photography: Arden Photography
3. Bride: Mrs. Allison Crosson + Bridal Gown: Ivory & White Bridal Boutique + Photography: Marsha Perry Photography
4. Bridal Bouquet: Lillie’s + Photography: Arden Photography
5. Transportation: Trolley Times + Photographer: Daniel Taylor Photography + Wedding Planner: M. Elizabeth Events
6. Catering: Vestavia Country Club + Photographer: Daniel Taylor Photography + Wedding Planner: M. Elizabeth Events
7. Cake: Magnificent Cakes at Mountainview Gardens & Ballroom + Photographer: LB Studios
8. Photographer: R I Weddings

 

AWM: How It’s Made

After all the images have been placed, the articles have been proofed and every page has a seal of approval from our publisher and editor-in-chief, Michelle Tubbs, it is time to see the new issue of AWM come to life via our friends at Publishers Press in Louisville, Kentucky. In early December, we packed our bags and hit the road for our annual press check to personally inspect every page of the book to ensure the greatest quality for our readers and our advertisers. It’s a journey that finalizes our efforts throughout the entire year.

The process of printing a magazine is quite fantastic. At the enormous plant with barrels of carefully tested ink and rolls of paper that create cities in a warehouse, we started the day in the wee hours and stayed until every page of the 2013 issue was complete that night. Plates of every page are created to transfer ink on paper that runs in, out and around huge machines that eventually fold spreads into neat bundles. Once each spread is scrutinized and approved, thousands more are printed, stacked and sent to binding. Machines that look nothing sort of a incredible carnival ride will bind sheets together into one solid, complete magazine that is ready to be shipped just in time for the holidays. There may be a ton of work that goes into getting each magazine put together, but that doesn’t mean we don’t want you to tear out pages with the perfect cake, table linen or dress for your planning folders. Of course, if you can’t bear to tear your copy asunder, all images on our website are ready to Pin now!

Of course, we couldn’t pass the chance to celebrate another wonderful issue! When we arrived in town we headed to the Maker’s Mark restaurant since we were in Kentucky after all! As a toast to our first Signature Style Series shoot in the magazine by Kathy G. & Co. at The Donnelly House, I had a mint julep and we finished a fantastic meal with bourbon balls. On the second night, we left the printing press and our Publishers Press representative, Bryan, showed us an exquisite night at Decca complete with a viewing of National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. We hope you enjoy this issue as much as we do! We are excited to start planning our 2014 issue and even more excited to be back on our way to Louisville to complete it.

 

Katherine Webb through the years with AWM

Monday evening, the Crimson Tide faced the Fighting Irish in the BCS National Championship and we must admit the results have us saying, “Proud to be from Alabama!” We never would have guessed that the attention of America would have been focused on our sweet cover model, Katherine Webb. The national media may have just discovered Katherine’s beauty (only ONE aspect of this wonderful young woman mind you,) but we have long known that Miss Webb has a grace that shines radiantly on camera. Since 2007, Katherine Webb has worked with Alabama Weddings Magazine on several photo shoots to share emerging trends and timeless inspiration with our Southern brides. You could say she is a staple in our repertoire of models that make our shoots so successful. When she was crowned Miss Alabama, USA 2012, that was a guarantee that she would be back in front of our cameras once again for one of our biggest shoots of our 2013 issue – the Designer Profile. Once we received the images, there was no question that she would appear on the first cover of our 2013 issue. She embodies the grace, poise and charm of a true Southern lady and we couldn’t be happier that all of America can now see that too. Take a look at Katherine Webb as she has grown through the years with Alabama Weddings Magazine!


2008 | Photography: flip flop foto + Floral & Event Design: Kimberly Nelson, Bloomwoods + Gown: Heidi Elnora + Hair: Tom Rehle + Makeup: Heidi Slocumb + Venue: Auburn Marriott Opelika Hotel & Conference Center at Grand National

2010 | Photography: Frank Carnaggio Photography & Jerrod Brown Studios + Floral & Event Design: Jill Sampson Garmon + Lighting Design: A.G. Lighting + Bridal Gown: Bella Couture + Bridesmaid Gowns: Bella Couture + Hair & Makeup: Misty Smith + Venue: Chapel Hill Meeting House, at The Waters


2011 | Photography: Mark Broadway Photography + Floral & Event Design: Kimberly Nelson, Bloomwoods + Gown: Ivory & White Bridal Boutique +  Bridesmaid Gowns: Bella Bridesmaid + Hair & Makeup: Brittany Benton Massey + Venue: The John A Sibley Horticultural Center, Callaway Gardens

 

2013 | Bridal Gowns & Accessories: The White Room + Floral Design: Lillie’s + Hair & Makeup: Melissa Moore Bogardus – Joyce’s Salon + Photography: Arden Photography