Believe Bridal Showcase

All Brides-to Be! You are invited to experience the Believe Bridal Event.
This is a boutique bridal show experience.

Live vignettes called “scenes”

Experience the event as walking through a visual interactive museum gallery.
Bringing inspiration, creative design and insight to the brides.

Alabama Weddings magazine comes to life so brides can see, touch and hear how dreams and ideas can come to life before their eyes, while personally meeting the creatives and seeing the essential team-work of all exhibitors.

Sunday, February 19, 2017
1:00pm-4:30pm
Grand Bohemian Hotel, Mountain Brook

Registration: Day of Show

 

Real Wedding : Payton + Sam

Today’s Real Wedding comes to us from Glass Jar Photography. We saw images from this stunning wedding on Instagram and instantly fell in love! Sam and Payton are an adorable couple that tied the knot Feb. 6, 2016, in Hunstville. Payton’s gorgeous BERTA gown from Finery has a cutout back that we simply love! The reception at the Roundhouse Depot is a beautifully sunlit and airy dream with fab florals, acrylic ghost chairs and cafe lighting strung  perfectly from the rafters. This wedding is nothing short of swoon-worthy! Congratulations Mr. & Mrs. Winkler!

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Photography: Glass Jar Photography | Bridal Gown, Event Design & Coordination: Finery | Hair &  Make Up:The Transformation | Floral Design: Nip & Tuck Florist | Ceremony Venue: First Methodist Church, Huntsville, AL | Reception: The Roundhouse Depot

If you have a wedding or styled shoot you would like featured on the AWM Blog, see our Open Submissions page!

 

Real Wedding: Jessica + Tim

Today’s Real Wedding comes to us from Miranda Bounds at Dragonfly Photography. Jessica and Tim had a gorgeous Christmas wedding at the fab Grand Hotel in Point Clear, although you probably couldn’t tell with the beautiful outdoor ceremony! The naturally stunning views of southern Alabama, including the Spanish moss dripping from the live oak branches and the rocky shores of the Gulf, create the perfect backdrop for this couple’s nuptials. The photography is absolutely editorial and made our eyes grow wide as we viewed the gallery, especially when this sweet couple made their way to the beach for portraits. Congrats Jessica and Tim!

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Venue: The Grand Hotel | Point Clear, AL + Wedding Planner/Coordinator: Weddings and Events by Jenna Laine, LLC + Rentals: SOHO Events and Rentals + DJ/Entertainment & Lighting: Southern Sounds + Hair & Makeup: Gary Lynn + Cake: Couture Cakes + Pastor: Barry Lee + Florist: Southern Veranda | Spanish Fort, AL + Silk Ribbon on Bouquet: Victoria Austin Designs, LLC + Bride’s Dress: Something New Bridal Boutique + Bridesmaids Dresses: Bella Bridesmaids + Videographer: Katie Cannon Art

If you have a Real Wedding or Styled Shoot you would like featured on the AWM Blog, please see our Open Submissions page here.

 

Real Wedding: Heather + Andy

Today’s Real Wedding submission comes to us from our fab friends at Park Crest Event Facility! This venue is the hidden gem of Birmingham, boasting the most stunning views of Shades Crest Mountain as well as their new Carriage House, which is set to open soon! Heather and Andy’s wedding day was full of Southern charm. Although rain clouds loomed in the distance, they were still able to have their nuptials in the gardens with the help of some tent coverage in case a shower did spring up. When it comes to planning outdoor weddings, a backup plan should always be ready and available! Congratulations Mr & Mrs. Comptom!

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If you have a wedding you would like featured on the AWM Blog, please see our Open Submissions information here.

 

AWM Fifteenth Anniversary Gala

On December 29, 2015, the fabulous Grand Bohemian Hotel Mountain Brook opened its doors to a gathering of some of the Alabama wedding industry’s finest to celebrate the launch of our Fifteenth Anniversary issue. With the help of some of industry friends and under the direction of our Style and Managing Editor, Christopher Confero, we ushered in a true return to glamour. With a palette of black, white and gold, the Grand Bohemian ballroom was transformed in great part by the lighting and drapery by Design Productions for a cocktail party that was nothing short of fabulous. The centerpiece of the room, an anniversary cake designed by The Cakerie, was a true work of art that absolutely took our breath away. The three signature cocktails of the evening celebrated the three original AWM advertisers that have been in our pages since Day One: Bromberg’s, Mr. Burch Formal Wear and Olexa’s. Delicious canapés by the Grand Bohemian’s catering chef and cake bites by all our bakers were a true taste of perfection. All in all, we have to say we’re still swooning from the entire night!

After fifteen years of producing Alabama Weddings Magazine, we are incredibly proud of all those that have helped make this publication great. We hope every page produced over this legacy of time continues to inspire brides in Alabama, across the Southeast and beyond. Thank you for being part of Alabama Weddings Magazine. We could not do what we do without our beloved readers, hard-working advertisers and supporters near and far.


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alabama weddings 15th anniversary party from Holloway Productions on Vimeo.

A crowd favorite at the party was the CoolShots photo booth by Feel the Beat Entertainment! Did you have your photo taken? You can see the full online gallery here!

Our grateful appreciation to those that contributed to this event! Photography: Amari Photography + Event Design: Christopher Confero Design + Lighting and Drapery: Design Productions + Stationery Design: David K Haugen + Stationery Production: Amberly Shelton Paperie + Linen: I Do Linens + Props: PropHouse Birmingham + Rentals: Event Rentals Unlimited, Nuage Designs + Catering, Venue: Grand Bohemian Hotel Mountain Brook + Floral Design: HotHouse Design Studio + Michelle Van Every’s Hair and Makeup: Brittany Benton Massey + Entertainment: DJ Coco + Photo Booth: Cool Shots by Feel the Beat Entertainment + Anniversary Cake: The Cakerie + Cake Bites Gallery: Barb’s CakesCakes By KimThe CakerieKlingler’sOlexa’s Cakes + Bridal Gowns: Bella CoutureHeidi Elnora, Ivory & WhiteThe White Room + Male Model Tuxedos: Mr. Burch Formal Wear + Model Hair and Makeup: Katina Carter, Ashley Vines, Madeline Hulsey, Brittney Shelton

 

Styled Shoot: Sail Away With Me

We are so happy today to share some of the work of Handley Breaux Designs! Handley is one of the rising Birmingham wedding industry go-getters and embodies the true spirit of a young entrepreneur. When we were able to catch up with her at the Birmingham Botanical Gardens’ annual event Antiques at the Garden, we had to let her know about our open submissions for styled shoots! We knew she had some beautiful work to show and couldn’t wait to share.

We love this gorgeous nautical-garden fusion shoot captured by Eric + Jamie Photography for its sweet softness, touches of whimsy and plenty of glinting gold. Gold is really basking in its moment right now and we don’t mind a bit! Talented hair and makeup artist Kerri Bunn effortlessly steps into the role as model with fashion selections that push the boundary of bridal expectation. The table setting is pure romance with an abundance of candlelight, spilling florals and a true cherry on top per place setting of lovely china by Bromberg’s. The cake is a masterpiece of sugar work, with handmade flowers, berries and gilded adornments that are impossible to believe weren’t plucked right from the garden. Our compliments to the entire creative team!

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“This maritime themed photo shoot is a collection of images that we hope ignites everyone’s ability to believe in the fairy tale,” said Handley. “On a day to day basis, I see so many wedding images and hear so many ideas. The idea for this shoot came to me one day when one of my girlfriends asked me simply, ‘If you were to have your dream wedding, what would it be?’ Thoughts of a huge antique sailboat and a flowing dress immediately flooded my mind, and this is how our beautiful photo shoot came to be. The day of the photo shoot came, and the forecast called for overcast skies and a high of forty degrees (burr!) In the end, the overcast sky played the perfect backdrop to the gown and the white sails.”

We couldn’t agree more!

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Photography:Eric + Jamie Photography+ Styling & Event Design:Handley Breaux Designs + Gold Gown: Bella Bridesmaids Birmingham+ Jewelry + China Bromberg’s + Rentals Event Rentals Unlimited + Cake: Gia’s Cakes + Floral Design: Bushel + Peck + Wedding Dress:Catherine Ryals + Hair & Makeup, Model Kerri Burn + Stationery: Marked + Videography: Crooked Tree Productions + Props: West Elm

If you have a Real Wedding or Styled Shoot you would like featured on the AWM Blog, please see our Open Submissions page!

 

Real Wedding: Reagan + Steven

Today’s Real Wedding comes to us from Liz Bacon of EB photography + artistry. Reagan and Steven tied the knot on July 18. 2015 at Holy Trinity Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Cathedral. From the moment we saw their photos, we were all smiles, and we are certain you’ll see why when catch yourself grinning ear to ear looking through these beautiful images. With a reception at the perfect place for rocking party, Iron City, this couple’s wedding had beautiful details with art deco influences. The stunning bridal bouquet by KG Designs is nothing short of floral perfection, complete with a handkerchief detail that we love.

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When we asked Reagan about how she and Steven met, we got more than we may have bargained for! It’s truly one of those love stories of two people who were always meant for each other and finally got their “Happy Ever After.” Here is what Reagan shared with us:

“You know, Elene’s brother Steven is here too, he’s your age,” my mother said as we sat in our Gulf Shores condo. It was Spring Break of my Junior year in college and I had decided to come to the beach with my family to watch the Hoover softball team play in a regional tournament. Steven Weaver – the name rang a bell. Our families had been watching our sisters play softball since they were little. Steven went to Hoover High School. I knew of him, but didn’t know him. As I thought back on high school, I was reminded of one memory in particular.

It was Junior year and Homecoming week. My best friend, Amanda, had just been asked to the dance by a Sophomore clarinet player. Yep, Steven Weaver. Now being the creative and good friend that I am, I promptly began teasing her at band practice – She was a flute player and I a Buccanette. “STEVEN WEAVER…I BELIEVE YOU CAN GET ME THROUGH THE NIIIIIIGHT!” is what I sang loudly to the tune of ‘Dream Weaver.’ This rendition of the song was short lived, for Amanda broke up with Steven just days after Homecoming. I guess it just wasn’t meant to be.

Steven and I really never hung out in high school at Hoover, but after my mom mentioned he was in Gulf Shores to watch his sister play softball as well, I got excited. There was someone else in college to hang out with because sitting at the softball park alone gets boring! So one night, Steven, his mom and I went to The Pink Pony for some beers and Steven and I hit it off. My 10-year-old brother, Trey, had weirdly said, “I think y’all are gonna get married,” earlier  in the night and both of us just laughed. And just as I was thinking, “Man, he’s cute!” I overheard him mention something about a girlfriend back home to his mom. Sigh…Guess he’s taken.

Shortly after Spring Break I begin dating someone myself. The next time Steven and I connected was July 2011 when I was working at Timber Lake Camp in Shandaken, NY for the summer. I had just been dumped and my Nana had passed away. On one of my nights off, I was able to check Facebook, (we didn’t have cell service or regular internet access!) and there was a message from Steven Weaver. He sent his condolences regarding my grandmother’s passing and went on to see if I was interested in catching up. I mentioned I was moving to Seattle in the new year to pursue acting and he told me he was finishing up a degree in Accounting from Birmingham Southern. After a lengthy facebook conversation we planned to hang out in September when I got back South from NY.

I cannot tell you how nervous I was to be hanging out with Steven and to be going to his Fraternity house. Yes, our first date, a Theta Chi house party. My mother took me shopping for a new outfit for my “date” (even though countless times Steven stated it was NOT a date) and I nervously entered the Theta Chi house. The party was fun, Steven and I clicked like nothing I had ever experienced before. We spent the evening talking and I kept going back weekend after weekend to hang out with him.

Well, December arrived and I became nervous that being 3,000 miles apart would be too much strain on our relationship and it wouldn’t work out. Steven assured me that nothing could come between us. I will not lie, our long distance relationship has been tough, but it has opened my eyes to the fact that the most important thing in our relationship is to value the time we have with one another to the fullest. After countless flights, air miles, baggage claims, and tourist attractions I am blessed to have moved back to the South in September 2014 for the role of lifetime in my own story. And funny enough Steven proposed in the best way possible in such a long distance relationship, at baggage claim in the Birmingham airport at 1:30am after two flight delays. I married the love of my life, the man that brings out the best in me, and loves me with all my faults.

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Photographer: EB photography  + artistry + Wedding Coordination: What A Whirl Events + Reception Venue, Catering: Iron City Birmingham + Floral Design and Decor:  KG Designs + Lighting Design: A.G. Lighting + Hair and Makeup:  MHD Beauty + Bridal & Bridal Party Gowns: Divine Design Formalwear + Groom and Groomsmen: Divine Design Formalwear + Cakes: Magic Muffins + Ceremony Venue: Holy Trinity Holy Cross Greek Orthodox Cathedral + Reception Band: Z and the Party Faktory + Honeymoon Destination: The Excellence Resort: Punta Cana, Dominican Republic Lodging Honeymoon Suite: The Tutwiler Hotel + Videographer: ProjectMedia

If you have a wedding or styled shoot, you would like to have featured on the AWM Blog, please see our Open Submissions page.

 

Real Wedding: Courtney + Joel

Today’s gorgeous Real Wedding comes to us via Todd Helzer Photography. Joel & Courtney Hancock were wed last year on September 13 at the beautiful Moriah Bottoms in Woodstock, Ala. The couple’s distinct fashion style caught our eye immediately – not to mention how sweetly adorable they both are! The bridesmaid dresses are equally darling with an eclectic mix that match each girl’s own look. And nothing gets us happy quite like spotting Magic City Macarons! These darling treats are the perfect addition to any wedding with a tasty variety of flavors and customizations.  Congratulations Joel & Courtney on your recent one-year anniversary! AWM_ToddHelzer_1 AWM_ToddHelzer_2 AWM_ToddHelzer_3 AWM_ToddHelzer_4 AWM_ToddHelzer_v2AWM_ToddHelzer_6 AWM_ToddHelzer_7 AWM_ToddHelzer_8 AWM_ToddHelzer_9 AWM_ToddHelzer_10 AWM_ToddHelzer_11 AWM_ToddHelzer_12 AWM_ToddHelzer_13 AWM_ToddHelzer_14 AWM_ToddHelzer_16 AWM_ToddHelzer_17 AWM_ToddHelzer_18 AWM_ToddHelzer_19

Bridal Gown: Urban Outfitters + Bridal Belt: Ivory & White Bridal Boutique + Catering: Southern Charms Catering + Dessert: Magic City Macarons + Floral Design: Rebekah Fowler Creative + Groom & Groomsman Attire: River Island + Hair & Makeup: Emily Holmes + Music & Entertainment: Megan Byers & Justin Jackson + Photography: Todd Helzer Photography + Videography: David Lundgren + Stationary: Oak and Dream by Courtney Hancock + Venue: Moriah Bottoms + Décor: Southern Styled Events

 

If you have a wedding or styled shoot you would like featured on the AWM Blog, please see our Open Submissions page!

 

Real Wedding: Nicole + Andy

Today’s Real Wedding submission comes to us from Natalie Elyse Photography. Nicole and Andy’s love story is a global affair straight out of a fairytale. Their images caught our eye first, but then their story captured our hearts. You never know where you may meet your soulmate!

“Well, to say that Andy & Nicole have quite the love story would be an understatement,” said Natalie Elyse. “In short, Andy saw Nicole crossing the street one day while he was in traveling through Alabama on an exchange program – he’s from Australia – and he immediately just knew he had to get to know her. He ended up asking a friend to find out who she was, and they went on their first date a few days before his exchange program ended and he had to return to Australia. They wrote letters back and forth from Australia to Alabama for several years until Andy decided to pack up his things and officially move to Birmingham to be near her.”

Oh be still our hearts!  On June 20, 2015, the couple tied the knot at the stunning Gabrella Manor, a venue that is a beautiful backdrop for any wedding. They chose Gabrella specifically for the worldly setting it would give for their guests.

“Since so many of Nicole & Andy’s family members came from out of the country to attend their wedding, they chose Gabrella Manor as their venue because of its Spanish Colonial architecture that they felt created a cultural feel to bring their guests from all over the world together in one place. And what a celebration it was! These two and their families and friends danced the night away and were so full of joy in their celebration of this new marriage. Seeing so many people from all over the world coming together in Birmingham was truly beautiful.”

Congrats to Mr. & Mrs. Keene! We hope your future together includes many more world travels and memories!

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Venue, Floral Design & Catering: Gabrella Manor + Photography: Natalie Elyse Photography + Videography: Chris Adler + Wedding Dress: Bridal Bliss + Bridesmaid Dresses: Anthropologie + Groom’s Tuxedo: DKNY + Groomsmen Suits: Macy’s + Rings: Levy’s Fine Jewelry + Hair/Makeup: Bailey Doyle + Cake: Magnificent Cakes + Drinks: Avondale Brewery + Band: The Negotiators + Officiant: Jonathan Haefs

If you have a wedding or styled shoot you would like featured on the AWM Blog, see our Open Submissions page!

 

AWM: Behind-The-Scenes

Ever wonder what all goes into an AWM inspirational photo shoot? It takes much more than just a little hard work to bring these concepts to life for each issue. Thanks to the beautiful work of Holloway Productions, we bring you an inside look at the building of these shoots. From the moment a designer is contacted to begin planning to the final product that inspires you, our AWM creative teams always dedicate 110%. Just wait until you see what they’ve been creating for our 15th Anniversary Issue!

See more from this shoot at The Oaks here.

See more from this shoot at Lake Martin here.

 

Brides Against Breast Cancer at The Harbert Center

This Sunday, August 9, The Harbert Center in downtown Birmingham will open it’s doors for one of the most special bridal events in the country. Brides Against Breast Cancer is an organization dedicated to raising funds to help provide FREE cancer-related programs to women, children, families and caregivers. Their Nationwide Tour of Gowns brings designer gowns at discounted prices directly to brides at local partnering venues. Gowns are donated by former brides and bridal shops that may be gently used or even samples. With a wide variety of styles, sizes and price ranges, any bride is sure to find something absolutely perfect for their big day with the help of local vendor volunteers. It’s a great event for a great cause that AWM is proud to partner with and we hope to see you there!
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MORE ABOUT BABC

“The revenue generated by Brides Against Breast Cancer on our Nationwide Tour of Gowns charity bridal events, non-bridal networking events, and beneficiary events makes it possible to deliver these free educational information and support services to thousands of children and adults impacted by cancer across the country.
Health Support Network programs and services are available to anyone, anywhere through the resource called the Health Support Network Online. Health Support Network produces more than 150 cancer related online programs annually. These online programs include exercise, nutrition, meditation, education and caregiver support. The program content is supported by evidence based scientific research. Health Support Network has the expertise, experience and leadership positioned to deliver unmatched video content to an online network of affiliates.”

 

 

Styled Shoot: Nautical Dream

Alabama Weddings Magazine is known for its incredible styled shoots produced by some of Alabama’s best creative minds each year. Now we are so excited to begin sharing submitted styled shoots from across the state to continue inspiring brides throughout the year. Every so often, a group of talented vendors will come together with an idea that they want to create, get a game plan, and go make it happen. These styled shoots featured on the AWM Blog represent the fruition of their collaborations and we are always amazed to see what other vendors in the state are producing between crazy wedding schedules and their own personal lives.

The first styled shoot submission we are thrilled to be sharing today comes to us from Dragonfly Photography and a team of South Alabama wedding pros, including shoot coordinator and stylist, Weddings and Events by Jenna Laine.  “This styled wedding shoot took place along the deep blue waters of Orange Beach, located in South Alabama,” said Jenna. “The sugary white sands of Orange Beach are a popular location for Southern weddings, so with this shoot we wanted to inspire readers by creating a beautiful, classic beach wedding with an unexpected twist.”

We adore the abundance of texture in the floral designs and flowing gowns perfect for catching the winds off the ocean. The soft tones mixed with the navy nautical stripes gives that perfect balance of feminine and masculine elements. Every detail works together perfectly to elevate the look of a beach wedding to something extremely chic and glamourous without missing the relaxed feel that makes a wedding on the coast so special. All of this is an absolute dream with the lovely natural light streaming though the room. It has us ready to stop what we’re doing immediately and escape to the beach for a weekend!

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Venue: Turquoise Place in Orange Beach, Alabama + Coordinator and Stylist: Weddings and Events by Jenna Laine  + Photographer: Dragonfly Photography + Rental Company: SOHO Events and Rentals + Florist: Wildflowers Fairhope + Cake:  J.A.M. Cakery + Paper,Calligraphy: Southern Calligraphy + Gowns: Bella Bridesmaid, Mobile

Thank you again to Dragonfly Photography and the entire creative team that pulled together this gorgeous shoot! If you have a styled shoot you would like to submit to the AWM Blog, please see the details here.

Please note, all shoots that appear in the annual Alabama Weddings Magazine printed edition are created by AWM vendors for the magazine. Outside shoots are not accepted for features in print.

 

Real Wedding: Jason + Ingrid

Today’s Real Wedding submission comes to us from 205 Photography! Jason and Ingrid were all set to wed at The Sonnet House in Leeds, Ala. on March 21, 2015 when the ever-dreaded rain clouds came rolling in. But a little rain couldn’t bring down Ingrid’s spirits and this perfect venue selection made it possible for the day to continue as scheduled without worry. With a few umbrellas to catch any drizzle during the outdoor ceremony, all was well!

AWM: What advice would you give brides as they plan their wedding?”

Ingrid: “The only advice I have is to try to not get caught up in the small things. You will argue during the planning process – Jason was less than pleased when I drug him to a cake consult and spent over an hour describing the perfect shade of ivory. I am a perfectionist and spent over 1 1/2 years planning the wedding, so I was more shocked than anyone when I didn’t care it started raining on our wedding day. All that mattered to me was that I was finally getting to marry Jason and all our friends, family, and beloved dog Duke got to celebrate with us.”

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One of our favorite parts of this wedding is that Ingrid actually discovered her wedding dress from an AWM photo shoot  that appeared in our 2014 issue!

“I already had my heart set on The Sonnet House so it was pretty amazing to fall in love with a dress that you all styled at my venue,” said Ingrid. “Jason and I started dating freshman year of college in 2004, so I was ‘lucky’ to have had so much time to think about our wedding day. I think it can often be overwhelming with all the Pinterest pages and ideas being thrown out, so you really have to know what you and your fiancé’s style is before diving too deep. We are definitely more classic and traditional.”

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We love this wedding because it reminds us to not let a little storm cloud or the other small details rain on your parade. At the end of the day, you are marrying the person you love and are surrounded by the people that care about you the most. Congratulations Jason and Ingrid!

If you have a wedding you would like featured on the AWM Blog, see our Open Submissions page!

Venue: The Sonnet House + Photographer: 205 Photography + Cakes: Barb’s Cakes + Wedding Dress: Bella Couture – Justin Alexander + Tuxedos: Mr. Burch Formal Wear + Caterer:                 The Happy Catering Company + Hair/Makeup: Melissa Moore Bogardus + Florist: Corey Daniels – The Sonnet House + Reception Music: D’Zyre – Music Garden + Ceremony Music:    Jennifer Louie Violinist

 

 

Real Wedding: Lindsay + Ben

Perusing images from beautiful weddings just makes us smile every time, and it could not be more true than for this wonderful submission from The Happy Bloom! Lindsay and Ben were wed at First Baptist Church in Eufala on March 21, 2015. The smiles and laughter we shared as we sorted images for this feature were absolutely contagious, only stifled by tender moments that took our breath away. We are so fortunate to constantly be reminded why we love what we do as we share stories of love across Alabama. This couple absolutely beams with happiness while dressed impeccably for a traditional Southern affair. Lindsay’s bridal party captures perfectly the way bridesmaid dresses can be completely different but fit into one gorgeous palette for a cohesive look, while Ben’s groomsmen are a testament to men adding a pair of suspenders to their tuxedo checklist. We are just over the moon for this couple and wish them well as they begin their life together!

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Photography: The Happy Bloom + Ceremony Venue: First Baptist Church, Eufala + Reception Venue: Shorter Mansion + Bridal Gown: Ivory & White Bridal Boutique + Florist: Michelle Beaty + Videographer: Focal Point Video & Editing + Reception Music: Az Izz – Music Garden + Rentals: Panache Tent + Event Rentals + Catering: Pans + Petals Catering + Cake: Renee Beaty

 

Real Wedding: Caitlin + Sean

Today we are looking back at this gorgeous wintry affair submitted by  Sweet Julep Photography. Caitlin and Sean were wed at American Village on Jan. 9, 2015 with a beautiful ceremony in the chapel and reception in the barn. We love American Village for its picturesque moments across the entire venue. Kayci and Brittany with Sweet Julep Photographer asked Caitlin about the big day.

SJP: “Tell us about the proposal!”
Caitlin: “The proposal was perfect! It was a family trip and Sean had told me that his family had not taken family pictures since he was really young so he wanted to go to the lighthouse in Hilton Head and take some. The day beforehand, his dad had bought me a pretty sun dress ‘for pictures’ and Sean told me to get all dolled up because I would be in the pictures too. Sean set up a day at the nail salon for us to prep for pictures. Little did I know that while I was upstairs getting ready, he was downstairs practicing getting down on one knee. Around sunset, Sean and I climbed to the top of the lighthouse and he asked me to spend the rest of our lives together and I couldn’t have been more elated than I was in that moment!”

 

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SJP: “What is your favorite memory from your day?”
Caitlin: “My absolute favorite memory from the day was getting to see Sean for the first time. Our relationship is very much like best friends so just being around him made the whirlwind of the day disappear instantly!”

SJP: “Tell us about the vision and style you had in mind for your wedding.”
Caitlin: “For our wedding I wanted the style to be very inviting! I loved the soft color palette and our ‘do it all girl’ Leigh Anne White could not have been more perfect! Along the way she was able to portray exactly what we wanted even I wasn’t sure how to express my opinion! I relied on Pinterest and magazines for a lot of my inspiration, then sent pictures to Leigh Anne and she made it our own!”

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SJP: “What was the best decision you made during your planning process?”
Caitlin: “I think the decision that influenced our day the most was the location and date. The American Village gave both Sean and I the butterflies as we toured it! It has everything we wanted – the chapel, the barn, seperate suites to get ready and the people really made the day all about you! The American Village was perfect!!”

Congratulations to Caitlin and Sean! If you have a wedding you would like featured on the AWM Blog, see all the details here.

Photography: Sweet Julep Photography + Venue: The American Village + Bridal Gown: Anya Bridal + Bridesmaid Gowns: Bella Couture + Groom’s Attire: Mr. Burch Formal Wear + Hair and Makeup: Abby C Moorer + Floral and Planning: Leigh Anne White + Cake: Pen and Pastry + Catering: The Happy Catering Co. + DJ: Feel the Beat Entertainment

 

Real Wedding: Shelly + John

We are just giddy today to share Shelly and John’s Mobile, Ala. nuptials submitted to us by the absolutely terrific Leslie Davis of Freshly Bold Photography! What instantly caught our eye about this wedding was the lovely blue tone of the fashion for the bridesmaids, groom and groomsmen. A coastal wedding in the South requires a splash of color and we just love these gowns and suits. Shelly is classic, radiant bride with a smile that is contagious. Even as we’re posting this, we can’t help but smile still when we see her images. Congrats to Shelly and John!!

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Photography: Freshly Bold Photography + Hair & Makeup: Donna Love – Posh Salon – Dothan, Alabama + Bridal Gown: I Do Bridal + Floral Design: Zimlich Florist + Catering: Southern Flavor + Cake: Flour Girls Bakery + Band: No Plain Jane + Chair Rental: Port City Rental + Venue: Centre for Living Arts

 

Bride By Design featuring Heidi Elnora Premieres on TLC!

In 2006, our publisher and editor-in-chief, Michelle Van Every, met with a bridal gown designer setting up her shop in the Birmingham area. Heidi Elnora had just completed filming for Project Runway and was ready to take the bridal industry by storm. The spark of energy and charisma that makes Heidi so “Heidi” instantly caught Michelle’s interest and began a partnership that continues to make us so happy and proud with every issue of AWM. Since then, Heidi and her team have been part of the magic that makes Alabama Weddings Magazine so special. She represents the true heart of a small business owner – she not only has the dream, but also has the determination and hard work to back it up. She has consistently pushed herself and her brand to be better every single day, taken challenges and turned them into blessings and made her mark in the industry on a national scale – right from her home in Birmingham, Alabama.

Now the world has turned its eye on Heidi Elnora to see that “it factor” that we’ve known she has for a long time. On Friday, March 27, Bride By Design makes it official debut on TLC at 9/8 pm central. Bride By Design follows Heidi Elnora as she helps brides design their dream wedding dress through all stages of creation—from inspiration to sketching to sewing to fitting to styling until their final dream dress is ready for their big day. Heidi helps each bride and her family design a dress that truly reflects their personality, whether choosing one from her existing collections—heidi elnora and hello darling—or through her Build-A-Bride trademark which is arguably the most customizable opportunity in the industry for a bride’s dress shopping experience. This alternative allows brides-to-be ownership in designing their dress, choosing a style from over 15 basic white dresses with more than 25 unique add-on pieces.

To see what makes Heidi’s Build-A Bride experience so incredible, check out this video by Holloway Productions:

To celebrate our time with Heidi leading to this moment, we took a look back at some of our shoots featuring Heidi’s creations to share just a handful of some of our favorite images from our 2007 issue to our 2015 issue currently on newsstands featuring a Heidi Elnora gown on the cover!

Frank Carnaggio Photography
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Rhonda Garrett Gilliam Photography / Mark Broadway Photography
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Frank Carnaggio Photography / Lance Lenoir Photography
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Arden Photography
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Rob & Wynter Photography
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See the Sneak Peek of Bride By Design here and be sure to set your DVR to record the entire series every Friday this spring at 9/8 pm central!

 

Real Wedding: Mary Christin and John

Today’s Real Wedding submission comes to us from Heather Durham Photography. Mary Christin and John had a perfectly intimate wedding for just family members in November at Mountain Chapel. We love small weddings like this that focus on the meaning of the day.  The best part is that the couple had time together for beautiful golden light photos to be made at Aldridge Gardens after the ceremony. The fall colors create a beautiful natural backdrop for stunning images that instantly caught our eye. We love this simply chic Nicole Miller dress paired with an elegant headband for a refined bohemian look. Of course, even for an intimate wedding like this you must have at least a two-tier cake – one for sharing with guests and one for the one-year anniversary. Some wedding traditions can be broken, but we encourage sticking to any rules that mean more cake – especially when it’s from Olexa’s! Congrats Mary Christin and John!

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If you have a wedding you would like featured on the Alabama Weddings Blog, see all the details on our Open Submissions page!

Photography: Heather Durham Photography + Cake: Olexa’s + Ceremony: Mountain Chapel + Coordinator: Amanda Foster + Bridal Gown Designer:Nicole Miller+ Makeup Artist: Laura Eason + Hair Salon: Angie Baker of Fringe +  Floral Design: Bride’s family

 

Real Wedding: Kelli + Tom

We are just thrilled to share today’s Real Wedding from Dragonfly Photography. On one of our daily (more like hourly really) scrolls through Instagram, we came across Kelli and Tom’s wedding cake via Cakes By Kim. We had a pretty good feeling this would be a gorgeous feature to share on the AWM blog and we were absolutely right! This NYE celebration at B&A Warehouse has just the right amount of sparkle and glamour to start the New Year right and the couple absolutely radiates with joy. Miranda of Dragonfly Photography had this to say about working with this couple:

“Kelli and Tom are two of the sweetest people that I have ever met. Kelli was actually a bridesmaid at another client’s wedding in Orange Beach, and Tom proposed to her soon thereafter. I was so thrilled when they asked me to photograph their big NYE celebration!! Everything was decorated with gold, black and cream with extra sparkle!”

And who doesn’t love extra sparkle?! Congratulations Kelli and Tom!

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If you have a wedding you would like featured on the AWM Blog, see more information on our Open Submissions page.

Photography: Dragonfly Photography by Miranda Venue, Catering: B&A Warehouse + Floral Design: Jenn Wilks, Main Street Florist + Wedding Gown: The Something Blue Shoppe + Bridesmaid Gowns: Adrianna Papell – Bella Bridesmaid + Cake: Cakes by Kim + Hair & Makeup: Emily Summervile

 

Real Wedding: Abbi + Brent

Today’s gorgeous Real Wedding submission comes to us from Wes Roberts Photography. Abbi and Brent Kohn tied the knot last year on April 12, 2014, at the fabulous Wynfield Estate in Montgomery. We’ve had the pleasure of shooting one of our Signature Style Series shoots for the 2012 issue of AWM at this venue and it is truly breathtaking. Although the fashion, the design and the couple are all just beautiful, the most perfect part of this wedding is the thoughtfulness of incorporating sentimental details throughout the entire day. Abbi gives us an inside look at how tradition and nostalgia made their wedding so special to them:

“On April 12, 2014, a fairy tale was brought to life! We had so much fun all day long; we couldn’t stop smiling. The Wynfield Estate couldn’t have been a more perfect venue to watch our dream wedding unfold before us. The weather was beautiful, the flowers were stunning, and the food was delicious. We had a fun-filled time dancing the night away with all of our friends and family to Tim Tyler and his dueling pianos. We were honored to share this special day with so many family and friends. We had several sentimental elements entwined throughout our ceremony. The ring bearer’s pillow was hand made from my grandmother’s sixty year old wedding gown. My bouquet was wrapped with lace from my mother’s wedding veil. We drank champagne from the same glasses that my parents used on their wedding day thirty-four years ago. I wore my mother in law’s garter, and sewn into her garter was blue yarn taken from my childhood blanket. The mother of the groom’s bouquet was adorned with a silver locket that held a picture of her late husband; they shared 29 years of marriage. The flower girl’s baskets were filled with dried flower petals that I had been given by the groom throughout our ten year courtship. We strived to make our perfect day a classic look, with touches of nostalgia that have enriched our memories, and brought us together to share a life. It was a magical day that will be forever etched in our hearts.”

No matter what look or feel you want for you wedding, tying in those special details makes your wedding uniquely you. It represents the heart of a relationship that begins long before your walk down the aisle and the future you will share together after your honeymoon. Congratulations to Abbi and Brent!

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Photography: Wes Roberts Photography + Venue: Wynfield Estate + Catering: A Catered Affair + Floral Design: Southern Wedding Design + Music: Tim Tyler and the Dueling Pianos + Cake Artist: Cake Design + Rentals: Brendle Rentals

 

Brides Against Breast Cancer in Birmingham

Looking to find your perfect wedding dress? Make plans to attend the Brides Against Breast Cancer charity trunk sale at the Hyatt Regency Birmingham – The Wynfrey Hotel on Sunday, March 8! This wonderful event brings a collection of donated designer gowns for brides to peruse and the proceeds help fund cancer-related programs that are free for children, adults, families and caregivers. It’s a terrific opportunity to share just even more love with your journey to your wedding day. While being part of this charitable event, you will also have the chance to meet with some of Birmingham’s wedding industry professionals and enter for a chance to win prizes and giveaways.

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Admission to the event is $5 per person. Gowns in sizes 4-18 will be available with price ranges of $99 to $3,900. Interest-free layaway plans are also available. Take your gown home that day, accompanied with the warm, fuzzy feeling of helping those in the fight against breast cancer. Of course, every bride will receive a free copy of Alabama Weddings Magazine too! Mark your calendars for this Sunday, March 8, to be part of the Brides Against Breast Cancer cause!

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Real Wedding: Emma + Anthony

Today’s real wedding submission comes to us via the ladies of Invision Events. Emma and Anthony were wed at Holy Trinity Episcopal in Auburn on March 1, 2014. We absolutely adore the light airiness of this gorgeous wedding day. The pastel color palette and simple yet striking details just make us smile. Emma’s tea length dress with pink petticoats is already so perfect, but the addition of tiffany blue shoes and Anthony’s matching bow tie just complete the look. Then just to add that extra “swoon factor,” check out the fantastic cake topper hand drawn to replicate each detail of the couple’s  attire. Courtney Wolf, one of the planners behind Invision Events, had this to add about the big day:

“Emma and Anthony’s spring wedding is chock full of so much prettiness and Emma did so much herself, as this was a budget soiree,” said Wolf. “We are completely, I mean completely, in love with them as a couple and their wedding. They have an amazing story, too! Emma, a mid-wife for women from countries in crisis, and Anthony met in Africa. They now live in Washington DC. And Emma’s dress is a vintage 50s one-of-a-kind. Emma really wanted a very simple and vintage-inspired day. Their wedding was less than 100 guests and she wanted to use the sweet and quaint setting the Holy Trinity has to create a vintage garden party feel. Being a couple that travels a lot, coming back to Auburn and to Holy Trinity where Emma had grown up was an easy choice for them. Everything about their day was done to give their day a personal feel.”

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If you have a wedding you would like included on the AWM Blog, please see our Open Submissions page!

Planner: Invision Events
Photographer: Tiffany Hughes
Venue: Holy Trinity Episcopal
Florals: Stanley Sistrunk with The Flower Store
Catering: Sprayberry BBQ
Cake: Sonshine Cakes
Vintage Decor: Rum and Roses
Rentals: Special Arrangements
Paper: Minted and Rifle Paper Company

 

Real Wedding: Angie + Michael

Today’s Open Submission comes to us from J. Woodbery Photography. Michael and Angie Bridell celebrated their nuptials in true Mardi Gras style at Sloss Furnaces in Birmingham on May 17, 2014. From the colors of the wedding party attire, the masks worn by all and a second line ceremony recessional, this wedding was all about letting the good times roll. Carnivale season is a favorite time of year for the couple, so they wanted to share that with their guests. We share in Michael and Angie’s appreciation for the Southern tradition of Mardi Gras and love seeing it incorporated into their wedding day. Congratulations to Angie and Michael as they celebrate their first anniversary in just a few months and, “Laissez bon temps rouler!”
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If you have a wedding you would like featured on the AWM Blog, see our Open Submissions page!
Photography:  J. Woodbery Photography + Venue: Sloss Furnaces + Wedding Planner: Elle Weddings + Florist: Nelda Shiftlett + Invitations: Invitatii Couture + Bridal Gown: David’s Bridal + Groom’s Attire: Jos. A Bank + Cake: Sharonda and Sharanda’s Custom Cakes + Catering: Cajun Steamers + DJ: Mixmaster DJ Crazy A

 

The Big Fake Wedding – Birmingham

On September 25, 2014, The Big Fake Wedding (formerly known as The NotWedding) brought together the talents of several local wedding professionals to create a bridal event that brings the full wedding experience to attendees.

About The Big Fake Wedding:

“Complete with dinner and drinks, an emotional vow-renewal ceremony and a dance-party reception, The Big Fake Wedding has become a killer alternative to a bridal show. The hand-selected vendors perform their services as they would at a real wedding, and the ‘wedding guests’ get to hear the music, taste the cakes, and smell the flowers… while enjoying a night of great food, dancing and surprises, leaving brides-and-grooms-to-be saying ‘I want my wedding to be just like that!'”

Each event features a real married couple that renews their vows during the ceremony, supporting The Big Fake Wedding’s value of strong marriages. This event’s couple was Nedra and Jeremy, an adorable couple that are also behind the wonderful organization She Dances, which provides holistic restoration for young girls that have been sexually trafficked in Honduras.

Take a peek inside the big event, which was styled around the concept of marble swirls for a truly unique design combining the interpretations of all vendors involved. Photos courtesy of: Benzaia PhotographyMagen Davis Photography, and A Still Breath Photography.

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To see the next Big Fake Wedding happening nearest you, visit their RSVP List!

Venue: The Avon Theater | Catering: Cantina On Wheels | Bar: The Bar Hops | Photography + Save the Date Shoot: Benzaia Photography | Photography + Styled Shoot: Magen Davis Photography | Photography + Rehearsal Dinner: A Still Breath Photography | Day-Of Coordination, Floral + Event Design (Head Table + Tables 3, 6, 9, 12): I Do I Do! Wedding Planning | Floral + Event Design (Bridal Party Flowers + Tables 2, 5, 8, 11): Spade and Annual | Floral + Event Design (Lounge Space + Tables 1, 4, 7, 10): PropHouse Birmingham | Stationery (Invitations + Programs): Deliver Paper Studio | Stationery (Invitations + Menus/Menu Cards): Amberly Shelton Paperie | Wedding Dress: Ivory & White | Bridesmaids Attire: Southern Bridesmaids | Groomsmen Attire: Menguin, Inc. | Hair: Morgan Ashley Salon | Makeup: PurPowder | Health + Lifestyle: Skinny Wrap With Jill | Accessories: Ex Voto Vintage Jewelry | Favors + Bags: The Robin & The Well | Entertainment: The Wedding Production Professionals by Chief Entertainment | Photobooth: Snaps Photo Booth | Wedding Cake: Cakes by Kim | Dessert Bar: Baking Bandits | Dessert Bar: Cakes by Kim | Desserts: 80 POPS! | Hotel Sponsor: Courtyard by Marriott and Residence Inn Hotels | Vintage Car Service: Coats Classic Cars | Wedding Website Builder: Squarespace | National Travel Vendor: Bliss by Luxury Concierge Travel | National Linen Vendor: LinenTablecloth| National Sparkling Wine Sponsor: Ferrari

 

Real Wedding: Morgan + Grant

Today’s Real Wedding Submission comes to us from Be Light Photography. Morgan and Grant tied the knot on Sept. 27, 2014 at the Cypress Inn Pavilion in Tuscaloosa, Ala. The day was perfectly inspired for a relaxed, fun afternoon by the Black Warrior River. We love the delicate lace back on the bride’s gown, the groom’s cheesecakes instead of a traditional cake, and some very well dressed young guests! Our favorite image though is the three generations of hands clasping and showing their symbols of commitment. Those are the images that will take your breath away for a lifetime even when loved ones are not near because that was an incredible moment in time that can never be taken away.

“My husband and I decided when we got engaged that we did not want an overly fancy wedding,” said Morgan. “We got married outside at the Cypress Inn gazebo and had our reception in the pavilion next door. Our church does not have a building and since we both enjoy the outdoors, Cypress Inn was a wonderful fit for us. I wanted our wedding to be rustic but not necessarily ‘country’ so I decided to go with more of a garden theme. I found a picture of a bouquet that I fell in love with and pretty much built my whole wedding around this picture of flowers. I chose simple, orange bridesmaid dresses that I thought would flatter everyone and match the flowers I had found in the picture. To compliment the bridesmaid dresses, we decided on grey suits for the men.”
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“To stay a little more casual, we had our wedding at 4:00 in the afternoon and served heavy hors d’ oeuvres like bacon wrapped shrimp, prime rib sliders and buffalo chicken dip,” said Morgan. “Drinks included beer and wine as well as basics such as water and tea. My cakes were done by a friend of mine, and she did a tremendous job. The bridal cake was a buttercream pound cake with flowers from our arrangements for decoration, and my husband had a medley of three strawberry-topped cheesecakes. Strawberry cheesecake is Grant’s favorite dessert, so I thought this would be more enjoyable for him than a traditional chocolate cake. Not to mention, they turned out to be gorgeous! We opted not to have a first dance and decided to go with the trend of having lawn games. The pavilion has these amazing roll up garage-style doors and grass areas that really suited this decision well. People were able to flow easily from inside to outside, and the weather was perfect. We left around 7:30 in his car that everyone had decorated. I thought the end result of our wedding was a beautiful and laid back day. I would not have changed a thing.” (That’s what we like to hear!)

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Photography: Be Light Photography + Venue & Catering: Cypress Inn + Bridal & Bridesmaid Gowns: Bella’s Bridal & Formal + Hair & Makeup: Lauren Brawley + Cakes: Carley Butts + Floral Design: Flowers Etc. + Wedding Day Director- Keely Duke and Christy Crawford of Signature Events

If you have a wedding you would like featured on the AWM Blog, see our Open Submissions page for more details.

 

Real Wedding: Carrie + Joe

Today’s Real Wedding comes from Maggie Beam of BleuBird Photography. Carrie and Joe Erdner were wed at Nichols Arbor of Huntsville Botanical Gardens on August 2, 2014. We instantly fell in love with this wedding for the gorgeous images taken around the gardens, the whimsical details and the look of true love in this couple’s eyes. The fashion is gorgeous, from the mother of the bride’s and bridesmaid’s dresses, the dapper men’s suits and the brides stunning Intuzuri gown from White Dresses Boutique. Pearls and a simple fabric flower in the her hair complete Carrie’s look. We love this wedding and wish our best to Carrie and Joe! Congrats you two!awm_erdner_1 awm_erdner_2 awm_erdner_3 awm_erdner_4 awm_erdner_5 awm_erdner_6 awm_erdner_7 awm_erdner_8 awm_erdner_9 awm_erdner_10 awm_erdner_11 awm_erdner_12awm_erdner_13awm_erdner_14 awm_erdner_15 awm_erdner_16 awm_erdner_17awm_erdner_18 awm_erdner_19awm_erdner_20 awm_erdner_21awm_erdner_24awm_erdner_22

Photographer: BleuBird Photography +  Dress: White Dresses Boutique – Designer: Intuzuri + Venue: Nichols Arbor @ Huntsville Botanical Gardens + Flowers: Kayla Hollis + Grooms Attire: Men’s WH + Caterer: Endless Catering + Wedding Coordinator: Paige Faulkner + Hair: Travis Fox + Entertainment: DJWellDunn Entertainment by Brandon Dunn + Makeup: Laura Werth Skin Care by Laura LLC at In the Nails + Cake: June Stafford & Jimmie Lou Harris

If you have a wedding you would like featured on the AWM Blog, see our Open Submissions page for more details.

 

Real Wedding: Michael + Sylvia

Today’s Real Wedding comes to us from Kristi Chappell Photography. Michael and Sylvia Warren were wed on October 11, 2013 at Guntersville State Park. Rich autumn tones and Southern details bring to mind all the things we love about this time of year. Sylvia’s candy apple red shoes are a fab pop of color, and the groom is sharply dressed in his Army Service Uniform. We just adore the young gentleman attending the blueberry lemonade station as a refreshment before the ceremony, which is a great detail to have for your guests as they arrive. Congrats to Mr. and Mrs. Warren as their first anniversary approaches very soon!

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Photography: Kristi Chappell Photography + Venue, Catering: Guntersville State Park Lodge + Wedding Planner, Décor, Floral Design: VM Weddings + Bridal Gown: Vera Wang + DJ: Citybeatz DJ Services 

If you have a wedding you would like to share on the AWM Blog, please see our Open Submissions page!

 

Real Wedding: Holly + Jarred

Today’s Real Wedding submission comes from Betty Donne Photography. Holly and Jarred had a sweet country wedding at Kalioka Stables in Saraland, Ala. this past May. There are so many details about this wedding that make us smile, from the flowers in Holly’s hair to the adorable ring bearer’s attire and the pastel/neutral color palette. The floral garland on the ceremony cross is absolutely gorgeous and you will love that Holly and her family/friends all worked together to create the floral arrangements. Our favorite part though is the popcorn bar! Guests can grab their popped snack from the vintage popper and customize with a selection of seasonings. Thanks again Betty Donne Photography for sharing and congratulations to Holly and Jarred!

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Photography: Betty Donne Photography + Caterer: Laura Reddit and Johnnie Smith + Venue: Kalioka Stables + Cake: Flour Girls + Band: Southern Approach + Ceremony Chairs and Popcorn: Mobile Popcorn Company + Bridal and Bridemaid Attire: David’s Bridal + Groom’s and Groomsmen’s Attire: Jos. A. Bank

If you have a wedding you would like featured on the AWM Blog, please see our Open Submissions page. We can’t wait to see!

 

The 2nd Birmingham NotWedding

Earlier this year, we had the pleasure of welcoming Birmingham’s first NotWedding to Bridge Street Gallery and Loft for an evening of love, dinner and dancing for a night dedicated to fab wedding design for happy couples. This event that takes place in cities around the country connects brides to local vendors in the form of a fake wedding and reception. Brides with their family and friends attend a “wedding” of a real Birmingham couple. They renew their vows, everyone cheers and then the party really gets started. Attendees can meet with the vendors that create the magic, and head to the reception. Check out some of the highlights from the first Birmingham NotWedding!

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Now we are pleased to announce the 2nd NotCouple to renew their vows next Thursday, Sept. 25, at Avon Theater! Nedra and Jeremy are an adorable couple that are also behind the wonderful organization She Dances, which provides holistic restoration for young girls that have been sexually trafficked in Honduras. Stephanie Benzaia of Benzaia Photography recently took the couple out for “engagement session” shoot in Mountain Brook’s English Village. See more of this engagement shoot on the NotWedding Blog!

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WE HAVE A SECRET FOR AWM READERS!

Do you have your tickets yet for the 2nd NotWedding on Thursday, Sept. 25 yet? You can purchase them here. We are so excited to share some HUGE news with our AWM readers as well! You can now get 50% off your ticket price with the promo code: HALFOFFTHENW. Join us for this bridal event like no other and experience what local Birmingham vendors can bring to your big day. We can’t wait to see you at the NotWedding!

 

 

 

 

Real Wedding: Megan + Joe

Today’s Open Submission comes to us from Freshly Bold Photography. Megan and Joe were high school sweethearts that tied the knot in front of Megan’s great great grandmother’s “little house” in Grand Bay, Ala. Setting your ceremony in front of an old family property adds a personal, sentimental touch to  the momentous occasion of a wedding that is perfectly Southern. It brings you back to a place that holds memories for an entire family and shares it with your new family. The bridesmaid dresses and bouquets are a nice pop of color against the neutral palette of the menswear and natural surroundings. And what rustic Southern wedding would be complete without cowboy boots? The couple wanted to create a casual, fun experience with their guests – a true shindig! Everyone in the family had a hand in making all the details come together, from the flowers and bridal cake to the clean-up afterward. “We are more than grateful for the help from our friends and family,” said Megan. That is the true spirit of a Southern wedding. Congratulations to Megan & Joe!

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If you have a wedding you would like featured on the AWM Blog, please see our Open Submissions page!

 

Real Wedding: Melissa + Matthew

Today’s Open Submission is Melissa and Matt’s gorgeous wedding at Children’s Harbor on Lake Martin on March 15, 2014. A big thanks goes to Alisha Crossley Photography for sharing her work on these nautical nuptials with us! Everything about this wedding is picture perfect. Melissa’s gown features lovely lace sleeves that we are sure she was grateful to have on a brisk March day by the water. We love the clean styling and attention to detail. The navy and neutrals palette is so lovely at this scenic venue. The wonderful thing about renting the Children’s Harbor facilities is that all proceeds directly benefit the services for children with long-term, serious illnesses and their families offered by the non-profit organization. Just by choosing this location for your wedding, you can help a child in need in your community. Congratulations Mr. & Mrs. Newland!

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

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Photography: Alisha Crossley Photography + Cake: Barb’s Cakes + Event Rentals: Special Events + Lighting Design: A.G. Lighting  Wedding Planner: M. Elizabeth Wedding & Events + Venue: Children’s Harbor, Alexander City. Hair & Makeup: Jeremy Stephens – The Salon + Floral Design: Grace’s Flowers + Catering: Springhouse Restaurant +  Ceremony Music: Auburn String Quartet + Reception Entertainmant: Feel the Beat Entertainment + Photo Booth: Birmingham Photo Booths

 

 

Birmingham’s First Not Wedding

On March 19th, we had the pleasure of attending Birmingham’s first Not Wedding at Bridge Street Gallery and Loft in the heart of downtown. The Not Wedding is a twist on the traditional bridal show where local vendors collaborate to create a fake wedding so that brides can get the full experience of their talents. The driving inspiration of this event was the Japanese technique of dyeing cloth known as shibori, with a focus on the color indigo with pops of vibrant hues and glints of gold. The airy, open venue with natural light pouring through wide windows at Bridge Street Gallery and Loft was the perfect palette for this creative team to bring this unique design together.

Brides could peruse vendor booths as they entered the building before taking a seat for the ceremony separated by sheer draping. HotHouse Design Studio set the ceremony with a grand backdrop incorporating oversized vases supporting a contemporary floral installation with suspended bubble vases. P.E.W.S debuted their fantastic new GOLD wedding pews that were custom-painted just for this event. Unique wedding seating just got a little more unique! A special part about this event is that the fake bride and groom aren’t just recruited models – they are a married couple that took this moment to renew their vows together. The bride, Laura McCarty wore a splendid gown from White Dresses Boutique and her bridesmaids wore gowns from RentTheRunway.com that matched the shibori theme perfectly.

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After the happy couple said, “I do!” again, guests were invited upstairs where a gorgeous reception awaited them after a meet and greet with the vendors who created everything they had seen. The Bar Hops were mixing libations and Bayles Catering had savory fare hot and ready. Café lighting was strung from the open rafters over guest tables that were designed by Invision Events, HotHouse Design Studio and Adorned European Floral Design. We love the attention to styling on these tables with layers of golden props and chargers, candlesticks and of course lush floral designs.

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The cake by Kim’s Cakes was a truly inspired creation that gave a sampling of several techniques wrapped into one fab confection. An fleet of light and fluffy cupcakes were arranged on golden pedestals. We have a fine appreciation for a certain talent that Kim’s Cakes shares with the cake designers featured in AWM – the ability to create cakes that not are not only visually stunning, but also delicious. It can be tricky, but a symphony when done just right. We grabbed a bite as we let the guests take to the dance floor and said our goodbyes.

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35 Atlanta

If you want to join us for the next Birmingham Not Wedding, mark you calendar for September 25 when the next team will create a completely different vision at The Avon Theater! We can’t wait to see what inspires them. Of course, AWM will be there with copies of our 2014 issue in hand. We will see you there!

Check out the awesome vendors below that made it all happen!

Videography: 35 Atlanta + Floral Design for Wedding Party and Tables 9, 10, 11, 12: Adorned European Floral Design + Drapery and Entertainment: Amerson Events + Transportation: Apex Valet / Rare Transportation + Libations: Bar Hops + Catering: Bayles Catering + Venue: BridgeStreet Gallery and Loft + National Travel Vendor: Bliss Luxury Concierge Travel + Wedding Cake: Cakes by Kim + National Sparkling Wine Sponsor: Ferrari + Program Design: Gray Cloud Print + Alcohol: High Ridge Spirits + Floral Design for Ceremony and Tables 1, 3, 5 , 7: HotHouse Design Studio + Event Design for Head Table and Tables 2, 4, 6, 8: Invision Events + Photography: Koli Nichols Photography, Morgan Trinker Photography, Spindle Photography + National Linen Sponsor: Linen Tablecloth + Live Event Painter: Live Event Art – The Wedding Artist + Day-Of Coordination: M. Elizabeth Events + Event Rentals: Event Rentals Unlimited + Pew Rentals: P.E.W.S. + Makeup: Rawwbeauty Makeup Artistry + Bridesmaid Attire: Rent The Runway + Wedding Dress: White Dresses Boutique

 

Real Wedding: Amy + Alex

Today’s Real Wedding comes to us from  j.woodbery photography. Amy and Alex recently tied the knot on the gorgeous grounds of Antebellum Weddings at Oak Island on April 5, 2014. We love roses and succulents with lovely deep hues of purple for the bridesmaid gowns as well as the delicate beading of Amy’s bridal gown. Our absolute favorite photo though is three generations of women showing their rings at the reception. Of course, we think a sparkler sendoff always completes the night perfectly! Be sure to check out their wedding highlight film by Hampton Road Studios at the end. Congratulations Amy and Alex!

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Catering, Flowers, Coordination: Antebellum Weddings at Oak Island + Photography: j.woodbery photography + Videography: Hampton Road Studios + Bride’s Cake: Barb’s Cakes + Groom’s Cake: Evelyn Criswell + Bridal Gown: – Something Blue – Allure Bridals + Bridesmaid Gowns: Something Blue – Bill Levkoff + Makeup Artist: Rawwbeauty + Hair Stylist: Molly Stilley + Band: Nick Carver Band

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

 

Real Wedding: Allison + Brady

Today’s Open Submissions comes to us from CWF Photography. Allison and Brady McGee tied the knot in Montgomery last year on April 20. The sweet Southern details and gorgeous scenery have us ready for Alabama to be back in bloom for spring! We can’t get enough of this couple’s beaming faces. You can truly see just how excited they were to start their journey as husband and wife together! “”I loved working with Allison and Brady planning their day!” said Mary Sanders, Allison’s wedding planner of Mary Me. “Hearing the vision Allison had and bringing it to life was so unique, especially with the reception venue being a close family friend’s private residence. She wanted it to have Southern flair and to be comfortable for all guests. With Brady and his family being from Texas, we wanted to show them true Southern hospitality.” If you have a wedding you would like featured on the AWM Blog, see our Open Submissions details. awm_cfp_1 awm_cfp_2 awm_cfp_3 awm_cfp_4 awm_cfp_5 awm_cfp_6 awm_cfp_7 awm_cfp_8 awm_cfp_9 awm_cfp_10 awm_cfp_11 awm_cfp_12 awm_cfp_13 awm_cfp_14 awm_cfp_15 awm_cfp_16 awm_cfp_17 awm_cfp_18 awm_cfp_19 awm_cfp_20 awm_cfp_21 awm_cfp_22 awm_cfp_23 awm_cfp_24 awm_cfp_25 Photographer: CWF Photography + Wedding Planner & Event Design: Mary Me + Floral Design: Melissa Kendall Floral Design + Rentals & Linens: Brendle Rentals + Lighting Design: Special Event Lighting + Catering: Jennie Weller Catering + Entertainment: Cornbred Band + Cake: Cake Designs

 

Real Wedding: Julianne + Scott Joe

Our Real Wedding today on the AWM Blog was shared with us by Spindle Photography. Julianne and Scott Joe’s wedding on September 21, 2013 was a darling affair at Swann Lake Stables.  Neutral tones, a perfectly draped tent with chandeliers and fab fashion make this wedding a true eye-catcher. You know we love the pup dressed in a tutu for the occasion! If we could just get a taste of Savoie Catering’s fare, we’d be tinkled pink. Mazel tov Julianne and Scott Joe!

If you have a wedding you like featured on the AWM Blog, please see our Open Submissions page!
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Bridal Gown: The White Room + Catering: Savoie Catering + Lighting: A.G. Lighting + Venue: Swann Lake Stables + Wedding Planner: Mariee Ami– Neillie Butler + Photographer: Spindle Photography + Video: Kinora Films + Florist: Flowerbuds + Cake: Magic Muffin + Band: Atlanta Rhythm and Groove + Bridesmaids: Clothes Tree + Invitations: Checkerboard + Hair/Makeup: Oak Street- Melanie Dodson + Rabbi: Barry Altmark – Deep South Rabbi

 

Win Two Tickets to Birmingham’s First NotWedding!

Want to win two tickets to the first Birmingham NotWedding at Bridge Street Gallery & Loft on Wed, March 19? Just follow the instructions in this handy-dandy graphic to enter via Instagram. Make sure to include the tags so we can see your entry! The winner will be announced at noon on Friday, March 14! Post your selfie today! For more information about this NotWedding and the next one on September 25, 2014, click here! See you there!

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The Not Wedding is Coming!

Wonderful news! The famed bridal sensation, The Not Wedding, is hosting its inaugural Birmingham appearance at Bridge Street Gallery & Loft on March 19! This wonderful event takes the idea of a bridal show and turns it on its head. You don’t just meet with the participating vendors – you actually get to see their talents in action! What better way to see how they work than to experience a (fake) wedding they’ve produced? We are thrilled to have this event coming to Birmingham, working with some amazing creative partners from across the state to show what Alabama has to offer. Check out the Save The Date session of Birmingham’s first Not Bride & Groom with Morgan Trinker Photography. The date is quickly approaching so make sure to mark you calendar and get your tickets today!

See more images from this Save The Date session here.

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More About The Not Wedding

“Complete with dinner and drinks, an emotional ceremony and a dance-party reception, The NotWedding has become a killer alternative to a bridal show. The hand-selected vendors perform their services as they would at a real wedding, and the ‘wedding guests’  get to hear the music, taste the cakes, and smell the flowers… while enjoying a night of great food, dancing and surprises, leaving brides-to-be saying, ‘I want my wedding to be just like that!'” –  The Not Wedding

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“For brides and grooms, the event serves as a source of inspiration, a resource in finding trusted wedding vendors and an emotional reminder to plan for what comes after the wedding: a marriage! For participating wedding vendors, the event exposes their business to new referral sources, while also exposing each vendor to a wealth of inspiration, resources and confidence to take their business to the next level.” – The Not Wedding

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Real Wedding: Rachel + Cody

We are thrilled to share this lovely Tallasee fall wedding from Nick Frontiero Productions on the blog today! Rachel and Cody shared their nuptials at the First Baptist Church with a reception at a private residence, which provided an expansive meadow perfect for a tent to house their festivities. Rachel’s bouquet is a mix of hydrangea, roses and calla lilies with a touch of sparkle that match the beaded belt paired with Rachel’s gown. We love the bridesmaids’ chocolate dresses with ruffled collars and bright bouquets that pop with autumn tones. The reception’s eclectic centerpieces on lace runners give us that “collected, vintage” feel that is oh-so-sweet. We’d also certainly like a chance to peruse the darling sweets table featuring the groom’s cake and custom burlap table skirt. With the event designer/wedding planner, Jackie Frontiero, at the helm of this event, all the details tell a full story that transition smoothly throughout the day. Congratulations to Rachel and Cody!


If you have a wedding you would like featured on the AWM Blog, see all the details for our Open Submissions here.


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Photography: Nick Frontiero Productions + Floral Design & Décor:  Dana’s Floral Design + Event Design, Wedding Planning:  Jackie Frontiero – Dana’s Floral Design + Bridal Gown:  Bella Couture + Hair & Makeup:  Melissa Moore Bogardus – Joyce’s Salon + Ceremony Venue:  First Baptist Church, Tallasse, AL + Cake: Ligers Bakery + Linen: BBJ linens + Rentals:  Brendle Rentals + Bridesmaid Dresses: Bridesmaids Inc. + Catering: Debbie Kemsel Catering +  Groom’s * Groomsmen Attire:  Prattville Bridal Boutique & Tux Shop

 

Real Wedding: Joanna and Aaron

We are thrilled to share this downtown throw down at B&A Warehouse shot by Sweet Julep Photography as part of the AWM Open Submissions today. This hip, spacious venue is located directly across from Birmingham’s Railroad Park, which makes for gorgeous images of the bridal party before the ceremony. Joanna is a stunning bride with a simply perfect Hailey Paige gown and darling hair piece. The guys are dashing in three piece suits, which give a bit of that Mad Men vibe that we love. Our absolute favorite moment is Aaron’s addition to the iconic “Before I Die…” chalkboard art project, which now spans the globe. His large proclamation of “Before I Die I Want To MARRY JOANNA” on Birmingham’s board across from Regions Field is completely adorable. We love the personality of this couple that shines in all of these images and know they have some incredible fun ahead of them as husband and wife. Congratulations Mr. & Mrs. Miller!

If you have a wedding that you would like to see featured on the AWM Blog, please see our Open Submissions for more details.

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Photography : Sweet Julep Photography + Venue, Catering : B&A Warehouse + Cakes : Barb’s Cakes + Florist : Ricky Whitley Bridal Events Florist + Bridal Gown: White Dresses + Hair & Makeup: Molly Stilley + Music : Craig Stilley + Videography : Kelsey Freeman Creative

 

Wedding or Knot at Capital City Club

Bridal shows are the ultimate chance to meet and greet with a group of vendors that can ultimately become part of the team that makes your wedding dreams come true. A new trend though is the “faux wedding” show, which is a chance to experience a mock ceremony with models playing the part of the bridal party and attendees are guests. It’s the perfect opportunity to see wedding professionals in action. Guests can then take part in the reception where they can socialize with other brides as well as get information from vendors about their own needs. The party is complete with lots of bites to sample, a band/DJ, gorgeous atmosphere and plenty of cake for all.

We were thrilled to be part of the Capital City Club 2nd Annual Wedding or Knot this year! Jackie Frontiero at Dana’s Floral Design was the event designer for the full show, working with Nikole Martel, private events director for the club. They enlisted some of Alabama’s finest to pull together a team to create a Gatsby-inspired ceremony and reception. We had a blast handing out the new issue of AWM and seeing all the Montgomery area brides! Thanks to Nick Frontiero Productions for the images!

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Vendors included: Capital City Club, Dana’s Floral Design, Nick Frontiero Productions, A.G. Lighting, The White Room, Liger’s Bakery, Doug’s 2 Salon & Spa, Brendle Rentals, Two Hawks Video Production, Prattville Bridal Boutique, Jim Massey Formal Wear, Blackbird Pickers, Ready Set Smile Photobooth, BBJ Linens, In The Groove Entertainment, Ice Sculpture by Chef David Bromley & Little Magic Cards.

 

Real Wedding: Brittany + Bobby

Today’s Open Submission from ellyB Eventsis a peacock extravaganza! Every detail of Brittany and Bobby’s big day is perfectly coordinated for the theme. Even the bridal party’s monogrammed shirts have been stitched to perfection in the peacock palette. The floral design is lush, colorful and full of beautiful textures with a touch of bling to really make this wedding sparkle. The reception takes place at one of Birmingham’s newest event venues, The Westin Hotel Birmingham, which lends it modern style to this event’s look. We especially love the gorgeous cake from Olexa’s Café with a juxtaposition of smooth buttercream to sprinkle-adorned layers with fresh floral details. Soak in all the fab color below and congrats to Brittany and Bobby!

If you have a wedding you would like to share on the AWM Blog, please see our Open Submissions page. We can’t wait to see!
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Wedding Planner, Lighting Design: Eliana Baucicault, ellyB Events + Cake: Olexa’s Café, Cakes, and Catering+ Floral Design: Andy Beach of Andy Beach & Co. + Photography: Milanés Photography
Wedding Dress Designer: Ian Stuart + Wedding Veil: Brooke’s Bridal + Bride’ Shoes: Badgley Mischka + Bridesmaids Dresses: Lazaro – Bridals by Lori + Hostess Dresses: Jim Hjelm –  Bella Bridesmaids, Wtoo – Bridesmaid Inc. + Grooms, Groomsmen, and Usher Tuxedos: The Modern Gent 
Flower Girl Dresses: That’s So Cute Boutique + Makeup Artists: Tiffany Flowers-Hurst, Kristie Peoples + Hair Stylist: Michella Carter + Ceremony location: Sixth Avenue Baptist Church + Reception Venue: Westin Hotel Birmingham + Stationery: Pampered Paperie

 

Real Wedding: Dori + Tyler

Today’s Real Wedding submission from Simple Color Photography will have visions of sugar plums dancing in your heads. Dori and Tyler’s Christmastime nuptials at Stone Bridge Farm make a winter wedding look fabulous. We especially love their proposal story:

Dori and Tyler knew they were meant for each other the moment they met in the concession stand line of an Auburn University football game. They grew up about 10 minutes from each other in their home town, and Tyler’s mom even made Dori pageant dresses when she was young, but they didn’t meet until they got to Auburn. After three years, Tyler popped the question by convincing Dori that they were filming a music video for their musician friends. After walking around downtown Birmingham shooting their “music video,” Tyler proposed overlooking Birmingham.

You can even spot Aubie make a cameo at their reception as an ode to their first meeting! Congrats to Mr. & Mrs. Wheldon!

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Catering, Ceremony & Reception Venue: Stone Bridge Farm + Event & Floral Design, Wedding Planner, Linen: Ava Grace Designs at Stone Bridge Farm + Bridal Gown: The White Room + Hair & Makeup: Brittany Benton Massey + Groom’s & Groomsmen’s Attire: Mr. Burch Formal Wear + Music & Entertainment: Az Izz – Music Garden + Photographer: Simple Color Photography + Bridesmaid Gowns: asos.com + Wedding Night Accommodations: The Westin Birmingham + Stationary: minted.com + Calligraphy: Sarah Tate Designs + Bride’s Cake: Creative Cakes of Cullman +
Groom’s Cake: Hannah Whitner’s Cake Creations

Let us know if you have a wedding you would like to share on the AWM Bog! See our Open Submissions page for more info!

 

Real Wedding: Kelly + Josh

Today’s wedding submission from High Cotton Photography has us seeing double! The color palette and details remind us of our styled shoot with A.G. Lighting at The Sonnet House currently appearing in our 2014 issue. We love this venue for its many picturesque moments from the signature red tub inside the house to the farm on the grounds. It’s also perfect for hosting a ceremony in the backyard and transitioning to the reception both inside and outside the house, and your guests never have to leave one location to celebrate your full wedding day! Our friends at A.G. Lighting are experts at this bringing their lighting and draping techniques to this venue for a customized look and feel. Cafe lights over the back patio ensures your reception can continue into the night with a warm glow lighting the way. We are especially fans of the favor – personalized hot sauces! What Southern home is complete with hot sauce handy? Congratulations Mr. & Mrs. Roberts!

If you have a wedding you would like to share on the AWM Blog, head over to our Open Submissions page for more details. We can’t wait to see!

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Venue: The Sonnet House + Lighting: A.G. Lighting + Groom & Groomsmen’s Attire: Mr. Burch Formal Wear + Wedding Planner, Floral Design & Decor: KRM Designs + Caterer: D’Armond Catering + Photographer: High Cotton Photography + DJ/Music: Feel the Beat Entertainment + Cake: Indulge Sweet Shoppe + Bridal Gown and Bridesmaid Gowns: Diane’s Formal Affair + Videographer: Claus Martel + Invitations and Programs: Vistaprint

 

Real Wedding: Emily + Zach

If you love a wedding with natural, Southern details then you are going to love this Real Wedding submission from J&D Photography. Emily & Zach’s soiree had the personal touches that make their day so special – the bride even crafted her own bouquet and flowers that are absolutely gorgeous. We must say we are impressed! The pews and paper lanterns at the wedding site create a fairytale ceremony scene in the woods. And at the reception outside the J&D Farms barn, guests can play a round of cornhole toss under glowing cafe lights before the party gets into full swing. Congratulations Mr. & Mrs. Davis!

If you have a wedding you would like to share on the AWM Blog, please see our Open Submissions page for more details!

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Credits: Wedding Cake: Pastry Arts + Catering: Urban Cookhouse + Photography: J&D Photography + Venue: J&D Farms  + Dress: David’s Bridals

 

Real Wedding: Amy + Lane

Today’s Open Submission comes to us via Shae Owens Photography. Amy Marquis & Lane Brunson tied the knot on a private property in Leeds on a crisp fall morning on October 26, 2013. We love weddings. We love brunch. Combine the two and we have a match made in heaven. After seeing these images, you will certainly join us in voting for more brunch weddings. Living in the South, we have the luxury of still being able to have outdoor weddings during the chillier portions of the year. Amy’s fur stole was the perfect accessory to keep away the chill and made for quite the stunning look we must say. Perfect papers from Annabelle’s, loose garden-style florals from HotHouse Design Studio and a ruffled cake from Olexa’s complete the rustic charm of this soiree. Kudos to all involved and congratulations to Mr & Mrs. Brunson!

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Photography: Shae Owens Photography + Event Planning: GoPro Event Solutions + Floral Design: HotHouse Design Studio + Catering: Yellow Bicycle Catering + Bella Bridesmaids + Bridal Gown: Diane’s Formal Affair + Car Service: Vintage Auto + Rentals: Market 46 + Vintage China: Plate of Chicago + Stationery: Annabelle’s  + Custom Monogram / Calligraphy: Jan Pruitt + Cake: Olexa’s + Music: Cahaba River Strings + Hair & Makeup: Kerri Bunn

 

Real Wedding: Jillian + Jesse

AWM 2014 is officially completed, on newsstands and in hands of future brides! Now we are thrilled to continue sharing even more Real Weddings on the AWM Blog. Our first wedding to share for the new year takes us back to the cool, crisp fall days for which we long again. Jesse Edwards and Jillian Wright were married on November 23, 2013 at Seven Gables in Tallassee, Ala. Pumpkins galore and deep, rich tones make this wedding a true ode to autumn. One of our favorite details is the chalkboard program in lieu of a printed version. The more chalk, the better we say! Kudos to Campbell Photography, on these lovely images. Congratulations to Jillian and Jesse!!

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Photographer: Campbell Photography + Videographer: Claus Martel + Cakes: Cakes by Tania +
Florist: Godwin’s Flowers + Venue: Seven Gables

 

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

 

Inspiration Board: November 2012

 Yes, our blogging hiatus is over for 2012. That means the 2013 issue is on the verge of completion! A few more stamps of approval and a trip to the printer and our twelfth issue of Alabama Weddings Magazine will be shipping! We can’t wait for you to see all the bridal goodness we’ve packed into every page. In the meantime, we’re back with another inspiration board pulled from our 2012 issue. We love design-seed’s honey tones for its warm sweetness that combines colors perfect for Alabama on the tipping point between autumn and winter. As always, you can repin any of the images you see from the AWM Pinterest.

1. Stationery & Wedding Planner: Mariee Ami + Photography: Steven DeVries

2. Cake: Sweet Spot Confections + Venue: B & A Warehouse + Photography: Frank Carnaggio Photography

3. Table Setting: Bromberg’s + Floral Design: KG Designs + Wedding Planner: M. Elizabeth Events + Photography: Jerrod Brown Studios.

4. Linen: BBJ Linen + Event Design: J. Ross, Norton’s Weddings & Events + Photography: Gretchen B Photography

5. Bridal Gown: Ivory & White Bridal Boutique + Groom’s Attire: Mr. Burch Formal Wear + Photography: Marsha Perry Photography

6. Lighting: Design Productions + Venue: The Zone

 

Inspiration Board: October

For October, our inspiration board focuses on our newly released winter cover for the 2012 issue, which corresponded fabulously with design-seeds.com’s succulent garden palette. The key to keeping this color scheme perfect for fall (and not totally spring) is to let some of your greens fall more in the mossy, earthy tones. The pop of lavender looks great not only in floral details, but also for a bridesmaid gown or signature cocktail. If you see anything that just screams at you, let us know by commenting or you can tack on any of these images straight to your Pinterest board. We’ve set up our own board with every image from this post here so pin to your heart’s content!

1. 2012 Winter Cover – Signature Style Series: AG Lighting + Photography: Arden Photography

2. Bridal Gown: Ivory & White Boutique + Bridesmaid Gowns: Bella Bridesmaid + Floral Design: Uncut Flowers + Photography: Arden Photography

3. Floral Design: Hot House Design Studio + Photography: j. messer photography

4. Bridal Gown:  Ivory & White Boutique + Photography: Arden Photography

5. Signature Cocktail: B&A Warehouse  + Barware: Bromberg’s + Floral Design: Lillie’s  + Photography: Arden Photography

6. Table Setting: Bromberg’s + Linen: BBJ + Photography: Marsha Perry Photography

7. Cake: Cakes by Audrey + Photography: Amari Photography

8. Floral Design: KG Designs + Photography: Scottie Jones Photography

 

First Annual Pew Decorating Competition at the Gardens

On Wednesday, September 19, the Birmingham Botanical Gardens hosted the First Annual Pew Decorating Competition. Floral designers, wedding planners and others of Birmingham’s finest wedding vendors put their skills to work, creating pew designs to accent the pews of . . .  you guessed it – P.E.W.S.! Standing for Purely Elegant Wedding Statements, P.E.W.S. is a new, local vendor offering outdoor pew seating for your wedding day. Get the look and feel of having your ceremony in your local church at any location you desire. Using one style of pews, they can seat up to 150 people, but you can also mix-and-match their various styles to seat up to 500 people. Add the designs seen from the competition and you’ve got one gorgeous outdoor wedding for the books. Take a look at what some of the competitors created using designated seasons as inspiration! Check out the PEWS Facebook page and cast your vote for your favorite design at: http://bit.ly/RBFcNq.

1. Bloom + Rowell Meetings & Events – Autumn

2. Kathy G. & Co. + KG Designs – Autumn

3. Norton’s Florist – Autumn

4. Mr. Burch Formal Wear – Autumn

5. Hot House Design Studio – Autumn

6. M. Elizabeth Events + KG Designs – Summer

7. Lillie’s – Spring

8. Mariee Ami Wedding Planning – Spring (First place in season and overall at event.)

9. Lilie’s – Winter

10. Norton’s Florist – Spring

11. Each competitor got a teacup for visitors to grab a business card. We hope some brides found a perfect vendor for their wedding day!

12. No Birmingham Botanical Gardens event is complete without refreshments from Kathy G. & Co!

 

Inspiration Board: September

 For September, we were really gravitated to design-seeds.com’s {corked hues} palette. This month is the transition from summer to autumn so the bright greens mixed with muted browns captured that perfectly. Once again, as we flipped through the 2012 issue we found particular images that collaborated with this color scheme perfectly and should start getting those noodle’s going out there. College football may rule the fall season in the South, but surely there are a few away games that make room for a wedding or two. If you see something you love, be sure to check our corresponding Pinterest board for this blog!

1. Stationery : Alan’s Invitations + Photography : Arden 

2. Floral Design : Norton’s Events + Linen : BBJ + Photography : Gretchen B

3. Event Design : Lillie’s + Lighting: Design Productions + Photography : Jerrod Brown Studios

4. Photography : Rob Ingram

5. Floral Design : KG Designs + Photography : Arden

6. Cake : Sweet Spot Confections + Event Design : Dana’s Floral Design + Venue : B&A Warehouse + Photography: Frank Carnaggio

7. Photography : Frank Carnaggio

 

Stay in honeymoon bliss while abroad

You’ve spent months planning the rehearsal dinner, the bridal tea, the wedding and the reception. When it’s time to get away for the honeymoon, you don’t want to be caught off guard when you travel overseas. This is your time to sit back, relax and cherish the time with your newlywed. Your weather app might say it will be sunny and clear the whole week in Greece, but why leave it to chance? And what if husband eats that special dish while in Mexico that just doesn’t sit well later? It’s important to make sure you pack what you need and while staying within your 50 pound check-in limit when it comes time to leave. Here’s a simple list of what to make sure you pack besides the usual suspects or you can Pin your list if you’re a little more visual.

1. Passport + airline ticket – If you have never applied for a passport, make sure you do at least two months in advance since it takes four to six weeks for it to be processed (costs jump steeply if you need expedited processing.) If you do have a passport already, make sure to check the expiration date. Nothing would be more devastating than getting to security check and then being turned away from paradise!

2. Rain jacket + umbrella – Even if the 10-day forecast shows nothing but sunshine, having these two travel essentials makes certain a little rain won’t ruin your plans! Add a trench coat to your packing list to stay chic while it rains.

3. Camera – Don’t solely rely on your phone to capture all your precious moments! Back up is necessary when you don’t want to miss a moment on this once in a lifetime trip.

4. Adaptors – Remember that every country doesn’t use the same outlets that the U.S. does. Save yourself the trouble and buy an adaptor so you can still use all your appliances (hairdryer, laptop, phone chargers, etc.) while traveling.

5. Swim suit – Whether the resort you two are staying at has a pool/hot tub or your husband suggests a quick trip to the beach, packing a yellow polka dot bikini never hurt anyone.

6. Medication & supplements – This includes any over-the-counter medication like Advil, antihistamines and antacids or any medication that you take regularly. Don’t make the mistake of assuming a drug store near you will carry what you need.

7. Guidebook – When you’ve only got a week, you want to make sure you don’t miss out on anything. Skim a guidebook to get ideas of daily to-do’s!

8. Credit card and/or currency- It’s actually better to use your credit card because the rates of exchange will be less than if you actual changed currency, not to mention it’s more convenient.

9. X-Large sealable bags – It makes packing more efficient. If your bag is searched at customs, it makes repacking easy as pie and it’s the easiest way to stow a week’s worth of laundry!

10.  Comfortable pair of shoes- This may be last on our list, but in no way is it least important. Most people think you have to sacrifice comfort for style when there are plenty of chic shoes that don’t cause you to wince after a few hours. Personally, we vote Tory Burch!

Be sure to check our Honeymoon Packing List on Pinterest!

Article submitted by: Sheyda Mehrara, Auburn University

 

The Gardens Cafe by Kathy G. & Co for B’ham Restaurant Week

Birmingham Restaurant Week is in full swing and a busy production schedule for the 2013 issue of AWM means we need food. We were thrilled to find The Gardens Cafe by Kathy G. and Co. on the list of participating list of Birmingham’s culinary gems. What that means for you is that from August 21 – 24 between 11 -2, you can venture out to the Birmingham Botanical Gardens to have a perfectly light and fresh lunch presented by the Kathy G and Co team for only $10 for an entree and dessert. Here’s your choices:

Pan Roasted Parmesan Crusted Boneless Chicken Breast over Creamy Polenta & Sautéed Baby Green Beans w/ Lemon Caper Picatta Sauce
-or –
Tomato Pie – Vine Ripe Tomatoes, Caramelized Onion, Fresh Basil, Feta & Parmesan Cheese Baked in a Pie Shell served w/ a Mixed Green Salad

For dessert, everyone gets the lemon sorbet with fresh berries and mint. All that is for only $10, but remember that doesn’t cover your choice of drink, tax and tip (and the service is wonderful of course.) I had the chicken breast and I was absolutely delighted. Make sure you save room to savor the sorbet as well. It is so perfectly tangy, yet sweet and perfect with this wonderful weather we’re enjoying. If you’re somehow feeling a little full afterwards, you’re in the perfect spot to take a little jaunt through the gardens. Take a moment to really enjoy that wonderful amenity of Birmingham.

This is a great opportunity for a mother and daughter to have a lunch date and consider the possibility of hosting a bridal shower/luncheon or possibly even your wedding if the space accomodates  your needs. You get to sample the food, service and atmosphere and will have enjoyed the perfect little lunch if you decide it’s not exactly the right fit. Let us know on Facebook, Twitter or the comments below if you make it there for Birmingham Restaurant Week!

 

Inspiration Board: August

If you’ve been pinning with us, you may have noticed our Color Ways board. It is dedicated solely to the endless color palettes that can inspire your wedding. We particularly love design-seeds.com’s combinations, created by Jessica. This particular palette, “Dried Hues” was a perfect match for our Fall 2012 cover. Starting there, we collected images from various shoots throughout the 2012 issue to illustrate how these palettes can inspire an entire wedding.

1. Bridal Gown: The White Room + Hair/Makeup: Misty Smith + Photography: j. messer photography

2. Stationery: Alan’s Invitations + Photography: Arden Photography

3. Boutonniere: Norton’s Weddings & Events + Photography: Amari Photography

4. Floral Design: KG Designs + Lighting Design: Design Productions + Photography: Marsha Perry Photogrpahy

5. Catering: B&A Warehouse + Floral Design: Dana’s Floral Design + Photography: Frank Carnaggio Photography

6. Catering: Kathy G. & Co. +  Photography: Marsha Perry Photography

7. Cake: Sweet Spot Confectons + Photography: Arden Photography

 

Instant Gratification – Same Day Edit

Christina & Phillip Same Day Edit from Main Street Productions on Vimeo.

We hope you all have recognized the value of an amazing videographer for your wedding day. If a photo says a thousand words, what all does a film of your nuptials say? Well, Main Steet Productions has started offering a new service – Same Day Edit. Basically, what that means for you is that not only will you have a full video to view after your wedding, but they will also have a shorter highlight reel ready to show your guests at the reception. This is a really exciting option that can enhance your guests’ experience and let you see the immediate benefits of investing in a videographer, such as the ones you can find our Resource Guide. Is this a special moment you want to include for your wedding day? Let us know. Better yet, give the fine folks at Main Street Productions a call and see how they can offer their services to you.

Other AWM advertisers you may recognize in the video include: AK Brides + KG Designs + Design Productions + Frank Carnaggio Photography