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Vendor Guide

Vendor Guide
Vendor Guide

Playful and Quirky Tea Party Wedding Inspiration

Oh, the sweetness! With bright poppy colors of red, yellow, and blues, this playful tea party wedding inspiration at the Armour House and Gardens at Meadowview Park in Richmond is simply perfect!

Captured and styled by Hoot Media Photography, there is whimsy in every detail, especially the chemistry between this beautiful couple. With a fun yellow bowtie, eclectically arranged DIY florals, and pink macarons and lemon tarts, you couldn't get more on point for a sweet intimate garden celebration for two. It's guaranteed to give you the warm fuzzies right smack dab in the heart!


Cozy Library Engagement

With a mutual love for books (particularly Tolkien and C.S. Lewis!), it was only meant to be for Stephanie and Brandon to have part of their engagement session in a library with Sachel Samone Photography. The Bateman Library on the Langley Air Force Base in Hampton was the perfect setting for their sweet session amongst the racks.

And we thought this C.S. Lewis quote was the perfect homage to these romantic bibliophiles' engagement memories:

Appreciative love gazes and holds its breath and is silent, rejoices that such a wonder should exist even if not for him, will not be wholly dejected by losing her, would rather have it so than never to have seen her at all. ― C.S. Lewis, The Four Loves


Instagram Etiquette for Wedding Pros

Instagram is a bit of the Wild West when it comes to social media. It's still new, fresh, and exciting. Anybody and everybody are sharing their photos for many different reasons, and there isn't a whole lot of "governing." After all, that is a bit of the draw to it when you're not running a business.

And just like the Wild West, people are finding their way around and testing the waters for what proper social protocol is. Well, lead wedding editors -- with a mixture of professional backgrounds from wedding pros, marketing gurus, tech innovators, and so much more -- are sharing their Insta-Etiquette insight with us today!

As editors, we see a very large picture when it comes to the wedding world and social media as different brands and everyday people interact, and there's a common thread through it all: be authentic.

Fun Techie Date Ideas

It's not really a secret that I'm a bit of a tech geek. Granted, my husband is more of the gadget-y person than I am, but I love the technology behind those gadgets! Now mix that love with a love of weddings and marriage... and we've got the perfect recipe for techie date ideas, thanks to our collaboration with Best Buy!

So if you're not married yet, these are great ideas of some small, affordable things you can register for at Best Buy. And if you're married already, then you've got some fun new things to find at home and at the store!

Vintage Nautical Wedding Inspiration

If there's one thing that this community is all about, it's nautical! But what do you do if you're not a modern ships and anchors kind of person, but fancy yourself an old soul with a love of the past? Well, look no further, because I'm excited to have the vintage and heirloom wedding guru, Megan of Glamour and Grace Weddings, here today to share a beautiful mashup of the nautical and the vintage!


I wanted to do a more soft and romantic vintage spin on the well-loved nautical theme, and I love the way this board turned out! White and navy stripes are a must for any nautical theme, but I loved adding in some blush and cream tones to make the color palette a little lighter and more vintage. For hairstyles, this loose, but refined twisted updo gives the feel of nautical rope by being completely elegant and timeless. And how gorgeous is this pearl and oyster cake by Maggie Austin? It's one of the most chic cakes I've ever seen with a sea-faring theme!

PHOTO CREDITS
TOP // Jessie Leake via Style Me Pretty // Branches Floral Design // Martha Stewart Weddings // Rue Magazine | BOTTOM // Maggie Austin // TopShop // Tealily Photography via Ruffled // Tec Petaja via Once Wed

Helping Nepal Locally and Globally

In solidarity with our friends over at Style Me Pretty, we are sharing a very special feature about a community so in need right now. Nina and Wes Photography shared their heart for Nepal through their recent not-for-profit photography workshop in the beautiful mountain village of Nagarkot. And when disaster struck soon after (even destroying the main buildings where this shoot took place), they knew they needed to get awareness and action going for this developing country:

This bridal session was born out of our time spent in Nepal. We wanted people to be able to experience Nepal through the different elements of the session. We had a spread of spices that are found throughout Nepal and used in many of their cuisines. Bits of copper and brass can be seen with those elements, which were found and purchased in the streets of Kathmandu. Marigolds were central to the shoot, as you can see marigolds on any given street in Nepal. We loved seeing them draped over the bride who is wearing a stunning Carol Hannah dress that seemed to sparkle in the Nepali sunlight.

The earthquake that occurred on April 25, 2015 in Nepal has shaken all of us. So many of the beautiful places we visited, and historical landmarks that we marveled at, are now piles of rubble. As far as we can tell, though, our loved ones and the people at the organizations we volunteered at, are all safe. Some of them have lost homes, but they have escaped the earthquake without injury. For that we are thankful.

While we typically only feature southeastern Virginia wedding content, I think we can all agree that showcasing the beauty of a culture shattered by one devastating event and how we are helping locally here in Hampton Roads and Richmond is the major exception. It's going to take a very long time to rebuild-- as we have seen here in the States after catastrophic disasters. So after seeing these breathtaking captures in photo and film, please find how you can help right here in Virginia below. Every little bit counts. Virginia is for lovers, and we've got some big love to give!




Traditional Richmond Bridal Session

Dressed in white with a love for sunflowers, Hampton Roads local Rebecca was picture perfect for her traditional bridal session with Diana Gordon Photography at Meadowbrook Country Club in Richmond, the venue where she and her new husband said their I Do's. Like most all Southern brides, Rebecca wanted to do a bridal session so she could have special portraits to share with her great-grandchildren one day. And who can argue with that!

Her wedding gown was a new, soft white color with a modern lace overlay and her veil was a fingertip-length veil with a delicate floral trim. And of course, this Southern girl couldn't have her bridal portraits without some classic pearls! It was the perfect touch to this romantic garden setting.


How To Make Your Wedding Business LGBT Friendly

As the wedding landscape becomes even more diverse today and in the years ahead, it's important as wedding pros to really pay attention to the messages they're communicating in their wedding businesses-- online and offline. The wedding world is about all kinds of people, and so I'm super stoked to have our local same sex wedding ninja Crystal of Cherry Blossom Weddings (who happens to help other pros looking to be more LGBTQ-inclusive when she's not planning weddings) here on Tidewater and Tulle today to give a few tips on how to make your wedding biz more friendly and inclusive to all engaged couples.

Sweet Historic Mankin Mansion Wedding

As if meant to be from the very start, the military brought both Brendan's family to Chesapeake and Ali's family to the good ole Dominion State in 2001. When it was time for them to go to college, Virginia Commonwealth University played the catalyst to Brendan and Ali finally meeting at their campus' InterVarsity Christian Fellowship chapter. And like all of our favorite love stories, one thing led to another and soon as they knew it, Brendan was proposing at sunset on the sandy shores of Virginia Beach.

Captured by C. Tyler Corvin Studio, Ali, Brendan, and their loved ones celebrated at the picturesque Historic Mankin Mansion
 for their Richmond wedding. Filled with yellow and gray colors on a beautiful sunny day, these two lovebirds incorporated as many sentimental details into their wedding: a special "Dad" bouquet charm, a vintage chalkware cake topper, nostalgic childhood photos of themselves, and signature bride and groom cocktails.


Wedding Workspaces: Memories by Mere Photography

It's time for another Wedding Workspaces, and today, we're sharing our sixth installment with another fab local wedding pro in Newport News!

Through Wedding Workspaces, we are showcasing Hampton Roads-based wedding pros and where they create throughout the week when not on location for a wedding. Weddings never are one-day gigs; it typically takes months and days to be part of that special celebration... so we might as well feel cozy for the day in, day out tasks!

And this month, we have wedding photographer and vendor fam Meredith Ryncarz of Memories by Mere Photography and her practical working mom home office. With thoughtful vintage and kid-friendly details, this lovely photographer shows a real glance at what wearing two hats in the wedding world looks likes.

Brides Against Domestic Violence

Did you know that 1 out of 4 women experience domestic abuse? It's a sobering side of our typically happy wedding world, and it's not a good one. We feel every person deserves a happy ending, and it's something we'll continue to hope for so there is a day when there are no "x out of x" statistics.

So we are proud to get the word out about the YWCA South Hampton Roads and House of Maya Bridal Salons' upcoming Bridal Auction and Benefit Fundraiser for Brides Against Domestic Violence on Sunday, June 7, 2015 at the Harrison Opera House from 2:00pm to 5:00pm where 100% of the funds raised will support the YWCA's mission in eliminating racism and domestic violence and empowering women.

Windsor Castle Park Engagement in Smithfield

There are no words needed to explain why the beautiful rustic red and yellow barns at Windsor Castle Park in Smithfield are very popular for engagement sessions all year round! For the couples who want that country and rural look, these barns are cozy perfection! And it was no exception for Kristen and Brandon's session with Angel Eyes Photography.

With an adorably painted "Save the Date" wooden sign and some sweet moments, these two lovebirds enjoyed a bright, sunny day together at one of Hampton Roads' well-loved location gems.


What to do on a Honeymoon in Asheville

In March, I had the awesome opportunity to head down to Asheville with fellow wedding blog editors to get to know the Asheville wedding community thanks to StudioWed and Hilton Asheville. Basically, we all fell in love with the mountain community and when I started talking about it in Hampton Roads, apparently I wasn't the only one smitten! So for our next in our series, The Little Honeymoon Guide, we're sharing the scoop on favorites when visiting or honeymooning in Asheville, North Carolina. It's not a comprehensive guide, but a collection of recommendations that are a mixed collection of "off the beaten road" to "iconic" from fellow Virginian wedding pros.


PLACES TO EAT


* French Broad Chocolates
Meredith of Memories by Mere Photography absolutely loves French Broad Chocolates, a hand-crafted artisanal chocolate lounge serving incredible sweets with a company focus on sustainability, community, and quality.

* The Corner Kitchen
Like most of Asheville, this quant open kitchen restaurant is a local legacy built in the 1890's. The Corner Kitchen is known for locally-sourced and seasonal ingredients and fresh menus all in a cozy environment. I especially loved the gluten-free options and accommodations available, including a fudgy gluten-free brownie for dessert!

* Native Kitchen and Social Pub
If you're looking to venture a little outside of Asheville (just 10 miles!), the Native Kitchen and Social Pub is a great spot for good food, good music, and good local vibes. Jill of Sunkissed Events especially loved the homey ambiance and beer choices!

THINGS TO DO


* Biltmore
You can't not go to Asheville and not visit the American Downton Abbey! "BILTMORE!" Crystal of High Voltage Hair (aka history buff) exclaimed, "It's a must to get the 2-days pass because there was so much to see and do."

* The Orange Peel
"For those looking to work a little rock n roll into their honeymoon," Tyler of The Girl Tyler suggests, "The Orange Peel is a great concert venue that gets a ton of good shows."

* Navitat
For the more adventurous couple who loves the outdoors (which is a huge reason to go to Asheville!), Jill of Sunkissed Events loves Navitat. It's 100% tree-based zip lining that you can do with your spouse as the ultimate adrenaline couple activity!

PLACES TO STAY


* Hilton Asheville
I've been a long-time member of the Hilton HHonors loyalty program, so I knew off the bat that the Hilton at Biltmore Park would live up to high standards and great customer service when we stayed there. But what really made it an incredible experience was the concierge service including the courtesy van to take you around Biltmore Park, a shopping and foodie hot spot, as you wished. It was a completely unexpected and appreciated perk!

* Cheshire Resort in Black Mountain
"About a 10-15 minutes drive from Asheville, we found these adorable cabins at Cheshire Resort perfect for the honeymooners who love nature and hiking! We loved the fireplace and the outdoor porch," Jill of Sunkissed Events recommends.

* Grove Park Inn
For completely breathtaking views, the historical Grove Park Inn boasts breathtaking views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. With over 100 years of luxury accommodations, time has clearly told this is a favorite amongst honeymooners and vacationers alike. Even ask about the resort's 1917 navy blue Cadillac that they just so happen to have! It's gorgeous!

FUN RESOURCES TO CHECK OUT

* Mountainside Bride
It's the ultimate wedding blog and online resource for anything wedding-related in any mountain region, including Asheville. So if you want ideas on what the mountain life is all about, head over to Mountainside Bride. Christie knows her high altitude-lovin' community better than anyone I know!

- Chelsea :)

Lil Disclaimer:
Accommodations and activities were all provided by Hilton Asheville and StudioWed, and the opinions are all genuine through personal experiences and the photo featured in this post is my own (Bit of Ivory Photography).

Purple Rustic Chesterfield Wedding

As Brett and his daughter were dealing with the abandonment of his former wife and her mother, Heidi entered the picture as a breath of fresh air and sign of hope for tomorrow. When he hugged Heidi for the first time, she said it was "the kind of hug you'd expect from someone you love but haven't seen in a long time, just sweet and safe." And Brett said it was Heidi's smile that made him believe in better times ahead.

It was a whirlwind romance meant to be and grown out of sorrow, so they knew they wanted their purple rustic wedding at Pocahontas State Park photographed by Nicki Metcalf Photography to have the theme of "growing together." But beyond the wedding and into their marriage, Heidi's beautiful words about her husband epitomizes what true love is all about:

He's my favorite person, my best friend. I think it's the grace he shows, not just to me but to everyone in his life-- from his parents to his former wife. It reminds me every day of God's grace, and it makes me strive to be a better partner to him, a better witness to my faith, a better worker at my job, and a better mother to Mackenzie. I could not wait just to be holding his hands. I knew no matter what else was going on everything would be okay as long as we were together.


Unique Mother of the Bride Gifts

It's almost Mother's Day! And we couldn't let that go unnoticed! When you're obsessed with the wedding world, you tend to have a lot of favorites. So we created a new series called Favorite Things where we round up our favorites from past features and beyond organized by topic. For this month, we're paying homage to the MOBs and MOGs with unique gift ideas!

From sentimental to pretty, there's a little something for every mother of the bride or groom specifically for the wedding day... and heck, some could even double as Mother's Day gifts!


Rustic Green Summer Wedding Inspiration

Inspired by the summer days of Suffolk, Virginia, herbs and deep earthy browns of the country give the perfect setting for rustic wedding inspiration. Using small potted herbs as place cards, they serve double duty for seating information and eco-friendly garnish for a post-wedding home dinner.

There's no chance of wilty boutonnieres with this elegant country wedding! Hearty succulents and light, lace bridal gowns are perfect for our Mid-Atlantic humidity in the late summer, so three cheers for an outdoor celebration that is practical and pretty!


PHOTO CREDITS:
Herb Placecards: Snippet and Ink // Bridal Gown: Claire Pettibone // Brown Bridal Shoes: Raya Photography via Style Me Pretty // Burlap Menu Window Pane: Greer G. Photography via Style Me Pretty // Rustic Boutonnieres: Erich McVey Photography via Wedding Chicks

Preppy Chic First Landing State Park Engagement

With a love for hydrangeas, beach dates, and local beer, Rosalie and Troy made a day at the beach with their salty little Scottie dog, Reggie, and Shannon Moffit Photography, for their engagement session at First Landing State Park in Virginia Beach. But that's where my words will stop, and Rosalie's will begin as she wrote the most beautiful story of their relationship and session!

Troy, a Healthcare analyst from Virginia Beach, and I, a banker by day and graphic designer by night, from Culpeper, met in the spring of 2008 while studying at James Madison University. Within just a few weeks of meeting through mutual friends, we could not stop making each other laugh and quickly became inseparable. Fast-forward to six and a half years later to a brisk December morning hike along the Lynnhaven River with Reggie by our side, Troy decided to make things official-- what our friends and family knew from the very start. Sitting in the sand, he pulled out my Great Grandmother's vintage engagement ring, that he had set with an heirloom diamond from his side of the family, and of course, I said yes, finally!

We love to enjoy the natural beauty of Hampton Roads where we spend our free time hiking, boating, and enjoying the beach with our little Scottie. When planning our engagement session, we couldn't think of a better way to spend it than enjoying a sunset picnic on an unseasonably warm February day at the shore of the Chesapeake Bay. It was a beautiful evening for cuddling up with a blanket, sharing lots of laughs (he NEVER fails to make me laugh!) and with delicious sandwiches from Taste on the beach along with local beer, it really was the perfect way to toast to a future full of love and happiness.


Family-Centered Lesner Inn Wedding

Striving to be family-centric, Tammy and Brent's special day at the Lesner Inn in Virginia Beach included their children in every way they could. In the wedding ceremony, Tammy's son was given the important job as the ring bearer, Brent's daughter upheld her flower girl duties beautifully, and Brent's son stood by his dad as his best man. The children promised their commitment to this new family, and they combined five colors of sand in a vessel symbolizing a true togetherness.

Captured by Caitlin Gerres Photography and coordinated by Antonia Christianson Events, the day was truly all about family as they entered this wonderful new chapter together. Since Tammy and Brent first met in high school, they added a few touches from their youth to the wedding day. They crafted cootie catchers for each place setting to entertain guests with trivia from their relationship. And for their grand departure, the 80's represented as Brent held out a boombox a la John Cusack's "Say Anything" as Tammy ran slow-mo style through a sea of bubbles. Any wedding with major iconic throwbacks to cinematic greats is a fab one!


A Trip Down #MemoryLane with Lyve

Remember when we shared some ways to organize your Marriage Memories last year? We're back again for Part Deux with Lyve, and I'm a little too excited to share this and a huge GIVEAWAY! We're getting a little personal today which is a slight rarity since I tend to like to keep things pretty light-hearted around here. But today, we're channeling a little nostalgia as photography and memory preservation are really important to me and something I preach often to my wedding couples about their wedding day photos.

A few weeks ago when I opened up my Lyve app to access a particular photo from my Cabo press trip last year, I noticed a new little scrolling feature at the top telling me that I had some "Moments From This Month."


One, whoa, it read my mind. How did it know I wanted to snag a photo from it?! Two, when you weren't expecting to see some really happy memories just two weeks after your second dad passed away and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad March, it hits you in the heart.

My 30th birthday year was seriously one of the best years of my entire life to date. Despite my being a bit of a "play it safe" gal, I vowed to take every adventure that came my way in 2014. So when Sara asked me to be her photographer/travel buddy to Cabo San Lucas, I immediately hopped at the chance to not only see a new place (and eat the best rice and beans!), but to hang out with a good friend whom I don't get to see often and to meet new people.

It was my first press trip, and it gave me the press trip bug like something fierce and kick-started what was to be an incredible year.


So when I was feeling a bit worn and weary and as cheesy as it sounds, taking an unexpected trip back down Memory Lane via Lyve helped to give a brighter optimism that 2015 will be just as wonderful as the last despite its rocky start.


Okay, nostalgia is a great thing, but we need to get pumped! Because guess who gets to giveaway another LyveHome device like last time?! I do! If you don't know of my love for this photo organizational gadget, be sure to go back in time and read why it's awesome.

While I have the LyveHome device and there is only one winner for this particular giveaway, anyone can join in on the fun! You do not need a device to utilize the wonderfulness that is the ultimate phone-space-free-upper Lyve app (which for you Android friends, there's a version for you, too!)!

The Lyve app is free and can be installed on the following platforms: iOS, Android, Mac, PC, and Kindle. The ingenious app consolidates all your photos and videos scattered across multiple devices into a single app for viewing across all those devices. Organized by date in a beautiful, simple timeline. Hello, Type As' dream!

If you're a fan of the app TimeHop, then you're going to love this one because it takes it one step further and preserves your photos for easy re-download rather than a timeline showcase for immediate social media sharing... which you can also do with the Lyve app in addition to the other benefits.

IT'S GIVEAWAY TIME!

Valued at $299, one lucky Tidewater and Tulle reader will receive a brand new LyveHome device to store their own memories!

TO ENTER:
1. Download the Lyve app for their phone or tablet (iOS or Android).
2. Find a few photos on your phone that remind you of happy memories and allow it to automatically upload into your Lyve account after you open the app.
3. Share your thoughts about the photos that make you smile most and the app in the comments below! Please make sure your email address is included if you do not have a Disqus (our commenting system) account so we can contact you if you win.

That's it!

The giveaway ends on Sunday, May 17, 2015 at 11:59pm EST. Winner will be randomly chosen via Random.org and then emailed asking for shipping address information. Valid only for U.S. residents.

Have fun freeing up your phone space! I'd love to see your #MemoryLane photos, so use the hashtag on Twitter and Instagram to share.

- Chelsea :)

The Stories Behind Creative Wedding Tablescapes

From modern to rustic to colorful to coastal, we have a real eye candy treat for you today as we showcase some incredible wedding reception table inspiration from Waterford Event Rentals' The Crystal Clear Vision Event, an annual event where local wedding professionals get together to create "a live Pinterest showroom" for engaged couples to see, experience, and learn upcoming trends and get ideas for their own wedding days.

Using all table and chair linens from Waterford Event Rentals at the Hilton Virginia Beach Oceanfront, these wedding designers started with a blank slate, selected the linens that best went with their themes, and then infused their own personalities and stories into their special design creations. Inspiration comes from everywhere (especially when sourced locally!), but we'll let the designers themselves share their personal words with these gorgeous photos.

COLOR-INSPIRED



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