Friday, December 9, 2011

{Coming Soon! La Vie En Print}

We've alluded to an exciting project in the works and we're excited to announce that in the coming weeks, we'll be launching a sister company to La Vie En Rose Events.

Once upon a time, a wedding planner and an artist met on a blind date. They happened to hit it off remarkably well. Within a few short years, the wedding planner was happily engaged to the artist and ready to start planning their wedding. However, when the time came to choose invitations, the couple found that nothing fit both their style and their price range. After an extensive & exhausting search, the wedding planner had a lightbulb moment. Who could design a better stationery suite than a wedding planner & an artist?! The couple set to work and soon came up with printed items to reflect their personal style.

The Wedding Planner + The Artist (photo by Tim Eng)
After realizing that they really enjoyed working together on their own invitations, the wedding planner began referring La Vie En Rose Events clients to her husband, and thus, La Vie En Print was born.We are very excited to offer couples and families unique, customizable, and affordable designs for life's most important celebrations. 

La Vie En Print will offer modern invitations and stationery designs in both printed format as well as Digital DIY Designs at modest price points.  We will also be offering custom design work.  And it's not just weddings - many of our standard designs can be used for parties, product launches, birthdays, etc.!  We'll have a range of baby/kid stationery too. Colors & fonts will be customizable on each of our stationery suites.

Here's a sneak peek of a few designs that we'll be offering:

Click here to view a larger version of the Modern Mums invitation suite.

Click here to view a larger version of the Fez invitation suite.

Click here to view a larger version of the Vintage Dahlia invitation suite.

We look forward to unveiling the rest of our designs and launching our Etsy Shop! Check back for updates & more designs in the coming weeks & don't forget to like us on Facebook for updates. 

Thursday, December 1, 2011

{La Advice - Wrong Way Bouquet}

A quick tip - there's a wrong way & a right way to hold your bouquet.  This goes for brides as well as bridal party... 

Here's how not to do it:

Anne, you're lovely, but we can't see your gorgeous dress!

Awww, SJP, we practically can't see your face.  And you kind of look like you're heading off to battle...
Please, don't do either of the above.  Hold your bouquet like so:

Nice & low.  Photo by Teresa Horgan.

This lovely bridesmaid got it right.  Photo by Richard B. Flores

When I line bridesmaids up to walk down the aisle, I collect gum from anyone chewing and then remind them of this simple way to remember where the flowers ought to be....  "Pubes, not boobs."  It's easy to remember and it always puts a smile on everyone's face right before they walk.  :)


Friday, November 25, 2011

{La Advice - Venue Hunting}

One of the biggest hurdles of wedding planning is finding a venue.  There are so many factors to consider when looking at potential spaces.  In the spirit of keeping it real, we're going to let you in on a little secret.... Venue hunting....Sucks.  Here's why and a few tips to make it less sucky...

This is the biggest decision you're going to make with regard to your wedding (aside, of course, from saying "YES!" when the big question was popped!).  This decision is also going to be one of the most expensive wedding related items on your checklist.  Choosing a venue can lead to arguments between you and your fiance, and possibly your families too, and I can assure you, that unless you have a fiance who's favorite phrase is "anything you want sweetums", this may be the first compromise in your married life.
So, yeah, it's not all unicorns pooping rainbows.  It's not all doom and gloom either though.  The key to minimizing casualties in the venue hunt is preparation and imagination. 

The first discussion you'll want to have is "Where" - with a capital W.  We're not talking about "where" little w as in at the Ritz Carlton or the Four Seasons.  We're talking area code (or even country code).  Especially difficult for the couples that each come from different cities/states/countries and now reside together in a 3rd location, the Where aspect can get dicey.  Take a deep breath, and weigh out the pros & cons of each location such as weather, costs of wedding venues/flowers/accommodation/etc., as well as the general vibe of the area.  If you've been dreaming of a sunset beach wedding, odds are Wichita isn't going to cut it for you; conversely, if you want cornfields and prairies as the backdrop in your photos, Brooklyn's probably not your best bet.  

Don't be afraid to stray from the "norm" either.  There's no rule saying that "good weddings" only take place in ballrooms/hotels/lofts/etc. Some of the best weddings that I've been to (both professionally and personally) have been in small restaurants, backyards, theaters and even bars.  

You also have to think about who your VIPs are - the people you most want to share in your wedding with (besides each other), and how they will be affected by the possibility of having to travel to your wedding - as travel can be prohibitive for some key players.  Take into account financial and health situations and take it from there.  

Be prepared for some ruffled feathers, no matter what you decide.  Mom might be upset that you're not going to walk down the aisle in the church that 4 previous generations of your family did, but guess what?  Mom will get over it *eventually. 

Another option is to have more than one reception.  You can get married in your hometown in Southern California (and walk down that aisle that mom is still obsessing over) and have your beach reception and then later plan a trip to his hometown in Connecticut and have a reception at his parents' country club.  (Though this option requires planning 2 receptions - if you're up for it, mentally and financially!).  We wish there was an easy solution to this scenario.  There's not.  Just try not to let it stress you to the point where you want to call the whole thing off! 

Once you've figured out the "Where", there are a few more things that you need to decide before you go hunting.  It's a good idea to know the style that you're leaning towards for your event.  If you are envisioning an English tea in a garden, you probably don't want to spend time making appointments at industrial lofts.  Knowing the vibe helps narrow down the seemingly limitless options that you're faced with. You should also have an idea of approximately how many guests you'll be having.  You can then weed out venues that are too large/too small.  It can also be helpful to know your wedding date - although this is not absolutely necessary.  If you haven't set a date and are not leaning toward a particular time of year, you have some flexibility. 

Some further considerations to make:
-How many different areas will the venue need to have (ceremony space? separate cocktail hour space? bridal suite? Outdoor space? Tent? After-party area?  Locations suitable for photo taking? 
-What other essentials should be available?  Do you want a full service venue with in-house catering? Do you want a raw space where you need to bring in everything from chairs to forks and everything inbetween?
-Are there any specific must-haves regarding the physical location of the venue?  Does it need to be close to the ceremony site or hotel? 

Once you've got those key questions answered, it's time to start narrowing down venue options and setting up appointments.  If you have set a date, make sure the venue isn't booked.  

Before you make an appointment, confirm that the venue is within your price-range.  You're not going to get an exact, down to the penny quote over the phone, but if you adivse the manager of your date and approximate guest count, they will give you a ballpark. Be frank with them - tell them that you're not interested in wasting their time or yours, and they should be willing to divulge at least a basic pricing guide.  (and if they refuse to budge, maybe they're not the type of place you want to have your wedding at....)

Once you start making appointments, it's just a matter of "trying the venue on".  Photos can be misleading, so there will be some venues you thought you'd love that you end up walking in & out of fairly quickly.  Others you'll want to take time to scrutinize.  

Small tangent (it's related, I promise), have you ever watched those house hunting type shows on TV?  I am mildly obsessed with them, and it irks me to no end when people look at a house and all they focus on is "Oh, I don't like that paint color." or "Oh, those carpets, yuck!" or "Hmmm, I don't like the way they arranged their furniture."  and they pass on a structurally lovely house based upon easy cosmetic fixes.  It's sort of the same for wedding venues.  You can't change the paint or the carpet, but keep an open mind when it comes to things like layout.  Also, try to visualize the space with your colors and style in mind.  You may be put off by a beige and white room, but hey, it wouldn't compete with those yellow flowers and charcoal table linens you've been dreaming of. 

Other things to note - does the venue do multiple events at the same time?  If so, how close are the spaces to one another?  Are the restrooms shared and are they far from the event space?  Is there a bridal suite (it's not necessary in all circumstances, but it's nice to have)?  

If you're looking at a venue that includes catering, ask them if you can see the kitchen (granted, you may not know much of anything about a commercial kitchen, but this will tell you a. if it's grody and b. how accommodating the venue is).  

Most importantly, if you like the space, ask questions.  Ask about the staff (the ratio of servers to guests/staff attire/whether there's a bridal attendant/etc.).  Ask about the hours (venues in residential zones often have legal limitations placed on them with regard to noise and hours of operation).  Ask if they have any plans for renovation or construction in the coming months.  And don't be afraid to ask them what I think are the most important questions of all...  "Why should we book with you?  What makes your venue the best choice for us? Why do you stand out from all the other venues in the area?"  Don't be timid, and don't let them give you a sales pitch.  Put them on the spot and ask honest, to the point questions. 

Happy venue hunting & good luck! 

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

{La Traditions - Bridesmaids' Luncheon}

Bridesmaids’ Luncheons are a wonderful way to spend quality time with your dear friends before the big event and to thank the ladies for being part of your wedding party.  There are no hard and fast rules to throwing a Bridesmaid’s luncheon – it doesn't have to be lunch, and it doesn't have to be just your bridesmaids.  It can be as casual or elegant as you’d like, and it doesn’t even have to be lunch – it could be pre-wedding mani/pedis and other spa pampering, dinner and dancing, a wine tasting, or even pizzas and beers.

Photo by Tim Eng of Visual Appeal Studios
 A bridesmaids’ luncheon is typically held a few days before the wedding which allows for out-of-town bridesmaids to be a part of the festivities.  This is particularly nice if your OOT Bridesmaids were unable to make it to your bridal shower/bachelorette party.  You may think that the days before your wedding will be too stressful, however, in our experience, the bridesmaids’ luncheon is a great distraction that allows the bride a chance to relax and unwind (besides, if you’ve got a top-notch wedding planner, you probably won’t be so busy and stressed!).

Generally the bride or her mother/grandmother/aunt hosts the bridesmaids’ luncheon – it’s almost like the opposite of the bridal shower -it’s the bride’s chance to shower her bridal party. In attendance should be the bridesmaids, both mothers, and any close friends that you’d like to have there – i.e. if you have a cousin who is doing a reading, by all means feel free to include her.  However, we don’t suggest that you invite every woman who is attending the wedding.  Instead, use this event as an intimate gathering to thank the women who are playing active roles in your wedding.  

Photo by Hart + Sol

Whatever you do, we hope you have fun!

Monday, September 26, 2011

{making the wedding "industry" less industrial and more organic}

We are overjoyed to let you all know that we're now listed in the Vendor Directory at A Practical Wedding.  If you're not familiar with A Practical Wedding (APW), we strongly suggest that you head on over and check it out.  It's an amazing community of folks who are all about weddings that don't fall victim to all the trappings of the insanity that engulfs the planning process.  You can view our vendor listing here.

And the "APW Sanity Pledge" that we vow to uphold?  Pure genius.  Here it is:
All APW-approved vendors, agree that:

... A wedding is an awesome party, but it’s the marriage that really matters.

... It takes two people to get married. It’s not all about the bride (and sometimes there isn’t a bride to begin with).

... We support LGBTQ couples right to marry, and we are delighted to work with them.

... We don't charge a premium just because we heard the word "wedding."

... We will be upfront and fair about our pricing. We won't surprise you with a secret fee because you want frosting on the cake, not just the cake.

... You don't have to have cake at your wedding.

... However you decided to tie the knot, we’re on your team.

... Weddings come in all different shapes/sizes/colors/budgets/etc., but as long as you two end up married to each other, it will have been a successful wedding.

It's like Team Practical jumped into our brains...

We're excited to do our part to make the wedding "industry" a little less industrial and a lot more organic.  


Sunday, September 25, 2011

{Bad Bloggers}

We've been working hard on gorgeous weddings, updating the website (check it out - update is live now!), and a fun new project...  Hence our spotty blogging lately.  Promise we'll be back soon with a few real weddings and a couple of exciting announcements.  So, stay tuned! In the meantime, here's a little peek...

Ryan & Clara's Hoboken Wedding
(Photos by the lovely ladies @ Hart + Sol)

Nicole & Jon's Jersey City Wedding
(Personal photos - pro pics coming soon)


Thursday, August 25, 2011

{La Traditions - The South Philly Serenade}

Earlier this year, we had the pleasure of attending a really unique (to us) tradition - the South Philly Serenade.  Our groom, Michael, a South Philly native, explained to us that the tradition stems back to the old country when young men would gather up their courage and sing love songs to their future wives the night before the wedding.  As Italians settled into the area of South Philly, they brought with them a very strong sense of community and of course their serenades. 

Photo by Kate Triano.
South Philly is comprised of small one way streets.  As soon as you set foot on a block and you get the feeling that the people are just as close together as the row homes that they live in.  And when it's time for one of their own to celebrate a wedding, everyone on the block comes out to support the young couple (and party, natch).  Unlike yesteryear in the old country, when a groom accompanied perhaps by a musician or two made his way to the bride and declared his love via song, modern serenades are an honest to goodness block party.  Lights are strung across the street (which is closed to traffic, of course), and neighbors start bringing out tables and chairs.  Women start appearing with tray after tray of delectable Italian dishes - from homemade pizzas to salads to sandwiches, and the cookies.... of course, the delicious cookies!  In the meantime, a full bar has been set-up as well as a DJ.  Before you know it, the block is filled with friends and family, laughing, dancing, eating, and drinking. 

Photo by Kate Triano.

As if that's not enough, some families hire Mummers to provide additional entertainment.  If you're not familiar with what Mummers are, Wikipedia can probably do them more justice than I.

Photo by Kate Triano.
Although incredibly exciting and entertaining, the Mummers are just the warm-up act.  The actual act of Serenading does still occur during the festivities.  The bride is brought to the top of the front steps, and the groom takes the mic.  The crowd closes in and waits with anticipation...  And then it begins...  just like his forefathers, the groom looks up at his bride-to-be and belts one out!  Our groom, Michael, chose to sing a very apropos song to his NJ born fiance - Jersey Girl by Bruce Springsteen.  It was sentimental and sweet, and we are thrilled to have been able to attend. 

Photos by Kate Triano.
Luckily, those South Philly guys come pre-wired with the confidence, guts, and charm to keep the tradition alive in this day and age of social media.  Yes, the video was up on youtube that night, and no, we're not going to share the link. 


Thursday, July 21, 2011

{La Good Ideas - Bouquet & Garter Toss}

Ah the bouquet and garter toss...  Love it?  Hate it?  Either way, we won't judge.  But for those on the fence, here are some unique twists on this old standby.

Photo by the ever fabulous Tim Eng
From personal experience, as a single lady, I always detested going out into the fray to catch the bouquet. And my how I would have been mortified to have some random single dude put a garter up my leg if I accidentally caught the bouquet!  However, as a bride, I really wanted to hurl some flowers at my single friends, hoping to chuck some happiness their way.  So, I chose to do the bouquet toss.  We chose some very tongue in cheek music for the event - Move B***** by Ludacris (censored), to be exact.  My groom & I followed tradition and did our tosses, but, that's where we stopped playing by the rules.  Instead of having the single lady who caught the bouquet sit down to be "gartered" by the single man, we had them switch roles.  That was our little way of avoiding any mortification & having a good laugh.

Natalie & Luis opted for yet another variation on the bouquet/garter toss at their May 7th reception. Let's take a look, shall we? 

{Following photos by the talented Mr. Richard B. Flores.}
Traditional bouquet toss...

Let's blindfold the single gentleman "to make things interesting".

Unbeknown to the single gentleman, things are definitely going to be interesting. 
The garter went higher & higher...
Until the single gentleman figured out that something just didn't seem right...
A good time and a good laugh was had by all.  

Regardless of whether you decide to have a bouquet/garter toss or not, it's important to not be afraid to add some levity and humor to your big day!  It's the party of your lives, right? So, enjoy it! 


Wednesday, July 20, 2011

{La Real Wedding - Natalie & Luis}

We are so pleased to have been a part of Natalie & Luis' special day.  Whenever you're around this fabulous couple, you really do feel the intense love that they have for one another. Natalie and Luis decided to make it official on May 7th, with a ceremony at the Church of St. Joseph the Carpenter in her hometown of Roselle, NJ, followed by a reception at the lovely Galloping Hill in Union, NJ. 

Their day was filled with romance, tradition, and a whole lot of love.  Over the next few days, we'll be back with more specific details and unique ideas that this couple used to tell their story.  For now, enjoy the photos, courtesy of the wonderful Richard B. Flores

You can see even more gorgeous photos of this amazing couple in the Traditional Romance gallery on our site. Thanks again to Richard B. Flores for the photos. 

Congratulations, Natalie & Luis!  We wish you all the best of the best!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

{La Preview – Jessica & Michael}

We recently had the honor of working with Jessica & Michael on their gorgeous, fun-filled wedding in Philadelphia. 

We’ll be posting their gallery to our website and a full recap on the blog soon.  In the meantime, here is a sneak peek. 

{Photos courtesy of Kate Triano, photographer extraordinaire.}

The Beautiful Bride


Wedded Bliss


Sweet cake

 The happy Mr. & Mrs.

Congratulations, Jess & Mike!  We wish you many years of health, happiness, and love!  


PS- A few more photos from this stunning wedding will be up on our Facebook page shortly.  Check it out and become a Fan! 

Sunday, April 10, 2011

{La Inspiration - To Wed or Not to Wed}

To wed or not to wed...that is the question. And of course, our answer is yes, yes, a thousand times, yes! Is English renaissance your favorite era? Incorporate some of the long gone golden age in English history into your wedding day by carefully selecting subtle details that will show your fondness for this time period, and why not, even some Shakespearean poetry. 
Calligraphy is a Greek word meaning "beautiful writing." If your budget allows it, use it on your invitations.  Otherwise, using a printed font that looks 'old English' will also have a similar effect, especially if you use a wax seal.

Invitations by Etsy seller Shine Wedding Invitations
Monogram Wax Seal Stamp from
When selecting a venue, a place resembling neo-classical architecture can transport you to a different century and an Italian garden would not only add to the ambience, but make for great pictures.

In NYC, the Metropolitan Museum of Art has several amazing venues that would lend themselves nicely to a Shakespearean inspired event.

VĂ©lez Blanco Patio
The Cloisters Museum and Gardens
Carroll and Milton Petrie European Sculpture Court
Whether you select a DJ or a band to party the night away, a string quartet during your cocktail hour can provide a great selection of classical music to add to the romantic atmosphere.

Although 16th century fashion might not be your bridal party’s cup of tea, tap into their inner Juliet by including a small bag of fragrant potpourri, when you give them a pretty hand-made necklace as a token memento of your day.

Potpourri from Rose Petal Weddings 

 Romeo & Juliet necklace -bronze pendant, silver chain and pearls  
by Etsy seller Dawana from Peaces of Indigo

Give your wedding programs an old fashioned look and incorporate one of your favorite Shakespeare sonnets.  
 Letterpress Notecards from Etsy seller Lettuce Press.

And finally, to tie it all in, the bride should look the part. For inspiration, take a cue from a custom made gown designed in a timeless style by Sandi Spika Borchetta for Taylor Swift for the video for her song Love Story.  The closely fitted bodice and an up do with gentle curls add to the romantic, young and fresh look.

There are so many fabulous ways to incorporate The Bard and his works into your wedding.  Other ideas include naming tables after your favorite characters or plays, having a feather quill to use for signing the guestbook, and you could even hire an actor and a minstrel to roam around the event reciting poetry.