Weddings

Wedding Reception, Weddings

5 Ways to Save on Your Wedding that You May Not Have Thought About

bridal gown

1. Save room in your bridal gown budget for alterations | Alterations to bridal gowns generally cost extra money, and nearly all gowns will require some level of alteration. I recommend estimating alterations to cost between $300 and $600. This is, of course, an estimate which changed based on the design of the dress and the amount of alteration being performed. So, keeping this in mind when picking a dress can help you stay in your budget! 2. Limit the bar options | While many people frown upon cash bars, they are actually becoming more and more common in the wedding industry. Picking several wine and beer options for your guests is a very easy way to be respectful of your budget because wedding guests generally consume less alcohol with a limited bar, thus putting valuable pennies back in your pocket.

3. Reconsider your centerpieces | Wedding day flowers can often become pricey. Luckily, there are many different options when it comes to centerpieces. Whether you opt for candle displays or simply decorate the table with a single flower, your tables will still look elegant while reducing your decorating costs.

4. Rent, rent, rent! | While DIY work can be a fun part of the wedding process for members of the wedding party, there are many items (i.e. vases, candle votives, lighting, chargers, etc.) that can be rented. Rentals allow you to enjoy your wedding day without being stuck with items you’ll never use again when the day is done, and they are usually cheaper than buying the items brand new.

5. Serve less food | Providing heavier hors d’oeuvre  options during cocktail hour can give you license to serve less courses during your reception dinner, thus saving you money on your catering bill. Your guests can snack on filling foods during cocktail hour, allowing for more time to dance and celebrate (BONUS:  more spending money for your honeymoon).

~ Best,

Emily

Brides, Weddings

Blended Families

Family Group At Wedding

Family Group At WeddingFirst comes love, then comes marriage, then comes the baby in the baby carriage. As with many childhood plans, this verse from the familiar, childhood game often shows itself to be untrue. As the cultural tolerance for young parents and for single parents (whatever the circumstance) increases, the American schema for the nuclear family—naturally—evolves to include many different images of a healthy family. And the best news is, that each and every image of these families is healthy and beautiful. So, with this ever evolving image of the nuclear family, new terms such as “blended family” are adopted. A blended family can be simply thought of as a family made up of a couple and their children from all previous relationships. Currently, the average age of a woman having her first child is close to 25 years old, while the average age of a woman at first marriage is 27. So, these age differences bring me to the topic of this blog: blended marriages.

But, what is a blended marriage? A blended marriage is not just the joining together of two people, but rather the joining together of two families.

I believe that it is important for blended marriage ceremonies to occur if a blended family will be present after the marriage has been performed, especially so for children effected by the marriage. Including children in the marriage ceremony will demonstrate familial commitment both to the world and, more importantly, to the children themselves, thus creating a deeper trust for the kids. Because of this, a new dimension to the family’s relationship can begin to evolve.   

There are many ways for a couple to modify a traditional marriage ceremony to include their children. Many of these ways can be easily thought of—we’d love to help you!—or found on your favorite virtual pin-board. These ideas range from as simple as a recognition during the ceremony to as involved as custom designed jewelry pieces for the entire family.   

However, in the end, it does not matter whether the kids are given spots in the wedding party, simply recognized during the ceremony or given personalized gifts. It is important to remember that no amount of recognition or gifts will have any significance for the children if they do not understand that they have a special and unique importance to the marriage. Not in the day-long-frills-and-lace-party-all-night sense, but in the lifelong-institution-for-better-or-for-worse sense of the word. It is only after this happens, that bigger things can happen!

Best,

~ Emily

Brides, Weddings

Winter Wedding Ideas

Drinks

Hi there! My name is Emily Palmer and I am currently in the second semester of my senior year at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. I am majoring in Recreation, Sport and Tourism with a focus on Tourism and Event Planning. I am beyond excited to be joining the Accent On Events team for the next few months as an intern. So, here is my first blog. I hope you like it! A couple’s wedding day is their chance to celebrate their personal love story with the people most important to them. And, with the recent snowfall I thought it the perfect time to blog about wintertime weddings!

Of course summer weddings are insanely popular, but I am here to tell you that winter weddings are equally as beautiful. While some couples know their date months—and sometimes even years—in advance, others do not. And that’s perfectly OK because every couple is different and unique. And while some couples are able to wait for a special date, sometimes love just can’t wait for the summer! Or, perhaps the season that many of us dread, winter, has a special significance to a couple.

But, what about the cold?

It is of course winter, so cold weather is—for the most part—inevitable. However, instead of trying to beat the cold, I recommend embracing it! This is the perfect opportunity for guests to be able to mingle with each other and catch up with old friends in a warm, cozy, indoor environment.DrinksThere are also other perks to winter weddings, one of which being the freedom to serve hot beverages. Think about it: hot chocolate, eggnog and coffee are beloved winter beverages and are easily made adult by adding yummy liqueurs such as Bailey’s Irish Crème, Kahlua, amaretto or even Grand Marnier.

But, not all beverages have to be hot to embrace the winter theme…I’m talking about peppermint. This holiday staple is a universal hit—it’s perfectly mixable in both kid-friendly and adult drinks. And hey, it would be pretty silly to serve peppermint flavored drinks at a summer wedding, right?

But, what about the snow?

Well, winter weddings provide gorgeous natural décor and multiple gateways to bring a wedding to life. The key to a successful winter wedding is identifying these things and using them to your advantage!Tablescape

There are many creative ways to embrace a winter theme across many traditional aspects of a wedding. Photos can be directed and styled to reflect the weather. Cakes, cupcakes or even cake pops can be beautifully embellished with snowflakes. Lighting displays can be assembled to create a reception environment reminiscent of the holidays or winter landscapes. And table settings can be customized to reflect winter in whatever way a couple desires.  

But, it is important to remember that at the end of the day, a couple’s wedding should reflect who they are as people and pay homage to their personal love story. A certain season coupled with wedding norms should not dissuade a couple from tying the knot during a particular time of the year because every wedding is beautiful and unique, just like each and every couple.        

~ Best,

Laura and Emily

Weddings

Real Wedding: Cara and Josh ~ Best Friends for Life

We are pleased to bring you Cara's and Josh's love story.  We were so happy to be a part of their wedding!! Cara Burks still laughs about the awkward first impression she had of her husband Josh. It was 2006, and Cara, then a ninth grader, had just finished playing in a basketball tournament at the small Christian school they both attended.

“I knew who he was, but I didn’t really know him that well,” she says. “He came up to me and said, ‘I did a pushup for every good thing you did out there on the court.’ Then, we talked about what I did, and watched some of the other games.”

It may have been an odd pickup line, but it caught Cara’s attention, and began a natural friendship. “It seems as though we’ve been best friends forever,” she says.

The two dated throughout high school, taking a brief break when Cara, who’s a year older, left for Maranatha Baptist University, in Wisconsin. After Josh went to West Coast Baptist College, in California, they picked up where they had left off.

Cara graduated in 2013 and moved home for a job with a local wedding planner. Josh was still in California, or so Cara thought on an evening in late November 2013, when her twin sister, Hallie, and brother-in-law, Justin, invited her out to dinner.

“While we’re there, my brother-in-law says he’s feeling sick and he goes to the bathroom,” Cara says. “It’s maybe 15 minutes later and he’s not back yet, and we’re starting to worry. So, my sister goes and checks on him.”

While they were gone, someone began playing Cara’s favorite song on the dining room piano. “I feel this tap on my shoulder, I turn around, and it’s Josh, with a ring,” she says.

Planning in just nine months was sometimes trying, says Cara, but she had a helping hand through every step.

Cara also credits a willing team of vendors, especially her boss, Laura Sanders Ahern, of Accent on Events. “It put me at ease, because I knew everything would be exactly as I wanted it,” says Cara. “Hiring people is worth it, if you can afford it. It was my magical day, and everybody helped it to feel that way.”

Enjoy the photos ~

Best ~

Laura

 

Vendors:

Photography ~ Mandy Blair Photography

Hair and Make up ~ Arch Apothecary

Ceremony Venue ~ Burpee Museum of Natural History

Reception Venue ~ Giovanni's

Florist ~ Event Floral

DJ/Lighting ~ Luxe Productions

Specialty Linens / Chargers ~ Beautiful Day Linens

Cake/Cupcakes  and Favors ~ sugarjones

Napkins ~ Rock River Printers

Photo Booth ~ Special Moments Photo Booth

Invitations ~ Jack Sprat

Wedding Planner ~ Accent on Events

 

 

Uncategorized, Weddings

Vendor Blog Series.....Questions and Answers from a DJ and Lighting Expert

luxe 2

The third part of our Vendor Blog Series are questions that we asked a DJ and Lighting expert.  Luxe Productions, located in Rockford, Illinois has been providing entertainment and uplighting for Chicago, Rockford, Quad Cities and surrounding areas for five years. As a wedding planner I can attest to the importance of finding a professional company to build a rapport with to meet your needs.  Jordan Chance and his staff have been a tremendous resource to myself and my clients and today I would like to share with you some of that knowledge.

luxe 4

What makes you different from your competition? 

Our approach is what sets us apart.  We have committed a full time staff to just focusing on your event.  On our staff we have trained professionals that specialize in each of our areas.  Those lead people seek out seminars, trainings, and information to make sure they stay on top both with technology but also concept and design.  This is what we do full time so we are able to spend the time and resources to create the best events and experiences.

Do I always get the person that I sign the contract with or meet at my consultation? 

Yes!  We believe that it is important to build a rapport with our clients.  You are welcome to meet with your DJ before signing the contract in order to ensure a good match.  We have DJ’s with a variety of personalities and styles to fit every event. You will know who your DJ is when you sign the contract and can communicate with them as much or little as you would like.

How would you define your style? 

The best way to describe our style is very professional.  We don’t have a specific way that we always do our weddings because that would not lend to the creativity or desires of our clients.  Instead, we have the tools and flexibility to listen and incorporate our clients’ wishes into their event.  The music, lighting, and timeline can always be changed up and we facilitate those changes so our client gets exactly what they want.

Luxe 3

What will you wear to a wedding or event?

We feel that our attire speaks to our professionalism.  We wear suits and ties to weddings.  For other events, we dress according to what will be expected of the attendees.  If we are unsure, we always look to the event planners to give us direction.

How do we pick songs that we want played?  Do you have a do not play list?  Can guests request songs? 

All of the song choices for both the special dances and the open dance can be picked through our online planning forms.  Upon booking, each couple is given a username and password so they can begin working on their song lists and timeline at their convenience. The online planning tool allows you to search a vast database of music and sort your selections into “Must Play,” “Play If Possible,” and “Do Not Play” lists.  If there happens to be something the couple would like played that is not included in the database, they can just let us know and we would be happy to get it for them.

luxe 2

Do you have backup equipment with you on that day?

We have carefully thought through the possible gear failures that could happen during an event and we carry an emergency bag of equipment to every event.  In addition to that we also have extra equipment that we keep in our  warehouse just in case and we always have someone on call who can run equipment out to events.

What ways do you keep up to date professionally with your business? 

Staying ahead of the trends, gear, and ideas is something that we love about this job.  We take the time to travel to the best national conferences to learn from the leading industry experts.  Also, with social media, forums, websites, and magazines we can gather ideas and inspiration that keeps us fresh!

Why would I include lighting at my reception? Is it just another expense? 

Lighting is one of the most important elements that you can add to your event.   Sometimes it helps to think of it as part of the décor of your reception.  It can set the mood in the room: romantic, elegant, festive, or fun.  Another important consideration is the effect it has on your photographs.  Lighting helps makes those photos come alive and exhibit the elegant or fun atmosphere.

luxe 1

How can lighting add the personalization I am looking for? 

The reason we love lighting so much is because it is so versatile.  With specific color and fixture choices we can create an intimate romantic setting that feels warm and elegant or we can create an upbeat, dance club atmosphere.  With our ‘Name in Lights’ we can project a monogram to truly customize your event.

Luxe 5

 

Will someone be onsite for the reception to monitor the lighting?

All of our DJ’s are trained on lighting and can monitor it throughout the evening.  Some of our packages include a lighting technician who can program the lights and provide more of a light show.

 

I hope this answers all of your questions ~ Contact Luxe today for more information.

~ Best,

Laura

Photography Credits:

White Shutter Photography

C Tyson Photography

Ryan Davis Photography

 

 

Uncategorized, Weddings

Oliver and Michaeleen on a Summer Day | Real Wedding

Last year I was contacted by one of my dear high school friends to assist in the planning of her daughters wedding.   I was so excited to be asked to do this as I have such great memories of the brides mom and dad and our high school years.  The first time that I met with Micha she was so sweet and knew that this was going to be a wedding that I would love to plan.  The colors were hot pink and yellow and she wanted a whimsical feel. As you view the photos below by Brian Milo Photography, I hope that you can see just how fun and loving this family is.  The hard work that went into this day made everything flawless and enjoyable.  We had some rain but eventually the sun came out and allowed for a beautiful night.

Oliver and Micha are such a sweet couple and I enjoyed every minute of their wedding day!!!

 

 

A very special thank you to all the vendors that assist Accent on Events on bringing the vision to reality.

Photography ~ Brian Milo Photography 

Hair and Makeup ~ Brichi Coiffure 

Florist ~ Balloons and Flowers by Haley 

Church ~ St. James of Belvidere

Reception Venue ~ Burpee Museum of Natural History 

Linens, Draping and Chairs ~ Beautiful Day Linens 

Lighting ~ Luxe Productions 

Entertainment ~ Men of Our Times 

Catering ~ Altamore's Restaurant

Invitations ~ Rock River Printers

Tent ~ Berg Industries 

 

~ Best,

L.

 

 

Brides, Weddings

A Day at the Beach

About six months ago I attended one of my favorite conferences for wedding industry professionals. I always meet some very talented individuals there and this time was no different.  Several months later, I was contacted by Robyn Schwab from Robyn Photography asking if I would assist her with designing her booth for an upcoming bridal show. We met for coffee and talked for quite awhile and she told me about this group of talented photographers that she was a part of called the Photography Stylistas.  She said that they were working on their upcoming stylized photo shoot and asked if I would be interested in joining them.  I was thrilled to be a part of such a wonderful team of professionals.

So as you review the photos ~ this is what happens when 6 photographers, a wedding planner/designer, a bakery, 2 incredible models, a stationer and an amazing florist come together on a beach off of Lake Michigan to put together ideas for clients all happening with the weather not cooperating causing a down pour of rain!

Enjoy!

~Best,

Laura

Concept + Design: Photography Stylistas | Styling: Laura of Accent on Events | Models: Nicole Knothe & Nathan Grede | Location: Beach House in Wilmette, IL | Invitations + Details: Homeseed Paper | Cake: Amy Beck Cake Design | Florals: Ashland Addison Florist | Hair + Makeup Team: Elana Darrus | Wedding Dress Designer: May Queen | Pearl Earrings: Ultra Diamonds | Necklace: Stella & Dot | Bracelet: Stella & Dot | Engagement Ring: Ultra Diamonds - Rose De France Amethyst Cable Ring | Wedding band: Ultra Diamonds - Men's Tungsten Band | Bow Tie: The Tie Bar | Headpiece: ZipporahK Photography and Ashland Addison Florist | Wedding Suit: Male Fashions Co | Linens: Beautiful Day Linens | Signature Drink: Peach Champagne Cocktails

Photography Stylistas: Dominique Strom - Dominique Strom Photography & Design |  Christine Brizendine - Dabble Me This Keren Chookaszian - Keren Sarai Photography | Kristi Haddad - Markit Photography | Robyn Schwab - Robyn Photography | Zipporah Kapambwe | ZipporahK Photography

 

 

 

Brides, Weddings

iPhones/Galaxy at Your Wedding ~ Bridal Tips

iphone5

The proliferation of camera phones has raised a new point of discussion for brides and grooms hoping to capture the essence of their wedding through a professional photographer of some distinction.  How to handle wedding guests with cameras and their phones and preserve the privacy and security of the wedding events is a growing challenge.  Social media is changing the rules around the ceremony that was originally about the bride and groom.  As Kim Ode of the Star Tribune said, "On a day planned down to the mints, social media allow for random acts of mindlessness."

  • While some couples may embrace the technology, others wonder "how to keep their vows from going viral".  This concern has prompted wedding planners like me to formulate some guidelines covering social media at weddings.
  • Recognize that most couples make a distinction between the wedding ceremony and its more solemn aspects and the reception with its feel as a celebration.
  • If the bride doesn't want people to see her in her gown before she goes down the aisle, she needs to make sure that her bridesmaids understand that uploading photos of her in that special dress is forbidden.
  • I would suggest putting a notice in the program itself that this is an "unplugged" ceremony.  Reinforce this by asking the officiant to remind the guests to silence their electronics.  This will also assist the professional photographer that the couple has hired to be able to take the necessary photos the couple wants without Auntie in the aisle with her phone or ipad obstructing the view for the professional.  Some clients have had a sign placed at the spot where the guest book if placed as a reminder.

Social media at the reception is much more acceptable.  Photo sharing sites enable guests to download photos into a designated wedding album which makes it nice for the couple to see lots of action at their party.  We recommend the app WedSocial for guests to share photos.  It is easy to use and fun for the guests!

~ Best,

Laura

 

Brides, Grooms, Uncategorized, Weddings

Say Cheese!

picture

The Picture Dilemma

 
 The Problem: It’s the middle of July. You have been waiting for 45 minutes and now you are finishing the last of the roasted chicken and green beans. You sit in a hot, crowded room with 130 other wedding guests waiting for one of your best friends and her husband to finally finish the pictures and walk through the door. While this scenario is annoying, it can be avoided.
 
The Plan: Many engaged couples are planning their pictures before the ceremony; this cuts down on the wait time after the ceremony ends. Your guests have come to spend this special day with you; don’t make them wait forever to congratulate you.
 
If you are planning on having a meal at your wedding, this is an option you might want to consider. You have spent so much time and money preparing for this special day. Take time and enjoy it!

Uncategorized, Wedding Vows, Weddings

I Vow...

Wedding Vows

~Traditional Vs. Modern~

Wedding Vows are a personal yet integral part of the wedding ceremony.  As you stare into the eyes of the person you love and promise to uphold them what do you want to say?

Many people think that the traditional route is the best because of the history.  While other people prefer to write their own personal vows.

There are advantages to both options…

Modern- You can say what comes to heart and personalize your message.  Many people write poems and/or make them into a song. Another way to look at it is you personalize every other detail of your wedding from the flowers to the cake why not your vows?

Traditional- Many couples think that every though these precious words have been said over and over there is a certain pledge that you promise one another.  A precedent set by all the wedding before and those to come after.

~Either way! Choose what feels right to you and make it special.

Weddings

Changing Times

Bride and her parents

Many of the traditions that we follow in weddings today have their origins in Elizabethan or Renaissance eras.  It is no wonder that some changes have occurred.

  • VOWS - the phrase "Honor and Obey" has been replaced with various alternatives that reflect equality in the relationship.

  • BRIDAL ESCORTS - More and more brides and couples are having both parents escort them down the aisle.  In some ceremonies, the groom comes down the aisle with both his mother and father, followed by the bride on the arms of both of her parents.  This honors both parents and recognizes each of their roles in preparing their sons/daughters for this day.  In fact, if the bride's father is not available or this is a second marriage, a bride may choose to walk down the aisle alone or she may choose anyone to escort her.  A sibling, her mother, her grandfather, , her son or a friend may do the honors.

  • PARENTAL ROLES - Parents are no longer limited to escort duty.  Many grooms are choosing their father to be the best man and brides are asking mom to be the matron of honor.
  • RECEIVING LINES - These may still be a part of a very formal wedding where the ceremony and reception are at different venues, but for smaller weddings with the same site for ceremony and reception, more and more couples are foregoing the receiving line and instead making it a point to acknowledge and thank each guest at his/her table throughout the evening.

We know how to help your wedding uniquely yours or tie it comfortably to tradition.

~ Best

Laura

Weddings

Honoring Family Members

Candle Memory

We find that brides often wish to honor a deceased family member by including that person's name on the wedding invitation.  While the intention is good, this is not the way to do it.  There are other more appropriate ways to honor the deceased one's memory ~ either privately or publicly. To honor a deceased mother, an usher can place a white rose on the pew at the moment the deceased would have been seated.  During the ceremony, a song can be dedicated to the deceased or the person's favorite hymn sung and commemoration noted in the program.

Deceased siblings or grandparents can be honored during the candle ceremony by lighting an additional candle in their honor.

Rosemary stands for remembrance so a sprig of rosemary could be included in the bridal bouquet or attendant's bouquets.  Bouquets could also contain the family member's favorite flower.  You may also add charms onto your bouquet of deceased family members photos.

A contribution to the deceased's favorite charity in their name is a nice way to honor someone you love.  Make note of the contribution on your wedding program.

If you would like more creative and innovative ideas ~ please contact us.  We can help you with more ideas on how to include the memory of your loves one in your wedding ceremony.

~Best,

Laura

Uncategorized, Weddings

Aisle Style

Here are some tips for defining the aisle you will walk down at your wedding. If you are marrying in a church, be sure that the aisle cloth you've chosen is made of sturdy fabric and has weights to hold it down at both ends.  Do not use a paper runner.  They are difficult to walk on - especially in heels and they make noise.  Better to have a bare aisle.  Many florists now have colored aisle runners so you could follow a color plan although white or creme are still the favorite choices.  Some companies also do custom aisle runners to match your wedding invitations or have your monogram on them.

Remind the ushers who will be positioning the aisle cloth that this is part of the ceremony seating.  Their behavior and demeanor while rolling out the cloth and securing it is a significant part of the pre ceremony activities.  It needs to be done with dignity and care.

If your ceremony is taking place at a locations that does not have an aisle it is possible to create one.  Lanterns, potted plants, torches, flags or pennants, columns and stanchions with velvet ropes can add dramatic impact while defining your passageway.

Usually, tall decorative elements create a formal look while shorter items are appropriate for a more informal weddings.  Whatever aisle you have fashioned, walk down it with dignity.  This is not a 20 yard dash!  Take your escort's arm, stand up straight, head held high and walk toward the most important moment in your life.

Below are samples of aisle decor we love!!

Weddings

Gifts You Give

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There are many special people who help make your wedding day a success.  It is a nice token to say thank you for their help or their presence.  Brides ask us for advice on what to give members of the bridal party to families and to guests.  Here are some of our guest gift favorites.

Some of the most popular wedding favors are edibles.  Wrapped chocolates or truffles in an attractive box that is imprinted with the couple's names and date are a big favorite.  Also popular are chocolate covered pretzels, nuts, fruits as well as chocolate hearts.  In many areas, couples choose to give cookies frosted in wedding colors and packaged in tulle or color matched gift boxes.  Some brides have chosen to give small wine bottles with personalized labels with or without wine charms that bear the wedding date and/or names of the couples.

Couples are also giving items that bloom and grow like your marriage.  Weddings with garden motifs, environmentally themed weddings and ceremo9nies in outdoor or rustic settings choose favors like potted plants, seedlings, flower seed packets and miniature bamboo shoot plants.

Other brides prefer a permanent keepsake that is both useful and attractive.  Some of the favorites are picture frames, candles and candleholders, glass bowls filled with colored sand or rocks, small books or albums, CD's with favorite songs, ornaments for Christmas weddings, coffee mugs with coffee or hot chocolate packets tucked inside.

Some couples are choosing to make a donation to a favorite charity rather than provide a gift item.   In that case, a printed card is included in each place setting which informs the guest of the donation.

Be sure that each item has a thank you note attached.  They are likely to be printed although hand written notes are lovely as well.

The placement of the favors depends on the space available.  Many brides have the favors arranged on a separate table near the exit for guests to make their own selections.  Or you can have your wedding consultant help with the distribution as guests leave the party.

~ Best,

Laura

Weddings

Jon and Lauren ~ Real Wedding

"Jonathan and Lauren's story began a little over 11 years ago.  Details aside, their love for one another definitely forced the hands of fate.  They realized that life seemed perfect with the other in it, and their love for one another was unstoppable." I met this couple for the first time and knew that this wedding would be off the charts!  The ceremony and reception was held at The Prairie Street Brewhouse in Rockford, Illinois.   When planning the ceremony they wanted to do something non-traditional so they wrote their own vows which included a "Beer Ceremony" instead of a traditional unity candle.  They wanted the largest dance floor they could have and planned to be on it all night long.  With that said ~ that is what exactly happened!  What a transformation we made.  The original color palette started with a pale yellow and gray with a little bit of the vintage look.  Halfway through our meetings the colors came alive and below is what we ended up with.  Such a whimsical and fun look!  The day called for rain in the forecast but all that we ended up with were some pretty blustery winds!!

These two were such a fun couple!  Always having new ideas and incorporating them through the whole planning process.  I hope you enjoy the photos!

 

Wedding Planning and Coordination Services:  Accent on Events

Photography:  Heirlooms by Stephanie

Venue:  Prairie Street Brewhouse ~ Rockford, IL

DJ and Lighting Services:  Luxe Productions

Florist:  Event Floral

Specialty Linens:  Beautiful Day Linens

Cake:  Sweet Pans Shoppe

Officiant:   Ryan Krause ~ Elegant Wedding Services

Catering:  Famous Dave's

 

Best ~ Laura

Weddings

Wedding Themes and Trends

Chateau

While is is fun to get ideas from these themes, what matters most is that the bride and groom have a wedding which is true to their vision.  The theme that the couple selects should have some personal relevance and meaning to them as a couple.  Why bother with a theme?  It provides a sense of community to all decisions made about the wedding - from the gowns to the lowers to the reception venue and the foods chosen. Decisions are so much easier once the theme for the wedding is established.  Whether it is a color or a location or a time period or event, the focus is there to insure that this life changing celebration is memorable for participants and guests alike.

  • History lovers may wish to be married in the "Roaring Twenties" of F. Scott Fitzgerald.  Art Deco can be the design focus.  Jazz was king and flappers wore short gowns and bling was everywhere.

  • World travelers  - or - dreamers will find a wonderful theme in exotic locations.  Tropical isles, far Eastern spots or Scottish highlands all provide a structure for food, decor, dress or paper products.

  • Bright colors against neutral backgrounds can be very effective.  Instead of carrying out a color theme in the brides maids dresses, have them in a basic shade like platinum and carry out the color theme in the flowers and reception decor.

  • The ceremony and/or reception location can provide the theme for a wedding.  If a museum is chose as the venue, art and sculpture become the theme.  If a garden or beach or ranch is chosen as the site, the theme becomes clear.

  • Medieval accents combines with fairy tail touches work well in historic buildings or modern redos which retain the original stone walls and structures.

If you are confused about how to execute a themed wedding or want to avoid overdoing it ~ Contact us!!  We know weddings!!

 

Best ~ Laura

Uncategorized, Weddings

A Wedding Dream....Etsy

Etsy Veil

For day three ~ our blog post today is about our favorite finds on Etsy for Weddings.  There are so many that it took quite awhile to narrow it down and show just a few of our favorites.  If you are looking for something unique and fabulous you will be sure to find it on Etsy.  

Our favorite Item #1 ~ Chevron Clutch from This Lady Made it

This is perfect for Brides to give for Bridesmaids Gifts and keep one to use for themselves.

 

Our Favorite Item #2 ~ Guest Book Puzzle from Puzzled One

What a unique way to keep your guest book over the years.

 

Our Favorite Item #3 ~ Cuff Links for the Groom from The Pretty Peacock

These will be a keepsake for the Groom of their wedding day.

 

Our Favorite Item #4 ~ Personalized Hanger from Get Hung Up

A perfect keepsake for your wedding dress.

 

 Our Favorite Item #5 ~ Card Holder from Kelly Marie Collection

This is ideal to show your engagement Photos to your guests as they place the card in the holder on your wedding day.

 

Our Favorite Item #6 ~ Monogram Sign from Script and Style

This is definitely something to hang in your new home as husband and wife.

 

Our Favorite Item # 7 ~ Wedding Bandeau Veil from Fascinating Creations

A beautiful addition to your wedding dress!

 

Our Favorite Item #8 ~ Wedding Dress Pendant from Green Grass Gifts

Take a piece of your wedding with you everyday.

 

Our Favorite Item #9 ~ Wedding Ring Pillow from Paloma's Nest

A fabulous keepsake to put your rings in every night!

 

Our Favorite Item #10 ~ Thank you cards from That Pretty Invitation

An amazing idea to thank your guests as they sit down for your wedding reception!

Enjoy all these items and everything more that Etsy can bring you when looking for wedding inspiration!!

Best ~ Laura

Weddings

Tips from a Planner

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We know that is takes a happy combination of events and planning to produce a "perfect" wedding.  here are a few tips from Accent on Events ~ Certified Wedding Specialist. If you are concerned about a guest list that has gotten out of hand and is too long for your taste or budget, assemble an unedited list of names (potential guests) and ask everyone involved to rank the names from most to least important.  Count up the "most important" names and see what the list looks like.  If it is close to budget, thank everyone and settle the list.  If the numbers are still off, then ask people to cut a designated percentage from their lists.  Take stock of the new total and see if the process needs to be repeated.

Don't even consider sending invitations to an "A" list of guests, only to invite someone from a "B" list when someone from the first list declines.

To determine the size of the site you'll need for your reception, be sure to investigate the parking facilities and the rest rooms as well as the since of the reception room(s).  The rule of thumb for toilets is that there should be at least one for every 25 guests.  The parking lot should accommodate one parking space for every two guests.

Always have at least one attendant assigned to your gift table at your reception (this is something that we will do for you) even if you are not planning to open and display the gifts there.  Money and gifts should be kept in special receptacles and secured.  Many weddings hire special security for the reception to keep an eye on the gifts and to assist in their proper transport after the celebration is over.

If your parents and stepparents are contributing money for your reception, it is much better to pool the money in advance.  Then no contributor will demand to take control of how the money is spent.  If someone feels strongly about "sponsoring" a particular wedding expense, it is far better to know that up front and working with that person to accommodate preferences.

For more helpful advice, call or email us, as we have answers to the most perplexing situations.

Weddings

The Bride's Mother

Mother and Bride

The Mother of the bride has a very special place in the wedding planning process.  The special role is there whether or not she chooses to accept it.  For some, it is truly a "Mission Impossible".  For others it is the role of a lifetime.  But what is important is that she is included.

With families frequently separated by miles, jobs, schools or military service, the parental roles have changed but what has not changed is the importance of including mom in the planning process whenever possible.  Remember to include mothers who feel left out of the plans.

What can you do?  It's great to involve the groom in the plans but don't forget mom.  She can make wonderful suggestions - so ask her opinion and advice.  Chances are excellent that she has more experience in dealing with things like receptions, parties, caterers and florists than has the bride.

Most bridal fashion stores would counsel a bride to bring only one person with her to select her gown.  That person could/should be mom.  Today's tendency to bring the entire wedding party and solicit each of their opinions on THE GOWN, generally is not a productive event.  Who knows you and your tastes and dreams better than MOM?

She is also a good person to have along when you choose wedding accessories and gifts for your attendants.  After all, she has known you for a long time.

She is the perfect person to take charge of the master guest list.  She can eliminate duplicates, help make decisions on the final list and gather the addresses.

Seek advice on, or let her plan the seating arrangements for the reception.  She'll be the one who knows who should sit with whom and who shouldn't be at the same table.

Among all your friends, she'll be the best at helping you put things in perspective when you feel overwhelmed by it all.  That's what mom's do!

Weddings

Illinois Meets Texas

It was May 1, 2012 when I received a phone call from Penny saying that she needed assistance with planning her wedding.  After meeting with 3 different wedding planners, she explained her situation and what she needed.  I knew that I could meet her expectations and create wedding that she had always dreamed of. After my initial meeting with Penny we clicked!!  I knew that this would be more than just a client relationship ~ that we would actually form a friendship for years to come.  My first encounter with her Fiancé Drew was just as great ~ he has the same sense of humor that I do and enjoyed watching the two of them together.  We all had so many laughs together!

Now coming from the City Girl – I knew nothing about ranches and horses, but learning about everything was fascinating.  The wedding was August 4, 2012 on the Perks Ranch in Rockford, Illinois.  This was definitely a wedding that I couldn’t have done without the professional vendors that we used.  As always I was watching the weather the evening before all hours of the night.  The morning of the 4th the decision was made to move the entire reception into the arena.  We worked hard but we got it done.  This was a wise decision because we had a downpour with 70 mile per hour winds at 3:00 p.m. in the afternoon just as the ceremony was about to begin.  The weather cleared up and it was a joyous evening for all who attended.

Here is a story that is so fitting for this perfect couple:

Where Illinois meets Texas ~ They were introduced while working horses in Texas and the rest is history

Photography: Ryan Davis Photography

Save the Dates: Printers Specialty Services, Inc.

Florist: Stems Floral and More

Lighting, Music and Sound:  Luxe Productions

Linens and Draping: Beautiful Day Linens

Aisle Runner:  Buttercup Runways

Catering:  Powerhouse BBQ of Oregon and Giovanni’s Restaurant Rockford

Cake: Patricia’s Patisserie

Bride’s Dress: Mahin’s of Monroe

Bridesmaids Dresses: Sara Grace and Co.

Hair and Make up:  Arch Apothecary

Groom and Groomsmen Attire: Sturtevant’s

Live Music:  Brandon Rhyder