Introducing Hello Rachel Creative!

Combining delicate paper, swoon worthy fonts, and thoughtful white space, the designs from Hello Rachel Creative are feminine and timeless.  Save the dates, wedding invitations, and day-of paper, Rachel creates it all and you won't be disappointed by any of it.  Don't believe me?  Take another look at some of her latest designs in the Burgh Brides Vendor Guide, then give her a holler to talk about how she can help you!

Hello Rachel Creative - Pittsburgh Wedding Stationery Designer & Burgh Brides Vendor Guide Member

Wedding Ideas & Details: Best of 2017

Looking for lots and lots of wedding ideas?  I've rounded up the best ones from the past year and put them into one handy dandy post for ya!  From bridal accessories to favors to table decor and even ceremony locations, the 2017 brides definitely thought outside the box when it came to all of the details.  If you're in the midst of planning your big day, get your Pin It button ready – you're bound to be inspired by these former brides in this latest installment of the Best of 2017!

What do you think about these wedding details?  Which one was your favorite?  Any that you're incorporating into your big day?

Don’t miss my other Best of 2017 picks!

Sonoma County Wineries: A Beginner’s Guide

With over 400 Sonoma County wineries, planning your wine country experience can easily become overwhelming.  How do you make sense of all of the vineyards and what make each unique?  Where do you begin to plan an itinerary that matches your style, desired pace, budget, and wine preferences?  The Wine Road makes this process nice and easy, of course.  But you can also take the word of someone who’s been there – i.e. me!  Here is a recap of my most favorite wine experiences from my September trip to Healdsburg, California!

Sonoma County Wineries: A Beginner's Guide from Burgh Brides

Most Immersive Experience: Blue Rock Vineyard

Sonoma County Wineries: A Beginner's Guide from Burgh Brides

First settled by Italian immigrants, Blue Rock Vineyard retains much of that old-world charm that has been engrained in its history since 1880.  The original stone cottage that features California redwood ceiling beams and stone masonry still stands on the property and now serves as an overnight guest villa that oozes romance.  Between lush vineyards, wild boars that inhabit the property, flourishing pomegranate trees, an organic vegetable garden, and other natural growth and inhabitants, Blue Rock has created its own ecosystem, further reminiscent of the way things used to be.  Meanwhile, their commitment to sustainable winemaking paves the way for a promising future.  It’s the best mix of old and new.  Believing in “accessible luxury”, the hosts at Blue Rock will ensure that you leave knowing what Blue Rock feels like, not just tastes like.

Sonoma County Wineries: A Beginner's Guide from Burgh Brides

Sonoma County Wineries: A Beginner's Guide from Burgh Brides

Sonoma County Wineries: A Beginner's Guide from Burgh Brides

The original stone cottage that is now a honeymooner's oasis! You can actually stay there!!!

Most Likely to Make Wine Education Fun: J.Rickards Winery

Sonoma County Wineries: A Beginner's Guide from Burgh Brides

The man.  The myth.  The moustache.  Jim Rickards not only boasts a signature ‘stache that has become a tangent of the J. Rickards Winery brand, but he also will greet you, shake your hand, tell you his story, and make you feel like an old friend.  As he dives into the nitty gritty of the wine making process, you’ll find yourself becoming enraptured, regardless of whether you’re actually following all of the talk of fermentation, filtering, and the like.  His passion for wine making becomes evident early on and it’s what makes this experience so special.  No stuffiness here; the man harvests his vineyards using a Lamborghini tractor from the 1960s that has been rebuilt three times.  This down-to-earth quality seeps into the finished product too; their wines are nuanced, hand-crafted creations that taste familial.  And if you’re lucky, you’ll leave J. Rickards with a new friend or two.

Sonoma County Wineries: A Beginner's Guide from Burgh Brides

Wedding bloggers and a wine maker! That's us with Jim Rickards himself…and his Lamborghini tractor!

Sonoma County Wineries: A Beginner's Guide from Burgh Brides

Vineyard dog living his best life on the right

Most Likely to Make You Feel Like Family: Zialena Winery

Sonoma County Wineries: A Beginner's Guide from Burgh Brides

Translated to “Aunt Lena” in Italian, Zialena Winery is a modern-meets-industrial operation run by a fourth-generation winemaking brother and sister team.  During the tasting set at a large table that gives off dining room vibes, you’ll feel like you’re right at home.  Lisa, the sister half of Zialena, will ensure your experience is just like Aunt Lena would have wanted, while Mark, the brother and winemaker side of the team, will make sure you’re sipping on some of the best cabernet and zinfandel Sonoma County has to offer.  This winery is so rooted in family tradition that even their logo bears the mark of Aunt Lena’s ravioli stamp.  Salud to la famiglia!

Sonoma County Wineries: A Beginner's Guide from Burgh Brides

Most Picturesque Setting: Trattore Farms

Sonoma County Wineries: A Beginner's Guide from Burgh Brides

I’ve traveled a lot and have encountered beauty in each place.  But nothing compares to the views at Trattore Farms.  Set high upon a hill, this 40 acre farm overlooks other vineyards and the rolling foothills of the Dry Creek Valley.  With nearly 200 year old mission olive trees, a variety of grapes, and even a spot called Proposal Hill, the scenery is enough to take your breath away.  It induces vibes of relaxation, contentment, and humility as you take in all the best that nature has to offer via a tractor tour.  Once you recover from all of that beauty, head to the terrace to experience their wine and olive oil tastings, both of which are made on the property.  Between your eyes and your taste buds, your senses are going to go into stimuli overload but only in the best way possible.

Sonoma County Wineries: A Beginner's Guide from Burgh Brides

I mean…have you ever seen anything so beautiful?

Sonoma County Wineries: A Beginner's Guide from Burgh Brides

Wine and olive oil tasting!

Sonoma County Wineries: A Beginner's Guide from Burgh Brides

So many engagements have taken place on this very spot that they've named it Proposal Hill! There is even naturally growing mistletoe hanging from this tree!

Most Hospitable: Dry Creek Vineyard

Sonoma County Wineries: A Beginner's Guide from Burgh Brides

As soon as you set foot on the property, Dry Creek Vineyard makes you feel like you are their most special guest.  An ivy covered storefront, sprawling lawns sprinkled with umbrella-covered picnic tables, and a secret flower garden greet you and let you know you’re arrived to a little piece of heaven.  This family-run business was the first winery to open after the repeal of Prohibition, and they were the first to coin the term “Old Vine” to describe their pre-Prohibition zinfandel vineyards.  Not only do they tell the story of their rich history in an interesting and engaging way, but they invite you to be their guests for as long as you like.  Pack your own picnic, pick up a bottle in their tasting room, and create your own memories on their lawn.  Or opt for their flight and lunch option, which includes a wine concierge to explain it all.  Either way, you’ll be treated like gold at Dry Creek!

Sonoma County Wineries: A Beginner's Guide from Burgh Brides

Picnic lunch on the lawn of Dry Creek Vineyard!

Most Likely to Make You Feel Extra Fancy: Gary Farrell Winery

Sonoma County Wineries: A Beginner's Guide from Burgh Brides

If you’re looking for that tasting experience that will top all tasting experiences, head to Gary Farrell Winery.  After a tour of the barrel room and grounds, you’ll be whisked off to their newly renovated Inspiration Room where an estate sommelier will walk you through a six-course flight paired with cheese, dried fruits, and nuts.  The wine and atmosphere strike a fine balance between luxury and approachability, making you feel special and sophisticated without being pretentious.  To cap off the sips, treat yourself to Gary Farrell’s own wine gummies, sugar coated candy treats made with their own vino.  The perfect ending to the perfect experience!

Sonoma County Wineries: A Beginner's Guide from Burgh Brides

A special thanks to our hosts Mysty (left) and Beth (right) of The Wine Road!  In the middle is me, Tabitha of United with Love, and Jessica of Apple Brides!

Now that you have the ultimate Sonoma wine country honeymoon bucket list AND you know all about the excellent vineyards in the area, go forth and plan the trip of a lifetime!  I just ask one thing of you…take me with you!  Comment below and let me know if you've been to any of the above wineries!  Or what's the best winery or tasting you've ever been to?  Let's hear it!

While this post was sponsored by The Wine Road, all opinions, insight, and recommendations are my own.

Thinking of honeymooning in northern CA?  Don't miss my Ultimate Sonoma Wine Country Honeymoon Bucket List!

Want to read what others are saying?  Check out these posts from my friends at Apple Brides and United with Love!

Wedding Flowers: Best of 2017

Raise your hand if wedding flowers are one of your favorite details to drool over!  Same here.  Now imagine if I take all of the best blooms to grace Burgh Brides in the past year and put them into a single blog post.  Sounds like heaven, right?  Your wish is my command.  Prepare your eyes for some pretty in this latest edition of Best of 2017.  If only your computer had smell-o-vision…

Vintage Romance Inspired Wedding at Longvue Club: Robin & Justin

Inspired by a trio of pink mercury glass votive holders, the flowers for Robin and Justin's wedding day were the epitome of pretty in pink.  Using the candlesticks as containers for the arrangements, Julie James Designs brought a unique look to the centerpieces.  Throw in elevated florals and a swoon worthy bouquet and you've got a recipe for beauty!

Modern Blush Pink & Black Wedding at Hotel Monaco: Christine & Frank

Anemones, ranunculus, and hydrangeas, oh my!  The work of Mocha Rose for Christine and Frank's blush pink and black wedding was OUT OF THIS WORLD.  The bouquets, arrangements, and even the epic garland that covered the sweetheart table fit right into the day's color palette.  I expect nothing less from a wedding planner's own big day!

Navy Blue Wedding at the Pittsburgh Botanic Garden: Monica & Conrad

Texture and volume reigned supreme at this affair inspired by bringing the outdoors inside.  Succulents and lots of greenery matched the navy and deep turquoise seen throughout the day, while pops of peach and white brought a light surprise.  Community Flower Shop nailed everything from the centerpieces to the boutonnieres, but they especially killed it with the hanging floral chandelier over the sweetheart table!

Summer Teal Wedding at Destiny Hill Farm: Joelle & Justin

When the son of the owners of Destiny Hill Farm get married, you know the flowers are bound to be amazing.  Peach, coral, and marsala blooms popped beautifully against the wedding's main color of turquoise.  Elevated and cascading arrangements were mixed among the tables while a flower-covered arbor set the stage for ceremony perfection.

Glamorous Garden Chic Wedding: Pazia & Tony

Dahlias, eucalyptus, lavender, and astilbe were essential in making the garden chic vibe of Pazia and Tony's wedding come to life.  Greenery table runners, large centerpieces accented with bud vases, a floral crown for the “ring bearer” (i.e. the couple's dog), and even floral tie backs for tent draping, the blooms at this wedding were sweet and sophisticated.  A job well done by Posies by Patti!

Rustic Sage & White Wedding: Zia & Dave

Floral chandeliers, greenery table runners, sweeping bouquets, and even fresh herbs at each place setting…the flowers from Zia and Dave's reception still leave me breathless to this day.  Sapphire & Lace Design hit it out of the park with creations that fit in beautifully with the rustic, low key atmosphere of the groom's family barn.  Simply incredible!!!

Sunflower Wedding at The White Barn: Reina & Kyle

The bride's favorite flower was the star of this show.  Thanks to The Farmer's Daughter, sunflowers made an appearance in centerpieces and a gorgeous ceremony arbor, and they were paired with everything from blue bells to caspedia to amaranthus to thistle.  The mix of color and texture was everything!!!!

Traditional Black, White, & Red Wedding at the Priory: Cristena & Ryan

Like many of the other pieces of Cristena and Ryan's big day, the flowers were timeless and sophisticated.  I absolutely adore the way Kohler's Florist mixed classic white hydrangeas and roses with red hypericum berries and Peruvian lilies to bring the color palette alive.  The centerpieces popped against white linens and black table runners, while the bouquets looked gorgeous against the red-clad bridesmaids!

Decadent Purple & Gold Wedding at the Omni: Christine & Ray

“Wow” doesn't even begin to describe the florals at this decadent Omni wedding.  The enormous, fluffy elevated arrangements and the sweetheart table swag from Mocha Rose still make my jaw drop.  Purple is my all-time favorite color and there was plenty of it in Christine and Ray's feature.  Love love love!

Absolutely Gorgeous Fall Wedding at Greystone Fields: Caris & Sean

If I had awards for “Most Luscious Bouquet” and “Best Ceremony Decor,” they'd both go to Caris and Sean.  Fall inspiration utterly came alive in the in.cred.ib.le. bouquets from Julie James Design.  And if you love pumpkins, you're going to flip over the backdrop to the couple's vows.  Did I mention all of those pumpkins were grown on the groom's uncle's farm?  The absolute coolest.

Glittery White & Silver Wedding at the Willow Room: Corrine & Brandon

I can't finish this post without reviving the oh-so-pretty flowers carried by Corrine and her bridesmaids.  With the white and silver color palette in mind, Barton's Flower & Bake Shop put together white lilies, silver brunia, white roses, and dusty miller.  The bouquets looked striking against the ladies' silver and gunmetal dresses!

Which flowers were your favorite?  Why did you love them so much!  Have they influenced your own wedding flowers? Comment below!

Don’t miss my other Best of 2017 picks!

Vintage Holiday Engagement Session: Ashley & Luke

We are in the midst of the most wonderful time of the year and this holiday engagement session is sure to put you in the spirit.  Taking place on a tree farm owned by the family of one of her bridesmaids, Ashley and Luke's pre-wedding shoot with Dawn Derbyshire Photography is just about as adorable as one can get.  Using the winter season and some vintage props as inspiration, the couple styled several vignettes.  From getting cozy on a bench with matching his and her coffee mugs to making s'mores in front of an open fire to decorating a live tree and then wrapping up in a colorful blanket beneath it, Ashley and Luke embraced the cold and made the most of the holiday feels.  Antique skates, metallic ornaments, plaid blankets, old lanterns, wooden crates, campus thermoses, a wreath, and even misletoe were just some of the props that brought the seasonal vibe to life.  I've been told it was extremely cold that day, but you'd never know it based on how bright and happy they look.  As you finish up (or start?) your holiday shopping, baking, gift wrapping, movie watching, family visiting, and general December merriment, be sure to scroll through these pics for an extra dose of cheer!

Vintage Holiday Engagement Session from Dawn Derbyshire Photography featured on Burgh Brides Vintage Holiday Engagement Session from Dawn Derbyshire Photography featured on Burgh Brides Vintage Holiday Engagement Session from Dawn Derbyshire Photography featured on Burgh Brides Vintage Holiday Engagement Session from Dawn Derbyshire Photography featured on Burgh Brides Vintage Holiday Engagement Session from Dawn Derbyshire Photography featured on Burgh Brides Vintage Holiday Engagement Session from Dawn Derbyshire Photography featured on Burgh Brides Vintage Holiday Engagement Session from Dawn Derbyshire Photography featured on Burgh Brides Vintage Holiday Engagement Session from Dawn Derbyshire Photography featured on Burgh Brides Vintage Holiday Engagement Session from Dawn Derbyshire Photography featured on Burgh Brides Vintage Holiday Engagement Session from Dawn Derbyshire Photography featured on Burgh Brides Vintage Holiday Engagement Session from Dawn Derbyshire Photography featured on Burgh Brides Vintage Holiday Engagement Session from Dawn Derbyshire Photography featured on Burgh Brides Vintage Holiday Engagement Session from Dawn Derbyshire Photography featured on Burgh Brides Vintage Holiday Engagement Session from Dawn Derbyshire Photography featured on Burgh Brides Vintage Holiday Engagement Session from Dawn Derbyshire Photography featured on Burgh Brides Vintage Holiday Engagement Session from Dawn Derbyshire Photography featured on Burgh Brides Vintage Holiday Engagement Session from Dawn Derbyshire Photography featured on Burgh Brides Vintage Holiday Engagement Session from Dawn Derbyshire Photography featured on Burgh Brides Vintage Holiday Engagement Session from Dawn Derbyshire Photography featured on Burgh Brides Vintage Holiday Engagement Session from Dawn Derbyshire Photography featured on Burgh Brides

From the photographer…

Ashley and Luke had a colorful, DIY, kind of boho vibe for their wedding and they applied some of those elements into their engagement session.  We decided to do something a little different, opting to shoot in the winter at a tree farm owned by the family of one of Ashley's bridesmaids.  Ashley and Luke planned out several different sets and activities all over the farm, from snuggling up and making s'mores to decorating a live tree on the property.  They incorporated vintage props, cute ornaments, and colorful blankets that added some fun elements that would later be seen at their wedding.  Our goal was to keep things fun while also creating a few memories during the session.  It was such a blast.

I just loved how, despite the freezing cold, Ashley and Luke embraced the day and had fun with it.  We were running to our cars for breaks to stay warm, but it never stopped them from laughing, having fun, snuggling up, and enjoying the session.  They incorporated little pieces of their personalities into all of the details and really got into the session; it made the cold weather tolerable and the whole shoot was filled with love and joy.

Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: Best of 2017

Woodsy, whimsical, urban, playful, and downright romantic…Burgh Brides had the pleasure of featuring some of the dreamiest Pittsburgh engagement sessions in 2017!  While I love each and every last one of them, here are the shoots that were my absolute favorites!

Picturesque Winter Engagement Session: Lyndsay & Justin

Winter in the middle of the woods?  Um, yes please.  This couple opted for a little something different and took off to find the best of nature.  They found that and much more.  These romantic photos from Jenna Hidinger Photography will go down in history!  Also, get a load of Lyndsay's gorgeous dress!

Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017

Coffee Shop Engagement Session: Ashley & Rory

I LOVE bright, colorful photos, so choosing Ashley and Rory's as some of my favorites was a no brainer.  After hitting up their favorite coffee shop, they explored Carnegie with Jenni Grace Photography.  Vibrant walls, fun murals, and even a few street benches…these pics will leave you anything but blue!

Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017

Summer in the City Engagement Session: Liz & Greg

Light and airy, this session from Kayla Bri Photography was a late summer favorite.  It's sunshine-y, flirty, and playful…a winning combination if you ask me.  Plus, Liz and Greg are totally adorable together.  It's not wonder this shoot stuck out to me.

Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017

Gaming Inspired Strip District Engagement Session: Sharon & Quinn

Speaking of sticking out, I love when a couple isn't afraid to go against the grain.  This couple, who fell in love over a shared interest in online gaming, went for a Strip District shoot with a subtle gaming theme.  The results were quirky, cute, and totally THEM.  Sandrachile totally rocked this one!

Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017

Cool AF City Engagement Session: Sara & Tate

Pizza break in the middle of taking photos?  It doesn't get better than this.  Effortlessly cool and so down-to-earth it hurts, these images of Sara and Tate are hard core engagement session goals.  Requiem Images went to town shooting the impromptu snack break and ended up with the most EPIC photos everrrrrr.

Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017

Cozy & Playful Engagement Session: Emily & Aaron

Beyonce who?  Emily looks like a straight up superstar in front of a wind machine in these pics from Tyler Norman Photography.  A cold and SUPER windy day didn't stop this pair from snuggling up and embracing the crisp weather.  Because of that, their photos are some of the coziest I saw all year!

Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017

Adorable Rainy Engagement Session: Danielle & Zach

Another couple who embraced less than ideal weather was Danielle and Zach.  Rainy skies didn't ruin their e-shoot with Palermo Photography.  Throw in a umbrella built for two and some super fun jumping-in-the-puddles shots and you'll have no trouble figuring out why these pics were some of my favorites!

Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017 Engagement Photo Ideas: Pittsburgh Engagement Sessions: The Best of 2017

Absolutely Gorgeous Engagement Session: Pamela & Domenic

I'm not even going to pretend that I won't wish I looked like Pamela.  This blond beauty looked ravishing in her and Domenic's engagement shoot with Ann Louise Photography.  Shades of blue (their wedding color!), golden light, and Mellon Park made these images extra delicious.  I'm still obsessed.

Absolutely Gorgeous Engagement Session from Ann Louise Photography featured on Burgh Brides Absolutely Gorgeous Engagement Session from Ann Louise Photography featured on Burgh Brides Absolutely Gorgeous Engagement Session from Ann Louise Photography featured on Burgh Brides Absolutely Gorgeous Engagement Session from Ann Louise Photography featured on Burgh Brides Absolutely Gorgeous Engagement Session from Ann Louise Photography featured on Burgh Brides

Which engagement session was your favorite?  Why did you love it so much?  Comment below!

Don’t miss my other Best of 2017 picks!

Wedding Dresses: Best of 2017

If you're as obsessed with wedding dresses as I am, you're going to love today's post.  From classic and chic to boho and flowy and everything in between, this year has brought us the loveliest of gowns.  Before we head into 2018, let's take a look back at some of my recent favorites!

Corrine's Beaded Sheath Wedding Dress

This Rosa Clara smooth satin sheath dress was decked out with bling around the waist, shoulders, and back.  And let me tell you…it was STUNNING!  Corrine accented it with a white faux fur wrap for her January wedding, perfectly playing the part of a gorgeous winter bride.  Obsessed doesn't even begin to describe it.

Bonnie's Dainty Lace Bodice and Tiered Skirt Wedding Dress

Bonnie created the dress of her dreams with this two piece mix and match number.  The WToo sweetheart neck lace bodice paired beautifully with a tiered ruffled skirt from Martina Liana.  The silhouette is the stuff dreams are made of.

Mara's Long Lace Sleeved Wedding Dress

The long lace sleeves, the deep V front, the low cut back…Mara looked like a boho wedding princess in her dress.  It went perfectly with the eclectic, relaxed vibe of her and Matthew's farm affair.

Michelle's Ruched Ruffle Skirt Wedding Dress

Michelle's ruched bodice and ruffled skirting reminds me so much of my own wedding dress.  Perhaps that's why I love it so much.  But more likely, it's because Michelle looked like a modern day princess in the Maggie Sottero number.  Just look at those layers!

Ashley's Boho Off the Shoulder Wedding Dress

This Daughters of Simone dress will stop you in your tracks.  It's antique lace and off-the-shoulder necklace is still leaving me swooning.  It was literally perfect for Ashley and David's carefree, woodsy wedding.

Lisa's Beaded Art Deco Wedding Dress

The beading on this Christina Wu gown is mesmerizing, and the art deco inspired pattern brought vintage vibes to this otherwise modern wedding.  Lisa shocked people when she decided to cut the train off, but the rest of the gown is so beautiful, I didn't miss it one bit.

Kelsey's Blush Pink Wedding Dress

I hope the blush pink wedding dress trend never goes out of style.  Kelsey looked so on point when she donned this Lazaro number.  Adding a beaded belt and drop crystal earrings, this bride looked feminine and fierce all at the same time.

Emmy's Sage Green Wedding Dress

Another bride that opted for color was Emmy.  Her sage green and ivory BHLDN dress featured a lace top and chiffon skirting.  Worn with ivory TOMS, it fit in amazingly with the rest of this muted, low key farm wedding.

Natalie's Blingy Hayley Paige Wedding Dress

Hayley Paige does it again with Natalie's encrusted spaghetti strapped gown.  A criss-cross back and airy skirt, coupled with the serious bling on the bodice, make this dress an easy pick for one of my favorites!

Jeni's Delicate Lace Wedding Dress

Sweet and dainty, Jeni's Rue de Siene dress featured feminine lace and girly patterns.  The most unique feature though was the pointed train that gave a different look to the back of this dress.  I'm still dreaming of this one!

Zia's 3D Lace Floral Wedding Dress

I've saved the best for last.  Hands down, Zia's Nicole Miller dress was my absolute favorite.  3D lace flowers, thick straps, and a V neck…let's just all bow down to the queen.  I've never seen anything like this!!!

Which wedding dress was your favorite?  Why did you love it so much!  Comment below, and then keep your eyes peeled the rest of this month as I reveal more of my favorites from 2017!

Hey, Pittsburgh Wedding Vendors! You’re Gonna Want to Read This!

Now that I have your attention, here is the full scoop: If you've ever thought about joining the Burgh Brides Vendor Guide, NOW is the time!

Until the end of the year, packages* are discounted by 10%!

 

Burgh Brides Vendor Guide

That's right…now you can work with Burgh Brides for less.

But why would you even want to join the BB family in the first place?  Here are just a few reasons:

  • Burgh Brides is the ONLY wedding planning resource of its kind in Pittsburgh.  Literally nothing beats it.
  • Burgh Brides connects you with more LOCAL brides than other national sites can ever dream to do.  They may beat me in numbers but I beat them in target.
  • Burgh Brides is a trusted INFLUENCER that provides reliable recommendations and helpful ideas.  At least that's what my readers tell me.

Need even more convincing?

CHECK OUT MY BRAND NEW 2018 MEDIA KIT!

Learn about reader demographics, hear what other vendors have to say, and basically have your mind blown.

Sounds great, right?  Let me let you in on a little secret…it is.  Just ask around.

This limited offer expires when 2017 does so you better act fast!

READ ABOUT PACKAGES AND APPLY NOW!

I absolutely cannot wait to work with you!!!

Fine Print (READ ME!)

  • You MUST reference this promotion in your Vendor Guide application.
  • *Discount does NOT apply to the List Me Package.
  • Please note that I reserve the right to only accept those businesses that fit with the goals, standards, and image of Burgh Brides.  In order to provide readers with only the best of the best, there is a limited number of listings per category.  Double check that there is availability in your category before applying!
  • If accepted to the Vendor Guide, you will be sent an invoice with the discount reflected.
  • New listings ONLY!  Promotion does NOT apply to renewals or former listings.
  • Offer ends at 11:59 p.m. December 31, 2017.  Application and ALL necessary materials MUST be submitted by that time in order to receive the discount.

Classic Holiday Wedding at the Pittsburgh Golf Club: Colleen & Zack

If you've never considered a holiday wedding, today's feature just might change your mind.  Colleen always knew she wanted a winter affair.  In order to have that and spread a little bit of Christmas cheer, she and Zack chose December 17 as their wedding day.  From there, a mix of vintage, classic, and winter magic vibes followed. The Pittsburgh Golf Club's sophisticated yet comfortable ballroom provided a unique space for the celebration while the venue's evergreens, garland, wreaths, and twinkle lights added the perfect amount of holiday decor.  Here are a few of my favorites that you should be on the look out for!

  • The striking color palette.  Inspired by a bridal bouquet Colleen once saw on a blog, cranberry red and dusty blue was a rich combo that added warmth and depth to this wedding day.
  • That cake!  The four-tiered buttercream confection was adorned with gold glitter ribbon, amazing deep red flowers, and a wooden laser cut topper that was perfectly suited for the occasion.  In a word, it was adorable!
  • A sweet ending.  What is a winter night without some cocoa?  The couple's guests were treated to a fun hot chocolate bar with all of the fixings!

Aaron Varga Photography captured all of the Christmas-y magic.  If you agree that this truly is the most wonderful time of the year, you're going to love these images.  Happy Holidays!

Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides

Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides

Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides

Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Holiday Wedding from Aaron Varga Photography featured on Burgh Brides

Here's Pictory Productions with the cutest, holiday-est wedding film everrrr!  Love this SO MUCH!

From the bride…

When and how did you two meet?

Believe it or not, Zack and I went to GRADE SCHOOL together!  We overlapped being in school a few years before we both switched schools and went different ways – until about 10 years later!  I always joke and say we are in the same yearbooks at such a young age!  We reconnected at the end of my junior year of high school at Oakland Catholic and at the end of his freshman year at Saint Vincent College.  Zack texted me after getting my number from my cousin. We had our first date and the rest was history!

Juicy details on the proposal, please!  Where, when, how?

Zack and I had a fall weekend trip planned to The Gateway Lodge in Cooks Forest, Pa and I had mentioned to my sister in law that I thought he would propose there!  Well, that was the original plan but since I had mentioned that, my sister in law let Zack know and he decided to surprise me even earlier with a proposal.  I had just passed my state boards to practice as an Occupational Therapist, as well as just landed my first job, and Zack had just completed his MBA.  We had planned to go to church and then head to a nice dinner on Mt. Washington to celebrate.  We went to church that evening at Saint Peter’s on the North Side (where we would eventually get married) and then headed to take the incline up to the LeMont.  Typically I am a BIG picture taker and Zack is not.  We got to the top and he said, “Hey, let's go take a photo on the lookout.”  Knowing that he isn’t a fan of taking too many pictures, I just brushed it off and replied “Nah, let’s just get to dinner.  I am hungry.”  I do not mess around when it comes to food 🙂  Plus, the weather was overcast and a little breezy.  He insisted on walking over and taking a look, so we did.  We were standing there looking over downtown.  The next thing I knew, I had turned around and there he was on one knee, asking me to marry him!  I was in total shock and had not been expecting it at all!  Of course, I said yes.  After getting some pictures and awes from the others on the lookout, we headed to an amazing dinner.  After dinner our families were all waiting for us back at my parents' house for an engagement party with a cake, champagne, and beautiful Waterford toasting flutes to use that evening and at our wedding 🙂

Describe the look, theme, style, and colors of the wedding.

I would like to think that our wedding was a mix of a holiday, classic, and vintage feel.  Beginning with Saint Peter's, the church was originally established back in 1850!  It is such an historic church that knew I wanted to incorporate an old, classic feel to our theme.  Our reception venue, The Pittsburgh Golf Club, also has the same vintage feel, which was perfect!  Adding in the beauty of Christmas decor at both our ceremony and reception was the icing on the cake!  It turned out perfectly and we were just in awe when seeing everything for the first time!  I felt as if I could just stop and gaze for hours throughout different parts of the day!

What inspired your vision?

Believe it or not, a bridal bouquet that I found on a blog had inspired my whole color palette and vision!  I always knew I wanted a winter wedding while also keeping in mind that winter in Pittsburgh can mean so many different weather patterns!  I chose the week before Christmas knowing that I wanted to focus on having a winter theme with some Christmas elements added in!  The vintage, classic look was inspired by both our ceremony and reception venue.

What made your wedding unique?

I was really hoping for winter-like weather and woke up to the iciest morning we had thus far that winter!  My dad was chipping ice off our our driveway at 6 a.m. and I was praying that everyone was going to be on time and most importantly, get where they needed to be safely!  Needless to say, we had a gorgeous icy background and snow on the ground for pictures.  It made the day even more perfect and will be a story Zack and I will love to tell for years to come! 🙂

What was your favorite moment of the day?

I think my favorite part of the day was when Zack and I had gone to the bar to get a drink sometime later into the reception.  We both were just standing together, taking a minute or two to take in all that was happening around us.  Dancing, laughing, smiles – all fun!  I can remember saying to him, “I just don't want the night to end!”  Watching everyone around us had just solidified that all the hard work had payed off!  It was the best feeling to know that everyone was enjoying themselves!  It was a great moment for Zack and I also because we were able to take everything in together!  This is so important to do with one another because everyone is right when they say that the day just goes by so, so fast!

What advice would you give to other Burgh Brides planning their big day?

Rely on others to help throughout the planning!  You cannot do it all on your own!  Designate to mom, sisters, MOHs, bridesmaids, aunts, or whomever you feel comfortable with handling some of the different parts of your big day!  Also, do things the way you envision them.  It's your day, which only happens once, and you do not want to have any regrets looking back!  Last, DON'T SWEAT the SMALL STUFF!!  If something isn't quite perfect or doesn't come out exactly how you wanted, it's you and only you who knows that!  Everyone will think it's beautiful and won't know any differently!  For me, honestly I can say it was the perfect day and I wouldn't change a single thing!

Any must haves, must dos, or can't live withouts?  Anything you would do differently?

I originally was unsure about whether to do a videographer, but boy am I happy that I chose to have Megan capture our day!  Our wedding video is AMAZING and will be something we watch every year, if not more than that because it is THAT GOOD!  I also would say to most definitely splurge on your photographer!  The pictures are really the only thing left after the day is over and you want them to be displayed and in an album, which you will LOVE to look through!  Aaron definitely was amazing and we are so, so in love with the photos!

Vendors

Bride's Dress: Pronovias from Van Cleve Wedding Pavilion | Bride's Accessories: Macy's | Bride's Shoes: Saks Off 5th | Bridesmaids Dresses: Dessy from Candalina Brides | Cake: The Pittsburgh Golf Club | Caterer: The Pittsburgh Golf Club | Caricature Artist: Sam Thong | Ceremony Location: Saint Peter Catholic Church | DJ: John Wiggins of FlipSide DJs | Flowers: Mocha Rose | Hair: Lavish Salon & Spa | Linens: The Pittsburgh Golf Club | Makeup: Valarie Panei | Menswear: Calvin Klein from Men's Wearhouse | Photographer: Aaron Varga Photography | Reception Venue: The Pittsburgh Golf Club | Stationery: Invitations by Dawn | Videography: Pictory Productions

Engagement Gift Ideas from My Favorite Pittsburgh Shops!

Proposal season is upon us and I'm willing to bet you know someone who just got engaged!  Or maybe you received a shiny new ring yourself!  Either way, saying “Yes” is definitely worth celebrating.  It's easy to do with these engagement gift ideas…all of which are made or sold by local Pittsburgh friends.  So say “Congrats”, toast to the soon-to-be newlyweds, and shop small at the same time!

Heart Shaped Glass Dish

Is there anything more perfect for a couple in love than something in the shape of a heart?  I think not.  Pop into Shadyside's or Squirrel Hill's Glassworks and see their collection of chic Annieglass pieces.  Ranging from 5 to 8 inches and rimmed in gold or platinum, these special works are great as ring dishes or even just a decorative addition to the newlywed's home.

Heart Shaped Glass Dish: Engagement Gift Ideas from Burgh Brides Heart Shaped Glass Dish: Engagement Gift Ideas from Burgh Brides

52 Reasons Why I Love You Cards

Know someone who recently got engaged? You'll want to double down on this customizable deck of cards that's the perfect gift for the bride- or groom-to-be in your life.  Modeled after playing cards, this gift from theBird+theBeard provides 52 reasons (and up to 52 photos) that lets the intended know just how much they are loved.

52 Reasons Why I Love You Cards: Engagement Gift Ideas from Burgh Brides

Beauty Treatments for the Bride and Groom

Everyone is going to want to take a photo of the happy couple.  Help the bride and groom to be look their best with a few beauty treatments from La Pomponnee Beauty Artisans.  This Aveda salon with two locations will have her feeling extra glamorous with makeup application and a blowout.  Meanwhile, he'll feel fresh to death with a hot shave and haircut from Mec, La Pomponnee's own barber shop.  Perfect right before their engagement party, holiday party, engagement photos, or even just a fancy date night!

Beauty Treatments for the Bride and Groom: Engagement Gift Ideas from Burgh Brides

Custom Return Address Stamp

I bet even the couple who has everything doesn't have a personalized return address stamp.  Between the engagement party, bridal shower, and wedding, they are going to be writing out A LOT of thank you cards.  Make their job a little bit easier by gifting them a quick and easy solution to the upper left hand corner (or envelope flap!).  From cursive to contemporary, bold to basic, these beauties are customized with love by Blush Paper Co.

Custom Return Address Stamp: Engagement Gift Ideas from Burgh Brides

Canvas Bride Tote

Something just for the lady, this canvas bride tote will come in handy for carting around that wedding planner binder, vendor contracts, and all of the necessary “stuff” that comes along with planning that big day.  Plus, what better way to scream from the rooftops that you're engaged than with a cute little bag that does it for you.  This and a variety of other tote styles are also designed by Blush Paper Co.

Bride Tote Bag: Engagement Gift Ideas from Burgh Brides

Monogram Cosmetics Case

Why wait until the wedding day to start using that new last name?  Surprise the new bride-to-be in your life with a fun custom cosmetics case with her initials (make sure she's changing her name first!).  Blush Paper Co. offers these beauties in natural, white, and black, all with a silk lining and a variety of color options for the monogram.  They're great for holding makeup, jewelry, or little accessories.  Knowing me, I'd probably use it to hold snacks.

Custom Monogram Makeup Case: Engagement Gift Ideas from Burgh Brides

Library Borrower's Card Thank You Notes

This note set from theBird+theBeard is the perfect gift for the newly engaged bookworm!  No ones makes it to their big day without a lot of help – that equals a lot of thank you notes.  Your bookish bride’s personality will shine through when she sends a library-themed note to those who’ve helped along the way.

Library Borrower's Card Thank You Notes: Engagement Gift Ideas from Burgh Brides

A Custom Painted Canvas

Really want to wow your favorite newly-engaged couple?  Surprise them with a custom painted canvas from Erin Art Design.  Available in any color combo that suits your fancy (and just about any size imaginable), these pieces are true works of art.  Ethereal, galactic, geometric, or any other style you can dream up (Erin is THAT talented), a canvas like this would make a perfect gift for a newlywed's new home.

Custom Painted Canvas : Engagement Gift Ideas from Burgh Brides

Personalized Scented Candle

Pittsburgh's brewery scene is hopping.  If the soon-to-be newlyweds love pints and pubs, a custom gift from Brewed 2 Burn just might be a great gift for them.  Available in classic crystal jars or upcycled amber bottles, these scents get their inspiration from your favorite pours.  The label can even be customized to celebrate the couple and their engagement date!

Fun Personalized Scented Candle: Engagement Gift Ideas from Burgh Brides

Custom Corn Hole Board Game Set

If the couple loves lawn games, especially the kind that involves some drinks, what better than a personalized corn hole board game set that commemorates their engagement or wedding date?  These wooden pieces are hand made by Penn Rustics Rentals and can be customized with any message you like.  They make a great addition to any casual wedding reception or just a summer backyard barbecue!

Custom Corn Hole Board Game Set: Engagement Gift Ideas from Burgh Brides

Fun Gifts for the Bride to Be

Looking for a variety of ring dishes, cute tees, wine glasses, and mugs, just to name a few things?  Then head to Clarissa Boutique for the cutest selection of all kinds of great gift ideas!  Spoiler alert: you just might see some items from yours truly!

Fun Gifts for the Bride to Be: Engagement Gift Ideas from Burgh Brides

Will you be purchasing an engagement gift for someone in your life?  Comment below and tell me what you'll be getting him or her!