Snowy Pastel Wedding Inspired Styled Shoot

The pale pinks and blues of a gorgeous winter sunset inspired this styled shoot that will make all pastel wedding lovers go gaga!  The light shades are a feminine contrast against the white snow of the season.  Taking place on Heaven Sent Farms, stylist Jessica Garda Events set up a sweetheart table dressed with airy fabrics, pink taper candles, and simple bud vases.  Two light blue high back vintage chairs save the place for the “bride and groom” – a real life couple who just got engaged!  My favorite feature though?  The V-neck icy blue dress with a lace bodice and tulle skirt worn by the model.  While a non-white wedding dress isn't for the faint of heart, this gorgeous spin on tradition will win the hearts of even the most classic bride.  The dress paired beautifully with the lush bouquet created by Allison Brooks Events, which incorporated color, texture, and whimsical vibes.  Soft hair by Glam to Go and natural makeup by Dominika Bronner completed the look.  Captured by Dawn Derbyshire Photography, this styled shoot is sweet, girly, and a winter dream come true!

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From the stylist…

The inspiration for this shoot came about on a Monday evening after a winter storm.  The sunset that night was a beautiful combination of pale blues and pinks that made me think of spring.  Typically with winter shoots, you see the use of bold colors to contrast the white snow.  But I thought the pairing of this pastel palette with the winter environment would make for a sweet and whimsical take on a winter wedding.

On Tuesday, with still just the start of an idea, I put out a message on Facebook to see who would want to do a spur-of-the-moment shoot that weekend.  The result was an amazing team of wedding professionals who came together (most of them meeting for the first time!) to make some magic.  We all had a blast collaborating on this project – each one of us throwing out ideas when inspiration struck.  Even our models – a real couple who were recently engaged – chimed in with ideas and helped with set-up!  This whole experience was a prime example of the spirit of “community over competition” that makes Pittsburgh's wedding industry so special!

Vendors

Photography: Dawn Derbyshire Photography | Stylist: Jessica Garda Events | Shoot Location: Heaven Sent Farms | Desserts: Bartram House Bakery | Dresses: ASOS | Flowers: Allison Brooks Events | Hair: Glam to Go | Makeup: Dominika Bronner | Models: Alexis Zmijowski and Ryan Lemerich | Rentals: Copper & Sage Event Design & Vintage Rentals

Photography: Dawn Derbyshire Photography | Stylist: Jessica Garda Events | Hair: Glam to Go

Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children’s Museum: Kimberly & Ronald

I dare you to spot something more fun than this polka dot wedding.  (See what I did there?)  Kimberly and Ronald took a classic wedding day palette – black, white, and red – and added some pizzazz by incorporating whimsical spots and wide stripes.  The invites, Ronald's tie, ceremony programs, the seating chart, linens, even the ribbons hanging from Kimberly's bouquet – all of these details showcased a little pop of pattern which infused a youthful, casual vibe into the entire day.  Couple this with numerous personalized elements – like the venue of the Children's Museum and the fact that Kimberly used to teach in the classrooms there, wine from Chautauqua where the couple got engaged, and a dessert course that featured both the bride and groom's favorites – and you've got a recipe for a winning wedding.  Traditional yet totally fun, this perfectly patterned day was captured by Ryan Zarichnak Photography.  Get your peepers ready for lots of Pinterest worthy inspo!

Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & 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Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald Super Fun Polka Dot Wedding at the Children's Museum: Kimberly & Ronald

From the bride…

When and how did you two meet?

We both work for Pittsburgh Public Schools, though in totally different departments.  Our paths had crossed briefly over the years, but it wasn’t until after some “convincing” by our co-workers that we finally went on our first date in the spring of 2014.  Since then, we have been pretty much inseparable!

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

Once the school year ended in June of 2016, we decided we needed a nice, relaxing weekend away so we went up to Lake Chautauqua for a few days.  While there, we stayed at a cute B&B and Ron surprised me by proposing with the most beautiful ring ever!  We kept the engagement to ourselves for the day while enjoying wine tasting with big smiles and then we told my family in person and Ron’s family over the phone once we returned to Pittsburgh.

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

We wanted our wedding to be fun, yet classy, so we chose classic black and white and then added the pops of red and sparkle for some fun.  I loves all things polka dot, so we fit the dots and stripes in to add some jazz to plain black and white.

What inspired the vision?

I had dreamed of my wedding since I was a little girl, and luckily Ron was flexible about wedding decor and style, so I was able to make all of my Pinterest wedding board dreams come true!

What made the wedding unique?

We chose The Children's Museum for our wedding because it's a very special place to me.  I used to teach in one of Pittsburgh Public School's classrooms within the building.  Throughout the years I taught there, I had seen the amazing things that could be done there with a little creativity.  Also, many of our friends and family have small children, so the location seemed perfect.  Ron selected the food for the stations from the extensive Big Catering menu, including sushi, sliders, and a pasta bar.  My favorite dessert is Prantl's burnt almond torte and Ron's is ice cream, so we decided to have both.  Many other wedding items had personal meaning to us, including wine from Chautauqua where we got engaged and beer from Draai Laag Brewing Co., where we have become friends with the owners.  The candles used for the ceremony were also made by a friend of mine and one of the district secretaries was the officiant for the ceremony.

What was your favorite moment of the day?

My favorite moment of the day was the short bit of time after the ceremony, but before the reception, where it was just the wedding party and immediate family around hugging and congratulating us.  It was very happy, very private, and very special (and luckily Ryan got some great photos of these moments).

Ron's favorite moment of the day was the amazing Draai Laag beer and the huge sushi bar 🙂

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

Pittsburgh has some great local things that can make your day wonderful without breaking your bank… take advantage of it!  Etsy is also great for getting personalized items that you and your wedding party will keep forever.

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

Must have: a great photographer and great DJ

Must have: a detailed agenda for the day so everyone working on your wedding knows what's supposed to happen and when, so you don't get asked a million questions when you're trying to enjoy your day

Would do differently: start earlier in the day – everything seemed to go so fast!

Vendors

Bride's Dress: Morilee by Madeline Gardner from The Winner | Bride's Belt & Headpiece: Ingenue B | Bride's Jewelry: Trinity Jewelers | Bride's Shoes: Badgley Mischka | Bridesmaids Belts: Ingenue B | Bridesmaids Dresses: David's Bridal | Cake: Prantl's | Caterer: Big Catering | Ceremony Location: The Children's Museum of Pittsburgh | DJ: North Pittsburgh Music | Dessert: Leona's Ice Cream Sandwiches | Flasks: Etsy | Flowers: Bloom Brigade | Hair: Above All Grand Salon & Spa | Hangers: Mile High Gifts | Linens: Mosaic Linens | Makeup: Above All Grand Salon & Spa | Menswear: Men's Wearhouse | Photo Booth: The Children's Museum of Pittsburgh | Photo Booth Album: Pink Fish Shop | Photo Booth Props: Oriental Trading | Photographer: Ryan Zarichnak Photography | Reception Venue: The Children's Museum of Pittsburgh | Rentals: All Occasion Party Rental | Stationery: Wedding Paper Divas | Transportation: Roenigk Transportation

Photographer: Ryan Zarichnak Photography | Rentals: All Occasion Party Rental

Surprise Strip District Proposal: Maura & Jim

I love a good surprise proposal caught on camera.  But when it takes place in my favorite Pittsburgh neighborhood – the Strip District – I'm all about it.  Jim planned to pop the question to Maura over his birthday weekend, and he secretly enlisted the help of Kathryn Hyslop Photography to get it all on film.  Good man.  After dinner and a quick stop for drinks at Primanti's, Jim walked Maura to the middle of Smallman Street.  In the quintessential Strip District location with the Pittsburgh skyline behind them, he got down on one knee.  Maura's reaction is totally priceless!  After saying YES, the pair headed off with Kathryn for an impromptu photo shoot around the block.  Damn near everything about it is totally darling.  This feature is bound to have you grinning from ear to ear.  Enjoy!

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From the photographer…

Jim planned the proposal for months.  He secretly saved up for the ring, while putting off her engagement hints.  About two months before the day of the proposal, he started coordinating with me to capture the big moment.

He had it planned for his birthday weekend.  He and Maura were a long distance couple, so he knew she'd be coming in to celebrate his birthday, and she wouldn't question him choosing the restaurant for dinner.  After all, it was his birthday 😉

The plan was to go out to dinner, then stop at Primanti Bros. for a drink afterwards (the authentic Pittsburgh experience).  However, the plan was off by a half-hour when Maura decided she neeeeeeded to get fries as well!  Poor Jim had to anxiously wait on her to eat, while he snuck away to the bathroom to text me about the delay.

Finally, they walked out of the restaurant and across the street.  Once they were right in the middle – Jim stopped traffic and got down on one knee.  Maura's face was the perfect mixture of excitement, shock, and happiness.  And the answer (of course), was yes.

We finished the evening with a short photoshoot around the Strip District to celebrate, and Jim planned a surprise engagement party with all their friends and family afterwards. <3

Blue & Gold Literary Inspired Wedding Styled Shoot

Taking a page out of Shakespeare's book, this literary inspired wedding styled shoot imagines a new ending for Romeo and Juliet.  Rather than star-crossed lovers, the pair wind up magnificently in love in this adaptation from Exhale Events and Kaitlin Powell Photography.  They imagined what the couple's wedding celebration might have looked like.  Pairing varying shades of blue with gold and fields of greens and taking inspiration from medieval Italian styles, a stellar vendor team – including Burgh Brides own Mediterra Bakehouse, Vintage Alley Rentals, Community Flower Shop, and All Occasions Party Rental – created an ethereal display.  Ornate stationery complete with gorgeous gold calligraphy and wax seals, brocade linens, and brass candlesticks brought a vintage vibe to the tablescape while Mediterranean-inspired place settings and dramatic navy napkins offered a touch of modernity.  Blue thistle, seeded eucalyptus, and even fresh berries brought the color palette to life while white ranunculus and silver brunia balls introduced complimentary shades.  In what would have been typical Shakespearean fashion, a feast of bread, pudding, and other old-age inspired foods graced the table and dessert display.  Thanks to hanging bistro lights, a multi-dimensional star display, and a circular canopy of florals, a heavenly ambiance exuded from every angle.  Even the bride looked like an angel in a beaded Anna Campell gown from Blanc de Blanc which made her look like a walking constellation.  Dreamy doesn't even begin to describe it!

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Photography and Exhale Events featured on Burgh Brides Blue & Gold Literary Inspired Wedding Styled Shoot from Kaitlin Powell Photography and Exhale Events featured on Burgh Brides Blue & Gold Literary Inspired Wedding Styled Shoot from Kaitlin Powell Photography and Exhale Events featured on Burgh Brides Blue & Gold Calligraphy Wedding Day Menu Card: Blue & Gold Literary Inspired Wedding Styled Shoot from Kaitlin Powell Photography and Exhale Events featured on Burgh Brides Rooftop Wedding Inspiration: Blue & Gold Literary Inspired Wedding Styled Shoot from Kaitlin Powell Photography and Exhale Events featured on Burgh Brides Blue & Gold Calligraphy Wedding Day Signs: Blue & Gold Literary Inspired Wedding Styled Shoot from Kaitlin Powell Photography and Exhale Events featured on Burgh Brides Blue & Gold Literary Inspired Wedding Styled Shoot from Kaitlin Powell Photography and Exhale Events featured on Burgh Brides Blue & Gold Literary Inspired Wedding Styled Shoot from Kaitlin Powell Photography and Exhale Events featured on Burgh Brides Blue & Gold Literary Inspired Wedding Styled Shoot from Kaitlin Powell Photography and Exhale Events featured on Burgh Brides Blue & Gold Wedding Day Tablescape: Blue & Gold Literary Inspired Wedding Styled Shoot from Kaitlin Powell Photography and Exhale Events featured on Burgh Brides Blue & Gold Calligraphy Wedding Signs: Blue & Gold Literary Inspired Wedding Styled Shoot from Kaitlin Powell Photography and Exhale Events featured on Burgh Brides Blue & Gold Wedding Day Invitations: Blue & Gold Literary Inspired Wedding Styled Shoot from Kaitlin Powell Photography and Exhale Events featured on Burgh Brides Round Diamond Engagement Ring: Blue & Gold Literary Inspired Wedding Styled Shoot from Kaitlin Powell Photography and Exhale Events featured on Burgh Brides Soft Bridal Hair with Silver Rhinestone Boho Hairpiece: Blue & Gold Literary Inspired Wedding Styled Shoot from Kaitlin Powell Photography and Exhale Events featured on 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Watch it all come to life with this highlight clip from Danielle Durbin Film & Photo.

From the stylists…

Have you ever read a book or watched a movie and wanted to write a new ending for it? (You and I both know there was plenty of room for Jack on that door, Rose…)  Well that’s exactly what the design team for Exhale Events aimed to do with Shakespeare’s tragic romance of Romeo & Juliet.

In this literary inspired shoot, we decided to re-imagine what it would’ve looked liked if the family feud between Montague and Capulet had come to an end, allowing the star-crossed lovers to live happily ever after.  Influences of medieval Verona can be identified throughout, with the floral selections being indigenous to that region of Italy as well as a dessert table adorned with fresh baked breads and puddings, which suited that time era.  The reception is a display of the stars finally aligning for the couple with an elegant and intimate table overlooking the skyline of downtown Pittsburgh, PA.  This is the ending, or quite possibly the beginning, we had envisioned for this infamous tale.

Vendors

Banner: Judith Browne Calligraphy | Calligraphy: Judith Browne Calligraphy | Cake & Desserts: Mediterra Bakehouse | Decor: Vintage Alley Rentals | Design & Styling: Exhale Events | Dress: Sydney by Anna Campbell from Blanc de Blanc | Food: Mediterra Bakehouse | Flowers: Community Flower Shop | Hair: Bon Giorno Bella | Hair Piece: Blanc de Blanc | Linens: Mosaic | Makeup: Bon Giono Bella | Menswear: Men's Wearhouse | Models: Bonnie Chun & Curry Dewhirst | Rentals: All Occasions Party Rental | Photography: Kaitlin Powell Photography | Shoes: Blue by Betsy Johnson | Shoot Location: Hotel Monaco | Stationery: Judith Browne Calligraphy | Videography: Danielle Durbin Film & Photo

Cake & Desserts: Mediterra Bakehouse | Decor: Vintage Alley Rentals | Design & Styling: Exhale Events | Food: Mediterra Bakehouse | Flowers: Community Flower Shop | Rentals: All Occasions Party Rental | Photography: Kaitlin Powell Photography

Timeless Gold & White Wedding at the Fairmont: Steph & Andy

For Steph and Andy, getting dressed up and going to nice dinners is a go-to date idea.  When it came time to get married, they aimed to recreate that feeling of a special night.  A romantic dinner, lots of candlelight, and a good ol' fashioned party is all it took to bring their vibe to life.  The Fairmont Hotel and the downtown area hold special places in Steph and Andy's hearts, so it was a natural fit to host their big day.  Once the venue was nailed down, the rest of the details were easy to figure out – timeless, neutral, and a hint of glam.  From the gold foil laser cut invitations to Steph's long lace sleeved Tara Keely sheath gown to the oh-so-bridal bouquet of white peonies, lilies, and hydrangeas (The Blue Daisy Floral Designs outdid herself this time), this day was as classic as it gets.  After a Heinz Chapel ceremony, guests entered the hotel ballroom to find even more chic-meets-glitz details like sheer ivory linens embroidered with gold satin ribbons, a gold painted wedding cake, and lit candles just about everywhere they turned.  What a special night indeed.  And it was all expertly captured by none other than Steven Dray Images.  This one's got me like whoa.

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From the bride…

When and how did you two meet?  What was the proposal like?  All the juicy details!

Andy and I are in the same industry.  At one point, we were doing the same job (title attorneys) for competing companies.  He works for EQT and I work for Consol Energy.  We met at a Young Professionals in Energy happy hour at Olive or Twist.  He overheard me tell my friend I was hungry and immediately asked me to dinner with him.  I awkwardly said yes.  We walked over to Six Penn Kitchen and had our first date.

Describe the look, theme, style, and colors of the wedding.  What inspired it?  What was unique about it?

Candlelit dinner, romantic setting, neutral ivory tones with hints of gold.  We love getting all dressed up and going to nice dinners, so we wanted to capture that feeling and atmosphere.  We knew from the beginning we wanted a traditional, classic, and timeless wedding.

We really wanted photos of our grandparents, who could not physically be there to share in our day.  So we blew up photos of them and had them displayed in the foyer.

What was your favorite moment of the day?

Steph

Aside from marrying the man of my dreams, my favorite memory is more of a feeling.  It was when we got in the limo after our ceremony.  It started to hit me – we just got married!  We were there with the people we loved the most, holding hands, smiling, laughing, and of course jamming to our favorite music.  It was the happiest moment of my life!

Andy

We did a first look.  I really liked seeing Stephanie before the rest of our guests and not waiting until she was walking down the aisle.  She looked so beautiful and  happy.  I was just staring at her until she finally said “Come here” and gave me a hug and kiss.  It's easy to get caught up in the regimented nature of the day, so having that moment of just us together and feeling the excitement and happiness we both had was a great start to the big day.  It calmed a lot of nerves.   It also meant we could spend more time together instead of just waiting until the ceremony.  It extended our celebration because we were together longer and enjoying more of the day as a couple.

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

No matter how much planning or time you put into it, something is going to go wrong the day-of.  You need to focus on the big picture, your feelings, and your partner and not let it ruin your day.  No one notices except you and if you choose not to let it bother you, then you can fully appreciate and take in each moment.

We both are really glad we did the first look.  It calmed both of us down and we were able to spend more time together throughout the day.  It felt more like a celebration of us since we are experiencing more of it together.

Set aside time for just you and your spouse.  It sounds like common sense but the day is full of you waiting for the next task, the next thing on your day-of schedule.  It's really easy to get lost in the mix and not live in the moment.  Try to sneak away or meet on the dance floor and enjoy each other, take in the venue, and the people around you.

Vendors

Bride's Dress: Tara Keely | Bride's Shoes: Badgely Mischka | Caterer: Fairmont Pittsburgh | Ceremony Location: Heinz Chapel | DJ: Bryan Hoover of Pittsburgh All Stars Event Services | Flowers: The Blue Daisy Floral Designs | Hair: Simply Captivating Styling | Makeup: Jae Lee Paredes of JL Makeup Studio & Beauty Boutique | Officiant: Rev. David M. Anderson, Jr. | Photographer: Steven Dray Images | Reception Venue: Fairmont Pittsburgh | Stationery: More than Words | Videographer: Michael A. McKown of The Pros | Violinist: Devin Arrington

Flowers: The Blue Daisy Floral Designs | Makeup: Jae Lee Paredes of JL Makeup Studio & Beauty Boutique | Photographer: Steven Dray Images

Navy & Blush Wedding at J. Verno Studios: Carly & Jeff

This navy and blush wedding had a healthy dose of glam and I'm all kinds of smitten over it!  After an incredibly heart-string-tugging proposal, Carly and Jeff wanted their wedding to be elegant and fancy but also to reflect how important their friends and family are to them.  Gorgeous details and thoughtful nods to those they love created a winning combination.  The palette of modern navy and always-feminine blush pink was accented by metallic gold decor and sparkly elements.  Thanks to creative lighting, tons of draping, and a canopy of hanging crystal chandeliers, J. Verno Studios was transformed into the perfect reception space that brought their vision to life.  All white centerpieces in a variety of arrangements, mercury glass, and gold chiavari chairs were the cherry on top of the already fantastic look.  Sophisticated, glamorous, and totally Pinterest-worthy, this wedding, documented by Lauren Renee Designs, is sure to leave you breathless!

Navy & Blush Wedding from Lauren Renee Designs featured on Burgh Brides

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From the bride…

When and how did the couple meet?

We met in the spring of 2015 – online of all places!

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

A year after we met, Jeff had several plans on how to propose, but the day he picked up the ring, he knew he could not wait.  So he bought t-shirts – one for each of my three sons and a fourth for this collie, Nixon.  Our nanny helped write “Will you marry me?” spread out on the four shirts.  I came home from work and the gym and was perplexed why the dog was wearing a t-shirt with a “?” on it.  I then saw two of the boys sitting at the table, their shirts reading “Will” and “You”.  I looked at Jeff, then at the nanny before asking in disbelief, “Wait.  Is this happening?”  I soon found the third son wearing the final shirt “Marry Me”.  Jeff got down on one knee and proposed!  And I said yes!  A group hug ensued!

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

We wanted a big party to celebrate our marriage with our friends.  We wanted it to be elegant and classy.  We kept the colors simple.  My dress was blush, Jeff wore navy and so did our guys and gals.  There were lots of white flowers and some gold accents.

What inspired the vision?

Having a time to celebrate with everyone we were close to was important to us.  We wanted it to be like a large dinner party that no one wanted to leave and where our guests knew how important they were to us.

What made the wedding unique?

The bridesmaids, mothers of the bride and groom, and I drove ourselves to the wedding, while the groomsmen, ring bearers, and Jeff arrived at the church in style…in the black, 12 passenger wood grained interior that was not intended for their use!  After the initial shock and panic, we all had a good laugh – like almost-ruin-my-makeup laugh!  Even the priest said in all of his years, the groom “stealing the motor coach” was truly unique!

What was your favorite moment of the day?

Our first dance.  It was sung by a dear friend and the lyrics were perfect.  It's such a whirlwind and that was a moment we were finally married and kind of alone…together and married to my best friend.

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

Hire someone to help coordinate the details.  If not through the process, then definitely the day of.  And then relax!  Know that things are going to go wrong…it's okay.  We laugh and reminisce about those things as much, if not more, than if they would have gone right!

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

Make sure you love your vendors and that they share your vision.  We had such amazing people to help pull off our day.  We found people we liked and trusted.  I think that's something you can't live without…and you need both – to like and trust them.

I wish we would have carved out a little more time to be alone right before (to breath and just relax) and after the ceremony (because whoa…we were married!).  It's so hard to take it all in.  It's a whirlwind.  I wish we would have just had a few more minutes when time slowed down.

Vendors

Bride's Dress: Sottero and Midgley from The Exquisite Bride | Bride's Rings: Melanie Burke Pohl at Goldstock Jewelers | Bride's Shoes: Badgley Mischka | Bridesmaids Dresses: Bill Levkoff | Cake: Oakmont Bakery | Calligraphy: Judith Browne Calligraphy | Caterer: Sausalido | Cookies: Nancy B's Bakery | Ceremony Location: Saints John and Paul Catholic Church | DJ: DJ Nugget | Flowers: Hearts and Flowers Floral Design Studio| Groom's Rings: Noah Gabriel & Co. | Hair: Beauty Justified by Justine | Lighting: J. Verno Studios | Linens: Mosaic | Makeup: Beauty Justified by Justine | Menswear: Tommy Hilfiger from Macy's | Photographer: Lauren Renee Designs | Reception Venue: J. Verno Studios | Rentals: Elegant Chair Cover Designs | Stationery: Wedding Paper Divas | Wedding Planner: Devoted to You

Photographer: Lauren Renee Designs

Surprise Rooftop Proposal at Hotel Monaco: Jess & Jacob

When it comes to proposals, some guys like to go big or go home.  When Jacob decided to pop the question to Jess, he wanted something uber romantic.  To help with all of the details, he enlisted the help of Exhale Events, who then had 48 hours to put together a team of A+ vendors, design the perfect proposal set up, and execute it flawlessly for the couple.  Hotel Monaco's Rialto Suite rooftop provided a backdrop of the city while Jacob dropped to one knee under a floral arch made of vintage ladders from Vintage Alley Rentals, fresh greenery and flowers from Sapphire & Lace Design, calligraphy wooden signs, and twinkling candlelight.  After saying YES and a mini photo shoot with Abbie Tyler Photography, the couple celebrated with their family and friends.  If this isn't the most romantic way to start an engagement, I don't know what is.  Congrats to the bride and groom to be!

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From the proposal planner…

According to Jacob, this modern day romance began when the pair matched on Tinder.  He was finishing his residency in Pittsburgh and getting ready to make a move to South Carolina, so he was a bit apprehensive to reach out, knowing he had to leave soon.  However, something told him that he had to meet her, so he decided to throw all caution to the wind.  After dating Jessica for a few weeks, Jacob decided to cancel his move to remain in Pittsburgh.  As he recalls, “one of my friends said that if you meet a girl from Pittsburgh and fall in love, you’re likely to never leave the Burgh.”

For the proposal, Jacob wanted something very romantic, but the details were up to us given the 48 hour time frame we had to work with.  His only real request was that he wanted “Crash into Me” by Dave Matthews Band playing when he proposed.  We were able to catch a bit of the proposal from our hiding spot and it brought a little tear to our eyes. You can tell how much Jacob loves her just from the way he looks at her.

After the couple got engaged and did a mini photo shoot with Abbie, Jacob had a private dinner prepared for Jessica.  Little did she know, she was in for one more surprise.  All of their closest friends came to celebrate that evening in the hotel suite.  There was champagne flowing and appetizers shared on that gorgeous summer night.  A perfect cap to a romantic evening.

Vendors

Catering & Desserts: Hotel Monaco | Flowers: Sapphire & Lace Design | Lighting: Pittsburgh Wedding Rentals | Location: Hotel Monaco | Photography: Abbie Tyler Photography | Proposal Planner: Exhale Events | Signs: Twenty Sixth and Sketch | Vintage Ladder Arch: Vintage Alley Rentals

Flowers: Sapphire & Lace Design | Proposal Planner: Exhale Events | Vintage Ladder Arch: Vintage Alley Rentals

Frosty Winter Wedding at The Studio on Fifth: Sheena & Dominic

As soon as I read that this wedding's theme was “Frosted Winter's Night”, I was sold.  Sheena and Dominic worked with Soiree by Souleret to bring to this wedding day everything that makes this current season so special – warmth, glow, sparkle, and, of course, snow.  Starting with a girly yet dramatic color palette of blush pink and plum, The Studio on Fifth was transformed into a starry winter night.  Crystal chiavari chairs, luxurious sequin linens, mixed metallic table decor, mercury glass, a wall of twinkle lights, and a multitude of dangling sparkly chandeliers came together to bring the evening indoors while giving the space a glamorous vibe.  I'm head over heels in love with all of the details of this affair, but some of my favorites include:

  • Golden pear escort cards.  Guests were greeted with gilded fruit that let them know their place for the night.  This small detail is both impactful and totally worth stealing!
  • Iridescent menu cards.  To add a little more glitz to the table, Sheena and Dominic choose menu cards that featured ombre iridescent foil confetti.  Um yes please.
  • A snowy exit!  Even though their January wedding included 60 degree weather, that didn't stop this couple from playing in the snow.  The night ended with an incredibly unique snow shower released from the ceiling!  Now that's thinking outside the box!

Outstanding style and winter romance come together in this feature that is sure to wow you!  Enjoy these images from Ryan Zarichnak Photography.  While you do that, I'll be over here planning my winter wedding do-over…

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ShoFilms was there to put all of this pretty into motion.  Check out Sheena and Dominic's wedding film!

From the bride…

When and how did you two meet?

Dom and I actually met on a blind date!  His parents set us up.  I knew them from church and he had just moved back into the area from North Carolina.  They stopped me after church one day, when I least expected it – as they say – and insisted on getting my number to pass on.  He, of course, waited a week to call.  Our first conversation over the phone lasted over an hour until he finally asked me out.  Like a gentleman, he offered to drive all the way from Brookline to Beaver County to pick me up on our first date.  We’ve been together since then.

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

We were in the most stunning setting in Negril, Jamaica.  Every year we plan a beach trip.  In 2016 we planned on going to Jamaica and chose the perfect boutique hotel on the cliffs of Negril.  We had just arrived at the hotel and were enjoying the views poolside.  He had ran back to the room and caught me staring out to the ocean.  He asked me what I was thinking about then he got down on one knee and asked if I would spend the rest of my life with him.  We know the answer to that question!

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

Our vision for the wedding was a Frosted Winter's Night.  We worked with planner Soiree by Souleret to bring it to life, incorporating lots of crystal “frost” with chandeliers and cut glass in candle containers.  To complement the crystal, we tied in a blush and plum color palette with lots of mixed metals, including gold pear escort cards atop a glass table.  My mom even surprised me with an ice sculpture!

What inspired the vision?

Even though the forecast called for a 60 degree day, our planner found a way to make this winter wedding a reality by having it snow inside!  Guests lined the exit, and Dom and I walked through and danced, as it “snowed” from above.

What made the wedding unique?

We also both have a lot of hometown pride, both having moved away and come back for the love of this city.  We tried to incorporate that in all aspects of the wedding from skyline decals on our invitations to waving Terrible Towels to Renegade at our reception.  We both formed an instant bond over our love for dogs, whom we featured on canvas as a guest book.

Vendors

Bride's Dress: Anne Gregory for the Bride | Bridesmaids Dresses: Dessy from Babette's | Cake: Tallulah's Catering | Caterer: Tallulah's Catering  | Ceremony Location: St. Philip Church | DJ: DJ Sam Crawford | Flowers: Fox Petal Floral Design | Hair: Cousin of the Bride | Lighting: Gray Phoenix | Linens: Lendable Linens | Makeup: The Pittsburgh Stylist | Menswear: Black by Vera Wang | Photographer: Ryan Zarichnak Photography | Reception Venue: The Studio on Fifth | Rentals: All Occasions Party Rental | Snow Exit: LUXE Creative | Transportation: Venus Limo & A Tortorice Limousine | Videography: ShoFilms | Wedding Planner: Soiree by Souleret

Makeup: The Pittsburgh Stylist | Photographer: Ryan Zarichnak Photography | Rentals: All Occasions Party Rental | Wedding Planner: Soiree by Souleret

Stunning & Enchanting Wedding at Fox Chapel Golf Club: Ali & Phil

Do me a favor and hold onto to your socks, because they're about to be knocked off.  Nothing – and I mean NOTHING – has wowed me as much as this enchanting wedding has.  It's romantic, breathtaking, chic, and lavish all at the same time.  Ali and Phil's September day took place at the Fox Chapel Golf Club, which GreenSinner transformed into a whimsical, wonderful greenery-filled fairyland.  Fresh foliage was the main theme of the day, whose color palette centered around ivory, cream, gray, and neutral tones.  Luscious table runners, an abundance of candlelight, sheer brocade overlay linens, lots of gold detailing, and greenery dripping from just about every surface made this reception space worthy of awards.  And if you think this bride and her all-in-white bridesmaids look simply ravishing, it's because Ali's mom is the owner of Bridal Beginning, THE Pittsburgh destination for wedding day fashion.  Styled and planned by Shayla Hawkins Events and beautifully captured by Dawn Derbyshire Photography and Traveling Heart Productions, Ali and Phil's wedding is OUT OF THIS WORLD.   Take a look and see just what I mean.

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Romantic, sexy, and all kinds of fun, Ali and Phil's wedding film from Traveling Heart Productions is DEF worth a watch!

From the bride…

Tell me about yourselves!  When and how did you meet?  How long have you been together?  How did you get engaged?  All the juicy details!

Phil and I met six years ago in the doctor of physical therapy graduate program at the University of Dayton.  We were cadaver partners in the anatomy lab!  We did a long distance relationship for 2.5 years.  He proposed the weekend I decided to move back to Pittsburgh!  I drive to his apartment from Ohio and the house looked empty.  He had flowers and candles everywhere and a letter for me to read, ending with a note that I'd find him upstairs.  When I went up, he was in a suit down on one knee!

Describe the wedding and what inspired it.  What was unique about it?

Our wedding look was very romantic and classic.  The colors were ivory, cream, and gray, with all warm, neutral tones and all green and white flowers.  My inspiration was to create a classic enchanted evening with a lot of greenery.  GreenSinner made it particularly unique by going above and beyond with the ambience they created and all the candlelight!

What was your favorite moment of the day?

Our first look!  It was so romantic and intimate and just a special moment between the two of us!

Is there any advice you would give to other couples planning their big day?

Use Shayla Hawkins Events!  They made my fairytale wedding come true.  My dream team of vendors made the day seem flawless.  Also, I couldn't have done it without my mom and her staff at Bridal Beginning for making me and my girls look like magical princesses!  Remember to enjoy your day together and spend time together!!

Vendors

Band: The Elite Show Band | Bride's Dress: Berta from Bridal Beginning | Bride's Accessories: Haute Bride from Bridal Beginning | Bride's Shoes: Bella Belle from Bridal Beginning | Bridesmaids Dresses: La Femme from Bridal Beginning | Cake: Bethel Bakery | Calligraphy: Judith Browne Calligraphy | Caterer: Fox Chapel Golf Club | Ceremony Location: St. Louise de Marillac Church | Flowers: GreenSinner | Hair: Geno Levi Salon | Linens: Mosaic | Makeup: Makeup by Bo | Menswear: Men's Wearhouse | Photography: Dawn Derbyshire Photography | Reception Venue: Fox Chapel Golf Club | Rentals: All Occasion Party Rental | Stationery: L Brands | Transportation: Tortorice Limousine | Videography: Traveling Heart Productions | Wedding Planner: Shayla Hawkins Events

Bride's Dress: Bridal Beginning | Bride's Accessories: Bridal Beginning | Bride's Shoes: Bridal Beginning | Bridesmaids Dresses: Bridal Beginning | Flowers: GreenSinner | Photography: Dawn Derbyshire Photography | Rentals: All Occasion Party Rental | Videography: Traveling Heart Productions

Urban Rooftop Engagement Session: Julie & Chad

The best view of Pittsburgh is from way up high.  That's why this rooftop engagement session from Jeannine Bonadio Photography is such a stunner.  Julie and Chad took to a downtown parking garage to capture the skyline, a glowing sunset, and their love.  After that, they ventured to lower ground, seeking out some of the urban green space and, of course, a bridge or two.  While these images are totally classic, I'm absolutely head over heels in love with Julie's dress.  The bright red looks dazzling on her and the structured skirt, statement necklace, and beaded green shoes had a surprising pop of pizzazz.  Keep your eyes peeled for Julie and Chad's dog, Cannoli, who sports a matching floral collar.  If the engagement photos are any indication of how stylish Julie and Chad's fall wedding was, we're all in for a doozey.

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From the photographer…

Describe the engagement session.

Julie's chic, bold style made this urban rooftop session really shine.  They included their pup, Cannoli, which is always a showstopper in my book!

What made the engagement shoot unique?

I think their session was unique because it is so classic – sunset with a city skyline, urban brick and bridges, all the things I love about shooting downtown!  I love neutral tones and flowing dresses but it was so refreshing to have vibrant color and structure to her dress, plus the little peeks of glam with her shoes and necklace too.  I loved how Julie's dress popped and really showed off her personal style.  It is awesome when clients really enjoy what they have on AND feel like themselves.  They had a second outfit and didn't even use it because they loved what that had on.  It makes a huge difference in the feel of your photos when you're feeling confident!