Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Tricia Huddas & Co. Real Wedding - Roya and JB

Christine Hall posted some pictures from this weekend's wedding on her blog - check it out, you would not believe how beautiful this couple is - inside and out! We hope to post more pictures soon of the amazing details that we worked on over the past year - enjoy this teaser!

Roya and JB are enjoying Belize right now. I am so jealous, but I am sure they will send us some comments when they return!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Meet Tricia & Ainsley!

Since most of our brides and grooms are destination to Savannah, we often hear "why don't you have a picture of yourself on the website?" Well the fact is, we are camera shy and not nearly as photogenic as our brides - but this weekend our good friend and photographer, Teresa Earnest of Memories n More Photography, offered to take some pictures of us and promised to be nice to us. So we put on our happy faces and met Teresa downtown by Forsyth Park and were quite pleased with the results!

Here we are...


We are pleased to meet you! Thanks, Teresa!

Wish Tree...the outcome

A few posts back we wrote about guest book alternatives and mentioned that we had a wedding that would be doing a wish tree. Well, here is the outcome of this weekend's wish tree. Harvey Designs worked hard to take all the elements that my lovely bride, Roya, wanted to implement and look at the stunning outcome!
We hope that Christine Hall, their photographer, will share some of the images from the rest of the night soon! It was an absolutly beautiful Savannah wedding, with so much thought and detail put into the whole weekend! Stay tuned for images from the low country boil rehearsal dinner!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Wedding Q&A Thursday: Guest Dress Code

Q: Is this week's Wedding Q&A Thursday a little bit different? (you, the reader are asking this, right?)

A: Yes, wise reader, it is. No specific question is being answered this week, but I'm using a post from a former blog to give guidance on an issue similar to something about which I've talked to a few brides recently - guest attire. Brides who want to request black tie often feel pangs of guilt in asking for it, and need reassurance. Generally these are destination brides, as people from Savannah customarily wear black tie to weddings after 6:00pm...it's more or less understood. I will say quickly, on that basic subject, do not feel bad about putting "Black tie optional" on your invitations if that is what you want. People may not go out and rent a tux if they think that it's too much, but it will guide them in the more formal direction that you desire.

To go further on the subject, here is a post on requesting even more specific attire for guests:

Guest Dress Code

I coordinated a wedding last weekend for which I did not know, until seeing the invitation, there was "Requested Wedding Attire" for the guests. I was not brought on to coordinate until the week before, just so you do not think I am the most oblivious wedding planner alive... It's hard to read the invitation wording above, so I will translate. It is requested that ladies wear black evening gowns or cocktail length dresses...so, a black dress. It is requested that gentlemen wear black tuxedos and bow ties.

Everyone looked very nice and appropriate for a black tie affair. With a color like black being requested, I don't know if I would have even noticed the uniform palette with so many other things going on. But the request, for me, begged the question of whether or not it is appropriate to request that guests wear very specific attire.

I think it's a neat idea and could really add to the spirit and look of certain events. Really inventive wardrobe requests could foster quick camaraderie in a large group of guests who aren't familiar with each other, and could make guests feel like they are part of your wedding instead of pure observers. Is it something that should be arbitrarily requested for fear that your guests will clash with your chosen color palette for the evening? Definitely, not. But I think it's appropriate, in special cases, to request that your guests dress the part. It is only a request, after all.

This train of thought led me to seek out this Real Wedding that was featured in Martha Stewart Weddings way back when I was planning my own wedding, and I have remembered since. I could only find pictures online, but I clearly recall the detailed write-up mentioning that guests were asked to wear brightly-colored, vintage-looking clothes. The other decor at the wedding was minimal, so the guests, in some sense, became the decor.

Have you planned or been a guest at a wedding where guests were asked to dress in specific attire?

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Introducing, Jackie!

We are excited to introduce a new member of the Tricia Huddas & Co. team - Jackie! She is not only our new assistant coordinator, but also an excited bride-to-be planning a July 2009 Savannah wedding - or, actually, pretty much done planning a July '09 wedding (she's very organized).

Beginning next week, Jackie will be posting weekly about her experiences as a bride planning a savannah wedding. I'm guessing that her first post might be about her Charleston bachelorette weekend that she is packing for right now!

Here's a cute shot of Jackie and her fiance, Matt, from their engagement session with Erin Gonzalez.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Custom Wedding Shoes

We are busy little bees as of late here at Tricia Huddas & Co. with lots to blog about, but nary a free block of time to give any of it justice. I hate to just swipe something from another blog and write a post about it, but even with all of the other things going on in my head recently, I can't get these shoes out of my head!!

I was mindlessly scrolling through my google reader when I saw this Weddingbee Pro Post by Chelsea Petaja of Oh My Deer. She is an accessories designer whose work I had only seen in the hair accessory genre until I stumbled up this fantastic footwear!

Let's be honest, the bridal blogs are giving some serious attention to dreamy, accessorized, designer shoes (guilty, who can help it, they're so pretty); but can most brides afford an $800 pair of shoes? No, not even as a "splurge." Chelsea has given us a great way to get the look without the loot. Thanks!

By the way, I think that custom shoes would be the best bridesmaid gift a girl could receive...get your girls the same shoes and have Chelsea create a different look for each maid!

Stay tuned this week for discounted wedding stationery and the introduction of a new guest blogger.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Destination Wedding - Destination Savannah

We have known for some time that Savannah is a popular location for destination weddings based on the fact that 90% of our brides are not from Savannah - it doesn't take much data analysis to come to this conclusion. We love our work and are so proud to show visitors a good time in Savannah, but it has never really dawned on me that we are participating in such a boost to the city's economy.

This Sunday's Savannah Morning News article - "Couples to Savannah : I DO!" is such a great reflection of the Savannah wedding industry, and really makes us proud to be an ambassador for destination wedding couples and guests with it's bottom line being we are excited to have your business and show you why this city has gained the popularity that it has! We hope that you feel that from everyone you do business with in Savannah while planning your destination wedding.

Special Thanks to Garrett Nudd Photography for providing pictures from the Muldoon Wedding for this article! We will be posting more of them soon.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Spring Wedding Season in Savannah

Happy Spring! I guess the new season is official today, though Savannah has been coming alive with blooming flowers and amazing weather for weeks now. With the official start of the season comes the official start of Savannah's spring wedding season for Tricia Huddas & Co. as well! We're really looking forward to the weddings that we've spent so long planning and coordinating - fingers crossed that it doesn't all fly by too quickly!

When the azaleas bloom in Savannah, there is no prettier place to be, but they only stick around for so long! Here are some pictures that my dog and I took on our walk yesterday to try and preserve the memory.

Oh, to be a spring bride in Savannah and have my wedding pictures painted with the lovely colors of this first city's first blooms of the season!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Wedding Q&A Thursday - Pre-Ceremony Pictures

Q: I can't decide whether or not [the groom] and I should see each other for pictures before the ceremony. I like the idea of him seeing me for the first time when I walk down the aisle, but it would make more sense, practically, for us to do group shots before the ceremony? You see more weddings than I do, what do you think?

A: This is one of those questions that a bride and groom need to answer for themselves. We see it done both ways all of the time, and I can't even begin to calculate whether we see it more one way than the other. If I just think about this month's weddings alone it is 50/50.

If there are practical considerations involved, I don't think there is anything wrong with breaking tradition and allowing the bride and groom to each other before the ceremony for pictures. Practical considerations would be things such as timing or location for group pictures, e.g., you want to have a lot of group pictures taken at a location that is different from your ceremony or reception venue, or even multiple locations, and there is not enough time between your ceremony and reception to accomodate the photo session. It may also just be a preference. If you think that you will be happier to have a lot of your formal pictures - whether they are with the whole wedding party or just the two of you - done with before the ceremony, the option should be considered. We always try to schedule some private time for the bride and groom between the ceremony and the reception so that they can be alone, breathe, and take in the fact that they just got married. It is, of course, harder to find that time in an hour or so that is packed with group pictures.

That said, I do think that the moment when the bride and groom see each other for the first time on their wedding day is special. But it doesn't have to happen as the bride is walking down the aisle, in front of all of your guests. Most couples who will see each other before the ceremony arrange a time and place - with or without the wedding photographer present - where they see each other for the first time and share a private moment before all of the formal pictures begin. This can be just as special, if not more special for a couple who prefers the big reveal be something for just them.

With This Ring blogger, Darci, shared pictures of her pre-ceremony encounter with the groom. This one, from Browers Photography, shows that if you put thought into it, the big reveal can be memorable and intimate when done before the ceremony.

So, dear bride, I leave you still with two options to think about. Go with your gut, and if you think that you will regret seeing your groom at all before you walk the white carpet, don't do it...because you can't take it back.

READERS: What do you think, from personal experience or feelings as you are planning a wedding, about the bride and groom seeing one another before the ceremony? Do you have regrets that you didn't do it one way or the other?

Have a question yourself? E-mail us at info@triciahuddas.com.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

No gifts, please?

This weekend's Wedding Field Notes article in The New York Times, Wedding Bells' Toll, focused on wedding gift giving and how to do so thougtfully and with little expense. It's a nice article, you should read it, because it reminds us that we are not slaves to registries and mythical rules about matching the price of your meal with what you spend on the wedding gift.

I've been hearing from couples A LOT recently that they do not want gifts because they have everything they need....feel bad asking people to spend money on them....know that it will cost guests a lot to travel to their wedding... And though I respect the thought behind that, I think that a lot of your guests, in the end, want to get you a gift. And whether or not you care, it is just as improper to put "no gifts, please" on your wedding invitations as it is to put registry information. I know that there are thoughtful intentions behind that choice, but I think there are better solutions.

You can register with a charity so that people can make donations in any amount that they can afford. Even if they only give $20, that will make a difference to a charitable organization. Or you can set up a registry on Alternativegiftregistry.org which allows you to choose traditional items as well as just type in whatever you like. If you create a registry here and type simple things like Simple but Delicious Crock Pot Recipes or Double prints of the pictures that you take at my wedding, people will see them and understand that you are not looking for big gifts, but will feel like they have some guide should they still WANT to get you a gift.

Isn't this Jack and Lulu Blue Club Recipe Box cute? It is only $50 and, filled with your favorite recipes, it would be a great and affordable gift for a young couple that is just getting started in a home together OR friends who are on their second marriages and living in fully furnished homes and kitchens.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Guest Post on PreOwnedWeddingDresses.com

Check out our guest post on the PreOwnedWeddingDresses.com blog! Our budget-saving tips will be featured regularly now on the first Monday of each month.

Of course I couldn't help looking through some of their new deals when I was on the site this morning. I love this Riva Mivasagar dress, Kerala. And this particular one is new, unaltered and selling for $2,300 below the retail price!

Friday, March 13, 2009

New Blog Design..

We're getting a blog make-over. Please excuse our appearance while we move into our new space!

Cocktail Hour - Complete the picture with Live Music by Trae Gurley

The cocktail hour between the wedding ceremony and wedding reception is really when a lot of your wedding design and theme comes to a head. This is the time when most of your guests will be taking their turn at your guest book or the fun and creative guest book alternative that you have dreamed up, and poring over the hand-calligraphered escort cards or seating chart that you could not pass up once you saw them on your favorite wedding blog. They may be sipping the signature cocktails that you chose to represent special times in your relationship - perhaps peach mojitos in honor your current home in Savannah, and Manhattans as a tribute to the city where you met in your first year out of college.

But what are they listening to? After all, the band or DJ is shut away in the ballroom, where water glasses are being filled and finishing touches are being made to the reception decor to ensure that everything is just right for the big reveal to come. So much of your wedding planning has funneled into the impression made at this transitional hour of the day, a great musical act will complete the picture.

Enter Trae Gurley, Savannah's one-man Frank Sinatra cover band. His amazing voice and star quality will charm your guests as they pause to wonder, "Is that really him singing?" Gurley's swanky, live performance will let guests know that they are definitely not just captive in a pre-reception holding pattern - the party has already started and - as Trae will remind them - the best is yet to come.

Visit his web site to download MP3s of his performances. Or, if you are in or visiting Savannah, stop by Jazz'd Tapas Bar any Thursday, between 7:30pm and 11:00pm, to hear a live performance.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Guestbooks, continued

Say "Cheese!"
I love it when my brides use a Polaroid guest book. The Polaroid camera is on the guest book table, and guests are instructed to have someone take their picture. The pictures are then secured in a guestbook, where there is also room for name signage (record of attendance: check!) and well wishing. A polaroid guestbook is not only a fun album to look back at over the years, but also a great way to break the ice during cocktail hour. Have an outgoing friend or two walk around and snap the pictures of your guests and their dates, or families and remind them to take it to the guest book to sign!

Adesso Albums offers pre-made polaroid guest books as well as packages including the camera and polaroid film.

Wish Tree
The Wish Tree is another creative guest book solution that is taken from a Dutch tradition. Small paper tags are provided for your guests, who are asked to write a wish for your future and then hang the tag on a small tree. The wish tree becomes a beautiful decorative feature of your wedding for the evening, after which you can preserve the wishes in any way you choose. If you plan on making a wedding scrapbook, you can include the wish cards throughout.

I recently worked with a couple who used ceramic Christmas ornaments instead of paper tags. Guests wrote their wishes using special paint markers and hung them on a small Christmas tree. After the wedding, all of the ornaments were glazed, and will adorn the couple's Christmas tree every year, truly guaranteeing that the hopeful sentiments of their wedding guests will be with them always.

Check out this great Wish Tree from Here Comes the Guide, I am doing a similar one in a few weeks and I will be sure to take some pictures to show you the outcome!

READERS: Are you using a traditional guest book or a new creative guest book solution? Do you know of any other original guest book suggestions or traditions?

Have a question yourself? E-mail us at info@triciahuddas.com.

Wedding Q&A Thursday - Guest Books

Q: I am not into the traditional wedding guest book, I just don’t see myself looking back at a book of names but my mother feels that it is important. What is a more modern and creative guest book idea that I can use that might appeal to both me and my traditional mother.

A: That is a great question and one that we get quite often. The wedding tradition of a guest book was a way to document who attended your wedding...same thing at funeral, ugh. There are many more options out there than the traditional white guest book – you can find a book in almost any color, pattern and style to match your wedding and theme, but why stick with the traditional when you can have something much more creative. We have many suggestions that might be suitable to both you and your mother....so many that we will divide it up in separate posts because...sigh...brides these days have pretty sweet and numerous options.

Coffee Table Books
If you are having a destination wedding, the actual location of your wedding holds greater significance. In such a case, using a coffee table book with pictures and sites from the city where you are getting married as your guest book allows you to play on the traditional guest book, while creating something that has a place in your home instead of your storage facility. Choose a book that is heavy on pictures, with ample blank space around the picture margins. Your guests will fill the empty space with warm wishes and sign their names (record of attendance: check; tradition observed: check). Every time that you, or a house guest, pick up the book you will be reminded of the great day that you two spent in Savannah starting your lives together.

For a Savannah destination wedding, this is a great option that you can purchase on the Historic Savannah Foundation web site - it is a beautiful book, and the proceeds of the sale benefit a Savannah non-profit.

If you choose have professional engagement portraits taken, have them published as a coffee table guest book. Many wedding photographers can set this up for you and may even include it as an option in your service package. If you'd like to make a DIY coffee table guest book, using professional engagement portraits or just great pictures of you and your mate, a site like MyPublisher allows you to easily create your own. Be sure, once again, to leave ample empty space in the margins.
Creative guest book options are as boudless as your own creativity. We'll be back with some more options this afternoon.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Savannah Celebrity Wedding Fun!

The phone chain has started among Savannah wedding people after the announcement on Perez Hilton that Mandy Moore got married in a "small, simple ceremony" in Savannah! Savannah wedding vendors are a pretty tight knit group, but we are also extremely professional and respectful of the level of secrecy demanded for celebrity weddings in Savannah. But once the word is out, we all want to know the details! Who doesn't?

I'm sure it was a lovely wedding. I can't think of anything more charming than an intimate Savannah wedding. Congratulations, Mandy and Ryan!

A Well-Documented Wedding

I am enamored of Jewish Wedding Traditions...little bit o' wasp jealousy over here! They have meaning that translates beyond religion and are, of course, visually memorable as well.

I am always so excited during set-up of a Jewish wedding ceremony when I see the Ketubah, and always stop and wonder at them in the homes of my Jewish friends. It's amazing to me that a document that was once the equivalent of a pre-nuptial agreement has evolved over time to become not only a religious contract (though the Orthodox community still uses the traditional language exclusively) but also of a declaration of hopes and expectations the couple has for their marriage - similar to the vows they take - that can be looked back at throughout their marriage. It can serve as a daily reminder of your wedding, and what your feelings were at the time.

I guess I could watch my wedding video every day, but I'd much rather have a lovely piece of artwork (possibly the first piece you and your other half decide on together as a couple!) hanging in my dining room or foyer as a reminder of my vows.

There are a ton of really beautiful online Ketubah stores. Here are a few lovely Ketubot (love the plural).

Blossom by Ruth Rudin

A Kaleidoscope of Love

Now looking again at my selections above, I have to laugh a little because if my husband and I were picking these out together, there's NO WAY he'd go for all of the pink...I guess I'm just thinkin' pink today!

Would you use, or have you used, a Ketubah in your non-Jewish wedding ceremony?

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Cead Mile Failte!

100,000 Welcomes!

I have started my great assembly line of March wedding welcome/hospitality bags and wanted to share with you some of the original welcome bag ideas that my brides are employing over the next month. Welcome bags are customary for all guests of destination weddings, or for only guests that have traveled from out of town for others. Typically they are ready and waiting for your guests at their hotel, either in their room or at the front desk upon check-in, and are a very thoughtful way of giving your guests a sincere Thank you for traveling to join us on our special day!

I love it when my brides really put time and thought into their welcome bags as it truly shows that they are thinking about their guests. They realize that the wedding isn’t all about them, but rather a celebrations of their loved ones gathering to share in this special time. I am currently assembling two different welcome bags for two different March Savannah weddings.

This weekend my beautiful bride and her soon-to-be are going with a classic Savannah style welcome bag, with a touch of St. Patrick’s Day swag in honor of the holiday that takes on a whole new form of popularity here in Savannah. I hope that her amazing photographer will share some of her pictures next week so we can post! They are including the classics - a couple bottles of water, a Savannah Travel Planner, a custom welcome note that we have helped them to prepare, Savannah Pralines from Savannah’s Candy Kitchen, Byrd Cookie Company Georgia Peach Cookies (yum!), a small bag of chips and Green Mardi Gras beads - a St.Pat's Day staple that guests will need in order to fit in with all of the other tourists that are making the pilgrimage to Savannah over the coming days for next week's big parade (second biggest in the country). That is a great combination - something sweet, something salty, water, and a few personal touches.

My other March bride has been working on her welcome bags for a year to make them very personal and reflective of her wedding day!

Included in her burlap welcome bag are individual packages of candy that honor their loved ones who can not join them on their special day - Jelly Belly's for gramps and licorice for Nanna; tea from their favorite NYC neighborhood shop; Persian Pistachios from the bride's mother’s native Iran; a bottle of Sweet Tea; a bottle of coke with an Obama bottle opener around the neck; and small bag of Savannah Bee Company goodies!

She took the best advice that we can pass on to anyone on a budget and kept her eye out for good holiday clearance sales! She was able to snag enough travel-size Savannah Bee Company lotions, lip balms, and body washes at a post-holiday sale at a Bath and Body Works to stock 75 gift bags working within a very realistic budget!

I am packing up all of the items in green tissue paper and burlap bags, tying them with a green ribbon, and adding on a personal welcome note and map of Savannah. Don’t they look great?

Are you doing a welcome bag? If so, what are you putting in it?

Monday, March 9, 2009

If the shoe fits...

...plan around it!

One of my new brides has chosen the fall wedding color palette for her big day based on the shoes that she is wearing. Not the other way around. And can you blame her?

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Wedding Q&A Thursday: Wedding Favors

Q: What is a good Savannah-inspired wedding favor?

A: A wedding favor is a small item given, as a token of appreciation, to your guests for coming to your wedding. The problem with favors is that they are often something that the guest will actually never use, and in such cases they are often - it's true, we are there for the clean-up - left behind.

I find that the most well-received favors are edible! I am a huge fan of the edible wedding favor myself because, let’s be honest, who really needs a votive candle with someone else’s monogram on it? No one. Who needs a little snack after a long night of drinking and dancing? I do!

That said, if you are getting married in Savannah, it might be nice to treat your guests a taste of our local flavor - the same is true for any destination. We have some great candy and cookie companies here in Savannah if you are looking to satisfy the sweet tooth among your friends and family.

Savannah Candy Kitchen is located on River Street...which is a good place to start. They have a lot of classic Savannah confections that are made fresh right there in the store.

Pecans are very Southern, very Savannah, and these two classics - Pecan Pralines (left) and Southern Divinity (right) - ensure a sweet ending to the night.

Couldn't imagine serving candy unless it's of the chocolate persuasion? They still have you covered with pecan-coated toffee or, Savannah's "Colossal Apples" - granny smith apple...dipped in caramel, dipped in pecans, smothered in chocolate!

Byrd Cookie Company has the best bite-size cookies around, and some locals might argue that you are doing your guests a disservice by not sharing these great little cookies! Their Georgia Peach Cookie and Red Velvet Cookie (below) are southern traditions that must be considered! They also have custom cookies, personalized tins, and savory snacks, like Jalapeno Cheddar Biscuits (below) and Cocktail Snack Mix, if you're not a sweets person.

Savannah Bee Company is a local company that harvests and sells some of the best honey! They also have great skin products like lip balm, soap and hand lotions. Your guests will BEE grateful (who can resist a pun) if you favor them with a jar of artisinal sweetness from the Savannah Bee Company! ...ok, I can't resist again. It's the Bees' Knees!
A little snack goes a long way at midnight, so if you want to provide a favor that is sure to be a hit, any of these will do.
READERS: What are you giving as a favor? Do you have any other great Savannah-inspired suggestions or local treats from your wedding destination?
Have a question yourself? E-mail us at info@triciahuddas.com.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

TH&Co. Real Weddings - Stacey and Alex, part two

The garden theme continued through the reception at the always amazing Mansion on Forsyth Park. Once again, all off the images are from Chia + Hon Photography.

Butterfly-shaped escort cards floated above a bed of wheatgrass, dotted with votive candles, in the Marble Garden Courtyard; and the same butterflies rested on wine glasses in the ballroom as place cards. Instructions on making these for yourself can be found on Martha Stewart.

The Viennese Ballroom was set with a long rectangular head table, and square tables for 8. Arrangments of dahlias and garden roses were mixed in with succulents atop subtle pink shimmer sheer table coverings.

The evening was filled with humorous and emotional speeches by friends and family, including the groom himself.

Congratulations, Stacey and Alex!

TH&Co.Real Weddings - Stacey and Alex, part one

While it may look like Spring, this breath-taking wedding was in October, my favorite time of year for a wedding in Savannah. Photographers Chia + Hon did an amazing job capturing this wedding.

The bride wore Monique Lhuillier, and the bridesmaids wore BCBG.

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Alex and his groomsmen were just about the funnest group of guys you could ask to work with - funny and spirited, but kind and caring to the core.



The secluded English-style garden of the Owens-Thomas House is beautiful on it's own, but florist Amy Harvey's additions made it truly enchanting.



It's such a special thing when the photographer can capture the groom's reaction to seeing his bride for the first time...


and the last look between a Father and Daughter before they walk down the aisle.


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A look at their Mansion reception coming up in part two.