Michele with Just Marry!

Weddings and everything surrounding them!

2008 Favorite Wedding Ideas and Vendors from A to Z, K is for Kids

Yes, I said kids.  I love kids at weddings.  Well behaved ones, of course.  Those are usually attached to caring and in control parents.  One of my favorite parts of a wedding ceremony is when the kids walk down the aisle.  They are just so adorable and you really never know what they will do.  But, there will most certainly be laughs, Ooh’s and Aah’s.  They will break the tension and they are great at helping the bride relax and get into a festive mood.  And I really love when the bride and groom really think about the kids experience at the wedding.  Great things come of that.  Well, mostly, happy kids.  Here are some neat ways to make kids feel special at the wedding.

1.  Include them in the ceremony, whether it be as a flower girl, ring bearer or JR bridesmaid or groomsman.  They can also be helpful in attending to the guest book or handing out programs.  If you have young kids involved in the ceremony, be sure to have somebody for them to sit with during the ceremony.

2.  Arrange for a kids party complete with activities and their own kid friendly food.  You can have a clown, video games, their own DJ for music and games.  How about a caricature artist to draw pictures of the kids?

3.  Keep them as part of the main reception party, but give them plenty to do.  After all, their kids and they have such short attention spans.  The best option is a kids table complete with butcher block paper and coloring crayons, pencils and markers.  A kid friendly centerpiece completes the look.  Create a mini kids buffet with some of their favorites.  What about a make your own sundae bar or a decorate your own cupcake?  If the kids will be seated with their parents, then be sure to give them a goody bag filled with some fun things to do when they get bored dancing!

Thanks so much to some of my wonderful photographer friends who gave me the following images.  I had such a hard time choosing, so I’m afraid this post may be a bit image heavy.  Kids take the greatest photos!

Images from Scott Watt Photography.

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Images from Abby Liga Photography.

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Image from Derek Smith from Sunshine Photographics.

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Images from Michael Wise Photography.

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Images provided by Limelight Photography.

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December 11, 2008 Posted by | Abby Liga Photography, blog, brides, caricature artist, centerpieces, clown, cupcakes, Decor, DJ, entertainment, flower girl attire, Food and Beverage, guestbook, happy kids, Ice cream, Junior Bridesmaid, Junior Groomsman, Just Marry!, Just Marry! Wedding Planning Secrets, kid friendly centerpiece, kid friendly food, kids, kids goody bags, kids table, kids wedding party, Limelight Photography, make your own sundae bar, Menu, Michael Wise Photography, Michele Butler, mini kids buffet, Orlando wedding planner, out of the box idea, professional planners, programs, Scott Watt Photography, special touches, Sunshine Photographics, Uncategorized, video games, wedding, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding planner, wedding planning, wedding reception | Leave a comment

Top Five Fab Finds for November 2008

Ah the trends of the wedding world.  Always fun keeping on top of what’s cutting edge.  I love it!

Here are my Top Five Fab Finds for November 2008.  Hope you enjoy!

1.  Fall Flavors, such as squash, pumpkin and turkey.  How about a mini squash bisque at your cocktail hour?    A pumpkin cheesecake as one of your cake flavors.  A deep fried turkey carving station.

soup-shots

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2.  Carnations are cool again.  They can really make for beautiful centerpieces and bouquets.  And they aren’t the most expensive flower.

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3.  Out of the box ring holders.  It doesn’t always have to be a ring pillow.  Boxes and shells and moss covered boxes, oh my.

4.  Clay flowers as decor.  So delicate and elegant.  And a great keepsake for your guests.

5.  Serve your guests flavored water infused with cucumber or varied types of fruit.

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November 30, 2008 Posted by | amenities, beautiful decor, blog, bridal bouquet, brides, cake flavors, carnations, centerpieces, clay flowers, Decor, deep fried turkey, Estilo Weddings, Etsy, Fall flavors, Fay Cullen, Food and Beverage, hot trend, Just Marry!, Michele Butler, November, out of the box idea, professional planners, pumpkin, refreshing beverage, ring holders, soup shots, special touches, squash, Table Settings, Top Five Fab Finds, turkey, water, wedding, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding day, wedding planner | Leave a comment

2008 Favorite Wedding Ideas and Vendors from A to Z, J is for Jesus Rodriguez and Raining Roses

J is Jesus Rodriguez and Raining Roses. The genius himself along with his design associate Chris Giglio really can do anything. They design weddings with floral chandeliers and bar mitzvahs with halloween and soccer themes. I just don’t know where the ideas come from, but they never seem to run out! Thank goodness. They can also cover dance floors and place gorgeous custom designs and logos on them. Here’s also to never forgetting Jesus’s partner and Chris’s good friend, Jonathon Panczuk who brought Raining Roses to Orlando along with Jesus. We miss him and I assure you that we think about him often and remember the fun banter and the beautiful decor that he brought to our lives.

Here’s some of the amazing events that Raining Roses has done throughout the years:

November 25, 2008 Posted by | bar mitzvah, beautiful decor, blog, Chris Giglio, Curt Littlecot, custom designs and logos, Damon Tucci, dance floor cover, dance floor decor, David Willems, Decor, event venue, Fawsett & Reams wedding, floral chandeliers, floral designer, florist, Grande Lakes, halloween theme, Hayes & Looney wedding, Hotel Property, J.R. Sterling, Jesus Rodriguez, Jonathon Panczuk, Just Marry!, JW Marriott Orlando Grande Lakes, Katta & Smalberger wedding, Lighting, Michele Butler, nu visions in photography, Orlando, Orlando wedding planner, photographer, professional planners, Raining Roses, Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Ritz-Carlton wedding show, soccer theme, special touches, Stephanie Rounds, Table Settings, Uncategorized, wedding, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding initials, wedding location, wedding planner, wedding planning, wedding show, Winter Park Racquet Club | Leave a comment

2008 Favorite Wedding Ideas and Vendors from A to Z, I is for Ice Cream

I is for ice cream at a wedding. We all love it! How can you not? Unless your lactose intolerant, I guess. Then, I do hope there’s a yummy soy ice cream out there, just for you!

Here are some cool ways to have ice cream at your wedding.

Ice cream created on site with nitrogen.  You choose your flavor and they put it all together with the cream and then use the nitrogen to freeze it quickly.  What a presentation.

A Coldstone approach with each guest being able to choose their fixins. Truly my favorite way to eat ice cream. I love the sweet cream with strawberries and pecans. That’s my indulgence.

Ice cream as a favor. Check this out on my blog. Certainly a bit more pricey, but if you can swing it. You know it’s one of those favors that won’t go to waste.

Mini ice cream cones butler passed around the edge of the dance floor. What a perfect way to cool off after dancing so hard to “Funky Cold Medina”.

The following photos provided by Rebecca at Limelight Photography.

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November 20, 2008 Posted by | amenities, blog, Coldstone, dance floor, E Creamery, favors, Food and Beverage, hot trend, Ice cream, Just Marry!, Limelight Photography, Michele Butler, Orlando wedding planner, out of the box idea, professional planners, special touches, wedding, wedding biz, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding day, wedding night amenity, wedding planner, wedding reception | Leave a comment

2008 Favorite Wedding Ideas and Vendors from A to Z, G is for Getting Away for Your Wedding

G is for Getting Away For Your Wedding.  Destination weddings continue to be the craze.  They allow you one on one time with those closest to you.  And you can even do some fun activities as a group at your chosen location.  How about sailing in Santorini, Greece or climbing Dunn’s River Falls in Jamaica?

Here’s some pictures of one of our couples who were married in Italy.  The photos are courtesy of our good friends at nu visions in photography.  Curt & Stephanie.

And here are some photos of another bride and groom, Jessica and Chad who were married in Colorado Springs, Colorado at the Garden of the God’s.  These photos kindly provided by our talented photographer friend John Unrue.

www.unruephoto.com

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November 9, 2008 Posted by | blog, brides, Colorado Springs, Curt Littlecot, destination wedding, Garden of the Gods, Greece, Italy, John Unrue, Michele Butler, nu visions in photography, photographer, photography, photos, professional planners, Santorini, Stephanie Rounds, Unrue Photo, vacation, wedding, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding day, wedding location, wedding planner, wedding planning | Leave a comment

2008 Favorite Wedding Ideas & Vendors from A to Z, E is for Eco Friendly Weddings

E is for Eco Friendly Weddings.  With everything going on here on mother earth, the need to be green is greater and greater every day.

This is definitely a hot trend and one that we won’t hopefully see fade anytime soon.  You can make your wedding eco friendly by using some of these suggestions:

  • Invitations – Do your research and send recycled paper invitations or forgo the invitations all together and send an email invite.  The following image courtesy of New and Blue.

  • Give plants as your favors.  You can even incorporate them into your centerpieces, so that nothing goes to waste.  The Wedding Greenhouse offers some adorable plants.

  • Use organic or local grown foods for your reception.  It may cost you more in the short term, but think of what you’ll be doing for the enviroment in the long run.

  • Give your flowers or leftover foods to charity or a donation service.  I discovered once such service when doing research for an article in the last few years.  They are Special E.

October 19, 2008 Posted by | blog, brides, centerpieces, charity, Decor, Do it yourself, donation service, Eco friendly weddings, email invitations, enviroment, event venue, favors, Food and Beverage, green, green products, hot trend, invitations, Just Marry!, local grown foods, Michele Butler, New and Blue, organic foods, Orlando, plant wedding favors, professional planners, recycled paper invitations, Special E, The Wedding Greenhouse, wedding, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding day, wedding planner | 2 Comments

Something Exciting to Share Here at Just Marry!

First, let me start off this blog entry by apologizing for my absence from the wild world of blogging.  I have been focused on wrapping up a wedding for one of my favorite families, the Katta’s.  I first worked with them in 2007 when their daughter Sarah was married and this one was their son, Joe’s wedding.  I am a perfectionist and that led me to only being able to think, eat, dream and work on Katta.  The wedding was this past weekend and was amazingly beautiful.  I can’t wait to post my future blog, “The Tale of Two Weddings”, which will showcase both Sarah and Joe’s weddings.  So, keep an eye out for that.

Ok, on to the task at hand.  I’m so excited about this blog post because it includes two of my best friends, Susan and Kristy.  Here they are at a recent speaking engagement.

Here’s the recent press release including both Just Marry! and our lovely Kristy at Couture Consulting by Chenell.  Expect great things in the future from both companies.  I’m so glad to be a part of the bright future.

JUST MARRY! PARTNERS WITH COUTURE CONSULTING

Orlando, FL (October 3, 2008) – Just Marry! is pleased to announce it’s collaboration with wedding business consulting firm, Couture Consulting by Chenell, LLC.  The partnership will grow the Just Marry! brand globally as well as develop innovative concepts and products for brides and grooms.

As new values emerge for couples tying the knot, a strong focus will be placed on each couple’s individual aspirations, preferences, and desires while staying sensitive to the ever changing market.   The two companies will join forces to create helpful resources (both services and products) made to inspire brides and grooms of their vision and to help them bring that vision to life within their spending parameters.

Couture Consulting will work with Just Marry! to cultivate its brand essence, rich with experience, fervor, and vision.   As a team, these companies anticipate expanding Just Marry!’s services, offices, and visibility internationally.

Founded by Susan Southerland in 1992, Just Marry! is the Southeast’s premier, full service wedding planning company.  Southerland and associate, Michele Butler, lead a passionate and experienced team that has coordinated thousands of weddings around the country and the world.  Focusing on destination, luxury, and cultural clientele, Just Marry! has offices in Orlando, Jacksonville, Savannah and St. Augustine.  Southerland shares her first hand experience with couples and industry peers alike in “Susan Southerland’s Just Marry! Wedding Planning Secrets” DVD.  In addition, Southerland and Butler recently released the anticipated “Susan Southerland’s Just Marry! 77 Secrets for Greening the Wedding Industry” DVD.  Just Marry! has been featured on the Style Network’s “Whose Wedding is it Anyway?” and TLC’s “A Wedding Story.” For additional information and to purchase resources, visit www.justmarry.com.

Couture Consulting by Chenell, LLC is a consulting firm for wedding businesses created by Kristy Chenell, formerly of The Ritz-Carlton and Disney’s Fairy Tale Weddings.  Based on the principles and standards of luxury services and products, Couture Consulting by Chenell, LLC provides inspirational ideas, innovative concepts, and customized solutions for wedding businesses that desire to strengthen their brand and increase sales.   For additional information, please contact Kristy Chenell at (720) 425-3610.

October 14, 2008 Posted by | 77 Secrets for Greening the Wedding Industry, blog, brides, Disney's Fairytale Weddings, DVD, event business, event industry, green, green products, Just Marry!, Just Marry! Wedding Planning Secrets, Katta & Smalberger wedding, Kristy Chenell, Michele Butler, Morales & Katta Wedding, Orlando wedding planner, professional planners, Ritz-Carlton, Susan Southerland, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding day, wedding industry, wedding planner, wedding planning, Wedding planning DVD | Leave a comment

2008 Favorite Wedding Ideas & Vendors from A to Z, D is for Dance Floor

D is for dance floors. Who would have imagined when I started in the business that people would find so many ways to be creative with their dance floors. I’ve seen covered, colored and even varying shapes. Dance floors in all parts of the room and over pools and it’s just so much fun.

Following are some pictures from some events that we’ve done where we had some cool dance floors.  These particular dance floors were designed by Raining Roses.

Hayes & Looney wedding at the Ritz-Carlton Orlando Grande Lakes - photo by Damon Tucci

Katta & Smalberger wedding at the JW Marriott Orlando Grande Lakes - photo by nu visions in photography

Einhorn Bar-Mitzvah at the Renaissance Orlando at Sea World

Einhorn Bar-Mitzvah at the Renaissance Orlando at Sea World - photo by J.R. Sterling

And I love this dance floor because it is set over a pool with a clear span tent over it and great lighting!

Fawsett & Reams wedding at the Winter Park Racquet Club - photo by David Willems

Fawsett & Reams wedding at the Winter Park Racquet Club - photo by David Willems

The following images and descriptions are from my good friends Brian and Richard at Flourish.

A dance floor in fuchsia, for a new Orleans client, that wanted a Bali themed wedding. Monkey appliqués on the corners.

This is a blue dance floor. The couple met in Hawaii and they wanted to have a lot of water feeling around them, the head table in the fore of the picture was a reef scene sitting on a lighted sweetheart table.

September 25, 2008 Posted by | bar mitzvah, blog, ceremony site, clear span tent, covered pool, Curt Littlecot, Damon Tucci, dance floor, dance floor cover, dance floor decor, David Willems, Decor, Einhorn Bar-Mitzvah, event venue, events, Fawsett & Reams wedding, floral designer, florist, Flourish, Hayes & Looney wedding, J.R. Sterling, Just Marry!, JW Marriott Orlando Grande Lakes, Katta & Smalberger wedding, Lighting, Michele Butler, Orlando wedding planner, outdoor venue, photograph, photographer, photography, photos, professional planners, Raining Roses, Renaissance Orlando at Sea World, Ritz-Carlton Orlando, vendor, wedding, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding day, wedding location, wedding planner, wedding planning, wedding reception, Winter Park Racquet Club | Leave a comment

2008 Favorite Wedding Ideas & Vendors from A to Z – C is for The Collection!

Yes, C is for The Collection, located in Winter Park.  Right on Park Avenue.  So convenient for doing a bit of wedding dress shopping and then hitting the wine bar or one of the many wonderful restaurants on Park Ave.

I am moving up on 11 years in this crazy wedding biz and Millie and her beautiful store have been around the entire time.  The Collection has some of the most elegant gowns you will find in the Orlando area.  And you can expect to be treated like family in this store.  What better way to shop for that gown you will wear for that all important event, the wedding ceremony.  And this shop is not just about wedding gowns, but bridesmaids dresses, mother’s gowns and flower girl attire.  They carry gowns from some of the most talented designers in the world.

Vera Wang

Monique Lhuillier

Monique Lhuillier

Reem Acra

Reem Acra

Lazaro

Lazaro

And many of our brides are happy customers.  Here are some of our beautiful brides in their gowns from The Collection.

Sarah Katta at the JW Marriott

Sarah Katta at the JW Marriott, courtesy of nu visions in photography

Emily Hayes at the Ritz-Carlton Orlando Grande Lakes, courtesy of Damon Tucci

Emily Hayes at the Ritz-Carlton Orlando Grande Lakes, courtesy of Damon Tucci

Terri Oster at Jekkyl Island

Terri Oster at Jekkyl Island, courtesy of Karla Fountain

Nicole Gravenmeir at the Ritz-Carlton Orlando Grande Lakes, courtesy of nu visions in photography

Nicole Gravenmeir at the Ritz-Carlton Orlando Grande Lakes, courtesy of nu visions in photography

September 10, 2008 Posted by | blog, brides, bridesmaids, bridesmaids dresses, ceremony site, Curt Littlecot, Damon Tucci, destination wedding, event business, event industry, event venue, flower girl attire, Grande Lakes, Hayes & Looney wedding, Jekkyl Island Club, Just Marry!, JW Marriott Orlando Grande Lakes, Karla Fountain, Katta & Smalberger wedding, Lazaro, lunchtime reception venue, Michele Butler, Millie, Monique Lhuillier, mother's gowns, Nicole Gravenmeir, nu visions in photography, Orlando wedding planner, photographer, professional planners, Reem Acra, rehearsal dinner location, Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Stephanie Rounds, Terri Oster, The Collection, vendor, Vera Wang, wedding, wedding biz, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding day, wedding dresses, wedding gowns, wedding location, wedding planner, wedding planning, wonderful world of weddings | Leave a comment