Michele with Just Marry!

Weddings and everything surrounding them!

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

Just Marry! Vendor Spotlight on Ricky Sylvia with the Buzzcatz

My spotlight this time is on Ricky Sylvia and his talented band, The Buzzcatz.  This is an amazing band, period.  They can do anything.  And for those of you out there who have worked with bands in the past, this one is a breeze.  No large headed ego maniac for the band leader.  Just a really great all around guy.  These guys make my life so much easier at a wedding and I always come off looking like the most amazing wedding coordinator when I’ve referred my clients to the Buzzcatz.  Why, do you ask?  Because they are so great to hear and I often have to look at the stage to see if that really is Ricky up there singing or if Bobby Darin has come back just for this one set.  If you haven’t worked with the Buzzcatz, then you must find a reason to.  They are one of a kind!

Here’s some great photos of Ricky and the band.  The first one is from one of my recent weddings, the Morales/Katta wedding. Thanks nu visions in photography for the image.

And here are a few more that the band shared with me.

buzzcatz-ricky

buzzcatz-band

Let’s get to know Ricky with the Buzzcatz a little better.

How did you get started?

I started as a kid in 1975. I was 11 years old. I auditioned for the U.C.P. telethon in Orlando and got the gig. My second gig was the Central FLA Fair that year.

Where do you get your inspiration?

ELVIS. I know I can be just as cool if I keep working at it and feel that I am just as good looking! 🙂

What’s your favorite part of the wedding day?

Watching the father of the bride sign the check!

What’s your favorite movie?

Hmmmm….lots of them…AMERICAN GRAFFITTI, SCARFACE, and KING CREOLE.

What’s your best wedding story?

How about my WORST?….we had a guy die on the dance floor while we were playing “Young At Heart”.

What in your opinion is the coolest trend right now with weddings?

Band AND deejay combos…makes my night alot easier and we don’t have to learn all kinds of useless songs!

If you could give brides one piece of advice, what would it be?

HIRE THE BUZZCATZ…they’re the best!

What is one thing that you want everybody to know about you?

I know how much your wedding night means to my brides and their families… it is an honor that I do not take lightly.

Do you have any pets?

No…I am allergic!

What is the best color combo for weddings?

PURPLE AND GREEN.

What are your favorite blogs/websites?

www.thebuzzcatz.com, www.tributesradio.com, www.justmarry.com !

What does the future hold for you?

Dinner & a movie tonight with my incredibly beautiful wife, resurrecting my tribute to ELVIS and learning a few more BOBBY DARIN songs.

What do you do in your spare time?

Search Ebay for vintage clothing and look at Elvis related websites.

November 11, 2008 Posted by | band, band and deejay combo, blog, brides, Buzzcatz, Curt Littlecot, entertainment, nu visions in photography, Ricky Sylvia, Stephanie Rounds, Uncategorized, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding day, wedding night, 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

colorado-2

colorado-3

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 – 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

A Truly Meaningful Wedding – My Friends Art & Lana

Art & Lana

What can I say about them? They are perfectly matched for each other. This proving that it’s never too late to find true love. They did! And now they’re hitched, as of July 19th 2008. Congratulations my dear friends. Art being one of the people I’ve known the longest in the biz and Lana is part of our girls night group. The best friends a girl can have.

I was so lucky to be included as a guest at this intimate celebration. And of course I had to offer a bit of help. I know that my good friend Susie Weiss with Wonderful Weddings truly would have loved to help and to be there to see this couple get married. After all, Susie helped them get together. Unfortunately, Susie and Jeffrey already had a wedding that day at the lovely Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Grande Lakes. So, I did what I could to help make sure things were organized and was even smart enough to bring along some extra help in my talented associate, Sally Jarvis with Just Marry! With her there, I was able to relax and have fun at Art & Lana’s wedding.

They really made it their wedding. You could say that they put the Art & Lana stamp on it. Here are just a few of the special touches they chose to incorporate into their special day:

Keeping their event casual and intimate. Sun dresses for the ladies and guys in pants and casual tropical shirts. Not a suit to be found. And they only included their family and close friends. Which made it a truly love filled evening. Everybody celebrating Art & Lana and their marriage to each other.

Seeing each other before the ceremony to do some romantic pictures. This always helps to take some of the tension of the wedding day away.

Having the cocktail hour before the ceremony and having a specialty cocktail. A Mojito none the less. The perfect Florida cocktail for a hot day. Refreshing.

Including their dogs, Smitty and Nick in their ceremony and giving them lovely floral decor for their collars.

Including their grand-daughter and niece in the ceremony. The processional was beautiful with the girls and then Art & Lana being walked by the pups.

Writing their own vows. Now, I was already crying from seeing them off down the aisle, but all of us girls really turned on the water works when they read their personally written vows. It was so obvious to all of us how much they love and adore each other. This is one couple that will certainly stand the test of time. Precious.

The homemade limoncello that Art had been cultivating since December. It was included as a shot with the melon and prosciutto.

The surprise from Susie. She had hired the beautiful antique Rolls Royce owned by Larry Gerry for the departure. And they left to sparklers of course. Always the best pictures with those.

Here are some of the gorgeous photos shot by Art’s talented photography team,

Here’s some of our girls night group. Those of us who were able to attend. We missed you Bonnie, Faye & Jennifer. Pictured below from left to right are Susan Southerland from Just Marry!, myself, Janine Boylan from the Grand Bohemian Orlando Hotel, Lisa New with BBJ Linen, Stephanie Rounds of nu visions in photography, Lana and Lisa Konecny from E Events.

The happy couple!

Here’s some of Lana’s beautiful decor. You can visit her at Fairbanks Florist.

Such a silly couple

The vendors that assisted Art & Lana with their beautiful wedding were,

Ceremony & Reception site, Casa Feliz located in Winter Park

Family vacation rentals, Villas by Christi

Hair & Makeup, Kari Larsen with About Face

Bride’s Jewelry, Sandi Loychik

Officiant, Judge Rom Powell

Decor, Fairbanks Florist

Photography, Art Faulkner Photography courtesy of Neal Sands

Catering, Arthur’s Catering

Ceremony Music, J.R. Krisanda

Reception Music, Danny with Power Entertainment

Transportation, Larry Gerry with Classic Rolls Royce

Honeymoon Location, Grand Bohemian Orlando by Janine Boylan

August 10, 2008 Posted by | About Face, animals, Art Faulkner, blog, Bonnie Garfield, Casa Feliz, Classic Rolls Royce, Deb Kettler, Decor, E Events, event venue, Fairbanks Florist, Faye Novick, Food and Beverage, girls night group, Grand Bohemian Hotel Orlando, Grande Lakes, groom, J.R. Krisanda, Janine Boylan, Jeffrey Stoner, Jeffrey Stoner Video, Judge Rom Powell, July, Just Marry!, Kari Larsen, Lana Pelham, Larry Gerry, Lisa Konecny, Lisa New, Live Entertainment, Michele Butler, Neal Sands, nu visions in photography, Off premise catering location, Orlando wedding planner, Pelham & Faulkner, pet, photograph, photographer, photography, photos, professional planners, refreshing beverage, rehearsal dinner location, Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Sally Jarvis, Scott Mifsud, sparklers, special touches, Special Touches by Deb, Stephanie Rounds, Susan Southerland, Susie Weiss, vendor, vows, wedding, wedding biz, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding day, wedding industry, wedding location, wedding planner, wedding planning, wedding reception, Wonderful Weddings | 2 Comments

Mini Vaca with the Family to Anna Maria Island

Ah! You know how much I love to travel. I really do live for it and am always looking forward to my next vacation.

Jeff, Griffon and I returned late last week from our quick jaunt over to the beach. We went to Anna Maria Island. Our good friend Stephanie from nu visions loaned us her parents condo and it was just perfect for us. It is so beautiful over there and relaxing and laid back. I love that. We even ventured to the beach once in awhile. Definitely every evening for the sunset. I’m afraid it just wasn’t enough beach time for Griffon. But, Jeff and I tend to be a bit sun shy. So, we did the best that we could. We did lots of fun family things and really, really relaxed. We napped, did some reading and even played some games as a family. It would seem that I’m really good at Scattegories. Love that game! I even beat Jeff, which I consider quite the accomplishment because I really do think he’s brilliant.

A few of my favorites from the vacation:

A trip to the Alpine Steakhouse in Sarasota. The Food Network show, “Diners, Drive In’s and Dive’s” filmed there last year. Jeff and I love that show because we love diners! So, I had to go to the Alpine Steakhouse. They have the Turducken. Very weird, but you might be able to tell that it has turkey, duck and chicken in it. Still can’t believe I didn’t try it. I was a bit scared. Shame on me! The food was very good and the place is certainly unique. I definitely recommend checking it out, but for goodness sake, have the Turducken!

Another trip up Sarasota way to St. Armand’s Circle. It’s located on Lido Key. My parents used to have a condo over on Lido Key, until I insisted they move closer to me. Now, I really miss being over there. Jeff, Griffon and I walked the circle like old times. Had lunch at the Crab & Fin where I had a few of my favorite foods, the Martha’s Vineyard Salad, Fresh oysters and Gazpacho. And of course a Bloody Mary! Yum! After that lunch, we were pretty full, but walked along the circle and went into one of our favorite stores, Garden Argosy. We love this place! It has so many neat things. Jewelry, wall plates, bath items, towels, dishes, just anything cool that you possibly imagine. Before we could leave the area, I had to drive the way that I used to drive when I came into Lido Key. I would always call my Dad as we crossed the bridge. It really does feel as though you check your stress on the other side of the bridge. No stress allowed once you cross over. My parents lived in St. Armand’s Towers and my Dad would always be on the balcony waving at me as I drove into the parking lot. We would hurry upstairs and he would have wine, snacks and plenty of humor waiting for us when we arrived. Being over there, really made me miss my Dad. He was one of my favorite people and we had so much fun while they lived over in Sarasota.

Here’s a picture of the condo,

Here are a few pictures of me and my Dad from the last few years. I must say, for as close as I was to my Dad, we sure didn’t have many pictures. Makes me so sad!

Here we are at the Melting Pot a few years ago. From the left, Jeff, my Dad, Me & Griffon. My mom is in the wheelchair.

Here we are at the Walt Disney World Dolphin, just after an amazing meal at Shula’s. One of the best steakhouses in Orlando.

Sorry, I spun off on a remembering the good ole days and my awesome Daddy.  Back to the trip details.

Loved spending quality time with the family. Really such a rarity in the fast pace of life these days. I loved hanging out with Griffon and watching Forrest Gump and eating freshly made ice cream from this wonderful ice cream place on the island.

Finally, what would a blog entry be without me telling you a few of my favorite places for a wedding over in the Sarasota area.

The Ritz-Carlton Sarasota. Just beautiful, with a location just by Sarasota Bay and a beach side location as well.

Lido Beach Resort. This was formerly a lovely little Radisson and now it’s an impressive beach side resort. Wow!

Longboat Key Club. A gorgeous club located in one of the prettiest areas on the west coast of Florida.

The Beach House. This is located right on Anna Maria Island and they have the best food and love weddings as well. One of my recent visits to the restaurant yielded a wedding in progress. It was fun to see one happening that we weren’t responsible for. For once!

I hope you enjoyed my trip to Anna Maria Island and Sarasota as much as I did. You must, must go and visit very soon. So relaxing!

August 4, 2008 Posted by | Alpine Steakhouse, Anna Maria Island, beach, beach wedding, blog, condo, condos, country clubs, Crab & Fin, Dad, Diners, Drive in's and Dives, event venue, FL, Food and Beverage, Food Network, Garden Argosy, Griffon, Jeffrey Stoner, Jeffrey Stoner Video, Just Marry!, kids, Lido Beach Resort, Lido Key, Long Boat Key Club, lunchtime reception venue, Melting Pot, Michele Butler, Mom, nu visions in photography, professional planners, rehearsal dinner location, Ritz-Carlton Sarasota, Sarasota, Shula's Steakhouse, St. Armand's Towers, St. Armands Circle, Stephanie Rounds, The Beach House Restaurant, Turducken, vacation, Walt Disney World Swan & Dolphin Resort, wedding, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding day, wedding location, wedding planner, wedding planning | Leave a comment

A trip to Denver & Bachelor Gulch

I’m getting so excited and just wanted to share with all of you. Jeffrey and I leave today to head out to Denver for a week. I’m on vacation, relaxing and enjoying myself. My Jeffrey has to work some. He is shooting some video for the Ritz-Carlton in Denver and then also participating in another Down the Aisle Wedding Show with one of our best friends Lisa Konecny from E-Events. Lisa did this show at the Ritz-Carlton Orlando Grande Lakes last year and now she’s taking it national. I’m so excited for her. Austin Scarlett from Season 1 of Project Runway will also return for this show.

After the show, Jeffrey and our good friends Scott and Kristy Chenell are heading off to the Ritz-Carlton in Bachelor Gulch. For those of you who aren’t familiar with this property, it is located near the Beaver Creek and Vail resorts. It’s very near to where I love to ski in Beaver Creek. It will be so weird to be up in the mountains with no snow, but we plan to enjoy the outdoors by horseback riding and hiking. We will return for the next ski season, so that Jeffrey can finally try his hand at skiing or snowboarding.

I’m so looking forward to to this trip and the fact that I’m not working! As some of you may know, Susan from Just Marry! is currently in Italy coordinating a wedding along with two of our other best friends from nu visions in photography, Curt and Stephanie. So, it will be nice to get away, because I’m dying that I’m not in Italy. Jeff and I love Italy and can’t wait to go back. Our favorite city is Venice!

Hope everybody had a fab & fun 4th of July! I’ll be back in touch when I return to the office on Tuesday, July 15th.

July 7, 2008 Posted by | Austin Scarlett, Beaver Creek Resort, bridal show, Curt Littlecot, Denver, Down the Aisle, E Events, event venue, Grande Lakes, Italy, Jeffrey Stoner Video, Just Marry!, Kristy Chenell, Lisa Konecny, Michele Butler, nu visions in photography, Orlando wedding planner, professional planners, Project Runway, Ritz-Carlton Bachelor Gulch, Ritz-Carlton Denver, Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Skiing, Stephanie Rounds, Susan Southerland, vacation, Vail, Venice, video, wedding, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding day, wedding planner, wedding planning, wedding show | 1 Comment

Catering Manager/Coordinator Happy Hour

Graze Dining Area

I recently organized a really fun get together of wedding coordinators. We met a few times. First at Luma and then at Il Mulino at the Walt Disney World Swan Resort. It was great and we were all able to talk shop. It then occurred to me that it would be a great idea to include the catering managers from the various hotels, country clubs and off premise caterers. We had our first coordinator/catering manager meeting at Graze in downtown Orlando. It was great fun. Very casual get together with drinks and food. Catering managers and wedding coordinators often work very close together. Wedding coordinators are sometimes seen as an extension of the hotel properties. Making a great team. So, it only seemed appropriate to have the entire group together. Attending at the initial group get together were Bonnie Garfield (Portofino Bay Hotel), Janine Boylan (Grand Bohemian Orlando), Christal Knowles-Feldman (Sunsational Weddings), Susan Southerland (Just Marry!), Aimee Sers (Just Marry!), Andrea Hall (Just Marry!), Susan Pelteson (Distinctive Weddings), Jenny (Doubletree Castle Hotel), Linda Helm (Heathrow Country Club), Jessica Lodispoto (Winter Park Racquet Club), Lisa Konecny (E Events), Stephanie Rounds (Nu Visions in Photography). We had a great time. The food was great, if not expensive and the drinks were extra yummy. We in the wedding industry love a good cocktail or glass of wine. Allows us to keep that smile on our faces in even the most stressful moments. One thing I can say about the restaurant, is that they are certainly lacking in service. It was a bad time to be lacking in that area as we all have big mouths and can be a source of future referrals. Regardless, we all made the best of it and just let our tips reflect any downfall in service.

January 30, 2008 Posted by | Aimee Sers, Andrea Hall, Bonnie Garfield, catering managers, Christal Knowles-Feldman, country clubs, Distinctive Weddings, Doubletree Castle Hotel, E Events, event industry, event venue, Food and Beverage, Graze, Heathrow Country Club, Jessica Lodispoto, Just Marry!, Lisa Konecny, ll Mulino at the Walt Disney World Swan Resort, Luma, Michele Butler, networking function, nu visions in photography, Stephanie Rounds, Sunsational Weddings, Susan Southerland, wedding biz, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding industry, wedding planner, Winter Park Racquet Club | Leave a comment

Halloween Party!

Jeffrey and I had our annual Halloween party again. It’s the 3rd year that we have hosted it. It is just simply good fun. Most of our friends are in the wedding/event biz. Are you shocked at all? With 10+ years in the industry, we don’t have much of an opportunity to socialize outside of our world. 65 of our closest friends were here to help us celebrate the spooky holiday. We always go with a cheesy Halloween theme. Nothing fancy about our party, except for some of our friends who come to play. This year, one of my favorite get up’s was Susan Pelteson, who took the (wear your favorite t’shirt) to a whole new level by adding red gloves and a tiara. And one our dearest friends, Kristy Chenell flew back in just to play at our party. She recently moved to Denver, Colorado to a new Ritz Carlton that will be opening sometime before the first of the year.

I really do love our industry and love that fact that we can all be such close friends. Even if we are in the same competing industries. Who else to best share the excitement and the woes with, than those who understand.

October 26, 2007 Posted by | Aimee Sers, Andrea Hall, Annual Halloween Party, Bonnie Garfield, catering managers, E Events, event industry, Halloween, Jeffrey Stoner Video, Joe Sharpe, John Unrue, Just Marry!, Kristy Chenell, Lisa Konecny, Michele Butler, networking function, nu visions in photography, Portofino Bay Hotel, Ritz-Carlton Denver, Ritz-Carlton Orlando, Scott Mifsud, Stephanie Rounds, Susan Pelteson, Susan Southerland, wedding, wedding biz, wedding consultant, wedding coordinator, wedding industry, wedding planner | Leave a comment