Local Spotlight, Planning, Stylized Shoots

Classically Elegant Wedding Décor: A Sneak Peek at the Premier Bride Photo Shoot

November 30, 2017
Ramhorn Farms tablescape by Feisty Flowers

To bring classic elegance to the otherwise rustic Ramhorn Farm, the coordinators at événement Planning gathered with a team of wedding industry pros for our Premier Bride photo shoot. Gorgeous floral arrangements and tablescapes from Feisty Flowers, a towering marbled cake from Simma’s Bakery, and thoughtful invitations from Paperwhites set the scene for an utterly elegant celebration.

Upon entering the space, the first thing to catch your eye will undoubtedly be the show-stopping flowers and foliage. Lush and loose, the true whites and natural greens sprawl across the table and cascade from above. “Custom Ramhorn plates in classic white sit atop gold chargers, laid out on this amazing harvest table for 10,” says Janelle Meyer-Brown, owner of événement Planning.  “Quince plucked from a tree just outside the Ramhorn barn adds the perfect final touch.”

Owner of Feisty Flowers, Jaclyn Millonzi, says, “We were inspired by the gardens on the property and the overall nostalgia of Ramhorn. We created lush table centerpieces filled with a variety of our favorite blooms such as anemones, ranunculus, freesia, lisianthus, dahlias, and delphinium. We wanted the overall look to be somewhat subtle, but still striking. We created suspended foliage wreaths to hover overhead and bring attention to the timber frames that really show off the European style of this gorgeous space.”

The crown jewel of the scene is Simma’s tiered marble and gold leaf cake, adorned with a vintage-style crown and seated upon an impressive stone cake stand, both from the owner of Ramhorn Farms’ personal collection. “A new trend in the industry is this marbleizing technique,” says Simma’s owner Peggy Carollo. “This technique allows us to incorporate more than one color and to give a stone effect to the cake. The colors are actually folded into the fondant before it’s applied to the cake. It’s extra special, because no two cakes will ever be alike!”

Each of the cake layers are “mile high,” meaning the bakers added two additional layers of cake to each tier. The wow factor is undeniable. 24-karat gold flecks round out the elegant sophistication, while the grey stone marbling grounds the cake — a perfect mix of elegance with a hint of Ramhorn-inspired rustic.

To invite guests to partake in all this beauty, Paperwhites created custom wedding invitations in the traditional European style. “We were inspired by the Ramhorn crest, as well as the color palette of whites, ivories, barn wood, and lush greenery,” says designer and owner Deb Eisner-Hackbarth. “Classic, European styling invited us to create simple, elegant invitations printed on pearl white letterpress stock — hand torn, gilded, and hand-painted with beeswax.” Topped off with custom calligraphy and a custom Ramhorn crest, receiving a wedding invitation like this one sets the tone for a most decadent, unforgettable affair.

Photos captured by the Artist Group. Video created by JC Design Video.

 

Vendors:

Photography  Artist Group Photography & Video
Venue  Ramhorn Farm
Coordinator événement Planning
Floral  Feisty Flowers
Wedding Cake   Simma’s Bakery
Invitations  Paperwhites
Videography JC Design Video

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Local Spotlight, Planning, Stylized Shoots

Sneak Peek at the Premier Bride Fashion Shoot: Our Model for a Day, PB Rewards Winner!

November 27, 2017

From spa days to wine tastings, our PB Rewards Program gives brides the chance to win some fabulous prizes. For Nicole Cichy, it was the chance to be a Premier Bride model for a day! With hair and makeup by Kaley Wittnick from Wide Eyed Beauty, Nicole stepped out in two gorgeous bridesmaid dresses from Miss Ruby.

The light, blue-grey hue of the Hayley Page gown is soft and romantic, with unique modern detailing in its shimmering floral-patterned bodice. The pewter color keeps it current, while the soft, ethereal tulle rounds out the feminine feel. Nicole’s classic updo serves to highlight the lovely neckline on this dress.

The cut of the deeper blue Bari Jay gown is one that will flatter all figures, allowing brides to dress all their girls the same. The effortless chiffon shirt is topped off with a sequined bodice, adding a dash of fun to this elegant frock. It’s the kind of gown that easily lends itself to both a black tie affair and to letting your hair down.

 

Nicole says that playing model for a day is unforgettable: “As a former event planner, I understand the level of detail that goes into an event. But seeing every little thing that went into this photo shoot was mind-blowing to me! The coordination, planning, and dedication from all the vendors onsite was amazing.They took a blank canvas of a space and transformed it. I had a blast getting all dolled up to have this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Thank you so much to Premier Bride for this fabulous experience!”

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Lake Geneva, Outdoor & Tented, Real Weddings, Rustic/Vintage Style, Summer

Carolyn & Justin’s Beautiful Backyard Wedding

November 14, 2017
Carolyn and Justin's Chic Rustic wedding in Lake Geneva

Carolyn from Dallas and Justin from Chicago met in 2012 when they both worked at a non-profit called Chicago Lights. “They put on a summer program for Chicago children called Summer Day,” Carolyn explains. “Justin was the program’s math teacher and I was a program intern. We hit it off almost immediately.” When the two got engaged, it was a mutual decision. In November 2016, Justin and Carolyn legalized their relationship with a civil union. They then planned a summer party at Carolyn’s grandma’s cabin to celebrate with family and friends.

“We were going for rustic, but chic — beautiful and comfortable at the same time. Like an elegant backyard party.” While wedding guests thought the day was all about celebrating Justin and Carolyn’s civil union, the couple had quite the surprise in store: “A few weeks before the wedding, we decided we wanted to get formally married,” Carolyn says. “My sister knew because we asked her to perform the ceremony — but nobody else knew!”

Following the surprise marriage ceremony, the party kicked off with delicious food and drinks. “Bartenders on the Go provided the beverages,” Carolyn says. “I have to say that I only tasted my signature cocktail: The French 75. But it was so delicious, I assume all the beverage options were great!” For dinner, Justin and Carolyn turned to their friend Chef Aram Reed, and then served up scrumptious cupcakes for dessert.

To outfit and decorate the space, Carolyn and Justin worked with All Star Rentals and Alfa Flowers. The couple also whipped up some charming DIY lighting. “We’re not usually the DIY type, but I ended up feeling inspired to work on a couple projects,” Carolyn says. “I collected tin cans and Justin drilled holes in them and spray-painted them to make little lanterns. I also collected mason jars and wrapped twine around them to make lanterns. They all turned out adorable! The lighting was beautiful and really brought everything together.”

The party was filled with great music and fun for all. “Our friends and family took tons of photos in the photo booth, with the disposable cameras we had out, and with the polaroid cameras we had for the guest book.” Carolyn says one one of the most special moments was when the band finished up and said goodbye: “They shared with us that it was one of the most fun, laid-back weddings they’d ever performed at. The vibe I dreamed of for the wedding not only manifested for me, but was also palpable to everyone else in attendance — even the vendors!”

Looking back on the day, Carolyn remembers how, after dinner, the videographer took her and Justin aside to shoot some footage. “As we walked away, the joyful noise of the party faded into the background, and we got to observe the most beautiful sunset in a quiet, peaceful moment together. As we were finishing up, the band started to play. We got to observe this beautiful event that we worked so hard to put together and to see all of our friends and family enjoying it. That memory is the quintessential moment of exuberance I’d hoped to experience on my wedding day.”

Wedding Consultant Jamie Diplaris from The Simply Elegant Group
Invitations Minted
Rehearsal Dinner Lake Geneva Lanes Bowling Alley
Ceremony & Reception Bride's Grandma’s log cabin
Caterer Chef Aram Reed
Bartending Service Bartenders on the Go
Cake Aggie’s Bakery
Flowers Alfa Flowers
Music/Entertainment Shout Out
Photo & Video Bonphotage
Gown Rue de Seine from Alice in Ivory
Formalwear Suit Supply
Rings Steve Quick Jeweler
Rentals All Star Rentals and Area Rentals
Signage Dco Lovenotes

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Ask the PB Pro

How do I get my girlfriends off my back?

November 13, 2017
Ask the PB Pro

Dear PB Pro,

I just got engaged and already some of my friends are bugging me to see who’s going to be in the bridal party. I know they mean well and are just excited to be involved, but my fiancé and I haven’t figured out a date and venue yet, let alone our final count on bridesmaids and groomsmen. How do I get my girlfriends off my back? When do I have to decide the wedding party by, and is there an ideal number of people to ask?

– Eager Bridesmaids-To-Be


Dear Eager Bridesmaids-To-Be,

While it’s nice that your friends are itching to be a part of your big day, there’s no harm in telling them exactly what you told me: That you and your fiancé havn’t even secured a wedding date and venue, and until you do so, the rest of the planning — bridal party too! — is on the back burner. Tell them that their patience is appreciated, as it takes some pressure off you, and you’re grateful for their enthusiasm and support.

As for when to announce the bridal party, do so after the major plans have been made: date, location, and guest list. If you end up with a smaller wedding than you initially anticipated, you may also want to have a smaller wedding party, so better to hold off until you know for sure. You could also invite any friends that don’t make the cut to perhaps be an usher, personal attendant, or to do a reading at the ceremony.

When the time comes to tell your friends who’s in the bridal party, there are lots of fun ways you can share the news with them. Send a “Will you be my bridesmaid?” card via snail mail, gift a custom-labeled bottle of wine, or make a fun video with your husband-to-be to send to the entire bridal party. Have fun with it, and don’t stress! Great friends will stand by you no matter what. And if you’re on the fence about any of your girlfriends, try to imagine which ladies are most likely to still be a meaningful part of your life a decade from now.

— The PB Pro


Have a question for our PB PRO? Email askthepbpro@premierbride.com and watch future newsletters for your answer. View our website for more questions and answers.

Downtown, Real Weddings, Winter

Mara & Cory’s Milwaukee Wedding at the Historic Pritzlaff

November 6, 2017
Mara and Cody Marry in Downtown Milwaukee in January

Mara from Spokane, Washington, and Cory from Pewaukee met in college at UW-Madison. “A mutual friend introduced us right before a football game, and I ended up inviting Cory to my birthday party the following week,” Mara says. “He was the only guy to show up in a group of 11 girls.” When Cory proposed, he enlisted the help of the same friend who introduced them. “We were supposed to have a girl’s day, but after we got our nails done, my friend made up some story about needing to go back to Bascom Hill on the UW campus.” Walking up the hill, Cory stepped out from behind the Abe Lincoln statue and asked Mara to marry him.

Cory and Mara planned a beautiful wedding with a church ceremony and a reception at the Historic Pritzlaff Building. “Since many of our guests were traveling from out of state and town, it was important to us that they have a great experience in Wisconsin. We wanted to add a lot of historic and Milwaukee elements, which is why we had hotel blocks at the Pfister and Intercontinental Hotels and chose the Pritzlaff as our venue.” The bridal suite, first look, and Sunday brunch also happened at the Pfister Hotel. “I was beyond happy with it,” Mara says. “The hotel offered such a historic and elegant place to host our wedding memories.”

Mara found her Liancarlo gown at White Dress Milwaukee and was beyond happy when working with them. “They listened to me, seemed to know me right off the bat, and were incredibly helpful. I felt like a princess while I was trying on dresses! I loved that I could customize my dress. I ended up changing the illusion neckline a little, and I extended the train a couple of feet. It truly felt one-of-a-kind.”

On the day of the wedding, Mara says she woke up with an incredible feeling of pure joy and happiness. “I felt like that the entire day. I honestly have no clue if something didn’t go according to plan because I was just so happy all day, and that feeling sticks out to me the most.” The wedding started with a traditional church ceremony that took place at the Cathedral of St. John the Evangelist. “It was so beautiful that we really didn’t have to add other decorations.” An organist and cellist played music during the ceremony. “It sounded so grand and elegant,” Mara says. “I played cello growing up, so I knew I had to have a cellist!”

Following the ceremony, Cory and Mara provided transportation for their guests to the Pritzlaff Building. “We had Go Riteway vans for all of the guests between the ceremony, reception, and back. We also had a limo coach for the wedding party.” Because the bride and groom had already done a first look and taken a bunch of pictures before the ceremony, they were able to mingle with friends and family during cocktail hour. “We felt like it was a nice way to talk with our guests, and we didn’t feel like we missed greeting anyone.”

For dinner, the couple chose a duet plate of beef and chicken, served with mashed potatoes and root vegetables. In addition to a traditional wedding cake for dessert, there were also mini chocolate-dipped cheesecakes on sticks. “Cory’s favorite dessert is cheesecake, so we had to incorporate it somehow.” Mara, being a self-proclaimed snacker, knew she wanted to have something extra for guests to munch on, too. “We had a popcorn bar because it’s my and my dad’s favorite food. We also had Ian’s Pizza, as that was our go-to late-night food in college. We believe everyone should try mac ’n’ cheese pizza at least once in their life!”

In addition to cheesy pizza, Mara and Cory added plenty of other fun touches to their reception. There were champagne cocktails, a whiskey bar, photo booth, a Snap Chat geofilter, and a surprise guest — Bucky Badger. “I surprised Cory and everyone at the reception with Bucky,” Mara says. “The look on Cory’s face was priceless. It was so special to see Cory so excited. Only myself, my parents, and our vendors knew about Bucky. He was a hit and definitely got everyone on the dance floor!” Mara also thinks the Snap Chat geofilter was a big hit with the younger guests: “I was really glad we did that, because the next morning I went on Snap Chat and got to see shots of the wedding through others’ eyes. It was really fun to see.”

While Mara admits that she loves DIY projects, she didn’t actually do any to decorate the Pritzlaff. “We were lucky enough to have collected things over time to use — and we had such amazing vendors that already had awesome things to rent!” The couple worked with Relics Vintage Rentals to create a custom chalkboard seating chart, and Evenement Planning helped pull everything together. “Anne at Evenement was a lifesaver. I honestly think this was the best money spent. Anne got to know me so well; she seemed to understand my vision and knew exactly what I wanted at times when I was feeling overwhelmed. I trusted her 100% and she executed everything perfectly. Anne was calm through the entire process, which made me calm and allowed me enjoy my engagement.”

Mara’s advice for future brides is to be flexible and go with the flow. “So many unexpected things take place and you just have to go with it and trust that the day will work out. Also, stay humble and down to earth throughout the experience. At the end of the day, you’re married to the person you love, and that’s what a wedding is all about.

Wedding Consultant Evenement Planning
Invitations & Save-the-Date Paper Envy
Rehearsal Dinner Swig
Ceremony Cathedral of St John’s the Evangelist
Reception Pritzlaff Events
Bridal Suite & Sunday Brunch The Pfister Hotel
Caterer Lee John’s Catering
Cake The Cake Lady
Flowers Jane Kelly Floral
Music/Entertainment Milwaukee Airwaves
Transportation Go RiteWay
Photographer April Zelenka
Videographer Sikora Film Co
Gown Liancarlo from White Dress Milwaukee
Formalwear Groom: Nordstrom
Groomsmen: Men’s Wearhouse (Vera Wang)
Rings Golden Karat Jewelers, Minocqua, WI.
Linens Windy City Linens
Guest Seating Chart Chalkboard and writing Relics Vintage Rentals
Late Night Snacks Ian's Pizza

Real Weddings, West

Savannah & Michael’s Romantic Lake Country Wedding at the Delafield Hotel

October 26, 2017

Savannah and Michael met in the dining hall at Carroll University and became fast friends. “Being friends first, I believe, was huge to the success of our relationship,” Savannah says. “We both know that we fell in love with each other for exactly who we are.” Michael proposed during a couple’s photo session — a Christmas present for Savannah. “Michael requested a few candid pictures, then he dropped to one knee and asked me to marry him. A proposal was the last thing I was expecting that day!”

Click on any image to enlarge.

The two planned a whimsical, romantic wedding with a dash of rustic charm. “We wanted classic elements while still making our wedding unique. We had just the right amount of romance with gold sequin tablecloths, whimsical with the floral arrangements and color palette, and rustic with the incorporation of wood boards and log slices throughout.”

Savannah admits that every moment between the engagement and wedding day was spent planning. “But I slept on the ideas I came across to make sure that it actually fit our wedding style,” she says. About a month after Michael proposed, Savannah attended the Wonderful World of Weddings show. “It was a great way to see what I liked and didn’t.”

Click on any image to enlarge.

Savannah found her dress at Stone Manor Bridal in Grafton. “One dress caught my eye on the mannequin when I first walked in, which was the complete opposite of what I thought I wanted. I tried that one on first as well as many, many others — but I kept coming back to the first one. The lady who helped me stayed late, after the store had closed, to let me try it on again and really get a feel for it. I said yes to that dress!”

On the eve of the wedding, Michael and Savannah hosted a rehearsal dinner at the Seven Seas in Hartland. “This was a great location. We had a private room with gorgeous views of the lake, and the space comfortably fit our friends and family.” The next day, the ceremony was held at St. Bruno’s Catholic Church in Dousman with a reception that followed at the Delafield Hotel. Savannah jokes that her favorite part of the ceremony was seeing Michael cry — “but though that was very sweet,” she says, “my actual favorite part was looking out at all of our family and friends and feeling all of the support they have for us and our marriage.”

Click on any image to enlarge.

After the bride and groom said “I do,” the wedding party piled into a limo that took them from the church to picture locations and back to the Delafield Hotel. “Go Riteway allowed us to split our booking and use the 4-hour rental minimum throughout the day, which was wonderful. That way the ceremony time didn’t cut into it.” Once at the hotel, Kim the event coordinator let Savannah and Michael go into the ballroom with their photographer before the rest of the guests.

“I was speechless,” Savannah says. “The Delafield Hotel provides set-up and tear-down, which is an awesome way to keep brides stress-free on their wedding day! I dropped off all of my decorations a few days before the wedding and went over the ideas I had for them and how I wanted everything set up. Kim blew me away; it was even better than what I’d dreamed of! The Delafield Hotel is a beautiful venue, has a wonderful staff, and was an all-around great experience.”

On top of that, the catering at the hotel was, in a word, “amazing!” Michael and Savannah received tons of compliments on the delicious dinner. During cocktail hour, there was crudité and a European cheese display, as well as passed signature cocktails. Guests raved about the entrees, too. In addition to a cake for dessert, Savannah’s grandma also made an array of desserts for a grab-and-go sweets buffet.

Click on any image to enlarge.

During all the wonderful craziness of the delicious dinner, Savannah and Michael had the chance to slip away and snap a few photos in the bell tower of the Delafield Hotel. “It was sunset, and not only were the views gorgeous up there, but this was our first time that day to really spend a few minutes together and take it all in. We got a breath of fresh air took some time to soak up the moment and really celebrate the fact that we’d just married our best friend. It was one of the most surreal moments of the night!”

Bride and Groom on balcony of the Delafield Hotel

Then it was time to rejoin the party, where the DJ from Vital Image packed the dance floor. “We had a phone consultation the week before the wedding where we went over not only the songs we picked out, but also customized the evening,” Savannah says. “I had a few unique requests for dance floor games I wanted to incorporate — the DJ had never heard of them, but he took the time to research and plan. Our music package included a gobo light, uplighting and fun dance floor lights, as well as a photo booth. Everyone was out on the dance floor — our guests had a blast!”

At the end of the night, Michael sang along to a special song for Savannah. “He sang in front of all of our friends and family, and there wasn’t a dry eye in the room. I will always remember that.” Savannah says she’ll also never forget how the sun came out to shine on their love. “It stormed the whole morning before the wedding, so I had my dad go to every Target in the area and wipe them out of umbrellas. Right before we left for the ceremony, the storms cleared and there wasn’t a cloud in sight.”

 

Bridal Shows Attended Wonderful World of Weddings
Invitations Elli
Rehearsal Dinner Seven Seas in Hartland, WI
Ceremony St. Bruno’s Catholic Church in Dousman, WI
Reception & Catering The Delafield Hotel in Delafield, WI
Cake A Little Slice of Heaven in Stone Bank, WI
Flowers Magnolia Floral Shoppe in Hartland, WI
Music/Entertainment Vital Image in Muskego, WI
Transportation Go Riteway in Milwaukee, WI
Photographer Faith Photography in the Lake Country area
Videographer Thrild the Photographer
Gown Stella York from Stone Manor Bridal in Grafton, WI
Formalwear Nedrebo’s Formal Wear
Hairstylist Hair by Lexi Lee
Rings Jared
Rentals Sassy Pants Events in West Bend, WI

Bride and Groom on balcony of the Delafield Hotel

Lake Geneva, Outdoor & Tented, Summer

Kristi & Patrick’s Gorgeous, Heartfelt Wedding at the Geneva National

October 16, 2017
Kristi and Patrick marry at Geneva National in Lake Geneva

Kristi and Patrick met through a mutual friend one December night in 2012 at the Lincoln Park Zoo. Viewing the holiday lights and spending the evening together, the two became inseparable. Patrick was living in California at the time, but it wasn’t long before he moved back to Chicago and reconnected with Kristi. In 2016, he proposed right at the zoo where it all started. Patrick recruited friends to film the proposal, then planned a day filled with surprises: brunch with family and friends, rooftop terraces, a limo ride, and karaoke to end the night.

The happy couple planned a wedding around their love of water, with a light aqua, blush, and grey color scheme. “This is also why we wanted to get married at Geneva National, because the pergola overlooks Lake Como. The venue was close enough to get all of our family and friends there, but also included the water aspect — it was perfect for us!”

To prep for the big day, Kristi also attended a bridal show at the Geneva National. The ceremony would be held at the Geneva National’s Lakeview Terrace with the reception indoors in the Grand Ballroom. On the eve of the wedding, Patrick and Kristi celebrated with a rehearsal dinner under the patio lights of the Ridge Hotel. “The scenery was breathtaking.”

Click on any image to enlarge.

The July 7th ceremony was a particularly special one, as it was three months prior, to the day, that Patrick and Kristi had been married the first time. “On April 7th, we had been married in Pat’s parents’ living room so that Pat’s dad Dennis, who was not in good health, could be there. Dennis was battling cancer and ended up passing away on April 9th. We are so thankful he got to witness our small ceremony.” Kristi’s parents’ pastor, Pastor Dave, led both the intimate living room ceremony and the Geneva National ceremony. “It was so heartfelt. We know Dennis was with us in spirit on July 7th as well.”

Kristi says even the staff at the Geneva National offered amazing support to her and Patrick during the difficult time leading up to their July wedding. “Michelle and Katy, the Geneva National wedding coordinators, sent us cards when Pat’s dad passed away and worked with us throughout the entire year to make us feel valued, supported, and appreciated.”

While going above and beyond to send love and encouragement, the team at the Geneva National also succeeded in giving Patrick and Kristi a wedding they’d never forget, starting with the scrumptious food and drink selection. “We had a drink called the PMAC (Patrick’s nickname — short for Patrick McDonald). It was a light aqua color made with lemonade, vodka, and blue curacao. Guests got a kick out of the name and the drink was a big hit!”

Click on any image to enlarge.

The dinner menu included a choice of filet mignon with a cognac demi glaze, roasted chicken breast with a brandy mushroom sauce, and pasta primavera. “With seventy-five percent of our guests choosing filets, we didn’t know how great that much meat made in bulk would taste — but we got so many comments on how delicious the filets were. The appetizers were tasty too. We had jumbo cocktail shrimp, vegetarian egg rolls, bacon-wrapped water chestnuts, and tomato bruschetta. Everyone was impressed! The Geneva National did not disappoint.”

Then came Kristi’s favorite part of the reception: the dancing! “I especially loved when my brother and two guy friends lifted me up on a chair over the dance floor, so I could see all the guests and celebrate in the air.” The DJ kept the dance floor rocking. “Pat and I both loved dancing the night away!”

Kristi says another highlight was the sparkler send-off and fireworks that ended the evening. But looking back, the moment that sticks with her the most was riding away with Patrick in a golf cart, following the ceremony. “Pat and I were so thrilled to be together for the first time all day and to be surrounded by all of our favorite people. Someone offered us a beer when we were riding on the cart toward pictures, and I swear a beer never tasted so good. Pat said the same thing. It was like all the nerves were finally gone, we were together, and we could just enjoy the party. I’ll never forget that moment.”

Geneva National reception room tables

Click on any image to enlarge.

Bridal Shows Attended Geneva National
Dance Lessons McDonald Dance in Arlington Heights
Invitations Lucky Invitations
Rehearsal Dinner The Ridge Hotel
Ceremony & Reception Geneva National
Cake Bittner’s Bakery
Flowers Gia Bella Flowers
Music Music In Motion
Transportation Geneva National shuttle
Photographer Cindy Romano Photography
Videographer Something New Media
Gown Enzoani from Kathryn’s Bridal, McHenry, IL
Formalwear Men’s Wearhouse
Rings Exquisite Jewelers, Palatine, IL

Ask the PB Pro

How can I honor my parent’s anniversary at my wedding?

October 12, 2017
Ask the PB Pro

Dear PB Pro,

My parents are such an inspiration to me! They will be celebrating their 30th wedding anniversary close to my wedding date, and I’d love to honor them in some way. Any ideas?

– 30-Year Goals


Dear 30-Year Goals,

Congrats to your mom and dad! How wonderful to have such role models to look up to as you begin married life. There are lots of ways brides and grooms pay tribute to the great marriages in their families. You might include a simple note of congratulations in the ceremony program, or a reading dedicated to them. At the reception, consider setting up a table of framed photos from your parents’ wedding for guests to enjoy. During dinner, you could also give a toast to them and their 30 years, or invite them onto the dance floor for a special moment in the spotlight. Whatever the gesture, your parents will no doubt be moved that you took time from your day to show just how much their love inspires you.

— The PB Pro


Have a question for our PB PRO? Email askthepbpro@premierbride.com and watch future newsletters for your answer. View our website for more questions and answers.

Budget-Friendly, Purple, Real Weddings, Summer, West

Brooke & Steven’s College-Themed Wedding at Tuscan Hall

October 5, 2017
Brooke and Steven get married at Seven Seas in Delafield WI

Brooke and Steven met in college at the University of Wisconsin Whitewater, when Brooke was a freshman sorority sister and Steven was a senior fraternity fella. The two met through mutual friends one night, and the rest is history. When Steven proposed, it was the Friday of Easter weekend after an egg hunt at Steven’s sister’s house. Brooke remembers: “He told me he had found one last Easter egg, got down on one knee, and proposed! I was very shocked, since I was convinced that he would propose at his official swearing-in ceremony as a police officer — but he did a really good job and caught me off guard.”

The happy couple planned a fun, college-themed wedding. “We agreed on Whitewater colors: purple, silver, and black — with some glitter for me!” Brooke says. “We also added some police-themed décor, since Steven is a police officer and we’re all very proud of that. We had a doughnut bar and a few signs around, like ‘It’s not a party until the cops show up!’” To prepare for the big day, Brooke attended the Wonderful World of Weddings Show at the State Fair grounds.

The ceremony was held lakeside at the Seven Seas of Delafield. “Having a view of the lake during our ceremony was always my dream,” Brooke says. “It was absolutely breathtaking. We couldn’t have picked a better venue.” The ceremony itself was “short, sweet, and perfect.” The officiant, Pastor Roger, had Steven and Brooke face the crowd as they exchanged vows so everyone could see their faces. “His theory was that people came to see us, not him,” Brooke explains. “I could catch glimpses of loved ones in the crowd, and I really liked that!”

The wedding party then boarded a Spring City Trolley to drive around Lake Country and take photos before heading to the reception. Brooke admits, “One of my favorite parts of the day was the trolley ride! We had some good music going and were able to bring drinks on the trolley, so our bridal party could celebrate while riding around Pewaukee.” After pictures were finished, one of Steven’s law enforcement friends led the way in his squad car, lights and all.

The reception was held at Tuscan Hall, where Brooke’s mother Amy Bartolf is the Events Coordinator. “She was my life saver!” Brooke says. The hall also catered a plated dinner of salad, bread & butter, braised short rib, Mediterranean chicken, red potatoes, and asparagus. “The food was phenomenal! You could tell it was healthy and fresh, and our guests raved about it.” Dessert came from Sweet Perfections — an “absolutely delicious cake with a fruit cream filling.” There was also the aforementioned cop-themed doughnut bar and an ice cream station. For late night stacks, Steven and Brooke chose hamburger sliders on pretzel buns and pizza. Drinks included unlimited Spotted Cow and Miller Lite on tap, plus Moscato and Cabernet Sauvignon.

In all the planning process, Brooke says there isn’t a thing she would change — thanks in large part to her wonderful mom. “I had my mother plan most of it, and we decided to have her and our vendors tackle the overall decorating, as long as it was fun and stuck with the college colors and theme. I was a more laid-back bride, and, to future brides, I would highly recommend being laid back during the planning process. Things will change and not everything is possible. If you’re able to enjoy it instead of getting wrapped up in every little detail, I promise everything will fall into place!”

Bridal Shows Attended Wonderful World of Weddings
Invitations OpenBox Events
Rehearsal Dinner Wildwood Lodge with Tuscan Hall Catering and Pizzas
Ceremony Seven Seas of Delafield
Reception & Catering Tuscan Hall Banquet Center
Cake Sweet Perfections
Sundae Bar The Chocolate Factory
Donuts Grebe's Bakery
Flowers Jess Fleur Fun, LLC
Music & Lighting Double Platinum DJ
Transportation Spring City Trolley
Photographer Tialee Photography
Videographer OpenBox Events
Formalwear Du Bois Formal Wear
Rings Jared
Rentals Cover it with Class

Fall, Galleries, Rustic / Barn, Rustic/Vintage Style, Stylized Shoots

Autumn Wedding Inspiration at The Landing 1841

October 3, 2017
Bride and groom in fall themed wedding

As the air grows cold, autumn colors warm up the scene for this fall photo shoot at The Landing 1841, orchestrated by the talented duo at Better Together Photography. The bride dons a gorgeous Bucci’s Bridal gown with long lace sleeves — the perfect answer to a brisk October night. Wool blankets lay in wait for for chilly guests.
Click on any image to enlarge.

The reception theme celebrates harvest time and the bounty of love. Apples can be found throughout the décor and even make for a scrumptious, caramel-dipped favor. Sprigs of rosemary and sticks of cinnamon garnish seasonal drinks, and a shabby-chic layer cake sits atop a sliced-wood platter.

Love is Sweet Take a Treat

Fall Themed Apple menu wedding by DCo Love Notes

Crimson flowers and green foliage from Bank of Memories accent the cake, while shades of ivory and orange add depth to the bride’s autumnal bouquet. It’s these thoughtful details, paired with a rose gold and copper-tinged color story, that come together to create a sense of warmth, comfort, and luxury made with love.

rustic themed woodsy wedding cake

Click on any image to enlarge

Photography & Styling Better Together Photography
Venue The Landing 1841
Flowers Bank of Memories
Dress Bucci's Bridal
Bride Jessica Lentz
Groom Shawn Quella
Hair Danica Bushman
Makeup rd Artistry
Letters EZPZ Marquee
Invites & Table Cards DCo Love Notes
Calligraphy Signage Liz Bartlein

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Real Weddings, Washington County

Heather & Krystal’s Great Gatsby Wedding at the Chandelier Ballroom

September 25, 2017
Heather and Krystal have same sex marriage at Chandelier Ballroom in Hartford WI

Heather and Krystal met at Office Max, where Heather was working when Krystal went in for an interview. “We locked eyes and needed to know one another.” When the two started planning their wedding, they decided on a Great Gatsby theme with a back, gold, and silver color palette. Both the ceremony and reception were held at the Chandelier Ballroom in Hartford — the ceremony in the Fireside Room and the reception in the Great Hall. “Michele at the Chandelier Ballroom was great,” Heather says. “She was cheerful, a joy to work with, and always available for any questions I had. On the day itself, she was there for anything we needed.”

Heather’s cousin officiated the wedding in the Fireside Room. “She’s always been the most supportive person we’ve had throughout our relationship, and likes to call herself our ‘biggest fan.’” Another special moment during the ceremony involved Krystal and Heather’s young daughter, who has autism. “Our daughter Shaine wasn’t doing well with all the people and the strange surroundings. Krystal stopped the ceremony and asked Shaine, ‘Do you want to come up here?’ Shaine ran up, and Krystal held her while we finished the ceremony. To see her holding our daughter was the perfect end to the ceremony; it showed everyone our family.”

As a backdrop for the “I do’s,” Krystal and Heather chose a custom painting of the famous eyes The Great Gatsby. Carrying the theme into the reception, Heather painted wine bottles gold and black, then added black and white ostrich feathers and draped beads. These were placed on top of hardcover books to create the table centerpieces. “My bouquet was also made of paper flowers that I crafted from book pages and accented with ostrich feathers and silver.”

Dinner was catered by the Chandelier Ballroom and was “absolutely delicious.” Guests enjoyed a Caesar salad and a choice of chicken cacciatore or baked tilapia, served with Penne or tortellini topped with Alfredo or house bolognese sauce. “The bolognese tasted so amazing, and the chicken and fish were cooked perfectly. Our only regret on the day was that we didn’t eat more of the wedding meal — there was just so much going on.”

Following dinner came an unforgettable father/daughter dance. “While my dad and I danced, Krystal was preparing a surprise for her dad,” Heather explains. “She had worn a suit for the ceremony and dinner, but Krystal strode out wearing a beautiful white dress for her dance with her dad. Everyone was excited and clapping, and her dad was so surprised and emotional.”

For Heather and Krystal’s first dance, the two unveiled a beautiful waltz. “We took lessons, so it was fun and not stressful. It was great to do something more than just sway.” In the end, Krystal’s favorite moment was seeing Heather walking down the aisle. For Heather, her favorite moment was seeing Krystal start to cry as she read her vows off a yellow post-it note.

Bridal Shows Attended La Crosse Bridal Expo
Dance Lessons Moonlight Dance Studio, La Crosse, WI
Invitations ETSY and Vistaprint
Rehearsal Dinner Mineshaft, Hartford, WI
Ceremony, Reception & Catering Chandelier Ballroom, Hartford, WI
Cake Cake and Bake, Menominee Falls, WI
Music/Entertainment Music Mixx, La Crosse, WI
Photographer ColorfulDreams4U
Gown Charlotte’s Bridal, La Crosse, WI
Formalwear Men’s Wearhouse and Charlotte's Bridal
Rings Kay Jewelers

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Downtown, Milwaukee, Real Weddings, Spring

Nicole & Eric’s Simple & Modern Wedding at the Hyatt

September 13, 2017
Nicole and Eric marry at the Hyatt in Milwaukee

Nicole from Oakdale, Minnesota, and Eric from Chicago, Illinois, met in college through mutual friends. They’d been together for eight wonderful years before Eric proposed in an Indianapolis hotel room, while Nicole was there for work. Eric was driving back from seeing his family in Chicago, so he stopped in Indianapolis to see Nicole and pop the question. “He had gone ring shopping with his mom!” Nicole says. The couple planned a modern, simple wedding at the Hyatt in Milwaukee, with a black and white color scheme and rose gold accents.

The ceremony, was officiated by one of Eric’s family friends. “It was short and sweet,” Nicole says. “Eric and I did our own vows, and as nervous as I was to read them, having that memory is one of my favorite things. My other favorite part was seeing Eric and all of our family and friends cry happy tears when I walked down the aisle. Everyone had been rooting for our love story — it was an overwhelming feeling!”

At the reception, Eric and Nicole kicked off the evening with their first dance and cake cutting. Then it was time for dinner, catered by the Hyatt. “The food was amazing! We had so many compliments on the beef brisket.” For dessert, the couple went for cheesecake: “It’s our favorite! We also had an open bar, which everyone was pleased with — ourselves included!”

To decorate the space, Nicole spray painted wine bottles in black and rose gold, then filled each with roses. “We didn’t spend a ton of money on decorations. It was all handmade and very simple.”

After dinner, Vital Image — who handled the music as well as photography and videography — got the party started on the dance floor. Nicole admits, “My favorite part of the reception was dancing the night away. That’s all I cared about after all the nerve-racking stuff was over! But the best part of the day overall, for me, was exchanging vows with my husband.”

Invitations Paperless Post
Rehearsal Dinner Evolution
Ceremony Location Hyatt Regency Milwaukee
Cake Aggie’s Bakery
Flowers Bloom Floral & Event Design
Music/Entertainment Vital Image Wedding Studios
Photo & Video Vital Image Wedding Studios
Gown Marisa from House of Brides Chicago
Formalwear Pursuit in Columbus, OH
Rings Kay Jewelers
Rentals Bloom Floral & Event Design