First off, I want to give a HUGE thank you to my wonderful assistant, Colleen! We had a L.O.N.G. day yesterday preparing and designing an AH-MAZING styled shoot that I could not have done without her!  I cannot wait to share all of the photos with you guys (they are pure gorgeousness)! In the meantime, here we are in all our exhausted glory at the end of the day: (not bad for 6 hours of hustle and bustle)

Vesuvius-Vineyards-Olivia-Smartt-9386

 THANK YOU COLLEEN – I OWE YOU ONE! (Bouquet by the fab Chelish Moore)

I am giving Colleen the day off and I have taken over her “Simply Southern Says” blog! One of the first things my brides usually ask me is ‘”what are the top must -haves or must-dos of a wedding?” While each wedding is different, there are some things that remain the same!  Today, I am dishing out my Top 7 (Must-Have or Must-Do) Ideas for Planning Your Wedding – Seriously ya’ll – these are awesome!

1.   Have An Unplugged Wedding – Thinking of letting your guests take pictures during your ceremony? Might want to think again! Let your professional photographer capture the moments, not photos of everyone else’s iPhones! Example of a plugged-in ceremony: Amber-Wilkie-Photography

2.   Limit Your Vendors – Don’t overwhelm yourself with vendor meetings. Pick your top 2 (3 at the max) for each category and meet only with them. If none of them are perfect – your can add more!

3.   Remember The Meaning – While your wedding is important, remember that you are planning for a marriage. Take time to close the Pinterest board and put down the wedding magazines and connect with your future spouse!

4.   First Things First – Vendors who can only book one wedding a day (ex: venue, photographer, wedding planner, music) should be your main priority. No sense in stressing about centerpieces when you have not selected a venue!

5.   Add A Personal Touch – Your wedding should be about you and your fiancé. Love the Tar Heels? Use Carolina blue for a color. Horseback rider? Get married on a farm and have horses in your photos.  Those little touches are what make it meaningful to you! The groom of a 2013 wedding we did is a BIG hunter – so the bride surprised him with this cake:

Hunt Cake

6.   Let The Experts Do Their Job – You wouldn’t tell your dentist how to fill a cavity – so don’t tell your florist how to arrange a bouquet. Given them guidance and inspiration, but then trust them to bring your vision to life – it is their profession!

7.   Hire A Planner – At the risk of a shameless promotion, planners will keep you on track, provide the best referrals (and discounts!) and relieve stress so you can enjoy your BIG DAY!

Let me know if you think I missed something! Have a great week y’all!

Erin