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102 North Loop @ Yale Houston, Texas 77008
Open 7 days a week! Schedule your appointment online.
e di to r ' s l e t t e r
This is your time to
We’ve interviewed thousands of brides over the past 33 years. One thing never changes. They all say not to sweat the small stuff. You won’t remember the mistakes… What’s your wedding date? Answer this question and all other questions are easy! Next, dive into the enhancements that will make your day creative and memorable. You may experience some stressful days and sleepless nights as you plan your big day, but remember, it’s all about you: the bride. As you navigate the sea of big day decisions and engagement hurdles, always come back to the center of why you said yes in the first place. When this is over, you’ll be married!
PHOTO BY IVAN GARCIA STUDIO
ON THE COVER H Texas Cover Compliments of The Princess Bridal Billboard Bride Ashley Marie Tovar Gown Ventura’s Bridal Fashions Makeup/Hair Simple Beauty Artistry Photography Ivan Garcia Studio Styling A Splendid Event Décor Rexberry Luxury Weddings & Events Location Madera Estates
EDITOR IN CHIEF Laurette M. Veres MANAGING EDITOR Tom Flynn SENIOR EDITORS Vicki Dill Tom Flynn Candace Miller GRAPHIC DESIGN Goran Atanasovski PRODUCTION MANAGER Jeanine Hickman EDITORIAL Candace Miller Jade Lewis Vicki Dill Kim Padgett Marian Jacob Stephanie DiCiro Kyley Kornegay Marisa Byers PHOTOGRAPHY See photo credits ®COPYRIGHT 2018 Bridal Extravaganza Show PO Box 667399 Houston TX 77266 281-340-7777 H Texas Magazine Texas Weddings Magazine
THE NEXT BRIDAL EXTRAVAGANZA SHOW IS JANUARY 5-6 , 2019
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Ashley Marie Tovar and Naval Nurse, Artur J. Gonzalez had only known each other for seven months when he decided to propose. The bravery of this Naval man was tested and confirmed when he secretly asked Ashleyâ€™s former Army Ranger father for his daughterâ€™s hand in marriage. Artur had only just met her family the day before and now they were rushing back to Houston that evening for the rodeo and her first Brad Paisley concert. She had no idea he was planning to pop the question in an unforgettable, truly Texan way! - 12 -
lo by Laurette M. Veres
ove Two people fell in
Billboard Bride Ashley has a magical photo shoot at Madera Estates
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In the middle of the bustling NRG stadium concourse, after the concert and fireworks,Artur scanned the crowd for the “most married couple” in the concession area and came across a happy family with a toddler and a beautiful new baby. While Ashley wasn’t looking, he ran over and asked the couple to record the moment using his iPhone. Artur walked back to Ashley and got down on one knee and asked her to be his bride“It was just the two of us,” recalls Ashley. “And everyone at the concert.”
With the big day set for August, Ashley and her maidof-honor attended the Bridal Extravaganza in January, Decked out in matching T-shirts, they were ready for some serious wedding planning fun! There, Ashley followed a whim and signed up to be interviewed for the chance to appear on billboards all over town as the face of the Bridal Extravaganza. “I was so nervous and hoped I answered the questions correctly.” she admits. A few weeks later, as she was finishing up a hair appointment, she received the call saying she had won. “I still had foil in my hair but I was screaming because I was so excited.” she recalls.
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Ventura’s Bridal and their limitless selection of fantastic bridal gowns made the dress fitting day tons of fun. “It was just like playing dress up!” says Ashley. “Getting to see the gown again and getting to wear it is just so nice.” Ashley looked stunning in the gown and especially loved the dramatic cape – perfect for a church or religious ceremony. We checked in with the Billboard Bride recently and she says plans for her summer
wedding are still going great! “I have a great planner, she keeps me on top of things.” she says smiling. “We are doing this all on our own (financially) and I want to be an inspiration to young brides who might be intimidated by wedding planning.” Ashley cautions brides who might be daunted by the planning process not to settle for a backyard barbecue just because it’s easier; “Planning a wedding can be easy if you have the right vendors in your corner.”
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Speaking of a great team of wedding experts, the Bridal Extravaganza brought together the best of the best for this shoot. Just North of The Woodlands, in the Piney Hills of Conroe, Texas, sits Madera Estates Weddings and Events. This versatile venue is known for their variety of indoor/ outdoor spaces and an iconic outdoor Grand Fireplace. “We really provide our clients with a one-stop shop.” explains Ian Ramirez, of this family owned business. “We take away the added level of stress throughout the planning process so couples can focus on the fun.”Madera Estates’ architectural structures and breathtaking grounds were inspired by a family home in San Miguel de Allende in central Mexico. “When you drive through the gates, you are transported to another world. We bring the destination wedding to you!” he adds. Lorie Speich, owner of A Splendid Event was on site managing event design and coordination for this shoot. On any typical weekend, you might find Lorie and her team out at a farm or ranch wedding or producing an upscale, luxury event. “We are ready to take your needs and your details and plan the perfect day for you.” assures Lorie.
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Of Madera Estates, Lorie declares,“I have fallen in love with the grand style of this venue. It’s very versatile and full of character. We could be in Cabo San Lucas or even Monaco!” she adds.
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Mayra Malik of Simple Beauty Artistry heads up the beauty team for this shoot. Offering traditional and airbrush makeup, spray tanning, lash extensions and hair services, this team of 12 artists is available on location or in studio. Mayra stresses the importance of having an experienced professional in charge of your wedding day look.“It’s important to have a professional do your hair and makeup on your wedding day so you will be photo ready.” she says.“Professional application of makeup ensures top quality pictures.”
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“Wispy, flowy and organic” are three words Malik uses to describe the fishtail braid she did for Ashley. “It’s one of the most popular looks we have.” she comments. “What we are seeing more now is pops of color.” Mayra explains.“Everyone wants to have the golden, dewy, sunkissed look with a pop of color. In this case, we went with a bold, red lip.” The task of bringing it all together with the right linens and table scape design goes to the expert team at Rexberry
Luxury Weddings and Events. “When you book a venue, think about the aesthetic.” offers David Rexroat. “You don’t want to be able to tell where the venue stops and your décor starts. We created a mix of glam and rustic together.” he explains. The custom bouquet created for Ashley by the Design Studio at H-E-B Blooms was on-trend, complimenting the bride with just the right amount of color. On hand to capture every last detail, we enlisted Ivan Garcia from Ivan Garcia Studio. Ivan is excited to announce his new portrait studio in Old Town Spring. As he continues to focus
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Essentialslfashions.com www.venturasbrida stry.com www.simplebeautyarti .com www.mymaderaestates net www.asplendidevent. com www.rexberryevents. com www.ivangarciastudio. m www.bloomsflowers.co
on shooting weddings, his wife Ana is at the studio shooting families, engagements and more. Ivan offers these expert words of advice for couples, “Break tradition and see each other before the wedding, if possible. This will allow ample time to change locations around your venue and you’ll be sure to capture every special image. These will be the photos that will look great in your wedding album. Especially brides who crave a sunset ceremony,” warns Ivan,“they should definitely consider first-look pictures beforehand.” After the shoot, Ashley was buzzing with excitement and anticipation of the finished product. “When I see the first billboard it’s going to take my breath away for sure!” she gushes with enthusiasm. “It will be overwhelming to see everyone’s hard work come together. For this to happen and then have your face up there is very overwhelming, in all the best ways.”
THE BRIDAL EXTRAVAGANZA SHOW IS IN JANUARY AND JULY. TO PURCHASE TICKETS, LOG ON TO www.BridalExtravaganzaShow.com
You could be the next Billboard Bride. - 22 -
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PARTY STORE SHOWER, BRIDAL & PARTY SUPPLIES YOUR SAVINGS HEADQUARTERS FOR A
Aisle Runners Balloons Banquet Rolls Baskets Bouquet Holders Bridal Gifts Bridal Bouquet Bubbles & Bells Cake Toppers Candles-Unity Candles Candle Holders-Unity Crown & Lazo’s Cups, Plates, Tumblers Glass, Paper & Plastic Plain, Decorated & Colors Garlands Garters Gifts Head Pieces Kneeling Pillows Paper Napkins Assorted Sizes, Colors Plain & Decorated
Parasols & Fans Picture Frames Plastic CutleryAssorted Colors Plume PensAssorted Colors Quinceanera Ribbon-All Sizes & Colors Ring Pillows Silk Flowers Serving Sets Toasting Glasses Table Covers Plastic, Paper & Assorted Colors Veils Wedding Bells-Assorted Sizes & Colors Wedding Books Favor Maker Submersible Lights
CALL: 713-869-8321 OR “281-45-PARTY” 2830 Hicks Street Off Studemont, 2 blocks south of I-10
HOUSTON, TX 77007
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Nadine Moon has developed a reputation throughout Texas for her beautiful and creative custom designed cakes. Called a “Confectionary Artist ” by her clients, she uses her artistic abilities to create beautiful cakes which will have your guests raving, “Who Made the Cake!” A seven-tier cake covered with 2,500 handmade sugar roses and white-chocolate fondant..
As seen in People Weddings magazine.
ure nfections feat co ic st ti ar ed e two. esign bination of th Our custom d m co a r o t, fondan being rich, buttercream, e known for ar s n ig es d ors to Our elaborate variety of flav a h it w s, u io ic moist and del . m o choose fr
Weddings Birthdays • Showers • Special Events
Specialties include realistic sugar flowers, stacked presents with sugar bows, detailed hand-painted designs, as well as unique carved 3-dimensional cakes. Highlights of Nadine’s career include meeting Martha Stewart and appearing on the Martha show, designing a special Texas themed cake for Matthew McConnaughey, as well as creating a birthday cake for Sir Elton John. 1811 South Shepherd • Houston, Tx. 77019, 713-528-4719, www.whomadethecake.com- 37 -
is Treated Like a Celebrity
photo by: nhan photography
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Who Made The Cake! • 713.528.4719 • WhoMadeTheCake.com
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Preserve Your Memories
For the modern bride and groom, Artifact Uprising’s wedding offers spans from save-the-date and invitations, to photo albums, framed prints and guestbooks. Artifact Uprising uses only premium quality papers, responsibly sourced materials and elevated design. The wedding guest book allows for the display of your favorite photos along with space for handwritten notes. Get started with as few as 10 photos and let your guests fill in the rest. www.artifactuprising.com/wedding-guest-book
Bridal meets boudoir with the launch of Naked Princess’first-ever Bridal collection. Making its debut in May, Naked Princess Bridal features embroidered short silk kimonos, garters and panties, giving the bride-to-be her something new, as well as photo-op-friendly matching looks for the rest of her party.
MAKEUP BY SIMPLE BEAUTY ARTISTRY
Planning Made Simple PHOTO BY ANA&IVAN PHOTOGRAPHY
You’ve been planning your wedding since you were 16, and now it’s finally happening. You want everything to be perfect, but you’re already feeling overwhelmed. Lucky for you, Blue Sky Personalized has the must-have wedding planning accessory that will solve all your problems. The To-Do Notebook is the perfect tool for brides-to-be who need a place to keep track of fittings, venue visits and weddingrelated appointments. Choose your favorite cover design and personalize it with your name, new monogram… whatever you want! www.bluesky.com
Keep your skin looking healthy for years to come. Head to your local Kiehl’s store and have their trained experts create a customized facial concentrate just for you. Appointments consist of one-on-one consultations to gauge your skin’s hydration level. Then, an Olive Oil derivative is blended with a few other ingredients to create your specialized skincare serum. www.kiehls.com
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Capture the essence of Havana for your honeymoon or wedding night. Twelve long lasting colors, inspired by Spanish colonial architecture, are available in the Havana Nights eye shadow palette by Cargo. Colors can be worn alone or together. www.CargoCosmetics.com
Pick a color, any color The Bridal Bliss nail & lip product line offers an array of shades meticulously chosen by color specialists, giving you an amazing assortment of colors. From “something blue” to the most delicate shimmer, there is truly a color for every blushing bride. www.zoya.com
Bring your wedding invitation to life with Lovepop. These customizable wedding invitations are perfect for the couple who doesn’t settle for ordinary, the invitations are truly one-of-a-kind paper magic. Whether you’re getting married on the beach or if you’re tying the knot with all 5 of your dogs by your side, Lovepop can help illustrate that in a beautiful, memorable way, making the invitations keepsake worthy. www.lovepopcards.com
Give the special men in your party something they will actually use and love! This beautifully engraved Maps Pocket Flask holds six fluid ounces and makes the perfect personalized gift for your groomsmen! UncommonGreen’s Maps Flask is currently available in two stunning maps styles, state maps and topographic maps.
Rosé all the way
New ‘Love Unconventional’ designs are available in a gift box from Moët. The box includes a bottle of Moët Imperial Rosé, in a full bottle, and in a Moët Mini (180ml), all dressed in the new design, to celebrate love. www.moet.com
We love subscription boxes!
For the guys: the Robb Report - the uberluxury things-to-have magazine has gone 3D with the Robb Vices box. The boxes are surprises each month, all curated around a story and meant to stoke and satisfy curiosity about the good life. The contents are worth $500-$800 and feature incredible things like technologically-wild writing instruments designed by Ferrari’s Pininfarina, hand made Italian Finlay & Co sun spectacles, luxe Euro-styled Bluetooth speakers or rare elixirs like the first creme de cassis made in 1874 from the house of Gabriel Boudier. Memberships must be applied for and are offered either month-to-month or for 3, 6 or 12 month periods. We can’t tell you what the products are, it’s a surprise each month.
Be Our Guest
You’re bound to host out-of-town guests either for bachelorette parties or showers. Make them feel at home with an assortment of necessary minis like mints, Advil, and lotion. Keep them connected by posting your Wifi password. I found this set up on a recent trip to McAllen – thanks Alma & Robert.
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These cute candy “Scripts” are great favors to give to your wedding guests. Customize the RX and warning labels on Etsy with your names and wedding date. Fill the bottles with your choice of candy and fill the prescription for lasting happiness - or at least a sugar high.
Alisha Crossley Photography
The Best Medicine
Etsy Shop: MuscadineMoon
This creative guestbook alternative is a beautiful option for Christian ceremonies. Have your guests sign their name or leave words of faith, hope or guidance next to a meaningful bible verse to be read later. It’s also a lovely keepsake to display in your home.
Etsy Shop RusticSugarCreekCo
Nicole Nared-Washington of Brown Sugar Food Blog
Looking for something unique to serve in the Texas heat? Break out these fruity spritzer pops during your wedding cocktail hour for a fun and refreshing treat. Pour Champagne or Prosecco over your choice of fresh fruit, add some lemon/lime and say “Cheers”!
The sacred moment when a couple says “I Do” is truly special and deserves to be “devicefree”. Consider having guests disconnect from their devices for the ceremony then encourage them all to share the special moments just after the vows or ask them simply to wait to “plug-in” at the reception.
Spread S’more Love
Remember roasting marshmallows and singing campfire songs? Bring those sticky, sweet childhood memories back on your wedding day. Take your s’mores bar to the next level with a variety of chocolates and toppings galore! Try coconut, caramel, peanut butter; whatever you like. This classic crowd-pleaser is sure to make this day s’more memorable!
My favorite facial cleanser is Kiss My Face Olive Oil soap. This vegan cleanser is loaded with nourishing antioxidants and deep moisturizing power. Add this soap to your daily regimen for younger, healthy-looking skin. Try the scented soaps with aloe, chamomile or lavender.
The Ultimate Flower Girl
Ashley Elizabeth Photography
Make it Better with a Kiss
Mark Lopez from Kitsch Event Styling
Ice Ice Bubbly!
This is the cutest thing ever! What better way to honor your grandma(s) than to ask her to carry out the petal tossing duties? She was there when you were born so it only makes sense for her to play this special role on your wedding day. No doubt, this will make your guests cry.
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Stephanie Rogers Photography
Having a plan for your formal wedding photos is essential, but be sure to squeeze in few unplanned, candid shots of you and your bridesmaids having fun! Chances are you’ll look back and wish you took more candid shots; it’s these photos full of fun and friendship that will truly remind you of the great time you and your girls had that day.
Photography by Jade Lewis
This candid shot gives us a peek at the unmistakable joy of a newlywed couple who have just cut their beautiful cake. For a rich, timeless look, choose black and white to capture the true emotion of some of your more intimate wedding photos.
Interactive Wedding Games Outdoor games are a playful and memorable way to ensure your wedding guests are having a great time at the reception. Exhilarating games such as bean bag toss, horseshoes, or croquet will get your guests mingling and keep them entertained throughout the night.
Caroline + Ben
Brandie’s Splash of Color
Christina Carroll Photography
Light of My World
Beautiful, colorful flowers aren’t just for the wedding anymore. Don’t miss the opportunity to beautify your reception site with flowers matching your wedding color scheme. Complement your chosen venue’s décor by adding fresh flowers to your table centerpieces to provide that extra pop of color.
For nighttime weddings, consider this brilliant idea, supply guests with sparklers to celebrate the couple’s exit instead of the traditional rice, bubbles or flower petals. These shimmering wands of sparks and light are sure to capture the spirit of the occasion and make for dazzling photos.
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This 32” round locket necklace starburst is a great gift. Select the note inside. Shown here: “You will always be my forever.” www.spartina449.com
Colby Davis, a mother-daughter-owned, hand-made jewelry company based in Boston, has launched a Celtic Knot Collection. Celtic Knot pieces are perfect for a variety of gifts: for the bride, bridesmaids and mother of the bride. There is even a special, symbolic “Tree of Life” design that’s a perfect engagement gift. Shown here: Tree of Life. Engraved on reverse: “Where life begins and love never ends.” www.colbydavisofboston.com
Go Glam! These gems and gifts will steal the show.
Generous Gifting – A Texas Tradition
The ancient Greeks knew a little something about love – and most importantly they believed there wasn’t just one type of love. Whether it’s for your bridesmaids, your sister or mom, James Avery creates pieces that express all types of love to help everyone celebrate your big day. Shown here Elisa Earrings in Peridot. www.jamesavery.com
This14k yellow gold “tough luxe” jewelry specializes in building your perfect layered look. Designed by fashion industry veteran, Alyssa Mishcon, the collection is offered individually and in sets. The Pebble Band, references the natural abstract imperfections of stone crafted in high polish 14k gold. www.two-of-most.com www.two-of-most.com
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What if your something blue was something you could wear each day? We found this 3.40 carat Burma no-heat sapphire diamond ring by Dorfman.
Diamonds Are Forever
Diamond Nexus engagement rings range in styles from timeless three-stone engagement rings to glamorous art deco inspired dazzlers. Shown here: Lyonette radiant cut. www.diamondnexus.com
Art Deco Inspired Engagement Rings
Look like a million dollars without breaking the bank! Eco & ethical friendly jewelry company Diamond Nexus has stunning engagement rings for under $1000, that look like a million bucks even though they don't cost it. Shown here: Alice Rose Gold. www.diamondnexus.com
Step Out in Style
The mother-daughter duo at StevieWren revitalizes fine jewelry as a staple in glam & lifestyle couture. Inspired by the duoâ€™s worldwide excursions of many different cultures, the StevieWren collection is characterized as one-of-a-kind with its use of rare colored diamonds, unique pendants, gold assortments, and other precious stones. Each handpicked jewel is sustainable and authentic, creating a minimalist style perfect for accentuating any woman who wears it. www.steviewren.com
Add a little Magic
Be one with nature and give your style and your soul a recharge - with Krystle Knight Jewelleryâ€™s Sun Showers.Inspired by the simple, yet whole and natural energy of the sun, the collectionâ€™s intricate jewels invite you to heal, soothe and recharge. Shown here: Magical Quartz Hoops. www.krystleknightjewellery.com
Spence Diamonds is the only diamond retailer to offer both artisan created diamonds and mined diamonds. Artisan-created diamonds are actual diamonds that are indistinguishable from a mined diamond, both aesthetically and chemically, because the technology used to create them replicates how diamonds are formed in the earth. Artisancreated diamonds are at least 25 percent bigger than a similarly priced, mined diamond, providing stunning pieces for any budget. Shown here: Multi-stone solitaire engagement ring. www.spencediamonds.com
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Lashes on demand
Eyelashr, the new app deemed as the “Uber for Eyelashes” offers on-demand eyelash extension services for customers in the greater Houston area. With the Eyelashr app, brides can conveniently schedule a skilled lash stylist to travel to their home, office or hotel for spa-quality eyelash extensions.
Using the app, customers can book a 5-star rated stylist ondemand in a couple of minutes and a lash stylist will arrive to their location in as little as 45 minutes. Customers may also browse through the lash stylist database and view stylist bios, photos and reviews. To assure a valuable experience, all Eyelashr technicians are licensed, insured, and background checked. At the scheduled appointment time, a lash stylist arrives with all the equipment and supplies needed to design or refill a customer’s eyelashes – including a portable massage table. www.eyelashr.com
Luxury Lash to Lash
The fabulous team at Simple Beauty Artistry extends their product line to offer Siberian mink 3D lashes. “We created Lash to Lash because traditional strip lashes don’t provide enough volume. Often we would stack lashes to create a three dimensional look,” says Mayra Malik.
“I wanted something to fit every bride and that can be used over and over again,” she says. “It took a while, but we got it just the way we want it.” www.SimpleBeautyArtistry.com
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Ivan Garcia Photography
There are ten different styles to choose from, from a very natural look to a very dramatic look, suitable to fit every eye shape.
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ERICA ROSE CHARLES SANDERS
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December 3, 2017
Photography by Debbie Porter and Quy
Local-girl-turned-reality-star, Erica Rose, gained notoriety while vying for the heart of Prince Lorenzo Borgheseon Season 9 of ABC’s The Bachelor.
As fans of the show may recall, she was known for being the center of attention and wouldn’t be caught dead without a tiara. Although she didn’t win the final rose, her appearance on the show yielded life-long friends, many of whom attended her December wedding to Charles Sanders. “We started on a journey to find love 11 years ago and will always have a special bond,” Erica says of her Bachelor Nation alumni. The Bachelor himself, Prince Lorenzo, bachelor/bachelorette match Tara and Jon Presser and former contestants Vienna Girardi, Melissa Schreiber, Ashlee Frazier Williams, Renee Simlak, Cory Shivar and Jeannette Pawula all attended the nuptials.
The story of Erica and Charles starts at Memorial High School when they met at Erica’s junior prom. Charles attended as her best friend’s date! After graduation, they each moved away, Charles to Miami and Erica to LA. Seventeen years passed, but when Erica moved back to Houston fate reunited them when Charles attended a Kentucky Derby charity event hosted by Erica’s parents, Dr. Franklin and Cindi Rose. Charles’ proposal to Erica was a private affair, just the two of them. Later, Charles
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made it official and even more meaningful by proposing to Erica’s daughter, Holland, at her first birthday party at the Houston Zoo. That same day, they announced their engagement to friends.
The wedding was an elaborate day-long celebration featuring a motif based on Charles and Erica’s super-couple nickname “Cherica.” Décor was embellished with cherry blossoms and roses at every turn. As guests entered the temple Congregation EmanuEl in Houston they were greeted with rosé champagne and Instagram-worthy photo ops against a lavish floral wall of hundreds of white roses, emblazoned with the “Cherica” logo in roses of pink and red, created by Lexis Florist. Bridesmaids all wore various shades of red, complementing the cerise theme.
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At the altar, the couple was joined by the bride’s
one year-old daughter and they recited their own vows, demonstrating their commitment. No eye was dry when Charles said, “There is still a part of me that can’t believe I get to marry you.”
Two receptions followed. At the temple, guests noshed on a full buffet dinner with passed foods, sushi boats, kosher food stations, and wedding cake. An old-fashioned typewriter was on-hand and a very talented poet created personalized take aways for each guest.
You do not need a year to plan a wedding! We did it all in two and a half months. And we still had a joint bachelorette party, couples shower, bridal shower and lingerie shower. We loved doing it exactly how we did. It was a bit of a whirlwind but it was awesome!
Next, the party moved downtown to the Majestic Metro, a converted art deco style movie house in the heart of Houston. Windows that once featured movie posters of Hollywood royalty now featured pictures of the bride, her beau and family. While
the DJ rocked non-stop, guests enjoyed each other’s caricatures, wedding poems, and step and repeat photos. The night was finished with an Astros themed groom’s cake.
Charles’ mother gifted the couple with the ultimate tropical honeymoon, a stay at the Belize Ocean Club Adventure Resort where they hiked the Mayan ruins.“I was scared because it was really high and steep” admits Erica “but I was proud to make it all the way to the top!” The couple resides in Houston, TX. – Laurette M. Veres
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Magic in Mexico
Stacy, a brand consultant, met attorney Luis Gomar while white water rafting on the Colorado River and they were swept away by love!
Luis and Stacy both enjoy traveling to Mexico and on one trip Luis made a move that made Mexico a permanent part of their love story.
They were staying in Punta Mita, reveling in a breathtaking ocean sunset, when he proposed. Mexico has become such a special place for the couple that they wanted to share it with their friends, so they decided it was the perfect place to hold the ceremony.
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November 5, 2017
STACY BETH SOEFER LUIS FERNANDO GOMAR
The rehearsal dinner was such an elaborate affair it could’ve been their wedding reception. With the ocean waves setting the stage, friends and family enjoyed a traditional Mexican beach barbecue. The next day, speculation on the wedding location took top billing as guests were mysteriously bussed to a secret location: the secluded Martoca Beach Garden, located between Punta Mita and Nuevo Vallarta.
The band really makes the party, be sure to find a band or DJ that fits your personality and can keep the party going all night! Also, don’t be afraid to be very specific with your song selections; bands will often learn new songs at a bride’s request.
Nestled into the hillside, this picturesque Spanish hacienda transported guests back in time.
“We love Mexico and we got engaged at the nearby St. Regis, Punta Mita; the Martoca was the perfect blend of rustic beach chic we were looking for,” says Stacy.
They celebrated with a traditional Jewish ceremony staged on the beach just as dusk fell over the ocean at eventide. The bride wore an elegant design from BHLDN, “re-imagined” by
Houston designer, Chloe Dao. As soon as the appetizers were dished out and everyone had their drinks, the live band hit the stage and stole the show. “My favorite part of the party was our crystal LED dance floor—it really elevated the décor and party vibe,” says the bride. Welllit party goers danced all night. In addition to the videographer, an aerial drone captured the magic of the beautiful ceremony and fun-filled reception. This high-flying footage added dimension and perspective to create a one-of-a-kind wedding video. And cake? Who needs cake when a local street vendor will make churros on-site? The following day, the fun continued as guests were treated to a farewell champagne brunch. Stacy and Luis turned their honeymoon trip into a jaunt between London, the Canary Islands and Paris. — LMV
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NICOLE SHOSTAK KAYVON SABOURIAN
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August 30, 2014
Caroline & Ben of Caroline Studios
A Walk to Remember
Nicole, a textile artist, and Kayvon, an attorney, met their junior year at Cornell in 2004. They dated for a semester, but then didn’t see each other for 7 years and lost touch. Kayvon eventually reached out via Facebook to reconnect when he was visiting a friend in Boston, which was where Nicole was living at the time. She agreed to meet up with him and their chemistry quickly became undeniable. The two were relaxing on a trip on the north shore of Kauai where they were staying with a friend. Kayvon asked Nicole if she wanted to go for a walk at sunrise one morning. Little did she know, it would be life-changing! Once they were in front of the mountain
on Tunnel’s Beach, Kayvon popped the big question. Without a moment of hesitation, Nicole said “YES!”
Nicole and Kayvon tied the knot at Laguna Gloria in Austin, Texas. They were living in Austin at the time and they wanted a venue that would show off the city that they loved so dearly. Nicole really wanted to get married outside by the water and Laguna Gloria in Austin offered the perfect combination of open air and sophistication that they were looking for in their ideal venue. Nicole wore
a Cymbaline Gaia dress with beautiful lace and a high neck. They opted for Cool Haus Ice Cream Sandwiches in lieu of a cake. Their Persian wedding ceremony and reception was one of a kind and it couldn’t have been more perfect for them. The newlyweds then flew off for their honeymoon to Bahia, Brazil. — Kyley Kornegay
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Out of this world love
Krystal, a venue manager at Shirley Acres Weddings & Events and lead blogger at 30 Something Newlyweds, met James, who works in business technology at Sysco Foods, when they were set up by a mutual friend.
KRYSTAL LYNN PEAY JAMES ROBERT WOODWARD
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August 26, 2017
Camryn Clair Photography
The proposal was a family affair. James invited Krystalâ€™s parents to come visit from Goshen, Indiana and popped the question while the four of them were at dinner.
On their first date they discovered they both had grandparents and other loved ones living in Southern California. When the opportunity to book a private estate in San Clemente, California came up, it was the natural choice. Even James’ 96 year-old grand mother was able to attend the ceremony.In fact, the couple had family and friends from far and wide in attendance.
The theme of their wedding was “Woodward Fest” and the bright color-scheme and décor was anything but ordinary. Colorful poppies and roses of every color were strewn everywhere, bringing their casual outdoor setting to life.
rings but when it came time for the ring exchange he was handed an empty ring box. Just then, the music changed and to everyone’s delight, a “bow-tied” R2D2 rolled out presenting the ring perched atop a ring pillow!
Krystal knew she didn’t want a traditional wedding gown. She tasked Houston designer, Natalie Harris of Renegade Bridal, with creating a custom, poppyembroidered wedding gown with a little extra detail. Look closely Star Wars fans, you’ll
The ceremony took a unique twist when Krystal surprised James by arranging for beloved Star Wars character, R2D2 to make a guest appearance. James thought the officiant had the
note a subtle nod to Princess Leia’s cape.
To acknowledge their guests who traveled from “a galaxy far, far away,” the couple created a multi-directional signpost showing all the states their guests hailed from and the miles they traveled.
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“We made all of the vinyl stickers on my Cricut machine and then assembled the sign when we arrived in California. It was fun to see all the guests taking photos with it and pointing to where they had traveled from,” says Krystal.
Another non-traditional idea they incorporated was the coloring book guestbook. Instead of signing in, guests were asked to choose stick-figures to color to represent themselves. And to keep their guests cool, boozy margarita-flavored popsicles and non- alcoholic popsicles were served. The couple had planned an exciting honeymoon to Queenstown & Auckland, New Zealand but since their big day was the same day Hurricane Harvey hit Houston, they decided to head back to H-town to offer their help to the citywide clean-up efforts.
Stay true to yourselves. It was important to us to have a wedding that reflected our personalities- which meant a colorful-casual affair. Pick a photographer whose personality makes you and your fiancé feel comfortable. The best photos come when you are able to act natural and show affection without reservation. Hire a fabulous DJ. Our DJ, Chris Berry with Sound Wave Productions made our reception a night to remember. He flawlessly transitioned from the oldies we love to Top 40 hits. He also asked questions
beforehand- like “What is the average age of your wedding guest?” That really helped him know and understand our crowd. Pick your priorities and spend your budget accordingly. Photography was important to us- so we established our budget based on how much we had after our photography fees. Since photography was important to us, we also chose to allocate time before our ceremony for a first look at mission San Juan Capistrano.
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Rachel, an attorney, and Joshua, an engineer, briefly met in their undergraduate years at The University of Texas in Austin. Fate would bring them back together several years later while Joshua was in Houston for an internship and the rest was history!
It was the day before Rachel and Joshuaâ€™s birthday (they share the same birthday) and Josh wanted to take Rachel somewhere as an early birthday gift. He drove her to Buffalo Bayou Park and handed her a gift bag on the bridge. She opened the bag to
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RACHEL GOUNDER JOSHUA JAGNANAN
May 7th, 2016
“Don’t tell us ‘don’t sweat the small stuff ’ (the brides know this). No matter what, get a good photographer. The pictures are what [will] last longer than the actual day and are a great way to reminisce. So splurge there.”
C H R I S W P H OTO. C O M find a ring inside! Josh got down on one knee and asked her to spend her life with him. She, of course, said “yes!” Josh took her to meet her family for dinner at América’s, where she was surprised by her brother, who had flown in all the way from Utah to surprise her. The couple tied the knot at the Bell Tower on 34th in Houston, Texas. Rachel wore a fabulous gown from Alysse’s
Bridal that is based in Provo, Utah. Their wedding was a beautiful blend of their respective traditions— Rachel’s Indian and Western upbringing with Josh’s Trinidadian.
Rachel and Josh honeymooned in multiple locations including: Paris, Barcelona, Rome, Santorini, Athens, and Frankfurt. All making for an incredible adventure as newlyweds! - Stephanie DiCiro
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MALLORY CLARE SNELL RAYMOND MARCUS LIMON
June 25, 2016
Happily Ever After Raymond met Mallory at her sister’s wedding where, coincidentally, her sister was marrying Raymond’s brother. One day, during a walk around Texas A&M, Raymond asked Mallory to marry him right under the Century Tree. According to A&M tradition: “If a marriage proposal takes place under the tree, the marriage will last forever.” On June 25th, 2016, Mallory and Raymond were married at the Chateau Cocomar in Houston, Texas. She wore a
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Jacqueline Jacqueline Gutierrez Gutierrez
Make sure that you stay organized and on top of things so that you don’t get overwhelmed. Remember that it’s important to make decisions and plan together. It’s not all about what you want and it’s not all about what he wants for the big day either. Weddings are a great time to practice compromise. It’s essential in a marriage to let go of your selfishness and think about what will make each other happy.
strapless, lace beaded gown by M2 Bridal. Mallory, being from England, received horseshoes as part of tradition on the special day. The four-tier cake with layers of summer roses was made by Bavarian Cakery. The reception ended with guests leading the couple out with sparklers.
Mallory and Raymond spent their honeymoon in the Valentin Imperial Maya Resort in Cancun. - Marian Jacob
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LYDIA PLAYER RONALD BLAIR JR.
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July 7, 2017
Lydia and Ronald connected a couple of years ago through a popular online dating site. By coincidence, they had both been divorced for four years and had decided to sign up for a onemonth trial membership at the same time. After only a few emails, they quickly discovered they already knew each other! As it turns out, Lydia had two sons that attended the same school as Ronald’s sons. Not only did they live in the same neighborhood, they had even crossed paths once or twice while co-chaperoning Boy Scout camp-outs together with their kids. It was just by their vows during a traditional handfasting ceremony and a spectacular backdrop for some of the most enviable wedding photos we’ve seen!
Lydia was virtually glowing in her beautiful wedding gown, while Ronald wore a traditional Scottish kilt. Ronald had the bridal bouquet and flower arrangements of red roses, peonies, delphinium and green bells of Ireland, expertly coordinated to compliment the Blair tartan of his kilt. St. Andrews locals, EBM Photography captured the joy and striking colors of the scenery on Lydia and Ronald’s big day. sheer chance that they had never officially met until the Internet matched them up. Lydia and Ronald soon found they had yet another thing in common, they both love to golf. In fact, Ronald planned his proposal to take place on
the “Most Beautiful Course in Texas,” the award-winning, Black Jack’s Crossing, nestled in the scenic hills of Lajitas, Texas along the Rio Grande. Ronald knew this was the ideal place for him to pop the big question. In keeping with their green
theme, Lydia and Ronald literally “tied the knot” in the city known as the home of golf, St. Andrews, Scotland. The world’s oldest golf course paired with the historic charm of the Old Course Hotel created an idyllic setting to exchange
Here are a few of those gorgeous shots showing the couple’s perfect stroll on the sandy beach where Ronald literally swept Lydia off of her feet, as well as the lush green of the open golf course where the pair said, “I Do.” — Kayla Darensbourg
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Attend America’s Largest Bridal Show! January 5-6 , 2019 George R Brown • Houston
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photo: Ivan Garcia Studio • gown: Ventura’s Bridal Fashions • hair and makeup: Simple Beauty Artistry
Meeting on the first day of their high school Chemistry class, Brittany Taylor and Mike Peterman spent that year getting “accidentally” paired up together and taking all chances to spend time together. Mike was Brittany’s first real crush, but, on that first day of Chemistry, little did she know that she would end up marrying him just a few years later.
BRITTANY TAYLOR MIKE PETERMAN October 22, 2016
Alexander Cross Photography
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Mike proposed at the Spindletop restaurant in Houston, TX after watching the city glow beneath them as they enjoyed a romantic dinner together. Mike got down on one knee and told Brittany that he had chosen her from the first moment he saw her, and he had already decided he would love her for the rest of his life. He asked her to marry him as tears flew from her eyes. Later, she found out her parents had their first date at The Spindletop, which made it even more special.
1. Wedding planning is
stressful, but it is imperative to stay true to what you both want on your big day. Focus on what is important, and don’t let anyone else’s opinion sway you at the end of the day.
2. Also, take a few minutes for yourselves. Don’t let the night go by without really taking in the moment. It all happens so fast, so don’t forget to take a second to kiss underneath the stars.
Their wedding took place in Dripping Springs, Texas. Mike and Brittany both love the Hill Country, so it was an easy decision! Their florist used a combination of lush greenery, whimsical floral accents, mixed mercury gold candles, and large candelabras as the table runners to make for a beautiful and romantic setting. They also provided biodegradable confetti for the guests to throw after they said, “I Do” and walked back
down the aisle. It was a really fun twist that made for beautiful pictures.
It was important to them for Mike to stand out, so he wore a dark gray tux, and the groomsmen wore navy blue, in coordination with the bridesmaids. Additionally, they both had Lucchese boots custom made in lieu of more traditional shoes. Brittany’s gown was from Kleinfeld Bridal, and their cake was a four-tiered devil’s food cake with mocha ganache and orange zest buttercream icing. After the wedding, they jetted off for their honeymoon in London, Paris and Geneva. — Cassidy Irish
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YASMINE VENIESE ESTES CRAIG DeWAYNE TEAGUE
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May 31, 2015
Dancing Down the Aisle
The day of your wedding will be a complete and total whirlwind of emotions, feelings, and people. So take a deep breath. Give yourself a chance to really enjoy and live in every single moment. The only thing that will make the day perfect is that you are married at the end of it.
Houston Dynamo Cheerleader and Customer Account Representative, Yasmine, and Insurance Adjuster, Craig, met at a party. The day before Yasmine’s 30th birthday, Craig called Yasmine on his way home from work and surprised her by telling her to get dressed and pack an overnight bag. After a reminiscent dinner and drinks at the restaurant where they had their first date, they walked back to their hotel in downtown Houston where Craig proposed. Yasmine wore a stunning keyhole back gown by Allure bridal for their wedding at The Parador— a historic wedding venue in Houston. Tammy Allen Premier Wedding Cakes designed their cake, which matched their wedding colors – champagne with pastel accents of lavender, peach, mint, and rose.
C H R I S W P H OTO. C O M
The newlyweds then headed off to Southern France for their honeymoon. They toured Europe and visited Béziers & Portiragnes and Barcelona. — Kyley Kornegay
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CHRISTINA NEMRY JIMMY ZAID
November 13, 2016
Then, Now and Forever
Their love story began while they were both attending the University of Houston, when one of Christina’s friends introduced her to Jimmy. After long nights of fun study sessions, library dates, and relaxing weekends together, they got to know each other and they both soon realized they had found their soulmate. The bride’s family has a tradition of spending New Year’s in a different city each year. Christina rang in 2017 with her family in Horseshoe Bay, Texas. While Christina
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was away, Jimmy texted often, asking when she would be home. Thinking nothing of it, Christina naturally accepted when Jimmy nonchalantly asked her to dinner the day she returned. She was faintly curious when he mentioned creating a tradition of their own. Even though Jimmy was skillfully dropping hints and they had already been ring shopping, Christina recalled, she still did not have a clue that he planned
Photography by Jason Snow
With such big families on both sides, space was a key factor in planning the reception as well. The elegant and spacious ballrooms at the Marriot Sugarland Town Square accommodated their guest list beautifully.
I think the thing I regret the most throughout the wedding planning process is not enjoying the time I had left with my family. As a bride, your weekends, and even weekdays, are consumed by appointments and necessary errands. I spent most of the time I had left at my parent’s house worried about the wedding and scheduling multiple appointments to ensure things turned out the way I had pictured them instead of just relaxing and trusting in the process. If you’re a perfectionist like me, try and accept the fact that things just won’t turn out exactly the way you envisioned it and mistakes on the day of the wedding may happen. They did for me and that’s okay, no one noticed! Just remain calm and enjoy your night because it flies by so fast! Also, try and enjoy every second you have with your family because when you’re gone, you’ll crave for time back, as I do now.
on proposing. That Sunday, Jimmy treated Christina to dinner at Brenner’s on the Bayou. After dinner, Jimmy led her outside toward a beautifully lit gazebo. The path was illuminated by candles and covered in rose petals. Finally, it clicked in her head! Christina asked, “Wait, are you proposing?” “You’ll see” Jimmy quietly responded. To Christina’s surprise, members of both their families appeared as if from nowhere, ready to snap pictures. Christina knew
this was the moment she had been waiting for when Jimmy, on bended knee, romantically asked her to spend forever with him!
When it was time to pick the church, there was no question. St. George Greek Orthodox Church was Jimmy’s family church and Christina had been baptized there. This location could seat both their families and it held such rich memories for them both; it was the ideal place for them to tie the knot.
At the ceremony, Christina graced the aisle in a lovely, ivory-lace, fit-and-flare gown from Essense of Australia , featuring sparkling Diamante beading. She added a beaded ribbon sash to the gown for an extra dose of dazzle! Paying homage to their roots, they hired a traditional Arabic “Zaffe” dance group to kick off the reception. Dressed in the customary attire, the dancers escorted the newlyweds into their reception and performed the traditional wedding ceremonial dances around the couple while playing drums and bagpipes and wielding swords! Edible Designs by Jessie created an incredible, 6-tier wedding cake patterned after Christina’s own ideas for her dream cake when she was just a young girl. Gold and ivory Victorian-like accents and crystal beading gave the cake a royal theme that was beautifully incorporated throughout. Christina and Jimmy escaped on a fabulous honeymoon in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic to relax and unwind after the exciting festivities! — Stephanie DiCiro
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ALYSSA WEATHERS MATT MURPHY
June 17, 2017
After dating for four years, originally being set up by Alyssa’s brother, Alyssa and Matt took a trip to South Beach, Miami. On their last full day there, the groom hired a mariachi band to serenade their beach site as he proposed. The band played ‘Besame’ as the newly engaged couple danced together under the sunset. It was a truly magical proposal. Matt and Alyssa have lived together in Midtown, OKC for the past four years. They married at First Unitarian Church, and
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held the reception at the Park House in Downtown. It was very important to them that their wedding reflected who they are and their interests. Matt loves racecars and gets to pursue his hobby throughout the year in Houston, Dallas and Austin. Most of his groomsmen were racing teammates or fellow Rotarians, so his groom’s cake
405 Brides Photography
1. Plan your budget early!
Don’t procrastinate. You want to focus on enjoying your big day without big invoices looming over your head.
2. Everyone said to take it all in on the big day, and I will echo that: Stay by yourself the night before, take a bath, exfoliate, moisturize, relax, soak it all in. Pay attention to everything happening around you and enjoy this time. It goes by so quickly!
3. If you’re planning on
seeing an aesthetician for a facial, do it a week out from the big day so your skin has time to purge. Your skin will thank you.
4. Though we had hoped was shaped like a Formula 1 Pirelli Racing tire, and his racing buddies had custom cufflinks made with their team logo.
Incorporating their love of art with the tropical themes from their trip to Miami, the couple decorated the venues with foliage based centerpieces and tropical accessories. Their cake, made by a local bakery HafaAdai Delights,
even displayed designs of tropical flowers and fish scales, and was coconut flavored. Alyssa’s Mori Lee dress, a mermaid silhouette, was made with lace and a touch of peach underneath the skirt. Their honeymoon was to the Mexican Isla Mujeres, continuing the tropical theme from beginning to end. - Cassidy Irish
to go on an extravagant honeymoon, it just wasn’t in our budget. Still, we learned that there are so many affordable options out there and all that really matters is your time together and getting a good rest. You don’t realize how much stress you’re under until it’s all over and your body just wants to sleep for a few days. Unwind and relax.
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Destination weddings, honeymoons, bachelorette parties and more converge in Jamaica for a good time, mon!
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Brides love Jamaica. Great ceremony locations, excellent resorts with excellent and service and beautiful weather are just four hours away.
maica by Laurette
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In Grand Style The Jewel Grande Montego Bay Resort & Spa is the newest luxury property in Montego Bay, Jamaica. Each of the 229 units is a tworoom suite, perfect for families and bridal parties when some want to sleep and others want to socialize. Inside the suites are refrigerators, microwaves and stovetops. Outdoors you’ll find a private beach, poolside bars, splash pad, kids club and spectacular views. Lush green golf courses, blue-ocean, tropical resort pool and white sugary beaches with yellow parasails floating in the distance are some of the things guests see. The boardwalk has two sundecks jetting out over the ocean, creating perfect bridal portrait locations. This resort has little “nooks” of various sizes to host weddings and receptions; one perfect for any group. We enjoy a reception on the West Gazebo Terrace. Nestled next to the pool and
appetizers, then soup and bread service. A surf and turf entrée is followed by fruity custard; just before wedding cake. just above the beach, the ocean waves create unbelievable ambiance; beautiful gold candles add romantic lighting. Black and white linens accented by pink, white and green floral arrangements complete the bridal vibe. The food is fantastic. White glove service begins with passed
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Golf is big in Jamaica. Highly White Witch and Cinnamon Hills courses are mere steps away from the property.
Standout Spa: Grande Spa at Jewel Grande Montego Bay Resort & Spa Open-air walkways and the fresh herb garden exude relaxation. Lemon grass, mint, and rosemary scents waft through the air. These ingredients are also in the drinks and treatments. Other amenities include a smoothie bar, co-ed steam and sauna, spin room, weight room and
THE BOARDWALK HAS TWO SUNDECKS JETTING OUT OVER THE OCEAN, CREATING PERFECT BRIDAL PORTRAIT LOCATIONS.
Game-Changing Accommodations Sandals Royal Caribbean
Texas Weddings Recommends: heated mineral pool. The reflexology room is built out of pink Himalayan salt stones and guests enjoy the mineral pool and outdoor pools pre and post relaxation options.
Golden Quartz Sand Treatment; like a day at the beach. Heated sand is spread over the MLX quartz table and covered with a light cloth. When you
lay down, the sand creates an anti-gravitational feeling. Himalayan sea salt stones are used to provide a relaxing massage. When itâ€™s over, your body tingles with delight.
Over-the-water bungalows on the French Polynesian islands are some of the most romantic accommodations in the world, but it takes a day or two to get there. Now Sandals Royal Caribbean provides a similar experience just four hours away. Ride the Royal Duffy, a private boat, from the resort lobby to the exclusive bungalow entrance and prepare to be wowed. Adorned with the highest quality furniture and
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accessories, and the view—oh the view—we understand why some couples choose to have breakfast, lunch and dinner delivered to their rooms. Snorkeling from their decks, making cappuccino, while enjoying the intimate infinity pools and unobstructed ocean views.
Half Moon In 1954, 17 families shared a love for Jamaica and developed Half Moon. Today, three of these original families run the property. Recently renovated,a view of the sea greets all who enter the open-air lobby. Pictures on the walls chronicle famous visitors including President George Bush and Jacqueline Kennedy.
The original 17 cottages are still available for rent. You might recognize cottage 10 from James Bond movie “Live and Let Die.” The equestrian center houses 27 rescue horses. If a bride wants to enter her wedding on a white horse, this is the property to do so! Wedding guests will be thrilled
with the “surf and turf ” activity, where you swim in the surf with your horse. The Royal Pavilion has a private beach, lawn, lily pond, bridge and a secluded party area – perfect for an after party. There are also 27 villas, perfect for smaller weddings. Most are beach front where bride and groom can literally walk outside their villa and exchange vows.
Fern Tree the Spa at Half Moon The spa is large enough to host an entire bridal party. Enjoy the tea of the day, brewed from the spa’s garden herbs, as you select organic ingredients for your facial. Raw honey repairs skin and grapefruit’s antioxidants
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ENJOY THE TEA OF THE DAY, BREWED FROM THE SPAâ€™S GARDEN HERBS, AS YOU SELECT ORGANIC INGREDIENTS FOR YOUR FACIAL
Flower Hill Flower Hill offers extra special accommodations for special guests. Beautiful villas with expansive views and private chefs are sure to please. Spa facilities, game room and plenty of semi-private dining or meeting areas, enhance the experience for extended families and groups of friends. It is also a perfect location for the best bachelorette party ever!!!
Raft help skin glow. Mix and match from a dozen ingredients the perfect facial remedy for you. The outdoor pool and waterfalls are huge. Massage rooms, overlooking the ocean, are
ESSENTIALS: www.jewelgrande.com www.sandals.com/main/royal/rj-home www.halfmoon.com www.flowerhilljamaica.com
quaint; small weddings could be held in them. The relaxation roomâ€™s sheer curtains can create total serenity or be pulled aside to allow the bridal party to party.
Martha Brae River has scenic sights and gentle waters. Bamboo River Rafting leads morning and afternoon floats. See local flora and fauna, birds and foliage as your guide gently rows you down the river.
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South Seas Island Resort, on the tip of Captiva Island in Florida’s Gulf Coast welcomes your wedding
Sea S h She Sells
“I’ve never met a couple who got married in Captiva that didn’t stay together.” New York Times’ best selling author, Randy Wayne White, who also happens to be a Sanibel Island local, seems to know the secret to a long lasting successful union. That’s just one of many reasons why t, on the tip of Captiva Island in Florida’s Gulf Coast, is a perfect place to set sail into a lifetime of blissful marriage. Warm balmy nights, some of the greatest shelling found in the US, 13 miles of untouched beaches, old fashioned trolleys and a small town feel make this welcoming resort seem like your home away from home. Jimmy Buffett knew it was special back in ‘78 when he wrote Cheeseburgers in Paradise at the nearby Cabbage Key. Imagine your guests arriving to your wedding in a romantic sea blue trolley. They’ll spend the evening mingling under palm
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trees, stargazing at your reception, enjoying a light ocean breeze while sipping champagne at elegant linen covered tables. South Seas has it covered when it comes to southern, upscale destination weddings. For the ceremony you have your choice of sandy or grassy oceanfront backdrops, the gorgeously manicured golf course with its waterfalls, or the historic King’s Crown. South Seas isn’t just a beautiful backdrop for a wedding, it provides a variety of activities for you and your guests to make your vacation memorable and your pictures worth posting! The beach area at South Seas provides paddle boarding, snorkeling, wave runners and kayaking! A tour of the island from the
hells “I’VE NEVER MET A COUPLE WHO GOT MARRIED IN CAPTIVA THAT DIDN’T STAY TOGETHER.” - Randy White
perspective of a wave runner will be the highlight of your trip. Sunny Island Adventures has you covered. Not only is it an adrenaline rush but you’ll experience the glistening waters
and wildlife from the ocean. You’ll ride through mangroves, watch the birds swoop in and fly next to you and see the pristine beaches from the ocean. It takes guests around North Captiva
Island, Cayo Costa and Useppa Island. Several of these places are only accessible by boat which makes them that more secluded. Golf carts are the main means of transportation and why wouldn’t
they be when the weather is warm, the breeze is inviting and everywhere you go is just a hop, skip and a jump! It’s easy to pack your days full of activities with easy transportation. For the guests who are energetic there is a tennis center as well as a gulf front, par 3 golf course with gorgeous views at every hole, onsite fishing and a 24-hour fitness center. Yoga is offered on the beach with Ambu Yoga. If kids are a part of your big celebration it’s important to know that Parents Magazine named South Seas a Top 10 Family Beach Resort. With offerings like Kids Camp at Sanibel Sea
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School, Camp Skullywags, Kids Night Out and Skully’s Family Interactive Center kids will be more than entertained! Accommodations at South Seas includes a variety of options. There are condos, cottages, waterfront homes as well as traditional hotel rooms. Although South Seas spreads out over 2.5 miles of white sand beach, this large resort feels like a small town.
SOUTH SEAS ISN’T JUST A BEAUTIFUL BACKDROP FOR A WEDDING, IT PROVIDES A VARIETY OF ACTIVITIES FOR YOU AND YOUR GUESTS TO MAKE YOUR VACATION MEMORABLE AND YOUR PICTURES WORTH POSTING!
If Sally was seriously selling seashells then South Seas is where she would be most successful. Try saying that five times! Seashell hunting will be a special experience during your trip. As South Seas has so cleverly coined it, it’s a “Shellabration”! The shells come in many shapes and forms and you’ll find yourself taking home buckets of them to remind you of your trip for years to come. No vacation to South Seas the day. Sipping wine on the beach with your special someone, while watching the sky spread into hues of pink, purple and orange, never gets old. You’ll surely be relaxed during your stay at South Seas, but if you want to really indulge and treat yourself like the royalty you are then book some services at the Kay Casperson Lifestyle Spa & Boutique located on the is complete without several evenings of watching their famous sunsets. Every evening you’ll see a kaleidoscope of colors that are worthy of being painted. It’s hard to imagine it could ever be outdone, and then the next evening there will be a different, yet equally breathtaking end to
property. They offer services for your entire wedding party to get them feeling and looking glamorous for the big event. In addition, spa wedding consultants can help you make a plan that works for your party and leaves them feeling pampered and stress free. South Seas has been sharing the beauty of Florida’s Gulf Coast with their guests for over forty years. Whether you’re planning a wedding, a honeymoon, or a trip with family you’ll come away from this resort village and wildlife sanctuary feeling refreshed and sun kissed with memories to last a lifetime.
FOR MORE INFORMATION, VISIT www.southseas.com
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Mukan Resort is a hidden gem located on the coastline of the Sian Ka’an’s Reserve, a biosphere and one of Mexico’s largest protected areas
Mukan Resort is the only luxury resort in the Sian Ka’an and their primary goal is to be a “self-sustaining” property that has the least amount of effect on the environment around it. Their tagline is “Like no other in the world” and no truer words have been spoken. The resort boasts energy generation through solar panels and a wind turbine, (generators are there for cloudy days), a natural source of water that is filtered through the highest purification system, a Chef ’s garden growing fresh
Mukan R Where sustainability and luxury unite
fruits, vegetables, and herbs for the delicious cuisine, and handmade furniture created by local artisans. Every element of Mukan’s purpose to maintain their eco-influence was successfully accomplished. Mukan is situated on the eastern coast of Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula and roughly 37 kilometers from the beach town of Tulum, Mexico. There are many options to access the private resort which include: boat, vehicle, or helicopter. That is one of the many details that the resort is more than happy to arrange at a variety of price points to fit your budget.
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We were transferred from Tulum to Mukan by boat through the calming waters of the biosphere. The Biosphere is filled with lush, vibrant jungles filled with animals such as; the jaguar, puma, ocelot, and Central American tapir. The various hues of blues from the lagoon and Caribbean Sea provide diverse marine life habitats, including, the West Indian manatee, four species of nesting turtles, dolphins, crocodiles, and hundreds of fish species. It is also home to many varieties of both resident and migratory birds that are almost as curious about us as we are about them. Upon arrival to the secluded resort via boat, welcoming staff present refreshments and greetings. As you walk through the pathway garden to the
Resort THEIR TAGLINE IS “LIKE NO OTHER IN THE WORLD” AND NO TRUER WORDS HAVE BEEN SPOKEN.
and materials are woven in all of the accommodations in Mukan Resort.
entrance of Mukan, iguanas skirted along side, as if they, too, are another welcome party. Walking into the resort is spectacular. Ornate, castle-like doors beckon you to enter into the main “house” that is the
resort. The exclusive property of Mukan consists of five luxury rooms that are located off the Main Villa, and four additional bungalows; three ocean bungalows and one premium bungalow with a private garden.
Each room is uniquely furnished with elements that promote sustainability and preservation of the authentic Mexican culture. Natural Mexican stone, indigenous wood etched with cultural details, native fabrics
There are many shared spaces in the resort for guests to engage with one another, if that’s what is desired, or if seclusion is your fancy, that can be arranged, as well. Mukan aims to provide its guests with whatever their heart’s desire. Mukan’s main villa offers a unique, quaint pool area on the main floor and a rooftop hot tub with breathtaking views of both the Caribbean Sea and the lagoon. The rooftop hot tub is the perfect place to end your evening by “star bathing” with a refreshing Mexican cocktail and good conversation. If poolside, is not your goal, the beach boasts the crystal blue Caribbean coastline with the resort offering complimentary
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water sports equipment, such as, kayaks, paddle boards, and snorkeling gear. Throughout the day, there are complimentary yoga and meditation classes to help you become one with your surroundings. When you are ready to venture off the resort, off road bikes are available for use to tour around the biosphere at your leisure. The resort can also schedule boat tours of the biosphere where you may encounter any number of the unique aquatic and avian life the biosphere has to offer. Our guides were very knowledgeable about the creatures in the lagoon and sea and were keen on showing us their world. It was reported that the biosphere has some of the best fishing spots in the world and on some tours, the guides catch the subsequent meal for the evening, like MahiMahi or lobster, to ensure the freshest food sources.
Although the Mukan is ecofriendly and prides itself on its sustainability elements, rest assured, the cuisine is heavenly. The chef fuses all of the authentic Mexican flavors to create divine creations, such as ceviche; Mahi, yellow fin tuna, shrimp, etc., “sopa de lima” (a soup made of
THE RESORT CAN ALSO SCHEDULE BOAT TOURS OF THE BIOSPHERE WHERE YOU MAY ENCOUNTER ANY NUMBER OF THE UNIQUE AQUATIC AND AVIAN LIFE THE BIOSPHERE HAS TO OFFER.
indigenous limes that are unique to the peninsula), authentic “tortilla soup”, flavorful street tacos of carne asada, just to name a few. While one would think, perhaps, the resort would be limited by its unique sustainable efforts with regards to ingredients, that is NOT the case with Mukan and its dining. The dining alone is worth the trip to Mukan. Each dish is carefully paired with a Mexican wine to
bring out the rich flavors of the authentic delicacies. Mukan offers an all inclusive or a la carte feature to its dining option, but the all inclusive option is highly recommended and encouraged. Mukan resort is the perfect locale for honeymooners, couples looking to reconnect, a girls’ getaway for authentic, meaningful conversations, or anybody ready to immerse themselves in relaxation and anonymity. Mukan is a place that will restore your soul and remind you to relish the beauty that is all around you because once you leave Mukan, you know you are back to reality.
FOR MORE INFORMATION, VISIT www.mukan.com
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When Texans leave our great state, we are looking for something different. Specifically,Texans crave a change in scenery and what could be more different than the majestic snowcapped mountains of Utah.
Whether you plan your wedding during ski season or prefer the warmer months, Utah abounds with truly awe-inspiring mountain views and worldclass lodging. Just outside of Salt Lake City, Utah, you’ll find the authentically western town of Ogden, home to the
Imagi Snowbasin Resort-Ogden, Utah
IMAGINE THE THRILL OF TYING THE KNOT AT 9000 FEET!
Snowbasin Resort, one of the oldest continuously operating ski areas in the nation. The Snowbasin resort plays host to weddings year-round. Summer and fall weddings
tend to be most popular; however, winter weddings are steadily growing in popularity. Imagine the thrill of tying the knot at 9000 feet! Some “extreme”couples even choose to ski or snowboard down the mountain decked- out in full bridal attire. For a more classic setting, several on-mountain and indoor lodge locations are available where a traditional ceremony will still be an unforgettable experience. One exceptional feature that makes Snowbasin stand out from all other ski resort locations: the unparalleled quality of the ski lodges. If
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A Mountain Wedding!
WHERE TO STAY: youâ€™ve skied before, toss out every idea you have about a day lodge. The magnificent mountain lodges at Snowbasin are unexpected treasures that rival a country club setting.
Wolfcreek Resort: Guests can stay a mere ten minutes from the resort, in Ogden Valley at Wolfcreek Resort.
ESSENTIALS: www.snowbasin.com/ groups-weddings/weddings
Elegant crystal chandeliers, comfortable leather chairs, cozy fireplaces and simply the nicest ski lodge bathrooms in the world, provide an upscale setting your guests will love.
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The costal regions and islands along South Carolinaâ€™s coast make up the Lowcountry, a collection of historic communities, natural habitats and southern hospitality. With all that comes tourism.
Deep in the Lowcountry, between Hilton Head and Savannah, sits Palmetto Bluff. The 20,000-acre development is nestled along the May River, a coastal estuary teeming with wildlife. Entering the community is like stepping back in time. Building exteriors resemble 1930â€™s architecture, winding roads lead to quaint shops and restaurants, parks, chapels and outdoor activities; classic one-speed bicycles are the preferred mode of transportation. Residents of
the 700 homes and guests of the Montage Palmetto Bluff are pulled together through an extensive list of activities and events and form a strong sense of community.
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Life in this mainly getaway community can be tailored to individual desires. The amenities are reserved for residents and Montage guests, so tee times on the Jack Nicholas designed golf course are readily available, parks are never crowded and traffic jams are nonexistent. Reading a book on a park bench and watching neighbors play Bocce Ball is a good way to spend the afternoon. Preplanned activities are numerous, 10-20 per day. Yoga, cycling, tennis clinics and paddle boarding entertain the athletic. Beachcombing, Sip- n-Sail river cruises amid the dolphins and porching (tea
Bluff THE 20,000-ACRE DEVELOPMENT IS NESTLED ALONG THE MAY RIVER, A COASTAL ESTUARY TEEMING WITH WILDLIFE
a luxurious wooden yacht built in 1913. Many holes on the golf course play along the river, diners enjoying Lowcountry cuisine at Coleâ€™s have stunning views of the marsh while eating fried pickles. Numerous preplanned activities and excursions take place on the river.
and lemonade gatherings on a porch) for the social. Outdoor enthusiasts enjoy archery; shoot sporting clays, fish and kayak. There are tons of kids activities, a state of the art four-lane bowling alley and everyone gets
together evenings for Sâ€™mores at the fire pits. The property touches 32 miles of May River shoreline. The marshy estuary has an eight-foot daily tide change. When the water is out you can walk out and harvest
oysters by hand. When the tide comes in so do the dolphins, chirping, playing and feeding. Alligators and beautiful white egrets are always plentiful. A good way to experience the May River is a cruise on Grace,
In the heart of Palmetto Bluff sits the Montage Palmetto Bluff, a luxurious gem of the south. The resort rests on a tranquil lagoon, miles of hiking and biking trails lead through the nature reserve. With dining options and bar, the Montage is the liveliest spot in the community; many residents gather there in the evenings and listen to live music. The world class Spa Montage is an attraction all its own with the
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finest treatments and amenities. Enjoy the fitness center, eucalyptus steam room, redwood sauna, pool and cold plunge after your signature 90 minute facial. Most of all, the Montage’s amenities and guests inject energy into Palmetto Bluff.
ENJOY THE FITNESS CENTER, EUCALYPTUS STEAM ROOM, REDWOOD SAUNA, POOL AND COLD PLUNGE AFTER YOUR SIGNATURE 90 MINUTE FACIAL.
If one tires of paradise and feels the need to getaway from their getaway, Bluffton is less than a 30-minute drive. Virtually every building in this historic town was burned to the ground
seating, Lowcountry grub and live music. Farm arguably has the best food in the region, possibly any region. Many restaurants have a chef who runs the kitchen and a Matre D in charge of seating and service. Farm adds a third partner; the farmer who
during the Civil War by Union troops. The guides at Bluffton Bike Taxis will show you the few surviving structures, outline the town’s history and show the best places to eat and drink with the locals. The Old Town Dispensary has lots of outdoor
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grows produce and sources the best meats and seafood. Their fresh, light tappas sized plates are absolutely amazing; the crafted cocktails are an added bonus. Palmetto Bluff feels hours and ages away from the real world. It’s actually less than 25 miles from Savanah, Ga. In 30-40 minutes after departing the plane, you can be sitting in one the Montage’s luxury rooms, snacking on the shortbread cookies and bourbon milk jam they leave as a greeting gift and watching alligators sun on the banks of the lagoon. Enjoy the Lowcountry!
FOR MORE INFORMATION, VISIT www.palmettobluff.com/stay
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Punta de Mita’s W Hotel is a welcome addition to the luxury scene
This bohemian chic hotspot hidden in the lush jungle on the Pacific coast of Mexico’s Riviera Nayarit is garnering mucho attention for its luxury accommodations. It’s quickly becoming the prime destination for weddings, commitment ceremonies and honeymoons.
Parad in the Pacific by Kim
Located 25 miles from the international airport in Puerto Vallarta, and a twohour plane ride from Texas, The W in Punta de Mita, reflects the surrounding culture and incorporates images of traditional Mexican celebrations and the Huichol people (indigenous people of Nayarit). Opened in 2016, it was built around nature– incorporating the ancient fig trees and natural springs – which were not disturbed during construction. Upon arrival, guests are whisked throughout the property via a fleet of colorful TukTuks. Or they can choose to scoot their way around on the throw-back Razors located around each corner. With 119 guest villas, the custom headboards and repurposed vintage photographs of Mexican historical figures, such
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as Frida Kahlo, by Revolución Del Sueño, adorn each room. The majority of the property’s art and décor is provided by local nearby Sayulita artisans. With a dedicated on-site full time wedding “guru,” all special event planning can be handled at the property, from floral to table assignments to live music. Pre-wedding receptions, rehearsal dinners and cocktails parties can be hosted in one of the private dining rooms at the several restaurants, under the stars in a tented party palace, or poolside. Event menus are custom designed and range from self-serve casual buffets to sit down multi-course plated meals. The most popular wedding and commitment ceremony sight is the breathtaking Huichol
adise c ALL SPECIAL EVENT PLANNING CAN BE HANDLED AT THE PROPERTY, FROM FLORAL TO TABLE ASSIGNMENTS TO LIVE MUSIC. While in Mexico for the nuptials, guests can be treated to a whale-watching excursion, surf school, shopping the boutiques in the nearby Sayulita, unique spa services at the hotel’s Away Spa, or a day trip into the Jungle.
Sunway – a tiled pathway that leads from the hotel lobby to the ocean. The pathway is a representation of the Huichol life journey, “highlighting the traditional images of the ups
and downs of life, with the goal to achieve spiritual ascension over the ocean at the end of the path.” Ceremonies can also be accommodated on the beach, the WET deck poolside,
or surrounding the property’s spring-fed, man-made picturesque lake.
FOR MORE INFORMATION, VISIT www.wpuntademita.com
What the hotel deems as a “surf beat, tribal heat,” the W will not disappoint those looking for a destination that is a true reflection of colorful Mexico and its culture. All of this is supported by the W brand’s signature Whatever/ Whenever service philosophy, the trademark service providing guests whatever they want, whenever they want it.
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T Re-create this menu from Robard’s in The Woodlands and celebrate your upcoming nuptials
Ladie’s Lunch By Tom Flynn
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Décor and coordination by Shelby Reininger & Jade Lewis Linens from EB, Inc. Flowers by B&M Floral Creations
The Woodlands, Texas has it going on. The master-planned community has always been known for big trees, great homes (at great prices) and excellent golf courses, and as the area has grown, a mall filled with quality retailers. Then the Woodlands Waterway opened with high-end shops and entertainment venues. But where could you get a good steak? Robard’s Steakhouse sits on the 18th green of the Panther Trail golf course. A salute to Howard Robard Hughes Jr., they have the finest dry-aged meat, an impeccable wine list and artwork featuring Hughes, a Houston legend. During a recent visit, they invited me to the kitchen and taught me how to recreate a Robard’s meal at home. The team at Robard’s dry-ages the choicest
meats in-house, their oven heats to 1600°F,
and the experienced waitstaff provide topnotch service as guests enjoy their two- to three-hour meals. Although these details make it near
impossible to recreate the exact experience at home, Chef Sammy showed me how to get
close with the help of a good cast-iron skillet and a few thick-cut steaks from H-E-B.
Don’t forget to pair your rib eye with its trusty partner, the potato, served any way you like it.
For the dressing: 1 egg yolk 1 tablespoon dijon mustard 1 tablespoon minced white onions 1½ teaspoons minced garlic 1 tablespoon sugar 2 tablespoons water 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar 1½ cups salad oil dash soy sauce 1 teaspoon kosher salt ¼ teaspoon black pepper
For the salad: 2 beefsteak tomatoes, sliced ½ red onion, sliced roquefort or blue cheese crumbles to taste microgreens to taste chopped herbs for garnish
Photography by Nicholas Nguyen
Robard’s Green Beans
1. Make the dressing: Combine the egg, mustard, onions, garlic, sugar and water in a bowl. Add the remaining ingredients and whisk until smooth. Set aside. 2. Assemble the salad: Layer the tomatoes and onions on a plate. Top with a thin layer of microgreens and sprinkle with the cheese crumbles. Drizzle on the dressing and serve garnished with the chopped herbs.
12 ounces green beans, rinsed and trimmed 1 tablespoon butter ½ teaspoon chopped garlic ¼ teaspoon chile paste 2 tablespoons chicken broth Pinch salt 1. Blanch the green beans in boiling water for 1 minute. 2. Melt the butter in a pan over mediumhigh. Add the garlic, chile paste, broth and salt. Stir to combine. Add the beans and toss/stir until the beans are tender. Serve immediately.
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Go Big and Go Thick
Buttery Rib eyes
For the bourbon-cherry syrup:
½ ½ 1 1 ½ ½ ½
cup bourbon cup dried cherries cup sugar cup apple juice cup maple syrup teaspoon orange zest teaspoon black pepper
For the candied bacon:
8 2 2 ½ ½
slices applewood-smoked bacon tablespoons dijon mustard tablespoons brown sugar teaspoon dried thyme teaspoon red pepper flakes
For the French toast: 2 eggs 1½ cups milk ½ teaspoon vanilla extract ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg ⅛ teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 loaf rrench bread, cut into 2-inch slices 2 tablespoons butter roquefort or blue cheese crumbles for garnish
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1. Make the syrup: Cook the bourbon and cherries in a pot over medium until the cherries soften, about 3 minutes. Flambé by tilting the pan toward the fire and letting the bourbon ignite. (The fire will burn off the alcohol, but leave the flavors in tact.) Once the flames have vanished, add the remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes. 2. Make the bacon: Preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a sheet pan with foil and place a baking rack on top. Arrange the bacon on the rack in a single layer. Brush on the mustard and sprinkle on the sugar, thyme and pepper. Bake until the bacon is fully cooked and slightly crispy, about 25 minutes. 3. Make the French toast: Combine the eggs, milk, vanilla, nutmeg and cinnamon in a bowl. Working in batches, melt 1 tablespoon butter over medium in a large skillet. Dip the bread slices in the batter and cook in the pan until golden brown; flip and cook the other side. Remove from the pan and repeat until all bread is cooked. 4. To serve, place 1 piece French toast on a plate, top with 1 slice bacon and drizzle on the syrup. Lean a second piece of toast on top and add more bacon and syrup. Top with the cheese crumbles and serve hot.
4 (10-ounce) rib eyes, at room temperature salt and pepper to taste 4 tablespoons butter 1. Preheat the oven to 450°F. Liberally season the steaks with salt and pepper. 2. Melt the butter in a cast-iron skillet over high until the pan begins to smoke. Add the steaks and sear for 2 minutes per side. 3. Transfer the pan to the oven and cook for 3–5 minutes, or until the internal temperature reaches 130–140°F. Remove from oven and allow the steaks to rest on a plate for 10 minutes. 4. Warm the skillet over medium and sear the steaks for 10 seconds per side. Serve immediately.
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By JADE LEWIS Photography by ANTHONY RATHBUN
What could be better than ringing in the new year with a Great Gatsby themed wedding shower? This classic theme has recently resurged in popularity and we think itâ€™s a great excuse for people to show off their creativity and play dress-up 1920s style!
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Gatsby and glam go hand in hand and nothing says glamour like a velvet roped, red-carpet entrance! We recreated our own envious entry,reminiscent of 1920s Hollywood. At the end of our red carpet, guests were greeted by a strolling Champagne Diva. This elaborately costumed server, provided by J&D Entertainment, offered new guests filled Champagne flutes from the 60 slots built in to her hoop-skirt gown. Her stunning, but functional costume was chosen to complement the theme and she was a popular photo op with the guests throughout the night.
Upon entering, the guests had the opportunity to make their mark with a unique type of “guest book” that reminded everyone, this was Gatsby, Texas style! Guests couldn’t miss the 30’ by 32’ wooden and glass container in the shape of Texas, featuring a supply of mini wooden hearts for guests to autograph and then deposit in the opening at the top, creating a massive message montage. The glass front can be customized with any message you like and it can be displayed on a stand or mounted on the wall for a one-of-a-kind Texas art piece. (coosadesigns.com) - 155 -
An opulent color scheme of black and gold was chosen to create a sophisticated look and feel to the overall dĂŠcor. Houston specialty linen experts, House of Hough,styled glitter-filled table tops with these colors intertwined together.
Flowers were by Belinda Lewis and Michelle Woodward,who created stunning centerpieces for the tables and high tops. Gold and black flowers are hard to find so Belinda paired red roses and white hydrangeas styled in vases of gold with gold accents. Fabulous, feathery plumes were added to give each centerpiece that Gatsby touch. - 156 -
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The Bridal Extravaganza Show kicks off wedding season for the great state of Texas. It’s here that brides, bridesmaids, mothers-of-the bride, grooms, and wedding planners meet with over 400 vendors in 700 display showcases. Looking to plan the wedding of your dreams? Then making plans to attend this over-the-top biannual event is an absolute MUST.
WELCOME TO AMERICA’S LARGEST
Photography by Anthony Rathbun
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Since its inception in 1983, The Bridal Extravaganza Show has continued to evolve and keep up with the latest wedding and wedding fashion trends. The goal? To meet the needs of every type of wedding party. “The overall wedding market has exploded, and part of the reason is reality television and the introduction of social media,” says Show Producer Laurette Veres. “You’ll literally find everything that you could possibly need for your dream wedding. The Bridal Extravaganza is like your Pinterest board brought to life. Our goal is to simplify the wedding process for the engaged couple.”
THE NEW PINK EXPO STOLE THE SHOW AT THE HOUSE OF HOUGH BOOTH. BLUSH LINENS CONTINUE TO CAPTIVATE BRIDE’S HEARTS THIS SEASON
The Bridal Extravaganza Show makes it possible for brides and grooms to plan their picture perfect and television-worthy wedding. And because everything is bigger and better in Texas, this extravaganza has over 400 vendors with more food, prizes, and fashion shows than any other bridal show in the country. Need a greattasting cake to match your wedding needs? As an attendee, you have an opportunity to sample delicious wedding cakes from several vendors. Many brides get lucky and book their cake decorator that exact same day.
THE NEXT EXTRAVAGANZA IS JANUARY 5-6, 2019
From fashion shows that allow brides to see numerous gown options to educational seminars that offer behind the scenes wedding options, The Bridal Extravaganza Show has something to offer the entire wedding party. All this and more creates two fun-filled days of bridal bliss.
The Bridal Extravaganza is taking place at the George R. Brown Convention Center in Houston. This bridal show is the most established, elite, and resourceful event for bridal parties, not just in the state of Texas, but in the entire country. Brides and grooms will join forces with their wedding party and attend an amazing convention to plan for the moment theyâ€™ll never forget. - 160 -
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INVITING THE DEARLY DEPARTED Engaging the spirit of those who have passed, to join in the celebration of a marriage, can be risky. Here’s how to understand the phenomena of spirit presence and call their attendance, safely. BY SONDRA SNEED Author, What to Do When You’re Dead
SONDRA SNEED IS A SOURCE COMMUNICATOR, SOUL READER, AND GODSCRIBE. SHE IS THE AUTHOR OF WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU’RE DEAD; A FORMER ATHEIST INTERVIEWS THE SOURCE OF INFINITE BEING.
When something as important as a wedding, begs the attention of a passed lovedone, it’s essential to remain sacred about the event, or there can be consequences. We rarely think about the effect our grief can have on those whom we miss. We feel our pain above all else, wanting so much to hear, see, or touch
them again. And because they have not disintegrated into thin air, but are genuinely still alive in another dimension, we have the opportunity to experience their profound presence. But it’s not as simple as it might seem. In an attempt to relieve our grief from their passing, we may call upon our beloveds
Photo courtesy, “Wedding Bouquet Charms” - an Etsy store.
Send your spiritual questions and emails to Sondra@ SondraSneed.com
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without knowing we’re making it difficult for them to move on to their next level of existence. And though it is possible for them to come to us, to appear in this dimension, it’s not wise to call for them, without a few rules of engagement set in place.
SAFETY IS PRIORITY.
Safety of a soul on the other side is concerned with the difference of vibration between body and spirit. The frequency difference between spirit and body can cause spirit to be ultrasensitive to the variability of our emotions. These emotions that move through our physical form can be a trap for souls.
Bouquet photo charms are an engaging way to remember If we don’t protect our those we love who cannot be loved ones from emotional present in body. In this photo: Go to URL bit.ly/bouquetcharm or search instabilities, by placing “wedding bouquet charms” on Etsy. ourselves in the presence com to find these DIY frames. of God-Source, first, their Use Texas Weddings Magazine’s discount code, “TEXAS” to sensitivity can unwittingly get 15% off your order. cause entrapment of their soul
It is always vital to subdue your grief when addressing souls that have moved on.
in the process of trying to make an appearance in our physical world.
STARTING FROM THE CENTER of your brain, let your inner sunshine begin to broaden within you. Feel a warm summer glow, from the back of your heart, ooze a golden light all around your body. Feel a sunny smile takeover, as you feel it.
CALL THEM BY NAME - projecting the call within your mind, not out loud - while encased in the feeling of golden, flowing, liquid God/Source light. (For those who know God, you should experience presence here, or Jesus, or Mary, or a saint, or even your spirit guides.)
FIRST, BEGIN WITH A MEDITATION, FROM WHEREVER YOU ARE:
Stand with your feet flat and firm to the ground. Grounding your energy is a critical first step. While being barefoot is not necessary, it can create an enormous feeling of electric blue aura, when a spirit is called-in during prayer.
CLOSE YOUR EYES. Allow blackness behind your eyelids, to fill your interior
NEXT, KINDLY ASK for their presence to bless the location of the wedding, and request they make you aware of their attendance in the way they see fit. Be sure to say it in that way; you’ll keep them safe from entrapment, guaranteed.
Our loved ones in spirit desire to comfort and make happy, those of us who are in need, but this is so dangerous for them. Being called back to Earth for a given amount of time can risk them getting stuck between worlds.
The following steps can bring beloved souls to us, safely, on or near the wedding day
view, (no pictures). You may see the flow of your blood rushing through or heat waves, but do not allow your imagination to make images. Just focus on the black void.
Warning, before proceeding to step five: Make sure you’ve created a protective field of Source/God energy, which is the feeling of a warm glow all around and within you. Repeat steps 1-4 until you’ve created it. It is this golden light that protects you and them, in a containment
7 field, to enable the process of visitation between the physical and the non-physical realms.
But, what if you don’t believe in God?
Then imagine Star Wars’ ObiWan Kenobi, when he had been killed by Darth Vader and joined the Force, and Luke suddenly felt sure of his ability to use the Force since his great mentor could help him from the other side. That’s how it should feel, it’s bigger than you, and protected by the powerful presence of the Force, for within is the appearance of spirit.
IN YOUR MIND AND HEART, ask your missing friend or family member in spirit, what they’ll be doing on the date in question.
DO NOT CALL ON THEM without achieving steps 1-4, however, or you may call in their Spirit without giving them time to acclimate to the change in vibration. If you wish merely to acknowledge them, in hopes they know of your celebration, then you need only to request their blessing for your happy moment, with a prayer to their safe passage from Earth to God. Doing this alone can free any souls nearby, who have lingered too long on the Earth plane after death, as well. It is always vital to subdue your grief when addressing souls that have moved on. You don’t want them to be overburdened and be forced to remain, in your pain, to try and relieve you. They are ineffective at that until your anguish stops, and then you can hear their higher/ greater love vibration working on your behalf.
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BRIDAL EXTRAVAGANZA SHOW
Tee Time Let your groom have some fun as he and his buddies enjoy a groom’s golf package courtesy of Sweetwater Country Club, booth # 1035.
and enter to win these prizes and more!
Consider a wedding or honeymoon at Hard Rock Hotels. Stop by booth 715 – Around About Travel for your chance to win!
Want to be featured on the next Bridal Extravaganza Show billboard? Well brides, it can happen to you! Just stop by the Billboard Bride booth and have your picture taken. Be sure to meet our talent scouts and let them know why you should be selected.
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Reverse the effects of overconsumption, fast food, bad food choices, alcohol, and environmental pollution at Deer Lake Lodge and Spa. Push the “reset” button and get back to a healthier way of living. Their program of fasting, juicing, cleansing and colonics is designed to energize, strengthen and enlighten.
Travel to the Riviera Maya is about the turquoise sea, the powder-fine sand, stunning sunsets and memorable adventures. Enter to win a honeymoon generously donated by Travel Lifestyles, booth # 1001.
Cosmetic Facial Aesthetics
Enhancement & Rejuvenation Package Booth # 835. $1500 Value.
Discover Riviera Maya
Celebrity China & Cookware Celebrity was founded with the goal of providing the very finest china, crystal, cutlery, and tableware available. Enter to win $1,000 merchandise certificate at booth # 1407.
$1000 gift pack including lashes, tanning and massage! Visit booth # 706
The Westin at the Woodlands
Win a bachelorette party including a King bed suite and breakfast. Visit booth # 929
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Weekend getaway in Columbus for two
Visit Identity Cosmetic Surgery & Medspa to win Sciton Profractional Laser Package Combined with a Micro Laser Peel Treatment & 30 units of Botox. Visit booth # 1347.
Columbus Texas Chamber of Commerce
Enjoy two nights lodging, dining & local shopping gift cards. Dates based on availability. Must be used in 2018. Visit booth # 729
Texas-Size Party Store Your headquarters for shower, bridal and party supplies is giving away $1,000 in selected merchandise. Visit booth # 1127 and register to win!
Receive a free Couple’s Soul Reading from Texas Weddings Magazine’s True Love Spiritual Advice Columnist. Discover the true meaning of your relationship through this intimate look into your life. - 174 -
Your Private Event Moffitt Oaks, A Premier Event Venue
Relax and enjoy an unforgettable private event at Moffitt Oaks, a unique venue offering a certain Hill Country charm. You could win a private event for 20 people that includes tables, chairs, linens, décor, and a barbecue or Italian meal. Visit booth # 1027 for your chance to win.
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wedding gift for the bride to be -she
sheâ€™ll love receiving her box of bridal goodies subscribe today! www.BrideSubscriptionBox.com - 178 -
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Attend America’s Largest Bridal Show! January 5-6 , 2019 George R Brown • Houston
Visit Shop Plan
Two fun-filled Days!
Fashion Shows Major PRIZES Educational Seminars Tickets
$15 Online • $20 at the Door BridalExtravaganza.com - 192 -
photo: Ivan Garcia Studio • gown: Ventura’s Bridal Fashions • hair and makeup: Simple Beauty Artistry
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The Ultimate Wedding Box B Wedding Necessities A subscription box service providing ultimate essentials and more! Continue the Bridal Extravaganza Show experience at B Planning Tools your doorstep. B Bridal Gifts B Beauty Products Order Your Box Today! B Vendor Samples & Offers TheUltimateWeddingBox.com
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Jordan Limousines Greater Houston, Galveston area and Southeast Texasâ€™ premier provider of vintage Rolls Royce and Bentley limousines for your wedding or special event.
We treat you like royalty!
713.680.3181 | www.jordanlimos.com
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Attend America’s Largest Bridal Show! January 5-6 , 2019 George R Brown • Houston
Visit Shop Plan
Two fun-filled Days!
Fashion Shows Major PRIZES Educational Seminars Tickets
$15 Online • $20 at the Door BridalExtravaganza.com - 234 -
photo: Ivan Garcia Studio • gown: Ventura’s Bridal Fashions • hair and makeup: Simple Beauty Artistry
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You are a soul. Written on your spirit is a history of the eons. It is not born, nor will it die. You are marrying to join heart and soul with another’s to love, honor, and protect. But until you understand your true self, the little things can cause big upsets. Join me for a deep look at your soul’s nature. Let’s see how it unites on a journey of spirit.
Couples sessions encouraged.
Find out more about it at... sondrasneed.com Soul Reader Source Communicator Godscribe
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Bridal Resource Guide
t h e w eddi ng v en d ors e v ery t e xas br i de sho ul d k no w COMPANY
Beauty/Aesthetics Cosmetic Facial Aesthetics CosmoHair DeCrosta Beauty Deer Lake Lodge Resort & Spa Dr. Heather Brown Earth’s Innova Epique Lash Exquisite Reflections Eyelashr Fab Med Spa, PLLC Floss West University Glam and Glow Beauty Bar GoodFellas Barbershop & GoodGirls HairBar Hair & Beauty Studio Identity Cosmetic Surgery Medspa La Vie Marketing Lasting Lips by Southern Lip Chics LightRx Face & Body LOVEWINX Makeup Affair Makeup2go by CS Mary Kay Cosmetics Renew from the Inside Out! Simple Beauty Artistry Timeless Plastic Surgery Young Living Essential Oils
goodfellasfadeshop.com houstonhairandbeauty.com 713identity.com selected-cosmetics.com senegence.com lightrx.com/houston-woodlands karen.lovewinx.com makeupaffairhtx.com makeup2gobycs.com marykay.com/kimberlyrobinson plexusworldwide.com/jannareed simplebeautyartistry.com timelessplasticsurgery.com youngliving.com/en_US
104 240 226 8 137 250
Cakesandcookiesbyclau.com cakesbyginahouston.com edibledesignstx.com forheavenscake.org supremekakes.com weddingcakesbytammyallen.com whomadethecake.com
167 70 184 205 149 37
Catering 2 Guys 1 Pit BBQ and Catering Bailey Connor Catering Cafe Natalie Catering by Norris DGZ Patagonia Grill & Cafe Supreme Kakes and More The Dapper Doughnut
2guys1pitbbq.com baileyconnor.com cafenatalie.com cateringbynorris.com weddingsbydgz.com patagoniagrillhouston.com supremekakes.com thedapperdoughnut.com
108 191 112
Décor Arne’s Texas Size Party Store EB Inc Event Rentals Elegant Chairs & More Johanna Terry Events
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Entertainment cosmeticfacialaesthetics.com cosmopolitanhair.com decrostabeauty.com deerlakelodge.com DrHeatherBrown.com earthsinnova.bigcartel.com epiquelash.com exquisitereflections.info eyelashr.com fabmedspa.com flossdental.com glamandglowbeautybar.com
Cakes Cakes & Cookies by Clau Cakes By Gina Edible Designs For Heavens Cake Supreme Kakes and More Wedding Cakes by Tammy Allen Who Made the Cake!
arneswarehouse.com ebincevents.com elegantchairsandmore.com johannaterryevents.com
31 Cover 3 64
Cypress Photo Camper DarKer Side DJ’s and Photo Booths Daulong’s Mobile Music DJ Dave Productions DJ Shorty Productions DJU Productions Dynamic Events Foxxium Entertainment GingerSnap PhotoCamper iHeart Flipbooks JM Productions Professional DJ & Photo Booths Ladybug Photo Booth LG Event Entertainment & Production LLC. Lightning Sound Mirror:Mirror a Photo Booth Experience Monkey Booth PicMe Events Picture Me Houston Photo Booth Pink Chest Parties, LLC Proof It Happened Open Air Photo Booth Pure Romance Royal Dukes Band Snapix Events TMAC Entertainment
cypressphotocamper.com darkersidedjs.com dmmdjs.com djdaveproductions.com djshortyproductions.com djuproductions.com dynamiceventshouston.com foxxium.com gingersnapphotocamper.com iheartflipbooks.com
243 121 233 33 245 170
mirrormirrorbash.com 241 monkeyboothpics.com picmeevents.com 230 picturemehoustonphotobooth.com 200 pinkchesthouston.com proofithappened.com pureromance.com royaldukesband.com snapixevents.com tmacsound.com
217 211 228
Fashion Amore Bridal Couture Custom Print Pros David’s Bridal Inc. Dillards Epique Lash Fiancee Bridal Boutique Impression Bridal Jos. A. Bank La Reve Bridal Couture Love and Lace Bridal Boutique Panache Bridal & Formalwear Parvani Vida Bridal and Formal Renegade Bridal Stephen Grace Atelier The Princess Bridal Ventura’s Bridal Fashions Vivienne Atelier Bridal Weddings by Debbie Winnie Couture
amorebridalcouture.com customprintpros.com davidsbridal.com dillards.com epiquelash.com fianceebridalboutique.com impressionbridalstore.com josbank.com larevebridalcouture.com loveandlacetexas.com panachebridalusa.com parvanivida.com renegadebridal.com stephengraceatelier.com theprincessbridal.com venturasbridalfashions.com vivienneatelier.com weddingsbydebbie.com winniecouture.com
142 63 166 175 58 123 213 177 71 194 39 27 2 143 57
Flowers Blinged Bouquet Dream Bouquet H-E-B Blooms and Blooms Design Studio Simply Beautiful Flowers and Events Succulent Bar Weddings by Design by H.E.B
blingedbouquet.com dreambouquet.net heb.com/blooms simplybeautifulhouston.com succulentbar.com heb.com/weddings
Gifts Arbor Day Foundation Arne’s Texas Size Party Store Bed Bath & Beyond Celebrity China & Cookware Coosa Designs Dillards EtchOSketch.com Macy’s Wedding & Gift Registry Things Remembered Williams Sonoma
arborday.org arneswarehouse.com bedbathandbeyond.com celebritychina.com coosadesigns.com dillards.com etchosketch.com macys.com/registry thingsremembered.com williams.sonoma.com
136 35 190 187 63 72 59 61
Hotels Crowne Plaza Northwest Brookhollow Hotel Hotel Galvez The Tremont House
melangeballroom.com hotelgalvez.com thetremonthouse.com
Invitations Arne’s Texas Size Party Store Beautiful Wedding Announcements DGZ Elias Paper Co. My Urban Invites Save the Date with Valerie
arneswarehouse.com 35 beautifulweddingannouncements.com weddingsbydgz.com 112 eliaspaperco.com 105 myurbaninvites.com 128 savethedatewithvalerie.com
Jewelry Lindsey Leigh Jewelry Peran & Scannell Jewelers Something New Jewelry Cleaner Uptown Diamond VitaSteel Men’s Rings
lindseyleighjewelry.com peranscannelljewelers.com myjewelrycleaner.com uptowndiamond.com vitasteel.com
225 50 229
Menswear Al’s Formal Wear Men’s Wearhouse SuitMart
alsformalwear.com menswearhouse.com suitmart.com
bergpictures.com akilbennett.com alexandercross.com
Photography 888 Photo Video by Caleb Berg Pictures Akil Bennett Photography AlexanderCross.com Photo
All Things Boudoir Capture A Stanza Photo & Video Celebrate Your Sexy Chris Curry Wedding Photography ChrisWPhoto.com Classic Photographers DarKer Side DJ’s and Photo Booths DC Stanley Photography Delight Story Eden Grey Photography EVOKE Photography & Video Inc. Giverny Wedding Photo & Film Good Omen Co. Ivan Garcia Studio John Mitchell Studio Luis Pedro Photo Natural Expressions Olaphotos Oryan Photo & Video Photos By Gabriela PicMe Events Pixel Studio Productions Second Shots Photography Shot Photo and Video The Houston Pros Weddings by You Kai Creations
allthingsboudoir.com captureastanzaphotography.com 198 celebrateyoursexy.com 237 chriscurryweddingphotography.com chriswphoto.com 182 classsicphotographers.com darkersidedjs.com 121 dcstanleyphotography.com Cover 4 delightstory.com 204 edengreyphotography.com 73 evokephotoandvideo.com Cover 3 givernywedding.com 120 goodomenco.com ivangarciastudio.com 7 johnmitchellstudio.com luispedrophoto.com 196 naturalexpressionshouston.com 195 olaphotos.com oryanenterprise.com 227 photosbygabriela.com 215 picmeevents.com 230 pixelstudioproductions.com 144 secondshotsphotography.com 224 shotphotoandvideo.com 239 fernandoweberich.com youkaicreations.com 209
Planners 3 L E Event Planning by Rina Bellah’s Elegant Events Calberts Weddings & Events Fabulous Beginnings By Delcina & Co Inventive Events J. Bray Events Magnolia Rose Company Plan Our Day Houston Save the Date with Valerie Schwartz & Woodward Stages Great Events Water to Wine Events
3lentertainment.net bellahsevents.com calbertweddingsandevents.com fabbeginnings.com inventiveeventshouston.com jbrayevents.com magnoliaroseco.com planourdayhouston.com savethedatewithvalerie.com schwartzwoodward.com stages-greatevents.com watertowineevents.com
244 216 77
206 189 100 88
Online Boutique Lauren Lash Designs
Affordable Linens & Decor Aztec Events & Tents Burlap to Bling and Everything in Between Decor by Dulce & Linen Rentals EB Inc Event Rentals House of Hough LBL Event Rentals Wedding Protector Plan
affordablelinensdecor.com aztecusa.com burlaptobling.com linenrentalhouston.com ebincevents.com houseofhough.com lbleventrentals.com protectmywedding.com
165 93 48 60 201
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Services ADT Security Arthur Murray Dance Centers Century 21 Western Realty College Nannies and Tutors Columbus Texas Chamber of Commerce Exquisite Taste Mobile Bartending Floss West University Fred Astaire Dance Studio Green Mountain Energy Honeywood Realty, LLC Houston Chronicle Houston’s First Baptist Church Married Young Adult Ministry Identity Cosmetic Surgery Medspa Martin Mortgage Pitcher Ministries Inc. Renewal by Andersen of Houston State Farm - The Marketing Arm Storm Tight Windows Texas Outhouse True Love Spiritual Advice
adt.com dancelessonshouston.com century21western.com collegenanniesandtutors.com/sugarlandtx columbustexas.org exquisitetastemobilebartending.com flossdental.com fredastairetexas.com greenmountain.com/events honeywoodrealty.com chron.com/celebrations
houstonsfirst.org/the.loop/ministries 713identity.com martinmortgageonline.com pitcherministries.org rbaeventshouston.com events.statefarm.com texas.stormtightwindows.com texasouthouse.com sondrasneed.com
171 246 219
Transportation Houston Carriage LLC Jordan Limousines Monarch Limousines
houstoncarriage.com jordanlimos.com monarchlimos.com
220 232 185
Travel AA Discount Travel Ace Travel House, Inc. Around About Travel Connie Events and Travel Cruise Planners Leisure Getaways Inc. Palace Resorts Southern Journeys Terry’s Travel Travel Lifestyles Unique Romance Travel
AADiscountTravel.com acetravel.com aroundabouttravel.com connieeventsandtravel.com navigateyourtravels.com lgiadvantageclub.com weddings.palaceresorts.com mysouthernjourneys.com terrystravelco.com tlife.com uniqueromancetravel.com
81 223 169 Cover 2 141 153 31 252
Venues 15 Acres 7D Ranch Texas 9th Sky Reserve Altstadt Brewery Ambrosia Crossing Ashelynn Manor Bridal Oaks Butler’s Courtyard Columbus Texas Chamber of Commerce Crystal Ballroom at the Rice Ella’s Garden Wedding Venue fifty-two-twenty-six Four Oaks at Mound Creek Ranch
15.acres.com 7dranchtexas.com 9th-sky.com altstadtbeer.com ambrosiacrossing.com ashelynnmanor.com bridaloaks.com butlerscourtyard.com
238 236 164
columbustexas.org crystalballhouston.com ellasgarden.com 5226elm.com fouroaksatmoundcreekranch.com
89 92 242
George Ranch Historical Park Haak Vineyards and Winery Heather’s Glen Henkel Hall Wedding Center Hochzeit Hall La Fontaine Reception Hall La Tranquila Ranch Lindsay Lakes Longhorn Riverview Ranch Los Cabos Advisor Madera Estates Weddings & Events Magnolia Meadows Mansion by the Sea Moffitt Oaks Oakwind Weddings Olde Dobbin Station Paradis Event Center
georgeranch.org haakwine.com heathersglen.com henkelsquareroundtop.com oldtownspringweddings.com lafontainereceptionhall.net latranquilaranch.com lindsaylakes.com longhornriverviewranch.com loscabos-advisor.com mymaderaestates.com magnolia.meadows.com mansionbythesea.com moffittoaks.com oakwindweddings.com oldedobbinstation.com paradiseventcenter.wixsite.com/ paradiseventhouston Pecan Grove Plantation Country Club pecangrovecc.com Pine Lake Ranch Event Venue pinelakeranch.com Raveneaux Country Club raveneaux.com Royal Palace houstonfunplex.com Rustic Rose Events rusticroseevents.com Shirley Acres shirleyacres.com Silver Sycamore silversycamore.com Southern Lace Estates southernlaceestates.com Sweetwater Country Club swcclub.com/catering/weddings Texas Renaissance Festival texrenfest.com The Brookwood Community brookwoodcommunity.org The Downtown Aquarium downtownaquarium.com The Dunlavy thedunlavy.com The Estates at Pecan Park theestatesatpecanpark.com The Grand Hall at Deer Lake Lodge grandhalltexas.com The Overlook Events theoverlookevents.com The Villagio villagiohouston.com The Westin at The Woodlands westin.com/thewoodlands The Woodlands Resort woodlandsresort.com Walden on Lake Houston Country Club waldencc.com Willow Fork Country Club willowforkclub.com
193 197 45 161 221
10 231 41 208 176
210 62 214 181 133 157 186 222 202 76 80 183 97 218 85 145 199
Videography 888 Photo Video by Caleb Berg Pictures ChrisWPhoto.com Classic Photographers DC Stanley Photography EVOKE Photography & Video Inc. Ivan Garcia Studio Luis Pedro Photo Luxe Weddings Meant To Be Films Natural Expressions Oryan Photo & Video Reverent Wedding Films
bergpictures.com 235 chriswphoto.com 182 classsicphotographers.com dcstanleyphotography.com Cover 4 evokephotoandvideo.com Cover 3 ivangarciastudio.com 7 luispedrophoto.com 196 luxefilmshouston.com meanttobefilms.com naturalexpressionshouston.com 195 oryanenterprise.com 227 wedding.film 43
From entertaining and travel to advice from real brides, this issue of Texas Weddings has it all. Experience crystal chandeliers, heroic mur...
Published on Sep 19, 2018
From entertaining and travel to advice from real brides, this issue of Texas Weddings has it all. Experience crystal chandeliers, heroic mur...