Saturday, September 25, 2010

Old Fashioned Charm

There are few venues that have as much old fashioned charm as the
chapel at Burnaby Village Museum.

The museum is really built like an old fashioned town, complete with
storefronts, a blacksmith and a ice cream shop. Part of the town is a
tiny chapel that seats about 60. That is where I just did a wedding
for Adam and Leah. In fact, since today was technically 'off season'
they had the whole little town to themselves!

It is charming and it makes for some great photos!!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

The Joy of a Good Wedding Coordinator

After having been in the business for 5 years now we have worked with our fair share of wedding coordinators. Not everyone needs one, but for people who are getting married and need a helping hand to oversee the details a wedding coordinator can be a great asset. There are also some venues that come with a wedding coordinator as part of the package.

For weddings that DO have a coordinator, I can not say enough about the joy working with a capable, warm, and professional wedding coordinator.

We have had a chance to work with a real range of coordinators and really see the effect their style and personality have on the wedding. I did a wedding this summer where the coordinator was bossy, abrasive and really domineering. She was upsetting the other vendors working on the wedding, alienating the family and even scaring the groom a bit! I appreciate someone who is all over the details, but when you let the details dominate over the flow and celebration of one of the most amazing days of your life, it kind of overshadows everyone's enjoyment of the day. She had to control everyone and there was no room for error!

On the other hand, coordinators that have wedding parties assembled and decorating/ music/ arrival questions taken care of really seems to give the bride and groom peace of mind and makes our job that much better!

One of the best coordinators Jordan and I have ever worked with is Jill at Redwoods Golf Course in Langley. (I promise they didn't pay us to say that!) Redwoods is one of our favorite venues to begin with, but working with Jill is what makes it great! She is so well organized and the ceremony and reception always look flawless. I have seen her calm jittery brides, comfort weepy parents and help organize disorganized groomsmen. But this summer she impressed me most when there was a HUGE rainstorm at 1pm on a day when the wedding was supposed to start at 3pm. Anyone else would have set up 'back-up venue' under the tents and just moved on, but she let bride and groom make the final call. They wanted to use the outdoor venue and by 2pm the rain had stopped and she had her team out on the outdoor deck brushing away the rain and setting up chairs. The whole thing was set-up and decorated without a problem by 2:30pm! The wedding went off at 3pm without a hitch. And no one ever sensed there was a concern. She seems to love what she does and couples who book with her seem to love her back. She really deserves a kudos for being talented, hardworking and really sweet!

We have worked with many other great coordinators too (Jill just happens to be someone we've had ongoing relationship with as we've done a number of Redwoods weddings). It's fun and really neat to work with other vendors who are as passionate as we are about making a wedding something that is so truly special.

My advice: choose vendors (especially a coordinator) that make you comfortable, that understand your vision and that truly want to make the day enjoyable and unique to you! Working with professionals who love what they do and make your wedding experience a great one is what is going to allow you to enjoy your day to the fullest!

Saturday, September 18, 2010

A Real Pleasure

All of our weddings are a lot of fun, but every once in awhile we have
the pleasure (and honor) of doing a wedding for someone we know.

This weekend I married my cousin Erin and her sweet new husband
Matthew at UVic. Their wedding was sweet and so personal. As a cool
touch they wrote love letters to eachother and locked them in a box
with a bottle of wine to be opened in their first anniversary.

Here's a pic of us together at the reception. Cheers to Matt and Erin.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Mid Week Wedding

Scott and Crystal live in AB and came to beautiful BC for their
wedding. The cool thing is they decided on a Wednesday wedding, which
meant I was able to fit them in our already full summer schedule!

The wedding is at the beautiful (and relatively new) Eagle Tree Lodge
in Agassiz, a great peaceful spot ideal for an intimate outdoor wedding.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Good Day, Sunshine

So grateful this morning when I looked out my window to see the
gorgeous sunshine!
Here is the view at Redwoods where Colton and Jocelyn say 'I Do!' in

It's a Jungle Out There!

Once in awhile we get invited to do an unusual wedding, which is
always fun. Today's location was the falconry at the GV Zoo!
I just married Tim and Christine admist the lions and tigers and
bears....oh my!

I will have some better pics later on as these were just taken w
iPhone camera (why don't they zoom?) but you get the idea.

The best part....their rings were FLOWN in by a HAWK! Crazy!

It was a ton of fun and the couple had such a great sense of humor
there wedding was a real treat!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Long Distance Can Work

This weekend, I did two weddings, and both of the couples were long distance success stories. On Saturday, I married off Rob and Emily at Brock House in Point Grey. It's a beautiful spot, overlooking the ocean, the mountains and the beach. Rob and Emily had met in the summer of 2006 while working at UBC. They were falling in love, but that fall, Emily went back to school at the University of Victoria, on Canada's left coast, and Rob went back to Dalhousie, on Canada's east coast. Geographically, you could not have put these two further apart in Canada.

On Sunday at Redwoods Golf Course in Langley (one of my very favorite spots for a wedding), I married off Joel and Jen. They met in Calgary in 2008, and Joel lived there for many months before finally joining Jen here in Vancouver. (Joel is a pilot for Westjet, so there was uch flying back and forth seeing one another.)

You always hear how long-distance relationships are tough and don't work out. But these two couples bucked the trend, overcoming distance and time zones by emailing, texting, phoning, Skype, cheap flights, and good, old-fashioned hard work. They built trust and communication skills which will help them in their marriage.

So to Rob and Emily, and to Joel and Jen: congratulations! Thanks for having me at your weddings... I had a great time and wish you all the best!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Hire a Great Photographer

Jenny and I got married waaaaaaaaay back in 2000, before the digital camera revolution and before the development of the incredibly talented photographer community we see now in the Lower Mainland. I look at some of their websites and I'm amazed at the work they are doing. Beautiful stuff!

Our wedding photos are good, and we always advise couples to spend the money and hire a great photographer. Those photos will hang around your house forever--so find someone whose style and artistic eye you appreciate.

Don't rely on amateurs... as this potty-mouthed bridal photo from demonstrates:

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Built for Love

This weekend I had the pleasure of doing a wedding at lovely Milner Chapel. Milner is a small, non-denominational chapel here in Langley that hosts a number of weddings each year. Jordan and I have done quite a few here and it's always a great spot.

Nice things about the venue:
-It's gorgeous on the outside, as are the gardens that surround it and it makes for GREAT photos
- Inside is classic chapel with wooden pews and a small stage, it's air conditioned in the summer and heated in the winter. (MAJOR bonus- nothing worse than a stuffy chapel!)
- It's looks great with no decorating OR amazing with some flowers and little flameless candles.
- Sound is great. Speakers are in if you want to run music, but it also has a piano (wedding this weekend had a piano and violin and sounded beautiful!)
- It's a year round venue. These can be hard to come by and fall/ winter/ spring weddings are really underrated. They can be so lovely!
- When the bride leaves they ring the bell in the bell tower. This is my personal fav!

Our church, Springbrook, holds our annual Christmas eve morning service and we love it. It looks STUNNING with snow and Christmas lights!

A little (TRUE) story we always tell as part of our Milner weddings:
In the early 1880s, a Milner farmer named Henry Davis wanted to marry a girl from back east named Elizabeth. Well, Elizabeth’s dad gave his approval, subject to one small requirement—Milner had to have a church of its own. After all, he couldn’t send his daughter to some barbarian town that didn’t even have a church! So Henry got on his horse, rode around the Fraser Valley to all of the new landowners and residents, and raised money to build a church. Singlehandedly, he raised $919.50 and a few years later, in 1886, Milner Methodist Church, led by Rev. RJ Wood, opened its doors. The church was built so those two could get married and it’s been a local landmark ever since. Henry married Elizabeth, and their great-grandchildren still live in Milner. This Chapel was built for love—a perfect place for these two.

If you're looking for a wedding venue in Langley it's worth checking out!

Whatever Floats Your Boat

We love weddings, and we've done all sorts: themes, costumed, elegant, casual. We've done them in parks and on beaches and in churches and in pubs and pretty much anywhere else people can gather.

But we have never done a Titanic wedding. CBC has a story of a couple, Maryann Morin and Jamie Kovacs, who met five years ago on a cruise to the Titanic site, about 600 kilometres south of Newfoundland.

Jamie and Maryann now work together on a research ship mapping the Titanic wreckage. It seems Jamie has been carrying a ring around for about a year, waiting to propose.

Now the research mission has been unexpectedly cut short, as a hurricane bears down on the area. So Jamie popped the question, and as their boat sped back to the safety of harbour in Halifax, the young couple were married at sea. The bride reports: "Coming in, the fog broke, actually just when we were getting married... The fog broke, the sun hit land, and it was just... it was beautiful. It's just a magical place."

Moral of this story: if you love each other, if you want to get married, don't let the hurricane and storms of life keep you apart. There may never be a more perfect time than right now. If you know in your heart that it's right, pop the question!