Friday, April 22, 2011

Time to Vote!

Today marks the first official voting for the details of Laura & Nolan's fabulous Real Maine Wedding!  You can visit to help us decide the decor theme.  We have brought a taste of these to each of the Bridal Shows put on by The Maine Wedding Association, and are excited to finally reveal them to the public.  We love each of these designs and can't wait to find out what you help choose for the lucky couple!

On the table, so to speak, are "Vintage Chic", "Traditional Charm", and "Cool Contemporary"... 

"Vintage Chic" is casual elegance at its finest.  A white table linen is overlaid with a buttercup yellow table runner and topped with birch rounds, stunning antique milk glass vases, candles in mason jars, antique tins, and an assortment of flowers that include Billy balls, tulips, and cream roses.  Opaque pastel plates are used as chargers, with vintage-feel linens completing the look.  The effect is sumptuous but light; think high tea held outdoors at a countryside estate.  This tablescape is the ultimate in "upcycled" glamor.

Photographed by Audra Photography.

Next is "Traditional Charm".  A rich chocolate pintuck linen covers the table.  A striking trio of red roses and calla lilies grace the center, surrounded by lots of gold votive holders.  This look is reminiscent of Old Hollywood glamour.  We can easily picture women in gorgeous dresses and men in tuxedos gracing these tables.  Traditional table service, set off with gold chargers, adorns each place setting.  Serve from the left, clear from the right, please.

Photographed by Audra Photography.

Finally we offer the "Cool Contemporary" look, so-called for its black-and-white minimalist drama.  A black tablecloth is overlaid with a sheer, white linen.  Placed in the center of the table is a tall square vase, topped boldly with a huge arrangement of monochromatic carnations, David Austin roses, spider mums, and Star of Bethlehem, accented with peacock feathers, and punctuated with an inverted calla lily submerged in the vase itself.  This is a conversation piece, surrounded by an array of small, square votives and candles floating in slim cylinders.  The effect is nothing less than sparkling. 

Photographed by Audra Photography.

So, go, vote now, and check back in two weeks to find out which design-scape made the cut! 

Thursday, April 14, 2011

And so it begins...!

On Tuesday, we had the pleasure of hosting a planning meeting for Real Maine Weddings winner, Laura Plaisted.  Joining her were her mother, Ellen, and her soon to be mother-in-law, Beth.  Amber and I were joined by the lovely Christine Parker from Real Maine Weddings Magazine.  There was so much support and positivity in the room you just couldn't help but have the warm fuzzies!  We all settled in with some delicious snacks from local favorite, Giacomo's, and got down to business. 

On the agenda was the discussion of the schedule to meet with all the generous vendors that have partnered for this amazing giveaway.  The decor, the dress, the jewelry, the cake, the food, the Inn, and more!  As Laura has the opportunity to meet with many of these vendors, you all will have the opportunity to vote on many of the elements of her and Nolan's wedding.  Every couple of weeks between now and September, you can visit to vote.  The first vote will go live on the 22nd, so be sure to keep checking in!

By the way, we can't help but mention how thrilled we were to hear "Team Laura" say they didn't know how anyone plans their wedding without a team of professionals!  Thanks, ladies!  Amber and I are honored to be a part of all this and having a ton of fun already!  You are making it so easy to help!  Muah!

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Winning the Real Maine Wedding: Laura & Nolan's Story

We promised you a blog from Laura, and she has delivered!  Get your hankies out now; their story, told in Laura's clear voice, is charming and romantic.  Thanks for letting us get to know you a little better!

"My first blogging experience!

Just a few short days ago, Melanie Brooks announced that Nolan and I were the winners of the 2011 Real Maine Weddings Contest! Words cannot describe the way that I felt when I heard our names announced. Eight months prior I was hugging him at the airport, wondering how I was going to make the time fly until I got to have my best friend back. Many long letters and midnight phone calls later, I found myself sitting at a little brewery in California with my soldier, my jaw dropped open, staring at a beautiful diamond ring. He had come home for his mid-tour leave and, so he says, “executed his master plan”. It wasn’t until he was back in Afghanistan that I found out about the Dream Wedding Contest, and I sent him an email urging him to call me as soon as possible!

Now, I’m a hopeless romantic and I can get pretty carried away. As I babbled on and on about the prize package, the Haraseekett Inn, the wedding gown, the tuxedos, the honeymoon, the wedding bands, the cake, the team of wedding planners, photographers and videographer, Nolan just said calmly, “Good hun, go for it. That sounds very nice.” At this point, I was convinced we had a shot. He was probably convinced that this deployment was making me go crazy! It wasn’t until our video was posted and our votes were up that he called me at 2am one morning and said, “Laura, are we in the lead?!” I said, “YES!” And suddenly his facebook wall was announcing the contest. I guess I wasn’t so crazy after all.

The instant support that we received when we entered this contest was humbling and indescribable. My friends, family, long lost friends, old classmates, and other random acquaintances were sending me beautiful messages thanking Nolan for his service, and wishing us both the best of luck. We received marital advice, blessings and kind words daily. Already, the experience was more than worth it. We felt so lucky and we soon learned that it had only just begun.

We are so thankful and so excited to be able to experience the Real Maine Wedding at the Harraseeket Inn in Freeport in October! Nolan and I will be forever grateful for such a wonderful opportunity. This Tuesday, I will be meeting with Amber and Kathryn at Sweetest Thing to begin planning the details, many of which will be chosen by the public. I am really excited to see what everyone chooses for us! People will be able to vote on my dress, our décor, the honeymoon and more!

In just a few short months, I went from planning a wedding alone while my fiancé served overseas, to having the help of some absolutely amazing event planners, and the opinion of all of YOU! This is the best prize in the world, and we are so thankful from the bottom of our hearts.

Laura & Nolan"

Monday, April 4, 2011

We Have A Winner, Folks!

And, OMG, she is adorable!

We were overwhelmed with excitement and anticipation while waiting for the winner of the Real Maine Weddings free wedding contest to be announced on Sunday at the Freeport Bridal Show.  We greeted each of the four lovely couples and then took our places in front of the podium to wait for the official word.  When Melanie Brooks, editor of Real Maine Weddings, finally said the words, you can imagine there were a lot of happy tears.  Yes, we cried, too.

 Photo Credit Audra Photography.

After months of waiting, Laura and Nolan received the news they'd been hoping for; they would, officially, be getting married on October 21, 2011 at the Harraseekett Inn in Freeport.  Unfortunately, Nolan couldn't be there because he is a Staff Sergeant in the Army Infantry and currently deployed to Afghanistan.  However, Laura's mother, Nolan's mother, several bridesmaids, and one giddy flower-girl were on hand to share in her excitement and help her celebrate.  You can bet that the girls from Real Maine Weddings, along with Amber and I, did quite a lot of squealing and hugging, too.  We were all beyond thrilled for this charming and beautiful young woman!  As she listened to the details of her wedding package she just seemed to glow, signing the contract with a flourish and a mega-watt smile.

 Photo credit Audra Photography

Laura did say that the contest had worked wonders to distract her from his absence.  She also admitted that the time between now and his return, hopefully in June or July, would be happily involved with wedding planning that would hopefully serve as a continued distraction.  Laura is a self-described wedding addict who has been waiting for her wedding day nearly all of her life. Well, Laura, it's almost here and Amber and I are so excited to be able to guide you through the next several months of coordinating the event, choosing decor, dress shopping, and cake tasting!

If you haven't seen it yet, you have to check out her adorable video.  You will totally understand why she won, and you'll be as excited as we are about sharing in her big day.

Congratulations, Laura & Nolan!  Get ready for the ride of your life!

Please keep checking back for updates, and to read a blog from Laura herself about what it felt like to win!