Top 5 Wedding Hair Styles for 2015,%202014

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Thunderbird Lodge Wedding at Lake Tahoe

The Thunderbird Lodge is a historic wedding venue on the shores of Lake Tahoe. Rich in history, this location offered Ally and Michael’s destination wedding guests an opportunity of a lifetime. Incorporating a Texas style BBQ from Lake Tahoe catering company High Pointe Event Catering had everyone feeling right at home. The bride, Ally, describes her Thunderbird Lodge wedding day below:

The Venue
Our wedding described our Tahoe life perfectly. Being locals, for us, the Thunderbird Lodge was a place we had never explored. For our families we were able to provide them all with a destination wedding and an experience in a historic lakeside location! The Thunderbird Lodge has been a part of east shore since 1936 and once we toured it we couldn’t resist sharing it with our loved ones.

thunderbird lodge tahoe wedding-3 Untitled thunderbird lodge tahoe wedding-1 thunderbird lodge weddings 2 The Ceremony
The day started by our guests arriving to the lodge and going on the tour to get familiar with the venue and its history. Shortly after everyone gathered at the lawn under the sunny blue skies that Lake Tahoe usually offers to get ready for the ceremony. The groomsmen wore Vera Wang Suits and the groom wore a Balani Custom Clothiers suit. The bridesmaids wore a navy blue lace dress by Adrianna Pappell and nude patent leather shoes and the bride wore a Jim Hjelm dress with Jimmy Choo shoes – the belt and cathedral veil were handmade by yours truly – the bride. The ceremony was performed by Davy Ratchford who was not only my former boss but is also a great friend. I…the bride walked down the staircase with my mom and aunt to the acoustic beats of “All My Life” by K-Ci & JoJo performed by Little Town Music. The ceremony was just perfect!

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The Details
Being a marketer at heart I couldn’t help but brand our whole wedding and a custom logo was found in all of our wedding goodies throughout the night. Let’s start with the invitations – they were a hit, living in the woods I felt that the wood grain paper would be ideal. As soon as I sent the invitations out I knew I had to kick it up a notch for the wedding. And I think we did it…

Heidi Gellerman from Green With Envy did wonders with the simplicity of baby’s breath and dahlias for the pop of coral. Ally’s bouquet and Mike’s boutonniere both had baby’s breath and calla lillies. The wedding colors were navy blue and a splash of coral. The centerpieces included wood slabs that were cut by the groom, steel galvanized lanterns with baby’s breath inside of them, and a few small vases with dahlias in them. Also, the custom chalkboards were just one more detail that we had to have…also DIY. The guest were able to walk away with handmade wood coasters (cut by the groom) stamped with the custom logo as well as mini brown bags full of candy!

thunderbird lodge weddings thunderbird lodge tahoe wedding-4 The Menu
Let’s talk about the food…I am from Texas so what better way to have a little BBQ from High Pointe Catering, their buffet spread was to die for and we both managed to sit down and eat our dinner.

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The Reception
We danced the night away and had one of the most beautiful sunsets we have seen in Tahoe and there are many. We just feel lucky we were able to share it with everyone. Our photographers were Karla & Andy from K. Raphail Photography who flew out from Texas to capture these special moments for us. I do not regret for one moment planning our entire wedding and I would do it all over again and I would also have my AMAZING wedding day coordinator Brett Sneed who made sure everything ran smoothly. It was a dream day as we rode away in our boat with the “Just Married!” and sign on it. I am glad we have all these pictures and memories to reminisce with our loved ones.

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Lake Tahoe Wedding Vendors:
Wedding Venue : Thunderbird Lodge, Incline Village, NV  | Catering : High Pointe Event Catering | Invitation Printing: Envelopments | Invitations : Worboys Design | Wedding Design And Planning: Ally Chase | Day of Coordinator : Brett Sneed | Floral Design : Heidi Gellerman At Green With Envy | Cake : Nothing Bundt Cakes | DJ : Jack Curtis | Rentals : Eventmasters | Photography : K. Raphail Photography | Bridesmaids’ Dresses : Adrianna Pappell | Grooms Attire : Balani Custom Clothiers | Band : Little Town Music |  Wedding Dress : Jim Hjelm | Hair and Makeup : Vanessa Ramos at Sierra Bella Salon

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Lake Tahoe Wedding Ideas | Wood Wedding Menus

Menus are one of my absolute favorite details at a Lake Tahoe wedding. There are so many ideas and they are a great way to add eccentric design and creativity to your wedding decor.  Whether you decide to go with an individual menu for your wedding guests or a large scale option, there are plenty of options from simple to elaborate. Here are some wonderful ways to include wooden details in your wedding.

wood wedding menu

clockwise from top left: Blue Dahlia Events,  Five Dot Design, &  Nathan Peel Photography via Style Me Pretty | Blue Pool Road &  Bonnie Tsang Photography via Snippet and Ink | Melangerie & Docuvitae | Paper Bark,  Alise Taggart Wedding Styling & Event Design & Paula O’Hara Photography via Magnolia Rouge


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I’ll just start with saying that some of my favorite wedding themes are bohemian, alternative, indie, and woodsy. And that’s just the reason I’m loving today’s wedding! Karen and James’ Lake Tahoe wedding at The HideOut would fit any one of my favorite themes. From the diverse array of botanicals to the macrame dreamcatchers,  Kate Whelan Events created a day that lives in boho-indie wedding heaven. The spectacular gallery from Sarah Maren Photography depicts a day filled with love, creativity and spontaneity.

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A surprise rainstorm joined the wedding day just before the ceremony. The couple and their guests waited out the showers while sipping cocktails under the pine trees.

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From the wedding planner,  Kate ~
Karen and James were married at the gorgeous Tahoe-area venue, The HideOut in Kirkwood. Karen’s bohemian dreams were realized by adding handmade dream catchers in ever nook and cranny, pheasant feathers tucked into textural flowers and even a mini teepee. The couple and their guests endured some stormy Tahoe weather by having their Cocktail Hour first, followed by their Ceremony and rocking’ into the Reception, entertained by their many musical guests.

From the photographer,  Sarah ~
Karen and James had an AMAZING wedding at The Hideout in Kirkwood, California. It was seriously one of the most incredible weddings ever! Yes, there was hail and rain RIGHT when the ceremony was supposed to happen. But Karen and James had the Alchemy team on hand, and we moved things around and had a cocktail hour first and then once the rain passed we got these two MARRIED! It was a great night with a fantastic group of people and holy cow I LOVE this wedding!

Wedding Venue : The HideOut, Kirkwood, CA | Photographer : Sarah Maren Photography | Wedding Design, Stationary and Planning : Kate Whelan Events | Rentals : Celebrations! Party Rentals and Forever Vintage Rentals | Reception Music : The Blank Tapes | Cake : Matthew Rogers, Coracao |Catering : Beth Sogaard Catering | DJ : SJ’s Disc Jockey | Florist : Flourish Designs | Ceremony and Cocktail Hour Music : Jesse Hendricks | Hair : Renee Brooks-Marquez, Hello Glam | Makeup : LeiLani Miladi, Hello Glam | Officiant : Abigal Doolittle

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Lake Tahoe Halloween Party Essentials

As I was getting our home ready for fall this past weekend I decided that this is the year I am going to through a halloween party. With many family and friends in our neighborhood we are in the perfect location for our guests to stop by while trick or treating with the kiddos or stay for a tasty beverage. Although a bit last minute, I was able to pull together some great ideas from my blogger friends. Here are my Lake Tahoe halloween party essentials!

Also, if you are having an October wedding, why not include some of these halloween inspired ideas. From a great picture op to a fun design element, halloween decor can be an interesting addition to your Lake Tahoe wedding.

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1. The Invitation

Not having too much time to prepare, these printable invitations from A Fabulous Fete are easy, simple and perfect.

2. Hors D’oeuvres

Autumn Harvest Board
via The House That Lars Built

  • Artisan Bread, torn
  • Artisan Cheeses–we used Humboldt Fog Goat Cheese, Teahive Cheddar Cheese & a French Roquefort Blue Cheese
  • Olives
  • Orchard fruit, sliced
  • Figs, cut in half
  • Pomegranate, deseeded
  • Butter & Flakey Sea Salt
  • Honeycomb
  • Spicy Dark Chocolate, broken into pieces
  • Big wood board to serve on

3. The Costume

La Catrina bride and groom. Inspired by a Día De Los Muertos styled shoot featured on Rock N’ Roll Bride.

4. The Drink

Get Lucky by Death & Co.
from The Sweetest Occasion via Harpers Bazaar

3 blackberries
2 oz. Flor de Caña extra-dry white rum
3/4 oz. lemon juice
1/4 oz. ginger syrup
1/4 oz. orgeat syrup
1/4 oz. acacia honey syrup
Peychaud’s bitters, to garnish

In a pilsner glass, gently muddle the blackberries. Fill the glass with crushed ice. In a shaker, whip the remaining ingredients, shaking with a few pieces of crushed ice just until incorporated. Strain into the glass. Garnish with a thin layer of bitters and serve with a straw.

5. The Flowers

Deep hues, dried leaves and a black vase. I love the addition of the violet flowers.
via Justina Blakeney

6. The Decor

Black candles and large brass candle holders set the stage.
via Coco & Kelley

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Lake Tahoe Wedding at The Ritz-Carlton

Winter is on the way and this wedding gallery has us sipping spiked cocoa by the fire. After poring over this stunning soiree at Lake Tahoe wedding venue The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe and captured by Ciprian Photography, I am sold that art deco meets winter elegance may just be one of my favorite wedding styles. My eyes are aglow with the white floral design by Art in Bloom  and the Northstar Ski Resort backdrop is as lovely as they come. See what the bride, Allison, has to say about her amazing Lake Tahoe wedding day below:


The Story
Rob and I met in 1995 at Cornell through Ski Club. Rob graduated ahead of me and moved out West, so we lost paths for 7 years…until 2006, when we ran into each other in the Pittsburgh airport baggage claim after a flight home for Christmas (also a native Pittsburgher, he happened to be on the same flight). At that moment, we realized we had both been living and working in San Francisco for the past handful of years, exchanged numbers, and started dating. In December 2011, we got engaged on the way home for the Holidays, while once again hanging out in the Pittsburgh airport, at baggage claim K.


The Style, Decor and Planning
Art deco meets vintage winter: my 1920s-style dress set the art deco tone in terms of design elements we used, and I wanted to also incorporate Tahoe/vintage winter sports pieces. Rob and I spend a lot of time in Tahoe so the entire weekend had to feel really different and special to us. The goal was to make the event elegant and chic, with a touch of rustic mountain/alpine details. I chose a palette of champagne gold, icy blue, deep turquoise, and earthy browns as I thought they’d work well in the event spaces, while also highlighting the pretty hues of mid-winter with the classic tones of a wedding.

I run my own business as a web/experience designer and my oldest and dearest friend Kara is a print/graphic designer, so she custom-designed an art deco pattern from my dress details that we used on everything. We selected a wintery fresh palette and deco font, designed a custom logo of Rob and me silhouetted/hanging on a chairlift, as well as an R&A monogram that was on most pieces. We also created a custom stamp, stickers, envelope stamp, etc. Together, it was really fun developing a full suite of design assets and elements that we could use on all of the wedding collateral we created. We designed almost every single design element in the event: the lift ticket save-the-dates, welcome boxes, the trail map, menu, program, custom “A” and “R” s’mores sticks for the welcome party at Petra’s, wedding website, invitations, signage throughout the event, escort card display, guest book skis, family photo display, etc. We used wintery materials like vellums, metallic papers, deep gold accents, rich texture linens, antique sports equipment, etc., to tie it all together.

Throughout the planning, I browsed antique stores, ebay, and craft suppliers to collect vintage gold mercury glass for the ivory florals, wickets for the Save the Dates, paper samples, vintage winter toboggan, mini-snowshoes, vintage fur stoles, gold baskets, ski race cowbells, blankets for the ceremony, vintage skis to be used/signed as the guest book, luminaries for the patio, gold boxes for the cookie table takeout, etc.

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The Ceremony
I am of Greek heritage and Rob is of Syrian heritage, so we wanted to incorporate some traditions from an Orthodox ceremony, as well as the cuisine we know and love. During the ceremony, officiated by our friend Josh who became ordained as a “Dudeist Priest” by the Church of Lebowski (no joke), we used my parents’ Greek Wedding Crowns, which serve as a sign of the bond between the Bride and Groom, and make the couple ‘King and Queen’ of their new family. My sister placed the crowns (which were tied together by a long ribbon) on our heads during the ceremony, and exchanged them three times between our vows.

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The Venue
Lake Tahoe was the obvious choice for our wedding, since we met via Ski Club, took a cat-ski trip to Canada for our first real getaway, and currently spend most of our free time there, when not living and working in San Francisco. We selected the Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe because it had the best food and facilities to host a winter wedding, and also had an outdoor patio where we could hold the ceremony. It was the perfect, luxe setting for an extended-weekend of parties in one location, and it minimized logistics for guests who would be traveling from afar. The hotel and staff provided our guests with an amazing Tahoe experience, complete with easy access to the outdoors and slopes, great service, food, spa, gear rentals, attention to detail, transit, etc.


The Reception
We also had traditional Greek Dancing, a Mediterranean menu, and a “Cookie Table,” which is a wonderful wedding tradition from our hometown of Pittsburgh, where in addition to a wedding cake, a large table with different ethnic cookies is presented at the reception. Cookies are generally prepared by family members in advance of the party, and my aunts and mom contributed with classics such as Baklava, Kourabiethes, and Buckeyes.

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Allison’s Favorite Wedding Day Memories
Skiing laps that morning with Rob. Walking down the aisle with my Dad. Seeing Rob for the 1st time at the altar. Our vows. The overwhelming feelings that hit me the moment the ceremony was complete. Dancing up on stage with Rob during “Two Tickets to Paradise.” Having a great friend marry us. Our dog as a “Ring Beast.” Dancing with our parents, family, and dearest friends. My niece Greek dancing. Putting on my dress with my mom, sister, and niece. The Mediterranean eats. Group shot-skis. The live music. A close friend showing up at 9pm after having emergency appendix surgery at Truckee-Tahoe Hospital earlier that day! All of our friends and family re-meeting in a place we absolutely love.

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From the planner, Shannon Leahy ~
The weather was perfect for a Winter Wedding… snow on the ground, sunny skies and the temperature allowed for the ceremony to be outside by the fireplace with some cozy blankets and cider. Perfect.

I just adore the paper materials that the Bride created and the table numbers from Yonder. It was also my first time seeing the Greek Orthodox tradition of the wedding crowns and it was absolutely stunning and beautiful to watch.

Lake Tahoe Wedding Vendors:
Photographer : Ciprian Photography | Ceremony & Reception Venue : The Ritz-Carlton, Lake Tahoe | Event Designer & Planner : Shannon Leahy Events | Florist : Hattie Reed with Art in Bloom | Catering & Cake : The Ritz Carlton, Lake Tahoe | Rentals & Lighting : Crux Events | Linens : La Tavola Fine linen | Paper : Yonder Event Design | Music : Guilty Pleasures | Invitation Designer : Chapas Design &  Kara Reid | Wedding Gown Designer : Jenny Packham from Nouvelle Vogue | Bridesmaid’s Dress Designer : Aidan Mattox from Saks Fifth Avenue | Jewelry : Custom by Sally Rumble & Maria Elena | Hair : Talia from The Ritz-Carlton | Makeup : Jennifer Ergut Makeup | ShotSki : Andy Costigan

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Lavender’s aroma is flowery, light and incredibly pleasant. Known in the apothecary world as having a feminine scent, it supports our ability to turn inward and increase our awareness.  It has also been used for many centuries in the area of love, used as a perfume to attract the opposite sex and used to scent love letters. For these reasons, and for its aesthetic beauty, we love to incorporate lavender into a Lake Tahoe wedding any chance we get. From bouquets to centerpieces, see below for all the ways your can incorporate this delicate flowering plant into your wedding.

lavender wedding details

clockwise from top left: lavender tied to ceremony chairs via Style Me Pretty | lavender cake via Style Me Pretty | lavender lemonade from Skinny limits | lavender dcor and lavender favor via André Teixeira, Branco Prata | lavender bridesmaid bouquet via The Bride Link by Jose Villa

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Wedding Tips | Best Wedding Apps

Technology has become an incredible part of our lives, and if you’re anything like us you spend most of the day on your smart phone tapping and swiping away. It’s not rare that I hear about an engagement over instagram or facebook. So while we are busy staring at our screens, why not make the time a bit more worth-while and start planning your wedding. With a slew of wedding apps on the market it’s hard to decide which one’s are the best. Well, we did the work for you. Here are some of the best wedding apps when it comes to planning your wedding. In the comments below, let us know what your favorites are!

1. Appy Couple


Much more than just a wedding app, Appy Couple is literally your own customized wedding app. This much-buzzed-about service allows users to create a personal wedding site and app to share important travel, lodging and event information with guests. Invite your guests to download your app and they’ll have all the wedding information at their finger tips. They can share photos, learn your story, allow guests to message each other without leaving the app, and even RSVP!

2. Pinterst

Like we’ve said before, Pinterest is a great tool to find wedding inspiration and ideas. Pin your favorite images and share them with your friends and family. Be careful, you could end up spending all day on this app!


With brides can browse images of products and decor by theme, color and brand, among other tags, and save things they like in “bundles” to share with friends, family or even wedding planners. It’s a lot like a bridal Pintrest, except highly curated. All images are selected by Loverly.

4. Postable


We have all been there at some point, trying to collect mailing addresses. This is 2014 and other than invitations, who uses mail? Mortgages, utilities and letters are all paid and sent online. This can be one of the most time consuming parts of planning your wedding.  Well, finally there is an easy way to get your guests’ mailing addresses thanks to Postable! Postable takes all the pain out of this extremely annoying process. Plus, it’s totally private, secure + free!

5. Blurb


Not necessarily a wedding app but still, we love it! Blurb let’s you easily create a gorgeous, unique wedding album that can be shared with friends and family. The designs are incredible creative and the step by step instructions are a cinch to follow. Don’t let those wedding photos sit on a thumb drive anymore, out them to good use!

Blog content & curation by Andria Gutierrez

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