It’s true! We do hereby declare, with as much authority we can muster as a national wedding magazine, that Perfect Wedding Guide’s Wed Box is the cutest wedding subscription box in the world. And yes, the adorability scale is wildly subjective and dependent on each engaged couple’s personal taste, but that’s alright.
Even if you, personally, don’t think the Wed Box is adorable, we can all at least agree that it’s an efficient money-saver, a helpful wedding planning tool, and perfectly tailored to our local, Albuquerque + Santa Fe engaged couples.
(Not going to lie though, we do work very hard to make it cute, too.)
But enough of the fluff — let’s get down to the ins and outs of the Wed Box. (Specifically the ins.) Nestled inside the craft box is a curated collection of coupons, gift cards, giveaways, and gifts all exclusively from local wedding professionals here in New Mexico. Sweet treats, cute and comfy tees, and substantial discounts on wedding services have been known to grace the box in years past, but everything, every year is brand-spanking new.
Unlike other subscription boxes, too, the Wed Box only comes around once a year, when the Spring/Summer edition of our print magazine is set to hit the streets. With a look at upcoming 2019/2020 shows, new and veteran vendors, and local inspiration, you’ll be one of the very first lucky-loos to grab ticket codes and other perks hidden within its pages.
We’re very proud to be deeply ingrained into our local community, too. In fact, it’s our favorite part of being Perfect Wedding Guide! So, when the day comes for your Wed Box to arrive, it won’t come from FedEx. It will be hand delivered, after being hand packaged with products chosen by hand, right to your door by one of the lovely ladies who make up our woman-led, women-run team.
(Antisocial? We get it, and absolutely won’t take offense if you wait until we’ve driven away to sneak out and grab your Wed Box.)
It’s that time of year in the Perfect Wedding Guide world — at least our corner of it — when the excitement of the holidays has passed, and the ethereality of spring hasn’t yet come. The magic never really subsides here though, because tiding us over between these two time markers is the new edition of our magazine finally coming to fruition! If you followed along for the thrill and apprehension of our Front Cover Contest on Instagram, then you know, too, that this spring’s print guide is going to be more beautiful, more inspirational, and more serviceable than ever before.
We spent some time a couple weeks ago falling in love with Caitlin + Justin, the stunning couple whose photo was in our top three finalists for the Front Cover Contest. We’d be absolutely remiss if we didn’t give a little TLC to our other finalists, Abby + Tyler, and their New Mexican elopement that warmed our hearts so much, it was a health hazard. Which, of course, comes as no surprise, considering Chrisi K Photography was there to work her camera mastery for every step of the day.
Opening up the celebration at the Inn of the Turquoise Bear, Abby + Tyler got oh so pretty in preparation for the next step of their lives together. It was there that they shared their first look, spinning around and marveling at one another, before heading to the destination of their elopement ceremony: Jemez Springs.
Now, Abby + Tyler are actually from Ohio. They flew in all the way from the midwest to our little slice of southwestern heaven to commemorate the beginning of their life as husband and wife here, in New Mexico. But against the backdrop of Jemez’s signature red clay, Abby + Tyler glowed with such obvious joy, it was as if they had been here and with one another for many lifetimes.
There, they shared their vows with one another, framed by the natural beauty of our desert, and stepped into their next chapter together.
It was beautiful, raw, and emotional. I’m so honored I got to document it all. My heart is full!
Something about this fine start to a brand new year has us feeling like the right thing to do, right now, is just to indulge in the beauty around us. We’re lucky enough to be on the forefront of weddings, styled shoots, vendor collaborations, and so much more. We’re even luckier to be doing what we love to do, here in Albuquerque and Santa Fe, because both communities are rich in creative people with unique aesthetics, who aren’t afraid of pushing boundaries.
Which is how we landed on highlighting My Beloved Vintage Rentals, on this crisp winter morning. Founded on the principle that beauty is everything, the woman-owned decor team provides their couples and clients with so much more than just your average stock of chair covers.
With meticulously chosen vintage furniture and textiles, classic wooden yard games for the child’s spirit within all of us, and handcrafted, lovingly built tables of all shapes and sizes, My Beloved Vintage Rentals does big details in a big way. Not to mention their take on the circular arch backdrop — the trend that everyone and their mother has been swooning over this season — that supports crawling, sprawling florals and fanciful greenery.
But, with all the love that’s poured into the big details, the little details get twice as much. Because crafting a memorable, special moment to match your love story is actually what My Beloved Vintage Rentals does best. It’s no wonder their team has been popping up in just about every jaw-dropping styled shoot and wedding in New Mexico!
To book My Beloved Vintage Rentals, and ensure your wedding celebration is fine-tuned into your unique love story and personality, you can contact their team here.
Let’s take a moment on this lovely morning to stop, breathe, and flex our brain’s inherent storytelling abilities. You are hereby given permission to pause whatever work you’re doing to indulge in the following: Imagine your wedding guests, many of whom will have traveled far and wide for your celebration, being greeted by your venue with a bubbling fountain, the comforting sight of traditional adobe, and a luscious garden of fruit trees, sweet-smelling herbs, and wildflowers. Sounds lovely, right? It gets better.
Casa Perea Art Space, established in the 19th century by the Perea family, is so excellently preserved, the State Register of Cultural Properties describes the wedding venue as an apt example of New Mexico Territorial Architecture. Beyond its fountain and wrought iron gates lies a 100-foot-long pergola, crawling with trumpet vines, climbing roses, and the ever-fantastical wisteria.
Within the adobe abode, the Casa Perea team describes the space as “New Mexican and Spanish Colonial antiques that evoke historic New Mexico architecture and style.” Which, if you know anything about the Perfect Wedding Guide team, then you know we go absolutely nuts for everything traditional New Mexico. Casa Perea Art Space might be the most historical New Mexican venue too, considering the fact it served as the Sandoval County Courthouse following our home’s statehood in 1912. We only freaked out a little bit when we found that out. Or maybe a lot.
There’s nothing to fear for engaged couples though, the venue is used only for romantic courting now. With every inch of the space already carefully cultivated by hand, minimal additional decor is required, especially if your desires are centered around incorporating your home state’s rich cultural history into your celebration — which we highly recommend.
Perhaps we use the adjective perfect a little bit too frequently…But we are the Perfect Wedding Guide, after all! Plus, every wedding that graces our pages, both print and digital, was conceptualized and executed to perfection. But don’t let that fact dilute the word, because Aja + Johnny’s celebration of love was — yes we’re going to use it again — absolutely perfect.
When we say perfect, we don’t necessarily mean without hitch or hiccup as the traditional definition would suggest. Anyone whose been to a wedding, whether attending as a guest or collaborating as a vendor, knows that no celebration so large, so detailed happens without a few little bumps. Especially when a healthy number of family members are gathered in one place, if you know what we mean. What makes weddings like Aja + Johnny’s perfect is their persistence.
Despite the hours of calling, researching, and booking local wedding professionals, despite New Mexican weather that stays finicky all year long, despite all the budgeting, the love persists. Because the love between Aja + Johnny is bigger than any wedding-related trial or triumph — it steadfastly remains the focal point of their celebration, no matter the circumstance. We’re lucky Chrisi K Photography was there to capture this facet of their love, and ensure every detail was solidified in memory for their lifetime. Because, well, their life together as husband and wife began on this glorious and bright summer day, but the love that brought them there had already been existing and persisting all the while.
And, as if this simple truth didn’t make their wedding day perfect enough already, the couple truly slayed the summer wedding palette, and incorporated some of the most darling details we’ve seen to date. From the paper parasols to shade their guests from the New Mexican sun, to the adorable and surprisingly realistic succulent cupcakes, to the buoyantly cheerful bouquets of rose that complimented the bridesmaids donned in ethereal pastel. Aja + Johnny cared for every detail of their wedding day, and Chrisi K Photography cared for every moment.
That’s what fuels our wedding fire — the best friend connection that so obviously shines through when two puzzle pieces fall inline together. We’re lucky to have a myriad of incredible photographers in New Mexico, too, to ensure that moment of coalescence is always captured forever. Today, we’re especially grateful for Briana Nicole Photography, whose crisp and modern photography style records the romance and personality of all her couples.
Sherah + Greg’s unique personalities were at the forefront of their wedding ceremony, and Briana Nicole Photography told their love story in exquisite detail. The muted and regal tones of their wedding colors enveloped the couple throughout their day at the Hyatt Regency Downtown, and complimented the all-white ballroom perfectly. Pops of purple in the bouquets from Albuquerque Florist and in the detailing of the decor showcased the couple’s humor and friendship, and rounded out the day into a full on celebration of their love.
The couple’s gifts to one another made them both cry, and proved just how deeply and truly they are connected. For Greg, Sherah surprised him with two thoughtful and heartwarming cards, detailing the unique facets of their love. To accompany her eloquent words, too, was a set of cufflinks featuring the faces of their fur babies. The second card was, of course, from the aforementioned puppies, thanking Greg for being the best dad ever.
It’s the precious, incomparable moments and details like this that accumulate to tell one, beautiful story of love and friendship. Briana Nicole Photography, who is a self-proclaimed romantic at heart, knows this so clearly and allows it to shape her work. Thank you, Briana, for allowing us a sneak peak into this celebration, so we might be touched by Sherah + Greg’s love in the same way.
Tis the season for rejuvenation, fine-tuning, self-care, and feeling beautiful in your skin. That’s why we’re so excited to share these expert tips from Marisa Lux Makeup on long-term skin care for feeling your absolute best on your wedding day.
Marisa has been doing makeup for 13 years, and she’s also a licensed esthetician with 10 years of experience. Marisa Lux Makeup specializes in doing makeup for wedding parties here in Albuquerque + Santa, and in particular, professional airbrush application. Which is perfect for weddings because it provides all-day stay, flawless finish, and minimal makeup that results in a lovely, natural look. Thank you Marisa for sharing your vast amount of beauty knowledge!
Many brides start thinking about their skin and skincare a bit more once the wedding date is approaching, and I am here to help you with that. I will guide you through what you should and should not do leading up to your wedding.
Some brides decide 6-12 months out that they want to start a regular skincare routine or upgrade their current skin regimen.Some start by getting regular facials. Some brides may have problematic skin (i.e. acne or light acne, post inflammatory pigmentation, acne scarring, rosacea, discoloration or extremely dry or oily skin) and want to learn how to best take care of it. Other brides decide they will just get a facial a week or a few days before their wedding. Since getting a facial right before the wedding is one of the more common things brides think of doing, let me tell you why, from an esthetician’s point of view, that is NOT a good idea. You are probably thinking, wait, what?!? Let me explain.
I always recommend brides start working on their skin anywhere from a few months to a year before their wedding. I know some people can’t afford to get facials monthly which is why a consultation with a professional can help you learn what your options are. For example, if a person has very problematic skin and they find a great esthetician in New Mexico who can assist them in choosing the correct products and treatments, it can be life changing, especially for brides.
I have had many brides who struggled with acne and/or could not get control of dark spots on their face from acne in the past. With the appropriate professional skincare products and applying the best treatments, I have literally transformed peoples’ skin. I will explain a little more about treatments and products later.
Now, why shouldn’t you just get a facial a week or a couple of days before your wedding? You will most likely just choose a spa that maybe sounds relaxing or you heard offers good facials. The issue is that you are exposing your skin to products you have never used before; you are receiving a facial treatment you have never had before; and you are working with an esthetician who doesn’t really know your skin. Now don’t misunderstand me, I respect people in my profession, but I can tell you from first hand experience not all estheticians are created equal. The first thing that can go wrong is some products used during the facial or even the skincare line used might not agree with your skin. Yes, Iacknowledge the odds of this happening are not high, but it is possible. What IF you have some sort of reaction to the products used? What IF the facial makes you break out? What IF you have an allergic reaction? What IF your skin gets red or itchy afterwards? What IF the esthetician uses too strong of an exfoliant and your skin starts flaking? Although the likelihood is low, do you want to risk any of these things happening right before your wedding day?
This is why I always suggest starting facial treatments at least a few months before your wedding. Or, if you are just wanting to get a facial right before your wedding, my recommendation is this: instead of getting a facial a few days before your wedding, get the exact same facial a month or two before your wedding as a trial run to make sure your skin does well with it. Also see the same esthetician both times. That way they will have notes on your skin and products they used so they can use all the same products or make adjustments, if necessary. Doesn’t that make sense?
I am not trying to scare anyone, but, trust me, I have heard stories of brides getting facials or waxing for the first right before their wedding and their skin freaked out. So my advice is to find a reputable esthetician (you can always look up estheticians in your area on Yelp and Perfect Wedding Guide to see who has the best reviews) and choose wisely based on someone’s education and experience in the field. Some of us estheticians have many years of experience and are vastly knowledgable about specific products, and, especially, active ingredients that will work to treat your specific skin concerns or just the most appropriate products for your skin type. Some of us take continuing education and trainings to stay up to date with all the new advancements in the skincare world. This is the type of esthetician you want. Someone who has vast knowledge of the skin and how it works.
Now regarding different facial treatments, let me give you general information regarding some of the more popular treatments. A regular or custom facial is good for all skin types. The esthetician will analyze your skin, perform a gentle, hydrating facial and talk to you about what products you are currently using and probably make some suggestions on products or skin regimens that would be beneficial for your specific skin. A deep cleansing facial with extractions is good for people who may have a bit of a more oily skin type, larger pores and possibly some acne. Typically these facials will include steam, cleansing, appropriate exfoliation; maybe a light enzyme exfoliant that will help with cell turn over and can soften the pores to help with extractions. This is usually followed with an appropriate mask, serums and moisturizers.
If you have severe acne you may want to start with an esthetician and work with her and her skincare product recommendations. Depending on the type of acne, certain active ingredients sometimes you can get it under control. Sometimes you make also need to look into things like diet, supplements, bad habits like not washing your face at night, or maybe other culprits. If you are not getting the desired improvement, the esthetician may also refer you to a dermatologist for prescription recommendations, but most good estheticians can really help with acne. Some other treatments that can be highly beneficial are microdermabrasion, dermaplaning, hydrafacials and possibly even peels that can even out skin clarity and lessen light scarring and discolorations.
I will do a more in-depth post on treatments and what is most beneficial for different skin issues. If you don’t know what any of the treatments are or you are thinking, “OMG a peel; I don’t want my face to turn beet red and have my skin fall off,” I promise I will go into more detail about what each one of these entails.
My recommendation for the best facial you can do before your wedding (keeping in mind you want to do one at least a month or two prior to make sure your skin does well) is an oxygen facial. Some people have heard of them or heard the name while other people have never heard of them.Let me explain why this is my go-to facial for brides. It is calming, soothing, extremely hydrating, meant to plump the skin and make it look flawless.
These are what many people refer to as “The Red Carpet” facial because many celebs like to get this facial before they attend an event like the Academy Awards. The reason is no super strong exfoliants or aggressive products are used. The main thing that sets this facial apart is that an airbrush dispenser is used to mist a highly active serum onto the skin and then uses compressed oxygen to drive the ingredients into the skin. It is a very cool, relaxing experience, with zero discomfort and no downtime. You walk out and your skin looks beautiful and results typically last up to a week.
If you would like any more information about facials and what I might recommend for your skin type, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me. I absolutely love skin care and helping people learn how to get the skin they want. I offer facials at the Four Seasons Rancho Encantado, if you would like to come see me. AND, yes, I offer my favorite facial “The Oxygen Facial” there. I will work with you and your skin needs to get you where you want to be with your skin so that your wedding makeup will look gorgeous because your skin will be in the best shape possible.
I hope this is all helpful information. Follow me on Instagram to see photos of some of my clients and how I helped make their wedding day even more special.Please don’t hesitate to reach out if you have any questions. Have the most beautiful wedding by looking and feeling your best.