Anniversary Session at Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument: Sarah + Jeremy

It’s very typical to see lots of engagement sessions and real weddings here at Perfect Wedding Guide and we can’t get enough of them! But we don’t always get to see the happy couple post nuptials, so we are just giddy to see this stunning anniversary shoot and share it with all of you!

As usual, our lovely Maura, of Maura Jane Photography, hit a home run with this stunning anniversary photo session at Tent Rocks National Monument. The iconic rock formations of Tent Rocks were the perfect backdrop for Sarah and Jeremy, who hiked the monument when they were dating.

The name Kasha-Katuwe means “white cliffs,” which offered gorgeous ombre hues to compliment the desert color pallet they chose for their photo session. With shades of blue, periwinkle and other natural tones, this photo shoot couldn’t have turned out more enchanting!

Jeremy and I met through a mutual friend on Facebook. I was hesitant to talk to him at first (stranger danger), but he pursued — for 5 years. We finally became friends and then he eventually came out to visit me while I was in school in Oklahoma. We had our first date on New Years Eve and we hit it off right away. Jeremy had me laughing the entire night. It was just natural.

Fast forward a couple of months and I came to visit him for the first time in Albuquerque. I am big into hiking so I begged him to take me to Tent Rocks. It looks so cool in pictures! We hiked all the way to the top to a beautiful overlook where Jeremy leaned over and asked me to be his girlfriend. I was a little stressed, because I thought I already was. This just made it official, I guess.

We wanted to do our anniversary shoot there because it was such a meaningful location to both of us. We didn’t get wedding pictures, so this was the first time we had our professional photos done! We couldn’t have picked a better spot!

— Sarah, Bride

For Sarah and Jeremy’s anniversary session, we hiked the Tent Rock Monument to a location dear to their heart. Sarah wore a flowy tulle blue skirt contrasting perfectly with the pink and white rocks. She carried a gorgeously messy bouquet from Floriography, full of desert flowers, pomegranates and roses. Sarah wanted her bouquet to have native flowers since New Mexico is where their love truly bloomed. Her hair and makeup by Genica Lee was simple yet truly complimented Sarah’s natural beauty. We tried to capture the effortlessness of Sarah and Jeremy’s love for each other as they danced and ran through the mountains hand in hand.

— Maura, Maura Jane Photography

Photos by Maura Jane Photography
Happy Anniversary, Sarah and Jeremy!
Meet the professionals who helped make their anniversary session possible:
 For more on everything Wedding + Wedding Planning, visit us at: PerfectWeddingGuide.com
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Come One, Come All! Witness the Incredible 2017 Bride’s Select Award Winners!

Last night was a circus — literally! Thanks to all of you who took the time to vote, we had the amazing opportunity to show our appreciation and celebrate the accomplishments of our favorite wedding professionals in Albuquerque and Santa Fe for our annual Bride’s Select Awards at NOAH’s Event Venue.

More than 650 local brides, grooms and newlyweds voted in over 20 categories and the results are in! Covering everything from Best Beauty Expert and Best Floral Designer to Best Ceremony Venue and Best Photographer, we are pleased to present you with the best of the best!

Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, step right up to see the amazing, the talented 2017 Bride’s Select Award winners!

Best Unique Wedding Service: Frost Gelato

Best Photo Booth Rental: Cutmaster Music

Best Cinematographer: Southwest Wedding Films

Best Photographer: Matt Blasing Photography

Best Local Band: Entourage Jazz

Best Disc Jockey: Dream Factory Productions

Best Place to Order Invitations: Funky Olive Invitations + Stationery

Best Hotel for Guest Accommodations: Hotel Andaluz

Best Men’s Formal Wear Shop: Mr. Tux Formal Wear

Best Bridal Gown Shop: Bridal Elegance by Darlene

Best Floral Designer: Floriography

Best Rental Company: Simply Décor and Events

Best Event Decor: Black Swan Events

Best Wedding Officiant: Amor Ceremonies

Best Location to have a Ceremony: Los Poblanos Historic Inn & Organic Farm

Best Place to Have a Reception: Hotel Albuquerque

Best Place to Have a Rehearsal Dinner: El Pinto

Best Place to have a Bachelorette Party: Uptown Funk

Best Catering or Restaurant: Prairie Star

Best Place to Order Wedding Cake: Simply Sweet by Darci

Best Spa or Place to Relax: Bliss Salon & Spa

Best Bridal Beauty Expert: Genica Lee

Best Wedding Coordinator: Alena Swanson, LLC

Congratulations, 2017 Bride’s Select Award Winners!

Photos by Sacred Life Photography

And, of course, a special thanks to our AMAZING sponsors! You made our Bride’s Select Awards Circus a huge success!

Ringmaster Brad of King Mobile Music | NOAH’S Event Venue | Occasion Services & Events | Conchita’s Creations | Bombshell Fitness | Sacred Life Photography | Charlotte’s Flowers | High Noon Restaurant & Saloon | Wise Fool New Mexico

Every year, your local Perfect Wedding Guide reaches out to hundreds of New Mexico brides, grooms and newlyweds just like you to get your feedback on your favorite local wedding businesses.

Stay tuned for dates to cast your vote for our 2018 Bride’s Select Awards!

For more on everything Wedding + Wedding Planning, visit us at: PerfectWeddingGuide.com

Romantic Desert Wedding Inspiration

Our enchanting desert landscape has long been a source of inspiration for artists of all kinds, including our talented friends in the wedding industry like photographers, designers and florists. For those of us who have become accustomed to our local landscape, it’s easy to take the desert for granted, but the earthy tones are the perfect canvas for a desert wedding masterpiece.

From the whimsical desert plants like yucca and cholla cactus, to the hidden elements of turquoise and burgundy clay, the possibilities are endless and this amazing styled shoot, captured by Briana Nicole Photography, is the perfect example of just how beautiful a desert southwest wedding can be. With a spin on local culture, this collaboration came together effortlessly.

For instance, the custom wedding stationery by Funky Olive Design Studio, showcased local symbols like the Zia and red chile. The amazing bouquet by Stephanie Yardman Floral Design was the perfect touch with cascading pheasant tail feathers and a mini barrel cactus. And the perfectly decorated sugar cookies by Little Sparrow Cookie Co. were everything but ordinary.

My hope for this styled wedding shoot was to show brides in the southwest that the desert can be such a beautiful place to incorporate into your wedding day. I feel like sometimes it can be overlooked because other areas have beautiful trees and greenery — I wanted to show brides that New Mexico is a beautiful place to call home. The elements in this shoot showcase some of the beautiful local culture as well as the art and to me, that’s why it stands out.

— Briana Nicole Photography

Photos by Briana Nicole Photography

Meet the professionals who helped make this styled shoot possible:

Photographer: Briana Nicole Photography, IG: @briananicolephoto | Hair + Makeup: C. Johnson Makeup, IG: @cjohnsonmakeup | Flowers: Stephanie Yardman Floral Design, IG: @stephanieyardman | Invitations: Funky Olive Design Studio, IG: @funkyolivedesign | Models: April Esquibel + Adam Sanchez, IG: @aprilmayesquibel | Dress: Bridal Elegance by Darlene, IG: @bridalelegancenm | Dessert: Little Sparrow Cookie Co., IG: @littlesparrowcc

For more on everything Wedding + Wedding Planning, visit us at: PerfectWeddingGuide.com

Look Your Best with Gypsy Trail Makeup & Hair

Don’t make the mistake of commissioning your little sister or hiring an amateur makeup artist for the biggest day of your life. After all, you want to look your absolute best when you walk down the aisle. To help you get on the right trail, we would like to introduce you to Macey, the beauty and the brains behind Gypsy Trail Makeup & Hair.

Macey has been creating works of art with hair and makeup for years and her expertise is unequaled. And with quality makeup, you can be confident your look will last. Aside from her amazing work, however, there is no one with a better personality. Not only does she love her craft, but she truly loves her clients which sets her standard for excellence.

Whether you’re preparing for a wedding, a prom or any special occasion you want to look your best, Gypsy Trail Makeup & Hair is definitely your top choice! Not to mention, Macey offers custom packages with affordable prices so everyone can be pampered with professional hair and makeup regardless of their budget.

We are absolutely blown away by Macey’s professionalism, creativity and stunning designs that truly showcase her talent. We are thrilled to have her be a part of our wedding community and we are proud to endorse Gypsy Trail Makeup & Hair to every bride, mother and bridesmaid who wants to look and feel amazing inside and out!

— Perfect Wedding Guide Team

Accentuate your natural beauty with Gypsy Trail Makeup & Hair, where you can be sure you will look and feel beautiful on your big day. If you would like to get your name in the books, contact Macey today!

For more on everything Wedding + Wedding Planning, visit us at: PerfectWeddingGuide.com

Romance in the Rain: Lauren Cherie Photography

Last month we introduced you to one of our favorite photographers with our post: Cherish Your Memories: Lauren Cherie Photography. Recently, Lauren and a talented gang of wedding professionals got together for a beautiful styled shoot in the quaint Village of Corrales. This lovely group of gals found a stunning bank along the Rio Grande that was simply perfect.

With a good balance of bright New Mexico sunshine and dark rain clouds rolling in, the lighting was just right and the natural setting couldn’t have been more gorgeous. Once their models were pampered by Lavender + Rose Hair & Makeup Studio, Lauren and the team set off for their secret spot hidden among the majestic cottonwood trees of the bosque (forest).

Like an enchanting fairy tale, the desert creatures were happy to bear witness to their beautiful styled shoot creation. Along with the elegant iron bed and accent table they used as props, the ladies from Floral Fetish and She’s Got Cake added the final touches with their beautiful flower arrangements and mouthwatering wedding cake.

We had so much fun with this photo shoot! We knew we wanted to do something in the bosque with the big beautiful trees. And this Corrales, NM location did not disappoint. We had some golden sunlight at the beginning and then some light rain at the end.

We wanted something pretty and romantic, but also fun and different. Along with a pretty cake and gorgeous florals, we decided to bring a bed to the bosque — talk about different! We captured some beautiful, romantic moments and also super fun, silly moments.

— Lauren, Lauren Cherie Photography

Photos by Lauren Cherie Photography

Meet the professionals who helped make this styled shoot possible:

Photographer: Lauren Cherie Photography | Florist: Floral Fetish | Hair + Makeup: Lavender + Rose Hair & Makeup Studio | Cake: She’s Got Cake | Models: Ryan and Ashlie Bustamante

Behind the scenes with Lauren Cherie Photography:

For more on everything Wedding + Wedding Planning, visit us at: PerfectWeddingGuide.com

Haute Pink Wedding: Brooke + Mitch

If you follow our Blissful Bridal Blog, I’m sure most of you had a peek of Brooke and Mitch’s Haute Downtown Engagement. In case you haven’t, be sure to take a look at this stunning shoot! For the rest of us anticipating the theme of their gorgeous wedding, however, here’s the moment we’ve all been waiting for…

Kate Spade New York!

Their Kate Spade inspired wedding was so chic, it might as well be a spread in the next Vogue! Everything worked so well together from the black and white stripes and the grooms polka dot tie to the hot pink flowers and golden accents. It was classy meets edgy with a dash of sparkle and a whole lotta haute!

Taking place at the elegant NOAH’S Event Venue, Brooke and her crew started out by getting pampered in the luxurious bridal suite. And what better way to get dolled up with all your BFFs, than by watching the hilarious Bridesmaids movie? Aside from it’s keen accuracy on comedic bridesmaid drama, a lighthearted film like this does well to set the tone and ease the nerves.

Once they were ready for their close up, the couple met outside for their first look and gorgeous photos before making it official at the LDS Temple. And later on at their reception, the biggest surprise of the night came when Brooke’s brother serenaded the couple and then surprised his sis with a mariachi band!

Brooke couldn’t be happier with this unforgettable moment, but more importantly, the couple couldn’t be happier about their new life together. To bring the night to a close, their friends and family showered them with a sea of sparklers — certainly a symbol of their bright future together.

Since Brooke’s family is in the land of enchantment, the wedding took place at the LDS temple here in Albuquerque with the reception at NOAH’S Event Venue. Brooke, who is quite the fashionista, loves all things Kate Spade and knew she had to incorporate it into her wedding. From the darling black and white Kate Spade heels with accent bows that graced her feet to the striped table clothes that hung on the tables, every detail was executed perfectly.
Brooke wore a stunning long sleeve lace dress from Alta Moda Bridal and held beautiful bright pink peonies in her hand. Aubrey, of Aubrey’s Petals filled the ballroom full of gold candles, orange roses and, of course, the bright colored peonies flown in from Israel. Guests were served some of Brooke’s favorite New Mexican dishes while they sipped yummy and unique sodas created especially for the couple and devoured the delicious cupcakes brought in by Smallcakes.
Perhaps our most favorite part of the evening is when Brooke’s brother sang a traditional Mexican song and surprised the couple with a Mariachi Band who joined in. The expression on Brooke’s face was priceless! This unique wedding was definitely one to be remembered and we wish the newlyweds nothing but the very best!

— Maura, Maura Jane Photography

Photos by Maura Jane Photography

Congratulations, Brooke and Mitch!

Meet the professionals who helped make their dream a reality:

Venue: NOAH’S Event Venue | Dress: Alta Moda Bridal | Dress Designer: Jean & Jewel | Shoes: Kate Spade New York | Cake: Smallcakes | Bridesmaids: New York & Company | Florist: Aubrey’s Petals | Hair + Makeup: Monica Gallegos | Photography: Maura Jane Photography | Entertainment: Mariachi Nuevo Sonido | Video: Jordee Arvin Pictures

And a special shout out to Brooke’s bridesmaids!

For more on everything Wedding + Wedding Planning, visit us at: PerfectWeddingGuide.com

Valentine’s Day Inspo for Your Bridal Shoot

Today we want to celebrate Valentine’s Day with inspiration from the experts in the business! Some very talented local wedding vendors got together to bring you this one-of-a-kind styled bridal shoot with a wild, urban vibe just in time for all you newly engaged ladies!

Each of these vendors put together a few tips and tricks to help brides think outside the box of traditional bridal. Styling this look around a tea colored gown with lace details by Free People — the epitome of modern bridal. It’s modern without sacrificing a bit of feminine and Arielei Kinzer Photography did an amazing job of capturing this look!

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JEWELRY

When selecting bridal jewelry, it’s important to pick something that expresses your personal style. We like the idea of being able to take the jewelry you wore on your wedding day and infusing it into your everyday style. Too often people select jewelry that doesn’t represent their personal taste and it ends up in a drawer never to be worn again.

In fact, the best wedding accessories are usually not considered “bridal.” So before you buy, talk to a designer about creating a custom piece. There are so many talented, non-traditional jewelry designers out there who love creating one-of-a-kind pieces. And the same goes for the groom when selecting tie clips, cuff links, or lapel pins. — Genuine and Ginger

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MAKEUP

For the nontraditional bride, embrace everything that makes you beautiful and unique. Don’t worry about trends or the advice of others. Focus on what makes you feel beautiful, confident and truly comfortable. — C. Johnson Makeup

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FLORAL

When creating a mood with flowers it’s best to provide your florist with a color pallet, pictures, textures and specific words describing the feeling you want to achieve. For instance, you might use descriptions like romantic, soft, lots of texture, wild and so on.

Also, if you give your florist freedom and allow them to choose the blooms that fit within your vision, it will be designed much easier than if you’re adamant about specific flower types. More importantly, find a florist whose style you love and trust them! — Stephanie Yardman

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Ultimately, bridal styling should be based on the bride and her personality. The idea that something is bridal or not bridal is all a myth. We want to encourage brides to rock whatever they love on their wedding day and embrace their adventurous, non-traditional side!

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Photography: Arielei Kinzer Photography, IG: @arieleikinzer | Hair and Makeup: C. Johnson Makeup, IG: @cjohnsonmakeup | Flowers: Stephanie Yardman Floral Design, IG: @stephanieyardman  | Jewelry Design and Styling: Genuine and Ginger, IG @genuineandginger  | Model: Sierra Champion, IG: @sierraemilie | Dress: Free PeopleIG: @freepeople

For more on everything Wedding + Wedding Planning, visit us at: PerfectWeddingGuide.com