Wedding Favors Your Guests Really Want

Wedding Favors Your Guests Really Want

With everyone cozied up in their homes, now is the time to focus on the important aspects of life like family, good health, and dreams for your future – it’s also the perfect time to do a little bit of wedding planning!

These are crazy times, but the Wedding Collective team is still here working hard to ensure that local couples are making connections with local vendors. Staying and supporting local is key, especially right now when everyone needs it most. We’re all in this together!

A great way to support local wedding creatives is to replace the items that you would buy online or from a chain with hand-made goods. There’s no need to worry about breaking the bank, because there are plenty of creatives that understand the struggle and offer incredible prices for high quality and unique products. Plus, you’ll be supporting the local economy and saving the environment, as well.

The easiest place to get started is with wedding favors! Your guests will always appreciate taking home a little memento from the day. Not a fan of generic wedding favors lined up on generic shopping aisle shelves? We get it and we couldn’t be anymore with you. We’ve pulled together our top 3 picks for local wedding favors that your guests will actually love, so keep on reading!

1. Natural Products

via K and C Naturals

All-natural wedding favors are always a good idea, especially when they are hand-crafted! Skincare is an important aspect of everyone’s lives, which is why you should care about the products that you use and choose to give to others. By choosing a local business like K and C Naturals, you know exactly where your ingredients come from + their allergy free. These goodies are made with love, for the ones you love.

2. Personalized Items

via Purplumm

Custom labels to put on wedding favors put that personal touch into the sweet gifts that guests will bring home, even if you don’t have the time to DIY a bunch of Pinterest projects. Everybody loves to receive a gift that has been chosen from the heart. Purplumm can help you create unique labels for wine bottles, gift boxes, candles, tea bags – need we say more? Choose the favors that will stand out!

3. Tasty Treats

via Celina’s Biscochitos

This one is for all of the foodies out there! Tasty treats, like Celina’s Biscochitos, are guaranteed to win all of the hearts at your wedding. Local baked goods are fresh, high-quality, and most always customized to your liking. Incorporate the beautiful New Mexican culture into your food, decor, and the keepsakes that are taken home to be enjoyed after a long day.

Meet the Wedding Collective Team

Meet the Wedding Collective Team

It’s been awhile since we have given you a little behind-the-scenes, and now that we have transitioned into Wedding Collective, we found it only fitting to introduce ourselves.

We’re the ladies behind the scenes helping our New Mexico wedding community foster connections, dream big, and create the best weddings yet. As a team, we work in a charming little space nestled in the North Valley where we feel right at home – at least we should since it is quite literally a house. If you’ve ever dropped by for a meeting or just to say hello, you know that we’re not kidding when we say “unconventional office space”!

To give you a better idea of what each of us do here at Wedding Collective, we’ve written a bit about ourselves. We hope you enjoy getting to know us + our individually quirky personalities. Brace yourselves – we’re actually really cool.

Meet Shauna

Founder, CEO, Fearless Leader

Hello, Shauna Pointer here! I am the founder and CEO of Wedding Collective New Mexico, formerly Perfect Wedding Guide. When I am not in the office, I am spending time with my adorable family going on adventures or playing board games.

I chose “CHALLENGE” as my word for 2020 because I want to challenge myself to learn new things; challenge myself to embrace unending change with courage; challenge our status quo as a company; challenge our team members to push themselves to achieve great things, and challenge the wedding community to love more, love harder, and never give up.

Traveling with my family is my absolute favorite thing to do, because of all of the unique experiences we have together along the way – like sleigh rides!

Meet Jenna

Creative Director, Crafty Queen, Dog-Lover

Hey guys Jenna here, Wedding Collective’s Creative Director!
At the start of the year, each of our team members chose a challenge or focus word for the year. My word is “CONFIDENCE”. When asked at the beginning of 2020 what word we would choose for ourselves, my hand was the first to shoot up (sounds confident already, haha). I knew that my word had to be confidence. It’s something I need to work on both personally and professionally.

Words of affirmation is not my love language so I’ve discovered my confidence can’t come from others telling me I did a good job or complimenting my work. That just makes me blush lol I know I have all the confidence I need but in those tough moments I need to remind myself of that. We all know our minds battle against us sometimes though, who’s with me?

So this year, its all about the little victories for me. Stepping out of my comfort zone and really pushing myself so I can feel those “I’ve got this” moments. It will help me be a better co-worker, leader, friend, wife, believer, and resource for our friendors. Let’s do this 2020!

Meet Jennifer

Social Media Maven, Super Mom, #HairGoals

Hey guys! This is Jenn, Wedding Collective‘s Social Media Maven.

At the beginning of the year, each of our team members chose a challenge or focus word for the year. I chose “BALANCE“. I want my focus in 2020 to be on creating a balance in my life+work, a balanced (+engaging) experience for our followers in terms of content, and a balanced following of creatives, entrepreneurs, engaged couples, and all the movers+shakers+doers.

The hardest challenge for me will be the life+work balance. I think it can be SO easy to lose track of yourself within your work. There is always one more email, one more project, one more issue to fix, and the list goes on and on and on. I get so busy with being busy that I forget the importance of balance.

Only if you are able to strike a balance between all the significant facets of life, will you have the courage to go ahead and chase bigger goals. In order to provide the best balanced experience for our followers (plus the balance that my family needs), I also need to focus on my own balance. So the next time you get an email from me past “normal business hours”, remind me about balance.

Meet Imyraly

Client Experience Guru, Proposal-Planner, Country Girl

“Be fearless in pursuit of what sets your soul on fire.”

-Jennifer Lee

Hi, lovelies! Imyraly Garcia, Wedding Collective‘s Client Experience Guru here. Formerly Imyraly Corral, Office Assistant. My last name has since changed because I recently got married to my sweetheart, yay! My job title has also changed. This year is all about out with the old, in with the new! LOL.

When I was first asked what my word for the year is, I said, “determined” because this year I am determined more than ever to pursue my passion and everything I always wanted to do but never did, out of fear of what others would say and the overarching fear of failure. That’s when I quickly realized that my word for the year should reflect me stepping out of fear and being, “FEARLESS“!

This year I started my very own proposal planning business called Marry Me Sweetly and I dove into the acting world. Although I have a daily mind battle of whether I am cut out for the business or the acting world, going after my dreams has never felt more right.

The best part of 2020 was marrying the love of life! We had a How I Met Your Mother themed ceremony, hence the yellow umbrella, because we are the real-life Lily and Marshall. At least we’d like to think so.

Meet Alissia

Brand Ambassador, Social Butterfly, Thai-Food-Lover

Hi, friends! It’s ya girl Alissia here, Wedding Collective’s Brand Ambassador! You’ve probably seen my face on our stories, or around town dropping off guides.

Our team chose a word for the year and my word is intent. For 2020, I want to focus on living my life with “INTENT“, and hopefully make a habit of doing so. I want to be able to take control of my life, and not let it control me.  This means being mindful of how I spend my time (and with whom I spend it, because that MATTERS, my friends).

I tend to always be looking toward the future (big time dreamer over here, people), and if I am living with more intention, I can truly live in the moment and appreciate the journey instead of trying to reach the destination. So, this year I am trying to slow down and appreciate everything that life has to offer—good or bad. And honestly, I’ve realized that not every “bad” situation actually has to be bad. It just depends on how you let it impact you.

Meet Kayleigh

Content Writer, Storyteller, Snack-Lover

“You don’t just wake up and become the butterfly. Growth is a process.”

– Rupi Kaur

Hi lovelies! I’m Kayleigh, the Content Writer for Wedding Collective. I chose the word “GROWTH” because, first of all, I am the newest addition to the team, so I hope to grow a lot in my experience writing all about the wedding community! I also have a goal to make this year my most transformational yet, for myself, my passions and my health.

Growing and learning go hand in hand, and I strive to always be learning. I get so busy thinking about the future and what it holds that I forget to live in the moment and remind myself that I will grow into whoever and wherever I am meant to be. I can’t wait to take on the rest of 2020 with the growing wedding community!

I chose a recent photo of me with my family at my college graduation because it was a huge step in my growing process and I couldn’t have done it without my support system. #AdultLife here I come!

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Wedding Collective is more than just a magazine, we’re a community, and because of this, we spend everyday showcasing New Mexico infused content to inspire. Whether this means creating blog posts to showcase local vendors, or hosting wedding shows for engaged couples, we’re here to help you!

Vendor Spotlight: Inn of the Mountain Gods

Vendor Spotlight: Inn of the Mountain Gods

Say “I Do” With a Mountain Oasis View

– Inn of the Mountain Gods

It’s finally warming up outside and the seasons aren’t the only thing making big changes. Wedding Collective has been anxiously waiting for the Spring/Summer copy of our guide to arrive at our doorstep so that we can share all of the new inspo with you! All of the recent changes made to our brand have us ready to take on new challenges, new content, and new springtime “I dos”.

If you’ve always dreamed that your “I do” moment would be straight out of a fairytale, then we have some really good news for you – your dreams can become a reality. Nestled in the mountains of Ruidoso, Inn of the Mountain Gods Resort & Casino sits proud and tall surrounded by greenery and gorgeous lakes. This fairytale-like venue offers more than just a beautiful backdrop, but also a complete Southern New Mexican experience, no matter the season.

The wedding turned out perfect! This is the best place to have a wedding if you love the outdoors and scenery! Everything was well planned and I could not have asked for a better wedding venue!!!

– Tammy, Bride

Finding the perfect venue can be challenging since there are so many options out there, from backyard weddings to luxurious gardens. It is possible, though, to find the venue that makes your heart say, “this is exactly where I am meant to be”. At Inn of the Mountain Gods, you’ll find your new favorite place where your love story will be in good hands. From start to finish, the venue ensures that you and your guests have everything you need to create the memories that will live on forever.

Blonde Buffalo Photography

Inn of the Mountain Gods offers a wide range of services and you can tell just from their enthusiasm that caring for their clients’ needs is of utmost importance. Couples, just like you, want to choose a venue that is flexible and can provide a range of options, and the resort heard those requests and has exceeded expectations by offering indoor + outdoor ceremony spaces, set-up, seating + table arrangements, meals, cakes, and so much more. You want to check off as many items on your list as possible – and babe, we totally get it. That is why the Inn of the Mountain Gods should be number one on your venue list!

A lakeside wedding surrounded by trees and rolling hills awaits you, and we’re honestly a little bit jealous that we aren’t the ones getting married at such a dreamy location. If you want to get in contact with Inn of the Mountain Gods to learn more, you can visit them here.

Wedding Invitations: Why You Should Stay Local

Wedding Invitations: Why You Should Stay Local

Header image | Funky Olive Invitations + Stationary

There are so many reasons why working with a local business is great, but the best and most important reason is because they get you.

Planning a wedding is no easy task and it can often feel like nobody is really listening to your individual needs. This is especially true when working with a national company that is catering to thousands of engaged couples per day. Here at Wedding Collective, our mission is to connect local couples with local vendors to make dream weddings come true. Incredible New Mexico weddings are possible because local vendors are able to give their undivided attention to their couples to ensure that they are being heard.

Wedding essentials like save-the-dates and invitations are in high-demand, and too often couples settle for ordering online from big corporations because it appears to be the most convenient option and/or they don’t know that there are super talented locals that can work with them personally. We are here to shed some light on all of the reasons to keep it local when it comes to paper goods and also to highlight some of our fave local stationary specialists.

It’s tempting to order paper goods online, and we get it, you want to save time and money all while trying to avoid leaving the comfort of your home. However, the benefits of locally made paper goods outweigh the downsides by far. Online companies tend to produce generic and lower quality products that are ordered by hundreds of thousands of brides and grooms. By working with local paper experts, you get to experience the quality of the paper before ordering and you can personalize your products to your liking. Not only will this face-to-face experience put your mind at ease, but it will also guarantee that your product is uniquely yours.

Local paper experts like Funky Olive Invitations + Stationary, Pennysmith’s Paper, and Darling Clementine Art + Illustration are exemplary creatives that take paper goods to the next level. We seriously cannot get over how stunning their end products are. Each of them bring something unique to the table, so you’re certain to find the one that can bring your vision to life. Let’s get to know these lovelies a little bit more:

Funky Olive Invitations + Stationary

Cam Storie Photography

Looking for a full-service, custom design studio specializing in bespoke invitations + paper goods? Look no further than Funky Olive! It’s all here, just for you. You can get in touch with these experts here.

Pennysmith’s Paper

Meet with a design consultant, choose from established designs or customize your own, and explore a wide variety of possibilities for all of your paper needs when you work with Pennysmith’s Paper! You can learn more about them here.

Darling Clementine Art + Illustration

Bella’s charming illustrations are created from the heart and are always completely customized. From wedding invitations to hand-bound books, Darling Clementine‘s creativity is endless. Get in touch with her here!

We want you to connect with a local wedding expert because your vision matters and your ideas deserve to be heard. Have questions or need some suggestions? We’re here to help!

Hiring a Wedding Photographer: Guest Blog with T. Rayne Photography

Hiring a Wedding Photographer: Guest Blog with T. Rayne Photography

These days it seems like everyone is a photographer with the rise of smartphone technology and social media. You might be questioning if you really even need a photographer for your wedding, and we’re going to stop you right there–because you definitely do. After all, you want your guests to be watching you say “I do” without distraction, and not from their iPhone screens.

In order to provide you with all of the reasons why it’s so important to hire a wedding photographer, we’ve asked an expert. Taylor of T. Rayne Photography went above and beyond to give you all the inside scoop, so sit back, sip on that soothing cup of coffee, and get ready to be on the search for your fave photographer.

Why should I book a local wedding photographer? Do I really need a wedding photographer?

Hiring local is key when planning your day. As a wedding community, we work together to make sure your day runs smoothly. We gather for events to learn and grow together and get to know each other. We also know the gorgeous New Mexico scenery best! Your wedding day is one of those BIG moments in your life and for most, only happens one time. You spend months gathering details and meeting with vendors to make your wedding your dream wedding. The day comes and goes so so quickly and soon all you will have left are the photos to remind you of the moments throughout your day. When you reach your 50th anniversary you will have a beautiful gallery to cherish…and when you are gone, your grandbabies will continue to cherish those memories and pass them down for generations to come. Hiring a photographer is a huge part of keeping the memory of your day alive and all of the stress and hard work that went into it worth it.

What should I keep in mind when hiring a wedding photographer?

What should I keep in mind when hiring a wedding photographer?
Each wedding photographer has their own style in editing, photographing and their own personalities. It’s important to make sure you are choosing someone who you work well with, who you get along with and have a good time with. Afterall, they spend the most time with you on your wedding day compared to any other vendor. You want to make sure they are someone you don’t mine spending the day with. It’s also important to choose a photographer whose style you are most attracted to. If you are looking for
moodier photographs, you should only be talking with photographer that have moodier galleries. We are each our own artist. We paint the photograph differently. The last big thing I think is important when choosing your photographer is deciding if you value formal photographs that are posed, or if you value more natural moments captured. Be
sure to notice patterns in each of our styles all around and choose the one that stands out to you the most!

What questions should I ask my wedding photographer?

I think this depends on what you value most as far as what you want photographed for your big day. Be vocal with your expectations and what you value hen meeting with photographers. We may not all be the right fit for you, but the more you tell us, we know the community best and can guide you to a photographer that is right for you. Your wedding is unique to you and your story, the more we know about your story and your vision for the day, the better! I love to get to know couples before I even begin talking about pricing and packages because I want them to feel comfortable with me as a person and friend.

Give us a rundown of what a typical wedding day looks like through the lens of a photographer.

What does a typical wedding day look like through my lens? Full of raw moments. From the time I arrive and begin testing lighting all the way through the end of the night, my focus is always to capture the wedding day as it was, the laughs, the tears, the embarrassing moments, all of it. By the time your wedding day arrives, I have been noting all of the most important parts of your day to you and your spouse and am constantly on the look out for them. If your grandparents play a huge role in your day, I am always on the look out for moments shared with them. If having a first touch is important to you, we will do everything to make sure it happens, even if that means gathering the groomsmen to build a secret service circle around you to get you to your groom without being seen by your guests who have begun arriving. During the ceremony we look out for the moments of emotion and laughter. We capture your day from every angle for you to experience and remember the day from different perspectives, perspectives that not a single other person in the room will every have without the photograph. Most importantly, on your wedding day you have a goofy
friend who is just excited to be freezing this day for you forever.

If you want to get in contact with T. Rayne Photography to book her for your next wedding, you can learn more here!

DIY Catering with Gourmet Table Catering

DIY Catering with Gourmet Table Catering

We love food and we love our catering vendors. There are so many different options, from full course meals to tasty hors d’oeuvres. We are all about the traditional menu options, but have you ever thought of choosing a more creative option when it comes to catering? For example, something more interactive and fun that will have all of your guests creating unforgettable memories together?

Gourmet Table Catering offers the most unique experience ever: DIY meals at your very own table. They’re taking “do-it-yourself” to a whole new level by providing guests with their own mini stove tops, pans, and supplies to cook a meal at the comfort of their seat–and what’s the best part? You can cook the food to your liking! Not only is this loads of fun, but the menu is delicious, too! Want to take a peak at the menu? Check it out here.

Jamie + Matt founded Gourmet Table Catering, and their story is a special one for sure because the business came to life on the day of their own wedding. Jamie wanted to find a way to combine the table-top DIY meal experiences she had as a child with unique and affordable catering, thus this incredible business was born. If we could describe GTC in three words, it would be: creative, unique, and affordable.

Their home base is in Las Cruces, but that doesn’t mean they are limited to that area. They offer a wide range of services to local couples all around New Mexico and El Paso, Texas. That’s one little perk when it comes to prepping your own meal at the location of your wedding–the food can travel longer distances than traditional catering!

If you’re looking for catering for your wedding and want to have an unforgettable meal experience, look no further than Gourmet Table Catering. With years of experience and plenty of praise, you can’t go wrong. To learn more and get in contact, you can check them out here.

20 Must-Have Wedding Photos

20 Must-Have Wedding Photos

Wedding Collective is all about community, and we are so fortunate to work with wedding vendors in all different specialties and interests. When we receive wedding photos from local couples and wedding experts, we celebrate, because photos are the magical little gift that allows us to see how all of the vendors and their work come together to create something incredible.

We know how important wedding photos are to you, too, which is why we’ve compiled a list of our must-have wedding photos. Sometimes during the wedding planning process, it gets crazy deciding on food, venues, and decor, and it’s easy to completely forget about working with your photographer on what you really want captured on your big day. We’ll expedite the process for you a little bit by providing you with 20 great photo ideas to ask your photographer for:

1. Getting Ready

These are some of our favorite kinds of photos because of the intimacy they reveal. Those small moments of excitement before putting on the dress and going out in front of beloved family and friends are the most raw–which is what makes them so beautiful.

2. Detail Shots

Even though everyone else will be able to stare in awe of your good looks on the day of the wedding, you might want to remember what you looked like as well. Sometimes the small details get buried in the chaos of the day, and having photos to look back on makes all the difference.

3. The Dress

The wedding dress is hand-picked by the bride herself, putting all of her personality, love, and care into the process. The dress is perfectly shaped to her form, creating the most lovely sight you’ll ever see–so a photo is essential!

4. First Look

The “first look” is a moment unlike any other, the moment when you first see each other and the first moment of the rest of your lives together. A photo beautifully captures the emotions and genuine love between two people.

5. Bridesmaids Celebrating

Grab your lady friends and celebrate! These fun photos always make great memories and take the stress out of the wedding day. Your girls will cherish these photos forever, too.

6. Groomsmen

Guys, don’t worry. We didn’t forget about you! Your dude group is just as good-looking as the bride tribe, so you will love to look back on these photos of you and the people who will always be on your side.

7. Invitations & Save the Dates

Just as we said before, the small details have so much thought put into them that it would be a shame if they weren’t captured! We love invites and Save the Dates because they’re all so unique.

8. The Groom’s Reaction

Haley Lupinski Photography

Similar to the “first look”, capturing the groom’s reaction as the bride walks down the aisle brings out that vulnerable and pure love that the couple feel for each other as they prepare to say “I do”. After all, the lovebirds are about to spend the rest of their lives together, and who wouldn’t shed happy tears?!

9. The Moment They Kiss

This one is a no-brainer, but we are putting it in our top 20 faves because, well, we love it so much. This celebratory moment has everyone clapping, tearing up, shouting, jumping for joy, and in some cases, throwing flower petals in the air.

10. The Ring

Oh, do we ADORE wedding rings! The gorgeous photos of the elegant details in a wedding ring are always a treasure. Accenting the photo by holding florals is just one way to capture this sentimental piece of jewelry.

11. The Bouquet

Brandon Harwell Photography

This is a wedding photo that has been trending lately, and we’re about it. Wedding flowers are an essential part of every wedding, and with their natural beauty, deserve every chance they can get to be photographed. Get the bridesmaids together and snap some photos of the bouquets together.

12. Decor + Tablescapes

The possibilities are endless when it comes to wedding decor. The colors, textures, and designs are all too magical to be seen only once. This is where photos come in! You’ll want to remember all of the beauty that surrounded you on your wedding day.

13. The Flower Girl

She’s adorable. ‘Nuff said.

14. Food

Catering, drinks, and baked goods always look like works of art. Food, in general, is a work of art, so a photo of the beautiful plates being served to your guests is always a good idea. Plus, unique ideas like the pie bar pictured above are fun to share with other couples looking for inspiration.

15. Time Alone Together

After all of the festivities of the ceremony have calmed down and the guests are heading to the reception, it’s always a good idea to sneak off and have some alone time together. It’s time to relax, have some fun, and get silly. The photographer is there to capture your intimate moments, whether they’re tears or smiles.

16. The Cake

Cakes are a big part of the wedding day and a lot of work goes into making them beautiful and uniquely yours. The gorgeous colors and embellishments make for the best photos.

17. The Bride

Beth Waldron Photography

The bride’s reactions and laughter are going to be the highlight of her day, and she will want to see how cute she looked later on. The makeup, the hair, the dress, and the love between the couple are all so deserving of great photographs.

18. The Dances

The first dance, the father-daughter dance, and so may others, are all tradition. These moments are emotional and entertaining for everyone to watch. The photographs of these special moments will be passed down for generations to come.

19. Bouquet/Garter Toss

The bride and groom don’t get to see the expressions on their guest’s faces as a bouquet or garter comes hurdling at them, and trust us, their priceless. This is a moment that you’ll love to look back on after the wedding day for a good laugh!

20. The Scenery

Last, but definitely not least, the ceremony and reception venues are always the perfect backdrop for couple’s photos. Whether you choose Los Poblanos’ lavender fields or the Sandia Mountains, the scenery will bring out the beauty of your wedding venue.