Custom Wedding Jewelry: Vendor Spotlight

With November nearly behind us, and the holiday season coming on the horizon, there’s not much we want to do except lay in our cozy, warm beds and scroll through the wedding section of Pinterest, if we’re being honest. Though the holiday season is known in the wedding world as engagement season, so there’s still much to be done. In times like these, we look to our local wedding professionals for a little boost and a little inspiration.

Jewelry by Josana, a local, custom jewelry business, is exactly what the doctor ordered. Josana’s work, riddled with sparkles and captivating to see in the light, is what we need to bring a little bit of warmth and sunshine back into these chilly almost-winter days. As a wonderfully spiritual and intuitive person, Josana endows each of her custom jewelry pieces with intention, love, and blessings for their wearers.

Jewelry by Josana started several years ago when Josana herself began to recognize the importance of jewelry for herself. Now, after 50 happy years of marriage to her hubby, Josana makes jewelry for engaged couples to wear on their wedding day and beyond, so they too, can have this physical connection to something beautiful.

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It is exhilarating for me to see their smiles and excitement when they receive their jewelry! There is nothing like beautiful jewelry to heighten a person’s self esteem.

-Josana, Jewelry by Josana

Using only the finest quality of metals, gemstones, and beads in their work, Jewelry by Josana helps couples choose their pieces to emphasize their wedding colors and add personal touches to reflect their love story within the jewelry.  From hypoallergenic metals and crystals, to freshwater coated pearl, cultured pearls, Preciosa, Australian Crystal, Crackled Crystal, and so much more, the shape, size, and color combinations are nearly limitless for your jewelry.

If you’ve been planning your wedding, or are just obsessed with weddings like we are, then by this point, you probably cringe when you hear about something to make your wedding unique. But truly, each celebration of love is as individual and unrepeatable as your relationship with your soon-to-be-spouse, and highlighting that is one of the most fun parts about your wedding — besides the actual marrying your sole mate part, of course.

Having custom-made, handcrafted jewelry for you and your wedding party is simply one of the easiest, and most affordable ways to do just that. Oh, and did we mention? Your jewelry package order comes with a flower girl set at no extra charge, just to sweeten the day even more. Leave your bridesmaids and partner with tangible memories of the beginning of your life together to cherish for the rest of your forever.

To contact Jewelry by Josana for your custom jewelry today, you can contact her here.

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Nativo Lodge: New Mexican Wedding Venue Spotlight

You probably already know this, but at Perfect Wedding Guide, we get to work face-to-face with hundreds of local, small businesses at our networking events, wedding shows, Elite Awards, coffee meet ups, and a whole lot more. Although, despite this simple fact, it’s true we’ve been accused of favoring the members of our PWG family over others. And we think we know where this belief may be coming from…it’s because our vendors and members are the best in Albuquerque + Santa Fe!

When you work with the best local wedding businesses, it’s easy to seem a bit biased towards the hardest working, kindest teams and experts. But we can assure you, we love working with any and every small business in New Mexico, and we don’t discriminate. It just so happens to be that the wedding professionals we work with the most, also happen to be some of the highest ranking and most well-loved around.

Take Nativo Lodge, for example. When their team of wedding experts and event coordinators joined the Perfect Wedding Guide family, we were over the moon. Because, while we adore all wedding businesses, one very real, very obvious bias we have is for New Mexican vibes and venues. Every inch of Nativo Lodge is covered in our distinct southwestern charm, and the venue as a whole draws heavily on Native American influences to pay homage to indigenous people. And, each individual room in the spacious hotel + venue was designed and painted by local, Native American contemporary artists.

The bounteous and fertile culture of our home state is what sets us apart from the mainstream wedding community, what with their penchant for minimalism and all. Of course you can find perfectly beautiful blank canvas venues in New Mexico, but incorporating the history of your home into your wedding day? Well now, that’s how you get a truly memorable, personal, and intrinsically unique celebration.

Luckily for us, local photographers Loren X Chris captured the perfect example of a wedding day with unparalleled richness and love at the Nativo Lodge. Alex + Mike tied the knot with their dearest loved ones and southwestern opulence abound.

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Bombshell Fitness: Where Your Bachelorette Party Needs To Be

Ain’t no party like a Bombshell Fitness party, ’cause a Bombshell Fitness party…accepts all bodies and bridal parties as beautiful and bountiful! And it doesn’t stop, either. (Not as catchy as the original phrase, sure, but it’s totally true, and that’s what matters.)

This past week, our amazing Social Media Maven, Keara, sat down with Jamie from Bombshell Fitness here in Albuquerque, New Mexico to chat bachelorette parties with the experts of fun and dancing. As with most local wedding professionals who serve bridal parties for their actual parties, Bombshell Fitness is high energy, maximum entertainment, and catered to YOU. (Proverbial you being our local engaged couples + brides-to-be, of course.)

In reality though, Bombshell Fitness is so much more than just being a killer spot for your bachelorette party. Which, we could have guessed, based on our many interactions with their perpetually kind team, but Jamie brought a whole new level of self-love and importance to the table.


Keara: The time before a wedding can be really hard on brides and their self esteem, do you think Bombshell can help brides with their confidence? 

Jamie: Absolutely! Bombshell Fitness is totally a judgement-free zone. We encourage all shapes, all sizes, all genders, all ages of women to come — and men too, of course. It helps everybody tap into that confidence deep down inside of you that’s just waiting for someone to help open it up, and allow for it to be acceptable.

Especially when we’re told we’re not meant to be sexy or desired — we’re trying to stay lowkey and stay away from the limelight. But this is what pole dancing is all about: putting yourself out there, being vulnerable, and accepting who you truly are.

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Keara: So, Bombshell Fitness won our 2018 PWG Elite Award for Best Unique Service — what is it that makes Bombshell unique? 

Jamie: So I think definitely our environment is what makes Bombshell a unique spot for brides, you know? We allow for bridal parties to explore a fun, sexy side; they get to learn new skills that they can use here or possibly take home for further use.

And then that gets them more excited to learn about body movement! Which means learning to be engaged with yourself, and loving yourself for whatever you have. Whether it’s a stretch mark, a roll, or something you’re not comfortable with, it’s about learning to be comfortable with what you have and understanding that people love you for what you have.

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Keara: What’s your favorite part about working with bridal parties in particular, then? 

Jamie: So, the thing that I really enjoy about our bridal parties is that we get a lot of excited people, right? From the moment they walk in the door, they’re ready and already in party-mode. They’re always giving the bride lots of love and attention, making sure anything she needs is taken care of.

I think that is super exciting to see how friends really come together to make sure the bride feels special. It’s hard for people sometimes! To really take the attention off of themselves and make it all about one person. So that’s really what I enjoy to see, is when friends can not be all about themselves, and just be all about the bride.

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You can contact Jamie with Bombshell Fitness for your super-fun, super-accepting, all-about-self-love, confidence-boosting bachelorette party here.

 

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Smallcakes, Big Hearts {Vendor Spotlight!}

Here at Perfect Wedding Guide, we don’t pick favorites when it comes to the incredible local wedding professionals in New Mexico. When every business contributes, in its own way, to the eclectic wedding market here in Albuquerque + Santa Fe, providing engaged couples with so many options for their big day… well, how could we?!

Actually, never mind. We can do it just like this: Smallcakes is our favorite cupcakery in New Mexico. 

Whew! Feels good to get that out in the open and, no, it doesn’t have anything to do with the fact that Smallcakes is the only team of bakers and makers in New Mexico who have specifically dedicated their talents to becoming cupcake experts. Although, that is a pretty good reason to love them, too.

Smallcakes: A Cupcakery is our favorite cupcakery in New Mexico because they actually do so much more than just cupcakes. Whatever you’ve previously believed about bakeries, cupcakes, wedding cakes, and the like — throw it out the window, because Smallcakes transcends all the customary boundaries. We’re not just talking your typical customization options, either.

Custom, handmade cookies? Check. Bachelorette parties? You got it. If that’s not enough for you either, they also do groom cakes — which we haven’t seen anywhere else — smash cakes, and gluten-free cakes. The best part too, is they have over 120 flavor choices for you to taste, delight in, and choose from.

Oh, and get this. Did you know that if you order your sweet treats from Smallcakes for your wedding day, you’ll also receive a complimentary couple’s cake for your one year anniversary?! There. Your anniversary dinner is already taken care of for you.

The team at Smallcakes: A Cupcakery is ceaselessly working to improve and elevate the wedding community here in Albuquerque and Santa Fe, so yes. They are our favorite cupcakery. This might be controversial to some, but with the flavors, fun, and friendly faces, how could they not be?

To schedule a tasting for your custom wedding sweets, you can contact Smallcakes: A Cupcakery here.

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First Photoshoot of Fall: Black Bow Events

The season’s turn is a few weeks behind us now, but let’s be real. In our desert landscape, it takes a little while for summer to fully wane and for autumn to settle in. (Yes, it’s chilly this fine fall morning, but unfortunately, we’ll probably be regretting these cozy outfits when it goes back to being 80 degrees this afternoon!) Luckily for us though, we’re getting all the sweater-weather vibes from the shimmering golds, deep maroons and warm rose tones from one of Black Bow Events signature styled shoots.

If you’ve worked with Danessa, Black Bow Events founder, owner, and wedding expert,  then it’s no wonder she won our 2018 PWG Elite award for best wedding coordinator in Albuquerque + Santa Fe. Her vibrant passion for love and buoyant personality combine to make her not only a dedicated wedding planner, but a wonderful person to have on your team in general.

If you haven’t had the opportunity to  work with Black Bow Events just yet, then… It’s still no wonder! Because Danessa’s penchant for the divinely particular shine through in all her styled shoots.

Northern New Mexico is best known for its Rio Grande Gorge Bridge, mountainous landscapes, and countless art influencers. These are just a few of the reasons why I love New Mexico and everything it offers! Georgia O’Keefe said, “I found that I could see things with color and shapes that I couldn’t see any other way-things I had no words for.” —which describes perfectly why I choose to design and create such visions for my couples.

-Danessa, Black Bow Events

And Georgia O’Keefe would be proud, because Danessa has totally mastered the art of bringing unique shapes into her collaborative shoots. Reminiscent of New Mexico’s famed mountainous landscape, Danessa and her team of local wedding vendors incorporated the sacred geometry of triangles into the deeply contrasted shoot in a way we’ve never seen before.

While we’re always inspired by Albuquerque + Santa Fe’s local wedding professionals, we’re especially touched by this teamwork from Black Bow Events, Jasper K Photography, Bridal Elegance by Darlene, Mr. Tux and more, to elevate the artistic efforts in New Mexico. So, brides-to-be, without further adieu, come and bask in the real-life inspo that is this incredible styled shoot. You can contact Danessa with Black Bow Events here, and bring some unparalleled magic into your wedding day too!

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Coordination + Design: Black Bow Events

Photographer: Jasper K Photography

Dresses: Bridal Elegance by Darlene

Men’s Attire: Mr. Tux Formalwear

Flowers: The Flower Company

Makeup: Marisa Lux Makeup & Viva Grace

Desserts: Frank’s Eats & Sweets

Cake: Smallcakes

Jewelry: Lilly Barrack

Invitations: Cordially Invited Events

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Memorable Ways to Use Orchids in Your Wedding {Guest Post!}

It’s always a pleasure to share our little stage with wedding experts and business owners. Enjoy this delightfully informative guest post on orchids from our friends, Whole Blossom! 

 

Orchids are one of the most beautiful wedding flowers to be ever used in décor and floral arrangements. The flowers which belong to one of the largest flowering families extending up to almost 2000 varieties are a delight to watch in all sorts of wedding flower arrangements right from centerpieces and bridal bouquets to corsages and boutonnieres.  Right from the durability and natural beauty to versatility (in terms of shapes and sizes) and bright colors; the flowers tick all the right boxes when it comes to weddings and celebration décor. You could easily buy orchids online from a variety of floral services and they are easily available throughout the year for couples to help them welcome their wedding guests in more unique and delightful ways. 

Whether you’re getting married in a classic and traditional ceremony or you’re thinking about a more contemporary look, whether a tropical or a beach wedding is your pick or you want a ballroom nuptial event; the flower could serve the purpose perfectly well for all sorts of wedding styles, décor, venues, flower arrangements, color palettes, and themes. There are many varieties of these gorgeous petals but the most preferred varieties for weddings include; Phalaenopsis Orchids, Cymbidium Orchids (boat orchids), and Dendrobium Orchids (moth orchids). Right from white to pink orchids, there are enough bright colors to make every look and color palette work out with these exquisite blossoms. 

 According to the language of flowers, they symbolize – ‘you’re in my thoughts’ and this could be the perfect way to start the new life with your special one. The unique shapes and curved stems of these petals make sure that they make gorgeous flower arrangements both on their own and even as an assortment with various other wedding accents. Whether you want them to serve as the perfect pop of color or you’re thinking about adding textures to your wedding flower arrangements or even if you need them to serve as the perfect elements for adding the cascading shape to the floral arrangements; you give them the word and the flowers will comply. 

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Phalaenopsis Orchids:

The most recognized orchids of all time have got to be Phalaenopsis Orchids. They are a unique combination that has both versatility and natural beauty to make delightful wedding flower arrangements right from wedding centerpieces to bridal bouquets. The petals could be easily incorporated in all kinds of wedding décor and floral arrangements irrespective of the theme, color palette, venue or wedding style. Consider tall centerpieces featuring lush cream and lavender roses along with hydrangeas to be complemented by descending white Phalaenopsis Orchids and you could easily get a winning combination that is as timeless and elegant as anything. A bridal bouquet featuring the bold violet blossoms with burgundy and red roses could be the perfect combination for your special day. The traditional white wedding cakes could easily be topped with these beautiful blossoms in cascading forms to radiate charm and elegance for the ceremony. 

Dendrobium Orchids:

The flowers which are also known as moth orchids have an appearance that strikingly resembles the fluttering shape of the wings of a moth. The whimsy and sophisticated blossoms could easily be used in all kinds of wedding décor and flower arrangements. If the beach wedding is your pick, the bridal bouquet featuring the white blossoms along with some tropical greenery is perfect to make a statement when it comes to the ceremony. If you’re looking for a centerpiece arrangement for a romantic wedding theme, consider towering centerpieces incorporating a spray of dendrobium orchids with calla lilies. They could also be a part of a chuppah arrangement (made of curly willow branches) when used as embellishments along with some delphinium blossoms for saying the I do’s.

Cymbidium Orchids:

The flowers which are also known as boat orchids have a striking resemblance with the shape of a boat when it comes to their appearance. The flirty and dynamic elements make them an ideal choice for all sorts of tropical and beach themed weddings. A bridal bouquet containing the varying hues of pink cymbidium orchids is both feminine and bold to make a statement for the wedding ceremony. When it comes to centerpieces, you could easily get away with using a single blossom with submerged greenery and think of Hawaii. They are also good to go as a boutonniere arrangement when used against a dark blue suit.

Cattleya Orchids:

The strikingly beautiful flowers have ruffled petals and impeccable visual splendor to take expressive forms when it comes to wedding décor and floral arrangements. You could make a perfect wedding bouquet for the ceremony by using white cattleya orchids and lush peonies for an all-white or classic wedding theme. For a romantic theme, you could work out the white hues of these blossoms along with some greenery and gold floral to make the perfect statement. Consider decorating your white wedding cakes with the embellishments of cattleya orchids to create a striking and dazzling effect for the ceremony.    

 Are you getting married this season and want some orchids flower arrangements ideas for making a difference in terms of the big day décor – well you’re lucky and just in time. Here are few orchids wedding ideas for your inspiration:

Take a look at these perfect orchids flower arrangements and please share with us what you feel!

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Chair decorations:

Chair decorations are one of the most important elements or detailing of a wedding décor. If you want, you could easily get purple orchids to play the part by decorating the back of the chairs by using either an orchid garland or even a bunch of stems secured by a purple silk ribbon in a bow pattern. The look could work out pretty stunning if the wedding theme of the event is purple and you could make the perfect statement by decorating the chairs with the arrangement. 

Use the petals to throw on the wedding couple:

Orchids with their perfume, natural beauty and elegance could be the perfect element to shower the newlyweds with when they are walking down the aisle. You could easily give a much-needed break to rose petals for the showering tradition and instead use orchid petals for the same. The flowers could be arranged in a cone shape filler for giving it to the guests so that they can shower the petals on the new couple on the block and give them their blessings and good wishes.  

Aisle decoration:

Orchids could make delightful aisle decorations. You could easily use orchid petals in varying shades of orange, peaches, and whites to line up the wedding ceremony aisle just along the white ceremony chairs to create an exquisite and charming look. You could also decorate the back of the chairs with coral LED lights for maximum effect. 

Floating candles:

Filing tall and slim cylindrical glass vases with water and using floating red or blue orchids in them is such an exquisite idea. The arrangement is to be topped with tea candles for making any wedding reception shine in all its glory. You could also use some glass votives holding tea candles to encircle the whole arrangement for maximum effect.

Wedding favors:

You could use single and colorful orchid blossoms on top of the wedding favors or gifts packs to increase their appeal and overall look. The flower petals could also be used in various designs and patterns to decorate the wedding gifts and favors. 

For the grooms:

The grooms or the whole groomsmen attire could be accentuated well with using a boutonniere arrangement consisting of these glorious petals.  You could easily use a single yellow orchid bloom or even purple flower to give the perfect finishing touch to your wedding suits. You could also match the boutonniere color with that of the bouquet carried by the bride for the ceremony.

For the brides:

The bridal wardrobe could really use the beauty of these flowers to make the perfect statement for the wedding ceremony. You could use them in flower pins, hairstyles, wedding hair band, garlands for hair, crowns or even various other accessories. The flowers could also be used to adorn wedding trousseau or even bridal shoes.

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Overhang décor:

You could easily make a whimsical and fairytale ambiance by using strings of white orchids to hang loose just a few feet from your reception tables. Just string along a few dozens of strands of orchid blossoms and crystals and hang them over the reception table and you’re good to go.

Curved centerpieces:

Use white orchids in curved centerpiece arrangements to make an ethereal and stunning ambiance for the reception. You could easily create delicate arches over the reception table by arranging two multi-flower stems in glass vases with tall narrow necks.

Fireplace décor:

If your wedding venue has a fireplace, you could easily use orchids to make dreamy arrangements straight out of a fairytale book. Just imagine a fireplace decorated with suspended orchids from long ribbons and some pretty candles all around to accompany them; some on the pedestal, some on the ground and we promise you’d be amazed to the core. 

Cupcake and cake toppers:

The flowers (real or fondant) could also be used to decorate cakes and cupcakes for a dazzling and charming effect. If you’re looking for adding that perfect tropical touch to your wedding cake tables or even desserts for the day; the flowers could easily serve the purpose. 

Thank you cards:

When the celebration ends, people just tend to throw their flowers away. How about recycling them for keeping as a keepsake or souvenir of memories and also giving them away to the guests? They could be easily embedded in thank you cards to serve as a perfect gift for your guests and relatives. 

Orchids wall décor:

Wall decorations with orchids could make a delightful ambiance for your wedding ambiance. All you’re going to need is some cork bark, hanging wire, and sphagnum moss. The look could be easily achieved by attaching the wire to the wall and by nestling orchid roots inside the moss. 

They could also be used to decorate escort cards holders, altars chandeliers or even in terms of wreaths, necklaces, garlands and various other flower arrangements. 

While some orchids are beautifully uniform in color, others are stripped or speckled too. The biggest advantage of working with these petals is, of course, their versatility and natural beauty. There are not many accents in the wedding circles that are as durable, versatile and beautiful as these flowers and that too at the same time. The flowers also combine well with other wedding flowers to make amazing wedding flower arrangements. You could easily buy orchids online at the majority of floral services or even at your favorite florist for the décor and flower arrangements of the big day. 

With the latest trend of DIY flower arrangements and wholesale flowers; these amazingly beautiful flowers could easily serve as a boon for making all sorts of unique and crafty wedding flower arrangements for your big day. The flowers are also quite affordable when you compare them with the likes of other expensive wedding accents like; peonies, garden roses, and various others. The brides all around the world love these blossoms and want to have them at all costs in their wedding bouquet arrangements. While roses and peonies are the more traditional forms of wedding accents but you could always give them a break and make unorthodox and beautiful flower arrangements with orchids instead. 

Orchids have the range, variety, and quality to transform any wedding space with its unique shapes, amazing fragrance, and natural beauty. You could also get inspired by asking out your friends as to how did they use orchids in their wedding décor and flower arrangements or even get professional in terms of a wedding florist. People in large numbers use DIY orchid flower arrangements for their weddings and the results that they get are even better than ever expected.   

Have any better ideas to use orchids flower arrangements for your special day? How did you use orchid flowers in your wedding décor and floral arrangements? Please share with us!

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Real Wedding with Matt Blasing Photography: Instagram Takeover

If this wedding looks familiar, it’s not just because the love between Katie + George is so pure and comforting. {Though it totally is.} You’re probably remembering the incredibly thoughtful details from our Instagram story a couple weeks ago. Captured by the ever-talented Matt Blasing Photography, the local photography team allowed us a behind-the-scenes look at Katie + George’s celebration at Nature Pointe.
 
Taking all of us along on their journey to express the couple’s love story through the lens, Matt Blasing Photography showed us not only how stunning the day was, but also the magic that spawns from combining two unique lives into one. Now, with the final photos from the team, even more intimate details are clear. From the muted blue hues of the bridesmaids gowns, to the carefully considered features of their menus and invitations, Katie + George elucidated their values as a couples, and the intricate components of their love.
 
Blending their home states of New Mexico and Texas, Katie + George had a wedding logo created to represent their coalescence. Featured on their cake topper, paper products, and even some delicious cookies, the logo polka-dotted the details of the day, reminding guests and loved ones of just how special was this union.
 
Matt + Amy, of Matt Blasing Photography, were the first and only choice for Katie + George. After meeting the wedding professionals at a wedding show, the couple knew they were the perfect match. {They even booked Matt Blasing Photography before they had a venue!}
 

The morning after our wedding and we are still grinning ear to ear. The Blasing duo are the best wedding photography team any couple could dream of! […] Their kindness and friendliness from the start made us feel so comfortable! 

George, groom

 
And the feeling was mutual! Amy, when describing Katie + George’s wedding day, called it a labor of love.
 

Their families were both so supportive, and their wedding was truly a labor of the love of family and friends. Many pre- and post-wedding events were hosted by friends and family to celebrate their marriage.

We’re so grateful to have been a part of this wedding day, albeit only tangentially. Thank you Katie + George for allowing us a peak into your day of love, and to Matt Blasing Photography for capturing it so beautifully, as always!
 


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Special Thanks to these vendors
Venue: Nature Pointe Weddings and Events
Photography: www.mattblasing.com
Video: Southwest Wedding Films
DJ: Nathan Duran with Too Hot to Stop DJ Service
Floral: Shannon Loves Flowers
Wedding stationary, programs, and menus: Funky Olive Invitations + Stationery
Hair/Makeup: Genica Lee, Makeup Artist
Officiant: Stephen Nickle
Catering: Mike Tafoya
Cake/Desserts: Le Chantilly Fine Pastries, Rude Boy Cookies, and Mike Tafoya
Dress Provided By: The Dressing Room West
Suit Provided By: Mr. Tux Formal Wear
Live Music: Hillary Smith and Chill House


 

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