JDE Brides: Nicole

I was referred to Nicole by a mutual friend back in 2013.  The first time I talked with her, I knew we'd get along great.  She was sweet and funny and easy-going....all while being THE most organized person I've ever met.  I love organization.  :)  I'm so happy I got to play a part in Steve & Nicole's big day.  It was a glorious, emotional, beautiful day.  Read on to get a glimpse of the day through Nicole's eyes and to see what advice she's passing along to future brides.

Who are you and who is your husband?  I am Nicole, my husband is Steve

How did you meet?  Steve and I officially met one evening in the Spring of 2010 at 501 City Grill. I was there for dinner with some girlfriends to celebrate one of their birthdays. A group of gentlemen walked in and out of them all, Steve caught my attention. We talked the night away and exchanged numbers, but nothing transpired immediately after. A few months later, I ran into him again but at another local establishment, Waterman’s. We’ve basically been inseparable since! Our rehearsal dinner was held in The Attic at Waterman’s and it was a neat way to share our story with family and friends that weekend.

How did he propose? Steve proposed in 2012. I call it the “year of the weddings” because between us both we attended a total of six weddings that year. Naturally, we began discussing our own future and wedding someday. On Friday, December 21st that year, we decided to exchange Christmas gifts early because as usual we were splitting our time between both families for the holiday. I opened a small wrapped box and found a card inside. It was a Hallmark singing card that played Hall & Oates, You Make My Dreams Come True (which on a side note, was the song we chose to dance to for our first dance at the wedding). He then asked me if I was ready for my real gift, went outside, and brought in...a beach cruiser bicycle!

The next morning, on December 22nd, we were getting ready to make a trip to the grocery store to prepare for holiday meals. I was literally still in my pajamas, when Steve walked up to me with another wrapped box and told me “you forgot a gift.” Puzzled, I sat on the couch and began opening the gift. Inside was another card, with a black and white image of a boy holding a bouquet of roses. Inside that card read one of the sweetest messages imagined, but more importantly asked one of the sweetest questions: Will you make another dream come true? After reading this, tears were streaming down my eyes of course, and that is when he knelt down and asked me to marry him!

Describe your wedding in 5 words:  Romantic, rustic, vintage, DIY (I count that as one word), and most importantly - FUN!

What was your favorite part of wedding planning? Together, one of our most favorite parts of wedding planning was the tasting and selecting the menu (because who doesn’t love being served a variety of delicious food to choose from?). But mainly, we got a chance to work together and we included food that represented each of us, from the petite Maryland style crab cakes, representing Steve’s family in Baltimore, to a mozzarella and tomato caprese, which incorporated my Italian heritage.

Some of my other favorites were dress shopping (of course!) and our engagement photo session. Our engagement session was definitely a blast. Our photographer is not only the best around but also super fun and it was great to get some practice in before our big day!

What was your least favorite part of wedding planning?  My least favorite part of wedding planning was trying to please everyone. It’s just flat out impossible. We stayed true to ourselves with our decisions and in the end everyone was extremely happy for us on our wedding day.

Where did you go on your honeymoon?  Antigua. We knew we wanted to stay at an all-inclusive resort because we wanted to fully relax after all of the work and effort that went into planning a wedding. We actually saw a commercial on TV for Sandals in Antigua, looked it up and fell in love with the resort and area. So, yes television advertising works haha!

Who were your vendors? 

Photographer: Andi Grant, Andi & Zoe Photography

Second Shooter: Brooke Tucker, Brooke Tucker Photography

Cocktail Hour Musician: Swell Luck

DJ: John “Rab” Rabulan

Vintage Rentals: Bluebird's Garage

Dress: Pure English
Invitations: Minted

Wedding Coordinator/Planner: YOU! :)

If you could do one thing differently, what would it be?  Ask for help. I am terrible at asking for help and maybe it’s because I am an only child and have been pretty much independent for so long. It wasn’t until the Friday before, that I realized I signed myself up to do too much, but luckily I had incredible support that day. Steve, my mom, and Maid of Honor all came through and pitched in to help pull many of the last minute items together. I just wish I had asked sooner so that I wasn’t stressing out to get things done so close to the wedding day.

Do you have any advice for future brides? 
Focus on the love you have for each other. That’s what this event is about after all! It’s easy to overlook this major part, with all of the many details that go into planning a wedding (and there are a lot!), but it is so important to keep in mind throughout the entire engagement/wedding planning process and especially important on the day of. That love will really shine (especially in your pictures) and outweigh anything throughout the day because let’s face it, you can expect that not everything will go exactly according to plan on the day of. But as long as you have each other, any little detail that is not perfect will seem perfect anyway.

Photos courtesy of Andi & Zoe Photography

Vendor Spotlight - Bluebird's Garage

Meet Mary Kaufman of Bluebird's Garage!  Bluebird's Garage provided the vintage rentals for Steve & Nicole's wedding at the Cavalier Golf & Yacht Club in July.  Mary was an absolute joy to work with.  She's so professional and creative and helpful.  And easily one of the sweetest and funniest people in the industry.  She's one of those people that you meet, and you're immediately at ease working with her.  I knew she would do whatever it took to make Steve & Nicole's wedding everything they had dreamed.  Not to mention, her rentals are EXQUISITE!  Read what Mary has to say about her company, then check out her site and all she has to offer.

Tell us about Bluebird's Garage:  Bluebird’s Garage is a full service vintage rental and concept design company based in Virginia Beach. We collect pieces that speak to you, the camera, and your guests offering unique and custom items for your party, wedding, photo shoot or event. Our storefront also offers handmade jewelry, made in house farm tables, and a small selection of homewares.

How long has Bluebird's Garage been operating:  We have been in business for two years this July and opened our storefront in February of this year.

What area do you serve?  We serve VA and coastal NC.

What services do you offer?  Vintage Rentals & Styling from ideation to implementation

  How would you describe your style?  My personal style is always changing but I obviously have a sweet spot for vintage finds. I love vintage clothing and home decor but am equally fascinated by modern  decor.  I think people will find that in and out of the shop.

What's the most memorable event you've provided rentals for?  Well I just love working weddings and being a part of someone’s dream day, so every wedding is special to me however I would have to say styling the 'Scout is Out' party for the Va beach Scout Guide will be one I will never forget.

What are your favorite types of events to style?  I love working events which I supply rentals and style. Doing both is a dream come true to me every time.

Who are your favorite vendors/venues to work with/at?  I think the Hampton Roads wedding vendor community is filled with too many sweet and talented people to pick! My favorite venues are private homes. I have found that regardless of size, they are always so intimate and special.

What advice do you have for brides trying to choose a rental company?  I say go with someone who you feel comfortable with and who’s pieces speak to you!

Thanks so much for your time Mary!

Steve & Nicole

This wedding definitely goes down in my top five.  Steve & Nicole were such an incredibly fun couple to work with.  Nicole was easily one of the most organized brides I've ever met, which made my job of coordinating the wedding as simple as it could be.  Steve was so laid back the entire day.  They were just so happy to be marrying each other....everything else was just a bonus for them!

One of the highlights of the whole night for me was the dancing.  It's not often that you go to a wedding and see the dance floor taken over by the groom and all his groomsmen, instead of the bride and her maids!  It was so entertaining watching the guys show off their moves all night.

Another highlight of this wedding was that it gave me the opportunity to work with some amazing vendors that I hadn't had the pleasure of working with before.  I'll admit to being a little starstruck when I found out that Nicole had chosen Andi Grant of Andi & Zoe Photography to capture her day.  I've spoken to Andi & emailed with her probably a dozen times over the past few years, but never actually had the chance to meet her.  And now, here I was, working side by side with her.  It was AWESOME!  Be sure to check out her blog post for more incredible images from the day.  Meanwhile, here are a few of my favorites!

Congratulations Steve & Nicole!  Thank you for letting me be a part of your day!

Ceremony Venue: Star of the Sea Catholic Church
Reception Venue: Cavalier Golf & Yacht Club
Photographer: Andi & Zoe Photographers
Second Shooter: Brooke Tucker Photography
Rentals: Bluebird's Garage
Cake: Jenn Cakes-A-Lot
DJ: John "Rab" Rabulan
Florist: Trellis & Bloom
Cocktail Hour Musician: Swell Luck
Invitations: Minted
Dress: Pure English

Also, a big huge thank you to my friend Abby for being my right hand for the day.  I love you to pieces!