Monday, September 28

Skin Prep For Brides

I wanted to share a few tips about prepping your skin for your wedding day because, as everyone knows, makeup can only go so far if your skin isn't prepped. There are a few products that I use that I will share, but my biggest suggestion is to get on a facial program and skin care regime with your favorite local spa or esthestician. This will cost some money up front, but will truly get your skin ready for the big day so you will look fabulous and flawless!

Most spas will offer a discount if you prepay for your series of treatments. The main goal would be to incorporate one that includes a few peels or lightening treatments. Straight facials will be great for upkeep, but to get your skin going, a few light peels can really make a difference.

Some will also include a bevy of products that they want you to use under the course of the regime. Make sure it is a product line that you trust, and if possible, take home a week of samples to make sure that you don't have any reactions to the products. If you don't like it, don't buy it. There are many other regimes out there, and even shops like Sephora have great ways to purchase a sample system so you don't have to purchase a full product line until you are sure.

With all of that said, I wanted to share a few of my favorite finds that I feel really help with prepping the skin and making one look their best. Here are my picks for some of my medicine cabinet favorites:

Exfoliating Cleanser - Murad AHA/BHA Exfoliating Cleanser. This is a great cleanser to use 2-3 times per weeks to give your skin that extra exfoliation it needs for makeup to be able to glide on and look smooth throughout the day. Make sure if you are doing any peels that this is put away for a week or two!

Serum - Bliss Peeling Groovy Facial Serum. One word for this serum - bomb. It is absolutely crazy how this serum works so well on all sorts of issues; dark spots, fine lines, blemishes and uneven skin tone. It battles them all, and hard! I have been using it for about two months, and my sun damaged skin has made a huge recovery and has simply never looked so smooth.

Moisturizer - There are so many out there that are great, my only standards are that it has an SPF 15 minimum and that it doesn't clog your pores. I personally use a tinted moisturizer from Murad, and I really like it, but it is oil free, so not for everyone.

Eye Cream (day) - L'Oreal Advanced Revitalift Double Eye Lift. With all the eye creams I try (and trust me, there are many), I found one that really is affordable and does a great job at keeping the fragile under eye area moisturized without being sticky. The best part is that this is a two part system, with one side being the under eye cream, and the other is the upper eye lifting gel. It is a pump, so no wasted product either, a big plus in my book.

Eye Cream (night) - Ole Henriksen Virtual Truth Eye Cream. This eye cream is super rich with African red tea, vitamin C and a bunch of fun ingredients I can't pronounce, but is so great to slather on before bed at night. One disclaimer though, make sure it is only used at night, it is so thick that it can ball up which is not so pretty under makeup.

Once a Week Treatment - Origins Modern Friction. This is a great scrub treatment to use about once a week (or more if your skin is tough) to eat up all the dead skin cells sitting on the top layer of your skin. It is also great to use right before a big event or if you just want to look extra nice, as it works almost instantly to make your skin shine.

My other tips for great skin is to keep hydrated, wear a hat when in the sun, and never sleep with your makeup on. It will really wreck havoc on your skin, and no matter how tired, try to get that late night wash in if possible.

I hope these tips help will help you get ready for your big day and all through the year.

Happy Planning!

Saturday, September 26

Happy Weekend!

I am heading out for a day of working, and then a day of playing. It is my first Saturday without a wedding in quite some time, and I am ready to enjoy this beautiful weather in San Francisco!

But before I do, I wanted to quickly share the engagement photos taken by the wonderful Janae Shields of my NYE couple, Bari & Justin. They started at City Hall and the went to the Palace of Fine Arts. She caught their playful nature, and I just love the way their photos came out! Really cannot wait for their wedding taking place at the Omni Hotel. What a party it will be!

Happy Planning (& weekend!)

Wednesday, September 23

Bridal Tour No. 3 Recap

We had our Third Dream Bridal Tour this past Sunday, and it was such a fun day. The tour started with the group meeting at our studio on Fillmore Street. We then loaded into our shuttle from California Wine Tours and headed to our bottomless mimosa brunch at Circa. This was a nice time to get to know everyone and talk about specific issues they had run into during their planning.

After we were full from brunch, we walked a block to Habit and Pin the Tail. Habit is a wax studio in San Francisco, and is just the sweetest spot ever. Carrie Maxwell, the owner, was a client of mine for her May 2007 wedding at Bimbo's. This is the place to go for anyone preparing for their wedding day. Plus, their new boutique, Pin the Tail, has the cutest stuff around.

We hopped back in the bus for a short ride up to Pacific Puffs. This is a cream puff only shop, and they are to die for. It is a family run business, and the two grandson's used their grandmothers' cream puff recipe to start their shop. This place is great for any event for a dessert bar or for favors. We then walked right across the street to Nick Brown Photography and Bella Bridesmaid. This husband and wife team have a space that they share where they can both showcase their work.

After looking at dresses and pictures, we walked to Haute Bride to look at their goodies. They have everything from hair adornments, jewelry, veils, shoes and even dresses. It is a must check out place for those little things you need to make your look complete. The girls even got a pair of earrings to take home with them!

We then got back on our shuttle, and traveled down to SOMA to visit the darling Hello Lucky shop. We got a great presentation about all different options for print styles, what type of custom work they can do and got to take home a little pack of letterpress thank you notes. This shop does all of their own press work, and it shows. It is absolutely a haven for anyone that loves paper products and day of details!

Did I mention how hot it was that day by the way!? The city is rarely even warm, and we got a hot one. Good thing the shuttle had a great AC system! Anyway, we then shuttled ourselves to Hayes Valley to visit Birch's new floral studio. She is a complete creative genius, and anyone that can check out her studio can see that. She can take your vision, and make it a masterpiece.

After Birch, we were starting to slow down, and made a quick stop at Paper Source before heading back to our studio to meet with Gabby from Cake Coquette. She talked about cake design and let the participants taste red velvet and chocolate ganache cupcakes. Yum! Then Kathy from Well Rehearsed talked about the importance regarding the events surrounding the wedding. We talked about how to invite guests that have traveled from afar without busting the rehearsal dinner budget or offending anyone. We then got to see a beautiful slide show from Andrew Weeks Photography, my office mate.

We met so many fun people on our tour, and I truly enjoy doing them. I heard some great feedback along the way, and most commented on how great it was to meet and visit with 14 vendors in a five hour period that were hand picked by a planner. In the end, the particpants all walked away with new vendor information and a swag bag full of goodies and discounts valued at over $2000.

Plans have already begun for the next tour happening in early 2010! We have great new additions to our tour, and will be able to take more participants on the next one. Look for information coming in November!

Happy Planning!

Monday, September 21

Custom Jones Soda Bottles

We had so much fun on our bridal tour yesterday, and I'm getting ready to post a review of our day and a very limited amount of pictures, since I wasn't very good at keeping up with that. Oops!

In the mean time, we did these recently for a wedding, and I thought it was a really fun idea that I would share. You can make your own custom Jones sodas for your non alcoholic drinks through myJones now. They look really nice in galvanized buckets to welcome guests to a ceremony on a hot day, behind the bar for the reception or even in your out of town gift bags. They have a lot of choices available, and they are great for all events.

Happy Planning!

Friday, September 18

Bridal Tour This Sunday!

We have been busy little bees at our studio this week; cleaning, prepping, filling giveaway bags and going over final scheduling with all the vendors for this Sunday's bridal tour. We are really excited to meet the group of brides (and a groom this time!) who are coming with us on our fast and furious tour through San Francisco and meeting with 14 vendors. We have a wonderful group of hand picked vendors for this tour, and we know the participants will be excited for all they get to taste, touch and learn! It is going to be a hot one too, so it should be a really nice day for all.

Plans are being already made for the next tour set to take place in late January/early February. If you are interested in being on the list for the fourth bridal tour, please email to be placed on our list for priority ticket alerts and information.

Have a great weekend, and I'm looking forward to posting more recent weddings and events (including the bridal tour) in the next two weeks.

Happy Planning!

Friday, September 11

Featured on The Sage Wedding Pros

I continuously find sound and realistic advice on this site for my business, and I truly enjoy reading about all the different business owners. That is why I was so honored when I was recently asked to be a featured business owner on the Sage Wedding Pros website. I really liked the questions that I was asked, it offered a lot more than just your typical "what is your favorite wedding venue" type question.

If you have a chance to check it out, please do. I'm off again for another weekend with another wonderful couple celebrating their marriage. Have a great weekend!

Happy Planning!

Thursday, September 10

Vote For Us on Divine Caroline

We have been nominated in the Divine Caroline Love This Site Awards, and we are so excited! You can vote for us by clicking here, and just know you have to register in order to vote.

In other news, we have been so busy recently with weddings and getting the bridal tour finalized, we haven't had as much time to blog. Once the season winds down in mid October, I will be so happy to be able to share all recent weddings we have done, as there are some really great ones to share!

Happy Planning!

Thursday, September 3

Lilian + Scott | Engagement Shoot

My October 3rd clients, Lilian and Scott, just got their engagement photos back from their super cool photographer in New York, Punam Bean. They were so happy with them! The great news is not only did my clients move back to the city just recently, but the photographer is going to be moving here as well. Very exciting to have more amazing and creative people here in the bay area.

You can check out more of their engagement shots on Punam's blog, but here are a few of my favorites:
Happy Planning!

Tuesday, September 1

City Club Bridal Event | October 4

The City Club in San Francisco is hosting a wedding and event show on Sunday October 4th from 11am-3pm. This is a nicer, smaller version of a typical bridal show where you get much more personalized attention. Check out the invitation below:

Happy Planning!