Introducing Our New Wedding Styling Series with Brianne Binder of BB Style!

We’re beyond thrilled to announce our collaboration with Brianne Binder of BB Style, who will be sharing her tips for the bride in search of the perfect outfit for all her events surrounding ‘the big day’. In the next couple of months, Brianne will share some of her favorite looks for events taking place in the City, at the Beach, in the Garden or in Wine Country. Our goal is to help guide you through the process of choosing the perfect outfit while taking the celebration, venue and locale into consideration. We hope you enjoy getting to know Brianne, her creative services, and her super talented ways as much as we have!

Photo by Matt Edge Photography

Meet Brianne : Photo by Matt Edge Photography

Let’s start with an introduction to Brianne’s company, BB Style:

BB Style is full service fashion and personal styling service in the Bay Area founded by Brianne Binder.  After almost 10 years working in Fashion Merchandising and Buying, she ventured out on her own to start BB Style. She is passionate about fashion and style and is a retail expert, which made the move to personal styling a natural one. She also curates a style Blog that showcases her personal style, posts behind the scenes depictions of creative projects she’s working on, and shares trends, tips and tricks, sale alerts and seasonal inspirations.

She has loved being able to work directly with clients to solve their style needs and help create the perfect style for their lifestyle, event or identity. Services are tailored to individual client needs, including wardrobe styling, personal styling, wedding & special event styling, and personal shopping. After all, everyone is different and has their own unique styling needs.

Photo by Matt Edge Photography

Photo by Matt Edge Photography

Wedding styling is particularly dear to her, having planned her own wedding last year (which was recently published on Style Me Pretty).  She fell in love with styling by way of creating bridal looks for her wedding party and almost all of her family, for both the wedding and weekend activities. Currently, she offers styling assistance for finding the perfect dress, completing your bridal look from head to toe, guiding beauty inspiration to compliment your bridal style and packages for styling for wedding party, groom and family.

BB Style strives to become your go-to styling resource, helping to overcome the roadblocks you are experiencing with your closet, shopping, or finding the perfect wardrobe for your wedding or event. She is always inspired by her clients, and feels tremendous reward in seeing them look and feel their best.

And now on to part 1 of our Wedding Style Series!

I am so excited to collaborate on this fun style series for Stacy McCain Event Planning! With wedding season in high gear, we thought it was the perfect time to talk wedding style. Not just bridal style, but style for all of the events you have to celebrate leading up to the big day! All of those special events also require outfits. You want to celebrate in style, but what do you wear?!

Today, I share with you my picks for what to wear to your Bridal Shower, giving you style advice on outfits you can wear to a shower taking place in the City, at the Beach, in the Garden or in Wine Country. Finding the perfect outfit takes time and with a million other to do’s on your list, it can help to have some inspiration and tips for where you can find it.

A few tips from BB Style on styling your Bridal Shower outfit:

* It’s never too early to start looking for outfit options.  If you see something you love, grab it!  You can find the perfect shoes and accessories to compliment it at a later date.

* Wear something that has your wedding color (or an accent of your wedding color) to get you excited. Don’t be afraid to wear color.

* It’s your day to shine and be showered, so wear something that makes you feel great. Whether that something is heels and a cute dress or a flirty skirt and fun flats ~ have some fun with it!

* Details, details details… it’s all in the details!  Adding great accessories completes an outfit and makes you stand out.

* Wearing something white or cream-colored is always fun as a bride because you stand out and it gets you excited to wear white on your big day.

Check out my inspiration board for the Garden, the Beach, Wine Country and the City:

Bridal Shower Style _ BB Style

Garden Outfit: Madewell Floral Dress | Kate Spade Floral Stud Earrings | Kate Spade Pave Bow Bangle | J. Crew Clutch | J. Crew Metallic Sandals

Beach Outfit: Joie Lace Dress | J. Crew Tassel Necklace | Kate Spade Bangle | Coach Clutch | Zara Sandals

Wine Country Outfit: J. Crew Peplum Top | Saturday Skirt | Kate Spade Statement Necklace | Zara Metallic Clutch | Kate Spade Striped Wedge

City Outfit: Joie Embroidered Dress | Madewell Necklace | Stella and Dot Crystal Ball Studs | Ray Ban Sunglasses | DVF clutch | Zara Turquoise Heels

Find all the styles and looks from my Wedding Style series on Pinerest!

Be sure to check back in a few weeks for another feature in our Wedding Style series fearing Brianne and BB Style!

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2013 Trends: Rentals with Hartmann Studios

Welcome to May’s installment of 2013 Trends, where we discover this year’s innovative and ever growing world of rentals. Many of our clients, have no idea where to start, what their options are and what they’ll need to pull-off their dream event (as I’m sure many of you can relate). Not to worry, we’ve got you covered. We  spoke with Melanie Leinweber and Kelly Burns-Gaoiran, expert Sales Associates with Hartmann Studios, to let us in on the latest event design and rental offerings.

Photo by Hartmann Studios

Photo by Hartmann Studios

Q: First, tell us a little bit about Hartmann Studios and your scope of services.

A: We specialize in the millions of details that work together to create an unforgettable event. In 1982, visionary, designer, and entrepreneur Bob Hartmann founded Hartmann Studios in a small warehouse in San Francisco’s South of Market area. A gifted artist, he created stunning environments for events all over the city and around the world, gaining a reputation for strong design and impeccable execution.

Presently Hartmann Studios has expanded its offerings to cover virtually every aspect of event rentals. The scope of our services is unlimited – from tenting and lighting to unforgettable tabletops. Our team of skilled designers and innovative staff work with clients to bring their custom event décor dreams to life. We work diligently with our clients to ensure that we can create anything they imagine.

Photo of the

Photo by Hartmann Studios

Q: Which items are typically found in a rental order?

A: Honestly, there is no “typical” event rental order, as every event is totally different! Most wedding orders contain the basics: linens, tabletop items, chairs, etc. However within those categories our selection of items allows a bride-to-be the creative flexibility to adorn their guest’s tables from the basic to overly elaborate. Our selection of items ranges from ‘shabby chic country’ to ‘big city super modern’ and everything in between.

Q: We work with budgets of all sizes.  In your opinion, what kinds of rentals are absolutely necessary for a bride and groom to incorporate into their wedding reception?

A: We work with brides of all size budgets as well! We feel we understand the thrifty bride who is looking for the biggest bang for her buck quite well. We believe that in order to achieve this goal, it is important for the bride to incorporate custom touches to the items provided by the Rental Company, Venue and/or Caterer. Incorporating small touches like specialty linens or upgraded glassware can make a huge impact. Placing a colorful patterned napkin on a white china setting can change the entire look of a table without stretching a bride’s budget too far. Another exciting and budget friendly trend we have recently seen is customizing the head table with upgraded specialty chairs, glassware, and table-top design which still match to the rest of the guest tables, but make the head table stand out against the rest.

Photo by Orange Photography

Photo by Orange Photography

Q: A lot of our brides and grooms want to create the sort of reception that makes their guests feel comfortable and relaxed. What sorts of rentals do you offer that can help achieve this look and feel?

A: Creating a comfortable space for the people who mean the most to you at your reception is key! We have a plethora of items to create an intimate and comfortable setting in any venue. Our selection of lounge furniture will not only give your guests a comfortable place to sit, but also successfully incorporate the theme and overall look of your wedding in to any space. Building a custom lounge space within a cozy cabana or small nook will allow all guests to take a break from the dance floor and relax in a beautiful but comfortable setting.

Q: What 2012 trends will we be seeing less of in 2013?

A: The year 2012 was the year of vintage rustic weddings! Corals, blush tones and ivories were big and country chic was the hot trend. So far this year we have seen our brides moving towards a much more modern feel. We’re seeing a shift from the soft and muted naturals of 2012 to brighter jewel toned color themes. We are excited about blending in the 2013 Pantone color of the year, Emerald, with the more modern and glamorous items we carry.

Photo by Noah Hawthorne

Photo by Noah Hawthorne

Q: Are you seeing any innovative rentals requests in 2013?

A: We’re proud to offer the newest and most exciting rentals to help brides create a truly one-of-a-kind event. We recently received a ton of new lounge furniture, and we’re getting more new products all the time.  Many of the new items we have – such as bars, kiosk tables and wall flats – can be customized with a monogram or graphic from the wedding invitation to create a more personal touch.

Q: What kinds of trends are you seeing in terms of wedding day flow and the rentals that are associated with such a day?

A: We’ve been seeing a lot of informal wedding receptions! Couples are ditching the sit down dinner with floral centerpieces for a more relaxed reception.  Receptions featuring heavy appetizers and finger food allow guests to mix and mingle without being sequestered at tables of 10. Many brides are coming in and setting up comfortable lounge settings in lieu of formal dining.  We’ve even created some blended areas for guests to play games like bocce and croquet. Giving guests a more interactive space has been a big trend in 2013, with photo booths becoming more creative and popular than ever before. The “Pinterest” generation of brides has taken the “fun” reception to new heights, giving guests the opportunity to make flipbooks and other interactive party favors.

Q: Would you be able to share a before and after photograph of a space to exemplify the way rentals can transform a reception and ceremony room?

A: We’re proud of every wedding we do, but here are a few recent ones that turned out pretty great!

Before and After Photos from The Bentley Reserve

Before and After Photos of The Bentley Reserve

Q: Keeping in mind that this all depends on the space, guest count, etc. – how much do you suggest a couple set aside for their rentals budget?

A: A surprising factor some brides encounter is the fact that having a backyard wedding is not always as inexpensive as it seems. Saving on venue costs appeals to most brides, as they assume they can apply the money they save by hosting the wedding in a home towards a splurge on their décor. However many brides forget that while décor is the most fun way to spend a budget, essential items like china, flatware, glassware, tables, lighting, and sometimes even power have to be brought in. When renting a venue, many times these items will be included in the rental price, allowing the couple to use their budget to enhance the space they are renting. In a backyard wedding, much of the budget is dedicated to providing the party basics, which could leave couples missing the custom lighting and design moments they’ve been dreaming about.

Hartmann Studios table at the 2012 Dining by Design Event

Hartmann Studios table at the 2012 Dining by Design Event

Q: If you had an opportunity to create your ‘dream wedding’ featuring your very favorite Hartmann rentals, what would it look like?

A: Working at Hartmann, we get to look at beautiful weddings all day, so this changes on a daily basis! We’re currently obsessed with a wedding we did at Santa Lucia preserve; we think it’s the perfect blend of modern with rustic touches!

Photo by Hartmann Studios

Photo by Hartmann Studios

 Thank you, Melanie and Kelly, for sharing some helpful tips and ideas as we leap headfirst into the 2013 wedding season!

In case you missed it, click here to see last month’s Trends feature on Color!

Questions for Stacy: Indicating Entrée Choices

Question:

My fiancé and I are in the process of creating our invitations and are trying to decide whether or not we ask our guests to indicate their entrée choice on their reply card.  Can you please explain the reason some couples choose to ask this question and some choose not to?  I would imagine there are pros and cons associated with both decision.

 Answer:

You are correct; there are pros and cons that come along with either decision.  Some couples feel that asking their guests to make their entree decision prior to the wedding takes away from the surprise factor of the night.  Additionally, some feel that it’s difficult for guests to think of what they’d like to eat at the wedding, let alone remember what they selected that far in advance.  Weddings where guests are asked to indicate their entree choice when they sit down to dinner are better suited for smaller weddings.  Another important factor to take note of is that electing to order upon sitting down can slow down the dining process, as the waiters must collect orders and then work with the chefs behind the scenes to place them.  In our experience, this is done most successfully when our clients have done restaurant buyouts, as they are able to utilize unused ingredients on their public menu the following day.

The biggest pro associated with asking your guests for their entree choice in advance is the amount of money you save by allowing your caterer to create a more accurate food order.  When entree choices are not made in advance, the caterers have no way of gauging which entrees will be in high demand and are forced to purchase as much as three times the amount of food that will actually be consumed that evening.  When you ask your guests to make their entree choice in advance, your total food waste goes down tremendously.  I would suggest discussing the various fees associated with all the above options with your caterer before making this decision.  If food waste is of particular concern to you, I would definitely suggest you ask your guests for their entree choice in advance or make it easy and choose on their behalf.

Our favorite (and most recommended) way to serve dinner at a wedding is plated.  This way the menu is selected ahead of time and guests don’t have to worry about choosing a meal or making a decision once they’re at the wedding.  We find that our clients want their guests to have fun and feel as though they are at a festive dinner party. What better way to achieve this feeling than choosing the meal on their behalf? Think of it this way: your wedding is essentially the most fabulous dinner party you’ll ever throw.  When hosting a dinner party at home, do you ask your guests in advance what they’d like to eat?  If you’re anything like us, the answer is generally no.

I hope you have fun creating your menu, and Bon Appétit!

Cheers,
Stacy
Photo By Yvonne Wong

Photo By Yvonne Wong Photography

Click here to read our last helpful Questions for Stacy blog entry!

Fashion Fix: Interview with Kelly Edmonson of ban.do!

This week, the team at Stacy McCain Event Planning decided to have some fun and indulge our fashion forward, party loving,  girlish selves a bit.  We reached out to Kelly Edmonson, Director of Marketing at ban.do, to update us on all the fabulous ban.do pieces that brides and socialites alike are enjoying this year.  We have to admit we’re a little jealous that Kelly’s day-to-day involves playing with  feathers, sequins, confetti and glitter!

Photo by Max Wanger

Photo by Max Wanger

Q: First, tell us a little bit about ban.do and how it all started.

A: ban.do is an LA based design house specializing in accessories that really pack a punch! It all started in 2008 by two stylists, who’d both created similar headpieces for different occasions.  They then thought, “Hey, these are awesome!  Other people would love these… we should sell them!”  In the beginning, ban.do was purely one-of-a kind couture pieces made out of vintage flowers, lace, ribbons, and other pretty things.  The problem with this philosophy was that once these beautiful one-of-a kind pieces were sold, they were gone forever.  As  demand for the product began to grow, we started to make pieces that we could duplicate multiple times, and now we design pieces that we are able to produce on a grander scale.  ban.dos for everyone!

The ban.do girls!

The ban.do girls!  Photo by Collin Hughes

Q: How would you describe the typical ban.do girl?

A: The ban.do gal is fun and definitely loves a good party.  She loves all things that shimmer, sparkle & shine.  She is strong & silly and also cool & quirky.  She stands out in a crowd, and she always keeps you on your toes. The ban.do gal likes to sip champagne cocktails, dance under disco balls, and toss handfuls of confetti.

Photo by Max Wanger

Photo by Max Wanger

Q: Tell us about ban.do’s range of products.

A: We do it all these days!  ban.do products range from our signature ban.do mini heart, mini pom pom flower, or flash bobbi sets (which start at $10) all the way up to black label pieces (priced at $350) and everything in between.  Our new motto is “all day every day”; we firmly believe that there is an appropriate ban.do piece to wear to any occasion ~ big or small ~ at any time of the day or night.  ban.do = all day every day!

ban.do Heart

ban.do Heart

Mini Poms

Mini Poms

Flash Bobbi Set

Flash Bobbi Set

Q: We absolutely love your bridal and black label collections and think they’d be perfect for the bride who wants something different and unique for her wedding.  How did you go about designing these collections, and where do you find inspiration?

A: It’s all about vintage party dresses and starry Hollywood nights.   As far as where we go to gather inspiration, there are lots of trips to the flea markets and nowadays, hours and hours spent on pinterest (we are totally obsessed!).  After we gather our inspiration, we create a mood board and start to piece together a collection.  In all honesty, it usually never turns out like we planned, but the end product is so much better than we could have ever dreamed.

Empress Tiara

Empress Tiara from the bridal collection

Love Struck

Love Struck from the black label collection

Bridal Rose Halo

Bridal Rose Halo from the bridal collection

Good Time Blast Riot Comb

Good Time Blast Riot Comb from the black label collection

Q: Which colors, styles and products in your collection have been the most popular in 2013?

A: This year, pink and red are staple colors in our world… and gold, we are big on gold!  Women absolutely love the flash bobbi sets and buy them in every color.  The sparkle and shine sets are fabulous, the twist scarfs are a dream, and the ladies go crazy for our headbands!  Of course the signature ban.do heart, and pom pom flowers are always hot sellers too.  We are launching our new line very soon, so there will be lots more (and other awesome stuff) where that came from!

Sparkle & Shine Bobbi Set

Sparkle & Shine Bobbi Set

Sequin Scarf

Sequin Scarf

Metallic Scarf

Metallic Scarf

The Big Shot Sparkle Headband

The Big Shot Sparkle Headband

Sparkle Headband

Sparkle Headband

Q: What’s the most unique or over the top use of a ban.do product in a wedding that you’ve ever seen?

A: The brides who wear black label are always a little more over the top, but generally our brides tend to find the piece that truly fits their personality and helps them shine on their wedding day.  We love to see brides wearing ban.dos! It’s like adding sprinkles to your very favorite ice cream.

Photo by Our Labor of Love & Max Wanger

Photo by Max Wanger

Q: What is your all time favorite piece for bridal attire?

A: Hands down, the crystal swirl bobbi.  This is such a stunner!

Crystal Swirl Bobbi

Crystal Swirl Bobbi

Q: Which ban.do products do you think would make for good bridesmaids gifts?

A: We have so many options for bridesmaids gifts… there are way too many fabulous choices!  I would say it is a toss up between the ban.do iphone case or our mini hearts.

ban.do iPhone Case

ban.do iPhone Case

Mini Hearts

Mini Hearts

Q: Do you ever work with brides to create custom pieces?  How does that process work?

A: In the past we’ve created custom pieces for brides and absolutely loved collaborating with them, but we’ve taken a break from this for the time being… there are not enough hours in the day! We hope to bring back custom pieces in the future.

Photo by Max Wanger

Photo by Max Wanger

Q: Finally, which ban.do piece would you wear in your own wedding?

A:  Ha! Well if that ever happens, I think I would wear one of our super fab black label combs.

Tropic Thunder

Tropic Thunder from the black label collection

Flora Bunda

Flora Bunda from the black label collection

Cake Eater

Cake Eater from the bridal collection

A big thank you from all of us at SMEP goes out to Kelly for providing us with our weekly fashion fix!

Be sure to check out the following adorable ‘how to’ video that the girls at ban.do put together featuring their fabulous pom poms.  After all, a girl can never have too many poms!