Get to Know… Aaron Novak of Artisan Production

Happy Summer, everyone!  This month we’re getting to know Aaron Novak of Artisan Production.  We love working with Aaron and his team, who create the most beautiful wedding videos for our clients.  And on a 10+ hour event day, he and his second shooter, Matt, are definitely a sight for sore eyes!  We hope you enjoy getting to know him as much as we have 🙂

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Name: Aaron Novak

Company: Artisan Production

Been in business for: Have been shooting weddings for 5 years.  Matt Hall has been with me for 3 years, and what makes it so dynamic is that we have been the best of friends for 20 years.

Aaron Novak and Matt Hall of Artisan Production

Aaron Novak and Matt Hall of Artisan Production

Located: Orange County, CA.

Q: Which industry related tool can you not live without?

 A: My camera, a Canon 7d: Im pretty much useless on the job without it.

Photo courtesy Wiki Media

Photo courtesy Wiki Media

Q: When you’re not on site at an event, what can we find you doing?

A: I am either editing at my office or spending quality time with my wife, Leslie, my 5 yr old daughter Lily, and 1yr son Wyatt.  Planning our next
vacation or weekend getaway is always top on our list.  Earlier this year, the four of us were able to travel to Europe throughout, France & Italy, for
5 weeks. We had the most amazing adventure together as a family.

fam photo

Q: At which venue are you dying to work?

A: I have been able to work at some pretty amazing venues throughout my career.  There’s no one particular venue that stands out, but if it is an
international location I am in!!

Q: My go to snack is ________.

A:  Coconut water and a bag of nuts?

Q: What is/are your guilty pleasure(s)?

A: Beer, I love it!! I’m really enjoying the IPAs right now.

ipa

Photo courtesy Lake Effect Brewing

Q: TV wise, what are you watching right now?

A: It feels like we are kinda hitting a dry spell right now, but I am enjoying “The Leftovers” on HBO and “Ray Donovan” on Showtime.

Q: I can’t stand ________.

A: Bad drivers, traffic, opinion based news, messy environments – I’ll keep it short.

Q: What’s the last thing you purchased online?

A: A hotel stay for a weekend getaway to La Quinta Resort and Club.

Photo courtesy Waldorf Astoria

Photo courtesy Waldorf Astoria

Q: Music wise, I am currently listening to ______.

A: It has been straight up electronic & dance beats; I made playlist, and it’s on repeat!

Q: Favorite thing I currently have hanging in my closet is ______

A: Being that it is summer, tank tops are in full effect.

Q: What’s your favorite restaurant in the Bay Area?

A: Bottega in Yountville.

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Q: What do you love most about working with the Stacy McCain Event Planning team?

A: I cannot speak more highly of Stacy and her amazing team, They are just so much fun to work with!  With all the prep and planning they do, every wedding has been beyond gorgeous and seamless. It is an honor to be a part of Stacy McCain’s events!

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In case you missed it, be sure you Get to Know… Gaby Feuersinger of Cake Coquette!

Wedding Traditions and History: The Bridal Party

This week we are taking a look at the fascinating history of the modern day Bridal Party.

Photos by Michelle McMurray

The Bridal Party: Then
Photo by Michelle McMurray

Photo by Gertrude and Mabel Photography

The Bridal Party: Now
Photo by Gertrude & Mabel

In early traditions, groomsmen were called ‘bridesknights.’  These bridesknights supported the groom by helping him capture and protect his bride. They would ride their horses to another town to kidnap the bride, and the groom’s ‘best knight’ would help fight for the groom’s love.

Drawing by Manga and Anime

The Groomsmen: Then
Drawing by Manga and Anime

The bridesknights would then oversee the safety of the bride until the wedding ceremony was over.  The best knight would stand on the Brides side so he could be next to her and protect her until they were married. This was thought to confuse the evil spirits, ensuring that no spells could be cast over the couple.

It’s safe to say that the role of the groomsmen has changed significantly over the years!  Today’s responsibilities include planning the groom’s last hurrah by way of a bachelor party, and ensuring he makes it to the church on time for the ceremony.

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The Groomsmen: Now
Photo by Gertrude & Mabel

Photo by Martin Schweig

The Bridesmaids: Then
Photo by Martin Schweig

Back in the day, bridesmaids played a very similar role to the brideknights. The bride’s closest friends would help the bride get some distance from her over-protective family and unwanted suitors so she could be captured by the groom she desired.  On her wedding day, her bridesmaids would dress similarly to the bride in an effort to throw off any evil spirits and bad luck that could be directed towards the otherwise easily identifiable bride and groom.

Laura & Jeff Wedding by Michelle Pattee

The Bridesmaids: Now
Photo by Michelle Pattee Photography

Nowadays, the maid of honor and bridesmaids are chosen specially from the bride’s close group of friends to stand beside her on the big day.  They celebrate her by planning a fabulous bachelorette party prior to the wedding, and see to it that each and every one of her needs are met while she prepares to walk down the aisle.

Traditions are so much more fun in our day and age!

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Photo by Gertrude & Mabel

Jennifer + Brandon Tie The Knot

In honor of the first week of Fall, we have the pleasure of sharing the wedding of Jennifer and Brandon. Their wedding was full of warm Fall colors, echoing the surrounding grape vines which were in the process of transitioning from shades of green to yellows, oranges and reds.

In the months following her wedding, we asked Jennifer to share the story of her relationship and wedding to Brandon. Here she shares their sweet story, as well as some helpful tips on making the most of your own special day:

There was a lot of history leading up to our big day. Brandon and I grew up together since elementary school, and share many mutual childhood friends. We even went to the high school prom together!

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We went our separate ways for college, but one day during summer break our paths crossed in our hometown Clayton, Ca.  We hung out together almost every day that summer, even before we started dating.

We dated for about three years before Brandon proposed at one of our favorite picnic spots at Rutherford Hill winery.  It was the most perfectly romantic proposal; just the two of us overlooking the valley.  We then spent the weekend visiting other wineries across the valley.

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I always knew I wanted to find a venue in the wine country, so I asked our friends, the Sherwins, of Sherwin Family Vineyards, if they had any suggestions.  They told me about Beaulieu Garden.  After seeing Beaulieu firsthand, we knew immediately that this was the spot!

We were engaged for a year and four months before we got married. We had a lot of close friends getting married that same year, so we wanted to choose a date that gave enough space between all the different events. We also liked the idea of getting married in September, as the weather is usually mild and the vines are lush with grapes.

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When the wedding day finally arrived it was absolutely beautiful. The venue was gorgeous, and the flowers were absolutely amazing! It is so wonderful to see all the details come together and look more outstanding than I could have ever imagined. It was so special to have all of our friends and family coming together to celebrate our marriage and future lives together. I was so excited to see Brandon, to be with Brandon and to start our life together. It was so exciting that the day had finally arrived.

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On the day of the wedding, I was so happy and I felt so blessed that all I could do was smile. I watch my wedding video and I laugh because on my wedding day all you can see is teeth! I am smiling from ear to ear the whole time. Brandon and I had the most incredible time at our wedding. We enjoyed ourselves and had tons of fun! We danced with our friends and family and truly enjoyed our time together. It truly was an amazing day filled with so much love and a tremendous amount of happiness.

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The best advice I could give to other brides is to take a few moments to take it all in.  For Brandon and me, our first opportunity to do so was after the formal dances and speeches. We went around the property with our photographer and took pictures of just the two of us. These were the moments during which we could view the reception and watch all of our guests dancing and having fun. It was so cool to see our wedding from a distance. It was also nice to have time for just the two of us to be alone and appreciate our special day.

It can be overwhelming when you are surrounded by all the guests. Part of you feels obligated to visit with people you haven’t seen in a long time or to thank people for coming. I think it is very important to step away with your husband for a short time to relax and take in all the special little moments. Otherwise it can seem like the day went by way too fast. So remember to have fun and enjoy every moment!

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Happy Anniversary, Jennifer and Brandon!

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Planning & Coordination: Stacy McCain Event Planning / Photography: Kate Webber Photography / Venue & Catering: Paula Le Duc Fine Catering  / Venue: Beaulieu Garden / Flowers:  Sharla Flock Designs / Lighting & Sound: Got Light / Rentals: Classic Party Rentals / Videography: Weddings On Film / Printed Pieces: Union Street Papery / Calligraphy: Michelle Papineau Calligraphy / Ceremony & Cocktail Music: Eloquence String Quartet / Band: Sage Music / Cake Maker: Sweet On Cake / Toasting Flutes: Kate Spade / Transportation: Pure Luxury / Getaway Car: Classic Convertible Wine Tours / Wedding Gown and Bridesmaids Dresses: Alvina Valenta / Bride’s Shoes: Kate Spade / Men’s Suits: Calvin Klein for Mens Warehouse

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!

Kate and Rob Tie the Knot

Welcome back for part two of our blog post dedicated to Kate and Rob tying the knot.  If you missed our last post of their rehearsal dinner at The CIA at Greystone, check it out here.

For Kate and Rob, Beaulieu Garden served as the perfect setting for them to exchange vows, becoming man and wife amongst their loved ones.  With the sun shining bright, their ceremony took place in the Sunken Garden.  After sneaking away for a private moment in the surrounding vineyards, they celebrated with delicious food and wine below the terrace and then danced the night away under the stars.

The florals for this wedding were a perfect combination of modern and romantic.  We were particularly fond of the bright color palette they chose for their bridesmaids’ bouquets and the long stem tulip bouquet Radeff Design Studios designed for the bride herself.  Chandeliers combined with green and pastel colored floral arrangements created a picturesque setting for dinner and toasts.  Additionally, freestanding ivy-adorned topiaries and orbs flanked pathways and aisles, luring guests towards the terrace and fireplace lounge.  Kate and Rob most definitely tied the knot in style!

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photo Credit Michelle Pattee

Photo by Michelle Pattee

Photography: Michelle Pattee  / Planning & Coordination: Stacy McCain Event Planning / Venue: Beaulieu Garden / Caterer: Paula Le Duc Fine Catering  / Flowers: Radeff Design Studios / Videographer: David Waldorf  / Band: Blacklist Band  / Cocktail Music: Eloquence String Quartet / Cake: Perfect Endings / Rentals: Wine Country Party Rentals / Lighting/Sound: Got Light. / Print Pieces: Ceci New York

Questions for Stacy: Wedding Day Shot List

Question:
Hi Stacy.  My wedding day is fast approaching!  The photographer I’ve hired has asked me for a ‘shot list’: a list of photographs I definitely want to see captured before and during the ceremony and reception.  Do you have a list of recommended shots I can pass along to my photographer?

Answer:
When composing this list, it’s important for you to focus on posed photographs only ( for example, a photo featuring you and all your bridesmaids.  See below. ) so that you and your photographer are on the same page.  Having said that, the photographers that we most commonly work with are truly creative artists whom we’ve entrusted to tell the story of your wedding day.  We feel that providing them with a highly structured and agressive shot list might interrupt the creative process so that they’re unable to capture the special candid moments that take place throughout the day.  Therefore, we suggest you create a short list of your ‘must-have’ posed shots, and that you have a conversation with your photographer to describe how you’re hoping your wedding day story will be depicted.  Then relax, enjoy the day, and allow the photographers to do the job they’ve been hired to do!
Cheers,
Stacy
Photo Credit: Kate Webber

Photo Credit: Kate Webber

Click here to read more entries from our helpful Questions for Stacy series!