Congratulations Nicole Abate-Kenyon our August Bride of the Month!


August 2014: Nicole Abate-Kenyon!

I’m excited to introduce our August Bride of the Month Nicole Abate-Kenyon. We loved her save the date that gave her guest the reminder of what to look forward to and how her “modern chevron” invitation really set the tone for the type of wedding she would be having. Nicole’s amazing photographer OpieFoto captured her beautiful wedding held at the prestige Stein Eriksen Lodge at Deer Valley. It just shows having talented vendors really does make all the difference for an occasion such as Nicole’s!

The Interview

Bekka: How is married life and do you feel any different?
Nicole: Married life is GREAT! Alex and I have been together for a while now, so not much changed after the nuptials. Getting to call him my husband is one of the best feelings in the world.

Bekka: Where did you get your inspiration from in designing your invitations and did you know exactly what you wanted or did you have a bunch of ideas.
Nicole: My inspiration came from an ad I saw in Utah Bride Magazine. It was a picture of a wedding party dressed in preppy navy blue and Kelly green. I knew right then that those were my wedding colors. Alex and I originally come from Connecticut, and now currently live in Denver, so we wanted to incorporate some east coast prep into our invitations for our mountain wedding.

Bekka: What is your favorite part of your invitations?
Nicole: Our Save the Dates were so fun to design. I loved that we were able to incorporate places from our past, present and future, as well as show the guests where they will be joining us for our special day. Ann Elizabeth was able to incorporate a modern chevron into a simple and elegant design for our invitations, which made them really unique and special. The blue and green stripes and chevron have to be my favorite! I also love the font I chose, because I feel it set a casual tone for the wedding.

Bekka: Was there any feature of your invitations that people complimented you on most?
Nicole: I got so many compliments on the originality of the invitations. From the map on the Save the Date, to the simplistic, yet modern design on the invitation, people really got a sense of what the wedding atmosphere was going to be like.

Bekka: Some brides take the theme of their invitation and tie it into their wedding decor did you use anything from your invitation?
Nicole: Yes! Our wedding colors were Navy Blue, Kelly Green and Grey so all of the décor was in line with this color scheme. The bridesmaids wore neutral grey dresses which allowed the mountains to really shine, and not be overpowered. The Groom and Groomsmen wore navy blue Vans and green striped socks to dress down their suits. We also had some chevron mixed in with paper straws and place cards. One thing I have always been picky about is matching the Save the Date to the Invitation, and then trying to incorporate that into the design of the wedding. I think it all went together very well!

Bekka: Do you feel that your invitations set the tone for your wedding?
Nicole: Absolutely. We wanted a casual mountain feel in an elegant setting. I feel that the invitations set the casual tone for the wedding, for sure. I definitely was looking for an invitation that was not too fancy, but pretty, fun and reflected us as a couple.

Bekka: What advice would you give to brides who are looking to gather inspiration for their wedding invitations?
Nicole: Look at lots of magazines, check out the Ann Elizabeth website, and of course…Pinterest! There are so many great ideas online. You just have to figure out what message you want to send to guests, and as long as you can communicate that to Ann Elizabeth, you are no doubt going to get exactly what you are envisioning.

Bekka: How would you describe your wedding day and was there anything that happened that you didn’t expect good or bad?
Nicole: Our wedding day was definitely the best day of my life. It was relaxed, fun and full of love! I started off the day with yoga on the deck with my bridesmaids at Stein Eriksen lodge and the Boys hiked Deer Valley. This set the tone for the day. After that came the routine “getting ready” and pictures before the ceremony. The ceremony was short, sweet and beautiful and the reception was a blast. We wanted all of our guests to have a great time and I really feel that they did! I would say the one thing I didn’t expect, was that I was so calm. I expected to be anxious and crying at every little thing, but it was actually one of the most serene and memorable days of my life!

Bekka: Tell us a little more about the vendors you chose and how it made your day that more special!
Nicole: Well first off, I have to give a shout out to our photographer, OpieFoto. Opie was a pleasure to work with. She takes amazing photos and is such a creative artist. I can’t stop looking at my wedding photos or my album! As for the venue, Stein Eriksen Lodge holds a special place in my heart, because we have spent a lot of time there during the winter ski season. This just felt like the perfect location for us to tie the knot. The other vendor that really made our wedding special was Couth Booth. They provided our photo booth and we have so many awesome, hilarious pictures from them!

Bekka: Nicole you were so great to work with, thank you for sharing your beautiful wedding with us!


See something above that you’ve absolutely got to have for your wedding? We’re making it easy for you. Below is a list of Nicole's vendors:


Ceremony/Reception: Stein Eriksen Lodge, Deer Valley

Photographer: OpieFoto

Catering/Cake: Stein Eriksen Lodge, Deer Valley

PhotoBooth: Couth Booth

Flowers: Silver Cricket

Invitations: Ann Elizabeth

Bride’s Dress: The Bridal Collection, Denver CO

Bride’s Shoes: Badgley Mischka

Groom and Groomsmen’s Suits: Banana Republic

Bridesmaid Dresses: Donna Morgan

Rings: Jay Feder Jewelers, Denver CO

DJ: Marriott Entertainment

Hair/Makeup: Versa Artistry

Officiant: Judge Shauna Kerr


Save the Date Part 2: Destinations Weddings

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Save the Date Part 2: Destination Weddings

If you're planning a destination wedding here are some do’s and don’ts to help you prepare. Traditionally a destination wedding is focused on a smaller group of close family and friends therefore sending a save the date is a MUST! Especially if you are planning to wed over a holiday where guest will need to plan accordingly. Etiquette time frames for sending out your save the date on a destination wedding should be six months to a year depending on location. When planning make sure you have the date, venue and URL locked in before sending them out. This gives your guest an idea of what to start planning for as far as travel goes. When creating your save the date card you can use elements of design from your wedding theme which can be carried throughout your invitation suite giving your guest a fun teaser of what's to come.

[one-half-first]save the date 2save the date 3[/one-half-first][one-half]What key details should be conveyed to guests on a save the date?

A save the date should have the date, destination, invitation to follow and a URL. Keep it simple by the way of wording and have fun with the design to get guest excited about the big day.

What details should not be on a save the date?
Do not give too much detail on a save the date card. For example: ceremony details and activities that will be going on during the occasion. You don't want the save the date to be confused with the invitation.

Why is it so important to have a URL?
With a URL you can provide contact information for travel agents/services and hotels so guests can handle their own travel and lodging. It also can be a place of information about your destination and activities so guest can pack appropriately. You can remind guests of passport, visa and other legal requirements and safety concerns if traveling to a foreign country. The URL can be so convenient for continuous updates and important information throughout the months to come.[/one-half]blog quote 2

If you have a whole weekend planned you can say “Save the Weekend”. With a weekend full of activities and events you will need an itinerary with details that your guests can take with them so things stay organized. Your itinerary should be incorporated into your invitation and again this is where you can get really creative and use your destination for inspiration.

With helpful do’s and don’ts you can create a well organized destination wedding that you and your guest will have memories to enjoy for a lifetime!

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Save the Dates, Part 1

Save the Date Photo 1

Whether you got engaged over the holidays or just recently on Valentine’s Day, now is the time to start thinking about sending save the dates. So what exactly is a save the date? Simply put, a save the date is a card or postcard mailed to loved ones that indicates these important things:

save the date quote

Key elements to include as part of your save the date design are:

The Bride and Groom’s names

The date of the occasion

The city and state of the occasion

“Invitation to follow”

A URL for more details

Including a URL is highly recommended because it directs guests to find details like accommodations, maps and other important travel details at your wedding website, rather than needing to include paragraphs of details on the your save the date.

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Not sure when to mail your save the date? Most wedding experts recommend mailing save the dates 6-12 months prior to your wedding date. If your engagement is shorter just be sure to send your save the dates a minimum of four months ahead to allow your guests adequate time to make arrangements.

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Additionally, save the dates aren’t for just weddings - any event where you need to give guests advanced notice is a good opportunity to use a save the date. Consider a save the date for Bar/Bat Mitzvahs, Quinceaneras, Company Parties, New Year’s Eve Celebrations, Birthdays and any other gathering where lots of planning will go into the event and giving your guests advanced notice will be of benefit.

Everything You Need to Know about Save the Dates

It is more than common for brides to have questions about Save the Dates. To send or not to send? What information HAS to be included?  In today's post, I'll cover the "ins and outs" of Save the Dates, and help you decide if these wedding reminders are a necessity for your wedding or not.

Do I need to send Save the Dates?

This is kind of a trick question, because it really depends on a few key things, like if your wedding is:

  • a destination wedding for everyone; you AND your guests will be traveling somewhere for the wedding.

    If you've got everyone jetting somewhere for your big day, it's best to give them as much time as possible to book their airfare, hotels, etc.

  • a destination wedding for your guests; you live in the area you're "tying the knot," but some or all of your guests will be flying in.

    Just because it's not a destination for you, doesn't mean it's not for them! Let's say you live in California, and want to get married on the beach you got engaged on. Your big, Italian family from New Jersey is flying in, so it's best to give them time to book travel and lodging.

  • your wedding date is on or over a holiday/ holiday weekend.

    This is one people tend to over-look. If you're planning on getting married over a national holiday- let's say Independence Day weekend- it's best to give people a "heads-up" so they can make sure they're there for your wedding.

  • Here's a special one: your region's traditions.

It may come as a surprise, but the United States has different traditions based on its different regions. The eastern US tends to expect more traditional correspondence, including a Save the Date (which, itself, is comparatively a newer element of wedding correspondence). The western US tends to be more relaxed about expectations for what you send and what you don't. Simply read up on what the majority of your guests would anticipate for your event and be sure to accomodate them.

Do my Save the Dates need to match my wedding invitations?

Not necessarily. Some brides-to-be panic a little bit over the myth that they need to exactly match their Save the Dates with their invitations; that they'll have to commit to a given theme prematurely, then if they end up wanting to change, it'll be too late. Your Save the Dates definitely don't need to match your invitations, but it is nice to have at least your colors, font(s), or a motif that is consistent throughout. Above all else, it is key that your Save the Dates reflect the tone of your event, whether it's formal, casual, etc.

When should I send my Save the Dates?

We recommend sending your Save the Dates six months to a year in advance. Have a shorter engagement, but still feel the need to send Save the Dates? The sooner you can send them, the better. Or, consider using a more non-traditional method of getting your wedding date known, like a wedding website.

What information do I need to include?

These may seem painfully obvious, but there are some Save the Dates we've seen that fail to mention some of this crucial information:

  1. Names of the Bride- and Groom- to-be
  2. The date of your wedding
  3. The location of your wedding
  4. Information that a formal invitation will follow
  5. List your wedding website if you have one, where information regarding lodging, wedding day information, etc may be found.

The way you give this information is completely up to you, but remember that your Save the Date sets the tone for your wedding. We don't recommend having a Save the Date that is really playful and informal when you plan to have a black tie wedding.

Who should I send Save the Dates to?

It's a common misconception that you only need to send Save the Dates to certain guests- ones who will be traveling a great distance to your wedding. Don't do this. It is best practice to send a Save the Date to anyone you want at your wedding, no matter the distance they'll have to travel. If you send a Save the Date, include everyone you want in attendance at your ceremony and/or reception.

Hopefully this post clears up some confusion about Save the Dates. Have you seen a Save the Date that stood out to you for good or bad reasons? We want to hear about it! Leave a comment below.

We thought we’d share some Ann Elizabeth love… This FABULOUS little beauty is going out

We thought we’d share some Ann Elizabeth love… This FABULOUS little beauty is going out today!