Get Your “Spring” Fix – DIY Wedding Bouquets!

 DIY bridesmaids flowers - wildflower bouquetsMy own wild-flower-wedding floral arrangements – compliments of mother nature and my mom, aunt, and sis!
[Image by Serendipity Photography]

I’m guessing there are quite a few brides out there who would LIKE to incorporate more do-it-yourself savvy into their wedding plans, but who aren’t quite sure whether they can pull it off. Not everything comes with a tutorial. Hey – I can relate! I’m no florist. I totally took a chance at my own wedding by plucking some of the wildflowers (shhhh – this is probably frowned upon) in the surrounds our Boundary Waters Canoe Area wedding-in-the-wild! Would they droop mid-way through the day? Would we need to keep them in water? Would our ribbons hold? Would the unique blossoms start to crumble? We really didn’t know. But – we survived, and so did our bouquets!

I’ve seen some pretty cool custom bouquets over the years too – though very few were actually done by the couple or a family member. One DIY bridal bouquet that will always stand out in my memory is that of a backyard-lakeside-MN bride – who gathered her goods at the local farmer’s market (pictured below). Three words: to-die-for! Super unique, and I’ve yet to see them duplicated. Can’t get much more personalized than that – and the couple also saved some $$! (Bonus.)

brideandDIYfarmersmarketflowers-DMPDIY farmers market bouquets for a backyard lakeside MN wedding – Image by DMP!

Whether you’re adept at being crafty, or you aren’t sure where you’d even start – chances are that if we were able to make DIY bouquets work on a whim, you can do quite a bit with this handy little instructional template! Much gratitude goes out to Simply Bridal for simplifying (Did ya catch that? I couldn’t resist…) the DIY bouquet-making process! Now – go rock your one-of-a-kind bridal bouquets, chicas! How can you go wrong with the beauty of real flowers – sans the stress-beast.

DIY  Wedding Bouquet

Be sure to pass along the wedding-wisdom to friends & fam who may be planning to get wed. Many thanks!

Denise Mack photography provides unstructured, candid, natural Minnesota wedding photography in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis & St. Paul, greater MN, Wisconsin, and beyond. Original. Meaningful. REAL. Fun!

 

 

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Gluten-Free + Wedding Registry!

artisticmnweddingphotography-celebratorywonderHere’s a toast to eating gluten free AND healthy! And – to getting all those kitchen gadgets that will make that super simple!

This goes out to all of my fellow gluten-free-foodies out there – who want to make the most of their wedding gift registry for maximum GF kitchen enjoyment! I’ve been following Jennifer Fugo over at the the Gluten Free School blog for a while, and I really dig her wisdom. I’ve been GF for over 6 years now, but there is always more to learn! Here, Jennifer posts about her favorite must-have kitchen utensils for making the most of your gluten-free kitchen. Dig in and enjoy! (PS: Ladies – to get the hub-to-be on board with your registry plans…. tell him he can be in charge of the laser-pricing-gun. In. like. flint.)

Please click HERE to check out those kitchen-must-haves over at the Gluten Free School!

 

How I Roll….

hiring-denise-mack-photography

A depiction of how I want you to feel about hiring me – Denise Mack Photography!

It has come to my attention that many couples are really unclear about how the wedding photography industry is priced… And why wouldn’t you be?

A) You aren’t in the biz. You don’t have the inside scoop on how this all generally goes down, and what’s trending – in the way of images or pricing.

B) Styles, experience levels, and prices are really ALL over the board! Crazy-pants, over-saturated market. (Buyer-beware! That ‘deal’ may not be what you’re actually going to gush over after all is said and done, and you receive those images of your day.) Think ahead – to that moment when you’ll first lay eyes on those images of your moments and memories!

C) You don’t know the ‘tricks’ of the trade that many higher-end photographers are now using to appear competitive at the onset, but still earn a viable living doing what we love. [So sad.] Rest-assured, DMP has no desire to ‘trick’ you into hiring me! I want you to know UP-FRONT – what you’ll be investing in your lifelong memories. (That means no puke-worthy surprise-costs later.) *Be sure to price-compare with ALL of your desired inclusions tallied into the final sum.

For more details – read my new web page – added just for you! “What’s BEST for US?”
I’m not a salesperson. I’m an artist. If art is what you’re after – then welcome aboard! Glad we’ve found one another~

Denise Mack Photography provides unstructured, authentic, naturally-fun & honestly-priced wedding photography in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis & St. Paul, greater MN, Wisconsin, and beyond! Follow the blog (upper right – no spam!) for regular, non-boring, wedding inspiration, resources, and updates.

Pot O’ Gold – Comin’ Atcha!

It’s that time of year… SPRING, GREENAGE (soon), St. Patty’s Day… and GOLD! I learned a bit about some unique gold offerings available out there from this graphic – provided by SimplyBridal.com.

A little inspirational ‘schooling’ this week. Enjoy!

St. Patricks 2014 - Touch of Gold HQ

Denise Mack Photography. Permission to be myself? GRANTED.
Permission to be YOURSELF?? Definitely GRANTED!

Slow Down and Enjoy Your Wedding…. Slow WAAAAY Down!

 DMP Natural MN wedding photography

EXTENDED FOR ONE MORE WEEK! WINNER TO BE SELECTED BY WEDNESDAY, MARCH 19, 2014!!
{Scroll to the bottom for details about their Free-Upgrade Offer!}

Okay – as you know – I’m not a huge trend-follower per say. Howevs, I AM all about FUN! And, I’m all about stopping to smell the roses, as they say. Your wedding day will FLY by. (No exaggeration. It moves so fast.) Here’s a memorable way to slow things down, and gather some amazing moments with fam & friends that you’ll truly want to watch again and again with them. I am love, love LOVING this fresh approach to professional wedding videography! It’s like a ‘photo-booth’ set-up, only in a larger space, and TONS more engaging! It’s called the Slow Motion Booth {Check it out here at SlowMotionBooth.com} – It combines your favorite friends and family conspiring with slow-mo creators to capture them doing zany, silly, hilarious ‘mini-stunts’ with one another and YOU! The final edited product is more than entertaining, and a great new way to immortalize your event, while highlighting the joy of the occasion.

If you only have a quick minute – check out their promo vid HERE.
If you have a couple extra minutes to peruse their other enticing samples, check them out HERE!

Here are a few words from Chris Meyer, of The Slow Motion Booth, MPLS:

DMP: What got you started in your field/ what inspired you?
CHRIS: Having been in the photography/wedding world for 8 years, I have always been interested in the different trends that come along. When I saw the Slow Motion Booth idea, I knew that this was an idea that I had to pursue. It’s something cool, different and fresh, and I LOVE providing the service at weddings and corporate events.

DMP: Who do you feel can benefit the most from what you have to offer?
CHRIS: Anyone that is looking for something different and unique, The Slow Motion Booth is the perfect addition!

DMP: If you could only highlight one thing about your product/ service/ location, what would it be?
CHRIS: The Slow Motion Booth is the most unique addition to any event, providing slow motion documentation of the most hilarious moments.

DMP: Your best tips for acquiring your products/ services?
CHRIS: The Slow Motion Booth is available nationwide, and while we would love to capture moments at everyone’s events, we can’t be everywhere at once (yet). Dates are booking up quickly, so give us a call or shoot us an email to check availability!

DMP: What is your top-favorite memory from your wedding day?
CHRIS: SO many great moments! One that sticks out though is our first dance. I surprised Kim with bringing in a musician friend of ours to play a special song for us. The look on her face was perfect!

DMP: If you could do it all over again – what is one thing you would do differently knowing what you know now?
CHRIS: I wouldn’t change a thing!

DMP: What is your best piece of advice about marriage in general/ planning a wedding/ or anything related?
CHRIS: Planning a wedding can be incredibly stressful. An open line of communication between the bride/groom and the parents is essential to a smooth wedding date.

Thanks so much, Chris!

Now, for some juicy news! Chris has generously offered to provide a free upgrade – valued at $700 – to one lucky winner! If you are considering hiring The Slow Motion Booth for your wedding, and you want a chance to win a free upgrade with your purchase, sign up to FOLLOW the DMP BLOG (upper right column)! Easy-Peazy. *(I hate spam too. I promise to keep your email info confidential, and you can always ‘un-follow’ me if you change your mind later. No hard feelings.) *By entering your info in the follow section, you provide me with consent to provide your name and email address to Chris Meyer of The Slow Motion Booth, Minneapolis, for give-away/ upgrade eligibility purposes, upon winning. (This is the only info I’ll be sharing, enabling you to receive your gift.) A random winner will be selected from new blog followers by Wednesday March 12, 2014. Eligible entries (via followers) must be received before midnight Eastern Time, Tuesday March 11, 2014. Winner and Chris Meyer will be notified via email on Wednesday, March 12. Winner must contact the Slow Motion Booth directly to receive their upgrade offer upon booking The Slow Motion Booth for their event. Additional details will be provided by The Slow Motion Booth, and all matters pertaining to booking or upgrade eligibility become the responsibility of winning client and The Slow Motion Booth team.

DIY (with some assistance) HD Wedding Video? Yep!

NaturalMNWeddingphotographbyDeniseMackPhotography

So – some peeps elect to enlist the experience of a professional wedding videographer to cover their vows. And let me just say, you’re going to get what you pay for here. We’re talking clean, high-quality, thoroughly edited, and “non-shaky” video of your memories.

Others ask the infamous “Uncle Bob”, or a friend or cousin to tend to this project. Here, you generally get what you don’t pay for… which is shaky, low-quality, haphazard video full of “wind”, background noise, and well – a huge dose of reality (as opposed to propagated “grandeur”) – so this can be a refreshing take on it! [We did this… Although it meant minimal video – yet enough for the memories we wanted – we also had STELLAR photography coverage, which of course was my priority!]

Then, there are those who want something in-between. A little cleaner, with multiple perspectives, high-def video – complete with edits and music to match the mood and theme of your day! (I personally LOVE this!) Enter Wedit Videos!! This is downright brilliant, as it allows you to take this anywhere (do you hear that, destination-wedding-brides & grooms?), and with much better quality output than you’d get from beloved Uncle Bob’s home movies! [Where were they when I got wed?!]
Here is probably my favorite sample video on their site: Wedit Trailer Bahamas   It’s my fave for a number of reasons… including the fact that it looks warm, sunny, and tropical there. But also – because this couple did some super fun and creative things (i.e. – footage on the plane of the two of them!) – combined with their free-flowing and fun, fun, FUN day! It doesn’t hurt that they selected a song that felt ‘right’ for their personalities and their laid-back beach-wedding. TAKE NOTE HERE:  It’s actually ENJOYABLE to watch. You’re pulled into it and you want to see what happens next. The mood is upbeat and you can just tell how much they relished in their day! This gives you an idea for what TO do if you go for this type of  wedding video coverage…

Next, let’s take a look at some of what NOT to do… I highly recommend you peek at a few of the other Wedit sample videos  – to get an idea for how those make you feel in comparison. When you’re watching a series of people stand next to the bride and smile, do you grow tired, distracted, officially bored? It’s not the fault of the Wedit team if clients requested to keep these things in their videos. And, if that’s what was important to those couples, so be it! {It takes all kinds to keep the world turning…. and interesting!}  All I’m suggesting is that you keep in mind these 2 pointers in relationship to this: A) Highlight the FUN portions of the day – the ones you’re going to actually want to sit on your sofa and watch over and again for many years. (i.e. Leave out the time spent shooting photos of the bride with every person present at the wedding – as you’ll have all those photos to remember that by – which can be viewed at your own pace in printed form)…. and B) Let this be a guide for just what you do and do not want to incorporate into your day! (Perhaps it’s not necessary to have an individual photo of every attendant or wedding party participant with the bride in the first place??? I happen to think not! Oy.) {Referencing this Wedit vid specifically here!}

DON’T BE AFRAID TO STEP OUTSIDE OF TRADITION AND MAKE YOUR DAY AMAZING AND MEMORABLE FOR YOU AND ALL YOUR LOVED ONES!!!! YOU WON’T REGRET IT.
In line with that – I’m excited to have come across this newer approach to candid wedding videography to share with all my unconventional wedding couples! Cheers to YOU! Enjoy~

Denise Mack Photography provides unstructured, candid, and rather kick-ass wedding photography coverage in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and Saint Paul, greater MN, Wisconsin, and beyond! Contact me if you’re seeking non-traditional MN wedding photography that’s Original. Meaningful. Real… and FUN!
Follow the blog (upper right column) for weekly -(usually)- updates on unconventional, supa-personalized wedding inspiration and resources!
(Spam sucks, so no worries here. You can always choose to ‘unfollow’.)

Bored by All the Mirror-Image Wedding-Hype?!

Hey all… Is it just me, or are so many of the wedding forums out there rather typical – and so often a mirror-image of one another? *[Kind of like wedding photography in my opinion as well!]*  This doesn’t mean these sites [or those photographers] aren’t ‘good’… It just means that they maybe aren’t quite as exciting, unique or fun!! Perhaps there just isn’t anything remarkable that stands out being shown, shared, or captured…Unconventional-and-Natural-MN-wedding-photography

Well breathe that sigh of relief – because I’ve found some less-trendy, atypical, and much more enticing wedding boards out there! Here’s the list – with a short description for what I personally like about these boards – and what you stand to gain as well… My belief is that the wedding board shouldn’t lead us to becoming wedding-bored.

#1) Let’s start with a fab-find in this regard! They encompass any and all aspects of non-traditional wedding planning – AND LIFE – which happens to mean fully-inclusive. Really anything outside of tradition – without limits – is a prime candidate for inspiration here. We’re talking weddings in the wild, weddings with a twist, weddings that are beyond personalized to the max, and weddings that cater to all human beings – such as wheel-chair-bound individuals and our friends within the GBLT Community! (I have even come to learn during my research that they share in my ‘language’ –  using terms like “kick-ass” and “non-boring”…. It must be LOVE!)
It’s none other than the outlandishly lustrous Offbeat Bride! They take the unconventional and give it a glorious spotlight – with all kinds of amazing features, tips, ideas, and shizz you probably haven’t even thought about! I personally enjoy reading about some of their Real Wedding features – and getting a glimpse into each wedding. You actually get to SEE what they did to make the celebration their own – (rather than being left with 2 or 3 teaser images). Here is one such posted, rockin’ wedding, that serves as an ideal example; I happen to really appreciate what the bride says (near the end of the post) to answer the question, “What was the most important lesson you learned from your wedding?” {I also clap-to how they incorporate narrative directly from the couple.}
Just when I thought they couldn’t be any more original, rebellious and fun (sound familiar?)… They also have an Offbeat Home & Life forum – for life after the wedding. Your offbeat, non-conformist, and personalized lifestyle just got even more inspired! {Swoon!}

#2) Another variety-enhanced inspiration-generating board is Emmaline Bride!  This site places their emphasis on the hand-made and truly original finds that you just can’t locate in the typical ‘wedding market’ — (at least not without tons of online searching and time!) It provides a hub to combine originality and utterly unique design, as well as many DIY tips and treasures to be made, found, and had. They seek to find those wedding day items and people who just stand out from the overly-saturated and under-varietous wedding market trends. *{One of the things I appreciate about this site – is that when they first began in 2009, THEY contacted ME – saying, “You’re exactly the kind of thing we’re looking for!”} Yay! Me too, me too! Be sure to check out my 2 Featured Weddings on their site! Jenny & Tom’s Lakeside Wooded Wisconsin Wedding    AND   Megan & Tony’s Snow-Kissed October MN Country Club Wedding   (Disclaimer – We hadn’t yet figured out proper image-sizing for this one.) Thank you Emmaline Bride! {Heart}

#3) Third place goes to another ideal resource for my nature-loving-side – and surely it will appeal to yours as well! It’s the Rustic Wedding Chic guide, and they know how to do that down-home wedding up right! If the terms “rustic wedding”, “barn-wedding”, “wooded-wedding”, “lakeside wedding”, “ranch-wedding”, “farm-wedding”, “country wedding”, or generally “outdoor wedding” come to mind – you’ve found the right site. In addition, if descriptions such as rustic-elegance, laid-back, woodsy, or vintage are part of your repertoire – you’ll find a plethora of ways to make the most of your earthly-love and bring the outdoors to the inner-most portions of your wedding day! It’s truly your top source for all things outdoors in the way of weddings. So kick up your boots and wrangle yourself a few new idears to celebrate… All their tabs are loveable! {Yeehaw Cowbride!}

#4) My final wedding resource suggestion is for a forum called Rock n Roll Bride. Although many of their acknowledgements and connections stem from or are located in the UK, it lends itself well at spotlighting couples who step outside of tradition, and the details that help them make their weddings into very personalized and meaningful celebrations. (Delish!) You can eat up a lot of this inspiration too – and get your mojo rolling for your own nuptial-nuance! Loads of fun to scroll through! (TIP: Click on the actual title of the post to see greater detail, and then scroll to the bottom to look through the full ‘gallery’ of images selected for that highlight/ post.) {Cheers!}

These forums should definitely help to get those creative juices flowing – especially for those of us who know we want something different. There are no rules. It’s YOUR day, and should be reflective of your style in every way! These boards won’t leave you feeling like you just chomped on some more cardboard cut-outs… Au contraire – ’tis Much more YUM! I hope this provides you with all kinds of new and meaningful means of fully representing on your wedding day.

Kick-Ass-Minnesota-Wedding-photography-Denise-Mack-PhotographyDenise Mack Photography – providing kick-ass candid wedding documentary services in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and Saint Paul, greater Minnesota, Wisconsin, and beyond!
Follow the blog (upper right corner) to stay up-to-date on wedding hot-topics and cool-vibes, for those who seek maximum personalization and enjoyment of their nuptial celebration.