Baaaaaaaaabyyyyyy it’s hot. I’m talk squelching. So hot I used a word that sounds like some nefarious bodily function to describe it. But despite the hell heat, some couples still love to celebrate their big day in the summer. Nothing says romance like 100 degree plus weather, or as we call it in Texas, “Tuesday.” A summer wedding can be fun but you’ll want these tips to keep you cool!
Bring Water. Lot’s Of It.
Buy water bottles and ask your venue to ice them down the morning of the wedding. You’ll want those out and ready for guests as they arrive, during the ceremony, and cocktail hour. You don’t want a wedding and a funeral. Trust me. Keep everyone hydrated and you won’t have a headline on your hands. Also, make sure your planner or venue coordinator knows the signs for heat exhaustion and heat stroke. Talk to them about other precautions to ensure that doesn’t happen.
Have Programs That Double As Fans
Didn’t I say it was hot?! Three piece suits, spanx, and bodycon dresses do not a cool body make. Give guests an opportunity to cool down. Find some cute prints at Magnet Street.
Wear Breathable Fabric
Linen for a wedding dress? Probably not. But if you’re having a summer wedding, make sure to have something cool to change into or something to prevent chafing. Maybe a challis fabric dress to dance the night away in. If casual wear at your reception is not your jush (bless you Jasmine Masters) try some of the anti-chafing shorts from the Thigh Society. They’re designed to wick away moisture and keep you cool.
While you take your photos, let your guests take a trip down memory lane with frozen pops. Steel City Pops makes some delicious flavors that all kinds of taste buds can appreciate. Starting at 100 pops they’ll come to your wedding and serve them out of their adorable vending carts! It’s a fun way to pass the time and throughout the night guests can sit under the stars with their freezy treats and…chill. Get it? I know, I know I’ll see my way out.
How would I describe Crystal Poenisch? Brilliant! Her work speaks for itself. Find out more about her, her work, and where to find her!
WHEN DID YOU START?: January 2017
WHY DID YOU START?: Photography is something I’ve always been drawn to. I come from a fine art background and have always been surrounded by artists. I’m not very good at drawing though, so my vision outweighs my skill when I’m using the wrong medium. With photography, I can create whatever I can dream of. I love the way weddings look and feel. I love how beautiful everything is. I love that I can make a bride feel as gorgeous as she is and as others see her. I love that I get to spend a whole day (sometimes more) with a couple and be a part of their love. You can feel it radiating from that and I feel so privileged and honored that I can capture that.
WHAT’S YOUR GOAL THIS YEAR?: My goal is to explore more of my creative style in wedding photography.
WHO’S YOUR ULTIMATE CLIENT?: My ultimate client is a couple who will trust me to capture their vision of the most special day of their life.
FAVORITE CLIENT MEMORY?: I was filming a wedding in Laredo, Texas. The couple was so sweet and in love. They made us feel so included the whole day, like we were part of the family. At the end of the night, the mother of the bride came up and made sure I has slippers so I could join on the dancefloor and my feet wouldn’t hurt. We had all formed such a strong connection over the day, and it made me so happy to get to know their family and feel so considered.
WHAT YOU WANT READERS TO KNOW ABOUT YOU: I work from my first question: “how do you want to look on your wedding day?” Whether that is ethereal, powerful, or “like a princess,” I will make it happen.
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WHY DID YOU START?: Watching Texas become such a culinary destination has been really inspirational. We want to contribute, and we believe San Antonio is the perfect place to bring whole-animal, pasture-raised butchery, as well as
expose the community to some of the best meat producers in the world!
WHAT’S YOUR GOAL THIS YEAR?: We want to be an integral part of the farming and cooking community, as
well as create amazing new experiences for people who care about where their food comes from.
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WHO’S YOUR ULTIMATE CLIENT?: Our people are the people with a sense of adventure, a need to skip the
pretenses and get to the heart of the matter. Meat plus fire. Beer plus friends. Add some exquisitely raised meat and the skill and passion to prepare it honestly, and we can have ourselves a hell of a time together.
FAVORITE CLIENT MEMORY?: One of the coolest parts of of our mission is bringing the finest sustainably and humanely raised meat to people that may not have ever had the chance to try it. Pretty much every event provides an opportunity for someone to have a singular experience, like their first bite of pasture-raised fat, their first cheek meat, or their first pork sirloin. These are the moments we live for.
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WHAT YOU WANT READERS TO KNOW ABOUT YOU: We care about the animals we work with, the land they were raised on, and our community’s food system as a whole. We visit the farms we use and have a close relationship with the people who work the farm. We also only buy whole animals, and do not participate in the commodity meat industry. This is what we do because we know it means a stronger community, and just as importantly, it just tastes so much better!
Now I might be biased but Adam is actually f*cking amazing. If you don’t cry watching his videos then go to the Wizard and ask for a heart! But in all seriousness, keep reading to find out why he’s our vendor of the week!
WHEN DID YOU START?: The first wedding I shot was back in 2010, but I’ve been doing videography for over 10 years now.
WHY DID YOU START?: After my first wedding I was hooked, I knew I wanted to capture couples’ love stories; I want couples to feel like stars of their own movie.
WHAT’S YOUR GOAL THIS YEAR?: Currently I am expanding my company, I am hiring videographers to travel and capture weddings that I can’t. Mostly the goal is to keep expanding that direction.
WHO’S YOUR ULTIMATE CLIENT?: I don’t really have an ultimate client, I am so thrilled when anyone wants me to capture their love story.
FAVORITE CLIENT MEMORY?: I really love it when clients enjoy the videos, every time I send the final product and they send back a beautiful email, that’s my favorite thing. I create to make others happy so when they are, it’s the best!
WHAT YOU WANT READERS TO KNOW ABOUT YOU: I am a videographer who loves what he does and I get to do it everyday.
…and he’s damn good at it. Find Adam Paul Stone Productions on Facebook, Vimeo, and then go book him!
I started my business in late 2010 and was able to go full-time mid-2012!
WHY DID YOU START?:
As cheesy as it sounds, a dream. Not the kind that you have while sleeping, but a “one day” sort of dream of wanting art to be a big part of my life, instead of a tiny slice. I had studied photography at a fine arts school but did not think that I could make a career out of it. I was hired at a state agency during the recession, and while I was grateful to have a job (especially since my husband quit his to go back to school and we needed every cent), it also made me miserable. I hadn’t considered wedding photography as a possibility until my husband and I were planning our wedding in 2009. It was such a new world out there! I had thought of wedding photography as still portraits, like what you saw in Father of the Bride. Realizing that wedding photography was a wonderful, creative field meant that I could stretch my legs into it and make a piece of it my own. It’s lovely making art for like-minded folks who are commissioning you to just be weird in your own little way.
WHAT’S YOUR GOAL THIS YEAR?:
I’m always trying to push myself creatively, so I hope that at every wedding or session I try something that I’ve been working to perfect, and the shot comes out so great that the couple wants to print it out!
WHO’S YOUR ULTIMATE CLIENT?:
My ultimate client is someone who trusts me. The client who does not trust me is often the same client who thinks everything has to be a “certain way” or tries to take control with a shot list or sends me a million “example” photos. I was picked out of hundreds of photographers because of something that resonated in my portfolio (hopefully), so as strange as my process may be while taking their photos, I would hope that the client goes along with it and then loves the outcome.
FAVORITE CLIENT MEMORY?
I have so many… the one that hits me the most right now is the wedding right after the recent US election. I’d been feeling so awful that week, but on the day I focused on the job at hand. The couple was joyous. The guests were lovely. All of the vendors worked together. I forgot about the world for eight hours and just steeped myself in their story. When I shared a slideshow with the couple after the day, the bride wrote to me that the wedding and its photos were a “love bomb” so badly needed after that week. It just reiterated how much I loved my job and the effects it can have on people.
WHAT YOU WANT READERS TO KNOW ABOUT YOU:
I travel to San Antonio No but really, in general: I’m a person who cares about you and your wedding. I know how overwhelming weddings can be, with all of their moving parts, so I position myself as a resource for my couples. I’ve been in this game a while (seven years!) and have been on the other end of the process too, so I try to make your lives easier!
Diamonds are pretty but are they really worth the cost? Who even made up the tradition of diamond engagement rings anyway? The people selling it to you that’s who.
With the concept of conflict free diamonds being a little sketch, I thought I’d offer up some just as stunning alternatives. Does it help that these beauties are gorgeous and affordable too?! Get lost looking into them and find more engagement rings on Etsy!
It seems counter intuitive, right? A wedding planner telling you to ditch a big extravaganza? But I’ve seen that look countless times. The squirm, the tick in the eye like a couple wants to run. It always happens when another expense comes up or an in-law gets a little too involved, or the thought between picking from seafoam green, mint, and turquoise napkins just seems so silly. I get it. If you’re approaching that point, why not just elope?! Here’s seven reasons why you should.
1. Save Those Coins
I will never tell you not to save money. In today’s gig economy, more often than not, we’re all juggling more than one job while trying to pay down student debt, car loans, and mortgages. Why fall even deeper into it? Save money by ditching the two most expensive aspects of a wedding — the catering and the venue.
2. Save Yourself
Wedding planning is not for the faint of heart. Things that meant nothing to you a week ago suddenly mean EVERYTHING. The minutiae gets blown up exponentially because you’re trying to impress everyone while you get depressed in the process. Stress isn’t a joke. Don’t put yourself under that kind of pressure. You’ve already got so many other things to juggle in life. This doesn’t have to be another one.
3. Save Time
You love your mate. Why wait 18 months to a year to marry them? If you’re ready to put a ring on it, why not just do it now? Life is precious and nothing is guaranteed. You don’t have to waste time waiting. The marriage is the treat, not necessarily the wedding. So get on to all the days after instead of spending so much on one.
4. Have The Ultimate Intimate Moment
By far, the most aggravating thing I’ve seen at a wedding is watching a couple exchange vows and hearing a relative screech, “We can’t hear you!” from the back row. Sharing your vows is a sacred act and that moment was obliterated by a hasty guest. All that matters is that your partner hears and believes them. What better way to honor the exchanging of vows by proclaiming your love in front of the friends and family you actually want to be there? What could be more meaningful and memorable than that?
5. Open Up Your Options
With less to worry about you create more options for yourself. A resort, an island, Vegas, a ranch, a state park, hell — even Whataburger, become options when you have less payments to worry about. Whatever and wherever you want to celebrate is now an option. You don’t have to settle for something your mom wants or that looks like every other venue. Go and be original and creative with your choices!
6. More Money for a Honeymoon
Because your guest count probably won’t exceed 25 people, you don’t have to worry as much about catering, favors, entertainment, and alcohol. The thousands you would have spent on guests you can now spend on yourselves. Get crazy with it and take the dream vacation you two always wanted!
7. It Just Makes Sense
I love the hell out of what I do. But do you want to know a secret? I would elope. It’s cheaper, it’s faster, and you can make it into what you want it to be, no compromises. If you needed more incentive to do it, now All The Days is offering Spellbound, our exclusive elopement package at $777 that includes venue, a small cake, an officiant, and planning! See? I told y’all you might as well!
Let’s be real, like really, really, real. When I found out about Serena Williams’ adorable engagement I about died from happiness. In the past year I got so used to tragic headlines about black women like Korryn Gaines that I was excited to see one about our joy. I needed it in an odd way. Forever a lurker, I quickly upvoted the Snoo-drawn announcement on reddit and went about my day. But I should have known better than to think most people would have the same reaction.
We can get into the politics of race and interracial relationships in this country but I will leave that for a writer with the emotional endurance, wherewithal, and nuance I left in 2016. After reading too many comments (I know!) I was worn out. Serena Williams is a living legend. Despite her many accomplishments and I mean there are plenty of them, people decided to take issue with who she decided to choose as a partner. REALLY?! Which brings me to my main point. Why are we so obsessed with the choices women make?!
Damned If You Do, Damned If You Don’t
If she had chosen someone black, someone wealthier than her, someone, or anyone else, there would still be commentary about it. There would still be outrage. The longer I’ve worked in this world the more I realize that the wedding industry has little to do with weddings and everything to do with a public pronouncement of a woman’s worth. Most wedding media enforces it; the whitest, slimmest, blondest, most feminine women deserve the gigantic rings, the most lavish productions, and most deserving partner (who’s usually your run of the mill dude bro). That’s who graces the covers and the ads that drive what I consider unnecessary hype. But surprisingly, it works. How could we pretend it doesn’t when queer, plus-size, people of color, and differently-abled couples are all but non-existent to a large majority of the industry? It doesn’t just marginalize, it capitalizes off of it. It depends on us being lead by our insecurities to sway our decisions. When we comply, the obsession seems nearly invisible, but when we don’t? Suddenly it’s up for discussion by everyone. Input you didn’t want and feedback you didn’t ask for hits you from the left and the right. Every choice you make morphs from a period into a question mark. It’s not like we’re not used to having our choices questioned by everyone from our petty Aunt Gladys to the highest courts (don’t get me started). But it would be nice if the biggest day we get to declare our love was actually supported by the industry that pretends to care about it most.
It’s an unfortunately profitable problem (to the tune of $40 billion) that needs to reconciled. I’ve seen far too many women lose their collective sh*t about things that didn’t actually matter to them. On a normal day, pintuck or shantung linens wouldn’t be life or death. But when weighed against the backdrop of what other people may say or think, it suddenly matters much more than it should. The hype is the biggest clothing store mirror amplifying all the things we hate about ourselves. The decisions go from being based in love to based on fear. Every choice from apparel to program format becomes a reflection of our value instead of a celebration of a union.
Guests Can Be The Worst
Where does some of the unrelenting criticism come from? Guests, or the people you invited to a fully funded dinner, bar, and party. Those ingrates. I’ve overheard plenty of things like the following:
“So sad they couldn’t afford the real china.”
“Did you see that dress?! She’s certainly brave.”
“That diamond must have been invisible because I barely saw it.”
“Those arrangements are so tacky.”
Those were the nice ones too. We’ve all been guests at weddings and overheard it or worse yet, participated in it. We don’t want to have that wedding. So we buy into it while the industry continues to confuse, condition, and trick women into thinking that in order to prove our worth, we need to meet a certain set of requirements. You don’t. It’s a load of bull as big as the state of Texas and as bright as our legislators. There’s no need for you to slip in it.
So whether you just announced your engagement or are months away from tying the knot, screw inessential people’s opinions. Wear that dress, walk down the aisle to Migos, take a shot at the altar, and marry whoever you want. Someone’s bound to judge you for it anyways, so you might as well enjoy it.
I came across the lovely Mrs. Tatia scrolling through Facebook. She was absolutely stunning but had a beautiful story to match. Read on about how Mr. & Mrs. Hutchins #WedDifferently.
HOW DID YOU MEET?In 2005 through a new friend of mine but an old friend of his.
WHEN DID YOU KNOW THEY WERE THE ONE?In 2008 when I got laid off after 16 years and he supported my new vision of becoming a RN during that time. I got a job in October 2011!
HOW DID THEY PROPOSE? He asked me in 2012 after 6 years and gave me a ring letting me know his intentions. But because of finances at the time, we didn’t plan a wedding. I began calling him “That Guy.” He resolved the challenges we faced with cars, home, and personal circumstances. He stood strong and never let me stress so in 2015 I started calling him “Mr. Many Things.” Then in mid-September 2016 he told me great things were happening and asked me to start looking for a ring. We set on the Justice of the Peace route before the end of the year but my Mom told me to inquire with our church and blessings were granted with no budget. After the wedding, Facebook friends started to call him Mr. Everything!”
HOW DID YOU WED DIFFERENTLY? We didn’t have a wedding party but we celebrated our blended family with a sand ceremony and solidified our union with communion…#GrownFolkWedding!
WHAT’S SOMETHING FROM YOUR WEDDING YOU’LL ALWAYS REMEMBER?
Walking down the aisle with my dad and son to present me to my King.
Wearing my great aunt’s old champagne pearls.
Wearing my new dress, shoes, & veil with my beautiful friend’s borrowed fox stole and blinged message “I Do” on the bottom of my shoe.
My 2016 was full of blessings: My 50th birthday brunch. My son graduating from college, and being together for 10 years when he proposed again.
I created the concept for the reception and was assisted by my stylist, Tina Briscoe Gilbert. Mr. Hutchins was amazed with all that was done without me being stressed.
The magical feeling of being presented as Mr. & Mrs. Hutchins.
Rocking my gray and natural hair!
How did you #WedDifferently? Send us an email and you could be featured!
WHEN DID YOU START? I started officially as a full time photographer in August 2012.
WHY DID YOU START? Long story short, after years of trying to find myself and my purpose, photography made its way into my life. After photographing my first wedding months after picking up a camera, I felt my purpose was to become a photographer. Before I started I was working a data entry job that I absolutely hated. I would spend my downtime at work trying to plan out things I needed so that I could one day be a photographer for a living. However, that got me fired from my job. It was the push I needed to get started. It wasn’t the easiest transition for me to move from having a “real job” to becoming my own boss, but I wouldn’t change the past even if I could. I love what I have the honor of doing. Photographing weddings give me purpose and continually is the reason why I wanted to start in the first place.
WHAT’S YOUR GOAL THIS YEAR? Creatively, I want to push myself a bit more this year. Whenever I feel I’m doing something really good, I want to step outside of whatever it is that’s making me feel comfortable. I want to experiment more and shoot more personal work because ultimately, it keeps me moving forward and betters my craft. I never want to be stagnant or complacent. I always feel that if my work is pushing more people away, it’s bringing those closer to me who really enjoy my work, my eye, and how I see the world.
I also want to do more photography education things this year. I want to help other photographers out by sharing the knowledge that I’ve gained since starting my business 4 1/2 years ago. Ultimately, I want to give back more to others this year.
WHO’S YOUR ULTIMATE CLIENT?They don’t care what others think. They do things their way and not how they’re “supposed to” do them. They don’t want their wedding to be a production; they want it to be a celebration of their marriage and party the night away with a gathering of people that are close to them. They don’t pay attention to the wedding trends and don’t want a cookie cutter wedding. They don’t care about the little details, just the big picture. They don’t care if their dress or suit gets dirty in order to make adventurous photos happen. They don’t want pretty posed pictures that they see in wedding blogs. They want photos of moments that make them feel how they felt. And lastly, they’re cat people.
FAVORITE CLIENT MEMORY? It’s really hard to say. I have many. One of my recent and favorite memories was back in Portland, OR earlier this year. It literally got shut down. The couple’s wedding was at an outdoor venue. The drinks were flowing and everyone was having a great time. Towards the end of the night, they were asked by the owner to bring the music down at a certain time. However, the music got louder and louder. Ironically, once Lil Jon’s, “Turn Down For What”, came on, the owner of the venue walked over and pulled the plug on the music. Literally. He pulled the plug from the wall and yelled that the party was over. Lol. The couple was cool about it though and apologized to him saying that they knew they had it coming.
WHAT DO YOU WANT READERS TO KNOW ABOUT YOU? Umm… I’m not sure. That’s kind of an open-ended question. I guess I would say that I’m a wedding photographer that actually gives a fuck about the couples I work with. I love what I do. It’s not a job to me. I don’t think of weddings as something I clock in and out of. It’s all about an experience to me. It’s about creating and sharing that experience with those I photograph. I’m pretty stubborn in the fact that I don’t want to work with people who think of me as just hired help and call me ‘sir’. I want to connect on many different levels with those I photograph. Because if they care about who I am as a person and appreciate how I see the work through my camera, I want to be there for them and give them my all.