You Need A Videographer

First thing I see go from a budget is the videographer. And I get it. But I don't. Before I got married I thought it wasn't important. I  even wrote a blog post about it and a ton of people said they don't ever watch theirs. It can be rather expensive and if you have a photographer, why do you need both?

I hired someone from Craigslist to shoot it and had it edited. 2 years later. I don't watch it a lot, but I still cry every single time I do.  A video brings about such a different set emotions. I have looked at my wedding photos so many times (and don't get me wrong, I love them) but I can go through the whole day in my mind based on those photos. The video has something more, something different. There are edits of a few of my friends laughing together. Edits of me while my dad is giving a speech. People looking for their escort cards (which I admittedly cared way too much about, so I was happy to see people hanging in that space!). Things I experienced and a lot of things I didn't.

And that's the point. You don't get to be everywhere. In fact, you get to be on a schedule from practically the moment you wake up until about an hour before the end of the event. You don't get to sit and hang with people as much as you wanted, and you truthfully don't quite get to enjoy the day like the guests do. (Obviously you get to enjoy it, but in a very different way) The video brings it all together, and allows the couple to experience it in different ways.

But there's more!

I've been to a lot of weddings. Heard a lot of great speeches and seen a lot of wonderful moments. I've never walked away thinking, "that wedding didn't need to be filmed". These memories are extremely special, and having a way to look back on them in 30 years, I guarantee you won't regret having had a videographer at your wedding.

I went to a wedding a few weeks ago and the groom surprised her by singing her a song on the guitar. The groom's brother also had one of the best speeches I've heard. Groom's surprise brides. It happens! So be prepared.

I'll leave you with a little surprise from my husband at our wedding. See, I'm really glad I got this filmed.

Ian's Wedding Proposal from Allison Silber on Vimeo.

Vendor Guide {Columbia River Gorge}

With the wedding quickly approaching, we have all our vendors solidified. It feels good to have everything set! Here are the vendors we'll be using. If you are getting married in the Columbia River Gorge area, I would highly recommend any of these people/companies...I did the research, so you don't have to :-) Welcome party location: Springhouse Cellar Winery - My fiancé and I love this place because they serve great, local wines and beers and the space is large enough for all the guests we wanted to invite. It also has the cool, laid-back vibe we wanted for the night before.


Welcome party catering (they have a mobile brick oven!): Solstice Wood Fire Café


Photographer: Sean Morrison


Hair and makeup: Patricia of Foils Salon and Day Spa

Wedding venue, ceremony and reception: Mount Hood B&B

Vendors1Sources:top left, top right, bottom left, bottom right

Day-of coordinator: Betheny Roberts of Mt. Hood B&B - She is technically 'day-of,' but has been so helpful answering all of my questions leading up to the wedding.

Florist: Lucy's Informal Flowers

Wedding catering: Boda's Kitchen


DJ: Gavin Bruhn, The Aussie DJ 

Transportation: First Student

Invitation design: Kimberly Roth, Bright Room Studio

Wedding website:

Wedding dress: Encore Bridal, San Francisco - new and nearly-new bridal dresses.

Dress alterations: Fichu, San Francisco

Groomsmen Suits: J.Crew Factory

Six Month Countdown {check-in}

I am officially less than six months away from my wedding date! I keep counting it out on my fingers, thinking I'm wrong :-) The wedding planning is continuing to move along, but I have a feeling these next six months are going to fly by, especially once the festivities start getting under way. This week I booked my bachelorette flight and can not wait to be in Palm Springs with my favorite ladies celebrating my last days as a 'single' woman!

This week I needed to step back and look at the bigger picture before I delve into the little details like invitation design, table-scaping and bride accessories. So, I thought what better way to 'step back' than to get inspired by images from my wedding photographer, Sean Morrison Photography.

Love these kinds of shots. Is it called a fish eye lens?


Nature, laughs, and love.

How cute is she?!


And some fun shots...


Looking at these pictures has me excited to dig into my next few tasks on my to do list. Nothing like some great images to get the inspiration going. The thing I love about my photographer is that he does wedding photography because it's his passion, not just his job. During the school year, he teaches digital photography at a high school in Washington. It's great to know my photographer really loves what he does. I think that comes through in his work.

My To Do List for the next few weeks:

- finding my hair and makeup person/people

- florist

- bridesmaid dresses - coordinating the mix-and-match look

Do you have any advice for me in the six-month countdown? Are you getting married this summer? Would love to hear how your planning is going!

Setting the Mood {with Food}

Hi E&Iers! I'm back after an amazing long weekend in Southern California at fellow blogger Taya's wedding (aka my future sister in law!). It was such a great weekend filled with laughs, dancing, friends, family, new friends and new family, in a gorgeous was everything a great wedding should be. I could go on and on, but I'll let Taya tell you herself when she gets back from her honeymoon. :-)

Onto my topic of the week - food! You might remember my post, here, on finding a caterer who would work with us in making everything affordable, while still including the elements we really wanted - quality, local food, family style dinner, etc. Well, we finally found them and it was worth the wait! My favorite thing about the caterers we found was that the owner, and lead lady of this husband-and-wife-owned catering company, really listened to what we wanted and figured out where to cut corners and where it made sense to splurge a little.


I am so relieved to have our catering booked! I believe food can really help set the mood of the day - the cuisine is just one more place to infuse your style as a couple. Loving how these weddings used food to help set the vibe of their wedding day.





My advice to fellow brides out there is that if you are not finding what you're looking for and you are getting a lot of 'nos' to what you believe is a reasonable request, keep looking and don't give up! Ask lots of questions and reach out to new vendors until you find someone who is ready to have a conversation and work with you. I think it's also good to know what things you absolutely know you want and what things you would be okay not having. For me, I knew I wanted family style dinner, but I was okay giving up the filet mignon.

If you are getting married in the Gorge and looking for a caterer, check out Boda's Kitchen. Ask for Sirota Johnston, the owner and boss laday. She's awesome.

Milkfed Press Stationary Giveaway

Victoria, the design genius and creator behind Milkfed Press is one of the most raved about stationary and invitation work in Northern California. All her work is custom designed that is catered to her client's needs and combines every bit of craftsmanship possible: binding, typography, design, and letter press printing- with a very antique touch! Look at some of her work:

We love her! And we want to share some of her work with you with another giveaway! Here's what you have to do:

Like the Milkfed Press Facebook page & our Engaged&Inspired Facebook page,

Email me your name and address to

and the first to do this will have 7 Shake It! 8 1/2 x 11 Letterpress Prints mailed to them!

Good Luck!

and congratulations to Dalena Nguyen for winning last week's Milk&Honey Shoe Competition!

Here is her shoe design here!


My Guide to Bridal Shows

My first experience with a bridal show was an awful one. I don't know if there was one definite thing that made it horrible, in fact I'm pretty sure it was several things. During my visit to a bridal show I made several mistakes from when I arrived and not preparing for all of the information I was going to have to carry around. I was lucky enough to have the Mister to accompany me and carry everything and since I am an introvert, he also started the conversations with most of the vendors we wanted to talk to. At the end of it all, I vowed never to return to one EVER again. [Spoiler alert! I'm going to another one!] I don't want anyone to be discouraged from attending bridal shows upon reading this. In fact, I want to encourage people to visit them no matter what stage of planning you're in. Not only are bridal shows a wealth of information, but many vendors offer discounts and many times you can be entered into drawing for free stuff! So here are my tips!

Source: My photo, Agape Creative Studios

Who - It's important to consider exactly who to bring with you to the bridal show. You're going to want to bring someone who is interested in your wedding planning and someone who can help you think things over and keep you from booking things impulsively. Bringing friends can be fun and it can make a great girls outing. Bringing family members such as your mom, mother in-law or sister can help make them feel included but they can easily overwhelm you with their own opinions if they're out spoken. Bringing your fiancee along can be fun, but remember that some guys aren't too interested in things like that. First consider if your guy would be okay going with you in the first place. If he doesn't don't take offense! I'm sure he will help in other ways! If this is the case sit down and discuss with him what you'd like to get out of the experience and what your plan of action should be if you find a vendor your're interested in. If your mister does come, remember that he may find other guys that were drug to the event by their significant others and catch up on the score for the big game. (There always seems to be a game of some sort that fall on these days.) If your man stands by you the whole day (congrats!) make sure to reward him! Treat him to a guy movie or beer after and let him know how great it was to have him by your side.

What - So what exactly should you bring to this? Remember that many vendors are going to want your information! So bring a pen (and your willingness to write the same info many times) or even prepare ahead with label sheets containing your information. It should be your name and contact information (mailing address, phone number and email). Bonus points for adding your wedding date also! This will save you time and save your wrist! I also recommend bringing a bag of some sort or have extra room in your purse. Most bridal shows provide you with a bag to store your goodies, but if they run out you don't want to be stuck lugging piles of paper from booth to booth. Lastly, you're going to be on your feet for several hours, so make sure you have shoes you're comfortable in!

When - When you attend the show (and which show if there are multiple in your area) really depends on how good you are with crowds and what features they have through the day. (I should note that the Mister compared it to a girls version of Comic-Con). Sometimes there are several different shows put on during different times of the year. Make sure to look into which vendors will be attending the upcoming show and which will meet what you're looking for. For example there is a local bridal company here in Fresno that put on a bridal show twice a year. One is smaller than the other which would be better suited for those who tend to shy away from big crowds but may not have some of the smaller vendors in attendance. If you choose the bigger show and are not a fan of crowds, try attending earlier in the day when less people are likely to be there.

Source: Premier Bride Showplace

I plan on attending another bridal show and hope to apply these tips. I anticipate having much more success this time around and will report back on how it goes!


Does you have any bridal shows local or travel to attend any? What was your experience? Do you have any other tips I may have missed? I'd love to hear your feedback!

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Pinky Flower Power

This past week I had the pleasure of having my first meeting with my amazing florist Jackie, of Jackie's Flowers. I haven't met with Jackie regarding my flower choices since December of last year, and I was surprised at how my choices in flower have changed.

Source: Left & Right

When I first started wedding planning and gathering inspiration on my Pintrest, I loved the look of light pink and ivory flowers, peonies and plush garden roses.


As time has gone on and we have selected our bridesmaids & groomsman's attire, invitations, and all of the other color elements I decided that I wanted more variety in my color pallet. Enter the fabulous trend that is ombre.

Source: Left, Top, Bottom

I love the freedom that the ombre looks allows. We aren't stuck with matching one color but can have the full spectrum of color. Jackie and I worked through all of the color and flower options and I am very excited to incorporate the ombre color pallet with the vintage doors, bottles and wood crates that the amazing Jackie is going to create. Here's some of the inspiration that we are pulling from to bring the whole look together

Source: Top Left, Top Right, Bottom Right, Bottom Middle, Bottom Right

Source: Top Left, Top Right, Bottom Left, Bottom Right


Bridal Makeup & Tips for Looking Your Best On The Big Day

This past weekend I had the pleasure of doing my trial run for my makeup with Jessica, of the fabulous Polish and Pout. She was awesome to work with, and listened to all my preferences and vague descriptions of makeup preferences. Seriously; she is a miracle worker. I came in with a lot of opinions and very few examples, yet she captured exactly what I was looking for. The day before my appointment I exfoliated my face which I learned was a big no-no. I really should have done that a couple of days before and just used a good moisturizer the night before. Opps. Hey, this is all a learning curve and I will definitely not make that mistake before the big day.

Source: Wedding Chicks & Flawless Faces

I really wanted to have a very natural look to my makeup as I don't wear a lot in my day to day life.  Highlighting my features and natural beauty was the goal. As Jessica put it, "you wear the make up, it doesn't wear you".


Source: Media

I loved the final look she created and I know I will look amazing on my big day. Jessica did offer a few tips that bride should remember regarding their beauty routine and the big day:

1. Don't start any new skin treatments with less than 2 months before your wedding. Should you have an allergic reaction you want to make sure that all visible signs are long gone before you say "I do".

2. The day before you wedding make sure to hydrate and drink a lot of water. Most brides don't get a lot of sleep the night before their wedding, but having that hydration will give your skin that nice glow that every bride wants and help curve tired eyes. In addition a thick moisturizer and eye cream should be used the night before to make sure your skin is all prep'd for the next day.

3. If you are going to get a spray tan before your wedding, DO NOT spray your face. Some spray tans can come out blotchy and make it hard for a makeup artist to match the color. A good makeup artist can always make you darker to match the rest of your body rather than covering up a blotchy complexion.

Source: Charleton Churchill

Here are a few tips from me in selecting your makeup artist:

Pick someone you are going to be comfortable with. Talk with them on the phone and find out the products that they use. How long have they been doing makeup? Follow up on their website or Facebook for work samples. Most makeup artists do have a travel fee, so make sure to ask what that is going to be and run through with them the number of people that need their makeup done. Some artists may require an additional person to ensure that they can complete everyone in time for the days festivities.


For more bridal inspirations and happenings check me out over on my blog.

Have Your Cake & Eat Something Else Too

For our wedding I knew that I wanted to break the tradition of a big wedding cake as the only dessert available for our guests. Cakes have never been my first choice for dessert and choosing a desserts that my Mr and I really enjoy was important to us.


Source: Call Me Cupcake

Source: Top: The Brides Cafe Bottom Left: Bridal Musings Right: Every Last Detail

We got so lucky in finding Sugar and Spice Specialty Desserts from a yelp review, and based on their customer reviews that looked be a great fit for what we wanted.  Clarissa, the owner, took note of ourdesire to not have a traditional wedding cake and emailed me a list with a ton of other dessert options she could do along with photos of some of her past work. When we arrived for our tasting we were amazed at how many fun items she had for us to sample. From truffles, to chocolate carmel bites, cake pops, pop tarts (yes, as in the flaky pastry kind), and multiple flavors of cupcakes we were in dessert heaven. After the full sugar coma set in we talked dessert bar. Clarissa and I came up with some great options for setting up the dessert buffet, how it was going to be styled and finally what dessert items we wanted.

Source: Top Left: Wedding Chicks Top Right: Polka Dot Bride Bottom: Bridal Musings

I cannot wait to see all these yummy desserts on display for our guests to enjoy. And yes, we did decide to have a very small cake made in order for us to have the traditional cake. We had to keep some traditions.

So, cake or no cake? Dessert table? What fun ideas are you coming up with for your dessert.


For more bridal insperations and happenings check me out over on my blog.

Techy Photo Booth Alternative

I love the idea of photo booths at a wedding. Not only are the photos keepsakes that guests get to take home to commemorate your day, but all the fun photos that the bride and groom get to keep of their guests after the wedding. When my Mr and I first got engaged, we looked into the cost of renting a photo booth and had a hard time justifying the cost. It wasn't a must have item for us and there comes a point in budgeting when you have to figure out what your must have items are.

Source: Top: Snippet & Ink Bottom Right: Wedding Chicks Left: Wedding Chicks

I got really excited when I discovered Wedding Snap. This website and smart phone app allows for your guests to have a designated area to share the photos they capture of your big day. Brides can sign up through the website and receive an album code. Wedding Snap provides information cards to hand out to guests explaining how they can access the site through the web or smart phone app and upload photos. Guests can download the free app and upload the photos they capture with their phone throughout the night.

Source: Wedding Snap

Any photos uploaded to your album will be avaliable to view and download online. Guests can even see the photos already uploaded to the album through the app as well. All photos stay online up to a year after your wedding, so friends and family are able to go and see photos captured as well as upload photos taken with a digital camera.

Source: Wedding Snap

Long gone are the days of leaving disposable cameras on tables for guests to use . Being someone who pretty much only uses my iphone for photos, I love the option of being able to share photos captured by our guests and  to have copies for myself. I plan on posting details about Wedding Snap at my bridal shower, so some of my guests will already have the app downloaded and be familiar with it before the wedding. Also, Wedding Snap allows you to create folders with your album so I can separate photos taken at the bridal shower and bachelorette.

What do you think of Wedding Snap? Do you think guests will be able to catch on and utilize it during and after the wedding?


Also find me over on my blog, and pintrest.