Monthly Archives:: May 2012

Raleigh Bridal Open House at Cardinal Club

Cardinal Club Bridal
Open House

Friday, June 1  ~ 6:00 pm to
8:00 pm

“Say I Do to the Best
Downtown View”

Experience the Cardinal Club, one of Downtown Raleigh’s favorite venues, in event mode. The beautiful city club will be set up as it would be for a wedding event.

Enjoy complimentary food
and drinks while overlooking Fayetteville Street, and meet expert wedding vendors. Enter to win various door prizes, which will be given out at 7:30pm.

Photo of the Cardinal Club provided by Luster Studios.


June Triangle Bridal Giveaways

We just looked into our stash of bridal giveaways and we
have sooo many amazing prizes left for the year, that we decided to make June a
big month of some of our favorite prizes! You don’t want to miss being in the
pool for these prizes!


Register with Southern Bride & Groom by June 1, and
you’ll be in the running for the following prizes:

–       $100
to Primp Salonbar

Treat yourself to a new ‘doo and
possibly a cocktail.

–       $100
to Silverland Jewelry & Gifts

Get a head start on your bridal or
bridesmaid jewelry.

–       $100
dinner for two at Il Palio at The Siena Hotel

Il Palio is The Siena’s 4 star
restaurant, serving high end Italian fare.

–       $100
dinner for two at Café Parizade in Durham

Experience fine Mediterranean
cuisine at one of Durham’s favorite restaurants.

–       $75
dinner for two at Solas

Enjoy a meal in one this urban-chic
restaurant that overlooks Glenwood

–       50
thank you notes from Maria Scheel Invitations & More

Get started on your thank you notes
with this custom creator of stationery.

–       2
room nights/weekend stay at the Hilton Garden Inn Raleigh-Cary

Perfect for you or a family friend
to use during your wedding weekend, or just for a couple nights away from home!


We are also doing a FACEBOOK CONTEST to win a free specialty
keepsake hanger from Posh Hangers this month! This is a separate contest- to
enter, just tag Posh Hangers in a post on SB&G’s facebook wall.


Prizes will be announced June 4 on Facebook!


We also have a special prize coming up in July – a 2 night
stay at The Meadowbrook Inn in Blowing Rock, NC! (All registrations this month
will be in the contest for that prize as well).

Posh Hangers Facebook Contest

Southern Bride & Groom is happy to feature a new
fabulous business, Posh Hangers.

Margaux Luen created her first specialty hanger when a
family friend was getting married, and she wanted to give the bride a unique
gift. She realized she had stumbled across something special, and decided to
launch a business. We met Margaux recently and just fell in love when we saw
her product.

As a wedding publication and website, we see a lot of
wedding photos. One of the all-time favorite wedding photographs is that
classic shot of the bridal gown hanging on the door frame or closet, looking
beautiful and pristine, before the bride slips into it and meets her groom. Believe
us when we say, nothing ruins that shot quicker than an ugly hanger!

Margaux’s beautifully elegant, hand-crafted hangers solve
this problem. And, not only does Posh Hangers carry “Mr.” and “Mrs.” Hangers,
but there are various other designs- such as “Bridesmaid,” or even names, so
that the hangers can be used as a keepsake gift for your entire wedding party,
parents, etc.

welcome Posh Hangers to SB&G, we are running a Facebook contest for engaged
women, for a chance to win a FREE hanger (you choose the style), until June 4th.

Like Southern Bride & Groom on Facebook and tag Posh Hangers in a post on
our wall. All of the names will go into a pool, and a winner will be drawn on
Monday June 4th. Good Luck!

Bella Bridesmaid Represented in Survivor Win

A bridal shop owner is the most recent winner of CBS Reality Competition, “Survivor: One World,” the show’s 24th season. Kimberly
Spradlin, owner of San Antonio Bella Bridesmaid, won both the $1 million grand prize this past Sunday as well as the fan favorite prize of $100,000. She must have deserved it!

Attention of this caliber is fabulous for girl power, the bridal industry, and of course, for the Bella Bridesmaid franchise.

I spoke with the local owner of Bella Bridesmaid, Christy Carver, about Kim’s win. Christy met Kim in New York City at Bridal Week 2011,
where the Bella Bridesmaid owners all visited the NYC store to view several designers and potential exclusive lines. She says that Kim was “delightful to be around” and offered help and advice to the new Triangle store owner.

She went on to explain that there is a community feeling between the Bella Bridesmaid owners. Christy just took over the Raleigh store
and relocated it to Cary in late 2011, so she is newer to the “BB Sorority,” but says that in this short amount of time, “they have become a second family, and that she has made some incredible friends for life.”

I personally feel the love between the Triangle wedding community as well, and it is always wonderful to hear about wedding businesses
supporting one another. This is the best way to learn and grow, after all!

Christy welcomes any bride to visit the Cary Bella Bridemaid at the Lochmere Pavilion Shopping Center. Her goal and the goal of Bella Bridesmaid is to give the bridal party one-on-one personal attention that they deserve. Dresses range from $175-$400, some of the designers in the Cary location include Amsale, LulaKate, Coren Moore, twobirds, and more.


Photo credit: CBS Entertainment- Jeffrey R.
Staab/Associated Press

Wedding Trend Report: Photo Booths

It is undeniable that today’s wedding is shaped by the ever-evolving world of technology. One of the coolest and still relatively new
trends that modern technology has brought us is the use of photo booths at weddings, which has taken off in the past few years. They are all the rage, and you have most likely experienced one at a wedding. But, you probably don’t realize how much the field has changed just recently, and how many new features are available with photo booth rental.

We spoke to Neal Zipser, who launched ShutterBooth’s Triangle/ Central/ Eastern NC division in 2008, about the future of photo booths in weddings.

“We brainstormed, we researched, we identified gaps in services and, of course, we spoke to brides,” Neal says, “We decided that being
a trend setter is better than being a trend follower.” Neal told us about a few ways ShutterBooth has predicted the needs of brides and incorporated technology to do stay fresh.

ShutterBooth identified a gap in spontaneous video, as well as personalized footage of guests other than the wedding party. They added ShutterVideo (still behind the curtain of the booth), where guests have the option to leave a taped message to the newlyweds.

Then, they looked at the affordability issue. Neal says, “While I believe a ShutterBooth is a ‘must have,’ the reality is that it typically is
something that brides want badly but sometimes can’t afford.” So, they created the revolutionary ShutterRegistry, which allows brides to register for a ShutterBooth, so their guests help pay for the service.

In our TMZ/celebrity world, they also found a desire for a “red carpet” experience.  So, ShutterBooth now offers the option of the booth without the curtain, so that spontaneous photos can be taken against branded backdrops. The creative possibilities here are endless.

And finally, while a photo booth provides instant gratification with on-the-spot photos, guests still want the availability to access their photos online as soon as possible. With the new Shutter and Share, guests sign up on a laptop at the wedding to have an email notification sent to them when the photos go live.

There is no question that the photo booth experience is one that guests are sure to enjoy and make a wedding event memorable. The photo strips are a wonderful keepsake for the guests and newlyweds alike. And now there are extra user-friendly options from organized help to acquire the booth in the first place, to fun new features and options once you book it. I’m sure the world of photo booths will only continue
to grow to fit brides’ needs, and we will be sure to report it!

Photos Above Left to Right- Dara Blakely Photography; Luster Studios

Downtown Raleigh Wedding Venues

Weddings in the heart of the city are popular these days, and one good reason is that with the downtown revival, restorations and growth, everything is close by or within easy walking. Restaurants, parks, museums, churches and late night bars are plentiful for the weekend entertainment.


Tie the knot at All Saints Chapel before moving on to a fabulous downtown reception. This is a beautiful, nondenominational chapel for the modern bride who wants to walk down the aisle.


The venue choices range from grand hotels like the Sheraton Raleigh Hotel, and the Marriott Raleigh City Center, that offer a choice of luxurious banquet spaces along with the convenience of room accommodations with special rates for all wedding guests. It’s so nice for both the host and the guests to have their “room away from home” central to the weekend events.

Unique event spaces have opened in downtown that appeal to the bride who is looking for lots of personal choices to display distinct style. Market Hall, stands out in historic Moore Square at City Market. The all-red brick building has 20-foot high ceilings and an Old
World look. Another new favorite is The Stockroom, an urban venue with big city “loft” flair situated on the second floor at 230 Fayetteville Street.

Although the name implies the past, sophisticated or avant-garde might well describe the grand three-story lobby and curved staircase,
soaring granite columns, cathedral ceiling and glass walled entrance of The North Carolina Museum of History. Views encompass the State Capitol and other downtown landmarks. The Museum of History should also go on your recommended lists of activities for guests no matter which downtown venue you choose.

Elegance abounds in downtown Raleigh with the distinguished sister clubs, Cardinal Club and Capital City Club, each designated as   “downtown’s best views to say I do”. Our newest “old” club is the just opened Grand Ballroom on 16 Martin Street, a 1930’s historic men’s club newly refurbished and ready for wedding affairs on the penthouse floor.


Caffe Luna creates great Italian wedding menus and offers top-notch service in their three art-filled private event rooms as well as
specializing in off-site catering.

These many beautiful event choices above, paired with the excitement of the downtown capital city gives any couple the chance to enjoy their own unique day.


Top photo by Neil Boyd Photography; Other two by Brian Mullins Photography

ISS Experience NC Recap

Inspire Smart Success  “Experience” came to Durham, North Carolina, a couple weeks ago, and Southern Bride & Groom’s Jenna Olender had the pleasure of attending the event.

ISS is an event industry resource, including a magazine, mentoring programs, and the “Experience” seminars that travel the nation. The event is framed to inspire, educate and connect wedding business professionals. The event kicked off with a cocktail party in which The Cotton Room was decorated beautifully by a team of Triangle wedding vendors, led by Erin McLean Events. Throughout the event, attendees were fed delicious food by Triangle Catering. Other local sponsors & contributors included The English Garden, Heart Stone Films, MakeUpForYourDay, Joe Bunn DJ, Tesh Parekh Live Painting, Ice Occassions, Vesic Photography, The Green Kangaroo, CE Rental, and Party N’ Post.

The nontraditional seminar consisted of presentations and live interviews/group discussions with prominent national event professionals, including ISS Founder Stacie Francombe, Design Superstar Preston Bailey, Weddings Unveiled Editor Brooke Thomas, and Celebrity Cake Designer Jay Qualls.

Although we at SB&G focus on the local event business, we follow national trends so that we can share them with our family of vendors and brides. This was a unique look into the mind’s of some of the national wedding business’ forefront movers and shakers.

One thing that stood out was something that Preston Bailey said on his success, “I surround myself with people who teach me things, and who inspire me.”

This is a fabulous way both to live life and approach your career. At SB&G, we live by that principle; we are very lucky to work with such amazing event professionals, and are always continuing to be amazed and inspired by our fabulous group of wedding associates!


Durham Magazine “Best of” List

Southern Bride & Groom has always been a Durham-based publication, so we are huge fans of Durham Magazine.

This month’s magazine edition announced the 2nd annual “Best of Durham” winners. We wanted to give a shout-out to all of the SB&G clients who were honored with a gold, silver or bronze award, which are voted on by the local patrons. We are so proud to work with so many amazing Durham businesses!

Congrats to all of the “Best of Durham” Winners! Here are the SB&G winners:

Best Greek/Mediterranean Food
Gold- Parizade

Best Museum
Silver- Nasher Museum of Art

Best Florist
Gold- Ninth Street Flowers
Silver- Floral Dimensions

Best Event Space
Gold- Bay 7
Silver- Duke Gardens
Bronze- Washington Duke Inn

Best Event Planner
Gold- A Swanky Affair

Best Hotel
Gold- Washington Duke Inn
Silver- Durham Marriott

Best B&B
Gold- The King’s Daughters Inn

Best Event Photographer
Silver- Scott Faber Photography

Best Salon
Silver- Bella Trio Day Spa

Best Spa
Gold- Bella Trio Day Spa

SB&G Launches Summer/Fall Cover and Shares the cover couple’s story!

Southern Bride & Groom magazine is happy to launch our summer/fall cover this month. Every year, brides and local industry wedding professionals look forward to SB&G’s cover picks, because they are often real brides and grooms from NC’s Triangle Area.

This cover couple is Jill and Dave Padilla, who were married in Raleigh last fall. The moment was captured by Stacy Borelli of Swank Photo Studio as the newlyweds rode from their wedding ceremony to their reception at Solas on the back of Jill’s father’s 1964 cadillac.

Jill is seen in the cover image wearing a stunning bridal gown from Alexia’s Bridal Boutique with a gorgeous bouquet by Fresh Affairs. Her hair was done by Bella Trio and her jewelry is from Bel Canto Designs. Dave wears a tuxedo from Bernard’s Formalwear.

To read more about Jill and Dave’s Real Raleigh wedding, and see a full slideshow of images, click here!

Congrats to Stacy of Swank Photo Studio for being the 2012 Summer/Fall cover photographer!

SB&G Summer Cover


Fearrington House ranks #1 US Luxury Hotel for Weddings

Fearrington House has been named the top luxury hotel for weddings in the nation by Forbes Travel Guide. Fearrington House, which consists of a restaurant, inn, spa and village of shops, is set on a historic dairy farm near Chapel Hill. It is a one of the most popular venues for Triangle weddings and Destination North Carolina weddings because of its unique and picturesque setting, beautiful accommodations, ceremony and reception locations, and top-tier service. For the full list of the Forbes Top 10, click here.

Fearrington is one of Southern Bride & Groom’s favorite venues and we could not be happier for them! Check out a recent Fearrington wedding that we featured on our website, the wedding of Jennie & Karl, with beautiful photos by Dara Blakeley Photography (as is the photo below).