October 2013 Archive

Fall Engagement Shoots We Adore!

Happy Halloween, faithful blog followers! Since I posted my Fall Hall of Fame wedding photos, I thought I would share some of my favorite fall engagement shoot photos from current and past KOWE couples, too!

So this first image is from Rhiannon and Vinny's engagement shoot last fall…and it's very special because TODAY is their wedding day! Not only were they super creative with this shoot, it's just awesome. Can't wait to sparkle for these two at their Halloween wedding!

JP5 2031 Edit

 You may remember Jaime and Jim from my “Fall Hall of Fame” wedding post…but yeah, they're e-shoot allstars as well. I love their downtown Albany e-shoot–so gorgeous!

JP5 0320 Edit Next up, Erin and Tim's autumn engagement session at Olana State Historic Site in Columbia County. The COLORS! OMG–so amazing and vibrant! This is why October is stealing the hot spot for in demand wedding dates!

Erintim 334

 Last but not least, one of my favorite KOWE couples, Melissa and Matt. They met at Shaker Junior High School and had their engagement photos taken there, too. Adorable. And I love them.

Melissamatt 501 Edit


These are just a few of my favorites! Did you choose a special spot or time of year for your engagement photos? Let me know in the comments! And have a spooky, yet sparkly Halloween!

 Keep sparkling–

Katie O' Getting Married: Katie's Bridal Breakthrough

You've heard me talk about a bit about how the reality of wedding planning doesn't always match the vision you may have in your head. Some people love wedding planning (me!) and others struggle with it (me, too!) and some people don't like it or don't have time and they hire me to help (and I love that)! As I've said, whatever your feelings are, they're OK to have. But maybe I need to start taking my own advice…

A week or so ago I was up at the Hall of Springs attending client meetings. Since I was going to be there anyway, I tacked on a meeting at the end of the day for Nate and I for our own Hall of Springs wedding in March. I've been very busy lately, was starting to feel a little run down, and Nate had been away on business for a week–I was so excited to see him! A few minutes before Nate arrived, someone remarked, “So has it sunk in that this is YOUR wedding? Are you taking it all in and enjoying the process?” And then it hit me like a ton of bricks and I started to cry a little. Now, that was not the intent of this comment, but those words really resonated with me. Was I enjoying my own wedding planning process?

I pulled myself together just as Nate arrived and we had a great meeting with Mazzone Hospitality–Nate was (is) so excited! We walked out to the car and he was going on and on about all the food and drink options and the different ways to layout the space and I was kind of like, “OK, I'm hungry. Let's get dinner and go home.” Needless to say, Nate called my bluff and I told him how I had a mini-breakdown and that I didn't feel like a bride…because I've always been a bride.

Let me explain. I'm there every step of the way with my clients. I help them make big decisions about a huge life event that (most) have never made before. I tried to explain to Nate that I WISH I was as excited as he was, but, unfortunately, this isn't my first time at the rodeo (for clarification–this is my first wedding that I will be THE bride).

For me, our meeting that night was one of countless vendor meetings I've attended in my career so it just doesn't feel new and exciting to me. And that's OK. I've been down this road with my clients and I'm so used to being happy and exicted for them that I keep forgetting that this is for me–for us! And it's for real.

A few days went by and I had some more appointments to try on wedding dresses. I was with my mom, sister, future sister-in-law, and some bridesmaids. We headed down to the gorgeous new space that is Angela's Bridal–I had been to Angela's before and found a few contenders. Owner Janet Cooper and her staff listened to what I liked and what I didn't about the dresses I tried on and ordered in a few additional gowns for me to try on. I was looking forward to it, but not overly hopeful.

1378061 10151667800997414 226158980 N

I tried on a few and they were quickly ruled out. The third one I tried on had a lot of elements that I loved; Janet said I could add various things or take the bottom of one dress that I liked and combine it with a top from another–I was starting to cobble together my gown.

We had been there for about an hour and she said she had one more for me to try on and had been saving this one for last… Oh. My. God. IT WAS AMAZING! The minute she started to fasten me in I knew that this was the gown I was going to be married in. Then we added a veil and some other accessories and all of a sudden I had the moment I was waiting for; my bridal breakthrough. I finally felt like a bride.

And then the champgane and the tears began to flow! I was crying, my Mom and sister were crying, Nate's sister was crying! We were a happy mess! It was perfect. I'm so excited, happy, and relieved that I have found my gown (or “said yes to the dress”–whichever you prefer) and I'm “officially” a bride.

Did you have a bridal breakthrough when you were planning your wedding? Did everything work out from the start or were there some hiccups along the way? Let me know in the comments!

Keep sparkling–

Sharing the Sparkle: Thomas Patrick Morrison Foundation Fashioned by Friendship Luncheon!

The Thomas Patrick Morrison Foundation is a very special organization that I'm so proud and honored to be a part of. It was founded by my dear friends, Carmelina and Tim, in honor of their son, Thomas Patrick, who passed away from a rare mitochondrial disorder when he was only three months old (Tommy would have turned eight yesterday, in fact). Through the work of the foundation Carmelina and Tim help raise funds for research and raise awareness of mitochondrial conditions so that other families facing this reality know they're not alone. It's an incredible organization that honors the memory of a little boy who had a profound impact on everyone who knew him.

405120 439290219468255 244987082 N

The annual fashion show honors friendship and the legacy of such a brave family and other families impacted by mitochondrial disorders. It also brings awareness to the foundation and to local businesses that donate time, goods, and services to make this day so special.

The 7th annual Fashioned by Friendship event will be held on Sunday, November 17th at 11:30am at the Glen Sanders Mansion in Scotia. Newschannel 13 anchor, Jessica Layton, will be the Mistress of Ceremonies and music will be provided by Mike Garassi of Music Man Entertainment and the fashion show is sponsored by Fancy Schmancy and will feature their fabulous fashions. Hairstyles for our models will be provided by Strut Spalontique and makeup will be courtesy of Tina Barbato and Polina Lounello from Flawless by Tina.  Many thanks to our sponsors as well:  BBL Construction Services, Albany.com, Times Union, TriCity Rentals, KeyBank, Mass Mutual, Value Options, Empire Travel, Gialanella Family Dentistry and CDPHP.

1393366 587364437987320 339133569 N

I'm so blessed to work alongside my co-chair, Nichole, on this amazing event. I'm also in awe of Carmelina and so inspired by her strength and her ability to persevere and rise above such a tragic situation and make something positive from it.

I am so proud to give back and use my experience to support such a special event; giving back is so important to KOWE and to be able to work so closely with such an amazing family and foundation makes my heart happy.

This event is SO MUCH FUN.  Each year it gets bigger and everyone that joins us can't wait for the next year! We even have really awesome gift bags for attendees!

We hope you can come and support an amazing organization and have fun while doing it–to learn more check out the Thomas Patrick Morrision Foundation on Facebook here. We hope to see you on November 17th!

Keep sparkling–

Katie O' Gets Married: Tackling the Gift Registry

We're back with another wedding planning post…today we're talking about the gift registry! Gifts for bridal showers and weddings are traditionally items that help make a house a home–china, cook and bake ware, place settings, etc. This was especially true back in the day when people were much younger when they got married.

Like many folks getting married these days, Nate and I are a little older. In fact, I'd go out on a limb and say most people are waiting till they're a little older, generally speaking, to tie the knot. Most of my brides are in their late 20's- early 30's, actually.

But what do you do when both the bride and groom-to-be have been out on their own for a while and have a lot of house things already? This is a question Nate and I have been struggling with. We talked a lot about it, too–we don't want friends and family to buy us things for the sake of tradition; but we also felt like we should register because we know (ahem, our families) want to buy things for us and “shower us” with gifts and love. And we're so very thankful for that! But it was a struggle–first world problems, I know.

We have both thought a lot about what we need (and what we want) and even things that we already have, but need to be upgraded. Both of us have a lot of home items that have been with us since college. And while they're fine and totally serviceable, it's definitely time to get some more grown up homegoods!  Especially, my one item that I have been waiting to select, I call them  “Getting Married Knives,” for years I have admired all of my married friends and their fancy Henckels, Wustof and Shun knives that it was my turn to register for the fancy stuff!  Keep in mind as a single girl who never cooked, I owned one good steak knife until I met Nate. With that in mind, we went to register! See how corny we are?! I love it! I totally made Nate take this photo, obviously. What a good sport.

IMG 8478

Immediately, I thought about this scene from the classic movie Sleepless in Seattle when Annie and Walter are registering for gifts at Tiffany's. “How many place settings?” “Ten. Exactly. Eight is too few, twelve is too many.” Hah.


But that was basically us, except we went for 12 place settings because we have big families! We decided to keep things simple and classic in the kitchen–white, of course, to showcase the food that will be served (made by Nate). Nate is a bit of a foodie, so I deferred to him on most (ok-ALL) kitchen things. I did insist on this awesome green color for the Le Crueset! He was like a kid in a candy store (see below)! I had more fun with the decorative accessories and linens!

IMG 6259

Overall, it was a well thought out process and I don't believe we asked for anything superfluous. Having recently combined our households, we're excited to have things that are ours –and not leftover from our respective college apartments!

Did you have a lot of household items prior to getting married or did you need everything? Let me know in the comments!

Keep sparkling–