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Tuesday, December 29, 2009

image of the week: wedding silhouette by stephanie moore

when you run a blog, you often find that it's a great tool merely for sharing the beauty you discover in your personal travels. this photo, taken by stephanie moore of stephanie moore photography, absolutely falls into the must-share category.

it's striking, hauntingly personal, and just utterly beautiful. stephanie might be a fabulous choice if you're having a north carolina wedding, don't you think?

Sunday, December 27, 2009

romantic bouquets

i am clearly in love with contemporary design — fresh ideas, clean lines, bold colors. that said, there is something about a classic, perfectly romantic bouquet of flowers that just melts me.

not your average, everyday, ordinary bunch of pink roses, mind you. i'm talking about vintage artistry with an updated twist. simply put, when romantic meets modern, it is absolute magic.

like this lush, gorgeous bridal bouquet by castle & pierpont, courtesy of instyle weddings, which mixes peachy roses with milky white peonies and ranunculus (my favorite wedding flower of all). it's just dreamy.

or this delicately ornate rose bouquet by karen tran, with its sleepy lilacs, soft greens, and just enough shimmer to keep it from being too pale. this is what it means to put a modern spin on a true classic.

just two of my favorite finds for this week.  :o)

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

paper olive featured in weddings in houston magazine

we are proud to announce that paper olive has been featured in weddings in houston, an award-winning wedding magazine focused on beautiful, elegant and upscale weddings based out of the greater houston area.

our beachcomber couture wedding invitation is currently highlighted in their january 2010 issue, which is the houston bride's guide to what's hot, new and exciting in weddings as well as top houston resources. we love their idea-packed website, which is jammed with beautiful imagery.

weddings in houston magazineweddings in houston - inviting ideas

please join us in our delight, as we adore weddings in houston!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

a very merry christmas wedding

in celebration of this gorgeous, wondrous holiday season, i thought i would share this equally gorgeous photography of alicia and anthony's real christmas wedding. simply stunning.

diy calligraphy by bride. gown by ian stuart. venue, st. lucy's catholic church in newark, new jersey. real wedding courtesy of the knot, photography by sameer kahn of fotobuddy.

merry christmas to one and all!

Friday, December 18, 2009

an eco-chic honeymoon • gaia hotel & reserve • costa rica

my love of this industry has so much to do with my own glorious wedding experience, and my unforgettable honeymoon had a lot to do with it.

we chose costa rica as our exotic destination, both for the beauty of the country, the exceptional food, and the gaia hotel & reserve — an eco-friendly resort that boasts gorgeous ocean views and its own rainforest.

the suites are lush, modern, and equipped with every possible amenity. the spa is a luxurious sanctuary into which you could literally lose yourself. and the on-site restaurant, la luna, features fresh, fabulous local and international cuisine. we never wanted to leave.

but our favorite part of the whole gaia experience was the level of effort and detail that went into building a luxury resort around and within the existing eco-system, actually featuring the surrounding rainforest and its creatures as a highlight of the escape. it's sustainable, green and brilliant.

our best day was throwing on shorts and boots and hiking down to the waterfall at the base of the nature reserve — then showering in the luxe oversized bathroom, grabbing a massage at the spa, and feasting on fresh ceviche and a margarita at the in-pool bar, while watching the sun set over the pacific.

these photos, courtesy of small luxury hotels of the world, offer just a glimpse of the majestic, natural beauty of costa rica, and gaia itself. can you imagine anything better?

Monday, December 14, 2009

all about orange

i'm crazy about the color orange, especially for big events.  it was the focal point of my wedding, and recently the same hue has been popping up with several new brides, which makes me positively giddy.

since vibrant color is a paper olive signature, i thought it would be fun to offer three unique examples of how bold color can absolutely transform an event from common to couture.

classic roses
in the first photo, courtesy of wedding style magazine, orange roses and white lacquered manzanita branches are set on an all white feasting table at the johnathan beach club.  orange is truly the star here, expertly arranged by r. jack balthazar.  wedding by kelly michelle, linens by bbj linen, chair covers by covered affairs, table setting by unique tabletop rentals.

california chic
orange gets an edgy, even more modern twist in this fruit-centric design by modaflora, which comes courtesy of

using the actual fruit is not only organic and elegant, but unexpected here, and the juxtaposition of the round fruit and square plates is a wonderful mix.

the best part?  citrus greens and delicate branches give the bountiful fruit an artistic aesthetic that is light, windswept, and truly uncommon.  it's pure sophistication.

tropical breeze
of the three photos, possibly my favorite concept is this one designed by yvonne chapman, shot at the loulu palm estate by chrissy lambert, courtesy of pacific weddings.  the fresh, cheerful hues of orange and peach are simply magical here.  it's a celebration of color, delicate and bold at once.  i am in love with it.

which one is your favorite? let us know!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

bridal splurge — giuseppe zanotti heels

okay, girls.  if you know me by now, you know i love shoes.  and among italian shoe designers, giuseppe zanotti is one of my faves.  i was just browsing the latest collection of zanotti bridal shoes at and came across these beauties.

i mean, these shoes are hot.  at $598 they're also a genuine splurge, but after the wedding you could easily dye them purple, red or black and have an incredible pair of couture shoes to wear with jeans or a little black dress that will never go out of style.  love it!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

the knot, beyoncé, and the ultimate bachelorette bash

we love las vegas, we love the knot, and we love beyoncé naturally, we love this.

the and beyoncé are offering a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for one lucky bride and her bridesmaids in the knot and beyoncé bachelorette bash: single ladies in sin city sweepstakes. this unique sweeps offers a bride and her party the chance to win the ultimate girls getaway in las vegas.

to kick off the party, the lucky ladies will have the exclusive opportunity to learn the signature moves for the hottest dance, "single ladies (put a ring on it)" in a private dance lesson with beyoncé's legendary choreographer frank gatson, jr. — who choreographed the popular video, and who will be joined by one of beyoncé's own back-up dancers.

also included in this one-of-a-kind prize package:

· round trip tickets courtesy of jetblue
· 2-night/3-day stay at the celebrity favorite wynn las vegas
· dinner at the famous botero restaurant
· spa treatments at the salon at wynn or encore
· 4 vip indulgence tickets to see le reve, including champagne and chocolate-covered strawberries
· complimentary entry into any of the nightclubs at wynn las vegas
· the ultimate beyoncé prize package filled with a selection of her cd's and dvd's

brides and bridesmaids can sign up here to win now through december 31.  good luck, ladies!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

a winter wedding wonderland

today los angeles was hit with a chill that shoved me prematurely into winter...which i didn't really mind, given all the gorgeous wedding design concepts that winter brings with it.

from fur-lined boots to crystal-accented invites to fire & ice martinis, winter is one of my favorite event seasons. i mean, all-white candy displays are just pretty. below are just a few of the many sophisticated possibilities for all you wintry brides.

forget snowflakes and pinecones — this season is a chance to be truly original. think aspen, think light and feathery florals, think crystalline landscapes. after all, winter gives white an extra dash of dazzle that no other season can match. you simply can't overdo sparkle right now.

and anytime you can add fur to your wedding ensemble, i'm all for it!

design & photo credits
first row — winter bouquet • martha stewart; candy display • the knot, photo by mary ellen bartley; winter wedding photo • david barss

second row — winter wedding invitations • paper olive; fur-lined booties • salvatore ferragamo; winter tablescape • tampa wedding rentals

third row — white wedding cake • the cake girls; fire & ice martini • the knot

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

autumn and thanksgiving weddings

the leaves are turning color and there's a chill in the air...perfect timing for some warm apple cider, a thanksgiving feast, and a wedding celebration.

autumn and the holidays are a great choice for your event not merely because of the rich orange and red color palettes, rustic backdrops and festive mood. thanksgiving weddings are fabulous in a very practical sense — guests are already traveling, and are often eager to spend the holiday in a new, unexpected way.

these are just a few of the lush design options for fall or thanksgiving. we love the bountiful joy of an apple motif, which is the star of this design collage.

from the unique, incredibly realistic apple candles by candle bay, to our own delicious apple-themed custom menu, the tone is bright, warm and inviting. mini-caramel apple favors by jody perlberger for perl continue the motif and match beautifully with earthy bouquets, also by jody.

round out the look with a simple, elegant table setting with rich golds and browns — including an all-brown chocolate & fruit wedding cake like this one by cheryl kleinman. you're sure to have an unforgettable wedding and a very happy thanksgiving!

Friday, November 20, 2009

the knot, philosophy and a wedding day sweepstakes

okay, we love good gossip and good shopping, and this post has the best of both.

we just learned that the knot has joined forces with lifestyle and beauty brand philosophy on an exciting new partnership. the result of their unique collaboration is “tying the knot,” a just-for-brides gift set created to pamper the bride-to-be so she looks as beautiful as she feels on her special day. how brilliant is that?

retailing for $100, “tying the knot” includes nine essential bridal beauty products, including purity one-step facial cleanser; amazing grace firming body emulsion, bath gel, and spray fragrance to help her feel amazingly clean and beautifully feminine; and kiss me exfoliating lip scrub for soft, smooth, kissable lips.

additional philosophy products in the gift set are:

· hope in a jar moisturizer
· microdelivery peel pads
· kiss me clear lip balm -- spf 20
· eye hope deluxe sample

the “tying the knot” gift set is now available for purchase on and our favorite thing about the set is an inspiring message that is included for the bride, along with a philosophy created exclusively for the knot: you must love yourself before you can love another. we simply adore this.

surrounding the product launch, the knot and philosophy are also launching the wedding day hope sweepstakes. the interactive site invites brides to share their hopes and dreams for their big day, and the personal messages will be posted anonymously on the site’s user-generated bulletin board for everyone to see. again, we love the idea.

brides who share their hopes are automatically entered to win the grand prize of a luxury honeymoon worth over $10,000, courtesy of viceroy anguilla resort & residences. other prizes include a wedding day makeover for one lucky bride and her bridesmaids, courtesy of philosophy beauty expert and makeup artist john trau, as well as “tying the knot” gift sets.

talk about a marriage made in heaven. :o)

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

hooray for hollywood

so, you're getting married, but a church wedding just isn't your style. gardens and beaches aren't grabbing you either. what to do?

well, if you're the kind of bride who simply must find the most original wedding venue possible, then you might want to consider the special events department at paramount studios.

not only has this legendary institution been making movies for almost a hundred years, they are also in the business of making memories for couples everywhere. the experienced event staff offers 5-star service in creating your event, utilizing many of the same resources used by blockbuster productions. it's magic.

i mean, where else can you mingle with hollywood history while sitting beside such an iconic backdrop as the paramount studio gates?

and speaking of iconic, what better way to complement your event than with our hollywood save the date? it's fresh, irreverent, and totally fun. after all, if you're going hollywood, you might as well go all the way.

for more details on paramount studios special events, check out their website. lot wedding photo courtesy of paramount studios.

Friday, November 13, 2009

get engaged and maybe win a spa package from wedding channel

proposal season is upon us, and wedding channel is ushering in the happiness by launching a playful new facebook application: 10 reasons to marry me!

whether the top 10 reasons to marry someone are snarky — “i’m not an aspiring reality star” or “i already come with a ring” — or really sentimental — “i volunteer every thanksgiving” — wedding channel hopes the facebook application will be a fun way to share why someone’s such an amazing catch.

to make it even more fun, spaweek is sponsoring the application, so two random winners will be selected to win a $300 spa package for two. you can check out the new app and the details here.

plus, has launched a new proposal guide as well. we love the poll section where you have the opportunity to weigh in on how the etiquette of modern-day dos and don’ts has changed. amusing stuff!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

real weddings • allison and kevin • cape may seaside fete

other than my own wedding, one of my favorite events has to be my sister's wedding 3 years ago. fabulous modern color mixed with sophisticated antique accents made her wedding truly original in every way — it is still a model for my own personal wedding style.

probably my favorite thing? the incredibly unique juxtaposition of a hot pink and black color scheme against a beachy blue backdrop, and a reception hall with tiffany blue and silver walls. it was beach-meets-old-hollywood-glamour, and it totally worked.

allison's venue, the congress hall inn in cape may, new jersey, did a fabulous job with the special touches, like accommodating a special menu of mini-philly cheesestakes for the groom, and an out-of-this-world sugar seashell wedding cake for the bride.

with all the attention to detail, allison was fortunate to have bella pictures on hand to capture all of the gorgeous scenery — especially since they turned into a stunning custom photo album as part of their package. i just have to crack it open every time i see it on her coffee table.

oh, yes...and it doesn't hurt that my sister and her husband are both gorgeous! of course, the lazaro couture wedding gown did put everything over the top, and i absolutely loved it.

i gotta tell you, girls, sometimes the dream dress is just worth the splurge, don't you think?

Friday, November 6, 2009

laura hooper calligraphy

as a designer, i gravitate towards artists who have truly transcended their craft and elevated it beyond the ordinary. one such artisan is laura hooper, who has mastered the traditional art of calligraphy and enlivened it with a fresh, contemporary flair.

elegance script

not only is her work beautiful, it looks just as good on classic cream letterpress as it does on uber-modern black linen. she's the first calligrapher we look to whenever a bride inquires about using this incomparable addressing method.


it's no surprise to learn that laura has been featured by multiple icons like instyle weddings, the knot magazine, ceremony magazine, town & country weddings and bride & bloom — to name just a few. her vast array of styles and expertise is almost hard to believe.


no matter the color palette, paper style or design aesthetic, laura has a calligraphy solution to match. and she's a doll to boot. how can you not love her?

Sunday, November 1, 2009

welcome your guests in style

for the couple having a destination wedding or otherwise expecting guests from out of town, there's no better way to welcome travel-weary loved ones than with a unique gift basket.

and there are no better gift baskets around (we think) than those dreamed up by kate parker weddings. chock-a-block with fabulous regional goodies and conveniences, they immediately set the tone and catapult each guest into celebration mode.

philadelphia basketchicago basket

the styles are endless. big city wedding? try the philadelphia basket, which among other fun things features fiji water, a med kit, a local map and a local philly favorite — tasty cakes. the chicago basket has the same practical items plus brownies from the chicago brownie company. yum.

nantucket basketvermont basket

or maybe you're headed for new england, to the harbor hideaway of nantucket, or the vast wilderness of vermont. either way, you can't go wrong with nantucket style cape cod potato chips or some delicious nutty steph's vermont granola.

miami basketorange county basket

beach wedding, you say? no matter which coast, kate parker has you covered. grab some gum balls from florida by mail out of the miami basket, or — speaking of orange — bite into some handmade gecko cookie company shortbread from the o.c. basket.

kids basketdoggie basket

possibly the best of all the baskets? those geared towards the little ones. the kids basket comes with juice, crayons and a pack of uno cards. perfect for keeping the ragamuffins occupied while mom and dad tear into their grownup delights.

and of course, let's not leave out your guests' other baby. this lola parker couture doggie bag features rawhide twists, a dog bowl and pee pads. can you stand the cleverness? we can't!

Friday, October 30, 2009

a hip halloween wedding

what do you get when you mix classic autumn elements with gothic black, burgundy wine, and a little bit of whimsy? a fabulous halloween wedding.

with the amazing contrast of colors, the limitless favor and decor ideas, and a great sense of humor, there's no reason lovers of this holiday can't be a little spooky and sophisticated.

our favorite idea in the bunch? has to be a tie between the surprisingly chic skeleton ceremony site decor, and the ominous black widow cocktail. do you drink it or does it drink you?

design & photo credits
first row — skeleton bow photo • chung li photography; guest book • better homes and gardens

second row — day of the dead wedding cake • wiltelang's flickr photostream; candy favor display • the knot, photo by janae shields

third row — black widow cocktail • talk of tomatoes; bridal bouquet • melia's floral

Sunday, October 25, 2009

irreverent imagery

i absolutely love it when couples have a sense of humor about their wedding, and love it even more when a gifted photographer gets the joke and finds beauty in it.

these two photos by ben james are truly playful, personal and gorgeous. most "wedding rings" shots include flowers or fabric — this wiley couple chose chucks. too cool.

in the second photo, i love the juxtaposition between the romantically sunlit bride and the happy gerber daisies in a funky pair of cowboy boots. thing is, having clever ideas is key to a unique event, but even more important is a photograher who knows how to capture them.

if non-traditional and unexpected are two words in your personal style book, then be sure to have fun with your wedding photos too. and consider ben james, who runs studio benjamin james out of ventura, california. he also does engagement and other personal event photos. we love him.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

wedding gowns in short supply this season

probably my favorite trend this wedding season is the mini-wedding dress — something stylishly bride-appropriate, yet totally non-princess and trainless. think simple, short chic.

take for example these incredibly fun, feminine gowns from priscilla of boston, who has an entire line of short dresses, in fact. one is more adorable (yet elegant) than the next.

priscilla of boston style pl218priscilla of boston style vineyard karalyn

and priscilla is not the only designer to jump on the short bandwagon. reverie by melissa sweet (part of the priscilla of boston family) and carmela sutera are just two other designers who know that one sure fire way to wow is to show a little leg...with class.

reverie by melissa sweetcarmela sutera style 459

just look at this video of my gorgeous client angie, who recently married in a completely non-traditional short wedding gown. watching the processional i could literally hear her guests gasp as she came down the aisle. now that's what i call fabulous.

gown credits
first row — priscilla of boston • platinum style pl218; priscilla of boston • vineyard style karalyn
second row — reverie for melissa sweet • 2009 collection; carmela sutera • style 459

Monday, October 19, 2009

fabulous is in the details

picture it: you've planned the perfect event, with a beautiful location, one-of-a-kind dress, stunning florals, the coolest music, and crazy good food — but you're still looking for that hip something extra to grab your guests' attention and make the day truly memorable.

solution? head to for your party for unique favors and event extras. consider favorites like these chic personalized coasters, which come in several shapes and colors — you can even upload your own design.

or perhaps these custom match boxes for a portable memory after the event is over. a gorgeous glass bowl filled with these is sure to show your guests you thought of everything.

for the cocktail hour and the bar, how about fabulous cocktail napkins in your coordinating wedding colors, complete with your favorite love poem or monogram?

the best thing about for your party? they not only have a terrific idea gallery, but their unique party elements are generally super affordable. it's a little extra touch you'll hardly feel in your wallet and that your guests are sure to remember.

i should know — i ordered bright orange cocktail napkins with a witty little note, and some of my wedding guests still have a few as keepsakes. crazy!

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