Add a Little Red to Your Winter Wedding

We're saying goodbye to to warm weather and hello to cozy winter weddings. When planning a winter wedding, consider adding red into your theme. So why red? It represents passion, love and ties in perfectly with the holidays. Here are some fun ways to spice up your day with the color that looks good on everyone.

RED SIGNATURE COCKTAILS Between flavors such as cheery, pomegranate and raspberry. Check out our cocktail inspiration board on Pinterest for pretty and delicious drink ideas.

WINTERWEAR If you're housing red as an accent color, look into giving your bridesmaids and groomsmen red wool mittens or scarves. This could double up as a gift to the girls and guys for helping make your day special. Bonus: This makes for cute pictures in the snow!

Posted in Blog, Weddingessentials on Tuesday, November 25, 2014 6:30 pm. | Tags: Winter Wedding , Winter Decor , Favors , Bouquets , Signature Cocktails , Wedding Ideas , Red Wedding

WE GIVEAWAY // WE Give Thanks

Today (and let's be honest -- every day) we're thankful for all the beautiful brides, wedding vendors and contributors that make up Wedding Essentials.

So in honor of you all, we're giving away a Make Up For Ever studio case from Sephora, which features 12 eye shadows and a full size artist liner  -- and it may or may not include a few extra surprises inside, courtesy of yours truly.

And how do you win this perfect addition to your makeup collection? Easy.

Posted in Blog, Weddingessentials on Tuesday, November 25, 2014 3:00 pm. | Tags: We Giveaway , Wedding Essentials , Sephora , Thanksgiving

Miss Vino & Vintage // Bridal Black Friday

Some of the best deals of the year can be found in the week before and after Thanksgiving, namely Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Here is a roundup of some of the best wedding-related savings opportunities online and in stores for 2014. 



Posted in Blog, Chattybrides, Weddingessentials on Monday, November 24, 2014 8:30 pm. | Tags: Black Friday , Bridal Deals , Bridal Thanksgiving , Black Friday Wedding , Bride Blogger , Miss Vino & Vintage , Chatty Brides , Omaha Bride , Nebraska Bride

Idea Show // Beautiful Blooms

Posted in Blog, Weddingessentials on Friday, November 21, 2014 7:30 pm. | Tags: Idea Show , Bridal Show , Omaha Bridal Show , Mid-america Center , Council Bluffs Bridal Show , Wedding Essentials Idea Show , Flowers , Blooms & Bouquets , Hy-vee , Florals Etcetera , A Flower Basket

Miss Vino & Vintage // Treasure Hunting

When weighing my options for the chicest ways to incorporate vintage elements into our wedding, I stumbled upon the idea of buying a unique and gorgeous piece of vintage jewelry for each of my bridesmaids. Like a lot of brides, I found myself with an idea I loved, but without a lot of knowledge in this particular area to execute. I felt like I was setting myself up to walk a fine line between chic and cheesy, classic and cheap. Thankfully, I was able to talk Leah Buller of Haute Bauble into lending me her extensive knowledge on all things vintage jewelry. Leah and I actually grew up together near Omaha and both live here now. Her passion for vintage fashion is contagious and I have loved picking her brain and joining her for some shopping trips. Whether Omaha brides are looking to add vintage elements to their weddings, trying to find a fabulous dress for the rehearsal, or just looking to add some unique pieces to their personal collection, I think they'll find Leah's advice really helpful. 

Miss Vino & Vintage: How did you get interested in vintage jewelry and clothing?

Leah Buller: About 6 years ago my Grandma gave me a bunch of costume jewelry that my Grandpa had given her as gifts. I thought they were so beautiful I just kept them safe in a jewelry box and then one day I read an article about vintage costume jewelry and how to find makers marks and determine the year of manufacture. I went back and found all this great information about the pieces I was given and I was simply hooked. It was like a little treasure hunt! I started looking for vintage jewelry in antique stores and thrift shops and then I discovered Estate sales and flea markets, which I just love! I have read all kinds of books to learn all I could but I'm still learning new things and discovering new designers all the time. It’s fun!

Posted in Blog, Chattybrides, Weddingessentials on Friday, November 21, 2014 4:30 pm. | Tags: Miss Vino & Vintage , Bride Blogger , Vintage Jewelry , Lions Mane Vintage , Wallflower , Paperdoll , Kleveland Clothing , Haute Bauble , Omaha Brides , Leah Buller , Real Omaha Brides

Idea Show // Tablescapes + Displays

Posted in Blog, Weddingessentials on Thursday, November 20, 2014 7:00 pm. | Tags: Idea Show , Bridal Show , Wedding Essentials Idea Show , Wedding Essentials Magazine , Omaha Bridal Show , Mid America Center , Council Bluffs Bridal Show

Bridal Jewelry

All eyes are on the blushing bride during her special day. From the beautiful gown to lovely jewelry – it all needs to be perfect. Elisa Ilana shares their tips for a flawless look.

Elegant style: Keep it refined by only wearing a single set of sparkling earrings that light up your face.

A classic style: These Raw Diamond Earrings are jaw dropping with 3.13ct raw diamond set in 18k rose gold.

Posted in Blog, Weddingessentials on Thursday, November 20, 2014 4:30 pm.

Engaged // Sydney + Ethan

Ethan and Sydney's Elkhorn engagement session by T. Free Photography is sure to warm you up from this cold. 

Here are three tips for making the most of your engagement session.

1. When in doubt, wear red. Red is the one color that looks good on everyone. Plus, it adds the perfect pop of color. 

Posted in Engaged, Blog, Weddingessentials on Wednesday, November 19, 2014 5:30 pm. | Tags: Engagement Photos , T. Free Photography , Elkhorn , Engagement , Wedding Photography

Idea Show // Sweet Love

The Idea Show never falls short on the display of cakes and sweets. This year, Hy-Vee and Mad Ox Bakery literally "took the cake." 

Dare you to identify which cakes had real flowers, fake flowers or edible flowers. Oh, and if you think you've got it figured out, try and guess how Mad Ox Bakery brilliantly pulled off that chalkboard-like frosting! 

Flip through the photo gallery and see our best picks (which is pretty much all of them).

Posted in Blog, Weddingessentials on Wednesday, November 19, 2014 4:30 pm. | Tags: Wedding Essentials Idea Show , Omaha Bridal Show , Wedding Ideas , Cakes , Hy-vee , Mid-america Center , Council Bluffs Bridal Show , Nebraska Weddings , Sweets , Food , Cake Displays

Idea Show // Gorgeous Fashions

This year's Idea Show runway brought stunning bridal party style from Tip Top Tux, Ellynne Bridal, David's Bridal, Gentleman's Choice, Men's Wearhouse, Spotlight Formal Wear and Dillard's. Here's a peek at the latest from these Omaha wedding vendors.

Posted in Blog, Weddingessentials on Tuesday, November 18, 2014 6:30 pm. | Tags: Idea Show , Bridal University , Omaha Bridal Show , Wedding Idea Displays , Bridal Gowns , Ellynne Bridal , David's Bridal

Real Wedding // Alli + DJ

THE PROPOSAL DJ proposed to me on his birthday. We had gone out to eat and when we arrived home he said I was the only birthday present he'd ever want and got down on one knee. Of course I said yes! SAVOR THE MOMENT Towards the end of the night we sat together at the back of the reception hall and just took everything in. It was so memorable to see all of our friends and family dancing the night away and celebrating our special day with us. We had friends and relatives from all over the country and we rarely ever get everyone together in one place, it was surreal. LEAVE IT TO THE FLOWER GIRL About 3 minutes before it was her turn to walk down the aisle, our sweet niece Kensley, who was our flower girl (2 years old) peed through her diaper onto the floor. Her mom and dad did a quick change and she was ready to go, it was hilarious and calmed the nerves a bit. SURPRISE PICTURES We had our siblings sneak both of our parent's wedding pictures to the reception hall and had them displayed by our cake. They were surprised, and loved it. LOVE NEVER FAILS When I reached the altar, DJ handed me a lace handkerchief that was embroidered with our wedding date and said "Love never fails" IDEA WORTH STEALING My sister made a wedding activity book with games and coloring pages for the kids, and had a basket with crayons for them to keep busy with. Someone surprisingly collected them at the end so we have darling pictures and notes from them. I also created cards for the tables at the reception with questions like, "Where do you see us in 10 years?" "What should we name our first born?" and "Give us your best bit of marriage advice." It was fun to read all the answers, and it gave our guests something to have fun with instead of a wedding favor. MAKE WAY FOR THE DETAILS It was nice to get all of the big things out of the way first, like booking the reception hall and caterer and church. I didn't anticipate how many small details make up the big day, but we wanted everything to have a personal touch. It's a lot of work, but so fun. FAVORITE DETAILS DJ made our cake topper by bending copper wiring into the right shape. I made our save the dates, invitations, programs and place cards which was really fun, and saved us some money! We also rented an old trolley for the day to haul our bridal party around which was a blast! 


Posted in Realweddings, Blog, Weddingessentials on Monday, November 17, 2014 4:30 pm. | Tags: Daniel Dunlap Photography , Omaha Wedding , Nebraska Bride , Nebraska Wedding Photography , Real Wedding , Real Bride

Real Wedding // Dreu + Brynn

Dreu & Brynn grew up in the same small town but never dated until college at the University of Nebraska where Dreu played for the Nebraska Cornhusker football team. They fell in love and made this gorgeous spring wedding in Kearney, Nebraska happen. Captured by T. Free Photography.

Posted in Realweddings, Blog, Weddingessentials on Friday, November 14, 2014 4:30 pm. | Tags: T. Free Photography , Nebraska Wedding Photographer , Omaha Bridal Magazine , Wedding Essentials , Real Wedding , Real Omaha Bride , Omaha Bride , University Of Nebraska , Cornhusker Wedding

Real Wedding // Lyca + Bryce

FOR THE LOVE OF WINE In the span of four months, we completed the 2011 Nebraska Wine tour, the Southeast Nebraska winery trail, the Nebraska passport tours and took trips to St. Louis and Branson, MO. Stuck with someone on long trips is definitely the way to know if you like or can stand someone and this built a strong foundation for our friendship. FOREVER THANKFUL We had been out on a date Thanksgiving night and when we got back to his apartment I noticed he had a Philippine lantern hanging in his apartment. Seeing that made me cry tears of happiness because I just felt so loved. I knew I found a man that embraces my culture and wanted to bring Filipino Christmas into his home so he can share it with me. This man was a keeper. THE PROPOSAL Lyca and I has such a wonderful Christmas together that the only way I could think to top it was to ask her to marry me on Christmas morning. She opened it and looked at it and asked what it was, thinking that it was going to be a replacement for the bracelet that I had gotten her for Valentine’s Day. Not quite the first reaction I was going for, but she still said yes, which was all I needed to hear. A MULTI-CULTURAL WEDDING We incorporated three Filipino traditions and symbols during the mass. Aside from doing a Unity candle, we also did the unity veil (cloth as one and commitment to each other), cord (bind the couple),  and the wedding arrhae (13 unity coins for prosperity that signifies the groom will provide for the family). Because of that we not only had a ring bearer, we also had a coin bearer. PERFECT SUMMER WEDDING ATTIRE The groomsmen wore barong tagalong, a traditional Filipino formal wear that is made of pineapple fiber or banana silk. Except for the bride’s brother, it was the first time for the groomsmen to wear such attire and they loved it because it was very lightweight and perfect for a summer wedding. AN EXPLODING SURPRISE The cocktail singer, Michael Lyon surprised the bride by singing a Filipino love song. Unbeknownst to the couple Mr. Lyon had been learning Tagalog for the past months. OTHER THAN A TOSS Instead of doing a bouquet toss, the DJ asked all of the single ladies to come in front and pull on one of the ribbons that were hanging out of the cake. Each ribbon contained a charm with meaning (i.e., new love, adventurous, babies). The lady who pulls out the charm of a ring wins the bouquet. TABLE HOPPING The bride and groom also went to the tables and got a picture with everyone. The guests got a copy of the picture in their thank-you note. BEST ADVICE My advice to brides is that their day will be perfect no matter what. My first tip is to give themselves a timeframe for doing D.I.Y. projects and finish them a week for 4 days before the big day. If they forget to bring or do something it's okay -- only you and the groom will notice. And the other tip is never skimp on pictures and videos. The wedding day will happen in a blur and 80% you will forget but having pictures and video to look at will help you relive the excitement of that day over and over again. HAIL TO THE NO Three weeks before our wedding we had the big June hailstorm in our town so all of our venues were damaged. Our church venue had broken windows so the windows were boarded up. Our reception hall had damaged sky lights, windows boarded up and soaked gym floors and our rehearsal venue had their roof cave in. We were still able to use these venue, but made some adjustments.


Posted in Realweddings, Blog, Weddingessentials on Monday, November 10, 2014 6:30 pm. | Tags: Real Wedding , Real Bride , Nebraska Bride , Dwyer Photography , Wedding Photographer , Multi-cultural Wedding , Filipino Wedding

Real Wedding // Luke + Bec

A LOUD PROPOSAL Luke proposed at the Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs, during flash flooding and thunder storms, Luke shouted over the thunder asking me to be his wife. LOVE AT FIRST SIGHT I made the dress attendants gasp when I told them – I had 6 weeks until my wedding and no, I didn't have a dress. Less than 48 hours after arriving back in my home country of Australia, I was being fitted into my very first gown. I, along with my mom and my maid of honor, gasped as I came out of the dressing room. There it was – the first dress, and what would become my dress. THE PERFECT BLEND My dress was Australian made and was complimented by my American made veil. It was perfect the blend of what Luke and I are, and what our wedding day would become: international, unconventional and in every way, us. AN INTERNATIONAL WEDDING PARTY Six days before the wedding, after two long months apart, I picked up Luke (who is from Alaska and went to school in Omaha) from the airport, along with 17 other American friends and family, for what was an insane wedding week of touring my pretty city and introducing our incredible families to one another. My girls (representing Australia, the USA and Scotland) and his boys (all American) made up one fun loving and extremely loud bridal party. THE FIRST DANCE Our good friend Travis couldn't make the wedding but he did record and send us the song he played during Luke's proposal, which we played as our first dance. BRAVE D.I.Y. DETAILS At 5:30am the day before the wedding, my girls and I braved the Sydney Flower Markets hand picking our favourite flowers and with the help of YouTube we made our own bouquets. SILENT PROGRAMS Our wedding programs were wordless and instead were made up of hand drawn cartoon, designed by Luke’s brother Jared. SWEET FAVORS Our reception favours were Hershey’s (American) and Caramello Koalas (Australian) wrapped together to thank our guests. Our service was live steamed and watched by our amazing friends and family from around the world. At our reception, we did Australian bush dancing and the Aussies were taught the cupid shuffle, and electric slide. OLD, NEW, BORROWED & BLUE I wore my grandmother’s engagement ring as my wedding ring and I had my great-grandmothers handkerchief pinned under the layers of my gown (my something old), I wore a lace garter (something new), a belt hand-made from my mother’s necklace (something borrowed), I didn't wear shoes but instead frilly blue socks (my something blue). AN UNFORGETTABLE MOMENT As the doors of the church opened up I told my Dad I loved him. From that moment I heard nothing – no music playing, no cameras, and I saw nothing, not the church, not the guests – only Luke, and I kept his gaze, as I walked, one foot in front of the other, down the aisle. As we stood out the front hand in hand he had one single tear streak down his left check and the moment was there. And like everyone told us it would, it went by so quickly; the sum of so many little, spectacular moments."


Posted in Blog, Realweddings, Weddingessentials on Thursday, November 6, 2014 7:30 pm. | Tags: Real Wedding , Wedding Essentials Omaha , Wedding Photographer , Real Bride , Destination Wedding , Australia

Miss Head Over Heels // Engagement Photos

Finding the right photographer is one of the most important parts of wedding planning, in my opinion. Your photographer captures everything for you -- from the small details to the big moments. Sadly, I've heard too many people say they don't like their wedding photos or that they only like a couple of them. Photographers come with a hefty price tag, but with good reason. It's important to remember that they are not just someone with a good camera. This is what they do for a living and what they are passionate about. Professional photographers spend many hours training and learning how to get that perfect shot, and they spend many hours shooting weddings and engagement photos each year. It's important to secure a professional wedding photographer instead just letting someone with a good camera, or just let guests shoot your wedding photos.

It is also important to do your research on any photographer you consider hiring. When we chose our photographer, we looked at all of her photos at a bridal show at Willow Creek Glass Chapel. When we went back home, I looked up the photographer’s website and reviewed all of the photos on there as well. We knew then that we had to have this photographer! Her pictures were fun and flawless! Just what we were looking for.

We are excited to have chosen Traci at True Imagery as our photographer. After looking at her website, we didn't see a photo package that was perfect for us. We wanted engagement photos, full wedding day coverage, a wedding album and then discs for both. Even though this was not a package on her website, she happily created one for us. 

Posted in Blog, Chattybrides, Weddingessentials on Thursday, October 30, 2014 7:00 pm.

Miss Vino & Vintage // Operation Junkstock

I decided I couldn't very well call myself Miss Vino and Vintage without taking a trip to one of Omaha's newer and very popular events, Junkstock: Harvest Edition. I have visited Junkstock in the past, but it has continued to grow and diversify and of course I had to evaluate with the wedding in mind!

I enlisted the help of my coworker Stephanie and her darling dog to help me peruse. On the way there, we came up with a list of things we wanted to keep an eye out for. I definitely recommend this strategy, as you can find anything and everything at Junkstock, having a partner and a specific shopping list helps keep you focused while allowing some inspiration to happen. I was looking for a bushel basket to use for our engagement photo shoot, which will be taking place at an apple orchard, in addition to some vintage glassware, which has become my new obsession. 

I spotted several things I think would be absolutely darling in the right wedding. Here are a couple examples: 

Posted in Blog, Chattybrides, Weddingessentials on Friday, October 24, 2014 7:30 pm.

Miss Ever After // Obsession Confession

Confession: I’m obsessed with flowers

I guess you could say that I found the perfect job as a floral and event design assistant. Some of my earliest memories involve gardening with my grandmother in her farm. Those memories have evolved with me as I journey through the process of planning a wedding.

I knew that I needed a florist who is creative, unique, and can create truly customized pieces for the wedding. This is why I chose Melissa at Blooms and Bouquets. Melissa has taken all of my unique concepts, and formed them into one large theme. Blooms and Bouquets has a two-step consultation process, the first is a phone consultation where Melissa can learn more about you and your wedding. The next is a consultation in either her Omaha or Lincoln office, which is full of inspiration pictures to help bring together a mood board of your wedding. I might have skipped to the car I was so happy after the second consultation. I just thought it was so exciting to be able to see our floral and décor come to life right in front of my eyes.

Posted in Blog, Chattybrides, Weddingessentials on Thursday, October 23, 2014 6:00 pm. | Tags: Chatty Brides , Miss Ever After , Blooms & Bouquets , Bride Blogger , Floral Advice

Miss Cloud Nine // Our Wedding Day

People told me, people warned me and I thought I was prepared, but your wedding day really does go by in the blink of an eye. 

The morning of the wedding was one of my favorite parts of the day. My bridesmaids, mom and mother-in-law came to my hotel room and we enjoyed mimosas and breakfast while we had our hair and makeup done. It was so relaxing and I never once felt rushed. My favorite memory was after every person got their makeup done, they walked back into the other room and were welcomed with an enthusiastic “woooo hooo!” Best feeling ever to walk into and such a great start to the day. I love my girls.

I can’t tell you how excited I was to see everything finally put together. I walked into the venue and I was blown away. It was incredible. Lovestruck and Blooms and Bouquets created a space that was beyond my expectations. It was the perfect mix of industrial but soft, vintage yet modern. I loved every part. My favorite parts of the décor….where do I even start? I would probably say the main light fixture above the head table, which Blooms and Bouquets made from scratch was my favorite. It was incredible and I want it in my house. Quirky little details were everywhere. Bios and pictures of our wedding party and fun facts about Dave, myself and our dog Abby -- yes, Abby did in fact eat 12 cupcakes, Dave would eat pizza 365 days a year and I don’t like cheese unless it’s melted. The lemonade in mason jars, the confetti blowers for our entrance, the personalized photo strips for place cards. Every detail was, exactly how I wanted our wedding to feel.

Posted in Blog, Weddingessentials, Chattybrides on Wednesday, October 22, 2014 6:00 pm. | Tags: Chatty Brides , Miss Cloud Nine , Blooms And Bouquets , Lovestruck , Hap Abraham Catering , Real Wedding , Real Bride , Bride Blogger , 1316 Jones , Goldenrod Pastries , Omaha Wedding , Nebraska Bride

Miss Vino & Vintage // Something Old, Something New

My darling fiancé proposed a week before my birthday with what is in my opinion, the most amazing piece of jewelry in the history of time. All brides think this, right? I love that my ring was picked out just for me, and everyone has mentioned time and time again how unique and lovely it is -- music to my ears. In fact, I love it's special quality and attributes so much, I've decided to let it drive the whole theme of the wedding! 

When we started the search for rings, I was obsessed with the idea of having a vintage ring. I loved the look of the art deco period specifically and how they often times included other colored gemstones along with diamonds. However, as someone astutely pointed out to me, buying a ring online is risky, and buying an old engagement ring online is basically crazy. So I headed over to see Mindy at 14 Karat to show her some of the styles I loved to see if they had anything similar. I knew it wasn't exactly trendy, but I thought I'd give it a shot. Then, to my amazement, she found a setting that was very similar to what I'd admired online and altered it to make it exactly what I wanted, including changing the halo to sapphires to represent my beloved's birthstone and a color I love. She also tracked down a center stone that was hand cut probably in the late 1800s or early 1900s, distinguishing it as an Old Mine Cut stone. "Something old" in a "something new" setting.  

So that's how the wedding will be shaping up. A mix of modern and vintage, old and new, with tons of personal details unique to my future husband and me. I feel like "vintage" can mean a million different things to a many different people. Pinterest seems to think it means legions of Mason jars covered in burlap. I'm taking a slightly different approach, which I'm sure will evolve and be revealed in future posts.  

Posted in Blog, Weddingessentials on Saturday, October 18, 2014 2:16 pm.

Miss Head Over Heels // We're Getting Married!

Mr. Head Over Heels and I had only been dating for almost a year and a half when we got engaged. We were introduced in February of 2013, by mutual friends, and then met again, and started dating, Easter weekend of 2013.  Apparently, we have a thing for holiday weekends because we were engaged this Labor Day weekend and will be tying the knot  -- literally, we plan to tie God's knot instead of lighting a unity candle Labor Day weekend of 2015!

Mr. Head Over Heels proposed on a beautiful Saturday afternoon. He took me out to Sugar Clay Winery in Thurman, IA where we sat on the deck, overlooking the winery, and shared a bottle of wine. It really was a perfect day! It was so adorable because I could tell he was nervous. You know that "I'm a macho guy nervous face"? Yeah, he had that. After Mr. Head Over Heels proposed, Cyrus (the dog) came to share in our excitement! I really think we made a lifelong friend. This is the only picture we have from our engagement.

Mr. Head Over Heels & Cyrus

Posted in Blog, Weddingessentials on Thursday, October 16, 2014 1:00 pm. | Tags: Miss Head Over Heels , Bride Blogger , Chatty Brides , Willow Creek Glass Chapel , Rustic Wedding , Wedding Venues