Inspire: Fiesta for Cinco de Mayo!

Everyone loves an excuse to have a margarita, so let’s color-up this holiday for a little bit of fun!  In case you need a refresher because you can’t remember what this celebration is all about, check out that link so you can act all knowledgeable.

As for the fun part, we love that spring is around, flowers are out and grass is green again.  For a little bit more color in your yard or even in your house, we suggest a quick and easy plan to brighten things up!  One of our faves for the season is papel picado, sometimes referred to as papel de china.  Now the quick solution would be to buy this pretty paper online since you still have enough time, or you could have a craft day at home and make some!

This is also a great craft to get kids involved because it doesn’t really matter how perfect this looks, but more so that it’s homemade and family fun!  Since the shop around the corner may not already have this pre-cut for you, we know that they will have tissue or construction paper to make your own.  All you need in addition are scissors, tape and string!
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Get a variety of colors, let the kiddos pick their faves and you do the others, and get started!

Then you can either do the snowflake effect of folding it up and cutting out random chunks (works better with tissue than construction paper), or you can always download a free template from online if you want to be a little more precise and a little less handmade!

After you have made your beautiful cut outs, randomly select them and tape to a long string (masking tape may be needed if your paper is heavy, otherwise scotch should work fine on tissue) and then you can hang it up in all it’s colorful glory!

Okay, so maybe it won’t look that perfect doing it on your own, but knowing you made it will be all that more satisfying!

One of our other favorite little tidbits of color?  Throwing in Loteria cards to your floral arrangements or stringing these together for a little bit of festive flair!

nate_kalimba_lowres_web-4Keeping it simple, colorful and fun!  Now have a margarita and celebrate!!

 

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Celebrate: Megan & Lee

Malibu and Music: could there be a better combination?

When we first met Megan and Lee back in January, those were the 2 major focal points for their upcoming wedding in March. The venue was to be Malibu West Beach Club (a CLD fave!), where they wanted to incorporate the beautiful scenery and beach elements. For music, both Megan and Lee are amazing musicians, so every musical element was selected with care. The result? Fantastic!

This amazing couple pulled off quite a feat with planning the whole wedding in under 3 months, but with clear communication and hard work, everything came together! There were even a few magical music surprises: singer Kenny Lattimore sang the processional and the mother of the groom sang opera!

Megan and Lee were such a blast to work with, from their creative ideas to their DIY attitude, not to mention their beautiful baby girl stealing the spotlight!  We also had the pleasure of working with an amazing team of vendors that made this stunning Sunday wedding spectacular.

Thank you so much to Megan and Lee and congrats to the beautiful couple!

Venue: Malibu West Beach Club
Wedding Coordinator: Christina Logan Design
Photographer: Haoyuan Ren
Flowers: Diane Carvotta
Lighting & Decor: CFS Design
Make-up & Hair: Elite Makeup Designs
DJ: DJ Malski and Music-To-Go Entertainment
Catering & Rentals: Pierre’s Catering
Desserts: Frosted Cupcakery

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Meet: L’ezu

At CLD, we simply love how over the years weddings have become such a customized experience for every couple. Literally every detail of an event or wedding can be unique and we believe in having our customers only do what they want to do, never what they should.  Don’t want to have a wedding cake? Serve pie instead.  Not a fan of high heels? Wear cowboy boots.

And if you want to have your absolutely perfect and completely customized wedding dress? Go to L’ezu.

L'ezu Store Front on Robertson Blvd.

L’ezu Store Front on Robertson Blvd.

This amazing bridal store on Robertson Boulevard may appear to be small, but is big in creativity and elegance. The store just underwent a beautiful re-model, making the interior oh-so-inviting and brimming with beautiful dresses!

A sneak peak of the inside of the store.

A sneak peak of the inside of the store.

A preview of the selection.

A preview of the selection.

Once inside, you will find that owner and lead designer Patricia Nevil brings over 19 years of couture bridal design directly to you! Brides have plenty of options when working with Patricia and her staff: you can browse and select from the unique designs she has in-store, bring in a dress you bought elsewhere that might need a creative overhaul, or work one-on-one to create something completely your own. The L’ezu team will work with you to customize almost any detail of your dress.

And L’ezu doesn’t just stop with bridal gowns. The L’ezu team can also make custom confections for bridesmaids and mothers of the bride, or even make you a fabulous couture gown for your next big event.

Here is a preview of a few of their fabulous real-life designs, courtesy of the L’ezu Blog:

Simple elegance. Photo Courtesy of L'ezu Blog.

Simple elegance. Photo Courtesy of L’ezu Blog.

Loving this midnight blue wedding gown! Photo Courtesy of L'ezu Blog.

Loving this midnight blue wedding gown! So much tulle! Photo Courtesy of L’ezu Blog.

Country wedding Couture! Photo Courtesy of L'ezu Blog.

Country wedding Couture! Photo Courtesy of L’ezu Blog.

At L’ezu, they can do it all!

 

Indulge: In a Happy, Healthy Easter weekend!

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We love Fridays, and this one is Good Friday, so all the more to celebrate!

While some of you may be fasting today and others not eating meat, we know there is a weekend of feasting ahead and uniting over the celebration of life! Cooking is always one of our favorite times to come together with friends and family, but with so much to do between dying eggs Easter egg hunts and possibly attending a church service, how much time do you really have to cook? Not to mention, the over-consumption of chocolate and jelly beans can be a little unforgiving, so add some delicious and savory options into the mix!

This is our quick and easy – and amazing tasting – salmon with veggies recipe for you to enjoy on this Good Friday or to serve to the masses on Sunday!
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White Wine Salmon

2 pieces salmon (or a large nice slab if there’s a group!)
White wine
lemon juice
soy sauce
garlic
sea salt
capers (optional)
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No need to do much measuring on this one, so just prep your fresh salmon in the pan pouring over a splash of wine, cover in lemon juice, add the soy, then garlic and salt.

Let marinate for no longer than 30 mins consistently re-pouring the marinade over the top of the fish.  Set the broiler on high (or enclose in aluminum wrap and throw on the grill) and cook for 10 minutes, checking every 2 mins thereafter.  Unless your fish is very thick or big, 10 mins should give you a perfect, medium cooked fish!

Brussel Sprouts

These easy peasy sprouts can cook at the same time! Start them first, then throw them in the oven when your fish starts marinating.
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1 bunch or bag brussel sprouts
olive oil
garlic powder
salt and pepper

Cut off edges of sprouts, cut in half and peel off excess leaves that are bad. Then sprinkle with olive oil, garlic powder, salt and pepper.  Toss/roll around sprouts to be completely covered.  Put in oven at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.

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And all you have to do is enjoy!  Feel free to add in your favorite carb side (we opted for simple cooked black beans to keep this meal lean) to round out the mix. Such little work, minimal ingredients, and nothing but smiling faces!  Happy Easter!

 

 

Inspire: Easter eggs CAN be cool…

You know that spring is here with the arrival of fresh blooms, pretty pastels… and Easter decorations and ideas blowing up the blogosphere and Pinterest boards! While back in the day the dyeing of Easter eggs seemed to only be a (messy) childhood activity, things are a bit different now. Egg dyeing and decorating has become quite the art form!

We here at CLD love our arts and crafts and with Easter only a week away, we might go a little crazy with a few of these amazing Easter egg ideas. Here are a few of our favorites:

Hold up. Here’s a quick reminder of how to prep your eggs for dyeing and decorating:

1) Put eggs in a sauce pan in one single layer.

2) Cover with cold water, covering eggs by at least 2 inches.

3) Put the pot on the stove and bring to a boil.

4) Once the water is boiling, take the pot off the stove, cover the pot and let it stand for about 12 minutes.

5) After time is up, put eggs in cold water to stop the cooking process.

6) Make sure eggs are completely cooled before using and clean the shells with a paper towel dipped in white vinegar.

Now, onto the cool stuff we are dye-ing to try!

Gold Leaf Eggs.

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Inspiring Messages. Easy, all you need is a happy thought and a sharpie!

 

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Ombrè Eggs. Still on trend!

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Awesome calligraphy, great way to practice!

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Stamped eggs.

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Silk-dyed eggs.

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Modern Eggs. Uses paper maiche eggs for less mess!

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We hope you have a great weekend of crafting!!

Admire: 2014 Bling Tally

We are one quarter of the year down, so we thought it was time to look at the gorgeous engagement rings thus far, of 2014.  I mean, what woman doesn’t love to ogle diamonds?  You’re either crazy, or just a way more humble person than us 🙂

Trends that we’ve noticed?  The round and the unique.  We’re not talking your traditional 5-pronged, brilliant-cut, simple ring.  We are talking brilliant with distinction; a new way of exhibiting the simple.  And on the contrary, some of these second-time brides are going bigger, funkier and bolder.  Enjoy!

Emma Roberts - keeping in beautiful and simple to match her young age.

Emma Roberts – keeping in beautiful and simple to match her young age.

Lauren Conrad - we expected something different to match her style, but still a classic beauty!

Lauren Conrad – we expected something different to match her style, but still a classic beauty!

Amber Heard - anything but boring and round. We would kill to know Johnny Depp's story behind this purchase.

Amber Heard – anything but boring and round. We would kill to know Johnny Depp’s story behind this purchase.

Mary Kate Olsen - a ring fit for a princess. The regal elegance will last a lifetime

Mary Kate Olsen – a ring fit for a princess. The regal elegance will last a lifetime

Mila Kunis - We love a big stone on a delicate band, and it suits Mila's hand perfectly.

Mila Kunis – We love a big stone on a delicate band, and it suits Mila’s hand perfectly.

Olivia Wilde - this mama-to-be is keeping her ring gorgeous and simple her second time around.

Olivia Wilde – this mama-to-be is keeping her ring gorgeous and simple her second time around.

Ashlee Simpson - From emerald, bejeweled ring first time around, this time her fiance selected something less girly and more unique to fit their personalities and lifestyle.

Ashlee Simpson – From emerald, bejeweled ring first time around, this time her fiance selected something less girly and more unique to fit their personalities and lifestyle.

Scarlett Johansson - keeping on trend for second marriages, Scarlett went for a unique, ornate ring that is clearly one of a kind.

Scarlett Johansson – keeping on trend for second marriages, Scarlett went for a unique, ornate ring that is clearly one of a kind.

Kim Kardashian - No one makes a statement quite like this one, her ring is nothing to be overlooked her third time around.

Kim Kardashian – No one makes a statement quite like this one, her ring is nothing to be overlooked her third time around.

Meet: Better than One Planner? Two!

It doesn’t need to be said how much we love a good planner.  Whether it’s us or one of our amazing planner friends, we 100% love the idea of getting all the little things taken care of with the least amount of stress and anxiety.  Well we know this goes for weddings, but it actually also applies to all the other little parties involved, like an epic bachelorette party!
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Nothing is a bigger buzz-kill than being the organizer of a party and then having to man the itinerary the whole time: having to tell everyone what to do, when to be where, keep your eye on the clock to make sure you don’t miss the shuttle, not drink too much so someone can remember to tip, make sure you get to the right club or wine tasting or restaurant, all in a city you probably don’t know very well since this is a getaway … must I go on??

That is why we love our girl Sarah Patton over at Social Bliss Events! She is our go-to lady here in Nashville for be-all, end-all, memorable bachelorette parties.  I know, most of your are thinking “but how hard is it to plan a night of eating and drinking out?”.  You’re right, you can do it yourself, absolutely.  Just like you can plan your own wedding.  But the problem with DIY is that you don’t get the expertise of an experienced professional who has already gone through the trial an error period for you for the past 10 years.  You are winging it and hoping it turns out great.  We know it will turn out great.
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Top three reasons we love Sarah for the best get-togethers:
1. Everything is completely customized to the client and their friends. Your mood, your energy, your length of days/nights together. It is an itinerary fit to your personality type!

2. They showcase Nashville!  Hello one of the hippest, hottest cities of 2014!  There is no where better to be right now and SBE knows Nashville.

3. Remember that experience thing?  Sarah is a true local, having lived here her entire adult life.  She has done the work, tried the bars, experience the restaurants and mixed with the crowds to read their clientele so she can put you into the perfect place that you need to be.  No guessing, no hoping it goes well … just fun!

Did I mention the custom gift bags?!?

Did I mention the custom gift bags?!?

Social Bliss Events works both with locals and people coming into Nashville from out of town, as well as directly with Brides, Maids of Honor, Bridesmaids and all family and friends alike!

Know: Kids at Your Wedding

Kids. CLD loves kids. Kids attending and being a part of a wedding can be so truly special (and oh-so-adorable). But, kids and weddings don’t always mix, especially very, very young ones. That’s just the truth.

So, what do you do?

Sit down with your fiancée while working on your guest list and launch right into the question: “Should we allow kids at our wedding?” We have a feeling that you’ll both have a gut reaction, but take a really good look at the guest list to prepare for any potential issues.  Are there any people traveling to your wedding with small children? Is there anyone in the bridal party or immediate family with children? Do we have children and how do we want to incorporate them into our day?

Once you have that initial feeling expressed, collaborate to make a uniform policy. You have so many decisions to already make for this big day, so do yourself a favor here and stick with consistency. Here are some options:

1) Adopt a “adults-only” policy. This is a popular policy for destination weddings, super formal weddings, or the very alcohol-friendly receptions where having people under the age of 21 is going to be hard. You might feel guilty going this route, but if it’s feasible, it really is OK! Seriously, it’s OK.

2) The more kids, the merrier! If you know that kids are a must-have, go for it in full-force. If you know they are going to be a significant amount of kids (such as 10-15% of the guest list), make sure you have some kid-friendly extras included. These might include good non-alcoholic beverages, a table just for the kids, an activity room or corner, etc.

3) Immediate family and bridal party can bring their kids–they are your family! This is a good policy if there are a few special little ones that need to be there for your day as a flower girl, junior bridesmaid or ring bearer, but you don’t want to have a ton of kids for the reception. Or, let’s say you have a long engagement (over a year): during that time, the child situation in your family or with your bridal party can change pretty fast, so you might need to be accommodating to those closest to you.  But again, be consistent in your application of this–once you make an exception, be prepared to make more.

4) Our new favorite solution (that can be applied to any of these policies): hire child care. Yes, this is an extra expense and you’ll need to provide a good space for children, but this really makes a wedding run smoothly.  Ask your wedding planner for referrals or start researching babysitting agencies in your area–having those few extra hands during the day can make all the difference!

Whatever policy you do decide to go with, kids can make a lovely (and adorable!) addition to any wedding, as seen here:

Christina pins a boutonnière on quite the dapper gentleman!

Christina pins a boutonnière on quite the dapper gentleman!