3rd Annual Bridal Night Out 


Here we are again, as time approaches for our 3rd Annual Bridal Night Out Fashion Show and Expo. We are delighted to have such amazing team of vendors, models and support. Our theme this year is just black & white tie.
Our bridal event will take place at the beautiful venue in the Big E area called “Storrowton Tavern & Carriage House” located at 1305 Memorial Ave. west Springfield. We have an amazing group of wedding professionals waiting to share their ideas and tips on how to make your wedding easy, stress free and affordable. You can learn more by visiting our facebook events page. 

Vendors who will be at our show will be listed in no order

  • Mary Kay
  • ThirtyOne
  • All’Asta
  • Card Box Rentals
  • Younique
  • Jamberry Nails
  • Partylite
  • Pink Zebra
  • Athenas
  • BTTR Booths
  • Herbalife
  • Traveling Vineyard
  • Celebrating Home
  • It Works
  • Justice of Peace
  • Pure Romance
  • Quivanna
  • Karlene Designs
  • Bridal Corner
  • BusyMoms Bridal
  • Golden Bloom Flowers
  • Jeunesse
  • Style Dots
  • Simply Said
  • Arbonne
  • Avon
  • Domyannas Boutique
  • Makeup by Johanna Rivas
  • Makeup by Johanna Gallup
  • Makeup by Erin Skelly
  • Hairstylist for models by Virtue Salon of Excellence
  • Our event DJ is DJ Diaz Service

Our MC of the day is Ayanna Crawford from The Ayanna Crawford Show 

Ayanna Crawford an Educational Consultant and Motivational speaker for nonprofits, and colleges in the Pioneer Valley,       

Ayanna C.Crawford (Springfield) is the proud mother of two children with one in college. She also is the owner/ President of AC consulting Services. She is also the host of the Ayanna C.Crawford show inside excellence scheduled to aired on focus Springfield as well as the new co-host for the BLE program with State Rep Ben Swan on WTCC.

Currently Ayanna serves on the board of directors for the American Red Cross and Total Women Conference, Inc, She is an Alumni from Leadership Pioneer Valley , which cultivates emerging leadership in the pioneer valley. Ayanna has been awarded 2013 women in leadership (Action award) from the TWA. Her motto: Is to be the change you want to see in the world- Ghandi

Our models are a huge part of this event without them we have no one to show off those new trends.

Female Models:

  • Jessica Reyes
  • Adalgiza Peralta
  • Zoraida Ares
  • Shawnay Andrades
  • Lexi Lopes
  • Wendeliz Diaz
  • Cardion Collins
  • Gabriella Caceres
  • Mariangelize Rodriguez
  • Lixsweth Garcia
  • Kesha Minnifield
  • Sonia Lopes
  • Jean M. Langevin
  • Daviana Plaza
  • Samantha DiGiovanni
  • Heather
  • Sandra 

Male Models:

  • Jose A. Reyes
  • Brian Reyes
  • Angel Muriel
  • Edgar O. Lozada
  • Peter Soto
  • J’Ceon Eberhart
  • Kayden Minnifield 

We will have several photographers, media, Internet gurus and more. 

For more information on tickets you can purchase tickets via online or be on the look for free tickets from either your vendors, or mix 93.1 today and tomorrow between 6:00-9:00am, where Zito and Karen will be offering freebies. 


The most exciting time of the Year!!


There comes a time in life when we decide to be happy, and that time is now, getting engaged. Couples are always choosing dates when it comes to making it special, a time to remember all their life and a time to share with loved ones. Some choose to get engaged on Christmas, some on New Years but the most important thing is these two holidays are one to always remember and one to always be on the look, According to a survey conducted by wedding website, TheKnot.com, 39 percent of marriage proposals occur between Thanksgiving and Valentines Day with 16 percent happening at Christmastime.

New Years Eve has become an increasingly popular day to get engaged for many couples. It is a new year and a new start. Many couples have plans to go out somewhere anyways, so maybe their significant other is not as suspicious of their plans to propose because they already have planned a big night out.

Engagement ring shopping has also changed because of technology and social media.

Almost every lady that comes in has a ring that she likes on her Pinterest account. About 50 percent of engagement ring customers will shop with a close friend or the mother of their bride-to-be.

So all we have to do now is sit, wait and see who and how many get engaged from now until January 1st, 2015 and other years to come!!!

Happy Engagement from IT Events 

Secret Garden

I had the wonderful opportunity to interview Jacki Jacobs from Jacki Jacobs Photography about her unique project “Secret Garden”, we’ve had several occasions where we worked together and I must say Jacki is one hell of a photographer, she knows what she wants and how she wants it. Her sense of humor has a lot to do with how beautiful her work is, she really knows how to bring a smile in you “no matter what you’re thinking”.

The reason I took the time to interview Jacki and in a few you will read why I love this women and her ideas, is because I have such interest in following her art I am sure once you’ve read this article you will be following her as well.

When did you come up with this amazing idea of transforming people into flowers? 
I first came up with the idea…well it wasn’t really an idea so much as the birth of my fantasy into a tangible medium.
I have a pretty big fantasy world going on inside my head. Sometimes its hard to remember what stuff is real. lol.
What inspired you to create this project?
Things that inspired me or rather helped in the creation of this really vivid fantasy life I live, the art of Brian and Wendy Froud heavily influenced it, especially when they worked with Jim Henson on the movies The Dark Crystal and The Labyrinth.
In my youth I had a pretty rough childhood, so I escaped to my room a lot, pair that with the regular migraines I kept the room dark and my eyes closed, but as you can imagine that gets pretty boring. So one day I just tried seeing what was out there in the darkness, and well the rest is slowly entering the real world through my art.
The first creature I encountered there was a purple octopus named Oscar who protected me while I slept and took care of me when I was sick.
What do you wish to accomplish in the near future with your “Secret Garden Art”?
My future wish is to continue to bring these creatures a little more into the world and show people who the phrase “living in a fantasy world” (something I was very often accused of many times in life) is to be taken more as a compliment than a curse. These creations, have taught me quite a bit about the nature of people. For example Oscar was the embodiment of what parents are to children, protection and nurturing. It is what I base my ideals of parenting on. I am not a parent myself but I someday hope to be. There are no monsters under the bed. There is only what you chose to believe living under there. I chose to believe in hope and protection, the complete opposite of what we are led to believe lurks in the shadows. Life is what we believe it is, what we manifest it to be. As far as being an artist, it wasn’t necessarily my intent but if that is how people see me then it is a badge of honor I will wear.

I heard you already have an amazing event coming up to make your first “Secret Garden” appearance, when and where will this take place? You must share, we all need to know and give you full support.
I have few events already on the horizon. Starting in September my work will be on display in Shear Xtreme in Northampton and for sale both online and at Heartfelt Fine Gifts in Springfield MA. And at the Brueggers Gallery in Northampton starting in November.
I hope to start each of these events with a celebration to thank those who have helped and encouraged me along the way as well as those who can help me spread the message that my project carries.
And that message is, when life gives you weeds: grow your own secret garden. in other words. life is what you make it.
Hey, but this doesn’t end here lol, as I was wondering and researching I also saw you have a fundraising tool to help you with expenses would you mind sharing a link of where we can read more and go to help you raise and reach your goal?
I started a Indiegogo Campaign to help me raise the money for prints. I have put up approximately $700 towards prints and events.
I have bought a few 11 by 14 gallery wraps but I need about 7-14 20 by 24s for the Bruegger’s Gallery and that is quite a bit pricier.
People can contribute by going to my Indiegogo page. We are offering some really great perks for people’s contributions, including signed postcards and first prints of some of the works.
How do you find it when it comes to transforming one person into an instrument of Garden?
When I start a piece I usually start by taking pictures, pictures of flowers and trees and moss and garden walls. Then I take pictures of people or pictures I have previously taken of people. I try to match the curves and the lighting, from there I let the story tell itself. If I  try to force it or I try to match a face with a flower that doesn’t feel natural then the work feels forced and in-genuine. The story isn’t there. This is why I don’t do custom work in the traditional sense. But rather take photos of a person who volunteers to be a part of the project and see where those take me. What comes out might not be exactly what the volunteer is looking for but the work is more honest and chock full o’ story.
Now I personally know Jacki and she loves and feels passion for her work, so maybe this question can be hard but not limited, Jacki share at least three images you consider can be some of your favorite.

My three favorites at the moment, that IS a tough one. My newest image that I’m in love with is titled “Passion” I think the inspiration for it is all in the eyes. They really pop in the photo. Plus the edges of the flowers fade off in such a way that its really ethereal and romantic. Its hard to say what I don’t love about it. lol
The second one would be “Daydream”. I just love the story that emerged from this photo. A constant reminder for me to keep looking up and reaching further.
And my 3rd choice would have to be “Where my Love Grows” because that’s just it really I feel like this whole project is where my love grows. I have never been more fulfilled than after I create a piece that I love. It feels like falling in love, and I get to do it everyday. It is amazing and humbling and beautiful and makes me feel content.
Once you’ve accomplished your gallery and who knows where your art will be next, what is next for Jacki Jacobs?
Well, I’m sure I will find a new piece of my fantasy world to show people, the hardest part is accurately conveying it to print. For example, mermaids live there, but I haven’t found a non cheesy way to replicate them. But I might go next into some of my fairy tales, or another project I’d like to do is “the spirit of” which could be another article entirely.
If you love the work and want to take a little bit of it home we do have some products available for purchase: http://www.zazzle.com/secretgardenart such as buttons and mugs and a small selection of tote bags, which were chosen by the fans of the art, through daily interaction on my facebook fan page: https://www.facebook.com/secretgardenart where a new piece is posted daily.


Jacki is amazing and I believe in her, I think we should all gather our trust and help another small business. Let’s help Secret Garden come to life!!

Written & Interviewed by Jessica Ares

Wedding Financial Responsibility Chart

Who pays for what?,  is the question we all have when it comes to wedding planning. Traditionally, wedding expenses are divided among the brides and grooms families, the bride, the groom, the wedding party, and out-of-town guests.

The Bride’s Family:

  • Engagement Party
  • Wedding invitations, announcements, and enclosures, including the mailing costs
  • Bride’s wedding and attire and trousseau
  • Rental fees for the ceremony site
  • Incidental ceremony expenses, such as the fees paid to the organist, soloist, and sexton
  • Ceremony and reception photography and videography
  • Transportation to and from the ceremony and reception sites for the female attendants
  • Entire cost of the reception
  • Bouquets and corsages for the bridesmaids, maid or matron of honor, and flower girl
  • Flowers for the ceremony and reception sites
  • Flowers sent to all hostesses who entertain the bride and groom
  • Their own wedding attire

The Groom’s Family:

  • Rehearsal dinner
  • Travel costs and accommodations for their out-of-town family members
  • Their own wedding attire
  • Additional expenses, as decided

The Bride:

  • Wedding gift for the groom
  • Groom’s wedding ring
  • Hair stylist and makeup artist to do her hair and makeup
  • Accommodations for her out-of-town attendants
  • Presents for her attendants
  • Personal stationery and thank-you notes
  • Keepsake accessories

The Groom:

  • Marriage license and any other legal fees
  • Brides engagement and wedding rings
  • Honeymoon trip
  • Officiants fee
  • Floral corsages for both his and the brides mother
  • Boutonnieres for his attendants and himself
  • Brides bouquet
  • Wedding gift for the bride
  • Corsage for brides going-away outfit
  • Corsages for honored female guests, such as grandmothers and godmothers
  • Gloves, ascots, and ties for his out-of-town attendants, if these items wont be rented
  • Accommodations for his out-of-town attendants
  • Shipping the wedding presents to his and his wife’s new home
  • Bachelor party, if no one else pays for it
  • His own wedding attire

Although this list has been created, many couples have changed the way they pay for their wedding, some couples are paying for everything equally especially now when they both have a full time job, only the traditional family will still use the similar list above.

You do not have to separate lists if you both create a budget and work it wisely.

Bridal Beauty Trends 2014

Bridal Beauty Trends 2014

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The 2014 bridal look is all about natural beauty, subtle glow and barely there nude lips with a touch of color.

To start with, the real key to this wedding trend is naturally beautiful skin.


Skin care should be at the top of list for every bride. Exfoliation is important to rid the skin of any flakiness along with proper moisturizing to keep the skin glowing. If you’re prone to breakouts, it’s a good idea to start with monthly facials six months before the wedding to keep breakouts in check and have the perfect canvas for your bridal makeup.


Foundation: with everything being in high definition, the last thing you want to use is a heavy opaque foundation that covers the skin completely. The camera see’s everything! You want to see the natural glow of your skin. 
For this reason, airbrush foundation, when applied properly is the best way to achieve the flawless natural look. Why?  Because it mixes tiny dots of makeup with your own skin showing through giving minimum coverage with maximum results.


Try warming up your complexion with tones of peach, coral or pale rose on your cheeks depending on your coloring.   Choose slightly transparent, fleshy reds, browns, or pinks for your lips.  Open your eyes with perfectly groomed eyebrows, accentuated brow bones, and defined curled lashes frame the eyes like a beautiful picture frame accentuates a painting. 
Many brides are using false lashes. I caution on this. Have a professional apply them if you are. Done properly this can give a beautiful big wide eye, if applied incorrectly it can give you more of a costume look.

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Eye Shadows should be in the neutral pallet. Avoid heavy frost in your shadows. The camera can distort this look and take away from the beauty of your own eyes.


Although there are many trends, from retro bride to the smokey-eyed bride, always keep in mind that you will be forever immortalized on film. Timeless beauty is always best!

Lynn Tassinari Wegiel has been a leader in the makeup industry for many years. Her work has been recognized internationally in the media and print.  You can view her portfolio at LTWmakeupartist.com


Preparing the Guest List

When planning a wedding, the most difficult task is preparing the guest list, some couples end up creating this huge list of guest which 20% you have no communication with in years, then to realize they’ve moved or will not be able to attend, this is why I as a planner let my brides & grooms know how important it is to concentrate on your guest list.

Make sure you take time writing, re-writing, re-reading and decide together on who should or should not remain there. It has come to my attention how social media has taken a huge way of communicating with guests, I’ve seen brides create a wedding guest list or RSVP facebook page, Although e-mailing wedding invitations isn’t considered proper, asking guests to RSVP by e-mail is becoming more common.

Table plan black lace

Whenever I start organizing a party, regardless of how big or small, one of the first things I like to do is sit down and come up with the guest list.
Why do I do this so early in the process? The number of people at your event will effect every aspect of planning and decorating. Keeping this number in mind (even if its just an estimate) will help you focus and stay on budget.
  • Location: Home or outside the home? Everyone’s answer to this question will vary depending on (1) how many people you are planning to invite, (2) how much space you have available, and (3) your ability to adapt the available space to your needs. For example, if you have a large backyard and are planning a party you might be better off saving the money you’d spend on renting a space and spend it on getting your backyard party ready.
  • Tables and chairs: Guests need a place to sit! Despite what you may think, people awkwardly standing around hoping to land some space on the couch is not ok. The size of the guest list will help you decide on how many tables and chairs you’ll need to keep guests comfy. If you don’t have enough you can rent. Prices will vary depending on what part of the U.S you live in and what kind of chairs you want, but on average can cost anywhere from $0.75 to $7.00 a chair. Tables will be a few dollars more depending on size and shape (square v. round). Churches and local community centers are also known to rent/lend out tables and chairs for a small fee or donation and sometimes even for free.
  • Food, drink and snacks: Don’t invite people if you can’t feed them. It doesn’t matter if you’re only planning on serving a light meal or finger food, there should be enough of everything for everyone. The size of your guest list will help you determine just how much food you need to order/buy/make yourself. The same goes for the cake: Knowing how many guests you have will help you avoid the mistake of ordering a cake too large and wasting money or ordering too small and having to skimp on the servings.
  • Decorations: A small gathering that’s over decorated will look suffocating and the overall effect lost, while a large party with too few decorations looks rushed and not well thought out. With the number of guests in mind you’ll also have an idea of how much space you need and how to make it flow. It’s important to find a balance between the amount of people that will be there and the use of the space.
  • Party Favors: Show your appreciation for your guests by giving each a special favor. Whether it be small boxes of candies or a handmade gift with sentimental value, guests appreciate receiving something special. Knowing how many you’ll need will let you choose what kind of favors are within your budget for each person and what kind best fits your event.
  • Your time and energy: Be honest with yourself. Who do you reallywant to share your party with? Is the size of the celebration something you can handle right now, or would you be more comfortable with a more intimate get together? This is the time to really think about how much and what you can fit on your plate.


When coming up with my own lists I have one column for the number of adults and another for the children. I do this because children have different wants and interests. Even if it is an event aimed more at adults you should be considerate of your younger guests and think about giving them a space where they can play and be comfortable.


Once I have my list, I add up the names in the two columns and include 5 more just to cover myself in case I’ve forgotten anyone and remember later on. For a wedding or very large event three months before the date should be your limit for editing the guest list in anyway. For smaller parties, two  to three weeks.


Next time you’re planning a party, try this method and see how it works for you!



Common Bridal Shower Themes

Today’s bridal showers often have themes, both to create a special type of party, and to help guests choose the right type of gift. The following examples are themes you can suggest for your clients bridal showers:

Jack ‘n’ Jill shower: If both the bride and groom are invited to attend the entire shores, it’s referred to as a Jack ‘n’ Jill, or couple, shower. Guests would give gifts that both the bride and groom can use, such as barbecue equipment. 


Pantry Shower: A pantry shower involves giving the bride and groom gifts to stock their cupboards. Canned goods, prepared foods, and gourmet specialties qualify as appropriate gifts; cooking equipment, however, isn’t appropriate.


Lingerie Shower: A lingerie shower is an all-female shower. All lingerie items are acceptable, and the guests or brides-maids may chip in to buy the bridal negligee. The invitation should list the brides size and color preference.


Round -the-clock shower: For a round-the-clock shower, each guests receives an invitation that has a certain hour of the day written in it.  Each guest then brings a gift that’s related to the hour specified on his or her invitation. For example, if the invitation specifies 10 a.m., the guests could give the bride a set of his-and-hers coffee mugs. Or if the invitation specifies 6 p.m., the guest could give cocktail glasses.


Photo taken from Michellepaigeblog

Gardening Shower: For a gardening shower, examples of good gift ideas include tools, gloves, and equipment, as well as bulbs, seeds, and outdoor plants. If the bride lives in an apartment, guests can give her items for a window garden.


Recipe Shower: For a recipe shower, each guest brings his or her favorite recipe and any small gadgets required to make the dish. These showers are ideal for proxy showers, which can be organized for the brides who live out of town and cant attend a traditional bridal shower; the recipes and gadgets can easily be shipped to her.


Paper Shower; At a paper shower, paper flowers, table mats, monogrammed napkins, books of matches, magazine subscriptions, and kitchen plastic ware items are considered appropriate gifts.


All gifts should be packaged in a manner that keeps with the theme of the shower. For example, gifts for a recipe shower could be packaged in a picnic basket. The gifts themselves can be used as decorations., because unlike the wedding, the primary purpose of the shower is for the bride to receive gifts from family and friends.

Shower invitations may also indicate if a wishing well will be present at the shower. A wishing well is intended to hold small, additional gifts of minimal value, such as sponges and dish detergent; these small gifts are usually meant to help the bride set up her new household. The gifts can be placed, unmarked, into replica of a well. In addition, they don’t have to be wrapped. 

Traditionally, shower gifts were handmade with loving care. However, with today’s time constraints, guests usually don’t have time to craft their own gifts; because of this, guests should spend some extra time selecting the appropriate gift. 

Guests should bring their gifts to the shower. If a guest can’t accept the invitation, he or she is under no obligation to send a gift; however, because the guest is likely to be a relative or close friend of the bride, he or she may wish to send a gift anyway; it should be sent in advance so the bride can open it at the same time she opens the other gifts.

A card should be enclosed with each gift, and the maid of honor should sit near the bride as she opens the gifts to secure the card to each present. This process makes it much easier for the bride to later write her thank-you notes.

Bridal Shower Gifts

The concept of a bridal shower is reportedly derived from two different legends originating from Holland. According to the first leyend, a Dutch bride fell in love with a poor man, and her family refused to sanction the marriage by withholding her dowry. When the couples friends hears about their dilemma, they hosted a party and showered the bride with gifts intended for her new home with thw groom. According to the second legend, the brides family was poor and unable to pay her dowry. To help the bride, the women in her community decided to host a party to shower her with gifts for her new home with groom-the gifts served as her dowry.
Regardless of which legend is true, bridal showers have since been hosted in honor of the bride to celebrate her upcoming marriage. This type of party provides you with an excellent opportunity to step in and help the bridesmaids plan and organize the affair.


Planning the shower

You should research halls and restaurants that specialize in catering bridal showers. For example, some catering halls will cater the shower at a special discounted rate if the brides wedding is also booked at the same location. In addition, try to develop unique ideas fr the decorating scheme and centerpieces. Find vendors who specialize in selling favors and decorations. Ultimately, you may charge a separate fee for helping to plan the bridal shower, or you can include this service as a part of your entire coordination fee.

You don’t need to hire entertainment for a bridal shower because the highlight of the party is when the bride opens the gifts. The type of gifts they would give for the engagement and the wedding. The invitation to the shower usually specifies the appropriate type of gift (for example, items for the kitchen) that should be given: the indicated first are most often related to the theme of the shower.


Gifts Found at Elite Weddings Boutique

Favors, which are small tokens given to the bridal shower guests as an informal thank-you, are often put at each place setting or distributed at the party’s end. These favors may be small fits of soaps, tiny picture frames, or potted plants. Often, the centerpiece, which is used as a prize in some of the many games played at a shower, is a larger version of the favors.

Most showers shouldn’t last more than two hours, except for luncheons and evening showers, which can last for three hours. In addition, the food served to guests should be kept simple and light, even if its a Jack’ n’ Jill, or couple, shower, which is when the groom and his friends are invited to the entire shower.

Because guests invited to an encore ceremony are never obligated to give a gift, bridal showers aren’t usually hosted for remarriages. Though many of the couples relatives and close friends will give wedding presents, expecting a bridal shower is considered excessive and inappropriate. 


Gifts found at Elite Weddings Boutique

Hosting a bridal shower costs money and takes time to plan. However, the party shouldn’t be so complex that it becomes a burden to those who are planning it. Creativity can be the key to keeping costs down, and developing a theme helps make it easier for guests to select an appropriate gift.

G Boutique

G Boutique, great high end fashion store coming this Wednesday January 15th at Chicopee Ma. You do not want to miss this event, a night full of fashion and glamour, grand opening will be begin from 4:00-5:00pm our VIP hour and networking event, from 7:00-8:00pm Fashion Show. Amy Patt is the owner and Elite Wedding & Events will be hosting this event. Great vendors, media, music and more. You can read more about G Boutique at http://www.gboutique-chicopee.com