Divine Details

A Wedding at Sea Pines Resort, Hilton Head Island

Spencer Special Events - Wednesday, September 24, 2014

You'll make many tough choices when planning your wedding but none more important than choosing your wedding venue. Almost every other detail and choice you make -- from the food, the decor, the flowers and even the cake -- can all depend on where. At Spencer Special Events, we just love touring our couples around to the area's finest locations and wedding venues -- giving them all the beautiful options. There's one place that we never miss and that is Sea Pines Resort on Hilton Head Island.

We get brides from all over the country. From Los Angeles, New York, Chicago, Knoxville, Denver and everywhere else and no matter where they are coming from, they all want that Lowcountry feel. That's why they choose this area for a wedding -- the breath taking beauty of the Lowcountry and all that this area has to offer. Having a wedding at Sea Pines Resort provides destination brides with options and a taste of everything. From the sand, the marsh, the iconic lighthouse, a ballroom, Spanish-Moss draped Oaks, a beautiful Inn -- every part of the Lowcountry that we love is right there in Sea Pines Resort!

We cannot rave enough about the team themselves at Sea Pines. They're absolute dolls to work with! We felt so honored and privileged to step inside early construction on their new wedding venues a few months ago and sat down with them the other day to hear what's new and how the construction is coming along.  WOW! We are so excited to share what's new and what's in store!

There are 3 new buildings and 4 new reception venues at Sea Pines. The Beach Club/Atlantic Room is an impressive and expansive space for 100-120 guests. The second floor has incredible ocean views with sliding glass doors. It's climate controlled or can be left open to get that breezy, beachy feel! There's also the Plantation Golf Club Magnolia Room that is new. For 100 or less, it's the perfect newly designed space. With neutral decor, it can be made into the space of your dreams!

Then there's the Harbour Town Clubhouse on the legendary PGA course. The redesigned Champions ballroom and Jr. Ballroom are fantastic options for couples with larger parties. Outside the Champions Ballroom, Sea Pines is putting the finishing touches on a new roof, covered porch and gazebo.

One of the things we love sharing with our couples is that they have the option of doing an "Inn buyout" where they reserve all 60 rooms at the Inn at Harbour Town. We think this option is fabulous for larger weddings with lots of out of town guests. You are really able to "take over" the entire Inn -- you and your wedding party are the only guests there. The catering team is happy to arrange welcome cocktails, lunches, snacks and farewell brunches, too! Sea Pines is also one of the only resorts to have their own pastry chef on staff, providing couples with exceptional cake design and delicious tasting cake!

We also love that in Sea Pines, you have all the resort amenities that your guests are looking for. You can kayak within Plantation, you have restaurants nearby, there's golf and tennis. Everything is easily accessible and your guests will feel like they are truly on vacation on Hilton Head Island.

If you'd like to learn more about a wedding at Sea Pines Resort, head on over to their website to see more and be sure to tell them that the gals at Spencer Special Events sent you! Stay tuned for more photos of the new construction, coming soon!

Wedding Ceremony Music

Spencer Special Events - Thursday, September 18, 2014

When it comes time to planning music for your wedding day, many brides and grooms get excited but plenty of others are overwhelmed and intimidated by the entire process. Music sets the tone for each part of your wedding. Whether it be that moment you walk down the aisle, as you enter the ballroom with your new hubby, dinner music, or creating that party experience you are looking for -- they all require different music. Where do you start? Today we want to help you take a quick peek into the process of selecting your ceremony music and song selections.

At Spencer Special Events, we are here to help guide you through this process to ensure you don't feel overwhelmed. We work with the areas most trusted music sources. One of our favorites is Hilton Head Entertainment! They've been in the wedding music business for 25 years and draw upon the hundreds of talented musicians, bands, DJ's and specialty music artists in the Lowcountry. They know who to call when you want a modern version of "All You Need is Love" by the Beatles to walk down the aisle, a Gullah Choir, or who to call when you need a Blue Grass Band for cocktail hour. We sat down with Jessica Jameson of Hilton Head Entertainment to share some tips with our readers!

Ceremony Music

Like many things, it will depend on your budget and your vision. You may want to consider a solo violinist, guitar or harp playing while your guests are being seated. You may love the idea of a magnificent Gullah choir rejoicing in song after you say "I do." At Spencer Special Events, we will be happy to give you some ideas that we think work for your style and ceremony format! We love that part!

When it comes to song choice, we are seeing more modern choices such as Jason Miraz, "I'm Yours", The Beatles "All You Need Is Love," Isreal K. "Somewhere Over The Rainbow," and Train's "Marry Me." Weddings today are of course still about tradition, but about incorporating meaning and personal touches. So don't be shy to ask if they can play your song!

Of course, there are all the traditional songs available like Trumpet Voluntary, Canon D, and all the classics if that's what you are looking for. Plenty of musicians play a good mix of modern and classics! We love working with Hilton Head Entertainment because spending on the vision, style and song requests, they help make excellent recommendations for who to choose.

All photos by Landon Jacob Productions (thanks!)

Our biggest tip when it comes to ceremony music is to know what you like and then trust the experts. Give them plenty of direction but then sit back and let them help. Jessica Jameson has lead dozens and dozens of our brides in choosing the right music, she prides herself in careful attention to each couple that she works with. She returns emails in a flash and having worked for the company for almost a decade, she's built personal relationships with musicians. She gets questions answered and helps ensure your wedding music is flawless. With Hilton Head Entertainment, there's always a backup plan too (in case that harpist gets sick -- you're covered in your contract with guaranteed ceremony music!)

We hope this has given you some insight into ceremony music and taken some stress away. We are here to help so that this process is fun, NOT overwhelming. That's what this is all about!

Wedding Registry Tips

Spencer Special Events - Wednesday, September 10, 2014

There are so many exciting parts of planning a wedding, but there's one that gets many shopping-loving brides (and a few grooms, too!) truly jazzed -- and that's registering for wedding gifts! Registering for wedding gifts is a time honored tradition dating back to the 1920's when a popular department store (Marshall Field's) introduced the concept. It's not "greedy" to register, many guests appreciate learning what your style is and seeing exactly what you want. Most guests truly want to give you something you want (no returns necessary!) Providing your friends and family with a variety of options in a range of price points will allow them to choose something that they can get excited about. Spencer Special Events is here today to share one of our absolute favorite sites!

At last! The traditional registry has evolved beyond china, crystal, silver and even home items. In our modern world, you can now register for your honeymoon, cash, a charity of your choice, gourmet food and wine, and even experience activities to do together! Enter, Newlyish!

Newlywish was started by our darling friend, Amanda Allen, from Engage, the luxury bridal summit we attend. Amanda Allen founded Newlywish for the modern engaged couple. Registrants are "mature, design-and style-savvy folks who are looking for chic home wares and outside-of-the-box gift options, like experiences they can enjoy together."

This amazing site allows couples to register for unique and stylish gifts from over 60+ boutiques and artisans. It's even curated by some experts like celebrities, bloggers, designers and more. You can start your own registry in seconds -- if registering overwhelms you, there are tools to quick add bulk products. (For example, a white sheet starter set gets you set up with all the towels, sheets, duvet, shams, etc. that you need with one click!) You can even register for GROUP GIFTS, guests can contribute money towards a gift but not necessarily the whole amount. If they want to give you a mixer for example, but it's slightly out of range, your guest can contribute towards that mixer! (See an example here!)

We love to shop and we picked out a few of our quick favorites to share with our readers. You'll even find wedding favors, and gifts for your bridesmaids or groomsmen on this site. We love that all those amazing artisans out there are able to sell their goods to the world, where otherwise they might not have been able to start a registry! It helps small businesses boom. Genius, I tell ya!

There are more luxurious, beautiful items at Newlywish be sure to check them all out in bedding, bath, home decor, furniture, art, lighting... the list goes on.  But beyond those, we love that you can register for a cash fun or honeymoon fund. Perhaps you and your fiance have been living together for awhile. If you aren't just starting a new home and already have a lot of home items, a  cash or honeymoon fund  is a popular choice that's perfectly acceptable!

If you don't feel as comfortable registering for a cash fund or honeymoon fund, consider registering for experiences like cooking classes, dance classes, spa appointments, even classes in interior design and organization! There is a wide range from which to choose. This is one of Amanda Spencer's favorite options of the site!! It's all about making memories! 

Very cool, isn't it?

A HUGE thank you to Amanda Allen for sharing some insight today with our readers and her amazing creation that we just can't rave enough about! 

Stephanie & Nathan

Spencer Special Events - Thursday, September 04, 2014

Today fall in love with this super cute couple, Stephanie and Nathan, just like we did in the months of planning before their wedding day this past June. These two just sparkled inside and out!  Spencer Special Events was so honored to be a part of their day. From the beautiful styling of Stephanie's dress, delicious selection of food, tremendous cake and dessert options, divine floral arrangements, soft drapery and beautiful venue at The Omni Resort on Hilton Head Island, this wedding was both personal and reflective of the couple getting married.

We sat down with Stephanie to ask her some questions about how she and Nathan met, their design inspiration, and plenty more to share with our readers. Thanks to Hopkins Studios for beautiful photography of this sweet couples big day!

1. How did you and Nathan meet? Nathan and I first met in 2007 while we were freshmen at West Virginia University through mutual friends. We actually both grew up in the same hometown but our paths never crossed until then! Nathan and I attended different schools (rival high schools) until we both started at WVU. We found that we had similar interests and really enjoyed being around each other. In the summer of 2008, Nathan finally asked me to go to dinner with him. After that the rest is history! We dated for four years before we got engaged in March 2012 in the beautiful Dominican Republic. From that moment on the wedding planning started (and continued) for the next two years.

2. Why did you choose Hilton Head Island to get married? We chose to get married in Hilton Head because we really loved the beautiful environment of the island. We both love the beach and found it to be a perfect place to have our wedding. We also wanted our guests to enjoy themselves and make a family vacation out of it. Nathan and I actually vacationed in Hilton Head in 2009 with my parents. This was our first vacation together. Little did we know that 5 years later we would be saying “I Do” on the island!

3. Why The Omni Resort Shorehouse for your ceremony and reception? Nathan and I really fell in love with the beautiful scenery surrounding the Shorehouse. The backdrop of the beach is stunning. The Shorehouse had everything that we wanted in a venue. We were able to have both the ceremony and reception in the same location. It was a part of the Omni Resort but still secluded enough that you were separate from the other guests. Alison Ward, the catering manager, was amazing and had several years of experience at the Omni. The Shorehouse as well as the entire Omni Resort was a wonderful place to have our wedding.

4. Where did you draw your inspiration for the wedding design? Like the majority of modern brides, I found my inspiration from sites such as Pinterest and The Knot. After looking at the wedding board that I had created on Pinterest, I discovered that I pinned a lot of deep purple and gray. That is when I realized that I was drawn to those colors without really even knowing. The color palate was so beautiful that we decided to choose those colors for our wedding. The vibe that I was going for was definitely romantic. One of the designs that I really wanted was to incorporate white draping into the space. I really wanted to create that soft, romantic look with white drapes that would catch some of the ocean breeze coming up to the Shorehouse. I also loved the idea of having tall candle lanterns to add to that romantic feel.

5. Tell us about that gown and the bridal attire! I found my wedding gown at Exquisite Bride in Murrysville, PA. It was the first and only bridal salon that I went to. My mother and grandmother were with me. It was special for me to have my grandmother there as she used to own her own bridal salon. My wedding gown was the third one that I tried on. It was a beautiful sweetheart strapless Maggie Sottero A-line gown made out of Paris chiffon with a stunning Swarovski crystal beaded belt and a corset back closure.

6. What was the most important thing for you on your wedding day? It was really important to us to create a relaxing and fun environment for our guests. We wanted them to really enjoy themselves while they were being a part of our day. It was important to us to have great food as well as great music to create that perfect environment for our reception.

7. Tell us about your food! Our food was amazing! We wanted our guests to have a variety of different options to choose from. We went with stations for our reception for that reason. For cocktail hour we provided a selection of chef’s canapés that included a selection of brie and strawberry, roasted vegetables on baguette, smoked salmon on pumpernickel, curry chicken salad in phyllo, crab salad on cucumber round, and blackened filet with horseradish on crouton. We also had black eyed pea hummus and Carolina crab and crawfish dip severed with crostino and pita. There was a chilled jumbo shrimp display as well as a fresh fruit display. We had a signature cocktail served during this time called “Almost Heaven” topped with edible orchids. For our reception we did a plated salad and then had different stations. There was a carving station which had honey whiskey glazed beef tenderloin with roasted potatoes. We also had a pasta station where guests could choose from penne and bowtie pasta accompanied by grilled chicken, prosciutto ham, and a variety of different vegetables with marinara and pesto cream sauces. Our last station was a pan seared jumbo lump crab cake station where there was a chef preparing the crab cakes right there. For dessert we had miniature desserts which including key lime pie squares, tiramisu in shot glasses, pecan squares, and mini cheesecakes. Our guests could enjoy a variety of cocktails throughout the reception. Our wedding cake was made by the talented Minette Rushing with Custom Cakes. She created a beautiful three tiered cake with different flavors for each tier. The bottom tier consisted of a vanilla bean cake with strawberry filling. We chose a chocolate cake with chocolate buttercream for the second tier. The top tier was carrot cake with cream cheese.

8. Where did you honeymoon? We honeymooned for a week in the gorgeous Riviera Maya at Secrets Maroma all-inclusive resort. We enjoyed a honeymoon package in a preferred club swim-out suit. It was a perfect ending to an amazing wedding!

We SO enjoyed working with Stephanie, Nathan and their sweet families and feel so blessed to have been a part of their day!