As a wedding blogger, you tend to “fall in love” with a lot of the submissions that come through. All the gorgeous weddings, romantic engagements, beautiful styled shoots… it’s all so pretty. But as a married mom of 3, those tend to seem far-reaching since I’m not in that stage of life. But this - a cozy winter anniversary session, at an Airbnb in the Catskills from Emily Kirke Photography - and I’m completely in love. A little time away… away from the kids and the rush of everyday life, celebrating how far you’ve come and the life you’ve built? Aoife and Taylor captured a moment in their lives that often goes undocumented, and we’re already planning a weekend away to do the same. Enjoy, friends!Read More
It's here! The second part of our incredible Fall Styled Shoot. We could go on and on and tell you how amazing this group of vendors are, or what an experience it was to be a part of something like this... but honestly, the photos below tell that story better than we could. We're so thankful for this opportunity to work with some of the most talented creative entrepreneurs in our area, and look forward to doing it again!
Photos below by Jennifer Larson Photography
Photos below by Cinnamon Wolfe Photography
Video by TONEmedia
Vendors: Planning + Design: All Who Wander Event Design | Photographers: Cinnamon Wolfe Photography and Jennifer Larsen Photography | Wardrobe Styling: Allison Koehler | Furniture Rentals: Dovetail Vintage Rentals | Tabletop Rentals: Borrowed Blu | Linens: Adorn Company | Florals (reception table + ceremony): Colly Flowers | Florals (personals + cake): Kerry Patel Designs | Dress: Rebecca Schoneveld | Welcome Basket: That's Darlin’ | Paper Goods: Bella Carta Boutique | Cake: Sweet + Flour | Calligraphy: Lovely Scribe | Videography: Tonemedia | Jewelry: L. Priori Jewelry | Hair + Makeup: Artist Makeup Academy | Ribbons Honey Silks Co and Susanna Luck Venue: Cedar Lake Estates
It feels a little bit like Christmas morning today, because we're finally sharing a shoot that is a very big piece of our heart. The dream was to create a shoot that both celebrated the wonderful Red Oak advertisers and friends that have cheered us on this last year, and also represented the diverse and incredibly talented vendors in our area. We could not be more thrilled with what this day turned out to be, and the camaraderie that blossomed between friends.
We're separating the shoot into two posts - one today and one tomorrow - so that we can do all of these beautiful photos justice. Our hope is that you're inspired by the possibilities of what this group of talented vendors can create - we certainly are!
Photos below by Cinnamon Wolfe Photography
Photos below by Jennifer Larson Photography
Video by TONEmedia
Vendors: Planning + Design: All Who Wander Event Design | Photographers: Cinnamon Wolfe Photography | Jennifer Larsen Photography | Wardrobe Styling: Allison Koehler | Furniture Rentals: Dovetail Vintage Rentals | Tabletop Rentals: Borrowed Blu | Linens: Adorn Company | Florals (reception table + ceremony): Colly Flowers | Florals (personals + cake): Kerry Patel Designs | Dress: Rebecca Schoneveld | Welcome Basket: That's Darlin’ | Paper Goods: Bella Carta Boutique | Cake: Sweet + Flour | Calligraphy: Lovely Scribe | Videography: Tonemedia | Jewelry: L. Priori Jewelry | Hair + Makeup: Artist Makeup Academy | Ribbons: Honey Silk Co. and Susanna Luck | Venue: Cedar Lake Estates
The fairy godmother of weddings, Allison Koehler of AOK Style + Planning is back to share the answer to a really important question: do I need a wedding stylist? If you're not sure, or (like us) aren't completely clear what a wedding stylist does, this article is for you! "One thing I didn’t have on my wedding day, was me. I’m a personal stylist, and I specialize in weddings and engagements. Brides are my people; I feel totally at home running around like a maniac on your wedding day to ensure that you’re smiling and blissfully unaware of anything that may go wrong".
When I say I had a drama-free wedding day, truly, I mean it. I had the best of the best vendors, the coolest bridesmaids, and a pretty whatever-happens-happens attitude about the whole thing. You hear it time and time again, but it bears repeating: at the end of the day, it’s about you and your spouse. The rest of it is a party and everything else can fall by the wayside.
However, one thing I didn’t have on my wedding day, was me. I’m a personal stylist, and I specialize in weddings and engagements. Brides are my people; I feel totally at home running around like a maniac on your wedding day to ensure that you’re smiling and blissfully unaware of anything that may go wrong.
I’m like the assistant you never had or knew you needed. I’m the little ninja that pulls a granola bar out of nowhere when you feel a little light headed. I’m your best friend and your wedding-day ally, and I pride myself on going to extreme lengths to secure your happiness.
But seriously, my job entails anything and everything, and is a bit like a mini day-of coordinator, except less focused on the big picture, more focused on you (the bride!) and your spouse. That means steaming dresses, liaising with other vendors, getting the bridal party dressed, making sure everyone is where they need to be, and perhaps most importantly, with you, your beloved, and your photographer for your wedding portraits. It’s my job to notice things, so when your groom isn’t wearing his boutonniere, I’m the one who points it out then fixes the problem.
Back to my wedding for a second. A few months before the big day, my friend Julia posited the question “Who’s going to style your wedding?” No one, I laughed. Me? That was that, discussion over. I didn’t give it a second thought until after the ceremony...
My wonderful, talented, amazing photographer pulled me aside and mentioned that my hair had come loose during the ceremony. It was not quite like the gorgeous chignon my amazing hair stylist had done for me earlier that day, and was definitely noticeable under my veil.
Grand scheme of things, really, truly, not a big deal. And absolutely no one’s fault, especially because the stylist was me and I was a little too distracted to do my job. After the ceremony was finished we found some bobby pins, fixed my hair, and that was that. But if anyone asks me why they should consider a stylist on their wedding, I always reference the above picture. The day is about the love, but the little things matter too.
If you’re as detail obsessed as I am, you may want to consider hiring a Wedding Stylist for your big day! I, for one, would love to meet you.
I remember "wedding season" so clearly - the five years in our twenties where we had 10 weddings a year, traveling around the country, watching all of our friends say I-do. I could have used some advice from Allison Koehler back then: classic closet staples that would carry me through every bridal shower, bachelorette party and wedding, rather than buying something new for every event. Allison from AOK Style + Planning is sharing some of her favorite pieces to get you through the fall!
September and October (and Fall in general) are slowly but surely becoming the busiest months of the year for Weddings. That means that most of us have more than a few Wedding related events to attend before the year is out.
Aside from hitting up the registry before it gets picked over by guests, what to wear to a wedding (or engagement party, bachelorette, bridal shower, etc) is always a top priority.
There are obvious rules like don’t wear white and adhere to the dress code that’s on the invitation, but truly, the world is our proverbial oyster when it comes to dressing up for wedding events.
photo by Lisa Frechette Photography
Here are my suggestions for how to dress:
The Bridal Shower
Depending on the type of Bride / wedding, the bridal shower may or may not be an occasion to get fancy. I always love to suggest pastel colors, they just feel so appropriate for Bridal Showers (and there aren’t a ton of reasons to wear pastel). Not looking to break the bank? Dress up one of your work dresses with fun heels, or peruse luxury consignment shops like Tradesy to snag something special on the cheap.
Getting dressed for a Bachelorette party might be my favorite. It’s such a good excuse to try a new trend and step outside the box a little bit. Think: crop top and skirt sets, neon colors, Daisy dukes, and rompers. I like to shop trends inexpensively by going sourcing from sites like ASOS and Zara. This way you can try something new without a huge commitment.
Rent the Runway is a great resource, but I like to be able to add to my existing wardrobe when I start to think about what I’d like to wear to a wedding. First things first, a black cocktail dress is always appropriate, and a true closet staple. Long sleeves are great for outdoor weddings in the Fall, and since a pashmina won’t keep anyone warm, if you’re wearing a short sleeved dress for an outdoor Fall wedding, pair it with a leather or structured jacket. Finally, don’t discount the jumpsuit! A sleek jumpsuit can be a winner for casual and black tie weddings alike. Comfort on the dance floor? Sold.
We're thrilled to introduce you to the first in a series of posts from Allison Koehler of AOK Style + Planning, one of our newest Vendor Guide Members! One look at her feed, or the clients she's styled, and guaranteed you'll want her to come raid your closet AND be your best friend. Today she's sharing practical tips to choosing your engagement outfit... and really, this can be applied to any photography session. Engagement, Anniversary, Family - you name it, these rules apply!
One of the best ways to get in the wedding spirit, in my opinion, is by having an engagement session with your Wedding Photographer. It gets you and your partner in the zone for the day, and it feels indulgent and special.
Aside from selecting the location for your shoot, the biggest question on every couple’s minds is undoubtedly What should we wear? With Pinterest and incredible shoots featured in wedding blogs and magazines, the options are, actually, limitless. Having had my own engagement shoot, I completely understand the head scratching. And while I maintain that at the end of the day, it’s all about the love, I have a few tips for loving what you wear for your shoot!
photos by Julia Elizabeth
This one seems obvious, of course you’re going to be yourself in your photos! More specifically, I’m talking about your style self. If you’re a jeans and tee shirt gal, don’t feel the need to wear a cocktail dress and Louboutins. When you show these photos to your Grandchildren someday, you want them to be a good representation of you at the time. My first rule is, stay in the same genre of clothing that you normally wear, and just elevate a piece or two. Wear your favorite pair of jeans, but buy that new top you’ve been eyeing. Same rule goes for your sweetie. Start here, and you’ll find everything else comes together quickly.
Coordinate, Don’t Match
I’m always careful to avoid over-styling my clients; I want them to look as they usually do, and goodness knows we don’t want any 90’s portrait studio matchy-matchy outfits. But there’s something to be said for thoughtful coordination. To avoid outfits that clash, stick to a color family (neutrals, jewel tones, etc), and layer in patterns and textures. Floral dress? Avoid plaid for your fiance’s shirt. Going neutral? Add a pop of color to break things up. There’s no real right answer here; chances are if you’re being mindful of coordination, you’re on the right track.
photos by Ashley Caroline
I love a good theme just as much as the next Bride, but I’m wary of going too far with regards to engagement shoot outfits. Things can get out of hand quickly, so I encourage my clients to take the subtle approach. If you’ve got a love for the 20’s, a drop waisted dress and loose finger waves are a great nod to your theme without going full Gatsby. Same rules apply for seasonal shoots. Not every Summer shoot has to happen on the beach, and not every Fall shoot has to have pumpkins and scarves.
You want to be able to proudly show off your engagement photos without cringing at your outfit, so be careful with trends when prepping for your shoot. Stay away from fad jewelry and go simple with your accessories, and have your make-up artist keep your look natural. I love one signature, eye-catching piece (a floppy hat, tiny gold earrings, your favorite trench) that can be layered in for some shots and removed for others.
We're so excited to introduce you to Allison Koehler, personal stylist in NYC. When we found Allison's website, we were immediately drawn to her effortless style and attention to detail. But when we saw that she offered styling services for engagements + weddings, we were totally sold. One of the most stressful things for a bride is choosing an outfit for engagement photos... flattering, seasonally appropriate, and coordinated with your fiancé. Where do you start? Allison takes care of that, and more. Styling your bridal party, packing for your honeymoon, making over your closet. Basically, she's your new best friend.
Tell us a little bit about you, and how you got started!
I grew up in Connecticut which means I love being surrounded by nature, but I currently live in Astoria, NY with my husband and our King Charles Spaniel, Charlie - I like to call it my little slice of the burbs in New York City. Before I styled others, I styled myself. I've been obsessed with the way people present themselves for as long as I can remember. When I started writing a style blog in 2013 as a creative outlet (I was working as a Wedding Coordinator for Magnolia Bakery at the time), it transitioned into a business fairly quickly.
What services do you offer and/or what do you specialize in?
I specialize in weddings and engagements, and I thrive behind the camera (well, behind the person who's behind the camera!) at a photoshoot. I absolutely love curating and styling couples' outfits for their engagement shoots, helping small business ladies hone their sense of style with regards to their brand, and of course, assisting and styling brides on their wedding day. As a wedding stylist, my job is to make sure the bride, groom and their bridal party look their absolute best throughout the day and for all of their portraits. My background is in event planning, so I also offer Day-Of Coordination to those brides in need of a little extra assistance.
What makes your business unique?
Working with a personal stylist (either for your wedding or just generally) is something that has just now become more mainstream. Growing up, a service like mine didn't exist for everyone - only those of a certain financial status. Now it's available to everyone, what with sites like Stitch Fix. I bring a way more personal approach to my work, and I like to think of my clients as friends. I promise plenty of laughs if we work together!
What is your favorite part of working with couples?
As I mentioned above, I think of my clients as friends. I am a people person by nature, and I love getting to know my clients. Entrusting someone on your wedding day is not a thing to be taken lightly - I hope that anyone who hires me likes me as a person, too. It's so much more fun that way!
One piece of advice for couples?
Work with people who you trust and whose work you love. As a bride it took such a weight off my shoulders to not have to micro-manage my vendors. My planner, my photographer, my DJ, I hired them because I love what they do and who they are creatively. I just said 'Do your thing!' and went along for the ride.
Childhood career aspiration?
I distinctly remember telling my mom I wanted to be both a Ballerina and a waitress. I have fulfilled one of those goals.
Coffee or tea?
Coffee, always. With International Delight Hazelnut creamer. It's my biggest vice.
Eerily good impressions of family and friends.