Featured Venue • M&D Farms • Tiffany Wayne Photography

 

Last week we officially launched the Red Oak Weddings Venue Directory, and today we're formally introducing our first featured venue, M&D Farms in Westerlo, New York! When Tiffany reached out to me about this incredible new venue she had seen, I could tell it was truly something special. She drove up to Westerlo to capture the beauty and charm of their venue, so that we could share M&D Farms with all of you!


From M&D Farms

M&D farm as we affectionately call it, sits on 58 acres composed of gardens, prairies and woods and has for many years served as our weekend refuge from our hectic "9 to whenever office routine" in the City. Finally after countless conversations, over plenty of food and wine, we decided to pack it all up and move to the country...

Today the farm has become our full-time residence and a multi-purpose venue that allows us to work on many of our interests and passions. It's here in our own tiny crafted slice of paradise where we welcome people from all over the world...Whether you would like to book one of our two bedrooms and spend the weekend at our cozy house, where you will relax and disconnect from the outside world...Come up for the day, sit at our harvest table, set in a field of wild flowers, listen to the soft bewitching sound of a Spanish guitar and learn how to cook delicious Spanish cuisine a la Buenísimo! style.

Rent our grounds, gardens and barn as the setting for that perfectly enchanting, magical event, whether it be the country wedding you always wanted to have, a family reunion or a birthday celebration...Stop by and explore our grounds filled with a multitude of unique objects for your garden and home, during one of our barn sale events throughout the year. We promise you, you won't leave without picking up a trinket that will always remind you of this place... 

Intimate Barn Wedding at Hallockville Farm • Cadence Kennedy Photography

 

There are some weddings you fall in love with the moment you see them, and this barn wedding from Cadence Kennedy is definitely one of them. Sweet + intimate, with so many thoughtful details. Vintage trucks, hand-lettered signs and gorgeous florals. Oh, and Melissa + Tony's adorable puppy even makes an appearance (in a doggie tux!)... immediately making this wedding one of favorites! 


FROM CADENCE:

I'm not only a photographer but an equestrian. If you knew me, you’d know how much I love horses. If I could keep mine in my backyard, I would. So when this bride first emailed me and mentioned that her wedding would take place at a barn, I think my heart skipped a beat.

Through the power of social media, Melissa had found me. Melissa & Tony’s wedding was a week after my own, but nothing was stopping me from photographing their special day. The couple was my first from Wantagh, and having them drive around the block to my office was truly an amazing feeling.

On October 18th, I made my way to Riverhead. The location, the details, the color palette, and of course the couple is what makes this collection so wonderful. Being it was a week after my own wedding, I could truly appreciate all these things Melissa had done. As she prepared to see Tony for the first time, it was like I could feel that excitement again. My favorite photograph from their collection is the embrace between the two during the first look. There is truly nothing like it.

Vendors: Location: Hallockville Farm | Pizza Truck: Rolling in Dough | Floral: Flower Barn | Photography: Cadence Kennedy Photography Collection

Meet-the-Maker • Allison Koehler

 

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.

Hidden talent?

Eerily good impressions of family and friends.

Photos by Julia Elizabeth | Victoria Gloria of L'Amour FouAshley Caroline

Industrial and Chic Wedding at Cork Factory Hotel • Aaren Lee Photography

 

Monday just got a whole lot prettier! This gorgeous wedding from Aaren Lee Photography at the Cork Factory Hotel is truly one of a kind. Effortless, chic and totally thoughtful, we love the way Alex + Ben made the day completely their own. And you'd never know that heavy rains and winds from Hurricane Joaquin were threatening their day. These two smiled big and enjoyed every moment... exactly the way your wedding day should be!


From Aaren: Alex and Ben. What on earth can I REALLY say about Alex and Ben that will do them or their day justice? Hurricane Joaquin came and went without REALLY touching us, but it did leave a nice trail of heavy rain and crazy wind in it's wake. Didn't phase these two one bit! Thankfully, the Cork Factory Hotel has quite a few nooks and crannies that allowed for some pretty one-of-a-kind portraits! From tri-toned floral robes and heirloom pearl necklaces to chic new watches, succulents galore and two of the biggest smiles I've EVER seen in my whole life, this wedding was incredibly detailed and incredibly special. I'm not quite sure if I ever saw Alex break down and cry like she promised she would, but it was clear from each speech that was given just how loved and treasured this union was to all in attendance. Despite doing my best to keep it together as their day unfolded (I've definitely been known to shed some tears behind the camera during father/daughter dances), even I had to succumb to the tears (actually, just full on ugly crying if I'm being real honest) during Mama Lee's thank you speech to all of the vendors that shared their talents to make her daughter's day special. I love these guys, and I hope you do too.

Vendors: Ceremony + Reception: Cork Factory Hotel, Photography: Aaren Lee Photography, Florals: Wildflowers By Design, Bridal Gown: In White, DJ: One 2 One Productions

The Red Oak Weddings Venue Directory

 

We're so excited to share that the Red Oak Weddings Venue Directory is officially live! Months ago we dreamed of creating a resource for both couples and wedding professionals that would help streamline the venue search process, and keep everything in one place.

Red Oak Weddings Venue Directory | For the modern couple planning their wedding in NY, NJ + PA. Real weddings, engagements, inspiration + more!

With close to 200 venues across all 3 states (and growing everyday!) this list will be a wonderful starting point for planning your big day. We have some really big ideas of how this will grow in the future to include more information for each venue, but for now, the name of each links to it's website (and in most cases, their info about private and who to contact). 

Red Oak Weddings Venue Directory | For the modern couple planning their wedding in NY, NJ + PA. Real weddings, engagements, inspiration + more!
Red Oak Weddings Venue Directory | For the modern couple planning their wedding in NY, NJ + PA. Real weddings, engagements, inspiration + more!

We'd love to hear what you think, and of course, who we should add next! Use our contact form to let us know who we're missing!

You're In The Bridal Party... Here's What to Expect • Carly Totten

 

We've all been there... your best friend asks you to be in their bridal party. You both cry, accept her sweet proposal and continue to celebrate this exciting time in her life. Once the thrill (and the champagne) wears off, you're left wondering... what do I need to do? Carly from Carly Is Inspired has outlined what you need to do, including some helpful tips to make your bestie's wedding day everything she dreamed and more! 


For the modern couple planning their wedding in NY, NJ + PA. Real weddings, engagements, inspiration + more!

Whether the bride asks you in person or ships a box filled with surprises along with a note to your doorstep, one of the sweetest questions to be asked is whether you will stand by her as her maid of honor or one of her bridesmaids. Being in a wedding is fun (or at least we hope you’ll agree!), but there are quite a few jobs and moments you agree to willingly participate in once you say yes to the wedding party. If you’re curious what happens after you say yes, take a peek below!

Photo by Emily Wren Photography | For the modern couple planning their wedding in NY, NJ + PA. Real weddings, engagements, inspiration + more!

Parties: You will likely team up with the bride’s mom (or the ladies of her family) to plan and contribute financially toward her bridal shower. Further, be at the ready to assist in planning and contributing toward the bride’s bachelorette party. Lastly, don’t rush to make plans for the morning following the wedding because the new Mr. and Mrs. may choose to host a brunch. 

Attire: As the maid of honor or bridesmaid, you will of course be wearing a bridesmaid dress! In some cases, the bride may ask for your opinion on the style, color, or length of dress you would like to wear. If she does, answer thoughtfully but honor her wishes if they’re different than yours. If a few members of the bridal party all live near the bride, plan a date to try on dresses together. It’s helpful for the bride to see dresses on different silhouettes, plus it’s a great time to get to know the other members of the bridal party.

Planning: As the maid of honor or bridesmaid, it’s safe to say you are one of the bride’s closest confidants. Be at the ready to offer a listening ear whenever the bride needs one (planning can be stressful!), and don’t be surprised if you find yourself at a DIY party in honor of wedding details. Also, ask questions so you’re in the know for the wedding day (knowing about the timeline and details will ease your mind and hers). Offering a helping hand is one of the best assets you have during this time, and you will always remember being involved.

Photo by Michelle Lange | For the modern couple planning their wedding in NY, NJ + PA. Real weddings, engagements, inspiration + more!

The Wedding: The wedding is your biggest moment as the maid of honor or bridesmaid! You will want to keep the night before the wedding clear for the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner, plus you will likely be staying in the same hotel or home as the bride in order to ease the process of getting ready on the wedding day. The photographer will likely be on hand to capture photos during the final hour you spend getting ready, and you will take many more photos throughout the day with the full wedding party – stay together! Think about your wedding reception entrance, and if you’re the maid of honor, prep your speech well in advance. Then, get ready to dance!

A few more hints for the wedding day:

  • Talk with the bride and bridesmaids to see if anyone owns a steamer, and make sure to have one during the morning of the wedding for last minute dress touchups. 
  • It’s incredibly helpful when one of the bridesmaids has a large tote on hand throughout the day to serve as a catchall for items you may need (bobby pins, safety pins, hairspray, makeup remover, etc) as well as items you may just want to have near you (clutch, phone).
  • Well in advance of the wedding day, ask the bride how she will bustle her dress. Her mom is likely aware, and as the maid of honor, you should know too. 
  • Make sure everyone stays hydrated throughout the day, have snacks on hand, and continue to encourage the couple – it’s an exciting day, but it’s also a long one for all!

Finances: You may be expected to contribute toward the shower, and you will want to fully pay for yourself for the bachelorette party as well as a portion of the bride’s costs. Plus, you will be responsible for purchasing your bridesmaid dress, accessories, and in some cases your hair and makeup on the wedding day. Because you will need to be on hand during the morning of the wedding, you may be staying in a hotel room the night before and the night after the wedding. Lastly, gifts! You may opt to purchase a gift on your own for the bride’s shower, bachelorette party, and wedding day, but it’s always a great idea to team up with the rest of the bridal party and purchase something together. 

Photo by Ashley Errington | For the modern couple planning their wedding in NY, NJ + PA. Real weddings, engagements, inspiration + more!

If you’re in a wedding or if you have already served as a bridesmaid or maid of honor, let us know in the comments if you have anything additional to add!

Photography by Emily Wren, Michelle Lange and Ashley Errington

Website | Facebook | Instagram

Stunning Detailed Wedding at The Links at Hiawatha • Tiffany Wayne Photography

 

We truly believe that the details - the unexpected intricacies and tiny moments - are what makes a wedding memorable. Kara and Zach's Wedding from Tiffany Wayne Photography is just that. The epitome of thoughtful planning and personal touches, their day was full of love and emotion. Our favorite part? The wooden wall handmade by Kara's dad. Seriously, all of the heart-eyes for this incredibly beautiful and sentimental addition to their wedding day! 


From Tiffany: I have no idea where to start with this wedding… the amount of details… the style…. the BAND… I pretty much had a jaw dropping experience. Seriously, I don’t know where to start. About a year ago, Kara and I had a phone conference chatting about her wedding and her love story with Zach. High. School. Sweethearts. I mean, how cool to go to the prom with your future husband?! We hit it off over the phone and fast forward approximately a year later….and here we are! This wedding took place just outside Binghamton at The Links at Hiawatha in Appalachian, New York. I’ve driven by The Links countless times because my extended family lives out that way. Even though I was familiar with the area, I planned on arriving to town the day before the wedding. My assistant and I stayed at the DoubleTree in downtown Binghamton and drove around to prepare for the following day. I must say, the DoubleTree is the nicest hotel ever! Anyway, the morning arrived and I headed over to LoriAshley Salon to meet up with the girls as they were being pampered with hair and makeup treatments. The atmosphere was filled with lots of laughs with a mix CD playing in the background courtesy of the groom, Zach.

I knew that Kara was big on details, so I was looking forward to seeing everything she had for me to shoot! She handed me a basket that had so many goodies…all I could think was “I need to get this wedding in a magazine!” After shooting the details, it was time to get this bride in her gown. After putting on her gown, she held tightly onto her grandmother’s hanky as she read a card from her soon-to-be husband. I’m pretty sure there wasn’t a dry eye in the room. Kara’s sister put on her veil and then it was time for the first look with her father. Another beautiful moment… and the day was just getting started. We left the house and headed over to a second location for some photos with the bridal party. One of my favorite detail shots includes the bridal party…each girl wrote on a chalkboard where they first met Kara. I thought that was so unique and special!

Following portraits, it was time to get this bride married! Kara told me there was going to be a Corvette get-a-way car following the ceremony- I was so pumped to see this decorated sports car sitting outside the church! I’m telling you, nothing was overlooked with this wedding! After the big ‘I do’ Kara and Zach exited the church as guests threw rose petals on them… and off they went in the Corvette! We jumped in our cars and headed out West to the The Links where Kara and Zach would see their reception space for the first time. Just. Wait. Until. You. See. This.

The week before the wedding Kara and I spoke on the phone and she told me about a wall that her father made with their initials carved out of wood…. Now I was expecting something large, but not a legit wall! It was the size of the entire back wall of the tent! Now, just when you thought that was cool…add in some shelves that were decorated with photos from previous generations…equipped with spotlights… and well, that’s the beginning of this magical room. The greenery and flowers, candles, vases, signs, whiskey barrels covered with wild flowers and succulent …. I can’t even form a sentence. There was a wall of old window panes where Calligraphy artist Stacy wrote the seating chart so guests knew where to go. The display was enormous! The guest book was a custom piece of wood cut from a tree where guests would sign on the bark to be later displayed on a wall in their home. SO unique! The entrance of the tent was decorated with custom garland made with wild green leaves-which was so eye catching. Bistro lighting and chandeliers hung from gorgeous linens that lined the ceiling. The centerpiece of the room was the wooden wall that Kara’s father made. I just couldn’t get enough of it! And to top it off, the left side of the tent was left open so guests could enjoy the view of the sunset. It was truly a perfect day.

The guests were ready to party after kicking things off with some great entrances during introductions! The speeches that were given were so lovely and personal… You could really feel the love in the room. As the sun began to set, I took Kara and Zach out for some sunset photos…the sky was simply stunning. After dinner Kara and Zach had a surprise for their guests- sky lanterns! It was so beautiful to watch so many lanterns float up to the sky. It was a calm night with minimal wind so it was ideal for these lanterns to drift up to the stars.

There really aren’t many words that I can think of that adequately describe Kara and Zach’s wedding day… the only one that comes slightly close is magical. Kara and Zach, thank you so much for choosing me to capture such a special time in your life. As you look back at your wedding photos, I can only hope that you feel a little bit of that magic that we all felt on your wedding day. Below is the smallest sampling of some of my favorite images …. I hope you enjoy them as much as I do! Congratulations to you and your families on such a joyous occasion, may your hearts continue to be filled with nothing but love!

Vendors: Hair/Makeup: Lori Ashley Salon | Wedding Designer/Planner: Lovewell Celebration Design | Flowers: Country Market Place | Music: Old Friends | Video: LaRose Media | Venue: The Links at Hiawatha | Church: Tabernacle United Methodist Church | Dress: Dress Your Fancy | Cake: By Bakes | Stationery: Tori Hernandez, The Cozy Gnome | Event Rentals: Weir Party Event Rentals | Photography: Tiffany Wayne Photography

Meet-the-Maker • Michelle Elise Artistry

 

We're so thrilled to introduce you to one of our favorites today: Michelle, owner of Michelle Elise Artistry! With natural-born talent and impeccable style, Michelle is one of New Jersey's most sought-after hair and makeup artists. And to top it all off, we have the honor of knowing her personally, and can attest that she's as sweet and genuine as they come! 


Tell us a little bit about you, and how you got started!
I am the owner of a bridal hair and makeup business based out of Northern NJ. My love for hair and makeup started when I was a young girl and would take all my babysitting money to the drugstore to buy a piece of makeup almost every week. Growing up I was an active painter and drawer, so those skills were easily translated into hair and makeup. All my friends would have me style them for our school dances and events -- I was taking appointments in high school!


After college and cosmetology school, I freelanced around the tri-state area to get my name out there and build my portfolio. I had a couple of clients whom I would style for weddings and events. They eventually passed along my name to friends getting married, and things grew from there. Fast forward 4 years later and I am doing 60+ weddings a year and am growing a team of talented stylists. It is still surreal to me sometimes!

Meet the Maker • Michelle Elise Artistry | New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania wedding vendors, resources and inspiration for the modern couple

What services do you offer and/or what do you specialize in?
My team and I offer hair and makeup services for weddings and events. We can execute any hairstyle, from soft updos to sleek and straight, to extensions or blowouts. For makeup, we specialize in airbrush foundation and always use lashes for a glam look. 

What makes your business unique?
Clients reach out to me because they like the style of my work; everything is very soft and natural but has a twist of glam. My brides also love that I only book one wedding a day and offer full-day touch ups, so there is never a hair out of place or eyeliner smudged by (happy) tears. With first-look photos and additional hours added on to the wedding-day, touch-ups can go a long way!

Meet the Maker • Michelle Elise Artistry | New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania wedding vendors, resources and inspiration for the modern couple

What is your favorite part of working with brides?
For me, nothing compares to watching a bride look at herself in the mirror on her wedding day and say “Oh my gosh, I feel so beautiful.” Seeing the smiles on my clients’ faces and knowing I helped them look and feel their best for such an important day is incredibly fulfilling and rewarding. 

Meet the Maker • Michelle Elise Artistry | New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania wedding vendors, resources and inspiration for the modern couple

One piece of advice for couples?
Plan ahead so you can enjoy your engagement and wedding! Don’t procrastinate so you can get everything done and not scramble at the last-minute. Getting married should be a blissful and happy time, not a chaotic and frustrating. 

Childhood career aspiration?
An editor at Vogue

Coffee or tea?
Coffee – lots and lots. 

Hidden talent?
I am very handy and great with power tools!

Meet the Maker • Michelle Elise Artistry | New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania wedding vendors, resources and inspiration for the modern couple

Rustic + Elegant Wedding at Camp Manatawny • Becka Pillmore Photography

 

Brooke + Kyle's Wedding at Camp Manatawny from Becka Pillmore is absolute perfection. Every element carefully chosen, with incredible handmade attire (including the bride's gown - unbelievable!) and sweet, intimate details. The contrast of a rustic backdrop against an elegant lace gown and dapper tux is probably one of our favorite parts of this wedding. 


From Becka: Camp Manatawny was the perfect backdrop for celebrating such a sweet couple’s wedding. The forecast wasn’t looking so great the days leading up to the wedding, but the day turned out to be beautiful and allowed for their adorable lawn games! "Those Randalls" keep the party hoping and helped everyone to get one the dance floor. It down-poured for about an hour during the reception but cleared up in time for a sparkler exit! Brooke and Kyle were glowing all day and were so happy to finally be together when they meet at the end of the aisle. We were a huge fan of Brooke’s look on the day which included sparkly Betsey Johnson pink shoes, a gown handmade by her aunt, and lose auburn curls in her hair. Brooke even handmade her bridesmaids sweet robes which showed off how talented she is!

It was such an honor to be part of your precious wedding day! Loads of love and thanks for letting me celebrate your special day, xo!

Vendors: Photography : Becka Pillmore Photography | Venue : Camp Manatawny | Florals: A Floral Affair |  DJ: Those Randalls | Video : Funch Film | Rentals: Harleysville Party Rentals

Art Nouveau Wedding Inspiration • Asya Photography

 

We love editorial shoots for so many reasons, but mostly because they really show what happens when a group of creative people come together and dream big. This Art Nouveau Inspiration shoot from Asya Photography, is just that. Everything chosen fits together so perfectly - from the dress, to the florals, all the way to the paper goods - and the end result is simply stunning. 


From Asya: The inspiration behind our shoot is Alphonse Mucha's "The Seasons". Drawing from the colors, style, and the essence of "Spring," we created a color palette that is a rich mix of greens, ochres (yellows/oranges/reds/browns with hints of purple), peach and pinks. The overall styling of the shoot closely follows the "Mucha Style" (which eventually became known as "Art Nouveau") with a whimsical and modern twist.

We chose the beautiful outdoors alongside Hunting Hill Mansion at Ridley Creek State Park as the setting for our styled shoot. This beautiful, historic mansion is surrounded by stone walls, gardens framed by ancient cedar trees, and fountains neighboring the beautiful woods.

The Sweetheart Table is situated as an overlook at the top of the garden steps with a stone arch backdrop. Keeping with the romantic and elegant style of Mucha's work, we brought in His & Hers gold Victorian chairs accented with olive branches. The table setting includes colored glassware, gold utensils, and decorative plates and linens to add richness and texture. The citrus fruits, grapes, and figs on the table represents the abundance of spring. The trailing clematis, gloriosa lilies and the bride's bouquet add whimsy.

The Craft Your Own Tea & Pastry Bar features loose teas (rose petals, lavender, oolong and chamomile) paired with hand crafted mini desserts. Chilled suntea is also on tap, a refreshing blend of hibiscus, peppermint, apple, lemon, and cherry bark. Rather than the more common cupcakes or macaroons, we incorporated pastries such as lemon-thyme madeleines, rosewater teacakes, lavender shortbread, and caneles for a more refined and elegant palette.

The garden lounge is a sacred outdoor space that invites magic and wonder. It's a place to connect, escape from the crowd, and steal some time together - or forget about time altogether. Mystical elements such as tarot and animal medicine cards, crystals, and feathers create an ethereal and magical atmosphere. A vintage love seat sets an intimate mood for the couple to lounge in the midst of a grove of trees accentuated with draped fabric and ribbons.

Vendors: Planning, Design and Florals: Papertini | Location: Hunting Hill Mansion of Ridley Creek State Park | Hair and Makeup: Duette | Stationery: Smoochie Paper | Furniture: Harris and Tweed | Desserts: Van Earl's Cakes | Bride's Attire: Lovely Bride | Photography: Asya Photography