This is Abby + Danny

Extraordinary circumstances brought Abby and Danny to each other, and they have experienced nothing but extraordinary circumstances ever since.  A courtship and romance that swept not only them, but their friends and family off their feet, a seamless blending of extended families and a wedding day that boasted a pink super moon and defied the looming threat of mother nature!

This is 4 minutes of unabashed love and gratitude from Abby and Danny to each other and their treasured family and friends.

This, my friends, is Abby + Danny.

 

Video Credit: Jeffrey Stoner Video

Wedding Dress Mementos: Lisa Stoner Interviewed by Patchwork Bear

I was just tickled when I saw a familiar name come across by inbox recently wondering if I wouldn't mind sharing thoughts about wedding planning, some tips on how to keep it personal and some fun ways to use the wedding dress AFTER the wedding as a legacy or keepsake.

Jennifer Cura and I went to school together in New York a *few years ago. It's been great to follow our lives both professionally and personally, {we both had our oldest daughter complete their first year of college this year!} and I am so proud of what she has done with her company, Patchwork Bear.

The Patchwork bear was founded by Jennifer Cura in 2004 after combining her skill as an architect with her love of sewing to produce a product line of handmade products that are unique and personal as those who won them.  Her line has grown from a simple baby quilt and matching bear to include: tooth fairy pillows, photo memory quilts, custom bears and full nursery design.

I mean if  my virtual best friends Jessica Alba and Jennifer Garner are fans ... *wink!


Now is the time for all of my most recent Spring Brides to take advantage of her June special so you can fashion your gown into a legacy!

The Q & A:

June is one of the most popular months to get married so this month we are highlighting weddings and our wedding dress quilts and bears. Recently we sat down with one of our favorite wedding planners, Lisa Stoner of E Events by Lisa Stoner and asked her to dish some advice for brides. Lisa, a native New Yorker, is a sought after event stylist who has been featured in BRIDES, The Knot and more.

1. What is the #1 piece of advice you give all brides?

To plan and design with a strong sense of self and family.  The most memorable weddings are the authentic weddings. If it reflects the couple and the families’ style and sensibilities, it all makes great sense in the end.  If it all properly tells your story, then you’ve made it perfect.

2. What is the first thing brides should tackle during the planning process?

At the risk of sounding cliché, I have to say hiring a wedding planner. Planners can leverage their network of resources to best serve the couple as well as narrow down the search for the perfect venue, photographer, floral designer, etc.  Our knowledge and experience with all variables that go along with the planning and designing process can also garner concessions on our clients’ behalf.

3. What are some of your favorite ways to make a wedding unique?

As much as I love a tastefully designed wedding environment, I always emphasize the power of “gestures” during the wedding weekend. Floral centerpieces and great lighting will make any space look great, but it’s how you make your guests feel at the end of your wedding weekend or evening that makes a lasting impressions.  It’s how you take care of them as a host and hostess at the biggest party of your life that counts!

4. What are some easy ways to personalize a wedding?

Is there a favorite recipe of Grandma’s that you love? Share it with your catering team to have it emulated. If your parents still have their toasting glasses from their wedding, consider using them. What is yours and your fiancé’s favorite indulgent food? Roll that out in the last hour of your reception when the party is really in full force! I’ve had pizza delivery on the dance floor and, as they say, the crowd went wild! *wink

5. Are there any details that brides often overlook?

Brides are busier than ever these days, advancing their careers and nurturing their relationship with their fiancé. I think that once they secure the essentials like the venue, photographer, floral, music, etc. they forget some fun and important details like lighting, wedding stationery [ceremony programs, escort cards, menu cards] a fun getaway, and though not the glamorous part of planning, but what does post-event look like? Who takes the gifts, cards, personal effects such as a cake server set, champagne glasses, any framed photos? Not to worry, we cover this with our clients 30 days before the wedding in our final details meeting!

Image Courtesy of  Liga Photography

Image Courtesy of Liga Photography

 

6. Do you have a favorite current wedding trend?

I try to be very careful and selective with the word “trend” when applying it to a wedding.  Certainly, we all try to be “on trend” in various aspects of our lives such as fashion, home design and even with food. My approach to planning and design is the use of some modern trends to a classic wedding elements. That being said, I adore whimsical drink stirrers, charging stations, and the use of hashtags to “brand” your wedding. Social media is the new branding platform for personal, business and weddings!

7. What are some fun ways you can use your wedding dress after the big day?

 Well, Patchwork Bear clearly creates these incredible keepsakes that make for the perfect legacy. I have also seen my couples use the dress for a bassinet lining, Christening dress, or fabric for a Chuppah for weddings that follow in the family.  I have also displayed a mother of the bride’s dress on a classic dress form at a client’s wedding, along with accompanying photos on a nearby table.  This had guests favorably talking!

Image Courtesy of  KT Merry

Image Courtesy of KT Merry

 

Don’t forget to order your wedding dress quilt, bear or christening gown this month with code WEDDINGS to get 20% off. For more great tips from Lisa check out her blog here.

 

And for a fun flash back [to really see how far we've come!] have a looksey here.  Please don't kill me Jen!

Albertus Magnus High School Graduation, circa 1987.


Wedding Moments: A Classic Wedding Send-Off

Classic!

Remember the days of yesteryear when the bride would slip away from the dinner and dancing towards the end of the wedding reception to change into her getaway outfit, which was presumably for her to jet off on her honeymoon?

Why on earth did we get away from that? If you can't guess, I;m all in favor of another outfit. [SHOCKER]

The newly wed, Mrs. Daniela Ackerman opted for a sweet lace mini dress with a navy liner to bid farewell to her adoring guests.

These moments were priceless and whimsical with an environmentally friendly confetti toss, Ecofetti, and captured at the precisely perfect moment by {another newlywed!} Abby DiDomenico with Liga Photography

Cheers!

xx, LS

 

Me and The Mister

Love and marriage.

Upon the launch of Me Actually, I reached out to several friends and followers of mine and the Mister's to find out what in "lifestyle" piqued their interest.  Sure, there were many shared passions that were thrown out there:  fashion, design, music, film, cooking, etc. , but it was becoming evident that a curiosity into our personal lives existed as well.  For a particularly private couple with a very (and I mean very!) tightly-knit circle, this seemed like the biggest challenge of all.  With all of that being said, what you see is what you get, and if you are willing to follow us, we are more than willing to share.

The Mister and I met each other 10 years ago as business acquaintances.  I was relatively new in the wedding business, { E Events Design} he was well-established, {Jeffrey Stoner Video} and you'd better believe that I had already been very well acquainted with his work.  Huge fan.  I mean, HUGE!  From a very quick introduction at a networking event, I vowed that we would work together, and work together we did on countless beautiful weddings!  As time and years passed, a very meaningful friendship had developed.  Every time I had a creative concept or marketing idea, he'd be the first I'd run it by.  He never laughed, and maybe not always agreed, but ALWAYS listened.   Business pow-pows transitioned into an easy and comfortable friendship.  

Here we are at a meeting in Denver, CO prior to a wedding fashion showcase that I  produced, and managed to convince him to document on video in 2008


Transitioning out of a marriage for me, and a long-term relationship for the Mister, it was this friendship that we relied upon so heavily to be a place of non-judgement and calm during a very tumultuous storm.  I was navigating keeping my business thriving, raising my two young daughters and building a new home for us to live, while the Mister moved out of his home to start a new life. Our friendship seemed more like a life-line in that we were constantly confiding and leaning on one another for support. "Buddy" - that's what we called each other, and that's what we definitely were.

Me and the Girlies, as we embarked on our "new normal" life. *Images by Abby Liga | Liga Photography*

Me and the Girlies+Lisa Stoner+Me Actually+Abby Liga Photography.jpg

 

As John Lennon once sang, “life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans”, and that about sums up our beginnings as a couple.  We weren’t planning it and could have never imagined it, but it just happened.  Here's the funny part: the girls had known the Mister since they were very little girls, and called him by his proper name, "Mr. Stoner." One evening while over for dinner, he explained to them that they no longer had to go through that formality.  They asked what they should call him instead, and he jokingly replied "you can call me Sir".  They combined that into "Sir Mister" and it stuck!  Hence, "Mister" for me to this day.

*Image Courtesy of Abby Liga | Liga Photography*

I frequently told the Mister that I never needed anything more than the beautiful relationship we seemed to be sharing.  I never needed to get married again, and I never wanted to rely on anyone but myself ever again.  Likewise, if you ever knew the Mister, then you knew he never wanted to get married either (he really was the George Clooney of the wedding industry!) Here's the lesson on that kids:  Never say never.

We were never engaged.  We never made an announcement or proclamation of any kind.  We eloped.  Just. Up. And. Eloped.  When I tell you that no one knew, NO ONE  knew (except for our photographers who not only served as witnesses for our marriage license, but are our closest and dearest friends to this day!)

Now, I am not suggesting we didn't talk about this; we certainly did. We considered everything imaginable, most especially my daughters. We planned for 3 months to clear our schedules and fly away to get married.  The girls thought we were going to NYC for Spring Break and would do a family photo shoot. This helped to explain why I was buying dresses for the three of us!

Post-Ceremony! *Image by Nathan and Jensey Root | Root Photography*

 

 

Someday soon, I'll share the details of our sweet elopement in Strawberry Fields, Central Park.

In the meantime, we've been living happily ever after ...!


*Image by Abby Liga | Liga Photography*

Happy weekending, friends!

xx, LS