Monday, July 27, 2009

Vendors Unveiled: Pavilion Catering

One of my favorite reception venues in Connecticut is The Barns at Wesleyan. It is a gorgeous, rustic environment that is the perfect canvas for an amazing event. This week, Bliss Weddings would like you to introduce you to the genius behind events held at this particular location. Please take a moment to read our interview with Jonathan Jennings as he speaks about his work with Pavilion Catering.

We have 4 beautiful facilities in central Connecticut. We really do have something for every bride. Waterfront, authentic historical, country club, mansion … we have it all. We are the perfect choice for local brides and those planning destination weddings.

How long have you been in business?
Pavilion Catering is celebrating 25 years in business in 2009 … and we are very proud!

What drew you to catering as a profession?
Catering is the one profession in which you get to be a little bit of everything … chef, event planner, social worker, electrician, tent repairman, plumber, gardener, bridal gown bustle“er” … everything. Brides even think I control the weather! Unlike other types of food service, each day in catering is uniquely different from every other day. I love it … it is easy to keep fresh and inspired.

What do you feel sets you apart as a caterer?
There are many really good caterers in Connecticut. I think we are different because of the level of energy we put into every event. We have assembled a terrific team and when all of their passion and energy comes together catering a wedding, the results are really special.

What do you love most about your job?
I love going to work each day knowing that I have to ability to make people happy.

If you had to describe yourself in one word, what would it be?
Lucky. I have a beautiful wife, children I adore and a career that is challenging and rewarding.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Vendors Unveiled: Michelle Dowling Calligraphy

It is always said that invitations are the guest's first glimpse into the event. This is where they learn the design, style, and formality of the wedding. Therefore, the first elements of the invitations are incredibly important. And nothing says classic, beautiful wedding quite like gorgeous calligraphy. Therefore, this week's edition of Vendors Unveiled is serving to introduce you to one of Connecticut's premiere calligraphers!

Name: Michelle Dowling


Where are you located, and what geographical area(s) do you service?
I am located in Glastonbury, Connecticut and work with brides everywhere.

How long have you been in business?
I have been in business for 6 years however, I have been doing calligraphy for over 15 years.

What drew you to calligraphy as a profession?
I have always had a passion for beautiful writing. As a kid, I would love to make "fancy letters" and begged my mother for calligraphy classes in second grade (which she let me take!). As I got older, I calligraphed all of my friends and families wedding invitations. Eventually I branched out and made it into my own business.

What do you feel sets you apart as a calligrapher?
I believe it is my level of care and attention to detail as well as my pricing. My priority is to offer beautiful handwritten envelopes to brides who want to make their invitation stand out for a unique first impression ... without being an extraordinary expense.

What do you love most about your job?
I love that each client is unique and we come up with ways to make the calligraphy and invitation truly part of the vision and the wedding.

If you had to describe yourself in one word, what would it be?

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Rachel & Mike | April 4, 2009

This blog post is loooooong overdue, but better late than never, right? We kicked off our 2009 season with the wonderful wedding of Rachel and Mike. Rachel came to us just a couple of months before the big day for some help in wrapping up a few last-minute details. She and Mike both have demanding careers which left them with little time to devote to the hectic final months of planning. They were also working with a very unique theme inspired by their professions – she’s a scientist and he races cars (cool!) – and they wanted to make sure their event had a cohesive look and feel. Working with a science/racing theme was a challenge to say the least, but it was a fun challenge and the event came together beautifully.

All of the below images were captured by photographer Bob Fairweather, who is a friend of the couple.

Rachel and Mike opted to host both their ceremony and reception at the stately Lounsbury House in Ridgefield, CT. Walking down the aisle in a wedding gown and heels is always a little tricky, but Rachel decided to up the ante by making her bridal procession down a flight of stairs in the foyer of the Lounsbury House. Luckily, her dad was by her side to escort her and keep her steady.

After the couple exchanged vows, they made their way down the aisle as guests waved miniature checkered flags.

When selecting the color scheme for their event, Rachel and Mike drew inspiration from Mike's racecar, settling on a vibrant palette of yellow, blue, and green. The car also served as the inspiration for Mike's groom's cake, which was created in its likeness.

Other racing-themed touches were evident throughout the event decor, including this pegboard displaying keychain favors that doubled as place cards.

Ann from Dirt Floral provided all of the flowers, including these beautiful floral centerpieces nestled in silver trophy vases. Rachel and Mike chose to distinguish their guest tables with numbers that represented their favorite racecar drivers.

Mike's parents had these very cool antique wooden toys that added a whimsical touch to the fireplace mantels, while continuing the racing theme.

The racing elements definitely outnumbered the science elements at this wedding, but subtle touches including Erlenmeyer flask vases decorating the cocktail tables and test tube shots at the bar ensured that both themes blended seamlessly.

And now for an action shot: I love this photo of the happy couple enjoying their first dance.

Rachel and Mike, it was such a pleasure to share in your special day and we wish you all the best in your new life together!

Monday, July 13, 2009

Vendors Unveiled: Dana Bartone & Company

This week's Vendor Unveiled is an incredible artist who has built an amazing reputation in our area. She is responsible for making so many brides feel absolutely radiant on the most memorable days of their lives. Take a moment to learn more about Dana and her team!

Name: Dana Bartone



Where are you located, and what geographical area(s) do you service?
We are located in Cheshire, CT and service CT, MA, RI and NY

How long have you been in business?
18 years

What drew you to makeup styling as a profession?
The love of the industry since I was a teenager. It is an amazing profession that allows me to work with people who allow me to create different looks and sides of their personalities through the use of color and makeup technology.

What do you feel sets you apart as a makeup stylist?
I feel as though I have the ability to work with each person individually and create the look they desire without preconceived "looks" in mind and considering all their features and uniqueness.

What do you love most about your job?
I get excited when I see a face come alive with color and expression.

If you had to describe yourself in one word, what would it be?

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Inspiration Storyboard: Coffee & Cybidium

I love coffee. The inspiration for this particular storyboard came from that deep and real love of all things java. I was at a friend's house one day and on the kitchen counter sat a clear container full of coffee beans. Given my addiction, it was a beautiful sight. I then thought about the chartreuse green of cybidium orchids and discovered that the colors are incredibly striking together. The contrast of the rich chocolate color of the coffee beans and the sharp, bright green of the cybidium orchid really play against each other. Here is a compilation of images I believe demonstrate the great combination of these hues. And now I want coffee... I'm off to Starbucks!

Image source: unknown
Please let us know if any of these belong to you and we'd be happy to give you credit!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Couture Cookies

When it comes to wedding favors, you can never go wrong with something edible. Check out Gumdrop Cookie Shop, which creates beautiful sugar cookies featuring your photo, monogram, or custom design for weddings and other special occasions. Have them create a unique cookie to match your wedding invitation or even your gown. You can also choose one of their couture designs. If you don't want to use them as favors, these sweet treats would also be a welcome addition to any candy buffet or dessert bar. Visit to place an order.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Vendors Unveiled: Justin & Mary

The first time I came across Justin & Mary's work was in the form of a photo shoot they did with two fellow local coordinators. The photos were amazing... they were moody and strong and truly created a palpable atmosphere that is difficult to even describe. This week, we are featuring this incredible couple and we know you will love their work as much as we do!

Name: Justin & Mary


Blog: same! we have a "blogsite"

Where are you located, and what geographical area(s) do you service?
We are based out of New Haven, CT but we travel all over the world!

How long have you been in business?
We both went full time in September 2006. We were sort of part time before then, but that's really what we consider the start of the business we have now!

What drew you to photography as a profession?
Justin was basically born with a camera in his hand. Seriously, we have a picture of him when he was about 3 holding a toy camera. For me, I always loved photography but never really had a way to learn it until I fell in love with a photographer. And the photography just seemed to flow from there. :) Bold

What do you feel sets you apart as a photographer?
We really consider our clients our friends. We understand what they are going through (having gone through it ourselves not too long ago). And that kind of trust and relationship makes it possible for us to get the shots that we wouldn't otherwise. For us, it's all about making the couple comfortable....because then they will reveal their true selves to us and the rest just fits.

What do you love most about your job? Bold
Working together. It's also incidentally, the thing that probably makes us the most crazy. We literally spend 24 hours a day, 7 days a week together...and that's a lot of time for any couple to be together! But we push each other, demand the best from one another. And we know...we're stronger together and better together. And at the end of the day, I can't imagine not waking up and going to work with Justin. Because for us, it all starts with love. Our love. Love of each other. Love of what we do.

If you had to describe yourself in one word, what would it be?

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Happy Anniversary Alessandra & David!

Alessandra and David were married one year ago today at the beautiful Saint Clements Castle. Happy Anniversary, you two!

[Image credit: Dreamscape Studio]

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Comment for a Cause: 2nd Quarter Recap

Here we are at the beginning of yet another quarter. I cannot believe that 2009 is half over already. With second quarter behind us, I’m pleased to report that we will be donating $35.00 to the Alzheimer’s Association, thanks to the comments from our readers. That’s $15.00 more than we “raised” last quarter, and we’re hoping the number of comments will continue to increase. Our featured charity for third quarter will be the Arbor Day Foundation, so please keep the Comments for a Cause coming!