Sunday, January 31, 2010

Oops! I had more pics of Alyssa and Samuel's wedding!

I loved this picture of Alyssa and Samuel. You could really tell they were having the time of their lives! The flash behind them looked really cool too.

I really loved the tulle draped in the front of the chapel. I wasn't sure I would like it, but it turned out to be very soft looking and a very nice touch.

We used gunmetal silver chair ties on the 6 tables that are adjacent to the dance floor and the head table. Lots of bang for your buck!

They mixed it up with 3 different designs of centerpieces. Their favors were Christmas ornaments in several different designs--all sparkly silver. We provided a special napkin fold that held the ornaments at each place. It all looked spectacular!
Alyssa's mom, an Italian through and through, chose a fabulous dinner with antipasto trays, and amazing appetizers, followed by a wonderful dinner with an Italian flair. The cake was served with authentic gelato in triple chocolate and white chocolate raspberry marbled together. Yum!
All in all, a great way to spend the day after Christmas!

Alyssa and Samuel, December 26, 2009

Alyssa and Samuel were such a delight. Alyssa is a diminutive little fireball of a gal! She and Samuel have been together since early high school.
Their colors were gunmetal silver and dusty pink. Lovely. Another color scheme that nodded to the Christmas season without screaming Christmas! So pretty.

You know what they say, a picture is worth a thousand words! It was really a beautiful event.
There was just enough snow falling to make it a beautiful winter wonderland. I'm sure they got some amazing photos in the falling snow. I love the winter pictures because they are a little different from what everyone has. The things that are memorable about weddings are the things that are different!

Elena and Bart December 19, 2009

Ok, well the pictures won't move for some reason--sigh. So I guess we'll just have to talk about them in the order that they were downloaded. I'll tell ya, I have to get all these photos off of the desktop of my computer! It's running soooooooooo slooooooooow!

So, Elena and Bart. What a terrific couple! Elena is from a very large, and very close Philipino family--and they are definitely up for any party! Bart's sister, Jolene was married here at Aberdeen last spring. She and her husband, Larry, were both attendants. Everyone, including me, had such a great time.
Bart and Elena have the distinction of being the first couple to have a photo booth at Aberdeen Manor! I was excited to see how it all came off. The guests REALLY enjoyed it! It was set up in a corner of the ballroom and manned by a couple from the company that took care of setting up a "guest book" with photos of the guests from the booth, on which the guests provided little messages. The guests also received copies of their photos to keep. It was busy all evening! This booth was quite large, so groups of guests could go in and take a picture. Of course, as the evening went on the photos got crazier!
Elena and Bart are both involved in environmentalism, and this was reflected in their wedding decor. Natural twigs and greenery decorated the tables. The cake topper was adorable! Two little love birds among some twigs. So cute.

They took advantage of the free dance lesson from Transaudio, and threw in some smooth moves for their first dance. The crowd, and their photographer, loved it!

Here are some photos of their tables. The chocolate brown bichon tablecloths really looked amazing and set off their elegant and simple centerpieces perfectly.

What I loved about this reception was that it was "seasonal" without screaming "Christmas!" Their red roses in the bouquets, and evergreen and cranberries on the tables, just sort of whispered it.

The cake was so beautiful. The twigs were real twigs that had been dipped in chocolate and sugared. Sugared cranberries also decorated the little groupings up the sides and on the top.

Best wishes Elena and Bart! We are all so glad that we'll see you, and your families back this summer for Matt and Kara's wedding!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Color of the Year--Turquoise

Well here you have it, the definitive word from Pantone is that THE color for 2010 will be TURQUOISE!
Click here for the full scoop from Pantone.
My first thought when I think of turquoise (that is my first thought after "how do I spell turquoise!) is Tiffany Blue. Tiffany has been a huge accent color, particularly with brown or black the last couple years. I like the idea of Tiffany blue standing on its own as a main color.
I think we can do some really beautiful things with this color in the coming months.
Stay tuned!

Saturday, January 16, 2010


Just so that you can make your plans and have it on your calendars--our next TASTE OF ABERDEEN will be on March 14th from 2 to 4 p.m.
This will be our ONLY opportunity to try our delicious menu items, until November. We will also have our usual bridal fair with 18 or 20 of our preferred vendors for you to talk with and check out their work.
The Taste of Aberdeen is by RSVP and is only open to our couples that have future weddings booked with us. Invitations will be sent out in the next couple of weeks, however we wanted you to have a heads up. Many of you live out of town, and have to make plans in advance to attend.
We will also have many wonderful door prizes contributed by our vendors. It's a lot of fun, and we look forward to seeing all of you!

Computer issues continue

I never really thought about how dependent we have become on our email and internet capabilities!! Not only our day to day contact with our brides has been affected--there is also the issue of tux registrations, contact forms from our website, communications between us all at Aberdeen; so many things that we have come to expect and take for granted that they are "there"!
Our email is apparently not "going away", it's just hiding somewhere out there, waiting to eventually get to our inboxes. I must admit though that it makes me feel REALLY insecure to not have it working in top form!
I've been using email since 1995 when we got our first desktop--a Tandy Sensation! Woohoo! What a powerful machine THAT was! 386 megabites of raw power! We really thought we had made the big time with our dot matrix printer that took about 3 hours to print a page!!! Back then they called it a desk top because it literally took up ALL of your desktop with peripherals--huge drives for CD's, huge monitors, huge hard drives, huge CPU's, the whole thing was a monster! My have our times changed since then!
Now we have cell phones that have several times the power of those original desktops! Heck there are watches and handheld video games that have more juice! It really is truly amazing. What is more amazing is that we now have teenagers that have never known life without computers and email and the internet. We have college kids that have to really think to remember life without those things because they were little preschoolers when it all came about. And THAT is why I get my knickers in a bunch when our email doesn't work! Our couples, our brides, are used to communicating with us instantly, and receiving answers instantly. I must check my email at least 20 times a day. It's rare that a message sits for more than an hour in my inbox without an answer. When my email lets me down, I have this terrible fear that I am letting my gals down. And that REALLY bothers me!
I guess I have to be very zen about all of this, and realize that it will be resolved, and life will go on, and we won't be any worse for the wear. That's a tall order though.
I need to go do a little yoga---center my karma! Oommmmmmm..............

Thursday, January 14, 2010


Just to let you all know. We are switching our hosting for our email today and we have had some issues with receiving mail. So if you don't hear back from me, PLEASE RESEND!
While my old address will hopefully be forwarding for a while, you should all know that my NEW EMAIL ADDRESS will be so change your contacts now to update this.
Hopefully all of this will be solved in the next day or two. Hopefully, I hope, oh gees I hope!!!!!! :)

Mmmmmmm! Coffee!

Specialty coffee bars are THE thing to do on the left and right coasts! It's something that is just getting into the Midwest, and I'm so excited because it's SO much fun!
Here's a video from a caterer in Oklahoma City, showing how they do their specialty coffee bar. It's like having Starbuck's come to your wedding! (granted, it would be nice if it had some music or something to make it a little more interesting, but it will give you the idea anyway.)
We have a barista we can bring in for your event. We refer to him lovingly as "coffee guy". Let us know if this is something that might appeal to you. It's surprisingly reasonable. The price is based on per hour/number of guests, roughly like an open bar price. For 250 guests it was about 700 dollars, for about 2 hours of service (I think it was 2 hours, it might have been 3, I'm shooting from the hip here!) We can get more specific pricing if you are interested.
Coffee bars are available to compliment the regular bar, not to replace it. Particularly after dinner, folks really enjoy having a cup of espresso or a latte. If you are concerned about people drinking too much alcohol, this is a great way to slow them down a little and give them a nice alternative to another Cosmo. The barista usually has "go cups" available too which is really nice for your guests to use to take a cup with them on the road.
I'll keep my eye open for more info about coffee bars, and will pass it along when I see something. Let me know if you want to do something like this.
And hey! You gals that had a barista last year! Let's see some comments on how cool it was, ok? :)

Tuesday, January 12, 2010


April 24th of 2010 has just become available!!!!!!!!

We have a cancellation for April 24th and we REALLY want to rebook it! (We have also had 2 cancellations on March Saturdays that we will offer the same deal.)
Therefore we are going to offer some REALLY SPECIAL INCENTIVES to the clever bride that realizes we can easily put together a wedding in 2 to 3 months.

So ok, here's the deal:
For the couple that books April 24, 2010 (or any Saturday that is available before 4/24/10):
Room rental half off for under 185, NO ROOM RENTAL for 185 or more!!!!!!
AND ceremony rental half off.
FREE upgrade to specialty tablecloths, FREE centerpieces!
FREE wine pour with dinner!
If you have 200+ guests we will also include 2 free hors d'oeuvres for the cocktail hour (our choice--they'll be good!)
That's roughly 2500 dollars worth of savings depending on your number of guests!!!!!!

Now, here is the kicker! If the person who books the date tells us that you sent them to us (and you have an upcoming wedding with us of course)

Now, here's the rules. The couple that books has to be a NEW couple (not someone who is already booked) If you already have a wedding booked with us, you can move your date up, but we cannot give you the room rental/ceremony fee deal unless we are able to rebook your date (which of course, we will make every effort to do).
In order to receive the special deal for the referring couple, the referring couple must be mentioned at the time of booking.
Don't have a wedding booked with us? No worries! If they mention your name when they book the date (4/24/10 or sooner) I will personally send you a check for $200!!!!!!!!
That's not chump change either!!
Call us if you have any questions. And thanks in advance for all your help!

Complete details are available at Aberdeen Manor, or call 219 465-7130

Friday, January 1, 2010

Love these ideas from ritsy bee!

Here are some really pretty ideas for using pine cones in your wedding decor--inexpensive, different, definitely seasonal--what's not to love?
(I sure hope this works!)

Erin and Travis December 12, 2009

Erin and Travis were such a nice couple to work with. Their ceremony was at First Presbyterian Church in Valparaiso.
They used dark red/burgundy and white as their colors. The burgundy bichon tablecloths had to do a quick turnaround to be ready again for Saturday evening!

The centerpieces were a mixture of Eiffel vases with arrangements by the florist, and our hurricanes with pillar candles. Very pretty and very elegant.
Don't you love Erin's hairdo? I thought the little floof that she wore after she removed her veil from the ceremony, was really pretty. There are SO many great hair pieces these days to choose from!The bouquet toss got a little crazy! The little gal in the white shirt was bound and determined that she was going to get that bouquet, and she practically took out the flower girl in the process! The grown up girls never had a chance! To be honest, I hope this little gal isn't the next to get married! She's definitely a little young!
It was a lot of fun for all the guests at the reception. A beautiful evening for a beautiful couple.

Melissa and Jeremy December 11, 2009

What a delightful couple! So cute. As you can see in this photo, Pastor Steve Munsey, as well as the rest of the guests at their wedding, got a kick out of their kiss at the end of the ceremony! I think Melissa was even surprised by it!

The classic black and red wedding was the order of the day. Black bridesmaids gowns with deep red roses and the burgundy/red bichon tablecloths. Always a beautiful look, no matter how many times I see it, it's always gorgeous in our ballroom.
Crown Bakery provided their cake, which was lovely and very tasty.

The table centerpieces were simple but very elegant, and lovely. This is one of the big advantages of having 60 inch tables in the ballroom. The area in the center of the table is much smaller than on a 72 inch table, so you don't have a huge wasteland of space to fill.

For dinner, the guests had a choice of roast beef or cranberry chicken. Herb roasted red potatoes and green beans amandine completed the plate.

Lovely couple, lovely wedding. Best wishes to you both, Melissa and Jeremy!!!

Elizabeth and Scott December 5, 2009

Ok, yes, you guessed my New Year's resolution! Get caught up with the blogging!!!!
Now that I have Jill and Ryan's wedding posted, I should be over my writer's block.
I have noticed that most procrastinators, including myself, are perfectionists. We put things off because we are afraid they won't be perfect. Sometimes I really have to push myself to "let it go"!

So on December 4th we had a little Christmas party for a company that has had their party with us since the first year we were open in 1999. Great company, great people.

On Saturday the 5th, Elizabeth and Scott were married, at 5:15! Yes! They had on their invitation that the wedding would be at 5:15! I love it! It seems to me that this would really make folks think that they were serious about the time. It worked out beautifully, and there actually were very very few late comers for as large a group as it was.

Another interesting touch that they added was doing a slide presentation BEFORE the ceremony started. It was an unusual touch. The moms lit the unity candle, then the lights went down and the slide show played above the table in the chapel, then when the slide show ended the processional began. It was a very unique touch. The ceremony did end up being about 15 minutes longer, which really squeezed them time wise after the ceremony, but it all worked itself out.
The Flower Cart used a lovely draping garland above the ceremony area in the chapel which looked very pretty. White twigs in bunches down the aisle added to the wintery look. The blue, white, and silver color theme was very crisp and icey.

Following the ceremony the bride and groom released the guests and the guests gathered outside to give them a sparkler lit path to the ballroom. Elizabeth had a lovely white cape to wear over her gown, along with a white fur muff, so she was toasty warm. For December it was really a beautiful evening. Cold, but not bitter.

The ballroom was beautiful with the blue and white, twigs, sparkly blingbling. It was really a winter wonderland.

Dinner was a very tasty combo plate with bistro filet and champagne chicken, asparagus and sour cream and chive mashed potatoes--yummy!!

Everyone enjoyed dancing and partying through the evening. It was a wonderful wedding to kick off the Christmas season. Such a nice change from the usual Christmas colors. The blue and silver was lovely.
Congratulations Elizabeth and Scott!

Jill and Ryan, November 28th, 2009

Wow, what can I say about these two? I’ve known Jill since the day she was born! Her mom and I have been like sisters for nearly 30 years, and Jill is like one of my own. You’d think this would be easier to write, because I know her and her family so well, but in fact, it’s harder!
First I just have to say that planning this wedding with Jill and Ryan was nearly as much fun as planning Megan’s wedding. We had such a wonderful time kicking ideas around and making plans.
Their wedding was at Trinity Lutheran Church, downtown in Valpo, which has been her church all her life. I think it’s ironic that I have known them all these years, and never really seen this church! I didn’t know it had a balcony! It has the beautiful “inside out boat” ceiling you see in a lot of older churches, particularly Episcopal churches. Gothic arches all around and Indiana limestone—it’s a beautiful church!
Here's a shot from the wedding—

The Flower Cart from Chesterton provided their flowers—beautiful as usual!!

On the tables, they used two different designs. One had a square vase filled with red roses,the other design was a low bowl filled with "California crystals" that look like ice chips, with three purple cymbidium orchids in each bowl. Lovely!!!

The head table had a series of low vases with orchids and roses, and candles, all across the front. Something to keep in mind decorating the head table--keep it low! Your photographer will love you for that!
Jim and I actually got to sit in the ballroom and have dinner (this is a rare occurrence!) even though it feels SO strange to us! Our staff runs so well on auto pilot, that when we are “invited guests” it’s fun to actually sit and be a guest! The menu cards matched their invitation, and really set off the color theme which was aubergine (eggplant purple) and dark red with ivory accents. The aubergine bichon table cloths looked amazing! So elegant!

Dinner was yummy—bruschetta chicken, sour cream and chive mashed potatoes and chef’s medley. Followed by Linda Monroe’s delicious and beautiful wedding cake for dessert.
Ok, this was my favorite thing of the whole wedding (I know Chris, I'm weird!) Their cake topper was SO cool!!! Yes, at first look you think "holy cow, why did they use that cheesy cake topper?" Well this cake topper has been used in Chris's family for ages! What a hoot! They paint the hair on the bride and groom to match the real ones! Ha! I love it! Cousins, aunts and uncles, all sorts of relatives in Jill's family have had this cake topper. Some have added lace, and beads and such. It's just SO sweet and warm and well, just so like Chris's big happy family! She is from a really close family of 8 kids. This cake topper, to me, just really embodied the whole feel of her family.
This is the kind of thing I really love to see at a wedding. Making it personal, making it reflect you and your families, your interests, your personalities. This is the sort of thing that makes a wedding real and meaningful.

Jill looked absolutely stunning! We had had a sneak preview when she came by the shop a couple of weeks earlier to try on veils and jewelry after her “trial run” of hair and makeup. But wow, all together with the gown and everything she looked amazing.

Her gown, another of the simply fabulous gowns of 09—was just beautiful. Simple, elegant, and shapely. At the back where it came down to a point above the train, probably about knee height, she wore one of our beautiful blingy brooches, it was just perfect there! Just the right touch.
Mike was at the mike from Transaudio and was his usual stellar self, keeping everything rolling and the crowd dancing.
What a wonderful evening. We had so much fun, and it was such a thrill to be able to make this such a special day for Jill and Ryan. It’s something we always strive for, but when it’s a couple that mean so much to us, it’s even more meaningful.
And of course, I just realized that I don't have a picture of Jill and Ryan!!! Gees! I'll have fix that later.
Best wishes and lots of love and hugs to you, Jill and Ryan!