Photographing the Wedding Menu

Thursday, December 30th, 2010 | Filed under: Party Planning, Style Alert, wedding planning | author: By Keith Sly,    

The best wedding catering is as beautiful as it is delicious. Chefs and pastry chefs prepare and present their delectable cocktail party, wedding reception menu, and dessert hour items with painstaking care, creating a breathtaking display of wedding menu treats. Chefs have gone to great lengths to make every dish a work of art, garnished to perfection and arranged so beautifully that guests hesitate before digging in.

From shiny pearls of caviar on top of salmon puffs to tiny martini glasses filled with mango salsa and shrimp, that platter of perfect little petit fours with the tiny little pink rosettes on top. The entire wedding menu features fabulous accent details just like the wedding dress does…which is why photographing the wedding food is a new top trend in wedding photography.

While the bride and groom are dancing or visiting with guests at the start of their celebration, the best professional photographers move through the cocktail party room, snapping fabulous photos of the buffet menu items, in HD close-up, capturing the most sensory elements of the cocktail party and reception with the same spotlight focus given to close-up photos of the bride’s bouquet or her wedding ring.

The result is a collection of magazine cover-worthy images of the gourmet fare at the reception, a capturing of wedding menu details the couple planned together yet didn’t notice fully during the swirl of their wedding celebration. But now, and in the future, they can look at these photos and marvel at the beautiful platters and food displays their wedding venue’s caterers arranged for their big day. Photos of the food become cherished images from the best day of their lives. In fact, many brides and grooms include photos of their food in their professional album collections, and guests have even been spotted photographing impressive cocktail party spreads, texting the images to far-away friends.

Other foodie photographs: close-ups of the wedding cake details, platter shots of dessert bites, monogram-shaped swirls of sauces on dessert plates, and brightly-colored cocktails and champagne glasses at the bar.

Michael Mahle, Director of Communications, Pleasantdale Château

Wedding Gift Registries Go Gourmet!

Thursday, December 23rd, 2010 | Filed under: Style Alert, wedding gifts, wedding planning | author: By Keith Sly,    

We’re noticing something exciting about today’s brides and grooms: they’re very vocal about their requested wedding wedding reception food preparations and presentations, since they’re foodies at home! Couples watch cooking competition shows like Top Chef, they’re adventurous and exotic in their own cooking repertoires and restaurant menu choices, and they tell our chefs here at the Pleasantdale Château that they’re building wedding gift registries designed to enhance their cooking flair.

Gift registry

Whether couples are filling their gift registries with their very first kitchen appliances, cookware and gadgets ever, or upgrading their older kitchen wares to the good stuff – the same brands of cutlery and cookware that our chefs use – brides and grooms want a kitchen that’s filled with the best of the best.

So here are some of the top wedding gift registry items that we see added to today’s bride and groom’s lists:

• Chef-quality cutlery sets

• Top-brand cookware sets such as sauté pans in different sizes

• Top-brand bakeware, including nonstick cookie sheets, muffin pans, springform pans and more

• Gourmet appliances such as Panini makers

• Healthy fare appliances such as vegetable steamers and rice cookers

• Unique kitchen gadgets such as avocado or mango peelers, and potato ricers

• Cake and dessert décor sets, such as pastry bag kits

• Domed glass pedestal stands for displaying desserts

• Cookbooks written by iconic chefs

• Gift cards to luxury kitchenware retailers like Williams Sonoma

Armed with these foodie-centric wedding registry gifts, couples plan to indulge in gourmet fare as part of their happily ever after.

Michael Mahle, Director of Communications, Pleasantdale Château

Renewing Wedding Vows: Not Just for Celebrity Couples

Thursday, December 9th, 2010 | Filed under: Bright Ideas, Bright Ideas for your wedding, Party Planning, Style Alert | author: By Keith Sly,    
  Renewing Wedding Vows

Renewing Wedding Vows

Every so often, celebrity couples grab the headlines for renewing their wedding vows, sometimes just a few months after their splashy wedding celebrations. Recently, Khloe Kardashian Odom and her husband Lamar Odom were reported to have renewed their wedding vows, and other stars such as Heidi Klum and Seal have made it a tradition to renew their wedding vows every year, sometimes in creative theme celebrations.

While celebrities often drive wedding trends, their example in the world of renewing wedding vows has become a bit confusing to couples. So to clear away that confusion, here are some reasons why renewing vows is so popular right now:

• Renewing wedding vows re-connects couples, especially if they’ve had a challenging year for any reason – a health crisis, financial stress, job search struggles, a move to a new city, what have you

• Renewing wedding vows allows couples to celebrate milestone anniversaries – the 1st, 5th, 10th, or more – as well as any anniversary they choose. So a 7th anniversary is completely welcoming of a celebration

• Renewing wedding vows allows couples to plan their wedding ‘re-do’ their way, which is quite wonderful for those who were perhaps unhappy with how their original weddings turned out, or whose parents overtook the plans

• Renewing wedding vows gives military couples the chance to celebrate their appreciation of one another before or after a deployment

• Renewing wedding vows serves as a wonderful example to the younger generations of what a positive, successful marriage looks like

• Renewing wedding vows may be done privately, just the two of you on a beach or mountaintop, or it might be a large family and friend gathering in a ballroom

• Renewing wedding vows allows you to show appreciation for your spouse, a healthy element of a strong marriage

In these challenging times, so many people want something cheery to look forward to and enjoy, and a wedding vow renewal provides exactly that.

Michael Mahle, Director of Communications, Pleasantdale Château

Gifts for the Honeymoon

Thursday, December 2nd, 2010 | Filed under: Honeymoon gifts, Style Alert, wedding gifts | author: By Keith Sly,    

Many brides and grooms wonder what they should register for when they already own all of the cookware, linens and décor they could possibly want, so a new trend is focusing on the honeymoon as a wedding gift inspiration. While honeymoon registries do exist, offering guests the chance to give the wedding couple the gift of a romantic sunset dinner cruise or couples’ massages on the beach or even a share of the couple’s stay at their resort, some couples prefer to register for items they’ll use while on their honeymoons.

Honeymoon gifts

Honeymoon gifts

Here are some of the most popular wedding registry items that can make that dream honeymoon getaway all the more special:

• A Flipcam or digital camcorder to record their adventures

• A top-of-the-line digital camera (Bridal parties often choose this item as their split-expense Group Gift to the happy couple)

• Luggage (Upgrading the couple’s existing older or mismatched sets, this too is a popular ‘group gift’ as well as a popular gift from parents.)

• Luxury pampering items, such as massage lotions in top-brand sets

• Spa robes made from cashmere or soft bamboo fabric

• Gift cards to the couple’s favorite clothing stores, so that they can purchase new formal outfits, casualwear or bathing suits for their honeymoon wardrobes

• Gift cards to their booked resort, so that they can treat themselves to an ultra-romantic private dining experience on the beach, or enjoy all of their meals and drinks for free

• Travel pillows for long-flight comfort

• Monogrammed luggage tags

• Monogrammed travel journal for recording honeymoon memories

• Travel guidebooks about their destination’s history and attractions, and more.

If the mention of gift cards surprises you, please know that it is acceptable in today’s wedding etiquette rules to add gift cards to a wedding registry. It is not acceptable to request cash gifts on a registry, no matter how much cash gifts are preferred. As an added bonus: guests love giving the happy couple honeymoon-centric gifts, adding to their trip of a lifetime.

Michael Mahle, Director of Communications, Pleasantdale Château

To make an appointment with a banquet manager, please contact us at 973-731-3100.