TWIRL BRIDE BLOGGER || Deciding on Your Bridal Look (Insight from a Pro)

Friends! Hiii!! Sorry for almost a month of silence. It's been a whirlwind of a month but we are back and SO excited to share today's post! Our fabulous Twirl Bride Blogger, Allison Johnson of Pink LouLou Design Studio, is sharing her expert & honest opinions with us about the way to go about deciding on your bridal look. This is always such a big decision for brides and we are thrilled to have Allie share all her wisdom with y'all! Xo


Deciding on Your Bridal Look: The Inside Scoop From a Pro Hair and Makeup Artist

by Allison Johnson

Photo by The Malicotes

Photo by The Malicotes

Choosing your wedding day hair and makeup style may be one of the most important decisions you make for your wedding day. And no I am not just saying this because I am a hair and makeup artist, I honestly believe this! Your hair and makeup is one of the first things you will have done on your wedding day that will set the tone for how you feel! Now I know I know, beauty is on the inside and that is the truth, BUT you absolutely want to feel confidant, and feel like you are your most beautiful self! You will have more pictures taken on this day than probably any other day in your life, so you better make sure you love your hair and makeup! How do you ensure this you ask? Well you have come to the right place my friends. As the newly crowned 2017 Best Hairdresser of the South (Thanks Southern Weddings for this incredible honor!!) I feel I have some credibility on this subject! I could write you an entire book of my bridal hair and makeup knowledge, but instead, I tried to narrow it down to what I think are the most widely useful bits of advice!

Spring for the Professionals.

Photo by Aesthetiica

Photo by Aesthetiica

I totally understand budget constraints, I am planning a wedding too y’all, but I highly recommend not skimping when it comes to hair and makeup. If you truly feel confidant enough to do your own, that is great! I have come across very few in my day that feel comfortable enough with their abilities to do their own hair and makeup on their big day, so I suggest taking the stress off yourself, and booking the pro’s! Your bridesmaids will appreciate being pampered as well! That being said, make sure you do your research on hair and makeup artists. Talk to friends; find out who they used and who had positive experiences. Find someone that specializes in special event styling, not just cutting and coloring. I know many hair stylists that would rather die than do a wedding, but who excel at cut and color. Make sure they actually do weddings often! I suggest not going the budget route on this one, because $35 of hair and makeup is going to look like $35 of hair and makeup. Also, bridey’s, don’t feel like you need to pay for everyone’s hair and makeup! In my experience, most often bridesmaids are more than happy to foot the bill for their portion. They want to look like rock stars too ya know! We book hair and makeup about a year or more in advance for weddings we do, so don’t wait until the last minute on this one, or you will be stuck with limited options. 

Do Your Research.

I can’t tell you how many times I do a trial run with a bride, and she says” I am not really sure what I want, I haven’t thought about it yet”.  Girls, this is important! Think about it!! Haha! Get your little bridal butt on Pinterest and start pinning! I personally LOVE having pinspiration when it comes to working with my clients. It let’s me easily see things they like, or dislike. Also, it is very important to look at pictures of girls with hair like yours. Updo’s always look different on different hair colors. If you have blonde hair, look at blonde pictures, and likewise if you are brunette! If you are a natural redhead, then you are a unicorn and you can look at anything you want. Red hair is gorgeous, and often styles well in any ‘do. 

Exhibit A:

Photo by Meg Wilson

Photo by Meg Wilson

Also, keep in mind a lot of those beautiful pictures you see on Pinterest are full of secret extensions. Talk to your stylist about this. Clip in extensions save lives you know. Always better to have more hair than not enough I say!

The Great Hair Down vs. Hair Up Debate. 

I feel like this is very important and I need you girls to really hear me on this. It is very hard to wear your hair down on wedding days. It is a long day, people are hugging you, it could be raining, it could be 90 degrees and humid, I just don’t know—it is unpredictable. If your hair is down, or half up half down, I can almost assure you with certainty that your hair will fall, and be a hot mess at your reception. If you chose to forgo my professional warnings, and wear your hair down, I highly suggest having your hair stylist come back and put your hair up after the ceremony before the reception. And for the LOVE if you are going to wear it down, you 100% need clip in extensions! They hold curl better and help give your hair some structure and fullness. Now, I have really given this some thought, and I think a lot of people are scared of the word “updo” because trust me, I have seen some baaaad ones too. Please see paragraph 1 above, on picking the right stylist who specializes in wedding hair. If my clients are on the fence at their bridal trial, I am always happy to do it down first, and then throw it up after. I truly think they will be happier in the long run with it up, so I like to be able to show them both options. Updo's do not have to be boring, or "slicked to your head" as I hear so often, haha! Here are of some of my favorites I've done recently. 

Look at all that full hair! And I guarantee these gals won't be worried about their hair when they are shaking a tail on the dance floor! Nope, they will look flawless.

 

My favorite example of hair down for ceremony, then up for reception, is my bride from a few years ago, Brooke! How gorgeous is she by the way?

Photos by Todd Pellowe

Photos by Todd Pellowe

While Brooke wanted to wear her pretty locks down for the ceremony, she heeded my advice and let me put it up for the reception so she could dance with her new hubby and not have to worry about her hair getting stringy or the curl falling. I betcha if we asked her she would say this was a great decision! 

Hair and Makeup in Photos, What You Need to Know.

When you are thinking about hair and makeup for your big day, it is important to understand that your hair needs to be a little bigger, and your makeup a little bolder. It is perfectly fine to want a natural look, but it is important to understand that even a natural look looks best when done a little bit more than you would normally wear it on say, a Tuesday. It’s your wedding!! I always take pictures and video of my brides at their trial runs, so they can see what is coming back off the camera, because it is definitely different than what you see one inch away from the mirror you are looking in. (Side note, no one should ever look that closely in a mirror, trust!) Your hair and makeup should be able to stand up to your dress, and your shoes and veil—all fancy things! Also, your reception will likely be dark, so a little more than normal is a smart move!  Your makeup artist surely has done this many times, so have a little faith! You picked her for a reason, remember that!

Both of these clients of mine both wanted a more natural look, and were scared about having on too much makeup. But once I showed them the photos, they were both absolutely in love! How beautiful are these ladies? 

I asked a few of my favorite professional photogs what they had to say on the matter. Kelsey Malicote touted the importance of makeup "Photos can often wash you out, so it is helpful to have a little extra, know what I mean? Eyelashes, so important. They really open up your eyes and look great in photos. Also lip color; it helps to have a bolder lip than you may be use to. Throw out that old motto of less is more, more is more girl!" Claire Singleton with Claire and Barrett says “Professional hair and makeup can make or break photos on wedding day. Professional artists know how make-up translates to pictures. They are also able to provide looks that  last through all the happy tears, hugs and kisses that you should be able to experience without thinking twice about whether your hair or makeup can hold up. Professional hair and makeup truly makes my job as a photographer so much easier!”

Thanks Kelsey and Claire!! Speaking of products that hold up—LipSense, heard of it? If not you should definitely ask me about it! It is my go to for bridal clients. No more lipstick marks on your hubby, or your champagne glass. Win-win. 

Trial Run: What to Expect, and How to Best Prepare.

A trial run is very important when it comes to wedding day hair and makeup. A trial run not only puts you at ease, but your stylist as well! I suggest doing your trial run 30-45 days out from your wedding. This gives you ample time to prepare, look at pictures, gather your veil and any hairpieces, etc. I have found if you do trials too far in advance, you may change your mind on what you want, or forget completely what you even looked like, ha! I suggest coming to your trial with clean hair, and a makeup free and moisturized face. If you haven’t washed your hair in two days and have it in a bun on top of your head, it is going to be difficult for me to make you fabulous. Whoever is spreading the lie that “dirty hair is best” needs to cut it out. Not always the case my friends. I prefer clean hair any day, as I can use products to achieve what I need to. If you can, schedule your dress fitting around your hair and makeup trial, so you can see the look come together! It is hard to imagine how it is going to look when you have super fancy hair and makeup, and are wearing yoga pants. Also, this is very important. What if you are NOT happy with your trial? Let your stylist know, please! I am always thankful when a bride lets me know about adjustments that need to be made. I know this can be difficult, because you don’t want to hurt feelings, but a professional stylist will always welcome the feedback and appreciate the chance to make it right. I always tell my clients "I do this everyday, you will not hurt my feelings, so please let me know if we need to make any changes”. We stylists want you to be happy, so please communicate with us if you are not 100% happy! 

Well, that was a novel. I apologize. I hope that this helps those of you getting married to be more knowledgeable going into the hair and makeup process! I think I have been most excited about creating this post! Now the big question, who is doing MY hair and makeup for my wedding?! Do you know this is the most common question I have been asked, so funny! I am actually going to do my own hair, and my super talented MUA friend Amelia Evans is going to do my makeup! We are going to get ready in my house, super laid back and chill. That is just how I have always imagined the day, really relaxed, just getting myself ready at my house. I can’t wait! 87 days Y’all!! 

*All the ladies featured in this post are past clients of mine. If you need some more inspiration for hair and makeup looks, feel free to peruse my portfolio on our website, which can be found here

FRIDAY FAVORITES || SUMMER WEDDING

Hey y’all I’m back and you know what that means, it is finally Friday! Now this week’s Friday Favorites is just a little bit different, but fear not you’re in for a treat. Starting today, I’m taking a different turn and instead of featuring a different designer each week, I’ll be showing you three different dresses from different collections that could all work for the same style event! So, to kick things off with a bang I’m going for a crowd favorite of the oh so popular, summer wedding!

First off is Stella York’s style 6555, which we here at Twirl refer to as Slone! This gown is laidback and flowy, but still so chic! And can we please just take a minute to admire the beading on top? I mean hello – so gorgeous! The pearl beading is the perfect touch for us here in the south, who doesn’t love pearls am I right? The light-as-air tulle skirt extends effortlessly into a slight train, making it super lightweight. In the hot summer months here in Kentucky, that is just an added bonus to make you just little bit more comfortable on your big day!

Next, we have Justin Alexander’s style 8949. The beaded net details of the bodice with the illusion deep v-back add just a hint of pizazz. The v-neckline gives a simple, super flattering effect. Oh, and let’s not forget this silk chiffon slim A-line skirt that completes the look and gives an air of lavishness. But, don’t worry even though this dress isn’t a tulle skirt, the chiffon is still light and airy enough that you can twirl the night away! 

Last but certainly not least, is Hayley Paige’s Celine gown. This gown is brand new here at Twirl and is being featured in this weekend’s trunk show, so I knew I had to put it on! Celine is an ivory and hologram A-line gown with a circular chiffon skirt. Added details of an illusion off the shoulder cap sleeve bodice with floral dotted rhinestone embellishment add just enough sparkle to make you feel like a star! Not to mention that this gown has a low open back that adds a hint of sexiness and an overwhelming feeling of glamour. You’re sure to feel confident and relaxed in this beauty of a gown! 

Around here we all know how hot it can in these summer months, so having a dress that you won’t feel like your overheating in is so important. Gowns like these three are the perfect way to highlight your figure, by cinching in the waist, yet flowy enough to keep you cool and comfortable! So I hope that if you are planning a summer wedding these dresses have given you some inspiration for finding your perfect dress! And as always if one these gorgeous gowns featured have caught your eye, don’t hesitate to make an appointment and come on in! We would love to help you say yes, to your Twirl dress!

XO,

Kelsey 

CHECK OUT OUR PINTEREST BOARD INSPIRED BY THESE GORG GOWNS!

FRIDAY FAVORITES || HEIDI ELNORA KATIE GRACE

As another week comes to a close, it’s that time once again for Friday Favorites! This week I’ve been completely crushing on Heidi Elnora and her Build a Bride collection. This collection is the perfect way to customize your gown to exactly what you’ve always imagined! There are so many options to choose from, you can guarantee you will look unique and feel incredible!

The best part of Heidi Elnora’s Build a Bride collection is that you can go as simple or as extravagant as your heart desires. Just take this dress, the Katie Grace, for example. This sweet and simple a-line wedding gown is gorgeous just on its own. Featuring a scoop neckline, a natural waist, and a low back, you will feel classically chic! Oh, and I can’t forget to mention the pockets, in this super sweet gathered skirt! And I mean, who doesn’t love pockets am I right? Who wouldn’t want to walk down the aisle with some snacks in their pocket? Okay, okay, maybe tissues and mints would be more appropriate… 

Now you might love this silhouette, but you might be thinking that this is missing something. This is where Heidi Elnora goes from great to absolutely fabulous. You can add so many different accessories to make it yours, which is exactly what we’ve done here. This belt is the Jeana Lee belt, which features hand-made organza petals, tulle, and rhinestone details. The pattern is large in the center of the belt and then gradually becomes smaller as it encompasses your waist. This belt is the perfect way to add a little sparkle and define your waist! 

Maybe you want a little more coverage up top? Well we’ve got that option as well! The Hillary Halter is just perfect and the best thing about it, is that you can wear it for the ceremony and then remove it for your reception! The high neckline of the halter gives a regal feel and the keyhole back adds just a little touch of playfulness and finishes right at a natural waist. Speaking of that waist, why not add a belt to flatter your figure even more? So, here comes the beauty bow! A classic favorite to add to any gown! This bow features a ruched waistband with long tails that be tied into a bow wherever your heart desires! I wore it in the back but you could always add it to the front or even the side!

To round out all the different ways you can wear the Katie Grace gown is the elegant Chloe Crop Top! This crop top features functioning covered buttons at the center back with lace that lies perfectly off the shoulder. This can add just that little extra something if you want to cover up but still feel modern and chic. And just like the Hillary Halter if you wanted to wear it for the ceremony and not the reception it can totally be done! 

Now I know customizing a gown can be a completely daunting task, so I hope I have inspired you to take a leap and check out Heidi Elnora! As always, if you’ve seen something you have to try on, go ahead and make an appointment. We would love to help you say yes to your Twirl dress!

XO, Kelsey

HEIDI ELNORA STYLED SHOOT || SHINING LIGHT PHOTOGRAPHY + REFINED SOCIAL EVENTS

Happy Wedding Wednesday, friends! Hope you all have had a great week so far. It's really hard to believe it's already the FIRST DAY OF SUMMER! Where is the time going?! It is absolutely flying by for us but don't get us wrong, we are loving these longer summer nights to enjoy time with our family & friends.

We've got another GORGEOUS styled shoot to share with you all today and we think it's the perfect thing to get us all in the Summer mood. From the lovely gown by Heidi Elnora's Hello Darling collection to the incredible florals & tablescapes designed by Refined Social Events.. we are absolutely smitten with every detail. Ashley Brown of Shining Light Photography captured everything so perfectly and we are so giddy to share it all with you guys today!

So sit back, grab yourself a little treat to snack on or something yummy to sip on, and ENJOY!

Xo, The Twirl Girls



Cheers to this AMAZING team of vendors that made this magic happen:

Styling + Coordination + Floral Design: Refined Social Events

Photographer: Shining Light Photography

Venue: Foxbrook Farm

Hair Stylist: Maddie Wofford

Make Up Artist: Nikki Miner

Wedding Dress: "Sunny Darling" from Heidi Elnora's Hello Darling Collection

Bridesmaid Dresses: Jenny Yoo

REAL TWIRL WEDDING || HILLARY + LUKE

Happy Wedding Wednesday, friends! So along with sharing more of our fun styled shoots, we also want to start showcasing more of our lovely Twirl brides on their special days! We couldn't be more thrilled to share our precious bride, Hillary, with y'all today. She is so beautiful, inside & out, and her wedding day couldn't have been more perfect for the happy couple. We asked her some questions about her wedding planning process, her actual day, and about life as a newlywed and we can't wait for y'all to hear what this sweet girl had to say. Enjoy her gorgeous photos by Chloe Lane Photography and film by Summit Stone Creations! We've got ALL THE HEART EYES over this gorgeous gal & her stunning wedding which was planned & coordinated by Ginny Adkins with Sharing Special Moments.


Can you give us a glimpse into you & your hubs's love story?
Luke and I met at Western Kentucky University in the Fall of 2010. Both Luke and I were actively engaged in Greek Life on campus and during Homecoming week we were introduced by mutual friends at a mixer party. A few months later my sorority was having their annual Theme Dance and that particular year the theme was "Days of the Year" where couples could dress up as any special day in a calendar year.  Being the ridiculous 19 year-olds that we were, my friends and I all decided to choose blind dates for one another. My date was instructed to dress for the dance as if he was getting married because I had (and will always have) a slight obsession with the wedding industry and chose “wedding day” as our theme.  The night of the dance, Mr. Luke Simmons arrived at the sorority house dressed in a black and white tuxedo t-shirt and jorts ready to "get hitched." When I returned home to the sorority house that night I distinctly remember thinking how much fun Luke was and that I hoped I would see him again very soon. As the Lord’s plan began to unfold, I was lucky enough to be asked on our first date the very next day. On May 23rd, 2015, Luke proposed at the waterfront in downtown Louisville and after 16 months of planning, on the most beautiful late September day, we got married on a horse farm in Lexington surrounded by our favorite people on the planet. In the almost seven years Luke and I have been together, I am truly so thankful to be able to call him my very best friend. We now reside in Louisville, KY in our new home with our sweet puppy, Oreo.

Hillary's gorgeous gown was Tara Keely style 2552.

Hillary's gorgeous gown was Tara Keely style 2552.

What was it about your dress that made you realize it was "the one?" Was it what you expected to love/wear? Favorite memory from dress shopping/Twirl?

Oh gosh… I am tearing up just thinking about it.  My dress was one I definitely would not have chosen for myself off the rack nor the style I had been looking for. But Liz, Twirl’s Manager, knew better. ;) Liz and I have been friends since high school and I was so thankful to have her by my side through this process.

After trying on multiple gowns  and not receiving that “perfect” feeling every girl dreams of having with any of them, I began to question if I’d ever find “the one”.

I had found a dress that I liked, but there was just something that was keeping me from saying yes.  Luckily, Liz suggested that I try on one of her favorite dresses in the store. A few moments later, Liz walks up the stairs holding this beautiful gown with cap sleeves, a beaded bodice with a tulle ball gown skirt. It was absolutely beautiful, but literally the opposite (minus the ball gown style) of what I was looking for. 

I stepped into the gown and walked out to the podium in the room where my Mom was waiting, and immediately began to cry.  As I looked at myself in the mirror, in the most beautiful dress I had ever tried on … all I could imagine was Luke’s face when he saw me in this dress.  When I stood in the dress I saw the woman that I wanted to be for Luke as his wife. When I saw myself in that dress, all I could see was him and that’s when I knew without a doubt that I HAD INDEED FOUND THE ONE!

When I think back to the two dresses that were my final picks, the first one fit my personality.  It was girly, confident, boisterous and a little unique, but THE dress that won my heart made me feel like I was opening a new chapter.  I was ready for this new adventure and committing myself to Luke in our marriage.  This may sound funny and nonsensical, but slipping into that dress brought a feeling of commitment and promise, and it filled me full of indescribable joy.

I am so thankful for Liz and the Twirl team, and the experience that I had at Twirl Boutique. Their patience, their happiness when I found THE dress, and their commitment to making it a perfect experience far exceeded my shopping expectation. Finding my perfect dress was an experience I will never forget. Cannot thank you ladies enough!!

What is your favorite memory from your wedding day?

It’s hard to narrow it down to just one, but three distinct memories come to mind. One of my personal favorite memories from our wedding day was seeing Luke before our first look. I could see him off in the distance on the bridge where our first look was going to take place.  He was and is unbelievably handsome. I could tell even from that distance that he was beginning to get emotional by his body language and seeing him standing there with his hands in his pockets, I began to cry… again, for what felt like the 100th time that day. The morning felt like an extreme blur, up until that moment. In that simple moment, everything became so real and in the hustle and bustle of the day that moment completely grounded me and brought me back to what was happening in just a few short hours.

Our ceremony was our combined favorite memory. One of our dearest friends from college, John, performed the ceremony. John has always had the most perfect way of telling a story and connecting with people. He explained his relationship with us in the most beautiful way; how he had met us both, getting to know us as a couple, etc. But our favorite part of our ceremony was how he explained the Gospel and the relationship of Christ and his bride, the Church, and how ultimately marriage is meant to be a reflection of this relationship. 

We both still reflect and laugh on another favorite moment which was immediately following our first dances (ours, mother-son, father-daughter). We had the most incredible band for our reception, Project859, and immediately after the dances ended and they began to play the first song we look up to see EVERYONE, and I mean EVERYONE, rush the dance floor and it didn’t seem like anyone left all night.  We have the most incredible friends and family, and we are so grateful they were able to celebrate with us.

What has been the best thing about marriage so far?

Easy… I get to live life with my best friend every single day. I get to groan when his alarm goes off at 5am when he has to get ready to leave for work every day and he gets to groan when I want to stay up late to watch TGIT on Thursday Nights. We get to laugh at each other when the other says a Southern phrase the other has never heard before (the difference in growing up on opposite ends of Kentucky).  We both get to love, praise, and scold our dog-child when she does something good or bad (good lessons for future parenthood ;).

We, now, get to make joint decisions on our home projects, where to travel, where to spend our time and money wisely, what meals to cook, where to serve, etc. has been a huge blessing and, also, a huge learning curve. We’re still learning how to communicate and definitely will be learning that in every phase of our life together.  The last 8 months we both have learned so much about ourselves and this new phase of life we are in. The newlywed stage is both fun and challenging as we learn more about each other every day, but also the new people we are becoming as a unit. A unit that we have built over the last 8 months that will last for 80 years to come and that’s what we have to look forward to!

Any pieces of wisdom or advice you'd like to share with future brides, engaged gals, or newlyweds like yourself?

In the very early stages of our marriage, my advice would be to just have fun and to ‘Keep the Main Thing, the Main Thing.’  In your first year of marriage, go out and try new things; cook a new recipe you both would enjoy, take a how-to class, take the road trip, join a new community group, make a new situation for yourselves and just do it.

Secondly, always remember to keeping each other first. This is a daily reminder for us.   That includes praying for patience always. Praying for patience when you both disagree on which family event to go to or what should be donated to Goodwill, or how to caulk the house correctly (definitely our largest fight to date). ;)  Darn caulk. 

“Love each other well” was the most frequent advice I got before our wedding and still get in our first year of marriage. How to do that is something we’ll always be figuring out, but keeping him above all else is a really great place to start.



Hillary, thank you SO much for allowing us to celebrate you & share your wedding day with the rest of our Twirl family! We are so encouraged by your story and your heart for your marriage. We wish you nothing but abundant joy & grace in the years to come. Cheers to you MRS. SIMMONS! Xoxo, The Twirl Girls

Interested in having your wedding day featured? Shoot us an email at liz@twirllexington.com if so, we'd love to hear from you & celebrate your happy day with you!

WE'RE HIRING! | LEAD BRIDAL CONSULTANT

WE'RE HIRING!! | LEAD BRIDAL CONSULTANT

It's true! We're HIRING! The Twirl Girls are looking to add another lovely lady to our team & we can't wait to meet whoever she may be! We are looking for someone who has a love for people & serving them with lots of love and Southern hospitality. The next Twirl Girl needs to have a good eye for fashion & if she has previous retail experience that is a dream. We consider it a gift + honor to be a part of styling a bride for her wedding day and we expect our team to strive to celebrate this season of life well with every bride that walks through our door. Our next Twirl Girl should expect to laugh a lot, serve wholeheartedly, work her booty off, and become a part of a family when she becomes a Twirl Girl.

Details about the position of LEAD BRIDAL CONSULTANT + who might be the best fit for it:

- Part-time position (3 days a week, including Saturdays).

- Saturdays are mandatory! 

- Prior retail experience is preferred.

- Fashionable, polished style.

- Detail oriented/highly organized.

- Self-starter, motivated, and confident.

- Kind, friendly, and hospitable.

If you think you'd be a perfect fit for our team please email us with your resume + cover letter to liz@twirllexington.com or ty@twirllexington.com. Can't wait to hear from y'all! Xo

Thinking you may not fit the bill but someone you know does?? Feel free to share this post with them to help spread the word! Sharing is caring. :)

FRIDAY FAVORITES || BLUSH BY HAYLEY PAIGE

It’s finally Friday!!! And you know what that means, it’s time for this week’s Friday Favorites! And this week is one of my favorites thus far. Why you wonder? Because it’s time for Hayley Paige once again, but this week it’s Hayley Paige’s Blush line. These three dresses are sure to make you feel absolutely fabulous on your big day! 


First up is the Lilou gown. This gown has a gorgeous floral full lace bodice, with spaghetti straps and an oh so flattering sweetheart neckline. And you can’t miss the fun and flirty tulle ball gown. This tiered tulle skirt will have you twirling around in circles all night long.


Next up is Hayley Paige’s Val gown. This ivory lace and organza A-line gown, features a V-neck bodice. The illusion cap sleeve adds a just a little bit of coverage, to help make you even more comfortable. The keyhole back with delicate trim accent gives this gown a hint of excitement. To top it all off, the pleated circular organza skirt if so flowy and relaxed, it’s sure to make you feel blissful and confident.

Click here to see our Pinterest board of a wedding inspired by this look!


Last, is my personal favorite of the three, the West gown. Featuring Marrakesh beading, this fit to flare gown will make you feel fabulous. The sweetheart neckline also has skinny spaghetti straps and a low scoop back. Don’t forget about the elongated bodice with ivory embellishments over a cashmere lining and a full circular skirt. You’re sure to feel absolutely glamorous in the West gown.


Thanks for checking out this week’s Friday Favorites! I hope you love Hayley Paige’s gowns as much as I do. And as always, if you’ve seen something you have to try on, go ahead and make an appointment. We would love to help you say yes, to your Twirl dress!

XO,

Kelsey 

HAYLEY PAIGE STYLED SHOOT || THE MALICOTES + REEL SPECIAL

Happy Wednesday, friends! We realized a little bit ago that we are seriously terrible at showing off all the amazing styled shoots we get to collaborate on. So instead of continuing that trend we decided to start sharing more of the amazing vendors we work with the and magic we get to create together! Today we're kicking things off with one of our all time favorite shoots we have ever done with The Malicotes and Reel Special Productions! One of our former Twirl managers, Olivia Rink (who is now a big bad blogger babe! So proud of you, Liv!), was in town and was sweet enough to be our gorgeous bride model alongside one of her besties & former UK cheerleader, David. We adore this shoot so much & are so excited to share some of our favorites images by The Malicotes & Reel Special's awesome video from it. Enjoy!!



Amazing vendor team who made all this magic happen:

Photographers: The Malicotes (PS- They just did an AMAZING rebrand so you should definitely check it out! ALL. THE. HEART. EYES.)

Film Processing: Indie Film Lab

Videographers: Reel Special

Gown Designer: Hayley Paige - "Peyton" Gown + "Byron" Gown

Models: Olivia Rink + David Patton

Venue: Castle & Key Distillery

Rentals: Purdon's Rentals

Calligraphy: Bluegrass Script

Florals: Thomas Ripley Flowers

Bridal Shoes: Omar + Elsie

FRIDAY FAVORITES || JUSTIN ALEXANDER

Hey y'all I'm back with this week’s Friday Favorites! This week, it's all about Justin Alexander. If you're more of a classic bride Justin Alexander is perfect for you. With elegant silhouettes and eye-catching accents, you will feel oh so glamorous.


First up is Justin Alexander’s style 8880. This strapless gown is adorned with an all-over geometric striped organza trim. You can’t miss the gorgeous cathedral length train that creates the most timeless of wedding day looks.


Next is Justin Alexander’s style 8925. You can show off your confidence in this organza jacquard fit and flare with a sweetheart neckline and chantilly lace appliques. If you look this dress up online you might notice that this style comes with a Chantilly lace popover layer with a cathedral length train and off-the-shoulder neckline, for an added hint of modern sophistication. We don’t sell this extra piece here in the store, but we can always order it for you!

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Lastly is Justin Alexander’s style 8904F. This gown is inspired by 1950’s fashion. The gorgeous ball gown has a Queen Anne neckline, allover lace pattern, open keyhole back, and eyelash hem lace. This gown also comes in tea length if you want to feel even more retro on your big day.


Thanks for tuning in again this week! If any of these gowns have peaked your interest, call and book your appointment today. We’d love to help you say yes to your Twirl dress!

XO, Kelsey

TWIRL BRIDE BLOGGER || ALLISON JOHNSON: ENGAGEMENT PHOTOS + SAVE THE DATES

You guys are in for a real treat today! Our sweet Twirl Bride Blogger, Allison Johnson of Pink LouLou Design Studio, is back and sharing all about her engagement photos and her process for creating her Save The Dates! Prepare yourself to completely swoon over all of Allison & Tim's cuteness. It's ridiculously sweet and we are giddy as can be that she's sharing it all with us!


Things have been moving right along over here in wedding world, and I am surely, but ever so slowly, checking things off my list. I was gifted the Southern Weddings planner and let me tell you, that thing has been a lifesaver! I find the monthly checklists the most helpful, as they are a quick snapshot of what I need to be doing, and when. It's like my own little wedding manager reminding me to do things (heaven knows I need it). 

 The biggest thing we did recently that I was excited to check off the list, was take our engagement pictures! Now Southern Weddings recommends doing this 6-9 months (closer to 9, obvs) before your wedding, but we were a little late on this. And you know what, that is ok!! The name of my wedding game is "no-stress" and I refuse to let anything stress me out. We got engaged in October, but wanted to wait until Spring when the weather was a little nicer to do our pictures, so we ended up taking them about 6 months after we got engaged, and 6 months prior to the wedding.  

We worked with our incredibly talented wedding photographer (Claire from Claire & Barrett) and we had so much fun. I was super nervous about it because I am the world’s most awkward in front of a camera, but this experience was actually one of my favorites so far! We wanted to really capture this time in our life together, and have memories that years from now would bring us right back to where we are, in this moment. We decided to do the pics in our home, simple and laid back. That is just us, we are not stuffy and fluffy, and most of the time we are just super casual being lovey dovey in our house. I absolutely LOVE how they turned out. I definitely recommend doing what feels comfortable to you. You will love the pics so much more when they mean something to you. Our house is where we fell in love. On our first date Tim came over to help me paint my guest room, and I knew that this was something special!! No matter where we go in this life, this little house will always hold some of our most cherished memories—from innocent midnight chats to whispered secrets shared.  

Thank you THANK YOU Claire for these beautiful pics! I could not be happier with how they turned out! 

(Don't ask me why, but I think this next pic is my favorite, Our feet are always touching and moving!)

We did also take some outside, we figured our family might want some more formal pics of us not cuddling on the couch,  haha!! I just love them all so much! 

We wanted to use our engagement pics for our save the dates, which are now pushing too late to send you should just send an invitation but whatever, we are sending them. I was appalled at the pricing I was finding online for save the dates, so I decided to whip them up myself. I literally did them in about 5 minutes in Indesign, and had them printed by GotPrint for $38. I am not kidding. No way was I spending $450 on pieces of paper!! Pick your saves and splurges, brideys.  

 I was super happy with how they turned out. If you go this route, you can also order envelopes from, you guessed it, envelopes.com. Thank me later. 

I have some more fun posts coming up for you brides that are following along!! As always, let me know if there is anything I can answer for your, or help you navigate! 

Xo, Allison

FRIDAY FAVORITES || STELLA YORK

FRIDAY FAVORITES | STELLA YORK

by Kelsey Mullikin

Happy Friday! Stella York is one of our Twirl Brides’ favorites and I can definitely see why! So, this week I’m all about some of our new Stella York gowns that we just received in stock.


irst up is Stella York 6487, also known here at Twirl as the Tessa gown. Tessa, is a style that brings both the modern and feminine details together, to bring all your romantic wedding day dreams to life! With the modern aspect of the trendy high-neckline and the traditional lace and sweetheart neckline, give you the best of both worlds. Not the mention the sheer, lace cutouts and the open, sheer lace back, adding a hint of sexiness to this overall elegant gown.

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Next, we have Stella York 6461, or as well call it Chrissy. Bring your fairytale princess dreams to life with this gorgeous ballgown! The subtle sweetheart neckline, the all-over lace bodice, and the tulle and Regency organza over a satin gown, adds an air or elegance to this princess style. This gown has the option of a lace-up back or zip up beneath fabric buttons. This dress is sure to make you feel like a princess on your wedding day! 


Lastly, is Stella York 6490, known here at Twirl as Season. This gown is laid-back, casual, and oh-so-chic! The breathtaking, lace bodice of this gown features the illusion of a sheer bodice, while providing a bit of coverage. The illusion-lace gives an off-the-shoulder look, which only enhances the elegant feeling. The back of this gown is highlighted with open, illusion tulle and lace detailing, giving it an effortlessly-romantic look. The light-as-air French tulle skirt extends effortlessly into a slight train. All of this making it the perfect gown for a beach wedding! 


I hope you enjoyed seeing some of our new Stella York gowns! Check back next week for more of my favorite gowns!

XO, Kelsey

FRIDAY FAVORITES || HAYLEY PAIGE

Happy Friday! My name is Kelsey and I am the newest addition to the Twirl family as this year’s summer intern! All summer long I’ll be featuring some of my favorite dresses on the blog every Friday!

So, to start things off, this week it’s all about Hayley Paige’s Signature Collection! From the first moment I walked into the store, this collection caught my eye. From the intricate beading, tulle skirts, and stunning colors, you will definitely make a statement at your wedding in a Hayley Paige gown!

My first favorite is the Teresa gown! This Ivory chiffon A-line gown, has a celestial beaded bodice with a V-neckline and T-strap back. The full circular chiffon skirt adds just a little extra fun to this flowy gown! It is so light and airy making it perfect for an outdoor or beach wedding! 

Check out our wedding inspiration board on Pinterest that goes along with this bridal look: https://www.pinterest.com/TwirlLexington/friday-favorites-teresa-gown-inspired-wedding/


This next stunning gown is the Leighton gown! An Ivory strapless fit to flare perfect for brides who want to show off those curves! Not to mention the silk stretch satin ruched bodice with a sweetheart neckline that is just oh so flattering! Don’t forget about that dramatic, signature Hayley Paige silk organza textured skirt that it sure to wow even the toughest critics! 

Check out our wedding inspiration board on Pinterest that goes along with this bridal look: https://www.pinterest.com/TwirlLexington/friday-favorites-leighton-gown-inspired-wedding/


This last Hayley Paige gown, Bijou, has my heart skipping beats. From the first moment I saw this dress, I knew I had to put it on. The lattice and rose cut bodice with a V-neckline and cutout corset detail immediately catches your eye. On top of that, the cascading tulle ball gown skirt with horsehair trim gives it an extra little pizazz. Not to mention the stunning Hummingbird Blue color! But don’t worry it also comes in Ivory. 

Check out our wedding inspiration board on Pinterest that goes along with this bridal look: https://www.pinterest.com/TwirlLexington/friday-favorites-bijou-gown-inspired-wedding/


Do you see why these are my favorites now? They are so stunning and so fun to wear! One thing I know for sure, is Hayley Paige never disappoints! Thanks for reading and don’t forget to come back next week, when I feature my next set of favorite gowns!

XO, Kelsey

TWIRL TURNS SEVEN GIVEAWAY | WINNER REVEAL!

FRIENDS! We are so so so amazed & thankful that we have reached this milestone within our 7th year of business. SO FUN! Thank you, each & every one of you, for being along for the ride with us and being a part of our Twirl Family. We love you so much and are so grateful for all the love and support you give us on a daily basis!

Soooooo.... with all that to say.. who's ready to find out who our lucky winner is?!?!?! Check out the video below to find out who our winner is:

A big thanks to our sweet Clay Avenue besties at Peggy's for helping us pick our winner, Miss Katie Cox! Congratulations, Katie!! We will be in touch with you later today so that we can send you all your goodies ASAP! YAY!!

HAPPY FRIDAY, Y'ALL! Make it a good one. XOXO, The Twirl Girls

TWIRL BRIDE BLOGGER || ALLISON JOHNSON + DRESS SHOPPING 101

Hi there ladies, me again! Long time to no see!! Well I can definitely say I am in the thick of wedding planning these days, and I must tell you--I have loved it so far. I swear the hardest thing has been trying to plan a honeymoon, which sounds stupid right? HA! That is the only thing I have found stressful, stay tuned on that front. Actually does anyone just wanna plan it for me, that would be great.

I wanted to chat today about what I think is one of the most special things you will do while planning your wedding, and that is wedding dress shopping! I mean as girls we dream about this from the time we are little. Exhibit A: my first bridal experience. 

I mean, while this IS a good look, I am not sure it is the one I am going for precisely. 

I wanted to share with you other brides and brides-to-be some of the things I think are important to consider when shopping for your wedding dress.   

1. Choose a store that will make your experience unforgettable 

I have been part of many a wedding, I think one year I was in 8 weddings, but that is neither here nor there. The point is I have been with several friends to shop for their weddings dresses. Some experiences more pleasant than others. I knew I wanted a boutique environment, a more personal experience. I was anxious about trying on dresses anyway, so I knew I wanted to be calm, and laid back-I didn't want to be shuffled through a warehouse like a herd of cattle--been there done that and it is completely overwhelming, trust. So I chose the cutest little shop in Lexington, which is low and behold, Twirl! Who knew?! ;) 

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Now, elephant in the room, yes I know the Twirl girls, and love them dearly. But even if I didn't this still would have been my top choice. They truly rolled out the red carpet, and made the day so so special for me. They had snacks and champagne, and personalized everything. 

That's me! The future Mrs. Jenks!! (still can't believe it!! My 17 year old heart is just bursting that I get to marry Tim Jenks!)

My friend Claire also sent flowers to make me feel like a princess, which was the sweetest thing ever. I could have cried, why is everyone so nice?!

Being in a small, more intimate setting just made the whole experience much more meaningful, which is exactly what I wanted. Thank you Twirl for making this day so amazing, and being so welcoming to us! It was perfect, and I wanna do it again. HA!  

2. Take a small group

This was SO important to me. I am definitely an introvert at heart (albeit outgoing at times!) and I feel most comfortable in a small group of people. Especially when the focus is on me. I took my mom, my sisters, my cousin Lucy and my best friend Chrissy! It was perfect. I value their input, and it was a small enough group that I never felt overwhelmed. You know what you want, so trust yourself! If that is 12 people, then go for it! But I do think a smaller group is a little easier to handle, and keep it stress free. There are no rules here, you do NOT have to take your entire bridal party. This is your special day so do what you feel in your heart! Look at these beauties, aren't they something? I feel pretty blessed for their friendship, and I must say they may just be the prettiest bridal party yet. 

3. Have your hair and makeup fixed 

Now I don't mean professionally (but hey I would love to do it for you, ha) but common girls, you're definitely going to be able to envision the whole look better if you have your hair and makeup done. I do not suggest rolling out of bed in sweatpants and two day old hair in a ponytail. You're just going to feel like a mess and in turn not like anything you put on. I want to wear my hair up for the wedding, so I wore my hair up when I went to try on dresses so I could get a better visual of what it might look like all together. I also did my makeup, so I would feel pretty and put together. I think it really makes a difference in how you are able to see yourself as a BRIDE!! 

See, makeup. LOL

4. Keep an open mind

I definitely suggest looking at dresses in magazines or on Pinterest beforehand. It can help you begin to think about what you like, and what styles might look good on you. You know your body well enough to start thinking along those lines. However, I would suggest also keeping an open mind. I mean I don't know about you, but it is not usually every day that I am trying on beautiful wedding dresses, ha. You may find yourself surprised to find that a certain style that you never imagined looks kinda-super-awesome on you. Listen to your consultants when they bring you things to try, they know what they are doing and you just never know, you could love it! Or you could hate it...but that could only help solidify your decision to go another way.  

Now let me tell you, I went in with my heart pretty hard set on the dress of my dreams. It's a sweet story really, you wanna hear it? Great! So, last winter Twirl was having a Hayley Paige trunk show at their store. So that means they have a lot of dresses in store that they may not carry samples of usually. I was in the store doing a hair and makeup trial for one of my bridal clients, and this one dress caught my eye. I never look at dresses, which is ironic since I work around them, but this one was different. I had just started dating Tim, and was all heart eyed and seeing butterflies all the time, and I was just mesmerized with this dress! I told Liz and Ty, "now girls, I know this is crazy but I think that is my dress!" They were probably like, yeah OK Allison, you nut. HA! Well, let me tell you what these girls did. They made sure that dress was at my fitting, a year later! They called the designer and had her send a sample, and it arrived the MORNING of my appointment! I tried it on last because I was nervous about it, and I think we were all just quiet for a minute. I am not sure who spoke first, but it may have been Liz saying, "wow" but I can't remember. It was perfect. It was the one. I couldn't believe it. They said that never happens, and they didn't even expect it to work. But let me tell you, it was a total God thing, just as my whole romance with Tim has been. It was so perfect, and such a special moment! When I walked in the other room to my tiny entourage, everyone was just blown away with how gorgeous the dress was. It was such an easy decision for me, I think I only put on like 6 dresses maybe?? 

Another fun fact about my dress, I actually got to meet the designer Hayley, while I was in NYC for Bridal Fashion Week this past October-how cool is that?! We went to her show room, it was a total "how is this my life" moment. I also met my veil designer Sarah Gabriel! Fate, fate, fate I say! 

Allll the Hayley Paige. Incredible. (PS duh, my dress is not pictured, I checked. HA!) All the real pretty pics by the amazing The Malicotes

5. Have fun and enjoy it

For real though, have fun!! This should not be stressful, it should be one of the most fun days of all the planning you do. For me it was. I would do it over and over again! I feel super blessed that it was so seamless for me, I know it is not always like that for a lot of people, but hopefully some of my tips will help you to have an amazing wedding dress shopping experience also! 

I will leave you with this adorable video that my talented sissy made for me of our time at Twirl. Gosh I wanna do it again!! I just have all the feels, and love my bridesmaids, and my Twirl fam, and Hayley Paige...and oh yeah Tim. I love Tim. A lot. I can't wait for him to see my wedding dress!! EEK!

Until next month girls!! 

 

TWIRL TALK || HOMEWORK FOR OUR FUTURE BRIDES

Hi ladies! Is anyone else in disbelief that April is right around the corner?! The month FLEW BY!! But don't worry.. we have not forgotten to give you your monthly dose of Twirl Talk! It may be the end of the month but better late than never, right?! ;)

In this month's edition of Twirl Talk we're giving brides-to-be a little bit of "homework." We're giving three big ways each bride-to-be can prepare yourself for dress shopping! We believe wholeheartedly that if a bride comes in prepared by doing these 3 little "homework" assignments then her appointment will be that much more amazing.

So go grab yourself a cup of coffee, a little lunch, or maybe a glass of wine and tune in! Lots of good info that we truly hope is helpful to brides-to-be and even future brides-to-be.

If you've got any questions, suggestions, or comments PLEASE leave a comment below. We'd absolutely LOVE to hear from you!

XOXO - The Twirl Girls

SHOPPING WITH HEIDI || HEIDI BRIDE TESTIMONY

Happy Wednesday, friends! If you haven't gathered already, we are over the moon excited to have our sweet friend Heidi Elnora back in Kentucky with us this weekend. It was such an amazing weekend last year. We are overjoyed that we're going to have even more brides this year get to experience the love & joy that is Heidi Elnora.

We had one of our precious brides from last year share with us about her experience shopping with Heidi last year and if you aren't excited already, you'll surely be excited now! Sweet Whitney, we adore you & are so thrilled you had such a magical experience with us. XOXO


On February 27th, 2016 I found the wedding dress of my dreams!!!! I was one of the lucky girls who had the amazing opportunity to book an appointment with the one and only Heidi Elnora during her trunk show event at Twirl! My experience with both Twirl and Heidi was something that I will never forget... the day I found my dress I truly felt beautiful and I was overwhelmed with emotions! A close friend of mine, Maria, who just so happens to model for Heidi was also there helping me and making the experience even more wonderful. 

My breath taking wedding dress came from Heidi's build-a-bride collection... a collection where you can piece together different silhouettes and add-ons to create the wedding dress you have always envisioned! I went in that day knowing I wanted something with long sleeves for my November 26th wedding and I also wanted to look and feel like a princess! After trying only three dresses on I had found the dress I always knew I would wear on my wedding day! 

The silhouette of my dress was the Coco Marie, a trumpet style gown with a low back and a chapel train. On top of that I added the Sumerlin Skirt, a see through tulle over skirt (which I was able to remove at the reception for dancing and a sexy fitted silhouette) that gave my dress the "Disney princess" feel! To get the long sleeves that I wanted I added the Catherine Cover up, which had my long beautiful lace sleeves and stunning buttons down the center of my back. The day of the trunk show Heidi only had this cover up in a cap sleeve but was so willing to meet my request of making it come all the way to my wrist! To complete my look, my "something borrowed" came from my friend Maria, a gorgeous full length veil which was also from Heidi's collection. 

Finding my dress that day with the help of the wonderful Twirl family, the talented Heidi Elnora, and my own amazing family was like something you see in a movie... it was beyond exciting and extremely emotional (I don't believe there was a dry eye in the shop! Haha) I love that I have the sketch that Heidi drew of my wedding gown that day, it's a special piece of art that I will treasure forever! 

To any girl thinking about attending the 2017 trunk show at Twirl with Heidi Elnora, I strongly recommend that you jump on this amazing opportunity of a lifetime!!!!  

My wedding was absolutely everything that I have ever dreamed it would be! My amazing husband, Justin, who touched my heart with tears in his eyes as I walked down in aisle, was taken away with how beautiful my dress was, all the little details on it, and the fabulous story that goes along with it... I am so thankful that Twirl and Heidi Elnora played such a big part in making my wedding dress shopping experience so spectacular and in making my wedding the most amazing day of my life! 

Whitney Beth Mason


Sounds like a pretty amazing experience, right?! As of 2/15 at 11:00am we only have one appointment available for Friday with Heidi at 6:00pm and our Saturday is completely booked on Saturday. So if you want this incredible experience for yourself, call us ASAP! And for those of you that are already booked for this fun weekend, we hope you are crazy excited!! We're going to have a blast. We can't wait to see you & help you find the dress of your dreams. XOXO


CHECK OUT THESE VIDEOS BELOW & GET TO KNOW HEIDI AND HER GORGEOUS DESIGNS A LITTLE MORE:

TWIRL TALK || DRESS SHOPPING: WHEN TO START & WHAT TO DO BEFORE YOUR APPOINTMENT

Friends! Hi!! We have been talking about doing this video series for what feels like FOREVER and it's finally happening. All the praise hands! The hope is that this series is educational, encouraging, and inspiring for brides to be, hopeful brides to be, and just fabulous women in general. We wanted to create a resource for people to have that informs them about the important things to know when it comes to shopping for your wedding dress and then sprinkling in some tidbits about being boss ladies & things of that nature. It'll be fun (or so we hope) and we're excited for you all to be along for the ride with us.

This month we're chatting about when to start the wedding dress shopping process and what to know before your appointment! We thought this was as good a time as ever since it's the heat of engagement season which means tis the season to shop for your dream dress. So grab yourself a cup of coffee or a glass of wine, snuggle in, and enjoy!

Thanks for tuning in, gals! If you've got any topics you'd love to have featured or have any questions, feel free to drop us a line in the comments. We'd love to hear from you!

Have an amazing weekend & we can't wait to share more next month. XOXO

MEET OUR NEWEST BRIDE BLOGGER: ALLISON JOHNSON

FRIENDS!! We are SO SO SO excited to bring back our Bride Blogger series! It was so much fun having Mary Stallard (now Rouse, ahh!) last time and we knew we didn't want this fun series to come to an end. When our sweet Allie girl got engaged we KNEW she would be the perfect fit to be our next Bride Blogger. We are over the moon excited for you all to get know her and follow along on her journey to the aisle. It has been such a joy to witness her falling in love with her precious man and we have no doubt y'all are going to absolutely adore them as well!

Without further audieu, Twirl Family, meet our newest Bride Blogger -- Miss Allison Johnson of PinkLouLou Design Studio!!


Hi everyone!! My name is Allison, and I could not be more excited to be blogging for Twirl!! 

Photo by The Malicotes

Photo by The Malicotes

When Twirl first asked me to be their bridal blogger, I thought two things: “who, what, me?!” But then, I remembered, “hey girl, you used to do this all the time, remember?" and secondly “wait...ME the BRIDAL blogger??” oh that’s right…cause I am ENGAGED!!! I found him y'all, and he is WONDERFUL! I am marrying the smartest, sweetest, most handsome and caring, funniest one there is. More on this in a minute, but first a little bit more about moi.  

I am a hair and makeup artist, specializing in (you guessed it) BRIDES! So color me excited to finally be on the other side of things! I own PinkLouLou Design Studio with my uber talented friend and poof partner Dana, you may have seen us around if you have been in a wedding in the past five years-we've probably done your hair and makeup-ha! 

Photo by The Malicotes

Photo by The Malicotes

Aww, isn't she cute? Love that little Dana! 

But anyways, I digress. I spent a lot of time thinking about what I wanted this first post to be like, and believe me there were many drafts. I am just so overwhelmed with gratitude. I am so incredibly happy, and I feel blessed that Twirl has given me an opportunity to document my wedding planning process! Nothing like somebody giving you a gentle shove back into something you used to love right?!

So you wanna hear about the fiancé? He's pretty adorable. Seeeeee....

His name is Tim, and I have been in love with him since I was 17. Ok so I had a big crush on him when I was 17, and he had that same big 'ol crush on me too, it just took us 15 years to reconnect in a Kroger parking lot. 

True story. 

Here's how it went down.  

Me (in pajamas, not sure if I'd brushed my hair that day): "Tim! Oh my gosh, HI! How are you?!What have you been up to? How is life?"

Tim: "Umm hi, I gotta go!" (walks IN the OUT door.) 

Bless it, he was nervous! Fast forward three months, and he gets my number from our mutual friend, and we never looked back.  

Let me just show you how sweet he is. The day of our first date, I had a hair appointment with my hairdresser of 11 (yes eleven) years, and he sent me flowers! I will never forget that moment, I was so overwhelmed with that grade school "a boy likes me" feeling. Isn't that the best?? 

I promise you, I knew I was going to love him on that first date. I just knew it. I always wanted to smack people who said that, ya know? Like, no you didn't...but YES I truly did! Tim proposed 9 months later in the Baths at Virgin Gorda. People always ask me if I knew he was gonna do it then, and my answer is no way!! It was my cousin's wedding week, so I just didn't even think about it. But he did, and it was the most amazing moment. I remember every little detail of that day. I was shaking so much I got down on my knees with him and just hugged and kissed him and cried. After a few minutes he said "so do you wanna see the ring?!" LOL!! 

Photo credit  Keni Parks Photography

Photo credit  Keni Parks Photography

We celebrated at lunch afterwards, and luckily there was wi-fi so I was able to FaceTime my sisters and parents!

We legit got engaged in paradise, I mean look at this place!!

 Best. Vacation. EVER. Can you believe that little sneakster had the ring in his backpack the whole time?! No clue over here. Ha! 

This past year has been incredible. The best year of my life so far, hands down. I feel like the absolute luckiest girl in the world to have found my best friend, and my husband. God has truly been faithful, and blessed me so much more than I deserve! I am marrying the man of my dreams on October 14, 2017!! I am so excited to document this whole process, and share with you all the tips I have for ya along the way. I will let you know that I did find my dress, and I am thinking that may be the subject for the next post!! 

Any questions, suggestions for future post content, send 'em my way! I want to help you other brides in the planning process, so let me know what YOU want to know!!  

I feel like "a TWIRL girl" getting to post for them, its a dream!! ha!!! 

Until next time ladies!!


To know Allison is to love her. We are seriously over the moon for her & Tim. What a fun journey it's been and will continue to be. So grateful she's letting us all follow along through this sweet little series of ours! Can't wait for next time. Stay tuned, lovelies! XOXO

THE HEART BEHIND: DARAE & FRIENDS CATERING

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Hey gang! It's been a while since we've done one of these but we're excited to be back and bragging on the sweet & wonderful, DaRae Marcum with DaRae & Friends Catering! We adore this woman and the business she's built. Not only is SHE wonderful but her food is also SO WONDERFUL! Win/win in our books!


It's also wonderful timing because they are doing an incredible giveaway that you should absolutely check out if you're need of a caterer! It's their 10th Annual $10,000 Wedding Reception Giveaway!

The drawing is March 15, 2017 and there are just three steps you need to take to enter to win:

1. Book your reception with DaRae & Friends

2.  Set a date for a tasting or finalize your personalized menu

3. Pay your 40% deposit before March 13, 2017

Once you've done those three things you'll be entered to win this incredible giveaway!! You can call their office for more details or to set up your tasting - 859.272.8003


Can you give the readers a little background about your business? How long have you been in business and what services do you offer your clients? My name is DaRae Marcum and I am the proud owner/partner of DaRae & Friends Catering. We’ve been in business now for the past 23 years and we often cater from anywhere between 2-17,000 people per event. Our most popular catering events include weddings, holidays, corporate events, and cocktail parties.

When did you know that this was the business for you? I truly believe becoming a caterer was all part of God’s plan for me. I loved learning how to cook and serve others from my grandmother and aunts growing up, but it wasn’t until I was 30 years old that I decided to turn my passion into a business.

Where did the inspiration for your business come from? My friends always asked if I would cater for their parties and I think that was when I realized that people truly enjoyed the services that I had to offer. Back then, I would call other friends to help me prepare the food, but now with the help of DaRae & Friends’ 20 full time employees and 150 part-time employees, I’m never left short-handed.

How do you contribute your passions into your daily work routine? I’m extremely passionate about cooking and entertaining so being able to do it on a daily basis is incredible. I’m constantly studying the menu, reading cookbooks, and exploring Pinterest for new inspiration.

What’s the best part of running your own business/ being your own boss? I’ve learned that owning a business as large as DaRae & Friends requires more than just my expertise so I’m incredibly grateful to have someone help advise. But to answer your question, my favorite part is looking after our employees. They mean so much to me and I love being able to watch them grow and become even more knowledgeable.

What is your favorite part about working within the wedding industry? Weddings are my favorite catered event because they’re a wonderful time for family and friends to get together and celebrate. We’ve developed several strong connections through wedding catering and I know those connections will last a lifetime. Many years ago, we catered a wedding and we recently catered to their son’s wedding as well. If the tradition continues, then maybe we’ll be lucky enough to cater the grandchildren’s wedding too.

What’s your favorite aspect of your business and how does that motivate you in your daily work? I love that catering allows me to be a servant for people and that I’m able to give back to the community that I cherish so much. Here at DaRae & Friends, we’re all about giving back, whether it’s through donations or free catering services. Once a year, we provide free wedding catering to a deserving couple and that’s always such a rewarding experience for us.

What is the most rewarding part of your business? One of the best things about cooking is the instant gratification. I’m able to cook something and give it away on the same day and I love being able to have that immediate satisfaction of making someone happy. It’s incredibly rewarding.

How do you define “success”? To me, success is the happiness that you bring to other people.

Where do you see your business in the next 5 years? I love where our business is today so I would be perfectly happy if our business remained how it is in the next 5 years.

This blog series is entitled, “The Heart Behind”. You were chosen because of your love for people and your caring attitude. How do you pass your grace and love onto your customers? Growing up, my grandmother and aunts taught me that you could express your love for people by feeding them. I’m blessed that I get to feed people everyday, but I also want to spread love and grace through comfort. That’s why I read the obituaries every day and bring food to those who are mourning a loved one. My hope is that they’re able to find comfort through the food that I provide in order to help them get through their difficult time.

What advice would you give someone who was considering starting his or her own business? Make a business plan for everything. Businesses have many moving parts so it’s important to make sure that each aspect is getting tended to. Having your own business is extremely rewarding so remember to enjoy the experience and give back to your community however you see fit.


Isn't it just so fun getting to know Kentucky's wonderful wedding vendors a little more? We certainly think so! We adore DaRae and it doesn't surprise us one bit at the success her business has had because of the heart she's put into it.

Don't forget to check out their amazing giveaway they're doing! Good luck if you enter to win!!

GIVE LOVE. GET LOVE. | Random Acts Of Kindness Challenge

How'd the first week go, friends?! We've heard stories of leaving big tips, giving free babysitting, bringing friends in need a warm meal, and the list goes on. You all are rockstars & we're so thankful to hear about how you're giving this holiday season!



Here are three new ideas for some Random Acts of Kindness for this week:

1. Pay for the person behind you in the drive through.

2. Take hot cocoa to the Salvation Army bell ringers.

3. Leave the biggest tip you can to an unsuspecting waiter/waitress.


Sometimes it's the smallest things that make the biggest impacts. Go spread some love, y'all, and have a great weekend! XOXO