Vendor Spotlight – R.E.M. Video and Photography

What is your vision/mission statement at R.E.M Video & Photography?

The ultimate goal is to capture as many priceless and eventful moments possible, in the most professional and discreet manner.

What sets you apart from other special events photographers and videographers?

We meet with each couple and try to customize each package to fit their needs and personal style. Every video and album is designed as a unique film/book to tell a wonderful story of the wedding day. More than a straightforward documentary, there are creative touches that help bring out the romanticism and emotions of the day. We believe that every wedding is different and deserves personal attention.

What can a couple expect their experience with R.E.M. to be like?

Each video and photo shoot is customized to the couple. We meet with each client to discuss their project and incorporate each couple’s ideas and vision into their video. Once we’re filming on the big day, whether we’re with the bride at her dressing location, at the ceremony itself, or capturing your guests’ dance moves at the reception, we remain unobtrusive in your wedding day scene.

What are some of the ways that couples can customize their photography/videography package with R.E.M.?

We can customize your video and photo package at your consultation. Before you come in, think about how much you want to spend. Once you’re here, we find what services are the most important to you and will fit within your budget. With all this information we will create a custom package that will meet your needs.

How quickly after the wedding can a couple expect to receive their wedding photo album and/or wedding video?

We can guarantee a final video up to two weeks after the wedding day (an expedited service). Otherwise, a completed edit can take up to 16 weeks. We spend between 30 and 40 hours in postproduction to guarantee the highest quality product possible.

A time frame for completing photo albums really varies from couple to couple. Depending on when you choose the pictures and when we receive them, finalizing a wedding album can take between three and six weeks.

What advice do you have for brides & grooms when considering a photographer or videographer?

The best way to start is to decide how you want the final overall look and feel of your video and photos to turn out. This is different for every couple, but it is definitely a decision that you need to make before the ball really gets rolling. Look at samples of different work to see who really matches your style and personality.

Please enjoy the following gallery from R.E.M. Photo and Video









2011 Bride’s Choice Awards™

Chicago, IL – January 26, 2011 – WeddingWire, the nation’s leading wedding technology company, is thrilled to announce Music By Design has been selected to receive the prestigious annual WeddingWire Bride’s Choice Awards™ 2011 for the DJ category!

Recognition for the Bride’s Choice Awards™ 2011 is determined by recent reviews and extensive surveys from over 750,000 WeddingWire newlyweds. Their past clients are among those that shared their experiences on WeddingWire, the largest wedding review site in the nation.

Music By Design stands among the top five percent of wedding professionals in the WeddingWire community, representing quality and service excellence within the wedding industry. Awards were given to the top wedding professionals across 20 service categories, from wedding venues to wedding photographers, and were based on the overall professional achievements throughout the past year.

“WeddingWire is honored to celebrate the success of the top-rated wedding professionals within the WeddingWire community,” said Timothy Chi, WeddingWire’s Chief Executive Officer. “With the annual Bride’s Choice Awards™ program, WeddingWire has the unique opportunity to recognize the best wedding professionals across the US and Canada. We applaud Music By Design for their professionalism and dedication to enhancing the wedding planning experience last year.”

We are happy to announce that Music By Design is among the very best DJs within the WeddingWire Network, which includes leading wedding planning sites WeddingWire, Martha Stewart Weddings, Project Wedding and Weddingbee. Music By Design would like to thank its past clients for nominating them to receive the Bride’s Choice Awards™ 2011.

Click the link for more information on Music By Design.

Click here for the official Music By Design press release.

Music By Design – The Knot Best of Weddings 2011

Music By Design named “Best of Weddings” in THE KNOT BEST OF WEDDINGS 2011.

Chicago, IL – January 26, 2011 – Music By Design is pleased to announce they have been selected as a 2011 winner in The Knot Best of Weddings, a special section in The Knot magazine and on Weddings from The Knot (NASDAQ: KNOT; www.theknot.com), the number-one wedding resource that’s most trusted by brides.

The Knot Best of Weddings 2011 provides a “by brides, for brides” guide to the top wedding professionals across the country, and is a must-have when it comes to selecting the best-of-the-best wedding resources. From New York florists and Seattle bridal salons to DC makeup artists, engaged couples will find detailed feedback on local wedding businesses reviewed by thousands of newlyweds who had great things to say.

“My husband and I would recommend Music By Design to anyone who is in need of a DJ. Not only were the prices reasonable but they accommodated every single one of our needs! After the wedding we received so many comments about the excellent selection of the music that was played. We also were told that with most weddings our family and friends attend the music is always too loud, obnoxious, and offending to certain groups of the crowd. Our wedding reception was different – the DJ energized the crowd, picked music that EVERYONE like, and kept the party on the dance floor. All of our guests were pleased and we had a great time. Thank you Music By Design for all the hard work and for helping my husband and I the wedding of our dream and so much more!!!!”

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About The Knot Inc.
The Knot Inc. (NASDAQ: KNOT; www.theknot.com) is a leading lifestage media company. The Company’s flagship brand, The Knot, is the nation’s leading wedding resource, reaching well over a million engaged couples each year through the #1 wedding website, TheKnot.com. Other products from The Knot include The Knot national and local magazines, The Knot books (published by Random House and Chronicle) and television programming bearing The Knot name (aired on the Style and Comcast Networks). The Company also owns WeddingChannel.com, the most visited wedding gift registry website.

Vendor Spotlight – Invitations by Design

Wedding invitations provide more than the date and time of your big day; they give your guests a glimpse into the tone and theme of your event. Many couples go the extra mile when it comes to designing the most important stationary of their lives, seeking design professionals to add the special touches they’re looking for. Invitations by Design knows how to help clients just like these. Owner Tara Vanderheyden gave us an in-depth look at the services and expertise her company offers.

How did you arrive at designing wedding invitations? Tell me a little about your background.

I have always enjoyed art and design. I studied design at Illinois Institute of Art.  Because I enjoyed design I would always help friends and family members with stationary and invitations. I have always loved designing invitations and other pieces for celebrations. This hobby became a company nearly three years ago, the same year I was married, my sister, and sister-in-law were also married. That year wedding planning and wedding stationary took up all my free time, I was always helping and designing. That year turned my hobby into a business!

How do you usually work with couples who want to order online?

Since all of our invitations are custom designed, most of our clients work with us at our office. Those clients who want to work with us online and over the phone still get to work one-on-one with a designer. We discuss in detail their ideas. We decide on colors and invitation type. Our designers work to design a few custom invitation options that are sent to the client as PDF images for review. After a few minor tweaks on the invitation of their choosing, the next step is a custom sample. The client is able to see a sample of their invitation with their names and wedding details. This really helps them know they are getting the right invitation.

How do you capture the personality of a couple in their invites?

Each invitation is designed around the couples theme or personality. In our first meeting we discuss what they are looking for and put these details into the design process. The couple and their event become the inspiration for the design. The final invitation design expresses the feel of the event.

Walk me through the design approval process with your customers before you print their invitations.

1.                   Pick colors, invitation type and collect the wedding day details.

2.                   Create a custom quote for the invitation designed.

3.                   Create a custom sample.

4.                   Update any details, design inserts, update sample.

5.                   Review final sample and get approval.

6.                   Order supplies, print, and hand assemble order.

7.                   If addressing services are ordered print all clients envelopes, stuff, seal and stamp envelopes

8.                   Mail invitations or deliver to client.

9.                   Move forward on “Day of” items such as programs, place cards, menus, favors, welcome cards/baskets and so on. (The process repeats with these products as well).

Give me an idea of the materials you use (paper-wise) and the cost that comes with each.

We offer many shapes sizes and colors. We have over 80 invitation shapes and sizes to choose from and can create custom designs as well. Our paper colors offer a rainbow of choices including matte, metallic, textured and patterned papers. All of our papers are made with components of recycled products and are made without chlorine. We also offer three stocks made of 100% post-consumer fiber and 11 tree-free stocks made from either cotton or bamboo fibers.

Do you offer package deals to couples who buy all their wedding stationary from you (response cards, place settings, etc.)?

We offer savings to our clients for ordering larger quantities or multiple pieces. We design packages for each client with savings specific to their order. Our clients can order 58 invitations and get savings for that exact amount without having to order unneeded extra invitations. Where we save on our supplies we share that with our clients.

How has your business changed since its opening?

Well, starting as an idea, much has changed in the past three years . . . we grew up! We have expanded or designs and products that we offer:

§     Custom wedding invitations (limitless options)

§     Addressing and mailing services

§     Welcome letters and baskets

§     “Day of Items” place cards, programs, menus, table numbers, favors and seating charts

We added employees (a talented designer, Ashley and a wonderful production manager, Courtney; thanks girls, I couldn’t have done it without you!). In addition:

§     We won the WeddingWire Bride’s Choice Award in 2009 and 2010

§     We were featured in the Winter 2009-10 issue of Chicago Social Brides with an editorial piece about Chicago themed weddings (showing a save-the-date and some table numbers)

§     We were featured in 2010 Chicago Style Weddings “Designers Challenge” in a two page spread

§     Our work was seen on WGN’s midday news, June 22, 2010

§     This year we opened our first office (no more meetings in coffee shops)

Why should couples consider you over the competition?

Invitations by Design is the best way to get custom invitations. We only offer custom invitations so each client is able to find the perfect invitation for their event. We also take the stress out of invitations. Our designers will help with wording, paper choices, and of course, the perfect design. To make things even easier, we offer addressing services (to print, stuff, stamp and seal all your envelopes). We also offer favors, welcome baskets, place cards, programs and more to help with every detail in one stop. We take the design and tie it into every printed piece. Every step of the way, we are here to help.

What do you enjoy most about your job?

I am lucky to have a job that lets me be creative and is always changing. Owning a business is not an easy task but it allows me to express my creativity every day! I get to work with brides to bring their vision to life. What a great way to spend my day!

Invitations by Design
100 Illinois Street
Regus Suite 200
St. Charles, IL 60174
847.975.5223
Map It

Wedding Invitations – Common Mistakes

Please enjoy the following creations by Invitations by Design.

Vendor Spotlight – Elizabeth Wray Design

The Elizabeth Wray Design staff invites you to visit their boutique design studio located in Geneva, IL. Weddings have been their passion since 1992. The EWD gals have all been brides…they know the trials and joys that come with planning a beautiful wedding. Their artful design aesthetic, knowledge of the hottest trends, and their sassy sensibility, has created a niche in the Chicago wedding market. Designing flowers is their specialty… fresh & fragrant, extraordinary & elegant, lavish & luxurious, crisp & clean, charming & graceful, funky & fun.

What’s your vision/mission statement at Elizabeth Wray Design?

What ever you imagine, we’ll make it happen!

We strive to create every bride’s dream wedding, exactly how she envisioned it!

How has the company grown and changed since it began in 1992?

Although we’ve always been in Geneva, I started working out a space in my house. The area was large enough to have staff working with me, but for the bigger events we had to use the spare bedroom for extra space.

In 2002 we moved into our urban chic loft studio. We renovated the space in 2006 and added a wedding planning staff and a design staff for custom paper goods.

What can a bride expect from her experience with Elizabeth Wray Design?

Brides that come to Elizabeth Wray Design can expect the whole custom wedding design experience. Every wedding we do is different, so we love to work with your ideas and inspirations to create a beautiful event! We’ll create your design and you’ll be able to pick out flower types & colors. You can also choose from all of our many rental containers, custom printed items, and other services.

What sets you apart from other florists in the Chicago area?

We are a full service wedding and event florist. We take care of you by taking care of the details…all of your wedding flowers and decor elements. We distribute your wedding party’s personal flowers and stay until the ceremony ends. One of our signature services is re-purposing your ceremony flowers. We combine, redesign & add other elements to present them differently from ceremony to reception. Before we leave your reception, we make sure everything is in place.

What’s the design team like at Elizabeth Wray Design?

Our fabulous team of designers is very diverse in their ages and strengths. Some designers do the florals; some do graphic design, and some do wedding planning design. Collectively we have a very similar design aesthetic, but our different personalities allows us to view our designs in different lights to make sure every wedding event is completely unique.

Can you tell us a little more about your wedding planning services?

We’re available for full wedding planning and day of wedding planning. We’ve become experts in knowing all of the best vendors, and have the experience to anticipate your needs. We never receive referral fees so we have the unique ability to negotiate the best value on your behalf. Wedding planning is perfect for the busy bride who doesn’t want an ounce of stress on her wedding day!

Elizabeth Wray Design
15 West State Street, Ste. B
Geneva, IL 60134-2253
(630) 232-1975

Please enjoy the following creations by Elizabeth Wray Design.

BBB Torch Award Winner – Music By Design

TorchAwardThe Better Business Bureau of Chicago & Northern Illinois (BBB) announces the 2011 winners of the fourteenth annual Torch Award for Marketplace Ethics, which spotlights companies that exemplify ethical business practices. Music By Design, Ltd. is the Torch Award Winner for Category V – The awards luncheon ceremony will be hosted at the Holiday Inn Mart Plaza in Chicago on Thursday, December 2nd.

“As the headlines have reflected, ethical business practices have taken a beating on Wall Street, the banking industry, housing and other marketplaces,” says Steve J. Bernas, president & CEO of the Better Business Bureau serving Chicago and Northern Illinois. “The Torch Award for Marketplace Ethics honors companies that make a demonstrable effort to promote ethical business practices, and we are pleased to see the number of businesses who, in the eyes of their customers and other associates, meet that threshold.”

The award recipients are selected by an independent panel of judges each year. Bernas continued, “This year’s participants and winners have reaped many rewards as a result of their commitment to achieving and maintaining high ethical standards including stronger customer loyalty, enhanced reputation, and greater employee commitment.”

The 2011 competition had the largest number of nominations and entries with nearly 2,000 nominations from a wide variety of businesses, explained Bernas.

“This variety in entries and the subsequent winners and honorable mentions reflect an increasing interest by more and more companies in using ethical business practices in their operations as their primary method of self-regulation,” Bernas said. “This belief is the cornerstone of the BBB system.”

Companies are judged in five categories based on their number of employees. Bernas noted that the presentation of awards is just the tip of the iceberg for companies that do it right by working with their customers, suppliers and other organizations in an ethical manner. It remains important for people to inform the BBB when they have done business with a company that did an exemplary job. Many of the nearly 2,000 nominees for this award were the result of consumers alerting the BBB to companies who ‘do it right’.

 

Vendor Spotlight – Caroline DeVillo Couture

If you’re looking for a stunning, timeless, and breathtaking wedding gown, look no further than Chicago-based designer, Caroline DeVillo. Her Hollywood-inspired couture gowns are elegant, classic, and sure to make an impression.

Caroline DeVillo always dreamed of becoming a fashion designer, but when it came time for college, she studied Marketing of Textiles and Apparel at the University of Illinois to become a buyer instead. Plans change and along the way, she found herself attending the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandise (FIDM) in Los Angeles. During her time in California, she began to work as a stylist and costume designer for TV, film, and print. After growing homesick, she decided to return to Chicago and take the plunge into design. Drawing on inspiration from Old Hollywood and her costuming experience, she designed her first line of couture bridal gowns in 2003. In 2006, her burgeoning bridal fashion career led her to open her own store in Bucktown.

Brides can choose from three couture collections to find their perfect wedding dress. Caroline DeVillo offers gowns that range from simple and understated to fun and flirty to sexy and glamorous. Whatever your personal style, Caroline DeVillo’s stunning masterpieces are certainly worth a glance.

Brides can also participate in the design process with Caroline DeVillo’s I.D. Collection. The I.D. (Individual Design) collection allows brides the opportunity to mix and match their favorite looks to create a dress that represents their unique personality and individual style.

Caroline DeVillo can also help dress the rest of your bridal party in style. She offers a beautiful collection of cocktail gowns that are perfect for bridesmaids and her customizable Kiddy Cocktail Collection provides great options for flower girls and children ages two and up.

Caroline Devillo Couture
http://carolinedevillo.com/
1616 North Damen Avenue
Chicago, IL 60647-5536
(773) 342-0096

Vendor Spotlight – Jenny Yoo

Designer Jenny Yoo Defies Wedding Dress Convention

Although choosing to wear your mother’s old wedding dress on your big day, might be a sentimental gesture, chances are, you probably want to wear a dress that is as contemporary and hip as you are – a unique dress that is indicative of present-day fashion (no offense to Mom, of course). Chicago area dress designer, Jenny Yoo, has a progressive, yet simple approach to wedding dress design that portrays this aesthetic ideal quite beautifully.

Yoo grew up outside of Philadelphia, and later attended New York’s Parsons School of Design. Subsequently, she started her own company, under the philosophy of creating understated and stylish dresses for bridesmaids – as to alter the preconceived notion that bridesmaid dresses must be ornate and overdone. Today, the Jenny Yoo Collection offers dresses for all wedding roles: bridesmaids, flowergirls, and of course, brides.

Yoo’s dresses all have many common stylistic themes. The bride dresses show a simplistic elegance, presenting themselves as light and airy, while emphasizing that the all-white color scheme is one tradition worth keeping. Yoo’s opposition to convention is clear in her bridesmaid designs. Keeping consistent with modern fashion, they have little to no ornamentation, but all the while, appear extremely refined and feminine. Even the flowergirl dresses maintain a certain sense of sophistication, but are still age appropriate.

For more information on Yoo’s dresses, visit www.jennyyoo.com.

Jenny Yoo – Chicago
730 north franklin street, suite 602 / chicago, il 60654
312.642.2327 / chicago@jennyyoo.com