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Brunch with the Brides | An Inside Look into the Fall/Winter 2019 Mag Release

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Recently, we had the pleasure of bidding farewell to summer and saying hello to our brand new fall/winter 2019 issue high above downtown Dallas at The Venue at 400 N. Ervay! As a team, we always look forward to these exciting mag release events as a culmination of hard work and a creative team effort from so many industry professionals. It’s so much fun to get together and celebrate a new issue full of amazing resources for North Texas brides!

We couldn’t have pulled off this mag release event without several of DFW’s best wedding vendors. Planner extraordinaire Lindsey Zamora Events helped design and execute this brunch, while Root + Bloom provided floral designs and installations that brought such life to the regal, traditional space. We wanted this venue to feel inviting and comfortable for all of our guests, so a lounge area from Coral Lane Rentals, luxe linens from Lawson Event Rentals and beautiful chairs and rentals from Posh Couture were all must-haves! You can’t have a brunch without delicious and beautiful bites, and Food Glorious Food knocked it out of the park! DJ Jason Esquire kept the atmosphere lively while Beyond provided TV rentals for our behind the scenes videos to play throughout the meal. Kristen Dee Photography captured the morning on camera, snapping every detail and new friendships being made: one of our favorite parts of these events! Our team spent the night at the incredible Adolphus Hotel nearby, and each guest in attendance got to leave with delectable favors by XO Cakery. What an awesome day all around! Cheers to a new mag full of the best in local wedding inspiration. We sure love what we do!

Photos // Kristen Dee Photography

Ask the Expert – Q&A with Dallas Wedding Photographer Megan Kay

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It’s definitely important to love your wedding photographer’s style, but getting to know your photographer is just as important — if not more so! Building a relationship and trusting your photographer throughout the process can allow them to capture the moments you’ve always envisioned on your special day. We sat down with Megan Buhr of Megan Kay Photography as she talked all things weddings — first looks, engagement shoot attire, advice for choosing a venue and more. (Don’t miss her brilliant tips on how to choose your engagement attire so you get the most use out of them.) Enjoy!


Photo // Megan Kay Photography

Describe your photography style.

I like to describe my photography as bright, timeless, and true to life. I don’t like being considered either “light and airy” or “dark and moody” because I don’t want to create photographs that follow a passing trend. I am passionate about capturing my brides’ wedding days in a way that remains relevant and brings back the joy, emotions, and memories in the decades to come.

Tell us what you love most about being a photographer.

My favorite part about being a wedding photographer is working alongside brides. I will never grow tired of feeling the excitement with brides through the planning process and all the emotions on the wedding day. I believe the relationships I have with my brides are the most valuable piece of equipment I can bring on a wedding day.

While having the best camera gear is important, nothing can replace the understanding and communication we grow prior to the day of the wedding. I love showing up to a wedding day knowing all the little moments and details the bride values and wants captured, so she is able to sit back, relax and fully enjoy being a bride while trusting I am capturing all of the details that are important for her to look back on and  relive her wedding day.

What advice do you have for choosing engagement attire?

I recommend my clients have some fun when deciding what to wear for their engagement sessions! I want them to feel comfortable and confident in their outfits, but it is also okay to take risks and dress according to trends and the colors of the season. I always recommend dressing up for at least one outfit during their engagement session.

Engagement session photos might be printed and shared more than one’s wedding photos, so dressing up is never a bad idea! For my clients who are struggling to figure out what color schemes to dress in, I suggest that they even consider pairing their engagement session outfits with their wedding day colors, so their photo will match their wedding website or Save the Date invitation.

What advice do you have for a bride selecting her venue?

There are a lot of important details to consider when selecting a venue. In terms of photography, my most valuable piece of advice would be to encourage her to look at photographs of their ceremony space. If the ceremony space is indoors, I would encourage her to look for places that still have a good amount of natural lighting.

Photographers can bring additional lighting sources in to make up for a lack of natural light, but we do prefer to avoid using flashes (especially during ceremonies) when possible. If the venue’s ceremony space is outdoors, I would encourage the bride to think about where the sun is hitting the space at the time of her desired ceremony. Especially in the summer months, direct sunlight can be extremely harsh and hot here in North Texas. I would rather my couples select spaces that allow for shade or soft sunlight during the ceremony, so they are best able to focus on the moment and vows with one another, rather than risk any distraction from the bright and often hot sun.

Are you pro first looks?

I am not pushy one way or the other when it comes to first looks. I truly want my couples to have the wedding day that they have always envisioned and respect the traditions that they might have in place. However, I am also passionate about having time to give my clients the best and greatest amount of photos possible on a wedding day. I usually speak with my couples about what they value the most and give them the potential pros and cons of a first look on their wedding day.

Generally, a couple will get more photographs of the two of them if they allow time for a first look. If a couple wants to go straight to the cocktail hour or reception after their ceremony, then they definitely would benefit from having a first look and time to take pictures prior to the ceremony. If their wedding falls within the winter months when the sun sets at an earlier time, I also often encourage a first look, so we have the opportunity to take more photographs outdoors with natural lighting.

I do think a lot of clients are afraid that all photographers want to talk them into a first look, but most of us are happy to accommodate our couples’ vision for their day. I would encourage all couples to at least talk about the pros and cons of a first look when it comes to their unique and individual wedding day timeline.

megan kay photography

 A special thanks to Megan of Megan Kay Photography for sharing her helpful insights today! To learn more about how she can capture your engagement and wedding, you can contact Megan directly through her Brides of North Texas vendor page.

North Texas Wedding Planner Profile: Gold Dust Event Co.

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Owned by two passionate sisters with a serious love for meticulously curated events, Gold Dust Event Co. is a Dallas-Fort Worth based wedding planning company ready to serve North Texas brides! Sisters Megan and Rachel thrive on designing upscale, charming and personalized celebrations throughout Texas and beyond. Their team of experienced professionals has extensive experience creating custom events for all types of clients. Southern sophisticated or glitz and glam, this dynamic duo can make your wedding dreams come true!

“We feel blessed to have each other throughout this journey and differ from other planners that you get both of us! We have been working together since 1986, so we would say we work really well together! We each bring our own strengths to the planning process and hope to cover with those traits every angle of what the bride and groom need. A fabulous eye for design and styling and the ability to organize, budget and plan in our sleep.”

Take a look at Rachel and Megan’s work below and get to know these two better as you scroll!

A Favorite Styled Shoot

gold dust event co north texas wedding planners

gold dust event co north texas wedding planners

gold dust event co north texas wedding planners

Photos // BeatBox Portraits

From Rachel and Megan: “This shoot just made us have the warm fuzzies for weeks and anytime we see a photo those same feelings come back. Between the amazing sunset that matched the color palette to the models who everyone thought were a true couple, to the stunning florals, everything was just perfection.”

Styled shoots are meant to give brides ideas and inspiration, but how do you turn that into your own one-of-a-kind wedding day vision? The sisters’ advice is simple. “We love when a couple has a unique ideas for their wedding design and we can work together to curate an overall aesthetic. From bohemian to rustic to garden, we love all types of events.”

Real Wedding Love

gold dust event co north texas wedding planners

gold dust event co north texas wedding planners

gold dust event co north texas wedding planners

gold dust event co north texas wedding planners

gold dust event co north texas wedding planners

Photos // A Sea of Love

How gorgeous is this modern boho scene? Details to-die-for everywhere you turn. Megan and Rachel share more: “Lance and Lydia’s wedding is one of our favorites because the church was absolutely stunning and the reception was a total transformation at a hall in the Texas countryside. Our bride loved the bohemian style, but is also minimalist so we ‘married’ the two looks together. Combing rich textures, unique florals and boho patterns throughout the hall created an over the top space where the 700 guests could dance the night away.”

When it comes to following trends, the ladies at Gold Dust simply believe in wowing your guests in a way that’s true to you. “We love seeing our couples’ guests provided an experience and brides and grooms that are excited to host their guests and offer them a variety of surprises and entertainment throughout their big day. We always encourage our brides to take a classic approach that they will still love in 20 years. We feel that any aesthetic can be timeless, glamorous and personalized to the bride and groom.”

As you can see, the Gold Dust team is extremely detail-oriented and thoughtful in their approach to planning. Learn more about the services they can provide via their Brides of North Texas vendor profile, and don’t hesitate to reach out!

Vintage Ivory Styled Shoot from Billie Ball & Co.

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Antiqued details and organic florals bring a historic venue to life in this vintage ivory styled shoot from Billie Ball & Co.! An amazing team of DFW wedding vendors met at The Schoolhouse, a new venue in south Dallas, in a beautiful, historic school building flooded with natural light. The tall ceilings and blank ivory walls make for the perfect backdrop for any wedding scene, like this one captured by Laning Photography! Top Tier Rentals provided tabletop details to swoon over, like patterned plates, vintage candlesticks and lovely ivory linens, keeping the overall aesthetic clean and simple while letting the smallest details shine. Billie Ball & Co.‘s blush and ivory florals pop against the bride’s gowns, a long-sleeve lace option and a sultry halter neck with an open back. Tease to Please Hair & Makeup gave her a chic updo with loose, face-framing tendrils and a smoky neutral makeup palette. A simple yet stunning altar of overflowing greenery takes center stage on one end of the venue, but anywhere you turn within The Schoolhouse, you’ll like what you see! Cheers!

Photos // Laning Photography

From the planner: “I coordinated this shoot for a brand new venue in Oak Cliff called The Schoolhouse. It’s an adorable historic elementary school turned blank slate wedding venue, with loads of charm and vintage touches.”

Ask the Expert – Q&A with Dallas Photographer Madeline Shea

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When you’re trying to find vendors that fit your style, planning a wedding can feel like dating all over again. We’re here to help simplify the search, so consider us your matchmaker today. When it comes to wedding photographers, it’s important to find one that is invested in telling your story, not just taking pictures. Madeline of Madeline Shea Photography is a talented, Dallas-based photographer that loves documenting love and sharing those stories. And just as important to her is developing a relationship with her clients so she knows how to perfectly capture the moments whether she’s at a grand event in Texas or an intimate weekend-long wedding in Venice, Italy. Learn more about what is possible with your wedding photographer in this edition of Ask the Expert!

madeline shea photography

Photo // Madeline Shea Photography

Describe your photography style.

My style has been nurtured, molded, carefully critiqued, and perfected, to be just the right fit for my clients. I want to capture the moments that tell your story. Whether it be you and your love wiping away tears as you read your vows, belly laughing so hard you can’t breathe or dancing around during a shoot, I want to capture the organic, authentic moments together. I want you to be yourself. The looks, the laughs, the loud and quiet moments when you think no one is looking, and everything in between. It’s all about the details. Together, let’s get creative as we rewrite your story through the sweet, intimate moments of your wedding day!

Tell us what you love most about being a photographer.

My absolute favorite part about being a photographer is forming relationships! Getting to meet so many people, travel this beautiful world and tell people’s stories brings me so much joy and makes this job an absolute dream. There is nothing more special than connecting with my clients on a level that builds a friendship before their wedding day. This automatically makes documenting their day that much more special. Documenting love and sharing stories are just a few of the reasons why I love being a wedding photographer. 

Film or digital?


What has been a favorite moment you have captured?

I recently photographed an intimate wedding in Venice, Italy, which was first and foremost a dream but also one of the sweetest weddings I have had the honor to capture and be a part of. Destination weddings are so fun for me not just for the traveling but because I get to spend more than just the wedding day with my clients and really get to know their friends and family throughout the wedding weekend. This couple had so many amazing plans for their romantic intimate wedding in Venice; as any wedding though, sometimes not everything goes according to plan.

We were in Venice during “Aqua Alta” season which is high tide in Venice. Needless to say the original ceremony plan had to be scratched due to the flooding and crowds. We ended up stumbling upon a quiet local square that seemed to be the perfect spot for them to get married. As they stood in the streets of Venice and exchanged their own vows, I felt so moved emotionally that I was chosen to document these memories for them and share their story. Many locals passing by stopped to listen in to the ceremony, cried and cheered as the bride and groom said “I do”!

The evening was nothing short of magical and was followed with an amazing evening of celebration throughout Venice. They ended the evening by dancing the night away in the iconic St. Mark’s square. It was truly incredible and something I will always remember and forever be grateful for!

Where are your favorite places to shoot?

Destinations outside of Texas are hands down my favorite! I love nothing more than getting to explore with my couples and adventure around to their favorite places! Between a wedding on a beach in Mexico or on a mountain top in a National Park, I truly love them all! One of my favorite places I traveled to earlier this year was Roatan, Honduras, for a beautiful destination wedding!

madeline shea wedding photographer

Special thanks to Madeline for sharing her insights with us today! To get in touch with Madeline Shea Photography, you can contact her directly via her Brides of North Texas profile here.