Wedding: Editor’s Note: Cool Weddings

There was a time when all you heard about were summer weddings: Ooh, she’s going to be a June bride, and all that. But in the past several years, cooler-weather weddings have been significantly on the rise; the fall is always absolutely packed with them, and more and more people seem to be using the holidays — let’s ring in the new year at our reception! — as an already-festive reason to celebrate during that time of year. I can tell from talking with wedding industry professionals and brides-to-be picking their dates. I can tell from the invitations landing in my mailbox. And I can tell by the three-wedding Saturdays the Center City church below my balcony (on which I may or may not be peeping) hosts once Labor Day has passed.

And I have to admit, it’s my personal favorite time of year for a wedding. I just think the whole season — the colors, the smells, the weather, the aforementioned festive vibe — sets the perfect atmosphere for the biggest, most important party of your life. So when we started planning this issue, we wanted to capture all that the season — and of course, everything our region’s best vendors — has to offer your fall/winter wedding.

We asked four amazing area florists to show us what happens — to both the look of your arrangements and their cost — when you incorporate beautiful non-floral elements into your centerpieces. (Check out page 90 for seasonal twists using everything from white birch to fiddlehead fern and lemon leaves.) We asked five talented bakers from all around Philly to create cakes where just one look at their tempting, so-pretty decorations lets you know exactly what’s inside (page 74). We asked six — count ’em, six — working-in-Philly hairstylists and makeup artists to team up and create three stunning bridal looks to give you inspiration for when you walk into your first consultation. (The best part: You can actually book any one of them to achieve your own wedding-day perfection. Get their digits on page 100). And we asked two Philly couples to share their autumn
weddings with us — their ideas, their personal touches, and, of course, the wonderful work of the local vendors who made it all happen (pages 80 and 96).

And let’s not forget the fashion. To help get your dress-shopping juices flowing, we took the dreamy silhouettes from today’s designer collections and shot them, snow-covered (you’ll see! Starting on page 64), in Greystone Hall, West Chester’s gorgeous early 20th-century mansion. (That’s our crew above, getting all the pieces in place for our shoot.) We also took one of our favorite trends of the season — a striking, playful usage of color  — and rounded up some looks we just know you’ll love.

There’s lots more inside this issue — from how to make sure you’ve got an iron-clad vendor contract, to how on earth you’re supposed to merge all your stuff (and finances, and families) together now that you’re getting married, to advice from a guy who’s been there on whether or not to invite your ex to the wedding. We’ll also explain what, exactly, is going on with your parents, if they’ve been acting more than a little nuts since the day you got engaged. (We promise: You’re — they’re — not alone.) But if there’s anything we missed, be sure to give me a shout at (And if you haven’t already, be sure to sign up for our bi-monthly e-newsletter, Bridal Bulletin, brought to your inbox from yours truly and all of us here at PW.) Congratulations! And happy planning.